Friday, 16 February 2007

On hubris

A brief note to all - never, ever make a boast such as this on your afternoon tea-break on a Friday.

I, madam, am one of the Elect Of God. I am a cataloguer.

It is my job to take whatever boring, incomprehensible crap you people throw at us, eat it, digest it, and excrete out a perfect level 1 AACR2-compliant MARC-formatted record. I’ve seen taxonomy papers, abstract maths, economics, corporate newsletters, friggin’ women’s magazines and, yes, legislation and case reports. I’ve been through hell and I’ve applied LCSH to it.


Sure enough, on picking up some work an hour later that Friday afternoon:

- "Castellnuovo-Mumford regularity and defining equations of a locally Cohen-Macaulay algebra."
- "Extending Hadamard conjugations to model sequence evolution with variable rates across sites"
- "On domain decomposition approach for a singularly perturbed diffusion-convection problem"

If there is a God, He doesn't love us. Or me, at least. But He does have a fine sense of humour.

3 comments:

grendelkhan said...

Ooh! I can't wait for cataloguing! The classes I have right now are gen-eds for the library science program, and they're not bad, but they're not what I really want to know. Next quarter, next quarter...

Phoenician in a time of Romans said...

I've been lucky. I picked up a secondment as a trainee at the semester I had that course. I've done well at both, and now I should be able to get a full-time position.

It can be remarkably Zen at times, although you do mumble to yourself a hell of a lot.

Shelly said...

Add cataloging in your sleep to mumbling. Gov docs, no less. It's a special kind of crazy, but you're right about the Zen aspect. On good days, there's a certain comforting rhythm to it. On bad days, I want to drive an ice pick through my eyeballs.

Most recent "Title of the Day": WHO guidelines on tissue infectivity distribution in transmissible spongiform encephalopathies.

(I followed you from Pandagon, when I saw that you, too, were one of the Elect of God.)