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Kibbles and Bits on a Saturday Morning

LISNews has a good roundup on Gormangate, a bibliokerfuffle that continues to trickle through blogs in and out of librarianship. Blake’s post itself is amusing reading. In the arena of things not observed, as I predicted, ALA News didn’t cover Gormangate at all this week or last.

I didn’t review blogs this week due to the combined pressure of work, school, and dealing with my damaged car. Today and tomorrow I must crank out two, yes, two! essay drafts for homework assignments. These writing assignments will take me back to other places.

One essay (if I stick with it) uses techniques I (theoretically) picked up from reading Fitzgerald’s “The Crackup” and bits of Stein. It’s a bit of a feminist rant, and at this point has all the structural finesse of a crumpled cereal box, but sometimes it feels good to rip off my clothes and run screaming down the street, and as an exercise in craft, it’s useful.

The other essay is another foray into military experience. Two weeks ago I took a rather daring plunge and submitted an essay that braided topics such as the military retreat ceremony, patriotism, and military life. I then held my breath until our workshop, sure that students in a writing class in the Bay Area would not like it. This part of the world is Kumbayaville, Crunchytown, and The Avenue of Bleeding Hearts all rolled into one, and the locals do not care to connect the dots between, say, winning wars and having a strong defense system. (This makes me a “conservative,” according to some bloggers. A “conservative,” then, is someone who doesn’t believe in delegating the hard business of national defense to the working poor and then denying them the support they need to do their job.)

Where was I? Oh, yes. At least in the classroom, most of the students liked it, except for some prolix chunks of military history that put them into MEGO mode (Mine Eyes Glaze Over). I am sure some students didn’t really like my unapologetic patriotism, but if I can get even a few rounds of applause in Peoria, just wait til I’m in Paree! Since this submission was really a tough start on many levels, my next piece will be equally impudent in subject but will be more fun to read, in the sense that the writing will be livelier, far more humorous, show more of me, and be less formal. That piece has the working title, “Guns: A Love Story.”

O.k., time to tap the pile of lightweight bond on the edge of the desk, roll two pieces into the Smith Corona, type the first sentence, and slap the return. Happy weekend, writers, bloggers, searchers, finders, crunchies, conservatives, librarians, agrarians, and anyone else reading this blog.

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