A few weeks ago I came across this statement. I fell in love with it and it has become entirely too applicable in my life. Today I was brutally slapped with it again as I had to deal with some craziness that while affected me, was not my circus. Thank God. I can walk away.
I have had this idea since last year while watching Paris When It Sizzles, a favorite Audrey Hepburn movie. I mean, I seriously love this film. And I got this idea for my local library. What about ‘Summer When It Sizzles’ for a book theme where you pull off all the romances and steamy books and trashy romances…. okay, not super trashy, but heck, even a few Harlequins have some ‘bodice ripper’ style covers. It is what it is and hey, the library has them on their shelves. It’s not like I would insert naughty books. Heck, the Fifty Shades of Grey books are right there.
So I talked it over with the librarian this year. I thought, heck, while the kids are having their summer reading program, the adults can have a fun “summer sizzling’ kind of reading program. Nothing fancy, just all the romance are pulled out and showcased. Up on shelves with little cut out tidbits of ‘something steamy in here’ or “sweet romance’ or ‘a classic romance’. See? Simple.
The librarian loved it. She even said, she would pull out one of the extra kids tables and set it up by the door for me to set up the display. I was even wishing I had some red fabric for a Valentines-y look. I was tempted to cut out hearts. And I like to think the librarian was excited for this display because the day before the first of July, when we were going to set it up, she made sure I was coming in to do it and seemed super excited.
So, I set it up. You can see my display.
July 1st rolled by and we got a laugh when she had to hunt for a book that I had pulled out to showcase and she had to switch labels…..
The the holiday came…….
I walk into the library with my stack of due books and before I barely get in the door, one of the volunteer ladies immediately tells me that they didn’t think it was appropriate that the children’s table had been used for ‘those kinds of books’ so they put them all back in the library and set up children’s books instead, and oh, would I call the librarian.
Fortunately the librarian was trying to catch me before I was slammed with the switch. But I would have liked her to have maybe stood up for me a bit. I mean, I had spent two hours making the labels and wording for the sign, and another hour setting up the display. And good grief, what? The table is not specifically a ‘children’s table’ but just a small table in the kid’s section. I didn’t know that kids could get an STD by picking up a romance novel…… which they can check out and the librarian cannot stop them (I should know, I worked in the library and when I saw a 12 year old check out Hannibal, I was shocked but couldn’t do a darn thing about it….)
The shock and horror that was in the volunteer woman’s tone was like I was this awful bad person. Yet, aren’t we supposed to be promoting reading? At a library? And aren’t romances part of the library? And a lot of them? And Fifty Shades made the rounds. And yes, I’ve read some of it. (Personally I find it terrible writing. I’ve read much better erotica in my time, but I digress)
The point being was, how petty can you be? How utterly childish and prudish can you be? Now, I’m not naming names because I plan on sending this to a few friends who know these people, but my gosh.
This is where I say, not my circus, not my monkeys. You can go take your own GD monkeys and well….. I’ll leave the option up to you. Needless to say I was not happy. In fact, I was kind of fighting tears later this afternoon because honestly, one day. The display was up one day with the Librarian’s permission and people got upset. Emma was one of the titles for pete’s sake!
It reminds me of Marian the Librarian from The Music Man (modern version best)
Professor, her kind of woman doesn’t belong on any committee.
Of course, I shouldn’t tell you this but she advocates dirty books.
OMG! Dirty books! I mean, who knew that Emma and Emilie Loring books were dirty?
And this is one reason I don’t get terribly involved with the library. And this is one reason why younger people don’t get involved with the library. It’s having to deal with anyone over the age of 55….. and their lack of , well lack of a lot.
Is this a rant? You bet it is. It hurt. And am I going to let it go? Yep. But seriously, this is the last time I bring up an idea to the library.