Pictures taken at libraries that prove librarians are funnier than you’d think

begin >>

Remember back in high school, when you used to hang out in the library and crack up at all the hilarious jokes the librarian told used to tell? No? Maybe that’s because librarians aren’t traditionally known for their sense of humor, especially when it comes to serious matters of the library. Even in movies and television shows, they are usually depicted as stern or scolding, berating students for being loud or overdue books. As kids, it’s sometimes hard to see their more playful side, though that’s probably due to the very nature of their job.

If you think about it, librarians have quite a difficult job – keeping silence and order in the library, while facing a bunch of reckless teenagers who don’t exactly care for rules. They often have to educate, discipline, or quiet down kids, and that’s in addition to all the work of actually running the library, and making sure books are returned on time. So, it’s no wonder that some of them decided to find creative ways of keeping the students aligned, using humor to catch them off guard.


Libraries are usually a place where you can find peace and quiet, without any distractions around. Whether you’re writing a paper, studying for an important exam, or just reading peacefully – the library is the ideal place for it. It also holds some of the finest works in the history of human literature, and so it should be taken very seriously.

However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t find the occasional comic relief – you may often stumble upon an amusing sign or a funny quote, that make you smile in the midst of a hectic day. That’s usually thanks to the hardworking librarians who care greatly about what they do. These people try to make the library the most pleasant place it can be for students and visitors, and show them that reading books is not only important – but can also be a lot of fun.

These funny images, collected from libraries all over the country, reminded us that librarians are just regular (and often really funny) people with a challenging job. Whether they’re making puns to lighten the mood, trying to promote book reading or just relieving the boring routine of everyday life with a good laugh – these stunts are definitely worth checking out. Keep reading to see how hilarious – and even silly – librarians can actually be. We promise you will not regret it.

begin >>

Batman returns

Just because one works at a library, doesn’t mean that books are their only area of expertise. One of the employees at this school library definitely knows what kids are into these days, and so they put up this sign to appeal to students – while hilariously using the movie Batman Returns as a reference – to remind them to return books that they’ve borrowed once they’re done with them. After all, if Batman does it, shouldn’t they?

No reservations required

Another library sign for the pun lovers among us – this one says “Come on in! We are never overbooked!” It is pretty self explanatory – the library is never overbooked as a restaurant might be, so there is always room to come in, and it also never has enough books! This cute little pun sure made library visitors stop and have a little laugh on their way in, which proves you can keep it simple and still make people laugh.

When librarians are in on the rap scene

This book promotion stand is so hilarious, we can’t even begin to describe it. It may be hard to think of librarians as the sort of people who listen to rap music a lot, but these ones have actually taken it up a few notches, writing whole new lyrics to the hit “Baby Got Back” by rapper Sir Mix-a-Lot. If this doesn’t make the library visitors crack open a book, we don’t know what will.

This bookshelf in the mystery section

The librarians in this place decided, in a bold move, to make the mystery section of the library a bit more… mysterious. Turning all of the books to the wrong side, this practical joke made sure that students go on a real adventure in finding the books they want to read in this section, and probably have a good laugh in the process. But like they say, what’s wrong with a little mystery every now and then?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle

We’re not sure if this picture is staged or not, but we really hope it wasn’t. This librarian said one of her students had lost a turtle in the library. It was found the following week, in a location that is just too funny to be true; it was making its way to a shelf with book about the art of… Donatello. This also happens to be the name of a certain Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. What are the odds?

Perfecrt time to fix your hair

This university’s library employees are apparently big on puns. Making a cute play on the word “checkout”, they put up a little mirror on top of the book drop off box – often referred to as a “self checkout” – so students can check themselves out in the mirror. The funny thing is, students probably use that mirror all the time to check out how they look. We love a joke that is both funny, and useful.

Star Wars pun intended

Another fun little pun is the one made in this library sign, and it’s even a Star Wars reference! Offering students to take little bookmarks in the shape of Wookiees, the librarians hilariously wrote “It’s dangerous to go solo,” – with a picture of Star Wars protagonist Han Solo, and “Take a Wookiee with you”, with a picture of Chewbacca, Han’s famous Wookiee companion. For those of us who love Star Wars, it’s definitely one funny picture.

IT workers making threats

This library sign is actually made by IT people, responsible for the library’s computers. Asking students to save all the work they have done on the computers so it won’t be erased doing maintenance, they joked about having no mercy since they “feed off tears” of students with unsaved work. Of course, having a paper you’ve been working on deleted is much more frightening than the IT people are, but this sign is hilarious nonetheless.

Library or Interstellar?

We’re not sure if this one is made purposely or not, but it certainly puts a little strange vibe in your ordinary library visit – these shelves have been organized in front of each other in rows, with mirrors on both sides of them. So if you step inside the section, you might think you’ve accidentally stepped into the movie Interstellar, and gone inside a terrible loop of endless bookshelves in the vast emptiness of space.

We won’t tell Ross Geller about this

This sign, put up in the entrance to a college library, is someone’s hilarious way of encouraging students to read more. Obviously, dinosaurs weren’t extinct because they didn’t read (although we can’t know that for sure), but this makes for an amusing way to make you think about book reading as necessary for survival. And the remark below about the thesaurus really cracked us up. If there really was a dinosaur called a Thesaurus, it would probably be the most articulate one!

Panda at the library

One funny librarian confessed she sometimes wears this hat to work, making it look like the counter is manned by an adorable panda, checking books in and out. Perhaps this one is mostly meant to amuse the kids, but if we walked into a library and saw the face of a sweet little panda bear peeking out at us from behind the counter, it would totally make our day (and perhaps even our whole week).

These librarians have procrastination down

This clever display is about the one thing that every student, with important exams to study for or papers to write, knows all too well – procrastination. And in accordance to the meaning of procrastination, as the lost art of postponing things you don’t feel like doing for as long as you can, the display itself is unfinished, because someone has been procrastinating. Is it just a joke, or a way to teach a lesson about what happens when you postpone things? You decide for yourselves.

Found in a university library

Librarians have to ask people to be quiet so often, it’s probably exhausting. That’s why these librarians opted for a funnier way of asking for silence, using a meme of Mugatu, a fictional character portrayed by the hilarious Will Ferrell in the hit comedy Zoolander. At a fashion show, Mugatu says this about a certain model, meaning that he is very much in fashion. Silence, apparently, is also in fashion and therefore should be kept.

This cart is assertive

This cart requires a bit of explaining, if you don’t know what it’s about. The picture on the trolley is of a book by Ilise Benun, called “Stop Pushing Me Around!”, meant to teach people who are shy or timid how to be more assertive in their workplace. Someone thought it would be funny to put this on one of the library’s trolleys, which literally gets pushed around a lot, and we have to admit, it gave us a chuckle.

Readbox or Redbox?

Employees at this library made a very funny attempt to make this book display look like Redbox, the movie rental company. Although it is generally meant to be a joke, it actually makes a powerful statement on how these days, many people prefer to watch movies instead of reading books. Reading books is almost considered to be a lost art, which is why librarians are often trying to promote it in any way they can.

Trust me, I’m the Doctor

If this quote sounds familiar to you (and you recognize the picture of the Tardis next to it) then you’re probably a Doctor Who fan. Doctor Who is a beloved British sci-fi series, with some great teaching moments. It was the tenth Doctor, portrayed by David Tennant, who claimed that books are the best weapons in the world. This quote was put up in a library to say – books are knowledge, and knowledge is power. Thus, you should read up!

Luckily, this library is safe

Yet another Doctor Who reference on a library sign – and we don’t blame the employees for hanging this one up, as it is from an episode called “Silence In the Library.” In the episode, swarms of little flesh eating beings called the Vashta Nerada, are found in a library and cause some very unpleasant events. This library promises to be a Vashta Nerada free zone, which would be great if they weren’t fictional – but is otherwise pretty amusing.

We completely agree

These librarians can really appreciate a good joke. They put up a sign with a brilliant quote by famed comedian and actor, Groucho Marx, which is also very true – “Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read”. The clever quote is not only funny, but also speaks a truth about books being great friends to man, which makes it perfect to put up in a library.

What was the book’s name?

Apparently, when you work at a library, it is not uncommon for someone to walk up to the counter and ask about a book – without even knowing what it’s called or its subject. This stand of books, put up by librarians, is a fun little joke about these people, who only remember the color of the book’s cover – and perhaps an efficient way to make them look for the book in question for themselves.

Baby, it’s cold outside

This town’s public library used the snowy weather to make a fun joke, while convincing people to come in and pick out a book. They do have a point, though – a book may not keep you warm in a stormy weather like this, but nothing says “Me Time” like cuddling in front of the fire with some hot cocoa and a good book to read, while not having to step outside and meet the chilly weather.

Overdue book return is the stuff of nightmares

Collecting overdue books is probably one of the least pleasant tasks that a librarian has to complete each year. So why not have some fun in the process? This librarian dresses up as the Grim Reaper of books every year to collect books that haven’t been returned, and make students laugh – or run away in fear – as she does. So beware of not returning what you’ve borrowed, or else the book reaper might get you!

Aren’t you glad you read this?

This is yet another joke made at the expense of people who can’t remember the titles of books they want to check out of the library. These librarians also added a display of books of the same cover color, in favor of those who can’t remember the books names, but also added a fun little pun – “Orange you glad you read,” because the books are the color orange, and after you’ll read them, you’ll be very glad you did.

“Not a squirrel!”

The sign in this picture clearly has a hilarious story behind it. Apparently, the librarians that put this up have a bit of a rodent problem, as a squirrel keeps coming in through the drop-off box, trying to steal one of the employee’s meals. This must have been pretty bad, if it made them put up this sign, asking people who are returning books to announce that they’re not hungry squirrels trying to sneak into the library.

Rabbits more than welcome

We don’t know which is funnier – this sign posted by the library employees, or the tweet that came along with it. The sign was probably supposed to say no dogs are allowed in the library, but when they decided to use a Wallace and Gromit reference as a joke, they welcomed rabbits, sheep and evil penguins instead. As the saying goes, be careful what you wish for, because someone might just walk into the library with a sheep someday.

Dinosaur-free library

This hilarious sign in a university library states that it, in fact, has not been attacked by violent dinosaurs for quite some time now. While it is good to know that the library you’re in is a safe space (in which you probably won’t get eaten by a dinosaur), this leaves us wondering if someone really updates the number of days without an attack, each day they come into work. If so, someone is going through pretty long lengths to make visitors feel amused.

This happened during a renovation

A university’s library posted this picture to their Facebook page, gaining shocked responses from their students. Apparently, while going through renovations, some of the bookshelves collapsed completely, leaving the library employees busy, having to put away all of these fallen books away in their right order. The poor librarians showed their sense of humor by posting the picture, and sarcastically adding how fun it’s been for them to have to reorganize all of the books.

Some Nicolas Cage motivation

Whoever put this motivational poster up on a school library wall is pretty hilarious. Apparently, Nicolas Cage is also the star of several other motivational posters, created by anonymous people and going around the Internet. This particular one is meant to encourage students and other visitors of the library to read books – and probably smile to themselves as they encounter it. Well, if Nicolas Cage tells us to read, who are we to question him?

Beware of the iPhone snatchers

These librarians truly care about the property of the visitors, as they warn them not to leave their phones or laptops lying around unattended, lest they get stolen. While no one generally wants to have that happen to them, people aren’t always careful enough. Using a funny meme like this, the librarians are sure to attract the attention of their library visitors, so no one will say they haven’t been warned about keeping their possessions close to them.

This invisible book display

Sometimes, when your job is hectic and you have a lot of tasks at hand, you don’t always manage to get everything done in time. These librarians, who apparently haven’t gotten around to setting up a new display of books yet, decided to put up a sign, inviting people to look at their display of invisible books – featuring a couple of empty book holders. Either that, or they just got a fresh delivery of fascinating invisible books.

Prepare to be relaxed

This hilarious sign is probably our favorite of the bunch. Librarians understand the pressure that students experience, when they’re studying for a big exam or have a paper they need to work on. So they decided to put up a Ryan Gosling display in the library backroom to lower these stress levels, whether it’s by staring into Ryan’s lovely eyes, or laughing at the very existence of this poster in a place like the library. We’re already feeling more relaxed.