austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

Was overdue for a dream come true

Probably it won't surprise anyone that I not rarely have library books running overdue, or checked out repeatedly. It's hard to convince myself to leave behind an interesting-looking book since, hey, borrowing is free and I can always renew, right? Plus nonfiction books can be mined for trivia points: with the modest effort of trying not to reuse a book more than once a month even a fruitful chapter or two can give me material to use for years.

But I'm thrown off by the three-week loans around here, since when I grew up it was always two weeks, but then once I got into college it was always four weeks. Three weeks is abnormal. The library is supposed to send e-mail for overdue books, but they have the interesting, by which I mean maddening-to-me, perspective that they'll only send you a mail if the book is a good bit overdue. And it turns out by ``a good bit overdue'' they mean ``really desperately overdue'': during checkout I discovered I had an overdue fine of $1.05. Implication: the book was at least three weeks overdue; I say at least because from the fact they'll go at least three weeks before sending the overdue e-mail I'm not sure they start charging anytime soon.

The book I had overdue was 11th Month, 11th Day, 11th Hour, which it happens I'd returned months ago when I was trying to get my list of checked-out books under control because I knew I could borrow it again anytime. Rarely do I not sit around and wait to see that all the books I'm returning are actually checked in, but this was one of those times I had to leave before witnessing it, and with this sort of track record I'm never going to get under control the growing list of my obsessive-compulsive disorders. Anyway, all this will be cleared up when I can get to the branch where the book is so I can show the librarians it is on the shelf -- and I certainly hope it is -- but I haven't been able to make it over there.

Trivia: Charles James Fox's 2 February 1778 motion to end the War of the American Revolution was defeated in the House of Commons 259 to 165. Source: Redcoats and Rebels: The American Revolution Through British Eyes, Christopher Hibbert.

Currently Reading: The Culture of Defeat: On National Trauma, Mourning, and Recovery, Wolfgang Schivelbush.


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