Thursday, January 31, 2008

11B becomes an 11C, change is good...

Suspect sometimes sings to me, I went from well trained 11B to 13B because the Army needed me there and this week they are teaching me new tricks. Not the Army, the Washington State Library wants me to cover the absent vacationing Library Keeper at the Western State Hospital.
So from Tuesday through Friday I am working in a 1940's style library, where the largest circulation is in CD and DVD and VHS. There are books but not used so much and they have been weeded well and I am in awe of the space remaining on their shelves - can't get that much room in McNeil Islands library shelving.
The library software is different and linked into the Statelibrary and I have used it before and adjust easily. I haven't figured out the ILL codes so I can work on OCLC but will try to find that information today. The security set up is different going through the DSHS instead of the DOC and I can't do some searches and such on the work stations, but can from the public access terminals (different security set ups).
The other major change is in the patrons, I get patients and staff and they are certainly not like the guys at MICC. I get to be a charming old fellow and don't have to put on my "Tougher Than Thou" persona. So you aren't getting the real me because most of the patrons are very nice, will wait for their turn, actually say 'hello' and mean it when they ask how you are and what is your name. They will remember my name and I promptly forget theirs - bad habit from years of everyone with a rank and name tape. One lost college student, returned to the proper direction to find the local college library with the proper staff and much material. One staff preparing a training conference looking for citations for support in current treatments, sent away with less than she needed since I had lack of skills in online data base search, or she didn't know the real titles of the publications. I also have to talk to women MUCH more than normal - I will recover next week from that shock. I had better, or they might decide I need to work at WCCW and I have avoided that so well over ten years.
So I get to stretch and learn some new skills, solve puzzles and work around barriers, meet and talk to new folks that would like to have their normal librarian back (we aren't really librarians, lacking the MLS). I assure them that she will be back Monday but I will try to help now, a nice harmless ol' fellow.

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