Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What to study next...

Playing on the popular reader's advisory book, I'm contemplating different areas of knowledge to attempt to ascend now that I've passed on epidemiology.  Not that I am no longer interested in the study of the distribution and determinants of disease in people.  But I have always been pragmatic and now that I have turned back to librarianship, I feel obliged to focus on my true calling.

Given my penchant for the bigger picture, I have a desire to learn more about the foundations and philosophy of librarianship.  Actually, there is no shortage of resources on this topic - from articles to books to blogs.  But as I read such works as The Social Transcript and The Atlas of New Librarianship, I am faced with my relative lack of exposure to philosophical theories and precepts.  I have had the basics - reasoning (logic), history of Western ideas, etc. but the names and theories that are bandied about in these and other works are not familiar.

I have also realized my limited knowledge of the ideas and their impact of our profession's greatest members.  I recognize names, but have a hard time placing them in the timeline and "idea-scape" of the field.

So, I have decided to embark on a course of study to include these topics:

  • Logic: I need to refresh myself on the foundational "science" of philosophy.
  • Epistemiology or theory of knowledge: I have attempted this before but usually get bogged down in the semantics of the language.  I need some good works that provide an overview that is relevant to the social sciences.  Here's one from MIT's OpenCourseware.
  • History of librarianship: Note that I have been avoiding the term, "library science".  I tried using that, but I always ask myself the age-old question: "science" of what? libraries?  I'm reading the above books quasi-simultaneously - moving back and forth - and one idea I agreed with Dr. Lanske (Atlas) is the focus on the librarian and librarianship, and not the entity.  There are so many "libraries" in academic departments that are merely study rooms filled with books donated or discarded by the faculty.  There is no organization, no purposeful selection (or de-selection), and no way to locate the information needed.  Needless to say, they are rarely used, except as meeting rooms.  Anyhow, I want to re-acquaint myself with the "movers and shakers" of the field, both current and historical.
  • Professions: I've already done a review of professionalism and academic librarianship, so maybe I'll review my resources and write up my ideas.  Who knows, maybe it will be worth something to someone.
Now, I have a reason for posting this on my blog - I need the incentive to pursue this project to completion. Like many librarians I know, I can be easily distracted and may move on before acquiring the knowledge I seek.  Also, I was hoping to gain some insight into the best resources to use.  I want to be informed, but this is purely for self-improvement - this is not a plan for PhD.  Please advise.

I will try to make occasional postings of my progress...unless I get interminably lost on another path.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Literary tattoos

I must admit, I was intrigued by this posting in Publisher's Weekly (made way to me from LISNews ->Bibliofuture): The 5 Books That Inspire the Most Tattoos.  The tattoos are amazing and I'm quite pleased by the #4 entry: The Little Prince.  Where the Wild Things Are (#3) were quite colorful, and I was a bit surprised that Slaughterhouse 5 was at the top - more for it's phrases than its images: "So it goes" and "Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt".

This was nice divergence from SOPA, RWA, crushed budgets, and citation analysis.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Top Ten Questions

This is a follow-up to my previous post on conducting research in an academic library, where I hope to start crystallizing my ideas.  I feel that my MLS, MPH and post-graduate training in epidemiology have helped me prepare for "doing research".  Towards that end, the first thing to consider are the questions - what do I want to find out?  Here are my Top 10 Questions - Letterman-style:

10.  What factors most affect the quality of a collection?
9.  What are the most valid measures of the quality of a collection?
8.  What are the similarities and differences in quality between open-access and subscription-based resources?
7.  How well would the Howard White-style Brief Tests work for evaluating our collections?
6.  What are the ideal parameter-values for the Brief Tests?
5.  Would a Conspectus method of collection development be effective for our library?
4.  What is the effect of accessibility to the resources in a collection on its usage? (I'm thinking a combination of findability and marketing or awareness)
3.  To what extent does the quality of a collection impact student and research outcomes?
2.  What will be the impact of eliminating resources from our collection on student and research outcomes?
1.  What are the most valid measures of the impact or quality of the non-ejournal electronic resources (e.g. abstract & index databases, audiovisual services, etc.)?

While I actually consider some of the questions in the 5-10 range more important overall, I am compelled to look at questions 1-3 first because of the situation that our library (like many or most libraries) is facing - greater demands with less funding.  I hope to be able to provide the appropriate and valid evidence that would enable us to recommend the (heaven forbid) elimination of the least effective resources.

It will be interesting to return to these questions periodically to see the progress I (hope to) will be making.

Monday, January 16, 2012

SOPA shelved...but don't let your guard down

From LIS News:
SOPA shelved until consensus is found:

Controversial online piracy bill shelved until 'consensus' is found

House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said early Saturday morning that Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) promised him the House will not vote on the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) unless there is consensus on the bill.

"While I remain concerned about Senate action on the Protect IP Act, I am confident that flawed legislation will not be taken up by this House," Issa said in a statement. "Majority Leader Cantor has assured me that we will continue to work to address outstanding concerns and work to build consensus prior to any anti-piracy legislation coming before the House for a vote."

While I'm glad that this step has been taken, it is not a true success. The fact that it is being "shelved" until "consensus is found" is very worrying to me. I envision this "consensus" being "found" in back rooms or buried as provisions in other bills, passed unwittingly or along with "must-pass" legislation.

SOPA is down, but it is not out, we need to continue our collaboration with the Internet industry to keep the pressure against it up.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Update on RWA

Progress is being made on the repudiation of the Research Works Act (RWA), which is the AAP's attempt to make the NIH's Open Access efforts illegal.  Several publishers (mostly university presses) have openly disavowed the bill and the criticized AAP (of which they are members).  This includes Rockefeller University Press, which is in the district represented by the bill's key sponsor.  Richard Poynder (of Open & Shut blog) reported his attempts to get publishers to answer key questions about their support of the bill.  Only NEJM's editor responded to all questions - the key response being: "We have no position on the RWA as drafted."  Hmmm, "no position", eh?  Sounds like tacit support to me.  

Well the university presses, at least, are starting to disavow the bill.  In addition to Rockefeller, MIT Press, ITHAKA, U Penn, and University of California presses have rejected the bill.  However, none have threatened withdrawal of support of the AAP.  Maybe it's too soon to expect that.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Changes to the English dissertation?

Quick note about the MLA (that's Modern Language Association, not the Medical Library) considering changing the format or guidelines for dissertation in InsideHigherEd.  When I was pursuing doctoral studies in public health, the standard format of a dissertation was well on its way out.  It was no longer considered relevant to a future in epidemiology to write a book-length tome.  Instead, the outputs of the research were expected to be several articles to be submitted for publication.  This is what the faculty did - few wrote whole books.  This is not to say that the quality of the work was expected to be lowered, just the length of each output.  I would guess that the total amount of pages would actually accumulate to be more than a dissertation, but it would be more practical training for the future.

Which is what the MLA and others in English graduate programs are trying to do themselves.  They suggest greater flexibility on format, including more creative works, writing for the Web, and collaborative work.  This could impact the kinds of resources that academic libraries provide to support these students.  Perhaps adding more resources on writing for the Web and marketing the collaborative workspaces to the English students.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Assessment in C&RL

Just ahead of ALA, the ACRL releases the latest issue of C&RL with several articles on library assessment.  Here are two that I wanted to comment on:

The first is actually a method I hope to put into practice soon - local citation analysis to assess utility of library collections.  Their primary objective was "to find out the extent to which the collections of the Hesburgh Libraries of Notre Dame met the needs of the graduate doctoral student population."  They looked at all references in all electronic dissertations (which was "most" of all dissertations owned by the library).  They manually entered over 27,000 unique citations from over 39,000 references (whew! - even with various tricks to help reduce the labor, that is a lot of work!).  Then they checked their catalog and other resources to a) validate the citation, and b) determine library ownership or access.

The results included several tables demonstrating differences in citation between major disciplines, which was pretty much expected - more books than journals were cited in the arts & humanities, while for sciences it was nearly all journal articles, and for social sciences it was about 60% articles.  One notable difference - dissertations in computer sciences referenced conference papers most (32%), followed closely by articles.  

The authors analyzed the data by title and year (and author, for books), which had the effect of listing in the top sources cited the same journal titles for different years.  While this may be useful for books (although it would have a similar effect on different editions), I think it would be better to condense it one more level to analyze by title.  This would enable other resources to appear in the "top 25" lists.  

The most interesting part was Table 10, which details the ownership of the resources.  Overall, the authors could boast that their library provided access to 63-76% of all citations referenced, and 75-93% of the top 1,000 items referenced.  Differences across broad disciplines showed that the sciences had the greatest rate of ownership, with the social sciences and engineering having lower rates.  Arts and humanities was mixed - low for all references cited (63%) but high for top 1,000 references (90%).  

Of course, this does beg the question - does this actually reflect "need" or "use"?  Were there unmet needs by the candidates?  How was the material not owned by the library acquired (ILL, loans from faculty)?  How were the students made aware of these references (faculty referrals and personal libraries, references in other works)?

The other article is both a literature review of methods of assessment of online library instruction (or is it, online methods of assessment of library instruction?), and the results of a survey of such assessment in academic libraries.  While the literature review section starts out discussing online instruction and metrics of usage (e.g. "hits"), it evolves into a broad overview of instruction assessment in general.  Mentioned here is the lack of good measures for evaluating non-traditional delivery of instruction - those that are not given in a single face-to-face "session".  I really couldn't tell if the primary concern of the authors, though, was the technical aspects of measuring online instruction or the broader issue of more appropriate measures of impact and outcome in assessment.

This was followed by a description of their survey, but the authors did not effectively state the purpose of the survey, except "to go beyond the existing literature, opinion, and experience in the realm of statistical reporting of online LI activities".  Invitations to complete the survey were sent out on various Listservs, requesting librarians who provide instruction or manage such programs to complete it.  Because it was anonymous, no attempt was made to combine results from the same library, but that may or may not have affected results.  

The results revealed that accounting for the delivery of online instruction is hardly standardized across institutions.  In addition to there being no clear method of counting and recording these "sessions" (for lack of a better word), the comments showed quite a bit of confusion over if and how to do that.  One thing that was clear was that online instruction methods take much more time to prepare than face-to-face instruction.  This does not surprise me, because I have done both and I have noticed the difference.  

Overall, I think this issue is very important, but I think the survey revealed that it (the issue) is still too immature to measure.  This seems like a good opportunity to do a qualitative study, focus groups of assessment and instruction librarians, which can help identify key terms and ideas, which could be clarified and condensed with a Delphi study.  

Overall, good reading for a cold, January night.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Role of Research in Academic Librarianship

I've noticed that librarians are increasingly under pressure to increase the visibility of their professional work, notably in the three main activities of librarianship: scholarly, professional and service.  This is not to say that we were not doing this, but often it was much more informal and unrecognized. For instance, some have done a lot of research related to their jobs, but they just haven't written it up and submitted it for publication.  I have no doubt that most, if not all, of the librarians have performed these activities on a regular basis, but usually below the radar.  Now, there is growing recognition that this needs to change.  Of particular emphasis is the research & publication requirements.

While there is some concern about the additional work required, it seems to me we are just not comfortable "doing research".  While some may not have had enough formal education in the methods, I think this is primarily due to a lack of confidence.  We librarians think of "doing research" as much harder than it really is.  We do it all the time in our lives, mostly through trial and error.  We "experiment" in the kitchen with a new recipe, or on the information desk with a new way of finding information.  But it is all informal and not documented.  We need to take the next step.

But a question that occurred to me was, what kind and level of research should we be doing as librarian practitioners, and not PhD information scientists?  Faculty-researchers have been trained in more advanced methods of study design and analysis than masters-trained professionals.  While many of us had a research methods and maybe a statistics course, that is really not enough training conduct the kind of studies that we think of as Research.  You know, the kind that our research faculty do.

But maybe that should not be what we should be doing.  We are not research faculty...we are professionals.  We have a responsibility to those faculty, to provide the best resources for their research; to the students, to provide the necessary resources and services for their education; and to the administration, to use the financial and human resources wisely and to demonstrate our impact on the outcomes of the organization.  As professionals, we have a set of values that we strive to uphold, succinctly summarized in Michael Gorman's Our Enduring Values: Stewardship, Service, Intellectual Freedom, Rationalism, Literacy and learning, Equity of Access, Privacy, and Democracy (I imagine some would argue with these, but I think it is a complete list).

We are also practitioners - we put into practice what we have been trained to do. Maybe we should be doing "practice-based research" - to improve the efficiency and efficacy and increase the impact of what we do. This kind of research, I think, differs from what our PhD colleagues in the SLIS departments do.  Their questions are of the higher realm - mostly, "why?"  Our questions tend to be more pragmatic - what works and why?  How to...and what's the best way?  Then there is evidence-based librarianship, where we take what is learned and apply it in our own environments and improve it.  Conversely, EBL involves documenting and sharing what we have tried with others.

As I wrote in my initial posting, I hope to use this blog to help me think through these issues and "talk out" my ideas.  With this post, I've been able to reduce my concerns about the scale and level of research to take.  What I do should first help my institution, which should also help grow the knowledge in the field.  I will discuss the topics of research that I'm considering in a later post.

Thanks for listening.

Another attack on intellectual freedom

Last year, we saw two major attacks on accessibility of information - SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and the PROTECT IP Act. While neither were successfully passed, neither were killed. They both continue to threaten our current (and already fairly restrictive) rights to access information, all under the guise of stopping piracy. This year is also starting with a bang - the "Research Works Act", which attempts to reverse the progress of making results of research that has been funded by taxpayers to be made available to us taxpayers!

While there may be some debate on the exact list of values in our profession, intellectual freedom has undoubtedly the most consensus. This item from the ACRLog nicely summarizes the extent of the threat, as well as suggestions on how to personally get involved.

Stop Making Sense (Scholarly Publishing Edition):

Yesterday I was flabbergasted to read about the Research Works Act (hat tip to @CopyrightLibn and @RepoRat), legislation which is strongly supported by the Association of American Publishers. As described on the AAP website:

The Research Works Act will prohibit federal agencies from unauthorized free public dissemination of journal articles that report on research which, to some degree, has been federally-funded but is produced and published by private sector publishers receiving no such funding. It would also prevent non-government authors from being required to agree to such free distribution of these works. Additionally, it would preempt federal agencies’ planned funding, development and back-office administration of their own electronic repositories for such works, which would duplicate existing copyright-protected systems and unfairly compete with established university, society and commercial publishers.

I recommend reading the AAP’s statement in full — it’s truly head-spinning. If this legislation goes through it would be a major blow to open access to scholarly research and publishing. And this comes on the heels of the (unsurprising, yet still disappointing) news that SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and the PROTECT IP act are also strongly supported by many commercial publishers.

Even more troubling are details on campaign contributions for the representatives who sponsored the act, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY). Biologist Michael Eisen used MapLight to learn that Elsevier contributed funds to Representative Maloney’s campaign last year. Anthropologist Jason Baird Jackson found Representative Issa’s name on Elsevier’s contributions list as well.

If this makes you furious (as it does me), you’re probably wondering what we can do beyond writing emails or phone calls to register our disagreement with these legislative acts. Here are some ideas — please share more in the comments!

Keep talking! Every time the commercial publishers come out in support of restricting access to scholarly research it’s another opportunity to widen the open access conversation. John Dupuis at Confessions of a Science Librarian and others have called for scholarly societies to resign their memberships in the AAP. What else can we say in support of open access in conversations with colleagues, faculty, and administrators?

Familiarize ourselves with the issues Many of us have likely perused the wide range of top notch resources out there on open access scholarly publishing. Peter Suber’s excellent overview of open access is a great place to start, and I highly recommend sharing it with those interested in learning the basics. To keep up with OA news and developments I follow Open Access Tracking Project on Twitter, or visit the Open Access Directory hosted by Simmons College.

Know where to go The louder the open access conversation gets, the more colleagues, faculty, and administrators are likely to come to us with questions. The DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals) is a great place for scholars to start looking for open access journals to publish their research, and SHERPARoMEO has a wealth of information on both OA and toll access publishers’ copyright and self-archiving policies.

Practice what we preach It goes without saying that we should make every effort possible to publish our own research in open access venues. Jason Baird Jackson’s classic Getting Yourself Out of the Business in Five Easy Steps is well-worth a read for its sound advice on transitioning from commercial to open access publishing in all aspects of our participation in the scholarly communications system.

As academic librarians we’ve been advocates for open access for a long time, from the very beginning of the serials crisis (and far longer than I’ve been in the profession). But as these recent legislative acts demonstrate, it’s never been more important to push for ethical publishing practices and access to scholarly research.

Edited to add: The White House has extended the deadline for comments on open access to scientific publications to January 12, which is another way for us to express our support for OA (hat tip @brettbobley).

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Does this headline really not surprise anyone?

Electronic Resource Usage from Off-Campus Locations Soars According to Latest MINES for Libraries® Study

True, it is further evidence of this trend that most librarians had known of, but I hate to say that my first reaction was, "Gee, you think so?".  Specifically, they report that while off-campus use was about 45% of responses in 2004-2005, such use rose to 68% in 2010-2011.  They do provide a few caveats, notably that the two surveys were using two different systems (a locally-developed portal in 2004/5 and SFX in 2010/11).  This could easily account for at least some of the difference (how much would require extensive understanding of both systems).  But I agree with the authors that the results reflect reality.

That being said, what does this mean?  Is this good or not-so-good for libraries?  I think most e-resource librarians would agree that it's good - use is use, and the more opportunities to increase that usage, the better.  Does it mean fewer people are going to the libraries?  Comparisons with gate-count trends could help with that.

Now, what does it mean for our community?  Is our user community expanding?  Or are they distributed much like the usage of our books - a Bradford-type distribution with a few heavy users followed by a lot of casual users?  I wonder how they are benefiting from the use of these resources?  Are they using them effectively?  I wonder if they are getting jobs, good grades, learning new ideas, changing their outlooks?

"O so many things for me to wonder"

Monday, January 2, 2012

Considering Conferences (from ARCLog)

This was originally posted on ACRLog - I've always considered both public health and librarianship to be essentially multidisciplinary fields.  Qualitative research methods, originally developed by anthropologists and sociologists, have been applied by both kinds of practitioners.  While I first need to reacquaint myself with the foundations of library & information science, I hope to soon "branch out" and bring in ideas from other disciplines.

Considering Conferences:
This semester I went to two academic conferences that weren’t library conferences. While I’ve attended conferences outside of librarianship in the past, both before I was a librarian as well as more recently, this is the first time in my library career that I’ve intentionally gone to non-library conferences. At both conferences I was making a presentation, which of course was a major factor in my decision to attend. But I highly enjoyed them both, and was pleased to find much of relevance both to my interests in librarianship as well as in higher education and the disciplines.
The first conference I attended this semester, the MobilityShifts conference at the New School (about which I wrote a brief wrap-up here on ACRLog), broadly addressed issues in teaching and learning, and specifically focused on mobility and education. This was a busy conference that spanned multiple days, and though it meant for a breakneck schedule I was able to see lots of great sessions. While there were presentations by and for librarians, I was most interested in the sessions that addressed bigger pedagogical questions. In our day to day work it’s easy to think only of the library — after all, that’s the physical and mental space in which we likely spend most of our time. But I found it incredibly valuable to have the opportunity to step back and consider the library as it relates to the whole of the college while I listened to presentations by classroom faculty, researchers, students, and more.
I also went to a discipline-specific conference this fall, the American Anthropological Association Annual Meetings, where I was part of a session on library ethnographies. Unfortunately I didn’t have as much time to spend at the AAAs as I had at MobilityShifts, but I was able to catch a few other sessions and had the chance to browse the exhibits, who were mostly scholarly publishers. I work at a college library so I spend much of my time considering student use of the library, and it was interesting to see the ways that researchers embedded in their disciplines consider issues of interest to libraries, like academic publishing, open access, and digital scholarship.
In the future I’d like to try to continue to head out to non-library conferences on occasion. Of course, a major factor that impacts our ability to go to conferences in any discipline is cost. As travel budgets are often slashed along with other belt-tightening measures at colleges and universities, it may not be feasible to attend to both library and non-library conferences. But if it is possible, I highly recommend it as a way to keep up with academia beyond reading the higher ed news and blogs. If you’ve gone to academic conferences outside of librarianship, what are some of the benefits you’ve found? Would you ever substitute a non-library conference for one that caters solely to our profession?

Focusing on special collections

In the latest Research Libraries Issues put out by the ARL (issue 277) there is an opinion piece by H. Thomas Hickerson, from the University of Calgary ("Rebalancing the Investment in Collections"), discussing the importance of special collections to academic libraries, especially in this day and "age of abundance."  This was actually a presentation he made at the ARL-CNI Fall Forum on “21st-Century Collections and the Urgency of Collaborative Action,” in October.

His statement about the general and special collections is interesting point out (emphasis added):

Approval plans address most selection for undergraduate study in most fields, and they do it better and more economically than we can, and we all achieve similar results. Our archives and special collections remain our opportunity for playing a distinctive role in documenting culture, science, industry, government, and the human experience.
He goes on to state that special collections should "become a central element of our libraries", with primary resources promoted by liaisons as much as new databases. In addition, librarians and archivists should work together to support the acquisition and preservation of born-digital human record.

Finally, he suggests that the way the collections budgets are managed should be changed to incorporate more collaborative collection building, particularly digital collections.  He mentions the Hathi Trust, Google Books, Open Access, and other resources that deflect attention away from "purchases" and towards collection-sharing.

It is an interesting position to take and one I hope to learn more about as I investigate ways of assessing our digital collections.


This is troubling: ACRL Assessment Committee

I was a little concerned about this development, especially just as I was preparing for my new position in, er, assessment:
ACRL Assessment Committee:
ACRL has recently proposed a new committee structure as part of a broader initiative to support the ACRL Strategic Plan for Excellence. Part of this restructuring includes the disbanding of the ACRL Assessment Committee. From the Proposed Committee Structure Chart (pdf):
Current name: Assessment Committee

Current Charge: The Assessment Committee is responsible for encouraging the use of assessment techniques and the development of a culture of assessment to assure effective academic library programs, services, and collections; and identifying and disseminating relevant assessment resources to the ACRL membership via the ACRL website, ALA Connect, ACRL publications, ACRL professional development programs, and other relevant venues.

Disposition/Transition: Disband at end of June 2012. Specific activities in current committee workplan (i.e., “Develop and Submit a Committee Program for the 2013 ACRL Conference” and “Value of Academic Libraries Toolkit”) will be completed by to Value of Academic Libraries Committee.
You can read more about the proposed changes on the FAQ ACRL has set up. FAQ:
Learn more about the ACRL Assessment Committee and the ACRL Value of Academic Libraries Committee.
What are your thoughts? I haven't been involved in this, so I'm unable to comment at this time...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New year, new job, new appreciation

I find myself starting 2012 with a new job and a new appreciation for librarianship.  I started in this field over fifteen years ago with that vigor and enthusiasm so often associated with youth.  For the last few years, though, I've been more like Forrest Gump, floating like that feather, hoping to find my "destiny".  When I look back and see what I had accomplished, I feel like I've been sitting still for the last 5 years.

When I pursued my MPH, I thought I would be doing something more important, touching and improving more lives than in an academic medical library.  But what I didn't realize was how much librarianship had become a part of me. My ears still perked at any mention of a library on the news, my eyes were still diverted to the local library, and my mind never traveled far from the values of information freedom.

Today, I find myself back in a library ready to re-enter the field with a new appreciation and renewed vigor. I was fortunate enough to live near a university that was actually needing to expand its collections in order to become a top-tier institution.  My interviews with the library faculty and staff convinced me that I was making the right decision.  The fact that I actually enjoyed researching, developing, rehearsing and conducting the presentations for these interviews further convinced me that I was finding my way at last.

I've spent the last few weeks preparing to pick up where I left off, updating my blog reader, my CiteULike, Delicious, and LibraryThing, and of course, starting a new blog.  I imagine that library blogs have become a dime-a-dozen, but I while I hope my thoughts, insights, ideas and experiences of this blog does help others, its real purpose is  to help me condense my thoughts, focus my insights, refine my ideas and understand my experiences in my rediscovered field and new specialization, Collection Assessment.

For the last six months, this old Springsteen song has been ringing in my head, reflecting my underlying desires.  I tweaked the last couple of lines to fit this occasion:
Well my soul checked out missing as I sat listening
To the hours and minutes tickin' away
Yeah just sittin' around waitin' for my life to begin
While it was all just slippin' away
I'm tired of waitin' for tomorrow to come
Or that train to come roarin' 'round the bend
I'm stepping out of this trap, puttin' on my old hat,
Feel like I'm  home again!
These are better days...

Karen Harker, MLS, MPH
Collection Assessment Librarian
University of North Texas Libraries