Being a good librarian committed to lifelong learning, and being generally curious about stuff I have a wide range of regular information sources. For example, I might watch a Khan Academy vodcast about pegging the yuan (it went pretty much over my head anyway so don’t know why I bothered) or the various TED talks that are available online. I also read “dummies” guides from my local library when they are available on topics that I feel I need to know more about, but this is not without a tinge of offence about being labelled a dummy.
I know that I shouldn’t feel self-conscious about these things but sometimes I feel that I’ll be judged by others, downgraded perhaps, by the stuff I am checking out. However I appreciate that this is my problem and not that of the person at the circ desk or the patron behind me in the queue.
In recent times I have found that library self-check and ebook downloads are great for not only efficiencies of time, but also to save my personal pride. Take my Kama Sutra experience as an example. Yes, it is ‘that book’, the ancient Hindu text on virtuous and gracious and sensual living. Aka The Sex Manual. Being a one time student of classic literature (even now I am justifying myself) I recently decided that I was tired of being bombarded with seedy pop culture references to this book, and actually read it myself.
This story has a happy ending. In my search to get a copy of the Kama Sutra I was able to get it in ebook format from my local library to read on my iPad. So not only did I not have to worry about strategically placing it between two other books for checkout, I didn’t even have to visit the physical library to get the book.
Some people like the personal interaction in libraries, but personally, I’m all for just getting my Justin Timberlake CD and my Complete Idiot’s Guide to Finding Mr Right (it’s a real title) and getting the hell out of there.