Why my job is the best

Once upon a time there was a girl named Liz who worked in Special Collections at the Harold B. Lee Library in Provo.  It was the coolest job EVER and she loved it. You can argue with me all you want on that, but for reals, we all know I have the coolest job. Here is why:

1.  I get to work with the coolest stuff.  Sometimes it’s really old pictures of LDS missionaries to Hawaii.  Sometimes it’s love letters from World War I. Sometimes it’s important people’s journals. Sometimes it’s ordinary people’s journals. (Those are my favorite!)  There are postcards, plaques, certificates, letters,  journals, scrapbooks, research notes, meeting agendas, and obituaries. And the stuff, it’s usually oldish.  Like late 1800s early 1900s.

2.  I get to be a detective.  When I was hired, my boss described my job to me as Indiana Jones meets Family Search Indexing.  And it was a good description.  Sometimes I get to research people’s lives to write little biographies about them for the finding aid. Or I get to research them to see how the heck they fit into the collection.  Sometimes I get to play detective to figure out where the collection is.  My job is nearly never boring.

3.  We get to use post-it notes. I love post-it notes.  (Funny side note: Today, I was all alone at work, so I spread out a lot. Like my project was all over our workroom.  After a while, I decided to take a little bathroom break.  As I was washing my hands, I noticed something stuck to my back, and lo and behold! It was a post-it note that had come off of one of the many boxes in my workroom! {I don’t know where it even came from, so now it’s hanging on the wall until my coworker gets back and can redirect it to its proper place.})

4.  I love the people I work with. All of them.  First of all, they are funny.  Second of all, they are great.  Even though it’s the library (you know the reputation libraries have)  we have so much fun!

5.  I’m pretty sure that there is a secret society of people who donate their stuff to Special Collections.  In our workroom, we have a ton of collections. I’d be willing to bet that 2/3 of them relate to each other. What I mean is that sometimes (well, a lot of the time)  there will be a collection.  We’ll call it collection A.  Let’s say collection A is about some missionary.  Collection B will have a letter from that missionary. And Collection C will have an obituary of Collection B.  Collection D will have a postcard from Collection B. This happens.  It is INSANE.

6. Sometimes, I feel like a spy because I’m reading someone else’s mail. Or journal. I feel sneaky. But I’m not really, because it’s my job. But I sometimes still feel guilty that I’m reading some sister missionary’s deepest darkest secrets.

7.  I have to be secret.  Yeah, my job is that cool. We seriously have to sign a paper saying we’ll keep private things private.

8. Sometimes I get attached to the people I’m working with. For example, I read a lot of journals. Sometimes the journals document years and years of a person’s life, so I learn a lot about them. Sometimes, the person writing the journal will write about the birth of their new baby and tell about how cute and great that kid is.  Then I get to see that kid grow up.  And then, just when I get attached to that kid, the kid goes and does something ridiculous. Like gets arrested or goes crazy and gets all bitter at his family.  This is not fun.  It makes me sad for the kid and for their parent. The kid, because I started to be their biggest fan, and the parent because I get to see what’s happening and their emotions in relation to it.  That part is no fun. But being fake friends with them is.  Everyone wants to be able to say, “Oh yeah, I totally know all about Minerva Teichert’s life.  I could tell you about her kids. And her husband. And some other crazy stories, because I hung out with her papers at work.”

9. Throwing around important names like it’s no big deal.  That is fun. (Oh yeah, I totally held Brigham Young’s shirt last week. Or I saw a certificate signed by Hyrum Smith. Not a big deal.)

10. It has great hours.  We close by 5 every day.  I love that in a job because then my nights are free to study or party…but mostly study.

So, yes. My job is the coolest. I know, you’re jealous now of how cool it really is . But try not to be…or try to work there too.

I missed it for the nearly 7 weeks I was gone from it.  But now I’m back to reading other people’s mail in a non-illegal manner. It is so great.


One thought on “Why my job is the best

  1. Pingback: Count me in! « Once upon a time…

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