Monday, January 30, 2012

On the Job: Jump

When your library advertises the chance to attend a conference, webinar, or other professional development event - jump at the chance. Librarians and other information professionals love to share their expertise, but you only benefit from this when you actually act.

I've covered this topic previously for On the Job, but now I want to remind everyone that you can only benefit if you pay attention to opportunities and actually grab hold when they're available. It's so easy to let invites idle in your inbox or lay around in the back of your mind.

Make a point of RSVPing to every opportunity you can. (And RSVP ASAP.) Many libraries have a limited budget from professional development. If you delay in responding, you may miss your chance to attend. Even if you are unable to attend these events, you can at least let the library higher-ups know that you are interested in professional development. Showing an interest in your career skills can go a long way in proving your worth to your organization.

We are all busy, but you can't grow as a professional if you let these changes of further education pass you by.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

What I Read this Week: January 28, 2012


New Feature! First edition.

As I mentioned in my earlier blog update post, In What I Read this Week, I will chronicle the best of "stuff" I read over the previous week.

So, here is a list of what I perused over the past week.
  •  While working out at the gym this week, I finally finished reading the December 2011 issue of the Atlantic Monthly. The articles I enjoyed the most were "What I Lost in Libya" and "The Glory of Oprah." I knew those two hit the spot when I forgot that I was working out. (Exercise and I, we are not friends.)
  • My magazines have been building up since before the holidays. I'm making a valiant effort to read them all (or at least make it to the most recent issues). Tuesday night, as I watch the Washington Capitals beat the Boston Bruins (wooot!), I flipped through the most recent issue of Everyday Food. The Boyfriend made chicken tortilla soup for dinner... which happened to be the cover image. (He used the Williams-Sonoma recipe and it was delicious. More please.)
  • Continuing my motoring through the magazine backlog, I read the December 2011 issue of Real Simple. I love how their holiday issue is jam packed with cheap gift ideas. This issue was far thicker than usual, but considering most of the additional pages were just pretty pictures, I did not mind the extra heft.
  • Book wise, I'm still working on Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea. I've been reading this in fits and spurts - mostly right before bed. I finally started my new commuting read this week - Succeeding in the Project Management Jungle. (The cover images for this books are in the right-hand sidebar.)

Friday, January 27, 2012

Blog Changes

One of my resolutions this year was to be a better blogger. To help me achieve that goal, I will be making a few changes to the blog.
  • Useful Things will become an occasional series. Instead of posting every other week, I will only post a Useful Thing when I find something I truly want to share. As of late, I find that I've been posting something simply for the sake of posting. I think that leads to mentioning lesser quality websites and tools. Moving to an occasional series means I get to talk about only the awesome things.
  • On the Job will still be updated every Monday (excepting holidays, etc.). However, I will start to make it more library oriented. This is a reading/library blog and I think these posts have become too broad. I will make my advice more targeted to those in the libraries and information field. Also, please feel free to contact me if you have ideas you want me to cover or if you want to write guest blog. I am all about hearing from others and sharing what they have learned.
  • I will debut a new feature this Sunday. In these posts, which I've dubbed What I Read This Week, I will list (with commentary) the best of what I've read this week - books, magazines, web posts, or whatever else my eyes have run over.
  • Look to see more posts about reading, libraries, librarians, information literacy, and anything related to those things in the future. I want to write and post more expansively on these areas. (If I post it. I have to do it. Right?)
I hope that these changes make the blog more fun to read and offer the chance for more interaction.

Please leave your comments and suggestions in the comments.

BOOLEAN: Animal Instinct

Who wore animal print tights to work this week?

This girl.

Rawr.
At one point, the office was cold enough that I tossed on my scarf. Said scarf is zebra print. If I had hidden behind the tree in the office, I would have looked like a jungle chase scene. Maybe next time.

Send your BOOLEAN pictures and links to BOOLEANgroup@gmail.com.

BOOLEAN: Friday Fashion Find - Birds of a Feather

Wolford has named this beautiful pair of legwear "Paradise Peacock Tights." There is something art deco-y about them that just pulls me in.




You can purchase a pair at Bare Necessities. They are a might bit (okay, a lot bit) expensive, so I recommend price stalking.

Send your BOOLEAN pictures and links to BOOLEANgroup@gmail.com

Thursday, January 26, 2012

BOOLEAN: A ha!

I was clicking through the recent back entries of the Librarian Wardrobe tumblr... when I found this picture.



Male librarians in awesome socks!

Win!

Send your BOOLEAN pictures and links to BOOLEANgroup@gmail.com.

Variations on a Theme: Science - The Space/Time Edition

The Boyfriend has turned me into a bit of a science nerd. I always find science classes to be fun, and sciencey shows to be interesting, but now I'm reading books and blogs on the subject. We've also attended a few lectures in the the Smithsonian Institution's Star Lecture Series. Between my new found love of all things science and NASA's release of the new "blue marble" image, I finally settled on this month's Variations on a Theme: Science - The Space/Time Edition.

(I dare you to not hum the Doctor Who theme right now.)


All the summaries provided are from Barnes and Noble.


How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had it Coming
Mike Brown

The solar system most of us grew up with included nine planets, with Mercury closest to the sun and Pluto at the outer edge. Then, in 2005, astronomer Mike Brown made the discovery of a lifetime: a tenth planet, Eris, slightly bigger than Pluto. But instead of adding one more planet to our solar system, Brown’s find ignited a firestorm of controversy that culminated in the demotion of Pluto from real planet to the newly coined category of “dwarf” planet. Suddenly Brown was receiving hate mail from schoolchildren and being bombarded by TV reporters—all because of the discovery he had spent years searching for and a lifetime dreaming about.

The Backyard Astronomer's Guide
Terence Dickinson and Alan Dreyer

The newest edition of The Backyard Astronomer's Guide includes the latest data and answers the questions most often asked by home astronomers, from beginners to experienced stargazers. Terence Dickinson and Alan Dyer provide expert guidance on the right types of telescopes and other equipment; photographing the stars through a telescope; and star charts, software and other references. They cover daytime and twilight observing, planetary and deep-sky observing, and much more.

The Hidden Reality: Parallel Universes and the Deep Laws of the Cosmos
Brian Greene

There was a time when "universe" meant all there is. Everything. Yet, a number of theories are converging on the possibility that our universe may be but one among many parallel universes populating a vast multiverse. Here, Briane Greene, one of our foremost physicists and science writers, takes us on a breathtaking journey to a multiverse comprising an endless series of big bangs, a multiverse with duplicates of every one of us, a multiverse populated by vast sheets of spacetime, a multiverse in which all we consider real are holographic illusions, and even a multiverse made purely of math—and reveals the reality hidden within each.

A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes
Stephen Hawking

Told in language we all can understand, A Brief History of Time plunges into the exotic realms of black holes and quarks, of antimatter and “arrows of time,” of the big bang and a bigger God—where the possibilities are wondrous and unexpected. With exciting images and profound imagination, Stephen Hawking brings us closer to the ultimate secrets at the very heart of creation. This landmark volume in scientific writing leads us on an exhilarating journey to distant galaxies, black holes, and alternate dimensions, and includes Professor Hawking's observations about the last decade's advances -- developments that have confirmed many of his theoretical predictions. Makes vividly clear how Professor Hawking's work has transformed our view of the universe.


The 4 Percent Universe: Dark Matter, Dark Energy, and the Race to Discover the Rest of Reality 
Richard Panek

In the past few years, a handful of scientists have been racing to explain a disturbing aspect of our universe: only 4 percent of it consists of the matter that makes up you, me, our books, and every planet, star, and galaxy. The rest—96 percent of the universe—is completely unknown. Richard Panek tells the dramatic story of how scientists reached this cosmos-shattering conclusion, and what they’re doing to find this "dark" matter and an even more bizarre substance called dark energy. This is perhaps the greatest mystery in all of science, and solving it will bring fame, funding, and certainly a Nobel Prize. Based on in-depth, on-site reporting and hundreds of interviews–with everyone from Berkeley’s feisty Saul Perlmutter and Johns Hopkins’s meticulous Adam Riess to the quietly revolutionary Vera Rubin–the book offers an intimate portrait of the bitter rivalries and fruitful collaborations, the eureka moments and blind alleys, that have fueled their search, redefined science, and reinvented the universe. The stakes couldn’t be higher. Our view of the cosmos is profoundly wrong, and Copernicus was only the beginning: not just Earth, but all common matter is a marginal part of existence. Panek’s fast-paced narrative, filled with behind-the-scenes details, brings this epic story to life for the very first time.

Neil deGrasse Tyson

Loyal readers of the monthly "Universe" essays in Natural History magazine have long recognized Neil deGrasse Tyson's talent for guiding them through the mysteries of the cosmos with stunning clarity and almost childlike enthusiasm. Here, Tyson compiles his favorite essays across a myriad of cosmic topics. The title essay introduces readers to the physics of black holes by explaining the gory details of what would happen to your body if you fell into one. "Holy Wars" examines the needless friction between science and religion in the context of historical conflicts. "The Search for Life in the Universe" explores astral life from the frontiers of astrobiology. And "Hollywood Nights" assails the movie industry's feeble efforts to get its night skies right.




Other Science Titles:
The Case for Mars: The Plan to Settle the Red Planet and Why We Must - Robert Zubrin

Cosmos - Carl Sagan
The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory - Brian Greene
The Fabric of the Cosmos: Space, Time, and the Texture of Reality - Brian Greene
The Grand Design - Stephen Hawking
Hyperspace: A Scientific Odyssey Through Parallel Universes, Time Warps, and the Tenth Dimension - Michio Kaku

A Short History of Nearly Everything - Bill Bryson
The Universe in a Nutshell - Stephen Hawking
Wonders of the Universe - Brian Cox

Links and Stuff: January 26, 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012

On the Job: Relationship Building

If you manage or supervise staff, it's vital to develop an individual relationship with each person on your team. Part of being a good manager is knowing what your staff. It's hard to be a good boss if you are put a wall between your office and their desks.

Some of the best ways to create indivudal relationships include:
  • Impromptu (or planned) individual meetings - They don't have to be long, just enough to "catch up" about their work (or life outside the office). Having one-on-one times lets your staff talk to you in a less formal manner.
  • Providing comments - Positive or negative, you have to talk to your staff to get to know them and their work. This is best done in person, but you can create a running dialogue via e-mail. Commenting on your staff member's work lets them know that you are aware of what is going on in the office.
  • Noticing change - If a staff member redecorates their cubicle or hangs a picture up, mention it. If they've suddenly cut their hair, or are wearing a festive article of clothing, when appropriate, say something. You don't have to stalk your staff to see "what's new," but you can let them know that you're aware something has changed.
  • Remembering details - If an employee says their seeing a movie that night, ask what they thought the next day. If your staffer has kids, ask how their t-ball league is going. You don't have to remember every detail, just enough to show that you are paying attention.
  • Listening - When a staff member asks you a question, comments on a project, or otherwise gets your attention about anything - listen. This is the key point to being a manager. If you have open ears and a welcoming attitude, your staff will come to you (or wave you over when you walk by their desk).
Not all of these methods work for every employee or every office. That's the the reason you have to work at building these relationships. You can't be a good manager from afar. You have to know what's going on, and the best way to do that is to develop a good relationship with each of your staff members.

The key point to all of this is to lessen the "Ack! The boss is talking to me" anxiety that occurs when a boss is more standoffish. Your staff should not be afraid of you. You're human, and your employees should know that you enjoy their company and appreciate their contributions to the office.


How do you build relationships with your staff?

Saturday, January 21, 2012

2012 Reading / Bookish Resolutions

1. Read books I own (on my endless quest to reduce Mt. TBR).
-- I've weeded and weeded, I've stopped buying books (for the most part), and, yet, I still have dozens of books in my collection that have gone unread for years. I always seem to give into the "ooh, new shiny" titles I see at the library. This year, I want to read more from my personal collection.

2. Read from the Titanic collection.
-- This is an addendum to my first resolution. April 15, 2012 marks the 100 year anniversary of the Titanic tragedy. Since I was kid (long before the movie came out... which - confession time - I did see in theaters 4 time), I've been fascinated by this event and the culture surrounding it. My intellectual curiosity has led me to create a rather large collection of Titanic related books. My dad also indulges me by sending every Titanic book he finds my way. I currently have 54 titles (both fiction and non-fiction). In 2012, I want to read at least 6 books from that collection. It will barely dent what I have, but it's a start. (I'll post a snapshot on this collection later.)

3. Stop focusing on the numbers.
-- When I write up these end of year reviews, I find myself too focused on the numbers and not on the content or quality. This year, I will try really hard to not care about how many books I complete. While I love the numbers and will still track completions and page counts, I will attempt to not be disappointed (or elated) by what I see.

4. Be a more conscious consumer of media. 
-- When I find a topic/subject/thing/etc. that I like, I tend to go nuts. I fill up my RSS feeder with new blogs, I add lots of titles to my TBR list, and I run rampant getting my hands on anything related to the topic. Essentially, I gorge myself on the issue until I am sated or lose interest. There's nothing wrong with that, per se... but I'm the type to stress over it. So, I reverse my love and weed the topic from my life (or at least down to a manageable level). This year, I want to be more conscious when I indulge my interests - even out the overindulge/completely weed pendulum so to speak.

5. Be a better blogger.
-- I can't promise that I will blog more (I know my own weaknesses), but I want to find a better balance. This blog veers between "professional" and "personal" in a rather haphazard way. I still want to blog about these areas, but I want to try to do it in a more cohesive way. I don't know what that will entail, but I hope it leads to a better reading experience for everyone.

2011 Year in Review

How I would describe 2011
I read more books than I did in 2010. Win! But I still read less than I would like. Sad face.

I don't know why I feel this need to always read more More MORE! But I do. Sometimes I get annoyed with my inner monologue for nagging at me. Shut up brain! I will read what I want, when I want. So there. Maybe that should be a resolution for 2012... hmmm. More on that in the next entry.

Reading took a backseat to life this year - and I'm okay with that. I had a lot of fun this year doing "other things," so reading was not the first thing on my mind. When I was putting books first (like during the two read-a-thons), I was happy with what I was reading. Even if I ended up hating the book, I at least never felt like I was wasting my time. Sometimes I love complaining about books; it's a nice stress reliever.

So, 2011. Not a great year, but not a horrible year. I finished 58 books totaling 14,967 pages.

[Side Note: I had some fun with Excel and discovered that, since starting this blog, I've read 535 books totaling 163,001 pages. I am coloring myself impressed.]

Reading Goals v. Reading Reality
I will not buy books.
-- I did okay. I purchased a  few books - but they were mainly books to share with The Boyfriend. or books with new recipes to feed us. I ventured into the Bibliobarn while I was home in October... which is always dangerous for my reading goals. That said, I managed to not go too crazy.


I will update this blog on a more regular (and expansive) basis.
-- I like to think I did better this year. I was pretty good about keeping up with my "regular features" but I never did get around to writing random entries about reading, books, libraries, and other related content.

Read more.
-- I got in 8 extra books. Does that count? My page count, on the other hand, dropped off. Poo.

The Year in Genres
The genre totals are more than the completed book total because I classified some books into two genres. When I was compiling these numbers, I was quite shocked to see that I had read only 5 romance novels. That is quite a turn-around from my previous, double-digit numbers. It seems I have decided to read more non-fiction now that I am no longer in school. Meh. I am okay with this.

Biography = 1
History = 1
Humor = 2
Juvenile = 3
Memoir = 3
Romance = 5
Mystery = 6
Fiction = 7
Non-Fiction = 7
Library Science = 11
Graphic Novel = 14

The Year in Ratings
When I told The Boyfriend that I had no "1" ratings these year, he responded, "Maybe it's because you didn't read many romance novels." Snark. He has it.
1 = 0
2 = 2
3 = 0
4 = 6
5 = 6
6 = 27
7 = 10
8 = 7
9 = 1
10 = 0

Yikes! What an average reading year. At least the bell curve is on the "good" rather than the "bad" side of the Meh Line.

The Ten Best Books of 2011 
This list was a pain in the butt to compile. When one has that many average reads, they all start to blur together.

10. At Home: A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson
9. Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America's War with Militant Islam by Mark Bowden
8. License to Pawn: Deals, Steals, and My Life at Gold & Silver by Rick Harrison
7. The Reader by Bernhard Schlink
6. The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo
5. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
4. Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff
3. Deadline by Mira Grant
2. Feed by Mira Grant


and hands down the BEST book of the year (which I am considering re-rating as a 10)...

1. How I Killed Pluto (and Why it Had it Coming) by Mike Brown


There you have it, my friends. 2011 has been tabulated and reviewed. Now we move into the 2012 reading season. I will be back with my bookish related resolutions for this new year.

Friday, January 20, 2012

BOOLEAN: Friday Fashion Find - Dance Worthy

Before I get to this week's Friday Fashion Find, I'd like to turn your attention to Pinterest (so addicted, yes I am). I've created a BOOLEAN board. Here I pin any awesome tights I find whilst perusing the interwebs. Check it out!

Back to our regularly scheduled update...


On Wednesday I went to see the Mariinsky Ballet perform Les Saisons Russes at the Kennedy Center. Had I known that everyone woman in attendance would be wearing spectacular BOOLEAN wear, I would have brought my camera. Instead, I scoured the web until I found a pair of tights I saw.

These babies are from HUE. The pattern on these tights is complex but manages to remain subtle enough that you can wear them to work.


You can purchase this pair of tights from HUE.

Send your BOOLEAN pictures and links to BOOLEANgroup@gmail.com

Thursday, January 19, 2012

BOOLEAN: Member Tights - Gray Stripes

The Roomie keeps expanding her collection of tights. Maybe our shared love of hoisery is why we're friends.... Also, the color gray.



The salient details: The tights are HUE brand which she purchased from Anthropologie.


Send your BOOLEAN pictures and links to BOOLEANgroup@gmail.com

Note to self...

I keep meaning to post my 2011 year in review posts, but I've been distracted with various things. They will be up by Sunday night.

Until then, please check out the updated Reading List page.

If I say it on the blog, it has to happen.

Right?

Links and Stuff: January 19, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

SOPA Strike

If you're gadding about the interwebs tomorrow and coming across "black" sites, it's most likely because they are protesting SOPA.

The bill aims to block online piracy but, in reality, would censor everyday uses of the web. For more information, please see this video I posted last week.

SOPA needs to be stopped. Call your congressman, senator, and other elected officials tomorrow voicing your protest of SOPA.



You can view a list of striking websites here: http://sopastrike.com/


YouTube Tuesday: Joy



This video puts a HUGE smile on my face.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Book 58: Guests of the Ayatollah

TITLE: Guests of the Ayatollah: The First Battle in America's War with Militant Islam
AUTHOR: Mark Bowden
STARTED: October 28, 2011
FINISHED: December 28, 2011
PAGES: 680
GENRE: Non-Fiction

FIRST SENTENCE: Before dawn Mohammad Hashemi prepared himself to die,

SUMMARY: [From barnesandnoble.com] The Iran hostage crisis was a watershed moment in American history. It was America's first showdown with Islamist fundamentalism, a confrontation that has remained at the forefront of American policy to this day: In Iran, following the ouster of the shah, a provisional government was established, and for a critical moment in the modern age's first Islamist revolution, a more open and democratic society seemed possible. But the religious hardliners on the Revolutionary Council used the hostage crisis as an opportunity to purge moderates from the leadership ranks. They altered the course of the revolution and set Iran on the extreme path it follows to this day.

The Iran hostage crisis was also a dramatic story that captivated the American people. Communities across the country launched yellow-ribbon campaigns. ABC began a new late-night television program - which became Nightline - recapping the latest events in the crisis and counting up the days of captivity. The hostages' families became celebrities, and the never-ending criticism of the government's response crippled Jimmy Carter's reelection campaign.

Guests of the Ayatollah tells this story through the eyes of the people who lived it, on both sides of the crisis.
Mark Bowden takes us inside the hostages' cells, detailing the Americans' terror, confusion, boredom, and ingenuity in the face of absurd interrogations, mock executions, and a seemingly endless imprisonment. He recreates the exuberance and naivete of the Iranian hostage takers. He chronicles the diplomatic efforts to secure the hostages' release and offers a remarkable view of President Jimmy Carter's Oval Office, where the most powerful man in the world was handcuffed by irrational fanatics halfway around the world. Throughout this all, Bowden weaves the dramatic story of Delta Force, a new Special Forces unit poised for their first mission, Operation Eagle Claw.

THOUGHTS: I love everything that Mark Bowden has written (that I've had the chance to read). That said, this is (so far) my least favorite of his books. While the writing quality and style are the same, I was a bit disappointed in the content. I was expecting a bit more analysis of the ramification of the Iran Hostage Crisis, but the book is almost entirely narrative. Had I been expecting that, my guess is that I would have enjoyed the text more.

Bowden continues to be one of the best non-fiction authors writing today. He has the ability to craft story out of history - which makes his books highly enjoyable reads. Guests of the Ayatollah is no different. He places the reader in captivity with the hostages as their story unfolds. Bowden does a stunning job of recreating the emotions, physically conditions, and attitudes of the hostages. Their stories of survival, boredom, and defiance were fascinating to read.

While reading, I felt the book was a bit long, but I would be hard-pressed to say what Bowden should have left out. The crisis was long and had great impact in the U.S. I think Bowden's in-depth coverage does a marvelous job of capturing how the events of the hostage situation played out in Iran and the U.S.

Bowden is one of my favorite authors because he uses words so wonderfully. There is an addictive quality to his writing that other non-fiction writers lack. I keep wanting to read more, even if the contents of the story make me uncomfortable. Seriously, this man could writing a book about ants and I would read it. His style is just that enjoyable.


What I liked least about this book was the failure to analyze the greater impact of hostage situation. By subtitling the book The First Battle in America's War with Militant Islam I expected there to be analysis on the impact then and up through today. So, I blame the subtitle for my disappointment. I loves me some thoughtful insight and this book, while otherwise great, lacked that chunk of meat I desired.

All in all, Guests of the Ayatollah was a long but good read. Also, as a bonus, I can finally let myself purchase Worm: The First Digital World War. I refused to buy Bowden's newest book until I read this one.

RATING: 7/10 [Very Good]

Friday, January 13, 2012

Book 57: 101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them

TITLE: 101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them: Practical Advice for Handling Real-World Project Challenges
AUTHOR: Tom Kendrick
STARTED: September 15, 2011
FINISHED: December 20, 2011
PAGES: 260
GENRE: Non-Fiction

FIRST SENTENCE: "It depends."

SUMMARY: [From barnesandnoble.com] Even with a terrific project management program in place, problems can arise to derail your team’s hard work. The last thing you need in the heat of battle is academic theory. You need field-proven fixes, practical answers to urgent questions, and simple strategies for navigating around obstacles. 101 Project Management Problems and How to Solve Them explores a wide range of these real-world challenges, including how to:

• Keep a project on track despite unavoidable interruptions.
• Prevent unreliable outside collaborators from jeopardizing the entire project.
• Manage project teams who have little or no project management experience.
• Make up for lost time without cutting corners.
• Succeed in the face of threatened budget cuts.
• And many more.

Filled with plan-ahead strategies as well as on-the-fly solutions, this helpful guide is the ultimate project adviser and on-the-job troubleshooter in one!


THOUGHTS: This is a well-organized, straight forward book. The title says it all. Each question is presented, the context is given, and answers are listed. Sweet and simple.

An easy read, and one that can be done on an "as needed" basis.

RATING: 6/10 [Good]

Stop SOPA


PROTECT IP / SOPA Breaks The Internet from Fight for the Future on Vimeo.



This is important. Please contact your elected officials and urge them to vote NO on these bills.

BOOLEAN: Friday Fashion Find - Warm and Fuzzy

The tights above may not look like much, but they have a secret. These simply looking tights are line with fleece. That's right, the warm and fuzzy fabric that makes up your favorite pajamas are also in these tights. '

Winter is here. These tights will keep your warm.

You can purchase a pair (or two) at Bare Necessities.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Links and Stuff: January 12, 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

BOOLEAN: Member Tights are Lacey

BOOLEAN member, The Roomie, donned a spectacular pair of lace tights recently. She decided to try them out before the weather took a turn for the arctic temperatures.


Lace makes for beautiful tights, but it does nothing to stop the wind.


YouTube Tuesday: Did You Read



True consumers of the written word.

Monday, January 09, 2012

On the Job: Meeting Rules

On Wednesday, I will host my first all staff meeting for my new unit. Meetings are a valuable workplace tool, but they should not be overused. When it comes to meetings, I follow a few simple rules:
  • Only a hold a meeting when it is necessary. If you can say what you need to say in an e-mail, then don't hold a meeting. 
  • Keep 'em short. Anything over an hour is discouraged. Half hour meetings are awesome!
  • Keep 'em targeted. Use an agenda to keep everyone (including you, the host) on track.
  • Be prepared. Don't wing it.
  • Death by Powerpoint. Avoid it.
  • Allow time for questions (and make sure to ask for them).
That's it.

Well... having a few snacks and beverages available is not discouraged.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Book 56: Her Secret Fantasy

TITLE: Her Secret Fantasy
AUTHOR: Gaelen Foley
STARTED: November 26, 2011
FINISHED: November 27, 2011
PAGES: 405
GENRE: Romance

FIRST SENTENCE: "The poor ladies!"

SUMMARY: [From barnesandnoble.com] Regency London's elegant ballrooms mask a daring world of erotic adventure. In this second novel in Gaelen Foley's Spicy Trilogy, a mysterious beauty with a devastating secret discovers, in the arms of a bold and fearless cavalry officer, passion that breaks all boundaries.

Some say the aristocratic Balfour clan is cursed, a once-great family now in slow decline. Graceful Lily Balfour is her family's last hope, and she has come to London with one goal-to marry a rich man. Her well-laid plans are balked, however, by the irresistible Major Derek Knight, a handsome highborn soldier and adventurer newly returned from India.

Hardened by battles on India's lawless frontiers, Derek is not just a fighter but a skilled and insatiable lover-a master of the Eastern arts of pleasure. Though Derek finds no shortage of willing women in London, it is the untouchable, aloof Lily who haunts him. After one stolen moment, he hungers for nights of sensual abandon to fulfill her fantasies and free her from her self-imposed prison. But he has come to England on a vital mission, and when Lily is pledged to a wealthy man suspected of corruption, Derek must thwart the treachery that ensnares them both-for only then will ecstasy and the sweet promise of her heart be his to claim.

THOUGHTS: I don't remember anything about this book. I recall that it was FAR better than the romance I read before it... but that's it.

Clearly, a mediocre read. But at least you can't go wrong with Gaelen Foley.


RATING: 6/10 [Good]

Friday, January 06, 2012

BOOLEAN: Friday Fashion Find -


It's the first Friday of 2012. That means, I have to start this year's Friday Fashion Find with a bang. Or rather, not a bang, but a booyah.

So..... BOOYAH!

Now those tights are literary.

You can purchase a pair for yourself or other lit lover from Coolil.

Send your BOOLEAN pictures and links to BOOLEANgroup@gmail.com

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Links and Stuff: January 5, 2012

  • Tiny libraries are popping up everywhere.
  • Kirkus' top book covers of 2011. 
  • "Publishers hated libraries then, but there was nothing they could do about it. The difference is, now they can control the content as well as the distribution, their ebooks aren’t sold but licensed (evading the first sale doctrine), and the publishers can dictate how people get to their books." 
  • Barnes and Noble may split-off Nook business.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

2011 in Review Post

My annual year-in-review post is coming... soon... ish.

I still have some book review to complete and statistics to compile, so I should be able to post the breakdown of 2011 by sometime next week.

Thanks for reading and a big Happy New Year Huzzah! to everyone.

YouTube Tuesday: Digitize



This could prove very useful to church scholars.