The ins and outs of a young library media specialist's life. Rock, rock on.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Asbestos, Mildew, and Mold, Oh My!

How many sick days is this? Five? HOW AM I STILL GETTING SICK?

Everyone always says your first year in a school is the worst, that you'll catch everything. My friends, the second year is worse even than that. Your body is already weakened from the previous years diseases, your immune system shocked by the sheer volume of germs assaulting it.

For real though, either I'm a hypochondriac or there is definitely something just plain wrong with the air in my school. By the time February vacation had rolled around I was pretty much ill with a chest cold. Two days later, all signs of illness had mysteriously dried up and I was perfectly fine.

Now it's Wednesday, two days back at school and I am already feeling sick again- achy head, runny nose, scratchy throat, my skin as white and dry as birch bark. I mean, I know schools are breeding grounds for germs and all, but the situation is becoming dire. There are only two possible solutions: 1. My body subconsciously does not want me to have wake up and go to work, thus making up illnesses of it's own accord, or 2. The air quality in this school is extremely poor. And since I love my job, I'm going to go with the latter.

I would love to bring a humidifier into work to alleviate the desert-dry air, but humidity is not good for books and I have the feeling it would just amp up the amount of viruses and bacteria germinating in there. It's also a bit disheartening when you hear the school nurse saying things like, "Wow, the teachers are just dropping like flies today", or the secretaries lamenting that there aren't enough subs to go around. (Speaking of, they better not have put the nutcase sub in for me today- I don't need to go back in tomorrow to find children sleeping in the stacks and the computers coated in an inch thick layer of spitballs.)

What do you do when you're actually allergic to your work?

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Crazy Talk

Sometimes I think I must know what it's like to be mentally ill.

I'm not saying that in a "I feel your pain, Prozac Nation" kind of way, or even a Britney Spears shave-all-my-hair-off-and-check-into-12-different-rehabs kind of way. I'm simply thinking that for the past 15 years or so I have been getting that montly visit that signifies that I'm now a woman and that I have God's biological permission to procreate. And yet? Every single month rolls in and I spend a good 3-4 days as a crazed maniac bent on my own destruction. My moods range from sad to angry to chipper and happy to weeping and ranting, in roughly 10 minute intervals, with pretty much no reprieve until I wake up a few days later thinking, "Uh oh. I really hope no one was too badly hurt during that little Dr. Jekyll episode."

And usually I think to myself, Self? This is really not a very lady-like way to behave. In fact, you're probably making everyone around you want to murder you in your sleep. Sometimes I can even pep talk myself into being calm and normal- that is, when I recognize that I'm being a loon, which is not the majority of cases. But when your feelings are so big and they feel so true, it's almost impossible to tell yourself that you're being irrational.

So maybe I'm naive, but I'd imagine that's exactly how mentally ill people feel. Or maybe they just never have that moment of clarity when they realize that everyone probably hates them? If only I owned a big drug company- all my efforts would be poured into a three-day a month Paxil formula. Well, that, and my birth control advent calendars- you know, where you get a little piece of chocolate with your Ortho every day? Oh, and there would be different "advent" themes every month- fun! No one will ever forget to take that ish if there's little bites of dark chocolate and kama sutra leprechauns involved.

I am so going to be rich one day. Or ex-communicated. Whatevs.

Where was I? Oh, right. Anyway, if I seem like a whiny jerk-face lately, or ever in the past, for that matter, it is probably for the above mentioned reasons. All I can say is, thanks be that a good 55% of the people on this planet probably understand without even having to read this, and for those who don't, sorry for the swings.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Dossier: Project February Vacation

Mission objectives: To fully enjoy the allotted February vacation time
HQ: Living room couch
Known associates: Numerous
Field duty: Complete (02.17.07-02.25.07)
Status: Success

When I left off with the photo montage I had accomplished a fair amount of sitting around. I was pleased with my progress; I felt as though my vision of utter laziness was taking shape around me. Then the weekend came, C took Friday off, and all dreams of laying in a heap on the couch and practicing slowing my heart beat to a near-dead stop went out the window. Thursday night I went to the first meeting of the 007 Book Club, spearheaded by this woman. I thought it would be slightly odd to hang out with a bunch of ladies I had never met, but it turned out great. A few glasses of wine and some fun chat about The Glass Castle and all my fears of being kidnapped in Southie were alleviated. Now my only worry is choosing the book for the next meeting because when we drew for meeting dates, of course I happened to be up next. Representin' fo' the librarians out there, I best not pick a dud. Friday was spent running around the Museum of Science, taking in the new Darwin exhibit and observing some beautiful Galapagos turtles wander haplessly around a box painted to look like, well, a rock. Saturday we carted ourselves up to Portsmouth for some brewery action, had a delicious dinner complete with an assortment of "native New Hampshire cheeses", and walked over to the Music Hall to see The Bad Plus in all their jazzy glory. Now, normally I'm not the jazz type, but The Bad Plus never fails to blow me away with the sheer energy they give in their performances. It was pretty amazing- not to mention, they played Rush's Tom Sawyer. And then on to Sunday, when I arrived at my parent's house for what I thought was going to be a quiet dinner with them and my sister but which actually turned out to be some kind of mini-family reunion party, where we watched Jackass 2 and looked at baby pictures. Happy birthday to my sister, indeed.

And now, and now. It's snowing and I return once again to the land of the working. Don't feel sorry for me though- I'm ready to help the darling children with their 5 paragraph essays on Egypt and their debate research on whether schools should have dress codes. I'm ready!

In other news, I am wearing boots that have fairly high heels today, making me roughly 6'0". I'm used to towering over most of the students (esp. the runty little sixth graders), but wearing boots somehow makes me feel even more Amazonian than normal. They also make a satisfyingly adult click as I walk down the hallways: a departure from my normal Danskos. These are "in-charge" boots. Alas, they are also "twist your ankle in the snow" boots, which so far, I have successfully avoided. As the snow continues to fall though, the outlook on me making it to my car unharmed this afternoon looks grim. At least I didn't wear a skirt.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Six Days In

Every vacation flies by and I inevitably find myself on the Sunday night before school starts back up saying, "What the hell did I just do for ten days?" Well rather than rely on my faulty memory to take a look back on the February Break of 2007 I put together a little montage of some of the finer moments. That is, the ones not involving Matlock and alcohol at 10 a.m.

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Some Rochester peeps came to visit, so what did we do? Drank beer, of course! Fancy beer! In Brookline! God, we're such good hosts it kills me.

Every baby shower should have a flowing fountain of chocolate. It's good karma for the unborn child.

Uhh... babies also like things wrapped in bacon.

The little man had lunch with the ladies at the local Chili's. Being the best godmother, I gave him his first mandarin orange. Being a handsome little devil, he flirted with all the old ladies at the next table over.

"So, NPW, what did you do on your break? 700 loads of laundry? Wow, I'm jealous. You didn't even get a sunburn! Can I hang out with you on April break?"

The hallway of death. Carrying those 700 loads up and down these stairs = the reason I don't have a gym membership.

After burning up all those calories doing laundry, it was snack time. Quandary: why is it that I am petrified of wiping up raw eggs from the counter so I don't get salmonella, but I have no problem eating cookie dough immediately thereafter?

I think the dough was better.

Met C on his lunch break for some Burlington Ice Palace action- "Where Olympic dreams begin!"

The true ice princess. This picture doesn't do her crack justice.

I wanted to document my skating prowess, C wanted to make it look like I throw little children to the ice. And anyway, so what if I did? They have helmets! Geez.

Netflix and FedEx and packages, oh my!

Suck on it, Sprint. Do your phones let me watch the Colbert Report on my lunch break? Yeah. Didn't think so.

Still lots of things on the horizon: I'm working on getting C to skip out tomorrow so we can go see the new Darwin exhibit at the Museum of Science. This morning he actually said to me: "Tomorrow is the last day to close loans for the month". When did we become grown ups? With responsibilities?

I also have a book club meeting tonight to talk about The Glass Castle (which I very much enjoyed, as I do with all miserable memoirs about people with lives so horrible I can only thank baby Jesus that my biggest worry is cramps). And Saturday will be a Portsmouth adventure as Part II of the anniversary celebration- dinner and The Bad Plus show at the Music Hall. And then a mini-birthday celebration for my sister on Sunday, who, although younger than I, is still old.

Oh, and lots more daytime TV. Ahh. The good life.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I Was Wrong

I thought a heart-shaped pizza was true love. Then Chris bought me tickets to this:

The Police at Fenway Park?!?!!? Oh, hell yes.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Over and Out

I have a few things of which I need to inform you on this wintry Sunday morn:

1. As of Friday afternoon, I am on Winter Break. Way to start it off with a bang, I am a stuffed up mess. Classic NPW. Fortunately for me, I have ten full days to sit on my ass and recuperate. Unfortunately for you, that may mean a mini-blog break as well. Oh, I'll post here and there, but please don't cry if I miss a couple of posts. My nose and my brain both need a little rest.

2. I am going out this week to buy this phone:

Yes, gone will be the days of hoping the battery lasts the 20 minute ride home from work because my phone is straight out of 1997. I mean, I'm grateful that my mother gave me her (v.) old phone to borrow after mine was so rudely stolen, but seriously. I need my text messaging back. And who doesn't want a cool-ass flip out QWERTY keyboard? Whoo-wee, I'm a nerd. I briefly considered the Krazr, but once I held it in my hand I knew that all it would take would be one over-excited conversation for me to snap that flimsy little plastic thing in half.

Bonus: no more Sprint!

3. On Friday afternoon I got the official invite to be on our school's team for the annual Town Spelling Bee. Please, try to contain your jealousy.

You're probably wondering how you, too, can lead such a thrilling and satisfying life? A little friendly advice from me to you: treat yourself to a private viewing of Librarian: Quest for a Spear featuring Noah Wyle (heck, if you're feeling dangerous and think you can handle a double feature, throw in Librarian: Return to King Solomon's Mines and make a day of it) and then sign yourself up for library school, ASAP. You can thank me later.

4. Thank goodness I don't eat Peter Pan Peanut Butter, eh? And for those of you that do, maybe a bout of salmonella will teach you the importance of not buying groceries solely on what's the cheapest/sugariest product available. Shame on you!

5. My agenda for the week is pretty full, what with all the movies and books piled up next to my sick bed. But hey, if you're around and you're free, give me a ring and maybe we can do lunch. Because I'm sure lunch with you beats anything my co-workers are doing- Aruba? Boring. South Carolina? Please. Hawaii? Pssh. One pizza trumps traveling any day.

Later, 'gators.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Golden Oldies

Some days, my senior citizen volunteers drive me batty. And by some I mean all. Take, for example, Priscilla; while she is legally considered deaf, she almost always refuses to wear her hearing aid because, she says, "when it's cold outside, it freezes to her ears". And while she does make an interesting conversationalist (Me: "Priscilla, could you put these books back on the shelves?" Priscilla: "Pardon? The library is infested with elves?"), her constant shuffling about grates on my brain. It's like she's unable to pick up her feet to move around, so it's a steady tssssh tssssh tssssh across the library carpet all day long. All I can imagine is that she must give herself some whopping static electricity shocks.

Then there's Edna, who must be in her mid-nineties and no longer drives, nor does she have any remaining family that cares about whether their old mother dies walking in the sub-Arctic temps lives near enough to cart her around. When she talks, she can't focus very well on you and so she creeps closer and closer to your face until you can see her pink rose Wet 'n Wild lipstick smeared clownishly around her mouth, teeth, and gumline. She also has trouble hearing, but with her I'm not so worried about it because it doesn't actually matter whether she hears me or not, she probably won't be able to do whatever I'm asking of her. She can't bend down, nor can she reach up, nor can she walk more than a few steps without needing a rest. So I basically have her sit and stamp things. What things? Just... things.

There's also Polly*, who recently decided that she was interested in learning about computers but is one of those very rare people who actually can break a computer just by looking at it. Seriously, she needs her own episode of Heroes. I stepped away from my computer to take a bathroom break and when I came back I had to fill out three work order forms with the Technology department because she had somehow broken my mouse, keyboard, and barcode scanner in one fell swoop.

Why don't I just trade them in for newer models, you ask? I'd say 10% of it is because it would be more work to have them stop coming in than it is for me to just endure their presence, 10% because they have interesting stories of illness and gossip (they're better than a town crier), and the other 80% is because I feel bad for them. Besides, if I wait a few years they'll all be gone anyway, right?


*All names are real. Seriously, they're old.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

What Is Love?


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Double Trouble

Awwww yeah. Happy snow day!

Oh yeah. And happy Valentine's Day, too.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

This Post Has Nothing Whatsoever To Do With Last Weekend

Last weekend I met up with a friend from New York that I hadn't seen in about a year. I was pretty excited to see her, but the deal was sweetened by the fact that I'd also get to meet her boyfriend and she'd finally get to meet Chris. Sounds like a lovely weekend visit, yes?

The plan was to meet up on Sunday afternoon, but when I talked to her she was a bit dodgy and it seemed as though her boy was hesitant to meet me. Finally she said, "I gave him your blog address and now he's nervous he's going to end up on there." I was momentarily speechless, and then, quite admirably held back a snort of laughter. I was (understandably, I think) both taken aback and amused- one, because in the grand scheme of things, the breadth and reach of my blog is very diminutive, and two, because what on Earth did he think I'd write about him? "Dear Readers, last weekend I met a man who is quite possibly the next Lee Harvey Oswald fused with Hannibal Lecter, possessing some of the finer qualities of Attila the Hun, as evidenced by the fact that he demanded that the restaurant servers bring him fresh raw meat and forced us to watch as he chomped it straight off a goat's leg bone. Oh, and he was also making eyes at me and trying to grab my leg under the table."*

Anyway, being the demi-evil librarian that I am, once I learned that he was nervous I'd write about him I was very much tempted to post Photoshopped pictures and intimate details about our little lunch date but I've been resisting that particular urge. Plus, he didn't really give me anything that I could twist into something hilarious for the amusement of the masses. In the 90 minutes of our acquaintance he remained innocuous enough to fly under the blog radar- except I just had to write something. You understand.

*All of these statements are patently false. Except for the "making eyes" bit, but I think that might have been because I had a piece of a samosa on my cheek that no one bothered to tell me about.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, I didn't write about this on Monday in hopes that they'd check Monday, see that they were in the clear, and not check again today. But in case you're reading this- Hi! And it was lovely to see both of you. For serious.

Monday, February 12, 2007


What is going on around here? I mean, for real. Everything is all topsy turvy; Anna Nicole is dead, they hired a woman as the new president at Harvard, and this morning my Principal made an actual, honest-to-goodness attempt at making a joke. So what gives? Why has my little world been turned upside down? Is this some cosmic phenomenon caused by changes in the tides after an iceberg broke off into the sea? Am I going to wake up tomorrow to find that the state of Maine under water?

Usually things aren't so strange around here, the library is it's own little cocoon of oblivion. However, it seems as though the fates have it in for me this week. NPR news this morning forecasted 10 inches of snow on Tuesday night, which may translate into a snowy Valentine's Day. And since when does New England get snow? It's almost unprecedented in the state of Massachusetts.

Memo to any higher being that may be out there doing weird stuff: no school on Wednesday would be a great Valentine's present, better even than one of those classy Whitman's Samplers. But there, now that I've said it we'll probably just get some cold drizzly sleet that will ruin my hair and soak into my socks and be totally annoying, but won't keep us out of school. So I take it back. I hope we do have school. I hope they decide on Wednesday that we need extra school, that we all have to stay until 9 p.m. that night. In fact, I hope they just decide that we're so far behind that we need to just have a sleepover here on Wednesday.

But just in case, I'm going to wear my pajamas backwards on Tuesday night. Because you just never know what might appease those fickle snow gods.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Taking It Light

I? Do not want to do any more work. No, for real. I'm tired. Yesterday I napped for three hours and still went to bed at 10. Sad- yes. But necessary for both my sanity (and Chris's) because when I'm tired like this I get cranky, and a cranky NPW is no laughing matter. So this weekend I'm going to take it light.

Tentative plans include:

Visiting this handsome little devil,

Meeting my friend Alex here for Sunday lunch,

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And buying this sheet set at Anthropologie.

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Then I think I'll be able to make it through one more week until sweet, sweet February vacation. Have yourselves a good one.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

So There

Hmm. Apparently you all lacked the fortitude required to get through the 100 things about NPW yesterday. Either that, or you're just saving them up, reading them like a chapter book, pacing yourself so that you can discover something new about your favorite librarian every day. Ha! Either way, it's very pathetic that my blood, sweat, and tears went into writing all that crap down for just two people to comment on it- my mom and Ben. (Thanks for posting twice though, Beej.)

So today you get a crap post. Hey, don't give me that look, you know what you can do to make it up to me.

Anyway, I spent most of yesterday and today working on the kid's podcasts. Damn them for wanting to do complicated things in my technology-deficient library. The poor little Audacity program that I downloaded for free just can't handle all the sound effects and stuff they're trying to get. But I'll keep working on it- even if I think they're all a bit lame. I guess the good thing is that next year I'll know to be much more organized with the way I set it up; for serious, if you saw my desktop with all the audio files, you'd wonder how there's any room left on my computer at all. But hey, if you're interested in listening to some of the industrious goober's podcasts, shoot me an email and I'll let you know what to look for in the iTunes store.

In other news, I've put the kibosh on computer games in the library for good. That's right. NPW put her proverbial foot down- game bitch no longer. Now all I need to do is figure out a way to tell people to screw when I go to get coffee and I'll be one tough library chick.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

One Hundred Things About NPW

I've been meaning to get around to a 100 Things About Me list for a while now, but it seems as though I've lacked the time energy motivation to get 'er done. But since everyone else has completed one, I don't want to be left behind out of sheer personal laziness. Onward!

  1. I love pointless surveys in which you can learn an inordinate amount about someone you might not ever get to meet, or if you did, that you might not ever think to ask them questions that would lead to these specific answers.
  2. I would have no problem being rich, but I would hate being famous. Not that I go out in pajama pants that say FABULOUS on the ass or anything, but if I did decide to go running in a baseball cap and hoodie I wouldn't want it all over the cover of People. Rich, on the other hand? I'll take me a cool couple of million and spend a few years traveling.
  3. Traveling has always been sort of a hobby of mine. This was made easier by the fact that I have always worked/dated/knew people in the airline industry. Flying first class for years for free sure makes me not want to buy a coach ticket.
  4. Favorite US place to visit: New Orleans
  5. Favorite foreign place: London
  6. Dream trips: Morocco, Australia, Vancouver, Mexico City, Costa Rica, Germany, Ireland
  7. I love forensics shows. I would sit and watch an all-day Forensic Files marathon, if such a thing existed. Oh, Court TV. I've learned so much. Like never, ever to commit a crime and expect to get away with it.
  8. Butterflies freak me the hell out. As do spiders and other crawly, bug-type organisms.
  9. I thought about a variety of options before I decided to go to grad school for my Library Science degree: Art History, Urban Development, Translation. Then I realized, the library is where my heart is.
  10. Sometimes I think I would have gotten into grad school even if I was a terrible student simply because my interviewer couldn't take his eyes off my boobs.
  11. I drink coffee and tea like no one's business. Right now I'm digging on the Rishi Organic Fair Trade Masala Chai. I also drink what feels like a gallon of water a day, iced tea when I think to make it, and diet soda when I think to buy it.
  12. I used Crest Whitening Strips this summer before a wedding and my glowing white teeth hurt for a month afterwards.
  13. I've wanted a puppy for a while now- I'm thinking French bulldog, Chris is thinking Italian greyhound. Stout or sleek? We'll see who wins out!
  14. Currently reading: The Green Glass Sea, by Ellen Klages.
  15. Just finished: Avatars: So This Is How The World Ends, by Tui Sutherland (amazing, by the way).
  16. Next up: The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls (for the book club!) Will be the first non-young adult book I've read since Running With Scissors.
  17. I managed to avoid the Netflix snare until someone gave me a month-long gift certificate. Now I can't stop updating my Queue with ridiculous movies that I would never drive to Blockbuster to rent. Currently: This Film Is Not Yet Rated. Next up: Wimbledon, with Kirsten Dunst. (C's pick!)
  18. I presently have accounts on myspace, friendster, facebook, hi5, flickr, picasa, blogger, wordpress, and photobucket, and I kind of hate all of them.
  19. I enjoy writing, but am a very harsh critic of my own stuff. Conversely, I'm much more likely to write if I think there are people out there waiting to read my stuff.
  20. I am a Guitar Hero savant, but am unable to learn to play a real guitar. Secretly, I think I was meant to be the bass player in a White Stripes-esque band. Not with my brother, though, since I don't actually have one.
  21. Have one younger sister. Sometimes I have to wonder at her sanity. Like when she sends me 18 emails a day in all caps saying things like, "WHAT ARE YOU DOING? WHY IS NO ONE WRITING ME BACK? I'M MAKING TACOS TONIGHT, WANNA COME OVER?"
  22. I'm only at 22? My lord, 100 things is a lot.
  23. Stores that I find I cannot avoid: Target, Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Ikea, Border's.
  24. Stores that I wish I could frequent more often: DSW, H & M, J. Crew, Abodeon, Jasmine Sola, REI, Banana Republic, Anthropologie.
  25. Stores I never want to set foot in again: Wal*Mart, Home Goods, Building 19 3/4, Furniture World, Bob's Discount Furniture.
  26. I have a bit of a library supply fetish. Not in a kinky way, more in a "Oh my god, I get to spend how much from this catalog at 47% off?!" kind of way.
  27. I love taking photographs but I'm terribly amateur, especially compared to C and pretty much all my friends. Am taking steps to learn more about apertures, ISO settings, and the like, but like I said- I'm my own worst critic.
  28. I'm fairly athletic and I love team sports, as long as the competition doesn't damper the spirit of playing. For example, I love playing Ultimate Frisbee, as long as we're not actually keeping score and no one gets hurt- say, kicked in the head, or knocked out. I also enjoy loner sports like tennis and racquetball. Basically anything with eye/hand coordination, I'm on it.
  29. I'm usually full of good cheer and smiles which makes me a candidate for any "Likeable Librarian" awards that might be going out. However I have, on occasion, been known to have a bitchy side as well. Who doesn't, really?
  30. I like to make fun. This includes friends, family, co-workers, random idiots, the government, the disabled, the abled, old people, people that slip on ice, people that slip on banana peels, celebrities, middle schoolers, and most of all, myself.
  31. I like Mexican food an awful lot.
  32. Ditto on the Indian food.
  33. I wish my job included more hands-on tech stuff like building the school's website. I should be careful what I wish for though- it appears as though all of the tech duties will fall to me next year and that includes an inventory of over 200 computers and printers. Blah.
  34. My student loans each month cost more than my car payment and insurance combined.
  35. I hate dishwashers. I feel like I'm doing extra work with the loading and unloading, plus they always come out spotty, then I have to clean them myself anyway. Washing dishes can be very Zen-like for me.
  36. The worst chore is folding laundry. I'd rather clean the toilet than fold laundry. Even if I can distract myself with Forensic Files or my ipod, I still hate it.
  37. Gosh, this is taking me forever. Hope you're not all bored to tears by now. If you've made it this far.
  38. I'm a fairly excellent cook. If only I could hire someone to come clean the mess afterwards.
  39. I started reading when I was very young. I'd make up words to go along with the pictures, until finally the words and the pictures matched up. No one's been able to tear me away from books since.
  40. I hate the term "hipster".
  41. I love the term "emo", but only because I like the way it sounds when I say it. Emo!
  42. The last time I went to the dentist I thought he was going to ask me out on a date. This was made more humorous by the dual facts that A) he had a newspaper cutout on his wall of him with a mullet, circa 1993, and B) he told me I needed a root canal.
  43. I love zombie/vampire movies, but I hate horror movies like Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Saw. The Grudge gave me nightmares for a month.
  44. My sister is also deathly afraid of movies like The Grudge- and happens to live out on a secluded lake. I like to devise ways of scaring her, like standing outside her living room window at night and moaning like that scary thing in the movie.
  45. In our house, Tuesday used to be pizza day (like in the Ween song). Now it's Wednesday night, to coincide with Lost. Pizza:Lost::Nachos:Super Bowl
  46. Like that? I rocked the SATs.
  47. I'm fluent in French, and have a decent working knowledge of Spanish and Italian. I also took a Latin class in college (worst class I've ever taken, hands down), and I've taught myself a bit of German from some audio discs from the library. I'd love to learn Arabic.
  48. I know more than most average non-Jew about Judaica and things like keeping kosher due to my matriculation at a university that boasts a whopping 65% Jewish population. I would make my roommate teach me Hebrew and Yiddish phrases and then bust them out at parties. Yeah. Good times.
  49. My university had, quite possibly, the least amount of partying known to college campuses worldwide, save for maybe some Mormon schools. For real, I was telling my sister about a BYOB frat party I went to and she said, "What was it- Bring Your Own Books?"
  50. I can't stomach reality television, not even for a minute. I can feel my blood start to pound in my temples when I see things like My Super Sweet Sixteen and that show with Nick Carter's brother and all the screaming white trash girls. Similarly, I hate American Idol, that show where they build houses for poor people, and anything where they ask you to text a vote.
  51. I will admit to watching snippets of Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance, but only for the flashy dance bits.
  52. How is this only half over? Painful.
  53. There are a couple of great kids in my school, I'd love to analyze their parents to see how they made them turn out so great.
  54. There are a couple of ridiculously bad kids in my school, I'd love to analyze their families and then do exactly the opposite with my own children.
  55. I waver between wanting kids of my own and not wanting them. Biology is a strong force to reckon with though; I may just give in eventually.
  56. I have very strong feelings on literacy advocacy and encouraging students to read. Sometimes this gets me in trouble with the people who feel that #2 pencils and machine-read tests are the keys to academic success.
  57. Getting a big box of new books at the library makes me giddy with excitement.
  58. I still watch cartoons.
  59. I love Harry Potter. Love it. I also love Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy- let's hope when the movie comes out this summer Nicole Kidman doesn't ruin it too badly.
  60. Valentine's Day is coming up and while I have previously eschewed the holiday, I don't think I'll mind so much this year. For reals though- if you don't want to get smacked, do not give me Conversation Hearts.
  61. I work roughly 180 of the 365 days in a year. Last year I took the whole summer off and spent the majority of it in Rochester, NY. This year I will be finding myself some part-time employment. Oh yeah, so if you know of anything in the Boston area, drop me a line. Preferably something not involving tweens.
  62. Speaking of vacation, only a week and a half to go before I have one full, glorious week off! What are my plans? Well they'll probably include a whole lot of nothing, but I'll save my pontifications for a later post.
  63. I love the smell of books in the morning.
  64. I love giving good book recommendations.
  65. I love getting comments on here.
  66. Currently listening to on my iPod: the new Shins album, Wincing the Night Away
  67. Currently ordering for my library: Guinness Records Book 2007, the new Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants book, and the World Almanac for Kids 2007.
  68. Currently being shipped to my library: an assortment of graphic novels. I obstensibly ordered them for the kiddos; that's not to say I won't be the first person to check them out. Librarian perks- you know how it is.
  69. Ha. 69.
  70. I currently have a Master's degree plus an additional 18 credits. When I hit 30 credits, my pay scale jumps another $4,000. You can bet I'm working on that- hence the classes like "Guitar in the Classroom" and "Beginning French".
  71. I like craft projects and flowers and rubber cement and ribbon and wrapping paper.
  72. I never use spell check. It's more a bad habit than plain vanity, I always re-read everything I write about 50 times before I print it, anyway. But I also kick ass at spelling and grammar, so I don't worry about it too much.
  73. I am highly competitive in the fields of air hockey, skee ball, Mario Kart, Scrabble, DDR, and all gaming in general.
  74. I love the beach and being near the ocean. Summers in Maine are some of my best memories.
  75. I also love the mountains, including hiking and picnics.
  76. Oh, and the city too. With it's rush of people and drama.
  77. I do not love strip malls. Or Central New York. Or southern Georgia, where the cooks have guns in the waistband of their pants at the local Waffle House.
  78. This is taking forever.
  79. I just came dangerously close to spilling an entire Nalgene bottle of water onto my computer keyboard.
  80. I once had a high school biology teacher throw a dictionary at me. She was evil and gigantic.
  81. I then made up the anthem: "What's the AP Bio cry? Eat my Twinkies or I'll die!" It caught on. She only knew of the first line, but it's actually printed in my yearbook.
  82. That was pretty much the extent of my rebellion in h.s. I was kind of a goody two-shoes.
  83. But man, I hated her.
  84. She used to tell us stories about how her husband's brains were leaking out of his ears and how she adopted some boy who was in high school already.
  85. Once we had a lab that involved estimating and she handed out big bags of tiny little beads. This girl Courtney swung one of the bags around, causing an explosion of beads all throughout the lab. Our fearless teacher dove onto the ground, under the lab benches, her sizable bottom wiggling all around in her attempt to grab every last estimating bead. I can still see this image in my brain like it happened yesterday.
  86. I got a 4 on the AP English test and a 1 on the Bio.
  87. Our physics teacher invented the rubber bumper on cars and drove a Mercedes to school every day. He died before I could take physics.
  88. When I think back on my high school days I feel a general fondness, but also a sense of bewilderment that I ever accepted my conditions there and went along with it.
  89. One of my friends from high school became a nun.
  90. Before she left for the convent, she sent me a letter saying she would pray for me and my family. I laughed quite a bit, imagining her praying for me in her bare little cell in Tennessee.
  91. Then I laughed some more when she said she hoped we could visit when she came back in May, imagining us out at TGIFridays with her in her nun habit that she sewed up herself.
  92. Nuns are hilarious. From a distance. Up close, they're scary.
  93. Almost done!
  94. I'm never doing 100 Things About Me again, so I hope you enjoyed this one.
  95. I mean, if I knew it would take this long, I would've just done 50. Or 25, even.
  96. I should have posted some pictures as a couple of the 100 things. Maybe I'll do some kind of photo meme- a project for the future.
  97. There can't possibly be anyone reading this far. But if you are, you deserve an award. Maybe I'll mail you something.
  98. I have to get to work now. Libraries wait for no blog.
  99. Thank you, thank you.
  100. Fin

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

I'm Changing My Title To "Coffee Bitch"

Somehow, some way, every time I decide to run out for coffee on my 20 minute lunch break word leaks out and I end up getting 12 very complicated orders ranging from small non-fat soy chais to grande caramel lattes with extra caramel, whipped cream, and Splenda. Seriously, once someone even drew a diagram for me to bring to Starbucks to show the barista with a coffee to milk ratio- I could actually see her muscles contract while she tried to refrain from rolling her eyes at me. And if she had spit in that coffee, I wouldn't have blamed her. Then I have to walk about 8 blocks with the coffee sloshing around into the cardboard holder, which brilliantly falls apart when wet.

Also, there are at least four different coffee places within a five minute walk from me. And while I prefer the tiny, local place with the delicious plain coffee, I never get to go there. Why? Because everyone else wants Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts. And then I get the disappointed puppy dog face when I put my foot down and tell them I'm going local. "Weeell.... ok. I guess I'll get something from there," they mutter.

Well hey, don't let me put you out.

Then, after writing down all their insane orders, printing out copies in triplicate, walking (on my lunch break!) to the farthest possible coffee location, explaining said insane orders to the hapless baristas, re-explaining them, correcting them, filling the appropriate amount of milk/cream/half & half/soy/non-dairy creamer into each cup, carrying them all back to school, trays in each hand... then I get to deliver them to my co-workers in their rooms, like I'm some sort of Coffee UPS.

What it comes down to? I'm a sucker.

Maybe I can build myself a secret exit under the school that pops right up in the back room of my fave place? Hmmm... definitely something to look into.

Monday, February 05, 2007


I will never understand how people can hate their jobs, yet every week they muster up the energy to propel themselves towards inevitable misery. I mean, if you know you hate where you work, how do you resign yourself to getting ready, folding yourself up into your car, and driving yourself to what you know will be a horrible experience- every day? I love my job, and it's still tough to wake myself up at the crack of dawn to get in here. And I still wish the weekends were longer. Every weekday I look forward to Friday, and there's never been a Friday night in my life when I thought, "Damn, when's it going to be Monday morning? I can't wait!"

Anyway, my point of that long-winded ramble was that once again, the weekend flew by and here I am. Cataloging books. Printing tax forms to send in to the IRS. Looking up new graphic novels for the kiddos. All very normal- but still, I wish it was Friday.

My weekend was lovely, packed with friends and fun stuff. On Friday night, two Rochesterians graced our presence at our new pad. We decided on cheap (but delicious!) burritos for dinner and thought we'd head over to the Sky Bar afterwards for some beer and music. You can't get much better than that on a Friday night in a wintry Boston. Of course, it was raining/snowing, and we weren't entirely sure where the Sky Bar was, and then when we did find it it was in the ghe-tto, not to mention almost $10 to get in for a wretched girly cover band that assaulted our ears even out on the sidewalk. So we all piled back into the Element and drove ourselves on over to the Independent, which was quieter, nicer, and had more classy beers for those beers snobs among us (namely, me).

Saturday was the big one year anniversary of our first "date" for me and C. Rather than spend a gajillion dollars on each other, we decided to roll up the anniversary and Valentine's Day into one package- I bought him tickets to this show and we're going to make that a Portsmouth Weekend, complete with brewery tours and a walk on the beach. I know, we're too cute.

So on Saturday we opted for low-key and took the T over the New England Aquarium for an afternoon filled with penguins, jelly fish, and 650-lb turtle named Myrtle. After we were all fished out we decided to walk across the freezing park over to our favorite sandwich establishment, The Parish Cafe. On our walk, I joked about the time that we went there and the whole place was closed for renovations. Our laughter died as we approached the empty cafe and saw the sign in the door: "Closed for renovations". We recovered quickly- mostly because it was useless to stand crying in the doorway, our tears turning to little icicles, but also because by that point we were starving. So we quickly decided on Diva and had ourselves a delicious Indian meal. We went home to watch a movie in the warmth of our living room, and it was a cozy night all around.

Sunday was, of course, the Super Bowl, and since New England was already out I had little interest in watching anything but the commercials. I did find some amusement in Prince's performance, namely when he was silhouetted on the big white sheet and his guitar head made him look like he had a giant bifurcated wang. Oh yeah, and the fact that he wore an Aunt Jemima do-rag in the rain. After that, it was all downhill. Even the commercials were only semi-funny, so we split. I didn't actually find out who won the game until this morning, when I checked CNN. I also discovered that I didn't win on any of the Super Bowl squares I had purchased so hopefully on Friday afternoon.

Ah well! Another weekend, another week. Hope your Monday is jazzy.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Friday ABC

Despite my lack of communication with the outside world, I have somehow managed to book myself pretty solid the next few weekends. Three weekends in a row I have out-of-towners coming to visit, plus this weekend there's the quarterly pub crawl (this one's in Southie- how Good Will Hunting of us!), the Super Bowl parties, and the ice skating. Thank goodness for weekend distractions, though- after this week, I could use about 50 vacations.

Anyway, it's Friday and I'm feeling vaguely "meh" about posting today, so I figured I'd give you what you've all been waiting for: an alphabet meme! I know, you can thank me later.

A - Available or married? Why are these the only options? Happily taken.

B - Best Friend? C

C - Cake or Pie? Ice cream cake

D - Drink of Choice? Iced tea, coffee, diet Coke

E - Essential Item? Lip gloss, books, my computer

F - Favorite Color? Blue

G - Gummi Bears or Worms? Bears- they bounce, you know. Here and there and everywhere. And they have high adventures that are beyond compare.

H - Hometown? Danville, NH. Represent.

I - Indulgence? Naps, afternoon movies, expensive hair cuts

J - January or February? Oh winter- I'm an equal opportunity hater.

K - Kids & names? N/A

L - Life is incomplete without? Family, Chris, friends, laughter, books

M - Marriage Date? N/A

N - Number of Siblings? 1- younger, sister, Alexis

O - Oranges or apples? Depends on the season- oranges in summer, apples in the fall

P - Phobias/Fears? Butterflies, clowns, spiders, disease, loved ones dying

Q - Favorite Quote? Want me to pull out the Bartlett's? 'Cuz I've got one. Right here. You know I'll do it!

R - Reason to Smile? Why not? It's better than frowning.

S - Season? Fall

T - Tag three people! The first three people to read this. You know who you are!

U - Unknown fact about me: I originally wanted to work as a translator for the U.N. when I finished college, and almost applied to the Monterey Institute of International Studies. I would've studied Arabic and French.

V - Vegetable you hate? Green peppers

W - Worst habit? Spending too much time on the computer

Y - Your favorite food? Pizza, cinnamon raisin toast, burgers, chicken and rice, salad, spinach pies

Z - Zodiac? Sagittarius, the Archer

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Brief Encounter

This morning before school started I told a student he had to go back to the cafeteria to hang out because the library was full, and this is exactly what he said to me:

"Ok, then please advise me on something: would it be better for me to just try to sneak in another way, or should I take this to a higher authority? Because the library doesn't look full to me."

To which I replied, "You know, if you had asked me politely if you could please use the computers this morning, I would have agreed. Instead, you're going to turn around and go back to the cafeteria anyway with a bonus of a detention from me for Monday afternoon. And you can take that up with any higher authority you wish."

That's right, punks. Don't mess with me this week. I don't care if you're in sixth grade and you're socially retarded. It's going down.

February is off to a roaring start.

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