Duke University took over the Library last night. President Brodhead was in town to knit the university tighter to Duke alumni, alumnae, parents, and soon-to-be freshmen. And he’s a good knitter, working the crowd like a seasoned pol without looking in the least partisan. Everyone was, of course, in a very good mood given the Ducal athletic triumph earlier in the week, but the good mood of the crowd got even better when they found themselves in the still-pretty-freshly painted and really quite splendid surrounds of the Mercantile Reading Room, most of them for the first time. President Broadhead endeared himself to us before the event started when, as we were giving him a short but intense tour of the city’s senior library, he showed himself to be unusually knowledgeable about Fanny Trollope whom we revere. The entire Duke family endeared themselves to us by their exhibition of excellent library manners, keeping their drinks off the bookshelves and bustbrackets and speaking in pleasant conversational tones. We have had a couple of Ivy events where people brayed a lot, peered at each other’s name tags too obviously, and sloshed nine-dollar cabernet all over the floors. Food for thought.