.Aula Máxima es la biblioteca y también lugar de recreo del espíritu. - José Vasconcelos
SOL 81 Contents:
It's almost time for the FIL—the Guadalajara Book Fair—and this Thanksgiving Day morning, even your homebody buddy Flaco will be climbing on a bus, bound for the land of tapatíos and tequila.
The effervescent Pam Conroy once again suggests convening a convivial kermesse of SOListas and friends, an informal chance to sneak a snack or an early lunch while comparing notes and easing bookbags off of sore shoulders. We hope to bump into a lot of you.
Maybe you can't shake Flaco's bony hand at the FIL, but you can hear his reedy voice on NPR's Talk of the Nation of November 12 if you click right here. The hour's topic was a good one: ethnic media in the US. The mouthy librarian weighed in with the first call (at 7min 40sec on the ticker) to ask about—or maybe it was to comment on, who knows—the treatment of local ethnic periodicals by public libraries.
It gets better: revered Univision anchorman, author, and reading promoter Jorge Ramos appears on the same segment (he's a caller, not a guest—what's up with that?) at the 43:00 mark. The host calls him "George" (...and that?) In an unrelated development, People en Español put Ramos on its cover a week later, promising exposure of his "pasado nudista" (...and what about that?!)
Talk radio is a fine way to get stuff off your chest, but it seems certain people just can't let things rest. That's why I'm writing an article for the next issue of a Major Librarians' Magazine to help us all see reasons to offer, catalog, and perhaps archive local Spanish-language periodicals, and then find practical ways to make it happen. Several of your libraries do this, so if you have pointers, success stories, failure stores, anything, please do send 'em along.
Multnomah County Library recently won the 2002 Mora Award because of its great Día de los Niños/Día de los Libros celebration. Here's an example of the kind of knowledge you can find in Multnomah's LIBROS program. (Multnomah County is the home of the Rose City, folks: Portland, Oregon.)
From: Lisa Regimbal <email@example.com>
This year we've finally got a major-studio Hanukkah movie; too bad it's Eight Crazy Nights. Never mind, 'cause it'll be Hanukkah 24/7, 365 days a year when you're with LA's rockin' Hip Hop Hoodios a Latino-slash-Jewish outfit that will absolutely dazzle you with their "Ocho Kandelikas" video, seen on MTV and in streaming video at their website, a video that turns the beloved bagel into a powerful holiday fashion statement. (In case you're wondering, the Spanish word for "Jew" or "Jewish" is judío, pronounced...well, you guessed it.)
For our many guanaco friends, some energetic music from El Salvador was featured on National Public Radio a couple weeks back. The band in question is called Prueba de Sonido, and you can listen to them in a short report.
Mind you, these aren't the first cuscatlecos to plug in and start thrashin'. Bands like Adrenalina, Jardín de Huesos, and Nativa Geranio rocked El Salvador—a little harder, at that—in the 90s.
But if you're looking for a a fine author from Cuscatlán, why, allow us to recommend the sublime Mario Bencastro.
Chris Tovell of Beaverton, OR warned us in SOL 80 about bogus ESL classes, with con artists using a claimed affiliation with the library to rip people off. The Oregonian then ran a revealing article about how widespread this con is becoming.:
The scams have been recorded in Aloha, Beaverton, Gresham, Hillsboro, Oregon City and Tigard. Police think at least 43 people have lost more than $850 -- and fear the numbers are much larger.
... targeted other Latinos, who may be reluctant to report crimes because of a language barrier...
Preschoolers sat in front of computers at the Depot Branch of the Bowling Green Public Library on Friday – their chins barely above the keyboards.
It's hard to top a lead like that. But the rest of the story is pretty good too, all about a library tour where kids and their parents found out what a great place it is:
As a part of Bowling Green Independent Schools’ Even Start program, eight children who speak English as a second language and their parents were given a tour of the library. While the preschoolers were busy in the children’s section, their parents were taken to the other side of the building and shown DVDs, books and computers with Internet access.
Tulare County in California's agricultural San Joaquin Valley decided to shut down the library in Farmersville, a little town (okay, you're right: a place called "Farmersville" isn't likely to be a huge metropolis). "Not so fast," replied the townsfolk. Read about how a broad coalition of volunteers has rallied to keep the bookbarn open three days a week.
Flaco recalls afternoons sitting on a stool at the Backstretch Cafe, sucking 7-UP out of a green glass bottle and watching his mom race back and forth bringing burgers and fries and ketchup to horse breeders and trainers and jockeys. Occasionally hooves would thunder past, stingers would be tossed into the nearby bushes, and a ten-times-daily cycle of elation and regret would take another hard, merciless spin. It wasn't Churchill Downs, but guess what? That venerable Lousville home of the Kentucky Derby has its own backstretch, where folks are hard at work right now creating a literacy center, classrooms, and a library for Latino racetrack workers. Might be out of the gate by next spring's Derby, and you can read about the project right here.
Bruce Jensen firstname.lastname@example.org