Thursday, January 21, 2010

Took the day off from work today

Today was the anniversary of my birth, so I decided to take the day off from work and do a few things I enjoy.

At 8:55 am I was standing in front of a locked door at the St. Louis County Library. I only had to stand there for five minutes.

I had a list of two dozen issues of the St. Louis Globe Democrat I wanted to research for stories on relatives. I had obtained the list from the Globe Democrat Clippings Index. Unfortunately, all they provide is the date, and a brief description of the article. No page numbers. If I went to the Mercantile Library, where they have the clippings, I could provide them with the envelope number and they'd go right to it, but they charge fairly exorbitant prices for copying. (For non-members, it's $66/hour research and copying fee, charged in quarter-increments. So at least $16.50. And then in addition they charge 35c a copy.) The St. Louis County Library doesn't charge anything, as long as you're using one of their digital scanners. I decided I was willing to search the microfilm for the stories.

I only made it half way through the list, and there were a couple stories I searched for and couldn't find. But I found ten, three of which contained photographs. The stories included a description of a wedding, a college student who was trying to sell a pet boa constrictor, a high school student who had a year abroad with the Foreign Service, and a relative who was arrested and accused of a crime. (Will have to do some research to find out if he was convicted. I've already made the decision not to blog details about close relatives who have committed serious crimes. It will be written down for family, but not broadcast)

I left the library at 11:30, and joined my mother for lunch at Lester's Bar and Grill

I had an urge to return to the library, but I had made other plans. I went to a nearby cinema and saw Avatar in 3-D. I enjoyed it. The basic plot is certainly old. Fantasy author, Peter David, jokingly predicts that once Disney is finished filming Edgar Rice Burroughs' novel "John Carter of Mars." there will be some who accuse them of ripping off Avatar. Combine Barsoom with the Star Trek episode The Cage and add the f/x, and you have the movie. But the f/x make the film what it is. After Avatar was over, I couldn't resist a double feature, and I watched Sherlock Holmes. Not exactly the most traditional version of the Holmes character, but I thought the movie was well done.

I returned home and discovered that Blogger-in-Draft had disabled their new 'pages' feature I talked about yesterday. Pages that were created yesterday still work, and are editable, so I am glad I was quick. I suspect it won't be disabled too long though -- they're probably fixing the glitch I mentioned with the formatting.