Tuesday, March 8, 2011

What Makes a Professional.

I just had an epiphany while resetting an old man's default browser to IE. He said the tech guy installed Google Earth for him but also installed Chrome and told it to be the default browser. The old guy was lost because Chrome didn't look the same and he couldn't find his favorites.

So I reset everything and explained that techies prefer Chrome. And then I had to explain what Chrome is. And then I explained again that techies hate Microsoft and prefer Google, but I didn't get into why because this old man seemed confused by the fact that there's more than one browser on his computer. And since old people get angry when they get confused, I left him to check his email and look at old lady porn.

But what I realized is that librarians are not professionals.

Librarians get along with everyone. We try to play nice. We make rules to accommodate everyone. We include everyone in the discussion. We call anyone who works in a library a librarian. We think all librarians are great and that they offer worthwhile contributions to the profession. We would never fill a sock with D batteries and beat a patron over the head for talking too loudly on his phone.

But real professionals argue with each other. When I watch those one-hour dramatic presentations on television, all the lawyers and doctors and computer guys and detectives all hate each other. The criticize other lawyers or doctors or computer guys or detectives and say how they suck at their jobs and how they're alcoholics or criminals or whores.

And that's what makes a profession. Infighting.

So long as librarians continue to play fair with each other, we will never be recognized as a profession. We need to argue. We need to prove that we have something in our profession that we will so strongly about that we could actually kill someone over it.

And if one of you assholes disagrees with me, we can take this outside. Right after I remove my sock and fill it with Rayovacs.

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