Friday, December 31, 2004

Happy New Year

I wish you all health, happiness, and prosperity in 2005. Have a safe and wonderful night tonight and see you next year.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

New Harry book announced

I'm sure you've probably all seen this already, but the new Harry Potter book has been announced. I'm going to be curious to see what the hold list will be like in my system for this. I think the DaVinci Code reached over a 1000 waiting for it at its peak.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

World's Toughest Voting Day Quiz Answers

From the Tempo section of the November 10, 2004, Chicago Tribune:

1. How many of Chicago's 50 wards did George W. Bush win in the 2000 presidential election?
A: Zero

2. Which of the following nations has the youngest voting age?
A. Iran
B. Canada
C. Guinea-Bissau
D. Maritnique
A: A. Iran

3. In U.S. presidential election history, what is the significance of the number 456,312?
A: It is the difference in the amount of votes received by Democrat John F. Kennedy over Rebuplican Richard Nixon in Chicago in the 1960 presidential election.

4. Which 2004 presidential or vice presidential candidate's wife wrote a steamy western novel?
A: Lynne Cheney - 1981's "Sisters"

5. Complete this slogan of the Nader campaign: "Bush and Kerry make me..."
A: "...want to Ralph."

6. Why was there a legal challenge in 2000 to George Bush picking Dick Cheney as his running mate?
A: Until 4 days before the election, Cheney was registered to vote in Texas. In other words, he declared Texas to be his primary residence. The constitution forbids a president and vice president coming from the same state.

7. In Australia, how much are citizens fined for not voting?
A: $20 AUS and can be increased to $50 AUS if not taken care of immediately.

8. Who was the Chicago-area banker-diplomat who was not only elected U.S. Vice President, but also won the Nobel Peace Prize and composed the music for the pop song "It's All in the Game"?
A: Charles G. Dawes

9. What state proportionally allocate electoral votes rather than using the winner-take-all method?
A: Maine and Nebraska

10. Which country has the world's most restrictive laws about who can and cannot vote?
A: Kuwait

I got 9/10. How did you do?

Friday, December 17, 2004

Librarians as Social Workers

Maybe this is *my* therapy. I had a patron today who unloaded *A LOT* of *HEAVY* emotional baggage on me. I was trapped. My library is small, and I was the only one on the reference desk and there were no patrons in for the majority of the day. Ones who weren't otherwise occupied reading the newspapers anyway. This patron had absolutely no concept of the phrase "too much information." Part of the problem was that there was the odd reference question in the middle of her unloading her life story on me, so I couldn't really cut her off.

When I finally was able to escape for my lunch break, I walked into our back room in a daze. I think I was in emotional shock from all this woman told me. I still feel like I'm in shock. I can't get the imagery out of my head because she saw fit to act out certain stories for me. My appreciation for social workers was already high, but this situation just shot it through the roof.

I think this woman was looking for a counselor, and saw fit to confide in me, if only to get it off of her chest. How on earth do you deal with people like this when they're not threatening you, they have valid questions, and there is no way for you contact someone to call you away on an "emergency?" Should part of Public Service courses cover patron relations in how to deal with behavioural problem patrons? I've had patrons who are in similar situations as this patron today is in, however, they didn't feel a need to unload on me like that. I'm rambling now, and I need to stop. I think I'm going to go find my stash of chocolate and pop in my copy of Clue.

Monday, December 06, 2004

The Librarian: Quest for the Spear

First, can anyone tell me where the heck November went to?

"The Librarian: Quest for the Spear" primiered on TNT tonight. How best to describe it? Think of "Raiders of the Lost Ark" crossed with "The Phantom", set it in today's world, and multiply the resulting campiness factor by 10. Good thing, that's one of my favorite kinds of movies. Noah Wyle's character has 22 degrees, but we don't know if one of them is an LIS one. Did I care? Not really. Because this is fiction. If he were actually charged with the cataloguing of items or doing reference for a researcher, then I'd care. But he's not. He's charged with the safety and security of mythic items. Too bad he doesn't have a degree in martial arts, as that would be more appropriate.

Some people may feel like 2 hours of their life was wasted as, and I agree, the movie could have been tighter on so many levels. However, I thought it was a great piece of escapism as long as you bought into the absurdity of the premise. If you don't want to do that, don't bother watching the movie. I guarantee you'll be disappointed. I normally don't watch ER because I'm not a drama person. TNT's catchphrase is "We Know DRAMA." Go into "The Librarian" with the expectation of comedy, and you'll be much more satisfied. Noah Wyle's got great comedic timing.

My rating: two thumbs up, with the acknowledgement that I'm a huge fan of intelligent campiness, even if unintended.