managing tough public service situations

One of my employees is experiencing his first bout with the flu. Poor dear. So I’m working the night shift tomorrow, the last night before break, and sort of looking forward to it.

This is because weird stuff happens in libraries after 18:00. It is a proven fact. Time and time again, the evening circulation supervisor gets to tell all the great stories, and during the day we just get to deal with the usual brand of insanity. The bizarros really come out after dark, and are frighteningly regular in their habits. One we have dubbed “the Bride of Frankenstein” due to an interesting hair choice. She comes to all the art gallery openings for the free food and wine, and she loves to use our computers for her own personal gain, the exact nature of which we have not yet discovered. It involves French textbooks.

So I’m excited about the dramatic possibilities tomorrow night. Of course, I’m writing this after two days of daytime drama, and not the soap opera kind. A student — who really knew better — did not turn her mobile ringer off when entering the library, and was taking calls. A professor assisting his student in the library, exasperated after a few of these calls, told her to stop. She proceeded to tell him to fuck off, with an accompanying helpful hand gesture.

Needless to say, they both ended up in my office, my stern yet caring countenance framed by the presence of my Managing Tough Public Service Situations course certificate pinned to my bulletin board. And even though I felt particularly useless, both complimented me on the way I handled the situation.

I am sure they will each carry a grudge against each other to the grave.

I am dragging the MSG with me on my Thanksgiving trip, a/k/a Red State Blues. We will be in a beautiful cabin in the middle of nowhere outside Nowhere, Ohio, with several members of my dad’s family. The MSG is going to cook and I am going to eat. This is our arrangement, and I find it quite equitable. Also, he is going to field wacky questions from my wacky family, and put up with our Cranium marathons. He doesn’t know it yet, but I plan to hit him with a snowball on Saturday when he is not looking. On Sunday, he’ll get me back by poking my earplugs on the airplane. Ah, love.

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