Thursday, February 25, 2021

a history of typewriters - as experienced by me

I've lived through the whole history of typewriters:

From the old Remington typewriters, a portable typewriter in college, the MTST machine (the first word processor) various electric typewriters (one of which my husband broke when he got frustrated while writing an antique MG article for a magazine), a Commodore 24 (wrote many stories and my first published book on it) , The Apple IIe, the first iMacs, the more advanced flat screen iMac, and now I use the iMac with a bluetooth mouse and bluetooth keyboard.

Whew!



Sunday, February 21, 2021

You Never Forget Your first

 I just finished reading YOU NEVER FORGET YOUR FIRST, a biography of George Washington.  by Alexis Coe.

Oh My. This is so, so, so much better than the So-called book supposedly about Mary Ball Washington written by Craig Shirley who inserted every boring thing he found, making that book mostly about George, not Mary.  

You Never forget Your First is thoroughly interesting reading. Fascinating Facts. (I love fascinating facts and always insert as many as I can into my own biographies.) Even her bibliography/ chapter notes at the end were sprinkled with more interesting comments.

Highly Recommend
for Middle Schoolers, Teens, and all the rest of us adults.

Sunday, February 7, 2021

We Dream of Space

 I'm reading the Newbery honor book - We Dream of Space by Erin Entrada Kelly - and suddenly I discover the protagonist's class is getting ready for the liftoff of The Challenger, January, 1986.  The liftoff that killed every person aboard.  The liftoff that, because one of the  astronauts was a teacher, almost every kid in the United sSates was watching.  And every kid (and any adult around them) was traumatized by this event.

My daughter was home sick from school, so as I usually do, I set up our portable TV in her room so she could watch this event.  Just like every child in the USA was doing in school. 

Suddenly she began screaming.  I rushed into her room. Discovered the explosion.  That the TV played over and over and over again. (I turned off the TV and hugged my child)

I don't think I can finish this book.  Too many terrible memories.  I've already begun crying and the book hasn't even gotten to this event.


Monday, January 25, 2021

The 2021 Awards for the Best Books of 2020

 Yay - the ALA Youth Media Award list is now up on the ALA website.  

I"m printing it out so I can reserve all the winners from my libraries. 

(I have access to two library systems, so - off I go.)

Friday, January 22, 2021

Taking walks these days

 I often used to take my mile walk at a local large (outdoor) shopping center. (most of them are outdoor, not inside buildings, in southern California) 

About a year ago I noticed Asian people wearing masks while the rest of us didn't. At first I felt sorry for them thinking that they were ill or immune compromised and needed to protect themselves. In a month or two I changed my feelings about this and thought they were smart to wear masks and a month or two after that I too was wearing a mask when I took that walk there.  

However, I haven't even thought of walking there since October -- too many people. I now walk in my quiet, suburban neighborhood where there are few cars and when other people approach me, on their own walks, I simply move out into the road so that we can pass safely.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Exploring the Capitol Building in Washington, DC

 Watching the invasion of the Capitol building today by the insurrectionists attempting a coup, I was reminded of the time when my children and I explored the place.

It used to be that anyone could just walk into the Capitol, and if you looked like you knew what you were doing, nobody would question you. 

In the late 1980s I took two elementary (or middle school children, I forget which) with me, but nobody bothered us. We wandered around the first floor, then I wanted to take the kids up to the peanut gallery where average people could watch the proceedings. So we found an elevator. But someone pushed the basement button. So when the door opened there, we decided to explore. So interesting. Pipes hanging from the ceiling. Lots of grey paint. Some doors to offices were open and we saw people having discussions. We must have walked the full length of the Capitol before someone came out of an office and asked us what we were doing. I replied, oh so innocently, that we were looking for where the kids could overlook Congress, so he directed us to an elevator and punched the number for the correct floor for us. More wandering (more offices) until we finally arrived at the balcony overlooking one of the houses of Congress. Which was not in session at the time. darn.  

Now, of course, there are all sorts of examination points you have to pass and they'll probably direct you to a tour guide.