Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Monday, October 31, 2005

Good to hear

and KET's Distance Learning was mentioned as an alternative way for students to take language classes to satisfy that foreign language requirement. (We teach German and Latin in Distance Learning, along with Physics and Humanities).

Kentucky to require second language to graduate high school

PS We didn't win any awards, but it was fun to have so many of us going along with a theme for Halloween. I walked into the station with the costume on and got some odd looks, but I'm in basic black now and glad to get an itchy wig off. Plan for tonight...watching scary movies and more importantly, it's a religious holiday (Samhain Eve), so doing preparations for that. Oh, and happy Celtic New Year/Happy Samhain as we remember those we've lost in the past year and beyond. Death is the beginning of a new existence, a sad time but also a peaceful and happy one, for it leads to transformations and new lives. I think among other things I'll light a candle for Spock tonight, remembering all the joy that stupid cat brought to me, and say my final goodbyes. What are you doing tonight?

The end is within sight

I have three shelves left of the regular collection to catalogue. After that, I'll reconcile the database I have so that any books that were missing when I catalogued the ones on the shelf will get into the catalogue, too. It's always challenging to keep books under supervision in a hospital, because it requires 24-hour access and half the time it seems like people just walk out with a book without signing the card. But on the other hand, traditional non-theft devices don't work because the books do need to go out when there's no one here to watch. I'm only in the library four hours a day, so that makes it harder. I know my database has over 800 books and I'll be up around 600 when I'm finished. A lot of books went to the family resource centre, so that's not necessarily a lot of missing books. But it is frustrating to try to keep up with them. After I finish with the main books, there's a range of special collections and the family resource centre books to do.

The Snow White costume came out pretty well. I did my makeup this morning and the wig is a little scratchy but otherwise looks good with my skin. The dwarves and evil queen look great, too. I really love the caps that U made.

Well, it's lunchtime and we're celebrating one of the girls' birthday with Panera. Yummy broccoli cheddar soup for me, and a half sandwich with artichokes. :) I'll write later.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Heigh, ho!

Tomorrow the girls at work and I are dressing up as Snow White and the Seven Dwarves and the Evil Queen. Guess who gets to be Snow White? Yep, yours truly. I don't have the Disney dress, but I have a fantasy/Renaissance dress that I used at the Harry Potter festival a few years ago, a black wig, and a little caplet with veil. I'll do my makeup to look even a little paler than I am and have 'lips as red as blood', and mascara my eyebrows. The girls have oversized shirts and beards, and U is making caps for the dwarves. JA has a dark fantasy/Renaissance dress for the Evil Queen. Wish us luck. Many at work dress up since we're a children's hospital, and the kids trick or treat to the various departments. Yay and fun.

Happy Halloween! I'll probably blog more tomorrow, but it IS my favourite holiday so I decided to string it out a bit. :)

Friday, October 28, 2005

Yummy pumpkin goodness

I have been blessed in the past two days by people bringing pumpkin dip to work. Thanks to JA and M's mom, who made the treats. I love pumpkin dip, or just about anything else with pumpkin. I'm having cravings for pumpkin cheesecake, and I may just break down and buy a springform pan so I can make mine.

Happy birthday to B, S, M, and A--my there are a lot of late October birthdays in my circle of acquaintances.

Back in 1998 our professional list went a little bonkers

and the result was The Doctor's Names List, names like Dr Sick or Dr Doctor, basically funny names we'd come across over our careers of real doctors whose name and specialty were quite fun. Kathy Tacke and Mari Stoddard compiled it all, and it's just moved to a new site. You might want to check it out for a chuckle.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Interested in art? And a segue into a tirade against white supremecy.

Check out Mark Harden's Artchive. He has many images that you can enlarge for better viewing.

So, you're probably wondering why all the art stuff all the sudden? After all, I'm a medical librarian, right?

Well, I have two jobs. One is as a medical librarian in a children's hospital, the other is as a humanities assistant in the distance learning section of a PBS television station. Our thing is 'humanities through the arts', so I learn a lot about art, theatre, dance, etc. along the way. Today's fact? Francisco de Goya suffered from a terrible mystery illness in 1792 that robbed him permanently of his hearing and left him temporarily paralysed. I've seen some speculation that the illness came from handling paint laced with lead, but I haven't researched any definitive cause that has been found. Anyone know right off the top of the head? See, I can mix medical librarianship and art. :)

A lot of these sorts of links are ones I find at work, because I spend a lot of time online for both places and I don't do much personal surfing since I don't have access at home. I do often blog from the public library, though, so if I'm in a browsing mood, I can find some weird things. Also, friends send me or show me quite a bit of their finds, and sometimes I blog about them.

Which reminds me...on something not art related at all, but would be at first glance. A friend pointed this link out to me and I haven't been able to stop thinking about how horrible it is. The news show Primetime did a story on Lamb and Lynx Gaede, early teen twin sisters who sing under the name Prussian Blue. (As in, the artist colour, see how it ties in?) I debated as to whether to link to their site or not, but you might as well go and judge it for yourself. What's my gripe with these apparently wholesome-looking teens whose folksy music has made them popular? Just the fact that it's music built on hate speech and white supremecy. Also, judging from what my friend and I heard and saw, they may be Asatruar, adherents to a Norse pagan religion that is not in and of itself hate-based but has a strong fringe that purport to be far superior than what they term 'mud people' (yes, like JK Rowling's ultimate insult, 'Mudbloods'). Let me reiterate that Asatru itself is not white supremecist, rather there are those within the religion who use its symbols and stories to perpetuate their own narrow view of things. I mention it because 1) no religion has a corner on intolerance and 2) being pagan myself, this sort of thing especially embarrasses me. Most pagans are very much into tolerance, although more than a few need to learn to tolerate Christianity better. I don't know for a fact the girls are Asatru followers, of course...I haven't talked to them. But I have known people who have followed Asatru, particularly because it resonated with their English or Germanic background, or because as a pagan religion it survived a little better intact in places like Iceland than say the Greek, Roman, or Celtic pagan beliefs have. That's a major draw. Yet, there seems to be this inextricable link between Asatru and another group that used the Norse religious symbols (namely, the Nazis, and neo-Nazi and similar groups that have been spawned since). Asatru apologists will tell you it's merely a fringe thing, and as a fringe religion paganism tends to have a truly wacky fringe itself. And I have to admit, it angers me that symbols of Norse and even Celtic paganism are being used by white supremecists. I remember someone from the army telling me how Celtic crosses were even being used that way in tattoos, and that 'everyone' knew what it meant...whereas Celtic crosses mean something totally different to pagans and Christians who might sport them. It was specifically why he, a proud kilted Celt, never got that as a tattoo. Argh!

The whole white supremecy thing has been ingrained into these girls, and I have to admit, I just don't get it. I mean, there is nothing about my skin colour that makes me superior to any other human. And just for the record, I don't like to think of myself as white...I'm actually rather pinkish, with stereotypical Irish skin. I'm proud of my heritage...Irish, Scottish, English, Welsh, Cherokee, and Blackfoot...but I don't think of that heritage as superior in any way. I'm also proud of my Southern heritage but that doesn't mean I think race-based slavery was in any way good and I'm sensitive to how the battle flag of the Confederacy may be termed by descendants of those slaves. I'd like to think in another time I would have been an abolitionist, yet at the same time, I believe in the states' rights to succeed, so who knows where I would have wound up in the Civil War...probably like the rest of Kentucky, right on the border.

Well that's enough of a tirade, I suppose. I'll let you judge for yourself. But I for one would like to see these girls grow into tolerant young women who learn to think for themselves, rather than parrot what they've been taught.

And somehow, somewhere, this is no doubt going to get me put on a list, either by those who support the girls and think of me as some sort of betrayer of the white nation (whatever that means), defenders of Asatru who didn't notice that I'm talking about a lunatic fring rather than the whole religion, or because I linked to a site that is for all the world a somewhat watered-down white supremecy site. Meanwhile, as a librarian, I certainly can't condone censoring the site or the music. (But I wouldn't go out of my way to buy that CD for a library, either. And I think that any festival or venue is within its rights to decide whether or not the girls' music fits with less politicised fare).

PS Tonight they ran a small bit on Primetime about reaction to the girls, and showed some of their comments about Hitler (calling him a great man with good ideas), the Holocaust (saying she didn't see how there could have been even that many Jews at the time, nevermind 6 million deaths) and dancing around a swastika and wearing Hitler happy-face shirts. This is really sick, and beyond that, it's child abuse. It's one thing for an adult to believe as he or she sees fit, no matter how irrational. It's another to spoon feed that irrationality to impressionable children who don't have the experience to counteract it with some independent thought. Nor do I see that home schooling the girls is going to add to their being exposed to different cultures and beliefs. And for those who would say that a child can claim Black Power without any fuss, there's a big difference between being proud of your race or heritage and seeing it as superior to that of others or supporting those who practiced genocide in the name of those same beliefs. Ugh. Kudos to Primetime for showing it, because while it does give them some free publicity (I'm sure their website has received many hits, for example), it also shows people what sort of stuff is out there, shocks their sensibilities, and encourages them to not be complacent.

Catalogued book #500, yipee!

Title? Violence and abuse in the lives of people with disabilities: the end of silent acceptance? by Dick Sobsey.

This looks interesting

Exploring Abraham Lincoln's 'Melancholy' looks at Lincoln's Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness by Joshua Wolf Shenk, and includes an excerpt from the first chapter.

Of all the presidents, I've always been rather fond of Lincoln, and not just because he is a fellow Kentuckian. (Ironically, we can claim both Lincoln, who was born here, and Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederacy...in its own small way this illustrates just how much in the middle Kentucky was during the Civil War.) His depression, his personality, and his alleged experiences with the paranormal always intrigued me as well. This sounds like a book I'd like to read.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Hump Day

Today was a bit of sun for the first time in what seemed like ages of cold, wintry rain, but I still feel like curling up into a warm bed with my animals, and that's exactly what I intend to do this afternoon, since I have some free time.

Tomorrow is payday (so is Friday, the great thing about having two jobs), and I am doing okay, although I'm down to about 37 cents (hey, a whole stamp) and low on gas. But, I should be able to get around just enough until tomorrow, so I'm not in my normal pre-payday panic.

One of the things I'll definitely get tomorrow is my ADDerall, which I've been out of since the weekend. I can tell some difference, but I'm still slogging through cataloguing without too much distraction. I'm now almost to 500 books, and I have just one range and special collections left. Woohoo.

I haven't talked about much in depth lately, I know. It's not writer's block, I've just been so busy with work and family.

Oh, I didn't get the job at the archives, which of course just sucks, but hey, I'm getting pretty thick-skinned with rejection letters, and at least as form letters go, it was a nice one. I'll just keep plugging along; after all, statistically, someone has to hire me, right?

I'm starting to get into a holiday mood with Samhain (Halloween), Thanksgiving, and Yule right around the corner. Plus, I have three birthdays to shop for. I'm ready to decorate and actually like the idea of winter coming, just not drizzle like we've had lately.

Well, that's all I have going on right now. Hope you're weather's nicer. :)

Monday, October 24, 2005

'So when do we get warp drive?'

asks Steve Jackson Games in light of an Air Force report that indicates we're doing pretty well on the transparent aluminium front. (A Star Trek IV reference, just if you're wondering).

Bones from the mediaeval royal menagerie

Big Cats Prowled London's Tower

In memory of Na Na

Frances Ellouise Duncan Broadbent Young Vanarsdall, born October 24, 1921, died March 10, 1993 of lung cancer brought on by years of smoking unfiltered Pall Malls. I miss you, Na Na.

Want to support Kentucky arts?

Check out the new licence plate which costs $25.00 and proceeds go to the Governor's School for the Arts. It has a stylised version of the Kentucky 'Unbridled Spirit' logo and 900 applications are required before the plate will be produced.

Kentucky has a plethora of special licence plates where part of the fee is donated. I've had one that supports programmes preventing and treating child abuse. There are others that support humane societies or the environmental, just as a couple of examples. Right now I have just the normal happy sunshine plate we love to hate. But next time I get a new plate I'll probably get a specialty one.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Wow, I'm a cataloguing machine!

I'm looking over my statistics and I've catalogued 409 books and 25 journals since the beginning of the month. Not bad. I'm off work a little early today, so I thought I'd just post that quick update. :)

Not much is going on. It's a dreary, rainy Friday that feels more like Monday. I'm still waiting for my reimbursement cheque from my flexible spending account to come in (I expected it earlier in the week), so I've been without Paxil for a couple of days and have kept driving at a minimum. I'm not going to get the full amount (there was a glitch in what type of paperwork they needed for my dental reimbursement), but it's about $45, so enough to get my meds and some gas, maybe bread and peanut butter. Yay. I hope it comes today.

I've got a novel for NaNoWriMo outlined and ready to go once November 1st gets here. Let's hope I actually sit down and write this year.

That's about it. Have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Listening to

Natalie Merchant's

"Life Is Sweet"

It's a pity
It's a crying shame
Who pulled you down again?
How painful it must be
To bruise so easily inside

It's a pity
It's a downright crime
But it happens all the time
You wanna stay little daddy's girl
Wanna hide from the vicious world outside

But don't cry
Know the tears'll do no good
So dry your eyes

Your daddy he's the iron man
A battleship wrecked on dry land
Your mama she's a bitter bride
She'll never be satisfied,
And you know
That's not right

But don't cry
Know the tears'll do no good
So dry your eyes

They told you life is hard
It's misery from the start
It's dull and slow and painful

I tell you life is sweet
In spite of the misery
There's so much more
Be grateful

Who do you believe?
Who will you listen to
Who will it be?
It's high time that you decide
In your own mind

Tried to comfort you
Tried to tell you to be patient
They are blind
They can't see

Fortune gonna come some day
All gonna fade away
Your daddy the war machine and
Your mama the long and suffering
Prisoner of what she can not see

They told you life is hard
It's misery from the start
It's dull and slow and painful

I tell you life is sweet
In spite of the misery
There's so much more
Be grateful

Who do you believe?
Who will you listen to
Who will it be?

It's high time you decide
It's time you make up your own sweet little mind

They told you life is long
Be thankful when it's done
Don't ask for more
You should be grateful

But I tell you life is short
Be thankful because before you know
It will be over

Cause life is sweet
And life is also very short
Your life is sweet

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Interesting from a forensic standpoint

Yes, your printer is spying on you — EFF cracks Xerox printer fingerprinting code

That'll make it's way to CSI soon.

Upcoming Lexington event for book lovers and environment lovers

Courtesy of Wind Publications' Kentucky Literary Newsletter:

Fri Oct 21 -- Lexington -- Mountaintop Removal Author Forum scheduled at Joseph-Beth Books at 7:00p.m. Authors from two coalfield tours coordinated by Kentuckians For The Commonwealth will share their views on mountaintop-removal mining. Currently, twelve prominent Kentucky authors, including Wendell Berry, Chris Holbrook, Silas House, Kristin Johannsen, Mary Ann Taylor-Hall, Ed McClanahan, Bob Sloan, Jordan Fisher Smith and Loyal Jones, are scheduled to speak. Most of the authors are contributors to an anthology titled Missing Mountains--We Went to the Mountaintop But it Wasn't There, which will debut at this event and will be available for purchase.

You can request your own copy of the newsletter at: http://windpub.com/kylit.htm. It includes not only book-related events but opportunities for writers to contribute to various projects.

I'm keeping a paper journal

in addition to this blog, to deal with those issues I'd rather not broadcast to the world. I mean, really, I write about a lot of personal stuff here, but there are some things only close friends and therapists need know.

It's interesting to have a book that only I will read. It gives me a measure of security. And one thing I've already learnt from putting things into words is that maybe I'm not really that crazy after all. Oh, I have faults aplenty, but I think part of the problem is I'm comparing myself not to a normal standard, but to a nearly impossible one that doesn't fare well in terms of interpersonal relations. But I do need to develop my own standard by which to live--and still aspire to a high one without being so hard on myself that I'm inflicting pain. I want to be happy with myself. I can't do that by moulding myself into something I'm not. I can still develop and grow, but not at the expense of the things that are good about me.

I don't know if any of that will make sense to you all. I hope so. But the good thing is I have two outlets--one private, one public--to work all this out with. I'll try not to burden this blog with too much jousting at my own inner daemons. That is what therapy is for. Hopefully you'll see the results more than the process. But I thank those of you who have listened over the years, too.

This song really resonates with me

and the little girl who grew up so afraid to live.

"Because of You" by Kelly Clarkson

I will not make the same mistakes that you did
I will not let myself cause my heart so much misery
I will not break the way you did
You fell so hard
I've learned the hard way, to never let it get that far

Because of you
I never stray too far from the sidewalk
Because of you
I learned to play on the safe side
So I don't get hurt
Because of you
I find it hard to trust
Not only me, but everyone around me
Because of you
I am afraid

I lose my way
And it's not too long before you point it out
I cannot cry
Because I know that's weakness in your eyes
I'm forced to fake a smile, a laugh
Every day of my life
My heart can't possibly break
When it wasn't even whole to start with

Because of you
I never stray too far from the sidewalk
Because of you
I learned to play on the safe side
So I don't get hurt
Because of you
I find it hard to trust
Not only me, but everyone around me
Because of you
I am afraid

I watched you die
I heard you cry
Every night in your sleep
I was so young
You should have known better than to lean on me
You never thought of anyone else
You just saw your pain
And now I cry
In the middle of the night
For the same damn thing

Because of you
I never stray too far from the sidewalk
Because of you
I learned to play on the safe side
So I don't get hurt
Because of you
I tried my hardest just to forget everything
Because of you
I don't know how to let anyone else in
Because of you
I'm ashamed of my life because it's empty
Because of you
I am afraid

Because of you
Because of you

Monday, October 17, 2005

Remember this, self

Or failing that, remember to search for the particulars later.

Battlefield Band, one of my favourite Scottish bands, will be playing at Georgetown College March 23, 2006. The phone number to call is 859/215-0215.

Thanks, Dirty Linen!

I just stumbled over a website

of the historic McDowell House, where I used to be a docent. If you visit Danville, be sure to check it out.

Jakob Nielsen weighs in on weblogs and usability

Weblog Usability: The Top Ten Design Mistakes (Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox)

I do fair. I haven't changed from Blogspot because frankly, it's built a readership I don't want to lose, and I don't have money/wherewithal to go purchasing domains and more importantly, hosting. Also, because of constraints in my hosting, I can't use Moveable Type or any of the other server-based categorisation tools.

Thanks to Blogger I do have an author bio/picture. And I do try to make links understandable. Sometimes I'm better at titles than other times, though.

Anyway, be sure to read it, especially if you're just starting out in blogging. He's got some very good ideas.

Good morning! Happy Monday!

Okay, I'm really not THAT perky. In point of fact I had a little trouble waking up this morning, but still got up early enough to take a relaxing a bath. I think taking the whole tablet of BuSpar at night is leaving me a little hung over in the morning. I seem to do better on half a tablet, which I'll be sure to discuss with my doctor.

I had a decent weekend, although sadly, there was no game. There was a lot of examining my emotions and discussing things to bring up to the counsleor, which I think has left me feeling a little resentful, despite the fact that it's just the truth and that I need to bring up certain issues with her. It's just I'm being told what I need to, and I know only a good friend would be that honest, but it still a little annoying, you know?

The same friend pointed out that it's probably not 'Crazy Librarian' so much as 'Crazy Lisa' which is somehow worse.

Oh, well. This is a new week and has all sorts of possibilites. I'm going to focus on that. Hope your week goes as well.

Oh, and happy Sukkoth! (I'm trying to remember, is that the harvest festival/one you build the little hut for?)

Friday, October 14, 2005

Not there yet

but this sounds hilarious...

Menopause, the Musical

Advocate for the Arts

A couple of very good sites to check out, especially if you support arts education:

Americans for the Arts
Art. Ask for More.
Arts Action Fund

and specifically, what you can do to help arts organisations in the wake of Hurricane Katrina:

Arts Action Centre

I particularly like one of the ads that says that when kids think Louis Armstrong was the first man on the Moon, that we need more arts in schools.

You know, it's one thing

when you call yourself crazy. I admit it. I talk about it a lot here, although I sometimes worry that people will think I'm really off the deep end when I'm not. I just have issues. I don't even mind close friends calling me crazy. They've earned that right, putting up with me all these years.

But it's another thing when someone else does it, especially if that someone is abrasive and treated you like dirt, who has lots of issues on her own that she refuses to seek counseling for, but keeps up the illusion that she's sane and generally has it together. That's not so fun or amusing.

Granted, it wasn't stated outright, but my being 'the crazy librarian' seems the most likely meaning given the context and our past together...and that's more than a tad annoying.

I used to say that I don't keep grudges. That's wrong. As a rule, when someone treats me badly, I usually forget just how badly and still keep coming back for more. But in this situation there was never any closure, because the person let out a bunch of venom on a blog--triggered by something inconsequential--and then avoided any direct confrontation that might have brought such closure. It was an incredibly passive-agressive thing to do, and I have to admit, I still haven't forgiven it, nor do I expect to, because that would involve the person actually talking to me face to face, and that's not going to happen, because she won't do that. I let what shreds of friendship remain fall away a long time ago, and finally saw it for what it was--my being a doormat at her beck and call whenever she wanted to feel better about herself.

But I have to admit, I still haven't dropped all contact...I still read her blog. I wonder if her new friends see the side of her I got, or if she has them all fooled. I admit to being a tad bit jealous that for awhile it seemed that we had opposite lives; I struggled to find a job, she lucked right in to one, she bought a house, I got evicted because I'd been laid off; my cat died, she got a new one. Little things where you wander what you did in a past life that seems to have messed up your own karma and yet another person just seems to luck into things. Granted, she's more materialistic than I am, so she's also willing to work harder to get the things she wants, whereas I've mostly struggled with gaining in less tangiable areas. But it's still a little weird how things have worked out, you know?

I know this sounds a little bitchy and 'why me?' I know I'm responsible for where I am in life...and in some ways my life is much richer than those I might compare myself to. I hope to make it better, and in ways that truly matter, and I suppose I should stop comparing myself at all to others, because it's not like any individual can be a true benchmark for comparison. We're all unique, all have our own paths, I suppose. But I think it's only human to do a little comparing, have a little envy, or just wish for a little better. Right?

Cataloguing serials

is much slower going than cataloguing books, because more is involved. You create the holding record, then create a record to tie to that where you actually receive the journal. The good thing is once I'm finished, I'll be able to go straight to an expected journal and receive it with just a couple of clicks. But for now, well, it's almost lunchtime and I don't want to do another journal until after I've had a break. I have fourteen sitting on my desk and I've done about seven so far this morning. Of course, I've also had articles to order and deliver to people, so I haven't just been cataloguing. So, in retrospect, an hour and a half for seven journals isn't too bad; it was probably more like 45 minutes of cataloguing and the rest in tracking down articles.

I got some rest last night and feel better today, although I also started my period so it's sort of a give and take. I'm listening to Natalie Merchant's Ophelia and just chugging along in a mellow sort of way. I'm really glad it's Friday. I'm going to pay my rent today, so that's one stress out of the way, then spend some time at home tonight after working at both jobs. I'm reading Laurell K. Hamilton's A Stroke of Midnight, the latest Meredith Gentry book. It's really a shame in a way that I'm so addicted to Anita Blake and Meredith Gentry; the books have become not so much murder mysteries but rather soft pornography punctuated with murder. By that I mean Hamilton seems obsessed in both series with writing sex scenes rather than really keeping up the characterisation that was her strength or advancing the plot quickly. It's not that I'm a prude, and I'm sure for some the sex has added to the appeal, but especially with Anita Blake, it was the characters I fell for initially, and the ideas of the world she created. Now it seems like those characters are fading into black and white, but I keep hoping for better, so I keep reading the books. After awhile, frankly, the sex scenes get pretty boring. Yes, they are consequences of plot ideas (Anita is trying to control a side-effect of her relationship with a vampire, Meredith is in a race to become pregnant and win the throne of the Unseelie Court of Faerie), but I just can't shake the idea that the author is caught up in her own fantasies, rather than writing for her audience. That's my take on it anyway. It hasn't stopped me from reading them, though, so I suppose I shouldn't be that critical.

Okay, time for lunch. Have a good weekend, everybody.

Oh, and a big happy birthday to Tracita!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Why is it

that I lie to myself, and to others, by revising virtually every experience I've ever had to seem more pleasant, less real, less troublesome? An old apartment that was really quite a dump gets labelled 'charming'. A psycho partner who constantly uses emotional blackmail gets labelled 'the love of my life'. Is it left over Christianity in my upbringing? Or just a really bad coping mechanism?

I think it started because there was always a dichotomy in my life between what I was told to believe and what I knew to be true. After awhile, it became easier to live the lies than believe the harsher truths. For example, I was always told I was a 'daddy's girl'. I honestly don't believe my father felt anything for me other than resentment because I represented the responsibilities that shackled him in his adolescence and force him to make choices he didn't want to make, like having a family, joining the military, etc.

I was always told I was a cute child, when in point of fact I was more than likely an annoying chatterbox who craved attention and who played little-miss-know-it-all at school. I was told the other children didn't like me because I was smart, when really I had such appalling social skills that of course no one wanted to be with me.

At the same time, I did other things to escape reality. I immersed myself in books. I gained weight to keep people away from me. I surrounded myself as an adult with things that were so cluttered that no one could come visit me in my mess. And I continued to revise reality without even thinking about it, to the point where I cannot trust my memory or even at times my perception. I don't just do it with hurtful things; I do it with everything.

And it's time to stop, to stop choosing by avoiding choices. To stop refusing to live my life in the real world. To stop avoiding responsibility. To stop living lies.



But how?

Any ideas?


PS On reflection, many of those comfortable lies were told to me by my mother, so I probably inherited the coping mechanism from her. Maybe lots of people do this, and never realise that it's lying, lying to yourself, lying to others, and that in actuality we deserve to live life firmly grounded in the truth, no matter how unpleasant it may be. But I'm tired of avoiding life through justifications.

'I'm out of my mind; please leave a message'

I saw that on a t-shirt the other day, and I love it. Actually, I'm feeling pretty good, although I'm a bit sleepy, having stayed up to about 3 am working on a project that had to be completed by today. Whew! I don't know how D, who has a baby, manages to stay up all hours and still function.

Last night I moved my BuSpar to only at night since I was getting a little sleepy in the mornings when I took it with the ADDerall. The doctor also had me double the dose of ADDerall, and today's the first day for that.

Things are going pretty well for me. I managed to keep some money on hand for necessities right up to payday (today), and then will pay my rent with that and my cheque from tomorrow at the second job. I'm not sure how that one will be, so I don't know how close it will be for the next couple of weeks. I'm also getting a reimbursement from my flexible spending, though, and that should ensure I can get meds for the next time as needed.

One of the benefits I'm going to take advantage of with AAA is a gas card that works at Superamerica/Speedway stations. You charge the card with whatever amount you want, and then you save 4% on gas and anything from the store. That works out right now to about 10 cents a gallon. This is in addition to the Speedy Rewards card that the stations have, which usually take about 2 cents a gallon off. We're also trying to group trips and limit any unnecessary idling or trips. I'm sure everyone else is doing that too. On the good side, gas in Lexington is about $2.59 at the moment, lower than it's been in awhile.

What else? Oh, I saw the therapist yesterday and she asked me to journal. I told you that already. I haven't started it yet (I came in so late last night, I just crashed, and didn't even change into sleeping clothes), but I'll try to start tonight. One thing I need to remember is a boundary issue...when I'm out at a store with people I keep coming up to them and showing them things I think they'll like. It's apparently damn annoying. And they can tell me to cool it; I just keep doing it. I don't know if its anxiety being out in a public place or some sort of attention thing. I suspect it's a mix. I'm good at finding things for people (hence the choice of career) and I enjoy doing it, but I find that the only way to really look and shop for myself is to go by myself; otherwise I'm trying to get some sort of points or something. I assume what I think is interesting they will too. I fully expect next time I do it to be embarrassed in public because I had to admit that would probably be the only thing that would get me to stop. 'Leave me alone you crazy woman, I don't even know you!' But I am going to try before it gets to that point.

Well, that's enough for now. Have a good Yom Kippur (happy isn't so much the word, I know) if you happen to be Jewish. Hope you have a lovely meal after sunset. Time to hit the books and catalogue away.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Hopefully someone will see this and go

I know I'm posting this late, just saw it in my inbox...

Jazz Factory Benefit for Louisville's Center for Women & Families

Free Readings & Music on Wednesday Oct. 12, starting at 7:30 PM. The Jazz Factory in downtown Louisville presents a special edition of Jazz & The Spoken Word to benefit The Center for Women & Families. To increase public awareness during Domestic Violence Month, The Jazz Factory readings will focus on that theme -- with readings by local and regional writers as well as from work by Toni Morrison, Anna Quindlen, Tobias Wolff and many others. Readers include Bobbi Buchanan, editor-publisher of The New Southerner; eastern Kentucky memoirist Valerie Sallee; author Fran Ellers; activist Marsha Weinstein; novelist Katy Yocom, writers Rus Funk and Dianne Aprile. As always, musicians Brian Vinson and Jacob Duncan will perform improvisational jazz as the readers read. FREE admission. Come early and hear jazz pianist Todd Hildreth from 5 to 7 p.m., also free. A portion of the proceeds from food and drink sales will benefit The Center for Women & Families. So come hungry and thirsty! The Jazz Factory is located in The Glassworks, 815 W. Market St., with free parking across the street. For more information, call 992-3242 or visit the website, www.jazzfactory.us.

A mental health day

Yep, I was off work, so that I could go to two different mental health appointments. In the first my psychiatrist upped my prescription of ADDerall, since I've seen an improvement in terms of productivity and focus. In the second, I met my therapist and we had a good first session. She wants me to journal beyond this blog--to write about the the things I either can't or won't share with the world on this site. In the past I'd say I couldn't do it; I've never been good with paper journals. But now, with all the experience I have with this, and then with the OCD and ADD under control, I think I have a shot. I even have a purple velvet spiral notebook perfect for the assignment. That way, if I mess up, I tear out a page, and all is forgiven. (I hate messing up bound books. If anyone ever gives me a journal, make sure it's spiral bound, no matter how much prettier the others can be.)

Well, that's it. I'm just checking in whilst a page full of many, many previously broken links finishes validating. Bye for now.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005


I joined AAA as a Plus member. They have this thing where they take out the dues over two pay periods. The Plus Membership is about $35 a year more but includes things like towing up to 100 miles and bringing me free gas if necessary. That plus a card that helps me save about ten cents a gallon when I use it at one of the local gas chains here should make it worth the amount I'll pay. Yay! The Plus membership doesn't kick in for a couple of weeks, but the Regular is immediate, so I'm covered, which is good, because while I have a good little car, it's got over 220,000 miles and I decided it was better to have road service than not, especially with winter coming. So for $89 I get piece of mind and all the services they provide.

On another note, the ADDerall seems to really be helping my focus at work. I've gotten a lot of cataloguing done, articles, really every moment I've very active and productive. It makes me a tiny bit sleepy in the morning, but then it's fine. And I haven't forgotten to take it, which is good, since it's for ADD. Ha, ha.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Friday, October 07, 2005

Small plug

This week I'm listening to Marc Broussard's Carencro, an excellent bluesy CD to catalogue to. I really like 'Home', but the rest is very nice, too.

Marc Broussard is from the Lafayette, Louisiana area and is participating in several efforts for hurricane relief. If you haven't heard him, check it out. His style is very mature; he sounds much older than he is, and has the whole blues thing down cold.

I'm also listening to Squirrel Nut Zippers Hot, so I'm having a jazzy-blues-New Orleans kind of week.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Big News

Trials show 100% effectiveness of vaccine against cervical cancer

The vaccine could help prevent HPV infections which account for 70% of deadly cervical cancers. For those of us who have not been exposed to HPV, it could mean that a vaccine could keep us safe. For countries where Pap smears are not routinely done, it may be a great preventer of this sexually transmitted, cancer-causing virus. It won't replace a need for Pap smears--there are other forms of cervical cancer not caused by the virus that this test will discover--but it will make it much less likely to have an abnormal test result.

Go, science!

A pretty good take on feedback

Four people and I filled out questionnaires from that book on social skills and ADHD that I've mentioned. I went through today and highlighted those answers where three of us agreed.

Traits I have: sincere, thoughtful, kind, humourous
Need to work on: considerate, warm, unselfish, dependable, truthful, responsible, cheerful, trustworthy, honest

Some others: introducing myself and others, most of the verbal communication skills, keeping an open posture and looking relaxed, minimising others' feelings, several of the organisational and impulse-related self-control skills, boundaries, understanding subtext and social exchange, flexibility, intimacy, self-esteem, and appearance. In other words, a lot...but also there were a lot that others saw as not a problem. I think I was harshest on myself of all of us, and there were few things that they saw in me that I didn't already think needed work (except I didn't particularly think I was kind. I mean to be...but they saw me as so).

Anyway, a big thank you to those who went out on a limb and gave me honest feedback. I really appreciate it, and don't worry, I still love you all. I'll try to put it to good use. Among other things, I think they help shed some light on what I'm doing to sabatage myself during interviews for jobs, especially in terms of appearance and nonverbal communication...I close off when I'm nervous, and it's hard not to appear to be. I need to work on being more together and appearing confident. After all, I look good on paper because I am good, I just need to be able to convey it in person, right?

Well, that's all for today. Hope you have a good Thursday. I'm going to go brave the traffic home.

PS Someone pointed out that I downplayed the appearance/hygiene section, which was tops from his point of view. I had gone through the sheets in order, and that was towards the end; I unconsciously may have given it short shrift. It's true everyone agreed that at times I need to work on my appearance, and yes, it may be affecting my interviews. I have a difficulty with the whole idea of 'making up'--I can do it, I just don't like to take the time to fix my hair and makeup. But I'm trying. Still, my hair seems to have a life of its own, and I think it looks perpetually uncombed no matter what I do with it. Maybe I'm not putting the right goop on it. Are there books on hair goop?

I think I've solved some of my basic issues in that area, though. Maybe I should do the questionnaire again in 6 months and see if there's improvement. Anyway, thanks again for the feedback.

Remember this site, self

Berkeley's Online Mediaeval and Classical Library

Read on a 'file not found' page at Librarian's Index to the Internet

Under 'what went wrong' there was this option:

Random behavior:
Do not rule out the capricious behavior of inanimate objects, databases included.

Librarians tend to have wicked senses of humour. You have to, doing what we do for a living.


Cold Weather Increases A1Cs

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Checking links for my second job

I discovered the New Orleans Museum of Art's temporary website and the location of the staff. I can't imagine the process that will be necessary to get the museum up and running. Unfortunately, many museums, libraries, and archives are in similar situations. I only hope that much of the history and culture of the region can be saved.

When you study library preservation they always talk of the 48-hour window you have when things get wet before mould invades. That's when it's imperative to have plans in place to freeze items for recovery later or dry minimally damaged items with fans. There's always the assumption that somewhere in the 48 hours you had a chance to get some climate control, whether it's dehumidifiers and fans or air conditioning.

Nothing prepares you for having a collection submerged in sewage for nearly a month, or having your staff told to evacuate for public safety so that they must either comply or violate direct orders of authorities. No disaster plan was ready for the scope of Katrina's wake. But all over the region, there are those trying to save what they can. Good luck to them, and to those institutions and organisations trying to help.

It's almost

NaNoWriMo- National Novel Writing Month, time to sign up again, for yet another attempt at writing 50,000 words in one month.

Bookmarking this as well

Another article from Medscape (viewable with free registration) on Treatment for ADHD: An Expert Interview With Robert Findling, MD, on the efficacy and effectiveness of medications in the treatment of ADHD. It helped me understand the different types of medication that there are, and considerations in how they're prescribed.

Paxil Use in Early Pregnancy May Cause Birth Defects

According to a Medscape article (available for viewing with free registration), a retrospective company study suggests an increase in overall malformations with Paxil/paroxetine taken during the first trimester, most commonly cardiovascular malformations such a ventricular septal defects.

That's a little scary. I'm not in any danger of being pregnant at the moment, but that means if I do plan to have a child I'll have to go off the Paxil before the pregnancy, which means I'll either have to find an alternative (and Paxil has helped me so much, especially with my OCD) or go off medication entirely, which could make for an interesting pregnancy in and of itself.

Anyway, women on Paxil should discuss with their doctors the risks of Paxil and pregnancy, so I wanted to pass this on.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


I'm looking over my goals and:

The dieting certainly didn't work. I was supposed to lose 20 lbs by dieting starting July 1. I did lose 10 lbs, but that was mainly from being poor. Still have to work on the whole willpower thing with the dieting. I also haven't been walking or really keeping track of my progress.

I have been taking my medications regularly.

I haven't managed to save, and the budget plan was short-lived. I did, however, create a budget and am staying in it for now, and paying small amounts on my debts.

I have written some but not regularly, haven't been to any art exhibits or concerts, and I've only knitted or done crafts a little. Except for the month of September, I have been playing in the game and have increased my participation and depth.

I have been doing yoga 4-5 times a week and performing monthly libations, but still no daily breathing exercises or logs. Can you see a trend in logging stuff tends to fall by the wayside? Really, until I started keeping this blog, I couldn't keep a journal, because I'd mess up and it wouldn't be perfect, then start again. OCD. That and I don't have the attention span to make sure I do it daily when writing. Oddly enough, I can do it with the computer.

What else? In the being a friend category, September was pretty much a bust for in-depth discussions but otherwise I spoke with each friend, did things for people, and encouraged someone once a week. Actually, I managed to do the latter two even during September, for the most part. I didn't write my familyevery week but I have been in closer contact with them.

So, it's mixed. According to my social skills book, it's better to focus on one specific goal at a time, so maybe I was overly ambitious. I think my goal for this month will be to work on my appearance. I don't often wear makeup or fix my hair, so I look like I literally went out the door straight from the shower (because I did). That's doable, and is concrete, but has no universal 'every day' to cause me automatically fail if I don't do it every time. The rest of the points for improvement are still in the back of my mind though, so hopefully I'll pay more attention to cues during conversations. I just know that a lot of times I feel awkward in small groups (never mind big ones, where I feel downright claustrophobic). I do better one-on-one, but there are more distractions when you have several people talking together. So hopefully that will get a little better.

That's all for now. Sorry I didn't do everything I said I would; the intentions were good but the actions to follow through are a challenge for me. But eventually I want to improve in those areas, it just may take longer than I thought to begin with.

Heard in a Kohl's ad

When asked to identify a sound...
A half-crazed librarian shushing someone

Ah, stereotypes.

Now I've seen everything

I received an American 3B Scientific catalogue I got a catalogue today. In the back they have boxers with patterns made from pictures of dust mites, gonorrhoea, staph, anthrax and testosterone. ($18) They have ties that include plague, herpes, HIV, tuberculosis, ebola, SARS, breast cancer, influenza, West Nile, mad cow, S. pneumo, vaccinia, giarda, gonorrhoea, & staph. ($30) How's that for a unique gift for the science geek in your life?

L'Shanah Tovah

Happy Rosh Hashanah/Jewish New Year for those who celebrate it. Oh, and it's Ramadan as well. I'm not familiar with that enough to know whether to wish a Happy Ramadan or not, to be honest. I know there's fasting, but I don't know much else. I'd love to learn though, so drop me a line if you know.

I got a book the other day that is very helpful. It's What Does Everybody Else Know That I Don't? and it deals with social skills and ADHD. I highly recommend it. When I was a kid, I really didn't socialise much, and with ADHD, you miss a lot of the cues that other people learn without trouble. I grew into an awkward adult, and I think it's one reason I have social anxiety. I learnt a lot in my 20s and 30s though, thanks to a good teacher, so I'm not hopeless. Still, I see a lot of the subtle things I have to work on, like timing in conversations, picking up the subtext of feelings, not interrupting, that sort of thing. And of course, managing money and following through on projects. I've elicited feedback in the form of a questionnaire from the book from people whose opinions I trust and it's giving me a good idea of what to work on. Thank you all! The more I'm learning, the more I really feel relieved that maybe (as one book puts it) I'm not 'lazy, stupid, or crazy', but merely dealing with a deficit that can be overcome with medication, counseling, and hard work. Well, okay, I am a little crazy, but that's in addition to having ADHD. :D

The experiment went well, and all is fine. Life is pretty good right now and I think some boundaries are in place that weren't before.

What else? Next week I have a dental appointment, a counseling session, and meet with my psychiatrist to evaluate the ADDerall. I'm not feeling sleepy or dopey anymore, which is good, just calm. I think my body is getting used to it, and I've noticed I seem to be able to focus better. I've been cataloguing, which I love and yet can be tedious, but I've gotten dozens of books into the catalogue so far, and I'll be plugging along for awhile.

Well, that's all for now. I've got to get ready for work.

PS 4:34 pm. In the midst of cataloguing today (I'm up to 125 books in about a week), I came across two workbooks, one on self-control for kids with ADHD and one on social skills. Strange coincidence. I didn't know we even had these.