Staff Pick — John — JUNCTION BOYS: HOW TEN DAYS IN HELL WITH BEAR BRYANT FORGED A CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM, by Jim Dent, DT 07156

Are you ready for some Football?

Of course, you are.  The only thing bigger than Football in Texas is Texas itself.

Football season is finally here.  Fans have lots of options when it comes to reading about gridiron glory.  A hard-nosed, old-school book about Football and Texas is JUNCTION BOYS: HOW TEN DAYS IN HELL WITH BEAR BRYANT FORGED A CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM, by Jim Dent.

Hired in 1954 to revive Texas A&M’s moribund football program, Paul “Bear” Bryant decided to “separate the quitters from the keepers.”  In the midst of an historic drought, Bryant took 115 Aggie football players to the Hill Country town of Junction for preseason training camp.  10 days later, only 35 players remained.

Brutal doesn’t being to describe what the players endured.  The practice “field” was a rock-strewn, goathead-encrusted patch of sunbaked dirt.  Temperatures soared well beyond 100°, but Bryant forbade water breaks.  One player nearly died of heatstroke.

After returning to College Station, the survivors battled through a 1-9 season. Two years later, they were undefeated Southwest Conference champions.  Bryant not only revived the football program, he may have saved the University itself.

After the 1957 season, Bryant left Texas A&M and returned to his alma mater, the University of Alabama.  The rest is history.  Bryant won six National Championships at Alabama and is considered the greatest college football coach of all time.

But despite all those glorious Crimson Tide championship teams, that gritty 1954 Texas A&M squad was his favorite.  Bear loved the “Junction Boys.”

With cameo appearances by Bonnie & Clyde,the Chicken Ranch, Elvis Presley, and a hay bale stuffed with $10,000 in hundred-dollar bills, JUNCTION BOYS: HOW TEN DAYS IN HELL WITH BEAR BRYANT FORGED A CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM is a treasure for college football fans and Texas History buffs alike.

NLS Annotation: The story of Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant’s legendary training camp in 1954 in the small town of Junction, Texas. In a move that many consider the salvation of the Texas A&M football program, Coach Bryant put 115 players through the most grueling practices ever imagined. Only a handful of players survived the entire ten days, but they turned a floundering football team into one of the nation’s best. Strong language.  1999.

If you view football through burnt orange glasses and prefer a 24-letter alphabet (no A&M, please), turn your Eyes of Texas toward THE DARRELL ROYAL STORY (DT 02830) by Jimmy Banks; or BLEEDING ORANGE: TROOULBE AND TRIUMOH DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS (DT  5515), by John Maher.  Another amazing story of Texans and football is TWELVE MIGHTY ORPHANS: The Inspiring True Story of the Mighty Mites Who Ruled Texas Football (DT 07025), also by Jim Dent.

Elmer Kelton’s novel, THE TIME IT NEVER RAINED (DB 49217; LB 03803), is a superb account of the of the 1950s drought that ravaged west Texas.

Catch a peek of the 2002 television movie, “The Junction Boys,” starring Tom Berenger as Bear Bryant, here: http://www.espn.com/eoe/junctionboys/index.html.

 

Lyft Offers Free and Discounted Rides on Election Day

The ride source service Lyft is partnering with national voting and non-profit organizations to provide low cost or free rides to individuals on election day. Many voters admit that transportation is their biggest obstacle to voting in local and national elections.

Lyft is available in all fifty states, but may not be available in local areas. Click here for a list of cities that offer Lyft service: https://www.lyft.com/rider/cities
The Lyft app is available on iOS and Android platforms.

The last day to register in vote in Texas for the November election is October 9th. You can pick up a voter registration application at various places like high schools and public libraries. You can also print a voter registration application here: https://webservices.sos.state.tx.us/vrapp/index.asp
You must register at least 30 days before the election in order to be eligible to vote.

In many cities the Democratic Party will also provide free rides to polling places. Persons with disabilities may also vote by mail.

For more information on Lyft’s #TheRidetoVote initiative, visit https://blog.lyft.com/posts/2018/8/22/get-out-the-vote
More details will be available closer to Election Day, which is Tuesday, November 6th.

Straight Outta BARD: Rap and Hip-Hop Reads

Did you know we have a large collection of biographies on BARD? Many of those biographies are about people from the entertainment industry, musicians included. And if you like Rap and Hip-Hop, and want to know about the struggles, challenges and triumphs of these awesome and sometimes controversial music legends, BARD is on it. Download these titles or order them on cartridge.

RAW: MY JOURNEY INTO THE WU-TANG by U-GOD  DB 90516

Memoir of one of the founding members of the hip-hop group the Wu-Tang Clan. He was raised in New York by a single mother and was arrested for dealing drugs in his youth. He relates the story of the formation of the group and their rise to fame. Narrated by the author. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2018.

DRE: THE BIOGRAPHY by RONIN RO  DB 66387

Music journalist traces the rise of Andre Young, a.k.a. Dr. Dre, of Compton, California, who in 1989 created one of the first “gangsta” rap albums. Details the development of the genre. Discusses the East Coast-West Coast feud and the gangland-style murders of rival rappers. Strong language and some violence. 2007.

DOGGFATHER; THE TIMES, TRIALS, AND HARDCORE TRUTHS OF SNOOP DOGG by SNOOP DOGGY DOGG  DB 50580

Autobiography by rap star Snoop Dogg, describing his youth in a Los Angeles ghetto and his strong belief in God. Recounts his success in the music field during the early 1990s, the murder of his friend Tupac Shakur, and his own trouble with the law. Strong language and some violence. 1999

HIP-HOP DIVAS by TRACY MICKENS-HUNDLEY  DB 56526

Chronicles the struggles and triumphs of women performers in the world of hip-hop music. Includes essays on the lives and careers of fifteen stars, such as Mary J. Blige, Lauryn Hill, Lil’ Kim, and TLC. Strong language. For senior high and older readers. 2001.

HEY YA! THE UNAUTHORIZED BIOGRAPHY OF OUTKAST by CHRIS  NICKSON        DB 59691

Journalist details the performing career of the award-winning Atlanta rap group OutKast, describing the team created in 1994 by Antwan “Big Boi” Patton and Andre “Dre” Benjamin. Delves into the singers’ personal lives, their business interests, and the evolution of their music. For senior high and older readers. 2004.

REBEL FOR THE HELL OF IT: THE LIFE OF TUPAC SHAKUR by ARMOND WHITE     DB 59848

Journalist chronicles the life of rapper Tupac Shakur (1971-1996), from his childhood to his unsolved murder in Las Vegas. Describes Shakur’s musical legacy, his brief acting career, and his legal entanglements. Strong language. For senior high and older readers. 1997.

TUPAC SHAKUR: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF AN AMERICAN ICON by TAYANNAH LEE MCQUILLAR     DB 71978

Biography of rap-music star Tupac Shakur (1971-1996) examines the artist’s unstable childhood as the son of a former Black Panther militant. Chronicles Shakur’s rise to fame, the rivalry between East-and West-coast rappers, and Shakur’s unsolved murder in Las Vegas. Strong language. 2010.

FROM PIECES TO WEIGHT: ONCE UPON A TIME IN SOUTHSIDE QUEENS by 50 CENT    DB 61202

Rap star describes the ghetto environment he was brought up in and his experience of dealing drugs when he was eleven. Details his life on the streets of 1980s Queens before hard work and determination helped him achieve fame and money. Violence and strong language. Bestseller. 2005.

WU-TANG MANUAL by RZA   DB 61481

Members of the Brooklyn rap group the Wu-Tang Clan explain their philosophy of life, much of which comes from watching kung fu movies. Introduces the nine members of the band and discusses martial arts, capitalism, and comics. Includes song lyrics. Strong language. For senior high and older readers. 2005.

SKILLS TO PAY THE BILLS: THE STORY OF THE BEASTIE BOYS by ALAN LIGHT     DB 62931

Follows the career of New York rap musicians the Beastie Boys–white, Jewish teenagers who formed their band in 1981. Interviews Adam Yauch, Adam Horovitz, Mike Diamond, and colleagues to explain how they made rap popular on the mainstream music charts. Strong language. For senior high and older readers. 2005.

WAY I AM by EMINEM  DB 67868

Autobiography of the controversial rapper. Detroit native Eminem, born Marshall B. Mathers III, describes his private life and the development of his Grammy Award-winning hip-hop career. Discusses the lyrics of his greatest hits, the Oscar-winning movie based on his life, and his work as a record producer. Strong language. 2008.

ICE: A MEMOIR OF GANGSTER LIFE AND REDEMPTION–FROM SOUTH CENTRAL TO HOLLYWOOD by ICE-T   DB 73836

Grammy Award-winning rapper and actor on television drama Law & Order: SVU Ice-T, born Tracy Marrow, describes becoming an orphan at age twelve and moving from New Jersey to live with relatives in Los Angeles. Details his life of crime before beginning his music career. Violence and strong language. 2011.

DIRTY VERSION: ON STAGE, IN THE STUDIO, AND IN THE STREETS WITH OL’ DIRTY BASTARD by BUDDHA MONK    DB 80367

Musician and friend of Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Monk–with English professor Hess–details the life of the cofounder of the Wu-Tang Clan. Details ODB’s childhood in Brooklyn, his work with Wu-Tang Clan, his solo musical efforts, and the challenges he faced before his early death by drug overdose. Some strong language. 2014.

HIP-HOP SPEAKS TO CHILDREN: A CELEBRATION OF POETRY WITH A BEAT        DB 69380

Fifty-one rhythmic poetry selections from forty-two poets and performers representing a wide range of styles and eras. Highlights works from Paul Laurence Dunbar, Langston Hughes, Queen Latifah, and Kanye West. Includes part of Aesop Rock’s “No Regrets”—a ditty about little Lucy’s yellow-chalk drawings on the sidewalk. 2008.

Bill Gates’ 2018 Summer Reading List

Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, announced his summer reading list for 2018. The Texas Talking Book Program has most of them in our collection. This year many of his selections deal with the big questions in life. Although these books deal with some heavy topics, he stresses that most of them are fairly short in length.

For more information directly from Bill Gates himself: https://www.gatesnotes.com/About-Bill-Gates/Summer-Books-2018?WT.mc_id=00_00_00_share_fb

The books in TBP’s collection:

Title: LEONARDO DA VINCI
Author: ISAACSON, WALTER

Author of Steve Jobs (DB 73682) chronicles the life of the iconic Renaissance man, Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519). Examines his early life in Vinci, artistic pursuits, patronage from leading Italian Renaissance families, engineering projects, investigations into human anatomy, and more. Bestseller. 2017.

DB   89588

Title: EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON: AND OTHER LIES I’VE LOVED
Author: BOWLER, KATE

Theologian specializing in the history of American prosperity gospel examines this faith tradition and draws parallels to her personal battle with stage IV colon cancer in her mid-thirties. Discusses her own medical treatments, her faith journey, and the ways the prosperity gospel has infiltrated secular American life. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2018.

DB   90181

Title: LINCOLN IN THE BARDO: A NOVEL
Author: SAUNDERS, GEORGE

1862. One night, soon after the death of his eleven-year-old son, Willie, President Abraham Lincoln goes to visit the recently interred body in Georgetown. There, he encounters the ghosts of the cemetery’s residents, including Willie, who must escape the limbo he is in. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. Strong language, some violence, and some descriptions of sex. 2017.

DB   86941

Title: FACTFULNESS: TEN REASONS WE’RE WRONG ABOUT THE WORLD – AND WHY THINGS ARE BETTER THAN YOU THINK
Author: ROSLING, HANS

A statistician and medical doctor believes most people hold mistaken ideas unsupported by facts about global issues such as poverty, education, and the environment. He explains that instincts and biases distort our perspective, and we don’t know what we don’t know. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2018.

DB 91120

Disability Focus Group Opportunity in the Austin Area

Travis and Williamson counties, which include the cities of Austin, Pflugerville, and Round Rock, are collaborating on a regional housing and economic opportunity study. They’ve hired BBC Research & Consulting to do the assessment. Disability Rights Texas has been asked to host a focus group session specifically for people with disabilities.

Event Information:
Location: Disability Rights Texas, 2222 W Braker Lane, Austin, TX 78758
Date: Tuesday, September 11th, 2018
Time 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM (1.5 hours)
Lunch will be provided.

If you’d like to participate, click here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeslzsQ8lFceS9ZRH8Etrhak4GM_T53ss4y8ZX2MNtJ33SUEQ/viewform

TBP’s Administrative Rules Review / Revisión de las Reglas Administrativas de TBP

TBP’s Administrative Rules Review: All state agencies and their programs have administrative rules, which are reviewed every four years, amended as needed, and then readopted. The notice of the review of TBP’s 18 rules has been published in the July 27, 2018 edition of the Texas Register (https://www.sos.state.tx.us/texreg/pdf/currview/index.shtml).

You may read the rules here: https://bit.ly/2AABKA4. Comments about the rule review may be made by postal mail, email, or phone to Ava Smith, Director, Talking Book Program, at P.O. Box 12927, Austin, TX, 78711-2927, amsmith@tsl.texas.gov, or 512-463-5428. Comments must be received by August 27, 2018.

Revisión de las Reglas Administrativas de TBP: Todas las agencias estatales y sus programas correspondientes tienen reglas administrativas. Estas reglas son sometidas a una revisión cada cuatro años, se modifican como sea necesario, y después son re-adoptadas.

En Julio 27 de 2018, en la publicación Texas Register (https://www.sos.state.tx.us/texreg/pdf/currview/index.shtml) fue anunciada la revisión de las 18 reglas administrativas de TBP(https://www.sos.state.tx.us/texreg/pdf/currview/index.shtml). Usted puede leer las reglas aqui: https://bit.ly/2AABKA4.

Sus comentarios sobre la revisión de nuestras reglas pueden ser enviados por correo normal, por correo electrónico, o por teléfono a Ava Smith, Directora. Programa de Libros que Hablan. P.O. Box 12927, Austin, TX, 78711-2927, amsmith@tsl.texas.gov, o llame al 512-463-5428. La fecha límite para recibir sus comentarios es August 27, 2018.

 

National Association of Blind Merchants BLAST conference

The National Association of Blind Merchants will host it’s BLAST conference from November 13 – 16, 2018, in San Antonio, Texas, at the Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa. Super Early Bird Registration is occurring now until August 13th; the cost to register early is $200. For more information call the National Association of Blind Merchants at 888-687-6226 or click on this link: https://blindmerchants.org/blast-2018-information/

The Color of Blind exhibit at the San Antonio Public Library

Color of Blind Exhibit Image
The Color of Blind is an interactive art show by Trina Geurra Bacon and Katherine Brown. First debuting in 2013, “The show allows visually impaired individuals, along with others with special sensory needs or challenges, to better connect with art,” explains Bacon. During the month of August, the San Antonio Public Library’s Central Branch gallery will host a “best in show” exhibit of some of Color of Blind’s fan favorite pieces. “Everyone should be able to fully experience art. We say ‘Yes- please touch the art!’” The Color of Blind will be free and open to the public during Central Library hours of operation.
(Source)

The Color of Blind Exhibit
Dates: August 7, 2016 – August 26, 2016
Times: Mondays through Thursdays 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sundays 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Location: San Antonio Public Library, Central Branch, 600 Soledad St, San Antonio, Texas 78205
For more information visit: mysapl.org or call 210-207-2500

Disability Voter Registration Week is July 16-20

July 16 – 20 has been designated as Disability Voter Registration Week.

You have to be at least 18 years old and a U.S. citizen in order to vote.
An application is required to register, but you only have to register once.
You can get a voting application at a public library, tax assessor’s office, high school, post office, or workforce commission office. You can also find the application online at https://webservices.sos.state.tx.us/vrapp/index.asp

Three ways to vote if you are elderly or have a disability:
1) Mail in ballot
2) Curbside voting (call ahead for this option)
3) in person voting at a polling location

Persons with disabilities may request an accessible voting machine, an interpreter, or they may bring an assistant to help them vote.

Everyone must bring a form of ID if they vote in person. This may be a voter registration card, Texas ID card, driver’s license, gun license, military ID, passport, paycheck, birth certificate, or bank statement.

For more information on voting for people with disabilities, please visit www.RevUpTexas.org or call the Voting Rights Hotline at 888-796-VOTE (8683)
The last day to register to vote in the November 2018 election is October 9th. Early voting begins on October 22nd. The election is on November 6th.

Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD) Disability-Related Resources

All of the programs within the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department can be adapted for seniors and persons with disabilities. Activities include but are not limited to fishing, archery, boating, kayaking, hiking, and biking.

In addition, organizations can apply for an Accessible Resources in the Community Outdoor Outreach Program grant to fund a variety of needs such as equipment, supplies, transportation, and staff. For more information about the grant, visit https://tpwd.texas.gov/business/grants/recreation-grants/community-outdoor-outreach-program-co-op-grants

The Texas Parks & Wildlife Department web site features the following links for wheelchair users:
Wheelchair-accessibility at parks: http://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/parks/things-to-do/wheelchair-accessibility-in-state-parks
Wheelchair-friendly events: http://tpwd.texas.gov/calendar/wheelchair-friendly
Please note that inclement weather can affect the accessibility of a park or outdoor space.

Sandra Heath is the Americans with Disabilities Act Coordinator at TPWD. She can be reached at 512-389-4818.
For more information about what the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department has to offer, visit https://tpwd.texas.gov/