Books Under the Bed

Ah bugger and crap, I’ve gone and done it again.

Today I opened a letter from the local library. Yes, I know there is no post on Sundays but I generally save up my boring mail so that I can open it when nothing else in particular is happening. It adds a little spice to life.


So anyway, this letter informed me that I had borrowed a DVD in June and had neglected to return it. A quick search of H8’s room showed this to be the case; the movie was sitting right there, covered in dust and crumbs, in plain sight.

The nice people at Bagarmossen Library would now like me to pay them the sum of 6 (six) hundred Swedish crowns (about 55 Euro) for this slip of memory. 600 fucking crowns?!? Are they insane? The stupid thing would cost 120 to buy in the shops! And anyway it was rubbish!

And couldn’t they send me a few preliminary letters with a few gentle hints before just sending out the one that says: “Pay up or else we send around the big men with the hammers.” You know, a few subtle reminders, a few nudges and winks? And these people even have my e-mail address – isn’t it about time they started using it?

This happens to me all the time. All-the-time. When I was seven I had the library staff search all the shelves looking for a book I was sure I had returned. It took hours, and they didn’t find it. Not surprising really, because it was under my bed and my mother found it after 5 minutes of searching.

So that’s it for the public library system for me. And now all I have to do is be as fucking charming as possible and try and convince the lady at the library that I am actually a sweet and honest fellow and it was all a big mistake, and let’s forget the whole thing, and wouldn’t it be better spending the 600 crowns on taking her out to dinner instead?

Although I will make it clear that while I do kiss on the first date, there will be no shagging. Unless she asks nicely.

/ paddy

17 thoughts on “Books Under the Bed

  1. When I first started school back in 1953 I borrowed a book about the cat Pelle SvanlÖs ( Pelle No-Tail) from the school library. I never gave it back and Pelle moved to England with me in 1968. He is not very likely to return to Sweden. :)

  2. How about sneaking in and returning it to the shelf (not quite in the right place, you don’t want to make it obvious!) and then reprising the role of “angry, wronged library user” – get them to search the collection, and hey presto – they find it!

    This won’t work, of course, if they take the usual precaution of displaying just the cases.

  3. Blackout: This DVD just sat there for 4 months. I wish it did have feet because then I may have noticed it.

    Lillan: So you’re saying if I keep the DVD for 50 years, they will forget about it..?

    DrDan: Nice plan. But the DVDs go in a special behind-the-counter box. Dammit.

  4. Well I never heard of anyone who went to jail for non-return of a library item so it’s worth a try. Unless you really do want to ask that librarian out for dinner.

    They really should have sent you a letter before now though. Maybe they did and you filed it in the to-open-when-I’m-suicidally-bored drawer.

    I let my post pile up too but it’s because I have a fear of the postman – a hang-up from the time when I was recieving daily threats to have my house repossessed some years ago.

  5. earthpal: Unfortunately in Sweden everything goes on my credit rating as a black mark. So this one unpaid fine could stop me getting a bank loan in the future. You just can’t beat the man.

  6. Although I will make it clear that while I do kiss on the first date, there will be no shagging. Unless she asks nicely.

    Good to see you’re a man of principle, though. :)

  7. libarott: Oh goodness no…how would the country work if they started forgiving people? (And actually, I brought the DVD back today, and they did not make me pay, because it was a kid’s movie…shhhhh…)

    RBH: When it comes to his penis, a man must have a principle. Or two.

  8. Congrats, then! In the public library of my home town (in Estonia), this whole week is fine-free, actually. They have accepted that otherwise they’d probably never see the person AND the book again :) And it works, apparently.
    Oh boy… the ineffable mercy does not include CDs and DVDs, though.

  9. libarott: Estonia! Wow, I must go and visit Estonia. Which is the best city to see, do you think?

    Ullis: That is the Long Room in Trinity College in Dublin (where I studied back in the 90s when you were just a wee thing). It is indeed a very nice library.

  10. Ha, what have I done now… But if you really must, then, it depends… if you are an urban concert-and-gallery type, then Tallinn, the capital, is a safe bet. Tartu is also a cultural (university) town and I’m content living (t)here, but let’s face it, there’s less action than in Tallinn. If you are more of a beach-and-spa type, wait ’til Summer and Go West – Pärnu, Haapsalu. Definitely OK (complete with hot beach babes, some say), but also hordes of elderly spa visitors from Finland and Sweden. Or try the west coast islands (which are somewhat similar to Gotland, for instance, and there are some interesting old Swedish settlements). Skier types may find something to do in Otepää (south/southeast) wintertime. As for nature lovers, I would send them to the bogs of Soomaa National Park, or to a tour in the southeastern corner (Setumaa area). There’s a fine folk music festival in Viljandi (mid-country) in July ( Anyhow, check, I’m no expert.

  11. When I was a wee boy, and first got my own library ticket, I read the rules carefully. The fine for an overdue book was “twopence per week or part of a week”. I quickly worked out that a week can be divided into an infinite number of parts, and so if I ever let a book become overdue, I could be subjected to an unlimited fine. So Biggles, Jennings and Billy Bunter were always returned bang on time.

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