Library Goon Squad

Via one of my lists, a scary tale from a library user on how we present ourselves to the public:

The next day I gave the library a ring. That’s when things got weird. According to the nice lady at the circulation desk, I checked out the book in April, 2006. “But I haven’t been to your library in a decade,” I told her. “I don’t even live in Queens anymore!” I asked her the title. It turned out to be a children’s book, written in Spanish: El Hombre Que Aprendio a Ladrar Y Otros Cuentos. I don’t speak Spanish, but I’m guessing that translates as The Man Who Got Screwed Over by the Library.

A few more phones calls lead me to Hong, in the community relations department. When I explained my situation, she went on the attack: “You have to tell us when you move, so we can delete your account!” Oops. With all the fuss over renting a new place and hiring movers and packing my belongings ten years ago, I apparently forgot the most important part of any move: calling the library. Hong went on to suggest that it was up to me to clear my name. “You need proof. Show us documents,” she said.