Showing posts with label library. Show all posts
Showing posts with label library. Show all posts

Friday, June 13, 2014

Turned Away From The Library

The Culprit

I walked through the front door of the downtown library but was not allowed to proceed.  I was then told I had to leave.  My violation?  Carrying a sleeping bag.  All rolled up and tucked neatly into its carrying case, somehow it became problematic for the venue.  I asked the security guard "why".  She said, "because it's the rules".  I asked, "But why it is a rule?"   She told me that I'd have to talk to someone with the city about that.  She said I could come in if I left the sleeping bag outside.  I told her someone would steal it.  She said I could have someone watch it for me.  I told her I don't know anyone I could trust to watch it.   I asked her if she thought the rule was fair.  She said she was just doing her job.

All the old cliche' come out - "I'm only doing my job" - "In the grand equality of the law it is just as illegal for a rich man as for a poor man to bring a sleeping bag into a library."

I think what gets me the most is that I have been allowed to carry my sleeping bag into every conceivable place without a problem - Cafe's, Grocery Stores, Restaurants, Fast Food places, shopping malls and their stores, movie theaters - you name it, in my many years of homelessness, the ONLY place I've not been allowed to bring a sleeping bag with me is the public library - yeah, so much for the word 'PUBLIC.'

The security guard gave me a list of the rules of the library.   This is sad mostly because of all the different types of people, the homeless need the services of the public library the most.

Here is the list.  It begins with this preface:
    To allow library patrons and staff to use the library's facilities without disturbance or undue interference, and to provide a clean, pleasant and safe environment, please consider your fellow library users and staff and refrain from the following in the library.
  1. Smoking, eating, or drinking, bringing open containers of food or drink in the library.
  2. Sleeping or loitering.
  3. Using loud, abusive, threatening or insulting language.
  4. Engaging in any disruptive or unsafe behavior.
  5. Disturbing, offending, intimidating, annoying, or harassing others.
  6. Leaving a child under the age of 8 unattended.
  7. Bringing any containers, packages, briefcases, parcels, or bundles into the library which singly or collectively exceed 24"x18"x6".  All items not prohibited are subject to inspection.
  8. Bringing shopping carts or wheeled conveyances into the building, with the exception of wheelchairs and baby strollers/carriages used for the actual transport of a person or child or wheeled backpacks and book carriers not exceeding 24"x15"x12" (excluding handles).
  9. Bringing any animal into the building, with the exception of service animals accompanying a person with disabilities.  As defined, a service animal (dog or miniature horse) is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability.  The animals work or tasks must directly relate to the handlers disability.
  10. Bringing sleeping bags, bed-rolls, or blankets into the building (blankets for small children are acceptable).
  11. Coming into the library without wearing shoes and a shirt.
  12. Using cell phones and/or similar communication defies or software inside the library.  Ringer volumes should be set to vibrate and use should be restricted to the lobby or outside the building.
  13. Distributing handbills or flyers, soliciting signatures for petitions, selling merchandise, or other similar activities that may disrupt patrons use and enjoyment of the library.
  14. Interfering with another person's use of the library, or the library staff's performance of their duties.
  15. Engaging in any activity prohibited by law.
I admit to getting a little hot under the collar when I was told to leave.  Luckily someone caught the incident on camera.

Friday, May 23, 2014

My New Laptop

Just thought I'd show you the Macbook Air 11 that I was able to get because of your wonderful generosity.   Thank you, again, so much!  I am currently in the San Diego Central Library, working on new plans for the blog. :)

Thursday, March 13, 2008


So, while sitting at my laptop, in the library, I fell asleep. Ya know. It's a normal function of the body. And it is a medically proven fact that people who are suffering from sleep deprivation, sleep apnea, and even people with ADHD, can easily fall asleep for reading.

BUT, the old security guard caught me, and "wrote me up." Funny, though, for a violation he wrote "loitering." This was just a warning, he said. If he catches me again, I could be suspended from the library for one day.

Now, I can see, if a person came into the library with the specific intent to find a place to sleep, perhaps he curls up under a desk, whips out a sleeping bag, etc, then I'd say you've found yourself a perp. But, falling asleep while reading, or doing other book/library related work, is not loitering. It is certainly not malicious in nature. It is a victimless crime. I even asked the security guard if my sleeping had disturbed any of the other patrons. He said, "oh no, not at all."

This is just silliness. Just wake me up. If I can't stay awake, then you might need to call me an ambulance. And if some homeless guy has pitched a tent in the non-fiction section, then please, by all means, take appropriate measures. But really, is kicking someone out of the library for the day, the appropriate measure for falling asleep while reading?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Video Of Fight Aftermath In Downtown Library

It is so common to hear loud noises coming from the area designated for teens, in the downtown library, that at first I didn't think anything of it. But there was something a little different so I started listening. Then I heard someone call out "fight" and I grabbed my camera. This is what I saw, next time I'll get a better shot of the action. At some points I just watched and forgot to point the camera in the right direction. From what I gathered, two girls got into a fight, and their boyfriends jumped in. Mostly this video is of teens standing around afterwards. The "action" if of the security guards trying to get the kids settled down.


Fight In The Library

I did get some sleep last night. I was sent out to Northside Church of Christ. I was able to get a good shower there, and did laundry too. After a week or more of wearing the same clothes, it is incredibly refreshing to be ALL clean.

I cut off yesterday's post in mid-thought, because a fight broke out in the library. It really was only a matter of time before something like this happened. As the library security occupies itself with catching sleeping homeless people, school aged children and teens are allowed to run amok. Really, the idea that requiring kids to behave themselves in libraries might end their appreciation for libraries, or that it would hinder their growth and creativity is absolutely ridiculous. Mostly because this lax disciplinary policy creates an environment whereby NO ONE can read or study or learn anything. When schools let out and the library fills with kids, the library ceases to be an institution for personal growth, and becomes a play ground.

Everyday, the kids are yelling, fighting, flirting, chasing each other, playing tag, making out, talking on phones, and generally socializing - everything but utilizing the library for what it was designed for. But, Hey, at least the homeless can't get away with sleeping in the library. I was able to catch a little video of the aftermath of the fight, and will try to get it uploaded here. Once I get that done, I'll post more about current homeless happenings.

Friday, February 22, 2008

When It Was All Over

On Tuesday morning, I drew a double plus ticket from Room In The Inn, which was good for a bed Thursday night. That meant I would have two nights without a place to go, except the rescue mission. And if you are any regular reader of this blog, you know that the mission is to be avoided at nearly all costs.

I was going to be up all night on Wednesday night, for the Homelessness Radio Marathon. So that left me with finding something for Tuesday night. Also, if I was to pull off another all-nighter, I was going to need some serious rest. And if at all possible, I would need to sleep in some.

So, I emailed some friends, the couple who let me stay at their house on my birthday, and asked for a big favor. And they didn't hesitate. They said I could stay at their house for the night.

Despite the comfortableness of their house, and that bedroom and bed, I slept too hard. My apnea was in high gear, and I woke up several times during the night. And in the morning, I had a headache. Still, I stayed in bed until about 6:30 am. and then went back to sleep for a while, and then just laid in bed for some time. I took some aprin. Still, the headache stayed with me most of the day, and drained a good bit of my energy.

I observed the Marathon, and though I wanted to speak, either there were others talking, or I didn't have the nerve. To see the speakers at the microphone, you had to be outside with them. But being outside with the speakers meant you couldn't hear the conversation. So you had to go inside to keep up with what was being talked about. Inside was also much warmer. I never did talk on the show. But that's ok. At one point or another, everthing I would have said, someone else said it instead.

In the morning, towards the end of the broadcast, things got real crazy, as the people who had been sent out to churches the night before were returning to the campus and disrupting the radio show. So, I took off early and went on up to Starbucks at the hotel, and stayed their until the library opened. Instead of my regular caffeine loaded drink, I got a hot chocolate instead. And that was the ruin of me last night.

During the day, yesterday, I stayed mostly at the library. I kept falling asleep in my chair, and a couple times security came by to check on me. There is always the threat that the security people would toss me out of the library for sleeping. Luckily I wasn't. For the last few hours, I sat at a table with a friend. And although twice he told me it was time to go back to Room In The Inn, I instead fell asleep with my head on the table. Luckily, I came to, just enough to recognize that I had just enough time to get down to the campus and get into the shelter. Once in the shelter, my headache started coming back.

I was sent out to a nice church - Christ UMC in Franklin. Dinner was great, and served up by the church youth group, but my tiredness and my headache prevented me from enjoying it much.

Going without sleep for a night now takes me at least two days to recover from. And it also causes my sleep apnea to be worse than usual. So, I was expecting to have a bad night anyway. And as the night progressed, I noticed that I was having a caffeine deprevation headache. Cause I had that hot chocolate in the morning, instead of my usual coffee. So, I was having two types of headache at the same time. One from my apnea, and one from the lack of caffeine. On top of all that, I could not find my bottle of asprin. It must have fallen out of my jacket at some point.

And so it was that I got very little sleep again last night. I guess he could see it on my face, but one the homeless mexicans with the group asked if I was alright - it was very broken English, and mostly gestures. We communicated well enough that he shared with me some Ibuprophen he had - 400mg tablets. He gave me three and told me to take them all at once. I took one.

Right now I'm feeling fine, and have the two other tablets if need be. This morning I drew a ticket for Room In The Inn that I think will get me in, tonight. With some more sleep, I should be feeling more like myself tomorrow.

I am currently at Starbucks in the hotel, and drinking coffee - writing this blog - and waiting for the library to open.