lightning talk proposal, “I Volunteered to Be Our User Experience Librarian and I Have No Idea What I’m Doing, Please Help”

Research note: in 1792 one Samuel Harris of Loyalsock, PA blamed his failure to produce more maple sugar on his laudanum habit.

Perhaps not unrelated, he put all his one hundred taps in a single tree.

In the 2010s I:

  • finished grad school
  • got a job
  • got a t-t job
  • finished other grad school
  • got cancer
  • got tenure
  • bought a house
  • got other cancer
  • had surgery for cancer 2
  • had chemo for cancer 1
  • bought a snowblower
  • went into remission

Was briefly detained at the border this evening. Apparently I set off sensors because I’m still radioactive from a PET scan two weeks ago.

Christmas Eve, the holiday traditionally devoted to troubleshooting family technology issues. It’s good to feel useful!

Rereading Kim Stanley Robinson’s 2312. I remember finding it tedious several years ago, but my experience this time is quite the opposite. Perhaps it’s that now I’ve read and enjoyed Aurora and New York 2140 and can see in 2312 early explorations of those books’ themes. 📚

I’m an Arsenal supporter. My father follows Tottenham. Neither of us wants to see more of Mourinho. ⚽️

Spent an hour going through old pictures today. The first photo is of Peanut in 2010. I’d forgotten the hair on his face used to be brown and not white.
Dog on sofa
Dog basking

I’ve spent much of my life in the far northeast US. But I didn’t expect to feel this excited about buying my first snowblower.

November 5, 2019: our 14th wedding anniversary, and my last day of chemo. We’ll celebrate them both this weekend, but for now it’s time to catch up on sleep.

A Love Note to the Plattsburgh Ball Machine

As a child I spent hours in front of the similar sculpture at the Boston Museum of Science. I can still lose myself watching this one. But I’d never realized just how uncommon they are, nor that they were all built by one man.

A reminder, perhaps appropriate for microblogvember, that even before we all had glowing rectangles to distract us we still found ways to avoid daily writing. From Nick Yablon, Remembrance of Things Present: The Invention of the Time Capsule (2019), p. 139.

Screenshot of excerpt from Yablon, Remebrance of Things Present, 2019

Friday. Week 10, two-thirds of the semester gone. Less and less inclined to lecture. You’d think that would ease prep but not so. I find I have to teach myself the material as if I’m going to lecture, then turn around and ask how I can best help the students learn it.