My birthday is coming up and I thought it might be fun to do something different and get arrested this year. Ok, maybe not really arrested but hopefully raise a little money for charity. Don't worry, I will still have Birthday Month so save January 6th for dinner out and/or January 10th for something fun and different (I hope).
See below to find out how to donate and thanks for your support.
I'm proud to tell you that I'm being locked up...that's right, I'm going behind bars to help Jerry's Kids© and MDA. To be released on good behavior I have to raise bail and I need your help!
All you have to do is click here to make a secure, online donation before 01/14/09. Your donation will help families living in our community and help guarantee me an early release. I can't wait to add you to my list of contributors.
Thanks in advance for your help.
If the link above does not work, please cut and paste the address below into the address bar of your Internet browser.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
My birthday is coming up and I thought it might be fun to do something different and get arrested this year. Ok, maybe not really arrested but hopefully raise a little money for charity. Don't worry, I will still have Birthday Month so save January 6th for dinner out and/or January 10th for something fun and different (I hope).
Monday, December 29, 2008
If it wouldn't cause the post to be published in everyone's blog reader multiple times I would be tempted to go in and fix a few errors in that last post.....and maybe finish it:)
Lately, I have been seeing the same kinds of arguments come up when bloggers talk about twittering. My point two years ago was, you don't have to have a blog or even read mine. Just accept that it makes me happy and gives a few friends (and my mother) pleasure.
Twitter is the same for me. I have met so many awesome Kansas City people who are not bloggers or who don't participate in the local blogger community on twitter. Unlike many of my new friends who are in the media fields, I don't treat it as a micro-blogging or marketing tool but tend to think of it as being able to text all my friends at one time with the random tidbits that pop into my mind and once again (hopefully) allow my old and new friends to get a glimpse of my quirkier side.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
See, my whole family consists of bookworms. In case you are interested, Dad is reading Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin and my Nephew is reading 1984 by George Orwell.
Anyway, I thought it would be fun to list the books I gave to different family members this year. This will also serve as a reminder so that I don't get them the same book again next year. Not that I would ever do that.....
Dad likes American history best but I can never resist an autographed novel:
Escape by Robert K Tanenbaum (autographed)
Bob Schieffer's America by Bob Schieffer
Mom likes a little bit of everything:
Remembrance of Murders Past by Noreen Wald - mystery paperback stocking stuffer
Shifting Calder Wind by Janet Dailey - romance paperback stocking stuffer
Captive by Joan Johnston - romance paperback stocking stuffer
Dark Angel by Karen Harper - romantic suspense paperback stocking stuffer
Intern: A Doctor's Initiation by Sandeep Jauhar - because Mom used to work in the medical field
So Brave, Young and Handsome by Leif Enger (autographed)
How The States Got Their Shapes by Mark Stein - this one may get filched by Dad
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski - hot literary fiction of the year
Stealing Athena by Karen Essex - historical fiction
The Soloist by Steve Lopez - uplifting and about music...both appreciated by Mom
My Sister is a mystery buff but I threw in a couple of "hot literary novels" as well:
The Turnaround by George Pelecanos
The Given Day: A Novel by Dennis Lehane
American Wife: A Novel by Curtis Sittenfeld
The 19th Wife: A Novel by David Ebershoff
Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World by Vicki Myron
Red Bird: Poems by Mary Oliver
Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood by Mark Harris
Planet Google: One Company's Audacious Plan To Organize Everything We Know by Randall Stross
The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Max Brooks
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories by Howard Phillips Lovecraft
Amory Wars Volume 1: The Second Stage Turbine Blade (v. 1) by Claudio Sanchez
1984 by George Orwell
An Anthology of Graphic Fiction, Cartoons, and True Stories: Volume 2 (Anthology of Graphic Fiction, Cartoons, & True Stories) by Ivan Brunetti
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Friday, December 19, 2008
This was the novel (so far) this year, that has most profoundly impacted me. It was an enormously touching novel and it brought back the horror of a time that I can still remember. I still remember being stunned and horrified that the entire world was sitting back and doing nothing. Sadly, most governments have not changed, as events in Darfur so vividly illustrate.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
What I have noticed lately is that my story has changed. Until a few years ago, the stories I loved, that touched me, all revolved about building family, not always biological, but family all the same, the quirkier the better. Lately though, the stories that have blindsided me aren't about that. Some still have elements of family but most are about solitude. The main character is learning self-reliance and self-knowledge. Consider last years favorite (and if I might brag, picked before Oprah and the Pulitzer committee discovered it) The Road. It is about family but also about endurance, solitude and ultimately, hope.
Monday, December 15, 2008
Yesterday, I had a new staff member (who reads a lot) start. She is in her early 30's. As I listened to her recommend books to an 80-year-old, she was also recommending right off the list.
Here is the list...
Bret Easton Ellis
David Foster Wallace
Hunter S. Thompson
And some "Street fiction" to go along with it...
Vickie M Stringer
Friday, December 12, 2008
I am currently up-to-date on the Naomi Novik series and I have to say, I really becoming a fan. The story, set during the Napoleonic Wars, is about a ship's captain who defeats a French ship in battle, takes possession of the ship and discovers a dragon egg on board. Since dragons will go feral if not convinced to "take the harness" early in life and the dragons are an essential part of the war arsenal, it is imperative that the dragon choose it's handler. Of course, this dragon chooses the captain of the ship, who liked his life the way it was, but who embarks on this new path for the good of the Empire.
What I like most about this series is the affection that develops between the gentleman Navel captain and an incredibly intelligent and strong willed male dragon. FYI: It is a series that works equally well for men or women readers (at least so far) and is one of the "hot" fantasy series for adults at the moment.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
I could do a really long, profound explanation of why I like taking personality tests but does it really matter? After all, anything that keeps me busy and out-of-trouble can't be a bad thing.
Monday, December 01, 2008
Toward evening, the natural light becomes
Intelligent and answers, without demur:
“Be assured! You are not alone. . . .”
But in fact, toward evening, I am not
Convinced there is any other except myself
To whom existence necessarily pertains.
I also interrogate myself to discover
Whether I myself possess any power
By which I can bring it about that I,
Who now am, shall exist another moment.
Because I am mostly a thinking thing
And because this precise question is
Only from that thoughtful part of myself,
If such a power did reside within me
I should, I am sure, be conscious of it. . . .
But I am conscious of no such power.
And yet, if I myself cannot be
The cause of that assurance, surely
It is necessary to conclude that
I am not alone in the world. There is
some other who is the cause of that idea.
But if, at last, no such other can be
found toward evening, do I really have
sufficient assurance of the existence
or of any other being at all? For,
after a most careful search, I have been
unable to discover the ground of that
conviction – unless it be imagined a lonely
workman on a dizzy scaffold unfolds
a sign at evening and puts his mark to it.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Major: A Black Athlete, A White Era,and the Fight to be the World's Fastest Human Being by Todd Balf
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
P.S. If you can't make that, I am open to more parties/dinners/cakes...throughout the month of January.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Tuesday, November 18th anytime after 5:00 p.m.
Harry's Country Club in the River Market area
112 Missouri Avenue
Kansas City, MO
RSVP on Spyder's post
Friday, November 14, 2008
Supporters are practical, dependable and loyal. They are both people-oriented and detail-oriented. Supporters are natural supervisors. They thrive on helping others excel in their positions and will fight for the underdog. Methodical in their methodology, they like to have the facts before they act. They respect authority and organizational structure. Caring and careful with people and projects, Supporters are skillful at implementing procedures. They possess a strong work ethic. Having a clearly defined goal to work toward is important to them and they follow through on objectives with steady conscientiousness. Psychological pay is of primary importance to them. They need to feel good about what they are doing and sense that their work makes a positive contribution.
Quick-Start Tips for Goal Achievement.
From Bea's Blog
From Bea's Blog
Sunday, November 09, 2008
You Should Be a Politician
Confident, assertive, and dedicated - you know what you want in life and how to get it.
Stubborn and opinionated, you can stand your ground... even if it's unpopular.
And while you have strong views, you never overwhelm people with your opinions.
A true charmer, you subtly influence people into seeing things your way.
You do best when you:
- Work according to your own rules
- Can change the world with what you do
You would also be a good lawyer or talk show host.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration Into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel by Michio Kaku
Friday, October 24, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Name a book you have read MORE than once: Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it? Every book changes the way I see life. I don't reacognize the effects but they all do.
How do you choose a book? By the pretty cover, the review, because I like the author, because a friend who has similar taste in books liked it, because it is assigned reading, because I am on a book award committee and must read or die...Take your pick.
Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction? Depends on the subject. I tend to gravitate toward fiction but love anything to do with Victorian woman explorers, archeology, brain research....
What’s more important in a novel - beautiful writing or a gripping plot? The books that stay with me are the ones with "beautiful" writing or at least the most memorable descriptions.
Most loved/memorable character (character/book) I have always been fond of Amelia Peabody from the mystery series by Elizabeth Peters. The author has her PhD in Egyptology and has patterned her character after Amelia Edwards, Victorian Archeologist.
Which book or books can be found on your nightstand at the moment? Life and Death are Wearing Me Out: A Novel by Mo Yan
What was the last book you’ve read, and when was it? Physics of the Impossible: A Scientific Exploration into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel by Michio Kaku
Have you ever given up on a book half way in? Sure. Many. Reading is not a test or an endurance activity. Reading should be a joy.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Sunday, October 05, 2008
From "Owl and Pussycat, Some Years Later", a witty retelling of the well-known nursery rhyme, to the darker poem "The Hurt Child", Margaret Atwood revisits familiar themes and explores new territory in The Door. In this collection, she highlights the dark side of personal, environmental and political landscapes in taut, spare verse proving once again her virtuosity with words.
Variation on the Word Sleep
by Margaret Atwood
I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head
and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear
I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center. I would like to follow
you up the long stairway
again & become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands
to where your body lies
beside me, and you enter
it as easily as breathing in
I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
& that necessary.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Because there is no more mowing! Now some of you might be thinking "mowing isn't so bad". In fact, I kinda like it. Yeah, well, you would be crazy people. I know the rest of you are doing the happy dance with me. No more dragging out the heavy mower every weekend (I am a delicate flower after all), no more environmental damage that is killing the planet causing me to be a bad, bad person (next year, I'm going electric) and best of all, no more no more mowing over dead animals causing me to being traumatized for weeks.
Now, it's time to rake! Ummm....Whoo Hooo?
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
I would do this too but 90% of the stats on my site come from authors looking for reviews of their books or people looking for reviews of those same books. Imagine that.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
YOU ARE SILK SPECTRE...
You're law enforcement material! Whether it's working vice or for the CIA, you have all the tools. You're brash, tough, and resilient. You could go far!
You'd do well on the "other side" of the law too. Consider organized crime, pornography, politics, or the tobacco industry.
WATCHMEN Profile Inventory (WPI)
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Also, I would like to make a case for researching the candidates and voting based on the issues, not the personality of the candidate. Voting because we like them hasn't done us much good in the past, now has it?
Your public library is an excellent place to go to find out more. Each website has a list of REPUTABLE web resources for you to access. Please take advantage of all of the hard work your library has done to help you stay informed. http://www.kclibrary.org/elections-politics
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Sunday, September 07, 2008
This is one of the best novels I have read this year.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
BlogDay posting instructions:
- Find 5 new Blogs that you find interesting
- Notify the 5 bloggers that you are recommending them as part of BlogDay 2008
- Write a short description of the Blogs and place a link to the recommended Blogs
- Post the BlogDay Post (on August 31st) and
- Add the BlogDay tag using this link: http://technorati.com/tag/BlogDay2008and a link to the BlogDay web site at http://www.blogday.org/
Since I read hundreds of blogs I thought I would pick one blog from a couple of my major categories.
Music Blogs - Covert Curiosity is a great blog with lots of new music to discover as well as free downloads of the recommended music. I follow a lot of music blogs but this is the only one I read religiously.
Book Blogs - Smart Bitches, Trashy Books is always a good choice for feeding my inner snark and the fact that I always find some good romance novels to recommend to customers is just a nice side benefit.
Odds and Ends - Crazy Aunt Purl - I don't knit but I love her voice. She isn't afraid to be silly or to laugh at herself, a totally endearing quality the blogosphere.
Social Networking and Tech blogs - Mashable is the blog I would follow if I could only pick one. I always find something interesting to talk about and I particularly loved that Facebook vs. Myspace evaluations.
Professional Development - Stephen's Lighthouse - Stephen is great at repackaging library and technology news for the library crowd.
Make sure you link back to Blogday.org with your post, and share your five new blog picks for this year.
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Friday, August 15, 2008
Friday, August 08, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
The Harvey Girls takes place on Tuesday, July 29, at 6:30 p.m. at the Waldo Branch, 201 E. 75th St. RSVP: http://www.kclibrary.org/rsvp/2008/orderup/
Friday, July 25, 2008
I forgot to keep track last Friday so I am doing this Friday instead so ignore the date in the title:)
Fridays are usually spent working the desk, doing paperwork and other assorted librarian type things that pretty much mirror the rest of the week. I spent most of my morning working on another incident report and spent most of the lunch hour covering staff breaks. The one big difference this week was that I didn’t have to work from 8:15 – 6. I had a branch manager meeting about security issues that met at so after that I headed home and changed into theater in the park clothing. Packed a bunch of snacky foods and am heading out shortly to see my friend Amy sing in Annie Get Your Gun with my UMKC friends.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
- Slept in until .
- Ran on the treadmill while watching Lars and the Real Girl and checking Twitter/reading blog posts on my mobile Google Reader (on my phone).
- Noticed a lovely toilet bowl leak and put out an SOS to local bloggers and friends, myspyderweb and her hubby, Kanga (aka: my wonderful, new handy-person)
- On the way to work I stopped to buy soda and paper goods for upcoming programs.
- At work, I checked in with the morning supervisor and talked with last night’s supervisor about training issues for the newly hired security guards.
- Checked work email.
- Proofread next month’s branch calendar.
- Talked with owner of the security company about security guard issues.
- Worked on letters, email’s and faxes for publisher letters requested review copies for the Notable Award.
- Ate dinner and browsed the blogs.
- Went out and worked the desk for the 5-6 pm rush.
- Continued working on contacting publishers.
- I always try to work the desk for the last hour we are open on my late night.
- Went home.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
When additional staff appeared I ran off to our neighborhood business association meeting. Since this is a lunch meeting it basically consists of eating lunch, socializing with my community and then listening to a presentation. Today's was about the green building going up in the neighborhood with a environmentally friendly design and a roof planted with native grasses. Very cool and when it is finished I will need to schedule a trip to my local neighborhood bar (conveniently located in the new building).
When I got back from schmoozing at the meeting I checked email (both personal and professional) and chatted with a staff person about the value of the workshop she just attended on urban literature. Since I was feeling a little tired from my late night last night I grabbed the "missing list" again so I would be up and moving around.
One question answered all night (apart from the occasional "can you sign me on to a computer as a guest" questions).
I am now heading home where I will do a couple loads of laundry, put on my pj's, spend a little quality time with the cats, read a little and then get to sleep a little on the early side tonight. Tomorrow is my late day so I will also get to sleep in and catch up on my sleep from last night's awesome concert.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
- Started to listen to The Dybbuk on Book on Tape to prepare for the Jewish Literature program
- Arrived at work at and talked with the assistant branch manager about upcoming employee time off requests, discussed repair issues with facilities staff and worked on the hold list before opening the branch at
- Read Librarian by Day’s post and realized that I no longer remember the password for the branch library Flickr account and have no idea what random birthday I used. Now I can’t re-request the password.
- Worked the circulation desk for a while. It's a good day when I can talk to a customer about books.
- Met with the Public Affairs department to look at meeting room space and discuss layout and event issues.
- Ate lunch and started a new (to me) series… His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik. Apparently this series is hot. How did I not know that?
- Talked with administration and co-workers about the bike theft issue and a plan for checking out bike locks is in the works. I also asked Human Resources for some advice about a staffing issue.
- Every once in a while a person needs a soothing no-brain task so I grabbed a list of books that had been marked missing and spent some time checking the library shelves for them.
- Went through a couple of book review journals and marked books that were suitable for the branch, the reading award....and a few just for me. This is one of the most dangerous tasks I undertake because it often results in a flood of personal book orders for me.
- Talked with a staff person about personnel "issues".
- Went home, changed and joined friends at a much needed Dropkick Murphys concert.
Monday, July 21, 2008
- Got up and got ready for work.
- Checked work, Twitter and personal email accounts on my Trio.
- Marked email that needed attention.
- 15 minute drive to work.
- Got the deposit ready to go to the bank.
- Worked on the list of customer holds that needed to be pulled.
- Opened the branch.
- Answered a customer email.
- Sent out a message to staff about the importance of collecting accurate statistics.
- Sent out self-evaluation questions to staff person to complete for upcoming evaluation.
- Investigated an online book club management system and created an account, inviting a few of the current book club participants to join.
- Worked on a staff evaluation.
- Called downtown to get clarification on new statistics gathering system.
- Worked the customer service desk for about an hour where I got to answer a Reader's Advisory question (yippy!) I also checked in and out books, answered a couple of basic reference questions.
- Dealt with a customer disturbance issue and filed an incident report.
- Worked on Notable Award list.
- Ate a rather boring but nutritious lunch…hummus, carrots, peach…awhile skimming KC blogs, library and book blogs for interesting tidbits..
- Worked on finding a second leader for the newly expanded Jewish Literature program, found and invited second book discussion leader.
- Talked with staff about the proper way to structure an incident report.
- Talked to an upset customer about overdue fines.
- Had a staff "birthday cupcake" and a little social time.
- Cleaned up a portion of the “Missing Book” printout.
- Worked the customer service desk.
- Wrote a blog post about the Jewish American Literature program.
- Talked with Public Affairs about various promotional details for the program.
- Dealt with three bike theft issues and wrote another incident report
- Stopped at the grocery store, ran home and then headed downtown for a library program.
- Listened to my smart librarian friend do a presentation and cheered wildly.
- Got home at 9'ish, read a bit of a notable read and then went to bed.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Friday, July 18, 2008
Thursday, July 17, 2008
If you want to try one for free, you get a free copy of the "Seize the Night" ebook. It's
also available in a free Kindle edition on Amazon. Use this link:
http://www.yearofac heron.com/ ebook.html
Sunday, July 13, 2008
An animated version of Zinn’s essay, Empire or Humanity? What the Classroom Didn’t Teach Me about the American Empire.
Friday, July 11, 2008
Thursday, July 10, 2008
And now for my ALA fun reads!
Little Brother by Cory Doctorow - I finally finished reading my free downloaded copy of this book and then promptly went out and bought a hard copy for my 18 year old nephew. This young adult novel has a lot to say about the 9/11 America, homeland security and personal freedom. It is fast paced, has engaging characters and is suitable (and recommended) for adults as well as teens.
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss - This fantasy novel was named "best fantasy novel of 2007" by the American Library Association "The Reading List" Award committee. It follows the life of Kvothe, living incognito, after his larger than life heroism goes horribly wrong. There are daring rescues, evil villains and enough magic to satisfy the most demanding of readers.
Rainbows End by Vernor Vinge - If you like hard science SF, this is an author you will want to try. Rainbows End is set in 2025 and the main character has been "cured" of Alzheimers. Starting over, he must learn to use the new technology close enough to what he remembers to be familiar but difficult to navigate and learn. His granddaughter is determined to teach him in spite of his curmudgeonly way. In the meantime he stumbles into a secret plot to take over the world....or maybe not? I really enjoyed it and I do want to try more of his Hugo award winning novels.
Wednesday, July 09, 2008
The first book was Our Daily Meds: How the Pharmaceutical Companies Transformed Themselves into Slick Marketing Machines and Hooked the Nation on Prescription Drugs by Melody Petersen. This was an absolutely riveting, yet very disturbing look at how drugs get approved, marketed and prescribed and I ended up going home and analyzing every drug I take and reassessing my medical and prescription options.
Book number two was In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan and although it can be read by itself, I think of it as a companion piece to last year's book, The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. If you have been with me for a while you might remember me talking about how this book has made me start looking at my food purchasing choices in terms of how far they have travelled and to start making a conscious effort to buy local whenever possible. In Defense is the book that is getting me to look at all of the low-fat, prepackaged foods I purchase (all of which are supposedly "good for me"). His basic premise (and yes, you still need to all go out and read the book!) is: "Eat food. Not too much, mostly plants and don't eat anything your great, great Grandparents wouldn't recognize as food." I am now toying with shopping at farmer's markets unless I have no other choice, starting a garden and making everything from scratch including my own yogurt.
And finally, The Wisdom of Whores: Bureaucrats, Brothels, and the Business of AIDS by Elizabeth Pisani. The author started life as a journalist and later, became an an epidemiologist researching AIDS. She has worked for a variety of NGO's and has seen the programs around the world that have worked and those that have not. Again she has more to say but the important point I took from this book is that until the US (and other countries) stop putting restrictions on this money, especially in not allowing a program to give out condoms and needles, the battle to stop the HIV virus will be a losing one. Our programs are failing because we as a nation cannot be realistic about what prevents AIDS. AIDS prevention does not work when we focus on stopping premarital, extra-marital sex and drug use. It works when we focus on preventing UNSAFE sex and the sharing of needles!
All three of these were eyeopening and fascinating books that I highly recommend reading.
Tomorrow....the fun titles I read on the flight home.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Kansas City Public Library to Host: Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature Reading and Discussion Series
Designed to explore Jewish literature and culture through scholar-led discussions of contemporary and classic books, the Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature program at the Kansas City Public Library will explore the theme of Demons, Golems, and Dybbuks: Monsters of the Jewish Imagination over the course of five sessions scheduled for the third Thursday of every month.
Each 60-90 minute session begins at 7 p.m. and will be led by Dr. Ben Furnish, author of Nostalgia in Jewish-American Theatre and Film, 1979-2004. Furnish is also managing editor of BkMk Press and a lecturer in the Department of English at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. All sessions will be limited to 30 attendees. To register for one or more of these sessions call 816.701.3407 or you may RSVP online.
The Kansas City Public Library is one of 83 libraries across the country that received competitively-awarded grants to host the Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature program that was developed by Nextbook and the American Library Association (ALA). The majority of the funding will be used to provide program participants with free paperback copies of the five books that will be discussed in the series – Satan in Goray by Isaac Bashevis Singer, The Dybbuk and Other Writings by S. Ansky, The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka, The Puttermesser Papers by Cynthia Ozick, and Angels in America by Tony Kushner.
“We are delighted that the ALA has selected us to host this unique book discussion series,” noted Henry Fortunato, director of public affairs at the Kansas City Public Library and lead grant writer for the project. “These five sessions at the Waldo Branch led by Ben Furnish will further our mission of encouraging public dialogue by enabling community members to engage in deep discussion on major themes in Jewish literature.”
“Monster theory is a hot area of literary research now,” added Furnish. “Monster theorists say that these supernatural literary beings can reveal a great deal about evolving cultural identity and difference. Just as medieval England’s Beowulf gives us Grendel and a dragon, so modern Jewish literature gives readers unforgettable figures like Gregor Samsa and a dybbuk, which speak powerfully to audiences making sense of their lives amid the turbulent cultural changes of the 20th century and beyond.”
The first program in the five-part series, scheduled for Thursday, August 21, 2008, will explore Satan in Goray by Isaac Bashevis Singer. An epic story of desperation and religious fervor, this first novel by the Nobel Prize-winning Singer was originally published in Poland in 1935. A dark, chilling tale that clearly reflects the anxieties of its era, Satan in Goray concerns the survivors of a 1648 massacre in an isolated Polish village who become convinced that the Messiah will arrive at any moment. Their high hopes lead to disastrous results.
Registrants for this first program in the series will be able to pick up their free paperback copy of Satan in Goray after July 15, 2008, at the Waldo Branch, 201 E. 75th St.
The remaining dates and books in the Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature series at the Waldo Branch include: Thursday, September 18, 2008, The Dybbuk and Other Writings by S. Ansky; Thursday, October 16, 2008, The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka; Thursday, November 20, 2008, The Puttermesser Papers by Cynthia Ozick; and Thursday, December 18, 2008, Angels in America by Tony Kushner.
Monday, July 07, 2008
I didn't see the performance so you will have to rely on another blogger to get the general idea. From the Anaheim en Mass blog:
"The crowd favorite was a team from CA who came out as mad scientists, complete with wild wigs, lab coats and a complete chemistry set on each bookcart. They danced their way through a musical number where they poured a drink in their beakers (which began to bubble merrily) and drank it. They writhed and shrank beneath their carts, stripped their outfits and became zombies - complete with ripped clothing and ashen/bloody faces.
Suddenly Michael Jackson's "Thriller" began to play and they stepped their way, zombielike, through the song w/ their bookcarts - just like the famous video but with the carts for added flair. They brought the house down, and wound up taking home the first place Gold Cart."
Friday, July 04, 2008
Thursday, July 03, 2008
For all intents and purposes Eric Flint's portion of the panel discussion is on the Baen website. I do wish I had written down a couple of "quotables" from Vernor Vinge and Cory Doctorow as well but I was too busy listening.
Wednesday, July 02, 2008
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
The 100 best reads from 1983 to 2008
Well, I have read about 2/3 of these and some I loved, some I was underwhelmed by and a couple I didn't finish. All-in-all not a bad list. I loved The Road, preferred Murakami's Kafka on the Shore and couldn't get through The Stone Diaries to save my life so always remember, everything is subjective. Never feel bad when you don't agree with the "experts".
Friday, June 20, 2008
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Annual Spring Waldo Crawldo
This annual spring pub crawl includes seven establishments all within walking distance: 75th St. Brewery, Kennedy's, Waldo Bar, Bobby Baker's, Tanner's, Waldo Pizza, and Lew's Grill and Bar. Tickets on sale now at each location. Visit all 7 the evening of the crawl and you will be in a drawing for great prizes.
Admission: $5 in advance, $10 at the door.
Waldo Shopping District
75th & Wornall
Instead of writing profound and wonderful reviews of books I posted myspace bulletins all evening at the part-time job. Since I spent so much time on them, I thought I would share them with you.
Who were you with last night around 9:00pm?
On a grassy knoll
Where is your sister right now?
Ummm….Colorado or India. It's hard to keep track.
What is one thing you would love to happen tomorrow?
For a knight in shining armor to swoop down and rescue me from the evil dentist.
Is your phone a flip, slide or neither?
It is actually a super secret spy phone imbedded in my arm
Do you bite your fingernails?
Not unless I am REALLY stressed out. Something that you never want to see. Trust me.
Do you like Mexican food?
Did anyone see you kiss the last person you kissed?
Yes. I try to gather a large audience for these moments in life.
Do you watch a lot of TV?
TV is the opiate of the masses.
Are you hungry?
No. I had a yummy yogurt and carrot dinner in the car on the way to the part-time job. And yes, before you ask, I AM living the life.
Do you like your mom?
She's ok. I think I will keep her.
Are you tan?
Nope. Pasty white.
Do you have unlimited texting?
Super secret spy phones come with all the options.
Where were you at 9pm Sunday night?
What is this obsession with 9 pm? You got the wrong man, I tell you. I'm innocent. You'll never pin it on me.
What happened at 10:00 am today?
A stranger handed me a mysterious package with instructions to deliver it to the Russian or I would die a horrible death.
Have you kissed a boy in the last three days?
You all are just full of noisy questions today, aren't you?
How many hours did you sleep last night?
What was the last text message you received?
From XO wanting to "entertain" me.
Does anyone call you babe?
Not if they want to live a full and happy life with all their parts intact.
What was the highlight of this week?
Well, the Russian was pretty cool.
Did you kiss or hug anyone today?
I took the world in a love embrace.
What was the last reason you went to the Doctor for?
To get a thorn out of my finger.
Do you have any birth marks?
Yes. I have the mark of "The Chosen One". All bow down and worship me. Ummm…. now people!
Who will you see the most this weekend besides family?
All my freaky friends.
Do you think you will be in a relationship 3 months from now?
Define relationship? I like to think that I have relationships with many people.
Do you drink tea?
Love it. It makes me feel very British.
Have you ever wanted something you couldn't have?
Not since becoming "The Chosen One"
What's the number one thing you want in life right now?
A super secret spy car.
Are you taken?
Where? If it is somewhere good, then yes.
1. What do you think happens after you die? I will be reincarnated as a superior being…no wait, that was last time.
2. What are you supposed to be doing right now? Whatever I want! I am a god at sea!
3. What do you wish you could be doing right now? The Twist
4. Would you marry for money? Depends? Is this someone who is hot, worships the ground I walk on, is uber-good in bed and follows me around buying me shoes? Then absolutely!
5. How long do you spend in the shower? Nuh uh. You aren't going to catch me with that one.
I've seen Psycho!
6. What are you wearing right now? I am naked in my skin.
7. What's the first thing you think about in the morning? Me :D Oh come on, like you don't?
8. And the last thing at night? Wow. It is dark behind my eyelids.
9. What type of toothpaste do you use? The kind with little bubbles….because EVERYTHING is better with bubbles.
10. Have you ever made out with a stranger? Define strange.
11. Are you an optimist or a pessimist? I like to think I am an optimist but sometimes I am very pessimistic about that choice.
12. Dominant or submissive? I am submissively dominant or dominantly submissive…take your pick.
13. Do you have psychic powers? Of course. I AM "The Chosen One"
14. If you could be any animal for a day, what would you be? Wouldn't that be cool if you could morph into an animal? But why just one? I want to be a panther and then maybe a dolphin and horse and ooooooh….a dinosaur. Definitely a dinosaur.
15. How often do you work out? The answer my friend is blowing in the wind. The answer is blowing in the wind.
16. If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and you could only take 3 things, what would you take? My laptop, a solar battery and a wifi tower.
17. What superhero do you most identify with? I'm thinking I am like The Hulk but that is probably because of the green feet.
18. What is the greatest challenge you have ever faced? I laugh in the face of challenge….
19. What is the best book you've ever read? That is like picking my favorite family member! Can't be done.
20. What person have you known the longest? Me
21. Would you have sex with someone for a million dollars? What??? I'm thinking!
22. What are you addicted to? You, baby!
23. Do you believe in love at first sight? Well, with all of the men throwing themselves at me declaring their undying love, how could I not?
24. What are your thoughts on true love? It makes the world go round.
25. What magazines do you read most often? Mad Magazine
26. What's the wildest thing you've ever done? I stood in the middle of Central Park naked.
27. Would you rather divulge your deepest, darkest secret or stand naked in the middle of Central Park? I think we have covered this.
28. What is the biggest problem in your life right now? Usually it is boys….or lack thereof.
29. What is your greatest fear? I fear giant spiders attacking the general population and me getting superhero powers and having to fight them.
30. What is your greatest hope? I hope that the Space Shuttle doesn't crash on my house cause that would be a bummer.
Monday, June 16, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER and A FOUNTAIN FILLED WITH BLOOD.
Click here to sign up to receive.
Promotion ends June 12, 2008, 11:59 p.m. ET.
1. Favourite author: In which genre? Which day? Which mood? This is like trying to figure out your favorite family member...impossible!
2. Favourite book: See question #1
3. Favourite poem: "Ozymandias" by Percy Bysshe Shelley
4. Favourite genre: I like everything but have never been able to embrace Horror.
5. Favourite non-fiction category: Egyptian archaeology
6. Favourite book as a child: Preschool: Green Eggs and Ham Grade School: From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs Basil E Frankweiler, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH and Black Beauty Tween: Swiss Family Robinson and The Witch of Blackbird Pond Teen: No one favorite but I seem to remember reading a lot of Danielle Steel and Zane Gray during those years.
7. What book are you reading now: A Life of Picasso: The Triumphant Years, 1917-1932 by John Richardson and Beautiful Children by Charles Bock
8. Favourite fictional character: I still like Ramona (of Ramona the Brave fame). I wish I was still that fearless.
9. Worst book you’ve read: Define "read". Do you mean books I have finished or books I have thrown across the room and refused to finish? Do you only mean published books? What about book manuscripts that authors asked for opinions on? Define "worst". Most poorly written? Not to my taste? Most repugnant hero/heroine? Worst editing?
10. A book that changed your life: Every book I have read has changed my life in large and small ways. I developed sympathy and empathy, respect for other cultures and religions, depth and breadth of knowledge, my ability to think critically, my questioning nature...from reading.
11. A movie that is better than the book: Every James Patterson.
12. Most disappointing adaption from a book: Every other movie from a book.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
And for those of you who think you are too old of YA Fiction...I have met you....remember?
Friday, June 06, 2008
1. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
2. Using only the first page of results, and pick one image.
3. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into Big Huge Lab's Mosaic Maker to create a mosaic of the picture answers.
1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food? right now?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. What is your favorite drink?
7. What is your dream vacation?
8. What is your favorite dessert?
9. What do you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. What is one word that describes you?
12. What is your flickr name?
First seen on Average Jane's page.
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Anyway, when I am not reading literary fiction and non-fiction for a book award, I am reading a mixture of mystery, romance, westerns and anything else you can think of, including Science Fiction. My favorite SF are space operas and humorous SF and fantasy. One of my favorite humorous authors was Robert Asprin, who passed away on May 22, 2008. This means that there will be no more Myth Adventures which makes me very sad indeed.
This is a light frothy fun series with a wanna be magician/thief named Skeeve, a demon from Perv named Aahz. Now, anything with a character named Perv is bound to be good but truthfully, the main attraction for me was the clever banter and lord knows, I am a sucker for clever banter. After the June award meeting I may have to take a little break and finish off the last few (or possibly re-read the entire series) to cleanse the palette for my next round of weighty tomes.
Monday, May 26, 2008
The Translator is about a young man who, after losing a number of family members in Darfur, risks his life to become a translator and guide for reporters so that the world would know about what was happening in his home. Eventually, he was caught, tortured and eventually rescued by friends. You can tell that English is not Daoud's first language because the book is a little choppy in places and could have used some polishing by a skilled editor. Still, it is a worthwhile read that gives a first-hand account of the atrocities being committed and that tugs the heart-strings and would hopefully radicalize others to get involved.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Last Week's Reads:
Byzantium: The Surprising Life of a Medieval Empire by Judith Herrin - An attempt to weave together the astonishingly complex history of the Byzantium Empire. It is brilliant but perhaps not as accessible to the non-scholar as the author intended. To be fair, I am not sure how one makes such a complicated subject accessible but she gave it a darn good try.
Seneca Falls and the Origins of the Women's Movement by Sally McMillen - excellent look at the powerhouse women who started and guided the women's rights movement in America. I wish I could have met a couple of them or at the very least, heard them speak. They sounded like amazing women.
Liberal Fascism: The Totalitarian Temptation from Mussolini to Hillary Clinton by Jonah Goldberg - This was interesting in an odd way. I found the historical study of fascism fascinating but I am not sure the author really offers convincing evidence that modern liberals are fascists. I do like books that offer a look an opposing viewpoint of my beliefs because it does force me to take a look at the not-so-pretty aspects of "my side" and try to avoid those qualities in my own life.
*Small Favor by Jim Butcher - Number 10 in the Dresden Files series does not disappoint. I'm not sure how much of a mystery was attached to this one but I really enjoy the SF elements of this series and he has managed to keep from getting silly and trite in the series. I like the characters, I enjoy the pyrotechnics and I am always satisfied with Harry and the good guys saving the day.
*not a notable possibility but a just-for-fun break from the serious scholarly work.
I have also joined a couple of new social networking sites and am currently exploring them.
Toluu - http://www.toluu.com/
Bright Kite - http://brightkite.com/
Friend Feed - http://www.friendfeed.com
Twitter - http://www.twitter.com/ (actually I have been on this one for a while but a bunch of my friends have now joined so it has moved from a pleasant diversion to a serious addiction.)
Ok, time to go finish mowing.