Saturday, April 07, 2007

It’s Hard out Here for an Information Professional 

We work the reference desk in teams. The other day one of the security guards strolled up and leaned into the desk. I was stationed with a colleague who resembles me, enough so that patrons often confuse us.

“A patron complained that one of you, he wouldn’t say which one, is calling his daughter in Los Angeles and telling the most despicable lies about him.”

He motioned his head toward the security gates. A man dressed in a long brown monk’s cowl was peeking out from behind one of the gates, glaring at us.

“Oh, please assure him that we would never do such a thing.”

“By all means.”

The security guard winked at us and returned to the man.

My colleague and I had a good laugh until I thought about how our patron might try to teach one of us a lesson about slander by splitting our skulls open with the hickory walking staff he is allowed to bring in the library. Fatalism is a good philosophy for this job and one of my favorite tenets is “worry is the misuse of imagination" but sometimes it’s hard not to brood to despondency.

Be mindful of Rasputin, least ye suffer a terrible fate.
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