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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Ahab the Arab*: Weeding in the world-language collection, part viii

First and foremost, welcome to our readers from the United Arab Emirates! Feel free to argue, bloviate, spout off, or otherwise engage me and my readers in spirited conversation.

Finished the Spanish collection yesterday, will begin to take on the Russian collection later this week. I've been falling behind on DVD weeding and ordering and have deadlines to keep, so the things that have the most urgency will come first--namely DVD ordering from Midwest Tape, then the Bibz list, then DVD and Russian weeding. The fun never ends...

*-Ray Stevens, 1,837 Seconds of Humor, 1962.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Concert for Bangladesh*: weeding in el Jardin secreto, part vii

Welcome to Bangladeshi readers! Country #64 heard from!

Feel free to argue with me, agree with me, state something new and outrageous.

Continuing with weeding the Spanish language collection.

Conclusion 1: Stephen King is not popular among our Spanish-language patrons.  Someone ordered the complete translated set three years ago and all but four or five titles have not moved.  "Carrie" is the leader, but only 4 borrows in three years--hardly a ringing endorsement.

June 19, 2017:

Finished the Spanish language collection this morning with a flurry of items that dropped out of the system.  Among the interesting titles in Spanish translation:

The Color Purple
Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters
Android Karenina (no, really)
The Portrait of Dorian Gray

and a fairly recent Nobel prize winner whose name escapes me right now.

Mopping up the paperwork for the systemless books, then on to Russian tomorrow.
Onward.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Japanese Dances*: Weeding in the Secret Garden, part vi

Slogging through Spanish-title weeding.

Interesting finds:

Old Man and the Sea and For Whom the Bell Tolls
Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
50 Shades of Grey

That's it for today--just three shelves :-). Discard rate for Spanish language titles running about 40% at this point (thru H's). I think the lower rate as opposed to Italian is reflected in the increase in Spanish speaking population here in the city.

Amusing note: The door to the breakroom from where I'm working is at the end of a short corridor, next to the Asian language collection. I opened the door from the breakroom to find a young, pretty, Asian girl sitting on the floor reading one of our books. She was a little embarrassed but I assured her it was okay. Besides, the stack of books she was checking out meant my job might be a little easier when I get to the Asian collection.  But--I have to finish Spanish and Russian first.

Onward.

*Composition for orchestra by Bernard Rogers, 1933.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Spanish Eyes*: Weeding in the Secret Garden, iv

Continuing with the world language weeding:


  • Interesting titles in Spanish: Jane Eyre, Fahrenheit 451,



  • Had to discard two old copies of Cervantes' Don Quixote--I hesitated but one was missing pages and the other's spine was crumbling.  I sent it out with someone who was leaving work early (Man of La Mancha reference).


  • Most interesting find so far: a two volume compilation of interviews of Tennessee Williams, Gore Vidal, Allen Ginsberg, Lou Harrison, Ned Rorem and others entitled "Consules de Sodoma". Musicians know Harrison and Rorem as prominent 20th century composers;   I'll have to seek out the English translation some day.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

1999*: Weeding in the Secret Garden, part iii

Finished the Italian collection today. Discarded 63% of the collection for poor circulation and condition issues.  Many, many items not circulated since before 1999. A few more in the 1/1/1980 category, and numerous books the record of which fell out of the system.

My supervisor alluded to what may be replacing everything that I'm removing, but nothing firm as of yet. She did say Arabic titles may be coming in, so we'll see what happens there.

Onward to the Spanish collection next week.

Cheers.

*--Prince, 1999, 1999. 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Language of Love* : Weeding in the Secret Garden, part ii

Some highlights of my time weeding our foreign language collection:
  • Samuel Beckett in French
  • Tom Sawyer, Old Man and the Sea, , and Dashiell Hammett in Italian
  • LOTS of extra work to put titles back in the system--and they'll probably be weeded when no one checks them out for another year.
  • French Collection--discarded 47% of titles
  • German Collection--discarded 43% of titles
  • Italian Collection--well over 50% so far
  • longest period between last checkout and today--37 years, 5 months (January 1980)
  • many items with 20+ years since last checkout
No, an item's lack of circulation isn't the only criterion for weeding. 
Onward...
*--Dan Fogelberg, Windows and Walls, 1984.



Saturday, April 29, 2017

And so it goes*: weird days in the library world

Nothing profound to say today.  I'm edging toward the door to leave for the day, and suffice it to say that my patrons have tested my patience and made me realize that I should dust off my mindreading skills (I'm a parent too, don'tcha know) and I'd make a lot more money.

Patron 1: Can you look up a book for me? it's called Trust. I don't know the author.
Patron 2: I saw this African-American author on the Internet.  I don't remember her name or the title of the book.
Patron 3: Do you have the movie "Raw"? It just came out last month...and if you don't have it can I get it through Interlibrary Loan?

All within five minutes of each other.

THEN:

My wife says, "let's go to that restaurant that just re-opened".

Noisy ambience, and I really can't believe the kitchen had the stones to serve the chicken that time forgot (or at least forgot it was in the oven). Even in the relative dark, I could tell that the coating was burned, and one bite in told me it had that unintentional charcoal flavor on the bottom (burned worse than the top).  I will say that they were sincerely apologetic and didn't charge me for my new item or my second beer. Kudos for that.
Onward.

*--Billy Joel, Storm Front, 1989.