Thursday, October 8, 2009

We're in the business of banning...

Tuesday, our Regional Manager called to forward a complaint about the Banned Books Week Display. Banned Books Week is a week celebrated by the American Library Association. It celebrates the freedom to read by highlighting books that have been banned or challenged across the country at some point. To illustrate the lameness of banning books I created a display that said “These Books Have Been Banned” on black paper with white words and surrounded it with caution tape. It was a pretty eye catching display if I do say so myself!

I put books like Lord of the Flies, To Kill a Mockingbird, Are you There God? It’s Me Margaret, In the Night Kitchen, The Stupids, Where the Sidewalk Ends…, The Lorax and the list goes on and on. Really. It does! Even the dictionary was on the list!

A former teacher came into the library and saw the display and felt that it was so outrageous that we were banning books that she called our headquarters to complain. She apparently asked at the circulation desk what the deal was with the display and was told it was a “joke’. Which it really isn’t…maybe the caution tape was a joke, but the fact of the matter is that someone somewhere tried to control other people’s access to those books. And that is not right!

Anyways, on the other hand, a lot of people asked questions about the display. Many people wanted to know why the books were banned, if we banned books, and many people when they found out that certain titles were considered banned made an effort to check those books out! It created a lot of conversation which was my point, and I think that it was a very effective display overall!

Yay me! J

In other fun patron run-ins. I love the people who when I answer the phone “Reference Desk, how can I help you?” don’t even say hello, just launch into some random question like….

“Ben Franklin made magic squares and he had two 8x8 squares. I’ve found one of them but can’t find the other one. You’ll probably have to go onto and search ‘Ben Franklin’ and ‘magic squares’”.

To people like that I say: 1. I am not your secretary. 2. It always helps to be polite to the person you are asking to find you something. 3. If you are so computer savvy, why aren’t you looking it up yourself? Or coming down to the library to get on our computers to do it yourself? HMPH!

If you ever want to really upset me at work, just start moving furniture. I hate it when people come in and think that they can move the chairs around, move tables, move the big seats. I just hate it hate it hate it. They never put them back and it frustrates me to no end. I can’t believe that people think they can come into a public place and move everything around. Would you go to your friend’s house and move their furniture? What about a department store? NO you would NOT! GRRRR

As its pajama story time night I’ve been listening to the screeching of the woman who directs pajama story time for the last hour and a half. She is a former soap star who now dresses up in her pajamas and acts out stories with a junior charity group. She is annoying as hell and I can’t stand the group. I basically want to stab myself repeatedly in the eye with a dull pencil whenever they are here and for some reason tonight they are here an hour longer than normal. GRRRR

And last but not least. A patron came up to our Children’s Librarian tonight and said “I’m off!” Pam looked at her “….. Um okay!” She overheard a conversation with another patron and thought that she was being helpful by telling Pam that she had gotten off her computer and was leaving the library. But of course from the initial “I’m off!” Pam had no idea what she was talking about. And as a side note, the patron’s conversation that she was listening to had nothing to do with the computers that the public uses. A man was unable to get his laptop to connect with our wireless network.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Questions I want to say NO to

Do you have a stapler?

Do you have a paperclip?

Do you have a pen/pencil?

Do you have lined paper?

Do you have this book?

Do you know where the bathroom is?

I need a book over 150 pages, about anything, got a suggestion?

Attack of the Annoying Patrons

I don't know what the deal is today but it's been a major attack of weird, annoying, crazy patrons!

Dog is a patron who constantly has issues with the computer. She is always asking for help with her resume which basically is asking me to help her search on It's annoying and frustrating becasue while I feel like my job is to help people naviagate the web, I feel like it is NOT my job to read words on a website to a person.

Anyways Dog is here tonight and apparently has a typing job that she is working on. She was working on it last night and didn't save her work and lost 8 pages of it. Frustrating I know, but now she is doing a dance around our computers, looking for people who have closed their computer session early, instead of waiting the 20 minutes to log on to her assigned computer.

Unfortunately, the way that our computer system works is that you get assigned to the next available computer at the time you make your reservation. So potentially someone could end their session while you are waiting and a new person could come up and make a reservation and get onto a computer before you.

So she is walking around looking for a computer to get onto, doesn't really find one and finally logs onto the computer that she is assigned to. She drives me crazy!!!!

Going on concurrently to this situation is this new lady. TankTop. TankTop has been coming to the library recently and utilizing as much internet time as she can! Which is fine, but even though our system allows you to log onto the computer for 60 minutes, with two 45 minute extentions (as long as there is nobody waiting) she still wants more. MORE MORE MORE MORE MORE!

She doesn't understand the word "No" or the reasoning behind why we can't give her more time (that there are people waiting to get onto the computer and they have every right to get onto them).

Finally ASL let her on, but she has to wait an hour. HAH!

The old guy that looks at old guy porn is here. EW

In other news, I've made my first real step to becoming a real librarian as I've applied to library school. It's very exciting!