Get LISNews via email! Enter Your Email Address:
This is the not the first time my family has crossed paths with Walt Whitman.
In my family’s lore, my grandfather would tell a story about how his grandfather (a judge in Camden prior to the turn of the century) once sent the famous and highly debated poet to jail for public intoxication. His grandmother and her friends would cross the street if they saw ole Walt stumbling their way, drunk as a skunk, for they did not want to be on the same side of the road as he passed. Their recollections, as retold by my grandfather, were singularly unimpressed with the man who has been called “America’s poet”.
Even in death, my mother’s family cannot escape some sort of proximity to the poet. Harleigh Cemetery, where my maternal grandparents, their siblings, and both sides of my grandfather’s family have family plots, is also the resting place for Walt Whitman. When I visit the family gravesite, I can see the Whitman mausoleum about one hundred and fifty yard away hidden in the trees that have grown over it. The only way out is to go past it. You can see the slots of the Whitman family behind a heavy barred gate with little knickknacks, flowers, and other minutiae left outside. -- Read More
I am absolutely quitting my blog; I'm going back to being someone with no feed subscribers (currently over ten million) and no tweet followers (some guy named Mel); I'll be a regular guy. I will go quietly.
So, please, for the love of Mike, can all the librarians stop baiting me for the next three weeks.. just stop doing dumb shit so I don't have to rant about it. I know I can't expect regular people to cease and desist, but can't all the librarians just take the month off?
The Darien Statements on the Library and Librarians is what I mean. Please just stop. Stop. Stop. Stop defining or declaring. Stop. Because if you don't stop, you'll just get me started.
Because the.effing.librarian can declare shit, too. But the.effing.librarian is leaving soon, so I'll keep it short:
"The Effing Librarian Statement: Libraries and Librarians help you do all kinds of shit that might somehow involve books, but not always."
And if you want the bumper sticker version: "Librarians help you do shit."
There are no grandiose claims of preserving the freedom or enabling the pursuit or preserving the integrity of anything. Just helping people to do or find the shit that they need or want.
So take your pick: one has a bunch of statements and roles to memorize, and the other lets you stick the word "shit" on the back of your car. I know which one I'd pick.
--- -- Read More
When franchises go too far.
I read the discussion about the latest Mummy movie where most critics agreed that it was time to retire that franchise, that the ideas were gone and they were just milking a dead goat.
But another franchise comes to mind in the book publishing world: Gallop!
Now, Gallop! is a pretty cool idea; it uses "scanimation" to animate still images by having stripes pass over an image thereby revealing one part or another and creating the illusion of movement. It's a simple, but extremely cool effect.
And based on the popularity of that first book, the scanimation people are releasing a second book, Swing!
And again, this is fine. But I just read that a third book is already in the works with the unpleasant title of, Poop!
Now, I don't know when an author or publisher should just call it quits, but I think a book called Poop! might be that point. I could imagine books with animals doing many other things before I would imagine them pooping. You have Gallop!, Swing!, maybe Hop! or Leap!, or, well, that's basically it, isn't it? What else do animals do? Sleep! Yeah, that'll stretch the use of scanimation to the cutting edge as animals lie completely still. -- Read More