Saturday, January 11, 2014

Four Top 25 Teams Resting on their Laurels So Far This NCAA Basketball Season


Duke lost to Clemson 72-59 today, but rest assured they'll still be ranked in the top 25 come Monday.

And what are the odds in the coaches poll?  Michigan State #3, Wisconsin #4.

Stay tuned.

Fifty Shades of Herpes



Library Copy Of 50 Shades Of Grey Tests Positive For Herpes & Cocaine. (Before It's News, 11/19/2013)

Photo credit:  KU Leuven

And even better, it's the strain of herpes  -- simplex type 1 -- that causes cold sores.

Now that you're relieved, listen to this musical Jan.



SUNDAYS!!!!! At the Los Angeles Public Library (Homage Promotion)



Jan C. Gabriel, 1940-2010: Drag-strip radio ad announcer famous for 'Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!' (Chicago Tribune, 1/13/2010)

Full throttle. A disc jockey who got his start doing sock hops, he had gained notice in racing circles with scintillating descriptions of the action at Santa Fe Speedway in Willow Springs. He read Christ's script once, and Cronen knew he had his man. "It was the excitement, the way he delivered that line. No one else was able to do that," Cronen said. "That's because he really loved racing."

Are You Represented by a Millionaire in Congress?

Congress is Now Mostly a Millionaires' Club.  (TIME, 1/9/2014)



Additional source:  Household wealth in the U.S.



Bill Baroni, a Regular Fred Astaire

Private emails, public statements and the gulf between the two in the Christie bridge scandal. (Newark Star-Ledger, 1/9/2014)

Photo credit:  Shawnco (via Wikipedia)

Related posts:
Let's look back to September 2013.  (1/11/2014)
Chris Christie & the I/Me/My's (Appearing with Word of the Day).  (1/11/2014)
"Refreshing Forcefulness": A Euphemism for "Misguided Bullying".  (1/9/2014)
The Chris Christie option:  No October surprise here.  (6/5/2013)
New Jersey's Gov. Christie does not love and value libraries. (5/20/2010)

How Stupid Does Joel Kleefisch Think We Are?

Wealthy divorced donor helped write controversial child-support bill.  (Wisconsin State Journal, 1/10/2014)

Joel Kleefisch thinks we are very stupid.  'I do a gamut of legislation with the help and assistance of many, many constituents, "Kleefisch said, "and whether they give a contribution or not has not made a difference."  



Four legislators have signed onto AB540.

The Assembly Committee on Family Law (Kestell is vice-chair) will hold a public hearing on the bill at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, January 15, 2014.

The George Washington Bridge Scandal: Let's Go Back to September 2013

From Retiring Guy's postcard collection

Bridge Jam's Cause a Mystery. (The Wall Street Journal, 9/17/2013)

Here are the facts as they are set forth in this article.
  1. Access lanes to the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, New Jersey (upper left section of postcard) reduced from 3 to 1.
  2. Fort Lee police and elected officials were not notified of the lane closures.
  3. No public announcement was made about the lane closures
  4. The official explanation:  The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is conducting a traffic study.
  5. Some high-ranking Port Authority officials were not aware of this "study".
  6. The lane closures were in place from Monday morning to Thursday morning, September 9-12. 2013.
  7. Port Authority Executive Director Patrick Foye ordered the lanes reopened due to public safety concerns.
  8. The lane closures resulted in "total gridlock", as described by Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich.
  9. Speculation arose that the lane closures might be retribution for Sokolich, a Democrat, not publicly endorsing Republican Governor Chris Christie in his re-elected bid.  (Quote:  Kevin Roberts, a spokesman for the Christie campaign, said that any notion that Mr. Sokolich faced retribution for not endorsing the governor was "crazy.")

What's missing from this list is any reaction from Governor Christie himself.

Don't you think, based on the traffic nightmare that resulted, that any engaged leader in his right mind would have interceded, ordering an immediate end to the "study" and offering an apology to everyone who was inconvenienced?

But Chris Christie, as we have learned, is a different kind of leader, and Kate Zernike counts the way.  ("Stories Add Up as Bully Image Trails Christie", The New York Times, 12/24/2013)

Related posts:
Chris Christie & the I/Me/My's (Appearing with Word of the Day).  (1/11/2014)
"Refreshing Forcefulness": A Euphemism for "Misguided Bullying".  (1/9/2014)
The Chris Christie option:  No October surprise here.  (6/5/2013)
New Jersey's Gov. Christie does not love and value libraries. (5/20/2010)

Chris Christie & the I/Me/My's (Appearing with Word of the Day)

According to Dana Milbank (New Jersey narcissist, Washington Post, 1/10/2014), Chris Christie talked a lot about himself during his nearly 2-hour press conference on Thursday, January 9.


Christie's Apology, Done His Way.  (The New York Times, 1/9/2014)

Working his way into the dictionary.   But Mr. Christie is not every other politician. He said “sorry” the Christie way: excessively, vaingloriously, in large, vivid and personal terms.


Related posts:
"Refreshing Forcefulness": A Euphemism for "Misguided Bullying".  (1/9/2014)
The Chris Christie option:  No October surprise here.  (6/5/2013)
New Jersey's Gov. Christie does not love and value libraries. (5/20/2010)

Friday, January 10, 2014

Books Sales Update as of October 2013

Trade Sales Slipped Through October.  (Publishers Weekly, 1/10/2014)


Adult Ebook Sales Flat in September and Year-to-Date.  (Digital Book World, 1/10/2014)

Column graph not the full picture.  That publisher ebook sales have basically been flat in 2013 has been a widely discussed trend in publishing circles. What is often left out of the discussion — though is being included more — is that the AAP report doesn’t include self-published titles and therefore doesn’t represent the entirety of ebook sales growth in the U.S.

Other ebook/reading-related posts:
The 24-hour news recycle: Mein Kampf edition.  (1/7/2014) 
Peering into the reader's mind.  (12/25/2013)
Booksellers hope print is on shoppers' gift lists.  (12/20/2013)
Survey sez: News of the death of print is greatly exaggerated.  (12/9/2013)
Not a Good Year on the Ebook Front for Barnes & Noble.  (11/29/2013)
Tell me again about ebooks ruling the publishing world.  (11/27/2013)
Other ebook market trendspotting confirms latest BISG report .  (11/1/2013)
Book Industry Study Group: "Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading" (Volume 4, 2013).  (11/1/2013)
Word of the day:  accretive.  (10/21/2013)
Survey sez: 72% of U.S. adults have read at least 1 book during the past 12 months.  (10/8/2013)
For years, many people asked the wrong question about ebooks and print books.  (10/6/2013) 
Ebook Flash Sales Grab Consumers' Attention.  (5/27/2013) 
BookStats 2013: It's not all about ebooks.  (5/15/2013)
Staying ahead of the learning curve.  (4/9/2013)
"Books are dead yet," sez Salon.  (3/21/2013)
Ebooks and the hype of emerging technology.  (1/8/2013)
Based on this column graph, print books are not likely to go away anytime soon.  (1/2/2013)
Printed books still lead ebooks by a significant margin.  (12/28/2012)
Ebook market pauses to take a breath.  (12/25/2012)
Year-to-date book revenues:  Jan-Jul 2011 and Jan-Jul 2012.  (11/1/2012)
Libraries get screwed when it comes to price of and access to ebooks.  (9/10/2012)
Millennials lead the way....to fewer bookstores?  (8/22/2012)
Ebooks sliding down the peak of inflated expectations.  (8/18/2012)
Adult hardcover book sales hold their own, paperbacks sales drop in 1st quarter of 2012.  (6/17/2012)
Library ebook circulation skyrockets @ the Greendale Public Library and throughout Wisconsin.  (5/29/2012)
In so many words:  Libraries will have a place at the table. (4/30/2012)
3M Cloud Library ebook lending service goes beta at select libraries.  (4/28/2012)
Pew Research:  The rise of e-reading, summarized. (4/5/2012)
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution attempts to get a handle on the ebook era.  (4/2/2012)
And I quote from "Bringing Up an E-Reader".  (3/29/2012)
The Philadelphia Inquirer editorial board weighs in on ebooks and libraries. (3/19/2012)
Carl Zimmer responds to Franzen.  (1/31/2012)
It's only Monday but this is still the best ebook headline of the week.  (1/20/2012)
Jonathan Franzen has something to say about ebooks.  (1/30/2012)
As they have been doing all along, libraries adapt to technology.  (1/29/2012)
Floating an Idea: The Harvard Library Innovation Laboratory's Library License.  (1/17/2012) 
Getting in line @ your library for ebooks.  (1/15/2012)
The Post-Christmas ebook sales surge. (1/10/2012)
Honey, we've been 'trying' it.  For years.  (12/25/2011)
Chris Bohjalian on our totemic connection to books.  (12/20/2011)
Hold that bricks-and-mortar bookstore obituary.  (12/13/2011)
Your local public library: The greenest option of all in the ebooks vs. print books debate.  (12/11/2011)
Go directly to Amazon, do not pass library.  (11/3/2011)
Ebooks in U.S. public libraries.  (10/22/2011)
How ebook buyers discover books.  (9/27/2011)
Cookbooks make the transition to digital publishing.  (9/27/2011)
Redefining what an ebook is and who gets to publish it. (9/19/2011)
The L.A.Times on ebooks: An Amazon tablet, push into interactivity. (9/16/2011)
The Economist:  "Great digital expectations".  (9/16/2011)
Lev Grossman presents a short history of the reading device..  (9/6/2011)
Speaking of gadgets, here's the latest iteration of ebooks.  (8/25/2011)
Sounds like another digital divide in the making.  (7/30/2011)
Libraries and ebooks:  Any book, not any time soon.  (6/1/2011)
On the distinction between the book reader and the book owner.  (5/10/2011)
Demand for ebooks grows exponentially in Wisconsin.  (5/2/2011)
Struggling to find an ebook common agenda between libraries and publishers.  (4/5/2011)
Ebooks and libraries:  "The challenges just keep piling up".  (3/28/2011)
Publishers Weekly tracks ebook sales.  (3/18/2011)
Word is getting out:  Ebooks @ your library.  (3/18/2011)
Ebooks continue to gain market share.  (3/17/2011)
Publishers look to bottom line in formulating ebook policies for libraries. (3/15/2011)
News stories on HarperCollins ebook decision go mainstream.  (3/5/2011)
9 years of book sales:  trade and ebook.  (2/17/2011)
Will ebook readers be wooed by Barbara Cartland?  (2/12/2011)
The impact of ebooks on libraries.  (2/11/2011)
OverDrive news release: Library eBook circs up 200% in '10. (1/10/2011)
Mashable: 5 ebook trends that will change the future of publishing. (12/29/2010)
Christmas 2010 the tipping point for ebooks?  (12/24/2010)
Ereader as brown paper bag.  (12/9/2010)
The ebook reader compatibility surprise.  (12/3/2010)
Ereader ownership:  Survey says....  (11/30/2010)
David Carnoy asks, "Does the Kindle pay for itself?" (11/29/2010)
Need to repair that ebook reader?  (11/19/2010)
Who uses an ereader:  Survey says....  (9/22/2010)
Book industry wrestles with print vs. pixels.  (9/2/2010)
Coming soon to a screen near you:  Ads in ebooks.  (8/20/2010)
Ebooks now comprise 8.5% of book sales. (8/12/2010)
Genre paperback publishers drops print.  (8/6/2010)
Ebooks and libraries.  (5/4/2010)
Ebooks eliminate a free form of adversiting:  the book jacket.  (3/31/2010)
Ebooks: another round of false promises?  (3/19/2010)
The skinny on ebooks.  (3/8/2010)
Hardcover vs. ebook:  Breaking down the costs.  (3/1/2010)

Getting out of Joint?

Language that has led to numerous Excedrin headaches.

Haass Library agreement dead? (Sussex Sun, 1/7/2014)

Lisbon stickin' to their guns. During nearly three years of negotiations, [Town chairman Matt] Gehrke has insisted that the town's share of library funding be reduced because, based on circulation figures, town residents use the library less than village residents.

Related articles: 
Pauline Haass library board 1, Town of Lisbon 0.  (1/3/2014)
Pauline Haass Public Library considers the cost of litigation.  (11/27/2013)
Sussex/Lisbon: Mediation fails, time to go to court.  (10/23/2013)
Town of Lisbon agrees to nonbinding arbitration with Pauline Haass.  (10/19/2013)
An uncertain funding picture for the Pauline Haass Public Library.  (10/11/2013)
This land is my land, this land is my land.  (9/12/2013)
Sussex-Lisbon library agreement still appears to be more "if" Than "when".  (8/22/2013) 
Still following the Sussex-Lisbon library talks -- since 2010.  (8/6/2013) 
Following a brouhaha over a "most objectionable 3-page letter," library talks to resume between Sussex and Lisbon.  (5/27/2013)
A most objectionable 3-page letter.  (5/10/2013)
Dear Greg; Love, Lisbon Town Board.  (4/27/2013)
Perhaps Pauline Haass is spinning in her grave.  (3/18/2013)
What a long strange trip it's been.  (2/13/2012)
Dueling news releases.  (10/7/2012)
Town of Lisbon wants deep discount in payment for library services.  (9/30/2012)
As the world of joint library agreements turns.  (8/22/2012)
The beat goes on.  (7/2/2012)
Joint library negotiations continue.  (5/13/2012)
Jane Stadler on Paying Taxes: "...it is something that you do because you're part of the community.  (11/26/2011)
Lisbon town chair not likely to get his way on Pauline Haass Library funding. (11/22/2011)
Lisbon Town chair advocates paying for library services on the cheap.  (11/22/2011)
The challenges of shared governance and funding.  (9/28/2011)
Consensus building for new joint library agreement.  (7/22/2011)
Sussex, Lisbon:  Local politics and library negotiations.  (5/28/2011)
Negotiation to continue after information-gathering process.  (10/8/2010)
And the beat goes on.  (10/4/2010)
Differences of opinion of library funding continue.  (9/18/2010)
Leaders of Village of Sussex, Town of Lisbon clash over funding for library. (8/26/2010)
Will annexation resolution interfere with negotiations over joint library agreement?  (8/4/2010)
Proposal to change library funding formula gets cool reception.  (6/7/2010)
Town of Lisbon Chairman proposes new funding formula for library.  (5/31/2010)

When Bill Cosh Sez "Sound Science", He's Speaking in Code

Leaked DNR report says mine poses threats to human health, water. (Wisconsin State Journal, 1/10/2014)

Bill Cosh is a Department of Natural Resources spokesman.


The Fraud of "Sound Science".  (AlterNet, 5/12/2004)

Speaking in code.  The Bush administration has invoked "sound science" on issues ranging from climate change to arsenic in drinking water, virtually always in defense of a looser government regulatory standard than might otherwise have been adopted. In this sense, "sound science" seems to mean requiring a high burden of proof before taking government action to protect public health and the environment.

Sounds to me a lot like a certain strategy in Wisconsin's mining debate.

The Center for Media and Democracy SourceWatch.  Sound Science.

The phrase has even been incorporated into the title of a bill in the U. S. House of Representatives.


Don't worry.  The bill  has a 14% chance of being voted out of committee and 2% chance of being enacted.




The MacIver Institute's Pavlovian Response to an Increase in the Minimum Wage

MacIver Institute Increase in Minimum Wage Will Hurt, Workers Lead to Job Losses.  (1/10/2014 news release)

Makes you wonder how the Texas economy does so well when it has one of the highest percentages of workers who are paid at or below the federal minimum wage.
  1. Idaho 7.7%
  2. Texas 7.5%
  3. Oklahoma 7.2%
  4. Louisiana 7.1%

Characteristics of Minimum Wage Workers 2012


The federal minimum wage has increased 10 times since 1979.


Related posts: 
The view from the other side of the counter.  (11/29/2013)
The minimum wage and the poverty guideline.  (11/20/2013)
Most of us don't buy into U.S. Chamber of Commerce handwringing over minimum wage.  (11/12/2013)
A look at the minimum wage.  (9/28/2013)

Thursday, January 9, 2014

A Statistical Look at Madison, Wisconsin: Postal Receipts (1921-1950)


Not included in the line graph.  



This version of the song, the first to chart on Billboard, reached #5 in May 1935.

Yes, I visited the Madison Central Library yesterday.

"Refreshing Forcefulness": A Euphemism for "Misguided Bullying"



Christie’s Carefully Devised, No-Nonsense Image in Peril. (The New York Times, 1/8/2014)

George Washington Bridge lane closures.   The episode is tricky for Mr. Christie and his aides. His cantankerous manner and independent streak are essential to his White House ambitions; advisers view them as an asset in early primary states like New Hampshire that have a history of embracing blunt-talking politicians.

In the print edition, the story continues on page A17 under the headline, "Carefully Cultivated, Governor's No-Nonsense, Bipartisan Image is Imperiled.


Related posts:
The Chris Christie option:  No October surprise here.  (6/5/2013)
New Jersey's Gov. Christie does not love and value libraries. (5/20/2010)

Doris Musante (1939-2013) Warren High School Class of 1958

Warren Times Observer obituary

1958 Warren High School Dragon yearbook

Also in the picture....

Pace's -- James Alexander Morrison -- was a popular Italian restaurant on Warren's west end.  The 1968 Dragon editorial staff could have easily put the same words next to my senior picture. These three friends -- Mardi, Barb, and Joan; the West End Girls -- with whom I remain in contact with 46 years later, lived within easy walking distance of the restaurant, though I doubt if we ever walked there back in high school.



Doris was the 29th most popular baby name for girls in 1939, 22 positions lower than its 1926-28 peak at #7.  The name spent 10 years in the top 10 (1924-1933) and 22 years in the top 25 (1917-1938.  During the mid-1960s, Doris quickly started to fall out of favor and, despite a few efforts to revive herself in the 1980s, fell off the list of top 1000 names after 1992. 


This instantly tiresome novelty song was a big hit when the class of '58 graduated.

Republicans Tell Just Half of the Story When Trumpeting Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)

Dale Kooyenga (R-Brookfield) news release (12/14/2012)
It's their annual holiday Christmas message.
Editorial:  Here's why voters need to be informed. (Eau Claire Leader Telegram, 1/9/2014)

The ups and down of accounting.

Things are looking up.  The $759.2 million surplus is reached by referring to the state's Annual Fiscal Report (AFR). That report uses cash accounting to summarize revenues and spending in the state general fund for the fiscal year ending the previous June 30, Berry explained.   

Things are looking down.  The $1.73 billion deficit is arrived at by using the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, which uses something called generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP).  [Emphasis added]

As the editorial notes, Republicans will focus on the good news, the green highlight, as does Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Burlington) in his online newsletter.

Rep. Nygren (R-Marinette), co-chair of the Joint Committee on Finance, also skirts the red issue but eagerly gives a shout-out to GAAP.

Yes, the Republicans are definitely "on message".

Granted, the deficit has been reduced from $3.0 billion in 2011 to $1.73 billion in 2013, but even with their fervent worship at the altar of GAAP, Republicans are not likely to use the number highlighted in red in any of their public conversations.

And that is what concerns the Leader Telegram editorial board.  Just telling half of the story.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Separated at Birth: Fred Thompson and Foghorn Leghorn

Twin masters in the use of cornpone, countrified expressions.





Alternative title. Fred Thompson: Everything I know I learned from Foghorn Leghorn.

The Municipal Group, Springfield, Massachusetts (Now In Its 2nd Century)

A postcard view from the mid-1950s

Spirit of Springfield announces 100-year anniversary celebration of City Hall, Symphony Hall, Campanile.  (Masslive, 10/4/2013)

A photo taken in September 1980 (portrait)

A photo taken in September 1980 (landscape)

Photo credits:  Retiring Guy (before he was Retiring Guy)


They Fact-Check at Fox News?

Biography Casts Critical Light on Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes.  (The New York Times, 1/7/2014)

An unnamed Fox News spokesperson is quoted.


Here's the cover of the book that escaped Fox News's fact-checking.


No bibliographic record in LINKcat.

Headline Shocker!!


One of the 4 -- just 4? -- companies charged with deceptive marketing of weight-loss products.



And I  quote.  "You may have read about Sensa in the New York Times and TIME magazine, or seen it on Dateline NBC."

Oh yeah, Dayna, we've read about it.  Just today, in fact.

Suckers.  Still being born every minute.  From the back pages of the July 1951 issue of Woman's Home Companion*.   A DIRECT approach.


*Which features a cover story on "mixed marriages" -- the kind where a Catholic marries a Lutheran, for example.  (Hey, I have one of those.)  Not generally recommended, sez the author. My, how times have changed.

Warren Pennsylvania Notables and Where They Lived (The Eddy-Frycklund House)

Location:  407 Liberty Street (between 4th and 5th)

Date of construction:  1871.  (It was the first house to be built on this block.)

Style:  Italianate, as identified by
  1. low-pitched roof
  2. wide, overhanging eaves
  3. cornice with decorative brackets (under eaves)
  4. tall, narrow windows
  5. single-story porches

Photo credit:  Retiring Guy (October 2008)

James Hood Eddy was born on November 11, 1814 in Pine Grove township, Pennsylvania.  He was the 5th of 8 children of Zechariah and Rose Eddy.  The family moved to Warren around 1819.

James Eddy married Hannah Hook, and they had 5 children:  3 daughters and 2 sons, all of whom were raised in the house pictured above. (Beautifully maintained, I might add.)

Eddy served as president of the First National Bank from 1880 to 1885.  He was also a member of the Warren City Council for 8 terms.

Eddy ancestors John and Samuel were among those who landed at Plymouth in 1630.

Related posts:
Falconer-Smith House.  (1/5/2014)
Siggins-Smith House.  (1/4/2014)
Mansion House.  (1/3/2014)
The Morck-Morrison house.  (1/1/2014)
Six degrees of Reverend Nelson.  (12/31/2013)
The Physicians' Building.  (12/30/2013)
C. W. Stone.  (12/28/2013)

The Most Unsurprising News Story of 2014 (So Far): Liz Cheney Drops Out of Wyoming Senate Race



Sounding rather hollow right now.  "Hi, I'm Liz Cheney.  Over the last several years, citizens across our great state have urged me to consider running for the Senate in 2014.  As I've traveled to every corner of Wyoming, seeing old friends and meeting new, I've been honored to have the chance to speak to so many of you about your concerns, your fears, and your hopes for the future. I've listened carefully and discussed the possibility of running for office at length with Phil and the kids.  Today I am launching my candidacy for the United States Senate."

So she announced on July 16, 2013.

176 days later, Liz mercifully aborts the mission.

Popular Incumbent and Policy Mismatch Hobble a Campaign.  (The New York Times, 1/6/2014)

Website headline: For Cheney, Realities of a Race Outweighed Family Edge.

How far and how often does Liz Cheney go wrong?

Jonathan Martin counts the ways.
  1. She hadn't lived in Wyoming for many years.
  2. The incumbent, Michael Enzi, is a well-liked and effective legislator.
  3. Her hawkish views on foreign policy are now out of step with today's reality.
  4. Her pandering to the base on gay marriage resulted in a public disagreement with her sister.
  5. She thought her name would count for something.
  6. Her election strategy was based on pie in the sky.  (RG rants.  Which seems to betray the observation that she is "no political novice".  So what if she was a "top-ranking official in the Bush State Department."  Her dad was the Vice President, some might say the de facto Presidentfor crying out loud.  Sounds like a blatant case of nepotism to me.  A "cold-eyed" realist would have never made such a series of blunders.  Guess it's back to Fox News, where she belongs.)

Health issues?   In an October poll, Michael Enzi led Liz Cheney by 52 percentage points -- 69% to 17%

Related post:

A Look at the New Billings Public Library



The new Billings Public Library in pictures. (KTVQ, 1/6/2014)

The new library opened yesterday.

Dedication takes place on Saturday, February 1.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The Oshkosh Public Library: Scenes from Early March 1981

Scene 1.  The 1900 original (groundbreaking took placed in the spring of 1899) and the 1960s "wrap-around" addition.  The photo looks as though it was taken in the middle of State Street on a very quiet day in downtown Oshkosh.  (You can read about the history of the Oshkosh Public Library here.)



Scene 2.  A sideways view of Sawyer, with the First National Bank building looming in the background.   (You can read a commemorative history of the Oshkosh Public Library lions here.)


Scene 3.  OK, who's the weisenheimer who put a stick in Sawyer's mouth?  Could it have been?  Well, you don't see it in the above photo, do you?  And it's obvious from the base (snow and shadows) that the photos were taken during the same "shoot".


Scene 4.  An interior view from the mezzanine.  Look at the range of card-catalog drawers, organized by author, title, and subject.  (Are those white, blue, and yellow labels, or just the effect of light and shadow?)


Note:  I just digitized these slides with one of my 2013 Christmas presents.  Yes, the instructions are terrible -- surprise! surprise! -- but I'm generally pleased with the quality of the results.

The 24-Hour News Recycle: Mein Kampf Edition

Why Is Hitler’s Mein Kampf Topping eBook Charts? (TIME, 1/7/2014)

Still not sure if it adds up.    The number of different editions available–Amazon sells 6 ebook versions of Mein Kampf alone–coupled with the increased popularity of ebooks has also boosted sales.

Actually, I stopped after finding 7 versions.


According to Theresa Ragan's "Sales Ranking Chart",  an Amazon sales ranking of 50,000 to 100,000 translates into about 1 sale per day.  1.  O-n-e.

And here's what I found at CNET.   It's from March 19, 2009.


Scott Walker's "Unintimidated" to Fall Off a Cliff

Best performance: #181 on day 3.

Scott Walker's been called many things, but "best-selling author" isn't one of them.


Sadly, some of Scott's fans don't realize that the party is over.  (Only four 2-, 3-, and 4-star reviews during this time period.)


Other Unintimidated posts:
Some reviewers fawning all over themselves.  (12/31/2013)
What's your favorite version of "Going Down" on this snowy Wisconsin New Year's Eve? (12/31/2013)
Christmas was not kind to Scott Walker on Amazon. (12/26/2013)
Climbing into 2014 conversation.  (12/24/2013)
Some Republicans ordering last-minute gifts via Amazon (Drones not ready yet).  (12/24/2013)
Scott Walker's "Unintimidated": 4 weeks of tepid rankings and opposing viewpoints on Amazon.  (12/172013) It's been a roller-coaster sales ride since Scott Walker's "Unintimidated" peaked on its 3rd day of publication.  (12/10/2013) 
Dear V S, Thanks for your fake review of Scott Walker's "Unintimidated".  (12/6/2013)
Scott Walker's "Unintimidated" book review parties seem to be over.  (12/6/2013)
"Unintimidated" book reviewers running out of steam?  (12/5/2013)
A variation on a theme: Like little Mighty Mice coming to their hero's rescue.  (12/4/2013)
In one day: Fans of Scott Walker "Unintimidated" to post 115 five-star reviews on Amazon.  (12/3/2013)
Scott Walker's Fans Accuse "Union Thugs" of Writing Fake Reviews of "Unintimidated", Then Do Likewise.  (12/2/2013)
Scott Walker "Unintimidated" by roller coaster ride on Amazon.  (11/28/2013)
Scott Walker "Unintimidated" to peak early on Amazon during first week of book's publication.  (11/26)
On day 6, Scott Walker's "Unintimidated" reverses course, but the bad reviews keep rolling in.  (11/24/2013)
Day 5: Scott Walker's "Unintimidated" experiences that overnight sinking feeling. (11/24/2013) 
Day 4: Scott Walker Unintimidated As his book slowly slip slides away.  (11/23/2013)
On day 3, Scott Walker Unintimidated to tread water.  (11/22/2013)
On day 2, "Unintimidated" Shows Sales Momentum, but Reviews Still Split.  (11/21/2013)
Day one:  Amazon's best-selling books "Unintimidated" by Scott Walker.  (11/19/2013)
Once again, Scott Walker is unintimidated by the facts.  (11/2/2013)
Unintimidated by the facts.  (10/28/2013)

Beaty Junior High School: No Longer "Just Above the Dam"

No, the school hasn't moved.  And it's now called Beaty-Warren Middle School.

I don't know if Beaty still has the same alma mater, but the one that we sang way back when started out....

On the banks of the Conewango,
Just above the dam.

Well, the dam was removed in 2009, and it certainly has changed the look of the creek.

Before the dam was removed.  (Photo taken from the Pennsylvania Avenue bridge in October 2008.)




Not from the exact same angle, but you definitely see more "bottom" 5 years later. (September 2013)



The Water Street perspective:  "On the banks of the Conewango, just above the dam." (October 2008)



"On the banks of the Conewango," just above where the dam used to be.  (Photo taken in September 2013)



When it happened: 
Coming out:  Removal of low-head Conewango Creek dam to start Monday.  (Warren Times Observer, 9/11/2009)
Clam saves dam....again.  (Dunkirk Observer, 9/15/2009)
Conewango dam reduced to rubble.  (Warren Times Observer, 9/26/2009)

And, of course, there's the obligatory YouTube video.



Related posts:
Do they see me when I'm sleeping?  Do they know when I'm awake?  (1/7/2014)
"Hail to Thee", Beaty Junior High School.  (5/16/2009)

Do they see me when I'm sleeping? Do they know when I've awake? (Another Beaty Junior High School Blogpost)

In the first case, I certainly hope not.  Probably so, in the second case.

Why am I going in this direction?

Spotify offered the following musical suggestion this morning.


Yes, I was a teenager, having turned 13 in October 1962.   "The End of the World" reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the week ending March 23, 1963.  It spent 6 weeks in the top 10 and charted for 17 weeks overall.



The school that I attended sat, "stately and so grand", on the eastern bank of the Conewango Creek in Warren, Pennsylvania, "just above the dam".

Photo credit:  Retiring Guy (October 2008)

The thing we carried.  (At least some of us, and for awhile.)

The cover (4" x 6")

The "centerfold"




Want to know more?
"Hail to Thee", Beaty Junior High School.

How to Waste a Shitload of Money



$18 billion would keep Asian carp out of Great Lakes. (USA Today, 1/6/2014)

That's the most expensive and time-consuming option.  The options range from taking no new action — a suggestion Stabenow and Camp rejected out of hand — to those creating a physical separation at the edge of Lake Michigan, which the Corps estimates would take 25 years to complete and cost as much as $18 billion in its most drastic form. It also would cause the greatest cost impact on commercial cargo.

The Asian carp species, it appears, is on a much different timetable.  In fact, there are some reports that it has already found its way into the Great Lakes.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.  Region 3 -- Great Lakes/Big Rivers.
Asian Carp -Aquatic Invasive Species Issues, Program Accomplishments, and Program Needs.

Kmart, the Closing Place



Sears Holdings Corp. to close 3 more Kmart stores in Wisconsin, eliminate over 300 jobs. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 1/6/2014)

According to the article, there were 28 Kmarts and 15 Sears stores in Wisconsin at the beginning of 2013.

The actual and planned closings since then:
  1. Kmart.  Brookfield.  December closing.
  2. Sears.  Racine Regency Mall.  January closing.
  3. Kmart.  Fort Atkinson.  January closing.
  4. Kmart.  Greenfield.  Liquidation sale begins Sunday, January 12.  Mid-April closing.
  5. Kmart.  Hales Corners.  Liquidation sale begin Sunday, January 12.  Mid-April closing.
  6. Kmart.  Portage.   Mid-April closing.
The Oshkosh Kmart closed years ago.

1962:  The "discount department store" concept takes hold.

The first Kmart opened in Garden City, Michigan, in 1962.

The first Target opened in Roseville, Minnesota, on May 1, 1962.

The first Walmart opened in Rogers, Arkansas in 1962.

The #1 song when Target opened its first store.

MoneyTalks Provides a Host of Reasons to Visit Your Public Library


7 Reasons to Rediscover Your Public Library. (MoneyTalks News, 7/24/2013)

Thanks to the Cedar Rapids Public Library for recently sharing the link to this article and video on Twitter.  I missed it the first time around.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Dear Eoin and Chris, No need to get hysterical.

Ebooks are simply settling in.

We slid down the peak of inflated expectations and working our way to a plateau of productivity. Just as you see in this illustration of the technology hype cycle.


Nobody is talking about a perilous future for ebooks. Nobody is trying to lie with statistics. There is no conspiracy afoot.

Word for Word: Don’t buy the myth about ebook slump. (The Irish Times, 1/4/2014)

Think e-book sales are slumping? Think again. (TeleRead, 1/6/2014)

Other ebook/reading-related posts:
Booksellers hope print is on shoppers' gift lists.  (12/20/2013)
Survey sez: News of the death of print is greatly exaggerated.  (12/9/2013)
Not a Good Year on the Ebook Front for Barnes & Noble.  (11/29/2013)
Tell me again about ebooks ruling the publishing world.  (11/27/2013)
Other ebook market trendspotting confirms latest BISG report .  (11/1/2013)
Book Industry Study Group: "Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading" (Volume 4, 2013).  (11/1/2013)
Word of the day:  accretive.  (10/21/2013)
Survey sez: 72% of U.S. adults have read at least 1 book during the past 12 months.  (10/8/2013)
For years, many people asked the wrong question about ebooks and print books.  (10/6/2013) 
Ebook Flash Sales Grab Consumers' Attention.  (5/27/2013) 
BookStats 2013: It's not all about ebooks.  (5/15/2013)
Staying ahead of the learning curve.  (4/9/2013)
"Books are dead yet," sez Salon.  (3/21/2013)
Ebooks and the hype of emerging technology.  (1/8/2013)
Based on this column graph, print books are not likely to go away anytime soon.  (1/2/2013)
Printed books still lead ebooks by a significant margin.  (12/28/2012)
Ebook market pauses to take a breath.  (12/25/2012)
Year-to-date book revenues:  Jan-Jul 2011 and Jan-Jul 2012.  (11/1/2012)
Libraries get screwed when it comes to price of and access to ebooks.  (9/10/2012)
Millennials lead the way....to fewer bookstores?  (8/22/2012)
Ebooks sliding down the peak of inflated expectations.  (8/18/2012)
Adult hardcover book sales hold their own, paperbacks sales drop in 1st quarter of 2012.  (6/17/2012)
Library ebook circulation skyrockets @ the Greendale Public Library and throughout Wisconsin.  (5/29/2012)
In so many words:  Libraries will have a place at the table. (4/30/2012)
3M Cloud Library ebook lending service goes beta at select libraries.  (4/28/2012)
Pew Research:  The rise of e-reading, summarized. (4/5/2012)
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution attempts to get a handle on the ebook era.  (4/2/2012)
And I quote from "Bringing Up an E-Reader".  (3/29/2012)
The Philadelphia Inquirer editorial board weighs in on ebooks and libraries. (3/19/2012)
Carl Zimmer responds to Franzen.  (1/31/2012)
It's only Monday but this is still the best ebook headline of the week.  (1/20/2012)
Jonathan Franzen has something to say about ebooks.  (1/30/2012)
As they have been doing all along, libraries adapt to technology.  (1/29/2012)
Floating an Idea: The Harvard Library Innovation Laboratory's Library License.  (1/17/2012) 
Getting in line @ your library for ebooks.  (1/15/2012)
The Post-Christmas ebook sales surge. (1/10/2012)
Honey, we've been 'trying' it.  For years.  (12/25/2011)
Chris Bohjalian on our totemic connection to books.  (12/20/2011)
Hold that bricks-and-mortar bookstore obituary.  (12/13/2011)
Your local public library: The greenest option of all in the ebooks vs. print books debate.  (12/11/2011)
Go directly to Amazon, do not pass library.  (11/3/2011)
Ebooks in U.S. public libraries.  (10/22/2011)
How ebook buyers discover books.  (9/27/2011)
Cookbooks make the transition to digital publishing.  (9/27/2011)
Redefining what an ebook is and who gets to publish it. (9/19/2011)
The L.A.Times on ebooks: An Amazon tablet, push into interactivity. (9/16/2011)
The Economist:  "Great digital expectations".  (9/16/2011)
Lev Grossman presents a short history of the reading device..  (9/6/2011)
Speaking of gadgets, here's the latest iteration of ebooks.  (8/25/2011)
Sounds like another digital divide in the making.  (7/30/2011)
Libraries and ebooks:  Any book, not any time soon.  (6/1/2011)
On the distinction between the book reader and the book owner.  (5/10/2011)
Demand for ebooks grows exponentially in Wisconsin.  (5/2/2011)
Struggling to find an ebook common agenda between libraries and publishers.  (4/5/2011)
Ebooks and libraries:  "The challenges just keep piling up".  (3/28/2011)
Publishers Weekly tracks ebook sales.  (3/18/2011)
Word is getting out:  Ebooks @ your library.  (3/18/2011)
Ebooks continue to gain market share.  (3/17/2011)
Publishers look to bottom line in formulating ebook policies for libraries. (3/15/2011)
News stories on HarperCollins ebook decision go mainstream.  (3/5/2011)
9 years of book sales:  trade and ebook.  (2/17/2011)
Will ebook readers be wooed by Barbara Cartland?  (2/12/2011)
The impact of ebooks on libraries.  (2/11/2011)
OverDrive news release: Library eBook circs up 200% in '10. (1/10/2011)
Mashable: 5 ebook trends that will change the future of publishing. (12/29/2010)
Christmas 2010 the tipping point for ebooks?  (12/24/2010)
Ereader as brown paper bag.  (12/9/2010)
The ebook reader compatibility surprise.  (12/3/2010)
Ereader ownership:  Survey says....  (11/30/2010)
David Carnoy asks, "Does the Kindle pay for itself?" (11/29/2010)
Need to repair that ebook reader?  (11/19/2010)
Who uses an ereader:  Survey says....  (9/22/2010)
Book industry wrestles with print vs. pixels.  (9/2/2010)
Coming soon to a screen near you:  Ads in ebooks.  (8/20/2010)
Ebooks now comprise 8.5% of book sales. (8/12/2010)
Genre paperback publishers drops print.  (8/6/2010)
Ebooks and libraries.  (5/4/2010)
Ebooks eliminate a free form of adversiting:  the book jacket.  (3/31/2010)
Ebooks: another round of false promises?  (3/19/2010)
The skinny on ebooks.  (3/8/2010)
Hardcover vs. ebook:  Breaking down the costs.  (3/1/2010)