Eddie 2-Sox's posting on nocturnal thought processes reminded me that I've been meaning to illustrate one of the big problems I have at work: public library managers are not just incapable of linear thought, they feel they have to hunt and kill anything that may encourage it. Trying to map out a course of action (let's not get above ourselves and imagine it may be a plan) is like herding cats. Each of ours has their own strategem for lack of progress:
T.Aldous' main weapon is persistence on an irrelevancy. Every time you feel you're starting to get somewhere you suddenly realise you're back at square 1¼, hovering uncertainly over the snakes and ladders board. I have seen him bring a half-million-pound project to its knees on the issue of whether or not "that needs to be a comma."
Julia's strategem is T.Aldous Lite: everything always comes back to Why It Cannot Be Done.
Doreen is generally willing but distracted by Why I'm Not Capable Of Doing It.
Milton will baffle you with fog. If you need ideas, Milton's your man: he's an idea foundry. The problem is that he does not know when or where to stop and will keep steaming on long after the original purpose is a distant memory.
And Mary... Mary will hop, skip and jump around all over the shop to her heart's content and you've got to hope that you can occasionally bring her back to the point of discussion. These are my notes of a discussion I thought we were going to have about last year's procurement statistics:
Lending stock additions
Bedfordshire in Spring (uh?)
Daughter's wedding (again...)
Lending stock additions oh go on, you can do it, pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease
In the end I just did what I thought the government was asking for an hoped for the best.