Blogging Reference: Saturday, August 7

Another Saturday at the reference desk.

Cool enough this morning to remind me why I love 2 wheels.  I remember my first long cruise, gliding through the trees on West Highway 50 when it was two-lane and little-traveled, eating a roadside burger in Homosassa, bound for Houston.

10:00  Open.

Today's paper.

Saw an old copy of Male and Female:  A Study of the Sexes in a Changing World, by Margaret Mead, in the book recycling bin.

Where can she sit for tutoring that won't disturb others?

Today's paper?  Sorry, it's out.

Trouble starting her session.

Where is cooking?  She wants to see the "parts of a cow".

A pencil.

We had a copy of Mead's Coming of Age in Samoa in the house when I was growing up.

It must have belonged to my mother, who had a very modern outlook when she was young.

PC for Annamarie.

10:31  Lengthy search on both floors to locate travel guides to Italy.  Turned out she was already carrying the main one she wanted without realizing it. (sigh).

Teens here for Youth Services Poetry Workshop in Henderson Room.  He's dark moptop w untucked red shirt, black tie, sleeves pushed up.  She has blond hair in pony tail, black halter top, one fingerless black glove, short skirt in big black & white plaid, black leggings.

Questions about her place in reserve queues, can't get into her account.  Change her PIN to match her new phone number.  Explain how being number 11 for Allende's Island Beneath the Sea isn't really so bad since we have 7 copies.

MK has been checking to see who's responsible for the poetry workshop.  Apparently, she's not here, and five kids are waiting.  She tries DT at home, gets voice mail.  Hmmm...

There's been a lot of talk in the NYT about the TV series, Mad Men.  The thirty-somethings are envious of the swinging 60's.  Mead's studies of sexuality in Samoa and New Guinea were the intellectuals' call to Bali Hai, a South Pacific of the mind, and contributed to the spirit of the age.

Paper comes back, goes out.

PC for Donel.

Where are urban fiction books?  He might well ask.  They are always checked out, and often overdue.  Give him a couple of lists.  The best way to get them is to reserve them.

Large print biography of Eleanor Roosevelt?  No.  Take interlibrary loan request for Eleanor Roosevelt:  a Personal and Public Life, by J William T Youngs and Oscar Handlin.

Help w printer.

Phone:  Help w item holds for DVD's 2 and 3 of Schama's History of Britain.  Pull, place, trap, take to reserve shelves.  Puff puff down stairs, up, down, up.  The reference librarian workout!

Phone:  R. coming w sandwich.  Do I need Pepsi?

I didn't know that Mead was an Episcopalian, and that she helped draft the revised 1979 Book of Common Prayer.

Cow Parts Woman has sent her bedraggled son to fetch her a King James Bible.

Check DK Italy out to mending, put on mending shelf.

12:43  Back from lunch.  About to go through the Battle of Jutland again in Hennessy's The Lion at Sea.  Tally Ho!

PC for Tim.

Girl fussing with her card, putting tape on.  Wants Sharpie to write over signature.  Why doesn't she get a replacement?  "Don't got no money."

PC for Omar.
PC for Wiley.

Indian couple ask about private study rooms.  No, sorry, we have meeting rooms for groups of 3 or more, but not study rooms for 1 or 2.

She wants book of famous publisher rejection letters.  L. helps her  Reminds me of funny rejection letter.

Five People You Meet in Heaven.  Many copies now lost.  Was Leon High assigned reading several summers ago.  Finally find a copy on shelving cart.

Dave Barry.  Humor or fiction?  Both.  Take to shelf.

He can't find Fires of Heaven by Robert Jordan.  Is on shelving cart.  2nd time in a couple of days I've fetched a Jordan title from that cart, where several recently returned are.  I shelve the remaining ones.

1:25  MK back from lunch.  I leave the main desk to MK and L., and move to the satellite floor station until 3:00.

Woman shuffles deck of Tarot cards at nearby table, lays out a spread.  I gave her a cigarette once.  She told me she used to be a legal secretary.  Lives at the shelter now.

Phone:  J. from Fort Braden Branch needs a book on cassette pulled for someone who's coming to pick it up.  Transfer call to Media.

Woman shuffling again.  Another spread.

Old guy kids me about my Vespa.  Says he's ready for his ride.

Phone:  Mr. L.  Any church sign makers in Valdosta?  Is selling church in Quincy a sign.  South Georgia Sign Company makes 'em.

When I hang up, Tarot woman is gone.

Straighten New Books shelves, make face-outs, shore up with bookends.

Straightening New Non-Fiction, I find J. I. Packer's Knowing God, which I searched high and low for on Monday to fill a hold.  Status was set to missing after two more staff searched Tues. and Wed.

It has a '93 pub date but was red-dotted for the "New" shelf because it was new in the catalog.  And I had noticed that and checked there.  Better I think to remove the dot and shelve it in the permanent 200's.  Less confusion.

Christian section of 200's is a shambles, and I spend about 15 min. putting it in order.

2:20  Check the Answer Squad mailbox.  There's a question about e-books.  Do we have e-books that work with the Barnes & Noble Nook e-reader?  Yes, I reply, we do.  OverDrive's e-books come in the Adobe ePub and PDF formats, and are supposed to be compatible with the Nook.

Where are Bibles?  Take to shelf.

2:45  Storm is brewing.

PC for Michael.
PC for Sonya.

3:00  Commotion.  People are finishing their business and leaving ahead of the storm.  The are a few PC's open.

Where is sheet music?  Take to shelf.

She wants a Wet One®.

Very dark outside, booming thunder and flashing lightning, and rain, but strangely calm.

3:21  Wind, now, and heavy rain.

PC for Wayne.

Phone:  Number for Ability Towing Service.

3:30  Quiet.  Rain is letting up.  The thunder is to the south.

MK and I get to talking about paper wastage and whether printing should be free.  A little girl tells us that a printer is out of paper.

(At 3:45 the the lights blinked, the barcode scanners beeped, and all the computers cut off.  The network had crashed.  The phones were dead too.  It soon became clear that there would likely be no more Internet for some time.  Telephone service returned, but techs were still working in the server room when the library closed at 5:00.

The library cleared out quickly with no Internet PC's and no wireless.  Only the magazine and newspaper readers in the reading area and a few book browsers remained.  It was a little flashback to what the library used to be like a mere 15 years ago.)

Thunder continued in the south.  After dark, at home, it returned over us, and we had more rain.


MK said...

"Cow Parts Woman"?!? Lol...sorta sorry I missed that one. MC sympathizes over paper waste but says powers that be want printing to remain free for now. Would tarot patron give me a reading if I asked? First book that came to mind when I thought of those I remember in the house growing up is Dad's copy of Ulysses. Was big, green and mysterious.

Anonymous said...

It was extremely interesting for me to read the post. Thanx for it. I like such topics and anything that is connected to them. I would like to read a bit more soon.

Julia Hakkinen

Brett said...

Charging for paper is not an issue for me. The amount of paper wasted at the library is relatively small. In fact, I recently read an article on how toilet paper manufacturers are concerned about the increasing scarcity of recyclable office paper, as the "paperless office" begins to become a reality. They rely upon it to produce the soft tissue we are used to.

Ever since I mentioned the Tarot in my "The Day I Didn't Die" post, it has been popping up all over; most recently today, when R. and I went to see Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky. Coco lays out a spread at a dinner party. The Tarot is funny that way. I haven't owned a deck in years.

Julia, thanks for your interest! I am glad you enjoy Branches and Rain. Are you Finnish? I had a boyhood friend of Finnish extraction, whose last name was Hokkanen.