“It’s not rocket science, it’s library science.”

I spent most of today in a highly elevated state of panic. The beauty of it is that there isn’t really any reason to stress. I don’t even know why I got so worked up.

I should have known that it was going to be a bad day, though, when I found this email in my inbox from my school’s library:

“You have “requested” 8 books from our collection. I want you to know that we have open stacks and expect the students to get the books themselves. The “REQUEST” button is there to make it possible for students from the other Pace libraries to request our books (and vice versa). This time we will get the books for you and put them on the Hold shelf, but for the future – please get them yourself. Actually it is to your advantage to search the stacks yourself, because often you can find books that you did not find in your catalog searching, and which are better suited to your needs.”

I have been ranting about this all day, but this is the last time I will bring it up. All I want to say is this: I go to a commuter school. Almost no one dorms on campus. I also work. So tell me, when was I supposed to go and get them? Isn’t the whole point of requesting a book to make sure they are available when you need them? (This aside from the fact that I have gone to the library before not finding the books I wanted from the catalog because they were in shelf limbo.)

(Incidentally, I read that after my toaster oven basically attacked me. Part of a poptart got stuck in the toaster and while trying to extricate it the toaster rack managed to bump the inside of my wrist. Surprisingly breakfast lost its appeal after all that.)

Things did not greatly improve at work (where I was all day, further preventing me from going to the damn shelves myself!). I stepped into the middle of some drama between librarians, so I had to listen to both side. A colleague from whom I desperately need a letter was not at work (after being incognito since Saturday). The last straw was when I had to hunt someone down to help me send a fax. I don’t know why, but it was just too much. Then, of course, as a result of all this panicking I began to wonder why I was contemplating working full time and going to grad school–how would I manage that if I couldn’t even remain calm on a relatively mellow day?

No worries, though. Everything more or less worked out. As the day progressed I started to feel more, if not completely calm. During a lull I was quizzing GC on his opinion of Pratt as a library school (he, along with at least three other librarians I know, went to Pratt for library school). His response, in his odd wisdom, was that it was a cakewalk and if you just want to get the degree and get on with your life it was the place to go.

GC went on to say: “It’s not rocket science, it’s library science.”

Aside from screaming to be on a t-shirt, that aphorism gave me some perspective. Everything is relative and, in the Grand Scheme of Things, my problems are not only small but also easily resolved. Everything will be all right. If it’s not all right yet, that just means I’m not done yet.

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