In years past, the library has offered several fine amnesty programs. For instance, we have, at various times, encouraged people to drop off cans of food. In exchange, we wipe out old debts, and pass the food along to some worthy charity.
I'd like to introduce a different program: for one week, make a point to pay your fines with real money. Why? Because there's an important civic project underway, and it deserves your financial support.
My grandfather spent all this life as a business man. He dropped out of 10th grade to support his disabled mother. For awhile, Granddad worked through a correspondence course to become an attorney. Then the Depression hit.
So though he never became a lawyer, he got a taste for self-education. He remained a voracious reader.
Most of his working life, he drove a pastry truck, and considered himself lucky to have the job. Eventually, he wound up in appliance sales at a big department store, where he worked until his death at 72.
Last week, I took a few days off to give a talk at a library conference in Jackson, Wyoming.
I decided to drive. The library had gotten a complaint about a multiple-CD book, and this would give me a chance to listen to it.
The name of the book was "Light in August," by William Faulkner. Somehow, I'd never gotten around to reading Faulkner before.