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Beta Phi Mu, the International Library and Information Studies Honor Society, sent me a poorly made semi-glossy, tri-fold pamphlet which proudly bears their motto and insignia on the front. The insignia, a dolphin and anchor, represents the mark of Aldus Manutius, a Venetian printer who created editions of Greek and Latin classics and dedicated his life to making his books accessible to all. Far more interesting is the Beta Phi Mu motto: Aliis inserviendo consumor, which means Consumed in the Service of Others, a concept with which any library or service industry employee can relate. The Beta Phi Mu organization selected this motto based on the idea that information professionals and librarians are a dedicated lot and devoted to serving the information needs of others - just like Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Upon reading this motto, the image that immediately popped into my mind was of a haggard, sanity-deprived librarian desperately translating an incantation to banish an unspeakable nightmare from another world whilst simultaneously helping a grad student look up 20 reference sources for an annotated bibliography that's due in one hour.

Cooooool. Can I be an information professional, too?

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