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And while I’m complaining about lousy customer service, let me tell you about my experience at UBC Library today. I had to drop off some overdue library books and pay the related overdue fines. Apparently some of my library books were due at the beginning of the month but I somehow didn’t get the email notice reminding me they were due. Instead, I got the second reminder notice yesterday saying “hey, this is your second reminder and also you owe us a crapload of money!”  Crap.  So while I was Vancouver for my Saturday seawall walk with Jen, I dropped by the Hamber library branch, located at Women’s & Children’s Hospital. I drop off the books and say I’d like to pay my fine. As it turns out, they don’t take credit or debit cards, or even cheques – cash only. But they only have student assistants working on the weekend and student assistants aren’t allowed to sign receipts. “Usually what I do is just put the money aside and the librarian can do it on Monday,” said the girl behind the counter.  So I’m supposed to hand over a bunch of cash, but I can’t get a receipt to prove I gave it to them. Um, yeah right. Now, I’m not saying that I think the student is going to steal my cash, but the thought of handing over unmarked bills that will just be put in an unsecured drawer until Monday – no way. So I ask if I can pay my fee online and she says “Oh yeah, you can just log into the Student Services Centre and go to the Financial Section.”  Then she looks down at my Faculty card that I’d given her to look up my account. Turns out students can pay their library fines online but faculty members, at least as far as I can tell, cannot. “Can you come during the day when the librarian is here?” asks the girl behind the counter.  “No,” I say, “I work out in Surrey.”  “Well,” she tells me, “Can you get out to UBC Campus during the week?” Not sure how that’s supposed to be helpful, since UBC campus is *farther* away from Surrey that Women’s & Children’s is.  So, basically, I want to pay my overdue fines1 but they won’t take my money. Awesome. I’m going to try calling them on Monday to see if they can charge my credit card to pay for it, because I hate owing money for things. Wish me luck!

  1. well, I mean, I don’t really *want* to, but I’m trying to since I owe it to them []