Worst Behavior: Library Edition

8 Annoyances That Occur in the Most Sacred Place on Campus

The Dirty Devil | Jordan Peasant | May 1, 2016

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So you’re here at Perkins: studying in the perfect spot. It took you a great deal of time and many stairs to find this space. Your Physics final is tomorrow so you’re in it for the long haul. You made sure you had every possible study material you needed because you know you will (attempt) to be in the same place for the next 6 hours. You refuse to move from this spot until you can apply Gauss’s Law and calculate net magnetic flux with your eyes closed. 30 minutes into studying and you have a great flow going until a fellow student commits one of the offenses listed below:

*Disclaimer* I am 100% guilty of most of the items on this list. In no way am I some high and mighty library saint who is free off committing any offense. If you see me in Perkins doing one of the items below, feel free to pull up this article and call me out on it.


  1. Eating crunchy foods. This, in my book, is probably one of the worst offenses in the library. The foods I’m talking about include but are not limited to: potato chips, carrots, pita chips (yes, I am aware that the ones from Saladelia are delicious), apples etc…This is the last thing I’m trying to hear when I’m on my library grind. Also, where did this ideology derive from that if you somehow chew slower, the sound you make is quieter? All I hear is loud chewing for an even longer period of time. Now, I’m not saying you can’t eat your favorite snack but just be mindful of your surroundings. Treat crunchy foods like you would a cigarette. If someone within a 10ft radius can hear you, take it outside.
  1. Playing music in headphones too loud. This is pretty self-explanatory but if I’m 20 feet away and I can clearly hear you listening to Work by Rihanna, then you are completely defeating the purpose of using headphones.
  1. One person taking up the whole group study room. We’ve all been through the seemingly endless search to find a group study/project space in the library. It can be even more frustrating when you see multiple project rooms taken by just ONE person. If you commit this offense be sure to prepare for MANY dirty looks. Nothing more awkward than a group reaching the last study room in the Link and seeing one sole person staring back with un-budging eyes. A stare down will usually ensue with the group nonverbally pleading for the lone studier to take one for the team and politely get up and leave. The lone studier typically holds their ground, with a look of innocence and just a hint of smug shining through. After all, if this group found it so important to have their own space, maybe they should’ve gotten here earlier? My take on the situation is that the group study rooms are completely fair game despite their label. Stand your ground lone studier, be smug! (I’m slightly biased on this considering this is a weekly offense I commit.)
  1. Sticky fingers in the library. On a serious note, why have there been so many thefts in the library recently?? Come on Duke, we’re better than this. If you’re contemplating leaving your stuff unattended, either take your valuables with you or ask a kind stranger if they will watch your belongings. If you’re just an innocent bystander, either stop the crime from taking place or simply ask the person if those items belong to them. A little consideration could mean the world to someone. If you’ve been committing these thefts, I can only hope the worst on you. Like missing your second tent check after a long, hard 6 weeks of tenting, or missing the only CCX running on a cold, rainy day. You, ma’am or sir, are lower than a UNC student.
  1. People who don’t silence their cellular devices. Look, I understand that you’re very popular and you have to respond to your friends the instant you get a text, however it takes little to no effort to put your phone on silent. The library is neither the time nor the place to have your phone blow up. I don’t want to know why your hotline blings and neither does anyone else. P.S. vibrate isn’t silent. When I say “silent” I mean silent.
  1. Talking too loudly in the library. I understand if you see a friend and want to say “hey” but if you’re having a conversation lasting more than 30 seconds, save it for a lunch date, ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE ON THE 4TH FLOOR OF PERKINS. This floor is supposed to be the quietest area in the library; I do not want to hear your plans for the weekend.

Note: If you’re really feeling the need to chat in the library, go to the Link. This is the prime “fake studying” location. At this point, this space should be turned into a social area because little to no work is getting done there.

  1. People who are sick. Why, oh why, do people make the conscious decision to come to the library when they are sick? If you’re under the weather, either drink orange juice or go somewhere with ambient noise because the last thing I want to hear when studying for my final is someone coughing up a lung. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have mad respect for the people who still make the trip despite being on the verge of death. However, not only is it annoying to hear someone hawking and hacking up an organ, but it’s just plain gross. If you are sick and do need a place to study, however, may I suggest reserving a group project room? *See #6 for possible repercussions.*
  1. Taking too long when asking someone to watch your stuff. Thanks to The Guardian of Stuff, we got an inside look at the terror that goes through someone’s mind when asked to watch a stranger’s “stuff”. Let’s set some ground rules: If I don’t know you, the max you can ask me to watch your stuff is 5-15 minutes. 15 minutes is pushing it though. This includes activities such as, getting a drink of water, getting a snack or coffee from Vondy, bathroom break, etc… If you ask me to watch your stuff and I see you getting ready to “Netflix and Chill” in a deserted corner in the library, I’m going to just act like I didn’t hear you.

So, if you’ve ever been guilty of one of the above or you’re a repeated offender, let’s all try to be a little more considerate. If you can handle the intense glares and awkward looks then by all means continue trolling Perkins. At the end of the day this is our space (and for fellow Pratt students our second home). To all heading into their final papers and final exams, I salute you.