Tuesday, March 31, 2009

An Open Letter To The Public Library

Dear Public Library,

I love the whole concept of free books and unlimited access to learning. I love that you encourage reading. But there are some major flaws in your system. Maybe you should take a field trip to the mall and check out your competition—the book stores.

First, why can’t you be more like Barnes and Noble? You don’t need to sell pastries and have a cafĂ© (although how cool would THAT be?) but can’t you arrange your books in attractive displays? Pull out some good ones and stack them nicely on end tables? I realize it’s hard to do with those ugly plastic-couch covered 1985 Danielle Steel hardbacks, but surely you’ve got SOMETHING good hidden in those dark, dusty shelves. Just a small table of something interesting might encourage me to dig through the 100,000,001 fiction books in hopes of finding more. As it is….I give up after a quick run through the “A’s”.

Oh, and that whole alphabetical arrangement really blows. Again, check out Barnes and Noble! They separate by subject! Amazing, huh? I can walk in and find a lovely historical fiction in five minutes. I don’t need to know the freaking author’s last name, because honestly, who knows that crap?!? I wander up and down your aisles muttering, “I know the title, but who the heck wrote it? Ah, forget it. I don’t have time for this.”(I won’t even mention how you never EVER have anything new. I know you are already embarrassed about it. It’s okay! I understand that you’re poor and have to please the old people by spending all your money on Princess Di biographies.)

But the real thorn in my side is your children’s section. What were you smoking when you put THAT together? Stop arranging by author’s last name! Do I look like I know who wrote The Stinky Cheese Man? And kids don’t know that crap either, despite all those Reading Rainbow episodes you’ve seen. Also? Throw out any picture book published before 1980. If a cartoon character is wearing bell bottoms, it’s got to go. (And who wants 30 years worth of germy kids’ fingers anywhere near their child?!?) I appreciate that you may have a few games and puzzles for the kids to play with, but could you check them once in a while for missing pieces? High-Ho Cherry-O kinda sucks without the cherries. Or the lid. Or the little spinner. In fact, it was just a piece of cardboard with holes punched in it. Library, I still have love for you, but you need to get your act together. (Or start selling yummy cookies and frapaccinos to make up for your suckiness. JUST DO SOMETHING. Geesh.)

XOXO
Songbirdmama

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