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Library Etiquette: Confessions of a Fragrant Food Smuggler

I have poor library etiquette. I am aware of this fact--I think it is one of those situations where I know all of the rules, but I don't follow them, which is perhaps much worse than unwitting rudeness.

Sometimes I laugh loudly at things I am reading on the Internet, I whisper (read: talk at decibel levels above normal conversation) with friends (though usually I try to study alone--forever a hermit), I shuffle papers, I drop things (poor TI-89), and I crumple wrappers.

The worst thing I do, however, is eat fragrant food in the stacks. I am a fragrant food smuggler, and having also caught the scent of Ratty takeout from time to time, I know exactly how terrible/distracting it is! But I can't help it, I usually need to snack to stay awake, and my palette tends toward favoring pungent, stinky foods.

A list of 5 fragrant foods I have smuggled into the library:

1) JalapeƱo bagel with herb cream cheese from ABP (I am eating this today). Maybe the smelliest thing you can purchase at that establishment, there is also some sharp, stinky cheddar melted on top of the bagel.
2) Better Burger Company french fries--I brought these to the fourth floor the other day and everyone glared at me. Sometimes it is unsurprising that I make more enemies than friends in the library (or is it all in my head?? The question of a lifetime.).
3) Anything that I have ever cooked using garlic--i.e. all the things I cook because I do not understand the concept of "spice."
4) Fish tacos--I bet everyone was thinking, "Girl, why?" Related: anything tuna fish.
5) Ratty takeout (THE ABSOLUTE WORST in terms of stinkiness)

I think there is also an implied ban of crunchy foods in quiet areas (the stacks, the Absolute Quiet Room, the fourth floor of the SciLi), which is another rule I repeatedly break. Alas, I am graduating soon, so feel free to tell me off this week, as it will be the last week I do this for a while (until I move on to other libraries, cue maniacal laughter).

I do feel self-conscious about my bad habits though. Sometimes I put chips in my mouth and then hold them there for awhile to let my saliva soften them before I start chewing. This never achieves the desired effect though, and usually I just end up cutting the roof of my mouth in the process.

The other day I was in a situation where someone I knew happened to sit in the library carrel adjacent to mine while I was in the bathroom, and I was so mortified that she would discover the secrets of my library misbehavior (I had come equipped with so many crunchy foods that day, I was prepared to make the sound equivalent of a person covered in bubble wrap in a room full of needles) that I sent her a message apologizing for my existence in advance, which was basically non-confrontation in its truest form.

Anyway, here is a photo from my day-to-day life, just because! (Note: you may have seen it on Facebook)


A future entry that you probably won't look forward to: the stages of studying-induced depression, as denoted by Taylor Swift songs.
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