Tag Archives: Monkey See Monkey Read

What do you think is the greatest pop song of all time? My vote: ‘Hallelujah’

The Holy or the Broken: Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, and the Unlikely Ascent of "Hallelujah" by Alan LightJerry Bilek, Monkey See Monkey Read bookstoreRolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time

A week or so ago while doing the dishes and listening to an NPR podcast on my smartphone (see, I’m hip), I heard this Weekend Edition music interview, Dozens Of Covers Later, ‘Hallelujah’ Endures about Leonard Cohen’s song, Hallelujah. The book that prompted the piece is out this week: The Holy or the Broken: Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, and the Unlikely Ascent of “Hallelujah” by Alan Light.

In 1994, a cover by the late Jeff Buckley helped save “Hallelujah” from musical obscurity. Buckley’s version turned one man’s lament into another artist’s ode to love. Light says the ambiguity of the song’s lyrics makes it easy for musicians to make the tune their own. “There are lyrics that are talking about sex. There are these allusions to stories from the Bible; the King David story and the Samson story,” he says. “There’s lots and lots of layers.”

After hearing that I thought, Hmmm, that actually could be at the top of my list of the greatest pop songs of all time. (Jerry Bilek at Monkey See, Monkey Read has the book in stock at his store in downtown Northfield.)

I also just learned about List.ly so I thought I’d give it a test run here on LoGro.  I’ve put five of my all-time favorite songs on the list (in no particular order) to get things started.

Your task, fellow Northfield citizens and music fans, is to:

  1. Add your all-time favorite song to the list if it’s not listed. (One source to use if you’re having trouble remembering your fave: the Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time)
  2. Vote songs up or down
  3. Comment on the songs and on the comments of others. You can comment within the List.ly listing on each song or you can comment via the usual WordPress comment box attached to this blog post
  4. Share the list on your social networks
  5. Embed the list on your Northfield area blog or website (List.ly syncs all the activity)

To participate in using the List.ly features, you’ll need to login with your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+ account.

I may adjust the List.ly settings on the fly occasionally as I learn about how it works.

[listly id=”2bm” theme=”light” layout=”full” numbered=”yes” image=”yes” items=”all”]

IndieBound wants you to snack, nap, and read local

Poster: Snack, nap, read Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore 
The Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore in downtown Northfield has an IndieBound poster in its window:


Raising Passionate Readers
Celebrate Independents in Your Community

What is Indiebound?

IndieBound is a community-oriented movement begun by the independent bookseller members of the American Booksellers Association. It brings together booksellers, readers, indie retailers, local business alliances, and anyone else with a passionate belief that healthy local economies help communities thrive. Supporting local, indie businesses means that dollars, jobs, diversity, choice, and taxes stay local, creating strong, unique communities and happy citizens. It’s a powerful tool for booksellers to communicate their part in a national movement supporting independents–and lets everyone know just how many independent bookstores there are.

Indiebound has other posters and promotional gear available:

Indiebound posters

Atina Diffley to speak at Just Food Co-op on Thursday; no bullshit expected

Turn Here Sweet CornIn case you hadn’t noticed, Northfield’s blogosphere is humming (Northfield.org here, Monkey See Monkey Read here, Just Food Co-op here) with the news that Atina Diffley of Organic Farming Works will be in town this week to speak about her new book, Turn Here Sweet Corn.

Why do I say "no bullshit" in my blog post title?

She was featured on the front page of the Strib’s Variety section last week:

and the last paragraph of the main article:

Atina Diffley - Strib photo by Marisa WojcikThe book deserves a wide audience, Dooley said. "I pray it doesn’t get pegged to a category. This is literature. It’s every woman’s story, about land use and food but also about resilience and being yourself." And even though Diffley finally caved to using cosmetics, she’s still very much herself, Dooley said. "There couldn’t be anyone more genuine. There isn’t a lick of bullshit in her."

I guess cuss words are aok in a family newspaper if someone is quoted using them.

Atina has at least one connection to Northfield that I know of. Her kids went to Prairie Creek Community School.

You can buy her book from Jerry Bilek at Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore in downtown Northfield.

Follow Atina on Twitter and read her blog here.

My parachute might be changing colors

Griff Wigley and What Color is Your ParachuteThe 2012 edition of What Color is Your Parachute? was published this week.  I got my copy from downtown Northfield’s only bookstore, Monkey See Monkey Read. I had owner Jerry Bilek take my photo (crappy phone photo, I know) to show that, yes indeed, I still engage with print occasionally.  Parachute has many illustrations and charts that don’t translate well on my first-generation Kindle.

I’ve been using this book for my own career development and job hunt/job creation since author Dick Bolles first published it back in the early 70s. I probably have purchased six versions (it’s updated annually) and I wanted this one since it’s the 40th anniversary edition with a lot that’s new. From the publisher:

2012 What Color is Your ParachuteThis is not your father’s Parachute; and not your mother’s, either. They’d be astounded at the changes. This book keeps building–in insight, helpfulness, relevance, and urgency–through new invention and information each year. And this year it’s the critical resource to help Americans (and others) get back to work…

This year’s edition of What Color Is Your Parachute? has been vastly rewritten, because job-hunting has increasingly become a survival skill. Career expert Richard N. Bolles describes the five strategies most needed to survive, and explains how to incorporate social media tools such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter into your job-search.

The new ideas are wrapped around the familiar core message of Parachute: WHAT, WHERE, and HOW, with an emphasis on finding your passion and identifying your best transferable skills. With fresh insights into resumes, networking, interviewing, salary negotiation, and how to start your own business, this book will give you the tools, exercises, and motivation you need to find hope, land a job, and fulfill your purpose in life.

Dick BollesFlower Diagram - That one piece of paperIn the late 90s, I met one of author Dick Bolles’ sons at a tech conference and he helped me arrange a visit at his dad’s house in the Bay Area. It was a treat to meet him and thank him for the influence that this book has had on my life.

It’s been over a decade since I last did all the Parachute exercises in order to fill out my Flower Diagram—’that one piece of paper.’  I’m not job hunting, but I am trying to better understand all the interesting work-related stuff swirling around in my head. Sabbatical stuff.

The Parachute web site is Job Hunter’s Bible. Bolles hasn’t posted to his blog in almost a year but he’s active on Twitter: @ParachuteGuy.

Do you read to your kids at bedtime? Know someone who does? Then go the fuck to the Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore and get this book

I heard about the book Go the Fuck to Sleep back in May and asked Monkey See Monkey Read blogger and Northfield bookstore proprietor Jerry Bilek if he carried it. Ever on top of things book-related, he wrote back:

I’ve got them on order. It should be released June 14. It’s getting a lot of buzz. I’ll send you a blog post about it as soon as I have copies.

Jerry now has the book in stock. See his blog post on it for more. Here’s a sample:

Go The Fuck To SleepThe cats nestle close to their kittens now.

The lambs have laid down with the sheep.

You’re cozy and warm in your bed, my dear

Please go the fuck to sleep.

From the Wikipedia on Go the Fuck to Sleep:

Go the Fuck to Sleep is a book written by American author Adam Mansbach and illustrated by Ricardo Cortés. Described as a "children’s book for adults", it reached number 1 on Amazon.com’s bestseller list a month before its release, thanks to an unintended viral marketing campaign during which booksellers forwarded PDF copies of the book by email.

The book is available at Monkey See Monkey Read in downtown Northfield.

Friends of the Northfield Public Library allowed to hold their annual meeting at the library; tense discussions ensue

The Friends of the Northfield Public Library held their annual meeting on Tuesday night.  Where? At the Northfield Public Library

There were evidently some tense negotiations on Monday about the fee that the organization would have to pay for use of the library’s meeting room. With the library’s recent budget cutbacks, Director Lynne Young is on the lookout for additional sources of revenue and has reportedly become a tough negotiator over non-profit use of that space.

Friends of the Northfield Public Library Bill North Kathy Sommers  Lynne Young Friends of the Northfield Public Library annual meeting
Friends president Bill North and treasurer Kathy Sommers ripped on Young during their presentations but she placed responsibility for the Library’s financial predicament on the City Council, as well as on library patrons like Will Healy who have hundreds of dollars of unpaid library fines for overdue books.

Henry Emmons The-Chemistry-of-Calm Henry Emmons signing books Jerry Bilek selling books 
The rhetoric was getting pretty heated but thankfully, Northfield psychiatrist and author Dr. Henry Emmons was on hand to, um, calm things down. Henry was the featured presenter, speaking about his new book, The Chemistry of Calm: A Powerful, Drug-Free Plan to Quiet Your Fears and Overcome Your Anxiety

All went well until after Henry’s speech when Lynne Young noticed Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore proprietor Jerry Bilek selling copies of Henry’s book. She argued that the Library should get a commission on all books sold on the premises. Jerry told her to stick it in her bookdrop. Henry refused to moderate the dispute unless someone agree to pay him his usual counseling fee.  The crowd was getting riled up, and when someone mentioned Zamboni tires, I decided it was time for me to leave.

Google to help get The Monkey off my back

Monkey See Monkey Read banner Back in Oct. 2008, I bought an Amazon Kindle and blogged about it: Northfield Kindle owners: saving trees or destroying Division St. bookstores?

There were three bookstores downtown then: River City Books, Bookfellows, and Monkey See Monkey Read. Only Jerry Bilek’s Monkey See Monkey Read remains.

Not that I feel completely responsible for the demise of two of our bookstores, but I was glad to see this in last week’s NY Times: Stores See Google as Ally in E-Book Market

Now one element of Google Editions is coming into sharper focus. Google is on the verge of completing a deal with the American Booksellers Association, the trade group for independent bookstores, to make Google Editions the primary source of e-books on the Web sites of hundreds of independent booksellers around the country, according to representatives of Google and the association.

Kindle and G1 with sychronized ebook I’m a regular e-book buyer and things got even cooler this week with a new Kindle app that allows me to read the same books on my Android phone that I’ve already purchased for my Kindle… and synchronize how far along I am in the book in both devices. Very helpful.

Full house for ‘Coop’ author Michael Perry’s reading

Michael Perry, Jerry Bilek Michael Perry Tom Swift 
coopbookcoverJerry Bilek, owner of Monkey See Monkey Read, downtown Northfield’s last remaining bookstore, hosted a reading to a packed house at the Northfield Arts Guild last night by author Mike Perry. Perry’s new book, Coop: A Year of Poultry, Pigs and Parenting, is out.  Local author Tom Swift (right photo) was on hand to help with on-site book sales.

Jerry hates Twitter and Facebook but Michael apparently sees merit in them. Follow Michael Perry on Twitter and visit his Facebook page.

Division St bookstores: there were 3; soon only 1

River City Books River City Books flyer raven
As previously announced in Jan., River City Books closed on Sunday. “Thank you for seven great years” says the sign on their door. Store manager Jon Lee blogged the death of the Raven last week and then blogged a photo of the last customer.

Bookfellows Patty Austvold  Bookfellows flyer 
On Thursday, owner Patty Austvold put up a banner in the window of Bookfellows at 5th and Division that it’s closing at the end of May. It’s 20% off most everything in the store now.

 Jerry Bilek  monkey see monkey read
I stopped in to visit with Jerry Bilek, owner of Monkey See Monkey Read. He’s already expanded his new book section with a much larger table. He blogged about the store’s new look last week with several photos.