Thursday, May 31, 2007

Today's Picture

He hunched down with his back to the concrete wall and ripped open his small sack of Cheetos. Eating them one by one, he'd sometimes pause to toss one to the crowd of pigeons shuffling anxiously nearby. The pop when the Cheeto was speared by a beak was pleasing. The resulting disintegration of the treat into useless dust made him chuckle. The desperate flapping of wings as each bird angled for a micro-bit reminded him that, at least for today, he was more civilized than they were. He lifted his backpack off the ground and left as the bird's beaks turned day-glo orange.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Chrysalis by Heather Terrell

Read the Reader's Advance copy of this last week. This one has a lot of buzz going for it. Fortunately, the buzz doesn't entirely rely on the Da Vinci-Codeness of the book. While it has the same art-as-clue premise, the action takes place in 1600s Holland, Nazi Germany, and the present day. The search for the provenance of The Chrysalis, a painting, has fun twists and turns. The historical viewpoint of 1600s Holland and the difficulties of being a Catholic at that time is nicely presented as is the Nazi lust for artwork and its consequences.

A tidy little piece and pretty darn good for a first-time author. Worthy of all the buzz and advertising? meh...it'll do.

It's a great read for young adults and for those adults who want a beach read or something beyond Da Vinci. And that isn't a bad thing at all. It is accessible to the average Joe or Jill and that can only be a good thing if you're encouraging reading. It is also a nice little romp for those more accustomed to heavier fare.

Publisher's Weekly, Library Journal, and Booklist find it to be perfectly suited to public library collections and I agree. The June 2007 Romantic Times gave it 4.5 stars - their highest rating. If you're looking for a bit of fun, I say read it.

What I'm listening to this week: Prior Bad Acts by Tami Hoag

What I'm reading this week: Reader's Advance Copy of Pesthouse by Jim Crace. I'm about half way through it and let me just say it is magnificent. No wonder Mr. Crace keeps getting those awards.

Creepy moment du jour

User dressed all in olive drab non-military uniform with long sleeves in 90+ degree heat wearing dark sunglasses, lounging in a chair for 3 hours using the building's wireless to watch heaven-knows-what on his cell phone

Thanks Phoenix!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Perspective

Author John Scalzi has a witty way of putting things into perspective: Bacon Cat and the Motivational Poster.

They Need a Person from the Feel-good Librarian filling in at Tame The Web: Libraries and Technology

I love my co-workers from See Also…Hey! I love your coworkers too!

Reader's Advisory

Bookgasm has pointed out a great title for readers who like the outdoors, adventure, and horror: Jack London’s Tales of Cannibals and Headhunters. It’s University of New Mexico publication from 2006. It’s unclear whether it’s still in print.

Reader Resources for Romance Readers

40 Free eBooks/Books Sites from LibrarianInBlack

Librarianship: The Profession

lolbrarians provides us with a much-needed grin. Loosen up people! (I am not responsible for language or offensiveness of the site. I’m just sayin’ we all have really great senses of humor and we ought to show them.)

LibrarianInBlack once again comes up with the goods. At last someone has figured out how to Create a more lighthearted 404 message

I wish the Better Know Your Association quiz was around when I was in Library School at the University of Iowa. They told us on the first day of the program that we needed to memorize the acronyms and fun facts about the association because we’d be asked about them in our oral comps. Did any of us remember? Only the guy with the highest GPA. …

And don’t let anyone tell you we don’t like the classics: Conan The Librarian

Awards in May

Yeah, I know, some of these are not libraryland-specific. Deal with it

Romantic Times Book Reviews Awards for 2006.
Nebula Award Winners
Quill Awards To Continue For Third Unexciting Year
2006 Darwin Awards

Wow! You can now easily subscribe!

Thanks to feedburner I've finally figured out how to put one of those sexy little subscribe buttons at the bottom right. I'm just like the big kids now!

Note to Self

Redo labels on posts. Don't be such a librarian about it.

Sticking With Blogger

Wordpress is a very nice option, no doubt. I'll just stick here and play with the look of this until I get it to my satisfaction. I'm sure my myriad readers out there are excited as all get-out.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I'm checking out Wordpress

It would be nice to have my newsfeeds and my blog in the same place. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Library Thrills

First evening fire drill of the dry summer season.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Library Heck

Some days I could just smack Melvil Dewey (aka: Melvil Dui) up one side and down the other. Why oh why did the man not take format into account when creating his System? Granted, there were only three formats at the time of his invention, but Puhleeeeez!

Could he not have said to himself: "OK, if it's a book, I'll put a 1 in front of my number, for periodicals a 2, and for musical scores I'll put 3." Bingo! A Cookbook in Book format would be 1.641.5. Simple, yes? We could put new formats together in an infinite way and shelve them so that users can find them: NUMERICALLY. Number the shelves. Yessir.

We'll arbitrarily use DVD, Downloadable Audio Book, and Maps as our example. DVDs will be format 21, Downloadable Audio Books will be format 36, and Maps will be format 8.

So you're going to Italy?
21.914.5
36.914.5
8.914.5 (assuming the person is visiting present-day Italy)
The user knows to go to the 21 section of the library. Or the 8. 36 would lead to a bank of computers with a helpful assistant. None of this "now...is this a DVD or VHS?" "I can see the cassettes but not the CDs"

It even lets the user save face when confronted with the fact that 914.5 is 914.5 despite its format or reading level. After all, 21, 36, and 8 are different numbers.

What? your building doesn't have infinitely reconfigurable shelving to quickly adapt to larger and smaller sections of format? You're remodeling? You want to separate out LANGUAGE?

OK, I just made myself dizzy. I'm going to go crawl back into my library-cave now and order lovely fiction books. Books that only have to be divided by last name. Except that mysteries are pulled out all together and romances and...oh forget it. A tip of my hat to cataloging and classification workers everywhere.

And I still want to smack Melvil Dewey.