Monday, April 10, 2006

My Secret Desire

Now is the time to dish some dirt; share what few people know; let you in on my secret life ....

In my heart of hearts, if I could choose any profession in the world, and having children and making money were not issues, do you know what I would choose to be?

A librarian.

Are you shocked and scandalized yet?

Yes, it's true, I secretly pine to be a librarian. I have since I was a little girl. I love going to the library. I probably visit our local branch two or three times per week. I even hold a TAL card --- a special library card that allows me to borrow books from any library in Alberta. My night stand is permanently stacked with library books waiting to be devoured. I suppose I am what you would call a library geek.

What is it that I love about libraries? I love touching the books, smelling them, browsing through the stacks looking for "treasures". I love watching the families I see using our local library. I love taking my boys to the childrens' section to search for colourful picture books. I love the elegance and simplicity of the Dewey Decimal System. I love the sense of peace and scholarship that pervades the atmosphere of many libraries.

As a university student I would spend hours in the library. I would find a secluded study carol and read, write, complete assignments, study for exams and (more often than I'll admit) take catnaps. The University of Calgary library is an imposing structure, with floor upon floor of heavy, academic tomes. I believe it took most of my university career to figure out the complexities of the Library of Congress catalogue system. I still don't consider myself to be a skilled researcher.

And libraries are about so much more than books. At their essence they are about sharing information. Books, music, videos, periodicals, archival materials and electronic information galore; you can find it all, if you know where to search. That is what I love about libraries --- the potential for discovery, for learning something new and interesting.

Yes, I am a pretty geeky girl at heart. I'm ok with that. Hey, I married a guy who spends almost every waking moment glued to his computer, who plays the bagpipes, and who loves Star Trek. I think we're a well matched pair. We even go to the library together on date night.

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