I forgot to add that all of New York City's one Nexis machine does not
even have a printer, because it's too expensive.
Here are some of the horrors of the new New York Public Library, as
experienced by me and David Shulman (who I met on Saturday).
1. THE MISSING PALMER'S INDEX TO THE LONDON TIMES--All of the machines that
were upstairs were moved downstairs for the renovation. Well, not all. I
couldn't find Palmer's Index to the London Times. I walked around all of the
machines three times. I called a librarian. We walked around all of the
machines twice. "It's not here. I don't know where it went," he said.
Librarians are always so helpful.
2. OUR STAFF WILL HELP YOU--I used the LEO system, and got "PER" for Women's
Wear Daily. I gave it to the guy at the window and received a number. Then
I waited about an hour. Twelve numbers came up after mine. Then I was told
to see a staff librarian. After a half-hour wait for a librarian (they're
short staff), I was told that the periodical was on microfilm in the
3. MISSING MATERIALS--"Subway Series" (All-New York Yankees v. Giants,
Dodgers, or Mets) would be very easy to solve. I merely have to check the
Subway Sun. I requested 1921, 1922, 1923, 1936, 1937--the proper years.
"ANNEX" said the staff member, which means you have to stand on the long
line for a librarian, fill out the call slip again, bring the big black
catalog book over, and wait another day. Two days later, my book and my
request wasn't there. I did the whole thing again. Two days after that, it
came back "NOT ON SHELF"--strange because YOU CAN'T BORROW THESE ITEMS. Is
it not on shelf for microfilming? Is someone else reading it? What? The
librarian called the annex. No answer. Another call. No answer. "They
don't always pick up the phone, there's only one person working there." Next
day, the call went through. Nothing is on the shelf. Other libraries were
checked. No one else has this.
There's more, but I'll stop here.