Monday, 16 July 2007

Word of the day

Our regular correspondent, Rebecca, has sent a word of the day, vintage librarian. This has been used on Web4Lib and comes from Robert L Balliot. Rebecca asks
1. What constitutes a 'vintage librarian'?
2. Are librarians better when they've been cellared for a while, or are they at they best when they're fresh off the vine?

Robert L Balliot's email (22 June to Web4Lib) suggests that "The reference process can be honed through observation and reviewed by the trainee. This training environment can, in my mind, augment skills of new librarians and help vintage librarians understand the virtual processes being used by many younger people." (It is disappointing to see Mr Balliot link the idea of virtual processes with younger people).

For more discussion of vintage librarians, you can browse, of course, but it is a confusing world our there. The
Vintage Librarian Shop does not sell librarians, but merely a range of Dewey accessories. Most references to vintage librarians refer to a particular look which one may assume, such as this example or this from Second Life (with illustrations) - stereotypes abound. Perhaps you have your own ideas about how this expression might evolve - a meaning is still emerging, and it is possible to shape it now. Vintage librarians, get online.


Anonymous said...

Greetings Derek,
The phrase "vintage librarian" is, in fact, two words and I would use happily use it to describe myself. I am posting this comment from my office in the cellar.

- Robert Balliot

Derek Whitehead said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Derek Whitehead said...

Dear Robert
This column uses the term word of the day loosely, and many of the words are in fact phrases or runtogethers. I guess many of us could be described as vintage - all it requires is a claim to improve with age.