sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

May 19, 2020

top ten reasons i love my library
posted by soe 1:44 am

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic from That Artsy Reader Girl invites us to share our love of something bookish.

It doesn’t get more basically bookish than this:

The Top Ten Reasons I Love My Library:

  1. This is where they keep all the books.
  2. The D.C. Public Library hosts my weekly Twitter book club, #brownbagdc. They have other Twitter book chats, too, and added a few more while the library was shut down. They also added biweekly trivia nights.
  3. I still have a dvd player, and they buy dvds so I can watch movies without having to pay for them.
  4. They gave us three days’ warning before they shut down for the pandemic. This allowed residents to create a literary run on the bank, as it were, as the bookish folks did the equivalent of hoarding toilet paper. (There were more checkouts that weekend than during the entire month of February.)
  5. They let me stream movies on Kanopy and stream and download music on Freegal.
  6. They just eliminated late fees. (They already had a very liberal policy, but now fines are just gone.)
  7. When the library shut down, DCPL went into their online system and reactivated accounts that had been turned off. Too many late fees? No longer a problem for nearly 4,000 accounts! Expired account? Welcome back, 87,000 neighbors! And if you’ve never had a card, they allowed you to open an account to borrow materials online for the duration of the shutdown.
  8. The library will let you print materials for free (when they’re open). You can print things from their computers, or you can send things from your home machine/mobile device to the printer queue.
  9. They have reciprocity with most of the other nearby library systems. This means I’ve been able to add accounts in neighboring Maryland and Virginia counties, upping my ability to borrow materials — and, in the case of the Montgomery County Public Library, giving me access to Acorn TV for free.
  10. Pretty much every librarian and library staff member I’ve met at the two dozen branches I’ve visited have been super nice and helpful. The work they do is hard, as is any public-facing job. Urban libraries, in particular, though, operate as de facto daytime homeless shelters and the staff are as knowledgeable about social work resources as they are about what’s on the shelves — and they don’t get the recognition they deserve.
  11. And a bonus — their buildings are beautiful and often win architectural awards. They’re nearing an end of a complete gut of the main branch, and I’m so excited to see what aspects they bring back (the MLK mural? the clock?) and what new things they introduce. (There’s a slide, people! I’m so hoping they let adults use it, too!)

What do you love about your library?

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