Saturday, July 9, 2016


Today the bell rang while I was in the back doing very important library things (singing to Pandora while I counted down the minutes until I could give the 15 minute announcement).  

I came out front and there was a very tall gentleman at the counter.  He pushed his card and a handful of coins towards me.

Paying some fines today? I asked politely.

HANDS OUT OF THE PANTS! he shouted in an enormous bear voice.

The thirty or so people in the building who were talking and running around printing and frantically finishing up their last-minute library mayhem suddenly became very quiet.  Not a single sound to be heard.  Footsteps halted in mid-step and several dozen eyes snapped towards the front counter.  I'm pretty sure I heard a bird taking a crap outside.  It was that quiet. 

Before I could stutter a 'pardon me' he shouted again.  


With that he scooped up a toddler who had, until that moment, been invisible to me as I was on the other side of the desk. As he picked her up he very deftly pulled her hands out of her ruffled knickers while nodding at me.  

My change? he asked politely.

After he left I gave the fifteen minute announcement in a very calm and assured voice the most shakiest and squeakiest voice ever.  

It sounded something like, can yyyy'all leave here ssoon so I can gggggo home and ddie?  

I came back out front and as one of the regulars whizzed past me I swear I heard the word pants.  


  1. Damned Germans; they should never have children. It was one of my earliest memories...said quietly but with the same lethal intent.

    1. That is hilarious. I didn't realize it was a 'thing' with kids to put their hands down their pants. So of course I didn't realize that parents naturally have to say something all scary-like.