Sunday, May 9, 2010

Dear Patrons

Thank you for redeeming yourselves.

Sometimes I have no idea why you do what you do, where you hide your values, and why you bother with a library at all. Sometimes I wish you'd spend less time complaining about things that can't be changed (fines, rules, etc.) and put a little effort into using all the free services we offer so that you see where your money goes. Sometimes I wish you all just wouldn't come in at all.

We have awesome programs, some of which cost a lot of money, and no matter how much we hype it and how much support the public shows, you often just don't come to the program itself. We put up heart-felt, elaborate displays to help you realize just how many useful and entertaining items we have just for you, and you ignore them all. We give ourselves near aneurysms trying to concoct ways to appease you, to serve you, to provide you with material, information and tools you need, and you destroy or scoff at them. It gets discouraging. It wears on the soul. I frequently am asked by coworkers if this idea or that idea will fly around here and I inevitably answer, "I have no idea what these people want." This isn't always true, of course. Sometimes I, like everyone else here, hit the nail on the head, but we have no clue as to why often. It's a crap shoot. We try so hard to bring you the The Goods, and frequently we are left feeling like you think it's The Shit.

My recent displays included genealogy, foods to improve your health, crafts, DIY home improvements, job searching online, and Darwin/evolution. You checked out nearly nothing on any of them, leaving me feeling a lot like nothing I do is worthwhile to you. It's depressing.

But, as I said in my opening, you have been redeemed.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, dear patrons. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for raiding and emptying my Memorial Day display. I have no idea if it was one person or a smattering of people, but walking in today and finding my display nearly empty of books makes me feel like you are decent folks worthy of my efforts. Good job checking out those books! I hope they bring you the emotions you expect and then some. I hope you are as proud of yourselves as I am of you. And mostly, I'm thankful that we share one value in common, and that is a reverence for those who have served.

Now I can go on working here, giving you my best, because if nothing else, I know we see eye-to-eye on one issue and that will be enough to carry me for a bit. So, thanks for that.

Much Love,
Happy Villain


Kate P said...

Whoa! I commend both you AND your patrons!!!

The closest I got to having diplays cleaned out was a read-alikes one ("If you liked [this] you should read [this other]") and a Cure-for-Twilight one.

Bobby said...

great job!!

Leelu said...

It's always gratifying when that happens. :)

My current display: "The weather is beautiful, go outside!" full of outdoor activities (sports, landscaping, gardening, grilling, whatever). Of course, today it's pouring rain and cold, so it's very timely.

Anonymous said...

Our current display: "Recycling" and no one cares