I’m doing this week’s blog a couple days early because I’m going to be out of town this Friday. Going to San Francisco to see A Perfect Circle for the first time. Whoo Hoo! My Maynard trifecta will be complete. After the concert, I’m staying in Oakland on a yacht for two days.
Anyway, on with this week’s winning topic, brought to us by another of my oldest and dearest friends, Janise.
Librarian’s evolving role as social workers.
Wow, you’d think with how much I love books, libraries, and especially librarians, I’d be able to come up with something great to say. But I’m drawing a blank. I mean, I’m not even sure if they are evolving into social workers. I grew up thinking they already were.
I wasn’t what you’d call a “reader.” I didn’t open a book outside of school until I was a teenager. Not even to do my homework; once that last bell rang, I was on my own. I never needed books to get away from reality. My imagination was a force all its own and didn’t need the addition of another’s.
The public library in Fresno in the late 80’s to early 90’s was always full of downtrodden and desperate degenerates. Which was why I was there. Sure as hell wasn’t for the books. Single mothers with too many kids, homeless teenagers looking for an escape, druggies needing a place to take a piss, and 12-year-old me, were all there to get out of the summer heat of California’s Central Valley. And in the middle of it all, were the librarians. They were the only adults that were genuinely happy to see me. Really, what librarian in going to turn away a child, even if that child isn’t there for the books. I think they felt that if I spent enough time there I’d pick up something eventually. And as long as I was polite and relatively quiet, and didn’t shoot up heroin in the bathroom, they helped me out.
About 15 years back there was a big hubbub about restricting internet usage. People were getting pissy about adults looking up adult content in public places. “Too bad!” the librarians said. Their funding was pulled. “Fuck you!” They said. “We will not be bullied. This is a place for those seeking knowledge, and we will not back down!” And I cheered.
You hear a lot about the national park employees standing up for what they believe in. And the EPA, and a shit load of other agencies that are desperate to hold on to what they have devoted their lives to. Pardon my hyperbole, but all of that, every last trace of defiance, can be attributed to the librarians.
I don’t think librarians are evolving as social workers so much a rising to the social challenges. They are protectors of knowledge, and champions of freedom. Always have been, and always will.
Ok, I was trying to leave that as the last line. It is a good one after all. But, how can I talk about librarians and NOT talk about how hot they are. Seriously! Who hasn’t had the librarian fantasy? I think that is at least half of why I’m so into Elizabeth Warren. She’s like the hottest librarian type there is. “That’s right, tell me to shut up and protect me from big bad wall street.”
…….perhaps I’ve said too much….
Anyway, thanks for reading.