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Simple but smart

It takes little to make me inordinately happy some days. The Shangri La hotel here in Bangkok made me smile twice already this morning and it is only 9AM.

When I got out of the shower this morning, there was a rectangle of steam-free mirror just above the sink. I could shave without having to wipe the mirror off in the steamy bathroom. A simple application of an anti-fogging goo, I'm sure.

At breakfast the veggies that went into the custom-made omelets were pre-cooked. I got my eggs in about two minutes instead of the usual five minutes.

Simple. Anything simple you can do today to make somebody smile?

Of course my whole mood might just be because I've gotten a decent night sleep two nights in a row. 


Improve your marriage with technology

Disclaimer: Listening to me give relationship advice is like hearing the captain of the Exxon Valdez lecture on navigation or following Jeffrey Dahlmer's cooking tips. The Demotivation poster that reads, "Dysfunction: The only consistent feature in all of your dissatisfying relationships is you." was written just for me. - Doug

After many, many years, I discovered the very best thing a husband can do when he gets home from work is to pour a large glass of wine, sit down, and make sympathetic sounds for about 20 minutes while his wife relates her day. No advice, no reading the newspaper, no grumbling about one's own day. Men, repeat after me: "Oh, that's too bad." "Well, that wasn't very nice." "I am sure it wasn't anything you said." " People just don't always show their appreciation." and the always popular, "Uh huh." Eye contact required.

I call the LWW (Luckiest Woman in the World) morning and evening when I am on the road, trying to be a supportive spouse. No problem in the US with cell phones and calling cards. But being overseas is more problematic. Even short callsskype_logo.png from hotels can be very expensive and I find it difficult to be empathetic while charges mount on a hotel phone bill. Enter Skype.

I am not one to give many product endorsements, but Skype has allowed me to be both cheap and understanding. The last trip I took overseas, the LWW and I prearranged times when we would both be online and used Skype's free computer to computer calling system. (Matching headsets with the cool microphone built in.) OK, but sort of a pain.

This trip I went out on a limb and purchased a whole $10 worth of SkypeOut which allows me to use my Internet connected computer to call any phone in the US from anywhere in the world for about two cents a minute. I'm at my computer and the LWW can talk on either the home land line or her cell phone. It's a miracle. We've had about five relaxed calls and I still have $8.46 or something left. I think even in the States, two cents a minute is pretty cheap calling time.

So men, technology doesn't have to wreck a relationship - it can actually improve it. Take it from me, the Dr. Phil of technology.


Thanks to all the librarians and techs who attended today's workshop here at the EARCOS conference in Bangkok. You were about the feistiest bunch I've worked with and you made my day fly by.  You were great!


Sometimes "they" actually listen!

This came in this morning's e-mail in response to a letter I sent to the editor of ALA's American Libraries (or more probably because of an eloquent posting by LM_Net's Peter Milbury):

Because you are an active blogger in the school-librarian community, the editors of American Libraries would appreciate adding your voice to the magazine's May story about media specialists who blog.
We hope this followup feature will rectify the omission of school-librarian voices from the March 2007 feature "Mattering in the Blogosphere."  
As we did in the March feature, American Libraries will compile a cross-section of responses to questions in the May 2007 print edition.  However, because I'm about to invite LM_NET subscribers to suggest questions by Monday, Mar. 26 for which they'd like to read school-librarian bloggers' replies, the actual questions will be sent to you on Tuesday, March 27, with answers to be emailed to by Thursday, March 29 at 9 p.m. Central time.  We'll also need a high-resolution color photo of you (at least 300 dpi at 4 inches wide).
Looking forward to your help in making American Libraries' coverage of this topic more inclusive.
Beverly Goldberg
senior editor
American Libraries 1907-2007
Celebrating the First Hundred Years
American Library Association
50 E. Huron St.
Chicago, IL 60611
voice: 312-280-4217
fax:     312-440-0901
P.S.  By the way, your letter is appearing in the April 2007 American Libraries.

 Sort of redeems by faith in human nature. So, OK, LMSs - what do you want to know about school library blogs and bloggers?