28 December 2007

Twenty Years

Twenty years ago today, my sister got married here. I remember us leaving Heidelberg at 1 p.m. Christmas Eve. We were in a car and an RV and arrived at Durham at 5 a.m. Christmas Day.

Why the RV and car? Well, my family owned a grocery store and had a catering business on the side, and we catered the wedding reception.

I've had a couple lazy days since Christmas, and lazy days are good days. This afternoon, I helped my mother and stepfather move some stuff from his house to her house, so I've also been somewhat productive.

I still need some time to get away from things, and I've not felt like doing much traveling. When Andy called yesterday saying he had an extra ticket to the Liberty Bowl, I said no-- even though the offer was appreciated. As much as I'd love to see the Bulldogs play, I'm not in a traveling mood. I'm also a bit tired.

25 December 2007

More Christmas Links

Weird Al Yankovic's Take on Christmas
I still can't help but smile when I hear this song. I don't think I'd ever seen the video until now.

Woman Fired for Writing Romance Novel at Work
I suppose that people can't find love while at work.

Nicholas Was... A Neil Gaiman story via mp3
If you're interested, the story can be found here.

Being Struck by Lightning & Tenth Marriages Don't Happen Twice
See what you can learn from the Mississippi Vital Statistics Report.

Early Nominee for Christmas Cards for 2008
And there are a lot of items at that website that I find interesting.

24 December 2007

Vince, Bing, & David

23 December 2007

Hawaiian Shirt Day

Visiting with people whether at a party or the Santa's Little Helpers show at Hal & Mal's is always fantastic. I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but I've always enjoyed ed being with friends.

Right now I'm at my mother's house in Canebrake watching Hogfather. I've not had a chance to see it before, and it's being shown in one four-hour presentation.

Too bad I missed the first 20 minutes of it. I don't know if I can see all of the remainder tonight since I've got to get a bite to eat for dinner soon.

21 December 2007

With Six You Get Blogroll

Or maybe not. As much as I like my blogroll, I decided to move it to this page I created a little over a year ago.

I've made some URL changes-- Otherjay's new blog is I think the most notable recent change other than the Clarion-Ledger bloggers move to the Pluck interface. There are additional blogs I will be listing on that page as time permits during the winter break. I also have a link to the page in the Sidebar above the Blogger icon.

A few words as the holiday is about to begin

I've done nearly all my Christmas shopping. The only thing left is to go to Amazon.com and purchase gift certificates for my nephews. I've not seen them in so long. I've been busy at work, and their parents lead very busy lives as well.

I purchased calendars for my co-workers as well as a gift card from Lemuria. They seem to like what I've given them, and that's fantastic. My mother and stepfather are getting books. I got the last book in the mail from Amazon.com yesterday.

I've mentioned a project that I'd been working on this past semester. It's a wiki that's being used to help us at the library help, well, the faculty and students at the college. I've talked to the college's webmaster about it a few times in the past few months. Yesterday, he set it up so that the wiki can be accessed from the library's main page on the web.

We'll see how it works. He already likes it because it means I don't have to pester him with changes and additions all the time. I like it because if we need to change or add something, I can do it myself.

As many of you know, I like to read different columns and articles from various sites. This afternoon I was on the Chronicle of Higher Education's site and I read this column. Here's an excerpt I found fascinating:

George saw a quiet kid who rarely spoke up in class, who didn't participate in student government or athletics, who didn't cavort with a wide circle of friends. He saw a kid with plenty of self-doubt. I would watch professors deliver cogent lectures for an hour at a time, demonstrating a profound grasp of the material, and I would think, "I could never do that." I would read brilliant tomes, put them down and say, "I could never write anything like that."

There are a lot of times when I've felt just like him. I have a great appreciation for beauty, works of art, literature and such, but have never considered myself to be creative. My writing is not creative; it's workmanlike and functional, but still a heck of a lot better than being non-functioning.

I'm leaving the college later this afternoon for the winter break. I won't be back at work until January 2, 2008. I'm already looking forward to seeing the nearly two weeks of mail that will be at the campus post office.

I wish that everyone has a wonderful time whether you're staying at home, travelling a little ways, or going to far off places like Barcelona. As for me, I hope to have some fun this holiday season. At the very least, I'll be appreciating literature thanks to gift cards that I was given by co-workers, which I've already used them to purchase some books.

I have an impish nature at times, which means I used Christmas gifts to purchase a couple of Philip Pullman books: The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass. I've already read The Golden Compass, and would like to see the movie.

I also purchased and am currently reading Dalton Trumbo's Johnny Got His Gun. It's very good.

Another movie based on a book I want to see is No Country for Old Men. FP recommended the movie a few weeks ago, and I want to see it, partly because I'm such a fan of the Coen brothers. I've not read the book though, but I did buy it.

Trane and Roy Blount Jr. piqued my interest in The Dog of the South, so I used the gift cards to buy a copy of it.

I chose Neil Gaiman's American Gods as the book club's next selection, and as I was browsing through the bookstore, I realized that I'd not yet read Neverwhere. I purchased a copy of it as well. Once I finish up with the Trumbo book, I'll start up on American Gods.

20 December 2007

Search Engine Answer Guy #6

Now that the political season is over, let's take a look and see what search queries brought people to this blog site:

1. i need a loan for chrismas posted few minutes ago

Can't help you. I'd suggest one of your local banks in Israel.

2. match.com profiles

Don't do it unless you're willing to laugh at yourself (and others too), as you've noticed from the blog entry where you landed.

3. ole miss coach, andy kennedy

My distant cousin's done a good job so far coaching the basketball team thus far. I hope Ole Miss gets swept by State though.

4. jeopardy contestant book

Try this book out. It's a great read!

5. dolemite stress relief

So you're going with the King of Party Records for stress relief?

19 December 2007

Three Interesting Job Postings

The Mississippi Department of Archives and History is looking for a Historian who would work at the Eudora Welty House. Now that would be a cool job. There's a part of me who wants to apply for this job. Obviously, I can't.

The Southern Poverty Law Center is looking for a Curriculum Writer. I once interviewed for a job at another institution in Montgomery shortly after I received my MLIS. Although I'm not interested in moving, I think Montgomery would be a cool place to live-- despite what Harry thinks.

The Central Intelligence Agency is looking for a librarian, and here's the first sentence of the job posting: Librarians are the U.S. Intelligence Community’s experts in researching, exploiting, and managing a variety information sources. I knew Batgirl was a librarian, but James Bond too? Hmmm.... looking at that sentence again, it looks like of was left out of it.

Dancing with Mephisto

I'm at Cups in Fondren having, well, a cup of coffee and listening to Enigma on iTunes. I was pretty drowsy today. I took some extreme pain relief headache medicine that makes me sleepy.

I had another Christmas party to attend today and I didn't want another headache. Considering that today's party was in a space smaller than yesterday's party, I knew a headache was liable to happen.

I need to make a run to Barnes & Noble for some calendars for co-workers. My day yesterday was too hectic for me to make the run over there after stopping by Lemuria, and I need to do that tonight. There are only two more workdays until we're closed for the holidays, and I need to make a run by Barnes & Noble if only to use the gift certificates I've received.

18 December 2007

Road to Singapore

I had an interesting interlibrary loan request. A request from, yes, Singapore. It was a request I filled easily.

While I would have preferred that the transaction be done via OCLC, sometimes that just ain't possible.

Today is the last day of final exams, and the library had a Christmas party. Unfortunately the room where the party was held wasn't big enough for me. It was too noisy, and I had a bad headache. I was just too miserable. I left the room several times and then decided to leave early.

I've got a book club meeting tonight. I've been reading the book. Now, it's more like I'm skimming through the book. I should be finished in a few minutes.

17 December 2007

Notes and Links


All in all, I had a good weekend. I went to a book signing party Friday evening.

I only knew a few people there: FP, TD, LA, and FP's family. There were some recognizable faces from Artmixes there too. I had fun.

I went to Light + Glass thing after that-- visited with Gorjus who had some of his work in it. It was cool. I bought a copy of the Sandusky Review, and it was good to visit with more people.

I went to Hal & Mal's for a little while afterwards. I chatted with some people at the Dirty Santa Pub Quiz-- I didn't take part seeing that I didn't get there 'til a little after 9, maybe 9:30.

I went to Martin's after that and was there until a little before midnight with friends. I made it back to the house and slept until 11-ish Saturday.

I had to get ready to attend my student workers' wedding, and I did. It was nice, really nice. I then went to Madison to another book signing of the same book. I'd not been to Yellow Dog before. Nice place. I figured belatedly I'd get my mother a copy of the book I got for myself Friday night.

The rest of the weekend, I'd just been taking it easy for the most part and trying to read Sheltering Sky for book club.


Something tells me that they saw The Shawshank Redemption. I'm a bit surprised I've not seen more in the news about such things.

Joe Lieberman endorses John McCain. McCain has had quite the comeback since this past summer. He's also been endorsed by the Boston Globe, Des Moines Register, and the Union Leader of Manchester, New Hampshire.

Dan Fogelberg died. Prostate cancer sucks.

15 December 2007

Terry Pratchett is not dead...

...but he has early-onset Alzheimer's.

14 December 2007

Friday Roundup

2007 Football Playoff Predictions Recap

I went 2-3 in my predictions last week. I correctly predicted Laurel and South Panola, and they were my choices to win 4A and 5A at the beginning of the playoffs. I was 115-42 in my predictions this year.

Wedding Shower

I just got back from a wedding shower a few minutes ago. Two of my former student workers are getting married tomorrow.

As I previously mentioned, Target doesn't do gift wrap, so I wrapped the present so that it looked like an interlibrary loan package. They laughed and asked when it was due back. I said one month, but they could renew it if they'd like.

Holiday Fellowship

One thing I've always enjoyed about this time of the season is being with friends and family-- fellowship. I tend to have a pessimistic outlook on things: I expect the worst; when I'm surprised, it's usually pleasant and good. I plan on having fun the next few days, attending various functions, and I will have fun.

13 December 2007

Bill Richardson

I've been impressed with Bill Richardson for the past several months, and if he's still on the ballot when Mississippi votes next year, I intend on voting for him in the Democratic presidential primary. I've added one of his campaign images to the sidebar on the right, and yes, I did vote for Haley Barbour last month.


I started shopping for presents Tuesday. I called Lemuria and special ordered one book for my stepfather. I would have preferred to order two from Lemuria, but Amazon made me an offer I couldn't refuse.

Yesterday evening after work, I went to Lemuria again. I bought two books for my mother. Hopefully she'll like them. I also told TC what my selection will be for book club, so she's ordering copies.

I went to Target to buy a wedding present. Unfortunately Target doesn't do gift wrap. I've always thought that places that had gift registries should also offer gift wrap.

The present's wrapped now. It's nowhere near a professional job, but more than one person has said that it was cute. I hope they mean cute as in good.

11 December 2007

Dear Students Who Use the Restrooms near the Reference Desk

1. When there's a sign indicating Caution Wet Floor in front of the doorway, that generally means the restroom in question is closed.

2. If the restroom door is kept open due to a door stopper and there's no sign, you can kick the door stopper out of the way and close the door. I've no desire to hear the toilets flush.

10 December 2007

The Week Ahead, Maybe

I'm at work. There's a little over two hours left in the night for me at the library.

Final exams begin later this week. Earlier today, I kicked out four students from a room intended to be a quiet study area because they weren't quiet. Why one student wanted to play music on her computer in a designated quiet area, it makes me wonder...

That student was wondering why I was (to use her word) harassing her. I told her I wasn't. I told her that I asked her to leave, and she was trying to turn off her computer. I told her to take her computer out of the room with her, and she did.

I don't particularly like to be the bad cop but when it's late in the semester, things get crazy. Unfortunately, I wouldn't be surprised if a student reported something being stolen in the next few days.

The next few days look to be hectic and fun. I'm working tonight, going to Pub Quiz tomorrow night, and doing some shopping Wednesday night. At the moment, I'm also looking at bridal registries at Target and Bed, Bath, and Beyond.

I've got a book club meeting tentatively scheduled that was scheduled for Thursday night but is now postponed for a week so that evening looks to be a time for another shopping excursion (this is what happens when you've not done any, and I mean any, Christmas shopping at all) unless there's something else going on, am trying to get away to attend a wedding shower on campus Friday for two of my former student workers (which is why I'm looking at bridal registries), and attending at least one shindig Friday night. I might go to the Dirty Santa pub quiz too, but I don't think I can make it to Hal & Mal's on time.

Saturday, I'm attending a wedding and a book signing-- both at the same time. I think I'll sleep on Sunday. Or something, anyway.

09 December 2007

An Interesting Weekend

On this past Friday and Saturday, I attended four of the five state championship football games.1 I've been known to help out a newspaper from my hometown on occasion when there's sporting events involving schools from the area that are playing in the Jackson area.

Obstensibly, my main job for the weekend was to be Quote Boy and get quotes from coaches and players and perhaps write an article. The newspaper's deadline was very close to the projected end of the Class 4A championship game.

On Friday afternoon I went to Memorial Stadium. I'm able to get to the game since I've got a media pass. I meet up with my friend T. I also see people from my college-- mostly members of the football coaching staff, but also an occasional faculty member or administration figure.

I visit with a couple of people from the newspaper. I don't know them since I moved from Laurel several years ago, so I introduced myself. The person doing the game story asks me if I could get him some quotes. I said sure, and I did. After the game, I went to Cups for a little while. I relaxed some and checked my email.

I saw that the traffic was heavy. I left Cups fifteen minutes before the 5A championship game between South Panola and George County and parked my car at the stadium parking lot about three minutes later and saw the players being introduced as spectators were still entering the stadium. Got to love taking the roads less traveled.

I saw T. I also saw M, a friend of mine from my hometown who does some photography. I saw some other people I knew along the sidelines. South Panola scores early and often against George County. The Tigers can name the score.

T leaves and says that he's meeting friends at Hooters. He asks me if I'm staying. I say I'd be here until at least halftime.

At halftime, I leave for Hooters. South Panola is leading 21-0, and can name the score.

I make it to Hooters just before the second half begins. All the televisions in Hooters are tuned in to Mississippi Public Broadcasting. I order a burger, some beers, and talk to T and his friends, a couple of coaches.

They aren't the only coaches there. More coaches begin to trickle into the building shortly after halftime.

South Panola is obviously bored, and George County wants to get back in the game. The Rebels do, but the Tigers do just enough to win.

After the game is over, we go our separate ways. T and his friends to the Cabot Lodge. I head downtown and visit with friends for a little while before heading back to the house.

Saturday, I go to a Chinese all-you-can-eat place near Metrocenter and then to Cups in Fondren for a little book reading and Christmas card writing. I make it to Memorial Stadium in time for the 3A title game. Louisville is surprisingly dominant. I thought Franklin County would be too physical for them, but they weren't.

I stick around in the stadium after the 3A game. I'm expecting friends from the newspaper. We talk about what he expects from me as far as quote-gathering is concerned. A reporter from another newspaper hears of what I'm doing and asks if I could get some quotes from them, and I say sure.

I head down to the field before the game. Shortly before kickoff, I get a call on my cellphone. Apparently he's having trouble accessing the Internet. Apparently the stadium press box had wireless last year, but it's not working.

The next step: dialup access. I don't know the local dialup numbers, and neither do the friends, so I start calling friends here in the Jackson area. So if you got a phone call from me last night and were wondering why, now you know.

I speak to a couple people. One person gives me a phone number, which isn't later proved not to be particularly helpful. Another is very helpful, but the phone system isn't cooperating.2

By this time, it's close to halftime. I mention to him that Cups has wireless, and they're open until 11 p.m. I give directions-- emphasizing the back roads since the main roads will be packed.

I head downstairs and run into a photographer from the newspaper. Apparently, his computer has a bit of a problem. I tell him where the others are. I have to head down to the field. I make it there in time for the second half kickoff.

Shortly before the game's over, I get a phone call from the person with the other newspaper. He wants me to get quotes from some players in addition to the coach.

When the game ends, I get quotes as quickly as possible and call my friend first, and then the person from the other newspaper and dictate quotes to them.

I leave the field-- I figure my friends might need a little help at Cups, and it might be a good thing to stick around there for a few minutes. I get to the car in five minutes, and some three minutes later, I'm at Cups, and this is at 10:15 p.m.

Ten minutes later, the folks from the newspaper show up. The wireless is working, and they email the article to the newspaper. However, there's still a problem regarding the photos. I'm asked to drive the photographer to the Clarion-Ledger since I know where the building's located even if I've not actually been inside the building. The others will follow.

We arrive, park, and find the side entrance. Fortunately, shortly after we arrive, one of the Clarion-Ledger reporters at the game shows up. He tells the security guard that we're okay and lets us in a little before 11 p.m. Unfortunately Andy wasn't there.

I see where the photographer will be and head back to the side entrance and wait for the others, giving them directions. They arrive, and we head upstairs. The photographer is done shortly before midnight. I drive the photographer back to his truck at the stadium and show him how to get to the Interstate.

After all that excitement, I'm a bit wired. I go downtown and see if I see anyone I know. No one at Hal & Mal's. No one at Martin's. But at Fenian's... friends, definitely friends-- one of whom asks what I was doing that night... We head over to TD's house for about an hour and then I head home.

1Sorry, Class 1A championship game at 11 a.m. Saturday, I wanted sleep and to go to a Chinese all-you-can-eat buffet a little bit more.

2The person who gave me the first number was helpful. Unfortunately, I got the run-around at the number I was given-- automated responses, getting disconnected, etc. The second person gave me a lot of numbers and really went the distance for us, but we couldn't get anything accomplished on our end.

07 December 2007

Heading out a little early from the library...

I'm going to catch a football game this afternoon.

06 December 2007

2007 Football Playoff Predictions, Week V

Last week, I went 8-2 in my predictions, missing the wins by Noxubee County and Ray Brooks. I am now 113-39. Here are my predictions for this week's championship games:

MHSAA Class 2A
Memorial Stadium, 2:30 p.m. Friday

West Bolivar (Region 3 1st) vs. Taylorsville (Region 7 1st)

I predicted the Tartars to upset the Eagles before the playoffs began, and I'm sticking to it even though West Bolivar is scary good.

MHSAA Class 5A
Memorial Stadium, 7 p.m. Friday

South Panola (Region 1 1st) vs. George County (Region 4 1st)

I predicted the Tigers to win before the playoffs started (who didn't?), and I'm going to keep on picking the Tigers until they lose.

MHSAA Class 1A
Memorial Stadium, 11 a.m. Saturday

Ray Brooks (Region 2 1st) vs. Puckett (Region 4 1st)

I'm going with my pre-playoffs pick of Puckett to pull out another state football title.

MHSAA Class 3A
Memorial Stadium, 3 p.m. Saturday

Louisville (Region 2 1st) vs. Franklin County (Region 7 3rd)

My pre-playoffs champion pick South Pike went down in flames in the first round. I'm picking the defending state champion Bulldogs to win their second consecutive title.

MHSAA Class 4A
Memorial Stadium, 7 p.m. Saturday

Noxubee County (Region 4 2nd) vs. Laurel (Region 5 1st)

I predicted the Golden Tornadoes to win Class 4A at the start of the playoffs. I'm not changing now.

God and Bart Simpson: Corporate Brothers

News Corp.'s Fox Entertainment Group has acquired Beliefnet, a Web site catering to faith communities, in a move designed to boost online marketing and distribution of Fox's film and TV programs.

05 December 2007

The More Things Change

By far the most frequently accessed article on my blog is my little commentary regarding MySpace. I'm actually a bit surprised at its status.

Earlier today I was on The Chronicle's website and read this article. I know the library director at Middle Georgia. We were classmates in library school at Southern Mississippi.

The funny thing is I remember when we were graduate students at Southern Mississippi in the mid-1990s. Cook Library expanded, and the public computers were used by students to access the Internet. Too many computers in fact. The library had to limit the number of computers that could access the Internet so research could be done.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Vote Early. Vote Often. Vote Croom.

04 December 2007

The End of Autumn

The fall semester will be over later this month. Friends and co-workers have already asked me what I'll be doing during the holidays.

I don't really know, but I'll do something (maybe several somethings), and I hope that the holidays will be great.

I've not found this semester to be as pleasant as I would have wished thus far. While it's good that my college has record enrollment this semester as far as funding is concerned, one negative consequence is that more students mean life is busier.

For those of us at the library who teach or have study halls, life is especially hectic.

One thing I've not been able to do this fall (and miss) that I've done in previous semesters: occasional meals with friends and co-workers away from work. Unfortunately, I'm not the only person with a busy life. And while I like to decompress when I get away from work, I'm not a fan of being by myself all the time.

Fortunately, the next few weeks are promising, and that's great because I don't need a discontented winter.

Two for Tuesday

Two links to the Wall Street Journal:

The Billionaire has a Writing Jones

I read this morning in the Wall Street Journal that Phil Knight has been working on a novel for several years and has attended creative writing classes at Stanford.

Dickie Scruggs

I noticed this article when today's Wall Street Journal arrived at the library.

03 December 2007

December Evening

It's supposed to get to 30 degrees tonight. Cold. And I left my jacket in the car. Oh well.

I went to the Moss Point-Laurel football game. Great game. Fantastic finish. Pandemonium when the game was over, and the Tornadoes play Noxubee County Saturday night for the MHSAA Class 4A Championship.

I helped my mother and stepfather move some things around and outside their house this past weekend. It wasn't too bad, and that's good.

I previously mentioned that I was asked to cover an event this morning. Well, this was the event. I'd not attended one of these before, and it wasn't bad at all.

The next two weeks will continue to be a busy time for me. It's almost time for final exams. I've got to get some stuff done around the house. I also need to do some Christmas shopping done, and wedding gifts, and Christmas cards, and book reading. Geez.