Tuesday, December 28, 2004

How long can I rent this for?



Because the almost square state was completely quashed with snow this past week, the library where I work had to engage in emergency shut down mode. The library was closed last Thursday because of the dangerous conditions the weather created. The library was subsequently closed for Christmas Eve day, and Christmas, and as usual Sunday. This meant the public library going crowd was AV free for 4 days.

The library re-opened yesterday. And like drug addicts lining up for clean needles, so too did the AV loving community for the opening on Monday.

Usually, on Monday we have 2 or 3 waiting to get in to the branch. Not this time. A full crowd had lined up. But first some back story.

The book drop was almost totally full of DVD's and Videos. I understand our chief concern is to increase circulation traffic with popular items. But when the BOOK drop is full of VIDEOS there is a small inbalance.

A dear, and favorite colleague recently noted that we should change the sign above the BOOK drop to read "Audio Visual Drop", with a note that you can put books in it as well. No one checks books out of the library. Its all AV.

Which is fine. If you can't read, or have no desire to read...come check out a video or two. The problem is, people are opening library cards for "their kids"...they might as well just call them the "Video gettin' cards". Patrons are allowed 5 videos per card. So, one patron under the guise of a mother with 3 children can check out 20 videos. And they do. And come back for 20 more the next day. At an average of 2 hours per movie, that is 40 hours of viewing for one 24 hour day. How do they do it? Is their a trick I don't know about, further, do I want to know about it?

By now you are thinking "tie it all together dear WDL". So I will. When the approaching storm neared, almost our entire video selection was cleared out. Notably, so were all the eggs, milk, and bread at the nearby grocery store. Panic shopping. Only the library isn't for shopping. No money exchanged.

So why do patrons ask "HOW LONG CAN I RENT THIS FOR?" You aren't paying for anything. You are not renting the movies. This is not Blockbuster, or even NetFliks. Please, you do not ask a department store clerk "Can I borrow this?" and hold up a vase, or a pair of trousers. Yet, the AV loving community continues to ask this question. Best is when they ask for a film that is currently playing in the theatre. We're good, but not that good.

Perhaps its wrote, but these people aren't the video renting kind..thats why they come to the library. Oh, AV lovers. Where do you come from? I encourage you to go back.

Yesterday, someone even asked if we had an ATM machine. Yes, its right next to the popcorn popper.

Moral of this blog: No, we don't have those kind of adult films, sir. I'd try the Lion's Den.

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