Education consists of what exactly?

I’m still looking for some hourly work for the fall.  My current place is holding 10 hours/week of hourly work for me, but I haven’t had a lot of luck so far with finding definite employment to make up the other 10 hours.  Of course, I’m looking for employment in cataloging and/or metadata.

I heard that the cataloging positions were filled by transferring 2 students in to Rapid Cataloging from someplace else in the library.  I hope that they at least want to be catalogers.  What with the outstanding system we don’t have in place here, it isn’t likely though.

One possible opportunity is a grant funded position that we just heard got funded [50% appointment].  Turns out the position might be more than what I wanted though.  I looked over some details this morning and sort of quickly said, "Probably not," as my education is foremost to me. 

But then later in the day I got to thinking.  It really is a perfect opportunity for me.  It would require scaling back my classes for a year and that worries me a bit.  But then I thought, just what is an education?  This would certainly qualify in many ways.  It would also qualify as experience, which is the other half of what I hope to pursue during my CAS degree.

I realized that I had boxed myself into thinking of my education as my formal classes, and I know better than that.  More than most people I know that.  Considering I am in no particular hurry to get done I need to reconsider this opportunity.  So that is what I am doing.

It is all fairly abstract at the moment as the job announcement has yet to be posted.  Once it is though it’ll be a fairly quick process as they need to get started soon.  And, yes, for now I am going to be very circumspect.  I will have to apply and go through the whole interview process business.  In an odd sort of way though, I’m only about 10% as worried about said process as I thought I’d be when I finally took the plunge into ‘real’ professional employment.  One reason I think is because as much as I hate resume writing, I realized that I can write a great resume for this position.  It could be that it’s for  a specific position vs. for an abstract position like the one I had to turn into Library HR for a possible GA-ship or hourly position.  But I don’t think so.  I think it may just be that this is a really good fit for me based on what I’ve done over the years.

So I think I’ll start drafting a new resume tailored to this position over the long holiday.  I also have an email out to my advisor to discuss it all sometime next week, and I’ll probably go visit my friend and mentor in Normal as soon as possible.  Talking with wise women can help me put it in perspective.

[I sure wish you were here Em!  I hope things are going great for you in Georgia.]

Mark as a professional librarian so soon?  It is kind of scary, but exhilarating at the same time.  I just need to ensure that it really does fit my educational needs.  I think it just might.

But, boy oh boy, which classes would get dropped for fall?

Champaign bound

Late this afternoon I signed a lease for an apartment.  On 2 August I’ll take possession of my new place on the 500 block of W. Springfield in Champaign.  I have to be out of here on the 9th, so I’ll have plenty of time to move my way too many belongings.

Heading over to the dark side as Jenny said.  I tried to stay in Urbana; I truly did, but it didn’t work out.  Oh well. 

The new place is a fair bit larger.  I’m also going back to having 2 bedrooms, although there won’t be any 2nd bed.  It’ll just serve as storage mostly.  It also is quite a bit more money, but heat is included.  My poor little car will also have an assigned, covered parking space.  The poor thing has been living with the buses barely scraping past it all through the day and night 363 days a year for 2 years now.

Except for the moving part, I think I am looking forward to it.  I will miss Crane Alley though.  Ah well, I was spending too much money there anyway.

Diversity is a wonderful thing

I love living in a college town!

I took myself out for a spot of dinner tonight and just as I was finishing up my friend Nav showed up.  He asked me out to the Alley as the rain had moved on, so I went.  Turns out he was with his new friend Tom.

So I spent a good portion of the evening hanging out with a Nepalese and a Norwegian.  Great for the perspective let me tell you.  We had a couple beers and some great conversation.  Discussed books, librarianship, higher ed, politics, religion, the military, various aspects of international culture, and who knows what else.  Both have been here (the US) long enough to easily forget that they aren’t American.  But the beauty is, they’re not.  So very refreshing!  And it would have been hard to have some of those conversations with many Americans.

We may even go kayaking together soon on the Kickapoo River.  It really is a small world after all.  And not in some glorified Disneyesque sense; but in a real world individual manner.

Did I mention how I love living in a college town?

Burnin’ the Feed

About an hour ago I did some magic between TypePad and FeedBurner and now my feeds have all supposedly been automagically rolled into one feed.  Subscribers are supposed to be redirected automagically also.  So here’s hoping no one has issues.

I also added some FeedFlare to my feed and site.  Thus, you should now see links for Email this, Add to, and Subscribe to this feed at the bottom of each post whether in your aggregator or on the site.  I still need to republish the blog so that it’ll show up on previous posts.  [Just did.]

I also removed TypePad’s syndicate link and replaced it with the standard RSS icon to the FeedBurner feed.  I also subscribed to the new feed in Bloglines so we’ll see how things go.

Please let me know if there are any issues.  And I’m sorry for the refreshed posts in your aggregator due to this and/or the republishing of the site.

Update:  Well that’s odd.  This post doesn’t have the FeedFlare and republishing didn’t do anything for the past posts.  Oh well.  We shall see.

Update2:  Now this post does, but not archived posts.  Whatever.

20,000 …thoughts… fans can’t be wrong

…although they may well be confused.  Welcome to the club!

OK, I don’t really have 20,000 fans.  But I did just pass 20,000 page views.  I know, I know.  A couple folks out here in the biblioblogosphere have half that many Bloglines subscribers and must get that many page views every 24-30 hours.  But most of us toil in relative obscurity with a small number of friends (FTF and web) and family reading our witty repartee.

I’ve also picked up a good handful of new Bloglines subscribers over the last week.  Welcome!  I hope you find the place to your liking.  I’m not sure if it’s due to Walt’s gracious words and inclusion of some of my babblings in the latest issue of Cites & Insights, or if it’s due to my 4th hosting of the Carnival of the Infosciences (#42), or my stirring up trouble re being slightly indirectly called ‘old,’ or at least ‘not young’ via a new leadership initiative from ALA, or just pure luck.  Either way, again welcome!

To all, new or (dare I say it) old (nah!) long-time readers, feel free to let me know what you like, or don’t.  I certainly will not promise to change anything.  But it might have some impact, and I’d love to know why you decided to stick around, even if only temporarily.  Even I haven’t been real pleased with my output over the last couple of months.  School was the biggest impediment, as well it should be. 

This whole web thing is so very odd.  I see the little subscription numbers change in Bloglines; someone added my humble blog, someone dropped it.  Except in the rarest of cases do I ever have any idea why.  I know who a few of my readers are, but certainly less than half.  One way, of course, to tell is by who comments reasonably frequently.  A few because I know them from school and they tell me.  A large percentage never comment though, and that’s certainly OK.  But then there’s the feeling that it’d be nice to have some idea.  Not in some big bad Big Brother way.  I’m really glad we don’t have that capability. 

Then again, I read lots of blogs where the writers don’t know that I do.  I’d like to think that if they asked that I’d tell them though.  I see no reason not to that I can think of, but I’m not saying that can be extrapolated to everyone.  It can’t.  People have their own reasons for doing things and that is OK with me.  I’m just saying, "This web stuff is weird."

Anyway, welcome to the big weird web and my little corner/portion/slice of it.  Feel free to introduce yourself, or not.  And don’t forget that my email address is on my About page and my IM is on the right sidebar of all other pages, in case you prefer not to comment publicly.

And, yes, I fully know that this little event really is no great shakes in the grand scheme of things, or even as important as stopping to appreciate the beauty of a flower or the smile of a puppy, but it gives me a small little glow anyway.  If anyone had told me back in January 2005 that I’d have well over 500 posts and 20,000 page views in less than a year and a half I’d have told them they were crazy and probably quit immediately on the offchance they were right.  I’m glad they didn’t.

Happy Birthday Dorothea!

I guess the post title really says it all, but for those who don’t know, Dorothea Salo is the witty and learned, "young" [per ALA anyway] writer of Caveat Lector and today is her birthday.

Here’s wishing you a wonderful one and that David’s homemade cake is the best ever!

On a side note, I’m still politely waiting on a reply to TEI is too metadata!  Take your time, enjoy your birthday first.  I’m not going anywhere.  🙂

Another waste of my tax dollars (and yours)

  Army stuff 
  Originally uploaded by broken thoughts.

I got an interesting package of "official U.S. Army documents" in the mail today.   It seems my Nation wants to thank its Soldiers [and no, I did not know that either of those were proper nouns.   "Nation" scares the crap out of me!].

All of this stuff, including a 2nd sticker, was inside a very heavy large envelope and well-packaged with a piece of cardboard the size of the certificate.   The pin is, of course, of metal and is on a multi-fold piece of cardstock with a piece of cushy stuff inside to protect it.

All of this was sent first class according to the envelope.   On one hand, I do appreciate this, but on the other, I think it is a complete waste of my (and your) tax dollars.   I have no idea how many ex-soldiers got this or even if it was restricted to retirees (still tens of thousands), but it must have cost a fortune!

Honestly, I’ll be the judge of how much my nation appreciates my service!   It’ll be reflected on various occasions, such as Independence Day, Memorial Day, and Veterans Day among others.   It’ll be reflected in how Congress votes on matters related to the military and war.   It’ll be reflected in how the citizenry responds to those votes.

Considering the cost of this stuff and the expense of postage is probably very close to the annual "cost-of-living" increase in my retirement pay, well, personally I think the money could’ve been put to better use.   You know, simple things like funding the Veterans Administration hospitals.

Maybe no one is paying attention to this unimportant little blog, or maybe they are and they’re trying to sway my opinion of their current bounty hunting tactics for recruitment.

Considering that you, my friends, and I, paid for this stuff I guess I won’t just trash it, but don’t count on seeing any of this stuff on my wall, my car, my backpack or myself. 

And, honestly, the next time "you" want to thank a veteran for their service just walk up to them and say so, or drop a comment in their blog.   Better yet, go volunteer some time at a VA Hospital.   Donate some books to the hospital library or start one.   Or just perhaps vote some of the criminals we call our "leaders" out of office so we have a few thousand less war veterans to care for in the 1st place.

Another nail in ALA’s coffin (for me)

Thanks to Alice’s post, Strong women in times of change, at It’s all good I came across the following:  Leslie Burger’s Emerging Leadership Initiative.

A side question that is not really related to my point here is why is this under the aegis of the Central Jersey Regional Library Cooperative and not ALA?


To enable 100 young librarians to get on the fast track to ALA and professional leadership


1) ALA member, and

2) Young (under 35 years), and

3) Recent MLS degree or in an MLS program currently, and

4) Ready to be involved in an ALA committee or workgroup, and

5) Able to attend both ALA conferences and work virtually inbetween, and

6) Ready to commit to serve on an ALA committee, taskforce or workgroup upon completion of program

My point.  This is discriminatory.

This should be available to any new and "young to the profession" librarians.  I have no doubt that some of you can come up with justifications for limiting this to those under 35; go ahead and post them as comments if you like.  Not likely I’ll buy any of them though.

My first guess would be because us recalcitrant Baby Boomers need managing by the young as evidenced by the article I discussed here.

My next question would be:  Under 35 as of when?  As of application submission, application deadline, start date of the program, or some other date?

I find it completely amazing how many lines—generational and otherwise—professional librarians are capable of drawing.  Despite my age and despite what any of the rest of you may think, I fully intend to have a long and productive career in librarianship; as do all of the other students I know who are 35 or over (no small number either).

As any of you know who know me, I have absolutely nothing against the "young."  In fact, I dearly love them for all that they bring to the table.  But we really should be encouraging all new librarians to get involved in our professional organizations.

So, a hearty "Thank you!" to whoever had the great idea to marginalize my cohort and me.  We certainly don’t bring anything to the organization from our previous life experiences, nor do we care to be involved.  Keep telling yourselves that and it will become a reality.

Tagged by a tipsy typist…

…or as she IMed, "I’m kinda typsy."  She immediately corrected it to "tipsy" but I think I prefer it as "typsy." 

Remember kiddies, no blogging while typsy!  Drink and blog responsibly.

My friend Tracy at trickle drops tagged me with a meme she did last Sunday.  The funny thing is, until now I thought her blog was named tickle drops.  I told her it was either my warped sense of humor, or else my illiteracy of great poets.  At least now the Whitman excerpt makes sense to me.

This was harder than I imagined, which was already up there on the difficulty scale.  Keep in mind that every statement could be vastly different.

I AM: becoming the person I want to be (albeit far too slowly).

I SAID: far too many hurtful things during my marriage.

I WANT: another chance someday.

I WISH: for worldwide peace, love and understanding.

I HATE: nothing (in my better moments anyway).

I MISS: my children.

I FEAR: dying lonely.

I WONDER: why those who profess family values preach so much hate.

I REGRET: setting a military example for my son.

I AM NOT: what some people think I am.

I DANCE: rarely and only when alone.

I SING: with my earbuds in.

I AM NOT ALWAYS: a nice person.

I MADE: someone happy yesterday.

I WRITE: to integrate my life.

I CONFUSE: myself sometimes.

I NEED: a hug.

I SHOULD: actively exercise.

I START: more than I finish.


I BELIEVE: that belief is the closest we can get.

I KNOW: that I could be wrong.

I CAN’T: believe our educational system lies to us so much about what is truly important.

I SEE: so much promise in my fellow students.

I BLOG: to mend my broken thoughts.

I READ: to converse with those long since gone or those I’ll never meet.

I AM AROUSED BY: simple things—the curve of a neck, fidlding with hair, an engaged mind.

IT PISSES ME OFF: that my country sent my son to war.

I FIND: beauty often overwhelming.

I LIKE: learning.

I LOVE: helping others.

I TAG: anyone who feels the need.

IM IT (and other miscellanea)

This morning I helped a friend install a plugin in GAIM via IM.  She was having issues understanding exactly what she was supposed to do between unzipping the plugin file and then installing what where.  It seems the folders that the instructions said should exist did not and it was all just a bit overwhelming for her. 

She started whining about being too stupid to understand and that it was beyond her.  I immediately told her to stop that.  It just makes things worse as I know from my own personal experience.  I also know quite well how she was feeling.  Much of this stuff is far harder than it should be. 

So I crossed my fingers and told her that she could do it and that we would.  And we did.  She copied and pasted the plugin’s instructions into IM and I started asking questions one at a time.  Keep in mind that I do not use GAIM, nor have I ever installed a plugin in it.  This was also on a Windoze machine that was not in front of me.  Luckily, I had one near my PowerBook that I was IMing from so I was able to work in a not completely blind state.

Taking it one step at a time, we found which user profile GAIM was installed under, switched to that users Application Data folder, created the levels of subfolders we needed, and then copied the dll file she needed into the bottom-most folder.  Then she closed GAIM and relaunched it.  We got her to the GAIM Preferences pane and (luckily—cause I am now completely "blind" at this point) she was able to tell GAIM to use the plugin she just installed.  Hoorah!

I am very proud of her, and, truth be told, I am very proud of myself, too!  I am not sure where I finally learned to be so supportive of others, but I am glad I did.  This past week during on campus, one of my LEEP buddies told me that I have a reputation with the LEEPers as the patient and friendly tech guy to go to when they need help.  As much as I have a hard time believing it, and as much as I want to believe it, it does my shriveled little heart a lot of good.  I guess I am beginning to believe it since I have heard similar things from several other LEEPers and even on campus students.  It still baffles me though, as it doesn’t fit my own image of myself.  But I like this image much, much more than the ones I already hold of myself.

So thanks to all my friends for allowing me to help them!  I hope I also (sometimes) help them with their own self-images as they help me with mine.

Yesterday in the mail I got an Erin McKeown CD, distillation, and another Ani tee, 32 flavors and then some.  These are things I ordered when I pre-ordered Ani’s upcoming release, reprieve.  I’m liking Erin’s CD and need to look into others.  I’ve liked Erin ever since I saw her during my 1st ever Birthday Month in 2001 with three other lovely young women in Voices on the Verge.  I also have their live album, which is simply excellent.  I’ve been meaning to pick up more Erin but just never quite got around to it.  So if there are any Erin fans out there, please send me recommendations on what to pick up next.  Anna, what do you recommend?

Around noon today I took the previous CDs back to Urbana Free and got 14 more.  I got 6 by the Cowboy Junkies, another Suzanne Vega, 3 by Elvis Costello, 2 by yo la tengo, Neil Young’s Sleeps With Angels, and Ry Cooder’s Chicken Skin Music.  So far I’ve listened to CJs’ The Trinity Session and am listening to Ry Cooder.  They are both excellent!

Yesterday I rented 3 movies for the weekend.  I haven’t watched any of them yet, but they are The Same River Twice, Missing in America, and Munich.

Of course, I’m also working on the Carnival of the Infosciences #42 for an early Monday opening.  I do not have many submissions yet folks.  Please send me some before 6 PM CT tomorrow.

And last, but certainly not least, do not forget that tomorrow is Father’s Day.