Archive for January, 2009

13 Aliens/13 Shows

Thursday Thirteen #54

I’m doing things a little differently this week, just for fun. Below I’ve named thirteen aliens. It’s up to you to come up with the television show they’re from. (I’ll warn you that one is terribly obscure.) As you come up with the answers, I will post them and link to you. At the end of the day, all will be revealed. Sound like fun? Then let’s get started.

Edit: The answers have now been added. How did you do?

Name that Show:
1. Mork from Ork – Mork & Mindy (Ann)
2. The Doctor – Doctor Who (Janet)
3. Uncle Martin – My Favorite Martian (Janet)
4. Matthew Star – The Powers of Matthew Star
5. Yubi – Benji, Zax, and the Alien Prince (this is the obscure one I mentioned)
6. Neri – Ocean Girl/Ocean Odyssey (Australia/UK)
7. Ta’Ra – Something is Out There (byrningbunny)
8. George Francisco – Alien Nation (aneerietapestry)
9. Teal’c – Stargate SG-1 (aneerietapestry)
10. Chocky – Chocky/Chocky’s Children/Chocky’s Challenge (aneerietapestry)
11. Delenn – Babylon 5 (aneerietapestry)
12. Worf – Star Trek: The Next Generation/Deep Space Nine (Ann)
13. Max Evans – Roswell

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Newbery Winner

graveyard-book  I was  very excited yesterday when I read the news that Neil Gaiman’s  The Graveyard Book won the Newbery Award.  I love his books for both adults and children. 

The Graveyard Book is the Story of Nobody  Owens.  He is a normal boy, except for the fact that he lives in the graveyard and all his teachers and family are ghosts .  He has lots of adventures among the gravestones, and a few of them are scary.  However, the scariest thing in Bod’s life is what is outside the graveyard.  Outside the graveyard is Jack.  Jack is the man that killed his family.

Playful, whimsical, a little scary, and sometimes grim; The Graveyard Book is ultimately about growing up and making choices.

Request it here

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You may have heard about it on a talk show, or in the newspaper, but How to Talk to Girls by Alec Greven is not the gimmicky piece of fluff that you may think it is. The author may be only nine years old, but his advice is really quite solid. Although the book is aimed at boys his own age, guys of all ages would do well to mind some of the offered advice. (Girls can join me in hoping that he follows this book with “How to Talk to Boys.”) Here are a couple of quotes to show you what I mean.

“Sometimes, you get a girl to like you, then she ditches you. Life is hard, move on!”

“Pretty girls are like cars that need a lot of oil.”

“If you want to start a conversation with a girl, first you have to say something like “hi.” If she says “hi” back, you are off to a good start.”

Pretty accurate, eh? Alec distilled his advice from his observations of folks at his elementary school. (He notes that his observations “aren’t worldwide. I would have to do a lot more research for that.”) It would seem that his elementary school is a good control group, as I would hazard a guess that his advice is applicable at least across the USA, if not further.

How to Talk to Girls is a quick read that you will find yourself quoting to your friends. Kei Acedera’s illustrations are a perfect accompaniment to the text. So, if you would like some tips on behavior or a bit of commiseration if things don’t work out, give this book a try.

(place a hold here)

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Volunteer Opportunity: Connect @ the Library co-instructor

Work Location: Fremont Main Library
Dates: Various Saturdays, 2:00pm-3:30pm, April – November
Training: 4 hours required training prior to co-teaching a class
Time Commitment: 6 month commitment
Age: 18+

Position Description:
The Connect @ the Library co-instructor is responsible for helping to teach basic computer instruction classes to adult library users. Co-instructors will work jointly with a librarian in teaching hands-on computer instruction classes to groups of up to 12 adults. Classes are taught using existing curriculum, but volunteers may also be asked to help revise curriculum to better meet the needs of the adult students. Co-instructors will be responsible for helping to teach up to 4 introductory classes. Computer classes for 2009 include: Introduction to Computers, Introduction to the Internet, Creating and using an Email Account, Intro to Microsoft Word 2007, Intro to Excel 2007, and Intro to PowerPoint 2007.

Basic understanding of computers and the Windows environment and familiarity with Microsoft Office applications. Ability to work as a member of a team and to follow instructions. Ability to communicate instructional concepts in an easy to understand manner. Must enjoy working with the public and with adults of all ages and skill levels. Patience and a sense of humor are required.

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Thursday Thirteen #52

It was obvious to me that this week called for another list of 13 Presidents. So, here it is. I learn more about the former leaders of our country doing these lists…

13 More Presidents/13 Facts:
1. Thomas Jefferson (3rd President – 1801-1809) – Jefferson was 33 when he drafted the Declaration of Independence. He invented many things, including a swivel chair, but never patented any of them, believing that everyone should benefit from live-improving inventions.

2. James Madison (4th President – 1809-1817) – Madison was 5 feet, 4 inches tall, which makes him the shortest president so far. The White House was burned during his Presidency, as part of the war of 1812.

3. James Monroe (5th President – 1817-1825) – Apparently, Monroe was so popular that he ran unopposed for re-election. He died on Independence Day 1831.

4. Andrew Jackson (7th President – 1829-1837) – “Old Hickory” was the only president to serve in both the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. At his funeral, his pet parrot had to be taken away…as it was swearing too much.

5. Martin Van Buren (8th President – 1837-1841) – Van Buren was responsible for the Trail of Tears. He also loved to wear fine clothing and go about in an elegant coach…which did not endear him to the populous during the Panic of 1937.

6. John Tyler (10th President – 1841-1845) – He had 15 children. 15! He hired his eldest son to be Press Secretary, but ended up having to fire him for excessive drinking.

7. Zachary Taylor (12th President – 1849-1850) – Taylor’s nickname was Old Rough and Ready. He died of cholera after only 16 months as President.

8. Millard Fillmore (13th President – 1850-1853) – Fillmore installed the first running water bathtub in the White House as well as the first cast iron stove. He started school at 18…and ended up marrying his teacher.

9. Franklin Pierce (14th President – 1853-1857) – Pierce’s nickname was “Fainting Frank” because he once fainted after being in an accident on horseback that crushed his leg. This was when he was a general during the Mexican War. As you can tell, his men were not terribly impressed by his military prowess.

10. Abraham Lincoln (16th President – 1861-1865) – Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address while suffering from smallpox. He grew his beard at the suggestion of an 11 year old girl who told him that “ladies like whiskers.”

11. Andrew Johnson (17th President – 1865-1869) – Johnson was a tailor before going into politics. He vetoed a bill to enforce political and civil rights for southern blacks. Congress passed the bill with enough votes over his veto.

12. James Garfield (20th President – 1881) – Garfield was the first left-handed president. His presidency ended when he died after being shot in the back.

13. Chester A. Arthur (21st President – 1881-1885) – Arthur made government jobs competitive, and began requiring a written test for the positions. He owned more than eighty pairs of pants and employed a valet.

U.S. Presidents: Feats and Foul-Ups by Nell Fuqua

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Presidential Matters

We witnessed history in the making yesterday as Barack Obama became the nation’s 44th president. If you want more information about all things presidential check out these children’s books on the white house, the first ladies and more. Click on the book jacket to find the book in the library or place a hold.

so_you_want_presidentSo you want to be president by Judith St. George
white_house_historyThe White House : an illustrated history by Catherine O’Neill Grace
if_walls_could_talkIf the walls could talk : family life at the White House by Jane O’Connor
first_ladiesOur country’s first ladies by Ann Bausum
first_ladies_2First ladies by Amy Pastan
white_house_q_aWhite House Q & A by Denise Rinaldo
america_votesAmerica votes : how our president is elected by Linda Granfield
if_ran_presidentIf I ran for president by Catherine Stier

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Knit One, Purl Two: A Monthly Drop-In Knitting Circle

It’s a new year, and time to remind you all of Fremont Main Library’s informal knitting circle – Knit One, Purl Two. This is not a class, but if you have never knitted before, bring yarn and knitting needles and we’ll get you started.

On 21 January we will be meeting in the Van Doorn Room (to the left in the Lobby as you enter the Fremont Main Library building) from 7-8pm. Then, due to some scheduling conflicts (sorry, mea culpa), this program will be moving to the fourth Monday of each month. On each Monday, we will be meeting in Conference Room A (on the right hand side of the Lobby as you enter.)

Join us for conversation, and fun with the fiber arts!

Dates for 2009: 1/21, 2/23, 3/23, 4/27, (no meeting on 5/25 as it is a holiday), 6/22, 7/27, 8/24, 9/28, 10/26, 11/23, 12/28.

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The Presidents

In the United States, we move from one administration to another very smoothly.  Here is a video with some very  smooth transitions.

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A Tale of Two Rovers

The Mars Exploration Rovers called “Spirit” and “Opportunity” have been working hard long after their expected expiry date. They were sent to do a three month mission, and they continue on five years later, fighting everything from winter to a bad wheel. Every day that they continue gathering data brings us a tiny bit closer to understanding Mars. NASA celebrates their intrepid rovers with this video.

A Tale of Two Rovers:

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13 Facts about New Zealand

Thursday Thirteen #51

This week I’m back giving thirteen facts about a country, and I’ve chosen New Zealand. Perhaps this is because Stephen Fry is currently there filming something for the BBC. Perhaps not. Either way, I offer you thirteen random facts about this beautiful country. Please feel free to comment with facts of your own.

13 Random Bits of New Zealand Information:
1. A “Kiwi” is: A bird that is the national emblem of New Zealand, a type of fruit, a nickname for New Zealanders, and a nickname for the New Zealand Dollar on the stock exchange.

2. The official languages of New Zealand are: English, Maori, and New Zealand Sign Language

3. New Zealand’s Currency is the New Zealand Dollar (NZ$)

4. The national anthems of New Zealand are “God Defend New Zealand” and “God Save the Queen.”

5. The Lord of the Rings trilogy was filmed in New Zealand. The gorgeous views in the films are half of the reason that I want to vidsit the country. There are actually tours available that let you see where filming occurred.

6. There is an area in New Zealand called “The Catlins.” This is quite amusing to my family…as Catlin is my maiden name.

7. New Zealand is made up of two big islands and many small islands.

8. Weta isn’t just a NZ film effects company, it’s also a large New Zealand-based insect.

9. The highest point in New Zealand is Aoraki-Mount Cook. It’s 3,754 meters tall (12,316 ft).

10. As in Australia, Vegemite is very popular in New Zealand.

11. New Zealand gave women the right to vote in 1893. They were the first country in the world to do this.

12. The capital of New Zealand is Wellington.

13. New Zealand is a parliamentary democracy.

*CIA World Factbook – New Zealand
*Country Databases from aclibrary.org
*Official New Zealand Tourism Site
*World Book Encyclopedia 2009 v. 14 – N-O

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