I can’t plan beyond the end of the day beyond accepting meeting invites for next month and scheduling some myself. Long-term planning in a public-sector position dependent on open-source software development cycles was an amusing proposition in the Before Time and now it feels somewhat meaningless but nevertheless I/we try.
Mita Williams inspires me to write in small chunks again. Here are some things that have happened not this week, but in the last period of time that feels like a week.
Assembled a dream panel for the online Access Conference (the GOAT): Logistics: the people and technologies that manage our stuff, with Max Bowman, Gillian Byrne, Mike Campbell, and Dustin McMurphy. Really happy that the virtual environment allowed us all to be a part of it.
If my online brand is cute things on the internet and openly available then I guess I will use this time of crisis to recommend resources to get us through. Some of this might only be available in Canada, my bad.
D was asleep on the couch but I was not, so I scrolled through CBC Gem looking for wholesome content. Land & Sea NFLD > Season 48 > scroll down > this sounds lovely. We have been planning a trip to Newfoundland since the day of my now-manager’s job interview, and I was on the hiring committee. It was the day my boo met my work pals for the first time, and he arrived after lunch, where the candidate takes a little break and the conversations around the table get more social by telling us about the volunteer puffin patrol in St. John’s, where wayward baby puffins – pufflings – get disoriented and need to be picked up on land. A bunch of people I really like came here from St. John’s so I wanted to watch something that reminded me of of them. Anyways, meet some friendly goats, including one who, after getting blowdried at the groomer, goes through the drive-thru to get a donut. It is not from 2013, the metadata’s incorrect.
In Dutch with English subtitles, described video available. I am halfway through this exceptionally strong doc on guide dogs, I stopped it so we could watch it together in the morning. I spent exactly 30 hours in Amsterdam and the only Dutch word I came home with was “geleidehond”. Buddy features people who live with service dogs, and the incredibly intimate relationships they have. It foregrounds the different access needs of real disabled people, not their surrogates, smashes stereotypes, and is also cute and charming. These dogs are legit The Best Buddies.
I should cancel Spotify. I keep saying I will. My year-end playlist contained two artists: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and Sharon Van Etten. I am buying real albums again and calling into our local campus radio station with requests.
This was always my favourite song off Are We There but it took me years to actually watch the video.
As I grapple with feelings pertaining to signing my name to words and the unpredictability of audiences in the digital dogpile era, the thought that nobody will ever see this is a positive affirmation at times. In other frames of my life the statement served other purposes: as a young freelance designer with a technically solid but un-hip and boring portfolio, nobody will ever see what I have to offer. As a library worker, it was the two straight weeks I spent nearly in tears in the sub-basement of the building, unpacking and numbering thousands of mineral potential maps that arrived some decades before, and were casually deemed unimportant enough to languish in the backlog. They sent us two copies of each, so half of them were immediately. “If we don’t have them in the collection already then we’re keeping them,” I was told. For reasons I will not get into here, I had reason to believe it was a punishment of sorts. Nobody will ever see this. It took several months to get them all into the collection and I am very happy that the student who helped me on this uses me as a reference. Nobody will ever see this. I don’t think anyone will ever benefit from our months of work.