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    Americare Inc. will present a recruitment for Home Health Aide (10 openings) on Monday, November 24, 2014, 10 am - 2 pm, at Staten Island Workforce 1 Career Center, 120 Stuyvesant Place, Staten Island, NY 10301. 

    St. Nicks Alliance Workforce Development  provides Free Job Training and Educational Programs in Environmental Response and Remediation Tech (ERRT), Commercial Driver's License , Pest Control Technician Training (PCT), Employment Search and Prep Training and Job Placement, Earn Benefits and Career Path Center.  For  information and assistance,  please visit St. Nicks Alliance Workforce Development, 790 Broadway, 2nd Fl., Brooklyn, NY 11206.   718-302-2057 ext. 202.

    Brooklyn Workforce Innovations helps jobless and working poor New Yorkers establish careers in sectors that offer good wages and opportunities for advancement. Currently BWI offers free job training programs in four industries: commercial driving, telecommunications cable installation, TV and film production, and skilled woodworking.  BWI is at 621 Degraw Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217.  718-237-5366.

    CMP (formerly Chinatown Manpower Project) in lower Manhattan is now recruiting for a free training in Quickbooks,  Basic Accounting, and Excel.   This training is open to anyone who is receiving food stamps but no cash assistance.  Class runs for 8 weeks, followed by one-on-one meetings with a job developer.  For more information : , call 212-571-1690 or visit 70 Mulberry Street, 3rd Floor, NY, NY 10013.   CMP also provides tuition-based healthcare and business trainings for free to students who are entitled to ACCESS funding.  Please call CMP for information.

    Nontraditional Employment for Women (NEW) trains women and places them in careers in the skilled construction, utility, and maintenance trades. It helps women achieve economic independence and a secure future.  For information call 212-627-6252 or register online.

    Grace Institute provides tuition-free, practical job training in a supportive learning community for underserved New York area women of all ages and from many different background.  For information call 212-832-7605.

    Please note this blog post will be revised when more recruitment events for the week of November 23 are available.

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    We love eating food, obviously. But, we also love reading about it, planning it, and making it. Now, add to that list hearing culinary masters wax poetic. Over the years, NYPL has been lucky enough to host some of the world's top chefs, food writers, chocolatiers, and other taste-makers. Here are some of the best recipes, culinary tips, and philosophies of cuisine from the NYPL video archive.

    Ferran Adrià on his favorite foods

    "There's not just one thing I like to eat, and there's not just one thing I like to cook. I like everything. There's so many hundreds and hundreds of things."

    Ruth Reichl on food writing and editing Gourmet magazine

    "Everybody eats, and everybody has something to say about food. So I went to writers I really liked and tried to persuade them to say something about food... Writing about food is very difficult because you're writing about something that's intangible, and it takes real talent to do it well."

    David Chang on the secret of genius chefs

    "That's the secret. There's no geniuses. It's just how many failures they're willing to make."

    Melanie Rehak on her favorite brussels sprouts recipe from NYPL's Jean Strouse

    "It's my favorite recipe alteration ever because Jean wrote on the copy that she gave me when I was at the (Cullman) Center: 'Here I usually add a stick of butter,' which — I think you want to read that in every recipe."

    Rocco DiSpirito on healthy cookies

    "Parents, if I told you, we could makes cookies that your kids could eat all day long, as many as they wanted without any harm to their bodies, what would you say? Well, you're New Yorkers, so I think the first thing you're saying is, 'You're full of it,' right? Is that the first?... But I'm really telling you the truth."

    Elizabeth Gilbert on meeting her great-grandmother through her cookbook

    "My great-grandmother published this book in 1947. She was a columnist for Philadelphia newspapers and Delaware newspapers writing about food, and a terrific, natural, lively, vivid writer. And I had sort of known about her existence but chose to completely ignore it. I wasn't interested in the domestic arts, and I just sort of cast it away and discovered it last spring and just thought, 'I should take a look at what this thing is.' And found this extraordinary living person inside that book who was much more Dorothy Parker than Betty Crocker."

    Lidia Bastianich on Italian-American cuisine

    "Italian-American is really a cuisine of adaptations, and when the early immigrants came, they used the ingredients they found. And of course vegetables always play such a big role in Italian cuisine. And one vegetable that always resurfaced in Italian-American cuisine was the much-loved artichoke. They stuffed it. They braised it. They fried it."

    Sarah Endline on chocolate

    "I wanted to create something new in the candy world, but what I got really fascinated about was chocolate because chocolate is like the bellwether of the candy industry. When you think of candy, you've got to think of chocolate. And what I started to realize is, you know, chocolate does not come from a factory in Hershey, Pennsylvania... It comes from a tree!"

    Marcus Samuelsson on foie gras

    "Fois gras is obviously something that's highly controversial. But in Göteborg it came out of a tin, and we sliced it. It was 'very expensive — don't touch it!' In France, it was just delivered, and we had to clean it constantly and it had to be room temperature and you had to clean very carefully, and if you do it well, you can pull all the veins out with one rip. After cleaning it so many times, I started to think about how come it was served in a terrine. When I came to America... started to sear it and served it with figs or mango. I thought it was such a cool American approach."

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    Materials on other historic New York City holidays and celebrations can be found through the following subjects:

    Holidays -- New York (State) -- New York -- History.Parades -- New York (State) -- New York.Festivals -- New York (State) -- New York.Pageants -- New York (State) -- New York.

    Historical newspapers with first hand accounts of Evacuation Day celebrations are searchable through the Proquest Historical Newspapers and America’s Historical Newspapers databases.

    Search the HarpWeek database for Evacuation Day illustrations and articles featured in the Harper’s Weekly magazine.

    The U.S. History in Context database also includes primary sources, reference sources, academic journals, magazines, and newspapers relevant to Evacuation Day.

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    On Thursday, households across America will gather to celebrate Thanksgiving, with turkey taking pride of place on our Thanksgiving tables.  Baste, brine, deep-fry?  (But not frozen, please!)  The options for cooking a turkey are seemingly endless, but leave it to founding father Benjamin Franklin to invent one more — electrocution.

    Franklin recounts the event in another letter to his brother, which you can read on the Massachusetts Historical Society’s website.  “I have lately made an experiment in electricity,” he says, “that I desire never never to repeat.”  In other words, don’t try this at home.

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  • 11/24/14--10:01: Accessible Classics
  • I still recall how I could not put Lord of the Flies down in high school. I did not want to read it at the time, thinking it a "boy's book" and picked it up reluctantly. I was captivated by the intricacies of human relationships and our ability to be so cruel. Peace, power, politics - the many themes have stayed with me my entire life. I think of this book often and recently my husband and son read it together. They were similarly "wowed". —Maura Muller, Volunteers Office

    I'll throw in Brave New World by Aldous Huxley—this dystopian novel is sometimes overlooked in favor of 1984, but Huxley's view of a dark future is fascinating and startlingly similar to some elements of our own society today.  An unforgettable read that will leave the reader with much to chew over. —Stephanie Whelan, Seward Park Library

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    On this Thanksgiving week, we’re reaching back into the NYPL archives to bring you a story about food, family, and multicultural identity. Internationally acclaimed chef Marcus Samuelsson describes his remarkable journey from a humble kitchen in Sweden to some of the most competitive and revered restaurants in the world, and finally to the opening of the beloved Red Rooster in Harlem — a truly diverse dining room. In the spirit of the holiday, we'll be remembering Samuelsson's words of gratitude: "My parents, in their own way, prepared me for the 21st century in the 20th century... I was prepared for a multicultural, multiracial world much earlier than most people. And that I am grateful for."

    [[{"fid":"277135","view_mode":"default","fields":{"format":"default","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"Marcus Samuelsson","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media","attributes":{"alt":"Marcus Samuelsson","class":"media-element file-default"}}]]

    Samuelsson spoke passionately about his restaurant, Red Rooster Harlem. For the chef, the restaurant is not merely a place to eat food; it's a place in which dreams can change the city itself:

    "When the idea of Red Rooster came about, it was really about changing the footprint of dining in the city that I loved so much. And what if people could come uptown and participate? And what if we could be a part of building people's aspirations in terms of food through the monocle of Harlem? If that would happen, the city would grow."

    In some ways, Samuelsson's food has been informed by his own biography. Born in Ethiopia and raised in Sweden, he has "chased flavors" around the world. Yet, he challenged common perceptions of his family life:

    "When people learn my history, they always think that in my own family race was the most dynamic thing and I understand it, you know, my cousin was Korean and my auntie was Jewish. My parents were white, and we were two black kids and one mixed kid. So, from the outside, yes, but not within the family. Love was the most dynamic thing in our family."

    Samuelsson boasts many firsts, including his signature foie gras ganache. He discussed being one of the first internationally renowned black chefs:

    "The way a black person has to integrate and create their journey when it's not around sports or, let's say, singing, that narrative is so complex and so different that you have to walk a line that is so thin and different and very often you have to not just see the door, but you have to build the door, open it, and walk. You get one shot at it. You don't get a second chance. So it's about building that narrative, opening, creating that door, building it so other people can open it later on... Most places that I went to, they'd never even seen a black cook. The notion of being a black chef didn't even exist."

    You can subscribe to the New York Public Library Podcast to hear more conversations with wonderful artists, writers, and intellectuals. Join the conversation today!

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    This is a guest blog post by Deena Greenberg, interviewer for Visible Lives: Oral Histories of the Disability Experience at Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library. Deena conducted her first interview for the project with storyteller Daniel Aronoff on Tuesday, November 18. After you read her post, you can listen to Deena’s interview with Daniel. Also, you can check out Deena's blog, A Funny Thing Happened.

    I just conducted my first interview for the Library’s Oral History project.  I was a little nervous about it because I’d never done anything like it before, but it went better than I expected.  First, I followed the advice I was given at the orientation the library gave all of the volunteers, and contacted my Storyteller, Daniel Aronoff, and scheduled the interview. Daniel asked for a braille release form, which John Fahs, the librarian who helps volunteers for the project, easily provided.  I also sent Daniel the library Data Sheet in advance in case he wanted to fill it out before the interview, which he did. 

    Daniel Aronoff at Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library

    Daniel has a blog called the Blind Taste Test, so he sent me the link to that as well as his Youtube Channel called The Blind Food Critic before the interview.  I looked at them and discovered that he is also going to be featured in a documentary called New York After Dark, which follows a few blind New Yorkers in their daily lives to show what it’s like to be blind in New York City.  I felt lucky to have a Storyteller with such an online presence because I was able to learn about him even before the interview started.  In fact, that may be why during the interview, I often felt more like I was having a conversation with a new friend than conducting an interview.

    I decided to wait in the lobby area, so that I could meet Daniel at the door and save him from any difficulties finding the interview room.  However, as I eyed my watch at 4:35 and then 4:40, I started to worry.  I wondered if Daniel was having trouble getting to the library.  That’s when I realized that while we had exchanged our email addresses and landline numbers, we had not exchanged mobile phone numbers.  That meant if Daniel was having a problem and wanted to reach me, he was not able to do so, and, of course, vice versa.  Finally, at close to 5:00, Daniel appeared.  As I feared, he had had difficulties with his car service.  We still had plenty of time for the interview so it worked out fine, but if we could have called or texted beforehand, I could have worried a little less.

    Before we started the interview, Daniel read his braille release.  I have never seen anyone read braille before and was amazed at how quickly his hands flew over the document as he read. I took Daniel’s picture before the interview so I wouldn’t forget or be too rushed at the end of the interview to do it. As I mentioned before, once the interview started it was, for the most part, a more comfortable experience than I had expected.  I say for the most part because some of the things Daniel talked about were difficult.  You see, Daniel lost his eyesight due to a brain tumor he had when he was three years-old.  Once the tumor was discovered, Daniel went through a series of operations over the next two years.  Although, thankfully, the tumor was completely removed, as part of the process, his optic nerve also had to be removed, which is what left him blind.

    However, despite the difficulties he has experienced, Daniel also had a lot of positive experiences to talk about.  After he graduated high school, he got a master’s degree in social work and for a time counseled veterans.  He also started the blog that I mentioned earlier.  According to Daniel, his blog gets between 2,000 to 3,000 hits a month.  And his audience apparently extends all the way to Spain, which is how he met the woman who is now his wife. It seems that his wife wanted to know where the best cupcakes in New York City are and tweeted her favorite blind food critic to find out.  Daniel researched the topic assiduously and gave her his recommendation.  They continued to stay in touch and visit until, a few months ago, they married.

    My interview with Daniel ended well before our 6:30 p.m. deadline, so I had no problem wrapping things up and putting the materials in their proper location.  Overall, I found the experience a positive one, and I think that Daniel did, too.  I hope those who listen to the interview feel the same.      

    About Visible Lives: Oral Histories of the Disability Experience

    Please visit our project website to read more about The New York Public Library’s initiative to make public, document, and preserve personal stories of the disability experience.

    If you’re interested in sharing your story for this project, you can find more information on the blog post.

    And, if you’re interested in being an interviewer (you can still share your story too!), we’re having another orientation on Saturday, December 13—details can be found on the program page.

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    If you are looking for something fun to do with your family this holiday season, and for FREE you can go to the Library for the Performing Arts and enjoy the exhibit "Somebody Come and Play: 45 Years of Sesame Street Helping Kids Grow Smarter, Stronger, and Kinder."

    This exhibit features many great things for all ages: from more than 20 puppets on display, sketches, blueprints and set designs to bring back memories—to an interactive children's area which features books, apps and activities.

    Sesame street is an educational TV program that started in 1969. It has helped many preschoolers to learn about the alphabet and numbers, but also about health, emotional well being, respect and understanding of many difficult topics. 


    But did you know that Sesame Street has international reach? Sesame Workshop, the company that produces Sesame Street, also co-produces international versions of the beloved television show in many different languages for audiences in many different countries, a list below:

    Afghanistan - baghch-e-simsim
    Australia - Sesame Street,“Play Along With Ollie”
    Bangladesh - Sisimpur
    Brazil - Vila Sésamo
    China - Zhima Jie: Da Niao Kan Shijie
    Colombia - Plaza Sésamo 
    Denmark - Sesamgade
    France - 5, rue Sésame
    Germany - Sesamstrasse
    India - Galli Galli Sim Sim
    Indonesia - Jalan Sesama
    Israel - Rechov Sumsum
    Japan - Sesame Street
    Jordan - Hikayat Sesame
    Mexico - Plaza Sésamo 
    Netherlands - Sesamstraat
    Nigeria - Sesame Square
    Northern Ireland - Sesame Tree

    Pakistan - sim sim hamara
    Palestine - Shara’a Simsim
    Russia - Ulitsa Sezam, Улица Сезам
    Spain - Barrio Sésamo
    South Africa - takalani sesame
    Tanzania - Kilimani Sesame
    United States - Sesame Street

    They target their programs to their many different audiences, looking for ways to teach and help children all over the world to understand and cope. This is also helpful for immigrant families. Sesame Street can help families learn about American customs and traditions, and Sesame Street international can help to share and explain situations from back home. It is also a great tool to teach children in general about international situations going on.  You can find  videoclips for any of the international programs through YouTube.  Here is a great video about a character, "Khokha," that is sure to empower and encourage many girls around the world.

    Another example of the wonderful works of Sesame Workshops is a bilingual (English/Spanish) initiative, "Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration." My colleagues at Correctional Services are using the materials as part of their family literacy programs, to help parents talk to their children about their situation with honesty and hope, in a way children can understand.

    Remember to come and enjoy the exhibit Somebody Come and Play: 45 Years of Sesame Street Helping Kids Grow Smarter, Stronger, and Kinder at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts—it will only be here through January 31.

    And once you visit, come back and check out some of the great materials we have for you. We carry materials in English and Spanish.

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    The Keeper of Lost Causes

    Welcome to November in The Reader's Den, Part 2. By now I hope you are eagerly turning pages, anxious to see what happens next in The Keeper of Lost Causes (published in Danish in 2007 as Kvinden i buret and in the UK in 2011 as Mercy). In my last post I noted that Jussi Adler-Olsen is the number one crime writer in Denmark. He is an international best-selling author and has been on the New York Times Best Seller list several times. His work has been published in more than 40 languages. So far only the Department Q novels have been translated into English, but his first published novel, The Alphabet House (Alfabethuset, 1997 in Danish), is due to be released in English in the United States in February 2015.

    In Cold Blood

    Often (and sometimes foolishly) critics try to interpret an author’s books by looking at his life. For example, although Truman Capote wrote In Cold Blood, he is not a murderer. Yet authors often do bring skills and interests from their life and prior careers to their writing. For example, Stephen Cannell  (1941-2010) was an American scriptwriter and television producer of prime time crime dramas, such as Ironside, The Rockford Files, Columbo, and The A-Team, for many years before he wrote his first crime novel, The Plan, in 1997. His television experience is reflected in his books by the fast pace and cinematic scene progression. His books read as if you are watching a movie.

    Adler-Olsen of course brings his own life experiences to his novels. Although he has a comprehensive bio in the Press section of  his website , I want to mention a specific aspect. He was born in Copenhagen in 1950, and his father was a psychiatrist. Consequently Adler-Olsen spent a large part of his childhood at mental hospitals in Denmark where his father worked. Adler-Olsen admits in an interview in the UK crime and thriller ezine Shots that growing up as he did had a big influence on his writing and his life. His youthful exposure to mental patients and their treatment is reflected in the strong psychological basis of his plots, whether it is the deranged perpetrators seeking revenge on Merete, the way Assad or Morck interrogate witnesses, or their verbal and mental speculations about potential motives or a suspect’s likely actions after a crime has been committed. No matter what bizarre criminal behavior occurs, the psychological basis behind it makes it believable.

    The Marco Effect

    The BoundlessI just finished reading the fifth novel in the Department Q series, The Marco Effect (2014, translated by Martin Aitken), and I can happily report the pacing and plot are still going strong. In this novel the action starts in 2008 in Denmark and reaches all the way to Africa and back. The sixth novel in the series, Den Grænseløse (The Boundless in English) has been published in Danish, but there is no English translation yet.

    Another measure of a book’s appeal is its adaptation to other media. The Keeper of Lost Causes was adapted to film in 2013 in Danish under the title Kvinden i buret in 2012, and it was the top box office film in Denmark in 2013. A film adaptation of the second novel in the series, Fasandræberne  (The Absent One, 2012, translated by K. E. Semmel) was filmed in 2014 and opened in October 2014 in Denmark. Both films star Nikolaj Lie Kaas, a Danish actor, and Fares Fares, a Lebanese-Swedish actor. A stage adaptation based on ''Kvinden i buret'' premiered in Germany in 2013. 

    The Absent One

    kvinden i buret

    If you want to read some books by other Scandinavian crime writers, here is a link to a comprehensive reading list in a recent NYPL blog.  It's a great opportunity to warm up your long cold winter nights with a few good mysteries.

    Thanks for joining us in the Reader's Den this month.  In December the Reader's Den features science fiction writer Iain Banks and Consider Phlebas, where a galaxy-wide battle is raging between men and machines.  

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    December Author @ the LibraryThe lost tribe of Coney Island... building the Statue of Liberty... a culinary history of America in 100 bites... the sinking of refugee ship The Wilhelm Gustloff during World War II...  a close-up of the planet Mars... forgiving, remembering, and forgetting in personal and political contexts... a road trip through presidential libraries... curious New York activities... what online data can tell us about ourselves... reducing inequality in the 21st century... the history of New York's mass transit systems between 1940 and 1968... tales from a world traveler...

    If any of these topics sound intriguing, please join us for aAuthor @ the Library program in December at the Mid-Manhattan Library Come hear scholars and other experts discuss their recent nonfiction books and answer your questions. And this month, we've also got distinguished fiction writer Kevin Baker on the schedule. Author talks take place at 6:30 p.m. on the 6th floor of the Library unless otherwise noted. You can also request the authors' books using the links to the catalog included below.

    Lost Tribe of Coney Island



    Monday, December 1

    The Lost Tribe of Coney Island, with writer and journalist, Claire Prentice and Kevin Baker, the best-selling author of Dreamland and The Big Crowd.

    The authors’ dialogue and illustrated lecture uncover the forgotten tale of the Igorrotes, a tribe from the Northern Philippines, 50 of whom were taken to Coney Island in 1905 and put on display amongst the fairground rides and freak shows.



    Liberty's Torch



    Tuesday, December 2

    Liberty's Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty, with Elizabeth Mitchell, a journalist and the author of Three Strides Before the Wire: The Dark and Beautiful World of Horse Racing, and W.: Revenge of the Bush Dynasty.

    This illustrated lecture tells the story of the envisioning, funding and building of the Statue of Liberty for the first time, dispelling long-standing myths  around its creation. 
    The American Plate



    Wednesday, December 3

    The American Plate: A Culinary History in 100 Bites with Libby O'Connell, Senior Vice President of Corporate Outreach and Chief Historian to the History Channel.

    This visual lecture focuses on three iconic periods in the history of New York—New Netherlands, the Gilded Age, and 9/11—that illustrate how foodways reveal an engaging view of history for diverse audiences.  



    Death in the Baltic



    Thursday, December 4

    Death in the Baltic: The World War II Sinking of the Wilhelm Gustloff, with Cathryn J. Prince, award-winning author.

    The worst maritime disaster in modern history occurred during World War II, when more than 9,000 German civilians drowned.  This illustrated lecture reconstructs this forgotten moment in history and weaves personal narratives into a broader story, finally giving this World War II tragedy its rightful remembrance.


    Mars up Close



    Monday, December 8

    Mars Up Close: Inside the Curiosity Mission, with Marc Kaufman, a science journalist, who writes about NASA and space science for and The Washington Post.

    This illustrated lecture takes the audience inside the mission and onto the surface of Mars, with images never published before, many with surprising colors and landscapes. 


    Forgiveness and Remembrance


    Tuesday, December 9

    Forgiveness and Remembrance: Remembering Wrongdoing in Personal and Public Life, with Jeffrey M. Blustein, Arthur Zitrin Professor of Bioethics at City College and Professor of Philosophy at City College and the Graduate Center of the City University.

    This illustrated lecture examines the complex moral psychology of forgiving, remembering, and forgetting in personal and political contexts.  It challenges a number of entrenched ideas that pervade standard philosophical approaches to interpersonal forgiveness and offers an original account of its moral psychology and the emotions involved in it. 

    Chasing History - jacket



    Wednesday, December 10

    Chasing History: One Man's Road Trip Through the Presidential Libraries, with David Cross, an attorney and freelance writer.

    In this illustrated lecture, the author recounts his road trip to all the 13 presidential libraries in the United States



    Secret New York



    Monday, December 15

    Secret New York — Curious Activities, with TM Rives, writer and photographer.

    This illustrated lecture explores some of the curiosities of the Metropolis and focuses on the spots that resonate with a special something: history, irony, and / or weirdness. 








    Wednesday, December 17

    Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One's Looking), with Christian Rudder, author and co-founder of the online dating service OkCupid.

    In the age of Big Data, Christian Rudder stands out. Rudder has worked with the richest data sets in the world, accumulated from the dating site he co-founded, OkCupid, as well as Twitter, Google, Facebook, and the like. In his new book, Dataclysm, he uses this data to show us the human behavior behind the numbers: a revolutionary look at who we truly are.


    The Citizen's Share

    Thursday, December 18

    The Citizen's Share: Reducing Inequality in the 21st Century, with Joseph R. Blasi, professor at Rutgers University, Richard B. Freeman, Chair in Economics at Harvard University and Douglas L. Kruse, Distinguished Professor at Rutgers University.

     This illustrated lecture traces the development in American history of the idea of workers owning the businesses where they work and looks at how it applies in today's economy. 

    From a Nickel to a Token

    Monday, December 22

    From a Nickel to a Token: The Journey from Board of Transportation to MTA, with Andrew J. Sparberg, author, transit historian, and retired Long Island Rail Road manager.

    This illustrated lecture chronicles the fascinating microhistory of New York’s transit system and examines 20 specific events between 1940 and 1968, book-ended by subway unification and the creation of the MTA. 

    Chasing Wild Ass - jacket


    Tuesday, December 23

    Chasing Wild ASS, with Jon Haggins, the producer and host of GlobeTrotter TV.

    This illustrated lecture is a narrative of the author’s travels to more than 60 countries around the world.





    If you'd like to read any of the books presented at our past author talks, you can find book lists from our January 2013 - December 2014 Author @ the Library programs in the BiblioCommons catalog.

    The Author @ the Library posts include authors discussing their recent nonfiction works at the Mid-Manhattan Library. Don't miss the many other interesting classesfilms, readings and talks on our program calendar. Enjoy art lectures and artist conversations, monthly panel discussions featuring authors from the Mystery Writers of America, New York Chapter, and short story readings at Story Time for Grown-ups. All of our programs and classes are free, so why not come and check one out? Looking forward to seeing you soon at the library!


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    The Brooklyn Bridge took fourteen years to build, and the people in Manhattan and Brooklyn all eagerly awaited its completion. Travel between the boroughs of New York City would become so much easier. Some people had faith in the engineering feat. When the bridge was completed, there was a lovely opening celebration. The bridge was such a beautiful creation, and fun to walk across.

    However,  some said that the Brooklyn Bridge would not stand, and they waited for its crash into the river.

    In order to test this theory, Phineas T. Barnum, circus genius and creator of "The Greatest Show on Earth" came to New York City in 1884. He had 21 elephants parade down Manhattan and then across the bridge.  One mile long, carrying 21 elephants (times seven tons each), the bridge still stood. Everyone enjoyed the circus.

    Twenty-One Elephants and Still Standing by April Jones Prince, 2005

    I love the cover with the elephants. Unfortunately, it appears that the elephants' tusks have been cut. This is animal cruelty, and the practice should be abhorred. However, I did enjoy walking over the Brooklyn Bridge many times when I lived in Brooklyn.


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    Chi 895.17 Beimeicuige 北美崔哥:中国人来了:神文博主說段子


    南京市 : 江苏文艺出版社,  ISSN   9787539962924  c2013.


    北美崔哥 崔哥说:“我觉得,有的時侯,人要有明知失败但仍然继续、明知不可为而为之的精神,不要光想着这辈子失败了多多次,而要想着还有成功的可能性。即便你这辈子经历的全是失败,那你也拥有了失败的经验,这就是最宝贵的财富。在美国,失败的人多了,这就是沧桑。脸上没有皱纹的人,活着有什么意思?” 」 p223

    他「目睹了祖国由穷变富的过程,时刻都感到心花怒放,用英文说就是,"Heart Flower Angry Open"。...说这世界早晚是中国人的呢?主要是咱们炎黄子太牛了,他们不服都不行。我说中国人牛,那可是有原因的。」p006

    怎样才能在美国混下去? p096
    老外集体认为:中国人早晚征服世界... p006
    美国人看透了,自已早晚得被中国人同化... p015
    到底该不该入美籍? p085

    Special Thanks goes to Hung-yun Chang at Mid-Manhattan Library and Maria Fung in Collection Development for All their help with this blog post.

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    This week on the New York Public Library Podcast, we honor Pulitzer Prize winner and former US poet laureate Mark Strand, who passed away over the weekend at the age of 80. The beloved poet and author joined us this October to discuss art, imagination, and the life of the mind. We are especially lucky to share this intimate conversation between Mark Strand and his daughter, Books at Noon host Jessica Strand.

    Mark Strand

    Although eventually Strand would become the Poet Laureate of the United States and win the Pulitzer Prize, his aspirations were not always literary. He recalled that early in his life, he was more enamored of visual art:

    "I grew up in a household where books were very important, and I spent most of my youth escaping the reality of books. I'm not one of those writers who grew up with literature. Although my parents begged me to read at least an hour a day, I found ways around that. I was usually out playing ball or something like that. I always thought that doesn't mean that I wasn't in the very back corner of my mind interested in what they were reading; it just seemd their domain. It just didn't seem mine. I gravitated toward the visual arts. I liked looking at pictures, and my mother had gone to art school and we had a lot of art books around, and I would really study photographs of Donatello's sculptures. He was one of my mother's favorite sculptors. I would leaf through the books of American painting, European painting that we had in the house, and it always seemed that I was destined for a life in the visual arts."

    Later, when Strand began to write poetry, his training as an artist greatly influenced his interest in form:

    "That formal commitment to art carried over into poetry so that when I began writing, I wrote in meters and I wrote in rhyme. I wrote sonnets in imitation of Robert Lowell or people I liked then. And then, by the time I was forty, I woke up and discovered, 'What have I done with my life? I'm not fit for anything. All I can do is write poems!'"

    The poet explained that although his poetry might not be seen as explicitly autobiographical, his body of work does suggest the silhouette of his imaginative life:

    "There are a couple of ways poems reflect a life. They can reflect the life by accounting for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, a kind of biographical poem that I find boring. But, there's another biography or autobiography that we're living which is the psychic one, which is the one our imagination lives. And the imagination is the tool from which we draw our imagery, the music that we hear that feeds our poems. The life of the imagination is the life that interests me, and as I go back, I've never seen all my poems until the Collected Poems came out, and I began to think that yes, there is an arc here, and some of these early poems, certainly not all, but some of them are pretty damn good... I just suddenly saw that this is my life, that this is my autobiography but not an autobiography which I star as the guy Mark Strand who gets up in the morning, has breakfast, goes to work, you know, reads a book, watches the news, goes to sleep. No, the life that the poems register is the life of the mind, the imagination; it's the inner life."

    You can subscribe to the New York Public Library Podcast to hear more conversations with wonderful artists, writers, and intellectuals. Join the conversation today!

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    Broadway Blues
    Broadway Blues

    File this one under: Never say never.

    In my family, I am definitely not known as the creative one.  My grandmother was an amazing artist, a trait she passed on to my sister.  Both of my parents at least dabbled in music. Me, nada.  No musical talent, and though I enjoyed drawing as a child, I was not good at it.  To this day, my sister lovingly pokes fun at the drawings I made that still survive.  If you asked me, I would have said I don't have an artistic bone in my body.

    Until about two years ago.  

    I needed to create an anniversary gift for Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, the Broadway composing team, who are personal heroes of mine, and whom I am also lucky enough to call friends.  They were celebrating their 30th year of collaboration in the musical theater, and I wanted to give them something special.    For weeks, I agonized over what I could do that would be unique and meaningful.


    Inspired by artist Michael Abert's collage of The Declaration of Independence, which I have in my apartment, I decided to create a collage for each of them containing titles of songs they've written during their career.  I found that I thoroughly enjoyed the project, and when it was done, I wanted to keep creating.  But the process of looking for words and letters was sometimes tedious, and I wanted to try something that was a little less intense.  At first, I thought I might "deconstruct" a cereal box, as Albert is famous for doing.

    But then it hit me.  What if, instead of a cereal box, I deconstructed a Playbill, something I had tons of, and that spoke to my true passion for the theater?

    So Broadway Glue was born!  


    With the help of a mentor, I started learning more about color theory and composition.  She encouraged me to take my artistic endeavor seriously.   I  found that the more I learned, the more I began to grow and experiment.  I love  being able to create Broadway themed art that allows me to get out of my own head a bit, while making use of all the theater trivia I know.  The collages I have created are sometimes thematic, like this one, celebrating  composer Stephen Sondheim.  Sometimes, they commemorate just one show,  like this one for Wicked. I love that the possibilities are infinite!I am thrilled that my library life and my artistic life will be joined when some of my collages are on display at the Morningside Heights Branch from December 2-31.  If you are interested in the theater, I hope you'll stop by and let me know what you think!

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    The holiday season is just beginning and I would like to recommend some holiday books in the library collections:  

    How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss. In this classic tale the Grinch steals all the presents  and decorations from Whoville because he does not like Christmas.  Yet the people of Whoville decide to celebrate Christmas anyway without decorations or presents. 

    A Charlie Brown Christmas by Charles M. Schulz. Charlie Brown along with his friends try to discover the true meaning of Christmas. 

    Sad Santa by Tad Carpenter. Santa finds himself sad after the Christmas holiday.  Santa receives a very nice letter from a child and learns that  you can have the holiday spirit all year long!

    Merry Christmas, Maisyby Lucy Cousins. This books has taps and flaps that the reader can use to help Maisy wrap Christmas presents and decorate her home.


    A Mexican Christmas by Michael Elsohn Ross. This title is about children in Oaxaca, Mexico celebrating Christmas. 

    The Nutcraker by Alison Jay is about a girl named Marie. Marie rescues her Christmas Nutcracker from angry toys and are later rewarded with an awesome journey to land of faeries. 

    Christmas by by Dana Meachen Rau is a wonderful title about the history and customs of Christmas. 

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  • 12/02/14--09:59: Poetry + Fiction For Teens
  • I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately for several committees including NYPL’s Best Books For Teens 2014 (coming later this month—stay tuned!) When I looked back over all the young adult books I read this year, I definitely noticed a recurring theme of poetry.

    Some of these books are poem-format novels, in which the entire story is told as a series of poems. And some are novels that start off as regular prose, but then as the characters start reading and writing poetry, their poems are incorporated into the story. If you enjoy rhymes, free verse, or anything in between, here are some great new books that you can find on our YA fiction shelves!

    The Crossover

    The Crossover by Kwame Alexander
    Twin brothers Josh and Jordan face tough challenges, both on the basketball court and at home.

    Death Coming Up the Hill by Chris Crowe
    Ashe doesn’t know which is worse—the possibility of being drafted to fight in Vietnam or the way his family is falling apart.

    Silver People by Margarita Engle
    The creation of the Panama Canal is explored through the voices of those whose lives were forever changed by it.

    Two Girls Staring at the Ceiling by Lucy Frank
    Francesca just got sick recently, but Shannon has been sick for years. Now they’re lying next to each other in the same hospital room.

    Two Girls Staring at the Ceiling

    Rumble by Ellen Hopkins
    Matthew doesn’t have faith in people or God or anything else, especially not since his brother killed himself.

    And we Stay by Jenny Hubbard
    Writing poetry helps Emily deal with her emotions as she copes with her ex-boyfriend's suicide.

    Crazy by Linda Vigen Phillips
    Laura is an artist like her mother, but when she sees her mother’s mental illness she worries that she inherited more than just her talent.

     A Girl in Pieces

    Gabi: A Girl in Pieces by Isabel tero
    Gabi writes in her diary about her friendships, her family, and being strong enough to find her own voice.

    A Time to Dance by Padma Venkatraman
    Veda is a dancer who loses part of her leg in a car accident. Will she ever be able to walk or dance again?

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    Like Yes Please by Amy Poehler, these humorous and engaging memoirs transform readers into the personal and professional lives of celebrities. Some titles also incorporate advice.

    if you ask
    i don't know








    Ali in Wonderland: And Other Tall Talesby Alexandra Wentworth
    “Mix 1 oz. Chelsea Handler, 1.5 oz. Nora Ephron, finish with a twist of Tina Fey, and you get Ali in Wonderland, the uproarious, revealing, and heartfelt memoir from acclaimed actress and comedian Ali Wentworth.”

    American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriotby Craig Ferguson
    Comedian and host of The Late, Late Show presents a funny and moving memoir of his journey from the street of Glasgow, Scotland, and every hurdle in between, before finally living his American dream.

    Life laughs: The Naked Truth about Motherhood, Marriage, and Moving On by Jenny McCarthy
    This model, author and talk show host, discusses her very public divorce, as well as such topics as PMS, dating and motherhood.

    I Don't know What You Know Me From: Confessions Of Co-Star by Judy Greer
    Actress Judy Greer best known for her roles in The Descendants, Arrested Development and The Wedding Planner, presents a collection of comedic essays  ranging from the hilarious to the intimate moments in her life.

    If You Ask Me: (And Of Course You Won’t) by Betty White
    The star of Golden Girl delivers cheery and reflective insights on issues such as love, sex and aging.

    These titles may be also available in multiple formats. For more information please contact your local library.

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    Sixteen-year-old Ned Begay is used to being called stupid and other names by adults. So  joining the Marines and going through boot camp is not especially challenging for him. But war does take its toll on him. Killing the enemy and watching friends die hours after he dined with them is not exactly easy.

    Luckily, Ned's Navajo heritage and language does himself and the war effort some good because it enables him to learn a secret code; he uses it to carry messages in his short-term memory. Very few written remnants of the communications are allowed. On pain of death and torture, Ned Begay is not to reveal the code.

    The Marines gives him something to live for.

    Code Talker: A Novel About the Navajo Marines of World War Two by Joseph Bruchac, 2005

    I was fascinated to learn that Native Americans used their Native language in order to transmit wartime messages during World War II.

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    Apprenticeship for a 21st Century Workforce is the Department of Labor blog post authored by Tom Perez, Secretary of Labor.  He writes about his tour in Wolfsburg Germany, home to Volkswagen AG's headquarters.  He notes that in Germany, businesses are required to establish "works councils" that include workers and management representatives.  These councils work collatively to address working conditions and set policies  on human resources and other matters.  Work councils are an innovative way to ensure worker voice, which is critical to a strong economy based on shared prosperity.  He asserts that we should look for ways to import this model to the U.S.

    Editor’s Note: This week, Secretary Perez travels to Germany and the United Kingdom, to learn from workers, employers and government officials about their effective models for skills training and workforce development. Throughout the week, he’ll share his personal reflections and observations.

    Oct. 28, Day 2: Wolfsburg, Germany

    Wolfsburg, Germany is a rarity in Europe – a city with its roots in the 20th century rather than the millennia of history that preceded it. That’s because it’s home to Volkswagen AG’s headquarters and one of the largest automobile manufacturing plants in the world. It emerged and grew as Volkswagen did. It’s the ultimate company town.

    Learning and Earning

    Today I visited VW’s headquarters to learn about its apprenticeship model, which many economists praise as one of the most innovative of its kind. The program is designed to train and develop apprentices to keep pace with rapidly advancing technology; they receive formal qualifications through extensive product training while working full time.  I heard from these apprentices, as well as the people who created and maintain the program, to find out what we can do in the United States to promote high-quality apprenticeships and make them available to more Americans.

    I asked one apprentice what he likes the most about his job, and he told me it’s that he can learn something new every day and continue to grow his career. Learning while earning – that’s what apprenticeship is all about.

    I finished the tour at their production plant, known as the “Sector 16 Werkforum.” As they do in the auto plants I’ve visited back home, the cutting-edge technology and sophisticated robotics astonish me. This isn’t your grandfather’s manufacturing. Through apprenticeship, Germany is able to give their people the highly specialized skills required to keep their businesses competitive and growing.

    “Build me as you will build your next car”

    Along the tour, one of the employees said something that strikes me as right on the money: “Build me as you will build your next car.” That sleek, well-engineered Jetta you see in the showroom or that you’re backing out of your driveway? It’s a good product because Volkswagen invests in the people designing it. VW “builds” its people up, giving them the tools to contribute to the company’s growth and success.

    A “Berufsfamilie”

    Dr. Horst Neumann, my tour guide today and a member of VW’s Board of Management for Human Resources and Organization, taught me a new word: “Berufsfamilie.”

    It translates roughly to “work family” or “professional family.” It’s an animating principle behind the German labor-management relations approach, which requires businesses to establish “works councils” that include worker and management representatives. These councils work collaboratively to address working conditions and set policies on human resources and other matters. As with any family, works councils don’t guarantee harmony, but they provide a forum for working through differences. Works councils are an innovative way to ensure worker voice, which is critical to a strong economy based on shared prosperity. We should look for ways to import this model to the U.S.

    Not Just the What, but the How

    VW’s training and worker representation policies are examples of a company that articulates its values as much as its products in everything it does. I told my hosts that young people in America are helping to bring about a culture shift where we value not only what a company makes, buthow it makes it.

    On to Berlin and then the UK. I’ll have another diary entry in the next day or so.

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    Rest in peace to the genius of comedy that was Roberto Gómez Bolaños, also known as Chespirito (1929-2014). Mr. Bolaños was well known across Latin America for his shows El Chaco del Ocho y El Chapulin Colorado. He was an actor, writer and director. 

    Bolaños was of Mexican nationality. His TV shows originated in Mexico and were broadcasted all over Latin America is Guatemala, Panama and Venezuela to name a few. Over time his shows also were translated and broadcasted in Japan, Europe and the United States.

    Bolaños always had a positive message in his comedy. In El Chavo del Ocho, the predominant message was friendship.

    Here are some of his works from our collection:


    The Best of El Chapulin Colorado

    The Best of El Chavo del Ocho

    Que descanse en paz el genio de la comedia, Roberto Gómez Bolaños, mejor conocido como Chespirito (1929-2014). El señor Bolaños es muy conocido en Latino América por sus programas El Chaco del Ocho y El Chapulín Colorado. Él fue un gran actor, escritor y director.

    Bolaños es de nacionalidad Mexicana. Sus programas originaron en México y desde México se expandieron a otros países de Latino América como Guatemala, Panamá, y Venezuela. Con el tiempo sus programas también fueron expandidos a Japón, Angola, Europa y los Estados Unidos. 

    La comedia de Bolaños en El Chavo del Ocho siempre tenía un mensaje positivo, como la amistad en la comunidad.

    Aquí puede encontrar dos libros escritos por Bolaños de nuestra colección:

    El Diario Del Chavo del Ocho     

    Su biographia Sin Querer Queriendo

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