At the Ref Desk (9/16/20): Worst thing about chat reference : the number of times you get cut off. Sucks. [more...]
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Doh-Doh Librarian

Submitted by Leo Klein on Thu, 11/5/20 (7:29pm)

So I wake up and look at the clock. Holy sh*t -- it's 6 o'clock! That's the start of my evening shift for chat reference! I rush into my workroom, turn on the computer, hook up to the library web-service page. Whew, that was close! Funny thing is, nobody else is hooked in. Huh? Usually at least someone from the earlier shift hangs around till you get settled. So where is everyone? I check out the time at the bottom of the computer screen. Just a couple minutes past 6 -- that's not bad! Then I notice something else: it's am at the moment -- not pm. Opps!

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Ballot Delivery Boy

Submitted by Leo Klein on Mon, 10/19/20 (6:27pm)

#BallotDeliveryBoy : At the Cook County Election Board Office, 69 W. Washington St., Chicago.

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Nice Fall Day (2020)

Submitted by Leo Klein on Tue, 10/13/20 (10:20pm)

Nice fall day. Leaves in bloom(?). Roscoe walking north on Sheridan (Chicago).

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Hey, That's Me in That Rock Video from the 1980s!

Submitted by Leo Klein on Tue, 9/15/20 (12:06am)

I probably knew about this at the time (1987) and just plain forgot but yes, that’s me on the left. It's a brief appearance in the 'official music video' by well-known rock band 'Faith No More' in their tune, Anne's Song. I happened to know Anne and hung out with her and a whole bunch of other very interesting people during my one-year stay in NYC*.

Here's some background info from the FaithNoMore website: Faith No More released their second single Anne's Song 30 Years Ago!.

Here’s the YouTube video: "Faith No More - Anne's Song (Official Music Video)". (I appear at around 1:50.)
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* For the record, I returned to Berlin at the end of the year, staying there till Reunification in 1990 -- at which point, I returned to Manhattan for more than a decade.

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1st Reference Session of the School Year

Submitted by Leo Klein on Wed, 9/9/20 (10:47pm)

First reference session (chat) of the school year! [Note: public access to library not yet possible. Everything done remotely from home.]

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After Reference, Take a Dip!

Submitted by Leo Klein on Wed, 8/26/20 (7:51pm)

Things to do immediately after your library shift (chat reference in my case): Hit the beach!

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Current Cites for July 2020 (Final)

Submitted by Leo Klein on Sat, 8/1/20 (3:08am)

go to Current Cites
Current Cites for July 2020 is out! You can find the issue here...

The issue is noteworthy for a couple of reasons: first that well-known library star Roy Tennant was ending his decade-long record as editor. My contribution was the featuring of two articles, one a snapshot of life as librarians in this age of COVID-19 and the other an interesting review of information literacy from the 1970s till now.

In addition, I'll be joining Roy in concluding my decade-long contribution. More and more my interests and activities are in library reference. Less tech and more public service -- that's the ticket! So bye-bye Current Cites! It's been a good -- very good -- run!

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Darn! Binny's Closed!

Submitted by Leo Klein on Mon, 6/1/20 (11:47am)

Binny's Closed! Now what?

Update (6/3/2020): "Binny’s Pledges to Reopen 11 Damaged Stores" (Sun-Times)

Update (6/11/2020): Yup, got drinks for the weekend!

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Today's Hike

Submitted by Leo Klein on Thu, 5/28/20 (7:37pm)

Some beautiful shots from today's hike downtown to State & Roosevelt. (Actually the last one was when I got back home -- resting up & munching on a sandwich).

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The Value of Library Reference : You Decide

Submitted by Leo Klein on Tue, 4/28/20 (5:51pm)

It’s 8:30pm on a Tuesday evening. Student contacts Reference Desk saying he/she is looking for ‘research’ articles on effects of poverty on success in education. Instructor wants list of articles from student by class tomorrow.

Student Worker Solution:

  1. Sends link to Research Guide for Education
  2. Says ‘good evening’.

Reference Librarian Solution:

  1. Explains that there are several databases -- some focused on education, some focused on social science
  2. Steps through how to access these databases by pointing to library’s home page and link to ‘Research Guides’ -- where databases are arranged by subject
  3. In background does quickie search through standard databases, sizing up the lay of the land and then recommends to student strategies/pathways that appear most promising
  4. And oh yeah: Explains how to identify ‘research’ articles through a number of characteristics
  5. Says ‘good evening’.

Observation : Both responses did in fact answer the student’s question. So what’s the diff?

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