Thursday, July 27, 2006

Overheard at the library

At the main area branch where I spend most of my working hours, they recently put together a Spanish language collection. There are a lot of bilingual kids books, language tapes and CDs for ESL... it's a great idea, and the items are getting circulated pretty frequently, so it's a service that the community is definitely using.

I have yet to have somebody checking out Spanish materials who didn't also know English. So it made me mad as heck to hear this snotty woman today making her views about the Spanish area known:

"Why do you have a Spanish collection when those people should be learning English?"

Charming. So glad I wasn't the one helping her.

6 comments:

Molly Morrison said...

Ugh.

Maybe that woman is just jealous that she can only read one language. (If not, she should be.)

Theresa said...

Errr. There is very little that gets me as mad as comments like the one you overheard. And who are "those people" anyway? It could be me, a native English speaker. I've checked out Spanish books. It could be parents who want their kids to learn another language as a child. It could be a Spanish major at the local university. And it could be someone who doesn't speak English at all. So what? Libraries just meet a demand. Why else would they have so many copies of Danielle Steel books? If there was ever a section that should go ... :)

AS said...

Ugh, indeed.

If something was originally written or produced in Spanish, why should those who can enjoy that have to read/watch something translated/subtitled? And, frankly, if it's quicker to read Spanish, why not be able to read that way? I read and speak other languages, but I'll often read translations, anyway, because they're just so much faster.

Lolly said...

The joys of library work, eh? All sorts of people...

roxy ^-o-^ said...

A perfect example of people who make me really tired LOL

cbsngeo said...

One hears some pretty amazing things working with the public! My only complaint at my library is that they replaced the New Materials section with the Spanish section - it's not as easy to browse the library's new acquisitions now. But that's a small quibble compared to having the Spanish material available to those who want it.