Everyone has to deal with stupid people on a regular basis, but I've been involved in a couple of incidents of supreme stupidity this week that need to be shared. It's frustrating to have--yes, I'll say it--retarded people around you, and the only thing to do is laugh. If possible, publicly.
Shane's taking a course on neurobiology this semester which he said is his favorite class because the professor is so fantastic--and this is a course he dreaded when he first signed up for it. The only problem with it is there is that one student who a) thinks her every opinion/thought is invaluable and needs to be voiced and b) isn't ashamed to interrupt the professor to get these mental wanderings out there. Shane said that they never, ever have anything to do with what the professor is teaching. (One of her recent gems was, "Did you know the brain is a muscle?" Professor: "No, it's not." Her: "It isn't?" Professor ignores her as she continues talking, and continues his lecture over her.) I feel his pain, having taken several different classes with that kind of person. (Most notably, the White Whale.)
Well, I got to meet her yesterday. I knew her right away, based on Shane's descriptions. (I hate to say it like this, but it's a fact that we don't get many black women in the biology library. Especially not ones with key chains that are roughly the same size and weight as my dog.) The first question out of her mouth? "So how does this work?" When I looked at her blankly she continued, "Is this, like, a normal library?" Kind of wondering what other kind of library there is, I said yes. Then she asked for help finding a couple of books. I knew they'd be on reserve, so I asked for the titles, which she didn't know. "Um, something that's, like, about invertebrates?" Yeah, not helpful when we have several books on reserve about invertebrates, for different classes. So she had to look up the title, which took about two minutes, and then the next title. Because I could have looked it up, but she couldn't tell me the courses. It takes brilliance to not even know what courses you're enrolled in. Then, when checking out the books, we require people's student IDs. It ensures that they really do belong to the University, and it's easier than looking them up in the system. Well, she handed me the whole friggin' lanyard full of her key chains! I understand having collections, but who needs to cart the whole thing around every day? When complaining about it, Shane said that she takes up an entire chair with it in class. After all of this, she asked me about buying books. "Why can't I buy these?" "We're not a bookstore." "But, I mean, like, online." "We're not a bookstore. We don't have anything to do with a bookstore." "But, like, on, like, Amazon?" "Well, there's absolutely no reason you shouldn't be able to buy these on Amazon, but we're not affiliated with Amazon, so you'll have to look that up yourself." "Oh."
There's more to the story, but due to privacy laws I can't say it. Rest assured, though, not my favorite patron to deal with.
The other story, which is funnier and less aggravating, has to do with a mistaken text. At Pub Trivia the other night, our friend Keegan received this text: "In 2011 the guverment will be sending all the ritards to a iland. Be shur to bring youre crans." He had absolutely no idea who the sender could be. We spent a few minutes laughing about the spelling, and wondering what to do in response. So Shane replied and said, "Oh, good. Can I borrow your crayons?" The anonymous texter responded, "Yes." "So you have extras?" "I tink I can spar sum." Shane then asked, "Are you drunk, stupid, or illiterate? And do you know that this is a wrong number?" Then came the text, "no, no, yes." I told Shane he should have said, "You still didn't answer my question about the wrong number." But he decided to leave it at that. I don't blame him. Getting texts from a confirmed illiterate just gets kinda sad after a bit. ; )
And at that Pub Trivia, I got the entire first category correct. "Sci-fi/fantasy characters under four feet tall." We took second place, and I won a loaf of bread.