Archive for June 2008

If you write at all

… you might appreciate this post on “MA in ‘creative’ writing.”

I can’t stop playing with Wordle!

Here’s the cloud for chapter 1 of What’s the Alternative. Guess it’s pretty clear what the book is about! Logo Contest

*** PLEASE DISTRIBUTE WIDELY *** LOGO CONTEST is seeking submissions for a new logo that reflects its mission of job hunting and career development for librarians and info pros. This logo will be featured on the upcoming redesign of the website, as well as in additional print and online materials.


Please keep the design in a landscape (wider than it is tall) format, and use lighter colors to help it stand out against the redesigned site. While creating your design, keep in mind that the new expands coverage of career development and library education issues, serving all stages of info pros’ career cycle. I’m seeking a logo that best represents that mission.

Please submit your design as a .jpg file to by Monday, July 7. If your design is chosen, please be prepared to submit a high-quality Illustrator (.eps) or Photoshop (.psd) graphic (vector preferred).

If your design is chosen, you affirm that you will transfer all rights over to Rachel Singer Gordon/ By submitting a logo design, you affirm that you are its creator and have not used others’ protected work in its design. You will be credited on the website as the logo designer, with a link back to your own web presence if desired. You will also receive a free resume posting on (lifetime, or as long as I still offer this service) as well as an autographed copy of What’s the Alternative: Career Options for Librarians and Info Pros (ITI, 2008).

The winning design will be chosen by Rachel Singer Gordon. If no design is selected, there may be no winner of this contest, and may stick with its old logo.

Purtiest Tag Clouds Ever

My tagcloud

My tag cloud via Wordle (via I obviously need a new project; note the predominance of the altcareers tag from the latest book! (I also need to install real screencapture software on my new PC, excuse the fuzziness!)

To renew, or not to renew?

My contribution to the perennial “is ALA worth it” discussion: I just received email notification that my membership expires in August. (And is it just me, or did dues go up a heck of a lot?) I log in to find that you can add divisions or roundtables when renewing online, but can only drop them — or change your membership type — by phone:

To change your Type of ALA Membership (e.g., from Student to Regular Member), or to drop any Division or Round Table, please call Member and Customer Service at 800-545-2433 ext 5.

Although, the referring email claims that:

If you would like to change your member type, add or remove Divisions, Sections or Round Tables, or update your contact information, please use the online form.

What’s up with that?

I’m also noting that my last few issues of American Libraries have gone largely unread. (And is it just me, or is each issue skimpier than the last?) I might re-up for one more year, since I’ll likely actually be able to attend next year’s conference in Chicago, but…

As California goes…

In honor of gay marriage now being legal in California, I present to you a conversation I had yesterday with my 5 year old:

5yo: Hey mom? Do men marry men sometimes?

me: Yes, sometimes they do.

5yo: Well then can they combine their 2 sperm cells and make a baby?

me: No, you need sperm and an egg to make a baby, so you need a man and a woman.

5yo: Well how do they have a baby then?

me: Well, sometimes they adopt a baby who grew in someone else’s tummy, just like we adopted Sam. Remember, there are a lot of different ways that babies join families.

5yo: Well, I’m not going to marry a man. I’m going to marry Saffron so she can grow a baby in her tummy.

me: OK.

5yo: And then when I go to astronaut school, she can stay home and take care of him! And his name will be Henry. Like the neighbor’s dog in Jack and Annie.

me: I thought you said Saffron was going to be an architect?

5yo: She can do that job later.

Despite the fact that I may be raising a mini chauvinist, at least he’s open minded about the marriage issue. (He later came up with: “Well, girls can marry girls, then, and then you’d have two moms!”) OK, but you’re thinking “stop blogging about your kids already — what does this have to do with libraries?” Simply this: a lot of kids in his generation are growing up thinking of things like gay marriage and adoption and multiethnic families as natural, just another way to do things. This should be a wakeup call for librarians to continue standing on our principles in terms of the way that we provide services to all.

I feel the same way about librarians who refuse to work Harry Potter parties, who won’t purchase materials on homosexuality (or witchcraft, or what the heck, even “intelligent design”) — or who block MySpace — as I do about pharmacists who refuse to dispense contraception: You’re in the wrong profession, folks.

It’s Final!

Full-body contact reading

Originally uploaded by lib_rachel

A few days ago, we received our adoption finalization documents from the court. It’s final!

Obama Boy

So do you think he has a future as bright as that of the Obama Girl?

(Also, this is to test out what blogging Flickr video looks like. For kicks.)

Multitasking, vindicated!

It’s in Newsweek, so it must be true, see:

Some scientists suspect that the brain can be trained to multitask, just as it can learn to hit a fastball or memorize the Aeneid. In an unpublished study, Clifford Nass of Stanford and his student Eyal Ophir find that multitaskers do let in a great deal more information, which is otherwise distracting and attention-depleting. But avid multitaskers “seem able to hold more information in short-term memory, and keep it neatly separated into what they need and what they don’t,” says Nass. “The high multitaskers don’t ignore [all the incoming signals], but are able to immediately throw out the irrelevant stuff.” They have some kind of compensatory mechanism to override the distractions and process the relevant information effectively.

You say compensatory mechanism, I say coping mechanism…

Who wants to buy me a present?

I {heart} Etsy, and this is too cute. Although so is the magnet… hmm.