Name: Inigo Montoya… no wait, Jacob Bond
Job Title: Library Associate at the Turner Branch
I started part time on June 16, 2009, and went full time in September 2010. This June will be my third year with the library.
What drew you to this occupation?
To be honest, after watching the entire business of my last job collapse very quickly, I was looking for job security. I did not want to return to retail, and I was looking for something I could make into a career at this stage of my life. I did not expect I would like it as much as I have, but it is easily my favorite job I’ve ever held.
Why do you think libraries are important?
I never realized it until I started working here, but libraries are such a community hub. Growing up, I only thought of them as a lot of people might: the place to get books. I never considered the amount of programs, education, crafts, and other activities and events that go on. Having gotten to know our patrons, I’ve come to realize how much some depend on the library in all aspects, from material to computer use to programs.
This drives me to try and make new and excited programs that aren’t normally available for both kids and adults. This is why I brought in the clown classes, learned how to “Extreme Coupon”, offered online selling courses, learned sciency things (that’s an official term, by the way) for Mad Science Experiments, and more. And as long as the patrons crave new information, I’ll keep looking for unique, fun, and interesting topics to teach them.
What is your favorite thing about working for the library?
Telling stories, which is ironic since public speaking has always been one of my worst areas throughout my life. When I first started doing the kids stuff with Turner, I remember being terrified of just reading stories at outreaches. I remember in the beginning going with Stephanie and watching her do it, but eventually had to be winged off and do it on my own. And as I got used to reading stories to kids, I found that two things bothered me: I wasn’t getting the interaction I wanted from the kids and I wasn’t feeling challenged. So, after watching Dianne de Las Casas tell her “Madame Poulet and Monsieur Roach” story at a summer reading workshop, I decided to give it a try. Ever since then, I’ve told stories at every outreach, and the kids (and their teachers) love it!
What reaction do you get from the kids you work with?
I remember after I switched from reading books to telling stories for my outreach, how suddenly I was being called “the Library Man”, and how excited the kids got seeing me. I still get a reaction all the time. Kids I don’t recognize who clearly know who I am and run up and give me hugs. I was even at the gas station and suddenly heard, “It’s Mr. Jacob! It’s Mr. Jacob!”
I also love hearing that, after telling a story, the kids repeat it over and over again, all day.
These kind of things really make my day and make the time practicing and memorizing stories worth it.
If you didn’t work at the library, what would you like to be doing?
Making comic books. I’m a geek. I love geek things, and I love to draw and write. I may not be the best, but I put everything into it. You never know, maybe some day it will happen, but if it did, I would probably still try to work at the library. I enjoy doing what I do too much.
What are some of your favorite books/favorite genre?
Again, I’m a geek. I love comic books, manga, and anime! In fact, I even started an anime club and I’ve been ordering the bulk of our graphic novels and manga for a while now. As far as traditional books, though, I like the juvenile series and a few young adult titles, such as “Harry Potter” and “Lemony Snickets”. I have fond memories of reading anything and everything S.E. Hinton as a kid. I do still need to find time to read “The Hunger Games” series, though.
What was your favorite book as a child?
The book that sticks in my mind that had an impact was “The Boxcar Children”, by Gertrude Chandler Warner. After that first book, I consumed as much of the series as I could, spending my $3 allowance on the next book every few weeks.
What do you like to do when you aren’t working?
I’m always working on projects, but the problem is I have too many projects and not enough time! I like to sell stuff online (as more of a challenge than making money, I guess), I love to draw and write, I do a lot of grocery shopping (using the “Extreme Couponing” method) for me and my family members, and when I find time, I occasionally play games on the XBox 360. I enjoy watching anime and reading manga and webcomics, when I can find the time. I’ve also recently been dabbling in glass etching, so don’t be surprised to see that offered as program in the future at Turner!
I also love the Chiefs and Royals, but I’m a huge fan of the latter. Even though they break my heart every year, I can’t help but love the Royals! I’m usually seen in my off hours wearing something Royals, whether it’s a jacket (my favorite possession), hat, or shirt. I saw a Royals toilet seat for sale once, but I figured that might be taking my love for the team a little far.
I also volunteer for a local non-profit in Piper called PCEA (Piper Community Education Association), running their website, teaching programs, and other stuff.