I stopped at the library before work because I ran out of stuff to read on my lunch breaks and the hospital newsletter isn’t terribly entertaining material. The woman who greeted me at the counter had very long and very festively red-and-green airbrushed fingernails, on which I complimented her before she disappeared into the back room to get the books I had on hold. Her colleague overheard my compliment and chimed in to say that she’d love to have long nails but hers keep breaking because her skin gets so dry – apparently this is a common problem with librarians, because they handle so much paper?

Oh, I feel your pain, I tell her, because my lab work has me washing my hands dozens of times a day, leaving my skin dried out and chapped, especially in the winter. But I discovered the perfect hand cream last year and haven’t had dry hands since! So I pull my little silver tube of hand cream out of my purse and show it to her. By now we’ve drawn a small crowd. I have three librarians leaning across the counter, and a woman behind me in line sneaking up to listen in. Ooooh, say the librarians, in harmony. My hands are inspected by all these sets of eyes and judged to be sufficiently smooth-looking as to be an endorsement for said cream. One asks to smell the cream. I hand the tube over to the woman who appears to be their leader and much sniffing ensues. The name of the cream gets scribbled in Sharpie on a Post-It pad and stuck to the computer monitor for reference. I tell them where to get it at the Columbia Mall, and I’m pretty sure that as I exit the library, a librarian shopping expedition is being planned for after work.

That totally made my day.

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