Wednesday, February 07, 2018


What I'm doing between questions: checking our catalog against Booklist's Editors' Choice list to see what we need to buy.

  • It is quiet tonight, unexpectedly. I can see 6 people--no, 7--only one of whom is likely to be homeless (it's sleep-in-our-town-tonight night, so we often have people here who are turned away because of alcohol or drug use)
  • Circ person brings me three books to order for her
  • People sign in for study room use
  • I place holds on things that were left behind earlier and then go eat cake and talk at the circ desk. It's really really dead, except for the Board Meeting going on upstairs

  • Chat with one of our regulars about how I "never" get sick despite all the germy people [I've been doing this job for almost 30 years: I've pretty much had ALL the regular stuff and my immune system is on high alert]
  • Check the cameras: meeting in public room, meeting in staff room, two study rooms in use, one person on her laptop, and the above regular....yawn!!
  • Study room sign out
  • Directions to the Children's Books area
  • ...time for a pre-closing walk-through
  • And everyone's gone, so I finish the last of the closing chores and head out.

Saturday, December 09, 2017


What I'm doing between questions: whatever I can figure out to kill time. So getting orders ready to send for my buying section(s), sending some of those orders, marking items in the catalog that we own that have received awards, sending the list of last month's Withdrawn Items to the buying staff...yknow, whatever.

9:00 [in the children's room]
  • Family comes in with under-2 kid (mom, dad and two grandparents) [play for awhile, show off the library to visiting grandparents, leave]
  • Staff member flies in to say there's a crisis in the workroom and they're swamped at the circ desk [Tech Staff person's pet bunny died suddenly at home--she's wrecked....don't judge, people!]

10:00 [in the children's room]
  • Yes, that was seriously all that happened. Currently, at 10:10, there is one adult in here, looks like she's going through her mail or something. The sun is shining outside and I definitely see people coming and going through the front doors, but no kids.
  • Bunny grandma has come in and calmed down TS person who won't leave because we're short-staffed today
  • Shelver asks for an explanation for the way we're numbering/sorting the Star Wars books in the adult fiction section; I verbally explain this chart to her [Star Wars people, I love your geekdom, and loathe everything else about the 'universe' in which you live]
  • Also, I just realized the books on the shelf, if I owned them all and wanted them in order, should start with the leftmost book being the furthest back in time (25,793 Before the Battle of Yavin) and count backwards to 0 BBY and then start at 0 ABY and count forwards to 45 ABY (at least to date) [the shelver just turned and walked away shaking her head]
  • Librarian AB comes in to ask me about stats and logins and blah-blah with our ILS [my short answer is "I don't know, but I don't think what you're doing will change the stats counts] ; she also says she's fine with me staying in here for another couple of hours
  • Shelver returns to ask about a call number on a Board Book ["I don't understand this board book..." My response: "I'm really sorry about that!"]
  • Truck books, REAL trucks, not stories [holy crap an actual reference question!!]
  • ...and Kleenex

11:00 [in the children's room]
  • (same) Shelver has yet another question....about the His Dark Materials series, which I love and can therefore answer easily
  • Check in with bunny mom and tell her to just go home if she needs to
  • [there are now TWO SEPARATE FAMILIES here in the area--so BUSY!!]
  • I go get my lunch bagel because my stomach is scuh-REEM-ing
  • Rump (Shurtliff) [we have 4 copies, but three are in storage, and the other is checked out--off I go to the scary basement to retrieve a copy]
  • Librarian AB calls to remind me she needs to eat lunch, oops

  • now I'm at Ref
  • And I replenish the nickels in our change drawer because the print station isn't returning nickels automatically today [tech win!]
  • How to transfer music from disc to thumb driver, only she didn't bring the computer in, so I sort of show her and she says she'll try, but probably will come back with her laptop
  • Guest pass for internet use (and extend time till closing)
  • How to close out when done online
  • [so basically in 15 minutes I tripled my patron interactions for the 3 hours at the kids' desk]
  • Book with "things to write in sympathy cards" instead of repeating what everyone else says [in this case, Google is what he needs, not a book; who uses books anymore??]

Monday, November 27, 2017


What I'm doing between questions: reviews for purchasing in my buying sections.

11:00 a.m.
  • Quick primer on "how to do the Reference Desk" since I haven't been out here for months (long story)
  • "Can I use the phone for an emergency call?" [it's re: a case number, she doesn't have a phone--homeless--so, yeah....and as I expected it's been 10 minutes so far: she's nucking futs. This shelter she's been staying at has "poisoned her with cancer" (multiple repetitions of this one) and she's suing them for throwing her out; ohmygod, it's a crazytown rant. Bless the woman on the other end of the phone] I'm getting lots and lots of names: Betty W...n, Donna, LaVerne, Kim D....n, Ron W...s, John S....z, Sofia,  [Kim has apparently wants this woman's legs cut off, or otherwise kill her; also the hospital stole her ovaries, uterus and fallopian tubes so they could rape her]
    I love my job!
  • 35 minutes later...Librarian H arrives to look for her son in the paper (not this week?) and she says the woman (who had just left) has been in to get a guest pass so I was able to pass long some of the warning bells

1:00 p.m.
  • Help with printing
  • Scratch paper
  • Do we have a calculator for a test? [yup--buried deep, but functional]
  • Help printing Amazon return label
  • ...and the line commences....
  • "How much to scan and email to myself?" [free]
  • How to save doc to desktop to download to resume site [it amazes me that people trust that we'll delete it from the computer and don't even ask]
  • [other stuff I don't remember]
  • Circ person arrives with 15-item list of DVDs for patron. I place 5 on hold and set the list aside for doing more later this week

5:00 p.m.
  • Finagling with Publisher and Word [if I could manipulate the doc myself, I'd figure it out, but the guy is about at my level so I just tell him to keep trying stuff, or Google the hack]
  • Print from phone [dude's barely ESL-literate, it takes 20 minutes, but we get it done eventually]
  • Look up card number for a known cutie-pie
  • Calculator is returned, after she passed her test [w00t!]
  • Consumer Reports [ultimately, the information she needs is behind the paywall online, and we don't have access--we should do that, derp]
  • There was more, but I spent so much time with those big questions that I have no memory of what I was doing in the gaps

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


What I'm doing between questions: trying not to rub my sore, allergy-ridden eyes which hurt like hell today. Also checking Fiction Core Collection against what we actually own.

  • Renew time online x2
  • "Can you look up my library card?" [yes, because he's a cute kid]
  • "Can I sign up for Summer Reading?" [well, it's got less than a week left, but sure since this week's prize is free entry to next week's county fair...]
  • Library card kid comes back--"can I get a guess pass?" [no dice figuring out his password]
  • I fill them both in on the fact that they can use the YA area now (going into 6th grade), which they decide is far cooler than hanging out here in the grown-up section [DUH!}
  • "Can we have a screen?" [he has a card, he knows his password, so...uhm, yeah....]
  • Mr. P (on of the regulars) "donates" two pens he found by his computer [they started life as ours anyway, so....]
  • Second time renewer finishes up and returns the pencil she borrowed earlier
  • Look up card number + compliment about how great our library is compared to hers [though, having been to her library, hers has a MUCH better view: lake + beach!]
  • Summer Reading kid returns, can't get online in YA [his birthday was entered wrong in his card; I fix it and give him a guest pass just in case]
  • "Screen" guy meanders over for a pencil; his daughter/sister/wife finds a writing utensil so by the time he meanders back she doesn't need the pencil she sent him here for [we discuss Job's patience and taking deep breathes while she mutters to herself]
  • Mr P stops to say bye and tell me that his wife is going to be incensed that he went to the library dressed "that way"--a pocketed clean blue T and clean jeans....--then he warns me it's likely to rain right around closing again tonight [great]
  • I'm searching for a book someone requested in my collection section (200s: religion)--I finally find it in Amazon: self-published manure re Jesus [call patron and say no-one owns and we can't buy]
  • "Screen" dude seems to be on the verge of murdering his companion; she is a bit (ahem) pushy
  • ...but they're leaving and she's actually fine in person, if a little ding-dongy
  • approx 3:35...RANDOM MAYHEM...
  • Husband arrives from train station to fill me in on his trip to the hospital in the Big City....
  • ...MAYHEM CONTINUES....till about 4:30 [I actually called for backup, twice!]
  • 700,000 Summer Reading check-ins [omg this is the last week thank God!!]
  • Reserve several movies for my regular Weds. aft. patron [she does NOT like subtitled movies, and she had two she asked for this time: "nevermind!"]
  • Help with scanning to a flash-drive and uploading the doc to email to someone
  • Mystery v. Mysteries, Western v. Westerns on genre labels [staff question]
  • Pen
  • Director from nearby library stops to say hi and give me a hug (she's a buddy) [the consortium directors met here this afternoon]
  • Sign-in for study room x 2
  • People magazine [we keep the current one back here so people might be less likely to trash it]
  • Someone I know from Al-Anon walks by and says hi [she looks great! ...hmmm and yay]
  • Scanned doc patron returns our flash-drive, and asks me to delete his file from it [I delete his AND four other people's....and send an email to Ref staff to remember to do this themselves!!]
  • more flippin' genre label questions.... "are we doing Horror? What color?" [I have a sudden realization that in about 5 months someone is going to 'realize' that we should have used "Russian Stories" or "Novellas" or "Pseudonymous Author" (or other random things) and want to add them. We already caved on "Time Travel" which I think is covered under "Fantasy" and we aren't doing "Suspense" which is basically 75% of what we buy it feels like.....  /rant
  • Ice Cream Museum yada yada yada

  • There was stuff

  • There was more stuff, and showing new staff how to close up shop and of course Zooey came in at 15 minutes prior to closing and stayed till 5 minutes after....

Monday, July 10, 2017


What I'm doing between questions: Rural and Reciprocal holds

  • I run to circ to swap the "big bills" for printing change
  • Library D has disappeared from here and not reappeared where he's scheduled, so Miss W is freaking out
  • No, the fact that Google has a (ridiculous) doodle today is not because they're trying to irritate you, Crazy Woman; and no, it doesn't look like poop: it looks like flour and potato peelings, which the subject's claim to fame [Librarian D already warned me that she's complained today about her card's barcode having her birthday in it--we did that on purpose of course]
  • Reset password
  • Password dude's dad strolls in whistling
  • Staple remover
  • Crazy Woman leaves, or at least logs off and heads to the front
  • Staple remover back
  • Help downloading books to her Kindle [she has an "emotional support" dog in a baby stroller--so that's a first for me]
  • Old maps [long complicated back story, and she didn't bring her reading glasses so she can't actually SEE the old maps....] I am saved by the next Ref person's arrival so I can eat lunch
  • YA reading logs--and someone has fubar'd the login (prob the boss) so it takes twice as long as necessary
  • Help finding link for job openings at local parochial school's website
  • Placed hold for The Daughter of Time (Josephine Tey) for patron who I am positive has read it at least a dozen times
  • Help with printing
  • Help with SSA printouts, logins, etc. Also electricity bills (can't access that for some reason)--poor folks with no computer skills being told to log in to do stuff they don't understand....sigh
  • Adult Summer Reading Prize
  • Local paper + CR buying guide for this year
  • Help with printing from a flash drive
  • Guest pass
  • YA reading log
Everything I typed here disappeared. Grr.

Sunday, November 20, 2016


What I'm doing between questions: Death Dates list.

  • I can't imagine who will be in the library today: it's lovely outside, there is plenty of [local] sportsball on TV, and the kids don't have school tomorrow; I expect crazies and people without a life, i.e. our usual crew
  • Newspapers are out, printers have paper: we're GO
  • [phone message] Courageous Faith [I'll have to order it--no one around here has purchased it yet]
  • A book about the Holocaust, with pictures [he later tells me it's to show friends who've never heard of it...omg...but good for him!]
  • Headphones [one pair that maybe works, or he can $$, so we'll try the maybes]
  • Thumb drive not showing up on public computer [of course it does when I'm standing behine her--computers, making us feel dumb since 1980]
  • Leftover reserve from yesterday for The Muse [our copy on hold, so it goes on reserve]
  • Guest pass for internet
  • How to copy stuff from a file into email, and vice versa
  • Scavenger Hunt results [I can't find the answer sheet, but thankfully I know all the answers this week!]
  • "I can never find this book on the shelf..." [he was looking where it should be not where it actually is, but we've got it
  • Can't log in [card expired--easy fix]
  • Add $$ to printing account, paid for with credit card at circ
  • [family member is being a dick on chat because I told him he might not want to watch his "home team" play today because they're being more chat for me for a bit] he did eventually apologize for being unfair
  • Our Constant Job Seeker is here, sighing as usual, and learning something new. I'm sure at some point today he will come over and tell me all about how stupid/brilliant whatever-it-is length...after he cracks his neck a dozen times and stretches his back (arms in the air &; wave 'em around like you jus' don' care)
  • Are we open tomorrow? [no one told me we aren' says he'll see ME then for sure]
  • Email-to/from-file copier stops back with our pencil--asks why we would be closed tomorrow and then says, "I'm too old to care about Columbus Day anymore!" [heh]
  • [phone] The Gipsy in the Parlour [found it but wow, could you be more obnoxious about spelling?? I have to ILL it; it's 60+ years old]
  • Chat with circ ppl about a frozen print job on her computer...can't figure it out
  • "Why won't this save on my flash drive?" [after a few minutes of "huh, hmm" I realize she's put a / in the file name; delete that and it's all good]
  • [phone] The Last American Man [on the shelf, so I pull it and place it on hold]
  • [speaking of which: radio silence on chat after I came back and asked a question about dinner....wevs dickhead]
  • As expected, Constant Job Seeker is here venting on the job he has....sigh sigh sigh [eventually walk away]
  • Fix registration for library programs [all set, didn't need fixing....?]
  • CJS is back
  • Guest pass [she has a fine, but she needs a job...I'm such a sucker]
  • [Find a pile of requests at the circ desk while wandering through--find one on the shelf, reserve two others, and leave the others for Someone Else to do through ILL; oh and I leave one with a tech to search her piles of DVDs since our copy is supposed to be here and maybe it's gone to Repairland]
  • CJS...omg, I'm gonna punch him!
  • Extend time [will do, but the computers shut down in 20 minutes...]
  • Local paper
  • CJS . Srsly
  • Walk through to see what kind of crowd is scattered around...just about time to do the We're Closing Soon announcement
  • [phone] Is Columbus Day a federal and state holiday? [yup and everything's closed. Except us]
  • Guest pass [nope, not doing it since you'll log in with just barely time to use it] [The whole family is dingbatty]
  • And then the other daughter makes a [loud] phone call for help on the webpage she's using ...
  • Headphones come back! Unbelievable!!
  • "So you're going to close at 4 on Sundays now?" [we always have, yup]
  • Last-minute patron wants Rushing Waters on hold [done]
  • And we're done.