Sunday, December 19, 2010

Played hooky on Friday instead of keeping the nose to the grindstone.

Well, yeah, I did play hooky.  But I also had a TON of errands to get done at the same time, so it wasn't REALLY playing hooky.  Except that I stopped at a couple of places that just happened to carry books....

Yup.

Instead of getting my Christmas cards addressed (I still want a few pictures of the boys to add for the cards that go to relatives),  I did other things.

I did, however, find a few cool books.  Don't have pictures of them yet, but hope to by later this week.

I also hope that I start to feel business-like again and want to do data entry.  Currently, not feeling very business oriented (though I do need to keep the orders rolling in to pay the bills, ya know) and would far rather sit on the sofa reading trashy novels (DON'T EVEN ASK ME TO TELL YOU WHAT THEY ARE.... I WON'T TELL --YOU CAN'T MAKE ME!!!)

I SHOULD be making a batch of Stollen for Christmas.  I will before Friday comes around -- it's just not Christmas (at least to me) without it.  (I use my grandmother's recipe, which, I have a feeling, she modified at some point, and which I have, over the years, modified a smidge again for my own tastes. It really looks very different, and has different ingredients than most of the stollen you find in cookbooks.)

 I don't usually do a great deal of other fancy baking for Christmas -- though I did make a Buche de Noel last Christmas ...every once in a while I try to make extravagant things... I found the recipe for Buche de Noel for a French Class holiday dinner back in.... oh, well either 1983-4 for classes I took way back when, or for the second set of French class I took in 1986-88.... this is the decadent, totally butter filled, coffee and chocolate flavored yummy that takes me three days to get all the parts together and finish.

Not this year though, for the Buche de Noel -- it will have to be the Stollen.  Hopefully I'll remember to take a picture of it before I dig in.  One of the modifications my grandmother added all those years ago was a buttercream frosting to the Stollen instead of just plain powdered sugar.  I happen to find buttercream frosting  addictive and slather it on in excess.  Good thing Christmas only comes once a year.



Now come tomorrow, I'm hoping to get a few more good (as in not blurry) pictures of Sons Number One and Two -- I signed them up for a soccer clinic which goes for two days, four hours a day (to hopefully give me a bit of break from listening to the constant bickering / computer grabbing).  It's rained steadily for the last day and a half... the weather report was for five inches of rain this weekend -- the clinic goes on regardless of rain unless it's an out-and-out downpour, so I expect LOTS OF MUD!!!   And I'm hoping that not only will they have a good time, but that the clinic will help them out too.


Tomorrow, I really need to get back to work.  I gotta get over this thing for playing hooky.  Sigh.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

It should be so easy to take a few minutes a day to blog....

I'll tell you a secret  -  I've been seriously Jonesing for a smart phone - for several reasons - the biggest draw of which is that I could add my credit card processing to it and not have to worry about cc slips, compliance factors and a whole lot of other nonsense.  My husband has been nudging me to get one for a while ... and has put on the pressure this month with little thoughts of what the thing can do....

Yeah, I KNOW.

But....

and this relates to my blog here....

Secretly, I want one so that when I take some funky pictures of my family doing goofy stuff, or found a cool book that I want to show everyone....well, it would be more possible with a smart phone than what I've got now.  AND.... I could do it when I'm sitting around (or walking around) the track during soccer practice.

That's been the big problem lately (well, one of them). My time is SO chunked up lately between what I need to do, what the boys need to do, what Scouts need me to do.... the ever expanding list of church things that they want me to do (Ha - just got the December/January lector schedule and between my husband and I we're on at 6 out of 8 weeks for some type of participation.... this after just joining in November.....sigh.)

Then there's the division of the computer time.

Currently, one son is home from school on vacation.  As of Friday night, Both boys will be home (and my husband, but he doesn't try to monopolize my computer, he has his own) fighting to see how much time they can wheedle out of MY work computer.  DURING CHRISTMAS!!! My peak season (supposedly). AND, I have tax stuff to do -- which I was hoping to have done before this.... not so lucky yet.

So the fighting will get worse. And, as I really don't work well with noise and distraction, more errors, less time and more giving in (on my part) will likely ensue.

Thus, a smart phone might also help alleviate a bit of this tension as well (of course, another BRAND NEW, HIGH SPEED computer with a full desk and extra sound cards, etc. would help as well....but that's just not going to happen).

 I was going to try and post a picture of what Son Number Two and I did last night, in the rain... for just under three hours.... I find that a smart phone would have gotten a MUCH better picture, so that's yet ANOTHER reason to buy the darned thing.

Here's the least blurry picture of the pack...
what you CAN'T see from this picture is that every one of the boys (and the coach who's being held back)
are COMPLETELY muddy.
Son Number Two, of course, being the muddiest, as he LOVES mud 
and finds ways to roll in it to his satisfaction.

Practice for winter soccer doesn't stop because of rain. And it was raining last night. Not a downpour, mind you, but a steady rain that was more than a drizzle.  We were there for three hours. By the time we were done, the field was so slippery that trying to do a big kick on the ball meant going over on your backside into the mud no matter how good your cleats were.  I  get to do my exercise / walking while either son is at practice, so I end up just as mucky, wet and bedraggled as they do (though not nearly as muddy as Son Number two, for the obvious reason that I don't ROLL in the mud willingly).

The nice thing about last night was that it was warm-ish.  If the wind had been up or if it had been 10 degrees colder than the 54 degrees that it was, well.... we would have been a lot more uncomfortable and gone home sooner. 


As for the book hunting this weekend, I've found a few fun ones that I'm itching to add to the database as soon as I get a chance...
here are some pictures to whet your appetite:

 William Pene du Bois wrote and illustrated this book about a famous
1960's model.








 Looks rather ordinary doesn't it?
Well.... turns out it's better than a reading copy.
More to come on this one.

 








 Illustrated by William Blake - the poems of Mr. Grey.  Great Illustrations. 


















 There was lots of Christmas stuff at the place I went. This is just ONE of the things I picked up.  I need to get them all in the database SOON!
















This one was an unexpected bonus.  The reason it looks a little yellowish is that there is a glassine dust jacket over the illustrated dust jacket.  The dust jacket is in near perfect condition which adds to the ooomph of the book, but to have the glassine (and in near perfect condition too) makes this one rather more intriguing.  More on this one later as well.






That's all I have for now.

If I end up splurging on the smart phone (and it's not the cost of the phone itself that's the splurge, but the monthly FEES that is holding me back)  I'll be sure to let you know.  You might know the minute I start blogging more frequently.... or with better pictures.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

December 2nd.... pulling books out of boxes today.

Yes, it was one of those days where I had to take new pictures to get started on another stack of books to go in the database... which means that I get to root through boxes to find books to pull out and list.

I know I should just pick up a box, pull all the books out and process them as a group.  But where would be the fun in that, I ask you?  Or the exercise.  Lifting and toting twenty boxes of books (I only went through one area of boxes today and found enough to keep me busy for a week) is GREAT exercise... and does wonders for your back muscles too.

In the process, I found two books that would make WONDERFUL holiday gift items.

I haven't had a chance to enter them into my database yet (I'm going to try to do that tomorrow or this weekend) but I wanted to show them to you anyway.

Enjoy.



 Which Star Wars fan out there wouldn't just LOVE a copy of a 
book about the lovable, huggable Ewoks.
I couldn't.



And for the golf fanatics out there who thought they had everything...


You have to look closely. Real Closely.  In fact, click on the picture to see a better view of it.

Followed by this:


And this:
   

Or maybe this:

Yup, I knew you couldn't resist.


Next week (or even the rest of this week if I'm lucky) I'll post some other books that got pulled from the stacks just in time for the holidays. 


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's been a while, hasn't it....

Wow, two months since I've posted.

Even my brother-in-law (Hi M!)  noticed that I'd been slacking, and that's saying something.

Once again, plenty of reasons for the lack of posts - most of them sound lame when written out - and worst yet, I've been checking my blog nearly daily for the last week or so because I keep hoping that I'll get back to it soon.

So today, even though I have nothing really interesting to blog about, I decided that the best thing I can do is to just start....

I do have some neat books to show but all of them take more than five minutes worth of thought and time to post about so those will have to wait. I'm in the process of trying to set up a new feed / delivery system for my emailed newsletter (which is also more than a month overdue) so when I get that done I'll post it here as well.

Last week was a total loss for getting anything done (except the absolute necessities of online selling) because of the holiday (you know, the Last one - Thanksgiving).

The week before that was absolutely crazy busy with scout stuff, soccer stuff and little niggly things that had to be done which took far longer to do than anticipated.

I've got a LOAD of pictures I've been wanting to post - many of them pics of the kids doing their thing (both of them have done lots of good / cool things lately that are worth posting about) but again, I keep losing track of the time to get stuff done.

And then.....

dreaded tax time has finally hit.  I really need to get the darned monthly totals done before the end of the year and.... oh yes, today is DECEMBER- FLIPPING - FIRST!!!

When did that happen?   And why did it get so cold so fast?

Yes, I'm a winter wimp, but the cold here bites in and runs right through my bones.  And of COURSE both boys signed up and made the teams for winter soccer season (yippee for the boys, there was hefty competition this year - good competition, but wahhhh for me who gets to go out to NIGHT TIME practices and watch and wait).   More about that later.

I'm trying valiantly to continue to process as many books (and continue to slog through the old titles to update and / or donate those that no longer make the cut) as I can before the winter holidays begin in earnest for the schools.  After that, my work, and especially my computer will be in a fight for time against the slavering hoard (IE: my kids).

I do have one picture handy that I am going to post.  Soon I won't be able to post pictures of Number One Son because he'd heading for the terrible teens (Thirteen years old is coming up in a frighteningly short time) and he's pout and wail about my pictures of him, but this particular picture is actually a nice picture of him, AND I got it spontaneously, right in the middle of him throwing a hissy about having to WORK. (sigh).

Here goes.



For one thing, he's decided that he's..... Mr. Cool. Second, he's finally starting to fill out a bit and doesn't look so twiggish.  Third, the look on his face..... yeah, that's it mostly.  MR. COOL.



So, that's it for now.  I'm going to try and be back DAILY from now until.... hopefully from now on.



 

Friday, October 22, 2010

the teddy bears' picnic



It's been a while since I've had anything fun to talk about (book wise) on the blog lately. Most of the books I'm currently listing for my database are books that have stuck around in boxes for a while (from two months to five years depending on the box....) so to me they are old hat.  Not that they are bad books, on the contrary. But for some reason or other, I would pull them out of a box to list, look at them and just not be interested in them.... so back into the box they went. 

The thing is, I'm currently trying to whittle down the backlog of boxes ... and at the same time conserve funds for the possibility of exciting new books that might come along and need real cash to pay for them.

It hasn't happened lately, but at least I can keep my hopes up.

The other day, while I was scanning the shelves of the one place I went to this week (because of the backlog of books, and because my schedule currently is CRAZY... I've pared down the time I allow myself to spend haunting my usual book finding spots.  At some point, if I DON'T get to go out book hunting, I'll probably burst into a thousand quivering bits).  So ANYWAY.... I went.  I found .... not much.  Some books on Fly fishing - which isn't my personal interest - but books that are good enough to fish out of the pile of dreck before they were totally destroyed.  If I get a chance this week, they'll go up as a group item to someone who DOES like fly fishing.   I was sad and disappointed that I'd wasted gas and time at this place.... but.... on the way out, I looked down (it's always down, or sideways, or some other way than right in front of your nose, isn't it?) and there was this one book sticking out of a pile of Children's paperback junk that caught my eye.

And....

It was The Teddy Bear's Picnic.

This is a wonderful book for several reasons.  One, it's the whole idea of the Teddy Bears' Picnic.
And then, the book comes with a 33 1/3rd record at the back (this one is in nice condition too) with the SONG  The Teddy Bears' Picnic  -- there is a great write-up of the original Teddy Bear inventor and the whole bear / picnic thing here,    has two versions of the song - first by Bing Crosby, the second by The Bearcats.

This copy, which was published by the Green Tiger Press (under their Star and Elephant logo) includes illustrations by Alexandra Day ( and there's another story there...   Alexandra Day is the pseudonym of Sandra Louise Woodward Darling, who with her husband Harold established Green Tiger Press in 1970. This particular book -- The Teddy Bears' Picnic was Darling's first published book illustration as Alexandra Day (she went on to conceive and illustrate the Good Dog Carl books).


It's a cool book with wonderful illustrations and a catchy tune to play with it.  All you need is a bunch of finger sandwiches, a young person to take to the park with you and a record player...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Next on the list for database....

Not much to say, but here's a few of the items I'm adding as I can this week.




 mystery stuff
 World War I
 Edwin Hoyt is best known for his books about
World War II and Sea stuff.... this is different. Totally different
It's about stamps.
 A pamphlet about The Ford Theatre
And a wonderful ethnic / 1950's cookbook put out by the
Slovenian's Women's Union of America. LOTS of desert stuff!

New Day!!!

New Hair cut, new hair color.  I'm stoked.

Now if only I could get a picture of it for my blog.....

Maybe this weekend when the relations come for a visit.

Check back next week and see if it's up.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I've had this sitting on my desk, waiting to be blogged about for three days....



No, I'm not starting my Christmas / Holiday  selling spree early this year....

This particular book just happened to be on the input pile on my desk this last week and I'm a big fan of Sandra Boynton's books.

I have another older title by her right now as well....


Both of these books feature her fun / funny animal characters and her quirky, but easy to enjoy sense of humor.

Sandra Boynton started creating and selling gift cards (by her own admission as a break from waitressing) between years at college in the early 1970's. Originally sold haphazardly to individual stores, etc. Sandra soon took the greeting cards to a trade show in New York and took up with Recycled Paper Greetings....  after that, her illustrations and her penchant for new /gnu spelling became the fad of the 1980's.

If you'd like more info about Sandra and her work, here's her blog address:  here


Over the years, I've had a number of her books for children -- all of them have made me stop and read them... sometimes more than once.


No matter what mood I'm in, when I see her illustrations and read her books, I always end up happy.

Maybe you do to.

Enjoy.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Correction of an Ooops!

Two posts ago I said that I hated Jane Eyre..... my bad.

I MEANT to write Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.  My memory failed me on this and when I looked up the plot, I got it wrong again.

So, Ooops!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

October Newsletter went out today....

And here it is....

I figured it wouldn't hurt to post it to the blog today seeing as I'm not getting much of anything else done until it's all finished being delivered.

The process for sending out my email newsletter is a bit byzantine... when I put the newsletter together my regular email program (Mozilla Thunderbird) was not able to handle mass mailing without showing all the email addresses (a BIG no-no) and it wouldn't LET me mail out more than a certain number in a given period of time (anti-spam guarding).  So I had to go fishing for a program that would.

I know there are on-line options for mass mailing but they all cost on a monthly basis.  I wasn't ready, nor do I have that large of a mailing list, so I checked around with the techie / book crowd and ended up with The Bat.  It's a very nice email program and does generally all the things I need it to do for mass mailing once a month. Took a bit of figuring but not too much.

The thing is, when I put this together, it / my ISP would only allow me to send 25 emails at a time.  SO I broke the list down into groups of 25.  I have at least 75 sub-groups now.  And, since I haven't had the time or the inclination to check for something more workable, I continue to add new names to the list in groups of 25.  (Now that I'm thinking about it though, I might just check and see if the new Thunderbird has this capability. Would save me extra work as Thunderbird is my daily used email program.).

It takes only seconds to click all the options to send the emails, but x75 times, it takes at least an hour (more like an hour and a half as my attention span skips to other interesting surfing things while I'm waiting for it to do it's thing each time I send off a group.

So when I do put out a newsletter, it takes a good chunk of the time I have for that day.   I generally only send the newsletter once a month (I'm sure I mentioned that I don't like to be too pushy with my newsletters, but I would like to send them out twice a month if I could- just because I think twice a month would keep my customers interest up, but not make them cranky and sign off the list).

So -- after all that, here's the newsletter.  And please feel free to use the discount to order something from the website (there's a link to my website off to the right side of this blog).  Send the newsletter to a friend or colleague.  


Enjoy.

Here it is:

Hi:

   October has arrived - fall has arrived...even in California. This
   week we have overcast skies and weather hovering around the
   mid-70's (which for us is actually a bit cool for this time of
   year). Along with the cool weather comes the changing colors of the
   leaves, the beginning of the fall and winter tasks (including
   raking and my favorite...cleaning out gutters). It also brings
   Halloween and the holidays to follow in its wake. This year I
   actually have to come up with a costume for myself because our Cub Scout Pack
   is having a costume contest and den leaders (including me) have to
   dress up as well. Scary thought.

   In other news, the Nobel Prize for Literature was announced this
   morning -- the winner is Peruvian Author Mario Vargas Llosa -- he's
   been a writer for more than forty years, has been a political
   activist and even made a presidential bid in 1990. At least two of
   his books have been made into major motion pictures in the United
   States.

   In honor of his accomplishments, my featured book this month is the
   first book he published in English : The Time of the Hero.

    Llosa, Mario Vargas: THE TIME OF THE HERO 1966. Grove Press. New York. Hardcover.
    1st American Edition/ 1st Edition. F / NF. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition
    and has a Near Fine dust jacket.   The book and its contents are in clean, bright condition.
    The text pages are clean and bright.    Top edge of text block has a bit of very beginning
    ground-in dirt and foxing.  The spine ends and corners of the dust jacket have a bit  of
    very light bumping.   The bottom spine end of the dust jacket has a very faint waterspot
    (mostly visible from the reverse of the dust jacket).  The white dust jacket is clean and
    bright. This is the first novel by Llosa (following a collection of short stories). This
    Grove Press edition is the First English Language edition of the book which was originally
    published as La cuidad y los perros. Translated by Lysander Kemp.
    $75.00



   And since you've read this far, you deserve a reward.  Receive a
   30% discount off your total purchase -- just use coupon code :
   OCT10 during checkout to receive your discount.

  

   Don't forget to check out our list of recently added titles at the
   end of this email.

  
    
     Thanks so much!

  
     Stephanie Howlett-West
        

RECENTLY ADDED TITLES:

 1.) Adams, Douglas and John Lloyd: THE DEEPER MEANING OF LIFF : A Dictionary of Things there aren't any words for yet. 1980. Harmony Books. New York. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Near Fine / Fine. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. Illus. by: Bert Kitchen. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Near Fine condition and has a Fine dust jacket.  $25.00

 2.) Archer, Jeffrey: FIRST AMONG EQUALS 1984. Hodder and Stoughton. London, England. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Fine. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. Illus. by: Charles Griffin. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Fine dust jacket. $35.00

 3.) Bergquist, N. O.: THE MOON PUZZLE : A Classical Theory Revived Correlating the Origin of the Moon with Many Problems in Natural Science. 1954. Grafisk Forlag. Copenhagen, Denmark. Hardcover. 1st English Language Edition/ 1st Printing. Near Fine / Very Good. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Near Fine condition and has a Very Good dust jacket.   "the Swedish engineer, N. O. Bergquist, advances a sensational theory based upon the studies of many years and founded upon such good arguments that it is very difficult to reject it. Mr. Bergquist's theory is both entertaining and plausible. He tells of an enormous planetoid, which many millions of years ago grazed the surfaceof the Earth in the same direction as the rotation of the Earth. The tremendous cataclysm that resulted caused among other things the ejecting into space of a large mass of the Earth, leaving a gigantic scar which is now filled with water and called the Pacific."  Record: #24240 $25.00

 4.) Brown, Michael: SANTA MOUSE 1996. Barnes & Noble. New York. Hardcover. Reprint/ 4th Printing. Near Fine / No Dust Jacket. Illus Type: Color Illustrations. Illus. by: Elfrieda De Witt. DESCRIPTION: Children's Book. This book is in Near Fine condition.  $12.50

 5.) Bryher (pseudonym of Annie Winifred Ellerman): THE FOURTEENTH OF OCTOBER 1952. Pantheon Books. New York. Hardcover. 1st US Edition/ 1st Printing. Very Good+ / Very Good+. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ condition and has a Very Good+ dust jacket.   "Like a Saxon companion piece to the Bayeux Tapestries, the pages of Bryher's novel discloses the warm and colorful story of Saxon resistance to the Norman invasion of Britain."  $30.00

 6.) Burgess, Thornton W.: THE ADVENTURES OF SAMMY JAY 1943. Grosset & Dunlap. New york. Hardcover. Reprint/ Very Good+ / Very Good. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. Illus. by: Harrison Cady. Burgess Bedtime Story Books. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ to Near Fine condition and has a Very Good dust jacket.   $20.00

 7.) Ciardi, John: THE MONSTER DEN : Or Look What Happened at My House - And to It. 1966. J. B. Lippincott Company. New York. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Very Good+. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. Illus. by: Edward Gorey. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Very Good+ dust jacket. $50.00

 8.) Cullum, Albert: BLACKBOARD, BLACKBOARD ON THE WALL, WHO IS THE FAIREST ONE OF ALL?  1978. Harlin Quist. New York. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Near Fine. Illus Type: Color Illustrations. Illus. by: Albert Cullum. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Near Fine dust jacket.  $35.00

 9.) Dening, Greg: MR. BLIGH'S BAD LANGUAGE : Passion, Power and Theatre on the Bounty. 1992. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge, England. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Near Fine. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Near Fine dust jacket.   "Captain Bligh and the voyage of the Bounty are the starting point fo thisnew study of the famous mutiny in history, literature and film. By juxaposing an account of the mutiny with an analysis of its evolving place in history and culture, Mr. Bligh's Bad Language offers a new interpretation of the mutiny in the context of its historical and cultural representations."  $25.00

 10.) Druon, Maurice (translated from the French by Humphrey Hare): THE LILY AND THE LION 1961. Charles Scribner's Sons. New York. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Near Fine / Very Good+. The Accursed Kings. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Near Fine condition and has a Very Good+ dust jacket"In England the young Edward III has come to the throne and establishes his personal power by arresting and executing at Tyburn Roger Mortimer, who was once Regent of the Kingdom and the Queen Mother's lover. In France Philippe VI, the first monarch of the House of Valois, has become king and immediately finds himself involved in the ruthless feud between Robert of Artois and the Countess Mahaut."  $75.00

 11.) Eccles, Audrey: OBSTETRICS AND GYNAECOLOGY IN TUDOR AND STUART ENGLAND 1982. Kent State University Press. Kent, OH. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Very Good+ / Very Good+. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ condition and has a Very Good+ dust jacket.   "Between sixteenth and eighteenth centuries midwiferly passed from a female mystery, employing traditional medicines and superstitions, to a scientifically-based clinical skill, with both gains and losses to the patient. Some of the psychological satisfaction of the old ways was sacrificed for improved saftey in difficult cases."  $30.00

 12.) Francis, Dick: SLAY-RIDE 1973. Michael Joseph. London, England. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Very Good+ / Very Good+. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ condition and has a Very Good+ to Near Fine - dust jacket.   $40.00

 13.) Hillerman, Tony: THE GREAT TAOS BANK ROBBERY  : And Other Indian Country Affairs. 1973. University of New Mexico Press. Albuquerque, NM. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st state. Fine / Very Good. DESCRIPTION: First Edition, First State with all requisite points. The book is in Fine condition and has a Very Good dust jacket.   $100.00

 14.) Horgan, Paul: GREAT RIVER: THE RIO GRANDE : In North American History : Two Volume Set including: Volume One: Indians and Spain, and, Volume Two: Mexico and The United States. 1954. Rinehart & Company, Inc.. New york. Hardcover. 1st Trade Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / No Dust Jacket. Illus Type: Maps. DESCRIPTION: This is a two volume set with a paper covered cardboard slipcase. The books are in Fine condition. The slipcase is in Very Good condition.   $50.00

 15.) Hunter, Edward: BRAINWASHING : The Story of Men Who Defied It. 1956. Farrar, Straus and Cudahy. New york. Hardcover. Trade Edition/ Fine / Very Good. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Very Good dust jacket.   "Brainwashing is modern witchcraft. This book is an exhaustive and popularly written story of how brainwashing came about and of how it can be beaten. For the first time, details are given of Pavlov's true role and the Reds' use of his work. A leading american psychiatrist, Dr. Leon Freedom, explains the danger of national neuroses, how whole populations are rendered mentally unbalanced by the Reds."  $25.00

 16.) King, Stephen: MISERY 1987. Viking Press. New york. Hardcover. 1st Trade Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Fine. Illus Type: Cover Art. Illus. by: Neil Stuart  . DESCRIPTION:  This book is in Fine condition and has a Fine dust jacket.   $50.00

 17.) King, Stephen: PET SEMATARY 1983. Doubleday & Company. New York. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Near Fine / Very Good. Illus Type: Cover Art. Illus. by: Linda Fennimore. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Near Fine condition and has a Very Good dust jacket.  $75.00

 18.) Llosa, Mario Vargas: WHO KILLED PALOMINO MOLERO? 1987. Farrar Straus and Giroux. New York. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Near Fine / Fine. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Near Fine condition and has a Fine dust jacket.  $30.00

 19.) Nye, Bill: BILL NYE'S COMIC HISTORY OF THE U.S. 1906. Thompson & Thomas. Chicago, IL. Hardcover. Early printing/ Very Good+ / No Dust Jacket. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. Illus. by: F. Opper. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ condition.  $20.00

 20.) Rice, Anne: THE QUEEN OF THE DAMNED 1988. Alfred A. Knopf. New York. Hardcover. 1st Trade Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Fine. The Vampire Chronicles. DESCRIPTION:  This book is in Fine condition and has a Fine dust jacket.   $85.00

 21.) Smith, Wilbur: GOLDEN FOX 1990. Random House. New York. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Fine. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Fine dust jacket. $35.00

 22.) Stiles, Maxwell: FOOTBALL'S FINEST HOUR : The Shrine East-West Game 1925-1950. 1950. Nashunal Publishing Company. Los Angeles, CA. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Near Fine / Very Good-. Illus Type: B&W Photographs. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Near Fine condition and has a Very Good- dust jacket. This book covers this history of the Shriner's East-West Football games from their inception in 1925 through 1950.  The games feature an all-star cast of collegiate football stars from the East vs the West and has been played continuously since 1925.  This book is filled with tid-bits of information regarding the games, the players and also includes numerous pictures of the game and players.    $25.00

 23.) Torme, Mel: THE OTHER SIDE OF THE RAINBOW WITH JUDY GARLAND ON THE DAWN PATROL 1970. William Morrow & Company. New york. Hardcover. 1st Edition/ 1st Printing. Fine / Near Fine. Illus Type: B&W Photographs. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Fine condition and has a Near Fine dust jacket.   $20.00

 24.) Warner, Sylvia Townsend: THE MUSEUM OF CHEATS : Stories. 1947. Viking Press. New york. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Very Good+ / Very Good. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ condition and has a Very Good dust jacket.  $35.00

 25.) Webster, E. M.: THE MOON MAN : A Biography of Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay. 1984. University of California Press. Berkeley, CA. Hardcover. 1st American Edition/ 1st Printing. Very Good+ / Very Good+. Illus Type: B&W Illustrations. DESCRIPTION: This book is in Very Good+ condition and has a Very Good+ dust jacket.   "This story of an outstandingly strange and interesting man is a triumph of modern biography. Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay, born in Russia in 1846, was one of the most extraordinay of all of the nineteenth-century savant-adventurers. A brilliant student of Ernst Haeckel, he embraced the natural sciences at a time when the genius of Darwin was revolutionizing Western cosmology. In his short lifetime he made the whole world his laboratory: sponges in the Red Sea, and the ancestry of sharks; head measurements in New Guinea; Negrito races in Malay jungles; marine life in Sydney Harbour - all these and a hundred other topics and places engaged his curiosity."  $35.00

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

A thought.... and book readers.

So ....

not so much stuff about books sticking up on my blog lately -- partly that's because I've had NO TIME -- partly because I don't have any interesting books (or at least, interesting enough to me at the moment books ) to post about.

On the other hand, I READ some very interesting blogs (book-wise and otherwise nearly every day).

Chris Lowenstein of Bookhunter's Holiday has a nifty article about some comic dust jackets that she recently picked up: see here.

And just yesterday, Robin McKinley has two posts which caught my fancy.  The first was about being pigeon-holed into a particular genre / sub-genre as an author and how that can have interesting repercussions that go on for years: here,

but she also made one of those throw-away statements that just struck me -- since it was about something I have done over the years off and on.

In the above post (regarding being stuck in a certain type of fiction come h#ll or high water), she makes an off-the-cuff statement at the bottom in her footnotes. Here:  "and I’m an evil cow with a bad attitude, and I throw more books across the room than I don’t."


For several years when I was very impressionable, I went to catholic school (capitalize catholic?  not sure... it's not a proper name).  We were told very severely NOT to deface books, mark books, break the spine of books, damage books in any way shape or form.  In  my mind, that pretty much included throwing them indiscriminately.


Later though, teachers ENCOURAGED students to write in their books (of course, these were the books that the student didn't have to turn back in at the end of the year).  I didn't do it. I couldn't. The training had sunk in. I did find myself becoming more liberal about the damage / defacement options -- and had found that I would NOT be struck by lightning if for some reason a book was accidentally injured. (this really is leading somewhere...just slowly).

In high school we were not only encouraged to read (as if I wasn't already reading through classes that I should not have) but required to read a "CLASSIC" of our choice.  I honestly don't remember which year it was, but probably junior year.  I have NO idea why I picked Gone with the Wind (Margaret Mitchell), but it might have been due to the fact that I was a regular viewer of the Carol Burnett Show and at some point, fell on the floor laughing at her famous Tara skit featuring the curtains (and curtain rod -- designed by the fabulous Bob Mackie).

So I read it.  I read the WHOLE book (as it was a requirement and had to do a report on it).

I found several things.  I loathe (yes, more than one notch above general dislike or hate) I loathe the character of Scarlett O'Hara.  Rhett Butler was a self-absorbed nincompoop. Frank whatshisname, her on-again-off-again beau / crutch should have walked away forever. Instead, he was as co-dependent in his behavior as Scarlett was.  ( I know I'm putting myself in hot water here because some of these characters are, for people, icons of classic writing,etc.  Well, not for me. Sue me.).

The end of that book made me so mad I did something I had never done to a book before.  I threw it across the room with a resounding thump, then watched it slide down and lay in a forlorn puddle on the floor.  Big book. RESOUNDING thump.

I hated that book.  To this day, "I'll think about it tomorrow"  is just as likely to have steam coming out my ears now as it was then.

I KNOW that I was young and I am SURE I missed some, if not most of the sub-text going on in the book, but I am not about to try to re-read it now just to make sure.

That was the first book I threw across a room in protest, but it certainly wasn't my last.

In self-defense, I'm not really a thrower. I try not to get myself into such a state that throwing is the only option left, but that book really did it to me.

The other book that made just as deep and abidingly bad impression was Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.  (Gasp! ).  If I hadn't been in a crowded, swaying van on the byways of  Belgium, with no lunch in me and no prospect of food forthcoming (and if you know me, not having enough food is a sure way to set me off to begin with), I would have thrown that book as well.  That book gave me a headache.
( I was 19 at the time, and again I probably missed contexts, etc. but I was a SciFi reader from way back... I appreciated characters who DID something about dismal situations -- better yet, I had already read Robin McKinley who featured young women / girls in situations that were dire and still managed to not be doormats.)

So the question of the day for readers......

What book did you throw across the room?

Sunday, October 3, 2010

I need a day of rest...

So it's Sunday.  The traditional day of rest.

(that all depends on your background of course....but in modern day America it is usually the day where guys kick back on the sofa and watch the perennial sporting event ... which ever one floats your boat.... while the gals get to clean the kitchen in a futile effort to NOT watch whatever sporting event is on).

Me, I was hoping for a day to get some down time. 

I could:
Stare at a wall  (hopefully, one of the few clean walls in the house.... Number Two Son's finger grime apparently has gone farther afield than I previously imagined).

Read the rest of the book that needs to be finished by TOMORROW.

Eat / drink something soothing (take your pick -- whichever was less work)

Maybe play a game with the boys at some point.

But NO....

again, no day of rest.

Started off the morning with church .... and my newest add-on to the schedule.  When the priest asked for some new lay readers / lectors, I stuck up my hand, and put myself on the list.  I've done this before. No sweat, just get to church a bit  early to read the lesson through so I can practice my biblical name tongue twisters.

But.... turns out, I somehow signed up for Lay Eucharistic Minister which is a WHOLE lot more than reading something out loud.

Today was my first gig.  I got through it with some help from the other people up front (more than just the priest up there nowadays) and hopefully it will sink in soon, but man, it was a bit more than I was expecting.

A quick change and Number Two Son and I pulled out the Cub Scout popcorn during coffee hour to sell some for his pack.

And then, this afternoon we have more scout stuff.

And more tomorrow.

And when I got home, I looked around, realized we have TWO WEEKS until my Venerable Mother-in-Law (yeah, I'm starting to run out of stuff from the Charlie Chan books to use for nicknames.... Honoured Husband, Venerable Mother, Number One Son, etc.....  I'll have to move on to something else soon...)

Getting back to Mother-In-Law .... she's coming in two weeks time for the annual fall get-together. Which means my house becomes command central.  Which, in turn, means that I have to have a CLEAN house.

Remember that lack of weekends that I've been having?

It continues this weekend.

And next weekend.

And the weekend after that... the one where she'll be here?

Yup.  Just found out that Soccer try-outs for the winter season start on .... the day of her get-together. 

All is not lost however. The try-outs are (miraculously) going to be about three blocks from the house.  Only one boy at a time has to go... so I'll be ferrying one over, watching .... then ferrying the next over.... and THEN we'll have get-together time.

This does mean that I LEAVE MY HUSBAND IN CHARGE..... should I repeat that?  I don't really want to. Once is bad enough.

And, my family will be all over my kitchen.... without me there.

(Wailing commences)

I may not survive the next three weeks.

I really could have used a day off today.

Friday, October 1, 2010

What a Week!

Technically, it started off last week, so I suppose you could say - What a Fortnight!  if you prefer, but I like it the way it is.

It started last Thursday with not being able to get any work done at home (and when I say at home, I generally mean working on the computer at my day job.... book selling, ya know).

Then Friday, Venerable Mother said, don't forget to take your stuff to the church rummage sale.  First thing.  Do it now!

So I went to the computer and started working -- which was  my way of ignoring the situation until I had gotten some badly needed work done......

but....


And there's ALWAYS a but...

Venerable Mother called again.  You REALLY need to get down here.  Bring the books now.  So I finished my bill paying, checked the email and gave in and dragged the twelve boxes of books (you remember that ongoing project to get rid of old, not so great book stock?  Well the dregs have to go somewhere and if they weren't bad enough to pitch, then donating them is the way to go.  And by the way, these twelve bags / boxes are STILL all from the A's.) down to church.

  I thought, "I'll just drop them and RUN."

Which NEVER works. I got there at 11:00AM.  I left at 4:50 PM because I had to get Number Two Son to soccer practice.

And that's pretty much how it's gone since then  -- I keep thinking I'll sit down and do paperwork / data entry...and something else comes up that is just as important.

Saturday it was two soccer games, rummage sale help, cub scout popcorn selling, and then back to church to pack up the leftovers from the rummage sale,  box them and stash them in a LARGE van to be taken to some other place.

Sunday was an all day trip to Columbia with the scouts to the Trout fishing farm.  Did I mention that the weather spiked again during this time period and we're back up to 100's each day?

Monday.... I totally forget what happened Monday.  I've blocked it out completely (except for the requisite hour and a half stop at  Number Two Son's school for math help.)

Tuesday.... same thing.

Wednesday was my yearly physical. Yippee.  Took an hour and a half. Met a very nice nurse practitioner who was taking over for my regular doctor for a while.  Nice lady.  Still don't like the stuff women have to go through for a yearly physical and probably never will.  I survived.  'Nuf said.

Yesterday was my job interview.  So OF COURSE I stopped off at Number Two Son's school for an hour and a half to help - realized that I had STOPPED watching the clock and nearly had a heart attack racing down the highway (did I mention that the interview was a half an hour away from home?) to make it in time.
And yes, it was 98 degrees in the shade at the time.  I was DRESSED UP.... and the air conditioning in my car is non-existant.

You try showing up for a job appointment with a sweaty red face, a dress stuck to your back and your legs (bare) sticking together when you walk.  YUCK.

On the good side, I think I might have made it past the first round.

And today.... well, here's hoping that I can get some data entry done today because I'm REALLY behind.

Tomorrow I won't be able to as the soccer stuff / scout stuff starts all over again.

Have I mentioned that my house is a shambles and that cleaning has gotten cursory at best?

Yup.  That's my week.


Oh.... can't forget the new pairs of pants from Lands End that arrived the other day.  Same pants I've worn forever.  I guess I can't pretend that I'm the same size anymore -- my imagination can keep the dream alive, but my body just doesn't want to stuff itself into something too tight.  Dang.  AND I have to send them back and get replacements -- which means at least a two week turnaround.  In the meantime I have to find something to wear that is decent (the reason I finally broke down and ordered pants was because the other pairs had holes so large they were obscene) and that half-way fits.  :(

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Passwords, passwords, and damned passwords

Yeah, there's my quote for the day.

Just updated my Thunderbird and it asked me for my master password.

My WHAT??????????

So then I have to ask it politely, which ONE, dang you?

Then I have to go through all the passwords in my head and try them all.

Of course, the ones I try WON'T WORK.

Then in desperation, I try my normal password (which, by the way, was the first one I tried....)

And it took.  Sigh.

One of those days, huh?    Of course, I have LOTS TO DO TODAY. And I've just spent 15 stupid minutes wasted on passwords.

Hopefully the rest of the day will improve from here.

Oh, by the way, I got an email yesterday for a job interview.  This is GOOD NEWS.  Now all I have to do is look and act like the right person for the job.   Keep your fingers crossed.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Do you know how hard it is to get a cat to SIT STILL for a picture?

FIVE PICTURES....

Just to get this.

Sigh.  

Other people's cats sit still for pictures because they LIKE getting their pictures taken.  

Mine, well,  Izzie here isn't the only cat in the house, but after it took so long to get this sad photo, I gave up for the day.
The thing in her mouth is her ball.

Izzie fetches.  But only if you have the Izzie approved type of ball.  Has to be soft and fluffy with some sort of puffiness to it. It has to be something you can throw far away. 
Then she has to be in the right mood to bring it back.

Don't know if I've mentioned this before but Son Number Two named Izzie -- officially she's Queen Isabelle or Queen Isabella of .... (don't remember what he said about where).

NO one calls her Isabelle. Or even Isabella.

She's Izzie.  

She's a tomboy.

She's BIG.

And she's very playful.

So --  there you go.  The requisite cat photo.

I'll have to see if I can get pictures of the rest of the gang another time.


Back in the saddle again.... metaphorically speaking

Yup, definitely metaphorically speaking, as I am NOWHERE near a horse at this moment and haven't been in a saddle with a horse under it in oh.....15 years at the least.

The Sacramento Antiquarian Book Fair is now old news.  I did better than expected, which is to say I expected to not be able to make my booth fee out of gross receipts.  I was happily surprised that I not only made back my booth fee (so I could pay it....) and that I actually made MORE than that.

HA!


Well, it was nice while it lasted.  Unfortunately, since the last two months prior to this book fair have been DISMAL as far as book sales go... well, lets just say a couple of bills got paid from the proceeds of the fair, but it would have been nice if there had been even more sales.

I did take pictures of some of the dealers and their booths.

 Chris Lowenstein of Bookhunter's Holiday.
Lovely booth, lovely books, lovely lady.



 Some of Chris's stuff. 


 More of Chris's Stuff.


 Vic Zoschak of Tavistock Books with a few of his books.
Cool stuff. Always.



Three goofballs-

Wendy Maxwell, wife of Bill Maxwell of Maxwell's Bookmark.
Cool Lady as well - and a great Jazz singer. (she's on the far left)
Next comes Peter Siegel of Bea and Peter Siegel's Books - Cookbooks to DIE FOR!
And Susan of Robert Gavora Fine and Rare Books (sorry Susan, I don't remember if your last name is Gavora or not, so I'll be safe and not sorry later)
Blurry picture. Sorry.


Also notice that I FORGOT to get pictures of my own booth, and of several other booths that I SHOULD have -- but time ran out and my camera battery started to wobble as well.  I took the pictures about 10 minutes before opening bell (which didn't actually go off and people were thronging in while dealers were chatting and away from their booths).



More info on the fair to come as I think of it.

Overall, better than expected, at least for me. Others I know... not so great. 

I'll get to that later.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Remember that work thing? Well, here's what I'm doing tomorrow and Saturday.

Sacramento Antiquarian Book Fair

Sept 18th -- That's THIS SATURDAY!!!!

Thirty boxes + packed in the car today and I'm nearly ready to hit the road tomorrow.  As you've probably guessed, I tend to over-pack (Ya think?). At any rate, I'll take the thirty boxes with me -- whether I stuff all those books onto the shelves is entirely a different matter. But I'll have them if I need them. Tomorrow is set up day, with the book fair on Saturday, bright and early at 10:00. 

Personally, I'll be out the door on Saturday morning at 6:30 AM to make it to Sacto with extra time.

I'm bringing a goodly number of new items in all sorts of subjects -- I've got a bunch of new Modern Fiction, some funky Non-Fiction items, some ephemera (found the sheet music the other day, so I'll have some of that too) Most Science Fiction / Fantasy and more (yeah, thirty boxes worth -- here's the math for you ..... thirty boxes of books with approx. 35 books per box (more for the picture books -- which tend to have 60-75) ...
averaging out to 1100 books.

Yeah, I'm over-packing. But hey, it works for me.

As far as sales -- well, I'd love to have LOTS, but in reality, I might have somewhere around 35-40 books sold by the end of the day (and yes, this is a fraction of a percent of what I'll be bringing ....  if my calculator is correct, and if I've worked the problem the right way around it comes to .0333 percent of the books I bring).

If, however, one of those books has a somewhat higher price tag, it works for me.

So why, you might ask, do you bring ALL THOSE BOOKS when you might just bring your high end stock and sell one or two?

You try it and see why .... I've said this before and I'm not the first one to say it. Book fairs are like a game of craps... it's entirely up to chance what a customer is going to buy. Sure, you might get J. P. Getty type come past your booth and wave his hand and buy up your entire booth, but more likely you'll get the guy next door who's looking for a $20.00 book that will fill a niche in his collection.  Nothing wrong with either end of the spectrum... it just means you have to have VARIETY (price and subject matter).

That's why I tend to go overboard with my boxes of books.

Ce la vie!

Hopefully it will be a good day. We'll see soon.

In the meantime, if you'd like to attend, let me know and I'll email a free pass.  If you're not able to or not interested in coming this time, I'll try and have a blog summary about it sometime next week.


See you there!

Another month gone by in a flash.

You'd think I'd be able to keep track of time better than this -- it's nearly a month since my last blog entry.  School has long since started, the soccer games (not just the practices) started last week, even Cub Scouts have started for the year.... and still I can't get my blog updated daily.

Yeah, about that.... well, all of the above have now ADDED ON extra time.

Soccer takes up four nights a week (minimum two hours per day- right at dinner time). Plus all day Saturday.

School.... Son Number Two signed me up as a volunteer (well, to be accurate, I signed myself up, but he bugged the teacher into remembering) and now I'm at the school for an hour+  Monday through Thursday helping with MATH class (if you know me, that's an interesting fit). 

And then there's scouts....

Scouts (sigh).  I love the Cub Scouts. I love being a den leader. I don't mind volunteering to do extra (Popcorn chairman... sure, sign me up.... and yes, my garage is filled with popcorn  for the foreseeable future), but when the Cub Master from last year couldn't continue (for a variety of reasons that don't matter here), well then we had to re-organize.  Luckily, I dodged the bullet and didn't end up Cub Master myself -- it was a close shave however.  On the good / GREAT side, the Cub Master who has stepped up has already done more in two months than the last one did in an entire year. 

However, currently, I'm the senior person .... NO, not the OLDEST... I'm the person who's been there the longest because Son Number One started several years ago and has since moved on to Boy Scouts...now I'm finishing up with Son Number Two (he's a Webelos II and will be graduating to Boy Scouts in February).  I'm the only one who remembers what sorts of things the pack has done and generally how we did them.

Not to say there won't be changes. Of course there will, but for the moment, we want to keep continuity going and I get to do extra work to help facilitate this.

Which means that so far, in the past four weeks I've spent no less than 10 hours a week (not including my own den meeting times or prep for my den meetings) working on Cub Scout stuff.... including endless emails, calls, making up and sending out fliers, driving all over town, etc.,etc., etc.,.

I don't mind, but in the mean time, I still have WORK to do -- which has to squeeze into an ever smaller amount of time.

AND THEN--- this weekend is the Sacramento Book Fair!

Don't ask me how clean my house is -- you'll either get a rude answer and a foul gesture, or I'll start to cry. (CAT HAIR IS EVIL INCARNATE!!!)

Yeah, I might see some time off sometime after the month of September, but I have a feeling it's probably not going to happen.


I'm enjoying all of this but.... and this gets back to why the blog has languished....

My time is a bit lacking lately, and the blog suffers because of it.


So that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.

Now I gotta get back to work.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Some new additions... and did you know there's a Book Fair coming up?

First off, here are some new additions to the website.

Added today (which means I've been doing data entry again!)

You know - mice must be one of the basic tropes of Children's books.
It amazes me how many different mice books I've come across in the last few years.
Here's another - Sylvester The Mouse with the Musical Ear by Adelaide Holl (illustrations by N. M Bodecker)


In a completely different vein, this book - if you're not a mathematician,
looks like its written in a foreign language.  
This book deals with very early theories and practices of artificial intelligence and cybernetics.
Interesting (at least to me), the editor C. A. Muses is a doctor of Philosophy who has written works
that put a rather...esoteric slant on mathematics.
And last, but definitely not least...

The inestimable Alexander Botts - Salesman extraordinaire for the 
Earthworm Tractor Company.
If you've never read any of the short stories about Alexander Botts, you're definitely missing something.



And in other news...
The Sacramento Fall Antiquarian Book Fair is coming up September 18th at the Scottish Rite Temple in Sacramento (Duh..)

If you're interested in coming and would like a free pass, let me know.


And in that same vein...  the fair is three weeks away.... and of course, I'm NOT ready.

Time to start packing boxes and getting mentally prepared.  Yikes!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

And the weather report for today....

I try not to be one of THOSE kind of people who pepper every conversation with inanities such as throw-away comments about the weather (unless I really have nothing in common with the conversee) but I have to put in a little bit here about the recent weather wackies in our area.

As you probably know by now, I'm located in Central California, to be a bit more specific, in the Central Valley of California (which is actually quite a large swath of California, but that's neither here nor there).  The thing is, we are technically listed (Geologically speaking / Climate speaking ) as High Desert -- which usually means that the summer time weather is quite predictable .... as in, it's HOT and stays HOT from most of May through most of October.  Let me define hot a bit further - 95-115 degrees (F) is the general (I'm not going to get into the technical terminology of mean temp vs whatever else... I don't have the background in it or the inclination to look it up today)  -- but for the most part it's sunny, it's dry, there's generally very scant precipitation during this period and it's usually HOT.

Ok, so not every year is a record breaker for heat, which is ok by me.

But this year, our average temperature seems to have dropped by about 12-15 degrees. We had five days with temps over 100 (degrees) in May.  Since that time, we've had......none.  Oh, we've had some 95's and some 97's, but NO 100+ days.

Then, as if we were jerked back by the shirt collar and tossed into another direction, this week, we're supposed to have 105 to 106 degree days.... So Sunday was 90, Monday was SUPPOSED to be 99, today is SUPPOSED to be 106, tomorrow 100+ and then, jerk again, we're supposed to drop to 70 (as in topping out at 70 degrees) by the weekend.

That's just insane.

Besides, when the whole summer is 95-100+, it's generally easy to be accustomed to the high heat and easier for our bodies to adapt to the occasion jump up to 112 degrees.....

This year, there has been no steady temp and it's bounced around like a rubber ball, giving us NO chance to become acclimatized so this week is a killer (and, I suppose, we'll all have to watch carefully for the older people in the area and for those who don't have cooling of some sort) for our bodies. UP, DOWN, UP, DOWN....

Even our soccer coach who isn't phased by any weather (especially rain and sleet) has canceled practice today  - of course, he's added an extra hour onto Thursday's practice to make up for it (when it's supposed to be 80 degrees again).


Weird weather.



Since I"m off the topic of books, here are some of the pictures I've managed to nab in the last week or two.

First up, the rabbit that crossed my path at the middle school during back to school night.  
I wasn't paying much attention to where I was walking or what was there then I spotted this cutie out of the corner of my eye.



Then I wanted to know whether she / he was a local or just an opportunist...


Ok, so it's blurry -- the rabbit was hopping when I caught this, but there's a smallish hole
just at the corner of the building where the rabbit scurried.
Obviously, a native. 
The colony (I'm assuming there is more than one rabbit)
lives right underneath the classrooms. 
Talk about adapting to modern living!

And then there's the silly duo...

I don't know if it's apparent from this picture, but the two smiling dudes are
SOAKED.

Son Number Two practices at a local city park  and some of the newer parks include 
"Water features" which are small areas where water can shoot up out of the ground-- this is 
the newest way for Californians to be somewhat cool (during NORMAL summers) and beat the heat 
since Swimming Pools are Politically Incorrect lately (and they cost MONEY which cities don't have)

At any rate, the two dudes above dared each other to run through.
You can see the results. One quick dash through turned into
a drenching.

Luckily, soccer gear is water proof.


And that's what it's like around here this week.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

And some more just in...

It finally looks (momentarily) that I'm actually getting some data entered and uploaded to my website.

This, of course, is a good thing.

So in honor of this good thing, here are a few more of the titles just listed:

First up is a  look at the Western Americana Illustrator and painter 
Charles M. Russell


In the 1940's all the GOOD Baseball players went to war -
but the major leagues still continued to play games... 
which meant that they were really reaching for decent players.
Anyone want a one-armed outfielder?
(And yes, as a matter of fact, I did look this one up -
there was a picture of him in the outfield, but how did he bat is the question....hmmmm)

Mitsumasa Anno is one nifty keen artist when it comes to children's books
AND to books without words. This is another wonderfully illustrated title by this very 
creative illustrator.

Nicola Bayley's artwork is very detailed, very lush and very exacting --
It's also really cool.  Here's her take on Mother Goose.




That's it for pictures for the day.  Now it's off to do some work for the scouts.  And after that, figure out dinner.... and then soccer practice.

At least today is easy. Tomorrow, I get to figure out how to be in three different, but equally important, places at the exact same time.
Anyone have a cloning machine?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

This just in...

And now, in honor of some NEW things that have come in and been processed (instead of looking backwards, let's look forward for a bit).

A few pictures of some recently added stock.  Just for the fun of it -and to whet your appetite

Here they are:

First American edition of this wonderful book.


 An Uncorrected Proof copy -


O.K., this item isn't NEW... I've had it for a few years, but It's one of the
books that I'm in the process of updating and adding new photos.
Signed, limited boxed edition. 

Who couldn't love Shrewbettina?


Another Harlin Quist title.  Found a small group of them this weekend.
Some new titles, some previously sold titles. 


Quite a varied bunch there aren't they?

Yup.


The post below

Ha....

The post below is what I currently have showing on my website's home page.  I put it up Friday-ish last week.  Partly I just wanted people to know that the stock was in the process of being "Refreshed" ... or in other words, I was drop-kicking the laggards to the curb.

I'm still in the process of weeding out the old stuff from the shelves -- and yes, at the rate I'm going, it's going to take at least a year.

I'm currently up to AN (as in Piers Anthony).  I've done four shelves so far. Four shelves out of ... let me get my calculator out.  30 (approximate) bookcases... each of them has six shelves (if I remember correctly, I'm not looking at one right at the moment and I'm too lazy to go downstairs and count) so, 30 x 6 = 180 shelves... each shelf holds between 25 to 35 books (depending on the thickness of the books, etc) so.... well, I know that it comes out to 8400 books that WERE on the shelves...still on the shelves until I chuck them.

I know I shouldn't be flip about these no-longer-wanted books.  They WILL find new homes. But in the meanwhile, as they sit on my shelves, taking space away from new stock, they have also come to represent other things:

1.) that I bought badly (which also means that I PAID for stuff that never sold...wahhhh)

2.) that the times have definitely changed since I listed these books (remember some of them have been on the shelves more than 15 years -- FIFTEEN YEARS!  15. 15!!!  FIFTEEN Flubbing years!)

3.) That my needs, and my customers needs have changed.

4.) That I really could use an assistant.... but paying one is out of the question at the moment as I'm mostly pretending to pay myself.

5.)That more books is not necessarily better.  At least for a one person operation, quantity does NOT equate with success. (For YEARS I've been using the 10,000 book quota as a guide to where I wanted to be. No more)

Overall, it's probably a good thing for me to do to "clean house" as it were.  It's hard to do though - both mentally and physically, but it needed to be done.  I hope that I can continue to plow through the task without getting sidetracked or discouraged, and that, in the end, it will be a good thing overall for my business.



I'd cross my fingers, but then I wouldn't be able to either lift the books, or do the data entry.

Wish me luck!