Do you have what it takes for library work?
Let’s see if you can read this list of things found in library books or book drops without gasping, flinching, or hollering, “Holy Shit!” (I couldn’t. And I work in a library.)
A bag of teeth
A flattened dead frog
Draft of a suicide note.
A large dead fish
A urine sample
White supremacist literature (in a black history book)
A loaf of bread stuffed with tissue
A used catheter
Maggots, ear wigs, bed bugs and cockroaches
A dead squirrel and a huge pair of granny bloomers
A bullet that had obviously been fired into the book.
Photos of dead people
A live turtle, a dead pigeon and a handgun wrapped in a plastic bag
An ankle monitor
A dead skunk dressed in doll’s clothes
If you can take this kind of thing in stride? I invite you to apply for a library job. Meanwhile, the next time your librarian seems a bit jumpy while checking your books in? Cut them a break. Could be they’re apprehensive about finding an actual crawdad in that copy of “Where the Crawdads Sing.”
( Roz Warren is the author of two collections of library and book-related humor, Our Bodies, Our Shelves: A Collection of Library Humor, and Just Another Day At Your Local Public Library, both of which would make great gifts for your favorite librarian or other bookish friend.)