Saturday, November 11, 2006

Oh boy- a new version of Blogger is available. But, I will wait a bit before I do that. I am still getting used to the new Yahoo email screens. So many updates, so little time! Had a discussion yesterday with a colleague about all the new technology "bells and whistles" we could incorporate into our online courses. But, technology for technology's sake, rather than adding value to the course is not my cup of tea. I am truly the "bookarian" one of my young patrons called me years ago. It has become my favorite descriptor for who I am. Not that I don't love everything else that goes on in a library, but I have a passion for books. Some of my friends have a passion for learning the newest technology related to our profession. My passion is books, in both print and audio format. I want to read or listen to the newest books for children and teens so that I can introduce them to anyone who will listen! I have a stack of articles next to me on audiobooks as I am about to write an article on children and audiobooks, which are referred to as "talking books" when doing a database search. Talking books - interesting term.

My early morning hours today were spent with Tarheel Libraries (a publication from the NC Library Association) and American Libraries. I read both from front to back. Am pondering what 4 characters I want on my NC "Drive for Libraries" license plate. :-) BKRN perhaps? Highlighted the statistic in American Libraries that listed the only age range with an increase in certified librarians is the 45 to 54 year old age group. Clear support that librarianship is a second career for many people. I love having students in my courses who have a base of life experience and years in the PreK-12 environment as teachers before they join the ranks of we subversive school librarians. :)

My late night hours last night were spent with Pete Hautman's Rash. No - I wasn't itching, but the other teens at the school Bo is kicked out of after he triggered a mass hysteria about a rash are indeed breaking out and itching. Soon everyone was covered in little red bumps and Bo became Typhoid Mary. That, along with his inability to control his temper, gets him sentenced to prison, which in this futuristic novel, includes making pizzas. People go to prison for the smallest offenses - this is how the government makes money - it sells the a felon's contract to a private company where the felon is then put to work for long hours with no pay. Slick deal for both the government and the companies involved. Bo gets sentenced to a pizza making facility in the Canadian tundra where the threat of being fed to the polar bears keeps most of the teenage guys working and eating pizza, even though they are sick of it. Bo is "promoted" to the Goldshirts and learns how to play football, which has been banned in the USSA (once the USA) for many years - too dangerous. People wear a helmet when going to a walk! Add to this craziness the Artificial Intelligence being Bork, who Bo created in school, and you have a fun read. Bork is able to get Bo out of prison, but will Bo be able to survive on the outside with no football and no fear of polar bears? :-) A funny but haunting look at a possible future I would have no desire to live in. I love Hautman's books, with Mr. Was still ranking as my favorite. Need to find a copy and reread it - such a cool historical fantasy.

Although the SLJ Summit and my time with Mary, Scott, and my grandson Michael were wonderful, I am so glad to be back home in Greenville. I sighed in relief when I walked into the condo late Wednesday night and have been sighing in contentment ever since. The weather is still wonderful and the trees are losing their colorful leaves. I love Autumn in NC! Now if Steve were here all would be right in my world. :-)