Monday, July 23, 2012
When Scott Douglas took a job as a page at a public library in southern California when he was in college, he had no idea what he was getting into. He ending up finding a career...a career that he quickly realized would not be what he expected. Instead of checking out books and shushing noisy children, he found himself kicking teens off the computer for looking at porn, getting mooned by a disgruntled patron, and trying to get people from sleeping in the bathroom. In addition to all the ridiculousness, though, he discovered that he could really touch people's lives through the library. Sometimes it was teaching the elderly how to use the computer to see pictures of their grandchildren. Sometimes it was doing storytime to give kids a love of reading. Through it all, Scott learned to take the good with the bad, and, on the bright side, at least the bad is pretty hilarious.
Since I'm a librarian, I totally related to Scott. At times, when I'm, say, cleaning up puke because the cleaning crew is gone for the day, I'm thinking "I got a masters for THIS?" But I've learned to appreciate those moments because at least they make for good stories! And all the good parts totally worth a little bizarreness...helping people finding good books, look for jobs, and do homework makes me feel awesome. But back to the book...I totally cracked up at several points throughout Scott's story because it's so over-the-top, but I know it's all true. At times, I felt like Scott was a bit condescending toward the patrons, and I got annoyed when he would talk about being bored at work and goofing off to pass the time...we never have free time at my library! Still, I enjoyed his stories. They reminded me of things I love about my job and made me laugh as well.