My Sweet Public Library: A Love Letter
Hey baby, ‘sup? I see you over there, all drab and ’60’s cinderblock on the outside, all creosote and xeriscaping, just waiting for someone to fill your lots and open your doors.
I’ll do it.
I know that inside there are wonders to behold. Only you, oh queen of that little tract of land behind the old Arby’s and next to the county annex building possess within yourself the entire collection of Bill Nye The Science Guy DVDs, untouched by today’s apathetic youth. It is true, sweet library mine, that youth is squandered on those who would sneak into your computer cubicles to search “hot girl boobs” on your hallowed CRT screens.
Only you have entire Norton’s Anthologies clasped to your careworn stacks, right next to the prints available for educational rentals. Why, oh empress of the learned, do they always choose Thomas Kincaides and leave the Klimts untouched?
I don’t know, I don’t know!
Let me soothe you by checking out entire stacks of Goosebumps books for my daughter. Let me provide some comfort to you within these very corrugated walls by pretending that I will actually read this copy of The Sound And The Fury while waiting for that bitch two stacks over to turn her back on your only copy of Gone Girl for two seconds. Two goddamn seconds is all I need, library! And then we can be together all afternoon while I shirk my maternal duties to hide out in the periodicals on the bean bag chair.
“What is microfilm?” that woman with enormous hair and bejeweled Ed Hardy shirt is asking the exhausted looking librarian. Do you want me to defend your honor, library? Shall I punch her right in the bouffant? I would do it, for you.
Only for you.
For only you provide me with all I need as a human and mother; you have been there all along. First there were the story times, grandiose affairs with heartily sung rounds of “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” and enthusiastic readings of The Very Grouchy Ladybug. Then, the summer reading program. One day, perhaps, the Central Texas Young Adult Enthusiasts of Anime and Manga club. Only time will tell what the future holds. Will I ever join the senior’s E.L. James Inspired Erotica Reading Group?
Fuck no, but that doesn’t mean I love you less.
Yes, library, you are a many-splendored thing; a beautiful, wondrous thing, my oasis in a cultural dessert. And don’t listen to them, library! Your splendor is not at all diminished by that man in study cubicle 4B, masturbating furiously to furry porn. To him we say, fie and shame on you, and head straight for the magical realism of Vikram Seth and Isabal Allende, hoping to escape into a different reality, one in which no longer can be heard the sounds of his frenetic “yiffing”.
You have it all, library.
From your gross water fountains to your stained carpet in the Kiddie’s Korner, to your grumpy circulation desk librarian and neglected reference stacks, there is nothing that can tear me from your loving embrace, not even the promise of .99 Kindle sales. I am yours, and you are mine.
Yours in Fondness Forever,