Marxist Guy

25 09 2014

Some guy came in the other day and asked where the 335.4s were located — more specifically, a 40-volume set of Marxist books — saying that he was looking on a different floor and then came down here where the books weren’t there where they were supposed to be and it’s been so confusing since books are moving everywhere. A library assistant nearby politely and patiently explained that the library is in the middle of a moving project and books are being moved to different locations on the floor. He demanded to know where the 335.4s were again, and she proceeded to lead him to the area where they were now being shelved.

Now at the appropriate section, she asked him what the call number for these Marxist books was.”335.4,” he repeated. There was a beat, as both of us waited for him to continue with the call number.

“What’s the rest of the call number?” she asked.

I pointed to some call numbers on the spines of nearby books. “There should be some letters and numbers after it,” I pointed out.

He was undeterred. “335.4! It’s a 40-volume set! It should be easy to see.”

“Okay, well, if you don’t know the rest of the call number, they’re somewhere in this aisle. So if you want to take a look, you can.”

“Okay, okay. I’ll just look.” And off he went in search of his Marxist books. The library assistant and I left the scene.

I found out later that this old guy found the books, but noticed that they were split between shelves. He called it disorganized and said they should all be together, and proceeded to rearrange the volumes so that they were all on the same shelf. He left.

When he was gone, a shelver put the books back to the way they were before.




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