Saturday, June 2nd, 2007
Well, I missed the morning Vision Session. Bummer. It was actually someone I would have liked to have heard, but, fortunately, I’ll at least be able to see the PowerPoint presentation. All the PowerPoints and handouts are being posted online this year where people can go and download them and/or print them if they so desire. It’s great, and I plan to go and look at it as soon as I dig my way out from being behind at work (this may take a few more days…).
Like Friday, I attended two sessions. One was on how to give presentations, given by my friend JS. Now, I did not just attend this session because my friend was presenting. I really was interested in the topic. I’m in a much larger library now, and I’m finding that I am doing more presenting to larger groups, many of them in other parts of the library. I figured I need all the hints I can get to make myself a good presenter. I don’t do badly, but that speech class back in high school was a long time ago, so the refresher was fabulous. It was more of a mix of presentation by JS and discussion and feedback/ideas from the audience. I picked up some excellent tips that I plan on using. So thanks!
I also went to a session on mixing serials, a traditionally behind the scenes technical services aspect of librarianship, with public service aspects, and how that can make you better at your technical services job. They discussed things like spending time on the reference desk to really understand what users are doing and how they are searching for things, and being accessible to those on the desk for help when necessary. The speakers were great, and I really enjoyed it. It will be interesting to see how I can potentially integrate some of their ideas into my current job.
Also on Saturday were the two discussion groups, one topical discussion, and one “user group” session for specific softwares and programs. The discussion group I attended got a bit sidetracked from the topic, but it was interesting for awhile. Part way through, my mentee EL and I decided to go have our own discussion. She’s new to serials cataloging, so it was nice to have an opportunity to talk to her about her professional development and issues related to being a serials cataloger and her career. We talked about everything from how to get involved on a national level to how to affect change in your institution and discuss issues with other departments in your library in an accessible way. I really enjoyed our conversation, and I hope she was able to take something away from it.
Later on Saturday afternoon was the user group discussion session. I led the session on a particular product we had purchased, and tried to focus the session on troubleshooting and questions people had, in addition to how they implemented the product in their libraries. I was actually looking for some ideas since we are still in the implementation phase, and came away with some information and ideas that I will be using.
After the sessions were over, six of us headed out for another “anti-dine around.” This time we took a cab (rather 2 cabs), to a different part of town I think is called Bardstown (Road?) for some BBQ. Our cabbie, Mack, was a trip, but the ride was a bit harrowing to say the least. At the end of the ride he gave us his number to call for the ride back to the hotel after our meal. Cool. We went on a recommendation to Mark’s Feed Store for our Kentucky bbq. It’s a local chain and had very good food. Sweet tea, fried pickles (better than the ones B and I had previously), onion strings, and barbecue. Excellent.
Our tummies full, we wandered down the road, which had an eclectic blend of restaurants and shops. We did stop and browse a few shops along the way, and I think we bored JS, the only guy in the group. We jokingly referred to him as “alpha” during the night…and I believe someone (but not JS, to his credit) referred to us as his “harem” at one point. Yes, librarians have bizarre, twisted senses of humor. But we do have fun.
There was a point to our rambling, we were in search of the hockey game. Game 3 of the playoffs was on, and B and I needed to find out what was going on. We ended up at a bar called Willy’s that boasted 68 beers on tap and 1 giant lizard. We never saw the lizard, but they did have a lot of beers. And they had stone benches and tables (literally slabs of stone you sat on). And, most importantly, they had the game on tv. B and I managed to amuse the locals by yelling and cursing at the game periodically. I think LH got a picture of the two of us focused quite intently on the game. After a bit, we decided to call our cabbie, Mack, and head back to the hotel. Mack showed up with only one cab, so we had to flag a second one down to get us all back. At which point a few of the crew headed to their rooms to crash, or to catch the end of the open-mic talent event, but B, JS and I headed back to our room to watch the end of the game. We were joined by another friend, MP, and, once again, B and I amused our “audience,” who, consequently, didn’t know much about hockey, but had fun anyway. This game did end better than the game on Wednesday, much to our joy.
By this point in the conference, the conference fatigue was really starting to set in, so we did all head to bed early by normal conference standards.