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

Reference Question of the Week – 12/24

   December 30th, 2006 Brian Herzog

This is a weird one. And I'm getting it secondhand, from one of my coworkers who had to consult me on it:

She said a patron came up to her and asked for books on "where God meets the brain." When she probed for a bit more direction from the patron, he said he was looking for information on things like why the horizon is so long, why there is space between planets, and how God grows trees.

After hearing the theology angle, my coworker took the patron over to the 200s and found some books on intelligent design and creationism. She suggested he browse the shelves to see if he could find the information he was seeking, and then she came back to ask me if I had any other ideas.

Apart from taking the patron into the 500s and giving him cosmology, physics and general science books, I had nothing to suggest. We thought that since the patron definitely had a religious slant to his inquiry, it was not our place to redirect him to science reference, unless he sought additional information.

I never did even see this guy. Apparently, he found what he was looking for while we were talking at the desk and left. Huh.

cosmology, creationism, god, intelligent design, libraries, library, reference question, science

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