Category Archives: Learn Something New

The Banned, The Burned, and The Removed!

Early in September  we set up our banned books display…which some of you may have noticed. I hope. It’s fairly modest, but definitely there. Banned books week ran from the 21st-28th. We were a little early in setting up and we’re going keep it up for a little longer in hopes that you’ll pick up a banned book to read Feed your rebel side!!

about 150 books are sitting out there in honor of banned books week because they have been banned or challenged at some point in their “life” since publication. Some were banned almost immediately upon publication, others challenged periodically through the years. Some are banned for obvious reasons while others have nearly outlandish reasons. For a few of the books on the display, we’ve provided you with the main reason for the ban or challenge…but do you want to know what got most of them on the list? You’re in luck! Here is a hefty list of books (many that we’ve got on display) and the reasons they’ve been so persecuted.

Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Challenged at the Baptist College in Charleston, SC in 1987. Why? Apparently people were offended by the “language and sexual references in the book”.

The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger

Perpetually challenged since it’s publication…no fewer than 30 times in the states alone. In 1960 a teacher from Tulsa, OK was fired for assigning the book to an 11th grade English class. While the teacher was reinstated, the book was still removed from the curriculum and the school. Some of the “favorite” reasons for banning the book are: language, sexual content, ‘defamatory to minorities, God, women, and the disabled’, blasphemous, undermines morality, anti-white, and my personal favorite: it’s a “filthy, filthy book”.

Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

This award winner was burned by the East St. Louis Public Library in 1939 because of “vulgar words”. In 1973 Turkish booksellers and publishers were arrested and put on trial for ‘publishing, processing and selling books in violation of an order of the Istanbul Martial Law Command’, those arrested faced a month to six months jail time and had their books confiscated.

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Warren, IN Township Schools challenged the book in 1981 because the book does “deep psychological damage to the positive integration process” and “represents institutionalized racism under the guise of good literature”. Lee’s work is called out often, even today, for it’s language.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Along with 17 other titles, The Color Purple, was challenged by a group called ‘Parents Against Bad Books’ (super creative name, guys…). They opposed its inclusion in Fairfax County, VA elementary and secondary schools, saying that the books “contain profanity and depictions of drug abuse, sexually explicit conduct, and torture”.

Ulysses by James Joyce

Burned in the United States in 1918, Ireland (Joyce’s own country) and Canada in 1922, and England in 1923!

Beloved by Toni Morrison

In 2006 a board member for district 214 in Arlington Heights, IL tried to get Beloved and a few other titles removed from the NW Suburban High School. She was elected amid promises to bring her Christian beliefs into all board decision making and raised the issue for these books based on EXCERPTS she found on the INTERNET. Because everything we read on the internet is true, right?

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Challenged in 1981 at the Owen, NC high school because it is “demoralizing inasmuch as it implies that man is little more than an animal”. You don’t say?

1984 by George Orwell

Challenged in Jackson Co., FL in 1981 because it was “pro-communist”. I wonder if they read the book…

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Banned in France (1956-59), England (1955-59), Argentina (1959), and New Zealand (1960)…because of disturbing sexual content.

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Banned in Ireland (1953), Syracuse, IN (1974), Oil City, PA (1977), Grand Blanc, MI (1979), Continental, OH (1980), and many others. In 1989 it was challenged as a summer youth program reading assignment in Chattanooga, TN. The reasoning: “Steinbeck is known to have had an anti-business attitude” and “He was very questionable as to his patriotism”.

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Challenged in Snoqualmie, WA (1979) due to several references to women as “whores”

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

Removed from classrooms in Miller, MO in 1980 because “it makes promiscuous sex look like fun”.

Animal Farm by George Orwell

In a Wisconsin survey it was revealed that the John Birch Society had challenged the novel because it objected to the words “masses in revolt”. A similar study was done in 1968 by NY States English Council’s Committee on Defense Against Censorship using NY State English classrooms. It was found that Animal Farm had landed on it’s list of “problem books” because “Orwell was a communist”….seriously?

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

Burned in Nazi bonfires in 1933. Banned in Boston (‘30), Ireland (‘53), Riverside & San Jose, CA (‘60)

As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner

Banned in the Graves County school district in Mayfield, KY in 1986 because it contains “offensive and obscene passages referring to abortion and used God’s name in vain”.

A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

First, the June 1929 issue of Scribner’s Magazine, which ran the novel, was banned in Boston, MA. Then, it was banned in Italy (1929) because it is a painfully accurate account of the italian retreat from Caporetto, Italy. Then, burned by Nazi’s in 1933. And finally, challenged in Vernon-Verona-Sherill, NY school district in 1988 as a “sex novel”.

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

Challenged for sexual explicitness in Brentsville, VA (1977).

Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison

Challenged in Columbus, OH  school in 1993; the complainant believed the book contained language degrading to blacks.

Native Son by Richard Wright

Removed from Irvington High School in Fremont, CA in 1998 after a few parents complained the book was unnecessarily violent and sexually explicit.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

In 1975 five residents of Strongsville, OH sued the board of education to remove the novel, labeling it “pornographic” and charged that the novel “glorifies criminal activity, has a tendency to corrupt juviniles, and contains descriptions of beastiality, bizarre violence, and torture, dismemberment, death, and human elimination”. It was banned in 1978 from St. Anthony, ID’s Freemont HS classrooms and the instructor was fired (the instructor sued but a decision was never published).

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut

BURNED in Drake, ND in 1973! In 1985, it was challenged in the Owensboro, KY high school library because of “foul language, a section depicting a picture of an act of beastiality, a reference to ‘magic fingers’ attached to the protagonists bed to help him sleep, and the sentence: ‘The gun made a ripping sound like the opening of the fly of God Almighty’”.

For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

Declared “unmailable” by the U.S. Postal Service in 1940. In 1973 Turkish booksellers and publishers were put on trial and faced a month to six months imprisonment for “spreading propaganda unfavorable to the state”.

The Call of the Wild by Jack London

Banned in Italy and Yugoslavia in 1929 and then burned by the Nazi’s in 1933.

Go Tell it on the Mountain by James Baldwin

Challenged as required reading in Husten Falls, NY Schools in 1994 because the book has recurring themes of rape, masterbation, voilence, and degrading treatment of women.

The Lord of the Rings J.R.R. Tolkien

Burned in Alamogordo, NM in 2001 outside of Christ Community Church (along with other Tolkien works) as satanic.

The Jungle by Upton Sinclair

Burned by the Nazi’s in 1933 because of Sinclair’s socialist views. Also, banned in Yugoslavia in 1929 and in East Germany (as inimical to communism) in 1956.

Lady Chatterley’s Lover D.H. Lawrence

Banned by U.S. Customs (1929), Ireland (1932), Poland (1932), Australia (1959), Japan (1959), India (1959), and Canada (1960-62). Dissemination of the novel was stopped in China in 1987 because the book “will corrupt the minds of young people and is against the Chinese tradition”.

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

1973, a bookseller in Orem, Utah was arrested for selling the novel. Though charges were dropped, the seller was still forced to close the store and relocate to a different city. The novel was removed from schools in Aurora, CO (1976), Westport, MA (1977), and Anniston, AL (1982) for “objectionable language”.

The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Though published in 1899, the novel was banished for decades because it so disturbed the critics and the public.

The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie

Banned in: Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Somalia, Sudan, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Qatar, Indonesia, South Africa, and India because of its criticism of Islam. It was BURNED in West Yorkshire, England. In Venezuela, owning or reading a copy is considered a crime punishable by 15 months imprisonment.

Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence

1961, the group called “Mother’s United for Decency” out of Oklahoma City, OK hired a trailer, dubbed it the “smutmobile” and displayed books deemed objectionable…including Sons and Lovers.

A Separate Peace by John Knowles

Challenged at Vernon-Verona-Sherill, NY School District in 1980 as a “filthy, trashy sex novel”.

Naked Lunch by William Burroughs

Found to be obscene by Boston, MA Superior Court in 1965.

Women in Love by D. H. Lawrence

Seized by John Summers of the NY Society for the Suppression of Vice and declared ‘obscene’ in 1922.

An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser

Banned in Boston, MA in 1927 and BURNED by the Nazi’s in 1933 becasue it “deals with low love affairs”.

I find it most entertaining that some of these books were banned or challenged when it is very nearly obvious that those complaining or challenging them had either completely missed the point of the book or had not even read it…I’m looking at you, the people who tried to get rid of 1984 because it was “pro-communist”! There are still hundreds and probably thousands of books that have been banned or challenged at some point, including children’s books, but they just didn’t make the cut on this list! Go forth, my readers, and read a banned or challenged book! Be a rebel!

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Internet of “Stuff”!

In this week’s edition of the Library Things blog we’re going to talk about weird things on the internet. Which seems redundant, really (weird and the internet are pretty much interchangeable terms). A large part of my position is to scour the internet looking for “stuff”, and boy-howdy do I ever. That may be the first time I’ve ever used the phrase “boy-howdy”…and the last. I am leaving it, but I don’t like it. Anyway…today, as a part of my never ending search for “stuff” today I came across some particularly entertaining items compliments of Buzzfeed. Some were games, some were just interactive clicky things, others were just completely random and I’m going to share this glorious list of items with you, for your entertainment (of course).

#1: You’re Getting Old. This is both an awful truth and the name of the site. You simply enter in your birth date and voila! Details about how long you’ve been on this earth and some rando events that happened since you graced the world with your presence.

#2: GeoGuessr. This is a fabulous time suck for those amused by locations and quizzy items. You are shown a Google Maps styled area that could be anywhere in the world. You can explore some and you have to try to figure out where you’ve been placed. Sometimes the answers are obvious, sometimes they seem obvious. Fabulously entertaining for the strange folks like me, your humble blogging librarian.

#3 Hacker Typer. This is a weird one. Have you ever wanted to look like one of those fancy hackers in the movies? Well, now you can!! You can type anything…anything whatsoever…and it will generate what appears to be random hacking code. Fun stuff.

#4 Find The Invisible Cow. That’s what you do. Somewhere on this blank white page there is a cow (or goat if you play enough times…and perhaps others, I only tested it a few times). It’s not just moving your mouse over the page though. It’s like a “hot-cold” game with some dude saying “cow” over and over in varying tones based on how close you are. If he’s screaming, you’re close. Stupidly amusing.

#5 idaft. Are you a fan of Daft Punk? Have you ever wanted to be one of the guys? Well, have I got a page for you! This fancy little page interacts with your keyboard and basically lets you do the whole “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” song. Amusing.

#6 Incredibox. This is a fun place to kill about…a day. You get 7 dudes to use to make different beats, songs, diddys, whatever. All told you have 20 different noises to choose from some beats, some vocals…you get the idea. If you match up your creation to the ones programmed in, you get to watch a special treat. Oh…and you can record your creations. Fun!

#7 Run Pee. Yes…you read that right. It’s a site that will tell you when you’re safe to take a tinkle break during the movie of your choosing. Naturally, not every movie is on the list, but most stuff currently in theaters has made the page!

#8 Does the Dog Die. Another movie helper site. On this one you can search out your pet themed movies to see if the dog does in fact die. It’s a fabulous page for people like me, who can’t bear watching a beloved pooch perish. Apparently this does not apply just to dogs, but to pets in general. It will also let you know if a pet is injured.

#9 Whale. This page doesn’t actually have a name, so I’m calling it Whale…because that’s all that really is. It’s a killer whale that will follow your mouse around the page. It’s stupid, but amusing. Plus, It’ll kill a few minutes while you try to make it miss.

#10 Pointer Pointer. This is another fairly stupid, but ingenious little site. You move your pointer around (giving it time to think, of course) and it will generate a photo of people (or something) pointing at, or very near, your pointer. Silly.

#11 Akinator. This one has made its rounds about the interwebs fairly recently, but just in case you missed him…Akinator is the web genius/genie. You pick a real or fictional character (in your head) and answer his questions…and he’ll figure it out. It’s pretty surprising really. He’ll usually get it in about 20 questions or so. Apparently Mr. Bean is a befuddling choice if you don’t know too much about Mr. Bean…took him 56 guesses and he still came up with Rowan Atkinson instead of Mr. Bean specifically.

So…there are 11 silly internet goodies to on which you can kill some pretty serious time. These are in no particular order, and you may not find them nearly as amusing as I did, but give them a try just in case!

Have a wonderful week Avila, and stay tuned! I’ll be blogging from VEGAS in a few days!

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Summer and Reading!

I certainly hope everyone is enjoying the summer so far! I know those of us at the library have been enjoying it when we can. Our director just returned from a garden tour of England and the circulation manager just returned from a mission trip to Cuba! I, your friendly neighborhood blogging librarian, will be heading to Las Vegas (Vegas Baby!) to attend the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference; I’ll be hanging out with a bazillion (number slightly exaggerated) in Vegas…this could be interesting.

Any hoo…In library news: We’ve adopted a stray stuffed bunny. The blue-ish bunny was left outside our temporary housing in Avila Hall just after the end of spring semester and appeared to have been run over. We found this rather disturbing and brought him in, washed him up, and now he’s doing just dandy. He’s gone on many adventures already since the beginning of May, mostly to check things out around campus. His most recent adventure is a trip to Texas with our part-time assistant Elisabeth for a cataloging class. He’s been a little shy down there, but we’ve received a couple pictures which will be posted on Facebook soon. If you’re interested in Jack’s story, please check our Facebook Page! He’ll be sending a friend with me to Vegas, and I do believe a friend of his went to Cuba. 🙂  Other news: We’re still in our temporary housing in Avila Hall. In fact, we’ll be camping out down here until mid-August! As far as we have been told, the library construction/renovation project is moving quickly and smoothly as well as the other projects on campus (yay more parking!). Finally, We’ve received news that our campus internet may (*fingers crossed*) be changing to…Google Fiber! If all goes as planned, we’ll be hooked up to the new Google-y juice for the fall semester. Huzzah!

On top of bringing you good tidings and a library update, I popped on to our little blog to send out some reading suggestions. These are all about what I’ve been reading and think many of you would probably get a kick out of (I’m looking at you 20 something women-folk!). These are in a particular order…Yeah, I’m ranking them. Here are 5 books to help you survive the summer:

#1  Cinder by Marissa Meyer. This is the first book in the “Lunar Chronicles” series. The front cover (for most copies) shows a foot with bionic looking parts in a red shoe…and gives you only one minor clue to what is going on in this story. Yes, there is a cyborg and her name is Cinder. Cinder spends her time serving the needs of her stepmother and sisters working as a mechanic (and around the house like a slave) in New Beijing. The future is a new place, with androids, cyborgs (with no rights, of course), a quickly spreading and very deadly plague, and people living on the moon called Lunars. It’s an exciting retelling of (you guessed it…) Cinderella. Pick it up, and if you enjoy it, there are already two more books in the series available (the fourth is due out in 2015): Scarlet and Cress.

#2 Dorothy Must Die by Daniell Paige. Yes, another retelling, but this seems to be the summer of retellings so it’s cool (Maleficent is magnificent if you’ve got some cash to spare, btw). This retelling is not a reworking of the original story, but a story that grew from the first. Some parts of the story you know have changed and this time Dorothy is not the beloved, tornado traveling girl from Kansas. But…someone does come through via natural disaster: Amy Gumm (“Salvation Amy” to her enemies in high school). So similar and yet different from the Dorothy we’ve grown to love, Amy is dropped in OZ and sent on a mission: Dorothy Must Die. Seriously. She’s awful. It’s a story of Oz, magic, and perhaps a bit of romance. And…it’s going to be a series!

#3 The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Yes…really. I know it’s a killer for “feels” but it really is a great book. The story is all about teenager Hazel Grace and her encounters with cancer, Augustus Waters, an alcoholic author, and just life in general. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and sometimes you’ll do both at the same time, but it is worth it. If nothing else, it gives you a different glimpse into a world I hope you will never experience.

#4 The Serpent of Venice by Christopher Moore. If you’ve read any of his other books, you’ve probably become accustomed to his humor…snarky, vulgar, and just right. If you’ve never experienced Mr. Moore, this is a decent starting spot, though you’ll miss out on Pocket’s origin story. I, naturally, suggest  you read anything this man has written, though. Anyway, this story is a retelling/mash up (I know, again…) up The Merchant of Venice, the Cask of Amontillado, Othello, and a smattering of other works by Poe and Shakespeare. It’s very irreverent, but a hilarious and fun read. You follow Pocket on his adventures in Venice while acting as a messenger (with his loyal Jeff and Drool) of his queen. There is death, fighting, lying, and loving and you’ll giggle your way through the whole thing. Also…the outside of the pages is dyed blue, so that’s pretty nifty.

#5 Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs. The neat old pictures scattered throughout this book and it’s sequel (Hollow City) would be enough reason to read it, but the story itself is pretty cool. Sixteen year old Jacob thinks he just a normal kid whose grandfather is a little nutty. After his grandfather’s mysterious death, around which Jacob saw something “spooky”, Jacob sets off on a mission to figure out who exactly his grandpa was. Some hilarity ensues along with wonder and suspense as we follow him to a lonely island off the coast of Wales.

That’s all for now folks. I realize 80% of those books would be considered “teen”, but lets be realistic…they’re usually quick to read and some of those stories really are fabulous. These titles will entertain and enthrall and, if nothing else, help you kill a long summer afternoon or a dreary and rain soaked day.

Check back for library updates, more summer reading suggestions, and as always some random factoids about random things!

Happy Summer Avila & My Dear Readers!

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Summer Fun…Havin’ a Blast?

Graduation is Saturday(congrats grads!) which also means the school year is coming to a close. Many of Avila’s students will be heading home to spend the summer bingeing on Netflix, working summer jobs, and soaking up some vitamin D. So, in honor of summer’s fast approach I figured I would tell you, my faithful readers, some awesome things that you can do for fun this summer in Kansas City!

THE FREE OPTIONS:

  • Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (go check out the giant shuttlecocks)
  • Sample chocolate at Chip’s Chocolate Factory at Crown Center (note…this isn’t free if you purchase candies)
  • Go and see the fountains…there are tons around the city and sometimes on game days, they’ll dye the water!
  • Check out some of the prominent parks (Loose Park–for the gardens, or the Ewing and Muriel Kauffman Memorial Garden, for example)
  • Visit the Money Museum (and get free money!)
  • Explore the Central branch of the Kansas City Public Library. Check out the parking garage and the giant chess.
  • Bike the Trolley Trail
  • Window shop in Brookside, the Plaza, West Bottoms, and Historic Overland Park
  • Taste test each flavor of Glace Ice Cream until you can choose a favorite (not responsible for angry Glace workers…)
  • Take a tour of the Harley-Davidson factory
  • Visit the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Catch a freebie jazz show

UP TO $15 OPTIONS:

  • See the view (and learn some history) at the National World War I museum ($14 for adults. $7 World War Wednesday’s)
  • Tailgate at Kauffman Stadium (Parking is $11…you don’t necessarily have to go to the game to tailgate, but game tickets can be pretty cheap too).
  • Catch a Royals game (Hy-Vee specials and Student days offer deep discounts for tickets–as low as $8 a seat. They aren’t great seats, but you can still enjoy the game)
  • Enjoy a Skyscraper from Winstead’s, probably best with friends as they are HUGE (7.49 +tax).
  • Enjoy a fancy chocolate from Andre’s or Christopher Elbow’s (prices vary, expect about $3).
  • Camp at Watkin’s Woolen Mill ($8.50/night per space…it’s tent camping)
  • Explore Fort Osage ($7)
  • Visit the KC Zoo ($12.50 for adults [$5.50 if you are residents of Jackson or Clay counties] some free days)
  • Check out Science City and ride the bike across the high-wire! ($13.50 for SC, $6 for the planetarium)
  • Check out the Steamboat Arabia ($14.50)
  • Take a peek at baseball history at the Negro leagues Baseball Museum ($10)
  • See a show at the Alamo Drafthouse (Tickets are, at most 11.50 for a regular show, 3D is an extra $3.50 and special events may cost more. Real food and drinks are available in theater for an additional cost).

$16-UP OPTIONS:

  • Worlds of Fun! Go ride the roller coasters and if you’re up for a little added expense, visit Oceans of Fun while you’re there! (One day passes are 39.99 for adults, but deals and discounts pop up throughout the summer).
  • Build a giant LEGO tower at LEGOLand Discovery Center ($17, save 15% if you get your tickets online).
  • Visit the fish at Sea Life Kansas City ($19 with discounts for online ticket purchases).
  • Ride the world largest waterslide at the Schlitterbahn ($36.99. Save some cash for buying online).

VARYING PRICED OPTIONS

  • Catch a show or concert at a variety of beautiful and generally “nifty” venues scattered throughout the metro (the Midland Theater, Starlight Theater, Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, Off Center Theater, Power & Light, etc.). Prices vary by show and availability.
  • Barbeque! Kansas City is a bbq mecca for many and we’ve got a plethora of famous and hole-in-the-wall joints to get some great grub. Local and famous favorites include: Oklahoma Joe’s, Arthur Bryant’s, Jack Stack, Gates, and BB’s Lawnside BBQ.
  • Bask in the glory that is the soccer capital of America at a Sporting KC game (prices vary, but can be snagged for under $30 on occasion).
  • Eclectic dining experiences. We’ve got a little bit of everything in KC. Check out some of the patios and street vendors during some of KC’s prettiest months!
  • Shopping! From thrift stores and vintage to brand new and designer KC has it all. If you’re looking for the really fancy attire, check out the shops on the Plaza. Vintage boutiques and off the wall thrift stores often pop up in the shopping areas throughout the city.

So there you have it! Kansas City is FULL of fun and different things to do throughout the summer and many options are free! I for one hope to hit up the K for a Royals game and will definitely be nomming some BBQ! Anything on this list you want to try? Did I miss anything? Let us know! Comment here or tell us on Twitter: @Hooleybundschu #kcsummerfun!

With that, I wish you all the best of luck during finals week and to our many graduates, a hearty CONGRATULATIONS!

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The Day We Fight Back

Today is the day we fight back.

Seriously.

Businesses, organizations, and individuals are banding together today to “fight” back against NSA surveillance. Reminiscent of the SOPA/PIPA protests from a few years ago, this will take place largely on the web, but there will be public events held all over the world. This movement is called…

“The Day We Fight Back”TDWFBAvatar

If you are unaware of the whole NSA scandal/debacle, I will try an explain it as clearly as possible (and wonder under which rock you have been living). Briefly, the NSA (National Security Agency for the U.S.) apparently was collecting data from phone calls, texts, emails, and general internet use of citizens around the world, including Americans. This was all brought to light by Edward Snowden, a NSA employee who is now very much on the run. Snowden, leaked documents and information detailing the government surveillance and data collection. Further documents have come forth, implying they were getting data from technology giants like Verizon, Google, and Yahoo. There have also been whispers of businesses and organizations being tapped for information being held to an NDA (non-disclosure ‘agreement’), effectively disallowing them to speak about any of their dealings with the NSA. The government has yet to truly clear the air, and it is evident that there are differing opinions as to what to do about the leaks as well as how to handle situations like this going forward.

What does this mean for us? Well, it could mean nothing…we still don’t know the amount of data collected or from whom it was collected. Nor do we know who was targeted, if anyone specific. Many believe this is an invasion of privacy. People are, apparently, not too keen on anyone (let alone their own government) possibly getting a view of their text conversations or what sites they visit online. There is, understandably, some moral and ethical outrage. There have been suggestions of a very 1984-esque “Big Brother” operation.

This whole catastrophe has an effect on everyone, though, not just individuals. Libraries could be “asked” to provide personal information about patrons and would have no recourse for refusing. Google may have to turn over e-mail account information for their millions of users. No one knows how far this surveillance has already gone, nor do they know how far it could go if not contained now.

As your friendly blogging librarian, I am not asking you to pick any sides, but i am asking you to be knowledgeable about what this NSA ‘thing’ is all about and the effects it could have on you and the institutions you are a part of.

If you would like to join the ‘fight’, please visit this site to learn how to help.

If you would like to learn more about the leaks, the NSA, and the whole catastrophe in general, please visit these sites:

https://thedaywefightback.org/

http://www.nsa.gov/

https://www.eff.org/nsa-spying

http://www.districtdispatch.org/2014/02/heads-day-fight-back-feb-11th-day-action-surveillance-privacy-reforms/

http://www.cbsnews.com/feature/nsa-surveillance-exposed/

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Brief Explanation of the Interlibrary-Loan Process

Do you have a big ‘ole research project due this semester? Already doing major research and found an article that will be useful to you, but we don’t have access to it? You’re in luck! Avila University’s Hooley-Bundschu Library participates in the OCLC community, and therefore can request books and articles from lending libraries across the nation.

If you wish to “request” a book or article which you’ve found, you’ll need to go here and perform a search for your book or article to ensure that at least one lending library in the U.S. has a copy available. Next, you will need to go here and fill out the request form. As you fill it out, be sure you have included your e-mail address, as this is how we will contact once the materials have arrived and how articles will be delivered (you will receive a PDF or similar document type).

If you have been searching in an Ebsco database and located a document which is not available in full text through any of our databases, click the link that looks like this:

Request this item through Interlibrary loan

Once there, fill out all relevant information and in the “Cost Not To Exceed” section, mark it as $0.00. Once again, it is essential that you provide your e-mail address, as this is how the majority of articles will be delivered. Your library card # is your student ID#. Once all information has been filled in, click submit and a generated request will be sent.

ILL is a great option for students working on large research projects, particularly those looking for obscure materials. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee that your request will be accepted, nor can we give you a specific time frame for delivery. ILL (Interlibrary Loan) articles could be delivered next day or over a week later; ILL books usually arrive within about a week, but could take longer depending on the location and speed of the lending library.

If you need help requesting materials, or with any step of the process, please feel free to ask any of your friendly neighborhood librarians. Also, you are welcome to ask me any questions in the blog comments or through our Facebook and Twitter (@HooleyBundschu) accounts.

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Squirrel Appreciation Day

Do you know what today is? Do you even know how important it is? Folks, it is Squirrel Appreciation Day. This is a very serious occasion, which much be celebrated according to extremely strict traditions.

Yeah….no. But it really is Squirrel Appreciation Day so get out there and appreciate those little rodents for throwing acorns at your head all year. Squirrel Appreciation Day was created by Christy Hargrove, a wildlife rehabilitator, in 2001. In honor of this glorious day, here are the 10 most “interesting” facts about squirrels.

10) Squirrels have four front teeth that grow continuously, at a rate of about six inches a year.

9) A group of squirrels is called a “scurry” or “dray”

8) There are more than 300 different species of squirrel around the world.

7) The smallest squirrel is the “African Pygmy Squirrel”, clocking in at a whopping five inches from nose to tail. The largest is the “Indian Giant Squirrel”, which can reach lengths of three feet!

6) A squirrel’s brain is about the size of a walnut.

5) The lifespan of a squirrel can be up to 12 years…if they would just stop running in front of cars! Oh, and natural predators cause problems too.

4) Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, VA has a squirrel-y mascot: Gladys the Fighting Squirrel.

3) Squirrels can relocate their stored food because they have licked or rubbed on the spot it is hidden, thus “scenting” it for later location.

2) Squirrels communicate using a variety of shrill sounds. They also use their tail to convey certain information/emotion.

1) Squirrel’s could rule the world…for a little while at least. Twice they have stopped trading at NASDAQ when some squirrels chewed through power lines. One squirrel caused a lengthy blackout in Northern Virginia when it got in to substation equipment and caused a transformer to blow.

**Bonus**

Rocket J. Squirrel was created in 1959 by cartoonist Jay Ward and is one of the world’s most famous squirrels. If you don’t know who he is…try looking up his friend Bullwinkle Moose.

So,  a very happy Squirrel Appreciation Day to all. Go throw some extra sunflower seeds out for them and don’t give them too dirty of a look when they nail you in the head with the shells.

Want to know how I found out about squirrels…click here

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MLK Jr. at a Glance

Happy Birthday Martin Luther King Jr.

Monday we will be honoring one of our nation’s most respected civil rights leaders, Martin Luther King Jr. King worked wonders in all parts of the country, bringing people together to fight, peacefully, for equality for everyone. He is known best for his leadership in the peaceful protests in the south (mostly Alabama) and the march on Washington D.C., which paved the way for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

While I’m sure we all enjoy the day off work or school in his honor, we should probably take a moment to remember the man, not the free time. So, here are some “fun” facts about Mr. King

  • MLK Jr. Day is always observed on the 3rd Monday of January, due to its nearness to his actual birthday on January 15th.

  • His birth name was actually Michael Luther King, but had it changed to Martin.

  • King was a brilliant student, graduating from high school and entering Morehouse College at 15, receiving his Bachelor’s degree at 19, attending Crozer Theological Seminary for 3 years, and eventually receiving a graduate fellowship at Boston University from which he received a doctorate in 1955 (age 25).

  • His wife’s name is Coretta and he had four children: Yolanda, Martin Luther King III, Dexter Scott, and Bernice.

  • The first protest King “led” was the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Which was set in motion by Rosa Park’s act of defiance.

  • Until his death, King led the Southern Christian Leadership Conference which he helped found.

  • King got his ideas for peaceful protest after observing and participating in “sit-ins” and the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi

  • He was assassinated on April 4th, 1968 while standing on a hotel balcony in Memphis, TN. The shooter was James Earl Ray, who was caught and died in prison in 1998. King was there to participate in a labor strike for sanitation workers.

  • The “I Have a Dream” speech was given at the close of the March on Washington in the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial.

  • King received the Nobel Peace Prize for his works with civil rights in 1964. He was 35, making him the youngest person to have received this award.

  • Letter from Birmingham Jail” is just one of King’s many published works. He has at least 5 books published as well as numerous articles.

Where I looked.

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It’s National Bean Day!

Do you like beans? Sure hope so, because today is National Bean Day! Break out the legumes and…celebrate? There are hundreds of thousands of options when you are looking for a new favorite bean or legume; I would venture that there is a bean out there for every taste and those who say they hate beans just haven’t found theirs yet.

No one is quite sure why today (Jan. 6th) is National Bean Day, but some believe it is to commemorate the death of geneticist, Gregor Mendel, who was known for using bean and pea plants to test his inheritance theories. Mendel died on Jan. 6th, 1884.

If you’d like to celebrate, go out and find yourself some beans to cook up! My favorite is some kind of bean soup, which is super easy to make (beans, frozen veg, and broth). If you are opposed to the consumption of any bean, get crafty and make some fancy bean art like these folks:

Fun bean related fact: Beans are a fruit, not a vegetable. Thus the “old” tune: “Beans, beans the magical fruit”

This actually required some research, here is where I looked.

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I Resolve to _________ in 2014

Every December 31st, I’ll sit down for a brief moment and write down (or make a note in my phone) a few resolutions for the coming year. One year, I went so far as to make a post on an old blog and Facebook. Not surprisingly, I wasn’t exactly “successful” at most of these, if not all. The fantastic part is, that is typical. If you join me in the ranks of resolution makers and breakers, you are definitely not alone. Studies from last year are showing that only about 12% of resolution makers are able to keep them successfully throughout the year. The fun part? It turns out that the making, and subsequent breaking, of resolutions is far from a new “tradition”.

Resolution making has been around as long as the celebration of a New Year. The ancient Babylonians (the very same who are attributed with the earliest New Year’s parties) were said to have made promises to the gods (usually to pay off debts and return borrowed farming equipment) to earn their favor for the coming year. Sounds familiar, yes? I always make resolutions to save more, spend less, or throw more money at my student loan.

The idea of the resolution has grown, a bit, since ancient times and we’ve expanded what we resolve to do. Last year the top ten resolutions were: Lose weight, get organized, spend less/save more, enjoy life to the fullest, stay fit/healthy, learn something exciting, quit smoking, help others in their dreams, fall in love, and spend more time with family. About 45% of Americans make resolutions. We also break resolutions almost as if it were tradition too; the top ten broken resolutions are: lose weight/get fit, quit smoking, learn something new, eat healthier/diet, spend less/save more/debt reduction, spend more time with family, travel to new places, be less stressed, volunteer, and drink less. So…it would seem that the most popular resolutions to break are typically those most broken. But, some people are actually successful and have shared their keys to success.

According to researcher MIchael Kitchens (asst. professor of psychology), the key to success starts with your head. Limiting yourself to a few resolutions, being specific, or setting specific goals with and end will help. Also, if you’ve got a long term goal, such as weight loss, regular monitoring could be helpful. If you do have goals that require routines to stay focused, find ways to enjoy the routine and keep it lively (change parts of it up so you don’t get bored). If you get off track, get back on as soon as possible; it only gets harder the longer you are away from a routine. Finally, sometimes making it “public” can help motivate you and those you share it with will be more inclined to help you!

What are some of your resolutions?

Happy New Year, and good luck to you all with your resolutions!

My research is here!

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