The 6 Types of People at Van Pelt Library

From the majestic sixth floor bathroom to the basement carpet caked with final exam season tears, you’ve probably seen every corner of the Van Pelt building. But now it’s time to discuss a more sinister element: the people in the library.

1. The Loud-Ass Gossip Girl

She’s on the phone, and she needs you to know it. She has lots of friends, knows who’s banging whom, and neeeeds to be the one that chooses the theme of the sorority party. She’s here because she *has* to be somewhere with plenty of people to look at her. She also neeeeds to know who you think the hottest Bachelorette contestant is, so she can disagree with you. (If his name doesn’t start with a J, it’s over for you!) Honestly, she neeeeds to stop pretending that her favorite book is something besides her not-yet-published autobiography.

2. The Cougher

This one I experience firsthand, sitting right next to my favorite section: psychology (I’m still futilely trying to understand why our world is so insane). This guy definitely lied on his PennOpen Pass, definitely could be spreading COVID, and definitely has no sense of pandemic social vibes. He coughs without covering, farts without shame, and if I see him again, I’ll muster up the courage to kick him out myself.

3. The Nerdy Introverts

These folks are at Van Pelt to get shit done. They’re hiding out in the rare books section, they’re actually checking out the Library’s online exhibits, and they’re gearing up for their PhDs. They don’t waste time on Twitter, chugging vodka, or seeing the latest Bond movie. They’re here for the work, and whatever they do to help the world will be so smart that you’ll probably never hear about it.

4. The Not-So-Nerdy Introverts

These folks are hiding away in the library from the loud popular kids and their roommate, but they are not really here doing anything too library-ish. They just want somewhere quiet where they won’t be disturbed so that they can watch the newest South Park or read conspiracy theories on Reddit. They might be fun to chat with (unless you believe the moon landing was real), but they have no desire for small talk.

5. Your Group Project Partners

When someecards is still relevant, you know there’s a problem.

“Let’s meet at Van Pelt!” you all say, thinking maybe seeing all the other students working will give you more motivation. But no, it doesn’t really matter. Most other people in the library are just messing around, and if there’s not one person in the group willing to do the majority of the work or is comfortable bossing people around, y’all are fucked.

6. The Semi-Phony Readers

And this is where I come in. Us semi-phony types love to read and love to be around books, but we’ve only had time to finish ten percent of the books we own. We could list hundreds of classic book titles & authors, but when it comes down to what we’ve actually read, the convo will dry up really quickly. We get so excited when we bring our big stack of library books to the checkout counter and we’re told we have until the end of the semester to finish them (December 23rd?! That’s around Christmas: so far away!) and yet again, sure enough, when the date rolls around, we’re lucky if we’ve finished three. But hey, that’s more than most people, right?

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