Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Picture break


This is Venna Archer & Gil Fernandez doing the Balboa swing in 1939


Flickr vs the secret robot army (or, Task 5 + 6 )

I wouldn't want you to think that the real title of this blog is Where have all the good men gone? Or that I'm using work resources to write a frivolous blog about dancing, movie stars and mood swings. Oh no. There is a Grand Plan.

It's just that I seem to have come across a power greater even than the secret robot army (curses!) The mighty forces of the web are against me. Every time I hunker down in the Secret Lab, ready to explore the latest online technology, everything starts to work v e r r y s l o w l y . . . .

Picture the scene: Paranoia in the lab, committed to taking a tour of the photo sharing website Flickr.

Flickr montager kicked me out.

The mosaic business was decidedly unthrilling. Like Montager it lets you make mosaics of photos. Yay.

Flickr graph that mapped social relationships sounds like it could have been a useful tool for knowledge management. But I will never know.

Mappr sounds like the goods but I couldn't get onto the site. It lets you map photos with geographic tags. I thought this could be good for local historyish projects. Or is you wanted to map the scenes from Godzilla movies.

The only thing I did get to see properly were the librarian trading cards. And they were just a bit, well, librarianish. Trading card maker is a tool that lets you upload images to make your own trading card or even a whole deck of playing cards. I think the librarians should have made a set of ninja trading cards. All 52 would look identical: a black shadow. A hilarious scheme!

Ah the dilemma for the library world. We want to be doing fancy things with new technologies. We want to take advantage of these exciting opportunities to offer services in new ways. But we have to be old school, new school and future school all at once. Many of us are sitting at the internet waiting waiting waiting for a page that is never going to load. Ever.

Grrr.

Godzilla thinks so too.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Mysterious disapperance of The Triangle Man

I'd meant to do a tribute to Deborah Kerr (rhymes with star!). But while I like An affair to remember (despite her noble suffering routine towards the end) I've never been too sure about her seaside romp with Burt in From here to eternity. All that grit...so uncomfortable.

What really makes me cranky about her is The king and I. Her character's a starchy, uptight, interfering miss! The songs are loathsomely twee (How can we forgive her for singing Give a little whistle?) And then seeing dear Yul Brynner play the King of Siam as a noble savage - it just makes steam come out my ears.

So after jumping up and down like Yosemite Sam my thoughts turned from Deborah to the men in these films. What we used to call Triangle Men. All those 50s film stars with shoulders an acre wide and narrow little hips. Burt was a good example. Joel McCrea. Victor Mature. What someone once described as 'the heroic triangle of military style'. (I know. I'm in a library. I should track this down. I haven't and I'm not going to.) I guess you got someone to hide behind and someone who you could dance with too.

I don't think dear Orson makes this list.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

5 tips for upstairs tapdancers


There's a Fred Astaire movie in which young Fred, dapper as always, disturbs a negligee clad Ginger Rogers who is trying to get a good night's sleep downstairs. This is what our hero does:

  • elegantly scatters some sand on the floor
  • executes delightful soft shoe shuffle
  • sings sweet lullaby
  • draws forth cute smile from Ginger as she drifts off to sleep
  • buys entire contents of florist shop for Ginger the next day

I believe he then goes on to propose to Ginger. My neighbour may forgo this step. (Otherwise, my favourite flowers are chrysanthemums)

DO NOT PRESS THE RED BUTTON!!!

The young man who lives upstairs, lovely fellow, but inclined to tapdance. Sometimes in the middle of the night. He really is very sweet. But I tend not to be so sweet at 3am with someone rattling away on my ceiling. This is when I get ready to unleash my Secret Robot Army. Ready to stomp on tapdancers. Without mercy. But he really is lovely.

Monday, October 1, 2007

If Orson Welles was my boyfriend...

  • I wouldn't feel like such a pig ordering a second round of dumplings in Chinatown - I wouldn't feel like a pig ordering a second round of anything
  • I wouldn't believe anything I heard on the radio
  • Maybe I would be as slinky as Rita Hayworth