l’archivista, ciao

We saw this funny post on l’archivista the other day, via someone’s twitter feed. It features a really straightforward instructional video, hilarious in its earnest public-service-message aesthetic. And, we guess, it does give a nice overview of the mysterious duties of starchivists the world over. It’s for some job site, because you know, people are hiring and all, but we appreciate it nonetheless.

Bookswapping Librarians

booksWe had a great time last night at The Desk Set‘s book swap / bar night at Pacific Standard. We managed to unload about 15 books and brought back a few choice titles, including two Isabelle Allende books, two Nicholson Baker titles, and a 1999 NY Neighborhood guide to ethnic eating.

We also learned about Books Behind Bars, an organization which gives books to prisoners–all the books which weren’t taken at the end of the night were donated to them.

Thanks desk-setters, well done.

scan-tily clad

barbie xxxArtist turned medical student uses the medical facility scanner to secretly scan objects by the cover of night,* incredible images result. Scans produce hundreds of layers which are then color coded (by the artist) to differentiate.

The Science Times’s got the story about 44 year old Satre Stuelke–check the slideshow. Barbie has leg bones and a skull?!

*actually the facility openly donated scanner time.

MoTA, Stick Around!

temporaryWe dig the Museum of Temporary Art, an at-home curatorial project which catalogues objects in 33 compartments of a small box. From what we gather, as new objects come in, old ones leave the Museum. Items are properly accessioned, it seems, and there’s an open invitation to contribute.

We particularly like Liberty in a Bottle, Sealed Nurse, and Headstone Tribute to John Dolis (RIP).

Are the links temporary, too?

a book as cool as its title is long

time capsuleWe hereby present a book about a time capsule long buried at the World’s Fair grounds, scanned for your reading pleasure, and available at the unique and amazing Prelinger Library:

The book of record of the time capsule of cupaloy, deemed capable of resisting the effects of time for five thousand years, preserving an account of universal achievements, embedded in the grounds of the New York World’s fair, 1939 (1938)

Punch Card from the Public Liberry


Our office has a scanner, and we have a library book titled The Causes of the American Civil War (slavery! And nothing else. I did not read the book). Sounds like a winning formula for an SD post to me.

The book, which we found on the stoop of a brownstone in Brooklyn, is three days and 28 years overdue. At 1981 rates—ten cents per day—the person who checked it out owes the Library $1022.30  in fines (and in 2006, that dime went up to 25 cents a day).

According to NYPL’s FAQ website, “If you owe the library fines or fees over $15.00 . . . or have any fines or overdues more than one month old, your borrowing privileges may be suspended.”

We wonder if whoever (whomever?) checked this volume out in the first Reagan administration won’t face more serious consequences than a revoked library card.

Unfortunately, the punch card’s declaration, “THIS CARD WILL BE PROCESSED BY COMPUTER,” is misleading.  I stabbed that little bastard into a DVD drive a bunch of times and all that happened is that my iMac started making whining noises.
Ah, punch cards. We barely knew ye.

the scan-do spirit

malamudPrint is Dead! Long Live Print! Carl Malamud for Print Czar! There’s revolution a-brewing in the Government Printing Office, or at least there will be if common sense prevails and Carl Malamud is appointed President. Some of his craaaazy, dare we say patriotic notions:

+ public access to legal documents
+ more support and work with librarians
+ the creation of the United States Publishing Academy as job stimulus
+ removal of passport RFID chips
+ making .gov sites a popular destination (g’luck with that one)
+ working with unions, not detroying them.

The man even twittered his platform.

Starchivist alert!!!!

archivistGothamist recently interviewed rockstar librarian David Smith. Wow what a guy. Here, in bullet-point form, are some reasons we love him, and some reasons we hate on him and therefore love him even more:

Love Him Because

  • Was a taxi cab driver in NYC in the 70s
  • Gets to do personal research projects for famous people like Diane Arbus, George Carlin, Werner Herzog
  • Also helps HS Students, the homeless, random folk
  • Wants to bring back rent control (not the fake rent control we have now)
  • Would never consider leaving NY
  • Likes the B&H Restaurant on 3rd ave

Hate Him Because

  • Once paid $135/month rent
  • Greatly admires Jonathan Saffron Foyer
  • OK this list is a lot shorter than we thought


dr_dianeThe UW Milwaukee library has a Nurse Romance Cover of the Week online archive. And there are a LOT of weeks. Oh my gosh, so many weeks, I think I may have to take my time and count them all, one at a time, full image search.

Please note how we feature a cover in which the woman in question is a Doctor, not a nurse lusting after some skeezy male Doc. Feminism lives y’all.

Found via @archivesbitch on twitter, who rightly asks, Why can’t there be an Archivists Romance Cover of the Week Archive?

After the shushing’s done

librarians are hawtThe librarian is drinking again. Cute post from the Desk Set’s much improved website, Where DO Librarians and Archivists Hang Out? We know and like most of these local haunts, and look forward to the book swap on March 30th at nearby Pacific Standard.

Cribbed for her pleasure:

Enid’s in Greenpoint and Daddy’s in Williamsburg have hosted us countless times, and always with grace and style. The bartenders are super sweet, the drinks are affordable, and you are almost guaranteed to run into a librarian, archivist or writer every time you set foot into either joint, whether they are serving your drink, spinning the tunes, or reading at the bar.

Black Rabbit on Greenpoint Ave hosted our Library and Literature Trivia night last September, and we’re betting you might spot a librarian or two at their Smiths Speed Dating event tonight! That’s right: speed dating accompanied solely by Smiths songs.

On the other side of the river, the Great Jones Cafe has been known to employ librarians and library students, and they have incredible food, delicious drinks, and the greatest juke box in the city, no doubt.

Urban Librarians Unite, a group of New York City Public Librarians meet up frequently at the Creek in Long Island City – the neighborhood that’s close(ish) to every other neighborhood – to talk shop and have a few beers.

I happen to know that librarians and MLS students can often be found at Harefield Road in Williamsburg, especially on Thursdays.

And Pacific Standard in Park Slope is so dedicated to writers and readers, they have their own in-house Bar Librarian. (barbrarian?) (And the Desk Set is planning an event for readers and writers to mingle and swap books there on March 30th).