"How goes it old fruit," say I."It's all rotifers and Volvox," he replied, which bode ill."As bad as that?""We were discussing staffing our libraries...""Yes..." this is currently The Discussion That Anybody In The Public Sector Would Prefer To Sidle Away From."One of our senior managers reckoned that we have too many staff in our libraries."
I know for a fact they're even worse placed than us for being able to open the doors each morning.
"How do they reckon that?""She reckons that they only need so many staff because the libraries get busy with customers.""Oh Hell. She's not decided that you can dispense with staff and do it all online has she?""Oh no. She's dead against online because we must get our visitor figures up."
My brain was already starting to hurt. I asked a question I shouldn't.
"So what does she mean then.""She reckons that we need to manage customer throughput. She suggested that we give customers red bracelets, like they do in busy nightclubs, and ask them to come back later.""Kenneth, please tell me you are taking the piss."
"You poor dear fellow."
It was all I could do not to put a white fiver in his hand and tell him to buy himself a cup of tea.