Saturday, April 29, 2006

car shopping

you know, as parents, we think that getting our child to 18 without loss of limb or sanity is a good thing. we think the worst is behind us. we think that when they get their license, that is a major hurdle and the rest will be cake. after all, they passed the driving and written test with flying colors. then, they wreck your car. then they wreck their aunts car. okay. no problem. the cars get fixed. we have insurance. nobody got hurt. then, they go off to a foreign land (California) and get a big ol' speeding ticket. THEN they come home and ask, "oh, by the way, will you still give me some money for a car?"
then, we as parents (who have just only two days ago started taking BIG TRANQUILIZERS for panic attacks), have to help these kids find a car. and do our children want to shop around for the best car for their budget? noooo. they want a car NOW because, OHMIGOD, they can't wait! they aren't patient. they have places to go (CompUsa) and people to see (CompUsa employees).
AND they insist on lugging around a laptop with a GPS (because clearly the parent is too stupid to find the car dealerships without computer assistance and a navigator). when the parent asks what they will do alone in a car without a laptop, they say, "oh, i'm taking it with me. it goes everywhere i go. i have even taken it to the MALL." so, the parent wonders, how will this child be able to DRIVE while he is 1) IMing several people at once or 2) talking over the computer with some microphone thingy or 3) typing in directions for the GPS or 4) doing whatever else he does on the computer (when he should really be KEEPING AN EYE ON THE ROAD). let's not even discuss cell phones and radios.
or aluminum engines.
no, let us discuss the fact that the parents are OLD and CRAZY and heavily medicated. just wait until the psychiatrist hears all this. he will be prescribing EVEN MORE medication and he will think, "thank God MY kids take the bus!"


last night, while driving home from a visit, my odometer hit 111111. this was the most profound religious experience i have had since the Virgin Mary appeared to me with my little hamster in her hands. (the entire odometer read 111111 901.1)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

new meds!

i have new meds to battle the panic attacks and anxiety...Klonopin. well, i don't have the fancy smancy hollow 'K' pills but the light green round generics called Clonazepam. i took my first one (.5mg) last night at 10:30 and by 10:45, i was knocked on my ass. couldn't walk, couldn't talk, feeling goofy. and i had a really good nights sleep with just a few weird dreams that i can't remember. (Maniac Mike dreamed he got me pregnant and i was totally pissed at him. see, that is a nighmare!) when i got up this morning at 8:00, i was still feeling woozy but i made it to work on time. i had asked my coworkers to call me if i wasn't there at 9 sharp just in case i fell back to sleep after MM called me at 8. i was not shakey today, did not have that weird skin-crawling, 'get-me-outta-here feeling and i was not any more tired than usual.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Punk Penguin Reader

i have been working on a new blog featuring books i have read or wish to read and experiences in reading. i have been very depressed so i am leaving this blog alone for a little while and drowning myself in books.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Hino is back!

Hino is back! he arrived home yesterday around 11:15am. he flew jet Blue from California (which airport?) to JFK (NY) and from NY to Logan Airport (Boston). Hino said the planes were brand new, sparkling clean with all-leather seats (or, all the seats were leather). there was atleast 6 more inches of leg room and more seat room...especially when Hino sat by the exit. the plane he road from NY to Boston was so new, it was only the third flight the plane has ever made! he did not get a meal, but some animal crackers and soda, even on the 6 hour flight they did not serve food. for $5 he had the option of watching a movie on the overhead tv that comes with every seat. he watched the X-Men, Ron Popeil (and his knife set) and the Game Show Channel (yawn!). he also got a little goodie pack with hand cream, mints, ear plugs and, my favorite, an eye shade! i really needed one of those, too. i can't wait for jetBlue to come to TF Green Airport!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

on patrol

the librarians had a meeting. they came up with a new 'policy' to deal with the out-of-control middle-schoolers: each librarian and the director will take one day a week to be the person on patrol. on that day, that librarian will be in-charge of keeping an eye on the kids and disciplining them. from now on, we report to that person. the kids get ONE warning. if they misbehave again, they are asked to leave the library grounds and we notify the parent, if possible.
sounds good but i doubt the director will stick to it. she is wishy-washy and terrified of parents' wrath. she does not back up her staff, generally, and the kids don't take her seriously.
i guess we'll see what happens.

broken video

just a short one:
notoriously difficult patron drops off a video and leaves. one video box is empty. i call the patron (cringing) to let her know the box is empty and we cannot check-in the item until the videocassette is returned. i had to leave this message on the answering machine. patron calls back two days later and asks to speak to the circhead. the patron dropped the video and broke off the gate. she wants to know if she will be charged for it since it was an accident. she also wants to know if she has to pay the late fine. she still hasn't returned the video but she already wants to know if she can weasle out of the fine or not. apparently, our pushover circhead told this patron she would not have to pay for the video but she would have to pay the fine. i guess she thought she could fix the gate, which we do routinely...but we also charge a dollar to do this. see, if this were left to me, i would have charged her for the video. if the video had been in the box, it might not have gotten broken. this makes me think that the video was broken all along and the patron believed that if she returned the box, we might not notice or care that it was empty or not be able to track her down as the last patron to borrow the video. patrons really do believe that, once the item is returned, we have no way of knowing who had it last and they try to get away with all kinds of ripping recipes out of $49 cook books and removing the inserts to CDs so they will have the lyrics and the performers picture. a girls' shelter is notorious for returning CDs without the inserts.
patrons must think we are stupid AND that we don't care how our library materials are handled. we aren't stupid (most of the time) and we care enormously about our materials! after all, we know how much they cost!

Friday, April 07, 2006

our own little loud-mouth know-it-all

every library has one: a know-it-all, loud-mouth employee. ours is in her early thirties. today she pissed me off.
she is a smart girl and she makes sure we all know it. she is very plain, never wears make-up and dresses poorly. she often wears faded t-shirts to work and short pants that i would not even wear to the supermarket (and i am NO fashion plate). she often tells bizarre tales that always put her in the most radiant light. for instance, her gorgeous dentist has asked her to coffee several times, once immediatley after he did some dental work for her. he asked her to join him for lunch. right. she knows the firemen in her town and several of them have 'looked at her' and flirted with her. when she pulls in to a certain gas station, a policeman she knows will personally pump gas for her...and this has happened frequently. we all let it go over our heads. oh, did i mention she has a mustache?
once she told us that a cop pulled her over because, he said, her car was the same make, color and model of someone who was 'wanted'. not only did the cop apologize profusely for stopping her, he flirted with her and asked for her phone number! did i mention she drove a blue Hyundai? is Hyundai the new crookmobile?
she has been pissing off a cocircworker ever since we had Millennium up and running. the circworker would ask the lady who trained us a question and the loud-mouth would stop whatever she was doing and proceed to tell her coworker what to do. she has done this to me, too. the other day, the lady who trained us found out a new 'trick' we could use as a shortcut when filling holds. she told me. when my cocircworker arrived for her shift, i asked our trainer to show her the 'trick'. loud-mouth, who was not included in the conversation, piped up, "oh, i already knew that. i showed so-and-so last night." we all rolled our eyes. she has said, "i already knew that" more times in the past couple of weeks than i care to count.
the reasons why she pissed me off today are relatively minor: she would not place a hold for a patron and insisted the patron write down all the info so she could place the hold later. what really got me about that was she told the patron that's the way we do it now with the new system when infact, we have been placing holds for patrons as they stood before us, waiting. i did several holds today while the patron waited and so did she. She cancelled a hold on a patrons DVD because we no longer can put holds on our DVDs with the new system, yet we have been honoring holds that transferred over from the old system. she refused to hold the item which made no sense to me and i told her so. little things like that.
at one point we were talking about which place we would order-out from tomorrow. the last saturday that we ordered out, eveyone else wanted pizza though i was dying for a club sandwich. no problem. i ordered a spinach pie from the pizza place. i ended up getting sick. still, i was glad to compromise. today we were lamenting the fact that so few places deliver. i mentioned that we could always have chinese food and the loud-mouth shot me a sarcastic, "i don't DO chinese!" well, fuckin-la-di-da. if everyone else wants chinese on ONE freakin' saturday, buck up! compromise! that's what set me over the edge.
the last thing that pissed me off and often pisses me off is the way she makes announcements over the PA. she screams them. SCREAMS! i cringe. my ears ring afterwards. we have a small library. everyone else speaks over the PA in a slightly phoney, cheerful voice, at an appropriate decibel level. her voice is harsh and the announcement sounds more like a threat than a request or a reminder.
so, this is what ticked me off today. tomorrow, we shall see....

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Clash with terrorist?

i hope Mann sues the shit out of someone. what would they have done to him over the Ramones?!
London calling to the faraway towns
Now that war is declared and battle come down
London calling to the underworld
Come out of the cupboard all you boys and girls
London calling now don't look at us
All that phony Beatlemania has bitten the dust
London calling see we ain't got no swing
'Cept for the ring of that truncheon thing
The ice age is coming, the sun is zooming in
Meltdown expected and the wheat is growing thin
Engines stop running but I have no fear
London is drowning and I live by the river
London calling to the imitation zone
Forget it, brother, you can go it alone
London calling upon the zombies of death
Quit holding out and draw another breath
London calling and I don't wanna shout
But while we were talking I saw you nodding out
London calling see we ain't got no highs
Except for that one with the yellowy eyes
The ice age is coming, the sun is zooming in
Engines stop running and the wheat is growing thin
A nuclear error but I have no fear
London is drowning and I live by the river
Now get this
London calling yeah I was there too
An' you know what they said? Well some of it was true
London calling at the top of the dial
After all this won't you give me a smile?
I never felt so much alike
what really gets me is that these anti-terrorist detectives (ooooooohh! fancy-schmancy!) took the word of one taxi driver, stopped a plane from departing, put all those passengers out just to question a (presumably middle-eastern or Indian) man about some GODDAMN song lyrics! and where has that taxi driver been hiding his head all these years not to know who the Clash are!? and how much fucking money are those detectives raking in to do their fucked up work? must we be afraid of EVERYTHING? we are a culture of fear. we are afraid of our own damn shadows.
also notice that the race of the taxi driver and the race of Mann were not mentioned. hmmmmm.

they are everywhere, God help us!

i was going to post a picture of Catherine Bell and write about how much i liked her in Triangle but then i found out she is a scientologist and that just ruined it. i don't like many actors, and even fewer actresses, but i liked her. no more. i am sick to death of scientologists like fucking Cruise and Battlefield Earthling Travolta, and now Isaac Hayes and his crap. i don't have many prejudices (Nazi's, Confederates and their flag) but i think i will add one more: scientologists. mosey on over to Wikipedia and type in Scientology and read about it for yourself. please don't tell me this is a religion and i should be tolerant. this is NOT a religion. it is a money making machine (for Hubbard and his succesors), a cult, pseudoscience and a really, really bad sci-fi story. if you don't believe me, watch Battlefield Earth!
Maniac Mike cannot have Wiccan services in prison, but the scientologists have 'services'. you cannot have rosary beads in prison but you can get all the Hubbard brainwashing literature (i use that word loosely) that you want. hell, they can probably get an E-meter and Xenu cartoon prayer cards.
they are dangerous, too. they hold marches and rallies protesting psychiatry. they believe psychiatric drugs are evil yet they believe in spaceships, intergalactic battles and extraterrestrial 'past lives'. gee, they could use a good psychiatrist, doncha think? can you say "Heaven's Gate"? how long do we have to wait for Cruise to drink his toxic Kool-Aid? not long, i hope.

we've got *dings*!

it's amazing to watch the power of a blogpost. yesterday i wrote that we should fire the asshole that took away our *dings* and voila; today we have *dings*! frightening, isn't it! yeah, right.
in truth, we do not have our old sounds back. oh no, this is a new system so we must have new dings: and just like the new system, they suck. one ding sounds like the "wrong answer" double tone on Jeopardy. another sounds like a submarine ping. it sounds like the circ staff are using the space shuttle simulator at the front desk. we all feel like we are on Mars (or diving in the Mariana Trench). atleast we have some noise. it is now much easier to handle the desk duties. it's amazing how much we count on our ears to do our job almost as much as we count on our eyes and hands. circulation is an mega-sensory experience.
speaking of ears, the city library where i used to work hired a deaf lady to work circ. noble, but not practical. at first, she wouldn't answer the phone or couldn't answer the phone. i believe i have spoken to her once and that was an odd experience. i kept asking questions and got some odd answers in reply. come to think of it, that could be anyone. i don't know how i could do my job if i were deaf. i remember a time when i had a double ear infection and i couldn't hear callers. i also remember losing my voice for 3 days. i was not even able to whisper. that was a struggle. at work, i picked up the ringing phone a couple of times by mistake, realized what i had done and frantically waved over a coworker to take the call. during that time, my car broke down and i had to rely on a really nice stranger to call AAA for me. god, that was a trip. i have to say though, if i had a choice (a really bad choice) of being deaf, speechless or blind, i'd rather be deaf. ( was going to write...deaf, dumb or blind... but i am already afflicted with dumb-i-tude.
long live the *dings* and the dingbats who love them!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The Triangle

The Triangle
In the Bermuda Triangle, nothing stays lost forever.

a Lionsgate film, originally shown on the SciFi channel (i think). i have not finished watching, but i really like what i have seen. lots of action and twists and turns. the subject of the Bermuda Triangle has been a dull one lately. i've read everything on it and there has not really been anything new. this IS new. neat ideas and lots of things to think about. i love the notion that a modern day 'iron behemoth' was once spotted by Columbus in the Sargasso Sea. do i think there are UFO bases underneath the Triangle? nope. but i do think something is going on there.
i love the cast and they 'fit' the story and each other. the special effects are not so high tech, but nicely done. beautiful CGI water/ship scenes. if you haven't scene it and you like the subject, try it out. beware! it's in 3 parts and runs 255 minutes.

Jesus may have walked on ice

what amuses me most about this story is that this guy gets hate mail from christians. this is just his hypothesis and a darn good one. whether Jesus walked on water or ice should not be that big a deal. so what if he used an ice flow? damn good showmanship...the guy was a genius! aren't christians constantly telling us it's the MESSAGE that counts? it's unfortunate that 'hate' and 'christian' are so often found in the same sentence.


the girls told me today that the jerk who is stalking the children's librarian was sitting in the parking lot this morning before any of the staff arrived. he watched each car come in, craning his neck to see who was in the car. he came into the building several minutes before we opened...walked into the darkened building...for a computer ( he said, though he first stopped by the kiddie librarians desk). thankfully, she was not there. the ladies kicked him back out and he left. later, he came back and he told the circladies that he had ideas for characters for a childrens book and he wanted to run it by our librarian. right. one coworker said, "the book is called 'Loser' and he's the main character."
the director now has his name and we are on alert and we will watch him when he comes in. if he approaches our kiddie librarian again, we should tell the director (if she's around) and stay in the kids room until he leaves. i think someone in charge should tell him to please leave our staff alone and that, if he doesn't comply, we will give his name to the police. the guy has a pot website. that should scare him off.
if any other library worker has had trouble with a stalker, i would love to know how it was handled.
in the last city library i worked at, our circhead was being stalked by a homeless man. this guy would also store his clothes and other articles in our copier supply room. he was asked not to do that. he was told that the director would have his things removed by the cops if she found them there again. this guy was really creepy. he was in the library almost everday spring, summer and fall. he developed a fixation on our circhead. he would sit in a chair in the line of sight of her desk and stare at her for hours. he rarely spoke, but when he did, he would ask personal questions. sometimes, he would get angry for no reason and swear and act hostile to her. the police were notified and several of the cops would come by while the creepy guy was in the library and ask him questions and ruffle his feathers. finally, our circhead started making inquiries about a restraining order, though that never panned out. i can't now remember how we got rid of him, but we did. all this occured over a couple of YEARS. yes, she endured this for years! please, don't anyone feel sorry for that guy because he was homeless. he was harrassing our coworker, plain and simple...homeless or not, he had to GO! we have had many homeless men use the library. they were fine people down on their luck. we treated them anyone else. this guy was not a fine person.

Fire the asshole who took away our *DINGS*!

patrons are complaining to us constantly about the new system. they are having a hard time using it at home. the system cancelled many of their holds when it switched over; they cannot determine where they are in the hold queue; it is a difficult system to manage. also, we have found that patrons have checked out books on Horizon and they have disappeared off their cards. some not only have disappeared but have also been kicked out of the system and must be recatalogued. when we print our holds lists and search for books, half of them are not on the shelves yet they are listed as AVAILABLE (and who decided to change the perfecly good CHECKED-IN for AVAILABLE?). we have found that these books are probably on a hold shelf somewhere in CLAN, or on a patrons card.
i feel sorry that many patrons are vexed by the new system but i am tired of being hollered at and i am tired of explaining that we are struggling, too. besides, LIBRARY STAFF did not write the new program. supposedly, actual librarians were consulted. they must have been really stupid librarians or librarians that have no idea how circulation works. it is truly evil. not circulation, Millennium!
one little thing that we lost was the little *ding* that warned us that a message just popped up like 'this book is on hold for...' or a zillion little things. for instance, when we ran through a patrons card in Horizon, if the patron had a message or fines, we would hear a *ding* that would alert us right away. if we were to checkout an audio book to a patron we would hear a *ding* letting us know how many CDs were in the case. when the item was returned, we could check it in and hear the same *ding*, stop and clear the screen. now we must keep our eyes on the screen constanty, or we could checkin and item with a message, miss the message and continue checking in items that are not really getting checked in because that damn message sits on the screen until we are alerted to it and cancel it. we really relied on the audio cues. they made our work faster and more effficient. so, who was the asshole who took away our DINGS?! i want you fired, buddy. FIRED!

sssssnakes on a plane!

Snakes on a Plane, a New Line movie, will be released in August. WOW! i cannot wait to see this movie! a disaster flick-creature feature film; my two favorite genres. granted, i am terribly afraid of snakes but i am not afraid to watch them wriggle on the Big Screen. i learned of this movie while watching Countdown with Keith Olbermann tonight. love that show, too. i wonder if my mom would like to see this movie. hmmm.
if anyone finds any cool links (especially links to home movies from fans) please let me know.
"Motherfuckin' snakes on a motherfuckin' plane!" yeeeeee-haaaaaaaaah!