They were my kinfolk, my people - many of whom I'm still friends with today, though we've scattered across the country, spilling out in different directions as fast as we could once we'd tossed our graduation caps in the air.

Aimee Nezhukumatathail - World of Wonders

For quote archives click here

It's In the Past

Three Dave's No Waiting

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Summer Reading plan 2020

Each year I try to read more during the summer. I usually define the summer as the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day. I like to add a few days to that so the period is exactly 100 days. This year for whatever reason I didn’t start the reading plan at Memorial Day. June  came and went and I hadn’t read a single book. I decided to start the plan on July 1st and go to October 8th for the full hundred days. Not exactly a regular Summer, but 2020 hasn't been a regular year,

My goal is usually to read at least 10 books during that period. Ideally I’d like to read more but if I read at least 10, I feel pretty  good. Today is July 25th and I am 1/4 through the period. Before I talk about my progress so far let’s talk about my method.

There are so many ways to read a book these days.  There of course is the traditional book in hand method, I still do a lot of that.  You can also listen to a book on cd, casette, play-aways or online.    For more of how I feel about the difference between reading and listening to books, you can see my post Is Listening the New Reading?

What books Ir ead during my Summer campaign isas varied  as how I read them.  I'll read books I've never read before, books I've tried to get through without  success ( Moby Dick and Three Musketeers for example), and I certainly reread books during this time as well.  Most years I'll buy at least one book specifically to read for the chalenge. For the most part, I obtain my books from my personal collection, or from local libraries.  

I read both fiction and non-fiction ,poetry or prose, regular novels or graphic novels.  I often have a list of books or authors I'd like to read in the back of my mind, but I am so glad that the library is open again so I can peruse the shelves and find something outside of my rather eclectic mix.  I also like my list to be organic. If I am reading a book and a subject, or book or person is mentioned, I may put that onto my list.  For example, I just finished a book about Fred Rogers where I read that early in his career,  he had met Charles M. Schulz, the creator of Peanuts.   So the last time I was at the library, I picked up a couple Peanuts anthologies.  

I tend not to read one book at a time but sometimes I’m reading 4 to 5 books concurrently. There will  also be times when  I start a book and end up not finishing it right away or not at all. As of today I have finished 4 books and am currently working on 7 (I know I said 4 or 5 but sometimes I go a little crazy.) more, and have put one aside for the time being.  In order to say I'm working on a book I have to read from or listened to it in the past week.  

The 4 I have finished so far are . . 

The Song - Calvin Miller (book that I own) have read previously. 

When Sinners Say I Do - Dave Harvey  (book that I own) had not read previously.

Little House in the Big Woods- Laura Ingalls Wilder - (on line audio book borrowed on Hoopla) Had read and listened to parts of previously, had never completed.  

Kindness and Wonder: Why Mr. Rogers matters now more than ever. - Gavin Edwards  (book - borrowed from library) Had not read previously.  

Books currently reading ...

Anne of Green Gables - Lucy Maud Montgomery (on-line audio book-borrowed on Hoopla) - Have not read previously.

The Runaway Jury - John Grisham - Book borrowed from library - Have read previously. 

Abraham Lincoln - A new birth of Freedom  - By Janet & Geoff Benge - This is a book owned by my family which I purchase when we were homeschooling our kids  - Have previously read book.

Downton Abbey Script Book Season 3 - Julian Fellowes (On-line book borrowed from Hoopla) - Had not read previously have watched the episodes on television. 

Frederick Buechner 101 by Frederick Buechner Choreographed by Ann Lamott- Book borrowed from library. Have not readpreviously.

Complete Peanuts 1971-1972 Charles M Schulz. Book borrowed from library. I own some of these volumes but my children have absconded with them.  

Peanuts Every Sunday  1966-1970 -By Charles M Schulz . Book- borrowed from library.  I have not read this volume of colorized Sunday strips before, but have read most of the strips previously.  

Books I have set aside.

A Crazy Holy Grace - Frederick Buechner I was trying to read this book on Hoopla, but soon discovered that I was having difficulty reading more than 1 book at a time electronically.  That is why I picked uo the book of Buechner essays from the library.  Once I am finished with Downton Abby, I may get back to this book.  

As of today I am on pace to finish 16 books in the 100 days.  If I were to finish just 5 of the 7  I am currently working on in the next 25 days, I would then be on pace for 18.  

 I have enjoyed each book I have finished.  Ideally, I'd love to do a short review of each book I read, but alas I find I lack the temperament for short reviews and the time for more detailed ones. .  Nonetheless, I'll try to include some reviews here in the weeks to come.  I'm going to close the book on this post now and return us all to whatever new normal we are heading towards.  

Thursday, July 23, 2020

I Heart Comics

I have always been a big fan of comic strips.  Anytime I used to travel I would plunk down the change to buy a local newspaper and see what therir comic page looked like.  As you have gathered what newspapers remain in this digital age cost more than change for a dollar.  

Fortunately there are many strips old and new available online. From time to time I will share a few of those here.  Simply click on the name of the comic  to see the strip.  The ones today I found through Go Comics.

The Far Side                                                  Calvin & Hobbes

Peanuts                                                                                              Pearls Before Swine

Monday, July 6, 2020

The Library at Last

March 13, 2020 was a Friday.  It turned out to be a true Friday the 13th in the sense that something scary started occurring.  Friday March 13th was the day that many things in the U.S. started shutting down because of Covid 19.  For me it was a day of lasts.  It was one of the last days I worked at the movie theatre I used to work at.  It was the last day I subbed during the 2020 school year. It was the last day I went to a public indoor event (a college talent show, wher my daughter was reciting her poetry).  

During this time I've switched jobs, (although I still hope I can sub in the Fall.) jumped back into blogging, and navigated the new normal with help from God and my family.  Because of that and that I am a particularly resilient kind of guy  social distancing, face masks and zoom chats have been fairly easy to adapt to.  What's been difficult is LOL. LOL is no laughing matter, it stands for lack of libraries.  

I love libraries.  I have really missed ours (Gail Borden in Elgin, Illinois) being open during the stay at home order.  They have handled it greatly but I still missed them.  The first thing they did after closing was expand the amount of materials you could take out virtually using Hoopla.  In late May or Early June the drive through  opened and you were able to start checking out  mterials.  Today they reopened in person,  

When we went to Wisconsin last month we stopped in an open library and there was a 30 minute time limit and not much to do because we didn;t  have borrowing priviliges.  It felt good to be back at a library even for a half hour, but today felt more like coming home. 

Instead of lasts it was a day of covid-19 era firsts.  First time back at Gail Borden ,first time bugging  reference people, first time checking out books in person. , first time back at my bank  (my credit union is in the same building as the library), first time running into and talking with someone I knew while at the library, and first time using a library computer.  I even started this post while using it.  

Home Sweet Library

Quarantine Chic: Library Style

I must have told 8 employees of  the library how glad I was that they were open.  A kid in a candy store had absolutely nothing at me.  Now if you could borrow candy and then return it when you were finished, that would be similar. A library is an everlasting gobstopper for the soul.