Sunday, March 31, 2013

Maybe I overdid the library shelving

My foot began to hurt Saturday, after spending all week helping to shelve books in the non-fiction and children's sections at the new Middletown Public Library. I fell and sprained my right foot on March 9 and thought the foot had recovered but I may have hurt it again with last week's physical activity.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Greater workforce diversity among ‘Conversation Starter’ candidates at ALA Annual Conference

ALA Connect is inviting American Library Association members to vote on “Conversation Starters” for the 2013 ALA Annual Conference. I cast my vote for Moving the Diversity Discussion Forward: What’s Next?

According to presenter Jennifer Garrett:
“The recent ALA Diversity Counts report was both eye opening and sobering. The movements we are making toward creating a more representative and diverse workforce are incremental, at best. While relevant, this session is, and must be, more than a discussion on ‘workforce transformations.’ Current librarians, staff, and students who represent underrepresented groups, either by being a member of one or by working toward diversity initiatives, will find this session useful. In a facilitated discussion, we will attempt to tackle the question of ‘what’s next?’ and hopefully develop connections, community, and change, which will continue outside of ALA.”
I believe that what should be next in a discussion of workforce diversity is the recruitment and greater representation by people with disabilities -- people with visual, physical, hearing and cognitive impairments -- among people in library service.

Outreach and recruitment should begin with financial aid -- similar to efforts with the Spectrum Scholarship to address imbalances in race/ethnicity -- and should continue with hiring.

“Conversation Starter” talks, according to ALA Connect, are fast-paced 45-minute sessions intended to jumpstart conversations and highlight emerging topics and trends.

Voting is open through March 31. The public votes will be weighted for 30 percent of the selection process; staff votes will account for another 30 percent while the remaining 40 percent will be decided by an advisory group of ALA members. Selected presenters will be notified by April 5.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Josh Stearns presents tips for social media verification

Block printing on lined background: "Be More Skeptical"
Image credit: Josh Stearns
In keeping with what I view as an important role for the library professional -- promoting information literacy -- Josh Stearns has compiled an impressive collection of links, case studies and discussion for verifying social media content.

And while Stearns approached his subject from the perspective of a journalist, I believe his collection is applicable in the library context as well.

Consumers must question the credibility of information found on the Internet, and providing them with the analytic tools they need is a natural component of library service.

I credit Steve Buttry, digital transformation editor with Digital First Media, with directing my attention to Stearns’ curated resources.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Moving in at Middletown Public Library

Cynthia Parkhill shelves books at Middletown Public Library

Jonathan and I shelved for several hours Tuesday at the new Middletown Public Library. We joined members of Friends of the Middletown Public Library and other volunteers from the community.

Book repair demonstration in Medford library

Mass market paperback book in stage of book repair
Photo credit: Jackson County Library Services
Sophia Bogle, owner of Red Branch Book Restoration, will offer a demonstration on repairing books, April 6, from 1 to 3 p.m., in the Large Community Meeting Room of the Medford Branch Library.

(I would take this workshop if my family had relocated to Ashland by then. I hope for repeat presentations. I greatly enjoyed the semester that I repaired books at the Sonoma State University Library and consider book repair an essential part of library collection maintenance.)

Bogle will show before-and-after photographs, bring the tools necessary for effective book repair and answer questions from the audience.

The presentation is sponsored by the Friends of the Medford Library. For more information, contact the Medford Branch Library at 541-774-8679 or visit Medford Branch Library is located at 205 S. Central Ave.

Monday, March 25, 2013

‘READ’ yarnbombing tag at Middletown Public Library

Yarnbombing tag: granny squares with panel that says "READ"
My newest yarnbombing tag has been installed at the new Middletown Public Library. This tag features greater structural integrity than previous vertical tags.

Concealed beneath the crocheted tag are bands of surgical tubing -- actually refill bands for a slingshot -- tightly cinched around the pole. Pipe cleaners were used to attach the crocheted piece to the tubing framework.

This tag is not going anywhere, at least not without some effort.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Is Sheryl Sandberg a role model? Short answer: I'll read the book

Is Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg a role model or not? An extra credit forum was posted this week in my women’s health class.

After viewing Sheryl Sandberg’s December 2010 TEDTalks presentation, I am concerned by the possibility that detractor Melissa Gira Grant is taking Sandberg’s message out-of-context to promote her own agenda.

To cite one example in Grant’s Washington Post commentary: Grant states that, for Sandberg, “the biggest threat to [women’s] ability to occupy a position of leadership is a woman’s desire to have a child.”

Grant’s statement fails to accurately represent what Sandberg said, at least in the TEDTAlks video, which is that women stop looking for opportunities to advance at work when they begin planning a pregnancy. As a result, I do not trust Grant to accurately represent Sandberg’s statements. I believe my best course is to read Sandberg’s book, Lean In, for myself.

One criticism that I thought valid, if accurate, was the restriction on sharing only “positive” stories among women in “Lean In Circles.” But I was unable to verify Grant’s claim.

I did note instructions at, that “Your Circle is yours. We encourage you to decide what works for your group.” Presumably this freedom of decision could negate any restriction such as Grant describes.

Grant raises a contention that Sandberg directs her focus only on corporate women. I found this argument also advanced in commentary by Atlantic writer Ellen Bravo.

In a piece titled “Many working-class women are already leaning in,” Bravo argued that all women would benefit from reflecting and acting on a question urged by Sandberg: “What would I do if I weren’t afraid?” The commentary highlights efforts by retail, home care, hotel and restaurant workers to win changes in the workplace.

This is a tough one. And I think my best course is to read the book and see if it has anything relevant for an aspiring library professional who has never felt comfortable with the “corporate” setting. A promotional video at seems to suggest a far more inclusive direction than Grant and Bravo indicate.

Finally, arguments by unidentified detractors paraphrased in an article by CNN writer Todd Leopold seem to reflect the very dichotomy identified by Sandberg in her talk: men attribute their success to themselves and women attribute their success to others: Sandberg “glided to the top thanks to the help of powerful men” like Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

My answer: I think that few people ever truly rise to the top solely upon their own merits. I would hope that the workplace is more collaborative than that. Let us assume that Sandberg received help and support from these men and from others, women whom she acknowledged in the video as paving the way for her.

If these men chose to act as mentor to Sandberg, it was because of her strengths, which include two degrees from Harvard and an early career in public service. Are these mentors somehow less valid, or are Sandberg’s accomplishments more about them, because they are men?

Bottom line answer: Sandberg’s book is worth reading and then I will determine if she is a role model for me.

Moving day at Middletown’s Gibson Library

Middletown's Gibson Library
Middletown Gibson Library, 21267 Calistoga St. (Highway 29)
Source of image capture: Google Maps

Volunteers needed, 10 a.m. Tuesday

Coinciding with preparation for my family’s pending move from Lake County, Calif. to Ashland, Ore.: books will be moved Tuesday, beginning at 10 a.m., from Middletown’s Gibson Library across Highway 29 to the new library site. There’s no heavy lifting; that work will be done by a Hill Road inmate crew.

If you can help pack books, library director Gehlen Palmer is sure to welcome your help. Come to the Gibson Library site at 21267 Calistoga St.

A grand opening celebration for the new Middletown Public Library and Middletown Senior Center is scheduled for April 12 at 4 p.m. according to a statement on the website of the Lake County Library. The dual-use facility is located at 21256 Washington St. For more information, contact Alicia Flores at 707-263-2580.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Oregon State Librarian discusses changing role of libraries

A presentation by MaryKay Dahlgreen, the Oregon state librarian, about the changing role of libraries, is the subject of an article posted March 21 by the Medford Mail Tribune.

MaryKay Dahlgreen
MaryKay Dahlgreen
Dahlgreen was scheduled to speak March 21 at Southern Oregon University’s Hannon Library.

As related by freelance writer John Darling, Dahlgreen states that libraries are moving from “shifting their mission to delivering digital works to your computer and offering a ‘community setting’ for alternative, creative learning.”
“‘The big push is from collections to creations,’ she said, with less emphasis on ‘things from authors and artists.’ The new and imaginative growth areas are fan fiction and ‘maker spaces,’ she said. Fan fiction is creative writing in response to novels, in the style of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ she explained, while maker spaces bring people together in libraries for arts, literature and crafts events.”
In spite of the change, libraries continue to play an “incredibly valuable role in the community.” Dahlgreen cites research showing that investment in libraries brings significant return and helps the economy grow.

As a backdrop to Dahlgreen’s talk, Darling reported that Jackson County services face a loss of federal timber subsidies. In 2007, voters opposed a ballot measure to fund libraries and the libraries closed “‘but it was telling (that) they reopened them, though with reduced services, so libraries are obviously important there.’”

According to Dahlgreen, libraries will rely more and more upon funding from communities.

As related in Darling’s article: “If voters turn their backs on libraries again, she said, it will rapidly affect growth and jobs because many people don't want to live in or move companies to a community that doesn’t support libraries.” online hub for digital literacy support and training

Woman at computer in right foreground. Couple people in left background.
Photo credit:
A Public Library Association (PLA) initiative began beta-testing on Thursday. is intended to create an online hub for digital literacy support and training. According to PLA, it will have self-directed tutorials for users as well as a community of practice for staff at libraries and community organizations who are working to bridge the digital divide. In its words: “See how libraries are changing the way we connect.”

Hawkeye Initiative: Male superhero duplicates women’s awkward poses

Female superhero flies through air, carrying male superhero
Source angels-assemble on Tumblr
My brother Andrew R. Parkhill shared this on his Facebook timeline: The Hawkeye Initiative duplicates female superheroes’ -- ahem -- overly exhibitive, off-balance postures with a male superhero, Clint “Hawkeye” Barton. It’s a refreshing alternative and commentary upon depictions of women in superhero comics. And it’s timely given the emphasis of my women’s health class upon media portrayals and social attitudes about women.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Pantry Basics class at Ashland Food Co-op

Mary Shaw at counter during "Pantry Basics" class at Ashland Food Co-op
AFC Education Coordinator Mary Shaw
taught a Pantry Basics class on March 20
One highlight of a week spent in Ashland, Ore. in order to secure an apartment, was the Pantry Basics class taught by Mary Shaw, March 20 at the Ashland Food Co-op (AFC) Community Classroom.

‘Superman Day’ to coincide with ‘Man of Steel’ film release

Graphic: Superman
Detail: Superman, the “Man of Steel”
Credit for original image: Random House Gets Graphic
Libraries will celebrate “Superman Day” June 15 to coincide with a June release for the blockbuster film “Man of Steel.”

I was informed via Facebook by Jackson County Library Services that the Ashland teen librarian has sent for promotional material. The prospect delights this library volunteer.

I relate to the dilemma that many superheroes face, of having unique abilities that set them apart while being expected or wishing to blend in among members of “normal” society.

Random House is offering bookmarks, posters and buttons and encourages libraries to share photos, stating that “The library that does the best job exciting the fans for Superman will win 10 movie tickets to see Man of Steel.”

Event kits must be ordered by May 15 from Random House.

Ashland, Oregon: Library cards and a move-in date

Jonathan and I (and our precious cat Starfire) were accepted for an apartment that is just a couple of miles from Ashland Library in the Jackson County Library Services system.

All the easier for me to volunteer as soon as we’ve moved in,  particularly since the library facilitated our applications.

We used public computers at the Ashland Library to print forms from the apartments’ website. As new arrivals in the community, we were on the wrong side of the digital divide and our access to these forms via public computers underscored the benefit of libraries.

While at the library, we signed up for JCLS library cards. We qualify for limited service while we remain at our current address, but can upgrade for full service as soon as we are Jackson County residents.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Textbook omits important component of childhood abuse

Book cover: "Contemporary Women's Health" by Cheryl A. Kolander et alMy reading this week from Contemporary Women’s Health: Issues for Today and The Future (McGraw Hill, 2011) concerns the prevention of abuse. Authors Cheryl Kolander, Danny Ramsey Ballard and Cynthia Kay Chandler cite childhood abuse as “one of the most serious problems in our society (237).”

An important issue absent from their discussion is childhood peer abuse, more commonly referred to as bullying. They speak exclusively in terms of abuse perpetrated by adults.

As a survivor of childhood peer abuse, I consider this omission a serious one. In all other respects, they offer a comprehensive catalog of forms of childhood abuse

According to the authors, “One common result of childhood sexual and physical abuse is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).” I would like to elaborate, incorporating information from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs:
“Dr. Judith Herman of Harvard University suggests that a new diagnosis, Complex PTSD, is needed to describe the symptoms of long-term trauma ... During long-term traumas, the victim is generally held in a state of captivity, physically or emotionally, according to Dr. Herman. In these situations the victim is under the control of the perpetrator and unable to get away from the danger.
Imagine the dread of a child required to attend pre-game assemblies in which members of the student body are permitted to single out classmates for ridicule and abuse. Each week this child wonders if she will be one of those picked. Every week that she is not, grants relief that is only temporary.

Or imagine the ongoing stress of a child who is always chosen last for the team. Who is pushed in the hallway through a gauntlet of students all larger and far more powerful. Who is taunted on the bus or in the classroom.

This was my experience at Calistoga Elementary School and Calistoga Junior/Senior High School. Now imagine as constant backdrop to these incidents of abuse, my awareness that I had no friends. Even when a direct campaign of harassment was not in play, I remained an outcast.

Clearly the text should have acknowledged the severity of peer abuse.

I find much value in the authors’ suggestions for preventing abuse; many of their suggestions at personal and community levels for preventing abuse against women can similarly be applied toward preventing peer abuse.

In the spirit of one suggestion by the textbook authors for preventing abuse, educating girls and boys about the characteristics of healthy relationships (251), I could name several websites of organizations that promote respect. To select one, in an attempt to remain close to the word limit for this assignment:

Safe School Ambassadors, at, engages and mobilizes “socially-influential leaders” among the student population. These students receive training to “resolve conflicts, defuse incidents, and support isolated and excluded students.”

Autism prevalence of 1 in 50 attributed to better diagnosis

“The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that the number of children in the United States with autism spectrum disorder has increased dramatically since 2007. As of 2012, one in 50 children between the ages of 6 and 17 has some form of autism, compared with one in 88 only 5 years earlier. The main reason for the higher numbers of children reported with autism appears to be due to better diagnoses.”

Monday, March 18, 2013

Bag from pillowcase, pants leg, tablet-woven straps

Handmade shopping bag with tablet woven handles in green and brown

This is my most lavish upcycled market bag yet: “Kivrim” trim, created with tablet weaving, forms the straps of this hand-made shopping bag. The upper body of the bag was made from a pillowcase, the lower body was made from a pair of pants. A piece of fabric woven on a rigid-heddle loom is layered onto the bag beneath an appliqued leaf cut out from another piece of fabric.

Anyone plan to yarnbomb a bookmobile?

National Bookmobile Day is on April 17. Does anyone plan to yarnbomb a bookmobile? Do an image search “yarnbombed bus” for inspiration and learn more about National Bookmobile Day at

Yarn Bombing @ Your Library: Images added

Yarnbombed statue of the Cat in the Hat, Naperville Public Library's Nichols Library
Photo credit: Naperville Public Library
New images in the timeline for Yarn Bombing @ Your Library highlight creative works of library advocacy. The curating that I do is of equal or greater importance than the tags I install myself to raise awareness of libraries.

Among images added today: a yarn bombed statue of the Cat in the Hat, circa Feb. 15, at Naperville Public Library’s Nichols Library; ribboned trees in Fort Langley, B.C., 2013 and 2012 installations at Rush Public Library, fence-tip covers at the West Branch of Somerville Public Library and the Knotty Knitters’ yarn bombing activities for International Yarn Bombing Day on June 9, 2012.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Middletown library children’s materials to be moved next week

Main entrance, new Middletown Public Library in Middletown, Calif.
Main entrance, new Middletown Public Library
The highlight of volunteering today at Middletown’s Gibson Library was learning about an imminent move across the street to the new public library. Just last week cement was being poured in front of the main entrance to the new library.

Volunteers are needed to help move children’s materials on March 19 and 20. Library director Gehlen Palmer told me the rest of library materials will be moved during the following week. For more information, contact Palmer at 707-987-3674.

FCC Chairman credits libraries’ role in closing digital divide

In a YouTube video, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski thanks the nation’s librarians for their service. He describes the American Library Association as “a vital partner to the FCC in one of our central missions: closing the digital divide and making sure every American can access the opportunities of broadband Internet.” This is one of the most important -- and most enduring -- ways that libraries enrich their communities. Libraries were instrumental in allowing me early access to emerging technology.

Matt Enis filed a report at Library Journal InfoDocket. I credit Jackson County Library Services for bringing my attention to the article and video. The latter is hosted by the American Library Association at its Washington Office YouTube channel.

Friday, March 15, 2013

TapIt Water bottle refill network finds refill venues on-the-go

Ashland Food Co-op labeled Klean Kanteen refillable water bottles
Ashland Food Co-op allows water bottle refills from the tap
In my women’s health class for general education credit, we are focusing on behavior changes that will lead to healthier lives. One of my assignments this week is to offer advice for a classmate’s goal -- and drinking water is an area with which I’m familiar through the logistics of carrying and refilling a reusable water bottle.

Carrying a water bottle is a great way to stay hydrated. Reusable bottles can be refilled from sinks, water coolers or from drinking fountains that have a high enough arc. I’ve refilled bottles from soda fountain spigots and even at grocery stores with gallon-jug refill kiosks. Try the TapIt Water bottle refill network to find refill venues on-the-go.

Webinar highlights use of photos during Library Snapshot Day

On March 13 I attended a webinar about Library Snapshot Day. The webinar emphasized using image collections to build community awareness for libraries.

Presenters Marsha McDevitt-Stredney, marketing and communications director for the State Library of Ohio; Jenaye Antonuccio, communications coordinator for Athens County Public Libraries; and Marci Merola, director of the American Library Association (ALA) Office for Library Advocacy; shared their experiences with Library Snapshot Day.

Library Snapshot Day originated as a joint effort between the New Jersey Library Association and the New Jersey State Library. Their findings indicated that on a typical day in 2009, more than 160,000 people visited New Jersey libraries.

During 2011, according to Merola, 32 states participated in the ALA’s Library Snapshot Day initiative.

The webinar addressed what makes a good photograph, echoing the preferences of this erstwhile journalist and public relations officer: close-up images that convey a sense of what is happening.

The presenters also highlighted ways to use the photos afterward: sharing on social media, blogs and newspaper ads. In one example cited by Antonuccio, the photo of a child displaying his library card got 108 likes on Facebook.

While the emphasis of the webinar was on the use of images, Merola also gave mention to data and user stories. With photos, these three are key elements of building what Merola described as a “trinity of advocacy.”

Slides from the webinar and additional resources have been archived online. I also used Storify to curate live-tweets from the Library Snapshot Day webinar.

New year of ALA student membership

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Do businesses’ weak policies invite bullying?

According to Baron Christopher Hanson, “the perceived weaknesses of a business, combined with desperate customers and evadable transaction policies, may actually entice bully customers.” The black intersection of these three circles represents the "bully invitation."
Image by Baron Christopher Hanson
Writing at the SmartBlog on Leadership, Baron Christopher Hanson argues that “the perceived weaknesses of a business, combined with desperate customers and evadable transaction policies, may actually entice bully customers.”

Hanson makes an important distinction between “high-expectation” customers who, “[a]lthough challenging ... are usually honest, civil and pay well for exceptional value or treatment,” and bullying customers, who are “usually dishonest, uncivil, verbally abusive and do not pay well.”

According to Hanson, the latter’s tactics “border on scam artistry.”

Hanson’s essay is of great interest to me as a survivor of bullying. I agree with Hanson that businesses should enforce clear policies but am not sure that all instances of bullying by customers can be attributed to perceived weaknesses in the target. This comes rather closer to victim-blaming than I feel comfortable with.

From time to time while working at a northern California newspaper, I encountered people who were textbook models for how not to behave with the media: They demanded free papers and behaved as though their announcements were more important than other submissions. The problems in these cases were not evadable policies or perceived weaknesses in the company; instead these people expected themselves to be exempt from rules that everyone else had to follow.

Hanson’s premise is worth thinking about when examining company policies, with the caveat that strict enforcement won’t stop people being mean. But hopefully if a business doesn’t cave to their bullying, these mean people will go away.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Hannon Library computers have Adobe Creative Suite

Courtesy of Jim Rible on Facebook, Hannon Library at Southern Oregon University has two new iMacs with the entire Adobe Creative Suite 6 Master Collection.

This information is vitally important; my initial career as a (volunteer) desktop publisher was entirely possible through accessing computers at the Sonoma State University library.

Through my use of software in the SSU lab, I was able to create monthly and quarterly newsletters for local and regional bodies in the Society for Creative Anachronism.

That early familiarity with software and meeting deadlines served me well 15 years ago when I applied for a position with the Lake County Record-Bee. My success at that position can directly be attributed to those library computer lab resources.

According to Rible, Hannon Library is open after other labs close. For more information, visit

League bowling: Lexie Firth bowls first games for ‘Killer Bees’

My husband Jonathan Donihue and I had an opportunity to bowl last night with the Lake County Record-Bee “Killer Bees.”

Our departure from Lake County, Calif. is only a few weeks away and I treasure these last occasions to bowl with my team. The two seasons that I bowled with the “Killer Bees” marked the first time in my life that I competed on an athletic team.

Lexie Firth and Nathan DeHart rounded out last night’s quartet as we bowled against D&K Carpet Cleaning. Firth’s average and handicap are yet to be determined, which will influence the wins and losses. I think they will be close games.

For my personal scores, I bowled 99 during my first game. My second game was low and during the third game I bowled an 87. My average remains at 80.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Author Lauren Oliver explains how book is made

With her book “The Spindlers” (HarperCollins, 2012) as example, author Lauren Oliver explains step-by-step how a book is made, beginning with the author’s idea and ending with the book in the reader’s hands. There is fascinating insight in the seven-episode series of videos, the first of which is embedded above. My thanks to HarperCollins Children’s Books for sharing a link to the series on Facebook.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Scholarship promotes intellectual freedom at ALA Annual Conference

The Gordon M. Conable Scholarship offers the potential of a unique opportunity for this would-be library professional. Administered by the Freedom to Read Foundation, the scholarship will cover conference registration, transportation and housing for six nights and six days during the American Library Association Conference.

While only a volunteer, I encountered my first challenge in the form of books removed from a small church library. While the motivation was as probably theft, I reported the disappearance to the ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom.

Intellectual freedom is important to me as a lifelong user of libraries. I depend upon libraries to provide the information I need free of bias or ideology. Attempts at censorship subvert the work of librarians to serve their communities' information needs.

If accepted, the Gordon M. Conable Scholarship would provide me with valuable experience that would enrich my professional career. In the short term it would give me a venue for dialogue about an issue I care about. In the long term, it would prepare me for further challenges in my library career.

YALSA launches 2013 Teen Summer Reading Program website

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) has launched the 2013 Teen Summer Reading Programs website at Area libraries: What are your plans for teen summer reading programs? The site offers a venue to share information and ideas; see more details at ALANews.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Study tracks effects of bullying into early adulthood

A study published in February found that depression and anxiety tied to bullying in childhood persisted at least through people’s mid-20s. As reported by Genevra Pittman for Reuters Health:

“‘It’s obviously very well established how problematic bullying is short-term,’ said William Copeland, a clinical psychologist who led the new study at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C.
“‘I was surprised that a decade down the road after they’ve been victimized, when they’ve kind of transitioned to adulthood, we would still see these emotional marks for the victims and also the bullies/victims.’”
These findings are significant and reflect my experiences with bullying in Calistoga Joint Unified School District schools: I was physically and verbally abused and ostracized by my schoolmates.

If study authors would examine them, I believe the effects of bullying persist later into adulthood. I  shared my own long-term consequences when discussing the rate that bullying affects children on the autism spectrum and believe them worth restating here.

At more than 40 years old, I find it hard to recognize potential friendships. It is difficult to understand people laughing with me instead of at me and when someone seems upset in my presence, I assume I am the cause.

There are also situations I refuse to place myself in. I object to civic groups publicly fining members for transgressions that seem capricious and invented. To me, this method of raising funds seems a license for humiliation.

Bullying is a documented factor in many young people’s suicides and has also been identified as a contributor to Complex PTSD (that’s post traumatic stress disorder caused by cumulative traumatic events rather than a short-lived trauma).

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Emphasis on Jackson County libraries for my professional Facebook page

Doing the job that I want ...

With my departure from the Lake County Record-Bee to relocate to Ashland, Ore., I have implemented a shift in focus for my professional page on Facebook.

I am posting notices from Jackson County Library Services and from other agencies about happenings at Jackson County libraries.

Readers of my blog can expect a similar shift in focus from Lake County, Calif. libraries toward an increased emphasis upon the libraries in my adopted community. At a minimum I plan to volunteer at Jackson County libraries, but my ideal job would be a paid position at an area library.

My dream job would let me be physically active at a library, shelving books or pulling holds -- perhaps administering social media, blogging and publishing newsletters -- while making use of a tuition-share program that would allow me to pursue an MLIS.

Where would I find this job? Maybe with Jackson County Library Services, maybe Hannon Library at Southern Oregon University or with Ashland or Medford school district library services.

Temple Grandin to speak at ALA Annual Conference

Excuse the hero worship that augments this would-be library professional’s ambition to attend American Library Association gatherings.

Temple Grandin will speak at the ALA’s 2013 Annual Conference, as compiled in the March 6 edition of American Libraries Direct.

Book cover: "The Autistic Brain" by Temple Grandin
The ALA credits Grandin with being “one of the world’s most influential, accomplished and well known adults with autism.” For me, Temple Grandin is a tireless advocate for our shared dignity and value. Her writings make frequent appearances on my list of books for people with autism.

Grandin’s appearance is sponsored by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, which will publish her new book in April. “The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum” is co-authored with Richard Panek.

According to the ALA, “Grandin brings her singular perspective to a thrilling journey through the autism revolution, weaving her own experience with remarkable new discoveries. She also finds a route to more effective mainstreaming and a way to unleash the unique advantages of autistic people.”

The ALA Annual Conference takes place June 27 to July 2 in Chicago.

I appreciate the ALA giving Grandin a platform to advocate the value of the autistic brain. Could this be a step toward greater disability representation among library professionals?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Online comments should be tied to known accounts

The subject of #DFMChat this week among Digital First Media journalists was improving conversations on social media. Specifically, it addressed trolling or online bullying.

Bill Keller writes, in “The Bullying Pulpit,” his piece for the New York Times, that anonymity is license to be vicious. Chat moderator Ivan Lajara shared a link to Keller’s commentary as an introduction to the subject.

I offered a suggestion in response to a question of how to deal with online bullying:

Comment platform hosts should insist that posting ability be tied to an identified account. The host can then actively block abusive users from being able to persist in online bullying.

Yarnbombing: Book drop handle cozy at Lakeport Library

Yarnbombing: Crocheted handle cozy on "Mosler Dropository" book drop at Lakeport Library, Lakeport, Calif.

How about one final wave of yarnstorming at Lake County, Calif. libraries before I leave for Ashland, Ore.? Yesterday I attached a crocheted book drop handle cozy at the Lakeport Library. I hope to complete at least one more tag between now and our departure date.

News know-how a shared objective for libraries and journalism

In the March/April edition of American Libraries, a brief notice states that three public libraries will receive more than $50,000 worth of training and support to participate in the News Know-how initiative.

News Know-how is a campaign of the American Library Association, with lead training provided by News Literacy Project, Inc. The two-year news literacy education project was launched in February 2012.

As stated in American Libraries, News Know-how will help students distinguish between fact and opinion, propaganda and news, and check news and information sources.

Grants were awarded in 2013 to San Antonio Public Library, San Jose Public Library and the State Library of Iowa. Each will recruit 10th- to 12th-graders in their communities to receive instruction from librarians, journalists and news ethicists.

As a stakeholder on both fronts, I consider information literacy to be an important and shared objective for libraries and journalism. Media consumers of all ages can benefit by being aware of credibility and bias.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Yarn Bombing @ Your Library: International activity

Tree decorated with yarn storming, Victoria Street Mall
Yarn Bombing @ Your Library, my library advocacy project on Facebook, continues to expand its international representation as I curate photos for the timeline.

This morning, I added a project circa June 2012: Moreland libraries in Moreland, Australia provided logistical support for “Wild and Wooly,” a yarn storming project at the Victoria Street Mall initiated by the Moreland City Council.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Jonathan Donihue is nationally certified as massage therapist

My husband, Jonathan Donihue, is now nationally certified as a massage therapist. Yesterday he successfully passed an exam administered by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. This achievement will qualify him to be licensed as a massage therapist in any state in the U.S. that accepts national certification.

Season opening at Oregon Shakespeare Festival

This guest post is by Patricia Feldhaus, a theater reviewer based in Chico, Calif. I know Feldhaus through my tenure producing an arts and entertainment section for the Lake County Record-Bee.

The role of women, Black Power and a Shakespearean tragedy herald the opening 2013 season at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

Music plays an integral role in the fast paced, high energy, entertaining production of Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew.” Director David Ivers combines rock and roll with country music to provide a 1950s-inspired look and sound. He re-imagines Padua as a seaside amusement park with ferris wheels, roller coaster and a boardwalk.

There’s a great deal of verbal sparring between the two protagonists since Kate is renowned for her acerbic tongue and Petruchio is determined to “wive and thrive in Padua as best I can.” Petruchio is “kated” after he claims her as his bride: “I will thee wed.”

Meanwhile, younger sister, Bianca, has three suitors vying for her hand in marriage. In the course of impressing her father. their offerings are very effectively projected on a large screen.

August Wilson’s “Two Trains Running” depicts multiple facets of everyday life converging in a 1969 Pittsburgh diner composed of the owner, cook/waitress, bookie, undertaker, recently released convict and others who dwell on past injustices. Most of them have consulted 349-year-old Aunt Esther, whose spirit permeates each of Wilson’s 10-play Century Cycle. One bit of her advice: “If you drop the ball, you have to go back and pick it up.”

Lou Bellamy, artistic director of the Penumbra Theatre in St. Paul, Minn., has directed all of Wilson’s plays. Bellamy said that “Two Trains Running” “portrays ordinary people dealing with racism as capable of having intelligent conversations.”

Two grand pianos and a cast of twenty provide the well-known Lerner and Loewe tunes for a spectacular tour-de-force performance of “My Fair Lady” based on George Bernard Shaw’s “Pygmalion.”

Amanda Dehnert, director and musical director, wanted to show that life and theater are not clean and tidy; therefore, she exposed the audience to what usually happens off stage by “seeing how people transform into workers, servants and gentry through the power of imagination and the adding of a glove or apron.” It was amazing to see proper hats being lowered from above stage.

Even though Shaw stated that “Pygmalion” was a political and feminist play, not a love story, the original actors changed the ending so that Higgins and Eliza ended up together.

Artistic Director Bill Rauch chose a contemporary approach in the intimate round seating of the Thomas Theatre for Shakespeare’s tragedy, “King Lear.” He cast two actors to alternate performances, divided the play into three segments and also left some often-cut political machinations intact. Program notes say that he is fascinated how Shakespeare's work operates on so many planes at once: metaphysical, psychological, social, spiritual and political.

“Lear” deals with truly dysfunctional families. After King Lear leaves his lands to his two eldest daughters, he discovers how pernicious they are. In the second section Lear struggles against the elements and a group of treacherous villains when he says, “I am a man more sinned against than sinning.” In the final part, everyone comes together in Dover where there is reconciliation before death.

“Shrew” and “Fair Lady” play in the indoor Angus Bowmer Theatre through Nov. 3. “Two Trains Running” will be in the Bowmer until July 7 and “Lear" is in the Thomas Theatre through Nov. 3. For further information and tickets, visit or call 800-219-8161.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Twitter archives now available

At the Buttry Diary, Steve Buttry recommends, “For the fun (or embarrassment) of reviewing your first tweet and other early tweets or to find tweets from your early coverage of a story that’s back in the news, you should acquire and check out your Twitter archive.” Buttry is digital transformation editor for Digital First Media.