Friday, December 19, 2014

Case Study No. 1752: Shirley Dennis and Verna Howard

Inclusive Holiday Concerts
Two elementary school librarians make sure different religions are reflected in holiday concerts.
Tags: 22 chanukah christmas concert hanukkah has holiday hour kwanzaa minutes ramadan this Comedy This Hour Has Minutes
Added: 6 years ago
From: thishourhas22minutes
Views: 126

[scene opens with a male news anchor speaking directly to the camera]
TUCKER T. BARTLETT: As Canadian schools become increasingly multicultural, more pressure is being put on schoolboards to insure that Christmas concerts are more inclusive.
[cut to a school library, where one female librarian (short grey hair, glasses, blue pantsuit) stands next to another "female" librarian (man wearing a wig, glasses, pink blouse, long black skirt), as "Shirley Dennis, Verna Howard, Elementary School Librarians" appears on screen]
TUCKER T. BARTLETT: [from off camera] We go now to Shirley Dennis and Verna Howard, two elementary school librarians who've taken it upon themselves to make sure every student can feel part of their school's festivities. Hello to you both.
VERNA HOWARD: Happy holidays!
SHIRLEY DENNIS: Multi-denominational holidays, of course!
[cut to a split screen, with the anchor labelled "Halifax" and the librarians labelled "Winnipeg"]
TUCKER T. BARTLETT: So, uh, could you tell us a little bit about your program?
SHIRLEY DENNIS: We have a very diverse student body here, and some parents were upset that the holiday traditions were not reflected in the concerts.
VERNA HOWARD: And we thought if we could just think of some way to include the various different festivities like ... oh, Kwanzaa!
SHIRLEY DENNIS: That's African!
VERNA HOWARD: Or Shawn-ikah, or Ramadan ...
SHIRLEY DENNIS: And then we travel around from district to district, demonstrating how flat-out fun a multi-denominational non-offensive ...
VERNA HOWARD: Christ-light!
SHIRLEY DENNIS: Holiday concert can be!
TUCKER T. BARTLETT: Well, uh, would you mind giving us a sample of your program?
[they both pause, then look at each other and smile]
LIBRARIANS: We thought you'd never ask!
[they rip off their conservative-looking clothes, revealing tight sequin dresses (one black and the other red)]
VERNA HOWARD: Hit it, Marv!
[the lights dim, as they begin singing to the tune of "O Christmas Tree"]
LIBRARIANS: Oh, Hannukah! Oh, Hannukah! How lovely are your candles!
[the "female" librarian starts singing to the tune of "Jingle Bells"]
VERNA HOWARD: Oh, Kwanzaa bells! Kwanzaa bells! Kwan-zing all the way!
SHIRLEY DENNIS: Oh what fun it is to be an African today! Hey!
[the "female" librarian starts singing to the tune of "Away in a Manger"]
VERNA HOWARD: Away in a manger, no crib for a bed! A regular baby lay down his sweet head!
SHIRLEY DENNIS: Could be anyone!
[they both start marching in place, and singing to the tune of "Little Drummer Boy"]
SHIRLEY DENNIS: Come, they told me to Ra-ma-dun!
VERNA HOWARD: Ra-ma-dun-dun!
TUCKER T. BARTLETT: Okay! Uh, ladies ... Uh, excuse me. Could I, uh, could I just stop you there for a second? Aren't you just singing traditional Christmas carols and then sticking in the names of different cultural festivals?
SHIRLEY DENNIS: You got it, Pontiac!
VERNA HOWARD: Pretty clever, we know!
TUCKER T. BARTLETT: [pause] Riiight ... Well, good luck, ladies.
[they both start singing to the tune of "We Wish You a Merry Christmas"]
LIBRARIANS: We wish you a merry everything! We wish you a merry everything! We wish you a merry everything, and a Chinese new year!



This Hour Has 22 Minutes (almost always referred to since fall 2009 as simply 22 Minutes; the full title is still seen briefly in the show's current introduction) is a weekly Canadian television comedy that airs on CBC Television. Launched in 1993 during Canada's 35th general election, the show focuses on Canadian politics, combining news parody, sketch comedy and satirical editorials. Originally featuring Cathy Jones, Rick Mercer, Greg Thomey and Mary Walsh, the series featured satirical sketches of the weekly news and Canadian political events. The show's format is a mock news program, intercut with comic sketches, parody commercials and humorous interviews of public figures. The on-location segments are frequently filmed with slanted camera angles.

Its full name is a parody of This Hour Has Seven Days, a CBC newsmagazine from the 1960s; the "22 Minutes" refers to the fact that a half-hour television program in Canada and the U.S. is typically 22 minutes long with eight minutes of commercials.

Jones and Walsh had previously worked together on the sketch comedy series CODCO, on which Thomey sometimes appeared as a guest. Mercer had been a notable young writer and performer on his own, touring several successful one-man shows of comedic political commentary.

Salter Street Films produced the series until the 2003–2004 season. Salter Street was acquired in 2001 by Alliance Atlantis, and production of the series was transferred directly to Alliance Atlantis in the twelfth season. Since 2005, Halifax Film, a new company formed by Salter co-founder Michael Donovan, has produced the show.

Recognized with 24 Gemini Awards and 11 Canadian Comedy Awards, 22 Minutes is broadcast on the CBC Television network. It is taped before a live audience in Studio 1 at CBHT in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

The series, which originally aired on Mondays for several seasons and later on Fridays, currently airs Tuesdays at 8:30pm on CBC, after the Rick Mercer Report.



He is considered one of Canada's best and brightest comedians – popular for his stand-up character monologues and notorious for his flawless impersonations. From Stuart McLean to Harry Potter's Severus Snape, no one is safe from Gavin Crawford's sharp ear and keen eye.

Best known for his work on CBC's This Hour Has 22 Minutes, the comic chameleon's enduring characters include nerdy teen correspondent Mark Jackson; naive, cardigan-wearing librarian Verna Howard; and cynical high-fashion designer Uwe Meyer.

Crawford has appeared at the Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, St. John's and Halifax comedy festivals, Just for Laughs, and the Aspen Comedy Festival. He has been honoured with numerous nominations and wins for his work as a comedian, actor and screenwriter, including several for The Gavin Crawford Show. Most recently, Crawford received five Canadian Screen Award nominations for Gavin Crawford's Wild West – a hilarious mockumentary in which he plays six quirky Albertans.

Case Study No. 1751: Staff of the Huntsville-Madison County Public Library

On the first day of Christmas my librarian gave to me...
On the first day of Christmas my librarian gave to me a new book to RFID.

Two one-shelf holds,
Three claims-returned,
Four large print books,
Five DVD's,
Six StaffSpace comments,
Seven Sirsi servers,
Eight meeting room requests,
Nine PC users,
Ten shelvers shelving,
Eleven branch runs running,
Twelve Author Signings...

And a new book to RFID!
Tags: Christmas library staff breakfast song twelvedays
Added: 5 years ago
From: hmcplstafftraining
Views: 1,250

Case Study No. 1750: Cheri Jamison

Lowell Fulson: Lonesome Christmas
Lowell Fulson: Lonesome Christmas - with scenes from the movie "The Twelve Trees of Christmas"
Tags: Lowell Fulson
Added: 2 months ago
From: dakarlion1
Views: 83


Cheri Jamison rallies the residents of her beloved Manhattan neighborhood to participate in a Christmas tree contest when her cherished local library is abruptly set for demolition. Cheri finds herself up against an ambitious developer Tony Shaughnessy, who hires Cordelia, a professional decorator, to win the contest for him. The competition is on, but as Cheri works to save the library she discovers that Tony is more than the heartless man she thought. Will her dedication to the beloved library drive Tony away...and with it a chance at true love?



Twelve Trees of Christmas (2013)
TV Movie - Romance - 16 November 2013 (USA)

In a New York City community, during the Christmas season, pretty red-haired librarian Lindy Booth (as Cheri Jamison) receives some devastating news. The library where she works will be demolished to make room for a condominium, with two full bathrooms per unit. Behind this dastardly plan is materialistic, but attractive Robin Dunne (as Tony Shaughnessy). By the way, they are both unmarried. In order to save the library from run, Ms. Booth decides to have a Christmas tree decorating contest. The script attempts to explain how this is going to help reverse the demolition and gives some vague guidelines for the contest, but none of it makes much sense...

The most standard contest rules are broken, and nobody seems to notice...

"The Twelve Trees of Christmas" is dull and predictable, but several in the supporting cast get scenes worthy of a demonstration reel. Shauna MacDonald is most effective. For some reason, Melanie Brown (aka "Scary Spice" of The Spice Girls) assumes the villain role. The handsome Casper Van Dien wanders onto the set a couple of times. Best thing about this TV Movie is the work of director Michael DeCarlo and photographer Russ Goozee. They fill the screen with the colorful set decorations nicely and balance them with sleek floors and table tops.



After last week's non-Christmasy Christmas movie A Country Christmas Story, I think Lifetime was maybe overcompensating a little with their new movie The Twelve Trees of Christmas. Its plot was eerily similar to a stress dream I once had when I binged on an entire box of candy canes and fell asleep with You've Got Mail on in the background. The same thing must have happened to the writers.

Our heroine is Cheri (Lindy Booth), a librarian who was created when a scientist crossed Shelley Long with Bambi and dressed the resulting creature in a bunch of cardigans. Her hobbies include reading, talking about reading, and smiling. She's devastated to learn that her beloved Manhattan library, where her father taught her to smell books, is set to be demolished.

What a coincidence that the man planning to tear it down, the grandson of the woman who founded the neighborhood, lives in her building. Tony (Robin Dunne) and his boss Charles (Casper Van Dien) have been planning to build a high-rise apartment building there. Charles is only in two scenes, which is a real shame, considering he spends his screen time imitating Christian Bale as Batman and delivering lines about how libraries are graveyards for words from the past.

In case you haven't already guessed, Cheri and Tony are very different. Cheri views the world through Disney-colored glasses, defining success as doing what you love and helping people (gross). Tony, on the other hand, defines success as money, money and more money. Naturally, they're often thrown in the same room together - even in an elevator at one point - and spend every scene arguing with each other while suppressing the desire to kiss.

Cheri has an "aha moment" (slow down there, Oprah) and decides the best way to save the library is to have a contest among the regulars in which they decorate Christmas tress inspired by the libary. I guess rich people's greed can be cured at the sight of adorable Christmas trees. Or something. She convinces Tony's grandmother Mrs. Shaughnessy to judge the competition. Much to Cheri's over-the-top dismay, Tony signs up to decorate his own tree, but of course he'll have help from his decorator friend Cordelia.

Enter Mel B, whose performance is seriously lacking in animal print and "zig-a-zig-ah." Cordelia has a thing for Tony and will do anything to win the contest for him, including stealing Cheri's tree idea, which was already pretty manipulative in itself. Cheri gets inspired to decorate a tree with traditional Irish crystal to give Mrs. Shaughnessy - who is extremely Irish, in case the name didn't give it away - a nostalgia attack and convince her to change her mind about tearing down the library. Just when she's convinced a shop owner to let her borrow a bunch of crystal on Christmas Eve, Cordelia swoops in and buys out the shop.

Meanwhile, there are plenty of other characters learning lessons by working on their own Christmas trees. Take, for instance, the busy couple who treat their Christmas tree theme even more seriously than me deciding between bacon and sausage at IHOP. They eventually decide to cover their tree in a bunch of old toys. That's... really unoriginal. But it brings them closer together so good for them, I guess.

There's also Artie, a rejected character from The Big Bang Theory, and his artsy crush, who clash over how to approach their tree but end up hooking up anyway. And of course there's the janitor and the head librarian, who bond over their love of books and whose courtship includes the line, "In my fantasy land, you're the queen." Couldn't make this stuff up if I tried, folks.

But those people aren't really important. What is important is saving this library. Everyone's trees finally go on display, and... they're all kinda lame. One of them has iPads with blinking hearts. Do with that what you will. While Cordelia impresses Mrs. Shaughnessy with her plagiarized tree, Tony is turned off by her dishonesty. He gives an impassioned speech into a reporter's camera while doing that weird Bill Clinton "I did not have sexual relations with that woman" hand gesture, and then he tells her to bugger off. (She's British so I felt comfortable using that phrase, but in hindsight it may have been a mistake.)

Now it's time to see what smiley Cheri came up with. Because she couldn't con Mrs. Shaughnessy into changing her mind with the Irish crystal, she decides to make a Christmas tree out of children (lined up on steps, not all chopped up and repurposed or anything) with a little girl singing a Christmas carol at the top. It's so beautiful and Jesusy that it gives everyone a case of the Christmas spirit, even the people who got their Christmas spirit shot at Walgreens. That includes "libraries are graveyards" Charles, who seconds Tony's decision not to tear down the library. What the hell, Charles? I thought I could count on you.

We end the movie with Tony and Cheri kissing. Drats, I had my money down on them almost kissing and then getting distracted by a cell phone ringing or a friend bursting in to deliver important news. Quit throwing me for a loop, Lifetime.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Case Study No. 1749: Staff of Unnamed Library (Pid)

Let's Play - PID - "The Library" PC GAMEPLAY PART 12
When a young schoolboy gets stranded on a remote old planet, a unique and eccentric journey begins. His search for a way off the planet takes him through cities and castles, attics and space stations into a dreamlike yet dangerous world. Along the way, he outsmarts a variety of malicious robots bent on stopping him and, befriends unlikely allies that start to shed light on a huge conspiracy that keeps the planet mesmerized and prevents him from ever reaching home.

My Twitter: https://twit

Semi-Funk - Kevin MacLeod (
Tags: Let's Play Guide Ending 2D Adventure Platformer MrPie Part Platform Game PC xbox Platform Game (Game Genre) Walkthrough
Added: 2 years ago
From: MrPiePlays
Views: 281

[the player enters the "Library" level, and finds an old man (glasses, long white beard) sitting in a chair surrounded by piles of books]
KURT: Excuse me, which way is it to the city? I've heard it's supposed to be close to the library.
OLD MAN: Oh hello, I'm glad to see another soul in here for once. It's usually just me and these books. The city can be reached from the older section of this library. It's further up a bit. Just be careful, the library was one of the first places to be taken over by these "invaders". Now the entire planet is under constant surveillance.
KURT: Why are they even here? What do they want?
OLD MAN: No one really knows, or remembers. It started ages ago and today people are just too used to the situation to really care. I'm sure the King and Queen had their reasons for leaving, but it left the planet defenseless against this new regime. The guards won't let you through to the city, it seems they don't want anyone to leave the planet. Maybe you can use the old material shafts to sneak by them. Good luck, little guest.
[the player uses his gravity gun (and several book elevators) to reach the upper level of the library, where another elderly man (short white hair, glasses) is sitting and reading a book ... he doesn't respond, so the player exits the library, finding himself out on the street in Rooftop City]



Pid (short for "Planet in Distress") is a puzzle-platformer video game developed by Might and Delight and published by D3 Publisher for Xbox 360 through the Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation 3 through PSN, Microsoft Windows, and Mac OS X. It was announced December 7, 2011 and released worldwide October 31, 2012. The game received average scores, with reviewers citing its presentation and soundtrack as favorable, but having problems with the game's repetitive gameplay and frustrating puzzle solutions.

Pid begins as a young boy named Kurt is left stranded on a remote alien planet. As he travels across the mysterious land, the boy must defeat terrifying robot enemies, as well as befriend unfamiliar allies in his quest to uncover an alien conspiracy and return home. The game takes takes place in a 2D side-scrolling perspective. The player must utilize a wide variety of different gameplay situations and mechanics to overcome and traverse the world's puzzle-like landscape. Kurt's primary tool is his gravity gun, which can be used to propel him in a manner of ways throughout the levels and solve various puzzles. The gravity gun can be used to create gravity wells, which push Kurt outward into the air, with two allowed to be active at once in the environment. However, gravity manipulation is not the only way to interact with his surroundings, as Kurt also comes across a variety of other tools which can be used at his disposal. Blue and red bombs can be detonated to either damage enemies immediately or timed for strategical placement respectively. Firecrackers will allow him to reach higher areas out of reach from the gravity wells. Smoke bombs can obscure his location from enemy spotlights and flashlights. Kurt may also make use of a vest that allows him to withstand more damage. There is also a co-operative mode where both players are dependent on each other to solve puzzles and eliminate enemies, while also competing and testing their skills against one another.

Case Study No. 1748: Ralph E. Whittington

The Daily Show: Librarian's porn collection
No description available.
Tags: The Daily Show (TV Program) porn Pornography (Film Genre)
Added: 4 months ago
From: Darth Yucko
Views: 3

[scene opens with Jon Stewart sitting at the news desk, speaking directly to the camera]
JON: Historically, librarians have played a respectable and conservative role in our society. Mo Rocca meets a Washington DC archivist who breaks that stereotype.

Stacks N' Racks
Produced by Liz Layton
Edited by Mark Paone

[cut to footage outside of the Library of Congress]
MO: [in voice over] The Library of Congress. The largest library in the world.
[cut to the reporter ("Mo Rocca, Correspondent") walking outside of the Library of Congress]
MO: Hundreds of miles of shelves of books, covering every subject in the history of the world ... except one.
[cut to an exterior shot of a residential home]
MO: [in voice over] But that subject does have a place in this Clinton, Maryland home.
[cut to inside of the home, as an older male librarian (short brown hair, suit, red tie) walks down a flight of stairs into the basement]
MO: [in voice over] Library of Congress employee and archivist Ralph E. Whittington has been compiling his private collection here for thirty five years.
[cut to the reporter and the librarian sitting on his bed, as several shelves filled with boxes can be seen in the background]
MO: Would you describe yourself as a hardcore archivist?
RALPH: I ... I'd consider myself an erotic archivist.
[cut to a shot of his business card ("Ralph E. Whittington, Erotic Archivist")]
RALPH: [in voice over] My business card says that.
[cut to the librarian pulling out a box from the shelf labelled "Anal Intruder"]
MO: [in voice over] Call it erotic. Call it adult. Call it legally questionable. Ralph is chief librarian of his own library of pornography.
[cut to the librarian pulling out another box labelled "Adult Baby Fetish"]
MO: [in voice over] Covering every corner, crack, crevice, and fold of this wide-open subject.
[cut to a shot of several VHS boxes (with titles like "The Fine Art of Anal Intercourse" and "How to Enlarge Your Penis"), then back to the two sitting on the librarian's bed]
MO: This is your library's main reading room?
MO: And it's also your ...
RALPH: Bedroom.
MO: In your mother's basement?
MO: Yeah ... So, how much smut are you hoarding in your mother's basement?
RALPH: I guess five hundred videos ... Thousand or so magazines.
[cut to an elderly woman ("May Whittington, Ralph's Mother") knitting on the couch, then to the reporter interviewing her]
MO: Does the sea of pornography ever distract you from your crocheting?
MAY: No.
[cut to a shot of the camera panning across several boxes of pornographic material piled up next to the couch where she is knitting]
MAY: [in voice over] He doesn't bother me with that. I'm upstairs and he's downstairs.
[cut back to the reporter interviewing the mother]
MO: When Ralph was born, and you held him in your arms and you looked into his eyes ... did you say, "One day this kid'a mine is gonna be hoarding a basement full of smut?"
MAY: Oh no. I never thought of such a thing then.
[cut back to footage of the reporter and the librarian looking over his collection]
MO: [in voice over] Ralph is not just hoarding smut ...
[cut to the librarian in front of an old-style card catalog in his basement, flipping through hand written cards for each item in his collection (like "Black Bun Busters, 1985" and "Blazing Zippers")]
MO: [in voice over] Implementing the same system he uses at the Library of Congress, he catalogs and files every choice piece of porn.
[cut back to the reporter interviewing the librarian]
MO: I'd like to talk to you ... about poontang. Is it one word, or two?
RALPH: "Poontang" is one word.
[cut to the reporter and the librarian speaking upstairs (as the mother sits and knits on the couch behind them)]
MO: What about the title "Happy Ass Lesbians?" Will we file it under subject "Ass" or "Lesbians?"
RALPH: "Lesbians."
MO: Could it be cross-referenced under "Ass?"
[cut to Mo holding a VHS tape entitled "World's Biggest Gangbang"]
MO: So "The World's Biggest Gangbang" is going to appear in the performer index under "Chong" and under the subject index under "Gangbang" and under the title index under "The World's Biggest Gangbang" ...
RALPH: "World's," yes.
[cut to Mo holding a VHS tape entitled "Knocked Up & Horny"]
MO: This title really says it all.
RALPH: Oh yes.
[cut to footage from the 1975 adult film "Let My Puppets Come" (featuring actual marionette puppets)]
NURSE: Nurse Mackringle never shrinks from a challenge!
[the male patient puppet sprouts a (pixelated) erection, then cut back to the reporter holding a VHS tape of the movie]
MO: So puppets are not just for kids. Tell me about it.
RALPH: The reason why I bought it, it's the only X-rated film that has puppets as the actors.
[cut to more footage from the film, then back to the librarian flipping through more catalog cards (this time in his mother's kitchen)]
MO: [in voice over] Librarian, archivist, fan.
[cut to the librarian moving around more boxes in the basement]
MO: [in voice over] Ralph E. Whittington has immersed himself totally in his passionate pursuit.
[cut back to the reporter interviewing the librarian]
MO: Would you describe yourself as hands-on?
RALPH: Uh, n-now I do, 'cause I made an X-rated film with Chessie Moore.
[cut to footage of the librarian (completely naked) undoing a woman's bra, from "Ralph E. Whittington Meets Chessie Moore" (1995)]
MO: [in voice over] This is a dream come true?
[cut back to the reporter interviewing the librarian]
RALPH: Dream come true.
MO: What is it about Chessie Moore that ... captivated you?
RALPH: [pause] Availability.
[cut to the reporter interviewing the mother]
MO: What does Mama Whittington think of her son's collection?
MAY: Well ... I feel that he's his own man.
[cut back to footage of the librarian's X-rated video (where he's sucking on the heel of the woman's shoe)]
MAY: [in voice over] I feel that ... he could have done worse.
[the librarian (in the adult movie) turns to the camera and waves]
RALPH: The end!
[the scene fades to white, then cut back to Jon Stewart at the news desk]
JON: Y'know, I gotta say ... In a weird way, i-it makes me feel better about myself.



Library of Congress librarian Ralph E. Whittington collects porn and lives in his mother's basement.
Air Date: November 2, 1999



The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Season 3 Episode 0
Stacks N' Racks

Aired Weekdays 11:00 PM Mar 25, 1999 on Comedy Central

With 500 pornographic films and approximately 1,000 erotic magazines in his collection, Ralph W. Whittington is a hardcore archivist.



One man's labor of lust / Retired librarian spent decades, $100,000 cataloging porn
Peter Carlson, Washington Post
Published 4:00 am, Tuesday, August 27, 2002

2002-08-27 04:00:00 PDT Clinton, Md. -- In Ralph Whittington's kitchen, family photos are stuck to the refrigerator with colorful magnets. Dangling from a cabinet is a little wooden sign that reads, "Lord, Help Me Hang In There." And below the sign is a heaping helping of hard-core pornography.

Whittington sifts through the pile of smut with the close attention of a retired Library of Congress curator, which he is. There's an old peep-show film. There's a video called "Tijuana Tushy," which is labeled "Shot Live at a Filthy Whorehouse in Tijuana!" There's an old copy of a magazine called -- well, actually you can't print its name in a family newspaper.

"This is just a tiny sample of the stuff in my collection," he says. "The important thing is the diversity. That's where my collection stands out."

He steps into the dining room, and on top of the wooden dinner table is a collection of framed photographs of Whittington posing with some of the greatest porn stars of all time -- Vanessa Del Rio, Ginger Lynn, Jenna Jameson.

Whittington smiles nostalgically. "Of course, these photos are all copies," he says. "The museum has the originals."

That's right. The Museum of Sex -- a serious, academically credentialed museum opening in Manhattan on Sept. 23 -- has purchased all of Whittington's grip-and-grin photos of porn stars.

The museum also purchased -- for a sum that remains secret -- nearly everything else in Whittington's world-famous porn collection, which had filled almost every inch of his modest brick house in Clinton.

Whittington, 57, is thrilled. He figures this vindicates his 30 years of curatorial labor in the vineyards of smut. "This should give me a little credibility," he says.

Whittington's 85-year-old mother, May, who lives with him, is also thrilled.

"It got to the point where he had too much," she says. "He couldn't keep it clean."

Ralph Whittington learned his archival skills while slaving for Uncle Sam. For 36 years -- until his retirement in 2000 -- Whittington worked at the Library of Congress. Along the way, he was given the responsibility of overseeing the library's collection of phone books.

"I was in charge of every phone book in the freaking world," he says.

He learned how to organize, catalog and archive a collection. And he took those skills home, where he was building a couple of archives of his own. The first was a collection of R&B and doo-wop music, which now includes 5,000 records. The second was pornography.

Whittington started collecting smut just for his own, um, edification. But then, in the early '70s, he had an epiphany: The Library of Congress was collecting nearly every variety of printed matter -- even phone books -- but not porn. Apparently, it was up to him to preserve America's X-rated heritage.

"All I did was use the same techniques that archivists use for other subjects on this subject," he says. "I hope you'll convey to your readers that I'm serious about this. This isn't brain surgery, but I'm not just a guy with a lot of big-breast magazines."


"The key is the diversity of the collection," he says. "To be blunt, most people buy for their own gratification. But I would spend money on stuff I didn't even like. I like high heels and big legs but I collected everything -- except gay porn and child porn."

Not only did he collect this stuff, he also cataloged it, indexed it and cross-referenced it. In 30 years, he estimates, he spent $100,000 on porn.

In 1976, his wife left him, taking their 2-year-old daughter. Whittington says he dealt with the pain of divorce by spending quality time with his porn collection. "It kept escalating," he says, "and when my wife left, it escalated some more."

For decades, Whittington toiled in utter obscurity. Then in 1996, documentary filmmaker Jeff Krulik made a short movie on Whittington titled "King of Porn." Soon, he was featured in Spin magazine -- which dubbed him the "Librarian of Sexual Congress" -- and on the Comedy Central network's "Daily Show."

"I wish you could have seen his house before we took all the stuff away," says Grady Turner, executive curator of the Museum of Sex. "The place was packed to the rafters -- literally."

A museum-world veteran, Turner's the man who bought Whittington's porn collection. It will assist the museum in its mission, which is, he says, "to bring the best of contemporary scholarship on sex and sexuality to a larger audience."

Turner first learned of the Whittington Collection last year, when Whittington offered to sell it to the museum because it was getting too big for his house. Turner traveled to Clinton to check out the collection and was astounded.

"It's an incredible time capsule of a period in American pop culture when pornography went from an under-the-table, plain-brown-wrapper kind of thing to the mainstream, where you could buy it in any community," Turner says.

Whittington's collection captures the era when court decisions made most pornography legal and the advent of the VCR took porn out of peep shows and made it a multibillion-dollar industry.

"This is a collection you could not make now," Turner says. "It will be a primary source for historical research and a great repository of pop culture."


The collection -- 500 boxes stuffed with photos, films, magazines and the kind of sexual knickknacks you cannot describe in a family newspaper -- filled two huge trucks. When they parked on Fifth Avenue to unload, even jaded New Yorkers stopped to gawk.

"When a U-Haul opens its doors in Manhattan," Turner says, "and people start unloading boxes marked 'Gangbang' and 'Obese' and 'Ginger Lynn,' you draw a crowd."

Five years ago, when May Whittington was 80 and widowed, she moved in with Ralph and found herself sharing a home with a world-class porn collection. At first she wasn't too happy about that, but gradually she changed her mind.

"It's something he loves," she says. "You see men his age going to bars or on dope. But he's home day and night. That gives me peace of mind. . . . He's not doing anybody any harm, and he's not doing himself any harm."

Her granddaughter feels the same way. "I suppose I could be offended as a woman, but I don't have a problem with pornography," says Amanda Whittington, 28, who works as a portfolio accountant. "I think it's a strange little hobby, but I know my dad, and once he starts collecting something, he becomes the quintessential librarian."

Although the Museum of Sex hauled away more than 75 percent of his collection, Whittington is still putting the finishing touches on the rest of it, and his bedroom is full of boxes not yet complete.

He picks one box off the floor. It's labeled "Chessie Moore No. 3," and it's one of his favorites. He opens it and pulls out a huge white bra that Moore, a semi-famous porn star, autographed for him.

He tells a story: He read that Moore had a "special fan club," and he joined so he could see just how special it was. It turned out that it was very special indeed, so he flew to Florida to meet Moore and then, believe it or not -- well, actually this is the kind of story that you can't tell in a family newspaper.

"It was just unbelievable!" he says.

Case Study No. 1747: Jack and Annie (Wannabe Librarians)

The Magic Tree House - Passport to Adventure
Mary Pope Osborne, author of the Magic Tree House series, is inviting you to go on a Passport to Adventure with Jack and Annie. You can find adventure everywhere--from books to your own backyard. Make sure to get your own Magic Tree House Passport at and pick up the newest book, Games and Puzzles from the Tree House.
Tags: Magic Tree House Mary Pope Osborne Jack and Annie passport to adventure magic tree house passport reading passport kids books kids reading kids chapter books Random House Children's Books fantasy adventure
Added: 4 years ago
From: RandomBooks
Views: 24,631

[scene opens with author Mary Pope Osborne speaking directly to the camera]
MARY: Hello, Magic Tree House readers. I'm Mary Pope Osborne, author of the Magic Tree House series, and I'm inviting you to take an exciting adventure with Jack and Annie. You don't have to look far to find it. Believe it or not, it's in your own backyard ... I love to pack my bags and fly to faraway places, but my favorite place to find adventures is close to home. I love to explore the woods near our house, and study the plants and insects in the garden.
[cut to various photographs of Mary]
MARY: [in voice over] I love to venture beyond our yard, into our community, and have meals at Italian, Mexican, or Thai restaurants.
[cut to footage or a book signing at a public library]
MARY: [in voice over] I love to go to the library, and wander among the shelves full of books. Looking at titles, trying to choose which worlds to visit in my imagination.
[cut to more photographs of Mary]
MARY: [in voice over] I love to spend time with my family and friends, and our three dogs. And go to the theater and watch live plays and musical concerts, and visit art museums and take walks along the river, and swim in the town lake.
[cut back to Mary speaking directly to the camera]
MARY: If I stay alert and curious, I can find adventure wherever I go. You can, too, and your new Magic Tree House passports will help you keep track what you do and see in your own community.
[cut to various graphics from the "Magic Tree House Passport to Adventure" pamphlet]
MARY: [in voice over] Or even in your own backyard. Plus, with the new Travel Pals, you can pose for photos with Jack and Annie wherever you go, and share the pictures with friends and family.
[cut back to Mary speaking directly to the camera, as she holds up a paper cut-out of Jack and Annie]
MARY: Remember, our lives are filled with magic and adventure ...
[cut back to more footage of children in the library at Mary's book signing]
MARY: [in voice over] Whether it's in a book, on the road, or in your own backyard.
[cut back to Mary speaking directly to the camera]
MARY: We just have to pay attention ... May you discover wondrous places, and have your own many exciting adventures. Safe travels, and happy reading!
["Join the adventure! MagicTreeHouse Dot Com" appears on screen]



The Magic Tree House series is an award-winning series of children's books written by American author Mary Pope Osborne.

In the first series, consisting of the first 28 books, Morgan le Fay sends Jack and Annie, two normal children from Frog Creek, Pennsylvania, on numerous adventures and missions with a magical tree house in order to help free Morgan from a spell, solve four ancient riddles to become Master Librarians, and save four ancient stories from being lost forever. After the twenty-eighth chapter book, Mary Pope Osborne started a second series called the Magic Tree House "Merlin Missions". In these missions, Jack and Annie have quests from the ancient wizard Merlin the Magician. These books are longer than the previous 28, and some take place in fantasy realms like Camelot. Kathleen and Teddy are two apprentices who befriend Jack and Annie during their adventures, with one of these adventures being to free Teddy from a spell. The two occasionally join Jack and Annie and when they don't, provide them support instead.

All together, there are 49 fiction books named. In addition, a number of Magic Tree House Research Guides (nonfiction companions to the series) have been written by the author, her husband Will and her sister Natalie Pope Boyce.

These books contain more information about the historical places and events which Jack and Annie visit in the Magic Tree House Series. Right now, twenty one have been released. One more is listed as a future book, so a total of twenty-two are named.

The series is translated into Japanese up to Book #39, and sold over 2 million copies as of March 2008. The Japanese version has anime-like illustrations.

A musical was written by Randy Courts and Will Osborne (Mary's husband). It toured to 55 cities in the 2008-2009 season.

An animated film from Media Factory was released in Japan on January 7, 2012.

Magic Tree House Volumes
1. Dinosaurs Before Dark (UK Title: Valley of the Dinosaurs)
July 28, 1992
The Mystery of the Tree House #1
Jack and Annie discover the tree house and, using the magical books there, they travel back to the Late Cretaceous period (65 million years ago) where they meet a Pteranodon that saves them from a T-rex. Jack finds a gold medallion with the letter "M" on it.

2. The Knight at Dawn (UK title: Castle of Mystery)
February 16, 1993
The Mystery of the Tree House #2
In England during the Middle Ages, Jack and Annie explore a castle and meet a brave knight.

3. Mummies in the Morning (UK title: Secret of the Pyramid)
August 24, 1993
The Mystery of the Tree House #3
In Ancient Egypt, Jack and Annie help Queen Hutepi find her missing Book of the Dead.

4. Pirates Past Noon (UK title: Pirates' Treasure!)
March 8, 1994
The Mystery of the Tree House #4
Jack and Annie encounter some pirates in the Caribbean Sea and meet Morgan le Fay, who turns out to be the mysterious "M".

5. Night of the Ninjas
March 21, 1995
The Mystery of the Magic Spell #1
Morgan le Fay is under a spell. Jack and Annie must find four magical objects to reverse the spell, with the help of a mouse named Peanut. In ancient Japan, Jack and Annie encounter ninjas and samurai and get a moonstone.

6. Afternoon on the Amazon (UK title: Adventure on the Amazon)
August 29, 1995
The Mystery of the Magic Spell #2
Jack and Annie search the Amazon rainforest for a second magical object for Morgan le Fay, which turns out to be a mango.

7. Sunset of the Sabertooth (UK title: Mammoth to the Rescue)
April 14, 1996
The Mystery of the Magic Spell #3
In the last Ice Age, Jack and Annie encounter Cro-Magnons, wooly mammoths, and a saber-toothed cat while looking for the third object to help Morgan - a mammoth bone flute.

8. Midnight on the Moon (UK title: Moon Mission)
October 29, 1996
The Mystery of the Magic Spell #4
Thirty-five years into their future (2031), Jack and Annie travel to the moon to look for the fourth object needed to help Morgan le Fay. Is it a star map? The moon itself? Or a mouse?

9. Dolphins at Daybreak (UK title: Diving with Dolphins)
April 29, 1997
The Mystery of the Ancient Riddles #1
Set in the Pacific Ocean with bottlenose dolphins.

10. Ghost Town at Sundown (UK title: A Wild West Ride)
September 16, 1997
The Mystery of the Ancient Riddles #2
Set in the American Wild West, where Jack and Annie meet a cowboy named Slim.

11. Lions at Lunchtime (UK title: Lions on the Loose)
January 12, 1998
The Mystery of the Ancient Riddles #3
Jack and Annie are on a mission on the African Savannah.

12. Polar Bears Past Bedtime (UK title: Icy Escape)
January 12, 1998
The Mystery of the Ancient Riddles #4
Set in the North Pole, Jack and Annie meet an Inuit.

13. Vacation Under The Volcano (UK title: Racing with Gladiators)
March 24, 1998
The Mystery of the Lost Stories #1 Jack and Annie travel to Pompeii on the eve of the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius.

14. Day of the Dragon King (UK title: Palace of the Dragon King)
April 20, 1998
The Mystery of the Lost Stories #2
Jack and Annie travel to China as it was 2,000 years in their past. The Dragon King is also known as Emperor Qin.

15. Viking Ships at Sunrise (UK title: Voyage of the Vikings)
August 11, 1998
The Mystery of the Lost Stories #3
In medieval Ireland, Jack and Annie encounter Vikings.

16. Hour of the Olympics (UK title: Olympic Challenge!)
October 20, 1998
The Mystery of the Lost Stories #4
Jack and Annie travel to Ancient Greece and see the first Olympic games.

17. Tonight on the Titanic
March 23, 1999
The Mystery of the Enchanted Dog #1
Jack and Annie travel back to 1912 and are on the RMS Titanic during her fateful voyage. In this arc the two are assisted by a dog named Teddy that they must find gifts to free.

18. Buffalo Before Breakfast
May 18, 1999
The Mystery of the Enchanted Dog #2
In the American Old West, Jack and Annie encounter a Lakota boy on the Great Plains.

19. Tigers at Twilight
August 17, 1999
The Mystery of the Enchanted Dog #3
Jack and Annie explore the Indian jungles of the past.

20. Dingoes at Dinnertime
March 14, 2000
The Mystery of the Enchanted Dog #4
Set in ancient Australia. Jack and Annie receive the final gift and return home where Morgan removes the spell on the dog who is revealed to be a boy named Teddy who is a young magician who trapped himself under a spell. This story introduces the character of Teddy who becomes a friend and ally to Jack and Annie over later stories.

21. Civil War on Sunday
May 23, 2000
Morgan's Library #1
In the American Civil War, Jack and Annie encounter Clara Barton.

22. Revolutionary War on Wednesday
September 26, 2000
Morgan's Library #2
Jack and Annie cross the Delaware river with George Washington.

23. Twister on Tuesday
March 27, 2001
Morgan's Library #3
In the 1870s, Jack and Annie encounter pioneer settlement of the Midwestern prairie. They have to save a teacher and some kids before they are hit by a tornado.

24. Earthquake in the Early Morning
July 24, 2001
Morgan's Library #4
In 1906, Jack and Annie experience the San Francisco earthquake. The two are able to use what they find to inspire King Arthur to battle Mordred, although in a later book its shown that he wins without dying in these stories.

25. Stage Fright on a Summer Night
March 12, 2002
Type of Magic #1
In Elizabethan England, Jack and Annie meet William Shakespeare.

26. Good Morning Gorillas
July 23, 2002
Type of Magic #2
In the Congo rain forest, Jack and Annie encounter gorillas.

27. Thanksgiving on Thursday
September 24, 2002
Type of Magic #3
In Plymouth in 1621, Jack and Annie share the first Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians.

28. High Tide in Hawaii
March 25, 2003
Type of Magic #4
Jack and Annie travel to the Hawaii of the past and almost get caught in a tsunami. They also make two friends who share an adventure with them.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Case Study No. 1746: Selena

Filmography: Ikaw Lang (1993)

Plot Description: A librarian's husband and mother-in-law turn out to be psychotically abusive. When the husband mistakenly thinks he has killed her, he dumps her in a river, where she is saved by a fisherman. Desperate for money and in need of help to take revenge on her husband, she hooks up with a bank robber whom she falls in love with. Together, they return to her husband's home and kill him. -- Internet Movie Database website

http://starforallseasons. 2009/11/15/ filmography- ikaw- lang-1993/
Tags: Bibeth Orteza Cesar Montano Chito S. Roño Cris Daluz Dencio Padilla Evelyn Vargas Ikaw Lang (1993) Janine Barredo Josie Tagle Mon Fernandez Roldan Aquino Ronnie Ricketts Vangie Labalan
Added: 4 years ago
From: STAR45465
Views: 5,043


"Ikaw Lang" (1993)

Vilma Santos as Selena
Ronnie Ricketts as Dalton
Cesar Montano as Alfred

The husband (Montano) of a librarian (Santos) puts her through physical abuse and pain, as well as her mother-in-law.

Case Study No. 1745: Ian Anstice

"We Need Libraries" - One Man and His Beard
"We Need Libraries" was written by One Man And His Beard in 2011 in response to the alarming cuts happening to the Library service in the UK, and that are still happening around the world.
The video features many leading Library Campaigners,Authors and stars from the world of entertainment, including Ian Rankin, Reverend Richard Coles, Robin Ince, Andrew Collins, Gideon Coe, Philip Ardagh, Alan Gibbons, Lucy Porter, Ruth Barnes and many more Library lovers from around the world holding the card that never stops giving - their Library card!
The message from Ian Anstice of Public Libraries News describes, along with the song, all the reasons "We Need Libraries".

Song available on iTunes: https://itunes.ap libraries-single/id493035129
Follow on Twitter: @weneedlibraries

Video made by Chris Arkley of Out of the Ark Productions
Facebook: face
Twitter: @OOTAP

Album Art by Deborah Pullan

Thanks to all who submitted their pictures!
Tags: Libraries Campaigns SaveLibraries Beard Protest Books Literature cuts lovelibraries Reading Writing Ian Rankin Reverend Richard Coles Robin Ince Andrew Collins Gideon Coe Philip Ardagh Alan Gibbons Lucy Porter Ruth Barnes Library (Building Function) Book (School Mascot) Hair save heritage
Added: 11 months ago
From: OutOfTheArkProductio
Views: 10,052

We need libraries for the toddler to hold a picture book.
For the preschooler at a story time and the parent to meet others.
For the many children who do not have a book at home, and for the child who reads more than any parent can afford.
For the student to study and for those looking for a job.
For the lonely, for the lost and those in need of comfort.
For the businessman, for the wifi, and the busy to meet.
For the community who need a place to meet on equal terms.
For the nation to be literate and have access for all.
We need libraries to be a civilised, modern nation, so it's time to stand up, now, libraries need us.

[music video opens with a shot of a lone tree in an open field, with dozens of photographs hanging from the branches, then cut to various shots of each individual photograph (showing pictures of people taking selfies with their library cards)]

Shh! Shh!
Don't close our, our libraries!
Don't close our liiiiiiiibraries!
Don't close our, our libraries!
Don't close our liiiiiiiibraries!

Don't close our, our libraries!
Cause that's not gonna help this once-great nation
Starving the poor of useful information

Do we really want, do we really want a backwards backwoods country
Cause that's what'll happen if they close all the libraries
Then nobody will get any books for free

Don't close our, our libraries!
Don't close our liiiiiiiibraries!
Don't close our, our libraries!
Don't close our liiiiiiiibraries!

Don't close our, our libraries!
Unless you wanna send us back to the Dark Ages (Dark Ages)
Where only the wealthy get to read the expensive pa-pages (pa-pages)
Cause in these times, using computers shouldn't be expensive luxuries
You should be able to go, go to the library and get all our information for free

So don't close our, our libraries!
Cause we need libraries, we need libraries, we need libraries, we need libraries
We need libraries, we need libraries, we need libraries, we need libraries
We need libraries, we need libraries, we need librariiiiiiies!

So don't close our, our libraries!
Cause if you do, we won't be quiet
Not saying what we'll do, but probably send our wives
Cause if you dooooooo ... we won't be quiet


[scene fades to black, as "Thanks to all who submitted their pictures with their library cards, your support means the world to us!" appears on screen]

"We Need Libraries"
Written and Performed by
One Man And His Beard

Video by
Christopher Arkley



Back in December, One Man and His Beard requested pictures of people holding their library cards for a video he was planning. The response was phenomenal and the result of everyone's efforts is now available online, just in time for National Libraries Day! The video features a whole host of library supporters with their library cards...see if you can spot someone you know! Be sure to read the text scrolling along the bottom, put together by Ian Anstice of Public Libraries News and do share as widely as possible! It would be great to get this going viral for National Libraries Day!

This entry was posted in National Libraries Day on January 17, 2014 by Voices for the Library.



We Need Libraries – a brilliant song about libraries and why we need them by One Man and His Beard.

A unique purveyor of indie/punk dance songs with strong hooks and melodies,with the appearance of a 100 year old but the energy of a 20 year old
One Man And His Beard played the final protest in front of the BBC in London in 2010 to help save BBC 6 Music,and in 2012 played the We Need Libraries song at the Speak up for Libraries Rally at Westminster Hall,London to help spread the message that many Libraries are under threat!

Listen to some of his other music here: https://sound



Battle over library closures intensifies
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey says there will be a report into library service as government is handed petition and he is branded 'Dr Beeching of libraries'.

By Martin Chilton, Digital Culture Editor
3:37PM GMT 13 Mar 2012

The government was today presented with a petition of 70,000 signatures against library closures collected by the Women's Institute.

Campaigners held a rally in London to coincide with a Parliamentary hearing by the Culture, Media and Sport select committee on library closures. Culture Minister Ed Vaizey has agreed to demands to produce a report by 2014 assessing the impact of changes in the library service for "good or bad".

Shadow culture minister Dan Jarvis claimed his opposite number faced becoming the "Dr Beeching of libraries" - a reference to Richard Beeching, who was behind the closure of many railway routes.

More than 100 libraries have either closed or are being run by volunteers in the past year, while those left open were being "pared to the bone" because of cuts, according to a study by Unison.

Vaizey insisted there was "no crisis" in the library service as he said that libraries run by volunteers could end up opening longer and providing books that are "more in tune" with local communities. Vaizey said that having volunteers run a library was "not a disaster" and that volunteers had always assisted the service. "It's not a failure of the library service - it's an opportunity for the library service."

Campaigners argue that that Big Society "volunteer-led" libraries are unsustainable and will lead to a drop in quality of service and eventual closure.

Jarvis said that Vaizey should not be so "short-sighted" as to permit 600 libraries to shut in England. He urged the government to intervene to save these "vital assets", adding that not to do so would make a 'mockery of the 1964 Public Libraries and Museums Act'.

The Act allows the secretary of state to intervene if local authorities are in breach of their statutory requirement to provide a 'comprehensive and efficient' library service in local communities.

Speakers at a rally at Central Hall, Westminster, this morning included author Philip Ardagh, Orange Prize co-founder Kate Mosse and Ruth Bond from The National Federation of Women's Institutes.

Ardagh, the award-winning author of the Eddie Dickens adventures, currently published in over 30 languages, earlier told The Telegraph that was speaking in support of libraries becase: "I want children from homes where there are few if any books to have the chance to discover the world of reading. I want those children who find homelife too distracting, unnerving or (sometimes) downright dangerous to have somewhere to do their homework where they feel happier or safer.

"I want people without access to the Internet at home to be able to use the computers. I want community information direct from the community. I want professional librarians to be able to offer professional advice, face-to-face, human to human. I like the storytime; the make-and-do; the exhibitions . . .and all those other things libraries have to offer. I want to keep the heart of the community at the heart of the community."

The march was organised by a new campaigning alliance Speak up for Libraries and featured film clips, talks from MPs and the band One Man and His Beard singing Don't Close Our Libraries.

A campaign against library cuts has been running since February 2011's Save Our Libraries Day. Last month, to mark National Libraries Day (4 February) Children's Laureate Julia Donaldson wrote a poem in protest at planned library closures.

Case Study No. 1744: "Librarian Vs Gangster"

Librarian Vs Gangster
Another random cartoon
Tags: librarian gangster books fight ninja crazy.random chav monkey box bling mess picture
Added: 4 years ago
From: TheSuperSmokey
Views: 62

["Librarian vs Gangster, who will win?" appears on screen, as AC/DC's "Highway to Hell" plays in the background]
[cut to a stick figure of a male librarian, wearing glasses and reading a book]
[cut to a "gangster" (wearing a hat and dreadlocks) who flips the librarian the bird (causing him to drop his book)]
[cut to the librarian suddenly growing several feet taller and sprouting giant muscles]
[cut to a closeup of the gangster's face, as he screams in panic]
[cut to the librarian dropping a giant book (entitled "Bollocks Book of Bieber") on top of the gangster's head, instantly crushing him]
[cut to the librarian (back to his "normal" dimensions) as he continues reading his book]
LIBRARIAN: Don't disturb me!
["Never mess with librarians they are awesome!" appears on screen]
[the screen goes black, then "Not!!!!!" appears on screen]

Thanks for Watching
By: TheSuperSmokey

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Case Study No. 1743: Penny "sophiewackles" Baker

Zen Tag -- The Movie
CrowdSource Like You Mean It -- Clark Library Winter Games Commence Wednesday February 26

Metadata Web Event

Crowdsource Like You Mean It -- Library Virtual Games

Fire up your laptop or mobile device for a day of virtual gaming and help to enhance worldwide access to the Library's digital collections. The Library has partnered with Tiltfactor Laboratory at Dartmouth College to contribute more than 3500 images from the David A. Hanson Collection to Lab's newest project Metadata Games (http://www.metadata

The Library's collection will debut Wednesday February 26 and the Clark's images will be available to tag throughout the day. The collection is rich in images to appeal to many interests -- indigenous peoples, disasters both man-made and natural, photographic travel souvenirs, expeditions to the polar regions, botanical and geological specimens, and much more.

Facebook Event: https://www.face
Tags: Crowdsourcing metadata tagging digital images #hangoutsonair Hangouts On Air #hoa
Added: 9 months ago
From: sophiewackles
Views: 43

[scene opens with a shot of librarian Penny Baker's web browser, showing the Flash game "Zen Tag" on the Metadata Games website (where a black and white photograph of a man sitting at an old-fashioned computer terminal can be seen)]

Welcome sophiewackles
You played 544 times and scored 156 points
This game's score 0 points

Turn 1/4

Don't know anything about this image? Pass to see the next image.

How To Play
* Describe the image as accurately as you can.
* Use commas to separate phrases or individual words.
* Hit enter or click Ohm when done.

Click on the image to see a full-screen version.

[she types in "control room, computers" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Turn 2/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a color photograph of three people sitting outside]
[she types in "exterior, group, wall" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Turn 3/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a black and white photograph of a group posing for the camera]
[she types in "group portrait, interior" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Turn 4/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a black and white photograph of a little boy standing in front of two overturned bicycles]
[she types in "bicycles, child" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Congratulations sophiewackles, you scored 0 points in this game" appears on screen (along with thumbnails of the four previous images), and she clicks "Play Again"]
["Turn 1/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a black and white photograph of a woman in a crowd reading a magazine]
[she types in "women, crowd, reading" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Turn 2/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a black and white photograph of two female soldiers standing next to a military ambulance (possibly from World War II)]
[she types in "ambulance, military, women" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Turn 3/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a black and white photograph of a man riding a bicycle]
[she types in "bicyclist, bicycle" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Turn 4/4" appers on screen, as the image changes to a color photograph of a military fort]
[she types in "fort" and then clicks "Pass"]
["Congratulations sophiewackles, you scored 0 points in this game" appears on screen (along with thumbnails of the four previous images)]



Crowdsource Like You Mean It -- Library Virtual Games
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Hosted by Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute Library

"Tiltfactor created Metadata Games to help libraries, archives and museums organize their digital resources without burdening institutions. The program also connects players to the institutions that provide the images," said Clark Librarian Susan Roeper.

"The games can be very addicting," she continued.

Penny Baker, Collections Management Librarian concurred and noted, "The only thing missing is that vital sweet/salt pairing -- easily remedied with a big bowl of popcorn and a delicious cup of hot cocoa."



Tiltfactor is proud to announce the addition of 4,000 new images from the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute Library to the Metadata Games platform. Metadata Games is a digital gaming platform for gathering useful descriptive data on photo, audio, and moving image artifacts. Through Metadata Games, players contribute valuable information to collections and further enable archivists, librarians, data scientists, and others, to gather and analyze information for archives in powerful and innovative ways. Clark Library joins a growing list of Metadata Games content partners, which currently includes the Boston Public Library, Open Park Networks, and Dartmouth College, among others.

Clark Library's 4,000 images come from the David A. Hanson Collection, which documents the history of photomechanical reproduction, the process by which photography is used to make plates for printwork. Photomechanical prints were a popular visual media form in the pre-film era. The collection traces the history of this process from its introduction in 1826, through the perfection of three-color printing at the beginning of the twentieth century.

The Hanson Collection encompasses virtually all categories of photographically-illustrated books, reports, accounts, treatises, catalogues, pamphlets, and ephemera. While the subject matter is particularly rich in American material, there are also numerous European examples, including Blanquart-Evrard's monumental 1870 survey of photography and photomechanical illustration, as well as Simoneau and Toovey in Spa et ses environs 1863 photolithographs.

"The Clark Library's collection of photomechanical photography represents a unique and exciting addition to the Metadata Games platform," says Sukie Punjasthitkul, project manager and designer at Tiltfactor.

"We hope that by increasing the public's access to the Hanson collection, we will enable a vast array of players to explore the history of photography and to contribute new knowledge that increases the collection's accessibility and searchability."



Metadata Games is a digital gaming platform for gathering data on photo, audio, and moving image artifacts. The platform entices players to visit archives and explore humanities content while contributing to vital records.

The suite enables archivists to gather and analyze information for digital media archives in novel and exciting ways.

Metadata Games is free and open source software (FOSS) developed by Tiltfactor, Dartmouth College's socially conscious game design laboratory, with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the ACLS.

Case Study No. 1742: Kirby Thomas

Kirby Thomas
Kirby Thomas
Tags: news local news
Added: 7 months ago
From: kjrhtv
Views: 65

[scene opens with a young female librarian (long blonde hair, polka dot dress) speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: Oh my goodness, it was the best book I've read in a long time!
[cut to the librarian moving some books around as children are using her library]
REPORTER: [in voice over] Meet Kirby Thomas for one second, and it's obvious she is passionate about her job.
[cut back to the librarian speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: It's the perfect combination, that's the best part! Books and kids!
[cut to more shots of the school library (including some paper letters on the wall spelling out "Everyone has a story to tell!")]
REPORTER: [in voice over] Inside this library at Union's McAuliffe Elementary, a simple statement on the wall says it all ... Everyone has a story to tell, and Kirby's is a best seller!
[cut to footage from the Ellen Show ("February 20, 2014"), where the librarian is shown in the school's auditorium in front of a large number of assembled students]
REPORTER: [in voice over] Chapter one, a surprise phone call from Ellen DeGeneres on February Twentieth ...
[cut to more footage from the Ellen Show, showing a split screen of Ellen DeGeneres ("Burbank") talking to the librarian ("Broken Arrow OK") over the phone]
ELLEN: And they're giving McAuliffe Elementary a check for twenty five thousand dollars to help you out.
[cut to a single shot of the librarian (holding a microphone and a copy of Ellen's biography), as she responds to the news]
KIRBY: Ahhhh! Oh my god!
[she becomes very emotional as someone hands her an oversized novelty check, then cut to a single shot of Ellen (from a different episode)]
ELLEN: I want you to tell me a little bit about your book program during this summer.
[cut to the librarian (wearing a pair of "goofy" glasses) surrounded by students from her school]
KIRBY: We go every week and we visit all of our babies, um, in their neighborhoods ...
[cut to another shot of the librarian, as someone points to a bright-red bookmobile now parked behind her]
ELLEN: [from off camera] We bought you a bookmobile!
[she turns and screams]
KIRBY: Ahhhh!
[cut back to the librarian speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: It's still a shock! Like, I watch the video and I'm still just like, "Is that us? Like, is that McAuliffe? Is that me?"
[she smiles]
KIRBY: And it's still hard for me to, like, process that that really happened.
[cut back to the librarian in the library]
REPORTER: [in voice over] It did, and the proof is on the wall.
KIRBY: Yes, this is our happy wall of Ellen fun!
[she laughs, then cut to the novelty check hanging on the wall]
KIRBY: I couldn't bare to throw our check away, or our giant Target gift card!
REPORTER: [in voice over] Now to chapter two, a trip to California to sit in the Ellen audience.
[cut back to footage from the Ellen Show (from a different episode)]
ELLEN: A couple of weeks ago, we met Kirby. She is a librarian from Broken--
[cut to a shot of the librarian (now wearing a red dress) sitting in the audience, covering her mouth to stop from crying]
ELLEN: [from off camera] Come on down, Kirby!
[she gets up and starts walking towards the stage as the audience applauds, then cut back to Kirby speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: I-I just thought she was gonna call us down and kinda get updated on how things had been going and how excited we all were, and what we were kinda planning to do with the money.
REPORTER: [in voice over] But Ellen had another surprise ...
[cut to more footage from the Ellen Show (as the librarian's fiance shows up), then back to Kirby speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: When Mac came out, that was giant surprise number two! Because I had just talked to him, and I swear to you, like I heard him typing on his computer at work! Like, I thought ... I thought he was in Tulsa at work!
[cut to more footage from the Ellen Show, as Mac gets down on one knee]
MAC: Will you marry me?
[she nods, as Ellen smiles while Mac (through tears) puts the ring on her finger]
KIRBY: [in voice over] When Ellen called me on my cell phone, I was like, "The coolest moment of my whole life was when Ellen called me on my cell phone, nothing will ever top that!"
[cut back to the librarian speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: And then ... there was the proposal on Ellen! And I was like, "That was it! Babe, we'll never do anything cooler than that! That was the best moment ever!" And then I was like, getting kissed on the face by LL Cool J, and now I'm like, "Okay, that was it! We're finally done!" Like, nothing will ever beat that!
[cut to more footage from the Ellen Show, where the librarian is shaking hands with LL Cool J on the red carpet of the Academy of Country Music Awards]
REPORTER: [in voice over] That brings us to chapter three ... Ellen sent Kirby to work the red carpet at the ACM Awards in Vegas.
[cut to the librarian interviewing members of the band Rascal Flatts]
KIRBY: I'm Kirby! I'm Ellen's, uh, librarian-schoolteacher friend from Oklahoma!
[cut back to the librarian speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: It was fun!
REPORTER: [from off camera] Favorite person you met on the Red Carpet?
[cut back to footage of the librarian (wearing her "goofy" glasses again) on the red carpet]
KIRBY: [in voice over] My favorite ... Oh, there were a lot!
[cut back to the librarian speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: Keith Urban was so nice to me and so good to me, and he smelled wonderful!
[cut back to the librarian on the red carpet with Keith Urban]
KEITH URBAN: Kirby! I love Red Bull too, baby!
[she turns to the camera and practically starts singing]
KIRBY: He said my name!
[cut to the librarian on the red carpet with Dierks Bentley, as he sings to her]
DIERKS BENTLEY: Kirby's getting married in July ...
[cut to more footage from the Ellen Show, as Kirby and Mac get up from the audience and walk down to the stage]
REPORTER: [in voice over] Chapter four, the wedding ... July Eleventh is the big day. Who knows what other surprises Ellen may have in store?
[cut back to the librarian speaking directly to the camera]
KIRBY: I sent her the "Save the Date," so I'm crossing my fingers that she did in fact save the date!
[she laughs]



Ellen's friends at Entitle Books gave Kirby Thomas and McAuliffe Elementary School $25,000, and her very own Bookmobile. Entitle Books is a website and app where you can download and read any two books for only $9.99 on devices like iPads, androids and Kindle Fires. There are over 125,000 ebooks to choose from, including new releases, bestsellers and everything in between.



Ellen Degeneres surprises McAuliffe Elementary librarian Kirby Thomas with $25,000 check
BY: Beth Pielsticker
POSTED: 12:33 PM, Feb 20, 2014

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. - Ellen Degenres surprised McAuliffe Elementary Librarian Kirby Thomas Wednesday at school with a check for $25,000, a van, and Target gift cards for her students.

Kirby works for the Title 1 school as librarian and media specialist and, along with Amanda Griffin and other teachers, has started a summer reading initiative, Mobile Media. The organization provides books throughout the McAuliffe low-income neighborhoods.

Ellen found out that the van Kirby uses for Mobile Media doesn't have the capacity to hold the number of books needed, so she surprised Kirby with a new, personalized van filled with books and iPad mins. The van even has a seating area. donated $25,000 to purchase more books. Ellen also surprised Kirby with 711 $25 Target gift cards, one for each McAuliffe student, for school supplies.

"We are so excited! We are still living in a dream," Kirby told 2NEWS. "I am very thankful."



Talk show host Ellen DeGeneres has recently been highlighting school libraries on her afternoon talk show "Ellen." In a show that aired February 20, Ellen surprised Ashley Kirby Thomas, a media specialist at McAuliffe Elementary School in the Union Public Schools District (in Broken Arrow, OK), with a bookmobile filled with books and iPad minis and a $25,000 check from Entitled Books, an ebook publishing company. In addition, Target donated $75 gift cards for over 700 students at McAuliffe Elementary, a Title 1 school.

Thomas, along with other teachers at McAuliffe, runs a summer reading bookmobile program where she brings books to the low-income neighborhoods in her school's area. The McAuliffe media specialist appeared again on "Ellen" (on a segment that aired March 12) during which she updated the talk show host on what she's been able to do with the money donated. During that episode, Thomas's boyfriend (now fiance) got down on bended knee and proposed.

School Library Journal caught up with 28-year-old Thomas to discuss her school, her program, and her newfound celebrity.

What made you become a school librarian?
I didn't truly fall in love with libraries until the very last year of [study] in elementary education from Oklahoma State. Once I did, I felt like I'd really missed out on some great experiences by not frequenting local and school libraries as an elementary school or high school student. I wanted to get into a school library and make sure I caught others at a young age and helped them to fall in love with the library, so that they could carry that love… for a lifetime. [When I was studying for my Master's degree]… one of the few programs my scholarship supported was Library and Information Science. I knew I had to pursue it.

Tell us about your school and your program.
Our school is an amazing Title I elementary school serving high poverty pre-K through fifth grade students, many of whom are English Language Learners. Our administration and staff are very supportive of our library and their loud librarian. We [at the school] look at [the library] like an emergency room—people should be able to get in and get taken care of at any time of the day. We love to explore, inquire, and learn about resources, but we also have a strong focus on the seemingly simple task of making sure kids are exposed daily to excellent books, and they learn to love to read and experience stories.

You were named "Teacher of the Year" for your school. How does that work?
The staff votes for "Teacher of the Year" from a list of staff members who have worked in the district for a certain number of years. After the initial voting, the top three candidates are announced, and we vote again among those three.

How did you come to be noticed by Ellen DeGeneres?
My dear friend Amanda Griffin (who teaches first grade at McAuliffe) and I [both] decided two years ago that we wanted to try to get ourselves featured on "Ellen." Ellen was doing a promotion at the time called the "Dance Dare" where she encouraged her viewers to dance with people who did not know they were being danced with. We submitted two "Dance Dare" videos—and never made it to the show… Many emails, tweets, pictures, and video submissions later, another wonderful teacher from our school sent an email to Ellen after I was named "Teacher of the Year" in which she explained how much we loved Ellen, her show, and the joy she brings to people. [That teacher also told her] about our summer book van, and how we work to make sure that our students keep reading and have access to wonderful books all summer long. The next thing I knew, Ellen was calling my cell phone.

What are your plans for the money you received from the program?
We want to create an iPad exploration station for inquiry projects and research. We are planning to use some of the money to purchase materials in Spanish so that we can further reach out to our families. We are accepting great ideas from teachers and students for what they would like to see us do with it, and what else we can do to support them.

Your appearance on "Ellen" has put school librarians in a positive light. Any advice for school librarians on how they can be advocates for their programs?
My best advice is to lead by example. If we are excited about our jobs and what we get to do for children, it will trickle down to others. They will be excited about it as well. Libraries and librarians are important, and we should be so present in the school climate that the library isn't even questioned as being crucial.

How has your life changed since being spotlighted?
Primarily, it got me engaged to the love of my life! But, I also have been amazed and deeply encouraged by the outpouring of support from the library community across the country. I think that this has been just one tiny example of the role that libraries play and how close they are to so many of our hearts. It has also been a cold, hard reminder for me about the importance of funding for our schools and libraries. I have seen the transformation of our library and what has happened merely based on funds that we've received. Most of all, I am so grateful that this experience has connected me to so many amazing educators and library professionals.

Case Study No. 1741: Pamela Mae Willard

Trailer for Fat Diary: Free Comedy eBook
Fat Diary by Duane Simolke.

A West Texas librarian makes fun of herself and the other people in her town, while writing about her reasons for wanting to lose weight.

Pamela Mae Willard must learn to love herself. Still, she can't resist laughing about her problems, and about the adventures of the colorful characters in Acorn, Texas.

This irreverent, politically incorrect tale reveals a woman finding joy in life, no matter what happens to her and no matter who mistreats her.

This short story also appears in The Acorn Gathering. Some of its characters also appear in The Acorn Stories.

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Added: 1 year ago
From: AcornUniverse
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Fat Diary
West Texas Librarian with Attitude

Free Comedy eBook
Duane Simolke

DuaneSimolke Dot Com

"Really cute and funny!" - SheWolfCat

Fat Diary
by Duane Simolke

Available on:
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January 20, 2001
Dear Fat Diary,

My nutritionist told me to write in you every day, until I can come to terms about why I'm not happy with my weight, and why I want to change. I'm supposed to call you my "love diary," but I'm not trying to get rid of love; I'm trying to get rid of fat. We'll talk about love later.

No, on second thought, we'll talk about love now. I don't have love because I have fat. If I didn't weigh 260 pounds, I might be writing a love diary, and teenage girls would read it and swoon, while listening to the latest boybands and dreaming of that guy who sits in the second row of their American history class. Wait, that's what I did at the University of Texas in Austin.

My name is Pamela Mae Willard, named after my Aunt Mae and my father, Samuel Carsons (yes, as in "Carsons Furniture, Acorn's best-kept secret"). He wanted a Samuel Carsons, Jr. He had to settle with a Pamuel, which became Pamela, due to the mercy of the Father, the Son, the Holy Ghost, and my passive-aggressive mom. She kept "accidentally" referring to my father as "Samueluel," and when that bothered him, she said she "didn't give a damnuel," and when he wanted supper, she said he could fry some "Spamuel," and if he wanted someone to keep him warm, he could "buy a cocker spaniel." Even though she never actually said how much she hated the name "Pamuel," the message came through clearly enough, and he eventually asked if Pamela Mae would be all right.

Pamela Mae sounded sufficiently dignified and Southern for a member of Acorn's beloved Carsons family, so she consented, and soon began cooking meals that weren't primarily composed of meat byproducts. Harmony soon returned to our home, and my parents adopted an unwanted newborn baby just over a year later, naming him Samuel, of course, but calling him "Sam." If they were going to go through all of that just to call someone "Sam," they probably could have named me Samantha! Unfortunately, I wasn't quite in a position to impart my keen sense of logic at the time.

My parents were very happy with Sam, who would eventually join the Air Force. I taught Sunday school for a time and, after returning from college in Austin, managed the library.

Our childhood went by with very little trauma or disaster. Meteorites, tornadoes, and general flying debris never hit our house, unless you count acorns, pecans, and the occasional dust storm. Daddy wasn't a drunk, though he always liked touring the wineries that keep popping up around West Texas. Mom didn't have a secret past, unless it's still Acorn's best-kept secret, to use that tired catch phrase I mentioned before, the one Daddy's store shares with most of Acorn's local advertisers. And my adopted brother didn't turn out to be a space alien, despite my early suspicions; in fact, he and I remain the best of friends. Regardless of how some people around here make it sound, the sky isn't always falling in Acorn, at least not for our family. I had loving parents and a happy, well-rounded childhood.

"Well-rounded." Bad word choice.

I grew taller fast during my early teens, so much so that my mom worried I might have some sort of thyroid disorder, and it seemed like I needed to eat a lot for my body to keep up with its own growth. But then I stopped growing. Upward, that is. Then I got fat, and I stayed fat. So here I am, writing in my fat diary. Worst of all, I'll probably wind up writing about my joke of a short-lived marriage.

I'm supposed to examine key moments from any of my amazing thirty-something years, and find reasons to love myself, all the while congratulating myself for the conclusions I reach.

Do I get a lollipop for that?

January 21, 2001
Dear Fat Diary,

I attended Seventh Street Baptist Church for most of my life, like the rest of my family. In fact, I even taught Sunday school there sometimes. But I walked right out when they started promoting censorship and book burning, and I mean the term "book burning" literally! As a librarian, I just couldn't calmly support that, dropping my tithe into the plate, to see my money used not for helping the sick or the poor but to pay for full-page newspaper advertisements that attacked any literary work with the slightest spark of imagination.

So I started going to the local Episcopalian church. It's smaller, more intelligent, my friends Chandler Davis and Keith Colson go there, and the new minister is kind of cute. Hey, if you have to stare at someone that long every Sunday morning, he should look better than the sag-faced pastor of 7-Bap. Chandler and Keith are also pleasing to the eye, but I'm one of the few people in Acorn to notice that they're also pleasing to each other's eyes, if you know what I mean, so there was never hope for me with either of those two.

I probably would have just moved my letter to the Zionosphere Baptist Church, since I still consider myself a Baptist, but that congregation fell apart after all of those paternity tests came back positive. Sure, Pastor Jimmy Jacobs left his wild days behind when he got saved and went into the ministry, but everyone had trouble forgiving him when so many young members of the congregation—not to mention Acorn's general population—started looking like him. He made the best move by accepting a calling to another state.

His uncle, Coach Jacobs, still attends 7-Bap, and he's usually the one who encourages its backward "crusades." I really think that church would be much better off without him, especially considering some of the good work they still do, when he allows it. By the way, I want to state for the record that Coach Jacobs has no first name. I checked.

Mayor Nick Williams (who is stylishly handsome, if you're into pretentious fifty-somethings) couldn't understand why I would leave 7-Bap for a church that didn't endorse his reelection campaign, which obviously meant that they were the enemy of all that's good. Most of my relatives said I was losing my faith; one of the few kin to spare me that grief was my cousin Aragon Carsons-Friedman, who is one of the ten people who attend Acorn's Holy Chastity Catholic Church (the others being her husband, her daughter, an altar boy, the priest, and the choir). But I didn't care what anyone thought. I needed a church where I felt real, and where I didn't feel like I was supporting something I shouldn't support.

January 22, 2001
Dear Fat Diary:

I'm not sure when I realized that I didn't need a husband or even a lover to make me happy. It was probably as soon as I divorced my husband, but I think it really just sank in a few months ago, while I was training a new employee at the Megan Carsons Library, where I'm head librarian.

Considering that Megan Carsons was my grandmother, and that there aren't many librarians in the Acorn area, it wasn't a hard job for me to get, but it's certainly one I love.

I mentioned some of the censorship that goes on in Acorn. Sometimes, it affects the library, and we'll get people trying to ban books like Tom Sawyer, Common Sons, or even Lord of the Rings, but most Acornians are supportive of us, even if they never come in. The censors eventually got too busy protesting Keith's art gallery, which is what made me become friends with him. Still, they backed off on that after the gallery's re-opening led to grants and awards that helped Acorn get featured in a certain monthly magazine with "Texas" in its title that used to act like we don't even exist. Go figure.

With our location across the street from campus, we double as Acorn's public library and as Acorn College's library. The building itself, a moderately ornate, two-story mansion, served as the home of my grandparents for many years, before they donated it for its current purpose and moved into a smaller home. Many of the books on our shelves came from their collection, and Grandma Megan (known to most other people as "Old Lady Carsons") even wrote one of the books: An Acorn History. Aragon talks about writing a more up-to-date chronicle and calling it The Acorn Stories, but I doubt anyone outside Acorn would buy it, if anyone bought it at all.

So it was the fall of the year 2000, which I still can't say without thinking of space ships, world peace, painless exercise, and all the other stuff we expected by the year 2000. Thanks to Acorn College's student worker program, I received a sparkly new freshman every year whose paycheck came from somewhere else—I never really understood where, but why ask?

Tiffani Basil, a bleach factory with high heels and overly snug clothing, bounced my way fresh out of Acorn High. A little too fresh.

"So, what do you like to do?" I asked her, during our first day working together. We were standing behind the checkout counter, and, like most fall semesters, I knew not to expect many students until the day before midterms started. The only people in were housewives feeding their romance novel cravings, Ian Aristotle making a beeline to the science fiction shelves for the latest Babylon 5 novel, and Lynn Williams (the mayor's gray-haired and red-eyed wife) perusing our stock of self-help books before abandoning herself to the latest posthumously published Schafly Shlockel novel.

"I like mostly like movies." The extra "like" wasn't like a typo on my part, but like how Tiffani like talks.

"Really? What have you seen recently?"

"I like saw that Brad Pitt movie, Meet Joe Black. It was like three hours long! I think it was so long because everyone talked real slow." She punctuated her conclusion by jolting her long head backwards and staring into space.

Forcing myself not to scream, I quickly changed the subject. "I noticed on your application that you're married. How long?"

"How long what?"

"How long have you been married?"

"We were married five months. We just got divorced, but we were still married when I filled out my application for you."

"I'm sorry," I offered, trying not to think about the fact that my marriage only lasted five weeks, and that I wasn't sorry at all when it ended.

"It's okay. I'm like so over him! He thought he was all that because he was manager of the last Piggly Wiggly around here, but it closed down and he wasn't manager of nothing. He's a bag boy at the super center now, but I don't go in there. It's like a magnet for stupid people. My new man is more sensitive than my husband was. He's a theater major, anndduh…he has a part-time job at the flower shop!"

I stifled the stereotypes that flooded my mind, and I mentally kicked myself for thinking those stereotypes. "He sounds nice!"

She indicated exclamation with some sort of cheerleader motion of her right hand. "Oh, you wouldn't believe how nice! But we're not real serious. If he wants to buy me stuff, that's great, but I need to be my own woman now, and I don't need any help raising my kids."

"Kids?" I said the word too loud for decorum, especially in a library. One of the housewives, spending way too long reading the back cover of a love story she would soon check out for the fifth time, looked up and cocked her roller-covered head.

"I have two kids, but I live with my parents now, so I don't need any help. I'm a independent woman! My little sisters are both pregnant, though, so we need more income while I'm in college, planning for a career with some big company, maybe Enron or K-Mart."

While helping Ian check out his TV/paperback tie-in and noticing for the billionth time how he and Lynn Williams always appeared at the same places at the same time, I bit my tongue over a myriad of "don't go there" thoughts. Still, after Ian left, I couldn't help but voice one of those thoughts. "I take it the Acorn School District still uses the abstinence-only, no-discussion sex education program that's so popular in West Texas."

"Yeah," said Tiffani, chewing her bubble gum and tugging at the lacy bra strap that peaked out of her red sweater's V-neck collar. "Why fix what ain't broke?"

"And speaking of the Dewey Decimal System," I swiftly and breathlessly replied, before I could get myself into trouble.

"The what?" Tiffani scrunched her makeup-caked face. "I'm not good at math."

"Math? Oh. Decimals. Never mind. I was just joking anyway. The library catalog is completely computerized."

"Now I'm good at computers! I can sit at one all day, and not even know there's a world going on around me."

"Hm!" I replied, ambiguously. But even as I contemplated the possible ramifications of letting such a vacuous individual become second-in-command of Acorn's intellectual epicenter, I came to the important conclusion I mentioned earlier. If Tiffani could survive without a man, I certainly could. Only I wouldn't be such a glutton for melodrama as to move back in with my parents. I mean, I love them, and they've always been there for me, but I don't think we could deal with each other as adults on a 24/7 basis. It sounds too much like a TV sitcom that would be turned down by everyone but CBS and then wind up on UPN.

I haven't always been so independent or so outspoken as the person writing this diary. In fact, I only recently graduated from uniformity and timidity, via certain strange and/or wonderful experiences. I'll describe some of those in the entries that follow.