2-liter Bottles at the Library

A few weeks ago, I wandered over to Sunnyvale to meet with friends. I had a gap in my schedule, so I camped out at the library there, to be productive while I was killing time. There was a man using the library computer. He was watching autopsy videos and laughing his head off. Already a questionable fellow because of that. I look over and he is about 3/4 of the way through a 2-liter bottle of Mountain Dew with a second one ready to go when he finishes. I decided that I was not going to interact with this guy at all. Nope.

Later that week, I went to the library near the college campus, since I needed to finish homework before class started. I sit at a table with two other people. One person is making work phone calls at the top of his lungs, so I put in my noise cancelling earbuds and drown out almost everything he is saying. At one point, he is trying to get my attention to watch his stuff while he goes off to use the restroom. I couldn’t hear a thing. Those things are great!

Across the table from the work phone call guy is a woman who has her whole setup going. I don’t know if she’s working or doing school work or just hanging out with books and a laptop. I wasn’t paying much attention until she got up to step onto the patio to eat lunch. She had a bunch of food containers but left behind a 2-liter bottle of Pepsi with her laptop. It was a lot to carry, I understand. I didn’t think a lot of it, but it was interesting because of the 2-liter bottle guy at the Sunnyvale library earlier in the week.

I went back the following week, and the woman was there again. This time, with a 2-liter bottle of orange soda. I wonder if it’s just part of what she packs for the library or if it was coincidental. Also, I wondered if she goes there every day. I meant to go back to check, but I haven’t done it yet.

Amazon blocks libraries

Amazon blocks libraries

Ever wonder why some of the books on your TBR list aren’t available in digital form at the library? Take a look at the above linked article for an explanation.

It seems that Amazon has control over distribution rights from some publishers, and if people are checking these books out from the library, they aren’t getting the money from purchases. These days, when most of the library lending is digital in so many areas, it doesn’t seem fair to the library patrons, or even to the authors whose books aren’t getting read. Libraries should be helped, not hindered, Amazon.

SFPL Summer Strides

June 1 to September 6, 2021 is Summer Strides for San Francisco Public library. If a library patron who signs up for the program reads for 20 hours during the time period, the patron will receive a tote bag.

I started logging my hours on June 3. Between school and bookclub books, I had already read 8 hours by Sunday morning. I may end up finishing the challenge this week.

There is an online logging program this year. It is called beanstack. I don’t know how many library systems use this system, but it is very easy once you get the hang of it. Don’t miss the big red button in the upper left corner. I did the first time.

Tough topics

Librarians have a tough job. Just knowing the Dewey Decimal system is tough enough, but knowing where to find the items that no one wants to talk about makes it even more difficult.

This library posted a reminder that the librarians are there to help, not to judge. Posting it makes it easier for patrons to find what they are looking for, without embarrassment. What a great idea, Librarians!

NYPL secret apartments

Secret apartments

The above linked article tells about apartments in the New York city libraries. They were kept there for the caregivers who were paid to keep the furnace going at night so things wouldn’t freeze over.

As I was reading about them, I was thinking about A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and how the family loses its source of income as a furnace keeper the night the baby is born.

Things were more difficult in those times and as electricity and gas became more common, there wasn’t a need for the caregivers anymore. These apartments sat empty until they were renovated into other spaces. Judging by the article, these apartments were pretty nice in their day. It’s such a shame that they aren’t used for housing anymore. Wouldn’t it be fun to say you live in a library?

San Francisco City Guides Virtual Tour

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Portsmouth Square

The library and San Francisco City Guides are putting on virtual tours until we’re fully open again. Most of them are free through eventbrite and most are found through the city guides page on Facebook. They are free, but they do suggest that you donate a small amount to help keep the program going.

Some of them have been fascinating. I’ve seen the Paris of the Pacific talk, and one on The Grateful Dead. A few haven’t worked out with my schedule, but I’m trying to watch as many as I can. There are some great ones coming up, and they are repeating some that have already been established. It’s been a great program and I look forward to seeing what they come up with next.

Is the library open for returns yet?

I have library books at home that I checked out in February. The due dates have all been moved to September 30. We’ve been asked to start returning some, but please don’t overwhelm the librarians.

This is great! I’ll be able to return them before I misplace them.

Here’s the problem: of the 27 branches of the library, only two are open for returns. Neither are easy to get to right now. Hmm.

I went online to find out if they are moving the due dates again. No. They are not. You can text the library when the chat feature is open, between 10&5 m-f. So I did. I mentioned that I can easily get to three branches, and I’m not able to get to the two that are open. Would one of these three branches be open for returns any time soon?

No. No more branches will open until mid October. Because the libraries are fine free, I don’t have to return them by their extended due date.

Not fair. I am working on spring cleaning and was hoping to get these back to their homes soon. At least I know that the library system is thinking of opening the rest of the branches, eventually. I still miss the library.