Let's kick it off by embracing our inner-eccentric. No, we're not all eccentric. I'm sure, though, you secretly harbor the opinion that all of your colleagues are eccentric.
From: Quirkiness "R" Us via American Libraries Gigantic Everything Feed by Beverly Goldberg on 4/19/10
The author writes:
"...the characteristic that most differentiates librarians from all the other occupational groups I worked with is a very weird and shockingly offbeat sense of humor. Librarians are very funny in some dark, devious, and totally unexpected ways—not a “gallows” humor so much as Far Side in comfortable shoes. And who wouldn’t wear comfortable shoes after being on your feet all day helping patrons?"
Fortunately, we also have a certain "coolness" factor that has not gone unnoticed by Keith Richards of the Rollings Stones. This quote is from: Keith Richards via American Libraries Gigantic Everything Feed by Leonard Kniffel on 4/6/10
"When you are growing up there are two institutional places that affect you most powerfully: the church, which belongs to God, and the public library, which belongs to you. The public library is a great equaliser."
Librarians are also known for their excruciatingly correct manners. Right? The Librarian's Guide to Etiquette has had a number of good exmaples of manners for librarians lately.
From: Victories, Celebrating via A Librarian's Guide to Etiquette by J on 4/1/10:
"Librarians should celebrate monumental workplace victories with Gatorade showers. A meeting that lasts less than one hour? Give the committee chair a Gatorade shower! Faculty members who return books before their due dates? Give them a Gatorade shower! A class in which students make eye contact and respond to you? Give yourself a Gatorade shower! While costly clean-up can be an issue, the rarity of these events should minimize any damages."
From: Career Counselor, Being a via A Librarian's Guide to Etiquette by J on 3/8/10
As a librarian, you will occasionally be called upon to counsel someone who is interested in joining your noble profession. Always present librarianship in a positive way to these prospective librarians, and resist the urge to show them your "I ♥ Dewey Decimal" tattoo, your Nancy Pearl doll, or your pay check stub.
And it's always time to laugh at our stereotypes
Picture Description: This is the cover of a "young adult" novel from 1967. The title is Jinny Williams: Library Assistant. The background is an utterly depressing green. You might even say it is oppressive. Gloomy at any rate. Young Jinny herself, however, is dressed in a delightfully conservative red shirt-dress. She smiles as she holds up a black book and reaches for another. As always, a date-due stamp is at the ready.
The blogger comments: "Can our young modern girl find love in her local library? Our girl Jinny moves through the stacks looking for love in all the wrong places. Maybe it will be the cute guy downloading inappropriate material from the Internet. Maybe it will be that ultra sexy new librarian who keeps “checking her out”. Maybe she will get a couple of cats and head off to library school and get her MLS. Grab this page turner and find out!"
Indeed, librarianship is full of romance. Jennifer Lohman of the Durham County Public Library recently won what the blog author referred to as a "librarian award." Lohman has been a great proponent of romance novels in libraries. When Sarah, from the blog Smart Bitches, Trashy Books heard of this, a photoshop contest was immediately started. The winner is below.
Picture description: Jennifer and her tatooed husband, Lars, are perched on the edge of a table in front of bookshelves. They are gazing into each other's eyes and just about to kiss. I might add that Lars, while hair-challenged on the top, does sport a spiffy set of mutton chop sideburns. The book cover is a parody of old Harlequin romances. The title is Between the Stacks. The teaser on the cover reads: their love was overdue...and the fine was passion!