Serious fucking rant ahead. Read at your own peril.
So let’s go over what I’m sick of.
I’m sick of the thought of graduate school. I’m sick of the thought of having to do two to three years in some program (any program, at this point) just to prove I know dick about libraries. I’ve been working in them for eight years now, people. Eight fucking years. If I don’t know anything by now, I’m not going to learn it.
I’m sick of the idea of paying more money I don’t have so I can make more theoretical money which still doesn’t translate to half of what half the people I know make.
I’m sick of the idea of longer days, and fewer weekends.
I’m sick of libraries, frankly. I’m sick of people walking into my library and expecting me to do all but hold their hands as they check books out. Would you like me to read that for you? Critical thinking … it’s so overrated, isn’t it?
I’m sick of students. I’m sick of the word “student”. I’m sick of the thought of learning shit that doesn’t matter, learning it well enough to take a test, and then forgetting it.
I’m sick of registration fees, the registrar’s office, anything that has anything to do with registers. Cash registers? Sick of them too.
I’m sick of textbooks that cost too damned much, textbooks on course reserve that no one ever checks out, textbooks that are weeded from our collection and left on the $1 book table like anyone really wants a nursing text from 1985. At one single dollar, it’s a steal, isn’t it? Like the dollar store, it’s a dollar for a reason: it’s useless.
I’m sick of perky librarians interviewing at my library and turning to me and smiling that freshly-minted librarian smile and saying, “When you decide to go to library school …”
Whatever the fuck is next out of their mouths, I do not hear. I am instead fantasizing about crumpling up their ever-so-lovely CVs and tossing them at their perfectly studious foreheads, watching that little O of shock their mouths will make, that polite outrage. But what more could you expect from a library paraprofessional, really.
I’m sick of the freaky homeless people who poop in the corner of the bathroom instead of in a toilet.
I’m sick of the ultrapink, everglossy eighteens who announce delicately, “I pay twenty thousand dollars a year to go here and I can’t make a photocopy for free. Libraries suck.”
I’m sick of the ultrapink, everglossy eighteens who print out pages of Hotmail drivel for free in the computer lab. I look forward to the day when you are older, driving your SUV, carting your brats to Mandatory Fun Athletic Time after school, and pointedly NOT thinking about any impact you might have on this earth. I look forward to it.
I’m sick of faculty members who say “please put this on course reserve for tonight’s class” and mean “tonight, ten students are going to come down to this desk and bitch you the fuck out if they’re not accommodated, you circulation manager moron.” Did it occur to you to think ahead, or maybe read my reserve policy about seven days in advance of your first class? No? Too bad for me.
I’m sick of being so sick of things, of hating the mere sight of my office, of hearing that sickly WinXP wake-up sound, the one that means I have emails in my inbox that are impatient people requiring service today, no, yesterday, and I have been such a horrible person as to actually go home and sleep instead of answer their every whim.
There is something I’m not sick of.
I’m not, nor will I ever be, sick of the written word, type on a page, the smell and thickness of paper between fingers, the sound of opening a new book or an old one, the heft, the size, the shape. So bring it on, you piece of shit job. You think you can make me hate it all, but you can’t. No one can. What are you waiting for? Bring it.