Thursday, April 27, 2017

Word of the Day


\ CHER-ee-pik \, verb;

1.Informal . to select with great care: You can cherry-pick your own stereo components .

2.Informal . (in retail use) to buy only the sale items and ignore the other merchandise.


It’s easy to cherry-pick silly or ill-considered or factually flawed things he’s said.

-- Hendrick Hertzberg, "Foul Tip," The New Yorker , Jan. 16, 2009

It is only on a second reading that one can see how delicately Sethe cherry-picks what can be told to Denver as the epic triumph of Denver's birth…

-- A.S. Byatt, Toni Morrison, "Introduction," Beloved , 2006


Cherry-pick entered English in the 1960s possibly as an extension of the slang term cherry-picker , defined by Railroad Magazine in 1940 as a "switchman, so called because of red lights on switch stands. Also any railroad man who is always figuring on the best jobs and sidestepping undesirable ones."

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Happy Admininstrative Professionals Day!

Where would we be without the administrative professionals of the world? Who would keep you on schedule? Complete all that typing and take care of your mountains of paperwork? Make appointments and take phone calls? And so much more. We'd be lost without them.
Today is Administrative Professionals Day. Take some time to thank the administrative professionals in your life. Without them, we'd all be lost.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Magazine Monday: Film Comment

by Steven D. Mathews, Library Assistant

The Yocum Library subscribes to the print edition of Film Comment, a bimonthly magazine published by the Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York City. 

For more than fifty years, Film Comment has reviewed and discussed the world of current cinema and its history. The January/February 2017 issue features an article on the works of Martin Scorsese and his new film Silence (2016)

The most recent issue (March/April 2017) features an article on Albert Serra’s The Death of King Louis XIV (2016). The cover of the issue shows the 76-year-old Sun King, the nickname for King Louis XIV of France (1638–1715), in a huge wig and ostentatious eighteenth-century clothes, lying on his back, presumably on his deathbed. 

Yonca Talu’s article on the film describes Serra’s lack of romanticism for the Sun King’s death: “The King’s physical deterioration is rendered through an unnervingly static and hypnotically paced mise en scène that, while viscerally involving the audience in Louis’s suffering, does not induce identification: the film’s true protagonist is not Louis XIV, but rather death, treated as a simultaneously cruel and banal fact of life” (26). The film reminds us no one can escape mortality, even the so-called divine ruler who built the Palace of Versailles.

Another article, “Text and Image” by Max Nelson, provides striking examples from the silent-movie era to the present of how on-screen texts, either as diegetic (from the world of the film) or non-diegetic (placed intentionally by the filmmakers), can impact the cinematic experience. 

“On-screen words can lodge in a film’s world, hover over it (in superimpositions), or interject themselves around it (in intertitles). Visually, they can announce themselves at the front of the frame, peek out from its corners, slither through it elusively, lurk in its background, or—as often happens with superimposed text—emerge as its single most striking element” (48). The article reviews a new book on the subject, Words on Screen, by the French theorist, Michel Chion.

Besides reviews and articles of cinema, books on cinema, home media, and streaming services, Film Comment also has web-only content on their web site, which includes reviews of Turner Classic Movie programming, recent film festivals, and a podcast.

Judith Croteau awarded Ronald F. Borkert Library Research Award

Judith Croteau (center) with Yocum librarians Pat Nouhra (left) and Kim Stahler (right)

Judith Croteau, business student of Mary Lou Kline, won the Ronald F. Borkert Library Research Award, which was presented at RACC’s Academic Awards Ceremony on Friday, April 21. 

Her essay was chosen by Yocum faculty librarians for its excellent use of library resources combined with her own experience and analysis. Congratulations Judith!

Library of Congress Celebrates Birthday Today

Today, the Library of Congress celebrates its birthday. On April 24, 1800, President John Adams approved the appropriation of $5,000 for the purchase of “such books as may be necessary for the use of congress.”

The books, the first purchased for the Library of Congress, were ordered from London and arrived in 1801. The collection of 740 volumes and three maps was stored in the U.S. Capitol, the Library’s first home. On January 26, 1802, President Thomas Jefferson approved the first legislation that defined the role and functions of the new institution.

The Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and serves as the research arm of Congress. The Library’s mission is to make its resources available and useful to the Congress and the American people, and to sustain and preserve a universal collection of knowledge and creativity for future generations. As of 2016, the vast holdings of the Library number well over 164 million items.

From Library of Congress web site "This Day in History"

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Cherry Blossom Trees Make Unexpected Comeback!

 We thought our late winter storm destroyed the chances of the cherry blossom trees from blooming. However, some of the trees along the Schuylkill Navigation Trail and at least one at the back of The Yocum Library are in full bloom. Another tree at the back of the library is struggling to make its debut, but so far only half of it has blossomed.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Are You a Comic Book Aficionado?

You can access hundreds of e-comic books via Hoopla, a program available to library cardholders from the Reading Public Library and RACC.

You need to sign up using your library card and then you'll have access to all of the comic books included with Hoopla. In addition, there are hundreds of e-books, audibooks, and e-magazines.

Check it out soon!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Celebrating National Library Week and National Poetry Month

April 9-15 is National Library Week and April is National Poetry Month. We're combining the two events for this post.

states that National Library Week "is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation's libraries and library workers and to promote library use and support. From free access to books and online resources for families to library business centers that help support entrepreneurship and retraining, libraries offer opportunity to all. The theme for 2017 National Library Week is "Libraries Transform."

According to, National Poetry Month "is the largest literary celebration in the world, with tens of millions of readers, students, K-12 teachers, librarians, booksellers, literary events curators, publishers, bloggers, and, of course, poets marking poetry’s important place in our culture and our lives." 

To celebrate both events, we're posting Nikki Giovanni's poem, "My First Memory (of Librarians)."

"My First Memory (of Librarians)"
by Nikki Giovanni, 1943

This is my first memory:
A big room with heavy wooden tables that sat on a creaky
wood floor
A line of green shades—bankers’ lights—down the center
Heavy oak chairs that were too low or maybe I was simply
too short
For me to sit in and read
So my first book was always big

In the foyer up four steps a semi-circle desk presided
To the left side the card catalogue
On the right newspapers draped over what looked like
a quilt rack
Magazines face out from the wall

The welcoming smile of my librarian
The anticipation in my heart
All those books—another world—just waiting
At my fingertips.

“My First Memory (of Librarians)" from Acolytes by Nikki Giovanni. Copyright © 2007 by Nikki Giovanni.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Spring Break II-College/The Yocum Library Closed

The Yocum Library will be closed Friday, April 14 through Sunday, April 16 for Spring Break II. We will re-open at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, April 17.

Don't forget! If you want to work on research during the weekend, you have 24/7 access to our online databases. If you want to watch a movie, you can borrow one via Hoopla.