or, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Fear and Loathing at a Public Library Reference Desk


(Dreaming About) Appropriate Libraries Games

   January 14th, 2010 Brian Herzog

Library minigolfThis is bizarre: a little while ago I dreamed about telling an a adult patron he was being too loud in the library, because he was playing Marco Polo with his kids to entertain them. He yelled back, asking me what I expected him to do.

I went to the reference desk to review our games policy (this is a dream remember, so it made perfect sense at the time). It didn't mention specific games, so I sat down with my director and came up with a list of games that he could and couldn't play in the library:

Approved Games:
I Spy
Hide and Seek
Cards
Board Games
Puzzles
Button, Button, Who's Got the Button?
Thumb Wrestling
Sandman
Unapproved Games:
Marco Polo
Tag
Red Rover
Red Light, Green light
Duck Duck Goose
King of the Mountain

I remembered the dream when I woke up, so quickly wrote down the games I could recall. How sad that I dream about things like this.

However, it also reminds me of Library Mini Golf, which I think is a great idea. I also still like the idea of having tournaments for any number of video games (which, oddly, didn't make my dream list).



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Gaming at the Library, Old School Style

   October 30th, 2008 Brian Herzog

Patrons playing on game tableLast month, my library added to our collection a nice new game table. It was donated in memory of a long-time patron who enjoyed board games.

It's a very nice table - all wood, "pub height," and the different game boards are self-contained in the table top. The included games are:

  • Chess
  • Checkers
  • Scrabble
  • Backgammon
  • Monopoly

We set it up in the Teen area and are circulating game piece sets from the reference desk. We also did a "games" display near the desk to promote the table.

The problem is, no one has used it yet to play games. I see people sitting at it to study by the windows, but the five sets of game pieces have yet to be checked out. Something like this might take awhile to catch on, and we've been toying with the idea of starting a chess club.

But regardless, I like having it. It's a nice way to remember a patron we all miss, and it encourages people to use the library for more than just academic research - it's a place in the community people can come to relax and enjoy someone else's company.



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