Monthly Archives: October 2008

A Prayer for Librarians

So I’m cleaning my desk today and I find a book mark that has “Prayer for Librarians” on it.  I am not making this up.

It’s long, but the first few lines go something like:

Lord, You are infinite and with
Your infinity, You are the Word.
Help us then, as Keepers and custodians
of words, to be aware of our profession
in all its depths of knowledge and
wisdom and in all its encompassing of
the past, present, and what is yet to be.

And so on and so on and blah blah blah

I won’t rant about religion, but I would consider myself to be a prayerful, spiritual person.  But what would my version of a librarian prayer look like?  Well the above sure ain’t it.  Here’s mine…

Dear God, give me the strength to not strangle the next person who says “Gee, you’re a librarian, you must get to read alllll the time!”.  Give me the wisdom to know that not all people understand that libraries are not the places to have cell phone conversations at HIGH VOLUME.  Grant me the peace that comes only after all information literacy and story time sessions are done for the day.  And lastly, Lord, grant me protection from the porn dude…you know the one…the guy who looks at porn on Computer 2, all day, every day.

“So that’s 614.23 PAS…”

Ever notice how librarians mutter call numbers to themselves as they’re writing them down or walking away from the desk to look for it?

And always in a very matter of fact tone, as if to say “Well of course 342.3 D.” or “And then I was walking along and 003.2 DAV!”

It’s never a question…always a statement.

Sorry – academic librarians mutter, “And then there’s BL 2525 .R4695 – but it’s 2002.”

the moving blues

I’m moving this week.   And it sucks.

Seriously, I’m a librarian!  Aren’t I supposed to be organized?  Well, I’m not.  How can I organize a library so well but be so bad at this???

Today I actually muttered the sentence “A lava lamp?  Holy CRAP!  I didn’t know I owned a lava lamp!”

Perhaps if I write dewey numbers on stuff it will call come together.  Quick! Get me a magic marker!

Uh…anyone want a lava lamp?

Going Green ’08

A green event in metro Detroit sponsored by AIA Detroit Emerging Professionals Committee: – it’s at Eastern Michigan University and runs October 31 and November 1, so it’s coming up fast.

Think that green isn’t for your library?  Check it out – the Hastings Public Library is in the process of installing solar panels.  Fantastic!

A little conference reflection…

I’m in a bit of a rush today, but I wanted to jot down some of the big thoughts in my mind related to conference.

The group of librarians at MLA are clearly split: innovators and old guard.  And the two shall never see eye to eye.  The innovators are gushing about communities of practice, twitter feeds, and the use of tech in getting information to folks.  The old guard is grumbling about tenure, loud kids at the library and what they perceive as changes in the profession that will put us all out of a job.  C’mon, can’t we all just all get along?

Let’s get streamin’…a lot of the big talk at conference was about tagging, twitter, blogging, file sharing, etc.  It’s time to make a web resource center for the MLA conference that will aggregate live blogging, video streaming, twittering and photo sharing (aka flickr) so everyone can see it.  The minimal access aspect of the conference had a very 1990s feel to it.

But it’s easier to b**tch then say what went right, isn’t it?  Well, can I say that I loved the majority of the tech and advocacy programs.  Very well done.  Loved the key notes.  LOVED LOVED LOVED they layout of the conference and the wifi that didn’t require a log in – it was easy to use and consistent.  And it seemed like tech and service people were everywhere, so if you needed something, bam! there it was!

Lastly, can I just say that it was kind of a bummer that Brewster Kahle was speaking at the University of Michigan the first day of MLA conference.  That would have been a really cool webcast to have done…or if MLA had known farther in advance, what an incredible key note.  There is a disconnect in that series of events that I find odd.

Peace out, my peeps.  Have a good weekend.

More about Thursday…

I admit I spent a good chunk of the post lunch time working on my presentation on mentorship.  It turned out well and I think that the folks that came enjoyed it.

Then I walked the two blocks down the street from the hotel to the Kalamazoo Public Library with some friends.  They had a great all conference reception with a live string ensemble…a really neat way to end the day!

Conference gives me all sorts of warm fuzzies about libraries and librarians.  We are not without our faults, but we are pretty cool!

MLA Thursday

Went to a great Michigan E-Library appreciation breakfast (thanks Library of Michigan…), I am now watching Dr. Julie Beth Todaro discuss the “Power of Personal Persuasion”.

ALA’s website has documentation about persuading your constituents.  Very cool.

A popular name this week: Dr. Robert Cialdini, Ph.D. and his work with the power of persuasion.

Rockin’ Out Reference

As I write this, I’m watching Holly Hibner of Salem-South Lyon District Library and Christine Tobias of Michigan State University present on Tech Tools for Reference.

Check out the presentation online at

(Thanks for the Twitter love, Holly!)

Noooooooo! The Whales ARE GONE!


My favorite information literacy training tool – – is GONE!


If you aren’t familiar with it, it’s a great website that looks totally legit and tells people about whale watching in Lake Michigan.  The lake may be one of largest bodies of fresh water in the world, but trust me, all you’re gonna find are some big muskellunge at best…

Anyways, the website is (was?) a great way to get kids to really analyze a website and admit that perhaps the Internet is not the most honest or best source of info.

If you know what happened to the Great Lakes Whale Watching website, please tell me.  In the mean time, I will mourn! (And search frantically because I’m teaching info literacy at 10 AM tomorrow.  Damn me and my procrastination!)

Conference Time!

It’s MLA Conference next week.  I can’t promise I will be uber-present on my blog, though I will try to summarize daily events if I get the chance.

I’m presenting on Thursday night about Mentorship in the library profession.  If that doesn’t interest you, how about this: I can promise references to Bugs Bunny, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and Manatees – all in the same presentation.  Now you can’t wait, right?