Happiest of holiday seasons, friends, one and all.
Today I wish to address an issue that has arisen at our beloved Pine River Public Library. At least it’s my beloved Library. It is, after all, my home sweet home. In this age of disposable diapers, packaged meals, canned tire repair kits, throw away pens and the lot, it is sometimes difficult to understand that our books at Pine River Library are not disposable. They are not a one hit wonder. They are there for large numbers of patrons like yourselves to read and enjoy.
Here is what has been happening. People have been placing their books face down, marking their place, thus breaking the binding. They have been stretching the paperback books so they will lie flatter, thus breaking the binding. They have been dining while reading without benefit of napkin. They have been turning down pages to better mark their place.
Think of it this way… Suppose a large neighborhood was sharing a lawn mower. Everybody gets to use it for free. What if one person neglects to check the oil and damages the motor? What if somebody else mows right over large decorative rocks in their yard thus chipping the blade? What if somebody else leaves this gift out in the rain and it gets water in the gas or it rusts from exposure?
Our books are a gift. We should treat them with the respect they deserve and with a mind to others who also wish to enjoy this gift. The library has numerous book marks available if you need one. A Kleenex will also work, or a paper napkin, or the grocery list that is already filled.
You wouldn’t break the gift lawn mower. Don’t break the gift books. By the way, if you receive a book that is already damaged or losing its pages, please inform the librarians so that they can have it repaired or replaced.
Thank you for your attention.
Browser, the library cat
PS. The Pine River Library will be taking food donations for the local food shelf all winter. Please be generous and give.
Printed in the Pine River Journal 24 December 2009