MEET ME IN THE STACKS. CHATTING ENCOURAGED.

Ever notice how some folks wrinkle their noses in perceptible scorn when the talk turns to libraries?  They’re convinced that the spirit of the printed page is but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage.

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Everyone loves to paratweet The Bard.

 

Will you and I seek wisdom only in the cloud? Will libraries come to an end, like fins on cars and tubes in TVs?  Will we remember the fabled church-like hush and what exactly those shelves were for?

 

 

I see libraries as powerful agents of community change. I don’t worry about them anymore.

 

 

I’m confident that we will still have buildings filled with print. And large public tables. And couches.

Libraries are vibrant hubs of comfortable, collaborative spaces. And full of services that aren’t limited to the virtual and physical walls of the building.

 

We are part of a society that consumes and spreads knowledge while socializing. And our libraries reflect this.  Libraries today are about what they do for us.  They are idea stores, not book warehouses.

You want weapons? We’re in a library. Books are the best weapons in the world. This room’s the greatest arsenal we could have. Arm yourself!

~Doctor Who, “Tooth and Claw,” Season 2

 

Libraries aren’t just places for quiet study but creative and engaging community centers where people meet. There’s plenty of chatter in the stacks.  And it’s encouraged.  Oh, the bookmarks? They’re still free.

 

The slap-honest truth about libraries is that we need them. For study. For solitude. For human connection. For answering Big Questions.  And little ones.

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The power of my library, and yours, is the conversation it inspires ~ between books and readers, children and parents, us and the collective world. Seems to me that libraries have less to do with clouds than connecting. My library and its staff is thriving, energized, enthusiastic, and ever so valued.  And they make us, patrons and volunteers, feel the same way.

 

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Library attendance and use is cloud-piercing. How-to manuals and health magazines, audio books and antique guides, Bibles and biographies ~ my librarians stamp out so many books in a week, their hands blister. (OK, so my nostalgia is showing. That’s one for #TBT. I miss that stamp, don’t you?)

 

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Index cards? Not so much. Not even here, in this lion-guarded haven.

 

 

 

Libraries feed our passion for information and self-improvement.enhanced-buzz-wide-19609-1388669893-18

 

So be aware of what’s happening to them, just when we need them most. They’re easy targets for local budget cuts, duck soup compared to potholes, pipes, and high school marching bands.  I’m thinking that it’s because what libraries give us is so intangible. How do you measure the worth of what someone gets from a book?

 

 

So, next time you’re at the library, borrow a book of recipes. Whip up something to share~ bagels or biscuits, brioche or baguettes, a pie or a pancake.

Blow off the cloud

and make a connection.

Toni 4/21/18

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WHAT A BLIZZASTER!

Snowmageddon!

Snowpocalypse!

Tsnownami!

Snomigod!

Snowflake

 

The meteorological bombogenesis dubbed Grayson is pummeling CT. We all hurried to the store yesterday to stock up on junk food essentials. Today we’re slipping, sliding, and stumbling around with shovels, blowers, and plows, clad in long underwear and building snow forts.

Fingers crossed, Grayson doesn’t turn out to be the “historic” storm forecasted.  Remember 1978?!?!?!?

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Hey, meteorology isn’t an exact science.  

Mother Nature always has the upper hand.

And she is eternally full of surprises.

 

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Like the frozen turkey vulture that fell out of South Dakota sky after its wings iced over as it flew through the severe blizzard. Did you know that vultures routinely soar high in the air, some, like the Rueppell’s Griffon Vulture, as high as 37,000 feet?

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There are plenty of vultures in my Florida neighborhood, far from the madding Grayson. They’re the ultimate recyclers, tucking into the rotting sinews and viscera of dead animals.

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We think of the comedic stereotypical vultures as desert-circling-last-moment-before-death birds, ugly and stupid.  Sure, these birds urinate on themselves and vomit on predators but what is gross to us is highly effective for vultures. These bald, ugly birds with a gruesome taste for gore do an essential but thankless job.

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Meet one of my neighbors.

Just another island afternoon on the carrion clean-up crew. You go, Girl.

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*BIRDNOTE: In CT, I saw a leucisitic hawk. Guess what?  Somewhere out there is a leucistic vulture.  Have you seen one?

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There’s still a ton scientists don’t know about winter storms.  But now they have GOES-16.

 

Grayson is the first winter storm to really test out NOAA’s new GOES-16—the most advanced weather satellite ever—which locked into position over the US in December.  Will it record Grayson as a record-breaker? Or  just the new normal?

So, for today, don’t leave home. Settle in.  High pressure, low pressure, fuggedaboutit.

No pressure, at least for now.

 

Toni 1/4/18

I CAN’T EAT ANOTHER BITE. OH LOOK, PIE!

Ah, Thanksgiving. Like many of you, we’ll sit around the groaning board, swap lies, and whoop (intermittently) How ’bout those Giants!

 

Mostly though, we’ll feast on the stories ~ memories of Grandma’s chicken soup with rice, the cast-off toilet (lid up) in the yard, Ma’s frozen French fries cooked with a brick of lard in the cast iron skillet. Oh, and the mayonnaise controversy. So much history here.

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The house, built in the 1800’s and moved to its present location, is full of Remember-Whens. A new table looms large and stands where bunk beds barely contained three boys.  A granite undermount sink replaces the chipped porcelain basin in what used to be the old pantry.  We love this old house and the people in it. They care about the eaves and beams, the joists and rafters. The family nest is aging gracefully and for that we are thankful.

 

 

This year, Thanksgiving will be in a different house, a different town, hosted by a different generation with its own growing families and stories to share. Each generation before us contributed to this abundance of joy.  And so it continues. Lucky us.

I’ll look around the Thanksgiving table and be (yet again) flabbergasted that we are unexpectedly older.  I knew it was coming, just not this fast.

Life is not about seeing the glass half empty or half full. The point is that you have a glass.

I raise my glass to you, Beloved Family and Loyal Readers. Notice everything and live it all.

Hey, be sure to add this little funky jam to your T-day. No, it’s not about actual turkeys. It’s about jive turkeys. A little throwback for us oldies at the table.

 

Toni 11/21/17

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