Can't you just get on that Google thing and find out?

One of the fun parts about my new job is that I get to go around to each division at the main library and go through a brief orientation. Yesterday was my day to learn about the children's division (known here as the Center for Discovery). I got a tour, talked with one of the managers about children's programming, and observed a baby laptime program. Now, as far as I can tell, "baby laptime" might as well be called "bounce your baby on your lap..time," because that's mainly what it consisted of. It's a great program - the babies seemed to love it, and it gave the parents/caregivers a chance to mingle. I sat in the back, and occasionally some of the babies either crawled over to me, or just stared at me. One in particular stared at me for quite some time, so I started to make funny faces, hoping he would laugh. Instead, he started to cry. Whoops! I guess that's why I'm not a children's librarian.

One of the not-so-fun parts about my job is dealing with people who insist that you can find what they need "in the computer." As if a computer is a magical encyclopedia that contains all of the world's knowledge, and "that Internet thing" surely will tell them exactly what they need to know, if only I would look in the right place. Sure, there's a lot you can find on the Internet... but not everything. If it's not there, it's not there. That's a difficult concept for some people to grasp, especially for those who are not familiar with computers or have never used the Internet. I have had angry people tap furiously on my monitor screen, exclaiming, "Just look in there! It will tell you!" I can do my best, folks, but I can't do magic.

If nothing else, my job will never, ever be boring. I'm in a great field. :)

Even the Saudis want overpriced coffee

I just read this story, courtesy of Pharyngula, a science blog I now read on a regular basis.

My question here is this: if the family area in Starbucks is the only place women can sit with men, why was she arrested? Wasn't she abiding the law? Putting aside the fact that I think religious laws (especially ones like this) are completely bogus and unfair, and forgetting that she is American and probably an easy target, I still don't understand why she was arrested for sitting with a man when she was sitting in the only place in the restaurant that women are allowed to sit with men. I read some of the comments on this story, and while most were pretty retarded, a few made a good point - if you are going to accept a job in a country with laws like these, you should know what you are getting yourself into. But I don't know this woman's situation, and I (of course) completely disagree with how she was/is being treated.

Even with all our problems, I'm very glad to be living in a country where I have the freedom to be a woman, and not be ashamed of it.