Monday, December 30, 2013

The library worker's New Year's resolutions

It's apparently New Year's Resolution week here at clerkmanifesto. I don't know how this happened. I did not plan it, but every time I start up a blog post out comes a list of New Year's Resolutions. Today will be the New Year's Resolutions of a library worker. I am not necessarily thinking of me as that library worker, as I am sort of on the fence about whether I need any improvement, so this is going to be about the general library worker. Nevertheless I will take these resolutions under personal advisement on a case by case basis. You can too.

The library worker's New Year's resolutions

1. Talk more about books.
Reading need no longer be a secretive shameful activity one has to hide under discussions of TV shows. 

2. But stop talking about the general virtues of reading.
It expresses a horrible insecurity and unappealing Virtuism.

3. Stop making fun of the Romance Novels.
Try making fun of George R. R. Martin, anything involving superheroes, or e-readers instead. Stop picking on the easy targets.

4. Stop defaulting to popularity being the fundamental determinate of your collection.
That's just lazy and I don't believe you anyway. Nope, I don't believe you.

5. Take care of it yourself.
The patron or the problem doesn't care about your job title, they just see you as the representative of the library. If you can't do it, then pass it on to the best person who can. Then learn how to do more.

6. Don't respect your crappy co-workers when they do a crappy job.
Yes, you probably need to generally respect your crappy co-workers as people, but if you see one of your crappy co-workers giving wrong advice, falsely denying services, inappropriately passing the buck, or just quietly destroying something, tackle them.

7. Lie
You work in an institution so you'll have to lie. If your manager asks you "Did you tackle your co-worker?" You will need to answer "Only metaphorically." or "No, shall I check the magazine area for hooligans? Did you get a description?" But always keep the library's interests at heart. To lie, you must be honest.

8. Respect the 20 hour workweek
It is one of the deeply held beliefs of clerkmanifesto (me, hi!) that the 20 hour work week is practically a divine right. Nevertheless we are forced to work 40 hour weeks as a standard. Therefore it is incumbent upon you to goof off, cavort, do other things, take coffee breaks, or generally disengage for roughly half of all your working time. Do it responsibly and carefully, the lower your position the more craft it takes.


  1. I can't possibly do #3, I'll consider #5, and I don't have enough hours to take 8 seriously.

    1. Well, it's a start. Now we're five years on so... how's it going?


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