I read this article on time.com about 10 frequently challenged books; it's part of Banned Books Week. I realized that while I would like to, I haven't read most of the books. I've read some of 1984, but I didn't really like it, and I remember reading Huckleberry Finn when I was a kid. I'm not interested in the Harry Potter series (*GASP*) or The Anarchist Cookbook.
In any event, one of the only books on the list that was at the Brandon Library was The Satanic Verses. After my 2.5 hour nap today, I headed over to pick it up. While the online catalog status read "checked in," it wasn't on the shelf, so I walked to the circulation desk to ask about it. As I was saying hello to the woman behind the counter, I saw a display shelf behind her all about banned books.
Me: "Hi! I couldn't find Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses on the shelves, but I guess it might be on that banned books shelf behind you. Do you have it?"
Library Lady: "Mm. Can I see your library card?"
I handed over my card, which she scans then starts examining the computer screen like the word "terrorist" just popped up on it. Frowning, she asked for my phone number, which I gave to her.
LL: "That's not right. I can't give you a book till I get the right phone number."
Me: "That's my only phone number."
LL: "Someone from here tried to call you and the number was disconnected."
Me: "My phone is in my pocket right now, working. Maybe they dialed the wrong number?"
She picked up the phone and dialed a number. My pocket started buzzing, so I pulled out the phone and it said "Brandon Library." I showed it to Library Lady and she put the phone down and went back to examining the screen. She asked for my address. I gave it to her. Cue more examining.
LL: "Oh! You have a late fee of two twenty-five. I can't give you a book till you pay that."
I handed her exact change. Cue more examining. She frowned again, then walked over to the display. She asked the lady at the reference desk "Can I check this out?" Reference Lady asked what book, and LL said "Satanic... something... The Satanic Verses." Reference Lady said "oh... yeah?" and went back to her work.
Okay, am I totally paranoid, or do y'all think she got alarmed by the title and didn't want me to have the book? Normally my transactions there consist of the following, in lolcat speak:
"Oh hai, I can has book?"
"Oh hai, I can c ur liberry card?"
"kk, book due back n free weex."
In any event, that was weird. I was gonna hit the library up for the Twilight series next, but I might be labeled.
1 month ago