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Showing posts from April, 2007

Reflections on the last week

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Thursday night brought an end to this semesters finals, and as happens at the end of the semester, I look back and wonder at how fast it actually went by, though it had its torturous moments. I am glad that I have a journal for that reason-I go back through from time to time and read some of what I wrote and think, "holy crap, and that seems so easy now."
And now I sit anxiously awaiting grade postings which happen tomorrow; and I bite my nails and sweat a little, hoping I did well enough in my cataloging class so I can avoid retaking it this summer. I will be taking 3 classes as it is, retaking Cataloging would mean the end of any hopes of a social life outside of the love affair that I had with the Proquest database this past semester. And so as I enjoy this week off between semesters and await the arrival of my grades, and my friend Nathan from Massachusetts, I think of some things that got me through the semester, and thought that I would share them.
MATERIAL COMFORTS OF WI…

Seriously?

Today someone was walking through the library here at school with their 2(?) year old with one of those harness leash things on. Seriously? I never understood how people do that...don't you just look at that on the shelf at the store, next to the dog leashes and cat sweaters and think, nope not for me. Maybe I am just weird that way?

And they had a stroller and were walking through this Graduate Library like they were walking through the park or zoo...I felt like I was in bizarro world! They were as casually checking out our library as you would look at animals in a zoo...next time I guess I will do my monkey impression!

This is what it reminded me of...one of my favorite SNL skits!
http://i70.photobucket.com/albums/i99/kelsi_doel/1849306683tard19yf.gif
A great read-information taken from: http://www.pps.org/info/newsletter/april2007/

Why Libraries Matter More Than EverBy Cynthia Nikitin and Josh Jackson
The ImaginOn Library in Charlotte, North Carolina
The creation of the "information superhighway" threatened to make libraries obsolete, but today they are as prominent as ever. Libraries are taking on a larger civic role, redefining themselves as community centers for the 21st Century. The old model of the library was the inward-focused "reading room," the new one is more like a community "front porch."
Read the full article »


How to Make Your Library Great
14 lessons from local libraries all over the continent.

Libraries and Placemaking
Libraries are the new commons for the 21st Century.
By Diantha Dow Schull

Library Placemaking in Action
Six success stories in community building.
By Diantha Dow Schull

Stumbling Blocks to Creating Great Civic Centers...and How to Overcome Them
Solutions to four common problems.
By Cyn…

Yehuda Amichai poetry

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I love NPR and I love too that they have a way of communicating every story with so much heart and something that like pixey dust has the ability to transport me to another place and into another's shoes. NPR just covered a story about the poetry of Israeli poet, Yehuda Amichai. His poetry is open and honest, and I found it to be an entirely appropriate thing to be reading this gloomy, rainy day. So I will share.

"Try to remember some details"
Try to remember some details. Remember the clothing of the one you love so that on the day of loss you'll be able to say: last seen wearing such-and-such, brown jacket, white hat. Try to remember some details. For they have no face and their soul is hidden and their crying is the same as their laughter, and their silence and their shouting rise to one height and their body temperature is between 98 and 104 degrees and they have no life outside this narrow space and they have no graven image, no likeness, no memory and they have …

Happy Earth Day!

Earth Day
by Elissa Haney
Earth Day was established in 1970 at a time when social activism was at a high. U.S. senator Gaylord Nelson (D-Wis.), recognized a growing environmental concern that had barely been addressed by the legislature. In setting aside April 22 to recognize human impact on the environment, Nelson hoped first and foremost to raise the awareness of politicians.Nelson certainly achieved his goal. More than 20 million Americans participated in this first Earth Day celebration, causing voter-hungry politicians to take notice. The overwhelming response helped generate a new political focus on the environment. As that focus has become increasingly global, more people than ever are celebrating Earth Day around the world.
Information provided by: http://www.factmonster.com/spot/earthday1.html
I am in charge of a group at my church called the Earth Care Ministry, so for Earth Day we decided with so many options to choose from, we will stick with energy, and more specifically LIGH…

My favorite authors

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When I was a kid we moved a lot-7 times by the time I was 7 years old-and as happens with many children, I was very lonely even with older brothers and a an older sister to play with. The house we finally settled in, the one that my parents still live in today, and the home where my nieces and nephews now play was like the house in The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, when I was a child. Though not as large, at seven it seemed endless and possibilities abounded, having moved into the country from the city of Detroit. There was even a time when we were playing hide n' seek, and I like Lucy, the youngest of four, hid behind a doorway. Unlike Lucy, regrettably, instead of a world in Narnia, I discovered a land of adventure yes, but more so of my own imaginings. It was on that very rainy day, when hide n' seek had ended-the older children tiring of it sooner than I should have liked-that I discovered a doorway into new worlds. I grabbed some books and hid behind my fathers old, so…

Deconstructing a Library

Our library has been preparing slowly preparing for renovation work for months now, though it seems that each day in preparation of renovations, we are already renovating. Deconstructing really. It remindes me of Merwin's poem, Unchopping a tree, which is a dear favorite of mine and reminds me of my wonderful friend Beth, who can actually quote long poems, a feat of which I have never mastered! So, in my ode to Merwin, my poem (though mine is in the reverse-while he is putting his tree back together, we are taking our library apart.

Deconstructing a library
Start with the books, heavy, dusty old collections, or new, sheltered, barely broken by service; these must be gathered into the arms of the cart bearing men, who clatter them down onto wooden semi-permanence. This does not take long, unless a spine is broken, and goes unnoticed, until the meat of the book falls onto the floor. If the move was well planned everything will come together as a well choreographed dance; each moment g…

Kurt Vonnegut

With Kurt Vonnegut's passing this week I have given much thought to death. I can ulger nothing of death, having never achieve it myself, so I sit and mull over the idea of what is left to us when someone dies. Especially in our culture where we celebrate so much of the Hollywood industry, as I see it, our largest export these days, when someone more well known dies it seems as if their life is hung out like laundry for all to see. I hate that and I won't do that. Instead I offer a few quotes that I mulled over today at the library.

"To die will be an awfully big adventure." ~ J.M. Barry

"The grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a far green country under a swift sunrise. " ~Tolkein

"To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure." ~J.K. Rowling
(maybe borrowing a bit from Barry)

"It is hard to have patience with people who say "There is no death" o…

Easter at the desk

Easter Sunday and here I am at the library (note to self...wish there were a song, "At the library," as catchy as that song "At the carwash.") It is slow today, but not empty. The usual street walkers or homeless, whatever you want to call, them are here, as well as some scattered students probably preparing for the last month of classes grind.

Days like today, I feel espedcially sad for the homeless, who are here with no family and no hot dinner to look forward to. It feels a little selfish when I think of all the planning and preparing that went into our family dinner yesterday.

Sometimes, like on days like today, I remind myself that the homeless that come into the library are a gift to us. As librarians I feel that the homeless teach us to be patient and understanding, more so then our tax paying patrons, who we may feel deserve to be wined and dined so that they think of that great trip they had to the library when they are voting on that upcoming mileage. The …

Tpos (I mean typos-get it?)

I was accused of having mistakes or "typos" in my blog. To those people "bugger off." My blog is what it is and is usually being written while I am at the Reference Desk. Any of you who have done an hour at the desk know how crazy things can be.

When they told us in my "Intro to La La Library Land" class, or whatever the class was called last semester, the professor mentioned that we are in the profession of information. No kidding. I feel like I learn so much while helping the patrons find things that I should be paying for this, not getting paid. That is a good feeling!

Anyway, back from my tangent-"typos"-I did some searching on the interesting Oxford English Dictionary's database here at work and found all about the word "typos." So, I thought I would share my new knowledge.

before a vowel typ-, combining form repr. Gr. TYPE n.1, used chiefly in forming scientific and technical terms, and some nonce-words. typacanthid (tap-, tpk…

Great article about the roles of Public Librarians!

Great article about the role of public librarians Current mood: awake
This is a great article about how Librarians in the public sphere also have to act as social workers of sorts. A little long, but it is an interesting read!

http://www.alternet.org/story/50023/

~Monster

"Dead Celebrities Lady"

There is a woman who calls here and wants to know when people have died. It is always the same voice over the phone and there is also a story. The first time I had the priveledge of talking to her was when I had just started here at the libary (see the blog-The Frankie Avalon Question). It was when answering someone's reference question gave me a sense of pride and self-worth. I remember feeling so pleased and helpful after our first rendezvous.

So "Dead Celebrities Lady" as I would like to call her...I like to imagine that she has a list on her wall over her bed and at night she can sleep soundly because she knows that Ethel Waters died in 1977. Her questions always come with the mention that she saw a program on TV or a movie.
Today's Celebrities: Ethel Waters, who was the 2nd African American woman to be nominated for an Oscar, and who was known for her Jazz and gospel singing (among many things). For more info:

http://www.pbs.org/jazz/biography/artist_id_waters_eth…