Thursday, September 26, 2019

What Have I Gotten Myself Into?

Lydia Sampson is the Assistant Director/Technical Services Librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read her column in the September 26, 2019 issue of the Transcript & Bulletin.

In three days I depart for Ghana, bound for a rural village with no running water or internet access, to work on a construction project for two weeks. I acquired my mosquito net, anti-malaria meds, and a large packet of pre-departure materials. This is how I plan to spend my annual “vacation,” and right now I’m questioning my sanity.

The first time I ever left North America, I ventured to Duran, Ecuador on a high school volunteering trip. My Catholic school had a partnership there and groups visited annually to help out in schools and a soup kitchen, and embed themselves in the local community. In retrospect, we didn’t accomplish much of anything, but the value lay in exposure to the reality of life and hardship in a developing country. As a teenager, it opened my eyes to water and electricity shortages, unsanitary conditions, infant mortality, and other struggles experienced by the warm and welcoming people we met. Perhaps the experience sparked my interest in travel to off-the-beaten-track regions, and service abroad.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

The Crochet Craze

Carla Howard is the Senior Circulation Assistant/Marketing and Media Assistant at the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, MA. Read Carla’s column in the September 19, 2019 issue of the Transcript and Bulletin.

I remember, years ago, watching my mother and aunt crochet the infamous “Ripple Afghan.” My mother’s was a range of dark purple and magenta colors. I was fascinated, watching it unfold.  She would watch her “stories” after finishing her housework for the morning and then crochet. I was about 8 or 9 and was always interested in all things crafty. I had made “Jeannie in a Bottle” using a Palmolive bottle and a miniature doll after having seen one at my neighbor’s house.  I collected my sister’s and brother’s old baby socks to use as “stuffing” for my sock pets, which were more tied than sewed.  Seeing my interest, Mum patiently took some of her scrap yarn and a G hook and taught me how to crochet. I was, as the saying goes, hooked!

Thursday, September 12, 2019

We Were Stardust. We Were Golden.

Charlotte Canelli is the library director of the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, Massachusetts. Read Charlotte's column in the September 12, 2019 edition of the Transcript & Bulletin.
          I was a rising high school senior in the summer of 1969. Far away from Bethel, NY, on the coast of California, I never even knew Woodstock was on the horizon. We all read newspapers and magazines and watched the nightly news. So we knew that something momentous happened on a muddy farm 3,000 miles to the east. Something terrifyingly huge, slightly obscene, and wickedly defiant had ignited while I lived my mini-skirted, innocent, bleach-blonded summer among the dry grasses of Northern California.

           Woodstock, like most unexpected events, might not have occurred, had the stars not aligned. Two young guys, 24-year old Michael Lang, and 26-year old Artie Kornfeld had an idea for a Studio-in-the Woods north of New York City. Kornfeld was already a vice-president at Capitol Records, but he and Lang needed financial backing. Enter two other young guys in their mid-twenties, entrepreneurs Joel Rosenman and John Roberts. Roberts was an heir to the Polident/Poli-grip fortune, and Rosenman was Roberts' good friend with a musical background. They had met on a golf course and were apartment mates in New York City. The two described themselves as "young men with unlimited capital."

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Here. Now.

Kirstie David is a Literacy and Outreach Librarian at the Morrill Memorial Library in Norwood, MA. Look for her article in the September 5, 2019 edition of the Transcript and Bulletin.

When you’re in the reading game, you get recommendations for all types about books you just HAVE to read.  Sometimes books are suggested to me because people know that I am interested in a certain subject, genre or author. More often, the people doing the recommending are overwhelmed by how a particular book made them feel and they want to pass along the experience. I have learned to adjust my expectations accordingly. I try to weigh what I know about someone’s personality and reading preferences against my own before racing out to get a copy of the book. This can be problematic, since I work in a library and regularly get recommendations from people I don’t know at all.