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There’s an unhealthy stereotype of librarians as little old ladies who wear cardigans and put their hair in buns.

I object to this stereotype. I’m not entirely sure what a cardigan is, but I’m pretty sure I don’t own one. In fact, Ive been forced to conclude that I’m not even the most stylish librarian in Wilhelmsplatz. Peresepolis has me beat. She’s always wearing cooler clothes than me. AND she’s old enough to be my mother. I’m ashamed.

Rumor has it that Gwynhfer has me beat, too, but I don’t see her every day, so I don’t have enough evidence to be sure. Also, she couldn’t be my mother, not unless she raised her skirts when she was really young.

The stereotype further breaks down when you consider that lots of librarians are men, and it breaks down even further when you look at my hair. These days it’s cropped really short, and it’s purple kinda, and it stands up in some really funky ways if I wake up early enough to apply hair goo.

I am so happy about my new haircut. The whole time I was with Backwater I could not beg, intimidate, or seduce anyone into giving me a decent haircut. (Did not actually attempt to seduce any of the hairdressers, and you wouldn’t have either, if you’d seen them.) Here in Wilhelmsplatz I have discovered Hairdresser Jeff, and he is the greatest person ever. He let me communicate in adjectives, like this:

  • Hairdresser Jeff: “What are we doing with your hair today?”
  • Me: “I want hip! Trendy! Groovy! Edgy!”
  • Hairdresser Jeff: “Awesome!”

Hairdresser Jeff says that next time we can explore color options. Also, Hairdresser Jeff knew what my license plate meant. (It says MUGL.) I think I’m in love.

My hairstyle is so very badass that I just might take a picture of it for you folks in distance places like Kansas/Missouri (which one is it, Marian? I can never remember) can see.

No! Better! Here’s a picture!

In real life my neck isn’t that long and graceful, but otherwise that’s pretty much spot-on. Oh, and I have a nose in real life.

But back to the original point: is that the face of the musty stereotype?

No, no it isn’t.

There. With my compassionate, mature artwork, I have demonstrated that I do not have a bun.

…crap. Didn’t address the cardigan thing. Or maybe I did. I’m not wearing one in the picture. In fact, I’m not wearing anything at all. Teehee!

There’s another stereotype of librarians as being shy introverts. This one is harder to argue against. Most (though not all) librarians are bookish, and most (though not all) bookish people keep to themselves.

It’s certainly true in my department. We are not the bubbliest softdrinks in the fridge. And, you know, that’s okay…

…except that, for now, my department IS my peer group. I just moved here and I don’t know anybody except for the people I work with. (And Hairdresser Jeff, can’t forget him.)

I’m trying to remember each day to leave my desk to go visit the other departments. I still don’t have a clue what most of these people’s names are, but hey, at least I’m chatting with them.

Still though, the people I see most are my cohorts in Adult Services. [I will never stop thinking that “Adult Services” sounds naughty. Never, never, never.] So I was delighted when Mellicent suggested we get some people together to go out for Greek food.

Unfortunately Mellicent got sick, but Persepolis and Currer Bell and I gamely went for Greek without her. Predictably, we spent a lot of time talking about books, but A) so what? Talking books is fun! and B) none of us wore cardigans.


3 responses »

  1. I just love my new(ish bland off-white) cardigan! And my freakin’ very comfortable, unstylish shoes (unless you consider black Reeboks, worn with everything, stylish). But don’t worry. I have one and 2/15th classes to go before I can call myself a (swooning sigh!) Librarian, so maybe by then I’ll get more with it. For people as OLD as I, cardigans come in very handy when you have to whip off layers when you feel like your going to melt on the spot. I think the stereotypical librarians were very intelligent in their choice of clothes and hairstyle. If my hair was long(er) and scraggly(er), I’d want it away from my face when I looked into a book (and that’s all librarians do, right? Read books?). If I had the coordination and wherewithal (and hair) to make a bun, I’d probably do it. Maybe instead of caving in to the fashion industry’s standards, we should all wear cardigans and buns (and Reeboks) and show how powerful, intelligent and wonderful we all are, and girls will want to grow up dressing like us! Hey, ya never know!I agree that Perespolis’s clothes are always just so cool, though.

  2. AND I love your haircut. But I told you that in person. Thought I’d let the folks in Whereverland that your haircut is, indeed, very good.

  3. The Queen of Claremont

    I think I’M very stylish, thank you, and you must, too, since you liked the skirt I handed down to ya.Always remember, though – the only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize! (That’s my favorite line from Steel Magnolias, where I wowed the audiences as Clairee – and I still have my Red Devils jacket that I made for the part!) A girl can NEVER have too much jewelry!


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