Librarian Pet Peeves

I have mentioned that I work in a library, right now as a Library Assistant – or as I like to say, a “Librarian in training.”  Either way, I do a lot of the same things as my supervisors… other than supervising.  For now anyway.

But in the time I’ve been working in the library, I’ve come to notice that many of us have the same pet peeves.  Most of them are just little things and really shouldn’t bother us, but they do.  We can’t help it.  So here are some common Librarian Pet Peeves that irk us.

Librarian Pet Peeves

– Referring to the Library as the “Li-berry”

I know sometimes it’s just a speech impediment… but really most of the time people just don’t know how to say Library correctly.

– Not listening to instructions

Oftentimes I’m helping someone on the computer and I have to repeat myself because they are just not listening to me/watching what I’m showing them or they over-talk me when I’m trying to help them.  Seriously, if you’re going to over-talk me, I’m not going to help you.

– Talking on the phone

We clearly have signs that say to take your phone conversations to our designated phone areas.  If you’re on the phone with someone getting help on a computer thing for an account, fine – please talk quietly.  But if you’re having a casual conversation with someone and we can hear you in the next room, please take it outside.

– Shouting across the room for help

If you shout to me that you need help from across the room, I will turn a deaf ear.  That is not how you ask for help.

– Not having your card ready at check-out

Come on people… if you know you’re checking a book out, at least have your card ready.  It gets annoying having to wait for someone to scavenge through their entire wallet/purse for their card, even if there is no one behind you.  But even more so when there is a line of people who also need help.

– Putting books away in the wrong spot

We have return cards out for a reason guys… it’s frustrating that we have to continually fix shelves (especially in nonfiction) because people decide they do not want a book and put it away in the wrong area.  Or, you can even give it to one of the librarians – we’ll take care of it.

– Parents who think librarians are baby-sitters

No… we are not your in-house baby-sitter.  If you bring your children to the library, you and you alone are responsible for them.  And no, you cannot leave them in the children’s room unsupervised while you go to the next level to browse the fiction stacks.  That is not how libraries work.  Sorry parents, the kids have to stay with you at all times, just like your personal belongings do.  We are not responsible for them.

– “I’m looking for a book, but I don’t know the title or author…”

Yes, we do get this a lot.  At least I have heard it a lot in the past few years.  Sometimes, if they can explain a little about the story, I’ll be able to find what they’re looking for – that has happened.  I know sometimes the names and titles just slip away from you – it happens to me too – but if you think you’ll forget the name of a book, write it down.  I finally learned to start doing that… or I’ll take a picture of it with my phone.

And that about wraps up this edition of Librarian Pet Peeves.  I’ll probably start hounding my co-workers and fellow librarians online to see what some other ones are.  I can almost guarantee that this only skims the surface of what irks librarians on a daily basis.

Until next time, my friends!

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