So...um...this might be slightly obvious to you bookish and writerly peeps...but seriously, libraries are so cool! I mean, I knew this already. Libraries are full of books, and books are awesome, and therefore libraries are awesome. This is merely fact.
Last week I got my very own, very first library card since I was a kid. It was like entering some kind of magical wonderland! Books, books, everywhere! People who love books! People who read books! People who love people who love and read books! I immediately gravitated toward the YA section and stood in wonder as I scanned the shelves. All my favorite authors were stocked. Books I've been wanting to read but haven't had a chance to buy yet were readily available. But now, I could read them for FREE. FOR FREE! Seriously? How is this amazingness even possible? (Yeah, tax dollars, I know. Shhhh.)
So, my new obsession is the library. I decided to indulge in this obsession last night, and so I packed up my laptop and my notebook, and headed to the most magical place on earth. (Sorry, Disney World--I still love you!) I sat at a table and opened my laptop, only to find the battery was dead because I forgot to charge it. Awesome. I was kind of in a bad mood until I heard something...
You guys, my library is full of teenagers!!! (Um, WOW that sounded creepy. *backs away slowly*)
But seriously. I was SO intrigued. I was in the perfect position to eavesdrop on real life teen conversation. This was RESEARCH, people. Research.
This is what I learned:
1. Some teenage boys are all about RULE BREAKING. There was one boy who INSISTED on using his cellphone even though the rules clearly stated that no cellphones shall be used in the library! But he was a rebel. He whispered into his cell phone, talking to "Chris" and telling "Chris" that he was with "Michelle" at the library. I think he might have said that he was with "Michelle" seven times. Which leads me to believe that
2. Some teenage boys are all about BRAGGING ABOUT GIRLS THEY ARE WITH. This boy clearly had a thing for Michelle. Or maybe Chris had a thing for Michelle and he wanted Chris to be jealous, perhaps elevating his social status? Who knows. All I know is that it was IMPORTANT that Chris know he was with Michelle.
3. Some teenagers LIKE TO PROCRASTINATE. They were supposed to be studying. Maybe they were even TRYING to study, but let me tell you...no studying happened. There was much joking, loud talking, illegal phone calls, and making of plans for after studying. At one point, Michelle even told the first boy (the one who called Chris), "I'm never studying with you again." Wise choice, Michelle, if you ever want to get any actual studying done.
4. Some teenagers are RISK-TAKERS. This is on a small scale, of course. I mean, how much risk is there in a library? But anyway, one boy was talking LOUDLY, and even using some choice expletives WITHIN EARSHOT of the librarian. Some teens shushed him, saying, "We're in a library!", but he continued until he finished his story. It was worth the risk.
5. Some teenagers are QUIET and STUDIOUS. Okay, this totally contradicts everything I just said, but there were other teenagers there that were not part of the group. They were alone. And they were quiet. They followed the rules. And they studied! Which leads me to believe that
6. Teenagers get more work done and follow more rules when they are ALONE, but seem to have more fun and take more risks when they are IN A GROUP. Astounding, no?
My conclusion is that teenagers are UNIQUE and INTERESTING and JUST LIKE US! But younger! Some are introverts, and some are extroverts! Some are loud and some are quiet! Some like to procrastinate and some like to study! And yeah, some are more keen to breaking rules and taking risks. But that's why I like to write about them! That's WHY THEY ARE AWESOME! Aren't all good stories about taking risks?
Anyway, I'm sure there's much more to learn. I hope to make my library trips a weekly thing, and I really, REALLY hope there will be more teenagers that I can listen to. It's been eye-opening.
Also? Teenagers rock. I kind of want to make friends with them. Maybe that's the next step...slowly move my chair closer...laugh at someone's joke...gradually enter the conversation...suggest some BOOKS...
Or not. Would that be weird?