Thursday, October 30, 2014

Brutus Celebrates Emily Post's Birthday

October 30th is Emily Post's birthday so Brutus decided that he should check out etiquette for dogs.  He was surprised to find that there was not a chapter just for dogs, but that dogs and cats are lumped together as "pets".  (And why anyone would consider a cat a pet when dogs are so much more loyal and fun is beyond him.)  He also does not understand why some people apparently don't like animals and she suggests that they be put outdoors or in another room when guests arrive.  Everyone should enjoy having a warm furry friend with them at all times!  Staff tell him that he is naive and has a lot to learn.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Brutus & the Gnome

Brutus encourages everyone to complete and turn in their scavenger hunt answer sheets by 9 p.m. on Monday, June 30th.  A gnome has been visiting the Owosso Branch, and those with the most correct answers to his locations will be entered into a drawing to win the gnome.  Pictures & answer sheets are available on the library's Facebook page or at the circulation desk in Owosso's adult department.  Brutus is hoping to find a good home for the gnome; the gnome has enjoyed his visit, but is looking for a good family to call his own.  Brutus has had fun, though, sniffing out the gnome's hiding places in the library, and hopes that you are as successful as he was.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Casey at the Bat Day

June 3rd is Mighty Casey Struck
Out Day so Brutus is enjoying
 our summer weather by playing
 catch.  Unfortunately, he had 
to be told to take the ball 
outdoors before someone (or 
something in the library
is hurt.
Lots of fun is being planned
at the library this summer. 
Right now the 100 Years, 100 
Reads Challenge is going on 
as well as a Catch the Gnome contest. The children's
summer reading program sign up has begun,and story
hours start next week. There will also be a
centennial celebration in Owosso on July 1st, 
complete with cake & ice cream.  Brutus hopes to 
meet many of you at one of more of these events. In
the meanwhile, hereis the poem Brutus just 
            CASEY AT THE BAT

The outlook wasn’t brilliant for the Mudville nine that day:
The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play,
And then when Cooney died at first, and Barrows did the same,
A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to the hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
They thought, “If only Casey could but get a whack at that—
We’d put up even money now, with Casey at the bat.”

But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
And the former was a hoodoo, while the latter was a cake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat,
For there seemed but little chance of Casey getting to the bat.

But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
And Blake, the much despis├Ęd, tore the cover off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and men saw what had occurred,
There was Jimmy safe at second and Flynn a-hugging third.

Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It pounded on the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
For Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.

There was ease in Casey’s manner as he stepped into his place;
There was pride in Casey’s bearing and a smile lit Casey’s face.
And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt ‘twas Casey at the bat.

Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt;
Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped them on his shirt;
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,
Defiance flashed in Casey’s eye, a sneer curled Casey’s lip.

And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped—
“That ain’t my style," said Casey. “Strike one!” the umpire said.

From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore;
“Kill him! Kill the umpire!” shouted someone on the stand;
And it’s likely they’d have killed him had not Casey raised his hand.

With a smile of Christian charity great Casey’s visage shone;
He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;
He signaled to the pitcher, and once more the dun sphere flew;
But Casey still ignored it and the umpire said, “Strike two!”

“Fraud!” cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered “Fraud!”
But one scornful look from Casey and the audience was awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,
And they knew that Casey wouldn’t let that ball go by again.

The sneer is gone from Casey’s lip, his teeth are clenched in hate,
He pounds with cruel violence his bat upon the plate;
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
And now the air is shattered by the force of Casey’s blow.

Oh, somewhere in this favoured land the sun is shining bright,
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light;
And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout,
But there is no joy in Mudville—mighty Casey has struck out.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Sniffing Out Some Good Reading

Brutus has may be running out of dog stories to read for the 100 Years, 100 Reads program.  This month he decided to try some titles he thinks are about the month of May.  He chose.  Willie Mays:  The Life, the Legend by James S. Hirsch, Marmee & Louisa:  The Untold Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Mother by Eve LaPlante, Bryant & May on the Loose by Christopher Fowler, My Heart May be Broken , but My Hair Still Looks Great by Dixie Cash, and Resurrection in May by Lisa Samson.   The staff are glad to see him expanding the genres he is reading, but he doesn't believe them when he's told that these books aren't about May.  Maybe he'll have some doggone good reading anyway.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Brutus Sniffs out the Candy

Brutus has found the jar of jellybeans.  Fortunately, he is unable to get a grip on the lid with either his paws or his mouth; but they sure smell good!  You can help keep the jellybeans away from Brutus by entering the contest at the Owosso Branch.  Whoever has the closest guess by National Jellybean Day (April 22nd) wins the jar of jellybeans.  Since Brutus has trouble counting beyond 4 (because he runs out of paws), he probably won't be the winner.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Brutus Celebrates National Puppy Day

Brutus learned about some libraries doing shelfies (an obvious take off on selfies) and wanted to do the same; but without a thumb he was having problems taking the pictures.  After much whining, he convinced staff to take a shelfie of some of his favorite books (dealing with dogs, of course).  As you might expect, he wanted to be in the picture, too.  Since today is National Puppy Day, he wanted everyone to know that the library has some good dog tails; (his spelling needs some work, too.  That should be tales rather than tails).  For anyone thinking of adopting a puppy, there are also books on choosing and training a dog.

Brutus is hoping to highlight some additional titles (and shelves) in the future.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Getting His Kicks on Route 66

 Brutus and his friend Burrow the Rabbit recently traveled part of  historic Route 66 in Illinois.   Among the sights they saw, were parts of the original road.  Were these sections ever narrow compared to today's roads!

 They also saw several old gas stations.  Brutus is too young to remember having an attendant pump gas, clean the windshield, and check the oil, but some of these stations (and the junk around them) were sure interesting.  There were lots of smells to follow and things to explore.
 Here he is on a section of the original road which was brick.  He had never ridden on a brick road before and was surprised to hear that there was one in Owosso.  It was a little bumpy and had to be taken slowly.  One section of the "highway" even included some turkey tracks.

One of their stops was at Henry's Ra66it Ranch near Staunton, Illinois.   Brutus would have like to chase the rabbit, but he wasn't allowed to dig under the pen.  Besides, Burrow did not think that it would be very nice to frighten his cousin.

Brutus and Burrow had a dog-gone good time.  Brutus is now researching places to go in Michigan next year, and the library has lots of great resources for him--both books and the Internet.  If anyone knows of a good trip for a dog (and maybe a friend or two), Brutus would love to hear about them.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

 Brutus has been a little giddy from the paint fumes this week, but he has enjoyed helping redecorate the Adult Department in Owosso.  Painting is lots of fun, but having his fur cleaned afterwards was not.  Fortunately, the paint all washed out, and he was not shaved as threatened! 

The painting was the last step in the restoration after the roof repair last year and the plaster work last winter.  The front entrance is being painted today, and the radiators are still in need of painting.  All circulating materials are now available again, and it hoped that all the reference materials will be back in place and accessible by next week. The pages have been helping him put the books back in place as it is difficult to shelve items when you have to move them one at a time in your mouth.

 The walls are now a teal color with a darker trim, supposedly one of Brutus's favorite colors; although since dogs are colorblind, no one on the staff is sure whether or not he knows what he talking about.  Brutus does invite everyone to come in and see the bright, clean walls!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sniffing Out a Good Book

Brutus has been sniffing the mystery books on display in Owosso.  He is hoping that he can detect the odor of dogs (his favorite characters) or food (his favorite activity).  So far they just smell like books.  He hopes that he doesn't choose one about a cat!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Brutus Visits Curwood Castle

Brutus heard that the kids had such a good time at story hour this morning at Curwood Castle that decided to visit himself this afternoon.  He enjoyed his visit to James Oliver Curwood's writing studio even though it rather hot to be outside with a fur coat.  Whoever decided that these were the "dog days" of summer wasn't a dog!

 His new friend Denice gave him a sticker which says that he is a Curwood Character, almost like Baree or Kazan.  Brutus was particularly interested to learn that dogs were the main characters in a couple of Curwood's novels.  Since he prefers books about dogs, he will have to read one of these books soon.
 He also explored Curwood's closet.  There were lots of interesting smells, but no food.   If it was a little cooler, he would have asked Denice or Margaret make him a bed here so that he could do some more exploring after his nap.
 He wanted to explore the turret, but it was too warm for such a long climb on such short legs.  He'll have to visit again when it is cooler.
He did like some of the views, especially this one from one of the stairwell windows overlooking the park.
 While he was there, he also checked out the plaque which designates Curwood Castle as a literary landmark.  This was placed before he was born, but he has heard about how the library helped obtain the plaque.  Brutus thinks that it is really cool (not the temperature outside) that Owosso was the home of a bestselling author.  Even more fascinating is that this author decided to build a writing studio which looks like a small castle!

 Time was also spent exploring the park and area around the castle.  Brutus would have liked to cool off in the river, but Margaret was a spoilsport (like usual).  She said that wet dogs would not be allowed in the library.  Apparently water does not mix well with books and computers.  He had to be content with a quick rest in the shade.

 He did take a short hike on the footbridge which was a little scary.  He'd never been a bridge which moved before.
 A trip to the castle wouldn't have been complete without stopping next door at Comstock Cabin.  He couldn't go inside, but he sniffed around the door and peeked through the window.  The garden was also interesting, but again there were rules!  This time--no digging to create a cool spot.
 While Brutus was at the Castle, a group driving some old cars also visited.  Brutus had never seen anything like these antique cars.
 He found out that this is a Ford Model A, but he doesn't know in what year it was made.  He wanted to take it for a drive, but Margaret said no (that spoilsporting librarian again).  She said that he would be in BIG trouble if he stole the car or even touched it.  She even threatened to never take him anywhere again if he didn't behave.
So he hopes that she doesn't see this picture.  He's not sure what model this is, but the running boards were too tempting to resist.  (And, he didn't scratch, bite, or chew anything on the car.  It is still in pristine condition. So there, Margaret.)

Friday, June 21, 2013

Congratulations to Lucille

Brutus wishes to congratulate Lucille Couzynse.  This morning, she was the first person to turn in a completed bingo sheet. (And a little bird also told him that it was also her birthday).

There's still five weeks let to complete a bingo (and even Brutus thinks that it's fairly easy); you only have to complete 5 tasks in a row.  Pick up a sheet at Owosso's adult circulation desk or print one off our website (  Anyone who completes a sheet may choose a free book.

None of Brutus's bones have been found yet.  He buried four more today; there are also prizes for those who find a bone.  Brutus wants everyone to join him in the summer fun at the library!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Groundbreaking Reads

Brutus has been a little upset with the library staff lately--they have been too busy to help him type up any blog entries.  To make matters worse, now some of them are taking vacations, but he hasn't being taken along with them.  Of course, this means that he has more time to fill, and this summer's theme of groundbreaking reads is perfect!  He hasn't been allowed to dig in the flower beds, but he will be burying (hiding) some bones in the Owosso branch.  Anyone who finds one between June 10th and July 27th may turn it in at the circulation desk for a prize.  In addition, he hopes that many of you will join him in the teen and adult summer reading program.  Anyone who completes a bingo sheet may choose from a selection of new books.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Enjoying the Eaves Troughs

Brutus is thankful for the nice weather we had earlier in the year when new eaves troughs were installed in Owosso.  With all of this week's rain, he has been able to go in and out of the library without being drenched by the runoff from the roof.  It takes a long time for his fur to dry, and no one seems to like the smell of a wet dog!  (By the way, he was in no danger from the saw while he was playing on the eaves trough equipment; all of the workers were up on scaffolding near the roof.)

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Plaster Restoration work in Owosso

Brutus has been displaced by the plaster restoration work.  He likes the final results, but will be glad when they are done.  The public will again have access to all their computers, but he is wondering if he whines enough, will Margaret take him home for the weekend?

Friday, December 7, 2012

Getting ready for Christmas

 Last night Brutus helped us get in the Christmas spirit at the wreath making workshop.  He loved the smell of the greenery and the chatter (and attention) of the ladies, but found it difficult to wire the pine, boxwood, and holly to the frames;  he didn't even try to make a bow by  himself.  This was just too doggone difficult to do with paws.  He decided to help by pulling out some of his favorite boughs to take to the women who needed them.  Unfortunately, he soon forgot about helping and enjoyed running around the library with them (which had to be stopped as he was setting a bad example for the kids).

He was amazed with how different each wreath was; yet they were all beautiful!  His favorite was one with a purple bow.  Part-time employee Chicaro was making one to use as a centerpiece so of course Brutus thought that he should be part of this, too.  Instead of the candle or hurricane lamp, he demonstrated how he could grace her dining room table (and have first dibs on Christmas dinner).  His only suggestion for improving this workshop was to have the cookie exchange at the same time.  Both Harriet and Margaret nixed that idea due to the lack of space and the mess of pine needles and dirty hands.  Brutus didn't see how that should be a consideration as he just grabs cookies with his mouth (and there would be more for him!)  Humans can sure be party poopers at times.

Brutus and the library staff wish everyone a Merry Christmas!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

New Book Bags!

Brutus is investigating the new book bags now available in both Durand and Owosso.  They are not only great for carrying books and other items, but he thinks they would also be useful for transporting small pets (especially dogs with short legs who have to run to keep up with their humans; cats can walk).  The bags are canvas with a front pocket and top zipper, and they measure approximately 14 inches by 17 inches by 3.5 inches.  They cost $6, and Brutus has added one to his Christmas list!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

One of Brutus' Favorite Authors

Brutus, when he wasn't stuffing himself with turkey last week, enjoyed the new book by Spencer Quinn.  Quinn is one of his favorite authors (just like Thanksgiving is his favorite holiday) because Chet is a dog and also the narrator; and Quinn speaks fluent dog.  Brutus was almost inspired to go chase murderers while reading this story, but a knife wielding character convinced him that there might be too much danger involved.  For now he is going to content himself with his warm box in the library until he can sniff out another good book.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Writing Your Family History

Brutus has been very busy the past few weeks trying to learn how to write with a pencil.  Neither his paws or his mouth seem to work very well with computers or pencils.  He is trying to prepare for Mardi Link's presentation on Sunday, December 9th in Owosso on writing your family history.  He doesn't know much about his parents or siblings, but he'd like to be able tell more about some of his library adventures.  He would also like to encourage all interested humans to preregister by December 6th to guarantee a space.  He has heard that she is a very good presenter and has written an award winning book.  As soon as he can get this doggone pencil to work, he'll begin working on his memoir which he intends to call Tail-Wagging Adventures in the Library.  (Or maybe he should just find someone to whom to dictate his story and forget about the pencil).

Friday, October 12, 2012

Happy Birthday, Stephanie Plum!

Happy birthday to you, Happy birthday to you, Happy birthday, dear Stephanie, Happy birthday to you!  May you have a tail wagging good day!

Brutus is excited to celebrate Stephanie Plum's birthday today.  He thinks that the books about her are very funny, but he does not want to be in her next car which blows up.  He also suggests that she choose Morelli over Ranger because Morelli has a dog (which is a much better pet than Stephanie's hamster or Diesel's monkey).  When he has finished celebrating, he plans to rustle up a pair of handcuffs (which seem to be sorely lacking in the library) and sniff out a fugitive.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Brutus' Vacation

Brutus was able to get away for a short vacation last week.  He met a new friend, Oswald the Bear, and they became best buddies.  It was rare to see one without another.  Among the sights they enjoyed were the Mackinac Bridge, several lighthouses, and Tahquamenon Falls.  They also had fun playing in the leaves and changing the word "dog" to "bear" (dog, bogs, begs, bees, beer, bear).  Unfortunately, there wasn't enough time to catch up on his backlog of books to read, and now Brutus needs to work really hard to catch up at the library this week.  Brutus had a doggone good time and really appreciated the change of scenery.