So here I am after….. oman, HOW long? Feels like a million years. I am still adjusting to a new schedule and dealing with the resultant semi-misery of losing about 20 hours of free time each week (I know… woe is me, boo hoo, whine– could I have some cheese with that please?) I have found, much to my chagrin, that possibly the library isn’t the ideal job for me after all. For one thing, eye strain. Yep, that’s right folks, all day staring at a computer= eye strain. This is not normal for me, generally before this I only had long periods at a computer if I felt like it and with decent lighting. Not that that’s the only reason, the interior of the building is yellow and the light inside is largely dependent sunshine, so on funky days (and as it’s spring, there are plenty) we have only the crappy orangey florescent to work by. It’s like being inside jaundice. AND it gives me a whopping headache. Big fun! Also, there’s the unbelievable amount of interoffice politics that goes on…. I had no idea that chasing your tail was profitable! Oh wait… we’re continually in a ’budget crunch’, so, not so profitable just fun. But, I don’t see anyone galloping to one of the myriad meetings saying anything resembling ’this is going to be so much fun!’ More like, ’if only I had Rickets, they’d let me out of this fucking meeting.’ I was at urban dictionary the other day, and found exactly the word to describe my place of employment: Slacktivism-
The act of participating in obviously pointless activities as an expedient alternative to actually expending effort to fix a problem.
Now, I know that this word was originally aimed in a slightly different direction, but it applies here absolutely. It frustrates me no end. And, the most common complaint from all the employees (but especially people at circulation desks all over), the PATRONS! Let me be clear here– there are some fantastic people who come in and support us. They are nice, polite, pay their fines without complaint and do their level best to return materials on time. These people are truly a blessing, especially when on the heels of one of the many assheads who come in. Folks, I’ve worked in the service industry for a long, long time. Fast food (most recently), sales, server, bartender, etc. I have had many crappy jobs and worked with crappy people and taken crap many times. But this is…. how do folks over yonder put it? Beyond the pale? I think that’s it. The sheer arrogance and overwhelming (and deliberate) stupidity of some of the people who come in is astounding. Just recently, I was yelled at over a 10 cent fine.
Yes, you read that right, one dime. $0.10. And can I just say here–
I mean, really. How cheap can you be? But wait, there’s more! I’ve had people demand that I admit that their fines could somehow be MY fault. I had a person who wasn’t done with a book, (but couldn’t renew the loan because someone was on a waiting list for it) keep the book and refuse to pay the fines (the book was called ’become a better you’… think it worked?). She also got belligerent with us when we had to explain why her account got sent to debt collection after 6 or 7 months of her not paying when the computer marked it as a lost item. Her reasoning was, ’it’s not lost, I still have it but I’m not done with it!’ Lady, you should’ve just bought the book and saved us all a lot of frustration. And the list goes on. Someone made one of my coworkers cry a few weeks ago, and this girl is a pretty tough one, she’s been there for years. In all the years I’ve worked in service, this is the worst behaved group of customers -consistently- I’ve ever seen. You wouldn’t think it’d be that way at a library. I mean, what happened to the time when librarians were FEARED AND REVERED (can you hear the echo?)? When all it took to strike fear into mortal hearts was a loud ’SSHH’. Oh, for the good old days of huge fines and fear. (snicker, chuckle… snort….) Well. There is one good thing that has come out of working there though, I’ve met some fab folks. The trouble is, they’re quitting. Wonder why…. Anyway, a shout out to Sweetie, it’s a pity you’re leaving (at least on my end), but I know it’ll be great for you. The only person I feel truly gets my weird ass brand of humor in that place, I’ll miss ya. And then there’s Princess, who almost always gets my humor and is moving on to be FREE of all the red tape! Yay you!!! Who will be all girly in the midst of so many tomboys? (Sure as hell won’t be me…)
On a lighter note, I was off all this weekend (Yay Me!) and got to spend today reading and basking in the spring sunshine and (best) eating chocolate! I shared with the boy (cause I’m just nice like that) and he unwraps his, pops it in his mouth, then reads me the message inside the foil..
’Go to your special place.’
He looks at me suspiciously and says after a moment
’Why do they want me to do that?’
It is all I can do not to fall apart laughing at his (admittedly inherited) suspicious nature, so I tell him the truth
’It’s a trap. They’re just trying to find all the kids’ special places…’
Then I fall to bits in laughter and he knows I’m fucking with him, but isn’t allowed to say the word… hee, I am evil. The good thing is, he’s finally old enough to know it, and that it’s largely a harmless form of evil (at least when it comes to him) and is getting clever enough to return fire in kind. Kid’s a genius, so when he really gets going, I’ll be in trouble..