By Meredith Farkas | October 13, 2008
With the pregnancy, I tried to keep my speaking schedule light for Fall. However, all three of the talks I’m giving fall within a two-week period, so it’s made me a bit harried in October. Last Tuesday, I gave a webinar for METRO NYC which was very fun, but it’s always weird to give a talk like that because you have no idea what the people on the other end are thinking. It’s hard to make a joke and have no idea if anyone laughed.
On Friday, I was down in Rhode Island giving the keynote for the NELINET IT Conference. My talk was entitled Can’t Get There From Here: Achieving Organization 2.0 and it was fun to focus on how organizations need to behave in order to start innovating, keeping up with patrons, and implementing new technologies effectively. Thanks to the folks at NELINET for the opportunity to pontificate on one of my favorite topics. You can see my slides below.
After that, I took a trip down to Connecticut to visit my alma mater, Wesleyan University, and do some serious apple-picking. At Wesleyan, I had two really odd experiences. The first was being asked to pay reparations by some Wesleyan students, which I guess shouldn’t have surprised me since I did spend four years in that environment. The second thing happened in the library, which was my home away from home when I was at Wes. I was showing Adam some of my favorite spots in the library when all of a sudden, someone said, “excuse me, are you Meredith Farkas?” It turned out the Science Librarian (hi Andrew!) reads my blog and somehow recognized me from my picture on it. That was really bizarre! I let him know that I’d sell my soul to one day work at Wesleyan; it really is an awesome library and an amazing academic environment. I still wouldn’t pay reparations though.
Next week, I’m supposed to be going to Iceland to give a talk on library education in the 21st century. I’m getting increasingly nervous about going though considering the state of their economy. I’ve been reading about possible food shortages because grocers can’t get foreign currency, and other pretty serious possible consequences of their rather extreme credit and currency crisis. Of course, I’m also seeing articles about how it’s the best time to visit Iceland. Normally, I’d probably be game to go either way, but now that I’m responsible for another human life, I’m a little more hesitant about going into a possibly unsafe situation. I plan to wait and see how things look later in the week and if the situation there is looking a bit more promising, I’ll definitely go. It would be a bummer not to go since I’d lose a bunch of money, would let down the organizers, and would miss going to both Iceland and Internet Librarian. But baby comes first.
If you are going to Internet Librarian, say hi to my colleague, Toni Josey. She was hired as our Distance Learning Librarian when I was promoted and she’s absolutely fantastic! She even has a blog where she writes about distance learning librarianship.
After October, I don’t have any other speaking engagements until January when I’m giving a keynote for an online conference for rural librarians in Iowa. I’m glad to see there are more online conferences happening; not only because I won’t be able to travel as much as I used to, but because it makes professional development so much more accessible to every librarian. Rock on, Iowa!