Saturday, March 5, 2022

My good name - 3.05 #sol22 Story Challenge

"I have lost the immortal part of myself, and what remains is bestial." --Cassio, Othello

In my email box  (e-mailbox?) this morning, I noticed a message from the local library. This in itself is not surprising. These days, nearly all borrowing business in the library system I frequent is conducted via digital platforms: online catalogs, self-checkouts, automatic renewal or return notices. While the books are -- or can be -- actual, everything else in the transaction leans virtual.

This particular bulletin contained the following chilling sentence: "Library item(s) checked out to your card have exceeded the due date by more than 7 days." Overdue book? Anathema to this responsible library citizen! I racked by brain about the title: Falling by T.J. Newman, a pulpy thriller about a plane hijacking, a "Lucky Day" non-holdable, non-renewable title that I had checked out as entertainment for my wife, then couldn't resist devouring myself. I had thumped that title into a book drop weeks ago, on a pre-dawn walk to catch the bus to school.

I needed to make a phone call. I needed to clear my at-least-in-this-context good name from further besmirchment. (Cue another Othello quote, via Iago: "Reputation is an idle and most false imposition; oft got without merit, and lost without deserving.") I navigated a pleasantly brief voicemail menu in order to reach an actual member of the library staff. The proffering of my library card number and an explanation of the circumstances was enough -- for now -- to erase the stain on my record and scramble minions in some biblio-bowels into searching for the wayward title. I hope they find it; my tenuous reputation hopes I don't.


3 comments:

  1. I'm chuckling to myself because I do NOT like to have overdue books and I HATE to have library fines, so I immediately identified with your reaction. Fingers crossed that they find the books. (And by the way, I read Falling relatively recently - somehow I love knowing that we shared a book.)

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  2. Perfect second quote from Othello! You almost lost your rep without deserving. That is quite the chilling sentence (lol) you received. The local library here no longer enforces due dates. It's shocking. You can just take out a book, even a popular best seller, and return it at whim. A due date is stamped but it's more of a suggestion as to when you should return it. Perhaps you should move back here.

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  3. I hope they find the books. That book must have been fun because you devoured them😊 What other genres of book do you like?

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