Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Library coincidence number 174


As a connoisseur of coincidence, I cannot resist bringing the latest one I came upon working at my library's front desk. 

This is a true story!

A notable library patron visited us for the first time in a few years. Once upon a time, this man came to the library every single day with an assortment of all his belongings, and an array of what looked to be assorted garbage, packed into four to six Target shopping bags. He never went anywhere without his Target bags. Because of this predilection for Target bags, he was known to the library staff as "Target Bag Man".

Upon reflection, this wasn't the most inventive nickname, but for years we didn't know his real name, and, let's face it, "Target Bag Man" was very descriptive. Target bag man was obsessive-compulsive about germs and used a lot of our Kleenex and hand sanitizer long before the Pandemic briefly made it de rigueur. He likely slept rough in the grounds and swamps in the back of our parking lot on many occasions. Target Bag Man was a lonely, sometimes noisy, unfriendly, daily figure of my library for many years and may even appear in an old blog post or two from those times.

But slowly Target Bag Man moved onto other things, and now it has been quite a long while since I've seen him. He came to my desk today to ask for an envelope. "Target Bag Man!" I thought but did not say. He looked old, a lot older, but his coldness and refusal to touch things remained. I gave him an envelope. He walked away.

And as he did another man came to the desk. "I thought the library might be able to use these." He said. He handed me a bulging plastic bag.

 It was stuffed full with Target bags.


  1. Art is long. life is short, and success is very far off. -Hunter S. Thompson

  2. thank you for your enigmatic and mysterious comment.


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