When the electricity goes out and stays out, what’s a librarian/library to do?

“Beerbrarian” Jacob Berg, director of a small, academic library in the Washington, D.C. area, has a humorous and thought-provoking article about how his library is coping with the recent and continued power outage caused by last weekend’s severe storms in the area.

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He contrasts their experience from the last extended power outage during Hurricane Irene:

…library staff were relocated to a basement classroom in another building. It seemed that nobody missed us. We had a few e-mails, but no walk-ins, nobody asking about reserve books, even. It looked like a failure; a library goes dark and nobody notices. 

to what they’re trying this week:

I have a laptop, a smartphone, and some swag (thanks, vendors!), and I’m walking around campus offering research assistance to all who ask for it. I’m also showing initiative by asking.