Stacking the Shelves: JoCo Library BIG Fall Kid’s Book Sale ed.!

Saturday, November 15th, 2014

2014-11-13 - JoCo YA Book Haul - 0001 [flickr]

So I was a little taken aback when the much-anticipated Johnson County Library fall book sale was announced last month. Instead of a book sale-book sale, it was billed as a “BIG Fall Kid’s Book Sale.” Luckily including YA and middle grade titles, but still. Usually the Friends of Johnson County has so many books to unload that they host their sales in the greater part of a mall! In which case, why limit it to just kids’ books? Maybe the donations were a little lax this year? But then many of the titles were library discards, so perhaps they focused their fall cleaning in the kids’ aisles this time around? I DON’T KNOW! But even with the limited selection – and despite what a long drive it is for us (an hour one way, yo!) – I couldn’t resist checking it out.

As it turned out, the selection was pretty decent for such a narrowly focused sale. There were at least as many YA books as at the regular sale – several tables’ worth – and a fair amount of middle grade books too. I scoured the YA tables but mostly skimmed the kids’ books. Maybe I would have been more diligent if I wasn’t wiped out from jury duty earlier that day. (Spoiler alert: I was not among the chosen twelve. Like you couldn’t see THAT coming!)

I came away with 13 books – not bad! – including two that were on my wish list: The Chaos and Diverse Energies. I can’t lie, I was super-psyched to find those. I almost wish I’d picked up an extra copy of The Chaos to give to the shelter I volunteer for. Oh well, next time.

  • Alias: Replaced by Emma Harrison (2005)
  • Alias: Strategic Reserve by Christina F. York (2006)
  • Alias: Namesakes by Greg Cox (2006)
  • Aphrodite’s Blessings: Love Stories from the Greek Myths by Clemence McLaren (2002)
  • Come August, Come Freedom: The Bellows, the Gallows, and the Black General Gabriel by Gigi Amateau (2012)
  • Dark Water by Laura McNeal (2010)
  • Diverse Energies edited by Tobias S. Buckell and Joe Monti (2012)
  • Under the Persimmon Tree by Suzanne Fisher Staples (2005)
  • The Chaos by Nalo Hopkinson (2012)
  • 11,000 Years Lost (Amulet) by Peni R. Griffin (2006)
  • My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult (2005)
  • Shooting Kabul by N. H. Senzai (2010)
  • My Name Is Not Easy by Debby Dahl Edwardson (2011)
  • Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn (2010)

    While we were in the area, we stopped by Whole Foods but struck on out most of our list, including the elusive Silk Pumpkin Spice. But they had Follow Your Heart on sale, so we picked up a bunch of mozzarella and cheddar (suck on that, Daiya!).

    On the way home we drove by another natural foods store, the new-to-us Natural Grocers. They’ve been in the Metcalf storefront since at least May; we tried to pop in after the spring book sale, but they’d already closed for the day.

    We stopped on a whim, and OMG am I so glad we did: they are better than Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, and Price Chopper combined! Their ratio of vegan-to-non food is pretty good (especially when compared to those other guys! boo!), and we found so many items we’d been hunting for: Silk Pumpkin Spice (yeah, we cleared the shelf). Amy’s Daiya Cheese Pizzas (you got me, Daiya). Quarts of vegan ice cream in several flavors and brands. Those tamales Shane loves. Even vegan raviolis!

    And the prices were so good, you guys! Even if the book sale had been a bust, Natural Grocers alone would have been worth the drive down.

    Open up a branch in the Northland, you guys? please please please!

  • Eat to the Beat: Black Bean Burger with Onion Rings & Kansas

    Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

     

    The song: “Carry on My Wayward Son” by Kansas (lyrics)

    The foodstuff: Black Bean Burger with Onion Rings from Vegan Junk Food (and actual onion rings from the frozen foods section!)

    The connection: The Monster at the End of This Book

     

    ** Danger, danger! Minor spoilers ahead! YOU’VE BEEN WARNED. **

    For the longest time (try seven years!) I resisted watching Supernatural, reports of its sheer epic awesomeness be damned. A show about two dudebros (literally! they’re dudes who just happen to be brothers!) doing dudely things while searching for their equally dudely absent father? Ugh, thanks but no thanks. The last thing I need on my TV are more men. More Buffys and Xenas and Nikitas, yes. John/Joan Watson 2.0? Fuck yeah! (I vote Lucy Liu for everything!) But white guys? We’ve got enough of those, don’t you think?

    Alas, I caught a few SPN reruns on TNT and fell in love with it in spite of myself. (The widely acknowledged homoerotic subtext being a ginormous bonus. Gay angels are MY FAVORITE!) Fast-forward four months and the husband and I have already blown through six seasons; Season 7 just became available through Netflix, and we’re eight episodes in. (So no spoilers, okay!) We’d better get a move on, seeing as Season 8 launches on the CW tonight. I predict an SPN marathon this weekend!

     

    Black Bean Burger with Onion Rings from Vegan Junk Food (0023)

    Saving animals, eating things. The family business!
    ——————————

    In honor of the occasion: a little Kansas and a Black Bean Veggie Burger!

    As per Dean – the obedient older son, the “good soldier” who embraces his father’s way of thinking, right down to his style (car: Impala; clothing: black leather jacket) – the SPN soundtrack is super-heavy on the ’70s and ’80s classic rock. Think: AC/DC. Zeppelin. Metallica. Bob Seeger. And Kansas, of course.

    For obvious reasons (see, e.g. THE PLOT), “Carry on My Wayward Son” made its appearance in Season 1, and was used with some frequency in the “previously on Supernatural” opening montages. In later seasons it was replaced by other classic rock standards, but it’s never failed to return for the season finales. If there’s one song I’ve come to associate with the show, this is it – and, judging from the fan vid above, I’m not alone!

    So there are the tunes. What about the food?

    While pie is the obvious – and tempting – choice (shipping Dean with pie is a cult fave in the fandom), I chose the road less traveled with a veggie burger.

    In Season 4, Episode 18, “The Monster at the End of This Book,” Chuck (author of The Book of Winchester – known topside as Supernatural) has a prophecy that Sam will enjoy some sexy time with demon Lilith. This is unequivocally NOT A GOOD THING, as she’s on a quest to break the 66 Seals to spring Lucifer from his cage in Hell. Plus Sam has demon blood pulsing through his veins, and Team Free Will lives in constant fear that he’ll go Dark Side.

    Anyway, in order to prevent Chuck’s vision from coming to fruition, Dean proposes an opposite day: whenever they’re presented with a choice, do exactly the opposite of what they’d normally do. A series of small, seemingly insignificant steps might lead them down a different path. And so, ordering lunch in a diner, Dean forgoes the bacon cheeseburger (world famous: “Oprah’s girlfriend said we have the best bacon cheeseburgers in the country”) in lieu of a “veggie tofu burger.”

    Oh great, I’m thinking. He’s going to get a round disc that resembles cardboard and Dean will take one bite before spitting it across the table and onto Sam because EW TOFU!

    Much to my surprise, Dead is pleasantly surprised by his lunch: “Oh, my god. This is delicious. Tofu is amazing!”

    Score for Team Vegan!

    Except, not so much: ten seconds later the waiter returns to the table. Turns out she gave him the bacon cheeseburger by mistake. You know, Gail’s bacon cheeseburger.

    Dickballs!

    I want to show Dean that a veggie burger need not be a slab of slimy, tasteless tofu. (In fact they never are! It’s an urban legend circulated by defensive omnivores!) Really, vegan burgers aren’t all that diff from non-vegan burgers: some are meh, others are just alright slathered in mustard and mayo and bbq sauce and relish – and others are like tiny little orgasms in your mouth. Ship that!

    So I went searching through all the vegan cookbooks at my disposal and came up with this: the Black Bean Burger with Onion Rings (served with a side of onion rings, natch!) from Lane Gold’s Vegan Junk Food. Black beans, bread crumbs, french fried onions, mayo (it’s vegan too!), BBQ sauce, ketchup, chili powder – this baby’s got it all! Unhealthy (though still better for your ticker than an animal meat burger!), decadent, and deliciously trashy, this is the kind of veggie burger non-vegan joints ought to have on their menus!

    (More below the fold…)

    UPC: Chickens Sadistically Abused at Kansas State University Basketball Game

    Monday, February 26th, 2007

    UPDATE, 2/28/07, via United Poultry Concerns:

    We’re pleased to announce that the Kansas State University administrative offices have issued an open letter to KSU fans condemning the mistreatment of chickens at the basketball game on Monday, Feb. 19th.

    KSU letter: http://www.k-statesports.com

    UPC Action Alert: http://www.upc-online.org/battery_hens/22607ksu.html

    During our investigation, United Poultry Concerns discovered that a Sports Illustrated website, SIOnCampus.com, encouraged and gave instructions on how to conduct a “chicken toss” as #32 of the “102 More Things You Gotta Do Before Your Graduate.” We are pleased to announce that as a result of our conversation today with the site’s producer, Andy Gray, the “chicken toss” has been deleted. Mr. Gray said he agreed it was not appropriate for the site to encourage college athletes and their fans to mistreat animals.

    We thank everyone who contacted President Wefald and the athletic director and coach at KSU on behalf of the hens who were so cruelty mistreated on Feb. 19. Your letters made and are making a difference. We’re continuing to work with the University to strengthen its policy against mistreating chickens and other animals for entertainment. We will you updated.

    ————————

    Via United Poultry Concerns:

    Chickens Sadistically Abused at Kansas State University Basketball Game

    On Monday, February 19, 2007, three, possibly four, hens were thrown onto the basketball court from the stands at KSU’s Bramlidge Coliseum at a basketball game. They were alive when they were thrown onto the court over a distance of approximately thirty feet. They were wounded, and they could not get up on their legs. One of the hens appeared to have blood on her shoulder. Another photo shows four hens painted red and blue (the school colors) in a plastic tub, apparently before they were thrown.

    The images show that these hens came from a battery-caged hen facility. They landed near the cheerleaders. The following two videos show a bit of what happened:

    UPC’s Letter: http://www.upc-online.org/entertainment/22307KSU.html

    Media Coverage: http://www.ksufans.com/forums/index.php?topic=8472.0

    http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/feb/20/keep_streakin/?sports

    What Can I Do?

    (More below the fold…)

    HSUS: Kansas: Stop the Logan County Prairie Dog Poisoning

    Thursday, December 14th, 2006

    Via the Humane Society of the United States:

    Kansas: Stop the Logan County Prairie Dog Poisoning

    The commissioners of Logan County, Kansas, have decided to poison the largest prairie dog town in Kansas. A 1901 state law permits county governments to go onto private property, despite the owner’s objection, and exterminate prairie dogs. Last week, one Logan ranching family was given the option of killing the prairie dogs on their land or paying for county employees to do so, at a cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    So far, the family has protested, saying that prairie dogs play an important role in the health of native grassland ecosystems. They also don’t want poisons, which kill many species besides prairie dogs, on their land. Furthermore, they have proposed their land as potential reintroduction sites for the most endangered mammal in North America, the black-footed ferret, a species completely dependent on prairie dog colonies for its survival.

    Click here to take action on this issue.

    More information is available here.

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    Defenders of Wildlife: Don’t Let Them Poison the Kansas Prairie

    Tuesday, December 5th, 2006

    UPDATE, 1/31/07, via Defenders of Wildlife:

    I’ve just learned that the court hearing on whether or not to force wildlife-friendly landowners to destroy prairie dog towns on their property has been postponed.

    Originally scheduled for this Friday, the hearing will now take place in late March.

    This is great news for the prairie dogs and the wildlife that depends on them, since the main poison that the county wanted to use can’t be applied between March 15th and October 1st.

    We’ll be sure to let you know when the new court date will be so that you can show your support by attending.

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    UPDATE, 1/29/07, via Defenders of Wildlife:

    Wildlife heroes — and the wildlife they’re trying to save — need your help!

    The Logan County Commission has filed suit to force ranchers Bette and Larry Haverfield and other wildlife-friendly landowners to destroy several prairie dog towns in the county, including Kansas’s largest. A court hearing will be held this Friday.

    Please attend and show your support for prairie wildlife and the landowners who want to preserve it.

    What: Court Hearing for Prairie Dogs
    Where: Logan County Courthouse, 710 W 2nd St, Oakley, Kansas
    When: Friday, February 2nd (Groundhog Day!) at 9:00 AM (Central Time)

    The Haverfields and their fellow wildlife-friendly landowners have seen firsthand the diversity of wildlife that prairie dog towns bring. From hawks to swift foxes, badgers to burrowing owls, plenty of wildlife finds safe harbor on the ranch.

    Now you can show your support for these landowners who are standing up for the wildlife on their lands. Attend the court hearing at the Logan County Courthouse — but please be respectful; make no noise, clapping or outbursts.

    It is important for wildlife supporters to show our presence in the courthouse to counter the all-out effort by the Farm Bureau to pack the courtroom with an anti-wildlife crowd. We can send a powerful message to the County Commissioners and state legislators that Kansans care about their state’s wildlife.

    Arrive early if you can — we will have stickers available for you to show that you support the landowners and wildlife.

    If you would like more information, please email me at jproctor [at] defenders.org or call (303) 825-0918.

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    UPDATE, 12/14/06: The HSUS also released an action alert on this item; you can view it here.

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    UPDATE, 12/13/06:

    The NY Times ran a piece on this story recently; looks like the prairie dogs have won a reprieve, at least for the time being.

    On Tuesday, the day before the deadline, Mr. Haverfield’s lawyer sent the commission a letter threatening legal action. All Wednesday, the Haverfields and Mr. Barnhardt’s daughter and son-in-law, three neighbors and two environmentalists kept watch. No poisoners came.

    They later learned why: the county commissioners were waiting to hear from their insurers’ lawyers. “We won’t do anything unless our lawyers tell us we can,” Mr. Scott said.

    Go read the whole piece.

    ————–

    Via Defenders of Wildlife:

    Don’t Let Them Poison the Kansas Prairie

    Logan County has it in for prairie wildlife and the ranchers who want to protect it.

    Last week, Logan County Commissioners put ranchers like Larry and Betty Haverfield on notice to remove their cattle from land they own and lease — so the county can destroy the state’s largest prairie dog town.

    If the ranchers don’t comply, the county will forcefully poison the prairie dogs for them — and stick the ranchers with the $200,000 bill! The slaughter is scheduled to begin tomorrow, December 6th.

    Help save the prairie dogs — take action now!

    More info here.

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