Monday, May 11, 2009

The Library Card


I hadn't been to the library in about four years b/c the last time I went it seems we managed to rack up over $60 in overdue fines. Figure at a quarter per book per day, even 4 books adds up to $7 in a week. Add into the equation 4 children under the age of 9 and a new house up to the rafters in boxes and, well you can do the math.

But one of the kids needed to reference a book from the honest-to-God library for a school report. So I packed up my pride and most of the kids and drove over to our small-town library and inquired politely at the desk as to whether I still had a vaild card. She clickety-clacked her computer and said (in a rather loud voice for a librarian), "Oh dear, it seems you have some unpaid fines. They're from quite some time ago and it was for a large number of children's books, see?"turning the monitor towads me.

At this point the people behind me are peering at the screen and giving me hoity looks. Trying to retain a shred of dignity, I quickly pull my kids along and tell the librarian, "OK, thanks", with a non-chalant 'I didn't care to check out any books anyway' smile. Not wanting to let it go, she was telling me as I was walking away, "I'm afraid you can't check out anymore books until the fines are paid". I flashed the non-chalant smile once more but kept walking.

Actually I walked right on downstairs to the children's section to gather my thoughts, and it was there that I hatched my evil plan.

I casually strolled over to the children's librarian and ever so cooly asked, "If my son wanted to get a library card, would that be through me or something entirely independent?"
"Oh, that would be completely independent of you" she replied, oblivious to my scheme.

A smile spread across my face as I told her, "Well then my son James here would like to get a library card, please". Before you could say "overdue" she printed out a shiny new card for James. We then took our time moseying through the library, picking out books that interested us and finding the reference books needed for the report. We checked the books out on James' new card, then walked back upstairs to look at one more thing.

Actually, it was just an excuse to walk past the librarian with a pile of books in my arms and watch her puzzled expression out of the corner of my eye.

When I got home, I related the whole story to mu son Patrick. He just looked down at me and said, "You're just takin' down the man, aren't you?"

Now, if we rack up outrageous charges on James' card, we still have Julie.

Beyond that, we may just have to adopt a few more children ....





Image courtesy" vanguardid.com

10 comments:

  1. I love this post! I just moved to a new province and thank goodness I get to start fresh at our library.

    Stopping by from the Wrinkled Mommy, hope you can stop by my blog as well. http://forgetfulmomma.com

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    Replies
    1. As long as there are more libraries (and more un-carded kids), we still have a chance.

      Thanks for stopping by! Off to check yours out now...

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  2. Oh yeah girl, way to pull a fast one on the evil librarian!!!

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    Replies
    1. I'm starting to think evilness is a prerequisite for the job....

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  3. Living in a big city we just go to the "other" library. I understand needing to have a system in place but their fines add up too quickly and don't fit the crime.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, Bridget, you hit the nail on the head. It does not fit the crime. They need to figure something else out.

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  4. I think you're OK for now, but they might catch on when the start checking out books to Rover, Fluffy, and Tweety. ;)

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    Replies
    1. When I run out of kids, the critters are next! Thanks for stopping by, Chris!

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  5. Oh you are evil. I like it! lol
    Hey - we have to do what we have to do right?

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  6. Our library has that scheme figured out already! :-) They are dead serious when it comes to getting fines paid -- it hits $35 and it goes straight to collections. Which I can sort of understand, but with two missing books it could hit that without warning.

    We won't discuss the book I went in to pay for last week that suddenly was never checked to us at all. I had the children's librarian do some investigating and it had been checked out to someone else that same morning, so someone just quietly deleted the fines from our record. I'm glad they found it, but a little upset that I spent so many weeks looking for the thing and nagging my son about it...

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