Friday, April 27, 2007

Another Government Library Closing?

Here is a reprint of a letter that is going around the blogosphere. I am still so ticked about the EPA libraries closing and now this. Yes, we all know that I am not pro-military by any stretch of the imagination, but I am pro-library and I have a special place in my heart for medical libraries. I am appalled that a time when evidence-based medicine is needed more than ever the government is trying to close down their medical libraries.

Here is the letter:

Here is the letter from Patrick Walz of the Armed Forces Medical Library:


I am a Tech Info Specialist at the Army Surgeon General's ArmedForces Medical Library. We are currently in a battle to save ourLibrary which has been an esteemed part of the US Military MedicalCorps since 1836.

We perform research for the Surgeons General of all the MilitaryBranches, as well as soldiers overseas in Germany, Great Britain,Iraq and Afghanistan.

Recently, the Military has been forced to make some budget cuts, and as is usually the case, the "easy target" library has come under the microscope. We were suddenly and inexplicably placed under a highly aggressive "work-group" comprised of Lean Six-Sigma-ready business ninjas. They want to close/move/consolidate or minimize our already scant resources.

As is always the case, our customers know the value of the Library. We've already received official letters, memos, testimonials etc... from a wide-range of military historians, commanders, executive officers and researchers, but it seems to be not enough. FY 06 marked the closings of nation-wide EPA Libraries and the AirForce has decided to close all of its Medical Libraries. We're getting a little freaked out. We must prove to the current bureaucracy that after 171 years, we are still an asset to the organization.

We have a plan of attack, we're wearing out a copy of MAKING THECASE FOR YOUR LIBRARY. What we lack is information. That's all this workgroup wants. Graphs, charts, spreadsheets and death by PowerPoint. If we could argue the entire case using ones and zeros we'd be in good shape.
We are hoping that you may have researched, or know someone who has researched the impact of closing a library. We'd like to know the cost differences between reciprocal document delivery and independent research contractors. Physical Librarian vs.. 100% automated databases.
The bosses are looking for short-term cost avoidance, and if they can save FY07 funds by canning the Library they won't hesitate. We wouldn't ask you for this if we had time to compile the data, but we don't have time.

They want everything immediately. It's like an information ambush: defend your library with some annual usage stats that mean nothing to the workgroup and a wet noodle. Good luck!

If you have any research or know anyone that's recently fought thegood fight, the help would be greatly appreciated. I was the Director of Medical Library in Germany prior to my coming here. I lost that fight and the library there is no more.
Many thanks!
Patrick R. WalzTechnical Information Specialist

Armed Forces Medical Library5109 Leesburg Pike, Room 670Falls Church, VA 22041E-mail: Patrick.Walz@tma.osd.milPhone: 703-681-8028; FAX: 703-681-8034

5 Blogs That Make Me Think

Since the Laundress has knighted me with a Thinking Blogger Award I shall go forth and provideth my list. I agree with her and that all of the blogs I read make me think. I have been taught, charmed, wooed, angered, and entertained by so many
great blogs it's going to be hard to choose, but here goes.

1. Dirty Laundry: As I stated in my previous post this lady can write. Her intellgence, wit and sense of humor shine through on all her posts and I love that she is interested in so many esoteric subjects. One of my favorite bloggers.

2. E-Notes: This is poet, professor, activist E. Ethelbert Miller's blog and what can I say-he rocks. He tells it like it is and he is always introducing an author or poet who I have never heard of before. Plus, his site keeps me abreast about what is going on in WDC.

3. My Marrakesh: This is my fantasy blog. This incredible woman lives in Morocco with her husband and two kids and they are building a guest house there. This is another woman who can write and posts the most beautiful pictures of her exotic world.

4. I have been reading this blog, well since the beginning. Jessamyn West's blog keeps me informed about library news and also about all of the cool things she does. (she's also a moderator on Metafilter, editor of Revolting Librarians Redux and a host of other things.). Check her out.

5. Cocktail Party Physics- I've noted before that I am a science geek (i was president of my high school's science club) and I love this blog. This is yet another woman (Jennifer Ouellette) that can write and she explains complex themes in lingo that anyone can understand. She has also written 2 books-Physics of the BuffyVerse and Black Bodies and Quantum Cats: Tales from the Annals of Physics.

So there they are. I have posted the rules below.

Congratulations, you won:Should you choose to participate, please make sure you pass this list of rules to the blogs you are tagging. I thought it would be appropriate to include them with the meme.The participation rules are simple:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,

2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,

3. Optional: Proudly display the'Thinking Blogger Award' with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn't fit your blog).

Round Up

Well, lo and behold I have to give a great big thanks and aw shucks to The Laundress for including Fig Newtons and Scotch in her blogs that make her think list. And I must say I read quite a few blogs and I have learned more from her site than any other. This woman can write and she has an interest in so many esoteric subjects. Give her a read and see if you don't become totally fascinated about something new.

I've been having fun following Barrington Irving's progress across the globe. This is an incredible young man. (when I say things like incredible young man that I feel extremely MATURE!!!!!). Here is the flight tracker and here is his blog.

I love Scandinavian design. I find it to be so pure, so simple, but elegant. One of my favorite Scandinavian designers Lotta Jansdotter has a blog.

The Amish have always fascinated me. No, I don't think they are cute or quaint or of the other silly terms people give to these groups, but I just find the culture to be so interesting. I have been reading about the Amish for years (as well as the Shakers, Hutterites and different communes) and was thrilled to find the very informative and well-written blog Amish America.

Now we all know that I am overly sensitive about this sort of thing, but I don't understand why people's credentials are not checked before they are hired for a job. This woman misrepresented her credentials (yes, she lied) and has been working as a dean of admissions at MIT for years and more than likely earning a great salary. She should have been fired when she was found out, but she had the wherewithal to quit. Good. Here's the fibbers website.

So you still have a lot of Easter Candy sitting around and you really want to do something with it-why not make the Leftover Easter Candy Cake?

I never realized when I was a kid that all eggs didn't look like the wonderful eggs that we got from Mr. and Mrs. Mills. I could write a whole entry on them. They were so sweet, especially Mrs. Mills and she was definitely from another time. Whenever I read anything about Tasha Tudor, I think of Mrs. Mills. I saw this New York Magazine and I thought of the Mills and their wonderful eggs. This is what an egg should look like.

Look at these cool 19th century shipping posters. They are actually Clipper cards. I love the typography and the detail on these is amazing. Also, check out these retro ship interiors.

Smooshi is in love.

Have a nice weekend.

"You may fool all the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all the time; but you can't fool all of the people all the time." Abraham Lincoln

Friday, April 20, 2007

Round Up

(If this post is all smushed together-forgive me. I have edited numerous times, but it's not taking-GRRRRR)

I have been looking at a lot of book catalogs of late and I came across a couple books on clouds, which led me to The Cloud Appreciation Society. Check out the photo gallery.

This week was National Library Week and Tuesday was National Library Workers Day. At my library we did SQUAT, ZILCH , NADA.

I might be a bit late to the fandom, but I love Cube News. I am not in a cubicle now ,but I have been in the past. This woman is hilarious and she is spot on with her wonderful interpretations of cube life.

This little bird is a Spectacled Eider (Somateria fischeri). It's very cute, it's endangered and it tends to hang out in cold weather places. It's a duck, a water bird, which I love. Other than that I have no idea why I had on my round-up list.

I'm a bit late, but I came upon the 2007 State Easter Eggs. (who knew??)
A Flickr group has been started called 07_07_07. The idea is to post photographs from around the world that are taken on July 7, 2007.

Speaking of photos, has anyone else besides me become totally captivated by Shorpy, the 100-Year Old Photo Blog? I like so many of these images, but I really like the image posted today (4/20) and the group photos. I love group photos even without knowing anyone in the picture.
This is a UK site so the prospect of me ordering anything from them are slim, but I just love the look of the site and they have some very cool items.
Thats all folks. Enjoy your weekend.
"There is nothing in which the birds differe more from man than the way in which they can build and yet leave a landscape as it was before."
Robert Lynd (1879 - 1949), The Blue Lion and Other Essays

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


I have been giving a lot of thought to the Imus situation and after the events of this week it all seems so pointless.

Yes, I am always going to rally against racism and discrimination of any form. I would do this even if I wasn't a minority female. Yes, I do think he should have been fired. I think his firing was more for cumulative reasons, than for just this one statement. Do I think that if he were a black man he would have been fired a long time-yes I do. Am I still angry, bitter and tired of how race seems to impact everything I do and see. You betcha!!!

However, I also am a firm believer in free speech. People should be able to say what they want. And that's where I have to leave this. I am torn between hating the racial and sexist epithets that pour from people, and my love and respect for free speech.

My heart, along with the heart of the nation is broken. With each senseless, violent act that is thrust upon the innocent I think our hearts and souls are forever impaired. I know that mine is.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Don Imus should be fired. I am sick of people getting away with things like this. A two-week suspension is nothing for someone with deep pockets like this scarey-looking, scarecrow of a man. I can't believe this closet bigot (and oh, there are so many of these around-usually masquerading as liberals) is saying that black hip-hop artists and rappers write these sorts of things in their lyrics. Well, guess what dryed-up skeleton of a man-the majority of the black population doesn't approve of those lyrics. They are demeaning and disrespectful to women-all women. If some black radio jock made a statement about stringy-haired, dirty butt, white girls the American public would be ready to have him lynched. It's a shame that it's 2007 and things just haven't changed that much.

And the more I think about this what business does a 65 year old man have commenting on anything about these young women. Makes me wonder if these folks may have had some money riding on the game.

FIRE HIM-Fire him, the Greaseman (whose now on AM radio), all of these out-of-the-closet-bigots.

Don't fire him until he has a meeting with the fathers of these young women. That should be interesting.

And while I am on my tirade I am also sick of people who steal, cheat, show favoritism, practice nepotism and cronism, all in the workplace. Fire their behinds as well. Better yet, JAIL THEM!!!!!

I am tired. So very tired. Tired of injustices I can't do anything about, tired people who so don't deserve success-having it, tired of bigotry, callousness, and vapidism. TIRED, TIRED, TIRED.

"A blow with a word strikes deeper than a blow with a sword." Robert Burton "The Anatomy of Melancholy"

"Once a word has been allowed to escape, it cannot be recalled. Horace

Friday, April 06, 2007

Round Up

Some new words (to me):

Graffadi- a play on the word graffiti, describes the use of street art for advertising purposes.

Nephelococcygia-interpreting the shape of the clouds.

A group of women from Ohio are urging women of all ages to stand together in silence for five minutes at 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 13, 2007. During the silence you are encourage to think about peace and what you can do to promote peace. This is inspired by the book The Great Silent Grandmother Gathering by Sharon Mehdi.

At one point I was attempting to create a list of online merchants that accept PayPal. I didn't get very far with this, but I found out this week that Powell's is now accepting PayPal. Yippee!!!!!

Two more companies with blogs:

Glenfiddich (my favorite single malt) and Wells Fargo History Blog.

I think only those of those who deal with serials on a regular basis will appreciate this joke: How many serials librarians does it take to change a light bulb? A: One. They are used to changing light bulbs regularly. First it's light bulb. Then it's lightbulb. Then it becomes lb : the bulb of light.... Tee Hee.

The American Planning Association has a page on MySpace.

For all of you Firefly fans, and yours truly is one of them, there is a Firefly Wiki.

I may have posted about this before, but the Animation Archive Blog is well worth mentioning twice.

I've always loved maps, all kinds, even carcass maps. You know there's a big image of a steer and all of the parts are shown. Yes, I know I'm a vegetarian and that should gross me out, but hey, it's a map. Hence, my liking of these food for thought plates.

For those of you that are celebrating the holiday have a nice one. For everyone have a great weekend.

"The optimist proclaims that we live in the best of all possible worlds, the pessimist fears this is true." - James Branch Cabell