Strange Magic

There’s some kind of strange magic* in the air at the Chattanooga Public Library.  On floors one through four at the library I feel a buzz that I just can’t put my finger on.  Let me tell you, it is awesome to be around.

Most of my life at the Chattanooga Public Library happens on the 2nd Floor.  Right now half of our space is full of empty shelves waiting to be taken away.  The other half is our makeshift tween/teen library.  It hasn’t reached its full potential yet but like I said above, there’s some kind of strange magic in the air.  It will happen in due time.  Everyone is excited for it to happen.


I’ve always felt a strong connection to the teens I’ve worked with in every library I’ve been part of, but these days I feel like I’m reconnecting with something from my past.  I stumbled upon this photo from my time at the Cape May County Library and in it saw a version of Justin that I hadn’t seen in awhile. I looked at the mirror a few days ago and you know what?  I saw that Justin coming back to the surface.  It’s all because of the teens….hanging out, geeking out, messing around…all happening in the library.  It’s not a quiet kind of magic…it’s loud, smelly, a bit scary, and a lot of fun.  It’s constant ideas immediately put into action.  There’s no time to sit around and think about the best way to go about working with these teens.  It’s all in the moment, being refined as we move along…and it is FUN.  The day in/day out here with these teens is a magical.  

Photo May 21, 2 49 27 PM

There’s a strange magic happening between the community and the library.  With every event happening on The 4th Floor (like this, this, or THIS!) comes even more community and library connection.  When the community steps into the building, the connection is made: this is the place where  lifelong learning and connection happens in Chattanooga.  Like the work we’re doing with 0-18 year olds on the 2nd Floor, it’s  loud, smelly, a bit scary, and a lot of fun.  It’s real.

I love it here.  I love the team here.  I love the community.  I love the strange magic going on.

*Yes, that’s supposed to be an Electric Light Orchestra reference

** Read this article, be inspired

*** This will be awesome very shortly

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