You may be a 21st Century Librarian if…

So as we librarians are inclined to do in our darker hours…one particularly hard day I turned to literature, specifically poetry, to give me an emotional boost. A confidence builder. An ego stroke if you will. Just a little sumthin sumthin on a particularly professionally challenging day.

My dear friend, who I’m sure you, Dear Reader, will hear more about as our time together continues, is a Fireman. When he has a hard day- or a special occasion- or a celebration, there are no END to the poems and tales that extol the virtues of not only his profession but he himself and what must be his character based upon his profession. You know the ones of which I speak! They usually begin in the following manner “I am a Firefighter…” or “Today God Made a Firefighter by…” etc…

So- as I said- on a particularly stressful day…where my patience and experience were stretched to their limit between staff, patrons, politicians and trustees…I went looking for a “I am a Librarian…” type poem or verse or sumthin!

What I found was an exceptionally funny clip from one of my favorite films! What I did NOT find was much of anything else!!

Really? REALLY!!??

SO! Dear Readers!! This is our task: To create the Perfect “I am a Librarian …” type poem. And I thought it best to do it together and – of course- put our 21st century spin on it!

And because imitation is the highest for form of flattery (Jeff Foxworthy you are a genius!) and you all KNOW you just cannot BE a 21st century librarian without a great sense of humor… We are going to use the spin: “You may be a 21st Century Librarian if…”  

I’ll go first! And Please don’t be shy! This will be so fabulous if we all collaborate!!

“You May Be A 21st Century Librarian if….”

…you have ever found yourself explaining to a patron why its a GOOD thing that the Library is NOT a quiet place!

…you regularly say to yourself “they did NOT teach me this in Library School”!

….you cannot for the LIFE of you figure out WHY anyone WOULD tweet but you still know HOW to do it for your patrons.

…you have ever had to explain to a parent the differences between the summer reading program and summer camp.

…your day can run from helping a child find the perfect book, to unstopping a toilet, to helping an adult look for a job, to patiently explaining why late videos are $1 a day for the thousandth time to the same patron, to dancing with toddlers in storytime, to listening to that same patron tell YOU for the thousandth time why it is absolutely not their fault (and potentially its yours) that those videos are late…again, to being thanked by an excited patron who 3 weeks ago you helped fill out an online job ad and today was their first day of work in 2 years, to walking to your car exhausted but happy with your B&T bag from 2 ALA conference’s ago containing the remnants of the lunch you didn’t have time to eat.

…you have answered the in-depth reference question “Where is the bathroom?” so many times you have seriously considered having it tattooed on your forehead!


Ok- now it’s your turn!





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2 responses to “You may be a 21st Century Librarian if…

  1. Anonymous

    …you recognize that technology is a means to better customer service, and not an end in itself.

  2. Anonymous

    … you inwardly roll your eyes when someone says “oh, you are a librarian, it must be nice to sit there and read all day long!” when you know that is something you can’t really do between opening the library doors, preparing your notes for the next library board meeting, writing a grant proposal to introduce new technology for the public, coaching a long-time staff member to apply for a promotion, orienting a brand-new staff member on policies and procedures, attending a planning meeting with community leaders and city officials for a re-development project, reaching out to the community college to collaborate in innovative programming for young adults, and on, and on, and on…

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