I went to a family bar-b-que yesterday and saw a few interesting things while driving across town. I was stunned to see a brothas on horseback, ghetto cowboys on the east side of Indy! Corn was knee high just as it should be by the fourth of July! There were children, so many, many children and all of them gave up the video games in favor of playing with cousins, water guns and footballs in the hot, hot sun! My night ended with new-to-me episodes of West Wing and a surprise fireworks show that I could see from my window.
Even though I am a librarian, I am always learning of new things, new specialties that exist for librarians. I’m looking into what it takes to use my library skills to work as a researcher. I think the most interesting job I’ve seen (besides being a CNN librarian) was a woman who started her own business setting up libraries. Many companies don’t realize that they should have a library: a place
where they collect and organize information related to their company and their industry. Some will collect materials for years and then realize the need for someone to come in and organize their information. It can take years to get a good library established in some places!
There are film librarians, textile and food librarians. There are academic librarians and there are prison librarians. The Feminist Texican has a really interesting post about why she wants to be a prison librarian along with a review of Running the Books. After reviewing the book, she reminds us that prisons are a wonderful place to donate books. Their libraries are funded way less than school and public libraries which are already underfunded. I would imagine that prison librarians are paid less too and thus unable to come out of pocket for materials. [I’ve seen adds for librarians with community agencies who want full-time librarians with masters degrees that they’re going to pay $29K.] If you are unable to donate to you local prisons, here is a resource for donating books to prisons from the Feminist Texican.
<—- Have you seen these boxes in parking lots near you? I’ve seen two of them now and did a little research on them, thinking that they’d be worth telling my readers about. Well, I’m going to have to suggest to you NOT TO DONATE to Books for Charity. It seems that over half the books they receive are destroyed. Some are even sold for profit.
The Share a Book website reports that 99% of their books go to thrift stores such as the Womens Assistance League, Deseret Industries, and Salvation Army. No doubt, these agencies each serve important causes, but the books are not freely redistributed.
Even people who don’t like reading don’t like the idea of throwing away books. They’re objects that need to be passed on to someone else who will read, enjoy and cherish. I prefer the idea of passing on books to be read, assuming it is in good condition with contemporary and accurate information. Nonfiction books that would have been in my library when I was in high school pretty much need to be gone!
In America, 4 July is all about freedom. And, so is literacy!