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Millicent Library Anecdotes

A little boy looked at the marble bust of the author Park Benjamin and ran towards it yelling, “Daddy!”


Another kid asked about the bust, “why did that man get his head cut off?”


Little boy in library lobby to grandmother. “Do kings live here?”


Second grader: “What’s the best book you have in here today?”
Librarian: “For you?”
Second grader: “No, for anybody!”


Little girl: “Do you have the movie ‘Stinky?'”
Librarian: “What’s the name of the movie?”
Little girl: “Stinky! Stinky! Stinky!”
Little girl’s brother: “She means ‘Jaws’. “


Six-year old Elvis fan: “Elvis died when his body got too old to sing.”


Six-year-old Patron taking out a book on Benjamin Franklin. The librarian said that Ben Franklin was one of her favorite people. Young patron says “did you KNOW him?!!!”


Seven-year-old boy came in and asked for a book on reading palms. He said he wanted to know how many kids he was going to have.


Ten-year-old boy asks librarian who is helping him find a book, “do you do this for a living?”


Little girl returning a stack of books: “I’ll miss you, books.” She also saw the Friends of the Library logo and asked “do owls like to read books?”


Little boy kept saying “excuse me.” Librarian goes over to him and he tells her he is going to White’s Family Fun Center this afternoon. Librarian says “wow, are you lucky! I wish I was going there too. Have fun!” His mother whispered to him to say “thank you.” As he was leaving, he turned around, waved, and said “thank you, Your Highness.” (I think he was too young to be sarcastic.)


One of our teenaged pages came in one day dressed in jeans that had a cat’s tail on the butt. (Not even near Halloween)


Preschooler returning a stack of books said “I did not color in these books!”


Ten-year-old boy brought back a stack of books. Librarian said “didn’t you just take those out this morning?” The boy replied “yes, but my mother is making me bring them back because I was misbehaving.”


A father and daughter came in looking for books on Mesopotamia. The father asked what countries it is today. The kid said “Iraq and Kentucky.”


A high school student came in looking for a book on a scientist whose first name was Elie. She said “I was in the other day, but I thought she was a girl, but found out he was a boy.”


Two teens came in. One was a middle school kid who had the assignment of carrying around a life-like baby doll for a week. It was even programmed to cry during the night and had to be turned off with a key.
Her little sister told the librarian, “Men can have babies, too.” The librarian objected and the sister said “it’s been scientifically proven that men can have babies…….but they’re too chicken.”


Little girl singing loudly and marching up and down the sidewalk military drill style (found out later this is from the ARTHUR TV series):
“Havin’ fun,
It isn’t hard.
I just got
My libr’y card!”


Tween boy: “If you’re such a good reference librarian, how come you don’t know where the Holy Grail is?”


Two young boys doing a project on wolves struggled with how to describe how the wolves mark their territories. “If we put ‘they go to the bathroom on it’ will we get into trouble?”


Teen Patron A: I think Shakespeare is crap.
Teen Patron B: I agree. If my life depended on reading “Moby Dick,” I’d be dead.


Preschooler to mother who was bringing a stack of kids’ books to the desk to check out: “can you afford all those books, Mommy?”


Tiny boy: “Daddy, even when I am fifteen years old, books will still be my favorite thing!”


Letter from a boy in Zimbabwe to whose school we had shipped some discarded books. “When we opened the boxes of books, I was floating in a dish of happiness.”


Little boy using the elevator: “Daddy, I like this elevagator! I don’t like big elevagators, but I like this elevagator.”


Four-year-old watching cataloger with a large cart full of books: “My mom would be up in heaven before we could read all those books!”


Calling a patron about a book called “Raising a Gifted Child.” A child answered the phone and said “my mother ain’t here.”


A little kid was waving at the coat rack. There was a lost glove on the top and he thought it was waving to him.


When checking out books a husband said to his wife who wanted to check his books out on her card, “I don’t want to commingle our books.”


A woman brought back a video about angels and wanted to make sure it was not in the children’s room. She said that the video claimed angels were transsexuals, but we think she meant asexual.


Music playing on rectory answering machine “Born to be wild!”


Adult patron on phone: What’s the kids’ program today?
Librarian: The Fire Department is bringing a fire engine.
Patron: Is it going to be inside or outside the library?


Trustee’s wife came to the desk with a pair of men’s underpants that she found between some books in the Large Print section.


Patron to librarian putting together the color-coded branches of a plastic Christmas Tree: “Is that a real tree?”


A patron called and asked for a phone number for another patron from whom he had recently acquired a dog. They had met and transferred the dog in front of the library. The new owner said he needed the old owner’s number because he had to find out what size sweater the dog wore.


Patron (looking at bust of Beethoven): Who is that?
Librarian: It’s Beethoven.
Patron: Didn’t he just retire?


A book came back from another library with no dustjacket. A few days later the dustjacket came back with a note that the patron had removed it to iron it.


Patron came in looking for books on parenting and checks it out. A month later, he has to come and tell us he lost the book which was entitled “How to Teach Children Responsibility.”


A totally chewed up book was returned and paid for. The title was “How To Train Your German Shepherd”


A patron brought in a large box filled with diet books. Each one had a bookmark in it with ice creams cones on them.


An overdue book came back after the patron found it sewn into the back seat of his newly reupholstered car. They had it torn open when his wife had complained that the seat was hard.


Little girl: “I want to renew a book.”
Librarian: What’s your last name?”
Little girl: “I don’t know how to spell it.”
Librarian: “Well, what’s the name of the book?”
Little girl: “I don’t know the name, just the pictures.”


A book mailed to the Millicent Library in 1991 had been found in the stacks at University of California. It had been checked out of Millicent in 1927. The title–“To California and Back.”


Patron: “This book is overdue. Does it count that I brought it back early last time?”


Overdue book: “It was under the couch where I haven’t vacuumed in years.”


One book was found in a boat in the Bahamas.


Patron from Cambridge with a summer home in Fairhaven called to say she left her overdue books “in a plastic bag under the juniper tree.”


Patron on the phone renewing books: “I’d like to renew some books. I was going to go to the library this afternoon but I didn’t have the right shoes.


Little girl returns a book and says it’s overdue. Her little brother puts a book on the desk and says “my book is overdone, too!”


Overdue book, “Gangsters: Portraits in Crime,” tracked down to a patron now in the Norfolk State Penitentiary.


“My brother has to read this book for school– “The Man and the Mouse’.”
(She meant Of Mice and Men)


Reference Questions:

“Is Tim Curry black?”

“Is Massachusetts in New York?’

“Which wins in a poker game– a flush or 5 of a kind?”

” Do you have a phone book with the numbers in alphabetical order?”

“Do you have one of those abnormally large dictionaries?”

“When do chickens stop nursing their young? I know they have breasts but I don’t see any teats.” (This was an adult with children!!!)

“I need an autobiography of a hedgehog.”

“I need a picture of constipation for my report.” (This was from a serious young man.)


Patron: “I called the New Bedford Library and the man said you’re the only ones who have this song on a CD.
Librarian: “What’s the name of the song?”
Patron: “I can’t remember — I’ll call my mother.
Patron (calling back): “it’s something about tripping old Larry, but Larry isn’t spelled the usual way. It’s like ‘I’m on my way to trip Old Larry.”
Librarian finally calls New Bedford Library and they said it was “It’s a Long Way to Tipperary.”


Librarian: Can I help you find a book?
Teenager: I need a book on John Adams.
Librarian: Here are all the books on the presidents.
Teenager: John Adams was a president???
Librarian: Yes, he was.
Teenager (skeptically): What money is he on?


Patron: Where are the oversized books? I don’t like to read but I like to look at pictures.
Librarian: What subjects are you interested in?
Patron: It doesn’t matter what the book’s about as long as it has pictures.


The librarian at Woods Hole was in her dinghy and saw a boat go down. Two of our videos popped up and floated by so she returned them to us. One of them was “Moby Dick.” The patron whose boat had sunk came in to tell us and to pay for the movies. He was surprised that we already knew all about it.


A kind of depressing one:
A woman came in and said ” I always use this card to take out movies. Can I use it to take out books too?”