Yes, I’m a library lady.*

I knew that pursuing a career in Library Sciences would likely have some Rodney Dangerfield-esque consequences to it.  Say it with me kids… “I get no respect!”  But I did it any way ’cause I’m bad ass like that and because I really loved what libraries did for me as a youth.  As if books!! on books!! on books!! weren’t enough, they also had cool programs, free plays/performances, story telling, classes, poetry readings, art shows, etc.  I always felt at home in a library.

Fast forward 20 or so years, I have the requisite degree–A Masters in Library Science, I work in my local Central branch and I often get met with the terms of disrespect (henceforth referred to as T.O.D.) that I anticipated about my line of work.  Usually its something like; “Don’t you just shelve books all day?” or “Librarian? Isn’t that boring?!”

I usually don’t sweat it because on some level I knew it’d be par for the course and mostly it comes from people who really don’t use the library and therefore don’t see the value it brings to the community.   Normally I just use that as a teaching moment and fill the person in about library awesomeness.  But there was a recent incident in which an intelligent, learned person (who used library services often) uttered the T.O.D. in these particular words: “Degree?! You need a degree to put books in alphabetical order?!”

This was a pat your weave moment boys and girls.  I guess you could say those were the T.O.D. that broke the camel’s back.

After my weave was sufficiently patted, I explained to the young woman that the degree was needed to do a myriad of other things that we library ladies* (and fellas) are charged with doing.  I’ll illustrate below.

Lets just get this one outta the way:

Yes, some Librarians do shelve books.

But we also do this:

A library is an agency–an institution, it needs to be managed. Librarians manage them doing things like accounting, acquisitions etc.

What are they doing? Why they’re being librarians! Cataloging and classifying all kinds of resources from personal papers to books to music, film etc.

Librarians can also work in a limited curator’s capacity as many libraries host art installations.

Librarians frequently teach, train and present to the public as well as to colleagues.

Librarians often digitize resources as we move into a largely electronic resource era.

Project management is a very common duty for librarians.

Not to mention research, outreach, story time, teen and adult programming etc.  Just thought I’d give folks something to think about.  I don’t expect to change the perception of librarians overnight.  It’s enough that I love what I do (88% of the time) and that I’m rockin with the late, great Rodney D!

Loved that guy!

*Since folks like to deal in archetypes, think lunch lady but subtract the hair net and add glasses and a sweater—now I will admit that I do stay with a sweater on my shoulders. Its cold in here!

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Anatomy of a hero: Notes from an Emotional Intelligence training.

Hiya you throngs of people you! 😀

OK so today I attended a training at work called Emotional Intelligence.  If you’re thinking it’s a Oprah-ish, new agey, What-Color-is-Your-Parachute kinda deal, you’re right.   Not to trivialize it, I did gain some good Ah-ha-moment! insights in the session but  those are for my thoughts only…I don’t Ah-ha! and tell.   What kinda girl do you think I am?  But here are 3 that I’m willing to part with:

  1. Emotional Intelligence trainers who look like AND have the affectations of Richard Dreyfuss (and thereby have you thinking about What About Bob the entire session) are distracting.
  2. Some phone apps still make noise—loud noise even though you’ve silenced your phone. My bad.
  3. Librarians are an Emotionally challenged bunch! Breathe! Do the Harlem Shake! Give a hug! Receive a hug! Something! Dang!

Lastly,  I will leave you with one helpful exercise that Dreyfuss had us do.  He instructed us to think back on those ‘heroes’ in our lives that really inspired us or made an impression on us and isolate the characteristic in them that we liked/admired.  Give this one a try!

Here’s my short list:

  • My Grandmother– Powerful love
  • My Mama– Superhuman selflessness
  • Sister Vanessa (pre-school teacher at my Elementary school)- Kindness and grace under fire
  • Lady J. Boone– Excellent Listener
  • Mrs. Parker (7th grade teacher)- Nurtured all students, not just the squeaky wheels
  • Ummi– The picture of patience
  • My Big Sister– Responsible before her time…

So many others (lots of women huh?), not enough space.  Who are your heroes and why?

Until next time…

Give me! Give Me! I need! I need!!!!

Google me graciously. Please and Thank you.

According to several reports, would-be/could-be/should-be employers are looking at your social media career—because lets face it, your social media activity is your own little PR machine with you (for better or for worse) at the helm—to inform their decision of whether to hire you or not.

Would you be mine? Could you be mine? Won't you be my employer?

It was with that in mind that I decided to put together this little missive; a guide, if you will, with hopes that said employers will catch wind, take heed and cut us some slack.  Catch. Take. Cut.  May this entry strike one huge blow for us job seekers.

Dear Employers,

When snooping investigating the background of potential employees, particularly me:

You might see this:   But this is what you SHOULD see:
  • A blog post or Facebook status ripping current job or current employer
  • A blog post or Facebook status ripping current job or employer with perfect grammar. Good grammar is hard to come by.
  • A picture of job seeker in seemingly compromising position with questionable individuals
  • A successfully uploaded picture of job seeker in seemingly compromising position with questionable individuals.  You’d be surprised how many people can’t upload.
  • A jobseeker with a profile on EVERY social networking site from Meebo, to Myspace, to Badoo, to Hi5…
  • A jobseeker who has been navigating these interwebs since the heyday of Meebo, MySpace, Baboo and Hi5. Computer proficient? Check! Social butterfly/good communicator? Check!

You get the idea.  During your nosing around investigation you might see things that suggest immature, wildcard, capricious…  I beg you, put on your rose colored glasses and see instead creative, innovative and spirited! Arguably creative people are the life blood of any organization.  Ask red-headed, enterprising,  Aubrey O’Day from Celebrity Apprentice (not blond tantalizing Aubrey O’day from Danity Kane).

The takeaway: have a heart.  Say to that deserving young slacker, diamond-in-the-rough, YOU’RE HIRED.  You won’t regret it!

Only a creative person could come up with positive words to describe this hair.

Days/Titles 104-107

Check em out out, buy em, download em. Give these books some love!