Thursday, July 28, 2011

It was already bad, but ........

I had just finished telling my co-worker that I wasn't feeling well. Dealing with messy patrons was not something I felt like dealing with.

One of the pages came over to tell me that he had awakened a patron who then began cursing at him.

I walked with the page back toward where the patron was sitting. As I approached the patron, he began yelling at the page that he didn't have to go and tell on him.

I explained to the patron that the page was only doing what I or any other staff member would have done when he woke him up. The patron was yelling, "YALL AIN'T BOTHERING NONE OF THESE OTHER PEOPLE! WHY DID HE HAVE TO POINT ME OUT?"

I said, "You were sleeping and it's against the library rules and regulations to sleep inside of the library." I repeated this at least 3 times, because the patron kept asking why he had to be awakened.

He then said, "I just got off work, and I was trying to get some sleep before I got on BART." For the 4th/5th time, I said, "Sleeping isn't allowed inside of the library!"

The whole time that I was talking to the patron, he kept cursing at the page. I finally walked back toward the reference desk, so that I could call security. The patron apologized to me as I was walking away. He said that he wasn't cursing at me, he was taling to him(the page.)

Well........I never made that call to security........because when I got about 5 aisles away........ I heard, "Step up then!!" Who said that you ask?.......... The page said that. I turned around and rushed back toward the patron because I knew those where fighting words.

What do I see? The patron was in the page's face yelling for him to do something. I jumped in between them. Facing the patron, I said, "You will not be DOING anything in here. You have two choices, 1. Sit back down, or 2. Leave. I don't care which one you choose, but you won't be doing anything else."

He yells at me, "Why are you talking to me, you need to be talking to him(the page.)"

I told him that I would speak to the page, but I first had to take care of him. The patron was still lunging toward the page. Then all of a sudden, he turned, got his stuff and said he was leaving.

I got right in front of him, walking backwards, to make sure he didn't sneak in a punch to the page. As we passed the page, he lunged toward him (with me right with him, blocking the page,) and said, "Fu*k yo job and see me outside. I bet I whoop yo a*s."

I once again, began guiding the patron toward the elevators. He was cursing the page the whole time, but I stayed on him, nudging him forward. When we got about halfway, my co-worker approached us and said, "I think it's best that you just leave. The elevators are that way."

The patron replied, "Fu*k you,BITCH!" My co-worker said, "I'm calling security on you!" The patron told him, "CALL THEM FAG*OT!"

An elderly African American woman was standing at the reference desk and she said, "You need to just go ahead and leave." The patron told her, "You a B*tch too, because you taking the fag*ot's side." We had finally made it to the elevators, when my supervisor arrived.

The patron asked him if he was a manager. My supervisor said that he is(he's the acting floor manager because our mgr is on vacation.) The patron told him that he wanted to complain about the page because he threatened him.

Thankfully, security stepped off the elevator at that time and took over. The patron went into the security office to file a complaint against the page. I had to file a incident report. My co-workers kept asking me all day, "Were you scarred? Are you okay?" I kept telling them that I was fine because the patron wasn't directing anything at me. I was only involved because it's our job to protect the page staff.

I knew the page didn't know what he was doing/saying, when he told the patron to step up. It turns out, the page was trying to tell the patron to step up and be a man. As I completed the incident report, my supervisor explained to the page what step up means to certain individuals.

The page kept apologizing to all of the librarians involved in the incident and especially me.


Judaye said...

If you're protecting the pages who is protecting you? Do you have training in self defense? What a question to ask a librarian!

Gorgeous_Puddin said...

WOW! Another crazy day at the library! That was brave of you protecting the page and all but what if it had gotten violent?? Would you have fought him to defend yourself and the page?? He sounded crazy!

Anonymous said...

Seriously, I don't know how you do what you do! You encounter all types of individuals (mentally challenged included) since the library is free. Sounds like ya'll need constant security! Sending you peaceful vibes for the days ahead.

Nexgrl said...

Security is supposed to be protecting all staff, including the librarians. At no point during this incident was I threatened. The patron appologized to me during the incident and afterward. He even explained to security that his actions were all directed at the page.
I'm not trained in any type of self-defense. During this whole incident, I was calm. I didn't raise my voice, nor did my body language indicate that I was scared or threatened.

@Gorgeous Puddin
If the patron would've hit me, I would have hit him back. I don't think that I would have been in a fight. I'm a one good solid lick type of person. There were other witnesses to this incident and the patron wasn't trying to harm me.

Security is supposed to make rounds on all floors, all day long. Our floor seems to be the one that is taken for granted by security and upper management. Because we're almost fully staffed, there is a belief that our floor doesn't need as much attention. Everyone seems to forget that most of the problem individuals stop at our floor.