Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Parenting at your local library.

I had a mom come up to me at the info desk asking if there's "someone in charge of the library."  Whenever patrons ask me that, I always try to think of what they want to complain about before they actually tell me and how far up the organization chart I have to refer them to.

She then went on to say that she wanted to complain about a librarian.  Did she want to complain about me in front of me!?  Maybe I said something wrong on the phone, I mean she literally (yes, I am using that word correctly) just walked into the library and headed straight to me.  I then thought about which of my info-coworkers and what they could have done to upset her.  The patron then pointed her head towards the circ desk towards the circ manager.  She then proceeded to air her grievance with me after I asked if she wanted to talk to the assistant branch manager.

"Everytime I come into the library with my daughters that librarian is always shushing them and telling them not to run.  My one daughter is 2 years old!  2 years old!!  What does she want me to do, make her wear a mask??  I want her to look forward to coming to the library and reading, how is that supposed to happen when she's constantly being told to be quiet and not to run??"

Really?  This is the first time I have noticed this mother and her 2 daughters in the library, and her daughter ran straight to the childrens section and was yelling until she hit the circ desk and the circ manager shushed her.  Not like the shushing did much, the little girl continued to run around and talk loudly.  I wanted to tell her that her daughter wouldn't be shushed and told not to run, IF SHE DIDN'T DO EITHER IN THE LIBRARY.  But I was not in the mood to be told that her daughter is just expressing herself and her feelings, and who are we to suppress them.

She definitely did not win me over and I just handed her the branch manager's business card.  I gave a head's up to the managers to expect an email from her.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

So, what did you do over the weekend?

Oh you know the usual, just tried to pour a whole bottle of vodka into a 24 lb watermelon.

First off, the internet lied.  The videos I watched before attempting this, made it seem like this watermelon would be my long lost drinking buddy and that it would down the vodka in no time.  WRONG.  Even after over 24 hours of "drinking," there was still about 1/4 of a bottle left.

I also had to help the process by moving the bottle up and down every other 30 minutes or so.  The act was seemed very dirty, but then again I am extremely immature.  But each time I would move the bottle in and out, it would release several big air bubbles.

When my library friends and I started eating it, there was no hint of vodka at all --- no taste nor smell.  It took several slices before we tasted it and boy, when you tasted it, it was overwhelming.  The thing is, is that you could not tell where the vodka was.  You would think that where the bottle dumped into the middle of the melon would be the strongest, NOPE.  It was like playing Russian Roulette with each bite.

The absorption was not as spread as evenly as I would have liked, it was either all watermelon or straight vodka.  Will I attempt this again?  Maybe...  I'll probably try with a Sugar Baby and a smaller bottle of alcohol.  I also cut the hole the same size as the bottle opening, but the bottle tapers so with it jammed all the way in, the hole becomes too big to put the cut plug back in to rotate the melon.  I think I'll also try using a fruit flavored vodka to give it some flair.  Summer isn't over yet, so I hopefully I will be able to perfect this for next year.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Enough is Enough

Usually when a patron calls asking what the library accepts for donations, I make a point to say that National Geographics are not accepted.  A lot of times, patrons will just bring them in by the boxes and by then the patron has taken the time to drive to the library and bring them in, so none of the staff turn them away.
Some really think that their "collection" has some real monetary value: "Some of these are really old!" or "This is a complete collection of the 70's."  I'm not one to burst that kind of bubble so it's all just smiles and nods and an occasional, "niiiice."

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The new branch mascot...

I shall call him Squishy and he shall be mine...

The circulation manager dropped this off at the info desk while she was cleaning up the war-zone, aka the children's section, after a busy day.  I instantly appointed him as the new (and first) branch mascot.  Since no one else who was working that night vetoed it, he won by a landslide.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Gone Til November

My biggest and heaviest flip ever.  When I picked this thing up from the store, I completely underestimated how big the box was.  I had to borrow my parents' minivan and take out all of the seats to fit this.  I was a little hesitant to try to flip this because it was so big and heavy, but it was clearanced for $49 and the deal was just too tempting.

Within 3 days I had two potential buyers, and one seemed definitely eager to make the deal happen.  I tried telling her that this was a big and heavy box, and she said that her SUV could fit it.  WRONG.  I was planning to charge a delivery fee if this exact scenario happened.  But this lady was buying this as a surprise for her husband who is currently deployed until November.  Again, the pay it forward principle came in to affect so my dad and I told her we would deliver it to her house.  She is completely new to the area after coming back from overseas, and we ended up getting to her house before her.

She didn't even try to haggle the price I had listed because my price was already lower than every other store.  So I bought this 200lb, 6ft behemoth for ~$50 and flipped it for $200, easily one of my most profitable deals ever.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

My Smelly Precioussss...

So for the second year in a row, our children's librarian has ordered scratch and sniff bookmarks for summer reading.  But we all know that it is really for me since I talked her into ordering them last year.  I think it is another one of her attempts to get me to join youth services.  I decided last year to hand them out to the kids after they completed the summer reading program and they really seemed to enjoy them, I know I do.  Even the reluctant teens seem to dig them.  ("Dig" get it?? "Dig into summer reading".....)  What's really cool are the kids who tell me that they still have the ones from last year and that they're excited to add to their collection each summer.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Paying It Forward at the Library.

Today a woman in her late 60's came up to me at the info desk accompanied by two children, a girl in the 7th grade and a boy in the 3rd grade.  The first thing she says to me is, "I'm trying to get these two to get back into reading, what do you recommend?"  Most times those that bring in children with them usually can tell me that Little Johnny liked So and So Book Title or Little Suzy likes to read about dragon-unicorn-chimeras.  But this patron clearly had no clue what these children liked to read.

Thankfully, a few questions posed to the kids put me on the right track for providing proper reader's advisory.  While the kids were browsing the shelves, the older patron came back to the desk to talk to me.  In a hushed tone, she said, "Those two kids are actually my neighbors.  There are a total of 7 siblings and they come from a divorced home and their dad doesn't come around at all so I'm trying to keep them busy."  I commented on how nice it was of her, which it really, truly is.  When the young girl came back to the desk to place a hold on a book, I noticed that she had some overdue fees which were over a year old.  I didn't tell her about the fees, but followed the elderly neighbor's lead and forgave the young girl's fines.  I can't do much in my position that can really help people but damn it I'll pay it forward when I can.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Book Covers by Bibliotecher...

Didn't notice the "Real Deal" blurb til after.
My new at work hobby started with this find.  I couldn't find any worthy/inspiring books until a week later.  I had a hard time choosing which picture to use.  Not surprisingly, there's a boatload of pictures of people shoving/fighting/running to get that discount item from whatever Big-Box retailer.  I ended up printing 5 pictures and had my supervisor choose the best one.  Let's just say that I put in too much effort for this.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Librarian Employment Plan B.

My library friends and I are coming to the realization that we should broaden our job search outside of the library realm.  I'm sure that the majority of MLIS holders have and will do the same.  There are too many MLIS's and not enough jobs.

So playing to our strengths, we have determined that the best option for me would be Personal Shopper.  I know my way around online shopping: coupon codes, cash back options, price-matching, and ways to get free shipping.  I believe in never paying retail, I also feel comfortable shopping for most things: cars, clothes, electronics.  Now I can add "Baby Stuff" to my repertoire.

Here are two of my latest satisfied customers:

My niece with her favorite toy, and my supervisor's baby sporting her summer clothes.