This blog represents most of the newspaper columns (appearing in various Colorado Community Newspapers and Yourhub.com) written by me, James LaRue, during the time in which I was the director of the Douglas County Libraries in Douglas County, Colorado. (Some columns are missing, due to my own filing errors.) This blog covers the time period from April 11, 1990 to January 12, 2012.

Unless I say so, the views expressed here are mine and mine alone. They may be quoted elsewhere, so long as you give attribution. The dates are (at least according my records) the dates of publication in one of the above print newspapers.

The blog archive (web view) is in chronological order. The display of entries, below, seems to be in reverse order, new to old.

All of the mistakes are of course my own responsibility.

Wednesday, June 12, 1991

June 12, 1991 - Lost and Found - and an infestation of miller moths

Everybody understands that the job of the library is to collect things. But I hope you won't be shocked to hear that some of the things we collect, we really don't want.

For instance, here at the Philip S. Miller Moth Library -- did I say moth? How did that get in here? Hold on, let me toss that rascal out ... oh, and this one, too, and dang, here's another one! [WHAP!!]

Where was I?

Oh yeah. While it is true that some people don't bring their books back when they're supposed to, just lately a good many of them ARE leaving us lots of other things.

Recently a couple of my employees (thanks Pat!) called my attention to our bulging Moth and Found Box - oops, that's LOST and Found Box - stashed behind the circulation desk. As Scott McIntyre (former writer for the News Press, and current Library Assistant) put it, "We've got keys to BMW's, datebooks with no ID (how's that for organization?)...a term paper on astrology, a pacifier (for that really intense patron), everything including the kitchen sink (stopper -- two of those, actually)."

And then there's my personal favorite: an empty 8 ounce Tootsie Roll can. As almoth - excuse me, alMOST - everyone knows, you don't see that many Tootsie Roll cans anymoth -- pardon me, anyMORE.

Did somebody leave the door open?

Also in our piles of ownerless possessions, we've got four pairs of children's sunglasses, a few of them in such strident hues that you need sunglasses to look at them.

We've got a blue jump rope with pink handles. I moth - MUST! - say, I just know some kid is crying his or her eyes out over this. Somebody's mom (notice that I did not say MOTHer) better skip down here right away and pick it up.

For the older, more fashion conscious readers, you may be interested in our bracelets: one made of absolutely genuine black plastic, the other of (imitation, I feel sure) gold. We've got a couple of pairs of girl's plastic headbands, too.

And every moth - that's every MONTH - we get something new. We do have a staggering number of keys lately. One key chain, as Scott notes, appears to be for a BMW -- or at least something from Murray Moth - sorry, Murray MOTOR - Imports. Another key ring has a couple GM keys on it, as well as an interesting blue bottle opener.

We've got fingernail clippers. We've got a bona fide, red, elastic, GI Joe belt, which if it fit me, I'd be tempted to keep.

We've got a HUD sales contract addendum. And we have one photocopied act of the intriguingly titled play, "When God Comes for Breakfast, You Don't Burn the Toast."

We also have a host of assorted hats, coats, scarfs, and sweaters.

And although I even hesitate to open my moth - my MOUTH, I mean - about this: in our meeting room, there's a blue denim jacket, draped nonchalantly over a chair by the door.

I was going to carry it over to the Lost and Found box myself the other evening, but it was kind of dark, and when I reached for it ... it reached for me.

Well, okay, about 50 moths fluttered off the jacket arm. It looked to ME like the jacket wanted to dance.

So I'd feel a lot better, people, if you all could flutter down here to the Philip S. Miller Moth Library, take all your stuff back, and put me out of my moth-ery.

Misery, I mean.

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