Computer Programming 123 cover

Computer Programming 1-2-3

Computer Programming 1,2,3
1983
Grosset & Dunlap

Submitter: Anyone who has worked with children and school assignments will know this story…
A class in the school across the street assigned a project on programming a computer and students flocked in to check out books from the library. There is of course that one student who shows up the day before the assignment is due and there is not much left. Trying to help him out, I found this ye olde computer book on the shelf. Yikes! Not awful in 1983, but not helpful today.

Holly: Oh look! A punch card!

McDonaldland cover

McDonaldland

McDonalds McDonaldland Specification Manual
McDonalds Corporation
1975

Submitter: There are many wonderful gems in our vertical file collection that really make no sense on why we collected them. This is one of them. It’s a 1975 booklet on the McDonalds characters. I love this quote “Ronald McDonald is a CLOWN. The fact that he is a corporate spokesman should not overshadow his ‘clownness.’ He is all the good things that come to mind when thinking of clowns.” I see that this booklet has been digitized in a few places and they will allow us to let this one go.

Holly: Nostalgia at its finest! I had a birthday party at McDonalds when I was about eight. I was a cool kid for that one day. Best. Day. Ever. But yeah – why is this still in a library collection? And I’m genuinely curious – who still has a vertical file? We do, but it’s mostly local history.

sex harassment and gender biasr

Sex Harassment 101

Coping With
Sexual Harassment and Gender Bias
Shaw
1998

Another old one from the “Coping with…” series. I just cringe at the covers of some of these books. (See this one and this one.) I think that jamming sexual harassment in with gender bias is asking too much of small book. I think they should be separate books.

This subject matter is important for teens. A book from the late 1990s isn’t going to be helpful in 2022. Aside from the creepy cover art, the content is probably on par for the late 1990s. We could argue about how much has NOT changed in over 20 years, but there has been way more dialogue on this topic than in the 1990s. Weed it and don’t look back.

decorating with crochet

Retro Crochet

Decorating with Crochet
Halliday
1975

There are some lovely decorating tips in this book for all of you looking for a “retro” look for your home. Particularly fetching is the wall hanging of a grandfather clock and the homage to macrame wall hanging on the last picture below.

As a mediocre to poor knitter/crocheter, I can appreciate the skill set, but I just cringe at these projects. It is a waste of yarn. I am also old enough to remember 1970s decor, so I can also tell you that this would have been awful in the 1970s. (At least in my opinion.)

afghans cover image

Craft yourself an Afghan just like Grandma

Afghans
Traditional and Modern
Bray
1977

I was prepared for a very 1970s vibe for this relic of a craft book. I wasn’t disappointed with a few crafts that looked like it came from a grandma’s couch. However, I was surprised that a few were actually quite good. There were some very plain but nicely detailed afghans that would have made nice throws for a couch in this century. The bad news is that the projects were crowded out with the examples below. (Warning! A clown afghan is one of the examples!)

Free Stuff for Quilters cover

Free Stuff for Quilters

Free Stuff for Quilters on the Internet
Heim and Hansen
1998

Submitter: I found this book this morning while weeding our craft section. To be fair, in 1998 it was probably a boon to quilters looking to get free patterns and connect with other quilters across the country. But, it’s an  awful library book now because 1998 was the Stone Age equivalent of the Internet compared to today. Helpful tips in the book how to use one of the starter discs from AOL to get started with internet service, and how to set up Explorer on your computer. Unfortunately, I am old enough to remember all of this, so I got flash backs of trying to dial into the internet and the horrible screeching sounds accompanying the attempt. I didn’t try the links, but I’m guessing many or most of them do not work. About the only information relevant to today are the Internet safety tips, which still ring true today. I see that there was a 2nd edition published in 1999, but I doubt the information on the Internet had significantly improved in a year’s time. I honestly don’t have an explanation as to why this was on the shelf. I have weeded in that area before, but never ran across it before. It’s leaving our shelves today.

Holly: Isn’t it weird how things just pop up out of nowhere sometimes? It’s probably been checked out to someone for like ten years and they finally decided to return it. Gee, thanks, patron.

Satan's Mark Exposed cover

Satan’s Mark Exposed

Satan’s Mark Exposed
Kirban
1981

Submitter: This book is one of many from Kirban that outlines the ways in which the world will ‘soon’ come to an end. This particular title is full of outlandish predictions that include cannibal worms, laser identification beams, and of course the word computer (when assigned the proper alphanumeric code) adding up to 666. Not only are we treated to ranting speculations, but also some alarmist images and comics, depicting the doomed direction the world is heading. It’s hard to believe that there are more of these, but as the back of the book claims “Salem Kirban is well qualified to write on future events. He is the author of more than 30 books on the subject.”

Holly: He was prolific, that’s for sure! My favorite title from his bibliography is “How to Live Above and Beyond Your Circumstances.” Any libraries out there have that little gem to share with us?

A children's book about whining cover

How about some cheese with that “whine”?

A Children’s Book About Whining
Berry
1988

Gotta hand it to Joy. She is so optimistic that kids might reconsider their behavior after a moment of self reflection. I am of the mind that many adults haven’t quite mastered this skill. More than once I have faced off with a parent who had better whining skills than the average kindergartner.

I can appreciate the intent, but I doubt this book has very little impact on a child’s behavior. A better strategy is ear plugs and a drink (preferably alcoholic).