How we know we've been working here too long:

Posted by September Blue Tuesday, 15 January 2008

1. All library minions must now wear name badges. This year's recruits embraced the stupid flippy plastic things with a shrug and a smile, but we grizzled old veterans - especially we grizzled old veterans who used to work in retail - are Drawing A Line.

My boss spots me and Dr K, badgeless, heading down to the bindery. Sighs. Says "Oh, well - everyone knows you two work here by now."

2. And Dr K's been here even longer than I have, which is why it's Dr K, and not me, who's developed a habit of muttering "Books at Shawshank... books at Shawshank... books at Shawshank..." as he shuffles across the floor with the morning's book trolleys.

3. But it's our workaholic senior colleague, the Amazing D, who's giving us cause for concern. Technically, the Amazing D is part-time; in reality, D works 70-hour weeks at a mishmash of different jobs within the library. Has for years. Place would fall apart without him, if only because then they'd have to actually pay someone a reasonable amount to do what he does and cover all the odd-end shifts on half an hour's notice. Most terrifyingly enough, D actually likes it. In him, we see our future.

And today, sitting by the help-desk people, I heard this conversation:
Technician:"I take it that's just a generic voice?"
Librarian: "Oh, no. That's D."

We're one small name-badge away.


  1. francofou Says:
  2. You are a funny person.

  3. Autumn Song Says:
  4. Maybe the name badge is a good thing - noisy people will know to be quiet around you?

    I guess it's either that or uniforms...

  5. Francofou - And yet, I'm still not hired. Damn you, academic job market. Can't you see how much you need me?

    Autumn Song - sadly, this presumes that noisy people would be quiet around people they knew were staff. Not the case so far, although we are campaigning for cattle-prods and hope to see a significant improvement once these come into play.

  6. francofou Says:
  7. I have always thought, funniness being a sign of intelligence, that job descriptions should always include the phrase, "humorless (O.K., have it your way: humourless) people need not apply."
    Of course, a lot of humo(u)rless people think they are funny (dear God).
    Maybe we should have a secret handshake.

    You were worried about your thesis.
    I wasn't.
    Now, you're worried about finding a job.
    I'm not.

    My secret. Do not bite members of the hiring committee in the ankles.
    Works every time.