Librarian Ire

Monday, December 05, 2005

Quaking in my Boots

Ah, lost books.

Patron: "I returned the books so its on you to find them."
Me: "Our responsibility is to look for these books you believe you returned..."
Patron: "I know I returned them. If you can't find them that's your fault. But you have to take them off my record."
Me: "I'm sorry but we can't remove books from your record unless we have the books."
Patron: "It's not my fault you don't have the books. That is unacceptable. I returned them. This is bogus! I'm a registered student. I pay tuition. That gives me the right to certain university privileges, right? I have the right to use the library that is provided for with my tuition. Right? Wouldn't you agree?"
Me: "Sir, I certainly agree that if you are a registered student you get to use the library. You got to use the library when you checked out the books. If you don't bring the books back you don't get to continue to use the library. Books aren't free."
Patron: "Since you agree you have to take the books off my record. I insist that you do it right now."
Me: "I'm sorry..."
Patron: "I mean it! You had better removed those books, because I returned them."

Isn't this 20 year old full of righteous indignation? I mean, of course the library lost 4 books that he returned. That's not freakish odds or anything.

4 comment(s):

Spoiled brat. I bet he STOLE them.

By Blogger Nike, at 9:31 PM  

Actually, I think so to. He was screaming TOO much to be truthful. The honest ones don't need to make a fuss because they know they are right. So, they just wait for things to get all worked out.

Happily, this SOB is SOL. :)

By Blogger Loki, at 10:00 AM  

I know from past experience that our university library "lost" books we returned. Several times my husband found the books he returned on the shelves, but not checked in. After one semester, he learned to always get a receipt for the books he returned.

You're probably right, you're patron probably was a lying sack of scum.

But libraries lose books--I've seen it from both the patron side and the librarian side. Let me tell you, nothing makes you feel so wonderful as informing an 80 year-old that she didn't return a book as she tearfully says she did, and then you find it a week later on the repair shelf because nobody checked it in.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:15 PM  

Oh, there's no question that lost books are found. I'd say for legitimate claims 90% are found. (Probably with a 95% legitimate claims record) For that other 10% we have a system in place so that the patron isn't "punished" if they still aren't found.

However, the more books that are lost at one time, along with the number of libraries these books needed to pass through, decrease the probability of library error. Also, when the patron practically refuses to let us follow our procedures for these books (which includes extensive searching) all the warning bells go off.

By Blogger Loki, at 8:07 AM  

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