almost forgot to write this post as I got momentarily lost on YouTube
The public library has been very, very, very, very good to me for the past 40+ years. I wholeheartedly indulge my various reading whims, which due to the fact that I was somewhat smarter than the average bear just about completely bypassed reading books in the children's section and zipped into the adult section.
But memories from that time period are a-plenty and the things that I read and saw I didn't give a second thought to then, but strangely enough, I do now.
For instance, back then I wouldn't think twice about checking out five books at the same time, simply because I could read that many books in during the lending period (about three weeks or so). Now, we do one, maximum of two at any given time. Or sticking with one to three different genres (non-fiction, true crime and the occasional sci-fi fantasy), whereas now I'm willing to read almost anything.
Yup, I had some good memories back then. But today in the here and now, I look back on those days and now wonder to myself about the thought process that the librarians had when it came to properly cataloguing books. You know, determining not only what the genre was, but whether it was for an adult or a child.
The reason why I bring this up is that the other day I was participating in idle chit-chat with a co-worker and the subject of non-smartness (aka severely stupid) that seems to populate the regional offices of the agency I work for.came up. Anyways, we were talking about that subject when I brought up the example of bad grammar (trust me, you really had to be there listening to the entire conversation in order to understand the reasoning behind the comment) as it applied to this person in question.
Anyways, I mention this because the example I used was pulled from a book called "Arnold Roth's Comik Book of Sports". For those of you who aren't in my current age bracket, Arnold Roth was a well known cartoonist from the 70's and early 80's, who was the sports equivalent of Sergio Aragones. His stuff appeared in such magazines as Sports Illustrated and Playboy. Anyways, if you click on the link, you'll see that the cover is wall-to-wall comics. Adult oriented comics. And would you like to know where in my public library I first discovered this book?
That's right, the children's section.
I'm guessing because the librarians saw that the cover was filled with comics, it should go to the children's section (using that logic, a compilation of the early 20th century comic strip The Toonerville Trolley should've been there, instead of the adult section where it properly belonged). To the best of my knowledge, the book is still there in the children's section, waiting to corrupt yet another innocent young mind
Another example of this lack of closely examining the item is music.
Again, for those of you who are in my age bracket, you probably heard of the recently deceased Stan Freberg (one of his most popular songs is this). IMO, the man was pure unadulterated genius. The stuff that he created in comedy was legendary. Later he took his genius to the advertising world but that's another story for another time.
Anywho, I found a copy of his brilliant comedy album "A Child's Garden of Freberg" located, you guessed it, in the children's section of the music collection. Now again, if you look at the cover, you can understand why it might be found in the children's section: a middle aged man holding a flower sitting in a garden type setting. But if you listen to the album, it's 100 times removed from anything remotely resembling children's music.
I'm sure there were other examples of adult books/music being found in the children's section, but these stick out the most in my memories. How 'bout you? Do you have any examples of this kind of thing that you may have come across on the todays and yesterdays of your wonderful life?
(c) 2015 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved.