Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Please, No Wintry Re-Mix

It's snowing in the Pacific Northwest. Snowing and sleeting and icing up, actually. On Yahoo Weather, it actually listed the weather here as being "Mostly cloudy with a wintry mix." Whoever you are, working over there at Yahoo Weather, I thank you for that. Wintry Mix! It sounds like something with mini-pretzels and roasted cashews will be falling from the sky, instead of small shards of ice that try to pierce your skull as you walk to work, like I was thinking.

So yesterday, lots of people couldn't make it to work in Libraryland because of the shambles that my city was in due to the Wintry Mix. (I know what all you east coast/midwesterners are thinking. A shambles? Just because of a couple of inches of Wintry Mix? Look, snow and sleet here is not the same as it is over there. I, as a midwest girl, could certainly choose to make fun of the chaos that happens when snow starts to fall here. And ok, so maybe I do make fun of it. But the truth is, this only happens for one or two days a year here. And so we don't have snow plows, or salt trucks, or people who know how to do brodies only when they want to. So cut us some Wintry Slack, will you?)

As I was saying. Lots of people couldn't make it in to work yesterday. And my library is the busiest neighborhood branch in the city, so when you're working with a skeleton crew, it's even more hectic than usual. For my part, I spent much of my day back in the workroom, helping to check in mounds and mounds of items from the book drops and trying to get them all re-shelved. Let me tell you this. Shelvers and clerks have GOT to be buff, people. Because after my day shelving and emptying book drops? I am sore! Next time you see one of your friendly neighborhood shelvers or clerks, just know that under their unassuming ways, they are hiding asses of steel. I am now convinced that this could be the new trendy workout for Paris, Britney, and Lindsay to do before a night on the town. Have them come in to a very busy branch and shelve a couple thousand books. I'm pretty sure that going without underwear and flashing their hoo-hahs all around might violate our Rules of Conduct in the library, though, so maybe not.

In other news, even though you all know me as the graceful and sure-of-foot librarian, I fell on my ass last night, making the times I have fallen down this month add up to TWO. Am I turning into Chevy Chase? Me, falling down! Even though I never fall down, ever. I am the one who is known to wear impossible heels that don't at all feel impossible to me. I watch movies where female heroines run fast in high heels and I'm the only one who doesn't find that ridiculous and unrealistic. But yet, there I was, innocently walking up to my house, and ka-slam. All of a sudden I am flat on my back. Snow angels position. I wonder if any of my neighbors saw me.

This was still not as bad as Fall Number One, which took place at my local supermarket. I was running in to get some cheese and cookie dough (these are the things that run low in my house), and I didn't wipe my feet properly in my hurry. Before I knew it, I had slipped and fallen, layout-style. Arms out in front of me, belly to the floor, treating Aisle Two like it was my own personal Slip N Slide. Not only did I do this fall in Superman position, the force of the slide combined with the trajectory induced by the slipperyness of the floor caused me to roll over twice. Let's just say that again. Roll over twice. Like a fashionably dressed log. And, in the moments afterward when I was lying on the floor in stunned silence, my supermarket comrades (of whom there were MANY) kept right on shopping. It was like it didn't even happen. Is this a kindness? Were they all trying to be nice to me in pretending that they hadn't seen that? I mean, I remember when Patty Bogard rolled all the way down a flight of stairs in 9th grade, spewing papers out of her backpack the entire way. She picked herself up off the landing, gathered up her papers, and then proceeded to trip AGAIN and roll all the way down the next flight of stairs. (And I swear to Lauren Bacall that is a true story. Poor Patty). In 9th grade, everyone pointed and laughed and called her Patty Roll for the rest of the year. So I'm choosing to think that those effers in the supermarket just wanted to spare me further humiliation, rather than them just being Wintry Dicks. An "are you ok?" would have been nice. I'm just saying.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Sunday, November 26, 2006

It's Not a Good Thing

I know that when you all come to this blog, you expect hijinks. I freely admit that when things happen to me, they most often involve hijinks, and I choose the venue of this site to share the hijinks bounty with all. I'm like Oprah on her "Favorite Things" show, except instead of Burberry coats and Teslar watches, I dole out the zany kooky happenings. And I imagine all of you out there, reading the ridiculousness that is my life, jumping up and down and crying your mascara off like those crazy Oprah followers. "AHHHH! She's telling us about her Celine Dion nightmares! WOO-HOOO!" Oh yes. I'm a giver, people.

So, although it is a time for the giving of the thank yous, and I have been trolling the blogscape just reveling in all of the warm and gushy gratefulness out there, and believe me, I have been feeling the thanky feelings myself, let me just tell you about a hijink that happened this weekend. It is of a rather grumpy nature and so please excuse the non-holiday feelings that I am expressing here and be rest assured that I was sufficiently thankful for the hours of this weekend that did not involve this particular story. And after writing this out, I promise to reconvene with being merry.

I had spent the morning trying to think of something crafty to make as gifts for my co-workers for the holidays. And, to this end, I decided I was in need of some help from Martha Stewart. Now, I am arty. I am crafty. But sometimes Martha is just too friggin' over the top for me. Have you ever tried to make a recipe from Martha? That lady is on a mission to fuck with our MINDS, people. I made this raspberry loaf from one of her recipes, and it was like some kind of brain experiment where Martha just wanted to see how fast she could make this here monkey dance. And Nordic Boy and I went right ahead and put
our tap shoes on like the chimps we are. Martha had us mixing up two dry mixtures and four wet mixtures. Then she had us combining said mixtures in the following fashion: "take one third of dry mixture #1 and sift it into a large bowl. Then take wet mixture #1 and drizzle it gradually into large bowl, mixing just until peaks form. Then take one-half of wet mixture #2 and fold it into two-thirds of wet mixture #1. Peaks should now melt into rolling waves. Then take three grains of sugar and place them gently in your right nostril, after which you will farmer blow them back into wet mixture #3. The resulting chemical reaction will have the potential to blow up the world, but only if you have a two-inch ramekin under your pillow tonight." I'm not even kidding you. Martha is trying to fuck us UP, people!

Regardless of this, I was having such a dearth of crafting ideas that I needed Martha's help. Martha Stewart Living is too complicated for me, but Martha Stewart Kids, now THAT I can do. Yes, in Martha's world I am the equivalent of a four-year-old. What of it?

Now, on Thanksgiving, Neighbor J had told me that Martha had discontinued Martha Stewart Kids. Not enough simple-minded fools out there like me who want recipes where you just mix some shit up in the same goddamn bowl. But then I talked to someone at work who insisted to me that Martha had not forgotten the children who, after all, are our future. Martha Stewart Kids was still alive!

This is the inevitable part of the story where I am shown to be a World Class Dumb Ass. I went to the mall to get to the bookstore to find Martha Stewart Kids. The MALL. During Thanksgiving weekend. Yes, that is what I did. And holy TomKat, I almost gave my life for Martha! Because that mall? It was nuts. This may not be news to you all out there who frequent malls on Thanksgiving weekend, but to me, it was harsh. The carnage! The brutality! Finding parking alone was enough to make me wish I had brought along some nunchucks or a throwing star or two. There are some angry, angry people out there, did you know this?

I fought my way into the Barnes and Noble and started the quest for Martha. Martha, please. Tell me how to roast some peanuts and wrap them with a pretty bow and be the talk of the library. Tell me how to make peppermint bark and personalize the canisters they come in. I need you Martha. Please baby baby please.

I went over to the magazine area and had a looksee. In the process, a little boy to the right of me was hopping up and down doing a sort of dance and making a suspicious gesture where he was kind of pinching his pee pee through his pants. Oh god, it's way too crowded in here for pee spray to start flying. And I couldn't find Martha. I waited in line for an employee to show me where to go and I overheard a dude on his cell phone say the words "double condom it." What is going on in here? This is not the holiday spirit that is touted on the Cool Whip commercials. Where is the fa-la-la-la-LA, French VanilLA atmosphere? And where is Martha?

I got to the front of the line, and the disheveled Barnes and Noble employee confirmed for me that Martha Stewart Kids is indeed defunct. Gone. Never to return. Speaking of never returning, um, me and the mall? We officially broke up.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Giving thanks for Marty...

To tide me over the holiday weekend, I copied a meme from Marty. Of course, I am doing this with tons o' pop culture deliciousness. Consider yourself tagged. Oh- and if you're running out of things to be thankful for, watch "Home for the Holidays" this weekend if you get a chance. You'll thank me for it.

Here goes.

when I think about that scene in "Center Stage" where Cooper drives his motorcycle on stage in the middle of the ballet. Motorcycle! Ballet! Two great tastes that go great together.

seriously that Izzy would still have a job at Seattle Grace after she freaked out and killed Denny. I mean, really.

"Snoopy Come Home" without crying. I mean more than misting up. Full out crying.

Kramer. I mean, holy stromboli!

to "Adam's Rib." Hepburn and Tracy. Sigh. Could watch it for days. "Lawyers should never marry other lawyers. This is called in-breeding; from this comes idiot children... and other lawyers." Ah, Kip!

for the Hotlips Houlihan character in the movie version of "MASH." They were so awful to her.

"Star Trek: the Next Generation" re-runs. Shut up.

to Mr. Rogers on tv when I get ready in the morning, sometimes.

I would go visit the manor where "Remains of the Day" was filmed. Sheezus I love that movie.

"My So-Called Life" to have more episodes. Man, they cut that off right in the middle of everything! Angst interruptus!

"Manteca," by Dizzy Gillespie. Or "Lucky Star," by Madonna.

with the cheezy goodness of Doris Day. I mean, when she keeps imagining beds every time she is around Cary Grant in "That Touch of Mink?" Oh, I am engorged with Velveeta and I love it.

should never be exposed to the Oompa Loompas in the original "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." They scared the shit out of me.

for the Landmark Theatres in my town to get new seats. The ones they have now are older than I am, I'm sure of it. Every time I go there I remember how Alli's mom used to warn us that we'd get ringworm from movie theater seats.

that I've seen Nellie Oleson in person.

with Jon Stewart in it. Rawr.

my pajamas when I watch "Lost." Have to be in pajamas before I snuggle up to watch it. Just have to.

Ted Levine, even when I see him on "Monk." To me, he'll always be Gumb the Moth Guy from "Silence of the Lambs." *shudder*

there was a tv comedy set in a library. I certainly feel like I work in a sitcom.

went to a New Kids on the Block concert. It was an accident. I swear.

saw "Top Gun." I'm kind of proud of that.

watching "The Ten Commandments" on tv with my mom every year. We would try and estimate how much baby oil Heston had on and I would do my best to imitate Anne Baxter's sultry pre-Kathleen-Turner voice. "Moses, Moooo-ses."

that I still to this day miss "Northern Exposure." What a cheezball I am.

any of those movies where intelligent, beautiful women choose to
romance Jack Nicholson. Helen Hunt and Diane Keaton, I'm looking at

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Monday, November 20, 2006

To Correct or Not To Correct

There's this stereotype of librarians being kind of schoolmarm-ish. And for once I am not talking about fashion. (Although I could start talking about fashion right now, so so easily. Go ahead, get me started. Have you seen the spring 2007 Sass and Bide collection? Liking the dresses from the waist up, but what is up with the bubbly skirts?) Whoa. Back to my point.

So, yes. Librarians. Schoolmarms. I know, there is a reason for the stereotype. I'm not going to argue that. With the type of work that we do, plus the fact that we are often smartypants, it stands to reason that we add up to a big pink bottle of Correct-All. As in, we correct all. On many levels. This can be good, and this can be incredibly annoying. So what happens when the Librarian gene that programs us to correct ceases to function?

Yesterday, I was on the receiving end of a random conversation. This lady starts asking me what I do, and is all interested in the fascinating life on board the good ship librarian. She was talking a mile a minute, and all I really had to do was inject a "yes" or an "I see" in here and there to keep her going. At the beginning of this conversation, she asked me what my name was. I told her. She kept on with her jibber jabber, and I began to notice that she was referring to someone named "Lisa." Oops. That would be ME. She somehow heard my name as "Lisa." Lisa is not my name. Not even close. So now, she is saying my Not Name over and over again as she talks. "Oh Lisa! That restaurant was to DIE for...Lisa, I love that coat you're wearing." She was really bonding with me, and here she was calling me by the wrong name.

Now, you've heard me say before that people often fuck up my name. This, in the grand scheme of my life, is so old hat that it barely even registers any more. You want to call me Lisa? Okey dokey. Want to call me Prunella? Fine, who the hell cares, random lady. Anything short of Dirty Whore and I'm all good. So, I just let this lady call me Lisa for ten minutes. My librarian powers of Correct-All just didn't kick in.

You think that's bad? Listen to this. This may be the longest case of non-Correct-All action I've ever had the privilege to witness. So, in my last post, I mentioned the incident where Neighbor B mistakenly called Celine Dion "Cilantro Diaz." Not only did I mention it in my last post, there was a longer post earlier on where I talked about it in more detail. And not only THAT, the reason that I've mentioned it twice in the short history of this blog is that it is a Droll Story That Is Famous In My Circles. All my friends know this story. It is one of the stories that showcases the Hilarity and Awesome Nature of Neighbor B.

So when I posted that yesterday, Neighbor J read it aloud to Neighbor B. "Ha ha," he said. (Well, maybe he didn't actually SAY the words "ha ha." He laughed, is what I'm getting at). "You guys are so funny passing that story around. Especially since that is not even what I said."

To which Neighbor J channelled Lil' John and said "Haaa-what?"

To which he replied..."I never said Cilantro Diaz. What I said was Cilantro Dijon."

Ok, let me just say that this is years after the fact. Neighbor J and I have been gleefully hopping all over town telling this story to bazillions of people for YEARS. Neighbor B is present almost every time the story is told. And he has NEVER CORRECTED US. This is disturbing to me on many levels. First of all, the librarian in me thinks "how could he STAND to hear this story told incorrectly all this time? How?" Second, this makes me ever more suspicious that Neighbor B has not registered a word we've been saying for the past ten years. Maybe he sat through us telling the story wrong because he just couldn't bear to listen to another minute of us flapping our jaws about who knows what. But more than both of those concerns, the jokey storyteller in me thinks "Cilantro Dijon? DIJON?" That is WAY FUNNIER than Cilantro Diaz. How could he have sat on such a geniusly more-funny quote? That material is gold! And the storytelling potential, all these years...squandered. I was robbed, I tell you. Robbed.

I think Neighbor B is getting a big fat jug of Correct-All for the holidays this year.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Friday, November 17, 2006

"Every night in my dreams, I see you..."

That's the first line to that Titanic song, in case you didn't catch that. See me being clever?

Ok you guys, this is the deal and it's not good. I had a dream with Celine Dion in it the other night. I am not going to regale you with the details of the dream, as people always try and explain their dreams and they are never as riveting to other people as they are to the dreamer. Unless you're IN the dream, then you want to hear all about it. Am I right? And since I am doubting that any of you reading this is Celine Dion, I'm not getting into it.

So, a couple of days went by after this dream, and although I was mildly disturbed that Celine had showed up in my subconscious, I didn't really think about it too much. I am, after all, the Pop Culture Librarian. Pop culture figures run through my brain all the time. Yes, I would have preferred to have Cary Grant show up in my head while I'm asleep, but whatever. Celine can traipse through if she wants. But then, two nights ago, it happened AGAIN. Celine! Get out of here! She wasn't doing anything menacing (unless her very Celine-ness can be counted as menacing, which, actually, it was). So then, it bothered me a bit more. I don't even remember the last time Celine Dion has entered my waking consciousness. I haven't heard her big voice lately. I haven't seen her stick body either. Neighbor J and I haven't had a laugh over the fact that Neighbor B once called her "Cilantro Diaz." Will this continue? Will I awake each morning, freaked out like that kid in the Sixth Sense, whispering "I see anorexic people"?

So yesterday, I showed up to work, and as I was sitting at the reference desk, my eye strayed to the display shelf across the way from where I sit. It's a display shelf of oversize coffee table books. Here's what I see.

This is right across the desk from me, people. As I type on the reference desk computer each day, Celine is staring at me over the top of my screen. Even when I am not looking at her, she is in my peripheral vision. All day. And right next to her is this.

So, I've got the two of them. Two pairs of glassy stares, burning a hole in my forehead. Eight hours a day, every day. Celine with that baby that she's clutching like a football, and Julia with that gigantic hair. Staring. Stop it! Stop staring at me! Freaky cyborg ladies!

So this morning, when I go in, I am going to switch up the coffee table books. If I want to see Celine, I'll get my ass to Vegas.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Monday, November 13, 2006


Oh my goodness, I am so fired from NaBloPoMo! I have done gone and skipped a whole weekend. And I have been taken to task via email from some of you readers out there. Take it easy, will ya? Buncha blog-reading taskmasters out there. As the New Edition would say before Bobby knew Whitney and BellBivDevoe wanted you to Do Them, "cool it now!" I've been reprimanded, and now, I will try, in the sage words of Mr. Gunn, to carry on.

This weekend, while Biology Girl was here visiting, we had a chance to visit with someone I knew almost fifteen years ago. This someone was a friend I had during some lean times back in the day, when the chipper and delightful Librarian Girl that you all know and love was rather sad and Eeyore-like. Everyone has a truly sucky year in their life that out-sucks every other year, and for me, that year was 1993.
During that time, I met Jess. Jess taught me to drink passion fruit italian sodas in the winter time, took me hiking up the side of a mountain to play in the snow in summer, and made me laugh harder that I thought I could at that time. Jess cheered me up, slowly and surely, like an iceberg melting over months and months.

So last week, when Biology Girl and I saw him, after so much time had gone by, it was stunning. Because, after all this time, Jess still talks the exact same way that I remembered, and laughs the same way, and cracks jokes the same way, and has that great listening face that is burned in my memory so well. And more astonishing than that was the fact that I could look at the old friend and not just see what I remembered about that person, but I could look and see myself. There are parts of that sense of humor that are mine-- Jess got them from me. Or I got them from him. Whichever. I still crack jokes like that, to this day, and I have him to thank. I can see that the seeds that we planted as friends so long ago have grown and matured and ideas that I had with him are now a part of the landscape that we both take for granted.

We all have these people in our lives. The ones who happen to be there when we are low, who help us to feel better, and in the process leave parts of themselves embedded in us. These parts stay and become so much a part of us that we begin to think of them as our own, as if they've always been in us. And even though they are ours now, they were seeds sewn by someone else, and we have them to thank for that

Although this is true for every person that we've ever been close to, it rang especially true for me this week because of the time in my life I knew Jess. The people who are there when we are at our crossroads, and who influence the way that we choose to go from that day forward, are a profound and select group. In a deep sense, we owe our lives to those people, because had they not been there, or had they been someone else, they may have influenced us down a different road, and our lives would be a completely different thing.

So, when I saw Jess, and saw how we are still connected, after all this time, by the very personal things like our expressions, our humor, even the words that we use, I felt overwhelming gratitude. My life, literally, would not be what it is now; I would not be who I am now, if not for knowing this friend.

Thanks, Jess. Thanks for my life.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Thursday, November 09, 2006

He Loves You, Yeah Yeah Yeah

So from the chronicles of my life so far, you guys have gathered that I tend to laugh at things. I am a giggly girl and things often strike me as funny. Even things that may not, at face value, seem funny. Like Tucker Carlson. Or "Wild Boys" by Duran Duran. Or "The Good The Bad and The Ugly." (Come on! Lee Van Cleef? Totally hilarious.)

I am often amazed at the things people DON'T find funny. Some of you people out there are SO SERIOUS. Funny things just keep happening on a daily basis and I find myself the only one laughing. Ok, now I am just coming off as a crazy person, laughing in the corner with my collection of pushpins. So let me give you a quintessential example of this, from the archives of my life.

When I was at University (look at me talking all fake British like Madonna), I had a class with one of those professors that is revered. You know the type- they tend to have groupies, and they go on speaking tours to exotic places like Pullman, Washington, and they are known as Verified Experts on Important Subjects. This professor would name drop in his class lectures. "Funny you should mention Buddhism, because when I was having dinner with Thich Nhat Hanh..." or "yes, you are right about the current political administration, as Noam was just telling me the other day." He had a scholarly beard that he would pull on when Thinking Deeply. For all my snarkyness while relaying this story to you, he was a good professor and I was lucky to be in his class. I'm just trying to convey that he was a card-carrying member of the Intelligentsia Brigade.

It so happened that I wrote a paper for his class that he wanted to discuss with me further. I was summoned to his office during office hours. I had done well on the paper, so I wasn't worried that he had called me in to tell me how much I sucked, but still, I was nervous. I was young enough to be intimidated by him having cocktail wieners with Thich and Cosmopolitans with Noam.

When I got to his office and we sat down to discuss the paper, it was a revelation. He was deflated somehow, a real person who hesitated when he talked and had to blow his nose and all kinds of human stuff like that. His pomp was gone, and he was perfectly pleasant, and even shy and socially awkward, like a nerdy boy grown up.

As we wrapped up our short meeting, I could tell that he didn't quite know how to end things. It was a little uncomfortable, as he wasn't giving me a cue to leave, but it was clear that the meeting was coming to a close. I didn't want him to give me a stern "that'll be all" like Captain Picard or anything like that, but there are ways for the authority figure in a meeting to close off the discussion. Like a "well, thanks for coming in," or a "well it was good to talk to you, see you in class" or something like that. Just when I was going to jump in to help him out by saying something like this myself, THIS happened:

Him: Well...I you...
Me: (snapping to attention in shock)
Him: (looking horrified) I mean, I really loved what you WROTE.
Me and Him: (pause pause)

Ok, now TELL ME THAT ISN'T FUNNY. Wouldn't you have laughed? From either perspective. If you were me...funny. If you were him...funny! Embarrassing, yes. I get that. But the funny-licious-ness. It outweighs the embarrassing.

So, I really wanted to laugh. But more than that, I really wanted HIM to laugh first. So we could laugh together. Ha ha, that was funny, look at us sharing a laugh, no big deal. But he didn't. He didn't laugh! What kind of freaky no-emotion glassy eye robot people ARE these that don't think this shit is funny?

I stifled my laughing and kept a straight face. "Thanks. I appreciate that." And I got the hell out of there. And I laughed my ass off all the way home.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Our Town Part Deux

Ok, so this NaBloPoMo do-hickey is harder than I thought. And I thought it was going to be somewhat hard. Yes, I am already whining about this and it's only eight days in. I could so never be on Survivor. Endurance is apparently not in the cards for Librarian Girl. Plus I wouldn't want to eat bugs and rats and all like that. Unless they had peanut sauce on them, because I'll do just about anything for peanut sauce. So maybe if I rewarded myself with peanut sauce each day, I would post each day? Is a peanut sauce reward system the answer to goal achievment in my life? I am such a genius, I can't stand it.

So, because I have no news...hey remember Gary Gnu? "No news is good news with Gary Gnu"? Oops, I was talking. As I was saying, because I have no news, I'm going to update you all on Our Town. If you don't remember this, or weren't in the loop then, look here.

That Our Town post was one of the most popular posts I've ever written. You guys poured in the emails with all kinds of suggestions. That's the good news. The bad news is that...well, I hate to break it to you, but some of you STILL DID NOT GET IT. So for all of you who ridiculed Nordic Boy for not understanding the town (poor Nordic Boy), I don't know what to tell you. Mind you, no one came up with a suggestion as weird and nonsensical as he did, but still. The Our Town I.N.S. had to turn away some of the new people.

On the bright side, here are a few names from Our Town, as so many of you wanted to hear more. Some day I will write out the whole list, but for now...

Nick R. Bocker- older gent (who wears knickers, of course)
Nick O'Teen- carni worker
Max E. Pad- drug store owner
Lucy Goosey- town vamp
Rosie Cheek- ski instructor (on Mt. Ying Yang)
Pete Sake- exasperated elementary school teacher
Peter Out- narcoleptic house painter
Pat E. Cake- baker
Gene Pool- marine biologist (that's for you, Biology Girl)
Frank N. Beans and Mack N. Cheese- husbands who own the local greasy spoon diner, called "Beans and Cheese."
Douglas Fir- arborist
Molly Coddle, the proprietor of the Day Care Center

Ok, that's it. I need to go get that peanut sauce.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Monday, November 06, 2006

Allison's Birthday!

Birthday Shout Out! Allison, you're up!

Oh my goodness, it's Alli's birthday. I could write a novel about this one, including juicy details, people! This one calls for a list.

1. My first memory of Allison (which is very different than the actual first time I met Allison, as I was too young to remember that), was on the kindergarten bus. She would get on the bus and sit by herself, look out the window, swing her legs, and sing softly. Something in the la la la variety of songs. I thought she was pretty. I remember this as clear as day.

2. In high school, Allison, Map, and various other pals were playing some video game or some such, where you had to type your name onto the screen if you got a high score. When Allison did this, she typed too fast and it came out as "Alisloho." From then on, this was her nickname, because, with the boys, she was kind of slow to make a move. So Alli Slo Ho was just right for her.

3. In 3rd grade, Alli and I began our long history of not being able to shut up around each other. Our teacher had to separate us every day.

4. Around this same time, when I wanted to rile her up, I would taunt her by calling her "Englebert Humperdink." This would make steam come out of her ears. I never knew what triggered that.

5. In middle school, Allison went through a Dawn Weiner phase, where she had glasses and braces, and a serious afro. The awesome part of this fact is that she went through a movie-style transformation over the summer between 8th and 9th grade. You know how, when you're in middle school, you have fantasies of going home over the summer and totally transforming into the school hottie, and coming back to school in the fall to dropped jaws and bugged out eyeballs all around? This actually happened to Allison. It was AWESOME. However, the Dawn Weiner phase is now referred to as the Alli-Slo-Fro era. Seriously, it was an afro.

6. In high school, Allison had a gigantic poster of Milli Vanilli in her bedroom for about a month. Sorry, Allison. You're outed.

7. If you ask Allison who is on Her List, she ALWAYS knows. No hesitation. This girl has thought through her list! Over the years, it has been updated, but number one on her list is always and forever John Cusack. John, you should be so lucky.

7. In 11th grade, we had a student teacher that Allison thought was hawt. Mr. Hawt was one of the coaches for team? Softball team? I can't remember. Some team. What I DO remember was this. Map, Allison and I sitting in the bleachers, watching some game, and Allison drooling over Mr. Hawt. This is some of what she said, and believe me, I'm cleaning it up for your delicate eyes out there: "Look at Mr. Hawt. Oh my god, I would so let him do me in a minute. I want him to do me from the front. I want him to do me from the back. He could just do me up one side and down the other." And on and on and on. Now, let me just tell you. Allison was not doing anyone in high school, nor was anyone doing her. This was quintessential teen Big Talk at its finest. Map and I didn't even bat an eye at this tirade. And it's a good thing we didn't, because then it wouldn't have been quite as funny when we all turned around to see Mrs. Hawt sitting one row behind us, trying her best to act like she hadn't heard this and probably thinking Alli was a Fast Ho instead of a Slo one.

Happy Birthday, Alli! You are so much a part of my life, it's like I can't tell where my thoughts and memories end and yours start. When I look at you, it's like looking at myself. In my mind, you're frozen at age 16, and you'll never look any different to me. You still sing to yourself, you still swing your feet when you're sitting, and I still think you're so so pretty. Inside and out.

Allison! My aim is true.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Colonel Sanders, Is That You?

Why is it fun when you're in a restaurant and you overhear someone's loud conversation at the table next to you? It just IS. Is this a universal feeling? Is this the bond that unites humanity? Why I believe it just might be.

You'd think, what with me working with the public every day, that hearing random conversations would lose it's appeal. And actually, when I am at the library, I don't really have much glee in overhearing Matilda tell Ronaldo that her ass boil will be lanced at home by her cousin. I guess it's the fact that I am in Professional Mode. I don't know why, but I honestly don't really take note of what I overhear. It's all part of the dull roar that passes by the reference desk each day.

But get me in a restaurant, and all of a sudden it's showtime. Today, Nordic Boy and I went to eat lunch at a local eatery (isn't that such a funny word? EATERY). In the car on the way over, we got into this philosophical discussion about the Nature of Things. As we got to the restaurant we kept talking. As we were seated, still talking. We ordered, and our food arrived, and still, yakkity yak. We were well on our way to understanding all there is to understand about the Nature of Things. As we paused to take bites out of our meal, we simultaneously heard this:

"...I was eating chicken and green beans last night, and they just tasted so good. The green beans were just a filler though. The main event was the chicken." To which his table mate replied: "HA HA HA HA!"

We both almost stopped chewing, and all thoughts on the Nature of Things went right out the window. We made eye contact across the table. The main event was the chicken? The main event? Ha ha ha, indeed.

We valiantly tried to re-start the conversation, but every time we paused to take a breath, we would hear something like this: "...and then this one time I had chicken with jalapeno sauce. Whoo-wee was that spicy. But it's still chicken, right? So how could I say no?" To which there was more of this: "HA HA HA HA!"

This went on for a good ten minutes. It was as if this person was listing every chicken meal he had ever had, and for some reason, this was infinitely funny to his table mate. And, believe me, the more it went on, the funnier it got to us too.

"...oh, but this other time, I had chicken with habenero peppers! I was wiping the back of my neck, I was so sweaty! But the chicken! Still good!" And then: "HA HA HA HA!"

I tell you, we were riveted by this speech. We ate in silence and giggled and listened to the Crazy Chicken Comedian and his audience of one.

There just must be something about eavesdropping in a restaurant that makes everything more entertaining. I think we should start offering higher education courses in this fashion. Put the professor at one table, and her students all around the restaurant. People would be geniuses by the end of the semester, I'm sure of it.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Thursday, November 02, 2006

"Hi There" Means "Yo' Mama" In My Dialect

You know how there are those people on the periphery of your life that annoy the Les Nessman out of you? Maybe it's the woman in your Library Skool class who incessantly asks you what grade you got on every assignment. Maybe it's the library patron who comes in every day to tell you that they "pay your salary." Maybe it's the neighbor who thinks it's ok to tell you that your partner looks too skinny and you better feed him better or he may never marry you. These aren't your friends. They aren't your loved ones. You never chose them. But they are in your life on a semi-consistent basis, and you just have to deal with them the best that you can. You know the ones. We all have them.

So, today, my library system had Staff Day. It was a mini-conference of sorts, where the entire large staff gets together for workshops, guest speakers, and training. As our system has hundreds and hundreds of employees, it's fun to get together in one place and learn us some skeels. As I walked the halls in the large Convention Center, going from workshop to workshop, I saw lots of friendly faces. I caught up with colleagues I hadn't seen in a while, and had a chance to introduce myself to some new people. And, in the midst of all of that positive interaction, I ran into Hortensia.

Now, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking that Hortensia is one of these annoying acquaintances of which I speak, and I am going to tell you some hideous story about how her nose always whistles or her breath always smells like Cheez-its. I'm not. First, these things are not true. Second, I don't really know Hortensia but at all, and what I do know of her doesn't annoy me in the slightest.

Hortensia and I went to Library Skool together. Our program was big enough that the cohort wasn't tight-knit, but small enough where you pretty much knew everyone by name and chatted with them every once in a while. Hortensia was, when she spoke in class, intelligent, funny, and interesting. I wasn't particularly drawn to her, but neither was I repulsed. One day, I happened to sit next to her in class. "Hi there," I said, with my Librarian Girl charm, "I like your sweater."

Now, as soon as I sat next to her, I noticed an almost imperceptible shift in her body. A stiffening. And when I said "hi there," the look on her face was not quite decipherable, but she did not look...happy to see me. "Thanks." She said this shortly, not meanly, but with an air of "please don't talk to me please don't talk to me" mixed in there somewhere. Soon, class started and there was no more between us.

During the rest of my stay in Library Skool, this behavior from Hort continued, and if anything, became more pronounced. She would yuk it up with other students, and didn't seem at all shy or stand-offish with them. But yet, every time I approached her for any social niceties, she looked pained. She was always gracious, never rude. But I could almost FEEL her shrink away from me. I was dumbfounded by this. She was acting very much like I had offended her, or like I smelled of pinto beans, or like I had poo stain on my cullottes. What could it be?

As I am not one to dwell on such matters, I didn't give it much more thought or effort, but let it go and just let her be. After we graduated, I didn't see her ever again. Until today.

I didn't know that she had joined the staff of our system, and when I saw her across the room, it really crystallized for me. When it comes to those annoying people in everyone's life...what can I say? The only explanation I can come up with is that for Hortensia, I'm THAT PERSON. The fact that the very me-ness of me can come across like teeth on a chalkboard to someone that barely knows me at all is what I have to swallow out of that situation. I can't control it. There's nothing to be done. I'll never really know just exactly what it is about me that repels her so, and it's a strange thing to think about.

So, if everyone has people that annoy the shit out of them, the math dictates that sometimes WE are on the bad side of that equation. I am quite used to thinking of myself as pretty damn likable, but in this case, Hortensia wants no part of this delicious Librarian Girl pie. Eh. Go figure.

Sorry Hortensia, if I accidentally spit when I talked to you or took the last doughnut on the student lounge table or fell asleep in class and talked in my sleep where I insulted your mama. Whoops.

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Because I'm Crazy, That's Why

So, I have been talked into attempting NaBloPoMo. Sounds kind of dirty, don't it? But it's not. At least not the way I'm going to do it.

So you've maybe heard that November is National Novel Writing Month, where crazy mofos attempt to write a novel in 30 days. Well, now bloggers have an equal opportunity to be crazy mofos. The purpose of National Blog Post Month (NaBloPoMo)is to post something, anything, for 30 days in a row. In doing this, "the hope is that the act of putting something of yourself out for the world to see every single day will make writing become a more fluid, natural, and integral part of your day." And hey, that sounds good, right? I know, you're thinking peanut butter and jelly in the same jar sounded good at first too. But I am willing to give this a try.

So, dear readers, I am going to try and post something every damn day for the month of November. Who knows what juicy tidbits may have to be pulled out of the recesses of my brain to fill the screen every day? I will write something, and if I absolutely can't bring myself to send out nonsensical gibberish into the world, then I will post photos. So you see, this will be fun! My writing will become ever more effervescent! And you will be here to witness it all! Or, I will crash and burn like Janice Dickinson on a bad day, but hey, that could be fun to watch too, right?People, including me, spend tons of time intaking all manner of crappisms for entertainment. So if I add to the crap heap, so be it.

So, to kick off my month of Posting Mania, a few comments about Halloween. First, sadly, our house had to be party-pooper-lights-off house last night because Nordic Boy dug up our front yard to re-pipe stuff so our water drainage would work better. That plus the fact that we have essentially no lighting anywhere past the front stoop, means that our yard is a recipe for tripped and maimed children. And although lining our front pathway with the crying, bleeding masses of kids in our neighborhood may be sufficient for a Halloween horror film, we decided maybe not so much with that. So lights off for us, and no trick-or-treaters.

And second, different work units around my library system took Halloween photos of their respective staff members in costume and shared them via email yesterday. The number of librarians who dressed as witches was astonishingly high. What can we, as a profession, read into this? Are witches something that many librarian-folk are drawn to, like funky glasses and office supplies? Any theories on the high proportion of witchy women in Halloween Libraryland?

Kiss the rings, I'm out.
Librarian Girl