Dagens Nyheter reports that the Stockholm University Library has seen some pretty bad vandalism. Yesterday morning it was discovered that someone had disconnected the drain-pipe from an upstairs washbasin and opened the taps to the max. Several cubic meters of water flooded out during the night and drenched three floors. Luckily, few books were damaged, but the place will have to close while everything is dried out and the carpeting replaced.
Vandalising libraries is of course on a par with organising book bonfires or bringing down internet hubs, a particularly ugly crime. I hope whoever did this turns out to be mentally ill, not having acted on any rational plan.
Personally, I’ve never spent much time in the University library, mainly because the Library of the Academy of Letters specialises in my field and so offers all I need. The Uni library is a pretty ugly building, designed by Ralph Erskine to the great acclaim of his colleagues and finished in 1983. More than anything else, it looks like a passenger ferry on dry land. As an undergrad I studied for a few exams there, but the distraction level is unbelievable: it’s babe ground centre, enough to make anyone’s head explode.