Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Information Desk can I help you? Information Desk can I help you?

I seriously wonder about the next generation of students. Every day I deal with parents who are at the library doing the research for their children. Just today I had this lady who was here getting books on a project her son was supposed to be doing. Her 15 year old, sophomore in high school, son. Ugh

Her son was doing a paper on "How did WWI lead to WWII?" and I'm trying to explain to her that the best way to get information for her would be to look at specific things that her son has already studied that he knows lead to WWII. I found a bunch of books for her all over the library, wrote down the titles and the call numbers, and the locations and pointed them out to her. I also showed her how to access the online databases and walked her through all of that step by step.

She walked away looking like she knew what was going on. She was back within 10 minutes and apparently didn't listen to anything I had told her because I ended up walking around the library with her, pulling the books and the like.

What are these kids learning?! They for sure as hell not learning how to do research or how to use the library or even how to ask the lovely library people how to do something. NO! Their parents are coming in and doing it for them. I'm especially worried about kids today because even though there are these great projects (I think of them as great now as an adult when I don't have to do them but as a child I'd totally hate it) that force them to learn how to do scholarly research. They aren't actually doing the research. It's the parents. UGH!

In other news I am going to see Conan next Monday. And you are not. :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Have I mentioned that I work 2 jobs and am also in school?

So sorry about the blogging break. It's been really hectic around here. I've had papers and book fairs and crazy patrons OH MY!

No, seriously though, it's been busy. I got really sick in the beginning of November which lead to me calling out of the school library job for two days which meant I only had two days to really prepare for my book fair. And then book fair happened and it was crazy and awesome and stressful all at the same time. We made almost $2000 which was great and I was really happy with it. Then it was Thanksgiving holiday and I was off of school for a week but still had the public library job to go to and now it's November 29 and I need to put my Christmas decorations up and finish my final paper for my first grad class. It's on the digital divide and needs to be 15-20 pages and I haven't done a lick of research. Did I mention it's due on Sunday? Hmmm perhaps I should get on that.

In crazy library patron news, we've had two local libraries close for some renovations. One is closed for a year and the other is closed for a month (opening December 1 woot woot). The fact that these two libraries are closed has lead to an exponential increase in our patron craziness.

Case in point:

Chatty But Silent Patron (CBSP). CBSP likes to have very elaborate but silent conversations complete with hand gestures. She sat in front of my at my desk the other day for a good twenty minutes talking and talking (silently) and point and pointing and waving and waving. It was very awkward. I even had a fun post on facebook that went like this.

Me: Sitting at the reference desk. There is a lady sitting right in front of me having a very animated but silent conversation with herself. This sums up my day.

Blah blah blah talk with other librarian about her patrons who have been arrested for assault and blah blah blah

She's waving her hand and pointing at me wildly. 42 minutes and then I can LEAVE!

Well at least she knows to be silent in the library.


I also had the Virus Lady (VL).

VL came to the library about 20 minutes before closing and wanted to get on the computer. Now as we all know from previous posts, our computers shut down at 15 minutes til. So I was explaining to her how if she logged on she wouldn't be able to stay on for very long and that we would be open tomorrow. Our conversation then took a crazy tone.

Me: You do need a library card to log on to the computers.

VL: Well I have a library card, but do you have a guest pass?

Me: No. We don't have a guest pass anymore we just have an Internet Only card...

VL: I want one of those!

Me: Well, those are for visitors to the library who are not state residents. You have a library card so in order to get on the computer you need to use your card to log on.

VL: I can't find my card but I want to go on the internet.

Me: We can replace your card for $2.

VL: But I don't want it under my name. When I log on it tells me that I'm on an unsecure site. They always make it so I can't go on my e-mail and they track me. They set it up so I get viruses.

NOW. Here is where I should have shut up. I don't know why I said the next part.

Me: Who's they?


Me: Um.. I don't know...

VL: I want to log onto a computer not using a card attached to my name, can you log me onto a computer?

Me: I'm sorry. It's our policy that you use your own card to access the computer.

She walked away after that and the other 3 people on desk just turned and stared at me. It was pretty crazy.

And as a side note. Someone told me the other day I was neurotic. Now I know what neurotic means but I thought perhaps they were using it in a different context. Not wanting to misunderstand them I went home and looked up the definition. I do not think I am neurotic. Thoughts?