Thursday, November 9, 2017

A little bitter, a little sad

I have written a few times about co-workers leaving the library I work at. And over and over I have likened it to a battlefield death. There you are, in the trenches day after day with some co-worker, chasing away the boredom and stress, sharing anything from nonsense to life stories to soccer discussion. Years go by, and then on a pin they're gone. Sure, they're just off at another library branch making more money, or with a shorter commute, or maybe they're somewhere completely else, bravely getting on with their life. But what's all that to me, back here on these same old front lines, year after year, with another small hole blown into the dirt next to me, the smell of cordite, and the grizzly spray of blood? 

Gone, gone, all gone.

Look at all these holes here.

And so now my friend the teen librarian is off to run some other small branch. And I tell you this: I am not really your "Go-to" for throwing parties around here when there are showers or retirements or farewells. In 23 years I have managed to muster up a scant few as necessary, and that is a far cry more than have ever been thrown for me. Not that I'm counting.

But now that it's come up, really, shouldn't we, who are to be consoled, be the ones a party is thrown for? Shouldn't those leaving, onto brighter, richer things, be throwing a nice farewell for those of us still here? We could use the small cheer and consolation. Why should we, who will have less, also give more? Let them, receiving him for instance, at his new library, throw a party to welcome him. They have gained. They are enriched and have something to celebrate!

We do not. We get only the loss. Today we are just, well, let's face it, I am just, an old soldier, in a field of holes, in the rain.

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