a response from the Arleta Library Bakery * Cafe!

Don’t you just love the connecting power of blogs?

The owner of the restaurant mentioned in my previous post “because good food is long overdue” found it via an ego search and added some neat comments!

Thanks for your thoughtful post. It’s refreshing to find someone appreciating our use of the library concept rather than condemning us for our lack of books!

We called our restaurant the Arleta Library Cafe for many reasons–none having to do with the presence of books for lending–which include:

1. Libraries are public spaces where people go for self-enrichment, relaxation, and engaging with others; we wanted to reinforce our commitment to spaces that encourage these activities

2. Once upon a time, there was an Arleta Library (not too near us, mind you) which stood at the nexus of a bustling neighborhood where streetcars converged and pedestrians conducted their daily business. Since the decline of “streetcar neighborhoods” like ours in the postwar years, people have increasingly relied on automobiles to run their daily errands–including their trips to the library. We aimed to remind people of the notion of having all services in a neighborhood within walking distance.

3. Our lack of books allows us to encourage conversation about libraries. “This is a library? Where are the books?” “Why would you expect books simply because it’s called ‘library’?” I think communities would be well served by investing in tool libraries, toy libraries and more means of “sharing” in this age of mass-production and overconsumption.

I’m sure there were more, but reverent kitsch (as you pointed out) was certainly primary among them.

Loving where the conversation takes us,

Sarah Iannarone

Owner, Arleta Library Bakery * Cafe

Spot on!

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