Earlier today I went to the library. The Tompkins County Public Library here in Ithaca, New York, is an incredible building. It’s large and bears a heavy amount of visitors each day. I go there to grade papers because I find that doing it at home, where I write, stifles the creative process. I like there to be a separation of some sort between academic and creative work. Typically, my time at the library is uneventful unless I stumble on a book or subject that reminds me of a previous and almost forgotten interest. Today was much different.
At the table next to me a young man—wait. It seems horrifying that I’m referring to someone as young man, so I’ll call him DMF*. DMF was on the phone with someone who works in the admissions department of the school he was attempting to get his transcripts from. DMF is applying to Kaplan. DMF thought it was appropriate to use his phone in the library. DMF’s frustration with the person on the other line, who was apparently informing him that his records couldn’t be released unless he filled out the appropriate paperwork, became more obvious. After telling the person on the other end of the phone that he (DMF) didn’t need to fill out a form because he was him or as DMF put it, “I’m me,” the person on the other end repeated themselves, at the very least, a third time. Moments later, DMF told the person on the other end of the phone, “Shut up. Stop being so fucking stupid and listen to me.” DMF listened to them hang up.