Vive la difference

PHOTO COURTESY OF ALISHA JEFFERS

“Never apologize for your reading taste” – Betty Rosenberg.

 

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As a librarian with thirty years’ experience one thing (among many) that has consistently struck me has been the variation and wide polar differences in personal taste.  People are different, of course, but the considerable variability in reading (and by extension, media) interests and choices are often very, very different.

 

Vive la difference.

 

But then I consider the variances of taste in my own family.  My eighteen-year-old son likes, and purchases literature translated into Albanian, and, listens to German folk music, on vinyl in the original German.

 

My daughter’s tastes range from Temple Grandin through the 1966 British cult tv-series ‘The Prisoner’ on to contemporary flicks starring Chris Evans.

 

My personal interests are somewhat objectively puzzling: 1950’s era Swedish, French, Italian and Japanese movies as well as contemporary Brit (and cousin) detective shows: Grantchester, Broadchurch, Vera, Endeavour, Midsomer and Doctor Blake.

 

And, a fascination for preferred Young Adult fantasy: Harry Potter, Philip Pullman and Ursula Le Guin.

 

Different strokes for different folks, of course, and while there are current reading themes running through beautiful downtown Red Feather Lakes Village and environs there’s wide preferential differences as well, and Red Feather Lakes Community Library makes considerable effort to meet them.

 

That’s through evaluating use, trends and comments. We take requests very seriously and many of the titles on library shelves have been user recommended as “a good read” or a “first-rate show.”

 

We can’t purchase everything, of course, because of occasional left-field interests that will otherwise see little, if any additional use. (For example, you won’t find books in Albanian on library shelves). At times wanted materials are unavailable: out of print, very expensive, or otherwise difficult to obtain.

 

For much of the latter we rely on interlibrary loan – the ability to borrow from smaller sister Colorado libraries (AspenCat) and larger Colorado libraries state-wide through SWIFT.

 

‘Swift’ is not quite accurate. Because we’re at the end of the road in our own patch of near-paradise, we see one-a-week pickup and delivery while many Colorado libraries have three-day-a-week or five-day turnover. So, allow two to three weeks receipt.

 

Need instant gratification? We can download a book – from millions – onto a circulating e-reader in 15 minutes – famous or not.

 

But the focal point is taste, individually or for your family and we’ll work towards meeting that.

 

Prefer Amish Christian fiction, techno-thrillers, Regency romance or Old West shoot-‘em-ups? Fine. We’ll try to meet those interests. Some folk prefer true crime as cautionary tales. We’ll meet that.  Documentary, foreign, or mainstream popular films? We’re there. Your taste is our taste: we’re here to meet your interests.

 

And enjoy what you’re reading or viewing. It’s a broad world and media reflects that from any number of genres or points of view.

 

Good, comfortable reading is never having to say you’re sorry.

Creed Kidd
Library Director