Monday, January 25, 2010

Conversations Outside My Head

Coworker: There's a book called The Quotable Douchebag that looks really funny, but I'm hesitant to buy it for the library because of the "douchebag" in the title.

Me: Why? Just do it! There's another book called Hot Chicks with Douchebags. We could get both, put them on a display and we'd have a "Douchebag" display!

We laughed. I wonder if we could get away with that.

* * *

Coworker: When I got in today I went to the washroom and there was no toilet paper -- OF COURSE! In ANY stall! I had to go all the way downstairs to get some and by the time I got back a little girl was in one of the stalls. I heard the toilet flush and was thinking she couldn't have wiped -- there was no toilet paper!! Yet here she came out of the stall. I tried to tell her I had toilet paper and was putting it in now, but she didn't seem to care. You KNOW she couldn't have wiped! And then she started to leave and I said, 'You need to wash your hands.'

Me: NO!

Coworker: Oh yes I did! And you know what she said? She said, 'No I don't.'

Me: Hahahaha, well, she told you.

Coworker: So I said, 'Yes, honey, you do. Wash your hands.'

I laughed really hard. It's one thing to suggest it, but another thing to insist on it with a total stranger after they rebuke you. She's so funny.

Coworker: That snotty little girl with dirty hands said, 'No! I don't!' and she walked out! Can you believe that?

Me: No! I don't!

* * *

After publishing my plea for contact with my reader from Perth, we emailed back and forth and the most recently received email had me giggling at his responses. Since I was at work, I leaned over to Marina and shared his insight, and then we both giggled.

Me: So, from this we learned that people from Australia are funny.

Marina: All of them?

Me: That was a huge, sweeping statement, wasn't it? I mean, I'm only communicating with one person, and it really isn't fair to attribute my impression of him to all of his countrymen. He is just one person, after all.

Marina: So, we've learned that this one person from Australia is funny then, right?

Me: No. Perth. Perth is funny. I can't speak for all of Australia. I can't be THAT widely sweeping, but I think I can say that people in Perth are funny.

Marina (laughing): Okay, well, at least we know that much.

* * *

Early last week, a few of us in the office were sharing our traumatic stories with our boss about a certain patron, and when it was my turn, I explained how, after I helped this gentleman extensively with the simplest tasks for about an hour straight, not only was I treated to a long, pathetic story about how his mother died, but this guy said to me, "Your husband is a lucky man, Nikki."

As I was telling this story, I made sure to add that I thanked this guy for his compliment and started thinking about my imaginary husband, and actually started thinking about all my other imaginary friends, and how lucky they are to have me in their lives. Lucky imaginary bastards.

Tonight the same guy was in and I learned that he is very nearly illiterate, while all this time we just thought he was computer illiterate. He couldn't spell small, common words, not by a long shot, and he couldn't read to me the very simple sentences he was having trouble understanding. In fact, he repeatedly asked what the degree was that one receives when they graduate high school, and we told him over and over that it's a high school diploma, but he couldn't grasp the words. As he was leaving, after we finally accomplished filling out the simple online form he was struggling with, he stopped at my desk to thank me profusely.

Guy: I couldn't have done this without you, Nikki.

Me: Well, that's what I'm here for.

Guy: Do you have a phone number so that I can call you if you're not at this desk and I need to ask you more questions?

Me: I don't have my own number and whenever I'm here, I'm at this desk, so that's the only time I'm reachable.


Guy: Okay, so if you're not here I can't call you?

Me: No.

Guy: Well, do you drink coffee?

Me: No.

Guy: Okay, well, you've gotta drink juice or something like that.

Me: No, no I don't.

Guy: You don't drink anything like that?

Me: Nope.

If he pushed it, I was prepared to make up a medical condition which prevented me from consuming any liquids or solids of any kind. Lucky for us both, he didn't pursue it and thanked me again before he parted.

Afterward, Marina started giggling.

Marina: When he asked you for your number and how he could get a hold of you when you're not at the desk, and you just said if you're here, you're at the desk, period, I was thinking, GOOD ONE!

Me: Dude, I've been doing this long enough I know how to head them off at the pass. No way I was giving him a way to call me or any indication that he should look for me in the building when he couldn't find me.

Marina: That was great. I was cracking up.

Me: Gotta do whatchu gotta do.


Kate P said...

Y'know, that "douchebags" display idea might pass for an "anti-Valentine's Day" display. . .

Also, "head them off at the pass" should be in every public library manual.

(WV: "ulamo"--now, that's just insulting.)

Leelu said...

Yeesh. I don't get why people think that doing your job constitutes sexual interest. The public hurts my brain like a hurty thing.

Edward Shaddow said...

I can assure you, everyone in Perth is hilarious. Mostly in their own unique, "special" way, and some who we won't encourage; but hilarious none the less.