Monday, March 31, 2008

Fans, Former

Weighing my options Removing rather than responding (or accepting) criticism? Not hot.
Former fan | 03.30.08 - 4:55 pm | #

Hmmm. A reader from Bellevue, WA area wrote the above to me. They had left a far more cutting comment, and I deleted it. Why? I didn't know how to respond. Do I owe explanations? Do I want to put myself out there to keep one rather nasty reader on my blog roll?

It is true, my blog is not the same as it used to be. Truth be told, I'm not the same person I used to be 6 months ago.

I'm a blogger, a librarian - I am not a professional writer, used to dealing with criticism.

Now that I have worked in management, and now run my own library - I do get criticism. One rule I have for those who criticize: don't come to the table empty handed. Come with suggestions. If things are happening a certain way - it is more than likely because I am not aware you are unhappy. Tell me what you'd like to see. I'm doing this all by my lonely kids. This is not a corporate sponsored enterprise.

On the other hand, I have to laugh. My blog is titled "The Well Dressed Librarian" -and guess what I post pictures of & write about? The best dressed librarian I know. No where in the fine print did this blog claim to be a mecca of civilization or a cornerstone of our industry. In my first post, I offered to lend a voice to this segment of the market. And so I have. My blog has been picked up and run by the newsletter of no less than 2 ALA accredited Library Grad Schools, I've been mentioned in one scholarly publication, my blog has been used as a training tool in at least one major US public library, and most importantly, my Mother reads my blog.

I am also impressed that someone who wanted "feedback" left a fake e-mail address, and no other way of contacting them - spare posting a response. You got what you wanted Sleepless in Seattle. I hope you are content, and a little wet that I replied.

So, what has changed in my life? Outside of a 9 year relationship ending by surprise, signing my half of my gorgeous house over to my ex, moving 500 miles away to a big city, living alone for the first time in my life, suffering a nervous breakdown, and starting a brand new job - nothing has changed. Nothing at all. Perhaps my blog isn't the most important thing to me. I post here to amuse myself, and it amuses me even more that people actually read what I write.

Is there more to it than that, or am I totally missing something? I am not Aaron Schmidt, Michael Stephens , or Stephen Abram. If you want news and information, check them out. I seriously don't mind losing traffic to these folks. If you want to know what the Well Dressed Librarian is thinking about -then read my blog.

As I've said before, we have never relied on Elsa Klensch to solve the Iraq situation, don't count on me to fix the Libraries of the 21st century. I've never promised I could, all I've done is tell people what I want them to know about librarianship. Almost a quarter of a million hits later, I must be doing something right.

I've mentioned before, customers from the library where I worked in the Almost Square State™ were astounded when they would see me out in the city. I don't live in the library! Don't be one of those people, Bellevue. You should know better.

I bleed when I am cut, and I respond when I'm poked. Especially twice.

Moral of this blog: Anonymous comments with no substance are not hot.

For Men, Accessories

So I walked into a bar...I was inspired this morning, when fellow blogger and librarian, Director LaFlamme, e-mailed me to say he was "wearing cuff links today." To say the least, I was delighted.

I too, am wearing cuff links, as I do everyday. It all started when I was a freshman in college, and a great uncle passed away. Dear Great Uncle Joe left me all his cuff links, and tie bars. Follow with another sad passing, Great Uncle Luke - and my inheritance grew. When Grandbob (Grandpa Robert) passed away, I was given his jewelry box.

My collection has since grown, with my own acquisitions.

Vintage Eiffel Tower cufflinks

There is something about these little pieces that delight me. Each one can start a conversation. Some hold special memories.

Today, I am sporting a vintage tie bar, that has a bowling ball and bowling pins on it and cuff links that were purchased in Paris from an antique shop. I smile each time I see them.

The cuff link has an interesting history, in the late 1700's, they were reserved for the upper class. They were made of expensive materials and often sported by royalty. When the French Cuff shirt popped on to the radar in the 1840's, middle class men started wearing cuff links made out of cheaper materials. Often, a hair of a lost loved one was placed under glass in a cuff link to commemorate them. In the Victorian era, men began wearing cuff links with more casual clothing, they weren't just for fancy dress dinners and the Opera anymore.

The industrial revolution brought along mass production, and by the 1920's, cuff links were all the rage. A revival in the 60's, by accessories giant Swank, filled the market once again. Cuff links remain popular to this day, and are becoming more popular each day, as retailers like Target, and JC Penney's increasingly provide affordable French cuff shirts.

Tie bars, or tie clips became popular in the 1920's. These replaced the tie tack, which is frowned upon because it has to pierce the tie each time it is worn. The tie bar is a practical piece of men's jewelry - as it hold the tie in place, and prevents it from blowing around in the wind and falling into your luncheon soup.

These are the easiest accessories for male librarians. A tie bar to keep your tie safe from prying little hands, a pair of cuff links to add a little flare to a white button down shirt. You can choose to be adventurous, or tame.

I wore my Grandbob's silver deco cuff links and matching tie bar to my first job interview when I relocated back to the city. I wanted to "bring him along" for luck. Thank you Grandbob!

EBay, tag sales, and large department stores are mecca for these objects. Let your personality show through when picking yours out!

Moral of this blog: Eat that, Bellevue, WA.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hot, Argyle is

super hot librarian

Moral of this blog: Nobody does it better.

Breast, Robin Red

Big, pert BreastsToday, on my drive to work in my large SUV, on a winding road that wraps one of the largest cemeteries in the city of Chicago, I came to a stop at a stop sign.

And there, with its head cocked to the side was the first Robin I saw in 2008.

"WDL" you say to yourself "is this really worth writing about?" To this I can only reply "Shut your pie hole."

Of course it is worth writing about, because it reminds me of so many other things I call "yearly firsts."

One of the yearly firsts that we as librarians can look forward to is the cataloging backlog. Finally, our fine men and women in cataloging get caught up, as we spend out our year end budgets. With strained eyes, due to a lack of natural light, they take up their laser wands, bar code and catalog each book. They finally get down to one wagon of books to work from - and then the ritual "we finished it" pot luck, complete with crockpot cooked nibblies. And then the new budget is approved, and once again, the librarians begin spending like crazy, meth-addicted, Baker and Taylor whores. And so another cycle ends.

One of the other firsts I look forward too is in the complaints department. While these never really stop, the special one is always the first complaint of the year. Usually it has something to do with bad parking, a rude paraprofessional, a librarian that didn't quite address your honor students needs. I like these, because I can use my new letter head, and enclose a business card. And solace the masses with deep and slightly feigned remorse about their experience.

I also look forward to the first day I can just wear a sports coat to work. While I look incredible in my camel colored wool overcoat, complete with tortoise buttons - it is still a relief to walk out of the house with dress shoes and a sports coat on. Taking this a step further, I look forward to the first day I can wear seersucker. This requires much warmer weather, and a light breeze. While I do like the original blue, I admit I look better in tan seersucker. It flatters the complexion.

Honestly, I also look forward to the first long weekend. We all do. Like that first cup of coffee in the morning, that last cigarette at night - it is just short of delish.

I also look forward to the first person I meet at a function (isn't that a fun word?)who is a)surprised b)shocked c)curious about my sexuality. The questions people ask astound me. My favorite question is "Does it hurt?" I'm pretty sure I know what they mean, but am still shocked each time someone asks. I much prefer people to be shocked that I'm a librarian. No one ever asks me if that hurts. Though, sometimes it does. Be shocked that I'm liberal. Be shocked that I wear plaid mixed with argyle. Don't be shocked that I have kissed a man. Men. whatevs. You get the picture.

And my favorite first, seeing the first lily of the valley. I always pick a sprig, and press it in my journal. This goes back years and years. I've been journaling since high school, and I can flip back and find the first one. It was my Grandmother's favorite flower. Often, in spring, she'd dig up a clump and put them in a tea cup on the kitchen table. Hmmm. That is a nice thought. It makes me happy just recounting it.

And of course, spring cleaning. That goes without saying, and merits a post of its own.

Moral of this blog: All the birds of the air fell a-sighing and a-sobbing,
When they heard the bell toll for poor Cock Robin.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Pumps, Fuck Me

I am loving this song right now.
A fairly recent obsession with Amy Winehouse has lead me to purchase both of her CD's, Back to Black, and Frank.

I know it's horrible to be a crack head, but we all loved Billie Holiday and Edith Piaf. Tragic lives, but soulful voices. Amy gets to join this crew.

And this particular song makes me laugh, especially because I can not find the explicit version anywhere. It's all about these trendy girls, and how they will never find love - their bag of tricks has dried up at age 30.

I'm starting to think the same thing, only I never had a bag of tricks and I'm hardly trendy. I do not want to be a footballers wife - I've dated my share of athletes. I think I'll stick to the scholarly boys. Nerds are hot anyway. I know. I'm living proof.

In the past few weeks, I've gone out on several "dates" - one was great. My standards are just too high. But I'm not really prepared to negotiate my fine points: Tall, college educated, funny, social, emotionally available, employed, and thin.

My Mother reminded me if it wasn't for blue collar workers, I wouldn't be here. My Dad is an automechanic - and kind of looks like Jason Lee with the moustache. Guess Mom thought that was hot back in the day. Should I open myself up to EVERYTHING? Should I date a deisel mechanic? I don't think so. If that is going to keep me single, than so be it.

I don't want to be fondled by dry, rough hands. Or ones that require Lava soap to come clean. I wouldn't mind a manicured hand feeling me up though. That is, if I let people feel me up. Which I don't. Usually. Sometimes. OK, I totally do.

In another discussion with a co-worker, I realized that maybe my "age gates" are too small. I'm 31 - so in reverse, I'll date to 25. But it has to be an even that means I'll date up to 37. 6 years on both sides. I was advised to lift the upper end to 40. Which means 9 years - if I swing that both ways, I could date a 22 year old - and that isn't going to happen.

I wish dating were more like a library. I walk in, look up what I want on the OPAC, go to the shelf, and find what I'm looking for. Best of all, when I get to the shelf, if I look to the left or right of my title - there might actually be something I want even more, that I didn't think of looking for.

Sort of like when I went to the shelf to check out A Passage to India, and found Maurice. That was fate. I had a love affair with that book for years.

Moral of this blog: I better dust off my Fuck Me Pumps.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Day, St. Patrick's

Hotty McHot!
Erin Go Bra-lessCan I say enough about Holiday Themed Clothing ™? I will answer that question for you.


I decided to keep it simple, as I encourage all librarians to do. A tightly patterend green shirt, that almost looks solid - with a great piece of neckwear. This one was landed at Brooks Brothers. The dark green stripe was just enough to say "I can read the calendar, but this is all you're getting out of me."

Why why why? you think "Does he go on and on about clothing?"

a)This is called the Well Dressed Librarian, so SURPRISE!!
b)We can't pin our degrees to our chests, people need to take us seriously for other reasons
c)I hate looking at poorly dressed people
d)I hate looking at poorly dressed librarians
e)I'm trying to help, in a non-obtrusive way. If you are reading this and don't like it, there are millions of other things to do instead. Like read my old posts.

I keep reading and reading about the deterioration of our profession. Has the deterioration started from within? Or is it something external? Who knows. My vote is from within. And I am unanimous.

Last week, I had the honor of attending a major gala for my organization. One of the things I heard several times that evening was "Wow. You don't look like a librarian!"

What does that mean exactly? I've been thinking of it over and over again in my pretty little head. Does it mean that they want me to be a graying middle aged woman? Does it mean they want me to be wearing things from the Comfort Zone™? Should I have swapped out Italian Leather loafers for something with an insole lift and velcro straps? Should I have stood in a corner, rather than sticking my hand into those of random strangers and saved my business cards for a rainy day? Perhaps, I'll never know.

Perhaps I'll make up reasons and write about them later, which seems more likely.

Moral of this blog: It isn't easy being green.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Hot, Ascots are

Moral of this blog: Friday just got a little less casual.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Single, Still


Moral of this blog: Just a reminder Dan. I'm still single.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Things, A Few of my favorite Hated

These are a few of my favorite thingsMud stains on cashmere and and my brothers fat wife
Germ covered kleenex and problems that cause strife
Super hot blind dates who only want flings
These are a few of my most hated things

Really close talkers and people with bad breath
Road kill and popcorn and lesbian bed death
Giving up kittens and ripped apron strings
These are a few of my mosted hated things

Boys in tight t-shirts who have outie navals
People who put feet on my coffee tables
Calling my cell phone to see if it rings
These are a few of my most hated things

Drink some Red Wine
Take a deep breath
When I'm feeling sad
I often obsess over these hated things
And I can't help but feel so bad

Moral of this blog: Thank G-d for nerve pills.

Monday, March 03, 2008

ugh, ugh

Its so true today

Moral of this blog: Men suck. And not in a good way.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Piaf, Edith

Moral of this blog: I can't stop listening to this song. It is so amazingly beautiful.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Photos, Phantom

icey hot

Moral of this blog: My cell phone takes photos of me when I don't even know its happening! How hot is this accidental photo?

Confusion, Blind

Oh My G-d.

Maybe I was having a blind date the other night that went well. Just saying, supposing. Maybe.

Maybe we came back to my cute little flat after a drink or two.

Maybe I put on a little Edith Piaf, and maybe I opened another bottle of wine.

Maybe he was a tall latin boy with an MBA, who spoke fluent Italian.

Maybe he tried to kiss me. And maybe I decided this was a good time to pull the blinds. It is a court yard building after all.

And maybe my blinds fell down when I tried to close them. Like on the floor - full out, tabs breaking. Crashing. Plastic splintering everywhere.

Maybe the moment was lost.

Maybe it wasn't.

Maybe this morning when I got up, and decided to pull my dated blinds up - with a cup of coffee in one hand, and my crossword puzzle sticking out of my housecoat pocket, and I did half ass job pulling the blind cord.

Maybe the dated blind fell down, and I slopped coffee all down the front of my pajama suit and housecoat.

Maybe I had to put my Tribune crossword puzzle on the table to dry, and had to do it later in the afternoon, once it dried. Maybe I couldn't tell what the clue for 19 down was because of a french roast stain.

At anyrate, one of those two things did happen. You decide.

But what really did happen: I went to the home improvement store, and bought new parts, and fixed my blinds. They work like a charm.

Which reminds me of an amusing party favorite: A nun is taking a bath. She hears a knock on the door, and says "who is it?", and hears "the blind man". She thinks to herself, and says "Oh, all right, come in". Upon opening the door, he looks at the Sister and says "Nice tits. Where do you want me to hang these?" I love that joke.

Moral of this blog: Dated blinds or blind dates? Which is worse?