Friday, January 23, 2009
You know the real reason I stopped blogging for several months was to give other Okie Bloggers a chance to be a nominee for the 2008 Okie Blog Awards. So if you haven't had a chance yet, go and look at the nominees and, if you are an Okie Blogger, vote.
Seriously though, just because I wasn't blogging didn't mean I wasn't tracking tons of Okie library related news. A lot of it I shared on my Google Reader page, of course not all of it is Okie library news - but some of it relates to what we do.
For instance, did you know Ginny, down at the National Weather Center in Norman - went with Evergreen as the library catalog? How fabulous is that? I mean take a look! I would be giddy to get hold of an open source catalog of this caliber to play - err I mean work with. Of course I do have our Joomla sites at work - which are fun.
I guess one thing which attributed to my hiatus from the blogosphere was the switch from Academic to Public librarianship. I've really been trying to find my footing among the personalities and I am still working at it.
Plenty of people ask about making the jump from Public to Academic and I've seen people mention the idea of a "stigma" in making a switch. Having switched from Academic to Public I've found a lot more similarities between the two than differences.
For instance - more than once at the Public Library I've had an idea shot down with "Well yes, but you think like an Academic librarian". And while at the University I would hear "Well, I don't know that's sounds too much like a Public Library thing". See - they are both afraid to try anything too outside the box! ;-) Another thing about having worked in both settings (and don't forget my specialized library too) I've realized they are the same type of work just to different extents. I know Academics do research and perform subject collection development and Public librarians do readers advisory and story time. But honestly it's the same thing - the audience just varies in age and the depth and direction of librarian/patron interaction is slightly different. Unfortunately for those who take the step between the types of librarianship - many of our colleagues don't realize the similarities between the two - because they have never spanned the gap between the types - so we will always hear remarks towards the "other".
Anywho - forgive me while I get all misty-water-colored-memories on you - but starting this year I will have been a degreed librarian for 10 years. I know I hear the "whoopty-dos" from my more seasoned colleagues - but that's precisely it! I'm 34 and still have a very long way to go before I can retire (unless my hubby finds that cure for IBS). But I'm still too young for the Boomers half of them think I'm a Millenial (it's the chubby face - hides the wrinkles). And I'm too old for the Millennials who view me -- well I don't know how they view me - either fear or confusion probably. I think worst of all - I'm not even a viable advertising demographic group! What's a Gen-Xer girl to do?
Also, I think librarianship is still strange to me because Librarian was not something I always aspired to. Rather it was a "Well, heck what do I do now? I guess I'll go to grad school" - sort of decision (a proud Gen-X decision process). Mind you it was a natural progression - I worked and volunteered in libraries my entire life - but I never saw it as anything but having fun. Work what my family did - harvest every summer Texas up to Canada. Spending time in the library was hanging out, putzing around and having fun - why would it ever be work? I mean sure - I get stressed sometimes when things go wonky. And I'll swear, spit and turn strange colors - but that's because I'm an INTJ and have issues. In the big scheme of things I get paid to do something a lot of fun and to help people have the tools necessary to better themselves. Isn't that what we all do regardless of library type?
So talk to me. What do you think? I only said I would post once a week - I never guaranteed to make sense. ;-)
OH! Also, if you live in or near Cleveland, McClain or Pottawatomie counties - think about becoming a literacy tutor.