Even excluding the antics of the Phantom Fish Flinger (who, I’m sorry to say, continues to mysteriously terrorise our library), we get a lot of odd things left behind in the library service. Detritus like glasses cases and the odd iPhone charger are pretty run-of-the-mill, but many weirder things have been abandoned in the various libraries where I work. Here’s a list of the truest oddballs.
- An empty bottle of pinot grigio
- A pair of black unisex corduroy trousers, 38″ waist
- A half empty bottle of rosé
- An incredibly detailed filigree silver bookmark
- Jelly babies, assorted and scattered through the children’s section
- An empty bottle of whisky (you may be starting to see a pattern emerging here)
- A butter knife
- A Mars bar (not unusual in and of itself, but they were attempting to use it as a bookmark at the time)
- A mostly empty bottle of straight vodka (I’m amazed we didn’t find a dead body next to it)
- So many umbrellas
- One left shoe
I’m pretty scatterbrained myself, and known for putting stuff down and forgetting where the heck it was. But even I’ve never managed to lose my own trousers, or a shoe, or overwhelming evidence of severe alcoholism.
Let me know if you get anything as weird (or weirder!) than this. Or, even better, if you’ve managed to abandon a pair of trousers in a public place.
A while ago in the library, I noticed a display covered in these tiny blue booklets. Since I move around a few libraries every week, this was the first I’d seen of the display and had no idea what it was.
It turns out there’s a super neat event going on, where you pick up one of these passports (for free!), and are then challenged to read ten books. Remember when your mum dragged to the library at the beginning of the summer holidays so she could sign you up for the Summer Reading Challenge? This is like that, except now you’re an adult and you have to drag yourself!
Apparently this is a thing that happens every year, which makes me feel all the more guilty for not knowing about it. This year’s theme is the fantastically punny Book to the Future: for the challenge, you’re asked to read a book set or written in each decade from the 1920s up to the present, and one about the future. It’s like your local library is a Dolorean and your library card is the throttle that takes you to 88 miles per hour!
(I never really watched Back to the Future as a child, so when I see pictures of Doc and Marty my brain mostly interprets it as real-life Rick and Morty. “W-we gotta — burp — read ten books, Morty! T-ten whole books!”)
I’m not sure how many libraries are taking part in Book to the Future, and I have a depressing inkling it’s only really libraries in the south of England. But there are plenty of details on the Reading Passport website, so do check it out even if you’re not from here. The passport is nice, but you don’t necessarily need it to take up the challenge and support your local library. (Please guys, we get so lonely.)
Is anyone else doing this? Am I a dummy for only finding out about this now? Why am I asking you all these questions? Comment and let me know!