When Spanish conquerors brought home a tomato from the Americas in the 16th century, its red color made people think it was poisonous. Not until 1755 did it appear in a savory sauce recipe in a Spanish pastry cookbook written by Juan de la Mata, the pastry chef for King Philip V and King Ferdinand VI. That recipe is among a dozen adapted by contemporary chefs and incorporated into a video project by the National Library of Spain to raise the profile of its vast collection of 23,000 food-related works that date as far back as the 1400s.
New York Times, July 12
The original map of Winnie-the-Pooh’s Hundred Acre Wood by the artist E. H. Shepard has set a world record for a book illustration sold at auction, selling for £430,000 (US$568,360). The 1926 sketch, which was privately owned and had been unseen for nearly half a century, introduced readers to the world of Winnie-the-Pooh. Purportedly drawn by Christopher Robin himself, the map is littered with spelling errors—“nice for picnicks,” “100 aker wood,” and “Drawn by Me and Mr Shepard helpd.”
The Guardian (UK), July 10
Katy Schneider writes: “We’ve always been cult-curious, and there’s a wealth of literature to prove it. We reached out to professors, researchers, cult deprogrammers, and filmmakers to find out the best books to read on a variety of notorious groups. Almost every book we’re listing here was recommended by at least two from our panel. A few only got single mentions, so we researched those titles ourselves and decided to include them as well.”
The Strategist, June 1
Children’s Librarian Joyce Anderson Taylor is in the hospital with back injuries after someone attacked her on July 11 at the Darby (Pa.) Free Library. Police say the attacker was after the money jar. The 60-year victim was coming into work around 10 a.m. with her 6-year-old great-grandson when police say Terrell Carter went after her as she was walking up the stairs. Taylor was shoved so hard she wound up outside on the landing. Carter got away with a five-gallon donation jar filled with coins and dollar bills.
WTXF-TV, Philadelphia, July 13
Libraries are key to enabling participation in the upcoming 2020 Census, Senate appropriators said in a June 14 report. Starting in 2020, the US Census Bureau plans to encourage residents to respond online to the once-a-decade survey. As with previous e-government efforts, many people come to libraries to complete their census form using library computers and to get help from staff. Many libraries also collaborate with the Census Bureau and community leaders to provide information about the census.
District Dispatch, July 13
Former President Barack Obama writes: “This week, I’m traveling to Africa for the first time since I left office—a continent of wonderful diversity, thriving culture, and remarkable stories. I’ve often drawn inspiration from Africa’s extraordinary literary tradition. As I prepare for this trip, I wanted to share a list of books that I’d recommend for summer reading, including some from a number of Africa’s best writers and thinkers—each of whom illuminate our world in powerful and unique ways.”
Barack Obama, Facebook page, July 13
Neil J. Rubenking writes: “Passwords are the bane of online existence. It seems like everywhere you go, every site you visit, you need a password. But if you use the same password on many sites, even a strong one, a security breach on one site exposes all your logins. Start using a password manager right away. We’ve evaluated dozens of password managers so you can compare features and choose the one that’s best for you. We’ve also rounded up free password managers in a separate article.”
PC Magazine, July 12
ALA has awarded the 2018 Loleta D. Fyan Award to Hillsboro (Oreg.) Public Library Manager Sarah Strahl for her proposal, “Food Literacy: A Critical Need.” Strahl’s program will develop classes on basic cooking skills and how to eat well on a small budget, then archive them as web videos.
ALA Library and Research Center, July 12
ACRL has published The Changing Academic Library: Operations, Cultures, Environments, 3rd edition, by John M. Budd, as number 74 in ACRL’s Publications in Librarianship series. This newly revised and expanded edition presents a critical examination of major issues facing colleges and universities and the unique challenges their libraries face. The book can be used as a text in LIS courses, as well as an introduction for new professionals and academic administrators.
ACRL Insider, July 12
Emily Temple writes: “If you look at lists of canonically funny books on the internet, you will notice that, invariably, almost all the books listed are by men. And when books by women are included, they tend to be nonfiction: memoirs or essays. So, in a gesture towards amelioration, I have collected 20 of them here. Most of them are dark in addition to being funny; few are the literary equivalent of romcoms. And many of them are told from the perspective of a rude, not-nice, or otherwise subversive woman.”
Literary Hub, July 12
Kevin Maher writes: “Federal funding for library priorities in FY2019 took another step in the right direction with the House Appropriations Committee approval on July 11 of level funding for critical library programs Library Services and Technology Act and the Innovative Approaches to Literacy. Under the bill, which originated from the Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee, LSTA would receive $186.3 million for FY2019 while IAL would receive $27 million.”
District Dispatch, July 12
The fancy new Advanced Learning Library opened in Wichita, Kansas, in June, and now the library’s café—operated by the city’s ever-expanding Reverie Coffee Roasters—is serving patrons beverages and pastries. The only issue, according to owner Andrew Gough: Years of conditioning to the rules of proper library behavior has café visitors too afraid to leave the area with their drinks. It’s allowed (and even encouraged) as long as the drinks have lids.
Wichita (Kans.) Eagle, July 11