Friday Time Killers

Rebel Librarians? Yes, please!

The following is our most recent Story of the Week from The Merry Librarian (www.merrylibrarian.com), dated Oct. 11th, 2009. A new story is posted every week on our site. Be sure to check us out!

"Rebel Librarians? Yes, please!"

Library patrons are, by nature, very delicate clientele. They enter our doors with all kinds of requests and needs, but we, being the stodgy librarians we all are, sometimes forget that they are to be treated with absolute sensitivity. Sometimes, we blunder. We inadvertently step on someone’s toes with cold-hearted requests such as, “Please use headphones when listening to your death metal music on your laptop,” or “We’d appreciate it if you’d leave your flask of whiskey at home next time.” And we may slip up occasionally and ask difficult and alarming questions, such as, “What’s the title of the book you’re looking for?”. But hey, we’re only human…right?

Librarian: What can I do for you?

Patron: Can you check to see if a book is in your library?

Librarian: Sure! What book are you looking for?

Patron: I knew you were going to ask that! I just had it…and when you asked me that I forgot it right away!

…pause…

Librarian: Oops…sorry about that, is there anything you know about the book that I can possibly use to find the title?

Patron: No! You shouldn’t have said anything!

Librarian: … -- Read More

Another Day, Another Taser

The following is posted from www.merrylibrarian.com from our Story of the Week archives, dated Oct. 4th, 2009. Check out the site for all of our stories!

"Another Day, Another Taser"

Just in case you haven’t gotten the memo, we no longer live in the cheerful, black-and-white world of “Leave It To Beaver.” The streets aren’t even clean anymore, much less safe. Where the public library was once a quiet, quaint place for study and leisurely reading, it has now become a strange mix of internet cafe/detention hall/day care/reading room/homeless shelter. Don’t get us wrong–we aren’t complaining (too much)! The library is supposed to be for everyone, and we gladly open our doors to any person who may walk through them.

But let’s face it: the whole “libraries are for everyone” thing means we get a lot of unsavory people stumbling past our desks everyday. And with them, we get a whole slew of uncomfortable situations. (It is the Merry Librarian’s humble opinion that librarians everywhere should be considered for the Nobel Peace Prize.) But the true heroes of the library are easily the library security guards. They undoubtedly see the worst. Not only do they get the porno freaks and drunks, they get the screamers, irate parents, gangsters, predators, thieves, liars, abandoned children, squatters…you name it. -- Read More

Bibliophile tattoo

At Flickr

What To Do With a Weary Aardvaark?

Everyone loves Arthur the aardvark, a favorite at the Lawrence KS Public Library's storytime, gladly accepting children’s hugs in a way only a 4-foot-tall stuffed animal can.

“He gets more hugs and kisses than anyone else,” says Joyce Steiner, youth services coordinator at the library. “He was looking rather droopy.” What’s an aardvark to do when he’s feeling a little physically beat? Take a vacation, of course.

That’s exactly what Arthur did this summer. With a little money from Lawrence residents and library boosters John and Carol Nalbandian, Arthur headed to exotic Independence, Kan. There, he visited the home of former library staffer Dana Hart, who just happens to be a seamstress.

More on the refurbishment of Arthur from the Lawrence Journal-World.

It Takes All Kinds...First Folio Thief Arrives at Court in Style

A man accused of stealing a Shakespeare folio valued at £3m arrived for a court appearance in a horse drawn carriage; report with video at BBC.

Raymond Scott, 52, of Wingate, County Durham, was dressed in Highland tartan and was accompanied by a bagpipe player at Durham Crown Court on Friday.

He faces charges relating to the theft of a first folio that went missing from Durham University Library in 1998.

Twitter as Conversation, as Culture

From NPR 'sharing culture, one tweet at a time' .

The Twitter Recipes of Maureen Evans
Chindu Sreedharan's Epic Tweets
"Twitterature"
...and more.

Mostly I liked the comparison of twittering to being at a cocktail party, enjoying a mixture of conversations and topics with a variety of different people.

One Lucky Librarian

Librarians aren't used to raking in a lot of dough, but Toni Bonnema, a middle-school librarian, had to make the adjustment rather quickly. She won almost half a million dollars playing the slots at Firekeepers Casino in Battle Creek MI.

On her seventh play on a 25-cent, Tower of Power slot machine Thursday morning, Bonnema hit it big -- really big reports M-live.

Bonnema, 55, a Schoolcraft Middle School Librarian for the past 12 years, won $469,626.84 about 15 minutes into her first visit during the casino's second day of operation.

``It was like I was dreaming,'' said the Schoolcraft resident Thursday afternoon, a few hours after hitting her 8:15 a.m. jackpot. ``Everyone was asking me how I could be so calm after I won, and it was like I couldn't believe what was happening.

``I honestly thought my husband was going to wake me up and ask me what I was dreaming about.''

Library Day with the R-Phils in Reading PA

Baseball & 'brarians, with a couple of our own all-stars suited up for the game: Good baseball, good company! The Reading Phils invite library staffers, library board members, Friends of libraries, and our families & loved ones to enjoy the final Sunday home game of the regular season at a phenomenal discount.

Twelve bucks gets you a 2½-hour buffet, a place at one of our library tables on the picnic deck, live music & discount beers in the ballpark café, a free half hour for your kids in the Phunland playground, postgame fireworks, and more, plus at least 8½ innings of excellent baseball with the AA affiliate of the reigning World Series champs.

Follow-up: Celebs with Librarian Dads

When I mentioned the SLJ article I posted here earlier--My Mom, the Librarian--on Twitter, @ryanwlarkin asked, "What about librarian dads?"

Good point. I did some digging, and here are some famous children of librarian fathers: writer Amos Oz, writer Jhumpa Lahiri, writer Charlotte Perkins Gilman, chef and The Cook's Companion author Stephanie Alexander, and Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen.

I've always been fond of the fictional heroic librarian father in Something Wicked This Way Comes.

SLJ Article: Celebs with Librarian Moms

What do actor David Caruso, Indigo Girl Emily Saliers, Morrissey, NAACP chair Julian Bond, and Nick Cave have in common? You guessed it: see My Mom, the Librarian at School Library Journal.

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