Happy Birthday, Thelonious

On October 10, 2017, we will celebrate the centenary of Thelonious Monk who died in 1982. Who was this jazz musician? See for yourself. Let’s start with what Moraine Valley C. C. library owns, a mostly-media collection, which can be checked out for three weeks and is located on the library’s lower level. Click here to see our holdings. Notice also in this list, that the library has a streaming video of the documentary entitled, Thelonious Monk: straight, no chaser, originally produced in 1988. Your laptop or PC might be the best way to view this video.


If you want a faster idea of this giant of jazz, get yourself to YouTube. You will find there a small excerpt of the documentary mentioned above. There are over 300,000 hits, so you have no excuse for not introducing yourself to his style.

And now, (insert a Drum Roll here): The most recent database acquisition at Moraine is one entitled Naxos Music Library: Jazz. It is in the Art & Music grouping of databases and get to it quickly by clicking here. Bring your headphones with you to school and enjoy this database of music.

Finally, there is the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz with offices on the east and west coast. See what they have to offer, especially if you happen to be a lover of jazz.

So Happy Birthday, Thelonious, and thank you for sharing your talent with us.


Not too many people in the Houston, Texas, area will forget August 26, 2017! Just as forecasted, Hurricane Harvey made landfall bringing with it a lot of rain and wind, and spawning many tornadoes. The devastation is enormous.

Want to give a helping hand by means of a donation? Check out this article by The New York Times. There are any number of groups or associations that are providing assistance. Even a modest amount such as $10 will help someone who perhaps has lost everything. Click here for the link to the article.

Popular Science Magazine….Again!

This magazine, Popular Science, is one of my favorites. This is at least my third blog on the good stuff I find there.

The May-June issue is about big machines. You can find out where the second U.S.S. Tripoli is being built on page 69.  The photo is of the finished product; so, it is an artist’s rendering.

When the oil boon dries out, what is Dubai planning to do? Pictures and big ideas for Dubai’s future begin on page 58.


Our perception ability is discussed on page 92 when we look at two orange circles and decide which one is bigger. What’s behind optical illusions? Read the article to find out.

Finally, Tommy Dunne, armorer and weapons master for Game of Thrones, explains on page 84 what it takes to build weapons from Roman and Medieval siege weapons to look and act real, but keeping in mind their safe use for the filming.

Water, water, everywhere but not a drop to drink.

Although this statement is roughly from the poem, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, the residents of Flint, Michigan, might have said the same thing just a few years ago.

The March/April, 2017, issue of Popular Science, is devoted to water, and there are graphics and some text that show the use of water, drinking and otherwise, around the world. The graphics are excellent for those of us who love visual learning.

This magazine/periodical is located in the magazine racks by the Circulation Desk and Café of the library. Additionally, the articles are available in the Academic Search Complete database in either HTML (retyped) format or the PDF format that resembles the printed page. This last format has the graphics and is in color. For a quick link to Academic Search Complete, click here. For person-to person help, stop in and speak with a librarian at the circular desk known as Information/Reference.


Two web sites for your Viewing and Doing Pleasure

You may know of the TED videos or any number of YouTube videos. But for the learn-it-online crowd, here are two more website suggestions: Pixlr.com and Howcast.com.

Pixlr.com is a free online video editor. If you are a beginner of the photo editing process, a free online service might be a gentler way of breaking into the task. Hey, free is good, in this case.


And how about belly dancing? Or how to learn to use a Mac? Or how about learning some aspect of math? Or dog care and grooming?  Or how…. I think you get the idea. The website opens with a great number of topics, but there is a search window for you to cut to the chase. What is the website? Howcast.com

The Library of Congress Classification System (LC or LOC)


Library users may wish to understand the letters and numbers on the spines of books and on other items (CDs, maps, etc.) in the library collection. These numbers are Call Numbers. Melville Dewey created the Dewey Decimal Classification System and he pretty much used numbers on the first line. Perhaps the words call numbers persist because of the popularity of his system.

Anyway, the call number is a unique way of identifying the object (book, CD, etc.) and also its place in the collection. Before public libraries became wide-spread, libraries did not always allow users/patrons to go to the shelves to obtain the desired item. The staff at a desk received the request (call number) from the patron and then went to the shelf to obtain it. As you can see, the call number has a long-lived history of importance in the library.

So, what is the object of the letters and numbers? If you are interested in knowing about the Library of Congress Classification System, click here for a website showing the letters of the alphabet with their accompanying subjects. Pretty much, any classification system is a method of organizing knowledge. This concept is old. But as we have come to the present century and with the proliferation of print media and now electronic media, the idea of organizing knowledge has become daunting. The Library of Congress is the agency that deals with all of this growth and expansion and provides a place in the classification system for “new knowledge” or for new things presented in different ways (media).

Not all of the letters of the alphabet have been used. For example, there are no Is nor Os, nor Xs. After the first letter, the classification begins to expand thus: A, AA. AB, AC, and so on. This occurs for most of the letters. You may not realize that when you learned the alphabet in kindergarten and first grade that this knowledge might become useful!

After the letters, the subject of that area is further identified by the numbers, which ascend as usual (1….10….100….1000) and maybe a decimal point with numbers after. (Thanks, Melville, for that wonderful idea.)

Here is a call number:
Hv 6250.3 U5 L357 2014  

The online catalog has the availability and the location of this book. Most of the items that can be taken out (circulated) are housed on the lower level and circulate for 14 days with a possibility of renewal. The collection is divided with the call numbers A-K located on the west side of the room and the call numbers L-Z located on the east side of the room. All media and books are interfiled on the shelves.

The end panels of the stacks on the lower level have the range of call numbers for each section.                                                                                   unnamed

Still stumped? Go to the Information/Reference Desk (circle-shaped desk) and ask a librarian to help you.

Making an Informed Decision on the Presidential Candidate of your Choice

An earlier blog gave excellent information on the voting process, from registering to voting, here in Illinois. After this, the important question is for whom will we vote? Although we know the two main candidates, Trump and Clinton, is there anyone else? And how about what they represent?
For starters, go to this website to get the details on the ballot for Illinois: https://ballotpedia.org/Presidential_election_in_Illinois,_2016#State_profile


The Candidates
You should now know that there are four candidates for the U.S. Presidency. So, for what do they stand? Take a look at the Green Party and find the name of the nominee: http://www.gp.org/platform
What about the Libertarian Party? Click on this link: https://www.lp.org/platform
We know that Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee, but what about the Democratic Platform? Read it at this link: https://www.demconvention.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Democratic-Party-Platform-7.21.16-no-lines.pdf
Finally, Donald Trump represents the Republican Party and their platform is at this website: https://www.gop.com/the-2016-republican-party-platform/
It is important that voters know what their candidates represent. So do your homework and be a voter who did some research ahead of time.

While Students Were on Spring Break…

As of March 14, 2016, all items on the lower level (downstairs, quiet area) of the library will circulate for fourteen days. This will make it easy to understand and direct patrons.

So, you DVD lovers, you may actually check out a DVD on a Thursday or Friday and not rush to return it within the previous amount of time, which was two days. Now all books and audiovisuals on the lower level will have a two week circulation.