Friday, August 27, 2004

Good Bye Dr. Kim






A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library
— Shelby Foote


Thank you for what you've taught me.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Returns



Oh, how the time has flown. Again, I await my return to University. Only I don't have to wait long. I go back on Monday. Indexing and Abstracting awaits me as I type this. I will also be taking Academic Reference, and if I am lucky I got into Preservation Management. I will also be doing my practicum at a postcard pretty private college, I'm sure it would give Norman Rockwell wet dreams.

One of the things I find myself wondering is "what do academic librarians wear?" I've done the corporate gig...lots of suits and ties and nice details. I've done the public thing...lots of jeans and polos and khakis. My academic experience stops at working the circulation desk..where I did a sort of "corporate-public" meld of apparel..and sported khaki's with a dress shirt, or jeans and a shirt and tie. I am thinking that the librarians might wear ties at this library. The woman who is my practicum advisor is sort of a Jackie Bouvier-Kennedy-Onassis inspired fashionista. Big sunglasses resting on perfectly coiffed blond hair, East coast chic sweaters casually tossed over her shoulders, Burberry chiffon scarfs knotted carefully over draped pearls. And very sassy black heels. I have to look the part if I am going to be her apprentice. Oooh! Apprentice to an Academic Librarian. How fabulous does that sound (to me?).

I've decided to keep it sensible, as I want undergrads to ogle me, but not desire to reach out and fondle my bathing suit area...and yet seem respectable. Funny. I've seen the naughty librarian look on tons of women, but not really on men. I shudder to think of all the collegiate sorority girls that I may attract to the library. Or Fraternity boys. Hmmm. Like moths to a flame. G-d knows I can flame. Scorch on occasion.

Back to school also means seeing classmates that I haven't seen all summer. It also means lots of homework and lots of late nights. I can handle it. If not, I can always go shopping now that my financial aid has come in.

Moral of this blog: style and academics. similar in my mind to bakelite flatware. unecessary but highly desirable.

Rare



I just took this quiz. These were my results:

eXpressive: 5/10
Practical: 4/10
Physical: 3/10
Giver: 6/10

You are a RSIG--Reserved Sentimental Intellectual Giver. This makes you a People-Pleaser.

Oh, RSIG! You are the most complicated and dynamic of any type. You are brilliant, tender, romantic and a joy to be with. You're the favorite of many of your friends. It's just not a party until you get there. You are bursting with feeling and sentiment and insight but you very rarely express it -- it's not how you want to present yourself to the world. Although you are always studying your non-romantic relationships -- you turn a blind eye to romantic relationships.

You're highly adaptable, and you conform to your circumstances (maybe you're a youngest child?). You would probably be content with almost anyone, and almost anyone would be blissfully happy to have you. But just because you're content doesn't mean you're happy. Don't settle!

You'd rather ignore your problems than rock the boat by creating conflict. Please understand that in the long run ignoring conflict will make you unhappy and your partner exhausted. Try picking a fight just to see how it goes. You'll find out that solving problems is so satisfying for you that it makes conflict worth it.

Your sex life could be fantastic if you could stop worrying about everything so much (did I wash my hands? how do I look? what do I need to do tomorrow?). You need a sweet, expressive lover who makes you feel at ease and never puts pressure on you. If you feel secure with your partner outside the bedroom, it will make all the difference.

You cry at movies. A lot.

Of the 5996 people who have taken this quiz, 6.4 % are this type.


Figures. I do cry at movies a lot. I'm rare. Just like my A- blood type.

Monday, August 23, 2004

After my blog the other day, I found this. Maybe I was actually helping an Olympian!!

Moral of this blog: Don't judge a book by its nailpolish.

Oops I did it again...



You know how sometimes when you are waiting to be seated at a cafe and you accidentally go across the street and buy an antique desk? Yeah, well that happened to me.

It was all very innocent. A wait at a vegan cafe turned into an opportunity for me and my partner to stop into this cute little place right across the street. This is where we found a 1940's era lab table, that had been whitewashed. We've been looking for a partners desk, and this was it.

So, we got it home and realized there was no place to put it. Go figure. Its only 5 feet by 3.5 feet. This is when we realized that the spare bedroom was about to have a major face lift. It is now a fully functioning office, complete with two HUGE lush potted Majesty palms.

But it kinda didn't end there...we've also added a new accent lamp in a lovely worn shade of sage, put down a huge sage and rose colored tapestry on the floor and completed the look with two mismatched upholstered arm chairs from the 1930's. Throw in a few white washed candle sticks, and 2 wall size bookcases...VOILA! Instant charming office.

Now my latest adventure is to frame all the wall art that we've been collecting for a few years. A great old architects brownprint of a built in library book case from the 1920's, a subway poster that my partner was in for his former dance company and a lovely lithograph of Ophelia that I've been meaning to get around to for years.

Now I can be a very productive librarian at home too. Not only do I have a lush conservatory-esque office now-but I have an office. I was using an old card catalog that had a converted drop front panel on it...that now lives in the dining room. And the bed? Its wrapped in drop clothes in the basement. Now guests will have to settle on sleeping on the queen size pullout in the sitting room.

Moral of this blog: Use your time productively when made to wait.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Nailed



I've been promising myself to write about this, but didn't really have enough fodder until recently to create something worthy.

I will be the first in line for a manicure, and a pedicure. I think that healthy nails speak volumes about the person. I will however draw the line at turning each finger nail into a work of art. I think body art is a wonderful expression. I enjoy seeing piercings, and tattoos, but somehow this is just taking it one step too far.

My first adventure with the "coco nails" as I've always called them occurred weeks ago when I was cleaning up the computer stations. Some of my devotees may remember my recounting cleaning up a box of Lucky Charms, a bottle of red pop, and the very elaborate fake fingernail that was on the floor.

Second, during summer reading club, a woman dropped something. A volunteen (volunteer+teen=volunteen) picked it up and returned it to the woman. It was a gold crusted fingernail with a rhinestone in it. Very kind of that volunteen to return such an obviously costly piece. The woman was very grateful.

I'd have died of embarrassment if someone said "HEY! Here is one of your fingernails."

The other night while emptying book drop, a woman was dropping off CD's and DVD's. About 3 minutes before close. We began picking them out of the book drop as she was putting them in. At one point she said "OOOh, I'm sorry baby. I didn't mean to stick you..." to my co-worker. Her nails were at least 1 1/2 inches long, bright red, with a silver glitter bridge diagonally crossing each nail.

When you have to be careful because of your fingernails, you have gone to far. They are now a weapon, and you...no matter how much lamee or finery you add to them are the non-mutant equivalent of Wolverine. We are not allowed to carry knives, yet this is legal.

The ladies with the coco nails can't even use the self check machine properly. It is a touch screen unit, much like an ATM machine. They have to use their knuckles to press the screen because their nails keep them too far away.

How do people with nails like that do simple thinks like put in contact lenses and eat canapes? More over, how do they "clean up" after a stint in the powder room?
One has to wonder if it looks like torn up wall paper down there. OK, one doesn't have to wonder that.

I've seen Chinese characters (I wonder if they might be like "how to instructions"?), hoops, studs, and palm trees (how tropical!) added as embellishments. I will say something if someone has portraits done though. I promise.

I will say they are well maintained. At least no one has dirt under thier nails. I guess coco nails aren't meant for gardeners. Just not for me, but still a point of amusement.

Moral of this blog: Size does matter.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Customer Service




Ever tried finding the customer service number for Amazon.com and found it impossible? Tired of bouncing around on their web page looking for their "person to person" contact information? Look no further. Here it is:


Phone: (800) 201-7575
Fax: (206) 266-2950


They fixed a small shipping glitch for me today in less than one minute...and I've been waiting 2 days so far for a reply. I hope this bit of information is helpful.

moral of this blog: reach out and touch someone. not on their bathing suit area's though.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Hello?? Anyone there??



The Olympics have basically left me a widower. My boyfriend has married a new bride...Swimming and Gymnastics.

Some may question my patriotism by complaining about this. I too admit to taking in a bit of the tellie...Murder, She Wrote and Divine Design (with Candice Olson!) but it has never been a mistress. These sporting games have completely taken his attention away from me.

Now, he says that he is doing "research" for a piece he plans to perform in a year called "Sport". Perhaps, but they keep him up late, satisfy him, and garner all his emotion and attention. Whore. It belongs to me. At least the Olympics don't leave cheap perfume and lipstick on his mock turtle zippy sweat shirt.

As a librarian, I am used to people wanting information, and mass quanities of it. Now I come home to horseback riding being taped in our boudoir, while he watches men's gymnastics downstairs.

Whats worse? I decided to escape to the local garden center while he was enraptured, and guess what was playing on the classical music station? None other than John William's Olympic theme!! Thank Goodness I had my copy of Villa-Lobos: Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5 with me. That kept me sane.

So, perhaps for the next few days, until track & field starts, I will be the Well Dressed and Bitter Librarian.

Moral of this blog: Perhaps I better take the route of this gymnast, maybe that will get me some attention. Hmmm, the Undressed Librarian.

added: a special thanks to a dear friend for this fine Olympian link



Sunday, August 15, 2004

Happy Birthday Precious



This is the cat I got on my 9th birthday. Today is her 19th birthday. We picked today to make the "numbers work out".

Her name is Precious, and I love her dearly. She lives in NY with my Mom...I thought she was too old to move when I came to Chicago 6 years ago. Guess I was wrong.

And now I'm off to the zoo to celebrate being 28.

moral of this blog: ahhh. old pets.

Saturday, August 14, 2004

August 15, 1912- August 13, 2004



Goodbye Julia.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

100th post



Something special for the 100th post. More ramblings of my favorite person: me.

My birthday is coming up. In fact its the same day as Julia Childs. I'll let the librarian inside you do a bit of reference work to find that one out. Its almost fall. My favorite time of the year. I've started to sneak fall colors into my wardrobe.

Today, I'm going to wear the male equivalent of the sweater set. This includes a cardigan worn over top of a sweater vest. They must coordinate, or this could be tragic and look like you suffer from colorblindness or carelessness. Todays will be a lavender dress shirt, with a spice colored cashmere vest, topped with a butterscotch and spice cardigan.

You might wonder if this seems a bit warm. Considering the fact you can keep meat fresh on the desk at my library, the answer is no. AC stays on until it snows around here. Maybe that is exaggerating, but by now...you shouldn't be surprised if I do.

So much has happened since I started blogging last October. I'd like to thank the folks who brought my tracker to 20000 hits as of yesterday, and I've attempted to give my site an RSS feed, whatever that means. Now, possible syndication? Fabulous. I've always wanted to be a slightly more blatant version of Miss Manners. I know its rude to be blatant, but isn't also true that we should ALWAYS tell the truth, and that infact sometimes the truth hurts? I could give advice to the masses...imagine me standing Evita style...throwing words of wisdom to the faithful adherents of my ideology. The world would be prettier, and smell much better.

I look forward to another 20000 hits, another 100 posts, and graduating. Then this blog will really get interesting.

And on a side note, I've been thinking of putting a bit of navy blue in my hair. I saw a very well dressed woman, in a delightful wasp waist Dior-esque skirt while visiting Chicago. She wore red lipstick, and dramatic black thick sunglasses. Yes, I did walk up to her and tell her she was divine.

Divine people should always share this with other divine people. But the point is, her hair had a shock of navy blue in it. Short, Audrey Hepburn hair with a shock of navy. Just lovely. I need to be lovely too. Lovelier.

Now dear readers, I am off to work. Where in fact the staff latrine was out of service yesterday for the afternoon. Quelle funny coincidence.

Moral of this blog: Desk Set can inspire sweater sets. Watch out Bunny Watson.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Murse



I have always been fashion forward. I have written about wanting to wear to work my "three quarter length trouser" that Kenneth Cole shook the world with. And I also carry a murse.

It is the above pictured bag. It is called a "German Medics bag", and I adore it because I can put my lip balm, cell phone, keys, and a novel in it without having to worry about the buldging pockets that plague so many men.

"Isn't it kind of grungy for a well dressed librarian?" you might query. No would be my resounding answer. Plus you know any well meaning fashionista is going to purchase anything called a "german medics bag".

I suppose the German medics fill it with things that are meant to treat wounds and the like. Chapped lips are a medical emergency to me. Why would I leave the house unprepared? Practical + functional+ foriegn=supercute.com.

Call it a "European Men's Carry-All", or a "strapped briefcase", or even a "tote". It is still a man purse. It is like buying twigs from a third world country to decorate your sitting room...utilitarian, and practical. "You're evil!" you might think. No. Candid..yes, but I've always been candid.

So go ahead and jet set with your fabulous murse. It doesn't mean you're gay if you sport one. Well, probably, but that is beside the point. Male librarians everywhere should be lining up to buy these. No more pockets that look like you have balloons in them. Stop that change jingling when you walk across the library. Best, you'll be fashionable-which as you know is a must for librarians.

Moral of this blog: Carry on. Just do it with a murse.

A la toilette



The joys of wireless technology. Right now, I am sitting at my new slate topped bistro table in my garden, which is surrounded by 4 of the most darling antique white washed conservatory wrought iron chairs that I found in an antique shop while visiting Chicago. Here I can freely drink coffee from my gorgeous pink Johnson Brothers cup and matching saucer, and freely chain smoke, a la Carry Bradshaw.

One of the things that this blog allows me to do is draw attention to things at the libraries of the world, or the library that is practically in my back yard. While I could lie and say I walk to work each day through this charming neighborhood past the cafes, and boutiques...I'll confess to driving my large SUV 3 blocks to work each day.

Today's attention grabbing subject is that of the toilet at work. Yes, I've mentioned before that a certain dapper old Asian man was mugged in the mens public toilet about 8 months ago. But I've decided to draw attention to the staff latrine.

Before any of you start to panic that I am going to divulge any of the toilet going habits if my fellow staff mates, you are wrong. Instead I chose the topic of this "Should one go to the bathroom while at work?" I for one am of the "non-bathroom going" camp while at work. I don't think twice of using the powder at work if I only have to pee...but anything else...requires me to wait for my lunch, getting into my large Orange SUV and driving 3 blocks back home.

Part of my morning ritual requires me to drink massive amounts of coffee. Usually anything that has to be done IS done before I even come downstairs a la matin. There is something terribly horrifying to me about bathroom going at work. For one, toilet going noises are not polite, and the staff latrine is right in the staff canteen. Secondly, there is the issue of timing. If you are in there for more than one minute, everyone knows what you are doing. This horrifies me, and makes my powder experience quick as lightening. A quick slash, and a good thorough hand washing shouldn't require more than about 50 seconds. And last, the, how shall I put this delicately, the fragrance.

Now I will be the first to admit, when nature calls, it screams. We do keep a small can of Lysol near the commode. But the idea still horrifies me. I know its me...over protective mother and all. I grew up knowing that public restrooms were only for washing of the hands before taking a meal, and perhaps a quick pee during a movie. Mom would make us walk zombie style to the sinks after using the toilet and wash and dry our hands. Further, opening the door of a public loo became an art form worthy of Cirque de Soleil. From a distance, I could open the door with my sweater cuff, or better a paper towel and prop it with my foot, turn toss the paper towel INTO the trash, and make a hasty escape...all from about the tender age of 5.

So here we have it. My first official blog about the toilet going habits of an uppity librarian. Do with it what you will. I'm hoping I'm not alone in this behavior...but if I am, I am willing to brave it alone.

Moral of this blog: Blogging out of doors makes me discuss les chose natural.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

For future reference



The toils and tribulations of graduate school. First, I was signed up for a class that was capped, and I was placed 7th on the wait list. I was informed by the professor that he was infact "delighted to inform me" that the class would not be taking anymore students, and "good luck in finding another class." OK, move on to challenging option 2. Library Management, taught by one of the toughest professors in the system. She's AMAZING, don't get me wrong.

The phone rang yesterday at 2:12 pm, and I was informed that the professor had decided to cancel her managment class this fall. Great. Now I'm down to two classes, and will be considered by the Bursar's office as part time unless I get a third class on my plate. Mind you, 3 classes is totally full time. I'd even bought the book already from Amazon.com marketplace...so its not refundable.

So onto that third class. My advisor suggested I get my practicum out of the way this fall. That is fine...but the professor where I'd do it is on sabbatical!! Could I feel more frustrated right now? Probably, but that wouldn't make for a very dramatic post. When I claimed to be ready for "anything that comes at me" this is not what I meant. I thought I meant having to have a sports coat altered to two buttons from three, or skipping cocktails. I didn't know it meant intellectual stress!

I'm hoping to get this practicum. The woman in charge of it was my professor last semester for a reference course, and she ROCKS!! She even has a great haircut, and wears classy sunglasses pushed back in her hair. A true icon of library fashion. My kind, that is.

So, right now, I am a part time student with residency tuition. I'm riding the "freak out" train right now, and it doesn't look like my stop is anytime soon.

I am so bitter about this almost square state's library science program. They've really pulled a doozy on me...and as we've established I'm as delicate as an orchid. Even the wrong kind of lighting will spell my demise.

moral of this blog: Working 9 to 5 what a way to make a livin'...problem is, I'm only working 9-12. I'm not going to live!!

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Points of Interest



I would be remiss in not informing you of several carreer shaping events that have occurred of late. I jot them down when they happen, so I can repeat them later. I have been terribly busy lately, so with out further ado:

*working circ desk*
Hot & sexy Customer service Associate "Can I help you?"
Urban patron with cell phone "hold up" *covering mouth piece on phone*" CAN YOU NOT SEE I AM ON THE PHONE?" *back to phone "sorry baby..."

I checked all of his items out, only to have him come back a few minutes later and slam them on the counter.

UPWCF "I was returning this, I wanted to renew these two, and to check this one out"
HSCSA "I'm sorry, I wish you would have communicated that to me...*going through fake motions* Here you go. You're all set. Have a great day!"


A mother came up to get a card for her daughter. Her daughters name was Malaysia. Only she had a card already, and Malyasia had fines of $70.00 on her card. When I informed her mother of this, she said oh, there must be another child named Malaysia *****. When I informed her that the birthdate was also the same, she said "Imagine that! Two Malaysia's born on the same day!"

She actually got a card for her daughter later that day.


A patron told me that I look like a young Elvis. Thank G-d. I would have slapped her if she said Vegas Elvis. Really. It would have been worth the dismissal.

A friend/co-worker went to visit Asatique Island. When she came home, I sent her a note telling her that I was glad she was home. She sent back a one sentence reply: "the ponies smell better than the patrons". I almost pissed myself laughing.

Thats all for now.

Moral of this blog: Patrons are as funny as they smell.

Le Poisson Rouge




Probably one of the worst things a person with a diagnosed OCD can do is have goldfish. I thought to myself "What am I missing in my life?" and of course the answer was more things to take care of. So I ran to the pet supply shop and purchased a small 3 gallon aquarium, a plant, and some gravel. I let it "cycle" for 36 hours, and then went back to find the perfect fish to fill it with.

I ended up with two fantail goldfish...Eggs & Toast. Eggs is gold with a white tail, and Toast was calico. Anyone with an OCD knows that you can not stop looking at goldfish...and I was afraid they were going to die. And so they promptly did.

SO, I went back and got Eggs II and Toast II. Toast II lasted for about 12 hours. Eggs II is still alive. I can't stop looking in the tank. I'm afraid Eggs is going to go the way of Toast. Perhaps goldfish were a really bad idea.

But this got me thinking, do all librarians have OCD? For those of you wondering, OCD is nothing more than an Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Mine blossomed during my undergraduate, but perhaps could have been diagnosed when I was younger. I used to dump the Monopoly and Clue games out, and alphabatize the playing cards and line the figurines up in size order. OK, maybe I'm the only person who has ever bothered to put decks of cards back into suite/color order..but I'm not the only librarian with these tendancies.

Thinking back on the librarians in my life, all of them were neat-knicks. Everything in its place, and a place for everything, order was the rule of the day, and they all looked impeccable. Each of them had a top list of rotating priorities that I was to clairvoy for the day. This still seems to be the case, only I think my OCD is synching up with the librarian's OCD...combining to make one super case of mental ability.

On top of it, it doesn't hurt to have OCD when dealing with the public. I find myself arranging pens and the tape dispenser after a patron has slightly moved them on the desk. It keeps us acute and neat. I highly recommend that if you don't have an OCD, you go see your physician and tell him you want one. Couching it in those terms will gaurantee you get one. If you choose to medicate, that is a whole other matter. I for one suggest embracing it, not masking it with little pink pills.

Moral of this blog: OCD's are a librarian's best friend. Just like gin martini's with extra lemon.