Given that I just finished up my last assignment for winter quarter on Sunday, now would be an appropriate time to reflect on how the quarter went. What I did right, what I did wrong, and what I plan to change. Lucky for all of you, though, I'm not one for long-winded reflection. :)
This quarter was not my best for several reasons. That's okay. Next quarter will be different. That's pretty much all I've got to say about it, soooo on to other things!
The admissions committee meeting went pretty well, but it was definitely different than what I'd expected. Going into it, I'd been prepared to fight tooth and nail for the people I'd ranked highly and against the people I didn't think would be good additions to the cohort, but the high and low rankings were fairly consistent between readers, so we spent very little time reflecting on the ends of the applicant spectrum. When it came to debating the middle ground though, voices got raised, people got frustrated, and tempers were lost at a couple points, but in the end I think we turned out a stellar group of future iSchoolers.
I feel like I should say a little something about my guest post on volunteering in the Hack Library School blog, but I think the comments that came out of it speak more eloquently than I can. Volunteering has had good and bad experiences, and I appreciated everyone's opinions as expressed in the comments. One point that came up in a comment was the possibility that by writing on a negative experience, I might be implicating someone that could potentially be a reference for me someday and thus shooting myself in the foot. Let me say this to that:
If refusing to censor my experiences in a library, be they good or bad, results in me inadvertently closing a door job-wise in the field, then so be it. I've had to tiptoe around the sensibilities of other people my entire working life, and I'm sick of playing the game. If it's in a field I couldn't care less about, fine. I'll keep my head down to keep my position. But if it's about something I care about, then I can deal with ruffling the feathers of a few librarians who might be less open to criticism. Sharing my experiences in an open, honest way is to me much more valuable and worthwhile to myself and others than sugar-coating them. LIS as a field needs this kind of honesty and openness, and I'm happy to contribute and respectfully hear the opinions of others, even if they differ from mine. If this is a naive or idealistic point of view, fine. I've already experienced plenty in the LIS job market to jade me appropriately, but I'm still optimistic, and I prefer to keep my outlook that way.
That being said...
Reading List for Break!
- Feersum Endjinn, by Iain M. Banks
- A Passage to India, by E.M. Forester
- A Canticle for Leibowitz, by Walter M. Miller Jr.
- The Long Ships, by Frans Gunnar Bengtsson
- World Without End, by Ken Follett
And IF the library gets them to me in time:
- Charles Jessold: Considered as a Murderer, by Wesley Stace
- Sex at Dawn: the Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality, by Christopher Ryan
- Hating God: the Untold Story of Misotheism, by Bernard Schweizer
Not a bad list, in my opinion! I only hope I can get to them all - my break to-do list rivals the ones I wrote for myself during the quarter. I'm also re-watching Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, so that's going to suck up some time. I'd highly recommend this series to anyone who's interested in anime but perhaps a little intimidated by the vast spectrum to choose from. It's quite gory, but I completely love it - the storyline is extremely well-crafted, rarely has an animated series made me crack up so frequently, and it's easy to get really invested in the characters.
And with that, I'll close with my random overheard of the day:
"South Kirkland park and ride - the place where dreams come true."