Without going into all the sordid details, I have an unpaid fine on record at the Los Angeles Public Library. Indeed, my otherwise perfect record as a borrower of books has been blackened because I was a day late last August returning Blake Gumprecht’s awesome The Los Angeles River: Its Life, Its Death, and Possible Rebirth, which I had checked out for the noble purpose of finding actual facts to support an IAAL•MAF spinvitational bike tour of the river that I led July 22.
The amount? A pffft. A trifle. A mere bit, if you will: 25 cents. But until I square things I am gratata non personum inflagrantus at the checkout lines of any of the 71 branches of the library… doubly so on its website — which is the slow point of this post. I’m not protesting the fine, but having had neither the need for the excuse since to visit the library and pay the penalty in person, I logged onto lapl.org to see if an online fine payment option was available. It was! Eagerly I entered my library card number and proceeded to the checkout where much to my deflated excitement I found that the privilege of balancing my account from my desktop was going to cost me a service fee. In order to give the library an electronic quarter and call things even it was going to cost me an electronic addition of, well… you can see for yourself:
At least they don’t insult my wavering intelligence by calling it a “convenience” fee. All the same I think I’ll just wait to pony up until my next visit or when the library police act on a bench warrant issued for my arrest, whichever comes first.