FH Truth Meter: This story is only 20 to 60% true, depending on who you ask.
Likely you’ve seen the inside of your local CALS library and developed a frustrated, awkward and unspoken opinion. But did you know that CALS offers more than just a menagerie of homeless auto-eroticists? It’s true. Tucked away in secluded overlooked recesses are troves of half-forgotten lore teetering on the edge of oblivion and longing for discovery.
But beware. To access these sacred books, you must prove yourself worthy by running the gauntlet of shambling bearded madmen, degenerated woodland people, badly soiled lunatics and shrieking rivers of wild fetid children. Yet if you have the moral courage, providence will guide your hand to the mysterious, old fading pictures and forgotten histories which hide in reclusive old books that crouch furtively on the lower shelves. These sainted records await your rescue; like virgins locked away in far towers, yet un-befouled by the spoor of the writhing mass of offenders in the lower chambers. Will you reach them before a mad hobo-scientist sullies their pages in service to his unclean experiments involving your family pet and a Coleman cooler? Endeavor to reach them before the final dam bursts and rampaging gangs of dirty underworld characters stream in, encircle the defenseless tomes and frantically violate them with their bodily effluence.
Witness the blue electronic glow of the cyber-vagrants’ enraptured faces. For it is a portent; a spectral challenge to those who lack the courage for the hero’s journey. Pass this omen stoically, like Joan of Arc, your prize awaits.
There are those who suggest that our libraries be forced to disgorge these gibbering mad throngs; and that it happen quietly, like at an animal shelter. Some citizens demand an end to the leering vigil foisted upon them by the hordes of lurking prowlers infesting these grand buildings. “Spayed and neutered” is the term of art; other phrases such as “euthanize,” “relocate,” “harvest“ and “mysterious disappearance“ have also been whispered. But, I know nothing of such things.
You can learn more about these quiet whispers by hanging out behind your public library.