"Madame, bear in mind That princes govern all things--save the wind." -Victor Hugo, The Infanta's Rose

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Library hijinks

Here in East Texas it's exams week at the University where Mrs. Toast works as a Librarian, which is the time that students go absolutely bonkers. Everything they've worked for all year in large part boils down to how well they do this week, and the pressure is enormous. And what do college students do when they're stressed? Apparently, they have parties in the library, take off their clothes, and urinate in the stairwells. The library is open 24-hours-a-day all this week, allegedly to give students a quiet place to study for exams, but the librarians who have been working the overnight shift (not Mrs. Toast, fortunately) have witnessed some strange goings-on in the halls of literature. One of them has been sending a daily e-mail to the rest of the library staff reporting on the nightly carnage, including the theft and vandalism of wall signs, water gun fights, students taking off their clothes to study in their underwear, and the most henious crime of all (gasp!), loud talking!! Hey people, put a lid on it - this is a library here! But things seem to be improving: here is an excerpt from one of his daily reports:
The building has cleared out a lot. I see no sleeping or signs that those who are left are slowing down. I noticed that a lot more trash has been picked up and put in the garbage instead of being left out. I think I have begun to make some sort of bond with the natives. They appear more docile and cooperative. I brought my camera with me this time around the building. Some were shy and had to be coaxed out of their hiding places while other strutted and thumped their chests demanding that their primitive nobility be recorded for the ages. I quickly made new friends and passed the word about the vandals and damage, and recruited their help in watching for trouble. I don’t know if this will help but I suspect that it has. Word is spreading of the strange silent pale one who stalks the stacks at night.
In the course of discussing these disturbing incidents, several of the librarians got together and came up with a brilliant plan: build a deck on the roof, add some lights and a DJ, sell drinks, and the library would become the hippest spot between Dallas and Houston. They could even call it ... are you ready? ... "The Library". Hit up the patrons for a cover charge to get in and the University could make a fortune. I don't know why they're not all over this idea.

Meanwhile, another faculty member mentioned that a library in his home town sponsored something called “librarian night” at the local strip club. All the girls at the club (not the librarians) dressed up as librarians (or at least started dressed that way) and then gave a portion of the proceeds to the library. Here's another great idea the University needs to capitalize on; they could even do a poster session for ALA, plus "Librarian of the Month" calendars and desktop screen savers!

Never let it be said that librarians don't work hard to further their careers.


  • At 12/13/2006 08:57:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I can only imagine Sphincter's response to this.

  • At 12/13/2006 10:53:00 PM, Blogger Sphincter said…

    I think many actual librarians I know would be able to raise funds by threatening to take off their clothes if patrons don't donate. I can hear it now--"Put it on! Put it on! We'll donate already!"

    As for the all-night library hijinx, I think it must be like farting in church. The subversive appeal proves irresistable to some. Poor, poor, co-workers of Mrs Toast.

    Thanks, Mrs. Toast says she'll be glad when this week is over as she never knows what she'll find in the morning after one of these all-nighters. The University has threatened to discontinue the 24-hour operation in the future if the mayhem continues, and I suspect this is the last semester it will happen. Last night, apparently the students removed several hundred books from the stacks and constructed a fort out of them, complete with towers and battlements (on a positive note, at least the books were from the "Architectural" section). If only they'd apply that creative energy to studying, they might actually graduate. But wait, then they'd have to get a job. Oh, the tragedy of the real world...

  • At 12/14/2006 06:56:00 PM, Blogger bossann said…

    Is it un-American of me to ask: Why didn't I go to this school? We NEVER did cool stuff like construct forts out of books during all-nighters!


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