Admit it: not all of us went into librarianship for solely altruistic reasons. While most of us have to fight the urge to pin a patron between a reference terminal and a chair to make sure you find that answer before they escape, a few of us do experience an ever-so-teensy pang of pleasure when something happens that proves that you are once again what we call in the business a smarty-pants:
- The bizarro stories on American Libraries Online such as the the director of the friends of the library group getting busted for stealing art from his library. Ditto for the print version.
- Avoiding yet again having to take notes for the weekly public services meeting.
- Being proved right in a reference encounter after the patron insists for ten minutes that the tactic you’re taken is wrong. Even better if you manage to pull up the answer on the web right in front of them after they say they’ve already checked the internet.
- Reading job postings for your library and taking comfort in the fact that when you started you managed to wrangle an extra $100 for travel than those poor schmucks right out of library school.
- Reading reply postings on electronic lists that were clearly not intended for group consumption. (“Do you believe Marguerite tried to do the Cabbage Patch while drunk at the Ameritech reception??”)
- Reading the sheepish apology from the person who posted the inappropriate reply. (“Uh–I was a little fast on the reply button….”)
- Realizing that you’ve not only picked a much better hotel than your co-workers did for ALA, you’re also not paying for one extra day because of that extra $100 (see above).
- Being able to come up with the correct MARC field number for varying form of title before anyone else.
- Thanking god you’re not geeky enough to know MARC codes are off the top of your head like that person sitting next to you….