The Truth About Sex and Librarians

Everyone wants to have sex with a librarian.

Or it seems like everyone wants to flirt, date, sleep with, or just plain hit on librarians, even other librarians, apparently. Why the sudden interest in our profession as a potential booty call farm team? Maybe it’s due to the fact that in the past few years, the stereotype has evolved an interesting wrinkle: the winsome lass with the ironically prim fashion sense and a brain–though truth be told, those hankering for this professional equivalent of a rainbow unicorn view the latter requirement as merely sprinkles on top of the hook-up cupcake.

But like your first kiss or a close inspection of a post-millennial cast member of a vampire movie series, the fantasy may be waaay better than the reality. For those unfamiliar with the possibly deflating reality, I present as a public service, the truth about dating librarians:

Fantasy #1: (500) Days of Delusion

Walking to the circulation desk, you spot a Zoe Deschanel lookalike with elbows propped against the counter, her Bonnie Bell Lip Smacker glossed lips framed by slim fingers as she reads Silas Marner before you. Your sudden presence startles her, causing her agate-blue irises to widen with surprise. She smiles knowingly into your eyes when she spots a copy of the latest Chuck Palahnuik novel tucked under your exquisitely tatted arm. Your mouth drops as she springs to attention, shyly pulling an adorable yellow cardigan with hand-crocheted rosettes across her chest and asks if you need help. In your hormonal confusion, you vaguely wonder at the fact that of all the people staffing the desk, she’s the only one allowed to park her bike (girl’s model with a wicker basket and felted handlebar steamers) right behind her. You manage to corral the words careening across your brain like psychotic ping-pong balls into a coherent sentence, one asking her to join you to a Spike Jonze video retrospective at the fixie-bike/punk knitting collective across the street. She blushes at your audaciousness then agrees, grabbing her bike and pushing it past book shelves and out the door, leaving staff and patrons with overdue notices wondering just what the heck is going on.

The Reality

After waiting 30 minutes in line because a patron up front demanded staffers wrap each book she checked out in Safeway grocery bags and wouldn’t give up until the supervisor intervened, you reach the circulation desk. You lock eyes with a forty-something woman wearing a “I’m Bringing Reading Back!” t-shirt and earrings that look suspiciously like fish skeletons. As you hand over a stack of Terry Pratchett books, she holds a trade paperback up to her nose. “Wow,” she murmurs, “these don’t smell like cigarettes!” She stares at you quizzically, as if you were a sentient poodle, one that may have companionship potential or at least the ability to pay attention though a dinner at Olive Garden.

You are smitten. You stammer as she frantically waves the barcode scanner over the back of each book. Blushing, you reach for the stack and accidentally brush her hand, one chafed from years of wiping down story time playsets in the children’s room. “Coffee?” Your mind reels with visions of the two of you indulging in intense discussions about the authenticity of Renaissance faires while sipping modestly-priced coffee drinks.

“WHAT??” Your one true love screams as she’s moved on to waiving the scanner over a pile of Goosebumps books shoved in front of her by the annoyed woman standing next to you, the one staring daggers at the back of your uncombed head. “I CAN’T HEAR YOU OVER THE BEEPING.” You are startled since, quite frankly, the beeping from the scanner isn’t all that loud. Her co-workers? They barely notice since she’s been talking that way for years….

Next Time: Dating Male Librarians, or: “Are you going to finish that?”