We're taking a bit of a breather while the world rearranges its underpants. Meanwhile, the other blog is here.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Mr. Wet Underpants in 1989

Some customers cause hearts to drop when the walk through the door of a library. Some cause consternation when the 'phone. Not many cause the staff of three libraries and backstage staff to erupt in fury at their name. Harbi Barnowl is one such.

Noreen's first encounter with him was:
"Hello, I'm Harbi Barnowl from Human Resources. Remember me? I dealt with your regrading request. I'm ringing to find out why it's taking so long for the book I reserved to arrive."
He's known in the Reference Library:
"Oh, he's in all the time, asking why he can't borrow this week's magazines. He gets quite shirty about it"
He's recently thrown a wobbly at Carbootsale Library about because they didn't have the magazines he wanted to borrow. No one else visiting Carbootsale actually would want to borrow them, but they're published by someone he knows.
"Do you know who I am?" he asked. Really.
Thank God our staff are very professional.

And today in Helminthdale he throws a major strop and calls over Warner Baxter, who just happens to be passing through after a meeting with T.Aldous. After a five-minute rant about the inadequacies of our systems and whatnot he finishes by turning to Norma and saying:
"You have to telephone me at 3.45 to tell me what is happening with this reservation. Not a minute more or less. Do not send me an email, I am not computer literate. You must telephone me at 3.45."
Warner congratulated Norma on dealing with him extremely well and not letting a stupid question become a public drama.

The story soon gets round the service, leading some library assistants to ask the obvious question:
"If he's high up in Human Resources and isn't computer literate, how come I can't move up from Scale 2 without ECDL?"


The Topiary Cow said...

Cow is breathless to know whether, in fact, he did get a ringy-dingy at 3:45...


Kevin Musgrove said...

Yes he did.

He wasn't in his office so a message was left with his manager.