A few days ago I logged on to our library’s online catalog for my usual check: What’s due? What’s almost due? What can I renew and eek out a bit more time? What can I say boldly, “Why YES! Your Captain Underpants book is DUE! It must be RETURNED! GO! NOW!”

I also have to check the balance of how many holds are in, how many holds are coming, and do we have room on our cards. Yes, we should have our own dedicated shelf at the library. No, we don’t. Yes, isn’t it great that our last name happens to be the section that the public gets to see while checking out, and that our last name is unique enough that the public all know who’s taking up all that space. People: the Gourmet cookbook and Peanuts ultimate collection are BIG BOOKS. Talk to the publisher.

Dork, I know. But it gets worse.

When I was checking our family accounts (remember? I was doing that, before the rant about the exposed nature of our reading material), I saw a notification written in lovely, light-blue lettering above the card’s record. “Change to CCRLS holds policy: In order to keep the libraries’ workflows manageable under reduced staffing, CCRLS will be lowering the holds limit for individual patrons to 25 holds at one time. This change will take effect November 1, 2012. Existing holds will not be affected. Thanks for your understanding.”

Understanding. They think I have understanding. Do I? I don’t see it… Maybe I left it in the pile of summer clothes yet to be sorted that are piled in the garage.

Some may think: twenty-five holds?! That should be plenty! But not for my household. My kids READ. I READ. We READ. Really, we should be on one of those “READ” posters, holding books about Ninjagos and Strawberry Shortcakes and Big Nates and Carnivorous Vegan cooking. Just like every other American family.

Don’t worry: I have a plan. And I’m sure you’re just aching to know. Who wouldn’t? Anyway, cards will be assigned “genres” to put on hold. Hubby’s card will be used for long-standing holds: popular items, like the latest movies or best-sellers, that trickle in with little rhyme or reason. JJ’s card: chapter books, graphic novels. Abe’s card: subjects – Lego, Star Wars, knights, ninjas, Avatar. My card: well, that’s for me. 🙂 And Little Miss? She will be getting a card ASAP, which will be all about colors – pinks and purples and reds from Strawberry Shortcake, My Little Pony, Pinkalicious, and whatever else will help make our boy-less mornings more manageable.

Hmm, I wonder if card holders are limited to humans only: we do have a cat…

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