Get Out of My Drawers

Get out of my drawers!

As librarians, we know that we are giving up a certain amount of privacy and personal space. Anyone has access to our stapler, Scotch tape, and Can ‘O pencils. Some of us are lucky enough to have an office and even a phone, but even that is not sacred. I have a staff member who helps herself to everything. I find her sitting at my desk, talking on my phone all of the time, even though there is a phone in the storage room two feet away. She opens the locked equipment cabinet and helps herself to scanners, digital cameras, and projectors. She opens my drawers behind my desk while I am standing there and rummages through!
Well, I know. I am part of the problem for letting it go on. I am only there 2.5 days, so I thought I could put up with it. But, just because her tutoring room is in the library does not mean, “What is mine is hers.� I am also her personal librarian. When she needs help with any piece of equipment, she wants me to drop what I am doing to help her. I don’t mind helping, but most of the time my help would be just messing around and plugging things in and trying again. It aggravates me this much because many of these times she is without students (she is an ESL teacher and has 2-3 students in a day) and I am taking care of two libraries and am pressed for time. I also feel miffed because she closes her door on a regular basis to be alone when she has no students. She can sit in her quiet room and use my stuff and me whenever it is convenient?
I have been thinking. Just saying something to her will not be effective. I have to illustrate it. Here are some ideas.

  • Hide the equipment key to the closet
  • Install pad locks on my drawers
  • Lock my office door
  • Rummage through her drawers
  • Rummage through her purse
  • Install shock device on my phone

I think I will abstain from action for now. Just a few more days (literally since I split my time between two schools…) until the school year is over. Our district is cutting and who knows if either of us will be there next year. Grin and bear it.


I feel for you. I don't really have this problem, but when it comes up -- say some coach coming into the equipment room and helping himself to a video projector or something -- I just go ballistic. I'm responsible for the health and well-being of this stuff! Leave it alone!

I don't see how you can deal with it effectively this year. And I hope you are still there next year to try!

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