When they turn the lights out, do you think it's time to leave?

United States
April 18, 2008 8:40pm CST
I work at a library and we often turn down or turn off some of the lights when we are just a few minutes from closing. You'd think people would get the hint? No! Some will continue to look for books in the dark! And, when you tell them that we're closed a few minutes later, they say "Oh, I didn't know you were closing". I mean, didn't they notice how dark it got all of a sudden? So, my question is have you ever worked at a place where you've turned off the lights but people don't get the hint?
7 people like this
18 responses
• United States
19 Apr 08
I work in our school's library on Saturday night. You would think people would want to get out of there on Saturday night and go have a life. Nope. We start telling people it's time to leave 15 minutes before closing. You have to be OUT at closing, not packing up to leave. Plus, closing is only 15 minutes before the garage closes. So, if you are not out at closing, you might not be able to get out of the garage. Even so, we tell people we are closing and they say "thank you" then go right back to typing. Look, you are not going to have that case down pat in 15 minutes. Just pack up your stuff and go. If you are in the middle of a sentence, fine, finish it, then stop. Do NOT keep going on like you are going to be there all night.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
We also tell people we're closing in 15 minutes. But, we constantly had trouble with this one woman who would spread out all her stuff and wouldn't even start putting it away until 1 minute before closing. Of course, it took her another 15 minutes to put everything away. Then, she would yell and scream at us for trying to get her to hurry up, yet she wanted no help from us.
• United States
19 Apr 08
Thankfully, we have Campus Police around to deal with anyone difficult like that.
• United States
19 Apr 08
Yeah, we sometimes have security guards in the branches, but not always. It seems to happen more at the branches without guards.
• United States
19 Apr 08
no,but i've worked at a bar where they didn't get a hint with turning the lights on. there's always one or two people you have to almost literally throw out.they think you have all day to wait for them to finish whatever they're doing.
• United States
20 Apr 08
Don't you wish you could go to their work and not let them leave, too? I wonder how many of those people who do that work with the public?
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Apr 08
probably not many,or in the same capacity. most i noticed were either business professionals or uni students. oh yeah,i'd like to go to their workplace. i'd leave everything on the desk when i left too :)=)
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Apr 08
That is just too funny!
1 person likes this
• Singapore
19 Apr 08
I haven't been in the position where I switched off the lights to hint for others to leave. But I have been at the other end lol. I do agree that when the lights are switched off, the hint is rather obvious. However, take a library for instance, the opening hours are clearly stated. So as long as I am still within the opening period, I will continue staying if I want or need to. However, for restaurants and coffee joints, I will normally chat (if I still want to) and will only leave after the staff ask. Cheers!
• United States
19 Apr 08
What's funny is that we don't really turn off the lights until after we close and think everyone's out. But, we always check to make sure everyone's really left when we see one person still back there looking for books as if nothing was wrong.
1 person likes this
• Singapore
20 Apr 08
That would be very nice of you. Over here, it is quite typical to switch off the lights even when people are still around. I am assuming you mean a partial switching off - not total darkness!!
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Apr 08
Lol, no, we turn off all the lights when we close. However, for safety, a few of them stay on and can't be turned off.
• United States
19 Apr 08
I just want to say, I'm not one of the ones that see the lights go off stick around for as long as possible. If I see the lights go down, I get the last thing I need to get and head for the door/register/whatever. It's rude to stay. I know that the people that work there have had a long day and are ready to go home.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
I once heard that it's not such a big deal if people stay over a little bit in a retail setting because they might make an extra sale. But, in a government building, the longer people are in there, the more money it costs with lighting, etc.
@sid556 (31006)
• United States
19 Apr 08
You are wrong in that desert...Maybe the business makes an extra little sale but the clerk really does not make enough to make it worth staying for you. I work 10 hour shifts and trust me, If you lingered around after I closed , I would let you but you need to know that you probably earned me less than a dollar and cost me some sleep. I have a daughter to pick up and I also get up early in the morning. You really are not doing me any favors by staying and shopping when I'm ready to close. My boss? well it depends on what you buy and if his profit is more than what he is paying me to stay and the cost of keeping everything up and running....hope your're spending plenty cuz otherwise...your 5.00 purchase probably is not worth keeping the store open for for anyone but you.
@jfeets726 (775)
• United States
19 Apr 08
Yes! I use to work as a retail manager for a small discount store. Before that I was the assistant manager at a dollar store. The dollar store was nice, as they had the intercom system, so they would said "we are closing in 10 minutes, please start to make your final purchases." The store that I actually managed didn't have an itercom system. That was hard. We acutally had to start turning off even more lights, so that you could hardly see in some areas of the store just to get people to leave.
• United States
20 Apr 08
Some of the libraries I work at have a PA system, but they still don't get the hint. Then, they all want to get out and once.
@gberlin (3836)
19 Apr 08
I am a high school librarian and we always turn off the lights to indicate the library is closing. It is a quieter way to get the students to leave. Most of them get the hint but sometimes one or two still need some encouragement. It usually is students working on the computers.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
Yeah, we try to close our computers down a half an hour early at this one branch, but no one is ever done until just before we lock the doors.
@sid556 (31006)
• United States
19 Apr 08
Yes, I work in a store. I will turn off the lights at closing. It is a small town and everyone knows the hours and still they will shop around slowly. I work 10 hour shifts and I find it very inconsiderate. If I were holding them up at their job they would not like it a bit. Some will even act surprised when the show up 10 mins. after I have closed. They say...wow, you don't waste anytime locking up now do you?. Um...NO! I close at llpm. Why would they expect me to stall around until 11:05 or 11:10 or whenever they decide to race down? people!
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
I know exactly what you mean. We get people, long after we're closed, who will say "oh, but I just need this one book, can't you let me in for a second?". Or, you get people hanging knocking on the door before you open, too. I'm sure it's even worse in a small town where you know more of the people there.
@paid2write (5202)
19 Apr 08
When I was in charge of a bookstore I never minded staying late if someone wanted to spend some money, but there were often just a few people browsing at closing time. I used to have a little routine of closing the door, making an announcement and then starting to turn off some of the lights. Usually this was enough to get people to leave, or to make their purchase, but sometimes there would be someone at the back of the store engrossed in reading a book, completely unaware that all the other customers had left.
• United States
19 Apr 08
I think it's funny when we turn off all the lights and someone is still trying to read. I know I can't read when it's dark.
@dnbuster (442)
• United States
19 Apr 08
sure, at the bowling alley, no one got the hint, they wanted to stay longer and get drunk.. I would finally have to annouce WE ARE NOW CLOSED!!..lol still took them a minute hugs- DN
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
Yeah, we have to make an announcement, too, when we close.
@itsmepinky (1301)
• India
19 Apr 08
My library follows the same practise. I always make it a point to leave 15 mins before the library closes in order to avoid rush. But i know of some people who will just wonder around looking for books or reading newspapers / magazines until they are told to leave. ~pinks~
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
Yeah, I don't like to be anywhere too close to closing, either for the same reason.
@smints8985 (1595)
• United States
19 Apr 08
I haven't but at work I am usually the last to get up from my desk for lunch and after work, so this co-worker of mine would keep nagging me and he would usually be standing near the light switch and turn the lights off so that I would get up from my desk already.. haha
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
Wow, that's kinda mean of her, isn't it?
@Rozie37 (15503)
• Turkmenistan
19 Apr 08
Ha, ha, ha, ha, that is so funny, because I know exactly what you are speaking of. But I have been a few places in the dark myself, so I try to be understanding when the shoe is on the other foot. I believe that this is why some pharmacies are open 24/7 now. As far as the library, I do not believe that I have ever been there I closing time. I have been there before the library opened, because my sister also works at one. I have been known to spend quite a bit of time looking for that perfect book to read, but I don't think that if you come early, it should take 'til closing. I think that the people you mention are just playing stupid, so they can stay longer. If there are no lights, how are you going to read?
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
I know, it's so funny, isn't it. I am often amused by the rude things people do. Now, for me, I am sometimes so focused on what I am doing that I might not realized that they were closed if it wasn't dark and they've turned the lights off. But, if it were night, I would definitely notice.
• United States
19 Apr 08
I have not worked in such a place Darlene, but I sure have put in my time in libraries, that this seems to be the norm for. When the lights go out I always knew they were closing yet had 7 more hours worth of study and research to do. Sigh.... Thank god for the internet. When I was going to school having a computer and internet would have made all of the difference in the world to me. But yes most of us know its time to put away reference books and head to the counter with books we want to take with us.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 08
Thanks for answering. . I don't mind putting things away for them, just as long as they are out of the building. We often have to wait until people are out of the building before we can do things like lock up the cash register, etc.
@Hatley (164743)
• Garden Grove, California
19 Apr 08
Sure have our Tustin library where I was a page. We also had the same practice and some people just could not get it that meant we were about to close. In fact one woman and her son somehow got locked into the library in spite of the fact that I had made that last walk through to be sure nobody was left in the library but these two had evidently been in the restrooms so they came out and of course set off the burglar alarm and that called our branch manager who lived forty miles away to come to the library and rescue the two idiots and turn off the alarm then set it again and drive back home.
• United States
19 Apr 08
We had something similar. We closed up and checked everywhere and everyone was gone and the lights were out. While we were trying to set our alarm, it kept saying that there was a problem in the lobby. So, we went out and this lady had somehow come into the front door and was looking around for books. I guess something was wrong with the door, though it was checked before we were about to leave. But, still, she was wandering around like nothing was going on. I mean, there were no people there and the lights were off. It just amazes me.
@KrauseHome (34983)
• United States
13 Apr 11
I have worked in Restaurants, and stores where when they are getting ready to close, you turn down the lights in a lot of the areas to give people the hint that they were closing. A lot of times there was even an announcement going around saying the store was closing, etc. to where people must bring their final purchases up to the register, etc. to only have some try to bring them up after the last register shuts down. Personally I think there will always be the people who never really seem to notice or care and will push the time of things to the limits as well. Many I guess never really consider a place really closing, and just wish they could have their own hrs. for everything all the time.
@wjolene (265)
• Malaysia
19 Apr 08
usually announce first.
• India
19 Apr 08
Time to leave!! who!! you!! me!! lights!! abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyzabcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz
• Australia
19 Apr 08
actually no