Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Stupid Teenage Cellphone girl

So I have to post about what happened to me Saturday at the Bryson City library. I am finally able to think about it without going into an anger frenzy.

After I dropped Ken off at work, I decided I would go to the library to use a computer to try and find a tutorial for the felt food I want to make for Addison and my Etsy shop (don't roll your eyes). (Too often, I try to wing things rather than use a pattern and then I get frustrated and boom, it ends up in the stack of "stuff I need to finish, but never will" pile.) Anyway, there I was in the library, two boys about 13 years old were on two computers next to me, playing a game against each other, whispering a lot, but being library appropriate. I vaguely noticed the girl sit down at the computer directly across from mine. I am deeply engrossed in my felt food pattern search, enjoying the 'library quiet' when I hear "Hi, is Anton there?" My fingers stopped in their tracks, I thought "No way, she is not talking on her cell phone in the library." But she was. Her conversation wasn't loud by any means, but she wasn't talking in a "library voice" either. I sat there debating with myself whether to say something directly to her or to go "tattle" to the library staff. Then I notice a library staff person re-shelving books. She didn't seem to notice the phone conversation or my dumbfounded glares. After a few minutes of "how old are you? 15? I will be 16 in June... Uh-huh, why aren't you going with (some girls name) anymore... My boyfriend just sent me a text message to break up with me... What about (another girls name) are you going with her? We have been going together for two weeks and he sends me this inappropriate text message... here, let me read it to you..." At this point I slowly leaned over to my right and very politely said "Uh, no, I don't want to hear that. This is a public place and if you need to talk on your cell phone, please go outside." And I leaned back to my original position.
The look on her face when I started to speak to her was a blank look of surprise I can't even describe. She sat there silently for a few seconds and then snottily snipped into the phone "I guess I will have to call you BACK!" and closed her phone. She sat there for a minute or so, then stood up, shoved her chair under the table and began to stomp out. As she passed behind me, she said "Nice attitude!" I did not respond. She exited the library room we were in. The two boys next to me had gotten quiet when she started talking on the phone. They busted out laughing as soon as the door shut behind her. One of them said "Man, she needs to keep that stuff at home." More laughing. Then instant silence, I heard the door open again, she stomped past me into another room of the library. A moment later the door opened again and there is this 90 year old librarian dude tapping me on the shoulder. "May I speak with you in the lobby for a moment?" I sat still in horror. What? You are asking me to step outside, right in front of everyone? What?
I stood up slowly, gathered my things and followed him into the lobby. He turned to me and very librarianishly (you know, quiet and slow and CONDESENDING) said "If you are bothered by another library patron, you need to come to the library staff and let us handle it. I am afraid I am going to have to ask you to leave."
Ok, now, I almost dropped my purse when my arms fell deadly to my sides. My breathing had stopped. I am looking at him with probably the same look of surprise I had witnessed a few moments before on the face of the cell phone girl. Shock. Then WHAT? I said "What? You are asking me to leave because I asked a kid to not talk on her cell phone? She was about to read "an inappropriate text message" out LOUD!" He responded "I don't care." (My least favorite phrase of all phrases) I continued "I am 47 years old, I don't need to have library staff..." He interrupted "It doesn't matter." then turned and walked back behind the counter. I could not move. I just stood there. Thoughts racing through my mind, anger, hysterical anger slowly mounted to my brain, and I stormed out. It was either that or throw the biggest-gawd-aweful-cussing-kicking and screaming- attack anyone in that library had ever seen. I felt like a cartoon character as I stomped to my car with steam coming out of my ears. I got in my car and just sat there breathing harder and harder and getting madder and madder. I was in disbelief. That had NOT just happened to me. Oh. My. Freakin. Gaw!!!
I started my car and headed out, but this incident stayed with me for the rest of the day, like the stink of a skunk spray, seemingly getting worse and worse as I replay it in my head over and over. I am usually pretty easy going, but this was a level of outrage I have rarely experienced. It's not like me to dwell on something either, but I just couldn't let it go.
I managed to get a few more things accomplished, including assembling two pop tarts with pink frosting, 4 sugar cookies with white frosting and colorful sprinkles. (They are so adorable I can't believe myself.)
When I picked Ken up I immediately started repeating the story and got all worked up again. He said the girl must have told the librarian I was rude or had cussed her out or something. I hadn't thought of that and while it didn't make it go away, it did make sense. That little witch had lied and gotten the librarian on her side and he kicked me out without benefit of listening to my side of the story. I HATE cell phones.

7 comments:

Maegan said...

I can't believe, you out of all people, were asked to leave a library!

I'm astounded that a grown man would not even take the time to listen to the adult in the situation. I would have been fuming mad, too!

I'm so glad you got some felt food done for Addison, I bet they're amazingly cute Those kinds of toys are extremely popular in the cloth diaper community.

Carla said...

I am excited that you posted, but I can't believe that library incident happened. If I were you I'd write a letter, to the editor of your local newspaper, to the chairman of the library board and the mayor! I'm sure nothing will come of it, but at least you'll get the satisfaction of writing the letter!
I agree with Maegan, the "librarian" should have listened to your side of the story!

SM said...

I don't know what to comment on first: the felt food or the librarian!

HA!

Ok, the felt food wins: I can't wait!

But for the librarian, I can't believe he behaved that way. I feel so bad for you. LOVED the story!!! I'm proud of you for keeping your cool and not acting like, well... *I* would have! LOL

Also, I know it came back to bite you in the butt, but good for you for standing up to that girl (in a firm, but polite way). I think you did the right thing!

AD said...

I'm at disneyland as I write this but I was blown away by your experience!!! I would have landed in jail if this had happened to me. Seriously, how you did not come undone is beyond me. Of course Ken has to be right--she must have told quite a story to have the librarian respond in the way he did. I agree with Carla 100% that you should write letters to powers that be to call out the librarian's behavior. No patron should be treated like you were treated. I doubt that man had the authority to kick you out for speaking to another patron. Sheesh!

Can't wait to see the felt food!!

DIANE said...

Unbelievable. I would have asked those two boys to talk to the librarian to back up your story. I'm worked up just reading this. Terrible.

Blue State Cowgirl said...

YOu need to write this in a letter to the library supervisor. Especially if there is a post "no cell phones" rule in the libary, any patron can feel free to remind other patrons of that rule. This isn't third grade and you aren't 10 where you need to run to a "teacher".

Jayme said...

I'm a new reader of your blog, a fellow North Carolina resident and frequent library patron. I also would have ended up in jail if this had happened to me. My blood pressure rose just reading this! I definitely think you should write a letter to the library. This was beyond ridiculous and they owe you an apology. Our library (Iredell) has lots of very explicit signs regarding NO CELL PHONE USE. Our roaming guard enforces it, even on me (who brings him suduko books and shares jokes.) Your library needs to step up. Good luck.