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Big Brother comes to LAPL

The following email I sent August 4, 2016, is self-explanatory:

to rmorales, ecaswell, Carol, Librarians
To: Robert Morales, Senior Management Analyst II

cc: Continue reading

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The Case for the Vertical File

Are you getting requests for juvy or YA material on “Day of the Dead”? There aren’t many books on this Mexican holiday and teachers don’t want material from the internet. What to do? Continue reading

Posted in Memoirs of a Public Librarian, Suggestions | Leave a comment

Public Scanners

I’m often asked by library patrons if we have a scanner for public use.   Continue reading

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1993 Tardiness Grievance

From the Memoirs of a Public Librarian . . .

In 1993 – at Exposition Park branch (LAPL) and at other branches – one of our work shifts was “11:30 am until 8:00 pm”.

The LAPL Library Manual, however, recognizes what  my supervisor then refused to recognize; that an agency open to the public requires 5 – 10 minutes to lock up the building after the last patron has left, to count the cash, set the alarm, etc.

My 1993 grievance is the reason why, today,  LAPL units (those open to the public) are required to set the schedule to be from 11:40 am until 8:10 pm instead of 11:30 am until 8:00 pm.

In 1993, I was written up (continuing harassment – see earlier grievances) for coming one minute late to work – although we always left the building not less than 5 to 10 minutes after 8 !  The point of the grievance was that if you are going to be strict about arrival time you must also be strict about departure time!

Click below to view my 1993 Tardiness grievance.  Names (or at least last names) have been redacted. Continue reading

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Agency fee.

A strong union is important for public librarians. We are on the cutting edge of an amazing information revolution. Our job description has changed dramatically over the last 15 years. We must now be fluent with new tools of technology in addition to the traditional fluency in literature being accessed by that technology.

We are caught between extremely rapid advances in the manifestation of information, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, library administrators who lag behind even the general public in knowledge of technology – but who nevertheless make decisions affecting our day-to-day workplace situations. Continue reading

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ITC v. LAPL Librarians: Is the tail wagging the dog?

To what extent are the traditional responsibilities of the professional librarian being swallowed up by the new technology?

This question comes up due to the policy at LAPL whereby librarians are prohibited by ITC from downloading any programs to the reference desk computers – including reference tools like Google toolbar which reference librarians use to fill patron inquiries.

The following are some of the issues involved – as stated in grievance (and grievance appeal) papers that brought (and denied) regarding this issue: Continue reading

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Doctor’s Note Conundrum

Early this month I needed to use sick time for nearly a week due to symptoms of the common cold. I was told on the phone that a Doctor’s note is required by LAPL in order to return to work when out sick for more than 3 days.

So the night before returning to work I went to Kaiser Hospital and got the required note. It took more than 2 1/2 hours of travel time, waiting time, and examination time. It cost me a Kaiser co-payment fee and Kaiser parking fees.

My question was this – was all this really necessary? – or was it based on a misunderstanding of the LAPL Doctor’s Note Policy? Continue reading

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Friends of the Library

Below is the bulk of the memo I sent on Jan. 5, 2009 suggesting some library fund raising possibilities:


Suggestions for Friends of EXPO

At the last area meeting I learned that the San Pedro Branch, Friends of the Library, group takes in some $3,000 per month from its monthly book sales. That’s impressive – especially with the current library budget problems. We should explore ways to improve Expo’s financial situation. The following are some ideas along these lines:

Continue reading

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SEC Day Trading Regulations

The following self-explanatory email correspondance is between myself and the SEC regarding the SEC web page at

The SEC makes the presumption (which I think is not correct) that day trading stocks is inherently riskier than actually “investing” in stocks. Continue reading

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