Friday, April 22, 2016

Not for the weak of stomach

This is the letter I hope we receive one day at my library. But then, perhaps, we already have:

Dear Branch Manager:

Usually I avoid your entire fiction section because of the man who sits there everyday, smelling of an unspeakable rot and peeing and defecating on all your chairs. But today, after lunching on a large burrito, I was really in the mood for a good mystery, so I ventured over hoping for the best. As I was perusing some old Rex Stouts I became so absorbed in them that I forgot to breathe in only through my mouth and reflexively breathed in through my nose! Alas that your epically smelly patron was within a mere 40 feet of me. His putrid odor slammed into me like a runaway locomotive of raw sewage. I gagged, and then, I'm afraid to say, I threw up my lunch (and a few older bits as well) in a wide arc, all across many dozens of mystery books and covering a rich portion of flooring as well.

Anywhere else I would be mortified. I would report it immediately, and, if at all possible, I would do everything I could to clean it up myself.

However, at your library, I get the impression this sort of thing does not concern you or your patrons, and I can only assume the quart of vomit I left in your fiction section will go completely unnoticed. It might even improve things a bit. I hope so.

Yours in all cordiality,



  1. Graphic content is right!! Is it really that bad? I know of a patron who complained of some perceived very minor "b.o." issue. How can such an obvious situation go unaddressed????

    1. I don't know how to say it other than, yes, it usually is that bad, and I honestly don't know how it can go unaddressed, but is possibly a complicated confluence of a live and let live branch manager and an overly polite and too reticent library public.


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