Monday, January 21, 2008

Just Ahead, or Behind the Tide

I've been so busy, it hardly seems like two weeks since I returned from Wisconsin. Tomorrow (today) is my brother's birthday. I need to remember to call him.

Lemme see, what have I been up to? I'll work backwards:

I've been exploring I'm giving it a try after sampling and rejecting it a couple or a few years ago. I didn't think I needed yet another web tool to suck me into exploring more of the web. I gave it a try because an MCL librarian convinced me it could be quite useful for managing bookmarks, better then those clunky Favorites folders. i thought of those dusty old links on my computer....yep....i just usually re-find them using Google. and then i thought of my bloglines feeds, and how i have over 100 saved blog posts just in my 'books' folder. So I signed up, especially since I could get started on work time.

You see, my library has begun a Library 2.0 learning program, and all employees are encouraged to work through the activities designed to give us a taste of web 2.0 tools. Our director even used YouTube to broadcast her introduction to the program for us. (I'm not going to link to that one...if you really want to see it you can work for's not hard to find.)

I will be quite familiar with some of that stuff, such as this blogging thingy, and flickr, but there will be some things I haven't been of a mind to explore. I'll share some of the posts I do there, here.

Yesterday I woke up with a dream that I saw my first husband at the mall movie theater. I greeted him, friendly, "Hey, Jimmy, what are you doing here in Portland?!" He seemed pleased to find me, and it appeared that was why he was there, but then he was only interested in finding this other seat in the theater and petulant over having to pause to talk to me. He looked the same as I remember, and I was eager to get a chance to talk and catch up, but after his first greeting he wouldn't settle to talk.

The day before I woke up with a dream that I was in a group at the Zen Center, my teacher Kyogen included, and we were trying out a new sutra/song to chant for services. We were doing it with a catchy beat, drums and bells, and it was the Song of Milarepa. Awake, I knew I was getting yet another dream from myself telling me to WAKE UP and practice meditation already. Is that a thing, Song of Milarepa? Lemme look it up. OK, from what dim recesses of my brain did that come from? I knew there's a Tibetan figure called Milarepa, but I did not consciously remember Songs of Milarepa, nor have I studied them. Now what, I wonder, would be the Song of Milarepa?

I digress with dreams. I took a civil service test on Friday, trying for that promotion to Library Assistant. The competition is fierce (but genteel). 23 (or is it 26?) people qualified for these exams. There are currently 3 positions that need to be filled, and we will be hired based on our score on the written exam and the oral interview. It's been 4 years since they did this thing, and this new hire list will last only a year. The opportunities are slim. If I get the promotion, I won't gain much money through this at first, but to do reference all the time would be quite enjoyable. Eventually I would earn more money, because while I won't get any more pay raises as a clerk, I would as a library assistant. I've been a clerk for 10 years; I've topped out on the pay increases. prepare I've been subbing as an LA, studying training materials, and making sure I knew where to look for obscure things. My oral interview is at the end of the month.

Thursday our new sofa and bed from IKEA were delivered. Steve and I moved the couch to his bachelor pad, and I took apart the old bed (not as easy as it sounds) and cleaned the bedroom in preparation. The delivery came later in the day than expected, so I put the sofa together, Steve came home, and we both put the bed together. It was a very long day, and quite a workout. But within two days my back felt completely better. I've had back pain for months, maybe over a year. Ah, the new bed is the trick. I travelled by Max to IKEA on Tuesday to order it and set up delivery. We ordered the new sofa before Christmas. They had a sale: we got a gift card for 20 percent of the cost of that, and this, our new chair. I used the gift card to pay for most of the new bed.

Oh oh, the fun stuff. Last night I went to a friend's 40th birthday party. She had us play the game where we guess our identity by asking other party-goers questions about who we were. (Sticker with name on your back, yes-or-no questions.) She has 3 kids, and she wanted to get wild because it was the first time they were not there and she was having a party. There was much sexual innuendo among all, especially as the levels descended in the bottles of rum. (But oh so innocent, I could so corrupt her if she wanted...)

And over a week ago I got to attend the world premier of the home movie of the scientists in Antarctica, doing their scientist things like taking radar and gps readings of ice movement or loss or some such thing. We saw sped-up video of camp setup, and Tina walking around and around doing the very important business of keeping warm while she waited the 15 minutes for the equipment to do its stuff. They dig a hole in the ice for their open-air porta-potty. Someone joked about scientists a thousand years from now taking ice samples. It's not yet, but at some point when it's public I can share the link. Here's a little memento of her stay:

Map, McMurdo Station, Antarctica

Map of McMurdo Station, Antarctica

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