Yesterday's list was not meant to be an exhaustive one of all the libraries I have ever been in, of course. I have been in most of the public libraries in Lorain County at one time or another, for example, and I remember that Ben, Julie and I went to a branch library somewhere in Columbus one time when Tom was participating in some sort of academic competition. (Help me out here, guys. I don't think it was Academic Challenge - some sort of math competition, maybe?) I remember my dad taking us into the Carnegie Library in Oberlin once when we were kids, and being quite awed by it.
Of course, there are the libraries I have tried to visit, but found them closed. Ben and I stopped several times as we drove through Wellington to check out the lovely little Herrick Memorial Library, but it was never open when we were there. Julie and I found the Reed Memorial Library in Ravenna not yet open at 10:00 a.m. on a weekday morning, and decided it wasn't, perhaps, the library for us. I think we tried to visit the Bowling Green Public Library one weekend when we were there, as well. And we did wait in the parking lot of the Athens Public Library while Julie went in to pick up her Phi Beta Kappa cord right before commencement, but I don't really think that counts.
As Julie pointed out in her comment, there are the university libraries I have visited. Our landmark library at KSU, of course, and the library at LCCC, to begin with. I have been in the libraries at BGSU, OU, and the U of D, and, also, it occurs to me, the Mudd Resource Center at Oberlin College. I may well have gone into the library at University of Chicago with my brother, but, alas, that is too long ago for me to remember now.
And, you know, I want to say that I feel guilty that I have damned the Elyria Public Library with faint praise in my earlier posts. It is a fine little library, and what makes it that way is its collection of books, of course - and everything else a library has to have nowadays. But equally important is the library staff. Some of the women on that staff have made it their life's work to serve at that library, and they have done a damn fine job. I mentioned the wonderful children's librarians who enriched my kids' lives in an earlier comment, but I also want to recognize the outstanding reference staff of Rose Burton and Eve Major and Marianne Mahl. And I can't forget Terri Miller, who has been ably running the circ desk all these years. If each of these women has not yet reached twenty years at the library - and I know some of them have passed that milestone - they are real close. They are just as crucial to the library as the bricks and posts of the building and the books that are housed there.
I thank you for your time. *steps down off soap box*