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September 25, 2008

A second brush with policy

September 24. Day 86.

I realize I'm a day late with updates. I'm still asking every day, but I've been so busy I couldn't do proper write ups. And I actually want to write something, not just bullet points for "asked" and "gained." Once I'm in San Diego, things will be back to normal. Until then, thanks for your patience...


This day-after update is less than enchanting, so I'll keep it short.

I was confronted, once again, by the mean library spirits. This time around, I dared to ask if I could exit through the front door minutes before the library closed. Impertinent human! I was carrying a bag of fifteen books on one hand, and balancing another stack of ten under my chin. Through the front door, lay my department and its free copy machine. A total of 40 steps away. The faster I could make it there, the less chance I'd trip or get an arm ache. Great way to spend my last night in town. (Yes, I'm a big nerd. Haven't we already established that?)

The guard checked the books of another woman, and then she turned to me: "You can't go out this way. We're closing now."


"We're closing."

"Please. I just really need to use this door."


"My department is very close to this exit. Otherwise, I have to walk through the library, up Mass Ave, around the corner, through the quad, and these books are really heavy."

"Oh. Well, I can't let you through here." Then why did you ask, you sadist????

"Please! They're really heavy, and I understand if you want to go home, but it would make a really big difference, and the library hasn't closed yet."

"I can't let you through here."


"It's policy."

Conclusion: Massachusetts uses same staffing agency as the TSA -- the TSA at its most vicious, back when the legitimate fear had subsided , but the agency was still trying to dehumanize people by glaring at them and making strange requests, arbitrary ones, for policy. Because they were wearing a uniform, and you weren't.

Gained: I took the long way, and it sucked.
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