Thursday, April 15, 2010

In Honor of National Library Week

Checking out books at the Berkeley Public Library in California with my little sister, Meg. (Yes, that's me in the geeky-girl glasses. You can't tell in this black and white photo, but they are red.) And the librarian in the really cool glasses? Any Berkeley librarians know her name?

With thanks to librarians in cool glasses everywhere. Believe me, you've cheered me up, and given me info and made me laugh and brought whole new worlds to me, and you never even knew. So thank you, from me and millions of kids like me.

And the geeky glasses? They came in very handy. Still do.


Paul Hoffman said...

Big props to the librarians, and not just for helping kids! Reference librarians do wonders for the many confused and embarassed adults I see in the library these days as well. Even the folks checking out and shelving: they're all part of a system that is very central to our modern culture.

Elizabeth Partridge said...

I LOVE reference librarians. It is awesome that you can actually walk up to a person sitting behind a desk and ask him/her to ferret out something for you. A book, a statistic, any weird piece of info. you're looking for.

When I was seventeen or eighteen I decided I wanted to make root beer from real roots. So I went to my beloved Berkeley Public Library and asked the reference librarian if she could help me find a recipe. She found a frontier cookbook from the 1800s with a recipe that included how to tie the corks into the bottles to keep them from popping out. I still have the zerox she made me, tucked in my cookbook, and a memory of how totally herbaceous the brew was!

Elizabeth Partridge said...

Received this from Linda Perkins, Librarian Extraordinaire who wasn't able to post it herself:

Greetings from your local public library. We have had the very lucky conjunction of your blog post and a library visit by Ruth Hadlock, who worked in the BPL Children's Room in the 1950's. She is pretty sure that the woman presenting you with your library card was Janet (Shub) Duckart who worked here in the 50's with Ruth. Ms Duckart went on to become a master kindergarten teacher at Berkeley's Washington Elementary, and now lives in El Cerrito. Ruth Hadlock has lunch with her every 4-6 weeks. I printed off a copy of your blog-post, and Ruth will take it with her the next time. For more info, contact Linda at BPL Children's.

Megan Bohigian said...

I was a student at Frederick Burke School in San Francisco in the early 60's, when Ruth Hadlock was the librarian. If you could tell me how to get in touch with her, I would be delighted. She was a life changer...aided and abetted me in my quest to read every book in the library, and inspired the autodidact in me. I'm a teacher today who uses storytelling. I think of her often and would like to let her know what a profound and lasting effect she had on so many of us. I'm Megan Anderson (Bohigian) and my email address is