Skimpy Library Finds and the Lives of Strangers

This week’s library finds are skimpy as a result of my library system going through a complete overhaul. None of my requests came in, so after an extensive browse up and down the fiction aisle, I came away with one book: Stardust by Neil Gaiman. I’ve never heard of Neil Gaiman until I started book blogging; for those of you who are not familiar with Neil Gaiman, you should know that he is a God amongst book bloggers. Ever the curious one, I’m jumping on a new bandwagon on the quest to find out why Neil Gaiman is the shit. Unfortunately, I must postpone my Neil Gaiman investigation until I’ve sufficiently whittled my way through the stack of library books left over from last week.

While I’m still on the topic of libraries, would it be too nerdy to admit that I’m really excited about the changes being made to my library’s out-dated online catalog system. In a few days, they will unveil the new high tech system and I can get email notifications of my holds! I’m secretly counting the days! The fact that I’m even writing about this is a testimony to how uncool I am. There’s probably no way to redeem myself after this paragraph. Um… Yeah… Sooo… do you want to hear about how I walked by this guy surfing porn at the library? (When in doubt, employ a distraction). He closed his window as soon as I passed by, but not before I got an eye full of studs in thongs (oh, I forgot to mention it was gay porn—I guess I know his little secret). I remember thinking “I didn’t know you can download porn at the library!” which just goes to show you that the library is a wonder place of unlimited resources. Not that I’m advising you go to the library just to download porn, because you can do that at home, but just in case your Internet connection fails, you always have options…

Anyways, I’ll get off that topic before someone slaps me silly with censorship and accuses me of leading my readers astray.

On a related note, I like to observe complete strangers. Sometimes, curiosity gets the better of me and I would peer ever-so-casually over people’s shoulders so I can see what they are doing on their computers, what books they’re reading, or what they’re studying. I guess I’m just fascinated by people in general and, well, living in a big city is pretty lonely what with being surrounded by people day in day out yet never making contact. So when I walk behind someone while they’re on their laptops (this is usually at the library because I’m not a frequenter of Starbucks), I can’t help it: I look. I try not to be obvious; I inch closer and closer on the pretext of looking for some book and then when they least expect it, I break out the stealthy head crane. The observations, however mundane, are fascinating.

There was a guy playing an endless round of Spider solitaire, which begs the question, why would you go to the library to play solitaire unless you’re a) waiting for someone b) avoiding that essay like the plague or c) bored out of your mind.

There was also a woman who was typing away on a Word document. Because she didn’t have any books or papers strewn about her, I crossed out the possibility that she’s working on a paper and wondered if she was writing a novel or short story (something I don’t see every day). Then again, she could be composing a letter or writing an essay off the top of her head for all I know, but still I wonder.

What about you? Are you plagued by people curiosity? What is it about complete strangers that fascinates you the most?


6 thoughts on “Skimpy Library Finds and the Lives of Strangers”

  1. chartroose:
    Like in The Shining, “All work and no play makes Jack a bad boy”? Haha, I can see that.

  2. Ha! I never even noticed how weird that is. Sometimes I go to starbucks to study, get bored, and start playing games on my laptop. I guess I should stop, knowing that there are rogue bloggers out there waiting to write about me 🙂

  3. Yep, I’m plagued by people curiosity. I think it happens the most when I’m in the car or at an airport coz then I get to wondering where these random people are headed, did they just walk away from a family fight, are they going to visit some exotic country? etc…And then I get really imaginative because of my own mundane life. Hmmm, maybe I SHOULD be a writer…

    By the way, Stardust was a light, fun read.

  4. rachel:
    Fear not because I think I’m the only rouge blogger writing about this, unless of course, there is an entire blog out there centered on people observations, oh, wait, that’s TMZ.

    I love airports! I don’t know why people get so cranky when there is a lay-over because I simply love sitting there and watching people come and go with all their luggage, typing away on their laptops, dragging their kids about. Same here, I wonder where they came from, where they’re going, and why.

    You SHOULD be a writer, or at the very least, you should start a book blog! Do you have a blog? I would really like to read about your thoughts on books since we have the same reading interests!

  5. Yep, I’m always interested in the lives of others. When I was younger I wanted to be a spy… I suspect this was partly because of wanting to know about others’ lives… and then later on because I watched endless Get Smart reruns.

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