Marion…the librarian


The library. I went there tonight. Book lover that I am, I find libraries confusing – I don’t know what it is about my little brain that can’t understand the alphabetizing/shelving system. I can’t even count how many times I’ve asked for help. Get help. And still need help.

Thankfully I knew exactly what I needed today and found it without looking stupid. Heaven forbid I go to the library to learn.

I purchased some 50 and 25 cent books. Poor books. Poor author. Lucky me.

Then I went to check out my other items. Self-checkout. Ok, I can do that. Piece of cake. I’ve done it at other library branches in other counties. No biggie. I approached the scanner. It looked different from the ones I’ve used before. But come on, how hard could it be? First things first. Library card. Scanned it. The screen told me I had library fees. Ooops. I don’t even remember the last time I checked things out from the library…I declined paying the fees. Why not let it accrue some more? All right. Stuck my items on the scanner….I kept getting an error message. It kept making me re-scan. Nothing was working.

You might think this isn’t a big deal. Just go to the non-self-check-out-check-out. If only I could have. There’s a problem; NO longer is there a librarian checking out books. Just computers – error-messaging, unable to clearly explain what I was doing wrong – why it wasn’t scanning.

I wanted to sing-out “MARION, the LIBRARIAN…WHERE IS THE LITTLE OLD LADY IN THE UGLY CARDIGAN SWEATER SCANNING MY BOOKS AND TELLING ME TO HAVE A NICE DAY AND WHEN MY BOOKS ARE DUE?!!??!?!?!??!??!?!?!”

And then. A little old lady with an ugly cardigan came up behind me and told me what I was doing wrong. What the computer couldn’t explain because it’s a computer – not Marion the Librarian. I wanted to hug the lady. To tell her to scan my books for me. After all, that was my favorite thing about libraries when I was little. Watching the librarian skillfully scan the books and do that thing with the binding/spines against the thing…(“thing” is all I know to say – I don’t know library terminology). But no, she walked away. Let me scan on my own. A computer printed a receipt – it asked me if I wanted to skip the receipt – but since I had library fees I decided I should make sure I know the due date. The printer “handed” me my receipt. Not Marion the Librarian.

Marion the Librarian. Where are you?

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