Monday, October 10, 2016

A Day At The Desk...

The other day I when I covered the children's desk, I was expecting a typical quiet Thursday, completely forgetting the schools were on Fall Break!  I hate it when that happens; I like to be mentally prepared for whatever kind of day it's going to be. Of course, unexpected things can happen anytime, but when school's out I know to expect it to be busier and to likely have to deal with unruly teenagers or unattended children.

So instead of the fairly quiet day I had expected, I ended up having to call security before the first hour was even up! First I had a group of teenage boys come running through, and reminded them to walk, which they did. For about three steps. Then they started jogging again. Later they came back with a couple of friends and it was apparent they had been having a race, two of them taking the stairs, and two of them taking the elevator. I declared the two on the elevators the winners since the other two cheated by breaking the rules and running. Then I showed one of them where books on the Holocaust were for his school assignment.

The next group of teens, a group of girls, crossed the line and got to have a little chat with the security guard. I swear, girls act up less often than boys, but they are worse when they do! First they were just kind of joking around and giggling, then the next thing I knew, they were horsing around and one girl pulled the other's shoe off and threw it across the library into the group of boys! I called security at that point, for two reasons: (1) I expected them to to take off running up and down the stairs from floor to floor, and I couldn't leave my area to chase after them, and (2) I knew a chat with security would have more impact. 

Meanwhile, they continued horsing around, and then suddenly took off at a full run through the stacks. The next thing I knew, there was a loud crash. I decided enough was enough and told them that was it, they were to sit at the table by the desk and wait for security. One was complaining about being hurt when she ran into her friend (just a ploy for sympathy), and being a mom, I of course told her that wouldn't have happened if they had been behaving in a civilized manner. The security guard came and had a chat with them, and I didn't have any more issues with them. Our security guards are really great with kids and manage to handle these situations without being harsh.

Fortunately, the rest of shift passed without issues. I had people coming in and out, helped one young lady find some books about the history of Mexico, and I couldn't help but be a little impressed when she said it was just for her own interest, not a school assignment. A college student came in wanting to interview a library staff member and asked if I would be willing to be interviewed, but I had to decline and explain that she would have to make an appointment through the Book-A-Librarian service after first clearing it with our manager. I put in a couple of requests for another family, straightened up, pulled holds and transfers, and helped several patrons with checkouts and finding materials. All in all, it was not a bad day.

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