Tuesday, April 11, 2006

She's Crafty

One imagines a security guard would usually protect library patrons from stalkers. In our case, the guard is the one doing the stalking. I can only guess this situation is due to her combination of utter job-related boredom and an inexplicable mania for "crafting."

For the past several months, our security guard has been hard at work with her head locked in the "down" position at her security post. I've watched her dabbling in an impressive variety of glittery, hot-waxy, card-boarded, or otherwise crafty materials, creating a profusion of truly horrific baubles and doo-dads.

Perhaps the absolute nadir was reached by an ungodly combination of straw hats and cutesy decorations, the sight of which made my stomach clench and my mouth dry up in fear. Within a matter of weeks she has taken over the craft program planning department of the library--admittedly a thankless chore--by volunteering to teach classes on the creation of these very own horrors. In a shocking result that once again forces me to question my own sanity, these programs appear to have become a huge hit with the similarly craft-crazy members of our library community.

Now, I understand that one will never go broke by wildly underestimating the taste of the American people, but these crafts, I submit, are reaching the proportions of crimes against humanity. Surely the Nuremburg Tribunals were assembled in the hopes that crafts such as these were never perpetuated in a civilized society. Nevertheless, to my utter amazement every time, rather than fleeing in horror people seem genuinely fascinated to learn the dark arts involved in their assembly.

Ah, but this is where the stalking comes in. Not content to merely set out a display of the above-mentioned atrocities and a clipboard sign-up sheet for those interested in signing over their souls in a Faustian craft-bargain, our craft-mad security guard has employed a far more agressive technique. Upon creating the sign-up sheet for a future craft program a few weekends hence, she spends the next couple of hours, or whatever it takes, jumping potential students a fraction of a second after they enter the door of the library.

She's a stone-cold profiler--if you're a woman between the ages of 24 and 95 and you look like you have the use of at least one hand for hot-glue-gun action, this armed woman is going to accost you while brandishing her sign-up sheet. Non-English-language-speakers are not exempt. You could be rushing in to photocopy your bail paperwork which has to be returned to your parole officer in five minutes, but first our pistol-packing security guard is going to quiz you on your crafting proclivities before giving you the hard sell on signing up for next weekend's diabolical straw-hat-with-ribbons-and-teddy-bears workshop.

Perhaps I've overstimated our patrons' actual love for nightmarish craft-making and underestimated the persuasive powers of a uniformed crazy woman with a gun.


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