The truth is out there

Entered “The Conscience of a Conservative” into Toronto Public Library catalogue (for this book) and got none of that but three books titled “The Conscience of a Liberal”. Are they trying to tell me something?

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End of the library story

The end of this story:
I went to the library today and talked the librarian into halving the charge (down to $20). They still got to keep the book. I guess that’s fair, and I can live with that.
Thanks to all who supported me with kind words and advice!
I would also like to thank a nice lady librarian from another branch who unblocked my account the day before I actually paid the fine, because I had some books on hold and the hold was expiring. (Not a matter of life and death but I would have to order them all over again etc.)

Toronto Public Library rant

Heard on Twitter today that David Foster Wallace died. I confess that I have never heard of him before, so I went to Wikipedia article first, and then to Toronto Public Library page to order some of his books. I selected a book and pressed the “Place on hold” button, but instead of seeing the usual page, I got a “User blocked” message. WTF, thought I. Went to my account and saw that I have been charged over $40 for a “damaged” book “(“Blue Ocean Strategy”). I know what they mean – I had accidentally spilled some water on the book on question, and the cover got slightly warped. However, the book is still perfectly readable, the spine intact, all pages present, no markings etc. It is unjust as hell to charge me the entire price of the book. I will probably end up paying the damned money and let them choke on it, but only if they give me the book back. It’s only fair, isn’t it?

UPDATE: They charged me $41.95 for a used book, and you can buy a brand new one at Amazon.ca for CDN$21.39. This is a bold-faced robbery, that’s what it is.

UPDATE UPDATE. Found the relevant library rules. Now THIS is a bold-faced robbery.

What the rule says What it means in plain human language
Replacement in kind – or substitution – for lost or damaged materials is not accepted. We will not allow you to replace the book with an identical one you buy elsewhere.
In the event that items are damaged, the Toronto Public Library reserves the right to determine the amount of repair or replacement charges. We will charge you as much as we want, twice as much as the book costs if we want to, even if the real damage is negligible
The Toronto Public Library reserves the right to retain library materials even in cases where full replacement cost has been paid. We can have our cake and eat it rip you off and keep the book, just because we can, HAR HAR HAR!