Throwback Thursday – #tbt – Halloween Costume Surprise

Pace was dressing as Batman for Halloween a couple years ago.

I’d thought about buying the obvious costume to surprise him but pre-made costumes are expensive these days and it felt like a lot of money to buy for a one-off surprise.  At the same time, how many times to you get to be the sidekick to your little (bat)man?

After going back and forth about whether or not to do it, I literally went to the costume store after Pace went to bed the night before Halloween and bought a Robin costume.  Then, when I got home, he was still awake in his bed so I went in to quiz him.

“If I wore a costume to go with your Batman costume tomorrow, who should I be?” (A very brave question considering there was a chance he’d say “Joker” or somebody other than Robin!)

Luckily, he replied “Robin” so I said “Well, it’s late but if I stay up all night sewing, maybe I can come up with something.”

I took the costume to work in a backpack the next day so Pace wouldn’t see it (which helped get my money’s worth by modifying the “R” on the front with masking tape so I was “RPL” man.)

Then, when I was near home on the bus, I called Shea to tell her to get Pace in his costume and meet me on the street with her camera ready.

This was the result…

Halloween School Dance

Pace was off having fun with friends but we got a good shot of three of us…

10 Novels That Are Scarier Than Most Horror Movies


Music Monday – Strawberry Fields Forever (Slowed 800%)

Brian Eno would be proud…

“Strawberry Fields Forever” – The Beatles (slowed by 800%)

An Illustrated Talk With Maurice Sendak

Saturday Snap – Look Mom, No Hands!

Friday Fun Link – What Quote or Line From A Book That Changed Your Life?

A fun question on /r/books.

Not sure what my pick would be – maybe “So it goes” from Slaughterhouse Five as a perfect illustration of how shit happens and then we die?

Or on a more optimistic note: ““And I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, ‘If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.””

Actually, pretty much any quote from Vonnegut has potential to be life changing or mind altering.

Throwback Thursday – #tbt – Happy 43rd Anniversary Mom and Dad!

What Do Garden Fresh Carrots Have To Do With Working In A Public Library?

As part of the interview process for a Public Service Manager position at RPL, candidates are asked to do a presentation on “The Future of Public Libraries” to some of the librarians already working in the organization.

I was able to attend one such presentation today and since we had a few minutes after the Q&A session, the candidate decided to turn the tables on us and asked “What is it like working at RPL?”

I was sitting in a spot where I would’ve been the first to respond but since I’d also been the first to talk during round table introductions at the start of the interview I deferred and asked the other side of the room to go first.

I listened to my colleagues give their answers and was struck by how many gave some variation of “It’s a great organization but we also have our challenges.”

“That’s not telling the candidate anything about working here at all.” I thought.  “That answer would apply to any library, check that, any workplace in the country these days.”

As each person answered, my own answer kept changing – should I talk about how I *love* working in a library that I’ve visited as a patron since I was 14 years old?  Should I re-phrase the somewhat generic answers we were hearing to something stronger along the lines of “We have some really awesome things going on and some things that completely suck balls?”  Should I ask our current Deputy Director who was sitting in the room to leave so I could give a more candid answer?

Then an idea popped into my head – story is often the best mode we have for communication so I decided to share a simple anecdote about a recent interaction at my branch as an illustration of what working at RPL is like for me.

This is how I answered (rewritten to be much more eloquent than I expect I sounded while speaking off-the-cuff)…

What’s it like to work at Regina Public Library?  Well, this answer will seem a bit strange but your question made me think of something that happened recently at my branch.  My parents were in about a week ago and brought me a bag of carrots freshly picked and washed from their garden.  I was leaving my branch at the end of the day and one of my young regulars saw me.  “Why do you have a bag of carrots?”  he asked and I replied that my parents brought them for me.  Did he want one?  He took one and I try not to make too many assumptions about my patrons but seeing his reaction after he started eating it, I couldn’t help but wonder if that might be the first “real” carrot he’d had in a long time and quite possibly for the first time in his life?  Since I’d made the offer to him, I decided to take the bag around to a number of my other young regulars spread out on the various computers around the library.  They all were pretty excited to get the carrots, many asking if they could have two or even three and apparently asking for more carrots after I left!  Now obviously providing any kind of snacks to patrons, outside of a few cookies for a book club or whatever, isn’t something we tend to think of as a typical library service – although maybe we should?  But my point is that there are many ways, big and small, that we can impact the lives of the patrons who come into our libraries, brighten their day, provide a welcoming environment.  This is a very small example.  But it captures what what it’s like to work at Regina Public Library for me.

The Next Five Years of Superhero Movies

This infographic excites me greatly…