Wednesday, June 04, 2008


Today's high temperature was in the mid nineties. I think it was God getting back to me for the text I sent to Kevin last week asking him if they still had snow in Northern Michigan. Who's laughing now? I'm not. The temperature is fifteen degrees above normal. That means it will be 110 in July. I think if it gets that hot you start having scorpions living in your backyard.

Cell Phones

For a while when cell phones were starting on their pat to ubiquity the library tried to keep people from using them in the branches. An idea that may have sounded good when the rule was first put into action. In reality we seemed to spend a large portion of our day chasing people around and telling them to hang up their phones. It was counterproductive from a public relations standpoint. Especially when one of my former coworkers would grab the "no cell phones in the library" sign and wave it in the offenders face after she chased them down. Most signs telling library users to refrain from an act are pretty obnoxious as it is. The added indignity of waving the sign around brought me back to high school.

Now we allow people to use their cell phones in the library. For the most part it works out OK. Ninety nine percent of library users realize that their voices are transmitted electronically and it is not necessary to yell into their phone in order to be heard on the other end. It's the other one percent, let's call them 'yahoos', that cause problems. These yahoos are mostly adults. Kids with cell phones know they don't have to holler. The yahoos raise their voice well above conversation level and proceed to project their bidness into every corner of the second floor of this building. It's shocking, really. My favorite yahoos are the ones that go into these computer cubicles we have. Cubicles that, due to their design, naturally project sound. Not only are you talking too loud but you are now broadcasting. You might as well be standing on water, dude.

The library's policy is that we allow cell phone use as long as the phones are used quietly. Now when I go tell someone to hang up his phone it's usually not an awkward interaction because he's usually being too loud and, hey, it's still a library, take it outside.

1 comment:

Lee said...

The administration of the academic library I work in have never tried to limit cell phone use in here. They saw it as a slippery slope.