Greetings and welcome to the Windblown Edition of You Are What You Read. This week’s housekeeping is as follows. There were no Offerings but the chatter around the library is full of people finalizing the who, what, and where of the Big Day on the 26th. Recipes are being fervently passed between people and cookbooks are flying out the door. The Game Countdown begins with T minus 15 days. Let’s go Buckeyes! The animal kingdom seems fairly quiet this week so there is no Animals Run Amok news that I am aware of. Perhaps the weather is slowing them down? Mary Lee Shark seems to be content to linger off the Outer Banks. For now.
Frequent visitors to this space know that I have several Things that I just cannot countenance. It is not a long list as I consider myself to be a fairly reasonable human being. But please for the love of all that is holy keep me away from Dolls with Teeth, Rodents of All Stripe, and Clowns. This past weekend I heard about this story on NPR and it so disturbed me that of course I had to dive deeper to see if this was really a Thing. Because I was convinced that it couldn’t possibly be a Thing. It was way too disturbing. But when NPR and the Washington Post decide to cover a story then one really has no other choice to admit to one’s self that, Yes, not only does this exist but it is also a Thing. Lately in the state of Florida (of course it’s Florida), there have been sightings of a Clown for Hire that goes by the name of Wrinkles. Wrinkles is a retiree from Rhode Island who moved to Florida about 5 years ago. Instead of doing normal retiree things like golf, using a white belt to secure your pants in the upper waist area and Blue Plate Dinners, he has donned a clown mask, a pair of black rubber gloves and embraced The Clown Life. Wrinkles likes to think of himself simply as an old fashioned clown. But he is, in reality, a clown who, if paid money, will terrify your children into good behavior. “When I was a kid, it was okay to scare kids and now they’re all whiny and scared. I want to bring scary back,” he added. So, for a price, Wrinkles will come into your world and scare your children straight. He currently is booked through January so there must be a lot of children in need of discipline in Florida. Wrinkles also seems to have no trouble with the ladies but he is trying to keep life simple because “I’ve had enough psycho women in my life already.” One can only imagine the sort of woman reaching out to Wrinkles. Anyway, you can read about Wrinkles and his mission here. If your nightmares need a soundtrack be sure to play the news clip at the end of the story. Wrinkles’ Rhode Island accent coupled with his smoker’s rasp should do that quite nicely thank you. And if any of you Snowbirds out there happen to have a Wrinkles encounter, try to snap a picture and send it to us. We are enquiring minds and want to know.
This week we have cigarettes and booze, France, a nest, twins, classified information and a sandwich.
The Playlist? Of course! We’re not clowning around. Promise!
Let us begin!
Kaitlin from the Rock has been suffering through a hideous bout of illness but she seems to be on the mend which pleases us greatly! Here’s how she spent her confinement. “I am still reading/listening to the same books, but while recuperating from being sick, I binge-watched Mad Men (I'm now in the middle of Season 3). I know I'm a bit late to the Mad Men party, but I'm completely obsessed. I keep finding myself wondering what life would have been like for me in the 1960s. I'm guessing it would have been filled with a lot more cigarettes and booze! It's fascinating to see a depiction of American life that really wasn't all too long ago, but completely different from the way the world is today. In binge-watching, I feel like I've gotten to really know the characters, and I love some of the relationships that have developed, like that of Don Draper and Peggy Olson. Looooove this show!!!”
Pat T is immersing herself in feminism issues. “I am reading Anne-Marie Slaughter's book Unfinished Business which goes beyond Sheryl Sandberg's book Lean In to address the issues facing Gen X and Millennial women today. Women have placed unrealistic expectations on themselves; to be the best mother, climb the ladder to a successful and lucrative career, be a loyal and devoted partner, and possibly caregiver for aging parents! Ms. Slaughter suggests the movement that Gloria Steinman and Betty Friedan started needs to continue by breaking free of our present set of stereotypes of women and men, and begin challenging societal conventions. Where to begin? "Telling whole truths and seeing the whole picture is the right place to start" advises the author. If you don't have time to read this book, I suggest you read the author's essay in the Atlantic titled Why Women Still Can't Have it All .
Barbara M is here with possibly one of my favorite cookbooks of the season which she shared with me and now she’s going to share with you all! “I’m still reading The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts and will be for some time but in between I’ve also read In a French Kitchen by Susan Herrmann Loomis and although I promised myself that I would never buy another cookbook I had to break that promise and buy this one. In a French Kitchen is more than a cookbook; it’s also a memoir of an American in France who attempts to uncover the French secret of being able to prepare amazing meals effortlessly. It is not the size of the kitchen, or the latest gadget that makes a good cook. I personally have seen that the size of the kitchen does not proportionately contribute to the quality of the meal. Two of the best French cooks I know have kitchens that would not be considered adequate for most Americans. Loomis takes us into the kitchens of many of her French friends and describes many breakfasts, luncheons and dinners. In addition to the eighty-five recipes there are recommendations on cookware, what to stock in your pantry and an insight into the relationship the French have with their food.”
This week we are hearing from 3 (!) of our Children’s Librarians, Nimble Fingered Miz Krishna, Miss Claire Leader of the CL Army and Miss Amy of the Double One Triple Two!
The Nimbled Fingered Miz Krishna has read The Nest by Kenneth Oppel when she wasn’t crocheting me an awesome hat! Here’s what she thought. “Steve is a young boy living with his younger sister and parents and the family has just welcomed a new baby boy to the family. However, something is wrong with the baby. Steve’s parents have spent countless hours at the hospital getting the baby tested and everyone is worried that the baby may not live. Every night in Steve’s dreams he is visited by a mysterious shrouded figure who tells him that the baby can be cured, all he has to do is say yes. Is he dreaming or is this reality? And saying yes may not mean what Steve thinks. The Nest is a dark supernatural psychological thriller that will keep you guessing until the end.”
Miss Claire, is here with I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. “I finally had an opportunity to read last year’s Printz award winner which is given to a young adult novel that exemplifies literary excellence. After finishing I’ll Give You the Sun it is no surprise how this book made an impact to the selection committee. The novel tells the story of a fractured relationship amongst twins Noah and Jude. The narration flips between both characters and their tragic story unfolds as the reader is moved between the twins at 13 and 16 years of age. I’m definitely a reader that appreciates books that take me on a ride, even if at times that ride may be confusing. This book is for any reader who enjoys emotionally-charged teen fiction that also has a surprise ending. “
Miss Amy of the Double One Triple Two is reading a most adult read, Most Dangerous by Steve Sheinkin. “Many Americans are familiar with Edward Snowden, and his recent leak of incendiary classified documents. But not as many are as aware of the leak of the explosive classified documents that led to end of American involvement in the Vietnam War. Daniel Ellsberg, a Pentagon insider in the early 60’s, was an activist and brilliant strategist. Most Dangerous chronicles Ellsberg’s life and how he was also one of a handful of Americans with access to the Pentagon Papers. The papers detailed America’s 23-year involvement in the Vietnam War. When Ellsberg decided that the American populace had a right to know the secrets and lies contained within the Papers, he released them to select newspapers across the country, setting off a chain of events which led to some of the largest protests ever to happen on American soil and caused him to face up to 99 years in prison. Fast-paced facts and dialogue keep readers on the edge of their seats in the newest offering by award-winning author Steve Sheinken.”
Steph is excited about He Killed Them All by Jeanine Pirro. “Robert Durst killed his wife in 1982. Or did he? Even though he was suspected by many, including then-district attorney Jeanine Pirro, his financial and family connections made him impossible to convict. But Durst made a mistake; in attempting years later to cover his tracks, he left a few vital clues behind, and set off a manhunt that led to his arrest after he attempted to shoplift a sandwich (despite having thousands in cash stacked in his trunk). Pirro never gave up her hopes of convicting Durst, but despite his arrest for shoplifting, the case didn’t break open until Durst made an arrogant and fateful appearance in an HBO mini-series. Pirro is a ball-buster with a LOT of grudges and a fabulous wardrobe, and her book features a lot of asides about both. But even her catty asides and political commentary can’t distract from her amazing role in one of the best true crime stories of the century. Whether you’re new to the case, or have already seen the documentary, you’ll race through He Killed Them All: Robert Durst and My Quest for Justice.”
The Always Delightful Pat S has finished Lady Bird and Lyndon by Betty Boyd Caroli. Here’s where she stands on that! “After years of hearing about the marriage of Lyndon Baines Johnson and Claudia Taylor, I thought this book might be a great start in separating fact from fiction. Certainly Caroli gives full breadth to describing Lady Bird's life before Lyndon-her childhood and young womanhood spent as the daughter of the wealthiest man in a backwater town in East Texas. Anxious to expand her world, Lady Bird got herself to college and found herself the possessor of two undergraduate degrees as well as a Master’s Degree. It was at this point that Lady Bird and Johnson meet, and she clearly recognizes Johnson as the man who will take her out of Texas, and into an interesting and exciting life. And in Lady Bird, Johnson has finally found a woman who will love him without question, provide emotional security and act as his partner in his political career. Was it a deal with the devil? Read and you decide. While Lady Bird is the subject here, Caroli's portrait of Johnson is woefully thin-which leaves the reader wondering if Lady Bird didn’t get the shorter end of the stick in this bargain?
DJ Jazzy Patty McC is sadly under the weather in The State Up North. I know you join me in wishing her speedy travels back to health. BUT! Of course she was able to put The Playlist together to rock us gently into the weekend. Feel better Pats!