I Miss the Library

Has anybody else been feeling the poignancy of the temporary loss of libraries in their life? The ones in my area have been closed for almost a month now, without notice. It was with heavy heart that I placed my last set of borrowed books in the return slot outside, not knowing when it would re-open.

Walking into a library (or writing about one, I’m now finding) never fails to lift my spirits. My mom instilled in me a love for reading since before I even learned how to read, and my great uncle took my younger sister and I to the library, as children, on a weekly basis to check out books, read the paper, read articles on microfiche, and attend (free) classical music concerts.

Many people only picture books when they think about a library. Libraries are about so much more than just books, although those do happen to be some of my favorite things in this world (at least, the kind you can hold in your hands with real pages to turn that have that “classic book smell”).

But the library is more than a convenience, luxury, or entertainment venue. It’s an essential asset to many members of the community, especially those belonging to vulnerable populations. The library allows access to a safe, warm, quiet environment with a bathroom. It offers internet access so that those without computers or internet access at home, as well as those without a home, can create a resume, apply for jobs, print paper documents, and learn about what’s going on in the world.

Libraries also offer DVD’s, CD’s, board games, and, depending on the library, other items such as work tools and musical instruments for rent. They offer free, fun, educational activities for kids and teens. They offer workshops and classes for adults, such as tax prep, gardening skills, mental health, etc. They offer resources to victims of domestic violence. And yet they are constantly on the front lines facing threats of defunding.

I’m sure I will make it until my library opens back up. I know I have other alternatives available to me, such as ebooks and ordering used books online for delivery. And I am lucky enough to have a warm, safe home, internet access, and even a job, to say nothing of my comparatively great health in a time when so many others are getting sick.

Keep your chins up, fellow library fans! Our precious institutions of old will not be inaccessible to us forever. In conclusion, I will leave some of my favorite library-related quotes for you to enjoy.

Updates/I’m Back

Hello. Greetings. It’s been a while. I have many posts saved in draft form that are currently in the works, and I’m glad to be back and publishing posts. I’ve missed writing. It helps clear my head and make sense of often overwhelming, muddled thoughts. It makes me feel less crazy to take often-unformed thoughts like amorphous clouds drifting through my head and nail them down on paper (or the Internet, as it were) to examine more clearly in the form of words with sentence structure and subject-verb agreement and direct objects and ORGANIZATION. And to be able to share things with my blogging audience I wouldn’t be comfortable sharing with those I know personally.

Early 2020 for me has not been very different than late 2019. I’m still working the same job, although I currently work from home because…

…we are now in the midst of a worldwide pandemic. This is what happens when I leave my blog for a few months (bad joke, I know…). I hope everybody is staying healthy and sane while we all try to live as self-contained as possible to avoid catching and spreading this virus. I think the hardest part right now is the uncertainty of when the danger will end and when we will all be able to go back to living normally. I have always felt that I could bear just about anything as long as I know when it will be over. At the sane time, I feel thankful to still be well when many others are currently fighting for their lives. Still, my introversion is being put to the test…

I wish I could at least say my weight-loss journey is going well, but, to be honest, it’s gone anything but. I seem to have no inner motivation for it and, in fact, it seems my concentrating on it and giving it attention only makes me desire to do the complete opposite — as though my public commitment to lose weight only served to heighten my anxiety over the topic, resulting in weight gain. I have noticed worse pain than ever in both knees, especially when going up stairs. I know I need to lose weight more now than ever during this pandemic. I already struggle with shortness of breath. My weight could be the difference between my living or dying if I were to catch this respiratory virus. At the same time, quarantining has me feeling I’m in a holding pattern and causing heightened anxiety and uncertainty, overshadowing the importance of self-improvement goals like weight loss. It doesn’t help that today I’ve been having technical difficulties with my work, which caused an additional level of frustration, exhaustion, and depression — a state that always has me running to food for comfort. At this point, I’m beginning to feel ambivalent…

I’m glad I’m back and writing again. I feel the most “me” when I am writing. More centered, grounded, and calm. So thanks for having me back and let’s wish each other good luck and strength to get us all through.

100 Films From Hollywood’s Golden Age Not to Miss

I hope everyone is doing well and taking care of themselves and their loved ones during these uncertain times. I know I have been gone for a while and decided to make a list of some of my favorite “black-and-white” or “classic” movies as my first come-back post. Many of these can be found free on the internet (especially on YouTube), and I know many of us have the time to sit down and enjoy a movie now that we’re quarantining. It’s interesting to watch movies from past eras when different norms and standards ruled society, to note the similarities and differences between how we think and act now. The use of different lingo and different word meanings can also be fun to learn. The slower pacing of older movies often helps set a film’s ambiance and causes viewers to feel more invested in the film’s ending. In no specific order and representing a variety of genres, here are 100 of my favorite movies from the 1930’s-1960’s:

1. Twelve Angry Men (1957)

2. Double indemnity (1944)

3. Dial M for Murder (1954)

4. Vertigo (1958)

5. Wait Until Dark (1967)

6. The Great Escape (1963)

7. Rebecca (1940)

8. House on Haunted Hill (1959)

9. And Then There Were None (1945)

10. Witness for the Prosecution (1957)

11. The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)

12. All About Eve (1950)

13. Citizen Kane (1941)

14. Whatever Happened to Baby Jane (1962)

15. Sunset Boulevard (1950)

16. On the Waterfront (1954)

17. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)

18. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

19. The Grapes of Wrath (1940)

20. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

21. The Children’s Hour (1961)

22. Casablanca (1942)

23. A Patch of Blue (1965)

24. Les Diabolique (1955)

25. Laura (1944)

26. The Bicycle Thief (1948)

27. Imitation of Life (1934)

28. Pollyanna (1960)

29. Repulsion (1965)

30. Shadow of a Doubt (1943)

31. Rear Window (1954)

32. Strangers on a Train (1951)

33. Rope (1948)

34. Gaslight (1944)

35. The Caine Mutiny (1954)

36. Freaks (1932)

37. The Masque of the Red Death (1964)

38. It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963)

39. The Producers (1967)

40. The Dirty Dozen (1967)

41. 36 Hours (1965)

42. Ace in the Hole (1951)

43. Lilies of the Field (1963)

44. The Stranger (1946)

45. North by Northwest (1959)

46. Charade (1963)

47. Anatomy of a Murder (1959)

48. Psycho (1960)

49. Birds (1963)

50. Marnie (1964)

51. To Catch a Thief (1955)

52. Notorious (1946)

53. Lifeboat (1944)

54. The Trouble With Harry (1955)

55. I Confess (1953)

56. The Dark Corner (1946)

57. Scarlett Street (1945)

58. Foreign Correspondent (1940)

59. Stage Fright (1950)

60. Spellbound (1945)

61. Suspicion (1941)

62. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

63. The Wrong Man (1956)

64. Wild Strawberries (1957)

65. Adam’s Rib (1949)

66. Black Narcissus (1947)

67. Le Trou (1960)

68. The Innocents (1961)

69. The Most Dangerous Game (1932)

70. David and Lisa (1962)

71. The Uninvited (1944)

72. Compulsion (1959)

73. Black Widow (1954)

74. Blackboard Jungle (1955)

75. Knife in the Water (1962)

76. Finishing School (1934)

77. The Big Heat (1953)

78. The Lost Weekend (1945)

79. Fahrenheit 451 (1966)

80. A Town Like Alice (1956)

81. The Manchurian Candidate (1962)

82. Dead Ringer (1964)

83. Dark Passage (1947)

84. The Maltese Falcon (1941)

85. The Love God (1969)

86. Where the Sidewalk Ends (1950)

87. The Long, Long Trailer (1954)

88. Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation (1962)

89. Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)

90. The Shaggy Dog (1959)

91. Stagecoach (1939)

92. It Happened One Night (1934)

93. The 39 Steps (1935)

94. The Lady Vanishes (1938)

95. The Letter (1940)

96. The Third Man (1949)

97. The Apartment (1960)

98. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

99. Inherit the Wind (1960)

100. Life With Father (1947)

If you find your own favorites on this list or have faves of your own to share with me, please let me know!