Must Read Stories

Must Read Stories

Lost in Translation--Crazy Reference Questions

Submitted by MerryLibrarian on Wed, 10/21/2009 - 13:01

The following is another story from The Merry Librarian. Once again, this true story is an example of patron expectations for a librarian’s abilities. As bizarre requests go, this one is definitely a strange need for information. And we’re just curious…why is it that when a patron needs something complicated and bizarre, they always want it within 24 hours? Just curious....

“Here’s a situation I ran into yesterday that I thought you might find amusing…it falls under the “librarians should know everything about everything” assumption that much of the general public seems to have. A man walked into our branch yesterday and asked me the following questions:

“If something were translated from English into Mayan hieroglyphics into Egyptian hieroglyphics, would someone from Iran who speaks Hebrew be able to understand it?”

Umm…I’m thinking not.

“Well, then, could you translate it for me so they could understand it?”

…Why yes, of course I happen to be fluent in ALL those languages. (I am a librarian, after all.)

“Well, do you have a book that translates Mayan hieroglyphics into Egyptian hieroglyphics into Hebrew?”

I’m thinking not…but I’ll check anyway just to appease you…Nope, just as I suspected. Nothing.

“Why don’t you have any books that do that?”

I don’t think there is a book anywhere that does that.

“Well, what can you do? I need it done tonight.”

Tough Love From a Tough Dad

Submitted by MerryLibrarian on Sat, 10/17/2009 - 16:57

The following is a post from The Merry Librarian (www.merrylibrarian.com) dated Sept. 27th, 2009. Check out the website for all postings!

"Tough Love from a Tough Dad"

This week’s Story of the Week is one of the rare stories that is genuinely heartwarming (though we’re sure there are more out there!). As librarians–as with any public service profession–we so often see the sad and traumatic family interactions. It is refreshing to witness powerful and positive relationships like this one. Thank you, “Diane”, for this great story!

I work at a small library in an area of town that tends to house the lower-economic demographic. It is not unusual for things to be stolen from our library on a regular basis–most frequently our DVDs. One day, I was at the reference desk when a man came in with a young, teenage boy. The man looked pretty haggard. He had tattoos everywhere (even a cross between his eyebrows! Ouch!) and lots of piercings. He looked like he’d had a pretty hard life. When he came up to the desk, he set a very tall pile of DVDs in front of me–at least 20 DVDs.

“I found these in my son’s room,” he said. “He didn’t check them out. He stole them.”

I didn’t quite know how to respond, so I (rather stupidly) said, “Oh. Okay. So none of them are checked out?”

“No, ma’am,” he answered. Then he knelt down on the ground so that he was eye to eye with me. His son knelt beside him, looking deeply humiliated and angry.

The Family that Reads Together…. (aka What’s in it for ME?)

Submitted by Blake Carver (not verified) on Sun, 08/16/2009 - 22:03

We often talk about the benefits of reading aloud to our children -- but we usually focus on the benefits to the children. Today, let’s reflect on the ways reading aloud to our children benefits ourselves as parents, our families and our relationships with each other.

Read-Aloud Idol
I’m no ham and I rarely attempt read-aloud theatrics, accents or voices, but boy-oh-boy do I love the rush I get when I have my young audience shrieking with laughter, swooning, raving and begging for more. Sure, all I’m doing is reading the printed word, the real genius is the author, but I’m the main act at our house and I bask in the glow of my appreciative and enthusiastic audience. Childhood is short -- I treasure the precious moments when reading aloud makes me a star in the eyes of my children.

Cuddle Time

Malt Whitman Anyone? Librarians for a Ben & Jerry's Flavor on the LA Times Blog

Submitted by birdie on Fri, 07/31/2009 - 12:35

A New Jersey librarian's (LISNews' VERY OWN ANDY W!!!) lighthearted Facebook petition for a Ben & Jerry's library-themed ice cream flavor might just come to fruition -- or should that be chocolate-swirl-ition? Launched in early June, the petition has picked up momentum as summer temperatures have risen -- there are currently more than 4,800 members in the group, and folks from as far away as Canada and England have volunteered flavor ideas. If you haven't joined the facebook group yet...DO IT NOW!

German Librarian Remembers Harrowing Plane Crash

Submitted by Great Western Dragon on Fri, 07/03/2009 - 09:22

She was called the Miracle Girl in Peru.

Now she's a librarian for the Zoological Centre in Munich. Yet she has a story to tell - a story of sheer luck, survival, and courage. She was the only survivor of the crash of a LANSA flight in 1971. As it happens, her adventure was only beginning after she survived a three kilometer free fall into the jungles of the Amazon rain forest.

More from CNN.