Friday, April 13, 2007

My ALA Resolution

It wouldn't be a week on the AL without a political post, so here goes.

I've been "persuaded" by the clever "reasoning" of the Regressive Librarian thugs. I say "persuaded," but obviously I caved in under duress. They threatened to call all the libraries in the country and say they had the Annoyed Librarian working on their staff and should just fire everyone in the library to make sure she was punished for daring to deviate from the Party Program of regressive harassment and intimidation. Heil, Regressive Librarians! Obviously, when the Regressive Librarians speak, people listen, and the thought of all those poor librarians fired from their jobs and out in the streets begging for videos to catalog or directing people to publicly available restrooms was just too depressing. So I capitulated.

I'm thus now in complete agreement with the "truthiness" logic of Snipey Fellow Traveling Dude. You might remember him as the guy who thinks that if enough people believe something, then it's true. Other people have weighed in on the argument saying they can't see the distinction between library and non-library issues that seems perfectly clear to me. With this democratic truthiness argument, the incapacity to make logical distinctions becomes a de facto argument that every issue is a library issue, if enough librarians believe it is. As we all know, democracy is a wonderful thing, and applied to the concept of truth it becomes completely fantastic.

I'm an academic, which means I still value things like logic, evidence, argument, reason, civility, debate, deliberation--crazy stuff like that. I didn't realize truth was just what enough people believed, but then I hadn't been through the totalitarian reeducation camp of the Regressive Librarians Guild and taught that truth is what they say it is. In the immortal words of Cole Porter--anything goes. The world has gone mad today. Good is bad today. Black is white today.... Sorry, I got carried away.

So I have a resolution for the ALA Council to pass, one of vital concern not just to me, but to civilized people everywhere. I realize this leaves out the political thugs in the Regressive Librarians Guild, but I don't mind leaving them out. I don't think they'd be very fun to share a drink with, anyway.

And speaking of drink, my proposed resolution is, of course, about the proper definition of a dry martini. What do we mean when we ask for a dry martini? I've been writing a lot about martinis over at the Relaxin' blog, but now that I've leaped headfirst onto, or perhaps under, the Regressive Librarians' subintellectual Cluetrain, I can write about issues of real importance and interest, instead of ALA politics.

The AL's ALA Resolution:

WHEREAS, the dry martini is civilization in a glass; and...

WHEREAS, the dry martini is the most significant American contribution to world culture; and...

WHEREAS, the dry martini is for those with established values and a liking for purity, even in their vices; and...

WHEREAS, one is alright, two is too many, and three is not enough; and...

WHEREAS, anything enough librarians believe must be true;

RESOLVED, a dry martini is made with gin and vermouth at any ratio between four and eight to one, shaken or stirred with ice, and strained into a chilled cocktail glass with either a lemon twist or an olive for garnish. In a spirit of ecumenism, vodka may be substituted for gin and the garnish is optional.

There. I hope the ALA Council takes this up at Annual. Remember, if enough librarians decide this is a library issue, then it is, so start lobbying the ALA Council today!

So have a good weekend, and I'll toast you all with my first martini tonight.


tanner said...

I would love to see this resolution passed in Council, or at least debated!
I can just hear the more humorless councilors pontificating about how offensive this discussion is to librarians in recovery.
Thanks for allowing the vodka option-- I do like my Grey Goose. And since reading that you keep your Martini glasses chilled, I've been doing the same thing.

Anonymous said...

(a) I was going to make a "Work Shall Set You Free" snark toward thine enemies, but figured it was too offensive. Your subtle slip of a Heil is absolutely deft. Nice touch.

(b) I dream of a world where everyone has to read "Animal Farm" and answer questions about it before they vote.

--Taupey, who thinks some librarians *are* in fact more equal than others.

Anonymous said...

PS: I am on record as being anti-socialism, but very pro vodka. I fought the Cold War just so Stoli would again be available.

Michael said...

I prefer a twist of orange rather than lemon. But then, I'm a member of CILIP - imagine something like your own professional body, but with less purpose - so I wouldn't get to vote anyway.

AL said...

The great thing about this resolution is that according to the logic of the regressive librarians, it really can be a library issue, if only the Council decides it is. I'm hopeful that the Council will give this the same consideration they give to other stupid and irrelevant resolutions. I imagine bitter and impassioned debate, for example, over whether the presence of vermouth is absolutely essential.

tomeboy said...

Six Degrees of Pseudonomity

1. Snipey Fellow Traveling Dude is also a Berry
2. Berries comprise any small, edible fruit with seeds
3. Small, edible fruits with seeds include grapes
4. Grapes make wine, the key ingredient in Vermouth
5. Vermouth is a key ingredient for martinis
6. Dino Crocetti's first pseudonym, Dino Martini (later just Dean Martin)

"Ain't that a kick in the head?"

Anonymous said...

I hope you toast the misinformed about-to-graduate budding librarians (like me) finding a decent patch of real estate in the world of academic librarianship. okay...'decent' may be asking too much...but toasts are good for wishing, no?

Anonymous said...

1. Snipey Fellow Traveling Dude is also a Berry
2. Berries comprise juniper berries, the key ingredient in gin
3. Gin is THE key ingredient for martinis
4. Dino Crocetti's first pseudonym, Dino Martini (later just Dean Martin)


AL said...

Not only can I create a little myself, but I can inspire creation in others. With this kind of association, I assume SFTD will be championing the Martini Resolution!

Zillah said...

Mmm. Orange twist, I will have to try that.

Michael - since you are in the UK, please have some Shetland Nordic Dry Gin. Can't seem to find it in the US.

AL, I am afraid that I cannot support such ecumenicalism. Vodka, pah! Next you will be allowing cocktail onions. A slippery slope, I tell ya!

AL said...

Well, personally I think vodka would have to make it a vodkatini, and anything with a garnish besides a twist of lemon or an olive would make it a different cocktail. And let's not even talk about straight gin which some people insist is still a martini. But now that I've entered politics, I want to show that I have a spirit of compromise, and that I'm not willing to crush my hopes for victory by my stubborn idealism and my willingness to sacrifice others on the altar of my own martiniology.

tomeboy said...


Not one, but two degrees closer!

Well done

Anonymous said...

May it also be resolved that when a garnish is added, it must be removed withing a set timetable.

AL said...

See, that's why I'm trying to be ecumenical. I like one small pitted olive, and I like to eat it with the very last sip of martini. I can see this is going to be a tough debate. It might stretch over all the Council meetings and drive out all other business. That doesn't seem so bad to me, though.

Bunny Watson said...

Might want to hold off on those olives for a while: FDA warning

contrarian said...

This is definitely a library issue and we need the Social Martini Round Table to take the lead. They have suggested calling it the "Resolution on the Connection between Martinis and Libraries." Putting the word "connection" in the resolution will help those who are blind to its relevance see just how relevant it really is. And if they still refuse to acknowledge that martinis are a library issue then they are just racist, sexist, anti-union, anti-democratic, conservative bigots who aren't *really* librarians.

Robert L said...

I can only assume that, knowing how I feel abut the Martini, that this was aimed directly at me. Yes, I'm taking this very personally. In fact, I would like your name and the phone number of your superviors and co-workers. I think your co-workers have a right to be informed of your personal preference in cocktails.

This is upsetting me so much, I'm going to go and have a gin and tonic.

Anonymous said...

Ah, Yes! A good Martini to soften up the prey for the evening!

"Candy is Dandy - - But Liquor is Quicker!" (Errol Flynn)

AL said...

Robert, this post was indeed directed at you and your puerile taste in cocktails. Frankly, considering your disdain for the dry martini, I wonder how you ever got a job as a librarian. It's a world gone mad.