The word of the day is "random". For some reason, I can't seem to focus on any one thought so you're going to get a big, fat, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink kind of guest post out of me. It's Ali here in case you're wondering. Ready!? OK!!
I love Oprah. Now, some of you might say, that's no big revelation. Millions of people the world over love Oprah. But I mean I really LOVE Oprah. I DVR the show, I watch it, I take notes. I've been to the show. I DVR'd that show I was on and I show everyone who enters my home the half a millisecond shot of me in the audience. Dr. Oz has got me looking at my poop to see what letter of the alphabet it resembles! Ok people. Do you get it yet? I am a proud Oprah follower and I don't proudly follow anyone. But that's not really the shocker. As much as I love Oprah, my husband (we'll call him Man of Song) HATES Oprah. I mean he really can't stand Oprah. It runs deeeeeeeeeep his dislike. Deee-eep. He is like violently opposed to her. He leaves the room when I start watching. So there it is. I feel so much better now.
Sort of confession numero B: I'm addicted to American Idol. Who's with me? I know you're out there. Weren't you sad when Chickezie got voted off last week? You know you were. That damn Kristy Lee has got to go. Shall we start a petition right here on my favorite blog? I'm not sure Librarian Girl would approve.
Next up.... Leave it to Beaver. Were the 50s really like that? I mean the other day I was watching an episode and Beaver lied to his classmates and said he owned a bird, because he was embarrassed that he was the only kid in the class who didn't have a pet. So, Ward went out at night to find Beaver a bird to take to class for show and tell. The big crazy thing about this story, as portrayed on the show, was that Ward was out AFTER DARK looking for said bird. Are you kidding me? People never went out after dark in the 50s? Can that be true? Or was that just Hollywood shiznit? And what's with June always wearing a pearl necklace? Now, Librarian Girl would say I should ask myself that same question. Apparently I wore pearls quite a lot in high school. Apparently more than is normal for a high school aged girl. You know what just occurred to me? Pearl necklaces. A kid named Beaver?! Who wrote that show!? Dirty birdies! I'm surprised Wally's name wasn't Woody. Heh heh.
Speaking of going out after dark, did you see I Am Legend? That shit freaked my shit out. Those dark seekers? Whoa. All that screaming and transparent skin was waaaaaaaaaaay too much for me to handle. It freaked me out so badly that I couldn't get it outta my head when I went to bed that night. That never happens to me. Of course Man of Song thought it would be funny to keep reminding me about it all night so I couldn't possibly move on to something more pleasant in my last waking hours. He cracks himself up. So what did we do the very next day, you ask? We watched it again! Why? Why did we do that? Cause we're asses that's why. Big dumb asses.
OK. That's all I got. I'm plum tuckered out. Parched I tell ya!
Congrats Biology Girl! Can't wait to hear all about the road trip back from CA. I'm sure there will be good stories to tell! Thanks for letting me guest blog Librarian Girl : )
The word of the day is "random". For some reason, I can't seem to focus on any one thought so you're going to get a big, fat, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink kind of guest post out of me. It's Ali here in case you're wondering. Ready!? OK!!
Hi, Pop Culture Readers! I was really honored when the lovely Pop Culture Librarian invited me to guest blog. But I was also a little bit intimidated. I’ve got a blog of my own, and to be honest with you? It has been kind of sucking lately.
So I wimped out and asked PCL to suggest a topic for me. In a typical PCL display of awesomeness, she sent me a list of six suggestions. I chose Suggested Topic #3:
A List of the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Teen Services Public Libraraining
So, I am a Librarian for the Teenagers in a public library. You probably already know some stuff about this job, being fans of PCL and all, but in case you don’t, a typical workday might include recommending books to patrons, making book lists, posting to a library blog, visiting a school, planning an event, working with teen volunteers, or doing about a million other things. It’s a good job.
But anyway! On to the list!
I love teens. (Not in a dirty way. Don’t be such a perv.) I think people who don’t like teens either don’t know any of them, or only know the ones that they made themselves. I’m sure your own teen is probably a pain in the ass a lot of the time, but other people’s teens are a delight. They’re old enough to have intelligent, reasoned opinions, but young enough that you can still mold their little minds like clay.
And that’s where the library comes in. Mind-warping.
Also, I’m really immature, and I like hanging out with people at my own developmental level.
Librarians and other people who work in libraries are often nerds like me. I like nerds. And overall, I enjoy helping the people who come into the library. Corny but true.
3. Reading, television watching, etc.
I can read teen romances or adventure novels, or even watch Gossip Girl on the CW, and call it professionalizing. Beat that! Plus, as a public librarian, pretty much everything I read or learn could potentially be useful in helping other people find information, which is pretty neat. (If you’re a nerd.)
1. Teen Services what?
A lot of people don’t know that my job exists—or if they do, they wonder why. “Teens don’t read!” they say. “Teens deal drugs and harass the elderly! They don’t need their own librarian!” It can be kind of exhausting to have to justify your own existence all the time.
As in any public service type environment (or maybe, any workplace), there are some people in the library who like nothing better than paperwork—the more, the better! I’m sure they miss the good old days of carbon paper and filling things out in triplicate. They make up for it by sending me twenty emails a day, all marked “Urgent!!!” but never actually containing any information that I could possibly need.
3. The Smell
I work in a big urban library, and my reference desk is near a seating area where people congregate. Lots of these people don’t really have anywhere else to go during the day, and I am 100% behind the library’s mission of intellectual freedom and a creating a welcoming environment for all.
But—and here’s where I start to sound like a Republican and/or a terrible person—when you have a lot of people in the same room who don’t necessarily have daily access to showers, it can lead to a certain . . . aroma. Not a nice one. And sometimes it’s a bit overwhelming.
Don’t hate me.
1. People who yell
Sometimes in the library, people yell at you. You’d think that the mentally ill people would be the problem, but they are usually pretty nice. More often it’s the wealthy, entitled patrons who are outraged that their favorite chair has been moved or something. I try to have a thick skin about it, but it gets depressing.
2. The Politics
This is related to the Bureaucracy, but is a slightly different problem. Basically, in order to get anything done, you have to know who to talk to, and then make them like you, neither of which is necessarily easy.
. . . And there you have it! Only two entries in the “Ugly” column. Don’t you want to be a librarian now?
When Librarian Girl asked me to be her guest blogger I was honored, but also a little bit afraid – similar to the feeling I had when my 9th grade history teacher told me that he thought I should take the government class he was also offering. On one hand I was glad he thought I was smart. On the other hand, well, I actually wasn’t that smart. But after mulling over LG’s offer I pushed my worries aside. After all, I’ve been writing my own blog for more than six years. Surely one entry wouldn’t be all that hard. But how would I ensure that I was carrying on the legacy of the pop culture librarian? In other words, how would I make sure I didn’t become that singer that joins the band and ruins everything? Well I assure you folks that just because I’m replacing Natalie Merchant, I’m no Mary Ramsey.
Of course I planned on following in LG’s footsteps and starting out my post with some engaging and slightly dramatic opening like “Okay people, have you ever had one of those days where you look like Richard Gere in An Officer and a Gentleman even though you feel more like the dude on the cover of the Scorpion’s 1979 album Lovedrive? Well let me tell you people, that is how I feel today!”
Then, following suit, I’d throw in hoards of pop culture references (like that little 10,000 Maniacs bon mot you just experienced, as well as the Scorpion album mention). That’s right, I’ll be dropping pop culture references like they’re hot and I’m the fire fighter who appeared in the calendar as Mr. August (the hottest month, btw), here to put out those flames.
I could also give all my friends fun names like Nordic Boy and Biology Girl. I think my friends would get the names The Redhead, Art School Dropout and Chill Style.
And then once I reached the end I’d wrap it up nicely with something like “I guess I was pretty crazy when I was 12. Fo sho!
Kiss the rings, I’m out!”
This may sound like a walk in the park, but I promise you it’s not all sunshine and random Gilmore Girls quotes (“Copperboom!”). Take the word of someone who knows, being LG is like being Green. It’s not easy.
It's just about time for me to jump in the car and hightail it to California! I have spent the last 24 hours doing such things as working, running around town searching for a good brown shirtdress which I somehow got into my head I wanted to have for my trip but the ones I was seeing were just not good enough because I had a vision in my head for what I wanted, and shivering while hoping to high heaven that California will be warmer than 40 degrees.
While I am gone, I didn't want to leave the bloggie unattended so I asked some of my peeps to babysit it for me. So for the next few posts you will be hearing from the following fine blog scribes. I have no idea what any of them might say and so this will be interesting.
1. Josh, my blog friend who does live action book reviews on his blog (librarian brownie points for sure) and who never fails to make me chortle. Yes, I said chortle. He is such a card.
2. Hopscotch, my neighbor and fellow librarian who still likes me even though I demanded a brownie from her once in a most rube like manner.
3. Alli, who never fails to say something hilariously embarrassing about me because she's known me since kindergarten and has seen me in all sorts of stupid situations. I can't tell you how much I love this about her. She keeps me honest.
4. Neighbor J, also a keeper of my secrets and one of the few people that can make me almost throw up from laughing. True friendship, that.
With that, I release my blog to this cadre of pals, to dish up whatever they would like to say. I'll be reading from the road!
Ok, so last we left off, BioGirl had invited me to her birthday party by accosting me in the Gas Shed. I ended up going to that party, and I remember four things about it.
1. I was ridiculously overdressed. I was all gussied up as I am wont to be and all of her friends were in shorts and tank tops. One of these things is not like the other, you know what I mean?
2. Everyone wrote her a poem as a birthday present. Although this was a very cool idea, the fact that I barely knew her caused me to write some shit like "Happy birthday you...awesome person in blue...yes you...you're awesome at what you do...when you rent a canoe..." It was mortifying.
3. As a cap to the party, they all wanted to go out in some janky ass smelly boat and row around the lake in the dark. Why, I ask you, would those of us who worked with janky ass smelly boats want to prolong the jank in our spare off hours?
I excused myself early and went home. I'm sure her opinion of me as Mutey Mc-No-Sounds was growing ever stronger.
You are so seeing the best friend potential here, aren't you?
Despite this bumpy start, over the next few weeks, I started to see things about BioGirl that I really liked. For instance, we had this boss. Our boss was about my age at that time and she treated the entire staff like they were her personal playthings. She would, in the middle of a shift at work, decide that everyone, no matter how tired or how hard they were already working, needed to go outside and get in a canoe and race them against each other just so she could watch them do it and laugh an evil laugh. I also witnessed her order a staff member to stand outside and then order the other staff members to pelt water balloons at said staff member. Just for kicks. She loved to pick on people in a really stupid, juvenile, mean girl sort of way. For whatever reason, she always left me out of it. Anyhow, the thing about BioGirl was that she didn't take crap from this boss of ours. She just wouldn't. This was key in my liking of BioGirl.
One day, I called her up and asked her out on a friend-date. We went to a local park and walked around the Conservatory, and we talked. Like, all day. Then we went to the movies, and we saw "54." We both agreed it was awful. Then we had dinner. It was one of those things where you just keep hanging out, all day. The bonding, it happened immediately. Well, immediately after months of working together, that is.
It's kind of amazing to me that she was 19 when we met. And now look at her. All growed up and everything. The fact that we'll be living in the same town again is so exciting I could just about bust, for reals. And by this time next week, she'll be here.
Too. Exciting. For Words.
I would like to start off with an apology. If you have called me in the past week or so, I probably said something like "I am so busy I really can't talk right now can I call you back later because I have eleventy five things going on right this second in fact my hands are full so I may drop this cell phone any minute so sorry about this see you later ok thanks bye!" I have discovered that when I am under duress, the first thing that leaves me is punctuation. I talk in one long uninteruppted sentence like that. I was noticing this all week. I would start to say something, and it would just NOT END. If I am ever held up at gunpoint, where it is really a stressful situation and not made up bullshit task list stuff like I have going on now, I am for sure going to be shot, just because my mouth will go on overdrive.
So the next big thing on my agenda this week (look at me, acting like I have an AGENDA) is to drive down to California and pick up Bio-Girl, who has done gone and got herself thesissifed and doctored up and Pee Aitch Deed. Now it's time for her to stop all this edu-ma-cation nonsense and be all jobby and stuff and she has decided to come back and make Seattle her grown up home town.
I know I just got done telling you all about how I met Nordic Boy, but I figured now would be a good time to tell you all how I met the other love of my life, Bio-Girl. This story doesn't take a bajillion years though, so don't be scared that I am about to drag you into another miniseries, kay?
A few years after I moved to Seattle, I decided it was time to get me back to school for some more undergraduate degreeing. This time around, I decided to get two degrees, all at once. Not double majoring, but two separate degrees. I know. What a nutball. Because of this decision, I didn't have a lot of time for a regular job. Yadda yadda yadda, I ended up working for this place on campus that rented canoes for tourist types and locals who had a hankering to canoe themselves around Lake Washington.
I was a professional canoe renter. How awesome is that?
There are so many canoe stories I could tell you, it's not even funny. Who knew that the canoe business was where all the funny, weird things were happening? It was probably the kookiest job I ever had (and that is saying something), with enough quirky characters to fill up many blog posts. I'll save those for another time and just get to me and Bio-Girl.
All of the staff at Canoes R Us were undergrads and although I was an undergrad too, I was a few years older than everyone else due to my Zigzaggy Life Path. I remember there was this one guy, a fratty bean pole named Sterling (ok his name really wasn't Sterling, but trust me his real name was just as...Sterling-ish), and one day we were hosing the goose poop off the dock together (jealous?), and somehow it came out that I was a bit older than the average college age person (I think I was like 25 or something) and he looked at me like I was about to pop my teeth out and tell him about my childhood in the Great Depression.
So this group at the canoe place were all friends with each other, and dated each other, and did all those college-y type things. I was friendly with everyone, but I kind of kept to myself too. Bio-Girl was a wee one of 19 when we met, and I have to tell you, I thought she was kind of princessey. I can't quite remember why I thought this. I wish I had some anecdote about her wearing a tiara or some such but I don't. I think it has been established between the two of us that she thought I was so quiet as to just about be mute.
Princess and the Mute. Doesn't that sound like the ingredients for lifelong BFF-ness?
One day, I was hauling a big old gas can out to what was known as the Gas Locker. The Gas Locker was a beat down raggedy ass shed where we kept all the gas for the speedboats that we rode in to rescue people who fell out of their canoes (I am so not even making this up). When I got the Gas Locker, Bio Girl popped up out of nowhere and scared the bejeezus out of me. She had followed me to the Shed o' Gas!
Her: Hey. I'm having a birthday party next weekend and I was hoping you could come.
Me: Ok. Sure.
Her: I know it's weird that I followed you out to the Gas Locker to ask you, but I didn't want to ask you in front of everyone else. Not everyone is invited.
You guys, I totally lied. I said I wasn't going to make this a miniseries, but now I've gone and run out of time and I have to go. What is with me and the two or three-parters lately? Yeesh.
It's kind of hard to believe that anyone would have thought I was mute, huh?
I am really losing it, you guys. Prepare for this blog entry to make no sense. Because I am totally not even coherent right now. Have you ever had a week or two where you feel like you are about five steps behind yourself? Where, the moment you do one task, there are three or four more that spring up, and you feel like you never will catch up, ever? That your life, once an idyllic traipse through the park, has been reduced to a series of checklists that will never stop and that you will never get ahead of?
Really. I say again:
I know this woman, let's call her Frazzle McDazzle. I don't know her well, and have only been to parties and suchlike where she is also a guest. Frazzle is never at the party for the first half. Somewhere during the party, she will call the host or a party guest to apologize for being so late, but to assure everyone to expect her shortly. Although I am never the one that she would call in this situation, I always imagine that there are traffic noises and chaos in the background of wherever it is she is calling from, and that one may hear the pounding of her feet as she runs down the sidewalk on her way to the party. Eventually, she does show up to the gathering, and she always looks the same. She always bursts in, like Kramer. She is always completely harried, and even somewhat confused, as if she doesn't know quite where she is. Sometimes her glasses are fogged up. Her hair is always messed up, and her coat is often hanging partway off of her shoulders as if she has almost run right out of her clothes. Her clothes are perpetually wrinkled. She often greets people at the party like this: "What? Oh hi." Or maybe like this: "Huh? Nice to see you." She is so Frazzled, she is truly dazzling.
I am turning into Frazzle McDazzle.
Huh? Oh hi.
I am all booked up, people. BACK TO BACK. Something happening ALL THE TIME. From before the sun comes up until half past Super Late. LISTS, EVERYWHERE, LISTS!
How did this happen? I don't know, but it sucks. More than sucks. Su-hucks.
I am totally doing this to myself, I know. People don't get crazy busy like this unless they are doing it to themselves, I get that. Here are some things that make me realize that I have to slow the fuck down.
1. I walked down the street yesterday? And the wind was a-blowin' all crazy like, and it was blowing my hair right across my face. My hair is black. And thick. And if enough of it blows across my face, I can't see a durn thing. I was in such a hurry, I just kept walking. BLIND FOLDED.
2. Last night I got home around 9:30. I wanted to fall right into bed, but I ate a little something and then watched a Battlestar Galactica episode on dvd with Nordic Boy. I love Battlestar Galactica. But in my current state of mind, I couldn't even follow it. That's right, I couldn't follow a tv show. I was this lady:
"Who is that guy?"
"Why are they doing that?"
"How come they're trying to kill him?"
"Wasn't she there before?"
THE WHOLE TIME.
3. As I was running around doing alla my made up task-list shit, I found myself singing this weird song. "Batty batty bat, batty batty bat, batty batty bat! One two thrrree!" I don't know what part of my brain this came out of. When I got to work the next day, I had to look it up. It was this.
Batty bat, indeed.
I'M TOTALLY LOSING IT, PEOPLE.
What? Oh hi.
Things that were said by yours truly within the last few days in front of normal, well-adjusted people. A list.
At a party:
Party goer: So I was thinking about doing this cleanse. It's lemonade, maple syrup, and cayenne pepper.
Me: Oh yeah! Pepa just did that cleanse on her reality show. Salt thought it was stupid. That Salt and Pepa! Always disagreeing.
(stares from party goers)
Me: Sorry. You were saying?
At another party:
Party-goer: Things just aren't the same any more at work.
Me: Yeah, it's like when Leonardo Di Caprio showed up on Growing Pains. It's like Cousin Oliver on the Brady Bunch. You know it's just never going to be the same.
Party goer #2: Hey, what's up?
Me: We were just talking about Growing Pains.
Party goer #1: And my work situation.
Me: Oh, yeah. And that.
In a car full of people:
Passenger #1: You have to turn left at the yield sign up there.
Me: Yield! Yield before Zod!
Me: You know...Superman? Kneel before Zod? Oh never mind.
At another party (yes, I went to a lot of parties this weekend):
Me: So, I'm really glad that our library is moving in that direction.
Co-worker: I'd love to hear more of your opinion on that. Can you explain what you mean?
Me: No, not really. I don't really know what I'm saying right now. I'm just, you know, trying to make conversation.
I know. I should really be giving conversation lessons. It's so clearly my calling.
Before I get to the story of the day, I have to clear something up. I forgot to answer questions from two lovely readers. I just skipped right over them. How rude.
Kelly Green Rogue asked:
How do you take your coffee?
I take it and I flush it down the terlet, because coffee is a nasty teeth-yellower that makes you have stank breath. No coffee for me!
If you could only listen to one cd for the rest of your life what would it be?
Eh. I don't care much really. Hall and Oates Greatest Hits? Funky Funky Christmas by the New Kids on the Block? Paul Anka Sings the Blues? That last one isn't real, but I kinda wish it was.
Do you wear sensible librarian shoes to work or something with a little more flair?
If you knew me in person, this would be the most laughable question in the world. Like, snort milk out your nose laughable. Of course I wear sensible shoes. If by sensible you mean Fierce and Faboo and definitely NON-DOWDY. I am without question 100% against dowd. Want an example? Here's what I wore today.
Flair. Always flair.
What is your favorite random act of kindness to bestow on total strangers (or people you know, but strangers is more fun)?
I'm kind to total strangers every single day, through my job. Awww, cheesy! But true.
Ok, I think I got to all the questions. If not, nudge me again and try not to call me a forgetful buttmunch, even though it may be just a little bit justified.
Here's the deal. You know how I was on the hunt for a good hair stylist for a long time? I went to the super foofy place, and the WWE haircutter, etc. I finally did find someone, and I thought my searching was over.
But now, I am trying to find a good doctor. My insurance changed a while back and I have been in doctor-hell ever since. I can't find a good one! And I have great insurance! How can this be? Where have all the good doctors gone?
Maybe I am spoiled. My dad was a doctor, the kind that people loved. I grew up in my town and people would stop me on the street to tell me about how my dad was the awesomest of the awesome. This is because, aside from the doctoring, my dad has the peeple skillz. He makes people feel good. He listens. He respects.
I went to this doctor the last few times I needed doctoring. The first time I saw her, she was super abrupt. It was like I was on the assembly line of health and she had to finish up with me because she had another lump of human tissue coming in any minute. She was a little bit rude. She made me feel like I was taking too long. Hurry up and tell me your symptoms! I am a doctor and I am so busy and important you know!
In a weird way, at first I kind of liked her. I tried to slant her abrupt-bordering-on-rude to mean that she was direct. To the point. And that was good, right? I don't need a doctor to sugarcoat! I am tough feminista librarian! Give me the facts!
I went to her last week. I wanted to talk to her about something totally unrelated to my ladyparts. (The reason I am saying that is because it's relevant to the rest of the story, not because I want to all the sudden talk about how I wasn't talking about my ladyparts.) I had a concern. And she scoffed at my concern. SCOFFED.
Where in the bedside manner handbook does it talk about scoffing? What page? I want to see what PAGE.
After she scoffed at me and made me feel like I was a Total and Utter Waste of her precious Doctor JuJu, she says this:
Her: So, anything else?
(Not, how are you otherwise? Not, do you have any more questions? Nope. ANYTHING ELSE?)
Me: No, I think that's it for now.
Her: Let me take a quick look at your file here. (glance) You know, if you want to have any kids, you better get started. You are getting kind of old.
OH MY GOD. YOU DID NOT.
First of all, does she know if I want kids? Nope. We have never talked about it. Second of all, what's with the OLD? Third of all, OH MY GOD.
Aren't doctors supposed to make you feel better?
The doctor search continues.
Look at me, rocking the mini-series style blog posts! First there was the Three Chapter Nordic Boy Story That Was Akin to Beating a Dead Horse, and now it's taken me two posts to answer alla these gorgeous questions that you all threw at me last week. Wordy much?
Let's do this, home skillet! Questions, Part Dos!
Oh, but first, have you guys seen all the billboards around that are advertising the McSkillet Burrito at McDonalds? They are EVERYWHERE. Ladies and gentlemen, I ask you. What the hossenpfeffer is a McSkillet Burrito? It's a burrito, made in a skillet, I suppose. I guess it is pretty self-explanatory. But this item warrants a media blitz? I don't get it.
That's all I have to say about that.
Onwards, Home McSkillets!
I have struggled for half my life trying to figure out what I want to do for a living, until reading here, and you reminded me of my love for the library and all things brainy, and I think I might want to be LG2. do you love working in libraryland? what does it take to be a librarian? is there a dark, seedy underbelly that no one knows about? do you feel strange, knowing that you may have inspired a stranger to change their careerpath?
Ok, Becky, let's break it down.
Do you love working in libraryland?
Why yes I do. I believe public library work suits me perfectly. There are all sorts of librarian gigs that you can get, but I am a public services lady (dirty!) so that's all I can speak to so keep that in mind. Which brings us to:
What does it take to be a librarian?
What does it take, you ask? Well let me tell you something. You think the library is all about free stuff? It ain't free! Because right here is where you start paying! In SWEAT! Just kidding, I just wanted to say that. You know how Debbie Allen says that in the opening of Fame? I always wanted to say that to someone so I just threw it in. There's really no sweat in librarianship, unless you count a patron here or there. What does it take to be a librarian, besides the requisite love of informational exchange? A good temperament helps. If you're a grumpy sort coming in to this profession, then this gig will take you DOWN. Non-judgmentalism helps a whole hell of a lot (you wanted to judge me for saying non-judgmentalism, didn't you?). You will be asked everything from the highly cerebral one moment right down to "where can I buy a phone just like Paris Hilton?" the next moment. You've got to treat them all respectfully. If you're easily skeeved out by different folks with different strokes, then probably not the best job for you. Also, you have to be ok with having lots of face time. Because it's you, at the reference desk, open to the masses, most days and most times. You are a library celebrity! People will come up to you and talk. CONSTANTLY. And (in case you didn't know this) you are expected to talk back to them. And sometimes they say really weird shit, and sometimes it's really hard to understand what the eff they are talking about, but it's your JOB to try and figure it out. This actually appeals to me, so I'm golden. But it ain't for everyone that's for damn sure. As for feeling weird that a stranger may have been inspired by me, I am only ok with it if you promise me that if you DO ever really become a librarian, you will at some point in your life sing, out loud, into the sky "You're My Inspiration" by Peter Cetera and think of me. I am so totally not kidding.
1) Do you ever have the impulse to talk like a gangsta in real life?
First of all, what is this real life of which you speak? Don't you all know by now that I am a disembodied head that lives in your computer drive and I make my thoughts appear on your screen through the interweb tubes? And yes, I do sometimes have the impulse to talk like a gangsta. I also have impulses to talk in various accents (French is a fun one) and character voices (Dr. Claw from Inspector Gadget is a standby) and I think I have already documented my need to sing nonsense songs. IF YOU MUST KNOW.
2) When did you live in Madison (WI)? Or did you just visit?
I lived in Madison back in the mid-90s and I friggin' loved it. This is a weird thing because I had the shittiest job in the history of time and space when I lived there and the scariest apartment I ever lived in too, and the time in my life was not so great and it was colder than penguin snot a lot of the time and I found it really hard to make friends there because I was working all the goddamn time, and yet I was horridly poor, but still? I loved that place. Love, love, love. I think if I ever moved away from Seattle, that town would be one place I might consider.
- are wannabe writers allowed to or supposed to have writer's block ?
and I love everything about the library! the smell the sound the scene
That should so totally be our new slogan for our library system. "the smell the sound the scene." Ok, maybe not the smell. That doesn't sound so good, does it? As for writer's block, I don't know. First of all I don't really know what a wannabe writer is. Writing is an action. Either you're doing it or not. If you're doing it, you're a writer as far as I'm concerned. We can have all kinds of arguments about if you or I or whoever is a sucky writer, but if you're writing, even if it sucks, it counts. And then the thing about being allowed to have writer's block? Allowed? What is that all about? Allowed by who or what? Supposed to? These are words that don't mean much to me. Which, one could argue, is apparent by the drivel that comes out of this here mind of mine. I mean, I talked about a McSkillet Burrito up there. So what the hell do I know about writing?
Tell me about something that you deeply anticipated, and then were bitterly disappointed. Like Ralphie and the Orphan Annie secret decoder ring.
I know I have talked two times about the damn McSkillet Burrito, and maybe that's what is making me think of this story, but for a long time, I had never in my life had an Egg McMuffin from McDonald's. Never! And for a short time, I became mildly obsessed with wanting to try one. On weekend mornings, I would try to get Nordic Boy to get on board with this idea. "Come on! Let's get up early and go get us an Egg McMuffin!" He did not help me with this. "How about we just buy the stuff, and I will MAKE you an Egg McMuffin," he would say. And he did that. But still, I was somehow convinced that the real thing would be better. I finally got one. Nasty egg-powder on a dry sawdust muffin was what it was. Does this really qualify as being "bitterly disappointed" you ask? But I was. I was McDisappointed Burrito.
Somehow, you find yourself able to live a life inspired by a magazine or a catalogue. Which one do you choose?
Ok, so it's not really a magazine, and it's not really a catalogue either (see how I just flagrantly ignore things that don't suit me?) but the website design*sponge is heavenly to me.
Would you rather have salt coming out of one nostril and pepper out of the other, or, ketchup and mustard, respectively?
Well I can certainly see why you chose to remain anonymous on this one. I suppose I will go with the ketchup and mustard. Just because.
Pop Quiz Kid said:
Alright, someone has a gun to your head and is forcing you to sleep with one of the following pundits: Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, or Bill O'Reily. Who do you choose?
That is the most evil question I have ever heard in my life. But you know what? I am not scareda you or your satanic questions! You know what I say to you? ALL OF THEM TOGETHER. (Ok I am totally lying and if this scenario occurred that gun would have to go off before I would let any one of them near my nether regions but since you got all gross with the question I just wanted to top you with the grossness).
Are there people you envy enough to want to trade lives with them? Who are they?
Hells no. Not even a little bit.
If you could eliminate any one type of insect permanently from the earth, what would you get rid of? (totally roaches for me!)
Bugs don't bother me, really. Can I eliminate McSkillet Burritos?
Daylight is coming back, people! The clocks are springing forward this Sunday and I am SO ALL ABOUT THAT. I haven't been this excited since Don Knotts went out west to fight "oral ignorance" in The Shakiest Gun in the West.
Ok, so I've been excited since then. I just wanted to throw in something about Don Knotts and his Oral Ignorance campaign because that movie is all kinds of awesome and I was trying to think of something awesome and that's the first thing that popped in my head and once I started thinking about it I kind of couldn't think of anything more awesome.
This is the way my mind works. I can't help it.
Okey dokey. As promised, I shall go back in time and answer those questions that you all were kind enough to ask me. Strap on that Flux Capacitor, friends!
Wow, a Strap On Flux Capacitor. Dirt. Ee.
Here goes. And depending on the wordyness that transpires forthwith, I may have to break this up into parts. If I don't get to your question this time, it's because I'm totally rejecting you and all that you stand for. Either that or I am too tired/lazy and I will get to the rest of it during another post. One of those.
Way back on February 19, someone out there wanted to know the following.
Question 1. Ahem.
Hey, Library lady, it is Palindrome. Mr. Fargo and I were discussing the movie Jumper on the way to work. Basically, the guy has the ability to jump through space and be anywhere. You know, breakfast in a Paris cafe, a hike in Rockies, a nap on a beach in Aruba, dinner in Rome, etc. No time travel appears to be involved. We discussed how we would have spent the day with such a talent. This also then led to the rule that this is a talent you will retain for some time so as not to try and cram all world travel in a 24-hour period. Like what would a typically Saturday involve? Your thoughts? By the way, I hear the movie sucks.
This one is so easy, because for many years now, I have been waiting for the Great Scientific Minds to invent a teleporter. WAITING. You know it is going to happen. All those Star Trek things are going to come along sooner or later, including the spandex jumpsuits, I just know it. And since so many of my close friends live so damn far away I would be jumping through space to visit all ya'll. It would be like What About Bob, you would be so sick of me knocking on your door. Sightseeing is fine and all, but seeing loved ones is much better. Also, I would go to Dollywood.
I sure do notice that different music changes my mood in different ways. Golly! I just have to ask - what kinds of music can affect your mood for better or worse?
I'm super duper excited for your reply! Gee wiz!
I watched this documentary about Pete Seeger last week. I admire him a lot, but you know what? I don't think he sounds good. I feel bad even saying it, because he stood up to MCCARTHYISM, and he wrote We Shall Overcome, and he cleaned up the friggin' Hudson RIVER, you know what I'm saying? I want to like his music because he seems like a super cool dude. But man. The sound.
You're probably wondering what this has to do with mood, right? Well the thing about Pete Seeger is that he was all about the Sing-Along. If you were to ask me my feelings about the concept of the Sing-Along, I would say that I was unequivocally against the whole idea of it. I hate the idea of coercing other people to do stuff that maybe they don't want to do. It's like, it's this democratic idea (hey, let's all sing together! every voice is important! everyone can participate!), but really? It's peer pressure. What if you don't want to sing? Chances are, I might not want to sing. That should totally be ok, you know? I am taking a stand right now and it is against peer-pressured singing.
So imagine my surprise when I realized that, as I contemplated Josh's question (oh that is correct, people, I said contemplated), the thing that comes to mind is the fact that what puts me in a good mood, song-wise, is a song that makes you just want to bust out into a sing-along with it. I don't care if it's a "good" song or a "bad" song. If it makes me want to belt it out, THAT puts me in a good mood. Examples: Barracuda, by Heart. Low, by Flo Rida. Bless Your Beautiful Hide from Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. Could You Be Loved by Bob Marley. At Last by Etta James. Pavarotti singing Nessun Dorma. I Love Trash by Oscar the Grouch. Good mood. Instantaneous.
Who is your all time favorite pop band and why?
True confession time. This makes me feel even less human than not liking Pete Seeger. I'm not what you would call a Music Person. I don't seek out new bands, or go hear live music all that often, or really listen to music with all that much intention. I have an iPod and I listen to it, sure. But not that often. I don't have strong opinions about music, as it seems almost everyone else does. Like when I said up there that I didn't like Pete Seeger? That just means that I wouldn't seek him out. But really, I could listen to him just fine and have an appreciation for his talent. There are very few musicians out there that I don't appreciate on some level. So for me, favorites? I don't know. I think that I have always been this way, but have become more militant with my non-committal attitude after dating two band dudes in my formative years. These dudes were both professional musicians, where they didn't have to have another day job or anything, and they were the most musically opinionated effers you ever care to meet. Which made me think that that was all boolshizz and turned me into someone who is all whatevs about the whole thing. It's like hanging around with Foodies who just make you want to eat a casserole with Pringles crunched up over the top, you know?
Who did you want Angela Chase to end up with - Jordan Catalano or Brian Krakow?
Ok, FINALLY. An easy question! I may not be able to come down on a side on many things. Jack or Sawyer? Betty or Wilma? But this? I KNOW. Angela shouldn't have ended up with either of those clowns. I mean really. THESE are her options? Don't settle, Angela! Don't you do it!
What is the most amusing thing someone has ever asked you to research?
Hmmm. Honestly, it may be that I don't get too many amusing questions, or it may be that I have been asked so many that I don't even recollect any more. My most favorite type of amusement at work is when a co-worker or I get into a sort of "Who's on First?" conversation with a patron. Where they are trying to explain something to us, and we are trying to explain something to them, and it all gets jacked up somewhere in the middle. This sort of situation can turn into Charades, or it can turn into a session where someone is drawing someone else a diagram. Doesn't happen too often, but when it does, it is high-liarious.
I feel the need to ask you a pop-culture-ish question too. Um, what TV show is better: Who's the Boss or Full House?
Oh my god. That is the best question ever. I contemplated making the answer to this question a whole separate post unto itself, because I have so much to say about it, but let me give you the highlights. Let's break it down into zones. Clearly, Full House had better hair. Although it also had many, many more catchphrases (Aw nuts! Cut, It, Out!, Have mercy!, How rude!, Whoa baby!, etc.) I think the simple, yet elegant "Ay-oh-ay-oh-ay" of Tony Micelli beats all of that. Also, although I do have a soft spot in my heart for Mona, the precursor to Blanche DuBois in oversexed granny land, I have to admit that Kimmy Gibbler was funnier, as unfunny side characters go. Also, I am much more partial to the dark, creepy lyrics of the Full House theme song ("Everywhere you look, everywhere you look, there's a heart! A hand to hold on to. Everywhere you look, everywhere you look, there's a face! Of somebody who needs you.") Who's the Boss was much, um, sexier, if you can call it that.
My head just may explode from this. I need to draw up a much more complicated matrix of scoring to truly handle this question. I may have to just leave it at that.
Added a few minutes too late: Blanche DEVEREUX. Not DuBois! For Jeebus sake. I do apologize.
I haven't forgotten all those questions you guys asked me last week, I really haven't. A couple of you got me started on that whole Nordic Boy story so the other questions got set aside. And I promise you that I will answer them, but first? I have to tell you two things.
1. When Nordic Boy read the last few posts, this is what he said: "Wow, you really shortened that story up. Way to edit!" So, as long as it might have seemed, it was really the Reader's Digest Condensed version. You're welcome.
2. How did I celebrate Leap Day last week? Why I am so glad you asked me.
I went rollerskating.
How cute is my friend Hopscotch in her rollerskating outfit? WAY CUTE.
When I got invited to go rollerskating, there was a part of me that was sad. Because I knew that rollerskating is not what it once was back when I knew it and loved it. I mean, then it was Xanadu and Skatetown USA. Now it's all BreakSk8. I knew, going in, that my nostalgia was about to be smashed and I was going to feel like the busted up granmaw that I am.
Boy when I am wrong, I am wrong, people.
That place? Was straight outta the early 80s! Like, not in a retro on-purpose way. In a this place was made in the 80s way and NOTHING HAS BEEN UPDATED.
Forget updated. I don't think things have even been cleaned.
When we walked in, Nordic Boy looked at me and says "Wow. Eau de Sweaty Socks." Normally, that shit would make me run in the opposite direction. But this time, I settled in. Because rollerskating rinks, the way I remember them, aren't supposed to smell like roses. Right?
The museum-like lobby, untouched by time, but not by sweaty booties.
When we got in there, it was a TOTAL TIME WARP. Just like I remembered! A bunch of people, skating in a big circle. What a weird thing to do, when you really think about it. A disco ball in the middle. Colored lights. Blue slushies and corn dogs on sale. A dude with a handle-bar mustache who polices the place and calls out things like "ALL SKATE!" and "BACKWARDS ONLY!"
Are you getting the picture?
When I was a kid, I wasn't a champion rollerskater or anything, like I couldn't do any tricks of any kind, but I was passable. I could go around in that incessant circle just fine. I never had any embarrassing wipeouts, like a lot of my friends do.
Rather, I didn't have any wipeouts, UNTIL NOW.
It was really quite spectacular, actually. It happened back in a corner where none of my friends were, so no one that I knew got to see the fabulosity with which I fell. This may sound ridiculous, but I was kind of disappointed. I mean, if you are going to have a balls out crash, and no one sees it, what is the effin' point? It's like the tree falling in the forest with no one there to hear it.
The fall had chapters. It wasn't like I was up and then I was down, all quick. Oh no. It was layered. It went on and on. It was the fall that kept on falling.
First, I was skating along nicely. I had a couple of "whoa!" moments, but overall, I was fine. Then, all of a sudden, the whoa got out of control, so I reached out with my right hand to grab onto the railing on the wall. I grabbed on, but forgot to put my toe down to stop myself, so instead of slowing down, I somehow managed to turn myself around. Completely. So now I am skating backwards, with my right hand still touching the wall, which is now on my left. Nordic Boy was behind me and he started to skate over because it was so obvious that I was GOING DOWN in a big way, but he was too late. I fell, and unfortunately, I landed on my right knee. As soon as I felt that impact, I tried to do whatever I could with shifting my weight to get myself off that knee because, you know, OW. Which resulted in me sort of rolling to the side in a very Aikido like way. The big finish being me, in sort of a fetal position, as the rest of the skaters rolled by.
It was a proud moment in my life.
I sat it out for most of the night after that, as my knee was kind of throbbing and making this alarming clicking noise. Nordic Boy skated the rest of the night away, until he ended up flat on his back with his skates in the air. Then he was done after that.
The grace. It is unparalled.
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