Awful Library Books

Hoarding is not collection development

A Calculated Weed

The Calculating Book: Fun and Games with Your Pocket Calculator
Rogers
1975

Submitter: [This] was in the library of my high school, a large school in a wealthy suburb, until May of this year! This book promises to teach tricks for calculators. However, there is a lot of talk about “overloading” the calculator with large numbers, like anything over eight digits, or giving it “lockjaw” (Huh?). Most modern calculators can handle at least twelve, and some can go even higher by displaying in scientific notation, so that’s no longer very accurate. There are some tricks that involve that thing where you flip the calculator upside down to spell words. Sadly, it does not mention that venerable classic of the calculator alphabet genre, 55378008. Graphing calculators, (i.e., the calculators most likely to be owned by the kind of people who find this stuff amusing) have moved away from the traditional seven-segment display and thus don’t make those letters anymore.

Holly: A reasonable choice for libraries in 1975, but this particular high school can probably do better. Kids are more interested in playing 2048 or Candy Crush than spelling 55378008 on calculators.

 

More Calculating Copies:

Problem Solving with Calculators

Calculate This!

Technology Fail

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Friday Fiction: Make Mine Love

 

Make Mine Love
Birren
1958

This cover reminds me of some kind of old Rat Pack movie. I swear that could be Dean mixing up the drinks. What really caught my eye was also the name Faber Birren. I had never heard of a name like that and then I saw the brief author note on the verso. See first picture below. Evidently Birren was a color expert. (I had no idea that was even a job.) A little bit of digging brought me to Yale University and the Faber Birren collection. Now I am intrigued!

This story is about a couple of ladies who seem to be the 50′s definition of Desperate Housewives. I particularly like the last sentence on the back cover on how this segment of society “needs probing”. I can’t wait to read all the gory details.

Mary

More Pulp:

Martinis and Murder

Shanty Girl

Love in Suburbia

Light Up

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Saved by the Bell

Behind the Scenes at Saved by the Bell
Cruise
1992

Time for a step back to the early 1990s to hang with the cool kids on Saved by the Bell. Having never watched an episode, I am only slightly familiar with these actors. I have to shamefully admit I paid to go see Showgirls and hired a babysitter to boot. Needless to say I did not get my money’s worth.

Anyway, as trashy tell all insider books for the kids go, this isn’t too bad. There is lots of text about how a tv show is produced and the other folks involved besides the actors. I did learn quite a few things: Tiffani-Amber Thiessen had ambitions about become a mathematician , Dustin Diamond was the “free spirit” and Mark-Paul Gosselaar is really shy and speaks Dutch.

For the record, there are still some medium/small public libraries that still have this on the shelf. If it is circulating, I have to wonder why.

I am sure this book would have helped one’s street cred for coolness.

Mary

More Celebrity Insider Books:

Lizzie McGuire Lives!

Do You Really Want to Hurt Me?

Larger than Life

Finally, for my generation, here is one of ALB’s finest books about Burt Reynolds. If you haven’t seen this before, you are in for a treat!

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