Archive | November, 2008

The Big Game and Other Rivalries

Here in the Bay Area, sports fans have been gearing up all week for this Saturday’s 111th installment of The Big Game, the annual football matchup between the California Golden Bears and the Stanford Cardinal.

This year’s tilt promises to be one of the most exciting in recent history, as Stanford needs a win to qualify for a postseason bowl game and Cal seeks to reclaim the Axe, the winner’s trophy, after losing it last year for the first time since 2001.  The game will be held at Memorial Stadium in Berkeley and televised locally at 12:30 pm on KGO-TV (ABC).

Big Games by Michael BradleyIf you’re an Old or Young Blue, bleed Cardinal Red, or just happen to be a Bay Area sports fan, you probably know all about the tradition and history, the great players involved, the memorable plays, and even the notorious Axe thefts.  But whether you’re just curious to know what all the fuss is about or seek to relive some of the greatest football memories of all time, you’ll find the history of The Big Game and more in Michael Bradley’s Big Games: College Football’s Greatest Rivalries.

Here’s some of Bradley’s history of the Axe:
“The odd thing about this coveted object is that it began with no ties to football whatsoever. Before the 1899 Stanford-Cal baseball game, Stanford yell leader Billy Erb purchased the Axe (which had a 15-inch blade) to dramatize the school’s “Axe Yell.” Or at least that was his story. In 1930, E. F. Weisshaar told the Palo Alto Times that he bought the Axe for $3.50 from a San Francisco store. Not so, said Julius Peterson, who was the foreman of the Stanford forge at the turn of the century…”

Inside Big Games you can also read about Harvard-Yale, Miami-Florida State, Oklahoma-Texas, Notre Dame-Southern California, Georgia-Florida, Lafayette-Lehigh, Alabama-Auburn, Michigan-Ohio State, and Army-Navy.  Look for it in our Nonfiction section at 796.3326 B.

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Great Books III – Willa Cather

Willa Cather Born in 1873,  Willa Cather’s life spanned two centuries and an incredible change in American life. At a time when few women went to college she earned an AB from the University of Nebraska and went on to write for and then edit McClure’s magazine from 1906-1911.  She spent the rest of her life writing fulltime.

Her novels are typically set in the prairies of the Midwest.  She wrote novels, short stories, and poetry, winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1922 for One of OursCather’s writing is carefully crafted and still compelling today.  Try My Antonia if you’ve never read her and Death Comes for the Archbishop for a more challenging read.

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Library Closed Friday, November 7, 2008

The Library will be closed on Friday, November 7, 2008 and reopen Saturday, November 8, 2008 at 10 a.m.

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Vote Today! Polls open 7am-8pm

voteToday is Election Day in the USA!  If you’re not one of the thousands who have already voted early or voted by mail, polls in Santa Clara County will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. today.

Voter turnout is expected to reach record numbers in this historic election, so make sure your voice is heard and vote today.

If you want to find your polling place, check your registration status, or even track the status of your vote by mail ballot, you can do so at the Registrar of Voters web site here.

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Great Books II — Eudora Welty

I am a writer who came of a sheltered life. A sheltered life can be a daring life as well. For all serious daring starts from within. — Eudora Welty, One Writer’s Beginnings.

In her stories and novels, Welty pays close attention to the inner lives of her characters. But she also infuses her writing with elements of mythology and folklore, tying her stories to the larger human experience. The combination makes her work both intimate and far-reaching — dreamy, yet anchored to the everyday.

Welty’s fiction is also grounded in a particular place and time. Welty, who died in 2001, lived in Jackson, Mississippi, and is known partly as a sensitive chronicler of life in the South. “It seems plain that the art that speaks most clearly, explicitly, directly and passionately from its place of origin will remain the longest understood,” Welty wrote in her 1957 essay, ‘Place in Fiction.’  She may be right.

Welty is the latest author to be featured in our “Great Authors” display. Look for her books in the library’s fiction section, or ask a librarian to help you find a title.

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