Little things and one big thing

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I have little news – thoughts about policies, etc. and some neat links to share, but today is a little-known national holiday. A very important holiday. 

It’s Mama Bear’s birthday!

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No, not the Mama Bear pictured above. My Mama Bear! Who is just as nice, helpful, and lovely as the Mama Bear from the Berenstain Bears, except MUCH less hairy. Much less. 

I wouldn’t be reading if it weren’t for Mama Bear. She always had a book out from the library when I was younger, always, and to this day has a list of books to read and a holds list pages and pages long. Sister A and I were regular devotees of the library when we were little, because it was always part of our list of errands, as much as the bank, the cleaners, food shopping, the library was a given too. 

Under Mama Bear’s tutelage – she taught me to read before I could even speak, and I’ve been talking for many, many years – I learned to love to read, quite early, and I remember when we would read the Little House on the Prairie series out loud, chapter by chapter, in her and Daddio’s bed. We started The Diary of Anne Frank as a read-aloud, too. 

Now we share what we’re reading, compare lists, refer books to each other, and, as you know, my dear readers, she is the best link-sender ever. What I post here is a fraction of what she sends me (you all haven’t been exposed to my Benedict Cumberbatch or Doctor Who obsessions, which she so generously indulges). This blog is as much her doing as it is mine.

Thank you for everything, Mama Bear! I am the reader I am because of you. You are the best and I love you so much.

**

Now we’re changing tacks quite abruptly because it’s time to actually talk about library things.

Our staff meetings are always intriguing to me, because we all don’t always have a chance to get together. Yesterday was a lot of minutae that had been brewing for a while. Should we have food at programs? Don’t forget to let Boss know about any summer vacation plans. Here’s how we’re going to start weeding YA. 

But one topic that was up for discussion was about a not-insignificant part of our clientele in children’s and in the library as a whole – developmentally-delayed adults. They are adults, but they probably get the most use out of our department rather than the popular or information services departments.  

I remember in one of my early posts talking about some blurred lines, and this topic certainly qualifies. They may check out our DVDs and books and ask to use some of our coloring pages, but, since they’re older than 12, they’re not allowed to use our computers. They may not use the children’s bathrooms, either. Can they sit in the children’s area and read? Should we have a separate area for them to hang out – even if they’re with a caregiver? What about our developmentally-delayed adults who are independent enough not to need caregivers?  Would they find useful resources in our adaptive services department, which services our patrons with physical disabilities? Can our one faithful friend who loves to hang out in Teen sign up for the teen programs, or hang out on the fringes when we have our Wii Wednesdays or movie nights? Should he be hanging out only in the adult sections?

I hate having rules for rules’ sake, because for as many that work, there are still others which I think are silly. I don’t think we’ll ever come to one mind about it as a department, but we are going to start upholding more of the rules. (I do have to admit that I feel like a hypocrite kicking 20-year-olds off the computer, but our faithful friend at 22 would be allowed to stick around. I’m surprised that no irritated patron has pointed that out yet, because I wouldn’t have any articulate reason as to why S/HE would have to leave, but Faithful Friend could stay.) So the only thing we’ve really resolved is that consistency is the name of the game.

Ok, links!

If you love words, you really should subscribe to the OED’s word of the day email. Coworker J sent me today’s: pavisand, to display an impressive or opulent array of clothing and ornament; to flaunt one’s appearance.

HILARIOUS!

Friend E, a transplanted Angeleno, sent me this neat story about library happenings in his part of the country.

History is always, always interesting.

One of the worst things about my online dating experiences – and they’re almost universally terrible full stop – is that when men see that I’m a librarian, I almost invariably get an email containing some form of “Oh, are you a SEXY librarian?” (Yawn. Get a new line.) And yes, once, a few years ago, I did dress up as a sexy librarian for Halloween. But it’s just a stupid stereotype, and this is a great blog post about it

From Friend P, husband to the also prolific link-sender Friend D, some underappreciated masterpieces

Some depressing news from Friend D about the plight of bookstores in NYC.

Also from Friend D, here are teens trying to describe Divergent to old folks. 

Finally, from Friend D, these are just freakin’ creepy

The following are from the Birthday Bear herself:

How would you rank the Roald Dahl books? Spoiler alert, of course Matilda is #1.

More Buzzfeed interestingness, about language quirks.

The word “dystopia” gets thrown around a lot, because YA dystopias are the it thing. Here’s a primer.

Every so often I borrow a library book on my iPhone’s Kindle app. I do, as you know, also own a Kindle. Here are some great eReading apps. 

Literary podcasts!

The estate of Margaret Mitchell has approved a prequel to GWTW – this one about Mammy, who will finally get a real name. 

In What’s Annabelle Reading, nothing completed since my last post. So there.

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