Here are a few things that your favorite librarians may find depressing, in no particular order.
A view of the Lecture Hall from behind the building on an obnoxiously lovely fall day. I had to go to work shortly after taking this picture.
1. When you tell us how nice it is outside
. Yes, we’d love to enjoy the day too, but someone has to be here to make sure you get all of those bestsellers
and magazine articles
, not to mention the ever-important headphones for the computers
2. Books that are returned with sand trapped in their jackets. From a technical point of view, this is bad because the sand will damage the book’s cover. From a morale point of view, this is bad because the book got to go to the beach
but we didn’t. This is especially depressing during the winter months.
3. The places that people leave things. One of my clerks once found a Naruto DVD
in the second floor men’s toilet. Not just in the bathroom, mind you, but actually in the toilet. I think he should have earned hazardous duty pay for rescuing it (don’t worry, we threw out that one and ordered a replacement copy).
No DVDs have been found in this particular toilet so far. Please don't get any ideas.
4. The things you use as scratch paper. I have a note from a customer written on the back of an opera ticket stub. No big deal, you say. But this particular ticket stub was entirely in Italian. Librarians don’t get to go to Italy very often, you know. Maybe if we presented it to the management as an outreach program?
5. Mysterious stains. More specifically, the coffee stain that we found on our new carpet the morning after it was installed. So from here on out, you’ll have to keep all of your Crazy Mocha treats down on the First Floor. We may lighten up a bit eventually, but that won’t be for another ten years or so.
6. When you say scary things on the phone. Today a customer told me that he was driving on (major highway
) at (illegal speed
) while talking to me, so he couldn’t get his library card
out to tell me his number. Please, call us later. The library has all sorts of nifty things to be sure, but it’s not worth risking your life.
Or you could just take us to Italy….
Back in the ancient days of yore, libraries around the world were known as shushing zones. That meant no talking above a whisper, no humming and certainly no music. Perhaps my factitious tale of library history is slightly exaggerated, but it certainly can’t be argued that times have definitely changed.
As part of Celebrate the Arts Sundays, the First Floor hosts the Sunday Afternoon Music Series the second Sunday of the month from 2:00 – 3:00 pm. Despite its formal name, the series welcomes an array of performers that are just as diverse as the tastes of our patrons. From chamber music to roots revival, there is something for everyone. Performances usually take place in the Quiet Reading Room and warm weather even invites the opportunity for outdoor performances.
This Sunday, the series features classical guitarist Chris Anderson. Anderson describes his approach as balancing “pieces at the core of the classical guitar’s repertoire with others that are rarely heard.”
Sunday Afternoon Music Summer Series
Circuits of Steel
Sunday, May 11, 2008
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Rick Gribenas, Margaret Cox, Steve Boyle and tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE are four artists representing the Circuits of Steel compilation series, which showcases Pittsburgh’s electronic/experimental music scene. Expect sounds far beyond conventional boundaries.
July 13th, 2008
Resonance is a world fusion ensemble made up of five musicians: three percussionists, guitar and bass. They use the distinct sound of the steel drum to draw audiences into their compelling mix of Caribbean jazz and global fusion music.
August 10th, 2008
Jennie Snyder, a rural Pennsylvania native, performs her mountain-flavored roots originals in the vein of Gillian Welch, Buddie and Julie Miller, and Hazel Dickens. She is currently at work on her first solo record.