At 8:00 Thursday morning, workers from McWaters, Inc., out of Columbia, began moving, storing or relocating more than 300 sections of main floor shelving. Let the madness begin! They hope to complete this project by today’s end, believe it or not.
They entered a building nearly empty of traditional library materials. Susan Silverman, Nancy White, Pam Garrison and Michaela Volkmar (and a handful of students) had already done the lion’s share of all the heavy lifting. And I do mean heavy, as in weighty, not as in, “Like, heavy, man, heavy.”
These really not-at-all-strapping-but-quite-fetching-women relocated literally thousands and thousands of reference tools. Think about it. These are not your ordinary, run-of-the-mill, portable Shakespeare pocketbooks, but enormous tomes, more on the order of the Oxford English Dictionary, known far and wide by its aficionados as the OED. In fact, that was one of the sets moved, along with about thousand other such sets, enchiridia, vade-mecums, grimoires and whatever else you can think of the size of small boats and weight of small elephants.
If all of this were not enough, using the master plan Ms. Silverman devised, Susan and Pam also went about the building labeling everything that had to be moved, surplussed, or relocated. By labeling, I don’t mean “move from this location to another.” I mean detailed maps, colored-coded and everything, so even a man could follow them, assuming of course you could get him to take five seconds to look at it. Oh, wait, would that be like asking for directions? Never mind. Maybe this is why when you want it talked to death, you convene a group of men, but when you want it done, you call a group of women?
Carrie Johnston, just-this-shy-of-delivery, made her way through the building with an entourage getting printers moved, copiers, offices, people and the rest of the non-book accoutrements put in a place not on the first floor. Gale Teaster and her crew (Ellen Owens, Sandra Douglas and Brenda Dumas) have been busy relocating current periodicals and newspapers. Dot Barber (do you see a pattern here, in these names?), in the dean’s office, has been packing up the dean’s suite of its dozen filing cabinets, supply closet for the whole building, and much more.
Meanwhile, the men of the building have been slouching at the gates pondering long and hard. Why, we had a meeting planned just this morning to go over once again the logistics for this reference move when—Eureka!—the whole thing had been done! But don’t you worry about us. We all have headaches at least the size of peanuts so I told them to take it easy for the rest of the day.
Next week: Pre-construction meeting