Thursday, May 15, 2008

Nice Library Moment

The other day, I stepped over to the self-check machine that's not far from our ref desk. Patrons often miss that it's two touch-screen touches to get it going: "ok" in the center of the screen and "start" at the upper right of the next screen. I helped a man check out a paperback with an "African-American" genre sticker (it could have been Christian fiction; could have been street lit -- it wasn't a familiar one).

I was discretely not noticing what it was, but he wanted to strike up a conversation. This was only his second visit; he thought he'd try this book. He picked it up off our end cap display (I tried to make my joke about how they are our "impulse buy" displays, but that one almost always falls flat). He picked the other one from a display, too: the one on Prince Edward schools and desegregation. He picked it, he told me, because his mom grew up in the county next door and attended the black school. He thought the book was "very powerful." And now he was ready to try something different. He waved his daughter over, and they headed to the door.

I felt doubly good about this exchange: I liked seeing a man (re?)connecting with books because he comes in to pick up his daughter who's been computering. And I felt good that something I put on a (YA) end cap went out. I never know if it's worthwhile to put non-fiction for teens up there, too. Obviously, it is.

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