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Thursday, September 15, 2005

EGA writes: "This is my second year as Washburn House Librarian, and I really enjoy it. Only I could turn such a thing into an opportunity for violence and rage. First there was my very embarrassing campaign speech last spring, in which I shouted and punched my hand for emphasis and scared everybody else out of running, and things have not gotten any better.

Every year the house is allowed to order about a dozen books through the Tyler book fund. We don't pay for them, they just show up, like magic, and it's wonderful and we are so lucky to have it. Last year I ordered a whole bunch of lovely new books, and was pleased to see them vanish from the shelves. "Oh good," I thought. "People are using the wonderful house library."

Unfortunately, many of the books were never returned. On Sunday, at our house meeting, I delivered an empassioned address to the house, waving around an empty box from our Harry Potter box set for emphasis. "There's a signup list on my board for new house library books, and please add your suggestions, and they'll come and they'll be great and they'll have bookplates in them, which is what will distinguish them from books that belong to you!" I cried, my voice growing higher and higher and faster and faster.

So far there are only three suggestions, which worries me a little. I could certainly fill it up myself if need be, but if all we end up with is, say, Wittgenstein and P.G. Wodehouse, it's going to be a boo-hoo Christmas for a lot of people."

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