Annoyed Librarian
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Inside Annoyed Librarian

Be a Little Library Clerk!

Now here’s something to warm the cockles of a librarian’s heart, and just in time for the holiday season, when hot cockles are just what you need to keep you toasty as Jack Frost is nipping at your toes. It’s the “Little Librarian” kit. The sales pitch is, “be a real librarian. Just add books!” You can tell immediately that this kit captures the spirit of most librarians quite well. Notice the exclamation marks! Little Librarian is the first personal library kit made just for kids! It encourages reading and is powered by creativity and imagination, not batteries! Wow! That sure is exciting! Powered by creativity and imagination! Wait a minute, maybe this isn’t a real librarian kit at all! And no batteries! How would our laptops and smartphones work without batteries?! Let’s see what the Little Librarian kit considers the essential tools of librarianship. According to the site, each kit has 7 File Folders, 15 Book Pockets, 15 Book Cards, 4 Library Cards, 4 Reading Awards, 2 ...

Are Personal Librarians a Waste of Time?

Have you ever noticed that some of the most prominent commentators telling us what libraries are like these days don't actually work in libraries? Okay, that's my Andy Rooney moment for the day. Time to move on to the topic. A recent trend in academic libraries is the “personal librarian.” Drexel University made national headlines recently by assigning each of their incoming students a “personal librarian.” It looks like Barnard is jumping on the bandwagon, too. Reading the article about it in the Columbia newspaper provides us an interesting contrast between hope and reality. The librarians are obviously enthusiastic about this, or at least pretend to be. Take a look at some of the quotes, though. The idea of a personal librarian appeals to Barnard first-year students, but few have utilized the program so far. Each of the seven personal librarians heard from only two or three of their assigned students. The students are saying, “Oh, that’s nice,” but few are using the ...

Odd Stuff

Odd stuff has been happening lately in libraryland. This is certainly one of the oddest job posts I’ve seen in a while. “CSU Channel Islands is looking for a not-so-mild-mannered superhero librarian to be our Head of Public Services and Outreach.” It certainly grabs one’s attention. The question is, what does it do to one after one’s attention is grabbed? For me, there seems to be a disconnection between “superhero librarian” and some of the examples given. For example, would a superhero librarian who is supposedly an administrator “jump at the chance to teach a library instruction session”? Do any librarians really jump at such a chance? I thought library instruction was one of those things librarians did to look busy, since students don't pay much attention to it. And I certainly don’t know any librarians who would “jump at the chance” to clear a printer jam. Nor, I would argue, does clearing a printer jam require superheroic efforts.  If I were the head of public ...

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