Friday, July 13, 2012

My Library Card and the Trail Toward Responsibility

At long last, I did it!  I braved the red tape of bureaucracy, I stumbled through the treacherous trails of residency proof, and I wore my protective boots in order to steel myself against the hazards of paperwork.

At long last I was on my way to personal fulfillment!

What does this mean, in plain English?

I finally managed to get my library card!!!


What took me so long?  

Well, the biggest problem is proof of residency.  I had to prove I live here in order to get a card.  Since I still haven't switched my license over to Minnesota from Texas, using one of those was out of the question.

As far as bills that show my name and address are concerned, they all show my husband's name, rather than mine, since he moved up here a few months ahead of me, so I was out of luck in that case.

Other mailings?  Yeah, sure.  In all seriousness, who in their right mind thinks, "Gee, I should keep my Think Geek catalog in the car, just in case I need it..."?

Not me, that's for sure!

Finally, I managed to switch my car insurance over to my Minnesota address, along with attaining a new Minnesota agent.

I took that in as proof of address.

And it was a success!  Yay!

You're probably wondering what in the world a library card has to do with environmental responsibility.  

The answer is a lot, actually.

First, a library card means borrowing a book that several other people (hopefully) have borrowed before you.  An example of reuse at its finest.  By checking out a book at the library, you've helped keep a few trees from getting chopped down, and done a little something to reduce the use of fossil fuels that go into the process of creating books.

Ok, so we all know that.  For some of us, that's a huge factor.  But what else does this do to keep me on the trail toward environmental responsibility?

Research, of course!

The library is filled with a vast treasure trove of knowledge.  Specifically, local knowledge.  I can learn about local animal life, local plants, local laws... local anything!

I can study climate patterns within this county.

I can find books that will help me identify local plants and animals while I'm outside and staring at them, rather than taking pictures and running into the confines of my house.

I can discover area businesses that work toward greater environmental responsibility.

I can seek out historic answers to questions... what people did to fix things long before I was born (which will, quite naturally, be more environmentally responsible than our current disposable society patterns).

I can do all of this, and more!

A few months without a library card was very difficult for me.

I used to work within school libraries.  I spent a lot of time at the public library.  Indeed, I spent a lot of time considering going back to school for an MLIS (Masters of Library and Information Science).

Finally, I have a library card again.  This means that I can delve even deeper into environmental responsibility, using the colossal hoard of information that is now within my grasp at the local library.


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