Brian Rogers is the latest member of the library faculty and serves as Web Design and Instruction Librarian. He’s a card-carrying bibliophile, a Southern native, our resident comic book guy, and a curator of the bizarre. Prior to his arrival in Chattanooga, Brian worked in various libraries in Pittsburgh, Pa., Boulder, Co., and Decatur, Ga. He has also worked as a freelance copy writer and software tester. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Brian since library school (together we took History of the Cardigan) and think you should get to know him too.
Name a hobby that you would turn into a career if it were possible? Can trawling used bookstores be considered a hobby? Can you convince someone’s rich uncle to pay me $226,000 a year to do that? If so, put me down.
Where is the farthest place you have traveled? One night out of boredom, I applied for Peace Corps. I soon found myself in Uzbekistan, which shares a border with Afghanistan. This was in August, 2001, which proved to be incredibly poor timing. A two-and-a-half year service stint turned into a five week paid vacation, most of which I spent sick. There is no moral to this story.
What’s a website design that you like? In conjunction with the rest of the university, we’re rebuilding the library website over the next year, so I’ve been mulling “responsive design” a fair bit. The idea behind it is fairly simple: build your site in such a way that it auto-formats layout and content based on the device someone uses to view it. The implementation presents some interesting design challenges, but when done well it’s fairly impressive. Mr. Simon Collison’s website is a low-key example. A recent favorite is the design company Forefathers. Shrink the browser on both sites width-wise to watch the principle in action.
If you were the leader of a funk band, what would be the band’s name? The Lone Funkavist. Thank you for not asking about our stage names or costumes.
Fill in the blank: When I am not working in the library, I’m most likely ______ At home with my lady and our elderly border collie.
What is a favorite X-Men issue? Uncanny X-Men Volume 1, Number 248 from September, 1989. I was ten years old at the time and reading it in the back seat of a car. Simply Red’s cover of “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” was playing on the radio. It was a deeply weird issue. Fodder-for-the-psychoanalysts weird. The villain is a mentally-imbalanced egg-shaped cyborg named Nanny who wants to reduce the X-Men to infantile states out of a misguided need to protect them. Nanny’s henchman is Orphan-Maker, a mutant child imprisoned in robot armor. This all takes place in the Australian outback, where the X-Men are just … hanging out in a ghost town. One character, whose mutant power is an indestructible ’80s hair-band perm, spends the issue wandering around in spectral form reattaching body parts. I am uncertain which recreational substance the writer was on at the time.
Which Price is Right game do you think you’d own if you were a contestant? “Cliff Hangers.” My consumer acuity functions best under stress of contributing to the manslaughter of an animatronic yodeling mountain climber.
If you were a detective, who would be your sidekick? Al Calavicci from Quantum Leap. This choice has nothing whatsoever to do with his usefulness as a sidekick.
You’re given a week to spend space-traveling to other planets or time-traveling here on Earth. Which do you choose and where/when would you go? Time travel: Strasbourg in the 1440s. So I could hover around Gutenberg and make snarky comments during the first failed iterations of his press.
Why? Just … why? I blame RNA enzymes.