Eins, Swei, Drei, Playboy!
Today was a rather slow day @ the Library, especially after the long holiday weekend. What the Library lacked in volume, however, it made up for in spades through a veritable slow parade of freaks all day long. My day began when an elderly man (69ish) walked up to me at the Reference Desk as I was updating The New York Times Bestseller List, and asked if the Library subscribed to Playboy Magazine, and if so, where it might be? He told me that he had, “Time to kill,” and that he knew that we subscribed in the past so he thought that he would give it a try. A colleague of mine interjected and told the man that we stopped subscribing right around the time he began working @ the Library, 25 odd years ago… The man lamented. I informed him that a nearby library does subscribe and offered to provide directions. He would have none of it. He said that he might as well buy the current issue with gasoline being so expensive and all. He then asked me where we keep the National Geographic? I directed him to the area where the new magazines reside. He gave a half-hearted, “Thanks,” and I went about my business…
Shortly thereafter, “Virus Guy” approached us with a medical emergency. He cut himself on something and was bleeding, so he asked us for a bandage. Alas, we can not provide bandages or any other seemingly innocuous medical supplies (aspirin, bandages, etc…) because these things are considered to be “First Aid,” and for the sake of the liability associated with this type of assistance we are restricted from providing said assistance. It then occurred to me, that we are not allowed to provide bandages, however, some staff members were recently trained to operate a portable defibrillator that the Library has bolted to a wall behind the Circulation Desk… Sorry, can’t help you with that nick. But, if you’re feeling a heart attack coming on, we’d be glad to help you with that by zapping you with umpteen jigawatts –“CLEAR!!”
After Virus Guy got his bleeding under control, he asked if we could possibly find a German video he was looking for elsewhere in the State and have it Interlibrary Loaned from another institution. I told him to fill out the proper form and that we would do our best. He said that the title was Triumph of the Will… And then assured us that he isn’t a Nazi. He assured us that he is doing research, and that is why he wants the movie. I told him that it wouldn’t be a problem since it’s a fairly common historical document… I informed him that we would call him when it arrives. He thanked me and left the building.
One would think that this would be the end of the freak parade, however, it wasn’t. My colleague went out into the stacks to the Young Adult section to pull a book for someone. When he returned, he said that there was a half-asleep guy nearly blocking his way who told him, “Give me 15 or 20 minutes.”
15 or 20 minutes for what?