We're taking a bit of a breather while the world rearranges its underpants. Meanwhile, the other blog is here.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Goodnight Mr. Pinter! Mind how you go on that tandem.

Noreen is biding her time...

For five long, weary years we've been allegedly reviewing the list of standing orders for the reference library service. Near enough everything that's bought for Ref. is on standing order, owing to Reggie Clockwatcher's erroneous belief that stock bought on standing order "didn't count" and he'd also get to spend "his share" of the book fund. And, like too many reference librarians, the priority was to make sure that all the trophies were in the cabinet, not that they were any use to the poor bloody public. (Back in the old days when we used to send Library Assistants out for diploma training the reference library component of the course focussed entirely on their finding the right page of the right book, not answering the question in a way that might be useful to the customer). One of the more embarassing moments of our Best Value Fundamental Service Review at the turn of the decade was watching Reggie recite a shopping list of books he wanted on the shelves of the reference library. He'd been asked to explain the purpose of the twenty-first century reference and information service to a lay audience.

Thus it is that we get three copies of Dod's Parliamentary Backhanding, The Cabmen of Huntingdonshire and Jane's Fighting Sailors, one each for Catty, Dutch Bend and Helminthdale libraries. This despite Catty no longer having a reference library. A dead waste of public money if you ask me.

But perhaps for no longer.

Like most everyone else in the north of England we've just changed our supplier. So all the old standing orders have been cancelled. And as the reference librarians have yet to produce a list of titles no new orders can be made - the Acq. Team couldn't possibly do stock selection as "none of them are Professionals."

So Noreen is looking forward to the day when she gets the 'phone call asking why something we don't need hasn't been ordered...


The Topiary Cow said...

All the standing orders have been cancelled? And no new ones put in place?

Cow shudders to think of how much work this would be.


Kevin Musgrove said...

Noreen assures me that it was strangely satisfying.