Thursday, January 31, 2008

need calculator

Just a quick note before I drop into the bed, to see if anyone out there has a used TI-83 or 83+ they can part with... One of my students, who is in dire financial straits already, had hers stolen (along with a lot of other stuff, lots of it irreplaceable) from her mom's van on Saturday. She called tonight to ask if I knew of where to get another or if I had an extra I could loan her. So I'm putting the word out there, as I don't have an extra... Any help you can give will be much appreciated. Thanks!

Update: I have had at least one offer already (see comments) but if anyone else sends calculators (or if you are local I can pick them up) I will put them to good use. I always have or know students who are in need. Recently I have begun to do some volunteer GED tutoring and they need calculators, too.

For all you foodies out there...

Click on the title for an article that was in the Ch. Observer yesterday. I don't have time for a post right now -- I'm headed out the door to a long Thursday -- but thought I'd give everybody an opportunity to start the day with a chuckle, the same way I went to sleep last night after reading this article. (Apologies to Rachel Ray, wherever you are...)

Friday, January 25, 2008


Having seen Everything Is Illuminated* over the weekend, and having had discussions recently with various people about clutter (a perennial problem for me), this morning's StoryCorps segment immediately caught my attention... It is either a springboard for new ideas of things to "collect" or a cautionary tale -- I choose the latter :]

*The protagonist collects things... Everything Is Illuminated is a really good movie, and the soundtrack was especially wonderful. I think it would be even better on the big screen, as the scenery is beautiful as well. For you dog lovers out there: there's a dog in the movie that is absolutely fantastic. She was almost my favorite character, and she's in almost every scene.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Smiley Library

Last night while looking for links that discuss "book addiction" I discovered this humorous piece and through it found the blog Library Dust. My interest has been piqued, and this morning (when I ought to be getting ready to go to work) I started reading back posts from the beginning, and came across this one. It's all about Smiley Library! That's the public library in Redlands, CA, where my aunt and uncle and cousins have lived for the past 40+ years, and now my mother lives there, too. So I've been there lots of times. I even watched, with my dear cuz Mary, some of the filming of a movie there late one night a year or two ago. What a hoot that was! (I wish I knew what movie...)
Reading about Smiley brought back memories of visiting other libraries in small towns I have visited over the years. When my kids and I traveled (in their growing up years) we often visited towns and cities that were new to us. The two places we went to loved to explore in particular were the local grocery store and the library. In addition to Smiley Library, some libraries that stand out in my mind are the ones in Dublin, GA, Haddonfield, NJ, Burlingame, CA, Atlanta Ga (the old Carnegie library with its squishy floors and the Ida Williams branch, now the Buckhead branch) and the first library I ever went to, which was in Minneapolis, Minnesota -- it was a children's library and I loved it very much.
I'd put more links but I've gotta run!
Addendum: I left out two of the best libraries: The Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County and the York County Library. Both are fabulous!

Update: Now that I have posted this, the "Library Dust" blog has been taken down. The author has started a new blog, On the Job, but it just isn't the same!

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Books, reading, and good news....

The thing about reading slowly that frustrates me is that there are waaay more books that I want to read at any given moment than I have time to read even if I had years to read them all... For example, I have three books on tape out from the library (I listen to these in the car; I'm currently in the middle of two of them) and I am reading at least four books (mostly from the library) and have at least two others out from the library that I want to get into asap -- one is about one of the current presidential candidates and the other is Perfectly Legal by David Cay Johnston, the author I referred to in yesterday's post. (I couldn't get his latest book at the library so I decided to try this one in the meantime.) Anyway, "book greed" is how I like to think of it, but that's really too charitable a description. There was a period of about 6-8 years when I couldn't get through even the shortest novel (for reasons that are still somewhat unclear to me) but ever since I got back into reading a few years back it's become sort of an obsession. When I was a kid I read all the time (albeit very slowly) and now I feel as though I am getting like that again.

On another topic: I have my first real Rock Hill student next Friday! Finally the next phase of the transition has begun!

p.s. Don't hesitate to click on the link in the title. It cracked me up -- and I think I'll still be chortling about it when I wake up in the a.m., like when Lizzie posted her "That's an airplane?!" comment....

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

David Cay Johnston on Fresh Air

Just wanted to post the link above for anyone interested. I am not a die-hard Fresh Air fan, but this segment really struck a nerve -- very well done and a real eye opener. David Cay Johnston is the author of Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You With the Bill) which sounds (from the interview) like something we all should read. What got my attention was they were talking about Cabela's, a huge store out in the middle of Nebraska... I've seen lots of signs for it when travelling in that area. For more, go listen to the interview.

I'll try to post again soon. I'm still writing Christmas cards and "treading water" in other respects.