Fisher Library is the ultimate in fickle.
Once upon a time – even only 6 months ago – Fisher library and its trendy younger cousin, SciTech Library, were best friends. In fact, it was as though these libraries were extensions of my brain. Housed in these two enormous buildings were mountains and mountains of books that could teach me about anything I wanted to know. And remote access to journals meant that I could learn new things from the comfort of my computer at home.
Now I am out in the real world. I am still a researcher but with no more connections with the uni. Fisher has spurned me.
I’ve known this since August, but the reality came crashing down today on my adventure to Moore College library to track down some material for work. Moore College library was foreign, but friendly. The librarians were helpful and they set me up with a visitors account so I could photocopy things. I couldn’t take any books out which was lame. But I wasn’t offended. I am not and never have been a student there, so why should I feel like it was my right?
After a fruitful time in Moore Library I walked the very short trek to Fisher – my academic home, the building which stores all the stuff that I can’t fit in my brain. My quest was to find out if they had a particular book that I had seen at Moore. Imagine my heartache as I walked past over fifty computers on two floors denying me access to the library catalogue because I no longer had a 13 digit library card number. This building full of knowledge was suddenly cut off from me. Once I could sit at those computers and waste time online, and track down articles, and write up long lists of Dewey Decimal numbers. Today I spent 10 minutes wondering around the library looking for a terminal that would accept me. And then there was the sad sensation of realising that even if I could find my book, I would not be able to check it out. Not anymore.
So now I am investigating an alumni card, but that still won’t give me remote access to the electronic journals. How am I supposed to be a researcher without those resources!? Ugh. It’s awful. My heart has been broken by a library.