Friday, May 16, 2008

I’d Rather Be Blogging Right Now


But when wouldn’t I?

Today I’m subbing for the LMC Specialist in the elementary school. (That’s LIBRARIAN to those of you who don’t speak Public School Talk.) Oh, and also? It’s field day at the elementary school. And also? It’s 2 weeks until the end of school, so no one is allowed to actually check out books. Which I would have THOUGHT made this a pretty easy gig, right? Read to a couple of kindergarten classes, and then maybe a little book shelving.

Reminder to those who are as naive as I am: If it SOUNDS too good to be true…..

Yes. Yes it is. There was no instruction sheet for me today, so I happily pulled out my laptop and set it up near the circulation desk. I was all prepared to check in and put books away, and answer any questions about what’s still missing and whatnot, while using the vast spaces of empty time in between to blog to my heart's content!

To my dismay, though, one of the school aides just came in with a message from the librarian LMC Specialist. She says that since there’s not a lot to do, I’m supposed to put all the fiction books in true alphabetical order. WHA……?

Usually fiction books are shelved by the first 3 letters of the author’s name. So if you’re looking for say, a Harry Potter book, you’d go to the shelf with the ROW’s on it, and then you just have to sort through ALL the ROW’s. Which at our library would be all the Harry Potter books plus one more.

Can someone PLEASE tell me why true alphabetical order is so important for the end of the year? The way it was explained to me, is that during the last week of school, many many children (and parents) will come to the library LMC wanting to know why they are being charged for books that they clearly turned in months ago. And the librarian LMC Specialist needs to be able to quickly point out that the book has not been turned in. See? See that empty spot with the ROW’s where the Rowler book should be?

Riiiight.

Because I know that if it were me, I’d never check the rest of the shelf. And the shelves above and below are clearly out of the realm of possibility, too.

I thought about trying to explain to the aide the total lack of productivity in alphabetizing the books, versus the TOTAL productivity of blogging for a couple of hours, but somehow I didn't think she'd understand.

So, I'm about halfway through my totally lame busywork. Also about halfway through my mindmeld with the wall paint. Which about doubles the fun of this activity, by the way.

At this point I'm hoping for somebody to bring in a torn book, so I can spice things up by getting out ... The Tape.

28 comments:

Amy Peterson said...

Maybe a little Diet Coke would spice the library up a bit!?!

Heather said...

That is one SWEET gig!!

Laurie said...

Wow! I didn't know elementary schools got all politically correct with the title of LIBRARIAN! Sorry, but that's what it is; that's what it'll always be! :)

Sorry for the lame job!! It's almost over!!!

Jill said...

Get out the tape.

Tape the aide to the shelves.

Continue blogging.

Jill said...

Almost forgot. Be sure to tape that darn aide to the shelves IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER!

Tori :) said...

You lead such a wild life.

Kimberly said...

I've never hoped for a book to be mangled and torn up but for your sake...I do.

Elizabeth-W said...

I'm laughing hard because I love to put things in alphabetical order. When I don't have patients, I'll put my most recent chart away, and make sure that whole drawer is truly in alphabetical order. It bugs when I go try to find a chart and it's not where it should be. I'll tell an MA (that's short for medical assistant) I can't find the chart, and she'll come looking--she'll look the the whole drawer and then find it....
But, I do 100% sympathize with thinking you get to blog but then have to do something else less fun. :(

lusciouschaos said...

I have done the library gig. The one truly great thing about completing this is the feeling for one brief period of time you created order in the midst of chaos. At home it never last long enough but with library books there is truly one spot they belong.
Your a giver.

Cynthia said...

Same thing happened to me. Subbing in the library the last week of school? What could be nicer? Except that I had to inventory all the books. I was given a hand-held scanner, and had to crawl around the library scanning the lower shelves. Apparently the librarian had finished all the upper shelves. I'm thinking that when she got to the bottom ones, she decided to take a day off. hmmm.

Earl & Vickie said...

Actually, Vickie has her fiction and Easy Fiction shelves pretty much sorted fully alphabetically by author. And even nicer, if you are on one of the authors say like the Berenstains, who have a LOT of books, they are then done alphabetically by title WITHIN the Berenstains.......

So were you supposed to change her shelf system, or just fix the misfiles?

Yvonne said...

Wow--you live such an exciting life ; )

Have a great weekend.

JustRandi said...

Yeah, I'm a wild woman!

Amy - even the diet coke didn't help.

Jill- I almost did. I should have started with the mouth.

Thanks, everyone for the supportive thoughts.

Earl- She just wanted her system fine-tuned a bit, not a complete overhaul.

But still.

Stacey said...

Lucky!!!

not.

I hope you had a lot of diet coke to liven up the sorting.

ganelle said...

You're getting paid right? Because, if you are volunteering, this is about the time you say "I choose NOT to VOLUNTEER my time in this way..."

Millie said...

Amen on tape.

Alphabetizing is only fun when it's YOUR idea.

sogratefultobemormon.wordpress.com said...

sorry for the lame thing

ELASTICWAISTBANDLADY said...

I had a calling as Ward Librarian for years. I can start my own show on how to fix broken and torn up church material

'PIMP MY HYMN BOOK!', doesn't sound quite right though.

ELASTICWAISTBANDLADY said...

When I used to volunteer at the kid's school I always made sure that I was the one in charge. I'm not a control freak I just don't like being assigned asinine tasks.

Lucy said...

Wow...that's changed. For all my years working in elementary schools, I saw it go from actual library science people, to reducing their title to library aides to save money, back to just librarian, and now any teacher. If you have a degree in fishing in 'this here' school system, you're in for teaching those kids. Progress? hmmm...

kristen said...

The librarian (and her aide) should be doing that THEMSELVES. I can just see you trying to get out of that "Um, I was like totally going to blog today...."

I can't believe they actually put you to work.

Tonya said...

Woohoo, you sure know how to party down at the ol Elementary school library. That kind of work would make me crazy. I am just not patient enough.

Lauren said...

OH MY GOSH....I would have been "ohhhh no you di'nt!"

Melissa said...

Really? Hmmm... perhaps she just wants the LMC in tip top shape for next year? Or maybe she just took a day off so that she could make someone else (aka - you) do her dirty work...

Nancy Face said...

I bet the pay was NOWHERE NEAR worth that type of torture! :0

East of Eden said...

Wow, you are so much more gracious about this that I would have been. From my days as a sub, wandering the big, mega-school district in a suburb of Phoenix, I had many a job where I was given "busy work". Nope, sorry, not gonna do it. I don't grade papers, teach algebra, go on field trips or do busy work. I'll answee the phone, direct traffic and make sure no one is getting killed, but true abc order....no thanks!

The Morris Fam said...

Since you are now pro...I would love it if my home library were in ABC order next time you are in Vegas! Oh, never mind. I'm sure my chilren would immediatly empty the shelves anyway, so what's the point!?

Lynell said...

What fun! hee hee
I am glad you lived to tell about it. I will have to remember your account if I ever get asked to help.