Quotations About Librarians


"And, guys have this thing with librarians: 'I really like frumpy librarians with glasses who, after a couple of tequila shots, take their hair out of the bun and get crazy.' "
Sonya Jury, architect
(Quoted in Construction.com article, 5 December 2002)

"Are all librarians this much trouble?"
Stephen Sommers
(The Mummy Returns, 2001. Line spoken by Brendan Fraser as Rick O'Connell)

"As a general rule, librarians are a kick in the pants socially, often full of good humor, progressive, and, naturally, well read."
  Bill Hall
  (As quoted in American Libraries, January 2002, p. 44)

"Beware the lustful fires that burn in a librarian's heart. They can rage beyond all control."
  The Onion
  ("Fire Safety and Prevention Tips," 28 May 2003)

"Boys who are into sports tend not to become librarians."
Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
(Unshelved comic strip, 4 December 2003.
Line spoken by the character Dewey)

"Burnout for librarians seems to me both foolish and unnecessary. . . . Work hard, work well, work effectively. Work until quitting time. Then go home and enjoy the rest of your life. If that leaves an unsolved problem, tell your boss on the way out the door or write the boss a note."
Herbert S. White
(At the Crossroads. Libraries Unlimited, 1995, p. 210)

"For the civilized world accepts as unforgivable sin
Any talking out loud with any librarian"
Meredeth Wilson
 ("Marian the Librarian," from The Music Man)

"He's like Super Librarian, y'know? Everyone forgets, Willow, that knowledge is the ultimate weapon."
(Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode, "Never Kill a Boy on the First Date."
Line spoken by Nicholas Brendon as Xander Harris)

"I deserve a swift kick in the shorts for all the times I've stubbornly wound my way through the library stacks, my mule head leading the way, searching fruitlessly for information a librarian could put in my hands in a matter of minutes."
Michael Perry
(Handbook for Freelance Writing, 1995, as quoted in Marylaine Block's
Ex Libris, 23 February 2001)

"I didn't know librarians drank martinis."
Josephine Carr
(The Dewey Decimal System of Love. New American Library, 2003, p. 77)

"I don't like libraries and I don't like dealing with librarians. They say they want change, but what they want is what they had in the past."
  Frank Gehry, architect
  (As quoted by a library director, Chicago Tribune article, 20 August 2004)

"I just knew I wanted to be respected. I wanted to be good at sport. I wanted to be pretty. I wanted to be head librarian."
Lucy Lawless
(Quoted in Sydney Morning Herald article, 30 January 1999)

"I love being in a skirt and boots. It goes back to the librarian-principal look. I like the idea of carrying books around in a skirt."
Tori Amos
(Submitted by L.J.)

"I may not be an explorer, or an adventurer, or a treasure seeker, or a gunfighter, Mr. O'Connell, but I am proud of what I am. ... I am a librarian, and I'm going to kiss you, Mr. O'Connell!"
Stephen Sommers
(The Mummy, 1999. Lines spoken by Rachel Weisz as Evie Carnahan)

"I really didn't realize the librarians were, you know, such a dangerous group. ... You think they're just sitting at the desk, all quiet and everything. They're like plotting the revolution, man. I wouldn't mess with them. You know, they've had their budgets cut. They're paid nothing. Books are falling apart. The libraries are just like the ass end of everything, right?"
  Michael Moore
  (BuzzFlash interview, 13 March 2002)

"I saw you guys going at it behind the card catalog."
(Friends episode, 22 November 2001.
Line spoken by Jennifer Anniston as Rachel Green)

"I think that librarians get a bum rap. They're constantly represented as these staid do-gooders, hair in a bun, glasses on the nose. In fact, librarians have better eyesight than most professionals."
Alan Kurzweil
("Fresh Air" interview (NPR), 20 October 2001)

"I thought I'd be a librarian until I met some crazy ones."
Edward Gorey
(Boston Globe article, 1998, as quoted in Salon)

"I wanted to have sex with a lot of librarians."
  Anthony Kiedis
  (Inducting the Talking Heads into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,
   18 March 2002)

"I've got so much more respect now for librarians."
Bjork
(Quoted in Associated Press news article, 15 November 2002)

"If she can't spell, why is she a librarian? Librarians should know how to spell."
Beverly Cleary
(Ramona's World. Morrow Junior Books, 1999, p. 109)

"If you tell even a single librarian joke, I'm outta here."
Josephine Carr
(The Dewey Decimal System of Love. New American Library, 2003, p. 37)

"In fact a few simple mathematical calculations reveal that if reference librarians were paid at market rates for all the roles they play, they would have salaries well over $200,000."
Will Manley
(The Truth About Reference Librarians. McFarland, 1996, p. 30)

"In the nonstop tsunami of global information, librarians provide us with floaties and teach us how to swim."
Linton Weeks
(Washington Post article, 13 January 2001, p. C01)

"It is this author's devout hope that in time he may be able to produce acceptable books about cute furry animals and -- for the older reader -- stories about high schools in California with really good athletic programs and uniformly attractive students. In the meantime, while the sort of adumbrated and sinister production which follows these remarks continues to issue forth (to my considerable enrichment -- and the publisher's), the least I can do is to entreat teachers and librarians of the better sort to keep the book out of the hands of the young."
Daniel M. Pinkwater
(Young Adults. Tor, 1985, p. 84)

"It must be where the librarians hang out. Hey, let's get locked in here every weekend!"
(Arthur episode. Line spoken by the character of Francine)

"It's very safe at the Oscars, I mean the Oscars is practically a librarians convention."
Steven Cojocaru, West Coast style editor for People
(Chicago Tribune article about fashion at the Grammy Awards,
21 February 2001, sec. 5 p. 1)

"Langdon had been inside hermetic vaults many times, but it was always an unsettling experience ... something about entering an airtight container where the oxygen was regulated by a reference librarian."
Dan Brown
(Angels and Demons. Simon & Schuster, 2000, p. 193.
Submitted by Rosemary McCarthy)

"Liberrian: One who picks liberries from wild liberry bushes and makes a liberry pie. Mmmmh! Mmmmh! So delicious!"
R. Lee Hadden
(Message reproduced in Library Juice, 12 April 2000)

"A librarian is a person who helps people -- and dinosaurs -- at the library."
Mark S. Bernthal
(Barney and Baby Bop Go to the Library. Lyrick, 1999)

"Librarians are librarians: they are not caregivers, nurturers, social workers, surrogate parents, welfare agents, or therapists. When all is said and done, their role is straightforward: they gather stuff, impose some order on said stuff, and make the stuff available to the public."
Blaise Cronin
(Library Journal column, 15 May 2002, p. 66)

"Librarians don't look like librarians all the time."
Pamela Rush
("Checking Out At the Library")

"Librarians, Dusty, possess a vast store of politeness. These are people who get asked regularly the dumbest questions on God's green earth. These people tolerate every kind of crank and eccentric and mouth breather there is."
Garrison Keillor, "Lives of the Cowboys"
(Submitted by Kathy)

"Libraries are far from the rarefied cathedrals of secular humanism they pretend to be, while librarians are the shadiest cratures this side of the Russian mob. Scratch the adamantly bland demeanor of any librarian and you'll find trails of broken hearts, bathtubs full of meth fixings, and covert careers in porn."
David Schmader
(The Stranger.com column, 17 October 2002)

"Libraries are brothels for the mind. Which means that librarians are the madams, greeting punters, understanding their strange tastes and needs, and pimping their books."
Guy Browning
(The Guardian column, 18 October 2003. Submitted by Lynette in Queensland)

"Like a librarian in borrowed leather pants, the city seemed to say, 'I just don't know if it's me.'"
The Oregonian
(Editorial, 19 August 2003)

"Man, who'd have thought being a librarian could be so tough?"
  (Andromeda episode, "Harper 2.0."
 Line spoken by Gordon Michael Woolvett as Seamus Harper.
 Submitted by C.E. of Texas)

"Mary Kay is one of the secret masters of the world: a librarian. They control information. Don't ever piss one off."
Spider Robinson
(The Callahan Touch. Ace, 1993, p. 64)

"Most people don't realize how important librarians are. I ran across a book recently which suggested that the peace and prosperity of a culture was solely related to how many librarians it contained. Possibly a slight overstatement. But a culture that doesn't value its librarians doesn't value ideas and without ideas, well, where are we?"
Neil Gaiman
(The Sandman. Line spoken by Lucien, Librarian of the Dreaming.
Submitted by Trey Bunn.)

"Of course it's alright for librarians to smell of drink."
Barbara Pym
(Less Than Angels , submitted by Rebecca Hunt of Maryland)

"Oh, I'm afraid I always wanted to be a librarian. To me that seemed like the perfect life: solitude; absolute silence; tall, dark libraries. But then they started to become very modern, you know, these little pre-fabs and they had no romance whatsoever. So suddenly the idea had no fascination for me."
Morrissey
(Star Hits interview, 1985. Submitted by Alice in Brazil)

"Okay, I'm going to draw up the demand for the librarian's resignation tonight."
(Gilmore Girls episode, 1 October 2002.
Line spoken by Liza Weil as Paris Geller)

"Or, if you catch her in a good mood, she'll recite the Dewey decimal system by heart. They say Mrs. Beamster has a crush on Mr. Dewey and that she carries his picture in a lead locket around her neck."
Mike Thaler
(The Librarian from the Black Lagoon. Scholastic, 1997)

"Our whole American way of life is a great war of ideas, and librarians are the arms dealers selling weapons to both sides."
James Quinn
(WESTPAC/NOCALL joint meeting, 1990)

"Show me a computer expert that gives a damn, and I'll show you a librarian."
Patricia Wilson Berger
(Quoted in Chicago Tribune article, 29 June 1990, Tempo section, p. 1)

"The library people can be mean pricks when it comes to people cutting up their magazines."
John Sandford
(Certain Prey. Putnam, 1999, p. 171)

"There are only two kinds of people who believe themselves able to read a MARC record without referring to a stack of manuals: a handful of our top catalogers, and those on serious drugs."
Roy Tennant
(Library Journal column, 15 October 2002)

"To Homer, libraries were holy places like churches, and the priestly librarians a blessed race, a saving remnant in a world of sin. Whenever God grew impatient and decided to destroy the world he remembered the librarians and stayed his hand."
Jane Langton
(The Thief of Venice, as quoted in Library Juice, 14 February 2001)

"We cannot have good libraries until we first have good librarians -- properly educated, professionally recognized, and fairly rewarded."
Herbert S. White
(Library Journal column, 15 November 1999, pp. 44-45)

"Well, that makes you a very clever librarian, Talamascan."
Scott Abbott, screenplay
(Queen of the Damned. Line spoken by Stuart Townsend as Lestat)

"What can I say? Librarians rule."
Regis Philbin
(Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, 17 February 2000)

"When Goofy meets the librarian, they hit it off and spark a stuck-in-the-seventies disco inferno that steals the show."
(Videotape case blurb, An Extremely Goofy Movie, 2000)

"With a librarian behind him, there's no telling how far a shoeshine boy can go."
Helen Schary Motro
(Christian Science Monitor column, 23 August 2002)

"You honor your reservations; you go to your meetings so we can clean the rooms; you're relatively quiet; and you drink more than the American Legion."
Anonymous hotel official, on why he liked the ALA annual conference
(Quoted by Patricia Wilson Berger in Chicago Tribune article, 
29 June 1990, Tempo section, p. 1)

 

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