An Embarrassing Situation

When I was attending college, term papers were often required in the classes I was taking. Being conscientious, I tried to begin the ‘paper’ as soon as it was assigned.

In one particular class I chose to write about Africa. I immediately went to the University library and picked up several good documentaries about the country. I took the books back to the dormitory and put them on my desk.

The next day I spoke to my professor. She was pleased that I had chosen Africa as my topic to write on. She took out a piece of paper and wrote down the name of a book she highly recommended. She felt it was one that had all the information I would need.

With paper in hand I headed once more back to the library. I took my time, looked through many book titles, but I couldn’t find the book my professor had recommended.

A librarian assistant must have been watching me as I was diligently searching. It wasn’t long before she was standing next to me and asking if she could help. I told her my situation and gave her the title of the book. She began searching for it also. I apologized for the inconvenience and thanked her for her help.

Finally, after having no luck in finding the book, she told me she was going to look up the name of the person who had checked it out. I followed her and she said that as soon as the book was returned she would notify me. She needed my name and where she could reach me.

Fifty years ago there were no computers used in libraries. It took some time for her to thumb through the many library cards. Finally she found what she was looking for, pulled the card and said, “Perhaps you know this person. Her name is Adele Kinney. If you give me your name I will make sure you will get it when it is returned.”

She stood before me, waiting for me to tell her something very simple – my name! I wanted to say, Minnie Mouse, Cinderella, Snow White, ANY name but mine! I looked at her with a sheepish smile on my face, leaned over to her and said in a soft voice, “My name is Adele Kinney”.

I don’t know what she must have been thinking, but I knew what and how I felt. How in the world could I have taken her time and my time to find a book I already had? I felt like a complete idiot. Without realizing it, I had checked the book out the day before and it was sitting on my desk with all the other books I had gotten on Africa.

I apologized for taking so much of her time and she just laughed. I think this was a ‘first time’ situation for her also.

I told my experience to my professor and she laughed also. I was happy that it made everyone I told happy! But, fifty years later I still remember what an embarrassing situation this was and it really wasn’t so funny at the time!

So now I had all my informative books on Africa that I needed. I then studied and began creating my term paper. All ended very well. I received an A+ on my term paper and the instructor mentioned in class that it was the best term paper she had ever read! WOW!

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.