Friday Time Killers

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: …

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.

Bibliophile tattoo

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

<a href="http://faculty.kutztown.edu/rjensen/rphils/libday.html">Baseball & 'brarians</a>, with a couple of our own all-stars suited up for the game: Good baseball, good company!

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.

Library Cats: an Interactive Map

Iron Frog Productions has created an interactive world map of library cats. Click on a state or country to see all known library cats in residence (or formerly in residence) at local libraries.

A Literary Quiz for Spring

Just how many daffodils did Wordsworth see? This and other queries of the season. From Guardian UK.

Make Your Own Buzzword Bingo

Raena Jackson-Armitage at Sitepoint in Melbourne posted a unique tutorial in coding PHP. Raena's post discussed how to build your own "Buzzword Bingo" card using PHP. The inventive discussion can be found on the Sitepoint blog.

What's the personality of your favorite blog?

<A HREF="http://www.typealyzer.com">Typealyzer</A> is a text classifier that t analyzes your favorite blog (or your blog) and assigns a Myers-Briggs personality to it based on writing style. The analysis of LISnews determined that it is a "Doer." I'd say librarians are doers, wouldn't you?

Do You know Where Punxsutawney Phil Spends His Other Days?

All eyes will be on Punxsutawney Phil Monday morning early (February 2, Groundhog Day), so I thought you might be interested in knowing that on OTHER days of the year, lucky Phil (with his wife, according to Wikipedia) lives in his own burrow located in the childrens section of the Punxsutawney (PA) Library. Not a bad life for a groundhog.

Wonder when and how he gets relocated to his outside burrow?

Know Any...Dead Librarians?


They were in costume on the job at the Sault Ste. Marie Public Library(it's really Kellee Taavel).

What did you wear to work today? Have a scary Halloween and comment below...

One of Those Tough Theoretical Questions...

Your house is suddenly going up in flames! You have time to save all your animate loved ones (children, pets, housemates, etc.) a handful of vital possessions, and ONE BOOK from your beloved collection. (Just one!) Which book will you choose? (Decide quickly!)

Wall Scrawl from Publishers Weekly. Only eight responses thus far, maybe you'd like to add your own.

Read At Work

Librarians do *not* sit around reading books all day but despite that, you might want to check out this cool website from New Zealand "Read at Work" sponsored by the NZ Book Council.

Librarians Beyond the Realm of Reality

Via Pub-Lib, indulge your librarian fantasies with the Seattle Library blog Shelftalk.

Make That Next Conference a Little Easier on the Feet

Can you imagine cruising down the aisles of the next ALA on this? Not sure if it can accommodate seven heavy bags of schwag, but perhaps it could be modified to work for librarians.

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