I have always had a soft spot for libraries and spent a lot of my childhood in them. Perversely during my university period I spent very little time in the university library, maybe because there were other places that were more interesting like a. the bar and b. the bar. But one thing I do remember about UK libraries was that a lot of tramps sat in them all day which would be fine except they smelt very strongly of pee - which is not okay.
Now that I live in America luckily things are different. Well not that different as the library I frequent is peopled with the usual colourful collection of care in the community mental cases and alchoholics but God Bless America - not one of them smells of pee.
Now you may well ask why I spend so much time in the library? Well it is part of my perverse nature - to need some kind of white noise to write my books and blog - to have people verbalising in the background without having any impulse to actually engage in conversation with them.
Like, what is the point of cafes where people sit about staring silently at their lap tops? Surely they'd have more fun at home because at least you can blog in the nude, fart at will and not pay $6 for a capuccino.
No, believe me, when you've gone library you can never go back. It is just so damn amusing.
The regulars are:
Hygiene Nut who wears surgeon's gloves while typing on the computer - I presume this is to ward off germs (and who can blame him?)
Man with flaking face Yes, worse than dandruff his face flakes all over the keyboard and he constantly picks at it.
Snoring fat man This obese guy has a bright red face and is always wearing headphones and snoring like a train in front of the keyboard. What's up with that? What's wrong with a bed?
The anorexic/bulimic She was really skinny for a long time, then she blew up like a balloon. She once came up to me and told me 'I don't like you.' Thanks for that. I've also seen her panhandling outside the library.
The usual suspects:
Many many men are looking at porn and subtly fiddling with their crotches but the funniest people are the Google virgins. They sit down at the computer and just scream over to the librarian:
"How do I get on Google? I wanna get on Google!"
Librarian: "What do you want to do on Google? It is a tool you know."
"I wanna find something!"
Librarian shows him how to get on Google and goes away.
Two minutes later the virgin screams again:
"I wanna go on Yahoo! How do I get on Yahoo?"
Librarian: "Do you have a Yahoo account?"
"No but I heard I can get some some free mail from Yahoo."
Librarian takes out a gun and shoots him in the head. Not really ....but I'm amazed they don't.
Yesterday a ten year old listening to music on headphones was bellowing very loudly along to the rap lyrics until someone told him to shut up: "Yo mutherfuckin ho, yo bitch I think I need some sno, so ho off you go, you lazy mo fo bitchin ho." (I may have got the lyrics wrong but you get my drift).
There are quite a few drunks at the library and sometimes they will start a punch up - why I have no idea.
There was a girl who screamed at the librarian that she was a 'Fucking Bitch Cunt' very loudly until she had to be escorted out. But what was wierd is that they let her back in the library the next day!
A man who sat next to me staring at me who slid me a note that he 'wanted to connect with me' and left me his number. I ran out of there so fast I left skid marks.
They're like a wonderful dysfunctional family to me. A family I don't ever have to deal with. What bliss.
What about you, what kind of white noise fuels your creativity? I find that inspiration strikes with a backdrop of tourettes syndrome and people talking very loudly into their cell phones.
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Who am I? Displaced Londoner now living in the States with my two little girlies and long suffering husband. Co-author of hilarious parenting book Cocktails at Naptime www.cocktailsatnaptime.com
My mom's an Austrian, my dad's a Brit, which makes me a Britaustrian, or possibly an Austrish?