As I was trying to find a radio station in my car today that was not playing Christmas music, it dawned on me that the end of the semester is rapidly approaching. While I have been working on my final project, I have lots and lots of work left to do before it is due on December 7th. Wow, is weeding quite a time consuming project! Time just flies way too fast!
Earlier, I referred to today’s postings over at Information Wants to Be Free and Annoyed Librarian about the identity of the pseudonymous Annoyed Librarian. I chuckled quite a bit about both posts (or really the one post and its slightly edited twin). As the day wore on – and the comments on both posts rolled in, I got to thinking about anonymity, pseudonymity and blogging. This has been a much debated topic. It can be easy for people to hide behind anonymity and use it as a tool to engage in negative behaviors. However, it can be necessary and even important in many circumstances. I thoroughly enjoy the Annoyed Librarian’s take. She often annoys me, sometimes makes me laugh, but always makes me think and rethink my own opinions about particular topics. She challenges me to challenge my own beliefs.
With this in mind, I started thinking about the overall impact of the Annoyed Librarian. I realized today that one of the reasons that I have never really speculated about the AL is because I do not want to know her identity – I DO NOT WANT TO KNOW! She is an effective voice because of her pseudonymity. In a very weird sort of way, I think that knowing her identity could possibly ruin her credibility. It could essentially take away the punch that AL packs – and that would be a shame. So, I’m going to allow myself to bask in the possible ambiguity of today’s events. That is how I want to see it.
On an entirely different subject, this is my third post today and fifth in three days. I’m guessing the blogger’s block has moved on to haunt someone else.
Tonight, I celebrated my birthday (which isn’t until Monday) with my family – my husband, my mother, my father, my brother, my sister in law, my 8 yr old nephew, my 6 yr old niece and 2 yr old nephew. It was a rather loud and boisterous evening. We had pizza for dinner – which is my favorite meal. I even got a special present (beyond my Amazon gift certificates) – a panda WebKinz that I have named Freddie – from my niece and nephews. It was a wonderful evening.
However, I had a very interesting conversation with my niece and nephew early in the evening. I had helped my brother create email accounts for the two oldest kids. They were ecstatic about getting their own email accounts. After my nephew sent me an email from his new account, he added me to his address book. He was adamant about filling in all of the personal information about the contact. I gave him my middle name, address, and phone number. Then, he got to the professional information. He wanted to know where I worked and what my title was. When I said that I worked in a library, my niece turned to me with wide eyes and said “That must be why you are so smart, Aunty Jen – because you work in a library with all those books.”
I was flattered that the kids think I’m smart, but was a bit taken aback by their comments. It is really interesting to hear opinions of the library from the very young. To them, the library is a magical, and somewhat mystical, place. It is a place filled with books that invite them to explore new worlds. Above all, it is a wonderful place where they love to go. They can’t quite verbalize that they see the library as a place of knowledge, but that is indeed how they see it. It was a fascinating conversation. They were incredibly impressed that I am a librarian. I think that I needed a bit of a reminder that the library is indeed a magical place. This reminder really could not have come at a better time. Wow, what a neat birthday gift!
Who doesn’t stay up at night pondering the identity of the Annoyed Librarian? I mean, the question of the identity of Deep Throat has nothing on the desire to unmask the contentious, yet comical Annoyed Librarian. I would stay up at night pondering this very weighty issue, but I don’t really know too many important people in libraryland. So really, I have no idea and no opinion on the matter. And well, I have other issues that keep me up (work, school, life, work, school, life, etc. ). Despite this fact, I find this conversation about the matter to be the funniest thing ever. It could not have been done any more ambiguously. Thanks to Meredith Farkas and the Annoyed Librarian (whether they be one in the same or not) for lots of Friday fun!!
Most of our assignments for ILS519-Collection Development are due on Thursdays. In many ways, this is a nice change. In the majority of my classes, papers, assignments and the like have been due on Sunday. This means that I have had the weekend to do work, but has also meant that I spent way too many weekends sitting in a chair in front of my laptop. This semester, I am doing much more of my homework during the week – furiously typing away in order to finish an assignment before the 11:30PM deadline. Usually, I finish with a couple of hours to spare.
In fact, I just turned in our fifth assignment for class. This assignment was actually related to the final project for the class – evaluating and weeding a specific subject area of a real collection. I have chosen to evaluate the QA76 (computer science) section of a library – one which hasn’t been evaluated in some time. It is shaping up to be an extremely interesting project – one from which I think I am learning quite a bit. Collection development is one thing with which I have very little experience.
The next thing up are several discussion questions that are due on November 17th (which isn’t a Thursday). I’m psyched to have my birthday weekend be homework free. That is the best present in the whole world!
Recently, it dawned on me that one of the major reasons I haven’t been too keen on blogging of late is that I’m mentally exhausted – I just haven’t had the energy. When I come home from work, I really just want to veg out in front of the tv. Fortunately, school hasn’t been an issue. Taking just one class has made a huge difference. The workload is very doable – and I am enjoying the class SO much more than I thought I would. I do have an assignment due tomorrow – and I have to get cracking on that!
So, why am I so tapped out? It seems a bit absurd that I didn’t realize that much of my stress was due to work. It has been a semester full of absolutely everything. The beginning of the semester was extremely difficult. There were software issues (most notably problems with Vista and Office 2007), new system implementations (ILLiad – with which there is a significant amount of work and a new digital asset management system), and college-wide strategic initiatives dealing with IT (and as such, the library which is heavily dependent on technology). We are also in the process of redesigning our entire college web site and implementing a new content management system. The workload is somewhat staggering. I guess it isn’t too surprising that when I leave work, I’m not terribly interested in thinking about or writing about library issues.
Life seems a bit brighter now, so I think that things are easing up. Last week, someone at work nominated me for an employee recognition award – something like an employee of the month thing. While I don’t feel the need to be recognized, the certificate that I received via campus mail put a big smile on my face. Seriously, it could not have come at a better time. Wow! The $15 gift certificate to Dunkin’ Donuts was fine. I gave it to my husband because I don’t drink coffee. However, the nice words written by a coworker on the nomination form were wonderful. I seriously had no understanding that being nominated would be such a boost. Added to that, my husband gave me an early birthday present tonight – a plush, green bath towel and Border’s gift certificate (my actual birthday is still several days away). I sense that a relaxing bath with a good book will be in my immediate future. I also think that I might end up spending my birthday baking cookies with my 8 year-old nephew and 5 year-old niece (my 2 year nephew is welcome to join us – but I suspect he will balk at being left with Aunt Jen and Uncle Mike).
The bottom line: I guess that I have been a bit depressed, but didn’t realize it. Hopefully, this revelation means that things are looking brighter!
Since I can’t find much to get me interested in blogging, I have to take whatever I can get. These quizzes make me happy in a really weird sort of way! This one is pretty accurate – except I don’t think I have a great deal of power. Very interesting!
You Are Internal – Realist – Empowered
You feel your life is controlled internally.If you want something, you make it happen.You don’t wait around for things to go your way.You value your independence and don’t like others to have control.You are a realist when it comes to luck.You don’t attribute everything to luck, but you do know some things are random.You don’t beat yourself up when bad things happen to you…
But you do your best to try to make your own luck.
You have a good deal of power, but you also know the pecking order.
You realize that working the system does get you further.
You know who to defer to and who to control.
When it comes to the game of life, you play things flawlessly.
Found via The Itinerant Librarian.