The Ranting Barrel: I couldn’t think of anything topical to say so I’m just gonna stick my hand in and throw words around for a page or two.
Kathy hates this book. Suzie shelves like a drunk panda. Did you hear what Ron said about my pineapple cake? OMG look at Ramona’s sandals. I heard Kevin’s wanted in seven states for jumping bookcarts. On fire. While on crystal meth.
Does this sound familiar to you? It should. The above are all examples of the worst kind of gossip there is: library gossip.
Library gossip has been known to tear libraries apart, ripping them down brick by brick like rabid monkeys hopped up on trucker’s little helper. And the ones not made of brick, those were blown down like a big bad wolf with a cold and nose full of crack cocaine.
Stick with me, Priscilla, this is not gonna get easy. But you know what? We are going to stop your horrid little hobby, this piece of pestilence that perpetuates the population of print pushers. Here’s a bunch of ways to stop gossip. Nine, in fact.
- Define “gossip.” That’s easy. You are (presumably) in a library. Library’s have dictionaries. Two plus two... For god sakes, just google it.
- Ask yourself if you are in a better world. So you keep talking and you hear a person’s name keep coming up. Ask yourself, “Are you better for listening to this shit?” If no, get new work friends. If yes, repeat their name over and over. Sooner or later their name, then they, will be meaningless.
- Drive conversation off a cliff. Dashiell Hammett said when he had writers block he just had a man walk in the room with a gun. If you find yourself talking about Brad a lot, then just have a man shoot Brad in the head in the middle of the story right before Brad said that thing. Sure, it might not make sense, but you ain’t gossiping if you are out and out lying. Plus, it's a better story.
- Are there other people in your stories? As you tell the story about how you and Barry cage fought some teenagers to get some petty cash last night in the arena, and you keep talking about how Barry killed some kid with his “Cracking Spine” technique.... stop to think, why am I talking about Barry? Then talk about yourself.
- Pretend to mime. If someone corners you and starts to tell you about how Brenda was chewing her food in that way again, just pretend to be stuck in a box. Then, go against the wind. If they keep on about Brenda and her mastication, pretend to hang yourself with a bungee cord. Just don’t do it in front of Tom cause that’s how his mom pretended to die.
- Show “empathy.” We do not understand what this means. Sounds like dumb superpower a loser X-man would have.
- Remove people from your life. Find that Marsha is annoying you more than others? Have her erased from existence by praying really hard, not by talking about her with Cindy.
- Limit your talky walky time balls. If you just gotta talk about how Fred turns into a bookpire when the moon is full, only talk about him when the moon is full. By giving yourself this brief window, you will limit your thought crime to his bother.
- Just be all, “This shit is gossip.” Nothing stops a charging gossip rhino faster than punching her in the face, but since you are at work and this is the 21st century, just say “This shit is gossip.” Then you can watch as the gossip rhino runs off to talk about what you just said.
Advice found on google by typing “how to stop gossip” and picking the first few sites I saw, including tinybuddah, thinksimplenow, wikihow, and ronedmondson, then throwing that out and making shit up.