Thursday, June 28, 2012

Up your Google game with these free Power Searching Courses.

Hate it or love it, Google is an essential tool at the Info desk.  I never understood the librarians who are against it.
But anyways, here's the link to sign up: Earn your black belt in Google Fu.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Smell is Strong with This One...

Caramel Popcorn, Jolly Rancher Watermelon, & Bubble Gum

The scratch 'n sniff bookmarks we ordered finally came in!  The first 10 minutes I spent in the branch was sniffing them back and forth.  My coworkers probably think I have some problem now, whatever, can't be as big as any of my other issues.  I probably didn't need to hold my nose so close to them, every time I would rub the tip of my nose I could smell them all over again, this was like an hour afterwards too.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I guess I'm the "Bookmark Guy"...

Like any work environment, people like to talk about other coworkers, myself included.  I can only assume it's much more pervasive in the library because we're dealing with people who work with "information."

Recently, my cool young female supervisor was replaced with an equally cool young male from another branch.  He already knew a lot about me before he started because I used to work with one of his coworkers.  She was one of the YS librarians at our old branch and I always called her "Friend."  She was one of the first Info people I befriended at that branch.  I also get along really well with my current branch's YS librarian and she's older than my parents and we really don't have much in common.  Now that I think about it, I really get along well with YS librarians in general, even the YS Librarian that doesn't play nicely with other librarians.  I think I have a thing for YS librarians, holy crap, this is some Freudian type ish right here...  Is this why I got my MLIS??

The People's Cubicle
Anyways, he mentioned one time, "So-so said you used to have a 'Bookmark Shrine' at your old branch."  Yeah, you could call it that.  I really don't know how it started, but working circ, you come across a lot of ... crap that patrons return in their books.  I guess one day I decided to hang a few on my drag cubicle walls.  My cubicle was off of Main Street so EVERYONE would see it and ask if I was collecting bookmarks, to which I just shrugged and said, "Sure."  Soon, every time I would come into work there would be a couple of bookmarks left by my coworkers.  It really did not take long to fill all of the walls but unfortunately I never took picture of it, this is all I have left, a crappy pic taken with my old Blackberry ::tear::

Okay, to be honest, I really kept it up because I knew it bugged the oppressive management there.  They love to micromanage every single aspect of the branch, even the way your cubicle is.  They hate when your desk has "clutter" aka anything that isn't: a keyboard, monitor, mouse, barcode scanner, stapler, tape, writing utensils, pad of paper, and Post-It notes.  I think all of my coworkers contributed to my bookmark collection as their way of "sticking it to the man."  A few have told me, "I can't believe they didn't tell you to take it down."  They couldn't because I had the people behind me and it would have just made everyone hate them just a little bit more.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

I Don't Always Get My Way in the Library...

I don't always get my way in the library but when I do, it's for something trivial like 'Scratch and Sniff' bookmarks.

One day I was IMing my friend at another branch, when she asks me if I sniffed the new SRP scratch and sniff bookmarks.  Scratch and sniff bookmarks!?!?  And no one has told me we had them because???  I told her to hold on and jumped up from my cube to talk to the YS librarian who was working the info desk.  I asked her if the SRP bookmarks came in and if she has smelled them.  She gives me this weird look, "Why would I smell them?"  Because they're scratch and sniff duh-doy.  So I opened up a box and took a big whiff.... nothing.
Some kid's going to be getting one scratched up bookmark...

I took it back to my desk and tried scratching at it, nothing.  So I sent a message to my friend asking if this is some cruel librarian SRP virgin hazing prank or something and she goes, "Wait, what do your bookmarks look like?"  So I sent her a pic of the scratched up one and she replied that theirs has bees on it.  Well, la-dee-da fancy ass branch with their smelly bookmarks to give away.

I guess the YS librarian must have felt some pity after seeing my utterly dejected expression, because after my shift on the info desk, I walked back to my cubicle to find the bookmark catalog opened up to this page:
Hells yea, we're getting some smell-goods!
We ended up ordering the popcorn, cotton candy, and watermelon ones.  We will be saving them for the kids that complete the summer reading program and me of course.

Monday, June 18, 2012

There's Always Money in the Banana Stand...

It's been 6 months since graduating and still no full time librarian job, but this was expected.  It took my friend a little over a year after getting her MLIS, so that is what I am marking on the calendar as desperation day ground zero.  My parents have mentioned going through their network to see if they have any possible leads or connections.  If that isn't awkward/embarrassing/sad enough, one of my ex-girlfriend's offered to take a look at her company to see if there's any relevant positions for me.  She recently texted me out of the blue because she had a dream about me and asked how I was doing, obviously not so well in the job department.

I'm contemplating starting up eBay/Amazon/Craigslist hustling again, but the profit margins are no where near the same with increased seller fees, PayPal fees, and shipping costs.

Now on the occupational back-up list: Baked Goods.
Limited Edition Nike Fondants:
Two-Tone Pink/White and White/Red Color way
This past weekend my mom held a baby shower for my sister (her first baby--woot!) and she asked my friend if she could make cupcakes for the event.  For what I lack in the cooking skills my friend more than makes up for it and I wasn't going to let her slave away by herself.  Although, my "helping" usual involves taking orders, cleaning stuff up --- usual my own mess, and other non-technical procedures such as placing those sugar pearls on the frosting.  I did make 1/4 of the booties shown below.  I think they turned out pretty well considering I had a hand in it.
48 Shades of Diabetes

Thursday, June 14, 2012

To Save the Library You Must Trick the Public...

Not sure why I'm just coming across this video now, it should have been plastered everywhere library related.  But it's a pretty damn good example of what can happen when someone successfully markets the library.

So I can get life-saving
surgery at the Library?
I never liked the phrase, "Cutting Libraries During a Recession is like Cutting Hospitals in a Plague"... No it's not, it's not even close.  Hospitals and libraries are not equal entities.  Unfortunately, some used this as their battle-cry which only works for those who already believe in libraries. Any normal tax-paying citizen will look at you like you're some nut.

It's bad enough they don't support the library and all that it does, trying to scare marketing them by referencing one's health and well-being is not a step in the right direction.  It won't catch anyone's attention, well, at least those outside of the library realm.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

My Short-Lived Teen Librarian Career...

With our youth services librarians busy with SRP and related book talking, they asked if I could help them go through donations to see if there is anything we could add to your YFIC collection.  I really feel bad for the YFIC demographic, I feel like our library system, as a whole, is neglecting them. 

This was only the first cart of many teen books to go through.  It was pretty ironic getting tasked to do this because I just read a Smithsonian article on how pink and blue came to define gender in society: 'When Did Girls Start Wearing Pink?'.  Just after going through this one cart, my retinas were seared.  I liken it to being out in the snow on a sunny day for awhile and when you come back inside and everything white appears pink.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

It's just an MLIS, really...

A couple of weeks ago, my family went out to dinner to celebrate my graduating from Library School.  Yeah, it's a couple months late, but I was more nonchalant about it, much like the whole grad school thing, because it's just an MLIS.  To be honest, I almost felt guilty for celebrating such a non-event.

Last week at work I came across The Grad Cafe website for grad students and they had a forum for prospective MLIS students.  I know that I have a completely different outlook on librarianship and MLIS's, but is it normal for people to apply to more than one library grad school program??  I know that's the thing to do for undergrad programs but for library science graduate programs!??!  What a waste of money on application fees.

Not only do people apply to more than one school, but they also apply to schools across the country.  The school I went to is nearby.  If by some reason I wasn't accepted, I would have gladly taken an online only degree program.  No sense in moving somewhere, anywhere, for an MLIS.  Here's how it will probably go down, genius applies to a handful of schools, genius moves across the country to attend a "top rated MLIS school," genius gets degree, genius cannot find any local jobs, genius applies to library jobs all over the country, genius ends up moving somewhere else to take a library job that pays incredibly low wages.

EVERYONE gets accepted into an MLIS program.  There are only a couple of reasons why a college wouldn't accept someone's money, sorry - I mean application.  I guess if someone has a horrible undergrad GPA and even worse GRE scores, maybe, just maybe a school would say no.  I read that some schools only accept a certain number each semester.  Why -- I don't know, colleges love easy money and it doesn't get any easier than the MLIS department.  Seriously, you don't need anything special to give an MLIS lecture.  In reference to the BCG Matrix, they are the cash cows of the universities.  So as you can see, EVERYONE get accepted into an MLIS program.

Not only does everyone get accepted but everyone also gets the degree. 
 All you have to do is pay the price tag.  Now, I know that just because I don't know of anyone who has dropped or failed out of library school does not necessarily mean that it hasn't happened.  But c'mon now, who knows someone who has?  And if anyone has failed out of library school, there probably is some special program, much like a witness-protection, that will relocate said failure and give them a new identity for fear of a life of mock and ridicule.

Getting an MLIS has to be the easiest graduate degree to obtain.  It's like getting an Xbox Achievement for inserting the game disc and starting the game.
MLIS schools pump out degrees like an automated assembly line.  To keep the cash flow coming in, they have to keep them moving.  Why would a college care if there already is a flood of MLIS holders out there and not enough jobs?  They already have your money, they don't owe you anything more than that piece of paper that says you're some certified info-hustler.

Anyone who claims that they went to a "Top Ranked MLIS School" should be forced to read every single romance novel written.  Their argument has no solid ground, the difference between one MLIS school from another is minimal if even measurable.  They all use the same textbooks, they all offer the same courses, they all tell you to read the same horrible "library research," and they will all tell you the same ALA spiel.  Do you really think that just because you went to the "#1 Rated MLIS School" you can copy-catalog better than another?  Or that it'll put you in top consideration for a position?  Sucker....

To those that want to argue that there is some prestige in an MLIS degree, I must say that you are highly delusional.  There is no "prestige" or "honor" with the degree.  Hey, don't be mad at me, I'm just as disappointed.  These library schools have no standards.  If they did, they would not allow every single applicant into the program.  If they did, not everyone would pass every class.  If they did, not everyone would walk away with a degree.  Of course, if a library school were to have any standards and reject people, those rejects would just go to another school and pay for the degree.  So no library school will up their standards because doing so would negatively affect their cash flow. 

Just because someone pays for the courses, does that mean they deserve ("earn") the degree?