20 February 2011

Buh Bye Borders, Hello Public Library?

Well, it's official, Borders is closing over 200 stores.  Of course, a normal person might have read about this in the newspaper or seen it on TV, but I read it on one of my favorite blogs:  Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.  Then, a teacher friend of mine informed me today that she'd been over there and bought some of the last books they had.  Ouch.

So the interesting question is, will another bookstore come up and fill in the void?  Honestly...I hope not.  And really, I don't understand why people are willing to pay for books twice.  Yep, I said it:  you all pay for your books TWICE.  You pay taxes in your hometown and some of those tax dollars go to funding the public libraries in your area, then you drive yourselves to the bookstore and pay for books again.  Why?  I'm sure there are lots of reasons that people prefer to go to bookstores, but in our economy, I'd like to make the argument for using public libraries.  Here are my reasons:

  1. They're FREE.  If you're good with due dates, using public libraries cost you NOTHING.
  2. You can reserve books from home.  I assume you have the internet if you're reading this post - did you know you can look for and reserve books online?  Yep, super easy.  If you need a tutorial, just let me know - I can teach you.
  3. Libraries have more than books now.  They have DVDs, books on CD/tape/playaway.  And again, FREE.
  4. Public libraries also have awesome programming.  Yes, I'm a little biased in this area - I just spent the last two months putting on technology programs for families at the public library.  But they also have family reading nights, poetry readings, and at the Mesa County Public Library, they have fly fishing lessons (how freakin' cool is that?!?!)
  5. If they don't have the book you want, they will request it for you from another library.  Awesomeness.
  6. Did I mention the books are free?

There are a few downsides, but, they're minor.  Yes, public library books can be, uhm, germy (read funky).  And some of the patrons in the public library can be...uhm...pungent.  And the intricacies of the Dewey Decimal System can baffle even this librarians mind.  But on the other hand I've had massive trouble finding books in my local bookstore (heck, even the apron-and-earphone clad store assistant didn't know where to look) and using the patron initiated hold system at your public library can make your library visits darn fast (I can be in and out in two minutes flat, it's that fast).

So I beg you, in this time of tight budgets and shrinking pocketbooks, use your public library.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to add your opinion of this or any books you've read here. Proper APA citiation style preferred (ha!)