Thursday, May 2, 2013

A Patron is a Patron, unless They're a Douche...

Not really what the Patron Note field was intended for but
some of my coworkers can't seem to suppress their rage.

When you work with the public, your chances of encountering those with the "holier than thou" mentality increase tenfold.  Self-centered would be the best way to group these people together.  They are the ones who feel like they are above everyone else and the same ground rules do not apply to them.  They are the ones who will argue every single time they incur a late fee under $1.  "It isn't my fault, something is wrong with your system," or "Well, I didn't get an email reminder about them so I didn't know they were due so I shouldn't have to pay the late fees."

Last week a patron came up to the desk to say that he had the conference room reserved.  Yes, yes he did, but he was also an hour late so I cancelled his reservation and placed another patron in the room.  The rules state that rooms are only held for 30 minutes before reservations are deemed null and void.  Luckily my supervisor happened to be at the desk with me because I do not think I would have been able to deal with him cordially.  The patron became very indignant, raising his voice because he felt that it would help his cause.

He told the patron, whom I shall refer to as D, that he is an hour late and that the room was given to someone else who asked for it.  D replied, "Look here, I told you last week when I called that I wasn't sure if I would be able to make it at that specified time."  D then said that he it was my supervisor he talked to last Friday to make the reservations.  Yeah, well, my supervisor and I both had that day off and we are the only males who work info.  D then said, "There's only a guy and two little girls in there, you need to make them leave the room so I can use it.  I need to conduct this interview NOW."  It was at this point I had to bite my tongue and restrain myself from telling him that I didn't give a damn about who he was or what he was doing.  My supervisor ended up sticking him in one of the larger meeting rooms which he technically didn't have to offer since they are only meant to be used for bigger groups.  I don't think I would have offered it to him, I would have told him about the park bench across the street.

I've encountered D before when I covered another branch for its staff meeting.  He was also using a meeting room but this time someone else was waiting on him because he didn't leave at the scheduled time.  I ended up telling him 3 times that someone else had the room reserved and they were waiting on him.  The first time he didn't even look up when I opened the room and said, "Excuse me," he just kept going on about his business.  The third time I was done, I opened the door and stood in the doorway until he got pissed off and packed up his things and finished his meeting outside of the library.

Thankfully, these people are far and few between.  If it wasn't this way, the term "going librarian" would be the common synonym for workplace violence.

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