The following is a post from The Merry Librarian (www.merrylibrarian.com) dated Sept. 27th, 2009. Check out the website for all postings!
"Tough Love from a Tough Dad"
This week’s Story of the Week is one of the rare stories that is genuinely heartwarming (though we’re sure there are more out there!). As librarians–as with any public service profession–we so often see the sad and traumatic family interactions. It is refreshing to witness powerful and positive relationships like this one. Thank you, “Diane”, for this great story!
I work at a small library in an area of town that tends to house the lower-economic demographic. It is not unusual for things to be stolen from our library on a regular basis–most frequently our DVDs. One day, I was at the reference desk when a man came in with a young, teenage boy. The man looked pretty haggard. He had tattoos everywhere (even a cross between his eyebrows! Ouch!) and lots of piercings. He looked like he’d had a pretty hard life. When he came up to the desk, he set a very tall pile of DVDs in front of me–at least 20 DVDs.
“I found these in my son’s room,” he said. “He didn’t check them out. He stole them.”
I didn’t quite know how to respond, so I (rather stupidly) said, “Oh. Okay. So none of them are checked out?”
“No, ma’am,” he answered. Then he knelt down on the ground so that he was eye to eye with me. His son knelt beside him, looking deeply humiliated and angry.