This blog is “not my job.” Not any longer, anyway. As of today, I haven’t been paid by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for a year. That is my explanation for letting this blog die.
I have recently read over all the posts I made to it, and I still think they’re interesting, informative, and nicely written. I regret that the list of Pennsylvania publishers from the collection’s Pa. Imprints Collection never got completely published. But other than that, I’m fine with it all.
There were difficulties at the State Library that led to my looking elsewhere for employment. And I’m very, very happy with my new job. We’re well supported (financially and otherwise). We have interesting things to do. We have an interesting collection to work with, on an interesting subject. There’s a building project that is funded, and will actually open on schedule. I have a nice place to live and a (usually) pleasant commute. What’s not to like?
One of the reasons this ‘Erudite and Eccentric’ blog stopped so abruptly was the paranoid attitude of the administration in Pennsylvania about information flowing in any channel other than the one that was strictly controlled by the administration. I am also free of that now. So I may be appearing soon at a blog near you (although I read today that young people are leaving blogs in droves, preferring the short attention span media of the tweet and its ilk).
Footnote of sorts: the most popular post on this blog … even today … is the one on Charles Dickens and fog. That’s just symptomatic of one of the things I always felt was wrong with the rare book collection at the State Library: that post and its subject wasn’t worth the pixels it was printed with to the head person there because it wasn’t about Pennsylvania and it wasn’t about Benjamin Franklin. There was no real vision, and the people perished.
UPDATE: Just today, Friday 27 April 2012, I had an email from the now-current “Rare Books Librarian” at the State Library of Pennsylvania. I had asked him “How are things going? Did the new space ever get up and running in a fully functional way?” His response: “We are still “in the process” of getting the space “fully functional”. Nevertheless, things are moving in the right direction—slowly.” Sigh! All I can add is ‘The more things change, the more they stay the same.