Once again on May 23, 2017, the Morrill Memorial Library's submission to the Massachusetts Library Association 2015-2016 Public Relations Awards won first place in the News category. A representative 25 columns were submitted. They were written by Charlotte Canelli, Nancy Ling, April Cushing, Allison Palmgren, Kate Tigue, Liz Reed, Bonnie Wyler, Diane Phillips, Norma Logan, Jeff Hartman, Sam Simas, Nicole Guerra-Coon, and Meredith Ruhl

On May 4, 2015 the Morrill Memorial Library's submission to the Massachusetts Library Association 2013-2014 Public Relations Awards won first place in the News category. A representative 24 columns from 2013 and 2014 were submitted. They were written by Marg Corjay, Shelby Warner, Nancy Ling, Diane Phillips, Brian Samek, Bonnie Wyler, Marie Lydon, Norma Logan, Allison Palmgren, April Cushing, Liz Reed, Kate Tigue, Jillian Goss, and Charlotte Canelli.

Library staff have written over 445 columns since 2009.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

The Review Wars

Kate Tigue is a children's librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library. Read Kate's column in the December 7, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


It’s an accepted fact that we are living in the era of information. More than ever, people have instant access to knowledge that can help them make decisions in their everyday lives.  People are using their smartphones, computers, and other devices to make informed choices about their medical care, their political views, and how to spend their money.  And it has never been easier to spend money thanks to the convenience of shopping online.  Open access to information about products and services means we now have endless choices to consider.  So how do people figure out the best way to get the most for their money? Even with all this new technology, people still rely on an old-school method:  recommendations and reviews.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

The World's Worst ... and Best Puppy

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the November 30, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


Let’s admit it. We had been warned. “Puppies are just like babies,” friends said. “At your age, a puppy will wear both of you out,” our kids told us. They chew. They make messes. They need so much attention.

            We lost our beloved 11-1/2 year old Boxer in September 2016. Over the next nine months as we grieved, we also managed to convince everyone, including each other and ourselves, that we weren’t anywhere ready for another dog. We were enjoying the freedom from having to be home on time. We didn’t miss the muddy paw prints, the dog toys strewn about, and our car no longer boasted a full coat of dog hair on the seats and the floor.

There were no streaky nose prints on the car windows or on the French doors at home. There was no annoying barking at the mailman and any friend or foe who came near our home.  There were no stray dog toys and bones tripping us up, and no more slippery water sploshes on the kitchen floor.

Yet, we missed the u-shaped, body-shivering hellos that greeting our every homecoming. We yearned for the warm, solid presence of a beloved dog at our feet in bed. We were even nostalgic for the leggy-cuddles – those that caused us to cry “uncle” and retreat to the love seat across the room – alone, without the furry friend who had pushed us off the couch.

One day this past June, a friend hinted that there might be some sweet puppies we would like to meet in New Bedford. They were eight-week old Boxers, a comical, loyal breed we knew so well. We convinced ourselves that we were only curious. We were “only looking,” we claimed. With six young grandchildren in our home for holidays and vacations, we were reluctant to rescue a grown dog who might take months or years to learn to trust. Yet, for obvious reasons, we were not so sure about a puppy, either.

Once a snub-nosed runt-of-the-litter puppy stared into my eyes, licked my fingers, nuzzled my chin, and curled up on my lap, I was smitten. Logic, resolve, and a window-shopping-fantasy ended right there. My husband Gerry knew it was love at first sight and sighed deeply, while at the same time secretly smiling. This new puppy we named Oreo (for the slice of white that appeared like the frosting in an Oreo cookie) came to live with us that week.

Several days later, reality set in. Our soft, cuddly puppy nipped at our grandchildren’s heels and grabbed them by the back of their heads, nibbling on their hair, knocking them over with all 12 pounds of his effervescent love. He stole the socks right off my feet and my knitting from the coffee table. He piddled and chewed and tripped us with every step we took. Those first few months I was sure he would never grow out of every stage he suddenly was in. He seemed to gain a half-a-pound a day, outgrowing every bed, leash and harness before we even got the credit card bill.

We crate trained. We downloaded the WAG app and arranged dog walkers like UBER rides.  We met other four-legged friends and their owners, praying that our puppy would wear himself out in a half-hour of before-suppertime play. We scolded, we praised, we admonished. We sighed.

We had, after all, been warned about puppies.

At nearly eight months, Oreo’s energy is unbounded. He peers from his crate when we walk through to door, as if to say “Hey! Thanks for coming back.” He sits, he stays. He gives one paw and “the other.” He makes his presence known on every couch and bed when he rests his grateful, heavy head on our cold and tired calves. His dog walkers call him the King of Norwood as he greets every person, dog, leaf and stick with enthusiastic attention. He still manages to steal a knitting needle here and there, run off gleefully with my socks.  Left alone, he can’t be trusted not to gnaw a chair leg or pillow, mistaking them for one of his dozens of toys. He will endlessly play fetch in and out of the house and up and down the halls and stairs.

One of our puppy guidebooks suggested that there are no bad puppies, just bad humans. While this advice might be brutal and unwelcome, it is most likely true. Dogs who mess in the house need a more regular schedule of being let outside. Dogs who chew need toys and exercise. Dogs who nip need stern training.

Oreo is either dog-walked up to an hour every day while we are at work or he spends the full day in doggie daycare and arrives home too exhausted to eat dinner. During the Thanksgiving holiday, we realized we needed to add “vigorous walk” to Oreos’ vacation schedule, too.

Fortunately, the south coast where we spend our holidays boasts many dog-friendly walking trails, off-season beaches and cranberry bogs. We’ve found countless resources online and on sites such as the Trustees of Reservations, Buzzard’s Bay Coalition and the Sippican Land Trust. When we venture further out for day trips to stretch Oreo’s legs and save our furniture, socks, and my knitting projects, we’ll take along some books like Best Hikes with Dogs Boston and Beyond by Jenna Ringelheim, Best Hikes with Dogs in New Hampshire and Vermont by Lisa Densmore, Doggin’ Massachusetts by Dog Gelbert, and Dog-Friendly New England by Trisha Blanchet.

Last week, when we weren’t watching, Oreo chewed a 3” triangular piece off a hand-painted, one-of-a-kind stool that sits in our back utility hall. I fought mightily to stifle my aggravation. He’s only a puppy, I groaned.


Last Sunday I nestled down on the couch with Oreo and re-watched Marley and Me, the 2008 film version of John Grogan’s book about his beloved Golden Retriever. Sobbing at the end of the film, I tightly held Oreo, all legs, massive paws and broad chest. I wondered how we, too, had ended up with the world’s worst dog – who we love with all our hearts.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Revisiting New England Favorites from Fluff to Baked Beans

Read Alli Palmgren's column in the November 23, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin. Alli is the Technology Librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library.


The United States is a diverse country. We are a culturally, intellectually, and religiously diverse people, and our regional foods reflect that. Every state, and even every city can lay claim to its own slice of American culinary culture. Buffalo, NY contributed the chicken wings that are so popular on game day, Philadelphia is all about the cheese steak, and it is hard to think of Chicago without thinking of deep dish pizza. While New England may not have a dish as popular as the buffalo wing or as iconic as Texas barbeque, a surprising number of amazing foods have roots right in our own back yard.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Praise for Paradise

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the November 16, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


I have dozens of DVDs in my personal at-home collection. On rainy or wintry weekend, I’ve watched my favorites over and over and over again. One of my movie marathons might feature some of my favorite actors - Pierce Brosnan, Diane Keaton, Amy Adams or Harrison Ford. I could begin with Working Girl, Sabrina and Indiana Jones and end the film fest up with Frantic and Air Force One. Both Brosnan and Adams star in musicals (Mamma Mia and Enchanted, respectively) which might be on my playlist, mixed in, of course, with their films of more serious work (The Thomas Crown Affair and Julia and Julia.)

My husband doesn’t understand my peculiar habit of re-watching the same videos. Viewing a movie once is enough for him (and sometimes once is too much.)

Thursday, November 9, 2017

The Holy Grail of Grammar (and other Humdingers)

Librarian April Cushing is head of Adult and Information Services at the Morrill Memorial Library. Read her column published in the November 9, 2017 issue of the Norwood Transcript Bulletin.

        My family is big on wordplay—the sillier the better. Whether it’s deliberately mispronouncing or making up words for comic effect (strictly ours), overusing idioms (beating a dead horse), or simply quoting dumb movie lines, we delight in linguistic levity. As our Commander-in-Chief might tweet, “That’s just sad!” No doubt, but entertaining nonetheless.

        My ex-husband and I had a thing for Monty Python and Charles Dickens--“that’s Dikkens with two K’s, the well-known Dutch author.” Certain catch phrases, like this one from the Monty Python “Bookshop” sketch, still make me smile.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Visiting the Giant Redwoods in California

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the November 2, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


Important news from the National Park Service hit the media (print, online and social) this past spring and summer. The $10 lifetime price of the America the Beautiful National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior Pass was ending at the end of August. The cost of the pass was then immediately increasing for the first time since 1994 to $80.
Image: National Park Service NPS.gov


The change was a result of legislation passed in December of 2016

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Things that Go "Bump"

Liz Reed is the Adult and Information Services Librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Liz's column in the October 26, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


“Don’t worry, all the hauntings here are friendly,” the curator reassured us at the start of the tour. He felt the need to offer this calming statement because we were just about to be led on a paranormal ghost tour of the Fairbanks House Historical Site in Dedham, MA. The date was Friday October 13th.

Dear readers, your reaction to the idea of a ghost tour of the oldest timber frame structure in North America on the night of Friday the thirteenth is probably similar to the reaction of my friends when I suggested it. For some strange reason, this was the date with the largest block of unreserved tickets – go figure. The tour was very interesting, and I highly recommend it for anyone looking for an evening with a bit of seasonal atmosphere, a lot of history, and a large dollop of local flavor.

         
   Personally, I love haunted history tours.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Remembering Pearl Harbor - A Hawaiian Visit to the Arizona

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the October 19, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.

I had just recently become a new Californian when Hawaii became the 50th of our United States in 1959.  This remarkable event in American history was undoubtedly front page news on the west coast for months leading up to the official admission date of August 21. Alaska had become the 49th state just months before on January 3. At seven years of age, however, I was unaware of the magnitude of these historical moments.
Growing up in California as an student in elementary, middle and high school, my education was steeped in the history of California statehood and its proximity on the Pacific Ocean to western geography, Less than two decades following the end of World War II in 1945 (in both the European and Pacific conflicts), stories of the war west of California were richly described by middle-aged men who had returned from the bloody and watery battlefields. Germany  surrendered on May 8, 1945 and Japan on September 1945, just seven years before I was born. It was the battle of Pearl Harbor that still seemed to be in everyone’s consciousness. 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Saving Time with Audiobooks

Sam Simas is a Technology Assistant at the Morrill Memorial Library this winter and spring. Read Sam's column in the October 12, 2017 issue of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.



I might be the only person neurotic enough to worry that I will die without having read enough books. Some books, like Thomas Jefferson’s Notes on the State of Virginia or Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight (no offense?), will probably not create an existential void if I never crack them open. But others contain stories and worlds so well wrought that they could change my life, and perhaps make me even more neurotic (i.e., What if the last book I read was the best one and I’ll never read anything better?). In order to cram as much story as I can into my life, I’ve identified areas that produce stress, like a commute around the Boston area or listening to the news, and have replaced them or supplemented them with audiobooks.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

A Total Eclipse of the Sun!

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the October 5, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


            As a child and teenager growing up in 1960s California, I should have witnessed a handful of eclipses of the sun. I don’t remember much about them, though. I have a vague memory of watching the sun disappear while viewing it through a pinhole box as a teenager.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Margaret Atwood's Prisons

Jeff Hartman is the Senior Circulation Assistant, Paging Supervisor, and Graphics Designer at the Morrill Memorial Library. Read Jeff's column in the September 28, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


The most common of library problems is requesting one thing and getting something else by mistake.  Recently there’s been a recurring issue with patrons finding themselves in possession of a mediocre film adaptation from 1990 rather than a recent hit show.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Surviving the Crazy Time

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the September 21, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


While I became officially divorced just ten months into the 21st century, I received the news that my marriage was over at the end of the 20th.  I faced Y2K and The Millennium as a divorcee. The implications of the end of the world as we knew it, and the promises of a new start, were both frightening and unfamiliar.

I’d had my suspicions about a possible breakup for several years before that summer in 1999, but I was still blindsided when it ended. And while I was not shocked when my ex-husband began dating (and eventually married) one of my then-closest friends, it was a staggering conclusion.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Out of the Ashes

Nancy Ling is an Outreach Librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library. Read the published version of Nancy Ling's column in the September 14, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


When President Kennedy was shot, I had yet to enter the world. As a matter of fact I wasn’t even a twinkle in my mother’s eye. Still, many Americans can pinpoint where they were when they heard the news of the president’s death in Dallas.

As a child of the Sixties, I have other events that stand out in my mind as unforgettable. Newspaper headlines of the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal caught my eye as they lay on our kitchen table. The Iran Hostage Crisis and long gas lines were also part of my childhood, and yet there are few times in my life that one event stopped me in my tracks.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Mrs. Rabbitt and the Little Nearsighted Girl

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the September 7, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


This past August, I attended a professional institute with 50 other library professionals at a beautiful Maine mountain resort. We enjoyed meals and participated in workshops for two full days, facilitated by RIPL, the Research Institute for Public Libraries.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

All the Books I've Never Read

Kate Tigue is the Assistant Children's Librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library. Read her column in the August 31, 2017 edition of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.


After contributing to this column for over three years, I should learn to take my own advice. I’ve written several articles on strategies to cultivate and diversify your reading interests and on tools to help you find your next book.  For all of the knowledge I dispense on a daily basis about finding the right book for the right person, I can’t find one for me!  That’s right, I’m admitting it out loud (or in print):  My name is Kate, and I’m a librarian who can’t find a good book to read.  I’m floating in a state of non-reading, a place filled with aimless internet surfing and too many piles of unread books on my nightstand.  Instead of reading, I spend my time watching YouTube videos (gasp!) and musing about various Instagram memes.

Contributors to the Morrill Memorial Library "From the Library" Column

Library Director, Charlotte Canelli began writing columns for the Peterborough Transcript in 2001 when she was the Youth Services Librarian at the Peterborough Town Library, 2001-2005. Soon after becoming the director of the Morrill Memorial Library, she began to write weekly columns for the Norwood Bulletin and Transcript. Since February 2009 other Morrill Memorial librarians have written many other columns. They include: April Cushing, Vicki Andrilenas and Liz Reed, Adult and Information Services Librarians; Jean Todesca, Kate Tigue, Nicole Guerra-Coon, Children's Librarians; Allison Palmgren, Technology Librarian; Sam Simas, Web Designer; Bonnie Warner, Literacy and Outreach Librarian; Diane Phillips, Technical Services Librarian; Norma Logan, Literacy Coordinator; Nancy Ling, Outreach Librarian; Cynthia Rudolph, Graphic Artist and Circulation Assistant; Jeff Hartman, Sr. Circulation Assistant; Margaret Corjay, Circulation and Outreach Assistant; Patricia Bailey, Circulation Assistant; retired librarians Hope Anderson, Marie Lydon, Shelby Warner, Margot Sullivan and Tina Blood; previous MML librarians, Beth Goldman, Kelly Unsworth, Brian Samek and Jenna Hecker; and library interns Kirstie David, Meredith Ruhl, Samantha Sherburne, Melissa Theroux and Khara Whitney-Marsh.