UP Saga 6-5: Benildean Colleague Saves My Ass
Joyce and I spent half a day flying everywhere for those hard-to-find books required by a hard-to-find teacher. There’s one in the library of Education, another in the College of Arts and Letters, another in the Filipiniana Library, another in the College of Music, some in the Center for Asian Studies, a few in Mass Comm and more of them in the Main Library. Those that we weren’t able to find inside the libraries of UP, we were able to find in the libraries of UST, in Joyce’s hometown in Bulacan, and the online listings of Ateneo and De La Salle University.
Some of the books turned up missing and the others were long overdue — with the borrowers missing in action. I had wanted to avoid going to La Salle because that wasn’t my turf. And though La Salle Benilde used to be one of my territories, I had never stepped foot on La Salle Main. Sure enough, as soon as I got there, I was told by the security guard that I needed a written permission from the Asia Pacific College Chief Librarian in order to use the library. I didn’t have time to go back to APC, grab a letterhead and draft that letter. My gosh, the book I was looking for and must report about on Wednesday (Literature in the Modern World by Dennis Walder) is only available in that library. Nicco had already called up all the Power Books, Fully Booked and A Different Bookstore branches, to no avail. Cris went through all the branches of Chapters in her area in Vancouver. Nada.
So I texted and called everyone I knew that had a connection to La Salle. It was my classmate Rod, a Benildean professor, who responded that there was a copy in the Benilde library and he was able to get hold of it. At that moment, a fleeting thought crossed my mind: Why oh why did I resign from Benilde when I knew very well that they have the best collection of books, bar none!? I actually mentioned this during my PhD entrance interview, when they asked me what I was giving up if I became a full-timer at APC, the institution that’s paying for my tuition. I said I’d miss CSB’s library. Of course, the opportunity to handle the best in the Art Scene as your faculty members, which is what I’d enjoy in APC, weighed above all else. Hence, the eventual choice.
Rod met me at the entrance of CSB but he said he couldn’t get the book out. The system was down. He was, however, able to photocopy the essay that I needed to report on. Laurence Lerner’s History and Fiction. I felt like I was experiencing a really bad practical joke when I saw that it was only about 8 pages. I double-checked the pages and the numbering. It really was just 8 friggin’ pages! All the effort it took to find it and that was all there is to it.
I wanted to scream.
But I hugged and thanked Rod for it. I thought i was going to go and get the dropping form but it turns out that I may just survive this. I must believe in the power of social networking. (And maybe, just maybe, this little incident is telling me to go back to part-time status? Toink!)