82nd ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS

On the evening of March 7, 2010, the 82nd annual Academy Awards were presented at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was officially organized on May 4, 1927, but the first “Oscars” were not awarded until May 16, 1929. That evening, in the ballroom of the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, “Wings” was named “Best Picture” of the year. Emil Jannings and Janet Gaynor took home the acting prizes.
Fast forward 81 years. On March 7th the following winners were announced:

Best Picture: The Hurt Locker
Best Actor: Jeff Bridges in “Crazy Heart”
Best Actress: Sandra Bullock in “The Blind Side”
Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz in “Inglorious Basterds
Best Supporting Actress: Mo’Nique in “Precious”
Best Director: Kathryn Bigelow for “The Hurt Locker”

It was a night of firsts! Bullock, Waltz, and Mo’Nique were all first-time nominees, and Bigelow was the first woman in the history of the Academy Awards to receive the “Best Director” prize. Also, for the first time since 1943, ten films were nominated for “Best Picture”.
Here are some fascinating facts about the Oscars:
Most Awards (11): “Ben-Hur“, “Titanic”, and “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King”
Most Nominations (14): “All About Eve”, “Titanic”
Most Awards – Acting (4): Katharine Hepburn
Most Nominations – Acting (16): Meryl Streep

East Central Regional Library has many Oscar-winning films on DVD and more are being added to the collection on a regular basis. Check our catalog!
The best book ever written about the Academy Awards is probably “80 Years of the Oscar” by Robert Osborne. It’s located in the central reference collection at the Cambridge library for your enjoyment and perusal.
Bob Gray
Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian

LOOKING FOR RELIABLE HEALTH INFO?

Did you know that East Central Regional Library maintains an extensive list of web sites that we use on a daily basis? Just check our “Reference Desk” page and click on “Web Links”. There are many different categories! One of the most popular is Health & Medicine.

Here you’ll find links to the American Medical Association, Medline Plus, WebMD, and the Mayo Clinic, among other reliable online resources. You can easily locate information on diseases, medical conditions, drugs, and specific health-related topics pertaining to children, men, women, and seniors.

The library also maintains outstanding print resources for your use, including:

“Mayo Clinic Family Health Book”
“Complete Guide to Prescription & Non-Prescription Drugs”
“American Medical Association Complete Medical Encyclopedia”

Please contact your nearest ECRL branch library for assistance with these and other library resources!

Bob Gray
Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian

THE ROAD to Cormac McCarthy

When No Country For Old Men won the Best Picture Academy Award in 2007 I told myself, “I must read Cormac McCarthy.”
I didn’t get around to it, however, until recently. I knew that All the Pretty Horses, volume one of “The Border Trilogy”, had received both the 1992 National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. Then The Road was awarded the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
Last week I picked up The Road, thumbed through it, and noted the absence of quotation marks to indicate dialogue. Finding this somewhat distracting, I laid the book aside and turned to a different novel. Yesterday I picked up McCarthy’s book again—-and finished it this morning.
A man and his son, both unnamed, struggle to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. Possessed of meager provisions and a pistol with two bullets, the man convinces the boy that some kind of salvation exists near the sea. Through a blighted landscape of gray ash, dead trees, and chilling temperatures, the reader joins them on the road, encountering harrowing instances of debased humanity, cannibalism, and despair. The boy, who has never known any other life, seems, at times, touched by God, for he is ever aware of the fact that he and his father are the “good guys” who “carry the fire”. Eventually the man succumbs to disease, starvation, and exposure—yet remains convinced that “Goodness will find the little boy. It always has. It will again.”
The Road has been called both “a masterpiece” by Booklist and “a novel of horrific beauty” by Kirkus Reviews. I agree. The book, deceptively simple and straightforward, is devastating and reminds us that the world teeters on the edge of the abyss.
On June 5, 2007, McCarthy sat down with Oprah Winfrey for his first and only television interview. When asked about his writing, McCarthy said he prefers simple, direct sentences and refuses to muddy up his text with “weird little marks” (quotation marks). The video can viewed on Oprah’s site: http://www.oprah.com/. Just enter his name in the “Search oprah.com” field on the upper right of the screen.
Directed by John Hillcoat, the film adaptation has just been released in theatres and is receiving generally favorable reviews. Viggo Mortensen, whom many will remember as Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, plays the man.
East Central Regional Library owns all of McCarthy’s works in various formats: regular print, large print, audio, VHS, and DVD. Access our homepage at http://www.ecrlib.org/ and click on “ECRL Catalog” if you’d like to request a specific item. Remember that library staff are a quick phone call away if you need assistance.

Bob Gray
Reference and Interlibrary Loan Librarian

Progress – the Web Catalog

I’ve been here just over a month (Wednesday was my one-month anniversary). Wow, so much has happened. I told Marilyn that I wish we had kept a daily log. We’ve not celebrated each step in the implementation of our new ILS (integrated library system), but there have been plenty.

Today is a huge milestone — the unveiling of the online patron access catalog. In library terminology, that’s an OPAC. Let’s not call it that. It’s just simply the Catalog. It seems pretty straightforward to use. The biggest thing that I think the public may need to remember is that they should select their library on the initial search screen — it comes up searching “All”.

As staff has tried the catalog out in its implementation phase, they’ve found several things they’ve like, several more not so much. Carla told me that she’s been here through Classic Dynix, Horizon 8.0, and now Unicorn. She says that there are certain things that she likes in each one and she wishes she could combine all her favorite tools. I suspect that will be the case with a lot of us (this will be the sixth automation system I’ve worked on).

Give it a try. And then post in the comments section what you like – or not. (be specific, please)

ECRL Catalog
ECRL new online catalog
Barbara Misselt, Director