The Expensive Library Summer

The librarians at the branch library near our house keep renewing the Darth Vader chapter book that Jack picked out one day.   At night when I was reading to him, he would get bored after about half a page, but for some unknown reason, I would secretly consider reading the rest of the book on my own time.  But I didn’t, and when it was time to return the library books, I gathered it up along with everything else.  So I was surprised to see it in the basement 5 minutes later, in Jack’s secret hideout.  I thought to myself, I need to do something with that book right this instant or it will end up getting lost.   Long story short, I keep trying to just pay the library for the damn thing and they keep renewing it and telling me to keep looking.  I have looked everywhere.

While this has been going on, I have been reading a book about Mary Magdalene.  It isn’t really my style, it reads more like a lecture, with a lot of the authors voice piping in with “I’ll address that in the next chapter” type of comments.  And I don’t read a lot of scholarly biblical studies (or any) so there were a lot of concepts that I really sort of glossed over.  But the premise of the book was really fascinating, and it presented another way of looking at a lot of Jesus’ teachings that made a lot more sense to me then the way they seem to be presented by mainstream Christianity.  It really made sense, except for all the parts that didn’t make any sense at all.   When I wasn’t reading it, I would think I should just return it and read something easier, and more my style.  But when I was reading it, I couldn’t stop.  Soon I was close to the end, and I decided to finish it.  Sadly, at some point in time over our trip to Breckenridge, Dave’s* coffee was spilled all over it.  I took it into the library to see what to do about it, since the coffee is just sort of on the edge of the pages, and I knew there were a ton of people on the wait list to read this after me.  Long story short, I now own it.  And I still have yet to settle the score on the Darth Vader book!

I was going to offer it up as the prize for the comment contest, but then I realized I am trying to encourage, rather than discourage comments.  Maybe it will be a consolation prize.  Who knows!

Have you ever had to buy a library book?


* I don’t blame Dave for the spilled coffee, I just had to mention that it was his coffee because I never put down my coffee until the mug is empty.  Camping and library books do not mix, and I told the librarian that for my next vacation I was going to Amazon.  She looked impressed until I added the “dot com.  I’ll go to and buy a book first so I don’t ruin another library book.”)


12 thoughts on “The Expensive Library Summer

  1. Anonymous

    We almost had to pay for a school library book that I KNEW we returned. The school found it a few weeks later. And p.s. I don’t want your coffee stained book as a prize.

  2. Jena

    Unfortunately, yes. The Wizard of Oz is still in the black hole it fell into, and since Delta claims the Count of Monte Cristo was never turned in to lost and found, it’s still cruising around at 10,000 feet.

  3. laura

    you should check at the library. at least three times, our library has claimed that I still had a book – then I go find it on the shelves and take it up to the desk like ha ha I told you so!

  4. laura

    Yeah, she probably thought you were really going to the Amazon before you said ‘dot com’. LOL
    She probably hears stuff about people going to outer space or Mount Doom, or North Dakota as she sits at her desk in Boulder.

  5. molly

    Lucky for us, Senior Citizens don’t have to pay fines at our library. Now that we have the time to keep our stuff more organized….

  6. Suzanne

    Freshman year in college, I returned some research books and made the mistake of returning them to the outside slot and not actually going inside and giving them to a worker. Well, long story short, in order to get my grades for that semester I had to buy the book they swore I didn’t return. If I had been really smart, I wouldn’t have paid that fine…..

  7. Jack

    I knew that I had returned a couple of books past their due date but they never seemed to charge me as I checked out another book. So, I screwed up my courage and asked whether I had any unpaid fines. The librarian began pecking away at her keyboard and saying “Mmmmmm” and “Ohhhhh”. It looked grim for our hero, but then she brightened and announced not only to me but everyone in the #$%^ &*( library that since I was “a member of the Over 60 club”, I was exempt from fines.Oh, THANK YOUUUUUU, I said, and walked out of the library with as much dignity as a Over 60 Club member could muster on short notice.

  8. Jack

    On a related topic, I know I returned a vhs tape years ago to a now defunct store. I remember putting it the lady’s hand. Imagine my surprise when I got the call a week or so later. Furious searches of the house were made, and I was assured that equally furious searches were made at the store (yeah, right). Long story short (yes, I know, too late already) I paid the fine. Twenty years and it still rankles me. And that might be the first time I’ve used the work “rankle” in a sentence. Thank you for the opportunity.

  9. Anonymous

    We own a book called “Celeste” about a young girl and her teddy bear who pretty much get into a fight with a duck b/c he steals her chocolate cucumber sandwich. It’s an odd one, but fun, though I wouldn’t have chosen to buy it … but we accidentally ripped the bejeezus out of it. Oops. We also almost had to buy a couple of other books over the last year. Library books just keep getting sucked into the girls’ own bookshelf, only to be found at the last possible minute.

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