July 29, 2009

Two Stories

I recently got a haircut...a drastic haircut. I cut almost 11 inches off to give to Locks of Love. It was time for a change so I went for it. The responses have been overwhelmingly positive. So many compliments and oohs and aahs. I'm thinking I should have done this a while ago, it's been great for my ego.
Yesterday someone was heard to say that I looked "adorable". Now, it may be because I don't really use that word, but it really threw me. It was the second time someone used that word to describe my new haircut and each time I was like "really?". To me adorable is a word for small things or baby things or precocious things, not 6' tall awkward people with new haircuts. I guess there are worse things people could have said, but I'm hoping that's the last "adorable" I hear.

On a lighter, less neurotic, note:
I was driving home from work yesterday when someone pulled out in front of me. They weren't super close, but I did have to hit the brakes and it freaked me out a bit. I'm not 100% over the car accident from a month back so I still get a bit nervous when people are too close to me on the road. I was scared and I got pissed so I laid on the horn. Unfortunately, the horn in my new car is ridiculous. It sounds like I'm killing a pack of out-of-tune geese in my engine. I had forgotten about that fact. So after I angrily honked at the stupid driver I immediately started laughing. Even though it's a completely useless car horn in an emergency, at least it's a great cure for my road rage moments.

p.s. I'll post pics of my new haircut once I get some good ones.

July 21, 2009

Heather's Wedding

One of my friends from Augustana got married this weekend. It was a very fun event, and I had the privilege of being a "helper" of sorts. She handed me a binder of details and I made sure the starred things happened correctly. It was a blast and the perfect outlet for my A-type tendencies. Because I was there for the rehearsal as well as the wedding and reception I got plenty of great pictures. I thought I would share some of the fun ones. (you can click on them to see a bigger version).I also took a video of a younger guest at the reception shaking his groove thing on the dance floor. He was out there for quite a while living it up. See it here on Youtube.

This weekend was also an awesome opportunity to catch up with my Augie buds and some friends I hadn't seen in years. I've got some good reception pictures to share too.

July 16, 2009

ALA Exhibits

On Monday I went with my fellow USF Librarians to the Exhibit Hall at the American Library Association Annual Conference. What fun! It was amazing the amount of people and vendors that were there. Over 1,500 booths. It was great to talk with other librarians/archivists and other vendors to see what's new, what projects people are doing, what information is coming soon.
I took a few pictures while I was there of the "decorations":A knight at one of the booths. I don't remember where, but he was pretty impressive.

At one point I turned to the side and almost ran into this dinosaur guy. Needless to say I was startled and then I kept seeing him prowling around the exhibits. It's hard to be creeped out by a dino in a orange shirt and blue hat, but he was a little weird.

My favorite. I have a soft spot for The Cat since I have been him for Halloween quite a few times. This guy was very popular, but he stopped to pose for me.

July 14, 2009

Ashamed of My State

I'm very disheartened by a news release that came my way through the library world. The State of MI, the state the I love and have hopes of someday returning to, has passed an executive order to terminate the History, Arts and Libraries Department and close the Library of Michigan.

How do you close the State Library? And how do you think you are saving the state money by taking away their access to free resources?

Highlights of Executive Order No. 2009-36:
* They will stop checking out books. whaaat?!
* Eliminate nine staff positions, including the State Librarian.
* Start charging an admission fee to the once free State Museum.
* They are going to "shop around" things like the Federal Documents Depository, non-Michigan genealogy, Michigan History Magazine, and the museum store and if they can't find people to take them over they're going to eliminate them.
* They won't be administering the MELCat program anymore, which is a huge blow to libraries in the state. MELCat is the inter-library loan program that allows Michigan residents to borrow books from outside their library system, from anywhere in the state. No more MELCat means no more ILL for lots of libraries.
* Many things will be transferred to the Department of Natural Resources including museum facilities, archives, historical records and related functions, and the Mackinaw Island State Park Commission. Exactly how does the DNR qualify as administrators of the state's history?
* They are "creating a nine person "Center for Innovation and Reinvention Board" that has until June 1, 2010 to come up with a way to "preserve and maximize the benefits to the public of existing state library and historical resources" using "creative and innovative ideas," but doesn't get more specific than that."

It just seems so backwards to me. I can see backing off on services or collection development or other things for a few years, but to eliminate or reassign everything is going to be such a mistake in the long run. I worry that when (or if) Michigan ever gets back on its feet they're going to look around and say "What happened to our State? And who are all these uneducated people milling around causing trouble? Don't we have somewhere they could go to learn outside of school?

July 10, 2009

Librarians Rule!

Did you know that the 2009 Annual Meeting for the American Library Association is being held in Chicago today through next Tuesday? I'm headed in to the city on Monday to visit the exhibits and meet up with some classmates and friends and enjoy the experience in general. I thought I would post some quotes in honor of my fellow book lovers and information gatherers.

"I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."
- Jorge Luis Borges

"In the nonstop tsunami of global information, librarians provide us with floaties and teach us how to swim."
- Linton Weeks

"Our whole American way of life is a great way of ideas, and librarians are the arms dealers selling weapons to both sides."
- James Quinn

July 9, 2009

Read What You Want

I am such a huge fan of reading lists that I've kind of overwhelmed myself with lists of books that I want to read. I have a "classics" list, and a "new classics" list, and an "ultimate teen" list plus the list that I kept while I was in grad school and had no time to read for fun but wanted to keep track of all the books that my fellow future librarians recommended. Whew! It turns out it takes a whole lot longer to read a list of books than to write or print it out (who knew). I also get frustrated because I'll be following a list and then want to read something off the list that just came out or was just recommended and I have guilt about it. Then I get stuck in indecision. Ugh.
I know it's a very petty problem to have, so I do sometimes have to remind myself that the world will not end because I read a few books "out of order". I recently found a quote by Samuel Johnson that says:
"A man ought to read just as inclination leads him; for what he reads as a task will do him little good."
While I think that assigned reading for a class may be an exception to that, I'm going to try to remember his words when I get caught up in silly fretting over what to read next. I'll read just as I'm inclined. The trick will be to figure out what I'm inclined to read.

July 8, 2009

A Neeeww Caaar!

Imagine that title was yelled by Rod Roddy on the Price is Right.

I had success on my 4th of July weekend mission to find a new used car to replace my poor jeepy that was totaled in the accident last month. I bought a 2000 Honda CR-V in dark green. It was the least expensive car that I test drove and had the most amount of features that I wanted.
So far, so good. There are some amusing/annoying things about it, but they're not worth fixing so I'll just get used to them. And the horn makes a sad, unfortunate noise that I laugh at each time.

The plan is to use the money I saved to do some fixes that will bring it up to worry-free working condition, and drive it for a couple of years until I've saved up enough to buy the car I really want. Who knows, maybe I'll end up with a new CR-V down the road. Right now I'm just thankful that I'm not having to pay for a rental anymore.

Thanks also to Bob for his amazing help on the car buying day. I know I got the awesome deal that I did because of him. And he stuck it out even after I complained about one car because there was no place for my purse. (I'm such a girl).

July 7, 2009

D.C. Highlights

I recently went on a family vacation to our nation's capital. I love that city. It's clean and peppy and chocked full of stuff to do. I thought I would share some highlights and some pictures. Enjoy!

* Smithsonian! Smithsonian! Smithsonian! - Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian props, The Castle, and the repairing of a space something or other at the Air and Space Museum are the main things I got pictures of, but we did quite a few of the museums.* Travel on the Metro was very somber and a bit slower after Monday's accident, but it is still my favorite public transportation system.

* Vacation Eating: McDonald's for breakfast, various food courts for lunch, and Cheesecake Factory for dinner. Lovely!* Kooky, yet relaxing, sculpture gardens.* The National Archives! We didn't actually go in because the line was always too long, but I had to take some snaps outside my motherland.* We got surprisingly close to The White House.* Nature in the big city - a duck family cruising in the Constitutions Garden Lake on the Mall.* Did you know that the National Aquarium is in the basement of the Commerce Building? Odd, but true. We spotted a turtle on the move.* The Tourists Traps - We saw the big ones, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, the Capital, Arlington Cemetery, and the White House. I really like the Jefferson Memorial and the FDR Memorial, but we didn't make it to those this time.