Friday Time Killers

The Language Wars, Left & Right

from JstorDaily.

In the current political climate, it seems how things are expressed has been pushed to the forefront of the debate. It starts with the strange and rambling idiolect of President Donald Trump—which The Guardian describes as “redundant, formulaic, aggressive, “post-literate”—full of bland contradictions, polarizing generalizations, statements sometimes inconsistent with reality (and some, we assume, are good statements).

Interesting don't you think...

The Title Character Has Disappeared But His Story Lives On

Perhaps you're acquainted with Edinburgh University's Library Cat? Here's the Facebook page where I first met him. Sadly I must report that Library Cat has gone missing this past summer, and has not shown up at the Uni library nor any of his other favorite spots. There appears to be a usurper, the so-called Library Cat 2.0. Here's the story of Library Cat's tenure at the library and his disappearance. He will be missed greatly. But his ghostwriter, PhD student Alex Howard has published his inner thoughts in a wonderful volume, shown here. It's been published in the UK but is available elsewhere via BookDepository.com.

Keep the Patrons Happy

Some Good Customer service "precepts" by Paula Laurita via Pub-Lib

Okay, my number one rule is no blood in the library. But aside from that I have a few general rules:

2. We don't work at the "no" factory. The first response isn't "we can't do that". Try and find the "yes" if possible without infringing on another patron. Some staff took this at first that we never say no. That's not a blanket yes to more computer time if someone else is waiting. It's not a blanket yes to extending a summer reading book when there is a holds list. But, is there really a reason why someone cannot have a special check-out period for Huck Finn while they are sailing on the Mississippi?

3. Take the money. Cousin Fred checked out a book using Cousin Beatrice's card. Fred racked-up the late fines, but doesn't have Beatrice's card. He wants to pay the fines. Take the money. Give Fred the cash register receipt. Save the account receipt for Beatrice. Don't inconvenience them both.

4. This isn't the cosmetics counter at the local department store. Don't chase people to make the sale. "May I help you find anything?" "No, I'm just browsing." "Okay, if I can help please let me know." Give people privacy and the gift of time to look.

5. No weltschmerz. Well thought out complaints are fine. General whining is not.

Hilarious Tweets for Book Nerds

From Buzzfeed Books.

Happy weekend! Anyone doing the #Deweyreadathon tomorrow?

Remember Hydrox?

Is it or isn't it the Public Librarians favorite cookie? Rumor has it that they're coming back. But as you are library folk, rumor doesn't quite cut it.

Post inspired by recent conversation on Publib list Publib Archives.

Please comment yay or nay. Any votes for 'Nilla Wafers?

Information Please Librarian

From The Guardian, a selection of queries addressed to NYPL librarians including "Is this the place where I ask questions I can’t get answers to?" - Phone question, September 13, 1947

The Story of Peeps

Somehow, they seem forever tied in my mind to librarians. Does anyone know how that came about?

Here's their story:

Ninety-two years ago, Sam Born opened a little candy store in Brooklyn selling daily-made confections he boasted were fresh because they were “just born.” In 1953, the Just Born company began producing marshmallow chicks called Peeps, and the sugary, squishy treats now have a huge, devoted following. Here are 11 things we bet you didn’t know about the iconic Easter candy.

Interview With a Jeopardy! Clue Writer

How cool a job is this?

The game show institution that is Jeopardy! has much more going on behind the scenes than it might appear. Every time you look at that board full of categories and clues, a highly coordinated effort has taken place to make sure everything is just right—including dozens of things you probably never even considered. After all, someone has to make sure that “Who is Harriet Tubman?” isn’t the answer to more than one clue a game, or even more than one clue a week. Billy Wisse is the head writer for Jeopardy! He’s been there a while, because, as he says, there isn’t much turnover on the staff at his game show. And once you learn just what his job consists of, it’s not hard to understand why. Working for Jeopardy! sounds like one of the coolest gigs you could ever hope to land. Read on to find out how the clues get written, what kind of things Alex Trebek vetoes, and what the best question is that you will never, ever see on the show.

Story from AV Club. HT @helgagrace.

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