Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cup of Joe

I will be leading the Historic Washington Dickens Christmas Walk beginning this weekend.  One of the most interesting stories on our tour is about Josephus Daniels, Jr., who was born and spent his early childhood in Washington. 

Many North Carolinians know the Daniels family through their connections to the Raleigh newspaper, the "News and Observer", but few remember that President Woodrow Wilson appointed Daniels Secretary of the Navy during WWI.  Mr. Daniels spent his time reforming the department.  He enlisted more chaplains on ships and banned the drinking of wine and beer on vessels.  The strongest drink allowed by Secretary Josephus Daniels was coffee, so sailors began referring to the drink as a cup of Joe.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Christmas Celebration at Tryon Palace

For the third year in a row, I will be sharing a selection of Christmas stories and anecdotes at Tryon Palace as they kick-off their holiday season this weekend.  I'll be telling in the new NC History Center this Friday and Saturday afternoons.  The Palace provides colonial costumes for those performing, so I'll be dressed in a green artisan's outfit for the event.  Hope you'll join me!   

Friday, November 19, 2010

Patti Smith wins National Book Award

The New York Times reports below that rocker Patti Smith has won the prestigious National Book Award for her autobiography, "Just Kids".  Although I have never been a devout follower of Ms. Smith's music, I think her song, "Because the Night' is absolutely awesome.  I've included a link to it here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0brHGJ6xqbk

(from the NY Times) The rock musician Patti Smith won the National Book Award for nonfiction on Wednesday night for “Just Kids,” a sweetly evocative memoir of her relationship with the artist Robert Mapplethorpe and life in the bohemian New York of the 1960s and ’70s.

Accepting the award to applause and cheers, Ms. Smith — clearly the favorite of the night — choked up as she recalled her days as a clerk in the Scribner’s bookstore in Manhattan.

“I dreamed of having a book of my own, of writing one that I could put on a shelf,” she said. “Please, no matter how we advance technologically, please don’t abandon the book. There is nothing in our material world more beautiful than the book.”

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Premiere Blog

At last, I have finally started blogging.  I've been considering it for a few years now, but just never tried it.  Will this blog take the place of my website? Will I be more active with postings here than I am on Facebook?  Only time will tell.

I am a storyteller, a bard, a folklorist, and a children's librarian, all wrapped up in one.  Words are my life.  Whether I am reading a children's book during storytime, or telling a favorite story on stage, or leading the Historic Washington Ghost Walk or the upcoming Christmas Dickens Walk, communication is what drives me. 

And now a blog, another form of communication for me.  My desire for this blog is to share my interest in language, reading, storytelling, history and all things connected to them.  I hope you'll check in regularly and comment.  Cheers!