Wednesday, January 03, 2007


Library fines! Boy, talk about penance. I mean, really.

I went to the library knowing full well I had been a very bad girl last year and was prepared to come clean, pay my fines, it being the new year and all. But at the checkout counter, in front of God and everybody, the librarian announced that I owed $133.14! Where did I go so wrong?! So she printed out the impressive and studious looking list for me...Season of Passion, by Danielle Steele (who on earth used my library card for that???); Finding the Dream, by Nora Roberts (again, not mine!); Dances With Wolves, Julie of the Wolves, Ordinary Wolves (youngest daughter was into wolves last summer, last summer); Timbuktu and Book of Illusions, both by Paul Auster (these were in fact mine...Timbuktu was good if you enjoy sad tales told from a homeless person's dog's perspective; Illusions not so much), and The Grave Maurice, by Martha Grimes (a mystery involving animal rights...this must belong to the youngest daughter again).

I thought I had turned all of these in (late, yes, but delivered). But my library card was officially "blocked" unless I could come up with $133.14. I think you have to be really bad to be blocked from the library. I felt ashamed. So I wrote a check and got my receipt, went home and started looking for the books, hoping to return them to their rightful owner and maybe get my money back. The last place I looked was the garage. Yes, the garage! It appears that we had bundled them up, and put them in the back of the car, but before we could make it to the library, we detoured someplace exotic like Omaha and cleaned out the back of the truck to make room for suitcases. So there they were, all 8 books, in a bag. I trucked them back to the library, begged for forgiveness (and got my check back). I offered to pay the late fines because I knew there were some. $8.00. That's it. Over 6 months late and that's all I owe?! And I had to ask them to bill me for that. I almost felt like letting them keep the check as a donation. Please remember to support your local libraries and librarians!



At 6:31 PM, January 03, 2007, Blogger Jim said...

I loved Timbuktu. Book of Illusions, not so much.

But your really have gone too far with the Danielle Steele. And let's not even talk about Nora Roberts. My goodness Gwynne... we broke bread together! How could you?

At 8:13 PM, January 03, 2007, Anonymous jennifer said...

Wow, that's impressive. $133. I thought it was bad when I had a $6 one. Glad it got resolved. Whew!

At 2:19 AM, January 04, 2007, Blogger Emma Sometimes said...

Holy cow, you could have rented three movies at Hollywood for that!

At 4:12 AM, January 04, 2007, Blogger mis_nomer said...

$8 only? Wow. For eight books too! It would cost me $108 here at $0.15 a day.

At 8:01 AM, January 04, 2007, Blogger beth said...

That's some pretty good forgivness to go from $133 to $8. But wow. Who knew library books cost so much? :)

One of these days I really am going to get a library card so that I join the ranks of those paying late fines.

At 9:41 AM, January 04, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Jim, I'm with you on the Auster books. Illusions was a departure from his other, more betterer, books. And I assure you I did not read either of those first two books. I did not even touch them, except to take them back to the library...along with the spiders that had nested therein...heh. And I've already spoken to the daughters about this violation of all that is literary. It shall not happen again. I promise. 8-}

Jennifer...$6 is bad. Very bad. But $133.14 should be punishable by execution or something. ;-)

Mis_Nomer, here in the States, there seems to be an unwritten rule (or maybe it's codified, I'm not sure) that libraries cannot charge more than $1.00 per book, although the stated fine is usually something like $.15/day. Unless of course, you lose the book. 8-}

Beth, I can't believe you of all people, the one who reads 3 books per weekend, doesn't have a library card! ;-)

Emma, I KNOW! And it would have been a lot faster than reading all those stupid books too. ;-)

At 12:26 PM, January 04, 2007, Blogger Badoozie said...

ok, thats the pits. i hope you learned your lesson you bad lady!

At 6:12 PM, January 04, 2007, Blogger Janie said...

Gwynne, I think it's awesome they forgave you the debt! That would be favor, right?? ;)

At 6:27 PM, January 04, 2007, Blogger Eric said...

See, that just proves what I've been saying all along. Those liberry cards are nothing but trouble.

At 8:13 PM, January 04, 2007, Blogger DarkoV said...

Funny thing this.
Just trying to connect dots and lines.
My desk is pretty much a mess illustrating the sedimentary filing methodology.
Your desk is well-organized and presentable for human eyes to pore over.

The last time I returned a book late to a library was when I was around 9 years old. Aside from paying a fine, the librarian (who back in those days were required to have corkscrew finger nails) let me know in very certain terms how my late return will be the casue of another child's personal development shortfall.
Ouch! Heaps of Guilt and monetary exchanges.
I was cured.

Now, you tell us that you're returning books an entire generation later! Gwynne, Gwynne, let me come over and muss up your desk. You'll be returning books back on a timely basis, I can assure you.

N.B.: Sedimentary filing, as one can see when driving around, is the most natural way to store papers of self-importance. Age and weight saturate all of the important components into one thin, but thick, paper.

At 7:24 AM, January 05, 2007, Blogger beth said...

See, Gwynne, it's like this: Libraries are Book Prisons. Maximum Security Book Prisons. I feel sorry for the books therein, therefore to avoid heartbreak I go to the bookstore (kind of like the SPCA for books) and adopt as many as I can.

What do you mean books are inanimate objects?

At 6:03 PM, January 05, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Eric, you've done time for passing bad liberry cards, haven't you? ;-)

Darko, much as I appreciate the offer of help (God knows I need it), this much I know...I was doing other parents a favor by keeping the Season of Passion off the shelves for a spell. ;-)

"corkscrew finger nails"...heh.

Beth, I understand. *rolling eyes* ;-)


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