Image

Spring… un-Break

Spring term starts on Monday after two full weeks of what most people choose to call “Spring Break.” Clearly, I must not understand the meaning of the word “break,” or else it means something other than it has meant for the rest of my life. This was not a break. In fact, it was probably at least as tiring as peek weeks of the term. Here’s a sample of what I’ve been up to for the past two weeks:

  • Helping to plan a conference.
    (This has been quite a learning experience, I must say. It’s fun to watch people who’ve done this before thing through possible scenarios, brainstorming, and problem solving. I don’t have any expertise beyond knowing what kinds of sessions I’d want to attend, but I do have a network, which I have exploited to the best of my ability. Thanks Twitter People!!!)
  • Interviewing librarians
  • Presenting to our college InfoServices group
    (I presented on things to think about when inhabiting online social networks.)
  • Dealing with preparations for the impending implementation of print management in the library and in all campus labs.
    (Unfortunately, this became inextricably entwined with a project to implement ID card access to printing and copying as our coin-operated copiers left us and as we tried to figure out how non-Carleton-affiliated people would be able to print once print management went live, and this is the part of the project that has taken the most work recently. This has been by far the most stressful part of the last few weeks, but I’ve learned some valuable lessons about working on projects that have crucial components parts grounded in various offices on campus. I’ve also worked to create policy and procedure documents, handouts, brochures, and anything else that’ll help people feel like this will work smoothly and be successful.)
  • Fixing dead links on my research guides
    (and realizing that a few of them will need major over-hauling as soon as I have the time for it.
  • Drafting a proposal to acquire and implement federated search.
    (This has also become a major project beyond what I’d imagined possible. I’ve had to be in contact with vendors to see what goes into actual implementation and what timelines are possible and gaze into my crystal ball to figure out exactly how people might use the tool and how much time librarians will spend making it work well. I tell you, it’ll take me longer to draft my portion of this proposal than it’ll take for me to learn and implement the tool itself.)
  • Scheduling classes for early Spring term.
    (And feeling guilty about not prepping for them now, before students start invading my office on a regular basis.)
  • Work with professors on their copyright questions as they prepare reading lists for their upcoming classes.
  • Troubleshooting Moodle issues.
    (Which reminds me… I was supposed to talk to our web dev people about something. I guess that’ll have to happen on Monday.)
  • Driving home to visit my family for Easter
    (and [sniff] leave Pippin with them for the next month or so to simplify life just a bit. By all reports, Pippin is having the time of his life. There are birds to watch at several bird feeders, and there’s a big and gentle dog to torment.)

I’m sure there was more, but those are the biggies. Can you see why I don’t think “break” adequately describes the last two weeks? (Of course, we won’t even mention how un-spring-like it is, still…)

And now may I please have a spring break?