For some of us it’s our local tavern, for others, their mother’s kitchen (in Niagara Falls this mainly applies to Italians) but regardless of the choice, it’s vital to a have a safe refuge to turn to when things get too hairy in your life.
#79: Your Local Library.
Yes, I’m a ginormous nerd, thanks ever so much for noticing, but libraries are more than just the first place to be targeted whenever cities want to direct funds to raises for city councils, they are repositories of human knowledge and understanding. Some of the finest works of literature in history can be found in libraries.
And works by the Kardashians.
Of course, the Kardashian tomes are guidebooks for future generations; namely, how not to live your life like a soul-sucking succubus that contributes more to society’s demise than it’s enlightenment.
But back to the benefits of your local bibliotheca. Modern libraries stock comic book trades and graphic novels. (YES!!!) Their shelves are stacked with guides to gardening (leafy!), home repair (noisy!), lovemaking (saucy!), politics (scandalous!) and every other subject under the sun including chihuahua cage boxing.
What? Can you prove they aren’t?
Libraries are also taking steps to ensure they don’t get left behind as society moves into the future. You can find mini-art galleries, expanded computer labs and multi-media rooms where you can use video cameras and musical instruments. And they’ll even provide all the editing equipment you’ll need to turn your dreams into digital realities. You can even rent space (free of charge!) at a library so your Three’s Company fan club can move out of your mom’s basement. (But she’ll still have to supply the cookies and juice.)
And guess what, kids? Your library even has ancient tech like record and tape players, vinyl pressings and tapes! History can be fun and soulful. And there even 3-D printers so you can design all sorts of doodads and whatchamacallits.
The Niagara Falls Public Library system hosts speaking engagements, paint nights, back-to-work symposiums for those hit hard by a crazy economy, movie screenings, craft shows, touch-feely doggie sessions and even tax workshops. There are literally more offerings than i can list here (and not because I’m lazy) including a “How To Break Into The Assassin Biz” nights. These of course, became extremely popular after John Wick came out.
But the real reason I love libraries is simple: They’re quiet and peaceful.
Sure, there’s a certain amount of background noise and the occasional nutjob ranting about potato salad and pink elephants but for the most part you can lose yourself in a library. My childhood was filled with some dark days and the St. Catharines Public Library was my equivalent of religious sanctuary. Solitude mixed with silence and knowledge equaled sanity for me as a kid.
And even though I’m an adult now (apparently) and no one’s ever going to make me feel like I’m not good enough to be in this world ever again, I still require a place to escape life’s pressures and challenges.
And the comic book store drains my bank account too fast, so I’d rather read graphic novels for free at my library than go home and explain why we can’t eat this week. I’m funny that way.
So when the voices become too loud take a breath and drown them out with knowledge.
See you in the lobby and the stacks, friends…