The Library Weeds
Weed it and reap.
Since he was 15, Dylan had worked on Saturdays at the town library doing odds and ends, fixing things (and sometimes breaking them), cleaning, dusting, painting, or whatever management needed him to do to spruce up the old building.
For eight hours every week he could think and dream and get some extra money for just showing up and putting in a little effort. Life was good for the high school senior. Every little bit helped these days what with his mother being unemployed and his father nowhere to be found.
He read the note from his boss, Mr. Davis.
Dylan, I know this is probably not your favorite thing to do but the weeds do need pulling. It’s starting to look like a forest out in front, on the flagpole side especially. It’d be great if you can knock that out on Saturday. Thanks.
“Weed pulling day,” Dylan said as he read the note.
But he didn’t complain. He only had a pair of thin gloves, a handheld garden tool, and a strong back. Most of the weeds were along the sidewalk and in the cracks. It would take the better part of the morning to do the entire outside of the library.
It was a typical Fall day in the North. The temperature hovered around 45 the entire morning. He greeted a few people as they walked past, but mainly kept to the task at hand. The sooner he finished, the sooner he could go get lost in the stacks and explore.
“Dylan, good to see you,” said Mr. Carter, Dylan’s band director.
“Hey, Mr. C. What’s up?”
He paused and said, “I hear a library’s a good place to do a lot of weeding,”
Dylan looked up at his band director and smiled.
“So I’ve heard. Rumor has it, though, that I'm quite the bookworm.”
“Well, I guess you're branching out into new hobbies then,” said Mr. Carter.
“Naa, I’m just trying to turn over a new leaf.”
The band director thought about it and said, “Well, you're definitely cultivating a love for literature.”
Dylan took a deep breath and said, “Perhaps I’m merely harvesting the seeds of great minds.”
“You know, I could do this all day, Dylan,” Mr. Carter said.
“Me too, Mr. C. But I’m getting paid for it. You know, I’m building good relations with our patrons and everything.”
“That you are,” Mr. Carter said with a smile. “Thanks for sowing a little kindness to your band director.”
Dylan also smiled to end the game as Mr. Carter walked past him towards the library entrance. He looked back at Dylan and gave him a thumbs up.