It amazes me on a fairly regular basis just how often I get yelled at by patrons, have them throw hissy fits and other wise act like small children. The library I work in sees maybe one or two children every month or so which makes it that much more confusing. You would think that in a university library people would be able to conduct themselves with a little maturity and decorum.
But I suppose that would be far too much to ask.
First thing in the morning a few days ago a patron came to the desk. When he asked for a reserve item, I asked him for the call number like I ask anyone looking for reserve material. Of course he didn’t have it. He also claimed that he didn’t know how to find it.
So I showed him.
“Well last time the lady was nice enough to just find it for me!”
I’m sure she did. I’m also sure that she’s not supposed to. However, I was about to say that I would pull it up for him but that next time he would need to find the call number before coming to the desk. It seemed easier than fighting with him. At least, that’s what would have happened if he hadn’t had a hissy fit and stomped off.
“I guess I’ll just have to find it myself then!”
Um, yes. You will. That’s kind of what I was trying to convey when I said that you’d need to find the call number.
He picked a computer close to the desk and made a show of pulling out books and searching for the call number. I assume he was trying to make me feel bad. Really I just became convinced that his princess act was worn out, his attitude needed a complete overhaul and that he had absolutely no idea which class he was in nor had he listened to my instructions. So when he turned to come back to the counter, I made a point of going to the back.
The girl I work with mentioned that he complained about me and threw another hissy.
A few hours later he was back to return the book. By “return” I mean “throw the book at me”.
“Here!” He tossed the book. “And just so you know, that book isn’t even listed under the right class so the other lady had to look it up for me anyway! So I guess next time you’ll just have to get out of your chair and get it for me!”
Of course, before I could say anything at all, he turned around and stomped out the door. You know, because I might have actually had the nerve to respond. Or I might have taken the time to point out that I don’t “have to” do anything, that next time he’ll still be asked to bring the call number with him and that now there is a note on his file stating that he has been shown how to search call numbers on his own.
Oh and just for the record, sweetheart, if you think for one second that your complete lack of respect, your hissy fits, your attitude and your bullshit are going to convince me to do one single thing above and beyond what is absolutely required of me, you’re in for the shock of a life time. Next time I will gladly point out to you that I’ve shown you how to search for call numbers on your own and that you are well aware of the mix up in cataloguing, so you should be capable of finding what you need all by yourself. Because me? I’ve got better and more important things to be doing with my time than sitting here taking any more of your nonsense.
If you don’t like that, I would suggest you take it up with management. Or, here’s a super special idea, maybe you could grow up and stop expecting the world to give you what you want as soon as you put up a fuss and stomp your feet? Hmm? Yeah, wouldn’t that be keen?