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Posts by Donald Laub

Book Discussion Series at the St. George Library Center

The St. George Library Center will soon be starting a Saturday morning book discussion which will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon. The first date for the group to meet will be October 13, 2012. Other dates and titles to be used that are confirmed right now are listed below. We plan to continue through May 2013, take a break during the summer, and resume in the fall of 2013.

The titles and dates confirmed are:

October 13, 2012

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Celebration of "Memoirs: Penned and Spoken"

For eight weeks a group has gathered at the St. George Library for a class called, "Memoirs: Penned and Spoken." They have exercised their writing skills, reflecting back on their lives and experiences, with a willingness to share with their fellow students. At the Celebration event they will be reading some of their work, and reflect on their lives and times.

All are welcome to attend.

Memoirs: Penned and Spoken is part of Creative Aging in Our 

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Memoirs: Penned and Spoken at St. George Library Center

The St. George Library Center recently received a grant — "Creative Aging in Our Communities: The New York City Libraries Project" — from Lifetime Arts, Inc., a Westchester County-based nonprofit organization. Over 25 locations in The New York Public Library and Brooklyn Public Library systems received grants.

The project at the St. George Library Center will be a memoir writing workshop aimed at people who are 55 years of age or older. The goal is to have the participants realize 

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NY StartUP! 2012 Win $15,000 - Orientation on Staten Island

The New York Public Library with its sponsor, Citi Foundation, has announced the New York StartUP! 2012 Business Plan Competition for New York-based startup entrepreneurs with cash prizes totaling over $30,000. The third annual New York StartUp! gives aspiring entrepreneurs the opportunity to bolster their business acumen. Entrants gain practical insights about starting and growing a business, while learning about the comprehensive small business resources at NYPL’s Science, Industry and Business 

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Book Discussion at the St. George Library Center of "Push" by Sapphire

Please join us at the St. George Library Center on Monday, February 28 at 6:30PM for a book discussion of Push by Sapphire.

Push is an electrifying first novel that shocks by its language, its circumstances, and its brutal honesty. Push recounts a young black street girl's horrendous and redemptive journey. For Precious Jones, 16 and pregnant with her father's child, miraculous hope appears and the world begins to open up for her when a courageous, determined teacher bullies, cajoles, and inspires her to 

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Famous Writers With A Staten Island Connection

Thomas Matteo, the Staten Island Borough Historian, wrote a nice article in the Sunday, January 16, 2011 Staten Island Advance titled "Their Pens Were Mighty Indeed," about famous writers who have a Staten Island connection. While I was aware that Washington Irving,

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St. George Library Center Book Discussion of "The Tipping Point" by Malcolm Gladwell

St. George Library Center hosts a book discussion of The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell on Monday, January 24, 2011 at 6:30PM.

About this book from NYPL Catalog entry: 

"An introduction to the Tipping Point theory explains how minor changes in ideas and products can increase their popularity and how small 

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The Staten Island Ferry

The Staten Island Ferry today remains a lifeline to Staten Island, as it is still heavily traveled by Staten Islanders for work and pleasure. The area of St. George grew up around the ferry. St. George was more or less a rural outpost until the ferry started landing at its present location in the the late 1800s. Other ferry services from Staten Island existed in other locations, but only one 

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History of the St. George Library Center

Photo dated 1915, showing the now gone entrance and stairway leading up from the bottom of Hyatt Street. To the right is the long since demolished Tiedeman mansion, currently the site of the St. George Theater.A brief history of the St. George Library Center from pamphlet "St. George Library Center," 6/89:

"Ferry service between the Battery and Staten Island began in 1886. Soon afterward, a town developed around the ferry landing and up the slopes of Fort 

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Edith Wharton and "The Mount"

This past July I visited Lenox, Massachusetts and had a chance to go to "The Mount", the home of Edith Wharton. I haven't read a lot of Edith Wharton, but have liked what I read, Ethan Frome and

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Paul Zindel

Paul Zindel, writer of young adult and children's books, was born in Tottenville in 1936 and died in 2003 in Manhattan. Before becoming a full-time writer, he  taught at Tottenville High School between 1959 and 1969. (When Tottenville High School was in Tottenville. The newer version is actually in Huguenot.)

Before that, he attended Wagner College on Staten Island where he took a creative writing course with the playwright

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At BookExpo America (BEA)

I attended BookExpo America (BEA) on May 25 and May 26 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. It is the first time I have ever attended BEA, which is a trade show for the book industry and is sponsored by ABA (American Booksellers Association) and AAP (Association of American Publishers).

On May 25 I attended five workshops:

1. Building Online Reader Communities with an Eye on ROI 

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Bluegrass Hit Parade at the Tottenville Library

This Saturday, May 15, Staten Island is bluegrass country! Starting at 2pm at the Tottenville Library, The Bluegrass Hit Parade: 1946 to 2010 will be a concert of bluegrass songs and tunes which were made famous by the originators of bluegrass music. Performed by Cross, Farrell, Cohen and Wright.

Band members Vincent Cross, Mark Farrell, Allen Cohen and Bob 

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Lecture by Bob Tomes, Local Tottenville Author

Bob Tomes, a professor of history at St. John's University, who lives right down the block from the Tottenville Library, will be speaking about his book Apocalypse Then: American Intellectuals and the Vietnam War, 1954-1975, a perceptive, well-balanced, and well-written look at a very difficult time in the life of the United States, which, among other things, gives insight to how we got to today's, by most accounts, somewhat contentious public discourse.

I picked up this book to read with a bit of trepidation, as 

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When the Game Was Ours

Love the NCAA basketball tournament? Read about two of its most famous alumni in When the Game Was Ours by Larry Bird and Earvin Magic Johnson. From he book jacket: "When the Game Was Ours is a compelling portrait of two inimitable players across three decades. It is also a rollicking ride through professional basketball's best times."

Fans of the early 1970s Knicks might object to that last phrase, but the book does take a look at the life and times of two great basketball 

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Willa Cather

Another favorite writer of mine is Willa Cather, author of My Ántonia and numerous other novels and short stories. I didn't discover her until I was in my last semester of college, and I have to admit I had not even remotely heard of her before that. But I was captivated by the story she told in My Ántonia and in the direct style of her writing.


There is an element to her writing that is usually described as elegiac, and her inscription in My Ántonia is from 

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Herman Melville

For a long time Herman Melville has been one of my favorite writers, perhaps the favorite. I read Moby Dick in junior year of high school in 1968 and was totally mesmerized. I have re-read it at least five or six times and it amazes me every time. I've also read all of his other novels, some of which were very difficult to read, but always worthwhile and interesting. When you read them in order: Typee, Omoo

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My Favorite Team

If the Super Bowl is over and it is February and there is 12 inches of snow on the ground, to me that means baseball season is just around the corner!

I’ve been a New York Mets fan right since the beginning in 1962. I was 11 years old, and I have a very strong, and good, memory of going to the Polo Grounds in upper Manhattan with my father and brother during that first season. We bought tickets at the park and got seats about 10 rows behind the 

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Book Discussion of Susan Minot's "Evening" at Tottenville Library

Last night, Feb 8, the Tottenville Library book discussion group met to discuss Evening by Susan Minot. We had 20 attendees, the largest amount ever at the Tottenville Library book discussion. The discussion was lively and animated as usual.

Some felt the book was a bit too depressing, but most seemed to be interested in the story of a 

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Book Discussion Group at the Tottenville Library

The Tottenville book discussion group has been meeting since this past September. Here is the schedule:

Sept 21-Martha Quest by Doris Lessing Oct 19-The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz Nov 16-Girlbomb by Janice Erlbaum Dec 14-The Camel Bookmobile by Masha Hamilton Jan 11-

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