Thursday, April 25, 2013

Waiting For You to Find Your Library Card

I have just done some rough math to determine that I have spent in my career 270 hours waiting for you (the general you, you in particular are faultless) to dig out your library card, a little more than 11 unsleeping and continuous days all at once. Fortunately I haven't had to do it all at once, but have managed to break it up into little 5 to 100 second pieces scattered carefully across 20 years. This breaking up the waiting is the key, as the smaller the pieces are the easier they are to digest.

Now here is my advice and whatnot to you:

I know it can be pretty anxiety inducing to be looking for that card with the time pressure and everyone waiting and everything, but I am totally cool with it. I am a professional. I have to be sitting here anyway. Just relax and breathe. You have 30 seconds.

Wait, don't panic. 30 seconds is, first of all, a surprisingly long time. And it's not like you're in trouble if you can't find your card in 30 seconds. You'll just need to switch gears. It is hard, but you can do it and I will be here to help. I will be helping and indicating the end of the 30 seconds by saying "I can use your license to check you out." Yes it is brutal and wrenching to give up that search, but it must be done. You are strong enough. Hand me your license.

Question time!:

Can you keep looking for your card while I am transacting business with your license?

 Yes, if you aren't too distracted. Be careful. It's a fine line easily crossed.

Can you share your delight with me when you find your card?

You won't be able to resist. But, yes, it is a triumph and I rejoice with you.

Should you ask if I need your card now that you found it?

No! Big faux pas. Let's just be quietly happy together. And maybe move your card to just a little bit better place.


  1. This recalls for me a very happy moment in my life: The Blogger showed me how to reserve books online, though I have yet to memorize my long library card number. It has saved me a lot of time perusing the library. I have since reserved many books while in the comfort of my home; I have also asked for inter-library loans. I would like, therefore, to donate a few hours of my life to the Blogger's life. So, Blogger, you now have at least 20 hours of life more than you once did.

    1. I am touched by the donation, but value you too much to bear the thought of your life being shortened by any amount, no matter how great the benefit to me. My refusal of this extraordinary gift is only an expression of love.


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