Saturday, April 26, 2008

Why do I "shush"?

I "shush" therefore, I am.

Reasons for which we "shush":

1. It's easier than going after each patron and asking them each individually to keep it down. We'd be following everyone around.

2. Because it's more effective than having to explaing to patrons, "You are being very loud, can you lower your voice". It pretty much gets the point across.

3. Because when people are walking/running into the library and talking so loudly they are practically screaming at each other, it's the only way we can stop ourselves from screaming back, "Hey, Shut the F up! You're in a library for heavens sake. Show some respect!"

Monday, April 14, 2008

i give up

As some of you may know I work in a fairly large library. We cater to hundreds of patrons per day (or at least t feels like it). When I first started working here I was surprised to find out that this library system has adopted the idea that having signs up banning people from doing inappropriate things in the library give off negative vibes (Seriously. That is what they think.). So we don't have any signs up. Even though we don't want people using the cell phones, eating, drinking or using a public computer with two or more people at a time, we don't have any signs up to let them know this prohibited. You know whose job it is to make our patrons aware of these invisible rules? MINE! The librarian along with other full time staff has to go up to the person who is eating/drinking/talking on the cell phones/crowded around a computer to stop doing that.

In a small library it wouldn't be so time consuming. But where I am takes up 50% of my time. Think I'm kidding? I took a count. On an average day I tell people to get off their cell phones 10 times. I ask a group of teens to go do something else, instead of standing around their one friend who has internet access 8 times. People who are eating/drinking are addressed 5 times. This is on a daily basis! This puts a huge strain on me and other staff. Don't assume that patrons just say, "Oh sorry. Won't happen again" and obey our rules. No. They argue with us or just ignore us completely. It's to the point where we have to make sure they do throw away their food/drink or move away from the computer or put away their cell phones. So not only do I have to provide great customer service, information and research guides, but I must babysit people so that our library maintains it's level of cleanliness and order; So that our patrons can use their computers without having people hovering over them and compromising their right to privacy; So that our library can stay silent and people feel comfortable coming here and studying. All this could be accomplished with some simples signs don't you think?

So after working here for almost two years, I am tired. I am tired of getting up and addressing these issues at an average of twice each hour I am the reference desk (ref desk 4 hours a day). I am a stickler for rules so this is going to be hard for me to ignore. But I am willing to learn how to ignore them. Unless, of course, they are overly disruptive by having a full on picnic on our study desks while talking loudly on their cell phones, will I approach them. I'm no pushover.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Riddle me this!

Who's bright idea was it to put a giant skylight over the reference desk in lieu of proper lighting? Hm? During the day it's awesome, but come nightfall and we are in darkness. Sure we get some light from the florescent lighting among the stacks, but not at our desks where we are actually working. It's not so great either for today. It's 80 degrees outside and the A/C decided to stop working. So we are under a giant glass with the sun beaming down on us. Not fun. When patrons come up to ask us questions they immediately comment on the heat. Yea. Welcome to my world, bring your sunblock.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

I confess, I love it!

One of the things I love most is when I find a new author that I love. It's such a wonderful feeling when you find a book that is so much fun to read that you must read everything this author has ever written. The second thing I love most is when I find out that the author has a lot of other books available!! This is what happened when I picked up Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella.

Confessions of a Shopaholic
by Sophie Kinsella was nothing like I expected. Her writing flows to where you can't put the book down. He characters are so charismatic and fun that you can totally relate to them or be their friends. I had previously seen her books on the Shopaholic series but the covers looked too "fluffly" and since I don't like to go shopping, these books did not seem like they were for me. But then my sister picked it for our book club and I was hooked!

Becky Bloomwood is a shopaholic who is slowing falling into debt while trying to prove herself as a financial journalist. Her life is tragic and funny at the same time and you can't help but root for her. I was frustrated with this book at first because I hate shopping and can't relate to her. But once you got to see all her adventures surviving in the world and trying to be taken seriously I couldn't help but wish that she does win the lottery and pay off her debt. Her friends and family are all unaware of her problem, but try and help her anyway.

This book was so much fun to read I could not put it down. So I'm happy to see that there are sequels: Shopaholic Takes Manhattan, Shopaholic Ties the Knot, Shopaholic and Sister, Shopaholic and Baby.

Kinsella also has Can you keep a secret? which is a bad title for the book. But again, I could not put it down! This book is hilarious!! I literally had to put it down three times because I was laughing so hard, tears were rolling down my cheeks. I highly recommend this book to everyone.

Emma Corrigan is a struggling marketing associate who is inadvertently spills all her secrets to a stranger on a bumpy plane ride. She deals with these consequences throughout the book. I don't want to give anything away. All I have to say is pick it up!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Flyers that are not read

Things our patrons use our events flyers for rather than reading the information:

  1. Scratch paper

  2. Fanning themselves

  3. Practicing their parent's signatures

  4. Exchanging myspace addresses

  5. Making confetti

  6. Spitting out their gum