"In the House of the Seven Librarians"

I listened to the Podcastle story, In the House of the Seven Librarians today. This is a story about a magical library and its seven librarian attendants who raise a foundling girl.

About three-quarters of the way through the story, the narrator describes a list of rules that have been scratched down, in various hands, over time. My favorite was:

“Do not play Nine Hundred eighty-two card pickup with the p to q drawer, or any other.”

I can just imagine the mess.

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8 Responses to "In the House of the Seven Librarians"

  1. Annie says:

    I wonder if that reflects our age – if we: 1) know what a card catalog is, and 2) can imagine the mess that would ensue should one dump a card drawer.

    I really need to start listening to PodCastle again. iTunes stopped updating because I had such a back log.

  2. Courtney says:

    I love that the rule must be based on a previous experience so bad it won instant rule status.

  3. James Cronen says:

    @Courtney: Ask Bill about rule #19 of the golf league of one of his previous employers.

  4. Bill Ruhsam says:

    @Courtney: Ask Jim about this because I definitely have forgotten.

  5. Bill Ruhsam says:

    @Annie: You should definitely listen to the Christmas episode of EscapePod this year. Steampunk Santa Claus!

  6. James Cronen says:

    @Bill:

    “No golfer may expose himself on the course.”

  7. Amy says:

    I love this rule, but I’m with Annie, we have a generation coming along that will not get it because they’ve never experienced a library with a card catalog. It’s always been on the computer for them.

    There’s also the need to be around a library that uses LC cataloging to really get it. The p to q drawer means nothing if all you’ve ever seen of call numbers are things that start with numbers.

    Besides, if all the Qs fit in one drawer with the Ps, that library doesn’t have much of a collection in literature OR science!

  8. Annie says:

    @Amy: I totally skipped LC cataloging and was thinking about the card catalogs at the libraries I frequented as a kid (since those were the ones where I HAD to use a card catalog). Those were organized alphabetically w/in the card catalog. The cards then had the call numbers for the books.

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