Early October Posting

October 11, 2007

Not an exciting title, but probably appropriate due to the infrequency with which I have posted over the past few months. Much of it has had to do with moving to and settling into life in North Carolina’s Research Triangle. As my regular readers know, I have been seeking employment in the area. I have tried for jobs in various library settings, and I signed up for the North Carolina State Government’s temporary employment agency. The latter has paid off (so to speak), so for the next three months, or until I find permanent employment in a library, I will work 40 hours per week as part of a state agency project to modernize how the North Carolina “conducts business.” I ended up in a group that schedules one-time training sessions for state employees in various regions of North Carolina. My first few weeks have been busy fiddling with the learning management system, including such activities as scheduling people en masse for classes; moving around people who ended up with schedule conflicts, or who somehow ended up scheduled for the wrong region; and solving problems related to employee profiles within the system (mainly password changes and account creation). It doesn’t pay nearly as well as a professional librarian position (yes, I read this), but the work is fine and I’m learning a few new computer skills from the management system used for this project.

I have had a chance to catch up on library-related matters, though with little time to sit and write something coherent. The Wyoming mudflap flap seems to have emerged as a semi-major issue, though it has probably begun to subside now that I have a chance to write about it. In my opinion, both the mud flaps and the subsequent flap seem rather silly. The mudflaps may pique some interest among those who haven’t read the infamous NY Times article about hip librarians, but I don’t think the trick will work in the long run. People go to the library for a number of reasons, and I suspect that anyone expecting to see a real-life manifestation of the silhouetted “book babe” (for lack of a better term) will skulk away sheepishly from the stacks of libraries throughout Wyoming. I doubt that anyone would think such a thing, anyway, even at a subconscious level. Still, I suppose it demonstrates that librarians have a sense of humor… apparently the same kind required to use Tigi hair care products. (A lighted curling iron? OMG! ROTFL!!!)

Sadly, I missed out on adding my life story to the Annoyed Librarian’s poll asking if librarians were unpopular as children. Among the comments, someone told another commenter that they found that person’s blog more sincere than most, along with my blog. That comment compelled me to post one of my own, but time and modesty worked against me. Once again, a tad tardy, but here goes…

My father was a relentlessly self-improving boulangerie owner from Belgium with low grade narcolepsy and a penchant for…

No, wait. I’ll try again…

I grew up in the coutryside about a mile outside a small rural town in Ohio, and I had older parents than most of my contemporaries, which meant that some kids had parents who were the same age as my brothers. I grew up with a sensibility barely touched by anything past the mid-’60s. There were exceptions, of course, such as television and movies, but I was rather out of touch with many other things my peers enjoyed (especially music… it took years for me to appreciate and enjoy Rock ‘n’ Roll). I also didn’t really start forming close friendships until sixth grade. My interest in girls started to emerge around that time, which gave me some incentive to finally start catching up. Figuring out that thick glasses and corduroy pants wouldn’t exactly work magic on them seemed like a good start, but I still acted about as suave as Guy Gadois. Things improved somewhat when I moved into town at age 16, though I remained “unattached” throughout high school and didn’t really fit in very well with any cliques. Nevertheless, I at least knew people from a variety of groups (preps, skaters, scummers, etc.), and I would hang out with people I met on my walks or bike rides throughout town.

Beyond high school, the details of my life are inconsequential, at least for the purposes of AL’s survey. Some things could be better, but I’m generally content with how my life has turned. Best of all, I have spent almost five years with my wonderful wife Diane, which shows that the best things come to those who wait. Speaking of Diane, I’m quite proud of her for being selected as guest editor for the most recent issue (October/November 2007) of the ASIST Bulletin, which focuses on folksonomies. For those of you interested in image tagging, Diane’s introductory article focuses specifically on that topic. Also look for a cameo from yours truly.


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