Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


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Saturday, October 30, 2004  

I thought I’d posted that I had to be off to a convention for a few days. I certainly wrote to somebody that I’d be out of town. I know it is in the blog somewhere, but probably in some early October post about “What the future holds for me.”

Anyway, I’ve been in Colonial Williamsburg ... well, in a hotel on the fringe of it, for the past 3 days, at the annual VA library assoc. convention. It’s held every October, but I haven’t been too active about participating in statewide library stuff for a while. Last year I skipped it altogether because it was held at the Homestead, in faux luxury, entirely too far away for me to feel like making the trek, and smack in the middle of Daddy’s surgeries. Besides, I’ve been pretty bitter about the library community as a whole as they pitched a 4 year collective hissy fit over TheCertificationIssue and then got the rug pulled out from under them in a legislative action that could have been so easily side stepped by making a simple, administrative decision with a long precedent. They still are flogging that poor dead horse in the most pathetic manner, letting the far greater issue of state funding for library initiatives idle on the sidelines, starved of the collective energy and passion. Eh. Fools them. “Lose gracefully” is my advice. Thank god I only had to listen to an hour of it. Greater thanks that they aren’t instituting some sort of toe blasting action.

The convention itself was pretty good - this year’s president is the sort who would pull off a convention with style, panache, and even a hint of wicked spoofing glamour. We had an Elvis impersonator at the grand opening of the exhibits ceremony. What a hoot. The guy was very good, too. The real thing in both voice and perfectly coifed black hair. Actually he had a lovely voice - though most of the Elvis songs are silly. I never was much of an Elvis fan; too young, but once on a trip through Mississippi, we stopped at the Elvis Birthplace Shrine.

One of the disappointing things about these conventions is that frequently the sessions I really want to attend are booked for the same time slot. In my case, as a director of a small library, where I wear all the hats, it’s tempting to try to attend sessions on as many different topics as possible. Trouble is, much of what goes into the ear never even lodges in the brain - just slips out the other ear, because the brain just can’t leap from The Value Of Graphic Novels In Your YA Collection to Inspiring Leadership in Your Friends Group to New Technologies in Your Library with ease. Certainly not in the 10 minutes between 1:50 and 2:00. This year there was a 6 part presentation on alternative funding and I just stayed there the whole time. Came away with just what I was needing, too, as we start to implement the glorious 5YearPlan.

Best of all, though, was the hour and a half spent with friends, ooing, ahhing and fondling the offerings at The Knitting Sisters. Now - I couldn’t possibly need any yarn, but J had never been there and R was quite willing to play hooky a while. It’s true, I missed the session on wireless networks, put on by the only geeky guy I know who could make this topic riveting. But then - he didn’t have any of this to offer in ice-cream colors! One of the shop employees had knit that marvelous ruffled scarf from Scarf Style out of this - using the vanilla color - and it was gorgeous. Is it any wonder several skeins hopped into a bag and came home with me?

It was interesting to note how many new faces were in the librarian throng, and how many old faces are gone. It was sad to hear the bad professional news about the only library director I have ever known for whom I would have given up my own position of head honcho. Lib. Dirs. come in all flavors, but they all have one thing in common - they like to be the boss. Those who don't crave the responsibility quickly find a boss to work for. This woman was an indefatigable, innovative, energetic worker with a very wry manner and expectations that tended to soar. She never asked for more than she gave - nobody could give more than she did in the work environment. I worked with her on several projects when she was in VA. I can see how she might be a terror to work for if you were lazy or unable to wrap your brain around change and unwilling to give it a try. But that woman could make you try and succeed at things you never dreamed were possible. I often regreat that I she wasn't my boss. Well, she has left the profession and I would say that the world is worse off for it.

There is less than a week to finish up preparations for the KRRetreat and thrown into this time frame will be today’s installation of a new/repaired main server at the library and tomorrow’s jaunt with GD to the wedding gown fabric shop. Yikes! The days ahead look mighty busy. Where does the time go? A collective thanks and hug goes out to all who emailed me this week. I promise individual answers to each of you.

posted by Bess | 5:41 AM