libraries week – the librarian’s dress was a fawnish shade of grey

a few years ago i decided to get out of my stable, fairly well paid, management job to go back to university and train in something which i actually wanted to do with my life. at that point it pretty much boiled down to two career paths, very similar but massively different. on the one hand was the option to further my interest in museums, and hopefully increase my chances of working in one, by studying them (nb – this was the option i went with). yet i very very nearly re-trained as a librarian.

it’s a job that i have seemingly always had an interest in. speak to my mother and she’ll recount you with tales of the classification system that my bookshelf had as a young child, complete with catalogue. yep, i was a cool kid. upon finishing my first (seemingly useless in actually getting a real job) arts degree i applied for lots of jobs in libraries, and it was at this point that i first seriously considered studying for an ma in library and information studies at manchester met. this was a course that seemed right for me. yet when i came back to this train of thought three years later i went with collections of dead and stolen things over books. i’d still bloody love to become a librarian mind.

with all of this said, most people see the job of a librarian as that person who stamps your book, and goes ‘shush’ a lot. there can’t be much more to it can there? well, yes, there can. over the course of researching the pieces for this week i’ve spoken to some really interesting people, who care passionately about their libraries, and long to see their institutions accessed by as many people as possible. given that i ducked out of this career path at the last minute i’m probably not the best person to tell you about this. instead, head towards this great piece of the guardian about what it takes to be a 21st century librarian.

oh, and if you were wondering, the title of this post is a lyric from the hefner song the librarian. here is a video of darren and ant from the band playing it live.


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