Angela Vanden Elzen

Author: Angela Vanden Elzen

Things Worth Knowing

A few weeks ago, we began a new tradition in the library: Things Worth Knowing. Our patrons may not know this, but the denizens of the Mudd Library have a vast knowledge on a wide variety of topics.  What kinds of topics?  Check out our Facebook page, or take notice of the fliers around campus to find out.  We begin advertising Tuesday or Wednesday for the topic that will be shared on that Friday.

Amanda Lee reads "Shirt" by Robert Pinsky

Our first program happened to take place on the one hundredth anniversary of the Triangle shritwaist factory fire.  Music Librarian Antoinette Powell discussed the workers’ rights movements of the time, Acquisitions Assistant Amanda Lee shared a poem on the tragedy of the  Triangle fire, and Gretchen Revie introduced a short film about the fire.  Our second program was on April 1st, so the topic chosen was the history of April Fool’s Day.  Gretchen Revie discussed the history, and Archivist Erin Dix shared some April Fool’s issues of The Lawrentian.

Tomorrow, April 8th, we will geek out as Interlibrary Loan & Circulation Assistant Angela Vanden Elzen discusses the history and impact of Dungeons & Dragons, and Gretchen Revie delves into the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

All Things Worth Knowing events take place from 4:30-5:00 p.m. on the first floor of the Mudd Library. Of course, cookies are always available.

Let us know if you have any suggestions of topics you’d like to hear us talk about!

Take a look at all previous Things Worth Knowing events on our Facebook events page.

Student Health 101

Take a look at Student Health 101, an electronic magazine brought to you by Lawrence University Counseling Services.  This monthly interactive publication features articles, video interviews with Lawrence students, a monthly contest to win $1,000, and more.

In this month’s issue, read about secrets to writing papers, tips for boosting self esteem, advice on sexual relationships, and how to improve grades by getting more sleep.

What’s in the Mudd?

You know that we strive to provide you with the best resources available for all of your research needs, but did you know that there’s more to the Mudd library?

Today, we begin a new series called “What’s in the Mudd”.  Stop in the library and take a look at our display of interesting and unusual resources.  Better yet, take one to the circulation desk and check it out.

Our display includes:

  • Pincus and the Pig: A Klezmer Tale– You know and love Peter and the Wolf. Here it’s performed by the Shirim Klezmer Orchestra.  Includes a helpful Yiddish glossary.  As a bonus, includes Klezmer versions of Brahms, Satie, and Mahler.
  • The Ramones, Anthology– The accompanying booklet says “loud and fast.” We think that sums it up nicely.
  • Airplane!– The “Don’t Call Me Shirley” edition.  A hilarious homage to disaster movies.  Technically, there is a plot, but mostly it’s a string of one-liners. A classic.
  • Super Smash Brothers Brawl– The back of the game case claims, “There’s no end to the smashing fun.” It’s true- ask a friend.
  • Dr. Seuss, The Cat in the Hat– Read it in English or attempt it in Russian.
  • Perfect Hips: Belly Dance Workout– Need we say more?
  • Caribbean Cooking for Pleasure- The Mudd library has scads of cookbooks.  You can find them by using the term “cookery” as a search term in LUCIA.
  • AC/DC Rockband Trackpack– Tired of playing the same songs on your Rockband setup? Why not totally rock out with “the majestic power of AC/DC?” (from game case)
  • International Sound Effects Library, volume 1-28- We are featuring volume 3, which contains such sounds as rat squeaks and baboon barks.
  • And more!

All this month, we will continue to delight and surprise you with some of the Mudd library’s hidden gems.

Wellness Resources at the Mudd

Did last week’s spring-like days motivate you to get outside and get active?  Even though the ground is once again covered with snow, the Mudd Library can help you maintain your exercise and healthy living motivations.  We have a growing collection of exercise videos available to check out.  Some of our newest titles include, Yoga for Beginners, Step-by-Step Strength Training, and Perfect Hips: Belly Dance Workout.  The Mudd Library staff can tell you that Wii Sports Resort can be a great workout, as well as a lot of fun to play.  If you don’t have your own Nintendo Wii console, the library has one available for loan.

If you’re interested in researching wellness, our reference librarians have put together a Wellness Resources library guide.  This guide includes information about wellness related electronic databases and websites, as well as tips for finding wellness related books in our catalog.

Of course, the library is not the only place on campus for those interested in wellness.  WelLU, Lawrence University’s committee on wellness, has been actively encouraging wellness on campus.  Take a look at their web page, or visit the newly remodeled Buchanan Kiewit Wellness Center.   The student organization, LU Wellness Committee, focuses on wellness related issues of particular interest to students, such as sexual health/body image and stress management.

Video Games at the Mudd

Some of you may have noticed that we enjoy hosting gaming events here at the Mudd Library.   While we know video games can be a lot of fun, we also know that they provide a wide range of research topics.   For all your video game research (and non-research) needs, the Mudd Library has recently added a Nintendo Wii and a growing collection of video games to our collection.  The Nintendo Wii and games are available for loan for Lawrence University students, faculty, and staff.   Of course, we also have some excellent books on the topic.

Feng Mengbo Long March: Restart (Installation shot) Photo: Matthew Septimus

The following are a few neat examples of video games integrated into art, culture studies, and even science:

Long March: Restart: MoMA exhibit by Feng Mengbo.  This exhibit depicts “the massive military retreat of The Chinese Communist Party’s Red Army, under the command of Mao Zedong and others, that began in 1934” through the media of a video game (see MoMA PS1 Blog).  The viewer interacts with the exhibit by playing the game, displayed on a 80’x20’ screen, with a wireless controller.

Computerspiel Museum:  Not just an exhibit, but a whole museum dedicated to “digital interactive entertainment culture”.  Their newest permanent exhibition, Computer Games: Evolution of a Medium contains more than 300 interactive exhibits depicting the “cultural history of computer and video games.”

Foldit:  Like puzzle games? Then why not “fold puzzles for science”?  This game was designed by the Departments of Computer Science & Engineering and Biochemistry at the University of Washington, with the purpose of  attempting “to predict the structure of a protein by taking advantage of humans’ puzzle-solving intuitions and having people play competitively to fold the best proteins” (see The Science Behind Foldit).  The game designers can use the knowledge unlocked by players to research cures for diseases such as HIV / AIDS, Cancer, and Alzheimer’s.

National Gaming Day 2010

National Gaming Day is an initiative of the American Library Association, created with the purpose of educating the public about the many opportunities provided by libraries- including gaming.  Libraries around the world are invited to sign up to host gaming events on Saturday, November 13, 2010.  As of November 1st, more than 1,800 libraries have signed up to participate in this event.  For more information about National Gaming Day, see the official American Library Association Press Release.

We at the Mudd Library encourage gaming for fun, as a way to socialize, and even as a topic of study.  We will, of course, be participating in National Gaming Day.  We will have board games including Scrabble, Twister, and Wits & Wagers, as well as Mario Kart Wii available to play on Saturday from 1:00 to 4:00 pm.  So, bring a friend and take a gaming break @ the Mudd.

New Interlibrary Loan/ Circulation Assistant!

When I asked blog superstar Antoinette Powell for some blogging advice for my introduction, she kindly wrote an excellent one for me!

Former Mudd Library Night Supervisor Angela Vanden Elzen now has a day job. As of mid-July, Angela is our illustrious hard-working Interlibrary Loan and Circulation Assistant. If you are a regular reader of this space, you remember the previous, highly regarded ILL & Circ. Assistant, Cheryl Kraft, left the Mudd’s bosom to devote herself to the Neenah Public Library (June 29, 2007.) Angela is more than able to fill those shoes.

In real life, Angela devotes herself to her cats, her nut-ball Lab/Akita puppy, and her husband Adam. She is working on her MLIS, and should cancel her World of Warcraft account now that the semester has begun.

Angela lives in the same space Cheryl occupied and will be available to serve the Mudd patrons Tuesday through Saturday during the regular academic year. We are thrilled Angela has emerged from the darkness, yet remains in the Mudd.

So, please come see me or call x6758 with any interlibrary loan, electronic reserve, or World of Warcraft questions.