I've shared many things about library life on here from time to time. I've shared the frustrations of working with youth, programs that I've implemented that have found successes and failures, and hopefully I've shared a little bit about how much I love what I do. But it's hard to really put that into words, because what I do is, well, kind of weird.
There's managing the collection, budgets, reference interactions, management, planning for the future, making hard decisions, making easy decisions...and there's play. Yes. I play at my library. I'm loud. I'm energetic. And I'm usually getting myself into appropriate trouble. Because, as Head of Reference and Teen Services it's okay to challenge a teen to an impromptu game of Just Dance. It's okay to dress as a zombie and make a fool of myself in front of a video camera. It's okay to make friends and build relationships with a group of teenagers that are both challenging and mind-blowingly awesome.
These teens. I wish you could meet them all. I wish you could get into a very detailed discussion about cheese Abraham Lincoln in a battle with Batman. I wish you could know the joys of having a shadow that refers to himself as Emily 2.0. I wish you could have secret handshakes and heartfelt conversations about life, and faith, and books, and Transformers. I wish you could experience the joy that I feel on a daily basis. Sure, there are rough days...I work with teens. But for every rough day is five smiles. For every moment of defeat is a moment where a teen lets you know, in their own unique way, that you are important in their life.
So what does "Team Noodle-Purse" have to do with this? Or what in the world is a "Team Noodle-Purse? Well, please let me tell you. We're coming up on our 6th annual Teen Film Festival, and for the first time we have a homeschool submission, and it just so happens that the creators are some of my favorite teens on the planet. And I do not say that lightly, because over the last eight years I have met A LOT of teens.
They're weird. They're strange. They're funny. They're passionate. And they make me oh so proud. As chair of the Teen Film Festival, I don't get to judge the entries, so I feel no shame in sharing my kids with you. So sit back, relax, and come face to face with my joy.