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Why I Boycotted the Library

Updated on January 11, 2012

Don't get me wrong. I once had a passionate relationship with the local community library, and spent an entire summer volunteering. But then I got distracted, and started slipping. Eventually I stopped showing up at all. Did they call to ask how I was doing, or if I'd be returning? Nope. All they cared about was getting those books back. And the fines kept adding up with interest compounding each day. In my new and innovative ways to avoid communication with the library, I discovered that I really didn't need the library after all!

Free Books Are Everywhere

A trip to the bookstore is a true luxury for my family. Typically we only visit one when blessed with some extra cash or in the fall when purchasing new home school workbooks. Walking out with just a book is a difficult task, especially when exit doors are placed near a barista roasting up something delicious and frothy from freshly-ground coffee beans and steamed milk. Thanks to places like Book Thing, thrift stores, and used bookstores, our family hasn't purchased a book from a corporate bookseller in a very long time.

Cheap Books Are Cheaper Than Library Fines

Local thrift stores offer booth contemporary and classic selections for under $2 each, and the Book Thing of Baltimore, Maryland offers books for free, to everyone, every day! If you're not within driving distance to Baltimore, try downloading e-books for the Kindle. No Kindle? No problem! Amazon not only offers a free version of its Kindle app for both Android devices and personal computers, but it also provides a ton of free books for quick and easy download.

No Snarky, Shushing Librarians

Thanks to restaurant franchises like McDonalds and Panera Bread offering free wifi, I never have to rely on the library for internet service, ever again. Not only are the chairs more comfortable, but my local Panera also has a super cushy love seat, right in front of a fireplace. Both let you drink coffee while using your laptop -- and as all internet junkies know, coffee is an essential part of most online sessions. Time to break for lunch? Work through lunch! Even if you don't want a whole meal, a snack is as close as the ordering counter.

It's safe to say that I will probably never return to my local, public library, ever again. Someone recently asked if I felt bad that my children would grow up not knowing how to use the Dewey Decimal System. Honestly? No. My kids are bright and I'm willing to bet that 90% of America's libraries have some computerized version of the Dewey Decimal System. If they can figure out how to talk to my mother-in-law on Facebook through the television set, I'm sure they can find a book. But chances are, they probably already downloaded it onto their personal computer or picked up a copy at the local thrift shop.

Thanks for stopping by this hub, and happy reading, wherever you find your books!


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