Where in the World Is the Dread Pirate Mama?

"I often came where I did hear of her, but cannot find her" 

The Merchant of Venice, III.i


It's been about seven months since my last post. I'm in the home stretch of my endeavor to read the canon, with a handful of plays left. You'd think I'd be keen to just power on through. It's already taken literally years longer than I initially planned. So what on earth happened?  Last season, on "Dread Pirate Mama Reads the Canon"...

  • Last summer, I started seriously thinking about my career...or lack thereof. I determined that while I've loved being my kids' primary caretaker, I was ready to figure out what to actually do with myself as a grown-up woman with interests beyond her family. I assessed my strengths/weaknesses and likes/dislikes, I thought about all the work environments and co-workers I've experienced, I did all kinds of research. Lists were made, you betcha.
  • With the support from the most patient and loving husband on the planet, I decided to investigate a career that I've been thinking about for close to five years. Something I never really thought I'd do.
  • I've been a volunteer at my local library for the past year. I go on a weekly basis with my kids and we use every kind of service and programming they offer. Libraries have long been my favorite place, and I've wondered about working in that field for years. But to make it a true career, most library positions require a masters degree...
  • So last August I started an open class at San Jose State University's School of Information -- a class that would show me a taste of the Masters in Library and Information Science and would give an idea of how I could handle school + parenting. After 2 months in, I loved it and applied to actually earn my degree. I started my first official semester of grad school this past January.
  • Of course, the dream job is to work at the Folger! But I'll be so happy to work in either a public or academic setting, given that I live on the opposite side of the country. I should be working (aside from internships and assistant positions) in a little over 2 years.
  • Why a librarian? Because the career path is ever-changing (as noted in this excellent post by Kristen Arnett), toggling between knowing cutting-edge tech, building communities, and constantly helping others. Because I love to always be learning a little bit about everything. But mostly because libraries are places that serve everyone -- and in our current world such places, where anyone is welcomed and can have access to free and accurate information, are few and far between. I plan on sticking it to "fake news" every single day I'm on the job. Besides, I've always loved to help people track down answers to questions...or a good book recommendation.
  • During the past few months, I tried three separate times to read Edward III. While there were some excellent parallels between the Countess of Salisbury bits and the #MeToo movement, it could never hold my interest. I'm re-grouping and trying again.

I have NOT abandoned Shakespeare. I'm still teaching my kid passages from A Midsummer Night's Dream. I still play #ShakespeareSunday on Twitter with my buddies each week. I still listen to the No Holds Bard podcast (and if you haven't, you REALLY should). And for one of my prerequisite courses (Information Communities), I'm even writing a research paper about how Shakespeare fans interact on social media to create a community [Side note, the book Broadcast Your Shakespeare was an excellent albeit expensive resource! And how late to the game am I on teen-created Shakespeare serials on YouTube? Nothing Much To Do is so cute!]. I promise the Bard has scarcely left my brain, despite my absence from this site.

So it's time to power up and get this thing back off the ground. Just a few plays left: Coriolanus, The Comedy of Errors, The Two Noble Kinsmen, Timon of Athens, Edward III. Throw in the lyric poems on top of that, and I earn a big, gold mental trophy. What becomes of this site and my musings then? I'm sure a librarian can think of something.