Stacked in Our Favor

Thoughts about libraries, education, children's literature, writing, art and being connected

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Urban Backpacking

In my last post I let it be known how much I love my laptop. The large screen is great, but one thing that is problematic is schlepping it around with me. I love to take it on my weekly forays into a city nearby. While I wait for my child to have the weekly activity I catch up on work and writing. Sometimes it’s a grocery list I’m typing.

Here’s the catch. How does one carry a laptop 10 or 15 blocks without pulling a muscle? These days I see students with these mini laptops. Right after they pushed the limits of how big the screen could be they turned around and made them small. I sometimes look on with envy.

First I tried a messenger bag. Slinging the thing over my shoulder, I nearly tipped over to the side and the strap cut into my neck. Cross that one off. I then got a roll on bag, but it was meant to carry your laptop and your clothing for a few days. It’s great for a real car trip, but not to roll through the street. Lately I carry my laptop in a backpack made by Columbia. Usually the backpack is stuffed and bulging with the reading material I “must” take with me. Carrying it around does make you stand up straight, that’s for sure. Sometimes, I look like I’m carrying supplies, including the oxygen tanks, for a trek up Everest. It gets the job done, even if it does look a bit odd.

There has to be a better way. I’m sure that there is a product out there for me. A bag which can be slung on your back easily, but doesn’t tear into your neck. A bag with a colapsable handle so that it can be rolled when advisable. A bag which looks professional and sporty, but not in a campfire kind of way. I’m looking for it. If you know what it is, I’d love to know.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Happy Anniversary

Just one year ago today I got my Dell Inspiron 1525 laptop. Oh, how I have loved it. It is such a lovely color which matches my blog and is my favorite color these days. I opted to buy a laptop with a large screen. I have just loved using this computer. It has made so many things possible. It has gone to the MSLA conference last year. Notes were much neater and easier to follow than those from years past. It has gone it on vacation to provide an outlet for inspiration when it strikes and to keep connected while away. I take it with me to do work while waiting for other things to happen. So far I’ve restrained myself from taking it to parades and such.

The Luddite that I was years ago eschewed using the computer. I was sure that the state of handwriting in the US was sure to plummet with the use of computers. I may have been onto something then, but I’m not proud of it. My handwriting certainly has slid into the quagmire, but I will not apologize. What I have lost in fanciful handwriting I have gained in volume, thoughtfulness and quality. There is no doubt in my mind about the usefulness of this machine or the value for the money. I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat. The portability has been a blessing.