The author, a Chicago-based youth librarian, looks back at his career and the principles guiding his work with young teens, who are not always prepared to follow library rules and codes of conduct. He argues that it is vital to be clear on what behaviour is tolerated and what is not. This means clear communication (not necessarily a written set of rules), with all staff applying the same standards. It means loving the job and appreciating the teens it involves working with. It is important to understand the habits and codes of teenagers, who sometimes test the boundaries with adults but who generally appreciate being treated with respect and guided in discovering the resources libraries have to offer.