30 July 2008

oh what a feeling

Okay, so, I volunteered again today, but only for 3.5 hours (damn doctor appointments, taking me away from the archive!), and it was so awesome! I spent the entire time (a) talking to my awesome boss & fellow volunteers and (b) doing research in the archives. I don't know why this didn't register yesterday, but a huge part of being an archivist that I never really thought about is helping people do research. Duh, right? In the particular archive I'm working in, there are oodles of calls and emails with research requests and very few on-site researchers, which means I get to do real live research! Not just helping people find the right box to look through or whatever; I got to look through press releases and newspaper clippings from the past thirty years! It was great!

And yes, I do realize how nerdy this sounds, but I realized today that I've chosen the right career. Tomorrow, I get to do more work that will involve looking at a bunch of those same press releases, and I am so excited that I might go in early. If I can get to sleep before 2am, that is.


So, today. I spent six hours at The Best Volunteer Job I've Ever Had, then I went home and did nothing for two hours. Then I felt guilty for wasting all that time, so I went to the Alterra on Humboldt and wrote three pages of my paper. Sort of, I wrote two pages and then realized I was completely wrong, but then I wrote some more and made some notes about other things, and I'm calling it three pages, because that was my goal for the night.

And then I came home, and I was in bed by 10, and now I am still awake. Ugh.

28 July 2008



Dear Astronaut is going to be featured in some kind of article in the Journal-Sentinel on Thursday, and Jeb asked me if I wanted to choose a few photos to submit. This is probably my favorite, but it seems too blurry.


Of course, this one is blurry too, but I still kind of want to submit it. But really, I will look through everything and hope that there are at least one or two mostly-clear photos of the entire band in the hundreds of photos I've taken.

I haven't taken many photos lately, at Dear Astronaut shows (HAHAHA I typed Dear ASStronaut at first, woops!) or anywhere else. I'm not sure why, but I'm trying to get back in the habit.

I'm also trying to focus on being super productive for the next few weeks. There's a whole lot going on, and if I can just stay focused on work and being productive, I think I'll be less likely to be overwhelmed by it all. To that end, I am going to finish up on the computer and do some much-needed cleaning of my room. And then, maybe, just maybe, I will sew something. Exciting!

26 July 2008

two book reviews

My mom bought me two books for my birthday.

This is the one she bought me when she went to the bookstore and said "hey, I'm looking for this book about an archivist, it just came out in paperback this month." It is... not terrible, but I hated it. I just, I don't know how to describe why I hated it without giving away huge, key plot points, and that would be wrong. It's not a bad book, but I hated the characters, and as a future archivist, the ending made me so angry. Ugh! But hey, it was not necessarily poorly written, it was just not written for me.

This is the book my mom actually meant to get me. Two books about archivists came out in paperback in June; how awesome is that? This book made me much less angry. First, it was set in communist Russia, probably one of my top five favorite settings for a novel. The characters were not constantly blabbing about religion, and Holland covered the whole "tough decisions have to be made" thing in a way that did not make me want to stab myself or him.

So, in conclusion, of the two books about archivists that came out in paperback in June, The Archivist's Story by Travis Holland is far superior to The Archivist by Martha Cooley.

Oh, also, Travis Holland had the author of The Historian blurb his book. How apropos!

25 July 2008

my new apartment is so sweet

I got five cavities filled today. Woops; I have decided not to wait another four years before I go to the dentist again.

Also, we found an apartment. We signed the lease on Thursday. I (we) have an apartment, an awesome apartment in an awesome neighborhood. Our landlords are also awesome. Awesome! I forgot to take pictures when we went over to sign the lease; we officially get to move in on the 15th, so there will be photos sometime around then. Hardwood floors, two bedrooms, plus a giganto dining room and living room, a bunch of original word work and old cabinetry and stuff. Love!

Before moving, I have to write a total of 35 pages, which seems like a lot, but once I finish that, I'll be six credits closer to writing MA, MLIS after my name ALL THE TIME.

20 July 2008


I went to see the Dalai Lama yesterday. It was amazing. The sound in the Alliant Energy Center Coliseum is terrible, and an astounding number of people brought their tiny little babies with them (surprisingly, the tiny little babies got restless quickly), but it was really very amazing to see His Holiness and hear him talk and be reminded that there's another way to live your life.

There was a protest outside, by the Western Shugden Society; they were protesting the Dalai Lama because he has repudiated Shugden practice, which they did by calling him a liar and a hypocrite. I think a lot of people don't realize that their are different schools in Tibetan Buddhism, schools that have been fighting for power for hundreds of years. I'm not going to pretend to have any deep knowledge of sectarian difference in Tibetan Buddhism, but Shugden practice is apparently controversial, and the Dalai Lama believes it's detrimental to the unity of the Tibetan community. [There's more information on his official website.] In any case, I find it hard to take a "Buddhist" organization seriously when they're calling the Dalai Lama a 'liar' and a 'hypocrite.' So much of the pamphlet they were handing out sounds exactly like Chinese propaganda, which I find really suspicious. The protesters were primarily Westerners, which is also suspect. The protesters were much louder as everyone was leaving the talk; the Tibetans in attendance were pissed. In any issue that involves Tibet, I'm inclined to side with Tibetans.

But that is enough of that. I don't know that much about it, and as I was standing off to the side, watching the (primarily Western) protesters yell that the Dalai Lama is a liar and the Tibetans yell that the protesters should be ashamed of themselves, I realized the protesters weren't going to stop until we left. And I did, and now I'll stop talking about them here. The important part of the day was that I was lucky to see His Holiness again, lucky that my parents bought me a ticket and lucky that I was able to hear him speak and be inspired.

Yuck, no more religion talk on the blog again, ever.

10 July 2008

back in mke

Doing schoolwork is so much easier at school. The library is so quiet! Also, it is hot outside! Summer is full of hot weather! I am full of revelations! Not Revelations though.

Back to catching up on video lectures! (No more online courses after this, btw.)

08 July 2008


Finally really going back to Milwaukee tomorrow. I think--I've said that 4 times this summer, but this time I really believe Amtrak is going to take me from Minneapolis to Milwaukee. I really might be in Milwaukee by tomorrow afternoon. I really miss my bed. Also, my friends and my awesome internship and all that shit. I won't see Nathan for at least 10 days, which seems endless; weird since we used to see each other once or twice a month. Oh, but you don't want this to turn into that kind of blog, and neither do I.

I'm pretty excited about getting back to my life in Milwaukee. I like being home, I love my family and friends, but I want to go home. Ha, I didn't even realize I did that! Called both Milwaukee and here "home!" Whoa!!

I'm sorry; I'm kind of exhausted. Time to pack! Or take a nap and pack later!

01 July 2008

I hate Sallie Mae

Why would you put a customer service number at the bottom of a letter about a private loan IF IT WASN'T THE NUMBER TO CALL FOR INFORMATION ABOUT PRIVATE LOANS? "Oh, sorry ma'am, I'll have to transfer you so you can wait another 10 minutes to talk to someone, because I'm not trained on private loans?" Dammit!

I hate Sallie Mae.