Monday, August 28, 2006

Making of the Annoyed Librarian: Stuff Too Mean Even for Me

I know everyone is curious about how the Annoyed Librarian actually gets written. Whenever I go on my tours, I'm always asked, "AL, where do you get your ideas from?" And of course I take ideas from other library blogs, and then make fun of them. However, there are some ideas that end up on the cutting room floor, to mix my metaphors a bit.

You may think the Annoyed Librarian is a cynical, rude old so-and-so. You would of course be right. But believe it or not there are some things too mean even for me to post. However, I'll give you a taste of some posts you might have seen on Annoyed Librarian if she were even ruder than she manifestly is.

Here's the opening of one where I was going to make fun of the numerous library blogs that are all very excited but have absolutely nothing to say. Not necessarily the personal diary type blogs, because even those can be interesting and occasionally funny. But the ones like this:

"Annoyed Librarian as the Humdrum Librarian
Hi! I'm a librarian! And I have absolutely nothing to say! That's why I started a blog! I read a lot of interesting and thoughtful posts over at someone else's blog, and it looked so cool I thought I'd do it myself! Consider this my blog manifesto! I'm the Humdrum Librarian! I'm going to tell you about my day! Sometimes!"

It went downhill from there. Mean-spirited, and pretty boring, you'll say, and you'd be right.

Then there's the Interview with the New Flea Librarian. Have you ever read a local newspaper article interviewing the new librarian? About as boring as they come. All the librarians talk about their love of reading, their knitting, their hobbies, how they always loved libraries, how large their bottoms are. I'll let you imagine the hobbies of the new Flea Librarian. The Flea Libary Newsletter was going to get more than it bargained for.

After the scrap about the University of Missouri-Columbia grant for their library school, I considered writing a rather blistering and sarcastic essay on Library School as an Intellectual Joke. Then I figured, what's the point. Everybody knows library schools are an intellectual joke except the PhD candidates and the professors, and I certainly wasn't going to persuade them.

A while back I wrote a piece called Annoyed Librarian Corps: Recruitment, a response to Leslie Burger's idea for libraries to get retired librarians to keep working for free instead of hiring new librarians. I have a draft of a piece on Annoyed Librarian Corps: Deployment, but it's just too mean to publish, since I wouldn't want to offend my grandmother. I have nothing against the elderly. I hope to be elderly myself one day.

And then there was the Annoyed Librarian Guide to the Broken User, begun after reading a post on how the user isn't broken. The rough draft is pretty nasty. We all know the user is broken, and the system is broken as well. It's a wonder anything ever gets done. But I felt like it was the sort of thing best tackled by the Happy Villain or the Bitter Librarian.

So there is a glimpse of some of the nastiness that did not spew from the pen of the Annoyed Librarian. They just sit there in draft form in my Blogger queue gathering virtual dust, destined never to make it as fully grown blog posts. Unless of course I get really desparate for material.

1 comment:

Taupey, the Bush Kangaroo said...

Awww, don't go all wobbly on us AL. You are our beacon amidst the dark foggy night that keepest from the sharp rocks and guideth us amongst the uncooth.