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December 4, 2009

As many already know, constant denial of self-worth by outside parties leads to feelings of loss, inadequacy, petulance and depression, to name a few.  No real news on the job front – I continue to attract phone interviews that go nowhere.  Today I got a rejection email from Endnotes, a new journal being published by the NMRT, to be a book reviewer.  I was told that the pool was “very competitive.”  I’m starting to take that to mean that they were too lazy to go through all the applications they received.  (See note about petulance above.)  I’m trying to decide when I need to start applying for non-library, but library-related jobs.    (And can I say that my frustration is only deepened by having colleagues who have job security and nice salaries who are just as qualified, or even less qualified, than me?)  I am so tired.


Fitzgerald Had the Right Idea.

November 18, 2009

It’s gotten to the point in my job search that I no longer keep track of where I’ve applied and when.  In my last year of library school, when I began applying for jobs, I created a nice little spreadsheet with all the pertinent information and I checked various things off religiously.

I can’t do that to myself any more.

So now, I write up the cover letter, put together all the things required and send it off.  And then forget about it.  That’s how hopeful I am.

Can I Get A Diagnosis Here, Please?

November 13, 2009

Everyone works with at least one person who has certifiable mental issues. I have the joy of working with two such people, both of whom are in supervisory roles. I learned a few years ago that it is best to keep my mouth shut in such a situation, since anything, no matter how innocuous, may be used as a reason to fire me. (Ya, you still suck SFMOMA.)

Having to deal with people who exhibit behaviors such as obscene self-absorption, delusional thinking and morbid anxiety, makes for an uncomfortable and dangerous workplace. Such as right now when I’d love to tell my manager that her conference call can be heard through out the library, but can’t, for fear of: 1) being treated in a completely snarky manner until the end of my contract and 2) the possibility of her giving me a bad reference in an under-handed way.

I hope that I get far enough along in my career to sit on many hiring committees so that I can nix any candidates who seem perfectly qualified on paper but who exhibit on closer inspection:
1) An inability to pick up on social cues;
2) Talking ad nauseam about his or her cat(s)*;
3) Takes credit for absolutely everything;
4) Exhibits any type of passive-aggressive behavior.

I don’t have a problem with people being crazy per se (I know I am incredibly socially maladjusted in many ways), but life would be so much better if they would just keep the crazy to themselves.

*I seem to have a particular problem clashing with women who are blond, slightly overweight and who love their cats.  I’ve seriously had altercations with every woman with whom I’ve worked who had these attributes.  What the fuck is up with that?

oh, Rly?

November 12, 2009


“From a Distance,” an article that appeared in the October issue of American Libraries provides a glowing report on the growth and necessity of on-line MSLS distance education programs.  Kenneth Hartman, academic director of Drexel University Online, trots out the the now rather thin argument of increased growth of the library job market as a driver of distance education growth:

Interest in the MLS degree will no doubt continue, as employment opportunities in the library and information science job sector are projected to experience positive growth in coming years, (ed: NOT!) according to data reported by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (sector analyses for 2006 to 2016), United States Bureau of Labor Occupational Employment Statistics, and reports from the American Library Association.

Eduventures, a higher-education research and consulting firm, estimated in a January report prepared for Drexel University Online that more than 21,4000 graduate students will be enrolled in a fully or blended online MLIS program in 2009, and that nearly 7,300 MLS degrees will be awarded this year.  Eduventures projects a 3% annual growth in MLS enrollment between now and 2011. (ed: are you fucking kidding me?)

To be honest I really dislike this shitty type of article, written by someone with an obvious conflict of interest.  Do they seriously think that there are 7300 new jobs created each year for people with the MSLS?  Granted, some of those graduates already have jobs in libraries and some of them will probably go on to pursue other degrees, keeping them out of the job market….but still, the author did not provide actual numbers of job growth (nor address how the market downturn has effected libraries’ hiring) means I’m more than a bit skeptical of his claim.

So, my two cents:  if you need an MSLS to get a promotion at a job you already have and the only way to do this is through an on-line distance ed program, then go for it. Otherwise, don’t bother.

Some Days I Do Not Feel Like Being A Librarian

November 9, 2009

Like today, when I read the upteenth article on being a “blended librarian” (you mean, like a daiquiri? har har) and all I can think is “christ this person is such a tool.”

Or when the graduate student comes up and complains about how the slides on her professor’s video lecture aren’t keeping up with the subject she’s on and what can I do to fix it?  Um, maybe you should ask your professor about that.  (The same graduate student who had to be told at least four times that I wasn’t going to help her find an article when she had the full citation.)

My new goal in life is to not retire as a librarian.

Whiney whine

November 2, 2009

Just when I think that I’m running out of luck, as far as having positions to apply for, 2-3 positions inevitably appear on various listings.  Which is good.  But also…difficult, might be the best word to describe how I feel about it.  Since I’ve essentially been applying for jobs since late fall of 2007 I’m kind of burnt-out on the whole thing.  This is confounded by the fact that I try to write a new cover letter for each position (of course with some cannibalization of prior letters – sometimes certain sentences are just constructed too well to try and re-write them).  I just get tired of writing about myself and how I know how to do this and that.  And I really wish I’d had my shit together in the mid-90s so that I could have gotten my degree then and entered a job market that was healthy and not saturated with new librarians.

I love it that my dad recently told me that he thought I’d “eventually” get a job – I replied that yes, “eventually” would be nice, since my contract here ends next spring and then I’ll literally be destitute.  What I’d really like to hear is “don’t worry, we’ll help you if that happens.”  But, help is not something I routinely get from my family.  Empty platitudes not withstanding.

FALL 2009

November 1, 2009

Soon all of this will be under multiple feet of snow. I should get out more…