I spent most of my high school years in my local library. Most of the summers, I volunteered there and when I wasn’t “working”, I was still checking out books by the arm load to fill those nights I couldn’t sleep. Spending so much time with books gave me an appreciation for the fact that for a bookworm, location is not important. I always have a book handy…I have a book in my closet in the bathroom, a lot in my room, a couple in every level of the house and of course, in my car & purse. I read in line EVERYWHERE and sometimes at red lights. Add to that the fact that I am scatterbrain and a mess sometimes, it’s likely that I could leave things in my books. I’ve found money and bills and credit cards in books months after I finished reading a book.
So it’s no surprise that people who check out library books can tend to leave things behind when they return the book…But it’s also no suprise that people don’t come back for these things…because a library book isn’t at the top of your list of places to “leave” things. Librarians in AZ talk about the bookmarks that they’ve found over the years…
Most of the cash discoveries are just a dollar or two, but several years ago Pals found an envelope containing a $10,000 check. When she couldn’t trace the name of the recipient in library records, she returned it to the check writer. That person, whom Pals would not identify, sent a thank-you card in which he explained the money was sent to his son for a down payment on a house.
Hmm…missing your down payment? Maybe you’ll be more careful next time you return a library book. I’ve personally left paychecks in books…but found them quickly.
One of the most common – and unpleasant – discoveries is toilet paper,
Now…is that with or without a stain? *gross*
She also has found combs, deflated balloons and origami creations.
Why did I think “condom” when I read deflated…I have such a horribly dirty mind. You know that someone, somewhere, is going to leave a condom…Just watch…
Another odd one was the envelope marked “happy happy” stuffed in a book’s spine; it contained muscle relaxant pills, she said.
Bring a whole new meaning to “Take a Chill Pill”
Pals keeps a collection of creative and unusual “bookmarks” on display behind her desk in case people want them back. Her wall is covered with greeting cards, personal letters, travel mementos, board game pieces, doilies, playing cards and one recent addition: a list of “karma violations.”
Library collections aren’t the only books that come in with extras. Suzanne Kinsinger, operations manager for Friends of the Library, said some donated books for public sales have been stuffed with personal letters and even spoiled food.
Spoiled food? “Honey, what is this box next to the trash can? Why are we throwing out all these books? Oh well…*dump yesterday’s leftovers*”
It makes me wonder…What kind of bookmarks have you used while reading? What could possibly be something found in a library book that YOU return?