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A WINDOW INTO THE DAILY LIFE AND THOUGHTS OF SLIS STUDENTS

Pleasant Suprises

Whew! Busy week with a couple penultimate assignments and a presentation in my classes, plus attempts to get back in shape and return to meditating daily. It seems as though my new year resolution phase has kicked in a bit early. Or maybe I'm just excited for cookie season. 

So, I thought this week I might share a bit some of my pleasant surprises from my role as a metadata intern. When I started library school, I honestly didn't really have an intention of becoming an information organizer to the extent of a metadata creator or cataloger. I found I really like my 415 class though (information organization), and suddenly I was considering resource description as a potential career. A piece of me thought I was just getting excited about something new to me, not really finding a new career path. So, I looked in other directions course and internship-wise for a while. Yet, the allure of info org has been too strong my friends -- and it has remained a consistent presence for me and not just a passing fancy. Hence the metadata internship which I abso-freakin-lutely love. I'm also excited to be taking both descriptive cataloging and digital libraries next year. Wohoo! This is the most excited I've been about my class line up since I started school. 
I've gotten off the rails a bit, though, haven't I? It's not surprising that I love my internship because I do love metadata and digital repositories. And- I love that librarianship lets me be descriptive instead of prescriptive (different than some of my previous nursing roles.) What has surprised me from this internship is how much I love the stories I'm learning! So- quick background info- my mom is my role-model, and in a lot of ways we're very similar in what we like and how we behave. One thing that I could never relate to, though, is how much my mom likes People magazine. I know, it seems like such a small thing to point out- but it really confused me for a long time because it just seemed so out there. I mean, we like soooo much of the same stuff and I just could not get this whole People magazine thing. When my roommates back in undergrad would watch reality shows, they would have to ban me from the den because I would yell at the shows so much that they just couldn't take it. I'm just not in to all that people drama, and it took me a long time to understand why my mom would read that magazine and my friends would watch those shows. A few years ago, I figured it out. My mom loves people (small p now). She loves them so much that she is interested to read about the lives of people she doesn't even know. Their little daily life stuff even. Like I said, I finally figured this out a few years ago, but I still couldn't relate. Until I started making metadata records at the item level for archival materials. 
I started with a folder of letters from one woman to a another woman, her friend. They corresponded over years. I knew what would be interesting to scholars researching these letters would be any mentions of the publishing and editing side of things (one of the women was involved in getting a famous poet's works published). What I couldn't help falling in love with, though, was all the little daily life stuff and affectionate terms between these two women. It was and is so fun! I love the describing piece of things, and I knew I would, but I didn't realize how much I would come to love and become attached to the material I was describing. I've even started writing letters to my friends and some of my phrasing is definitely borrowed from the era of these two women. I also get to do a lot of investigating to try and figure out context. It's like I'm a shamus y'all! (I've also be re-watching Bored to Death for the 10th time). So yup, I love my job, and I'm totally that doe-eyed noobie with rose-tinted glasses, but use what you got right? I still don't expect to start reading People magazine, but the good news is that my momma also loves hearing about the stories I'm learning. So we have that to share now. 
Alright, until next week amigos. 
With hopes for a great week for all, 
Believe me, 
Manda 
PS: that whole "believe me" thing is how a lot of folks used to end letters, apparently. 
PPS: also, my undergrad school- Clemson is still undefeated at football this season. Go Tigers! 

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