Had a lovely time last night as one of about 40-50 guests of the ABC Library, Sydney. Looks like around 200 folk sent in requests to attend, and it was very much a matter of first in, first served. I didn’t know most of the people there and ended up meeting a few new people which was nice. Plus got to hang with a couple of mates who’d managed to make it too. The ABC Librarians excelled themselves, running 3 tours (10 minutes each) covering different aspects of what the library does and covers. I particularly liked their cataloguing system for videos, film,etc. Librarians can put items in any available space on any shelf. Once placed, they scan the item’s barcode and the shelf barcode, and the system is automatically updated with the item’s current location ie shelf order is irrelevant. So long as both barcodes are scanned, any old space will do. Maximises space and means you don’t have gaps on the shelves going unused. Awesome.
Ended up watching the end of The Chaser while relaxing on one of the couches, sipping champas and nibbling on some delish cheese and crackers. As for the main event, The Librarians, it seemed to go down well. I liked it and thought it a reasonable first episode, a few funny moments, and a few bits that made me feel uncomfortable. While the racism seemed spot on, I reckon they pushed that line a bit too much and it felt overbearing. There wasn’t anything that really jarred with my own library experiences and I’m looking forward to future episodes. Various librarians have been blogging already and there’s been some discussion on librarian elists. Some folk liked it, some folk hated it and some folk were happy to wait and see. There’s a total of 6 episodes and the trick for me will be to remember to watch TV; I may well end up downloading the episodes later.
Well tonight is the big night, the premiere of a new ABC comedy titled “The Librarians“. ALIA, the Australian Librarian and Information Assoc, is even hosting a blog devoted to it. Librarians around the country are hosting launch parties, with dressing up encouraged. Yours truly will be attending a gathering at the ABC Library inside the ABC bunker in Ultimo where 40 librarians will be partying hard.
“Equate all technical knowledge–it’s all interchangeable; all techies know everything.”
The Librarian in Black has posted a list of things (by her co presenter) never to say to librarian techie types, or even techies generally I reckon, especially if you want to keep them.
Had one of those days where not a lot went right. Had a good night’s sleep but the day seemed to go downhill, even to the point that when I went for a relaxing walk after work, I was nearly run over by speeding cyclists…on the footpath. Oh so Newtown. I yelled my displeasure but the cowards laughed and took off. Probably just as well, if they’d hung about I would have turned coward I reckon. Popped into a bookshop in search of a guide to Newtown that got an interesting review in the paper a few weeks ago. No sign of it and I suspect I’ll have to order it from the Trust. However, in a victory for retail therapy (and a failure for being spendthrift), I found a copy of the Taschen edition of da Vinci’s works I’d been seeking. All his drawings and paintings in a single, very heavy (hurt my finger when I shut it too quickly) volume. Been trying not to buy books, particularly as my nice copy of The Silmarillion had recently arrived. Oh well, it was at least a book I’ve been on the lookout for and nearly ordered from a bookstore in Melbourne where I last saw it. Feeling rather relaxed and content at the moment.
Proving that my vocab is not as expansive as I would like, I did manage to attain the dizzying heights of 40 (several times) and in the process was responsible for donating 1,340 grains of rice. It goes without saying that serious word people, were comfortably in the 40s and regularly attaining a score of 50.
Update: with a bit of practice you can improve. Some words repeat but not enough to explain the improvement. I’m now scoring primarily in the early 40s and briefly made it to 44.
Just noticed that 16 Oct was Dictionary Day, or at least it was in the US, where the Day was declared to honour the birth of Noah Webster, author of the first American Dictionary. Reading the comments of the OUP historical piece on various lexicographers, I came across a site dedicated to the 300th anni
nversary of the birth of Samuel Johnson, creator of the dictionary, A Dictionary of the English Language, which was considered the authoritative dictionary until the publication of the OED a century or two later.
Okey doke, it was announced after I went to bed that Anne Enright had won this year’s Booker for her book, The Gathering.