'Twas the Committee Before Christmas

'Twas the committee before Christmas, and all through the LAO
Not a creature knew how long the meeting would go;
The agenda was hung out all empty and bare,
In hopes that adjournment soon would be there;
Committee members nestled all bored in their places,
While visions of forced smiles danced on their faces.
Randy with his Pepsi, and I in my motorized seating,
Were settling down for a long administrative meeting.

 When out in the atrium there arose such high voices,
We wondered out loud who was making such noises:
Away to the window I literally rolled,
And through the shutters I peered, so curious and bold.

 The sun on the sheen of the nice wood veneer
Allowed all the persons outside to appear;
My wondering eyes with a stare all imprudent
Saw a tightly knit group of twelve tiny students,
With a little old librarian, so full of good will,
I knew in a moment it must be... St. LiiL.

LiiL is a St. Nickname, or that's my deduction,
That stands for "Information Literacy and Library Instruction."
More rapid than tortoises St. LiiL's adjectives they came,
And she pointed out departments and called them by name;

 "Now, History! now, Econ! now, Social and Sciences!
On, Humanities! on Religion! on, General Appliances!
Now, Science! now, Math! now, Music and Dance!
On, Family! On History of Scotland and France!
Now, Special Collections! now, Government Docs!
On, Agronomy! on Philosophy! On Geology and Rocks!
To the top of the catalog! to the top of the website!
Now dash into databases! Get wisdom and light!"

 As folio leaves that before the onslaught of acidic paper crumble,
As they meet with a reader pile up in a jumble,
So off to the instruction rooms the students they rushed,
With iPods in their ears as their instructor just gushed.
And then, in a twinkling, when they had jogged in
Came the prancing and pawing as each student logged in.

 As I pulled up my e-mail and was checking my spam,
In with a bound came Saint LiiL, oh yes, Ma'am.
She was dressed in fake fur, from her foot to her head,
And "Boolean is Herculean!" is the first thing she said.
A bundle of bibliographies she had stacked in her arms,
And she started to describe online catalog search charms:

 Subject headings -- how they twinkle! Their commas, how merry!
Perhaps you'll find cheese under "Products, comma, dairy."
Her droll little mouth was drawn up in a grin
As she showed how to locate Subjects by their Discipline:
"Just click on ‘School of Dentistry' while gritting your teeth
And the link for "Orthodontics" will appear underneath."

 She had a laser pointer with an ignorance detector
That shook, and then beeped, and then turned on the projector.
For the first time all semester, the students were thinking,
And now their reliance on Google was sinking.
Soon the brains of the students were smoking, all twelve,
And I laughed when I saw it, in spite of myself.

 A wink of her eye and a twist of her nose,
Soon gave them to know how to find full-text prose;
She spoke pedagogy, going straight to her work,
And filled all their brains up; then turned with a jerk,
And laying her finger aside of the mouse,
She said: "Gotta go, my kids are expecting me back at the house."

 She sprang to her Honda, turned on the ignition,
And away she then flew, like a brain spike of cognition.
But I heard her exclaim, to the lads and the lasses:
"Wait a minute, it's Christmas! Why am I teaching classes?"


 ... for Julene Butler to read, Christmas 2004,
         written by Dick Hacken