Overheard in the Library: Overdue Edition

31 May

Our worst offender finally handed back his book today. It was due on September 20, 2010. I you are not aware (because apparently he wasn’t), that was a long time ago. If it was me returning a book after that long, I would walk shamefaced into the library and apologize profusely for having had this book out for so long. I would come up with some excuse. My dog ate it (and then regurgiated it), my friend kidnapped the book and held it for ransom, I read the whole book – one page per day and it took awhile. Anything!

But no. Today the library offender sauntered (yes, sauntered!) into the library and handed me the book.

Me: “Oh! We’ve been looking for this book!”

Offender: “Huh.”

Me: “This book was due on September 30th!”

Offender: “Yeah.”

Me: “That was a long time ago.”

Offender: “Uh huh.”

Me: “That’s a big fine.”

Offender: (Non-plussed) “Oh.”

Me (thinking): Seriously?

Me: “Your fine is $33.25.”

Offender: “Oh.”

As you can see, it was a riviting conversation.

I wanted to tell him, “Way to go! This is our biggest fine this year. You seem so proud of your accomplishment and rightfully so.” But I held it back. Then I wanted to tell him, “Well, I expect to see $33.25 in your hand tomorrow!” but I won’t because the book only has a replacement cost of $5. So instead I told him, “Your fine is $7.25.” And he just shrugged with a blank look on his face and wandered out of the library.

At least we got the book back.



3 Responses to “Overheard in the Library: Overdue Edition”

  1. averageinsuburbia May 31, 2011 at 1:22 pm #

    I read this at work and immediately got a migraine! This kind of behavior makes me feel like I’m going to pop a vessel in my brain! I want to say, “Did the little old lady who paid the taxes who bought the book have you in mind? Did she buy this book out of her meager bank account so it could sit in your locker all year?” At least your book came back in good shape. We received three today in tatters and the students never even blinked and eye. Selfish and irresponsible…

    • freshlymintedlibrarian May 31, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

      Most of our books come back in pretty good shape. Thankfully not many of the students use their lockers in our school so it is a safe place for forgotten books. I think I would explode if we got 3 back in terrible shape. The students should have to pay to replace them!

  2. averageinsuburbia June 1, 2011 at 1:43 am #

    One book was in terrible shape to begin with, I have to admit. It’s the student’s casual attitude that bothers me more than anything.

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