Saturday, May 13, 2006

Lost and Found

There are two kinds of people in the library biz. Those who categorize people into two groups and those who don't. Guess which one I am? Just kidding, folks, I'm here all week, thank you!

But seriously, there ARE two kinds of people of the Librarian persuasion. The super messy and the over-orderly. I don't usually talk about my co-workers on this blog because that can get a bit ungraceful, and honeys, I am nothing if not graceful. But in this case, I will make an exception because it's just too illustrative of my point, and besides, I ain't sayin' nothing that my beloved co-worker doesn't know already. So there's this librarian that I know, let's call her Rolanda. Rolanda kicks ass at librarianing, and she does it through a literal sea of books, papers, and miscellaneous items that congregate wherever she is. She never loses anything, or lets the messiness hinder her job performance in any way. I am hard pressed to recall any time that her disarray has had a negative impact on anything or anyone. But no one, even Rolanda herself, could argue that there isn't utter clutter wherever she hangs her hat. Her office is adjacent to mine, and it is like we are bizarro worlds colliding. Her desk is piled high with paper, books, journals, remnants of notes, post-its, you name it. It literally stands at least 2 feet high on her desk, and there is NO space for her to write. She can squeeze in to peck out some stuff on her computer, but that's it. If anything requires more space, she has to move to another table out in the library. And the floorspace in her area is packed tight with book carts full of books that need mending, or processing, or who knows what all. Her chair has wheels on the bottom of its feet, but she doesn't need them because her chair is not going anywhere. All the real estate in her little office space is piled high to the point where she literally cannot be seen from the entryway if she is sitting at her desk.

I, on the other hand, have the opposite neurosis. From Rolanda's office, do an immediate left turn and you enter my world. I am embarrassed to admit this, but having clutter that I have created really disturbs me. I am the type of person that has to get myself organized before I can concentrate to work on something. Draw your conclusions about what this says about me, people, but it's just the sincere troof about myself. I like things put away. A place for everything and everything in its place. I am rolling my eyes at myself even as I type this, but that doesn't change the fact. This trait is a handy barometer of how I am feeling that day. If my physical surroundings are messed up, you can be sure that something's amiss with me on the inside.

So currently, I have four piles of books on my desk, miscellaneous reminder notes scattered among them, a dusty computer screen (haaaate that), and no order to my in- and out-boxes. I also have Summer Reading program flyers in my car waiting to be delivered to schools, unopened mail on my dining table at home, no food in my fridge and a pair of heels that I can't find anywhere. How does one lose heels?

The trouble, dear friends, is that I am trying to figure out my mortgage. Let me rephrase. I am trying to figure out if I can afford to have a mortgage, and if so, what kind? Who knew, but there are exactly one hundred forty thousand two hundred nine different distinct mortgage plans. And they are all a snoozefest, every one. They are designed to strike one dumb. I have absolutely no room in my brain for any ridiculous details like where the rubber bands go in my cute blue desk drawer organizer. No room at all. Put the rubber bands in the paper clip compartment, go crazy! Kick off those heels and just leave them somewhere! I have amortization to think about!

This whole process is making me sloppy, and I don't do well with sloppy. When things are sloppy, I can't friggin' FIND anything, and not being able to find something rattles my chain or yanks my leg or whatever the hell the correct phraseology is. (See, I can't even FIND things in my brain). And if there's one thing that librarians have in common, messy and orderly alike, it's that we enjoy being able to FIND stuff. That's what we do. Rolanda may be messy, but she knows where stuff is, I guarantee you. Our FINDyness is what links us. And why do I keep capitalizing the word FIND? I don't know, maybe I'm afraid I'll lose it. Or, from the look of this post, maybe I've done lost it already, if you know what I mean.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl


biology girl said...

Let's say it together people "My planner is my friend!" Now, where the hell did I put my keys?

Leah said...

Amen. All desk items should ideally be placed at 90 degree angles relative to one another.

Good luck with the mortgage headaches! Have you done any of the fun stuff such as going to open houses, daydreaming about fabulous furniture, planning the killer tea parties (that's right, killer tea parties) that you'll host on your very own patio!?

Librarian Girl said...

I am the Queen of tea parties, seriously. I have a serving set and everything.

marty said...

Dude, I am exactly the same. I am so freaked out by messiness that if the kitchen is in disarray and I want to cook something, I have to clean it first, cook, then clean it again.

Librarian Girl said...

Oh Marty, you're my people!

Anonymous said...

you guys need to chill out on the whole organizing thing...i mean, for crying out loud, just because it is in our job description doesn't mean it has to be in our life description.