Tag Archives: cats

A bit shit but also wonderful: the 2017 story

OK, OK, 2017 was A LOT shit in many ways. The government is constantly trying to take away/destroy things I care about – like human rights, the environment, libraries, health care, being able to live and pay my bills in general – and every day there seems to be another mass shooting. Add onto that the occasional threat of nuclear war over what seems me to like some really stupid dick measuring contest, the fact that people are accepting Nazis (WTF white people?!), and like probably 18,000 other upsetting, stressful, and legitimately scary things this year and there were some days that it was hard to get things done.

Anxiety medication helps. I realized I probably should have started taking this a while ago. But I guess took me years to realize that situations like having a coworker point out typo in a work document in a lovely, nonjudgmental way so you can change it, probably shouldn’t send you into an hours-long spiral of shame, near tears, and inability to do anything else. Yay! So yeah. Thank goodness for SSRIs.

I also really struggled with running because of recurring hip problems and some other very lame health problems so I’m ending up 2017 a bit chubbier than I was in years past. I’m remembering it’s a lot easier to be all body positive when you feel like you’ve been able to take care of yourself and when you like the way you look. But, it’s a work in progress. Also, maybe I’ll figure out what’s going on with all my potential food allergies/digestive issues this year. Or not. Thanks a lot, Body, I thought you’d wait til at least 40 to start to just go to hell but 30 is fine, too.

Hey, also being married is hard?! Like, I know people say that all the time and this is not news to me but guess what? Everyone is right. Of course, I don’t want to do this hard work with anyone other than Doug but it’s a serious adjustment.

Doug, Bev, and myself by the amazing Clare Vacha

I promise there were good parts to 2017…..

I went to the Women’s March in Boston and while it wasn’t without it’s problems – centering cis women over trans women, white women over women of color and Native women, being some of them – it was important for me to go. I wouldn’t say that I’m an activist, but I’m trying to learn to be more engaged with politics and supporting the causes I care about.

I also got to spend a lot of time with friends and family this year. Especially important are times at my BFFL Hannah’s cabin where I don’t really get cell service and so I’m forced to read books and talk to people. It’s incredible and Hannah is the perfect mix of hospitable and “do it yourself since we’re very old friends.” Some of my favorite weekends are those spent with there.

Doug and I also visited Minnesota which we loved and picture of me that I ACTUALLY LIKE is photobombed by a couple of doofuses.

I also made this dress and definitely improved a lot of sewing skills this year.

And despite marriage being hard, it’s also amazing. Doug and I spent our first anniversary in Maine where we read, ate, slept, and played games. It was so perfect. I’m in love with him and with how completely unhinged I look in the picture below.


Work was a challenge at times. I didn’t always agree with the way some issues got handled, and I share this pseudo-management role that I don’t feel good at or prepared for at all. But other times, we had a Ghostbusters lock-in with 30 teens and it was the best kind of crazy. Finally, my coworker Renata is the best and incredible and I would definitely cry if I didn’t get to work with her.

We ordered a DOZEN pizzas for the lock-in.

Renata bought my these “Kirk and Spock but if they were cats” pins and I love them.

What else was good? There is more, but throughout the year there are constant themes: my family, Doug, Hannah, Renata, Bev (that’s right, my cat) and all my friends who reminded me that I’m loved and cared about. With everything else being a bit shit, it’s the people who you care about that matter. Thanks to all who made an effort for me this year, it means more than you know.

What’s next?

Well, resolutions aren’t my thing but as Doug and I were talking today in 2018 we want to:

  • Take down Trump and the rest of the government who wants to ruin everything
  • Fight for what is right (the environment, health care, LGBTQ rights, people of color, fair wages, etc)
  • Play more games
  • Hang out with our friends
  • Hang out with our cat

I also want to:

  • Sew more clothes
  • Find a different exercise routine if I can’t figure out how to run without pain
  • Write more here
  • Be a good Printz Committee member
  • Pierce my septum
  • Get a new tattoo
  • Eat more veggies
  • Bake more
  • More more more of everything that I love and that matters
  • Get a porg
  • Maybe wear less vests? (4 out of 5 of the pictures I posted I’m wearing a vest. I have a problem?)

That’s it for 2017. Hug your family and friends when you can. See you on the other side.

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The train thief and other library adventures

If you don’t work in a library, spend a lot of time in a library, or know someone who does either, you may not be aware that libraries are lovely, innovative, exciting, and amazing. They are also basically Crazytown, USA. (Or whatever country you happen to be in.) It doesn’t matter if your library belongs to a huge city system or in the suburbs or in a rural area or the middle of nowhere: weird things will happen there. In fact, I suspect some of the weird things chronicled in Scott Douglas’ hilarious book, Quiet, Please: A memoir, inspired me to become a librarian. Strange but true.

What are these weird occurrences, you say?

Weird things like a person in a giant Subway sub costume will come in, wander around for a few minutes, then leave, silently and inexplicably.

Or someone will unroll ALL of the toilet paper in the women’s restrooms on all the floors. Then she’ll come back and smear poop on the walls. (We call her the Bathroom Bandit.)

Or someone will poop in the sink. Or outside. Or attempt to exchange sex for drugs in the bathroom.

Or will tell you about the conspiracy of government-created, mind-controlling microwaves, and how Obama and all the black people are trying to kill everyone else. (Ironically, told me to by a black person.)

Or there’s the nice, unassuming guy who comes in the sleep in ‘his’ chair in the periodicals every day and leaves promptly when we announce that the library will be closing in 15 minutes.

Or the man who cannot handle it if the library doesn’t have its copy of the paper in yet and will watch the desk like a hawk as if we are hiding it from him for some reason. He’s always very grumpy.

Or people will try to have sex or masturbate in the stacks. And look at porn on the computers.

Or the police will handcuff youths in the parking lot, search their car, then free them and leave, while all the staff watches excitedly from the windows.

Or someone will bring a loose cat, as in not in a cage, into the library and ask for books about pregnancy. Then you have to calmly give her the call number but tell her she can’t go look for the books until she takes the cat outside. When she doesn’t return you wonder who was pregnant, the woman or the cat?

Or upon hearing that someone has Parkinson’s, they will recoil back in horror and exclaim, “I hope I don’t catch it!”

Or a 10 year old girl will call you a bitch because you won’t give her a library card because she has no parent with her and no ID or proof of address. (Those are our library rules.)

And don’t forget all the strange, awkward, and harassing comments patrons make to librarians – sometimes while following you around the stacks – about your hairstyle, clothes, what age they think you are, marital status, and how they could help change that marital status.

Finally, because that’s all that I can think of right now, here’s the final strange but not that strange thing that happens in libraries. People steal things; even kids steal things. Last night one of our Children’s librarians realized after a 5-year old kid had left that he had taken all of our wooden trains from the train table, put them in a box, and left.

train thief
He left with some friends of his family and we alerted the mom, who was leaving shortly after him, that he might have made off with Thomas and Friends. She sighed and said, “Oh probably. He steals things all the time. He really has sticky fingers.”

She tracked him down, made him give the 10 trains he took back, and the went on their way. The Children’s librarian made him promise never to steal them again. Watch out for librarians, we’ll find you.

Despite all this craziness, and there’s more that I don’t remember or have blocked out because of trauma, I love my job. I love serving the patrons and helping them find what they need, even if they have to take the cat outside first.

Have you encountered much of the weird, strange, and uncanny in libraries?

P.S. All of these things are true and happened at libraries where I worked, usually while I was there. And I know that my little libraries have nothing on the craziness that happens in big cities. The weird is everywhere.

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