Sunday, August 23, 2009

Summer Day in the life of a librarian; or, why I am exhausted and grumpy

8:30 - 12: Arrive at work. Work on filling in back to school displays. Tackle detritus of juvenile nonfiction weeding. Carry prizes over to community room. Move a few tables. Greet new aide who is being trained by current-but-soon-to-be-previous aide (who is going to college). Call Parks and Rec to reserve community room for fall programs. Talk to Parks and Rec about their Baby Sign program (we don't want to overlap). E-mail colleague the go-ahead to plan ours. Adjust fall brochures. Pass fall brochures out for review by staff. Continue juvenile nonfiction weeding. Shift juvenile nonfiction shelves. Shelf is stuck! Spend a while banging on it with aid of aide and accompanied by irritated looks from patrons at computer. Finally get it unstuck. Pull down all the old window art from summer reading. Organize prizes in community room. Grab something to eat.

12 - 2: On reference desk. Help girls find books on gymnastics. Help little girl find chapter books (put Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa and Cork and Fuzz on hold). Enter computer reservations for four people. Computer crashes, b/c someone tried to use Adobe on it (which it doesn't like). Poke around on computer. Poke around some more. Wander around library looking for people who have reservations. Talk to director about getting new computer system and replacing horrible computer-which-crashes.

2 - 3:45 Continue juvenile nonfiction weeding. Show off "I can be a computer operator" complete with 1980s keyboards to colleagues. Discuss weeding with director. Finish entering stats from summer reading program. Help aides move tables and chairs for grand prize drawing in community room.

3:45 Race to grocery store to get ice cream and cookies for program (we don't have a freezer big enough for the tubs and my car has no air-conditioning). Takes longer than I expect and I arrive back at...

4:10 to discover approximately 85 people milling about the community room, our face-painter has arrived, and the kids are getting bored. Hastily bring in ice cream, aides, director, and adult services librarian start scooping, I get the kids' attention with the aid of a teacher (I'm a librarian. I have a library voice.) and tell them to line up for ice cream and look at the prizes.

4:30 - 5:00 Draw for prizes. We have 2,000 drawing slips and 36 prizes. Kids enjoy taking turns pulling out names, but more than half of the winners aren't there. My top five readers all won a prize as well as several others.

5:00 Face-painter generously agrees to stay later and finish the line. Encourage kids to finish ice cream. Crying kid (there's always one) is born off by parent. Aides clean up (you guys are great!) while I lug all the prizes left back to my office out of sight.

5:30. Everybody finally leaves . Help face-painter carry equipment out to car.

5:30 - 6:00. Type list of names of winners who weren't there, post list at reference desks (people will hear from friends they won a prize and many will call and ask if they won). Move all prizes to closet by youth reference desk so they're accessible. Discuss cataloging of Boys of Steel by Nobleman. Biography - but then which person? Nonfiction - 741s?

6:00. Go home. Collapse. Remember thankfully that I work 12 to 8 on Wednesday. Remember that I'm going to have to call all the prize-winners. I hate making phone calls.

See? I can be grumpy if I want to.

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