“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
Today was the library’s annual holiday luncheon. It’s never a lunch. It’s always a luncheon. I don’t know the difference, but the food at the Boone Faculty Center is fantastic. Every meal I’ve had there in the last two years has been good enough to make you wanna slap your granny. Add in your favorite coworkers and you’ll wanna slap your papaw, too. Happy Feasting one and all.
“Never forget the three powerful resources you always have available to you: love, prayer, and forgiveness.” ~ H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Today was day one of the Dodging the Memory Hole conference. Like yesterday’s meeting, it’s being held at the Internet Archive headquarters. Today’s keynote speaker was IA founder Brewster Kahle pictured here with Eric Weig whom you’ve met before. Eric followed Brewster on the program in part because he has developed a content management method for our historic newspapers utilizing the IA as the object store. His was a mighty impressive presentation and I was so proud for him to show off his hard work. He’s really done an incredible job with a number of projects, not just this one. Plus, he knows every song lyric ever written and can speak whole conversations in nothing but lyrics. Hilarious. And, hey, Brewster was pretty awesome, too. Another winning day.
“One of the most important things I’ve learned in life is to ignore most of what people say.
I watch what they do instead.” ~ Amanda Patterson
This is an inevitable fact of life: some days things are going to go wrong en masse. This was one of those days. First, I forgot a meeting. That was followed by a series of unplanned meetings (which is almost worse). I came home to a garage door that won’t close (after having it repaired just last week). And worst of all, the washer drain is clogged and dumping water into the floor. The Universe saved it all up for today. Still, there was plenty to make it a great day, and that’s all that matters. For instance, for my birthday, Crystal Heis made a delicious apple pie from scratch. I got to share it with some of my favorite people over afternoon coffee, including fellow birthday girl, Judy Sackett who just returned from celebrating her birthday at the Grand Canyon. The pie was absolutely delicious, and so very, very sweet of Crystal to think of me. The camaraderie fabulous as always. And this picture showed up in my office mailbox. Jen Bartlett sent it from the main library where she’s had the sad task of cleaning out our recently deceased colleague Roxanna Jones’ desk. The photo was taken by Becky Ryder. She, Eric Weig, and I attended one of Cornell’s first Digital Management Workshop’s in 2003 in gorgeous – or Gorges as they like to say – Ithaca New York. I got a hearty laugh from the picture. Both Eric and I have lost weight since then. He’s lost some hair, too, and he looks like he’s 12. I don’t know how Roxanna came to have the picture, but I’m thankful she saved it for us. Eric and I have been through a lot together. He’s been a good friend to me, especially these last few years. I’m particularly grateful for him, and to him, for believing in me, helping me, talking in confidence to one another, and always reciting lyrics. You haven’t lived until you’ve had a conversation with Eric Weig comprised entirely of song lyrics. It’s a real talent, and one I do not possess, but Eric sure does. So, yea, I had some rotten things go down today, but look how awesome my day was anyway. And, hey, at least the washer didn’t explode. I take that as a win.
“One moment can change a day, one day can change a life and one life can change the world.”
Crystal and I stopped by Eric and Vanessa Becker-Weig’s new house after work. Eric gave us a tour, and in the basement I found yet another reason to like Vanessa. She meditates, so she had a wonderfully colorful altar set up. Eric picked a good wife; a creative, and thoughtful woman. It makes me really happy to know my friends have good people to love them.
“Some of us think holding on makes us strong, but sometimes it is letting go.”
~ Hermann Hesse
Karen Estlund suggested we take a snap of me to photoshop into the cool kids pic. Before we left Charlotte, Eric Weig snapped a couple. Hangin’ with the cool kids is pretty funny. Everybody do jazz hands!
“Kindness makes you the most beautiful person in the world no matter what you look like.” ~ Unknown
I spent my day hangin’ with cool kids Karen Estlund (Oregon), Shawn Schollmeyer (Washington), Eric Weig (Kentucky) and Brian Geiger (California). We were part of a larger meeting concerning the preservation and access of news. This is a very complex archival issue, and it’s one that will always be engaging for me, in part because I’ve done it for so long, but mostly because I believe it’s one of the most important preservation issues facing the world (not an exaggeration – I mean whole world). Today, news evolves faster than it ever has. How well we preserve that news depends on the choices we make today, and how well scholars in the not-too-distant future will be able to evaluate our collective history based on what we save for them. I cannot underscore enough the value to our society of that final point. These goofy friends were involved in the National Digital Newspaper Program with Eric and I, so we’ve had many years to get to know and appreciate who they are, and what they’re all about. It’s people like them – and us – that keep the brain wheels turning on how to capture, preserve and fund our shared first drafts of history. I’m so thankful for all their hard work and years of friendship. I’m especially grateful to Eric for being my friend, and being so darned smart (being my friend is not a qualifier for smart, just to be clear). I love it when the goodness just clicks, and this bunch clicks every time we meet. I don’t know how much luckier I could be.
“Patience is not simply the ability to wait. It’s how we behave while we’re waiting.”
~ Joyce Meyer
If it’s true, that a picture is worth a thousand words, then this picture is worth two thousand. Wendel and Eric Weig met up in my office for some lively conversation during the two free seconds he had during his first day. My office used to be Eric’s office when Wendel was here before. We worked many hours on newspapers and a host of other projects, including oral history, out of this office. The filing cabinet to Wendel’s right is his old filing cabinet. It still bears his name. It has been passed around to lord knows how many of us over those years, just to end up in my office that used to be Eric’s office. I find the circuity – is that a word? – entertaining. It really does make me smile, just like this photo makes me smile. These boys have played a big part in my life. I’m grateful for them, and thankful for all they’ve taught me along the way.