The ins and outs of a young library media specialist's life. Rock, rock on.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Golden Oldies

Some days, my senior citizen volunteers drive me batty. And by some I mean all. Take, for example, Priscilla; while she is legally considered deaf, she almost always refuses to wear her hearing aid because, she says, "when it's cold outside, it freezes to her ears". And while she does make an interesting conversationalist (Me: "Priscilla, could you put these books back on the shelves?" Priscilla: "Pardon? The library is infested with elves?"), her constant shuffling about grates on my brain. It's like she's unable to pick up her feet to move around, so it's a steady tssssh tssssh tssssh across the library carpet all day long. All I can imagine is that she must give herself some whopping static electricity shocks.

Then there's Edna, who must be in her mid-nineties and no longer drives, nor does she have any remaining family that cares about whether their old mother dies walking in the sub-Arctic temps lives near enough to cart her around. When she talks, she can't focus very well on you and so she creeps closer and closer to your face until you can see her pink rose Wet 'n Wild lipstick smeared clownishly around her mouth, teeth, and gumline. She also has trouble hearing, but with her I'm not so worried about it because it doesn't actually matter whether she hears me or not, she probably won't be able to do whatever I'm asking of her. She can't bend down, nor can she reach up, nor can she walk more than a few steps without needing a rest. So I basically have her sit and stamp things. What things? Just... things.

There's also Polly*, who recently decided that she was interested in learning about computers but is one of those very rare people who actually can break a computer just by looking at it. Seriously, she needs her own episode of Heroes. I stepped away from my computer to take a bathroom break and when I came back I had to fill out three work order forms with the Technology department because she had somehow broken my mouse, keyboard, and barcode scanner in one fell swoop.

Why don't I just trade them in for newer models, you ask? I'd say 10% of it is because it would be more work to have them stop coming in than it is for me to just endure their presence, 10% because they have interesting stories of illness and gossip (they're better than a town crier), and the other 80% is because I feel bad for them. Besides, if I wait a few years they'll all be gone anyway, right?


*All names are real. Seriously, they're old.


Anonymous Megan rocks hardcore!

Ha! Sounds like the volunteers I get to work with...or the Admin Assistant who can't hear either. "Kay, can you pick up some stamps when you're at the post office?"...."Kay?"...."KAY!!!!???" She must have the volume turned up to its turbo boosters on the phone in order to hear a damn thing.

My dad won't where his hearing aids either. Says he hears too much when he does. ????? Oh, that's right, they're intended for decorative purposes only. Guess he should have rethought going to sleep with his headphones turned up to 11 when he was a 60s stoner.

11:36 AM

Blogger Melissa rocks hardcore!

Your volunteers sound kinda cute, actually. If anything, they make the place more interesting, right?

I used to work in a nursing home. Can you tell? :)

11:43 AM

Blogger CarpeDM rocks hardcore!

I'm sorry, I just lost it over Priscilla and the library infested with elves. I think that just makes up for all of her other problems.

And Edna? Good Lord, she does need her own episode of Heroes. And then you could sick Sylar on her. Because he's evil enough to eat an old lady's brains.

The sad thing is that I so need a hearing aid because I'm yelling at my friends for not looking at me when they're talking to someone else. I don't read lips but apparently watching someone's lips move makes me able to comprehend better.

12:22 PM

Anonymous Anonymous rocks hardcore!

Patience my dear..your parents will be like that someday...and they both will be very happy to volunteer at your library. Your padre will take over for Polly breaking your computer and mumsie lou will just be there looking sassy and bossing you around.

12:57 PM

Blogger chai rocks hardcore!

*All names are real. Seriously, they're old.


1:22 PM

Anonymous liberace rocks hardcore!

I think that they will be gone eventually.

Unless they are like my elderly neighbor, who I think died a few years ago but no one has remembered to tell him yet.

3:49 PM

Blogger stilettoheights rocks hardcore!

I loved mom used to work at a nursing home and I was forced to...I mean, and in occasion I would volunteer and help with their activities...I even chaperoned a dance they were creepy, sad, and sort of sweet all at the same time.

8:27 AM

Blogger b rocks hardcore!

I am so diggin' the Wet 'n Wild reference.

9:49 PM


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