2.19.2006

@ your service @ your library

So we have this old man who calls us a lot who seems to think he is the one-man FEMA Auxiliary. He always has questions about the library's disaster preparedness resources.

He called the other day and said, "I have a job for you." You know that is never a good sign when a customer introduces their request thusly. I should start saying, "No thanks. I already have a job." But whatever. I asked how I could help him.

"Well, here's what you can do. When you have some time today, I need you to make a list of all the books in your library that have to do with disaster preparedness. See, I'm speaking at a community emergency response meeting, and I would like to give them a handout of all the books the library has on the subject."

He went on in a similar vein for awhile before I could interrupt him to inform him that we do not prepare bibliographies for people.

"Oh, I don't want a bibliography. I just want a list of the books you have."

"Sir, that's what a bibliography is: a list of books."

Then he got all huffy with me and basically accused me of being a bad citizen for not helping out with his presentation which would reach "at least 150 influential people in our community." Then came the kicker, "If you do this you will be helping to save lives, and who knows, the life you save might even be your own."

I decided to see if we had alread compiled a list of resources on the subject (it seems like a topic we would already have info on), and said I would call him back. I told my supervisor what he wanted and she agreed that we absolutely do not provide the service he requested, but she said I could run one search and print out a screen shot of the results for him.

When I called him back to tell him that, he acted all smug as if I had caved. Whatever. Then he launched into his spiel again and had the audacity to say "Well, you're too young to know that there are MANY dangers out there that can affect us, so you just don't realize how important this is."

Comments:
Another classy "not a service we provide" story!
 
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