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Book Notes

January 3, 2013

'People Like Us' is worth watching

Probably the worst place you can watch a movie is in an airplane. The picture is bad, the sound is bad and usually the movie is bad as well. Even if it’s one that you want to see, the sound is garbled and you inevitably have a seat where you suffer a pinched nerve from having to crane your neck. It’s the perfect trifecta and then some. How many people actually look forward to watching an in-flight movie?

I mention this phenomenon because I had an unusual experience on a flight recently. I actually saw a film that wasn’t half-bad despite all the drawbacks. It didn’t hurt that I had an unplanned aisle seat when I normally take a window. It’s one of those unexplained situations, possibly due to the airline changing the aircraft, where you don’t end up with the seat you request.

One advantage to the aisle seat is that you have a more direct view of the screen rather than the angled view of the window seat which equates to looking at a battery operated TV on the beach with the glare of the sun. It helps if the screen (which the airplane has every five rows) is in the row in front of you.

Otherwise you might need binoculars. Fortunately I was in the perfect position. So far, so good.

The movie in question was one I probably saw previews of but made no impression on me. It was called “People Like Us” and from the description in the in-flight magazine sounded like it had promise.

Inspired by a “true” story (I assume that means that 10 percent of the story actually happened), a young man with business problems returns home for his estranged father’s funeral and to take care of his effects. It is there that he discovers he has a sister he never knew about.

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Book Notes
  • Libraries provide vital services Some people think that libraries are becoming obsolete due to the Internet and the growing popularity of e-books. Nothing could be further from the truth. Libraries are a repository for more than just the written word and reference materials. They provide a basic need for every community and will for the foreseeable future.

    April 17, 2014

  • WWII collection grows with 'Those Angry Days' The main lesson history teaches us is to learn from our mistakes and not repeat them. There’s also an old saying that insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Perhaps the two notions have something in common because we continually prove that history does indeed repeat itself.

    April 10, 2014

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    April 3, 2014

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    March 27, 2014

  • Book captures both sides of 'Splended Splinter' Ted Williams is an American icon. As the mainstay of the Boston Red Sox from 1939-1960 he was one of baseball’s all-time greats, a first ballot Hall-of-Famer, and perhaps the greatest hitter the sport has ever known. He was admired for his devotion to the game, his service to his country, and his support for children with cancer. But there was an ugly side to him too. Williams’ life was a set of contradictions where his talent and humanity were offset by fits of rage and cold-heartedness.

    March 20, 2014

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    March 13, 2014

  • 'Miracle' shows when Olympics were pure The Winter Olympics ended recently and somehow they seemed to have lost their luster. It wasn’t so much that they were in Sochi where most of the events were on tape delay. It was more due to the new events (many we have never heard of) that have diluted the games. The Winter Olympics have gone from an intimate edition of their summer counterpart to one where it appears medal counts and commercialism is all that matters.

    March 6, 2014

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    February 27, 2014

  • British films that will warm your heart With all the snow and sub-zero temperatures this winter there are enough nights where the easiest thing to do is hunker down and enjoy a good movie. I thought I’d offer a few suggestions with a British twist. These are films with Americans that are filmed in England. The one thing they all have in common is that they’ll warm your heart in the end.

    February 20, 2014

  • Giants-Dodgers rivalry entertains One of the fiercest rivalries in all of sports is the Giants and Dodgers. These two proud franchises have been going at it for well over 100 years. First it was New York vs. Brooklyn. Now it's San Francisco vs. Los Angeles. There's no love lost between them. Victories over each other are sweeter than those over any other team. Even when they're not going head-to-head it feels good when their arch-rival loses. If you're a Giants' fan, hating the Dodgers is a way of life (and vice versa).

    February 13, 2014