Laws of the Library: a plea to patrons

11 Mar

  1. Please, please do not reshelve the books yourself.  I know it probably seems like common sense, but 8 times out of 10, that book did not come from where you think it did.  If you’re even 1 digit off, that book is technically “lost” because it’s not in its place.  It may be easy to find again, but if you miss an entire shelf, it’s not.
  2. Understand that while we do know a lot about computers, how they work, and particularly how to find information using one, this does not make us computer engineers.  For some of us, it doesn’t even qualify us as experts.  Your previous local librarian, who also happened to code for open-source during vacation?  Was not me, and wasn’t a common breed to begin with.
  3. Please don’t ask me where “that book [you] looked at 2 years ago is?” because if you didn’t check it out, I have no idea what book it is.  Telling me the color of the cover doesn’t help.
  4. I am not your babysitter, for your baby or your personal belongings.  If you ask if it’s ok to leave your iPod, cell phone, and laptop on a table while you go to the restroom, I’m going to tell you it’s fine but that I’m not going to watch your possessions.  Don’t glare at me because I’m helping other people instead of sitting on your stuff.
  5. If you come up to me in a bad mood, chances are good that it will telegraph.  I understand, but don’t expect me to be perky and effusive in the face of your gloom.
  6. Understand I can’t be everything to everyone.  I may not be able to help, but I promise I’ll find someone who can.  That does not mean I am incompetent, nor rude, nor “against” you.  It just means I’m not an expert at the universe.
  7. Forgive me when I make a mistake.  If I’ve been working for 10 hours, or on a solo shift, I’m tired.  I’m a bit slow, and I still want to help.  I’ll give you my best, but I don’t promise it’s as fast as it was at the start of my day.
  8. I have a personal life.  Do not be angry that I want to leave when the library closes instead of keep it open just so you can have another 30 minutes on Facebook.

One Response to “Laws of the Library: a plea to patrons”

  1. ConsiderJennifer March 12, 2012 at 08:53 #

    Love this post! So very true!

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