31 July 2007

Tuesday Evening Ramblings

After getting off work, I was checking some blogs and saw some items of interest.

From Throwing Bullets...

Here's an interesting survey. Once you answer the questions, the site ranks which presidential candidates are closest to your views. In addition, it covers what viewpoints the candidates that are different from yours.

I was a bit surprised who my most compatible presidential candidate was. Incidentially, the candidate I like the most is, according to the site, my second choice most compatible.

From McSweeney's, Yoknapatawpha County Today. Also, a message from The Lonely Sommelier. I liked this entry:

Lindemans Bin 45 Cabernet Sauvignon,
Southeastern Australia, 2003

Like most Australian Cabs, this lower-priced offering from Lindemans features a robust earthiness and impressive balance. This particular Cabernet Sauvignon also has a mouth feel that is strikingly smooth and rich ... much like kissing the spot between your shoulder blades.

God, I miss that spot.

Pairs with:

Pungent cheeses, lamb, beef, and regret.

Next from Super Mom, we have a new leader in the worst political campaign sign contest. The designer is a truly a real man of genius.

Lastly, from B2, two nice photo blog entries:

Stuckey's Bridge and Dunn's Falls.

I remember going to Dunn's Falls a couple times before it became a state park. It was only about a half hour away from where I lived. I thought the place was quite cool as I recall. It wasn't my regular hangout.

I usually went to Lake Waukaway or Lake Bounds. Sadly both places aren't open to the public anymore. Waukaway is a Christian retreat; Bounds is closed.

Bulwer-Lytton Awards

I like to keep up with the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest. When I was a student at Mississippi State, one of my former roommates was a participant in the competition and actually had a couple of entries published in one of their books.

Here's the Grand Prize recipient:

Gerald began--but was interrupted by a piercing whistle which cost him ten percent of his hearing permanently, as it did everyone else in a ten-mile radius of the eruption, not that it mattered much because for them "permanently" meant the next ten minutes or so until buried by searing lava or suffocated by choking ash--to pee.

Click here to see that entry, additional winners, and other notable entries.

Just the Good Ol' Boys Filled with Guilt and Ennui

With the passing of Ingmar Bergman, Iowahawk has reposted his Ingmar Bergman-Dukes of Hazzard parody.

30 July 2007

White & Nerdy

Thanks to The Chronicle, I read about this New York Times article on what is exactly is a nerd. A link was also provided to a Confessions of a Community College Dean blog entry. He's come up with a Grand Theory of Nerdiness that I think is quite interesting.

Links and Commentaries

Caffeine and Exercise Fight Skin Cancer

I've not exercised as often as I have in the past, but am still drinking coffee, so good news there.

Election Day is in Eight Days

I have voted for the loser in each gubernatorial election since 1995. Dick Molpus, Mike Parker, Ronnie Musgrove... Will Haley Barbour or John Arthur Eaves Jr. be the next victim of my voting curse?

Ingmar Bergman Died

I think he should have improved his chess game, or at the very least he should have asked Bill & Ted to be his champions.

Bill Walsh Died

Now that sucks. I remember seeing him coach the great 49ers teams of the 1980s.

Tom Snyder, Too.

Okay. That's three. No more today please. He and Walsh both died of leukemia.

Northwest Pilot Shortage

Take a wild guess which airline I'll be flying on my trip to Indiana next month?

29 July 2007


Sunday night. Almost midnight.

While I'm not in the best of moods, I did have fun last night with friends. It was good to see and be with people.

As usual, I wasn't very talkative, and this time it was largely by design. I didn't want my moodiness to make an appearance. While living boldly can be good, I much prefer to be in the background when my boldness and moodiness are potentially combustible.

I need to be in a good mood. I'm much more productive, and even more importantly, I feel better.

I've got to be at work tomorrow morning. If I have time, perhaps I can exercise before going to the college. Maybe that will help especially since I've not been able to exercise as much this summer as I had hoped.

Brown Soul

What color is your soul painted?


Your soul is painted the color brown, which embodies the characteristics of calmness, depth, nature, stability, tradition, poverty, roughness, down-to-earth, uncertainty, and neutrality. Brown is the color of the element Earth, and represents soil and, to a lesser degree, fertility of the Earth.

Personality Test Results

Click Here to Take This Quiz

Quizzes and Personality Tests

Note: It makes a certain amount of sense. I've always considered myself to be in the background, and brown is not a color that stands out from the others. Blue or black would be a nicer color, but brown is a decent description of me.

28 July 2007

Simpsonized for Your Protection

The Simpsonizer has been making the rounds of some blogs I read. I decided to follow suit.

It's been a quiet day. I've been doing a little reading today. I'm going out later.

Last night I cashed in the Sal & Mookie's gift certificates I won at the Rollergirls to-do. I'd not eaten there before. Nice place.

27 July 2007

I'm Winston Wolfe. I solve problems.

Being a librarian is often like being The Wolf. We find solutions to problems.

Just after eleven o'clock this morning, a dean knocks on my office door. There have been orientation sessions going on at the college this summer. This week, the college is also hosting an education conference, and the rooms that had been used for orientation were already booked. So, problem.

After talking to two people, there's no choice. The students going through orientation have to be in the library, and they need a projector and screen. I call two colleagues. We get a projector and screen out of a smaller room and put them in one of the larger rooms in the library. A table is moved in from another room, and an extension cord and surge protector are also needed.

As it turns out the library's projector isn't compatible with the laptop computer. Fortunately, the people conducting orientation do have a projector compatible with the laptop. Since the session requires additional activities not involving the use of a computer, the students going through orientation do some of those activities first before going to lunch.

After lunch, the orientation session resumed and ended a few minutes ago. Problem solved.

26 July 2007

Library Guy Superstar

What's the buzz?
Tell me what's a-happening.

One, if not the, buzz phrase that's been circulating throughout the library community for quite some time is Library 2.0.1 Several conferences and workshops that I've attended over the past year or so have largely been focused on this subject because librarians must reach out to the people who are-- and more importantly-- will be using library resources, and in order to communicate effectively, librarians must be knowledgeable about and use many of these often-used materials.

However, my library can't access many social networking sites. I blogged about it a little over a year ago.2 To this day, my college doesn't allow access to MySpace, Facebook, YouTube, Photobucket, and Imageshack-- just to name a few sites.3 I attend conferences and can't help but to think to myself: 2.0? I'd be happy if the library got to be somewhere around, say, 1.54.

What's the buzz?
Tell me what's a-happening.

I'm happy and sad all at the same time again. I found out earlier this week that a friend is moving, and I feel the same way I did a month ago.

I'm glad she mentioned to me when she was leaving. I hadn't made any commitments about being someplace else.

We're all supposed to go out someplace this weekend. It'll be good to be with her and have fun.

What's the buzz?
Tell me what's a-happening.

I'll be visiting my aunt and uncle in Indiana Labor Day weekend. I was invited last week and had been thinking of visiting them in early August.5

Maybe I can relax there. I need to relax.

In the meantime, I plan on taking advantage of that 10 percent off coupon that my masseuse mailed me earlier this week. Maybe Friday afternoon after work...

1Here's a link to a good article about Library 2.0.

2Incidentally according to data concerning search engine queries that lead people to this blog, that blog entry is the one most often accessed by google searchers. For some reason, MySpace is popular.

3There are ways to get around the blocks though.

4I'm being more than a bit facetious. Libraries don't have to make use of a lot of 2.0 elements to be a 2.0 library.

5I changed my mind when FP mentioned her upcoming move.

25 July 2007

Oscar, Harbinger of Death

From Yahoo and the Associated Press:

Oscar the cat seems to have an uncanny knack for predicting when nursing home patients are going to die, by curling up next to them during their final hours. His accuracy, observed in 25 cases, has led the staff to call family members once he has chosen someone. It usually means they have less than four hours to live.

Again, the link to the article.

24 July 2007

Mississippi's Favorite Architecture

From the AIA/Mississippi, what are your five favorite Mississippi buildings?

Thanks go to the Lauren Rogers blog for the heads-up.

Search Engine Answer Guy #1

My friend Mark has a reoccuring series called Search Engine Answer Guy. I thought I'd follow steal from him and post some selected search engine entries.

1. looks like a fenian

The leprechaun hat and box of Lucky Charms didn't provide you with enough clues?

2. what's the point in decaf

Exactly! What is the point?

3. tim doherty and applebees

Andy? You know the answer to this one?

4. mt olive vs nanih waiya

Take the Pirates.1 But I wouldn't be surprised if Weir won Class 1A.

5. hipster test

If you arrived at this blog, you failed.

1That's Mt. Olive.

23 July 2007

Partial Power Outages, Depressed Fingernails, and Pardoning Johnny Cash

The power went out at my house early this morning. Partially, anyway. The ceiling fan in my bedroom kept on going, but not as fast as it was supposed to be going. I thought it had affected the neighborhood, but apparently it was just my house.

I called Entergy, and after checking the breakers, and confirming that the breakers weren't the culprit (culprits?), the person I spoke to said they'd send someone over. They did, and apparently, things are working fine now. I'll find out later tonight though.

In the meantime, I had to leave for work, and since my house had little power1 I needed to open the garage manually. No problem.

Closing the garage was more painful. My left middle fingernail has a fairly nasty bruise. It's not hurting too much, but I do feel the pain. My left ring finger is also bruised, but it's not as bad off as the middle finger.

I saw what Gorjus posted about the Pardon Johnny Cash web site.2 It looks like it could be an awesome thing.

1In addition to the ceiling fan, the lights worked in two other rooms.

2Andy blogged about it first too, but I originally saw it on Gorjus's site.

22 July 2007


I left Barnes & Noble at 1 a.m. Saturday morning with Deathly Hallows in possession and finished reading it a little before six o'clock that morning. It was a very good read. I'd call it a satisfactory end to the series.

I slept the rest of the morning. I woke up sometime around 1 p.m. I relaxed some before I headed off a little after 5 p.m. to run a couple errands, pick up Emily, and then go to Hal & Mal's for the Anniversary Pub Quiz and karaoke.

Most of the team showed up by 8. TC didn't show up, so ChiChi recruited a sixth to fill out our roster. We did well, leading for most of the game, but we wound up finishing second. Second is good though. I would have appreciated first place money though.

I could have gotten a 90-minute massage with my cut of the pot, and after today, I need one. I did some chores around the house. My back and arms didn't appreciate today's workout.

20 July 2007

Moonlight in Vermont

I'm in Jackson. I'm at Cups in Fondren, and thunder and lightning are going on as I type.

Starkville was nice I suppose. I attended a conference, and I think it was okay. I don't know how much of it would be helpful for me and my college because many of the things discussed I didn't think were really applicable.

I spoke to my pla C while I was driving down 25. He was taking 55 on his way to Texas. We decided to meet up for some dinner, so we broke bread at Outback.

I'll head over to Barnes & Noble in about two hours or so. A friend from college mentioned she would be buying Deathly Hallows. We might socialize some while waiting in line for the book.

I'll be reading the book when I make it back to my house. I should finish sometime around five or six o'clock that morning.

19 July 2007

Wabbit Season No More at North Dakota State

Here are the last five paragraphs from an article in The Chronicle of Higher Education:

For more than a dozen years, the university has sent its maintenance workers out with pellet guns to control its rabbit population. Mr. Larson was just obeying orders — and had the blessing of North Dakota State’s police and safety inspector, Ray Boyer — when he set out on Wednesday morning to bag the varmints.

Understandably, a woman who saw the rifle sticking out of his vehicle immediately dialed 911. Dozens of officers from the Fargo Police Department responded by rushing to the campus and blocking traffic as they searched for the gunman.

After about 90 minutes, they figured out who the gunman was, and university officials sent out an e-mail alert giving the campus the all-clear.

For the time being, at least, the rabbits are safe too. The university has decided to end its practice of limiting their population by shooting them.

No word yet on whether the university’s cafeteria will have hasenpfeffer on the menu.

Again, to read the entire article, click here.

Thursday Morning Thoughts

The yellow orb is still in the sky. I'm currently listening to "The Candidate" by Urge Overkill on Pandora.

I didn't get much sleep during the night. I don't know why. I'm on my third cup of coffee for the day.

FP's birthday is today. Happy birthday wishes go to her.

I also can't help but think about my uncle who died a year ago today. He'd been a significant part of my life for 39 years.

Enough thinking. I'd better get back to my projects.

Ah. "Everybody Needs Somebody to Love" by the Rolling Stones. I love that song.

18 July 2007

What's That Big Yellow Orb in the Sky?

It didn't rain today.

I took the day off from work today. I needed to get some chores done around the house, but that wasn't the reason why I wasn't at work.

I couldn't sleep. I went to bed at around 12:30 a.m., which is my normal time to sleep. I woke up at 2:30 and could not fall asleep.

I don't know why I couldn't fall asleep. I didn't have that much coffee to drink yesterday.

I did go to Pub Quiz. I played with an acquaintance of mine from a messageboard I sometimes frequent and one of his friends. We did pretty well, but there were too many questions about movies. I think we would have finished in the money if it weren't for the cinematic-centered categories.

I went to Don's briefly. I saw and talked to several friends.

So, anyway, I took today off. I couldn't sleep. I knew that when I work with little sleep I could get cranky, irritable, and sometimes sick. I called the library a little after 8 a.m. I fell asleep for a little while, but woke up at 10:30 in the morning.

When I reawoke, I saw that it wasn't raining, so I did some chores around the house that really needed to be done.1 One thing about the rainy weather, the opportunities to do things outside are not there-- especially with the showers showing up in the afternoon at about the time I get off work.

I've got to get ready to go to Starkville tomorrow after work. I've got a couple projects I want to try to continue to work on at the library as well.

When I return from Starkville Friday evening, I'll be getting ready for Deathly Hallows, Pub Quiz, and more chores around the house-- if it's sunny weather. The way this month has gone, I'm not sure what the weather will be like.

1Pruning lantanas, cleaning out a gutter (joy), and laundry. I've got more projects to do, but a couple have to wait until the ground is drier.

17 July 2007

Health, All Consuming

The Clarion-Ledger has had several stories regarding the Department of Health and Dr. Brian Amy. Friday, it was reported that he would head up quality improvement for the federal Medicare program. Well, it looks like things have changed.

I read what the Librarian in Black had to say about AllConsuming.net today. It looks interesting, and I'm going to check it out.

16 July 2007


It's raining. It looks like it'll rain off and on all week.

I believe I'm going to skip out on the Extravaganza and head up to Starkville after work Thursday. While the Extravaganza may be tempting, I don't know too many people who'll be attending.1

As much of a night owl as I am normally, I'd function better with at least two hours more sleep that I would get if I had to drive from Clinton. I think sleep would be a good thing since I plan to stay up late reading Harry Potter Book 7.2

I got an email response over the weekend from Zanda, one of my Latvian friends.3 She's moving to be near her boyfriend next month. She's currently living in the Pacific Northwest, and her boyfriend lives in the Southwest.

I got word today that I will be teaching a continuing education class for the college in the fall.4 College employees have to take courses in different fields that would be related (one would hope) to their jobs. I've taught classes before as previously noted.

Last week, I asked if I could teach a class on RSS and aggregators. People here at the college have often made requests for articles from certain periodicals that are available via our subscribed on-line databases.

Lately, the databases have set up RSS feeds concerning these periodicals, which is something that would be useful for our faculty. At least, that's what I think. We'll see what happens.

1Other than a few people I know from college as well as those folks I know who post on Six Pack Speak. It'd be nice to see them, but otherwise, I'm thinking that the Extravaganza might not be all that special this go-around except for a final opportunity to hear Larry Templeton speak before his retirement.

2Very late, in fact.

3The little girl in the photo is Zanda's niece, and that photo was taken a little over five years ago at Gauja National Park. If you're interested, here's a nice blog entry regarding Gauja.

4Nothing terribly time-consuming on my part. The class should last only an hour, and I plan to offer three different classes at different times and dates so that people have options that would best help them.

15 July 2007

Kittens at Keifer's, Rollergirls, etc.

After work Friday, I relaxed. I went to Cups and then went to Keifer's.

I had a gyro, cottage fries, and diet coke. It was nice and cool so I went to the porch.

I saw a kitten wandering around outside. A moment later, the kitten wandered on to one side of the porch and crossed my path before going through the other side.

After eating, I went to the Rollergirls shindig at Hal & Mal's. I had fun.

I saw some people I knew. There were a couple of musical acts I enjoyed hearing.1

I won a basket in their raffle. Thankfully, it was the movie basket and not the rollergirls starter basket.2

I've nibbled on candy this weekend. I've not seen the movies or made use of the other prizes yet, but I will.

I know I was emailed something about an author appearance at Lemuria... Ah. here it is. I might attend it, but timing can be a problem. I get off work pretty close to the time of the book signing and reading, but I'll see what I can do.

I'm also heading up to Starkville to attend this conference. It should be helpful.

I'm still debating whether to head up there Friday morning or perhaps Thursday evening. I'm considering attending this event Thursday.

I know if I do drive up to Starkville Friday morning that I'm going to be very cranky. I am so not a morning person.

It's going to be a very long day for me because I'll be getting the seventh Harry Potter book at midnight, and the past couple of times I've gotten the Potter books, I've read them. That morning.3

At least I'll be able to get enough sleep for the anniversary Pub Quiz Saturday night, so I'll be somewhat functional.

1The Tuff Luvs and whoever was the opening act. I didn't catch their name. The other act, well, was okay, but not one I really liked or would have paid cover charge just to see and hear.

2The movie basket is a nice basket if I do say so... Rush Hour 1 & 2, a martial arts DVD, gift certificates to Sal & Mookie's, Fondren Beverage Emporium, and Blockbuster, popcorn, IBC root beer, candy.... Jeez... I might have to give the root beer away to someone... I've not had sweet tea or a regular caffeinated cola since January.

3There are a lot of pages, but fortunately are very quick reads. I finished books 5&6 at around 4-5 a.m., so not bad at all.

13 July 2007

If Public Libraries Didn't Exist, Could You Start One Today?

Stephen Dubner from Freakonomics writes:

I am guessing there would be a huge pushback from book publishers. Given the current state of debate about intellectual property, can you imagine modern publishers being willing to sell one copy of a book and then have the owner let an unlimited number of strangers borrow it?

I don’t think so. Perhaps they’d come up with a licensing agreement: the book costs $20 to own, with an additional $2 per year for every year beyond Year 1 it’s in circulation. I’m sure there would be a lot of other potential arrangements. And I am just as sure that, like a lot of systems that evolve over time, the library system is one that, if it were being built from scratch today, would have a very different set of dynamics and economics.

Again, here's the link to the article.

Wine, Women, and Song

The best Chardonnay in California costs less than $3.

Charles Shaw Chardonnay, better known as "Two Buck Chuck," beat hundreds of other wines and was named the top prize in a prestigious tasting competition in California.

"The characteristics that we look for in our gold medal winner … a nice creamy butter, fruity … it was a delight to taste," said 2007 California State Fair Commercial Wine Competition judge Michael Williams.

I received a thank you card from Coppertop and her hubby. They love the coffee grinder and towels. They're getting settled in Texas.

I thought I might have to go to Hattiesburg this afternoon after work to help out at my mother's shop. Since the forecast calls for rain this weekend, she doesn't need me. I'll be here this weekend.

I suppose I'll be at the Capitol City Roller Derby Girls to-do at Hal & Mal's tonight and listen to some music. And tomorrow, I don't know... I'll think of something.

Oh, one last (but certainly not least) thing. What's worse than turning 40 years old? How about turning 40 years old on Friday the 13th? Happy birthday to my pla C.

Highway 45

When I was a child, I often went with my parents or occasionally my sister to Mississippi State University. Highway 45 was a two-lane highway from just north of Lauderdale all the way north to the Crossroads and beyond.

The Crossroads of my youth and college days have long past. Watering holes that I passed while going from home to college and back are gone.

I remember Electric Mills actually having some substance at least on the highway. Now there's even less.

I remember stopping at restaurants, gas stations, and convenience stores. There was one particular convenience store in Porterville I liked. It's long been closed now.

When I was an undergraduate at MSU, the 1987 Four-Lane Highway Program was started. Yesterday, the final section of Highway 45-Alternate was opened to four-lane traffic.

Last month, I traveled that final two-lane section when I left a conference for my mother's house in Hattiesburg. I don't know the next time I'll be driving on Highway 45, but I won't miss all the hills of Kemper County that were tamed due to the highway upgrades.

12 July 2007

Fueled for Librarianship

I know it's because I grew up in a town where many people were employed in the petroleum industry and wrote a master's thesis about the oil & gas industry in Mississippi, but I still can't help but take a look when a position such as this one advertised.

11 July 2007

Badger Badger Badger

Giant badgers terrorize Iraq?

Oh my.1

1I don't know how Neil Gaiman found that article, but he deserves credit. Big time.

"There is no trap so deadly as the trap you set for yourself."

We met last night to discuss The Long Goodbye.1 We were all impressed by Chandler and wanted to read more by him.

I think what we all liked was the way Chandler wrote. I also liked the fact that it seemed like that with this book every character served a purpose, so now we have another author to read.

After talking about the book, we got into a discussion over what modern actor would be a good Marlowe. This actor came to mind.

Yep. Billy Bob Thornton.

Somehow we also got to talking about the character of Candy.

I mentioned (and Satsuma agreed) that the first person to come to my mind when I imagined Candy was that guy from Boogie Nights.

Checking IMDB.com... Luis Guzmán.

As most of you who read my blog know by now, I selected Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis to be the next book club read.

So far, it looks like there's been general approval of my choice. I was asked last night why I chose the book. Satsuma had known that I was seriously considering this Graham Greene book.

I did come up with a cool icon to represent me though.

For several years I've had a fondness for novels with an academic setting such as Richard Russo's Straight Man and Jane Smiley's Moo. For what it's worth, I prefer the Smiley book if only because the fictional university in her book reminded me a lot of Mississippi State University, where I earned my B.A. and M.A.

I've also been known to email links to articles and columns that are found in The Chronicle of Higher Education. A few weeks ago, I was at the website and noticed this article. Initially intrigued, I did some further research. I liked what I read about the book and thought it'd be good.

1Significant portions of this blogpost were first posted here.

10 July 2007

Donegal Bay

Book club meets in two hours. I got off work a little over an hour ago and am relaxing.

I did some interlibrary loan work, looked through our periodicals subscription list, and met with a vendor. Not too bad really. Just time-consuming. I need to get back on my main summer project.

Hattiesburg was nice. I got to relax some when I wasn't watching the shop. Even when I was watching the shop, I was able to finish reading The Long Goodbye and finally make serious headway into Children's Hospital.

I saw my friend K. She and her husband are getting a divorce. I'd not seen her in nearly three months and we got a chance to visit for awhile Friday night in Hattiesburg with her friend R.

I exchanged some emails with one of my Latvian friends today. I've known Irina & Zanda since I was working at the public library in Laurel. They were au pairs. Zanda now lives here in the U.S. Irina & her husband moved to Ireland after Latvia became a member of the European Union.1

Irina emailed me some photos and some links to some places they've been to in Ireland.2 I believe I need to renew my passport and go to Ireland.

1Here's a link to a photograph taken some five years ago in Riga, Latvia: L-R, Aigars (then boyfriend now husband of Irina), Irina, Zanda, and me.

2Here are links to photographs of Carrick-A-Rede Rope Bridge and Slieve League at Donegal Bay. Irina also included links to the Cliffs of Moher and a google image search of Giant's Causeway. Incidentally, Pezgirl also emailed me a link to some photos she took of her trip to Greece, and now Greece is on my to-go-to list.

09 July 2007

Librarian Hipness: Different Viewpoints

There's been some reaction to the NYT article by librarians and library staff who disagree. Check out Heretical Librarian for his thoughts. He also provides links to similar thoughts at Shush and by the Annoyed Librarian.

08 July 2007

New York Discovers Librarians Are Hip

Now we know what Parker Posey hath wrought. TD emailed me a link to a New York Times article about hip librarians. He was amused because it mentioned guybrarians, and I've been called a guybrarian before-- maybe even still today.

The article mentioned Jessamyn West and Unshelved, and I subscribe to both of their web sites. I've met and bought books and shirts from the Unshelved folks. They're good people. On Jessamyn's site, I noticed she also included a link to this New York Sun article.

I suppose librarians will be considered hip in Mississippi in about 2-3 years. I don't know if I'm hip, but I do have a soul patch.

06 July 2007

Before I head off to Hattiesburg...

...three FOUR things of note:

1. Be sure to thank Marshall Ramsey for the rain. Credit goes to Andy. I hope Marshall can telecommute from Georgia for awhile.

2. The Earth is smaller than first thought. Surprisingly, Pfizer's stock price is down up today.

3. Boots Randolph is dead.

4. Yikes!

05 July 2007


As mentioned in this comment, I didn't go to the casino yesterday. It was raining, and I didn't feel like driving to Vicksburg.1

I had noticed that Sochi, Russia was awarded the 2014 Winter Olympic Games yesterday. My college has a relationship with a college located in Sochi. Faculty and administrators from my college have gone over there. We've also been visited by our Russian counterparts.

I've gotten to know a faculty member from the Russian institution. He's taught over here on occasion.2

I'll admit to being a bit of a Russophile. I took a couple of classes in Russian history when I was an undergrad at MSU, and I've always been fascinated with Russian culture. I'd love to go there someday.

Another thing I can't stand about midweek holidays: Today feels like it's a Sunday.

I woke up this morning at my usual time for a weekday-- shortly before the alarm went off. I turned it off and rested my eyes for what was supposed to be a few moments. Two hours later, I woke up.

I left a message on my supervisor's voice mail and made it to the library at 10 this morning. I worked longer on interlibrary loan projects than I had intended. There were a couple of requests that took a little bit longer than anticipated.

I also had an email from an instructor regarding access to a database. I had to be sure that it was working properly, which turned into a brief email conversation.

This afternoon after lunch, another instructor dropped by wanting to see if he could get some journal articles. I checked a couple of databases and took care of most of his requests. One thing he wanted that I couldn't immediately fill it looked like that a nearby college where he was taking a class subscribed to the periodical in question. I told him if he couldn't get the article from the college to let me know, and I would send out a request for a copy of the article.

One good thing about it being quiet today: I was able to get some work done on a project. I still have some work to do, but it's good to work on it while I have the opportunity.

1So I went to Applebee's where I celebrated Independence Day eating a hamburger and mozzarella sticks along with drinking two gin and tonics. And yes, that's very likely more pathetic than going solo to the casino. But it was raining! And I'm sticking to that excuse.

2He'd also requested materials via interlibrary loan, and there aren't that many libraries around in the United States possessing Russian language materials. Fortunately, we were able to help him.

03 July 2007

Beautiful Harbor

Tomorrow's July 4, and I don't know what I'll do. I'm so bored that I may just head over to one of the casinos in Vicksburg for the first time in almost five years.

Midweek holidays are a bummer. It's not worth it to travel to Hattiesburg just for the day. I don't know what's happening in Jackson tomorrow. I emailed friends and didn't get a response, which is why I'm thinking: Casino.

I've been going through my messages in my yahoo account. I had forgotten that I set up a gmail account some two years ago, and it's still active. I suppose I should make use of it.

When I found out that I wouldn't be offered a position at an institution some three months ago, a friend asked me if I would be ever be interested in a job at another college. I said I wouldn't. My impression was that she didn't seem to think it would be a big deal to apply for a job there.

Well, today I received an email message regarding a vacant position at the college she mentioned, and if I did apply it would be a promotion. However, I'm not interested, and to be frank, even if I were, I know I wouldn't be considered.1 I wouldn't want decision makers at the college in question to think of me after I read the job announcement.2

I think I'm heading over to Don's or perhaps Martin's. Maybe I'll see friends who'll know if there's anything going on tomorrow that might be of interest to me because let's face it, going solo to a casino on a holiday is just pathetic.

1In order to be considered, a candidate would have to provide an explanation of interest in Christian higher education, list a senior pastor among the references (who even if I did regularly attend church would be unqualified to pass judgment about my work as a librarian unless, of course, the pastor happened to possess a master's degree in library science), and include a statement of personal faith and how it applies to Christian academic libraries. This college has one of the most restrictive job announcements I've ever read, and I've read thousands of them and applied for hundreds of positions after I earned my MLIS degree.

2The vacancy is at an institution that has a student, faculty, and administrative population from what I understand to be very conservative and very religious, and as I previously blogged: ...I've had past experiences with institutional religion that were too negative. Partly it's because I consider myself to be pretty rational. One consequence of my rationalism is that overly emotional appeals (e.g., political, sports, and religious) to me don't work. Also I've had interactions with some Christians who verbally tried very intensively to convince me to attend church and wound up being insulting towards me.

When responding to such tactics, I usually ignore people who practice them, which has often infuriated said people. At any rate, I've not considered myself welcome in church in years.

02 July 2007

Quizzical Commentary

After a few days and fifteen responses, I suppose I'll go into detail about the questions that are in the quiz. A lot of people thought I was reading Lucky Jim or At Swim-Two-Birds. More people answered the car question correctly than I had figured.

Congratulations go to Colette and Dylan for both scoring 70s. The Diplomat did score a 100, but he took the test twice.1

While I have driven all four cars listed in that question, my first car was indeed the Delta 88 Diesel. My sister's first car was the Pacer. My folks liked the Lincolns.

I have degrees in Communication and History from Mississippi State University and in library and information science from the University of Southern Mississippi. I don't have a degree in political science.

Where did I not go to school? As previously mentioned, I have degrees from MSU and USM. I took a couple English classes at the University of Southern Indiana the summer before my senior year in high school. I've not attended a single class at the University of Mississippi.2

My only intramural championship was in sports trivia. I still have the t-shirt someplace. I'm about 70 percent deaf in my right ear, which means sitting to my left is always a good option. However, when working in a library where many people are inclined to whisper, I often have to tell people to speak up.

When I'm at a place like Hal & Mal's with a band playing, people have to shout for me to hear them. I've been known to tell friends when it's been really loud that if they're saying something they want me to hear, just punch my shoulder, so I can try to pay attention.

I purchased this Decemberists album last week.3 Most people who didn't answer this correctly responded with the North Mississippi Allstars, another good answer.

I'm trying to read The Long Goodbye. I've not gotten far into the book yet, but should be finished by next week which is when we meet.

I've not seen the Braves play at Turner Field. With my sister and her family formerly residing in the Bay Area, I've seen the Giants play at Candlestick and at AT&T. I've also seen St. Louis play in the most recently demolished Busch Stadium a few times.

I've mentioned my master's thesis in previous posts. It concerned the oil and gas industry.

And, finally, I do not own a book personally inscribed to me by John Grisham. I have one book with his autograph. Penn & Teller inscribed this book to me after I saw them perform at the Warfield in San Francisco in 1990. Garry Trudeau inscribed a Doonesbury collection to me at a bookstore in Menlo Park.

1He also made a 30 the first time, so Otherjay is the bookclubber in the lead at the end of it all.

2I did, however, apply for law school there and at Mississippi College back in 1989. I thought about attending MC, but decided against it. For what it's worth, I also attended classes at Jones County Junior College.

3I also purchased this album last week as a gift for a co-worker, but it was purchased before I bought the Decemberists CD.


As I've previously mentioned, among my responsibilities here at the library is interlibrary loan. The book we own that's most commonly requested by libraries is a 36-year-old diet book.

I've no idea why. We must get at least a couple requests a month for this book. Interestingly, the author died of a stroke when he was 64 years old.1

1And if you didn't trust the Wikipedia entry, there's always Quackwatch.

01 July 2007

Inside It All Feels The Same

Explosions in the Sky just finished playing on iTunes.1 I'm at Cups in Fondren again.

Looking outside, I see lightning in the air. The weather doesn't look all that great. The clouds are a lot darker. I'm sure there will be a rainbow.

1If you're interested, Inside It All Feels The Same is an instrumental piece from the Friday Night Lights soundtrack. On occasion, my blog entry titles come from songs and instrumental pieces that I listen to at random on iTunes while I'm blogging.

By George

All in all, I think I much prefer to be the quiet one in this crazy game of three beatle monte.