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Liblog

Staff members from the Greenfield Public Library will write about recent developments at the library, staff book recommendations, new materials, updates on the new library, upcoming events and programs, and highlights of specific collections. For more information about the Greenfield Public Library, check out our web site.

Running Strong at GPL

HELLO BLOG READERS!!! 

With Spring finally arriving, the action at the Library is also picking up.  Please see some of the activities we have planned in the near future at Greenfield Library. 

Are You Ready to Tackle the Job Hunt? Brush Up on Your Job Hunting Skills at These Greenfield Library Workshops 

Greenfield Library is hosting a series of workshops that will help jobseekers navigate the job market as a more mature and prepared jobseeker.  The workshops will be presented by the Department of Workforce Development – Job Center and will take place in the Library’s second-floor conference room.  The workshops are free and registration is not required.  The following are our scheduled workshops, with dates for succeeding workshops to be determined.

 

Tuesday           April 22           Resume Writing – Learn how to best highlight your skills, experience, and education

 

Wednesday     April 23           Job Search Strategies – Learn how to navigate online and paper resources with confidence

 

Wednesday     April 30           Interviewing – You have gotten this far.  Now learn how to verbalize your resume and say the right things to get that job.

 

History Book Club Hulas Back with a Vengeance April 22 at 7:00pm 

The Greenfield Library History Book Club is back for the month of April with the unfortunate saga of Hawaii in Julia Flynn Siler’s Lost Kingdom: Hawaii’s Last Queen, the Sugar Kings and America’s First Imperial Adventure.  It is a turn-of-the-20th century drama: a clash between a vulnerable Polynesian people and relentlessly expanding imperialistic and profit-driven threats to their ancient way of life.  Reserve your copy now online at http://countycat.mcfls.org or by calling the Library at 414-321-9595 x104.  All are welcome, even if you did not read the book but enjoy historical discussion. 

“The Invisible Threat of Identity Theft” Program on April 24 

You’re being targeted 24/7!  Learn strategies to help you and your family avoid being victimized by this all-too-common crime.  This free library workshop takes place on Thursday, April 24 from 6:00-7:30pm in the Library Community Room.  The program is co-sponsored by the Greenfield Public Library and WWBIC (Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation).  Registration is appreciated at the Library Reference Desk, by phone to Michelle at 414-321-9595 x101 or by email to MichelleS@greenfieldwi.us. 

Hypnotist Paul Knight to Command Audience at May 8 Hypnotism Show at GPL 

Hypnotist and “Master of the Mind” Paul Knight brings his mesmerizing and hilarious hypnotism show to Greenfield Library on Thursday, May 8 at 7:00 pm in the GPL Community Room.  Bring the family to this hilarious G-rated program set to make your sides hurt from laughing.  No registration is required and the event is free to the public.  Come early to get a seat.  Just a warning: after this show, YOU MAY NEVER BE THE SAME. 

 

Deep in the Stacks: The Boston Marathon 

The third Monday in April is Patriots’ Day in the state of Massachusetts and this is always the day when the Boston Marathon is run.  Inspired by the marathon event of the 1896 Summer Olympics, the Boston Marathon began in 1897 and is the world’s oldest annual marathon.  The event attracts 500,000 spectators annually with around 25,000 registered participants running, including 43 percent of the runners being female (females not allowed to run in the event until 1972). 

Part of the Patriots’ Day tradition is the Boston Red Sox playing a home game at 10:00am, early by baseball standards.  Beginning in 1903, the tradition is when the game ends, the crowd empties out into Kenmore Square to see runners enter the final mile.   

Unfortunately, most remember the Boston Marathon event by the despicable actions of the Tsarnaev Brothers, detonating two pressure cooker bombs in backpacks, killing three and injuring countless others.  Despite these horrific actions, the collective care and aid provided by both the city of Boston and United States’ citizens after this tragedy has only made the race and the City of Boston stronger and the 2014 Boston Marathon a highly-important event and media-covered event. 

Below are just some of the books available at Greenfield Library to help runners train and perhaps participate in a marathon of their own someday. 

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Anatomy for Runners: Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health, Speed, and Injury Prevention – Jay Dicharry   796.426 DIC 

The Beginning Runner’s Handbook: The Proven 13-Week Runwalk Program – Ian MacNeill   796.42 MAC 

Better Training for Distance Runners – David E. Martin    796.425 MAR 

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Ever Seen – Christopher McDougall   796.424 MCD 

Complete Book of Running: Everything You Need to Know to Run for Fun, Fitness and Competition – Runner’s World   796.426 RUN 

The Complete Book of Running for Women: Everything You Need to Know About Training, Nutrition, Injury Prevention, Motivation, Racing and Much, Much More – Claire Kowalchik   613.7 KOW 

Run Fast: How to Train for a 5K or 10K Race – Hal Higdon   796.42 HIG (Ask at Desk) 

Run Your Butt Off!: A Breakthrough Plan to Lose Weight and Start Running (No Experience Necessary!) – Sarah Lorge Butler   613.71 LOR 

Runner’s World Complete Book of Women’s Running: The Advice to Get Started, Stay Motivated, Lose Weight, Run Injury-Free, Be Safe, and Train for Any Distance – Dagny Scott   796.426 SCO  

Runner’s World Guide to Trail Running – Dagny Scott Barrios   796.42 BAR (Ask at Desk) 

Runner’s World Run Less, Run Faster: Become a Faster, Stronger Runner with the Revolutionary 3-Run-a-Week Training Program – William James Pierce   796.42 PIE 

Running for Women – Jason Karp   796.42 KAR 

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Thank you for reading our blog and we look forward to seeing you soon at Greenfield Library.

The Future of Cartography: A History Book Club Wrap-Up

In our last History Book Club meeting, the group discussed Simon Garfield’s On the Map: A Mind-Expanding Exploration of the Way the World Looks.  The book is a sort of pop-historical introduction of cartography for the layperson interested in maps, but not necessarily making a career out of it.  It is a very fascinating, and what I would think a difficult-to-write book, capturing a chronological history of cartography through a series of well-researched and whimsical chapters that will not make the reader bored.  Exhausted perhaps, but never bored. 

One of the questions posed to the book club was whether paper maps were becoming the floppy disks and VHS tapes of our current generation; in other words, informational, yet outdated.  When asked if they have used an online mapping site such as Google Maps or Mapquest and whether they own a Global Positioning System (GPS) or not, it was nearly unanimous that members of the group have used one or both of these services, despite the fact that the technologies are not perfect and a paper map is still the ol’ reliable.  It seemed that everyone had a horror story using an online mapping service, application, or a GPS and they laugh about it now.  But seriously think about it: you don’t need these services when you are just driving to work or in an area you know; you use it when you DO NOT know where you are.  This is a serious, and in some instances, horrifying situation to be in.  Granted, a road map from 60 years ago will most likely not do the trick today.  However, it is a printed, physical record in front of you that will not disappear once you are out of WIFI range. 

Unfortunately, the paper map is dwindling.  They can be expensive; much more expensive than an app.  You have to get up, go to a store and buy a map and this is SO much more inconvenient than just laying in bed and downloading a map or frantically searching through your mobile device after you have accidently passed your exit ramp that your phone told you to take over and over in that annoying voice.  And, my God, you have to fold the thing up when you are done.  That is simply too much to ask! 

The paper map will continue to be around, as society continues to publish books with the Kindle and Nook present and compact discs continued to be pressed as digital music has revolutionized the medium.  While today’s mass-published road maps may not be a beautiful thing to be treasured and kept for future generations’ enjoyment, the maps created by cartographers hundreds, even millennia ago are simply stunning pieces of art, even if California is portrayed as an island and dragons and other mythical beasts really do not live in the Pacific Ocean.  While one would not use these to navigate today, each map chronologically tells the story and advancement of cartography, exploration and scientific discovery that if not discovered then, would not provide reliable results on your iPhone app today. 

Another question posed to the group was whether cartography was dead.  After all, with the advancement of Google Maps and the explosion of the purchase and usage of GPS and satellite navigating, all of planet Earth has been mapped to the tiniest degree.  So, why do we need cartography any longer?   

While this question is a loaded one, cartography and mapping will always be needed.  It just may be that a shift might be occurring from the concept of ‘cartography’ to the newer concept of ‘mapping.’  Terrestrial maps may not change much from now on beside altering border disputes and fulfilling the political creation of new countries since most everything on Earth has been explored.  

Despite this fact, this does not mean the end of maps; just what is being mapped.  The creation of useful visual representations beyond the means of numbers and graphs provides an educational opportunity for others in fields outside of cartography to “map” their findings for a larger number of people to learn from.  In the same manner that a Spanish explorer surveyed their findings while crossing the Atlantic Ocean in the 1500s, a neurologist can begin mapping the sequence of neurons firing in the brain in a linear, map-like fashion.  Even though it is not land being mapped, today’s professionals can now map their concepts with the same results. 

With the increase and dawn of this new digital age we are living in, mapping might now only be just beginning and going in directions that Ptolemy to even 21st-century cartographers never knew were possible.  Cartographers of land now must have a new role in developing their maps: storyteller.  New and creative maps of the world must show and tell the viewer something beyond bodies of water and mountain ranges to flourish in the future.  Publications like the State of the World Atlas place a map of the world on each page, but also emphasize data on a wide variety of topics such as population density, health issues, and human rights of countries and regions, highlighted by various colors and graphs.  This information goes above and beyond what one can learn staring at a plain ol’ map of the world.  Such a collection of maps can teach the viewer a variety of topics and show what kind of lifestyles, values, and people live in each region.  Cartographers in the future will need to say more with their maps, since almost all already has been discussed and discovered.

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Defining Billy Mitchell: A History Book Club Wrap-Up

History Book Club

At the most recent History Book Club, we discussed Douglas Waller’s A Question of Loyalty: Gen. Billy Mitchell and the Court-Martial That Gripped the Nation and the legacy of the brash Milwaukeean, General Billy Mitchell.  Mitchell was a pioneering military officer whose viewpoints on the future of military aviation ultimately led him to being court-martialed and eventually found guilty for speaking his mind and undermining American military procedure (violation of the catch-all 96th Article of War).

In a time when airplanes were very little more than wood, cloth, and an engine, Mitchell understood the potential importance of air-power on the battlefield unlike any other of his time.  He predicted the importance of the Hawaiian Islands and the rise of Asia, particularly Japan, as one of the countries that the world needed to be concerned of post-World War I.  He in fact predicted that the Japanese would strike at Pearl Harbor years before the eventual attack in 1941, and actually predicted the time of the attack within 20 minutes.  He had successfully proven that air-power could sink a battleship, a thought once noted as preposterous, during a flight test in 1921; a result that made manly naval admirals weep at the test.

Unfortunately, as smart and prophetic as he was militarily and aeronautically, two things that he could not control ultimately did Mitchell in: his social class and his mouth.  Born the grandson of an eminent Milwaukee banker and the son of a Congressman, Mitchell lived a life of excess and privilege that many in the military never dreamed having.  Though he was a very ambitious and promising soldier, Mitchell could not help how his lineage perhaps took away from the successes he had earned.  His wealthy family may have also shaped his ego.  When he asked his family for money, often overspending his bounds, the loans were lent easily, and there was always more money from where that loan came from.  Having money often allows people to be more public, more outspoken, fear repercussions less. 

Mitchell had the military know-how of airplanes unlike very few in the United States Military.  He flew every model of plane that the US Army acquired.  He flew scouting missions in France as a General.  If anybody had the right to acknowledge the direction of aviation in the military, it was Billy Mitchell.

However, sometimes you just need to put your foot in your mouth.  In response to the Navy dirigible Shenandoah crashing in a storm in 1925 that killed 14 on board, an enraged, ignored (in his opinion), and recently demoted Mitchell fired a scathing 6000+ word document at a press conference that accused leaders in both the Army and the Navy of incompetence and “almost treasonable administration of the national defenses.”  While the average person may be able to get away about saying some of this about their superiors, in the military atmosphere, such speech could not go undisciplined.

The result was a seven-week media-circus court-martial which was the O.J. Simpson trial of the 1920s, or at least a similar equivalent.  Mitchell was tried amongst a jury of his peers (fellow generals including childhood playmate and future Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers Douglas MacArthur) that either loved him or hated him for a variety of reasons.  Mitchell was eventually found guilty of his breach of the 96th Article of War and was suspended for five years without pay or title. 

The question remains why the US military did not kick Mitchell out outright.  Did they value his opinions but not his gabbiness?  Mitchell certainly thought so, but it didn’t matter in the end.  Though President Coolidge altered the sentence and eventually allowed for Mitchell to receive half-pay, the flamboyant Mitchell resigned from the Army in February 1926.  He tried to rally around Franklin Roosevelt’s presidential election in 1932, hoping to get a valuable military or possibly a cabinet position, but nothing materialized.  Within ten years of the court-martial, Mitchell was dead at 56.

Unfortunately, Billy Mitchell never got to see most of his ideas come into fruition.  His death preceded the beginning of World War II by just three years and he never saw how powerful airpower became on the battlefront, especially with the dropping of the ultimate weapon, the atomic bomb, from an airplane.  He never saw the formation of an independent air force, co-equal to the army and navy that he lobbied for for so many years.  He never got to see the direction of today’s modern aviation or its advancement to the point of creating drone technology where airplanes do not even need pilots.  Compare this to some planes in his time being called “flying coffins” and the term ‘suicide mission’ being an apt and common concept in early aviation.

Despite his military downfall, Billy Mitchell and his legacy are stronger today than ever.  Wherever there is an airplane, the legacy of Mitchell is right behind.

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