excellent literary prank (even if it’s fake)

Video made by Generic Theater in Virginia in 2011. As this explanatory article says, “Why it’s gone viral four years after the play stopped running is anyone’s guess! The Internet is a strange place.” Thanks, Emily Lloyd!

August 16, 2016 at 9:46 am Leave a comment

library olympics


The library of the University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio held its first-ever Library Olympics in August of 2016. Events included book-truck maneuvering, speed-sorting, and journal-Jenga.

Thanks, Ross Gresham!

August 15, 2016 at 11:58 am Leave a comment

reader advisory through tattoos

Library staff at the Multnomah County Library in Portland, Oregon are recommending books to readers based on their tattoos.

Of course they are.

Thanks, Terry Kennedy!

August 8, 2016 at 1:18 pm Leave a comment

library workers on roller skates

My friend David Weinstock was skeptical when his mother mentioned she wore roller skates as a page at New York University in the early 1940s. He did a little research and discovered this!

New York Times Pages On Roller Skates (1)

That’ll teach him to doubt his mother.

I haven’t been able to find any photographs of the NYU pages, but according to this article in Noticing New York, the film You’re a Big Boy Now features a roller-skating library worker:

You Are A Big Boy Now

I suppose we don’t need pages on roller skates any more, since digitization puts so much information at our fingertips. Why, we hardly even need to get up from our computer chairs any more. Alas. I suppose we could try skating at our treadmill desks, kind of like this guy:

August 5, 2016 at 9:48 am Leave a comment

incunabula joke

Glasgow Herald June 15 1939 page 10
Joke news from 1939. At left, Glasgow Herald,  June 15, 1939, page 10.

Similarly, the Library Association Record (London), Series 4, Volume 6, 1939, page 338:

“Then, too I should hope he had at least a nodding acquaintance with the technical jargon, or language if you prefer the term, of librarians and booksellers, so that if told that some incunabula had been found in one of the cupboards, he would not, as did one chairman, order the library to be closed and request the Medical Officer to have it immediately disinfected.”

Thank you, Daniel Traister, for bringing this shenanigan to my attention on Facebook with an image from an unknown publication:


And thank you, Jay Dillon, for providing the versions with citations.

Traister’s Facebook friends then proceeded to yuck it up:

Peter Donaldson: Little things fit for a cradle? I can see lots of health issues!

Jack Lynch: That can give you a bad case of rubrication.

Merrily Taylor: Well, if the darned things proliferate, you find yourself with all these Rare Book Librarians to mind them, and you know how demanding THEY are!

Jay Dillon: What *other* incunable jokes are there? (My own modest contribution to the subsubgenre, some years ago, was to suggest that incunabulists might be called ‘fifteenyboppers’.

Camilo Marquez: I had some grilled with olive oil, oregano and crumbled feta at my favorite Mediterranean spot.



August 4, 2016 at 11:33 am 2 comments

live-in library workers

Rose-Terence-and-Patrick-Thornberry-new-york-society-library.pngFor almost a century, some New York City libraries had live-in caretakers. Here’s a highlight from the 6SQFT article: when the Thornberry family looked after the New York Society Library and lived in it, young Rose Mary Thornberry got to host sleepovers there! Aw man. I wish I coulda gone to one of those.

Somebody sent this shenanigan to me a while back and it got lost in the mire that is my online life. Thanks, Suzie DeGrasse, for bringing it back to my attention!

August 3, 2016 at 2:58 pm Leave a comment

for mature audiences only


I wish I knew more about this clever shenanigan. It’s clearly a “little free library” kind of library and appears to be located in a forest. Anybody know anything more?

July 22, 2016 at 4:36 pm Leave a comment

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