Wednesday, February 25, 2015

WWMD?

Greetings readers! Tonight's musings center around the new acronym I created: WWMD: World-wide Weapons of Mass Destruction! Oh wait, that's a different blog haha...

WWMD stands for What Would Mintern Do? This came to me after I was eavesdropping on one of Mintern's phone conversations today. She is SO nice! Her tone is happy and pleasant, and you can tell she genuinely enjoys her job. So, future prison librarians, I am going to use this acronym when people are driving me nuts and all I want to do is yell at them, and I encourage you to do so as well.

Until next time!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Stop the presses!!

Greetings, dear readers!

Lots of happenings in the prison library lately. Mintern continues to excel, and to present a more united front for our patrons, I got a head start on the new AR and started wearing professional dress two weeks ago. You would think that our patrons have never seen a librarian dressing like a librarian before from all the comments I have been getting.

Some of the best:
Patron: " You changed your outfit!"
Me: "Uniforms are SO last season."

Staff: "I love that sweater! Nordstrom?"
Me: "Target!"

Patron: "I love your outfit! Where did you get it?"
Me: "Target!"
Patron: "All of it?"
Me: "Well no, just the sweater. The pants are from Maurices."
Patron: "And then what about your boots?"
Me: "Oh. Those are just Ugg boots."
Patron: "They KNEW it!" *wheeled back to her friends who knew what Ugg boots looked like*

Surprisingly though all the comments have been positive. Nobody has told me that I really should switch back to the uniform haha.  Not that I'm there to impress anyone but at least it's nice to know that I don't look completely terrible.

My favorite look though is my REI-chic button up shirt and Kuhl pants. It's nice to finally wear pants that I like!

Until next time!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

To my colleague who left and I didn't even get to say goodbye

You know who you are and I just wanted to let you know that I enjoyed working with you over the past year. Even though we were far away and didn't get to hang out in person mucb, your humor and expertise will definitely be missed. You were an awesome addition to our Librarian team and wherever you go next will be lucky to have you!

I hope you have a good life back at home and that you have lots of snuggle time with your puppies whom you left behind for a while during your tenure with us. If you ever need anything you know my email address.

P.S. we got the missing dictionary back in the courier on Monday so don't worry, we won't be charging your account despite the many threatening overdue notices we have sent. ;-)

Until we meet again at ALA!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Shiny new contact info

Greetings dear readers!

I wanted to let you know that I have set up an email address to correspond with this blog. The purpose of this is twofold: it allows me to keep this blog "anonym-ish" and also provides a different platform for readers who have questions about prison librarianship but don't want to leave them on the blog.

So, from now on, you can contact Mintern and me at askaprisonlibrarian@gmail.com.

Until next time!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Prison Laugh o' the Day

Today a patron checked out the book The Martian, which invariably led to a conversation about how space is portrayed in Sci-Fi.  One of our clerks is a huge sci-fi fan, so she has extensive experience with the genre:

Clerk #1: "I don't want to go to space!  It's all empty and scary and people get mutated there!"
Clerk #2: *Coming to the conversation late* "Where is this vacation place?  China??"

Ha!

Until next time!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Mintern meets OC

Hi readers!

In order to carry pepper spray on a daily basis at a prison in my state, you first have to be exposed to it. While it might initially sound really mean to make all DOC employees experience the cruel, blinding burn of pepper spray, the state requires exposure for legitimate reasons. First, the department of corrections wants to make sure that you aren’t allergic to the chemicals. Second, it is an absolute certainty that pepper spray is used in prison settings. Whether you are in the middle of the fray or you just accidentally walk through the outskirts of the mist, the department wants to ensure that you can operate effectively while experiencing the negative effects of the demon juice.

Now, I am not a huge fan of spicy foods. The mild sauce from Taco Bell has been known to make me tear up, so you can only imagine what a face full of OC did to me. All 100 of my classmates and I lined up single-file outside of a tiny, little brown shed. In groups of four, we entered the shed. Upon entering, our training instructors filled the shed with OC. It was stifling. My eyes instantly started tearing up, and I was involuntarily coughing left and right. While in the shed we had to shout loud, repetitive instructions to a fake offender as we aimed our own individual cans of OC at an outline of a person on one of the shed walls. After our training officers were satisfied with our performance, we rushed out of the shed and had to successfully demonstrate knee strikes on a training mat. Our instructors said that rubbing our eyes would make the burning worse, so I made sure not to touch any part of my face. While I didn’t get direct exposure, I got enough to know that any amount of pepper spray is bound to be a pretty unpleasant experience.

Until next time! Mintern, over and out.

P.S. Special note to all the guybrarian readers out there: A few dudes in my training class didn’t wash their hands after exposure… Let’s just say that they were in more than a little pain after our first restroom break following exposure.


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

For your reading pleasure, a new blog from Mintern

Hello readers!

This was the best week of training ever! I got to meet one of the super awesome dogs that the Department of Corrections keeps on staff. There are nine dogs that work for the department. They travel from facility to facility to sniff out bombs and narcotics, and they follow the scent trails of escaped offenders! The dogs can pick up the trail of an escaped offender from miles away. That’s pretty amazing!

For the presentation today, one of the dog trainers stowed a little bit of marijuana in the purse of one of my fellow classmates. When the (cute but ferocious) dog was brought into the room it barked and barked until the dog trainer gave him some slack to hunt out the contraband. The doggy found it within minutes and quietly sat right next to the purse-in-question until the dog trainer discovered the drugs and gave the puppy his favorite chew toy as a prize.

The dog trainers said that anyone in the department of corrections is welcome to cross-train with them for a day. If I cross-train with the dog trainers, I would get to see the dog in action in a real prison and help make sure the dog stays on top of his game by doing drills. So my new mission in life is to think up an irrefutable reason that a prison librarian needs to cross-train with the narcotics doggy. Any and all suggestions are welcome!


Mintern, over and out.