Librarian Avengers

Look it up.

Jul 31, 2003

Ok, so you know that old Warner Brothers cartoon with the coyote and the sheepdog? The sheep dog and the coyote both come into work and punch the time clock, and one goes "Morning Ralph" and the other goes "Morning Sam." Remember? That one? Ok, so I'm leaving work last night, and I see somebody from the reference department coming in for her shift just as I'm leaving. And of course I say "Morning Ralph," because of course everyone in the universe has the same cultural touchstones as me right? And of course she has no idea what I am talking about, and of course I'm a big freak.

Jul 29, 2003

Shit, I'm running out of things to say about libraries. Quick, somebody do something stupid. Whew, thanks!

Jul 25, 2003

So, I popped in to the Tompkins County Public Library yesterday to take advantage of the few hours that they are open after recent budget cuts. I believe I represent many library workers in my inability to return library materials on time. My friend Mark worked at circulation when I was in college, and I got kind of spoiled as a result. Anyway, I paid my $13 fine, and received a wonderful reference interview from one of the librarians. And I found this: Truer Than True Romance: Classic Love Comics Retold! a parody of all of those hideous True Romance comics of the 40's and 50's. The comic art archive where I used to work collected many of the originals, and shelving them was always a swoopy-swoony blast. Afterward, I took to biting my knuckle in times of stress.

Jul 22, 2003

There are mushrooms growing in the corner of my living room. We discovered them when we moved the wireless router upstairs and removed a tangle of cords. There they were. Three little mushrooms. Growing. In the carpet. We live in one of those beige apartments where everything is new and clean and entirely characterless, so mushrooms in the carpet, even beige mushrooms, seem out of place. We will be moving in a few weeks, so we took this discovery in stride. We decided to leave them as conversation pieces. "Welcome to our home, have you met the mushrooms?" On a cinematic note, the mushrooms bear an uncanny resemblance to the ear in the opening scene of Blue Velvet. Of course this has nothing to do with libraries, but if it makes you feel better I will call the reference desk and ask for a book on common living room fungi.

Jul 13, 2003

So Clay of reference desk fame and I have just gotten out of our dance class, and are talking about a book she read. A woman overhears us and starts talking about a book she is reading on the subject of Jack the Ripper. "What was that book?" she asks, "The one they made a movie out of?"

At this point I should pause and remind you that neither of us were in any way identifiable as librarians, nor were we at work, where we might have had a contractual obligation to answer this woman's question. Yet answer it we did, with alacrity. We pipe up, "Oh! you must mean the graphic novel From Hell by Alan Moore," and our cover is blown. We have been exposed as professional know-it-alls. Any chance we might have had to pose as members of another, sexier profession has been lost. We couldn't just say "huh" like normal people. Nope, had to jump in there with the full bibliographic citation.

Jul 8, 2003

The weekend was so good that it took me until Tuesday to write about it. With a full serving of book-shopping, horse-petting and firework-ogling, Chris and I luxuriated our way around Ithaca, reveling in the not-work. Also, we discovered, libraries can be found in the most surprising places. The bird sanctuary where the beavers live also houses a new audio and video library, complete with some very hip compact shelving and an enormous AV-lab. I saw a huge turtle from the window outside their reading room, so I am now a big fan.

Jul 3, 2003

Look everybody! I got my very first bit of blog-related mail today! Plus a half-assed proposal! Thanks Dale!
Dear Erica,
Stumbled across your blog a couple days ago, and check it daily devoutly now. I'm married and too old for you this time around, but would you marry me in my next life?

On that note, I'd like to thank both of the people currently reading this (hi dad) for their patience through all of this site-moving, domain-name-changing redesign nonsense. If you visit me in Ithaca, I will gladly buy you a beer. Or an "organic carbonated wheat supplement" as they call it here in hippietown. Here's my favorite Ithaca related site today, stolen directly from Mimi Smartypants. These guys are the ones behind the Lion in Helen Newman hall. May I suggest a library theme for your next prank? Perhaps something related to the "stone throwing is prohibited" sign on the roof of Olin? Just a thought...

Jul 1, 2003

This is how librarians talk when they think no one's looking. The following exerpts are from actual email conversations:

Me: Good news! The ALA now has a Library Worker's Day! ALA loves library assistants! What I like most about this day is how close the phrase 'library worker' is to 'sex worker.' "Hi, I'm Erica and I'm a library worker! I started out as a library dancer, but now I just do some phone reference and a few library tricks on the side." hehee

My Librarian Friend: Some day I will be Madam at a whole Library of Ill Repute. Really naughty boys will be sent to Technical Services!!!
Me: Good news! The ALA now has a Library Worker's Day! ALA loves paraprofessionals!

My Other Librarian Friend: Show me the money.