Tag Archives: Humor

Library Tips and Tricks: Printing

There is nothing worse than a printer mishap when your class started 2 minutes ago and you need that paper NOW. So here’s a guide to common printer problems, and how to solve them.

Sometimes when printing from Blackboard, your document may come out looking like this:

You didn't need to read that, did you?

The Heart of Darkness

Worry not! There is no madcap censor blacking out entire pages.  Blackboard and Chrome don’t always like to play nicely together.

Ken is Chrome

Via chipsprites on Tumblr

If your printouts are coming out looking like something out of 1984, just switch browsers. Firefox or IE will be more than happy to help.

Even more frustrating is when you can’t print at all! Sometimes when you hit Print, your only choice is something called “Send to One Note.”

OneNote

You see, our computers can be a little forgetful. Kind of like…

Are you crazy? I'm not messing with Disney.

Photo credit: Jonathan Beeston via Flikr

…yeah. I can add a printer, and next period: POOF! It is gone again.

Tiny magician, give me my printers back!

Photo credit: Eva Peris via Flickr.

And as everyone knows, the only way to counter a magician is with a wiza- I mean, librarian. So call one of us over. Of course, if you’re tech savvy/impatient/MS. SPERBER IS GOING TO KILL ME AUUUGH you can always fix it yourself.

Just click the Start button, and type in \\print. Then hit Enter.

Thank you, Karl, for teaching me this.

Then scroll down the list to Library_Upper_Copier.

print 3

Double click, wait for it to install, and you’re all set!

Hopefully this will help you solve some of your printing woes, and ease your mind while waiting for that research paper to print.

After that, though, you’re on your own.

-Signing off, Mr. Gette (who estimates he spends approximately 23.97% of his time dealing with printers.)

Bookmobile in Review and Spring Break

KG: It’s 1:30 on Friday afternoon, which means there’s only 2 hours left until Spring Break.

JB: It’s actually 2:49 on Friday afternoon, which means Librarians Barrows and Gette ignored the task of writing this post for over an hour. Now, Librarian Gette is teaching the likes of Health 9 and Librarian Barrows must author these meager words solo.

Yesterday’s Junior School Bookmobile saw success unlike any other Bookmobile, ever.* Students jostled aggressively, vying for an opportunity to check out a coveted Kindle/Kindle Fire or even a, dare I say, book. We enlisted Mr. Saunders for crowd control, and immediately lost him to the crowd. Last time we librarians spotted Mr. Saunders, he was grabbing sought-after books and Kindles by the armful, laughing maniacally all the way to the Breakthrough Office.**

Thank you JSchool for your toleration and participation.

To students near and far:

Read. Amidst elaborate (or totally un-elaborate) travels, missed episodes of The Walking Dead, post-term paper sleep, read. Whether badly written chick-lit, James Joyce, John Green, narrative non-fiction, The Economist, or Shel Silverstein, read as if books were rare and expensive and difficult to locate. Read as if Gutenberg was still kickin’ and the printing press was still in its infancy. Read as if the Chinese hadn’t developed printing even earlier. Read as if an impending invasion of your country threatened (and subsequently destroyed) all physical manifestations of collected knowledge. Read as if free K-12 education was not a right, but a privilege.

Read stuff and get excited about it.

-Signing off, Jenny Barrows (public service announcement courtesy of being surrounded by ALL the books ALL the time)

*Slightly exaggerated

**True or untrue? You decide.

Book Review: The Passage

Help! Virals!

The Passage

Author Justin Cronin listened to his daughter, and now life is awesome. Now we have The Passage.

The first installment of a trilogy of the same name is a little difficult to summarize – and by “a little difficult,” I actually mean a Herculean task that suspiciously resembles impossibility.

Attempt #1

Basically, a rare Bolivian jungle virus is discovered and extracted by a Harvard scientist and the US military. Cursory evidence suggests that the virus, if properly harnessed, could be injected into humans and turn them into superheroes who stay young not forever, but for awhile.

Are these things ever properly harnessed?

Exactly.

Injections fail, test subjects escape, infection spreads, mayhem ensues, and the world falls into a post-apocalyptic state. Most people are dead, some are “turned,” and few humans remain. Those  “turned” are dubbed virals, which strongly resemble vampires. Hate sunlight. Drink blood. Mostly kill, but sometimes turn their victims. Super strength and speed. Etc.

Attempt #2

There is no way to summarize the book without making it sound like an installment of a horror trilogy that only appeals to a specific genre reader (see above). The summary provides the framework of a plot that is made great by its characters, particularly Amy – the heart of Cronin’s story. An abandoned girl whose journey spans miles and decades, Amy’s appearance nearly 100 years after the outbreak (Year Zero) infuses members of the First Colony (94 surviving humans) with the hope needed in their journey to survive and reclaim the world.

High-lights: non-linear plot, varying perspectives, biblical undertones, Peter, Alicia, Wolgast, masterful suspense, interjections of letters, emails and official reports, overlapping story lines, calling pants “gaps,” slow revelations, and the virals. Definitely the virals – for so many reasons.

Low-lights: heaviness of the text (solved by reading on a Calarco Kindle), occasional uneven prose (almost forgivable in such an epic tale), Richard (terrible human)…that’s about it.

Takeaways: These vampires do not sparkle or seduce and this text is better described as a dystopian journey rather than a horror story full of blood and guts and stuff.

The Passage is dangerously absorbing and fascinatingly rewarding. Read it so I have a friend to geek out with and someone to accompany me as I read Cronin’s first sequel, The Twelve.

-Signing off, Jenny Barrows (who will forget to eat, sleep, or bathe as she reads The Twelve…apologies in advance)

Weeding Discoveries: The Latest Series

As I plod through Great Expectations and look wistfully at the other books on my desk/bedside table/floor/coffee table/kitchen table/entryway/bookshelves (obviously), I think to myself, “Why not start yet another erratic and nonsensical blog series?!”

…And so Weeding Discoveries is born.

weeding, n. : a. the action or process of freeing (land, crops, etc.) from weeds ; b. the eradication (of weeds) ; c. that which is weeded out (courtesy of OED)

In order to allow tangible knowledge and information (i.e. books) to flourish and grow, librarians must free allocated plots (i.e. shelves) of that which occupies valued space. Books that occupy valued space include multiple copies of editions/translations, books falling apart (literally) at the seams, manuals on Windows 95, etc. While this may all sound very sad and un-librarian, we assure you that is the most librarian thing to do. Removing a book titled something like, “Contemporary Thought on U.S. Foreign Policy and Soviet Russia” published in 1972 really only does everyone a favor. We are bibliophiles people, not hoarders.

During this process, we sometimes stumble upon some of the most exciting discoveries. So far, they have included the infamous piece of pie, lists/documents printed on that 1980’s printer paper (which I just discovered is called continuous stationary), lots of dust, and these two gems below.

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Read the article Line on Liners to learn more about the Seamen’s Welfare Committee and Mr. Haight. And since you cannot read the inverted Russian proverbs, I will leave you with some of those.

Don’t look now, but someone is stealing your potatoes.

The kopek thief is hanged, while the thousand-ruble thief is honored.

The uninvited guest is worse than a Tartar.

-Signing off, Jenny Barrows (who was once told on a Russian train that she was en route to Leningrad…in 2010)

Town Forum – Whiteboard Question #1

On Friday, Ms. Barrows and I found an unattended whiteboard in the library. So we decided to put it to use.

Hup two three four

The whiteboard levitates up the stairs.

Less magic, more muscle

Oh wait, it’s just Ms. Barrows.

Since we’re librarians, we have to ask about books. It’s in our contracts. We decided that a nice, easy, non-contentious question to start with would be “Suggest a good book!” And with help from a friendly freshman whose adviser must be wise and talented (Thanks, Nik!), we got set up.

Pretty soon, the whiteboard looked like this:

That was fast!

That was fast!

Seuss. S-E-U-S-S. Seuss.

And then it looked like this:

I've never heard of some of these.

Getting kind of crowded….

And then this:

My eyes! My eyes!

My eyes! My eyes!

Don’t think we didn’t notice that little change, folks. Please respect other people’s recommendations.

Also, The Popcorn Rat? I’m not sure I believe that’s a real book. And Google backs me up on that one.

And finally, at the end of the day:

Hooray!

Hooray!

To keep reading (no, really, keep reading) click here!

Library Shame Con 2012

And so commences Reads of Shame: A Series from your Calarco Librarians

This series will consist of Mr. Gette and Ms. Barrows being shamed into reading various books at irregular and inconsistent periods of time. These will be books that we really should have read by this point in our lives (as librarians and as humans), but for shameful, inexcusable reasons, have not. We will shame each other, and we ask the greater Hopkins community to finger point and assign books to us humble, shamed librarians.

For this first non-specific period of time, Ms. Barrows was shamed by herself and Mr. Gette into reading Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. Why is it shameful Ms. Barrows hasn’t read Great Expectations? Maybe because she is obsessed with Mr. Pip, visited England (where she saw a massive Dickens museum display), and secretly watched the bad Ethan Hawke movie once.

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Mr. Gette has been shamed by Ms. Barrows into reading The Hours by Michael Cunningham. Ms Barrows was going on and on about how good it is while talking about how embarrassed she is that she’s never read Mrs. Dalloway (a preview of things to come?). And since Mr. Gette had read some Virginia Woolf in college,and had sort of thought about maybe seeing the movie, he figured maybe he should give the book a try. Plus, he doesn’t read much contemporary fiction, so this should be a change of pace.

The Hours

Reads of Shame, Round 1: Start!

Signing off, Jenny Barrows (does doing bicep curls with Great Expectations count as reading it?) and Kit Gette (who hopes The Hours won’t take hours).

Vagabond Librarians No More: The Triumphant Return

School Days Closed: 9 (not counting Yom Kippur and Class Trips)

Blog Posts Posted: 10

Laptops Checked Out: Billions

Incorrect Print Jobs: 17 Trees

Textbooks “misplaced”: …we would prefer not getting into that

Science Faculty Sightings: Pleasantly frequent

Hokey Jokes About Books: …we certainly haven’t heard THOSE before

Tears Shed Upon Return: several, and a significant one from Jenny Barrows when she slammed her hand in a laptop cart door

Books Lost to Mold: 0

Books Lost to Pie: 1 (?)

Pie, Pi (Ha, Pun)

photo credit: djwtwo via photopin cc

Let’s elaborate on the last statistic. Yesterday, we returned to the library to find a solitary book cocooned in plastic wrap furtively stashed  in a corner of the upstairs reference desk. We approached with caution – what untold moldy horrors could lurk within? Librarian Prendergast bravely picked up the unknown element, and then a disembodied voice floated up from below,

Beware…BEWARE! That book contains a piece of pie…which actually looked like it was quite delicious at one point. Seriously, who does that – ruins a piece of pie by putting it in a book?! Anyway, beware…BEWARE!

Thanks, Anthony from maintenance. And by the way, great disembodied voice. Really, quite impressive.

As an aside, pie does not make a good bookmark. Pie is intended to be enjoyed by people, not pages. Yes, sometimes you have to eat your words. But please, not ones borrowed from the library.

…Oh, were you looking for actual information? From librarians? Try scheduling an individual appointment here.

-Signing off, Jenny (Apple Pie) Barrows and Kit (Blueberry Pie) Gette (no really, bring us pie)