Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Strappin' On My Chuck T's And Headin' To The Library

I'm sitting here at my desk doing busy work, because that's what you do on your first day back from a four day weekend and you don't want to address the real work that needs to be done. To my right, a large mug of very black tea. To my left, a walkie-talkie which will not stop belting out my call sign (which, in case you were wondering is "T1." I have been deemed an important enough individual here at the workplace where I have to carry this stupid little squawk box around because I'm often not at my desk and people occasionally have trouble getting in touch with me. Apparently voice mail - or even a simple phone call for that matter - is just SO passe. Whatever.) In front of me, the monitor which I'm currently staring at, and a set of Harman/Kardon speakers to either side. It's what's coming out of said speakers which has inspired today's post actually, so don't be too disappointed when I tell you that this entire paragraph was nothing but meaningless filler.

I'm currently listening to the latest edition of Open Source via podcast (I've blogged about this show ad nauseum, so I feel no need to recap here. If you're unfamiliar with it, check out this post) and they've got a bunch of authors I've never heard of talking about their summer reading lists. Many of the books sound intriguing. My curiosity is certainly piqued, thank you, but it doesn't manage to drown out the shame that I currently feel. Yes - sorry folks. It's confession time. You see that book over there to the right? The ridiculously trendy one? Yes, well... it's a library book. A seriously overdue library book. Normally, I wouldn't be so concerned. You see, this has happened before. I am, unfortunately, rather notorious for not returning my books on time. Several years ago I had Caleb Carr's The Angel of Darkness out for about a year and a half. It was simply sitting on my bookshelf before both my mother and sister, avid library users themselves, broke into my room, grabbed it, and shamefacedly returned it while insisting they didn't know me. Total cost: $5.00 (Apparently the fines can only go so high.)

So why is this book different? Because it has a waiting list a mile long, apparently. I tried to renew the book - I really did. But when I logged onto my account and clicked renew it spit back "Renew Unsuccesful. Another patron has requested the title." So instead of returning the book on time, I kept it well past the due date until I had finished it, making the people behind me (all 23 of them) wait even longer for the coveted trendy tome. So I guess this time, there's a little bit of guilt involved - whereas there was none before because I was younger, much more oblivious to everything around me, and much less impressionable. Not only that, but after I return it this evening, I'll be out a few bucks as well (but don't worry - the next book I'm going to (re)read is Personal Finance for Dummies, Fourth Edition. No, I'm not kidding.) I half expect to walk into the Copley Main Branch and have the clerk say, "Thank you, sir. Now please move to the room to your left where a gentleman is waiting with a cattle prod." God knows I deserve it. So if you're one of the ultra-trendy people waiting for this ultra-trendy book, I apologize, but rest assured I'll be staying away from the library for awhile. I have plenty of other stolen books to read at home.

P.S. Speaking of trendy, I was feeling pretty blah being back at work today so I decided to throw on some Smiths. I made two tracks available for download over to your right. Bigmouth Strikes Again - because it's one of my favorites, and How Soon Is Now because it's everyone else's (if there is a more quintessential late 80's/early 90's track that makes me regress back to summertime at age seventeen, I've yet to hear it.) Enjoy.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

hmmm- Natick has conquered the overdue issue with their fees. Last May I was a week over due and had to pay $11.50. To make matters worse it was for Blue's Clues Boogie and Angelina Ballerina! THAT will never happen again. I went out this past Friday at 10PM just to return this MOnth's selections on time (RIchard Scarry's The Best Word Book Ever). YIKES!

9:22 PM  
Blogger Eric said...

Yikes indeed. That's hilarious. You have to admit that makes a certain amount of sense though... Where's the impetus to return the book if you can keep it for as long as you want and pay less then it would cost to buy? I don't understand Boston's policy. Even when I returned the book tonight it only cost $1.00. I was astounded. The clerk wa even pleasant about the whole thing. I thought she'd at least have a scowl.

Blues Clues Boogie and Angelina Ballerina, eh? Heh. Still not worth it. If it were Curious George or Dr. Seuss though? Worth every penny.

9:55 PM  

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