training day one (5 things)

| On
Monday, October 15, 2007
North Portland Branch

Day one was in the computer lab of the North Portland branch. It's a lovely old brick Carnegie Library.

Five things which I learned or was reminded. (and lunch.) (I promise I won't do this every day.)

1) This library system is very popular with taxpayers. It's extremely well-used with a robust collection and high circulation rate. I tend to forget that this is not the case in every city and town across the nation, and therefore am confused when people assume that I will be working in a quiet, book-smelly room with dust motes floating gently through the air. My local branch is one of the busiest in the 17 branch system and I love it! Libraries aren't shushy anymore. There's a lot of hustle bustle involved.

2) My job will be as a cog in a giant wheel, but since the wheel is dispensing information with every click, I don't mind. It's kind of zen -- the work is never done since the work is circulation. check out the books, check in the books, send the books on their way. (of course it's not just books.)

3) I think the hardest part of being on the desk will be keeping a poker face when someone presents a book I love. You can't interact with people about what they've chosen for reasons of privacy. It's almost like being a doctor or a priest -- patrons need to feel like they can check out whatever they want without someone making judgments. This makes perfect sense, but I know it will be hard to not say "OMG! I love that book!" (assuming that it is one I love and not, say, Thomas Kinkade's "Cape Light," in which case I will bravely stifle my inner recoil.)

4) We practiced creating new library cards, so I made one for Buffy Anne Summers. This amused me to no end, but then I had to trade it with someone else! the card I got in return? John Doe. (I am assuming that it was John Doe from X, so it's still okay.)

5) I ate lunch at the Chapel Pub right across the street. It used to be a funeral parlor, but is now an absolutely charming and lovely place to have a meal and read a book, which is exactly what I did.

chapel of the chimes
(chapel side entrance)
8 comments on "training day one (5 things)"
  1. I am so glad. Really. The branch of your 1st day is quite lovely. I love the old building.

  2. I found out today that it is HAUNTED. It purportedly has haunted hand dryers. you've got to admire such a specific poltergeist.

    Anyway, tomorrow is my first day out in a branch. I go back and forth between thinking this is a great idea, and thinking this is the worst idea I've had. I expect I'll know in a couple of weeks...

  3. At least it will give you something else to do through the holidays? That's always nice. Right now I am job/apartment hunting, but at least my mom is not still planning on moving right now. That makes things less annoying I guess.

  4. I managed to get through a full day without dying, crying or killing someone, so it's already an improvement to some past jobs. we'll see how it goes. Today is Central branch: all this could change.

    good luck on the job hunt/ apartment hunt! I'm glad you only have to deal with one move right now.

  5. I am sure you will have a grand day. Just try to remember that you didn't start the fire and that the world has been burning since the world has been turning. Or something like that. I am super happy glad that I only have to locate one new dwelling. makes life easier.

  6. Libraries are the bombdiggity! I've worked in libraries most of my adult life and utilize my local public library all the time. Librarians and library staff are typically very interesting, intelligent folks so you'll fit in perfectly. Public service can be exhausting but you really can't fault a person for reading, not matter what it is. Good luck Jen!

  7. BBD, you were right! it ended up being just fine and I went yet another day without crying, dying or killing anyone!
    Do you have a neighborhood narrowed down for your apartment search?

    Robin! Thanks for the well-wishes!! My brain hurts because it is full of new information (typical new job stuff), but I think it will be okay...

    When are you coming back up this way?

  8. SE Portland, like Sellwood/Westmoreland area. Not very exciting but I like it the most and the family people are around them parts. I am glad that the library has not driven you to some unspeakable act. I love Feist. Especially MUSHABOOM!!!


Klik the button below to show emoticons and the its code
Hide Emoticon
Show Emoticon