71 Monell Avenue
Islip, NY 11751

T: 631-581-5933

F: 631.277.8429

71 Monell Avenue
Islip, NY 11751
T: 631-581-5933
F: 631-581-8429

71 Monell Avenue
Islip, NY 11751

T: 631-581-5933 

F: 631-581-8429


Category Archives for Entertainment

2016 Academy Awards Debate

Movies & More: The Academy Award Category Debate

Should the Academy Awards keep the best male and female acting awards separate or combine them into one best acting category?

As the host, Chris Rock skewered the Academy Awards for the lack of black nominees but it was one particular comment that opened my eyes to this very question. Chris Rock implied that the Academy Awards could create an award for the best black actors because they already have separate awards for the best male and female actors.

He went on to say that there is no justification to separate the awards by sex, explaining that acting is not a sporting event and that men and women have the same acting abilities, therefore there could be an award for black actors all the same.

I do not believe that Chris Rock really wants to create a separate award for black actors, he had another strong monologue about having more opportunities for black actors, which I think was his main point. But he has a valid argument about the irrationality of having separate awards for men and women.

So my question is, should we have separate awards for men and women?

In a discussion with my colleagues opinions varied but most of them believed the awards should be kept separate. Many of them said that the tradition of the Academy Awards should triumph the proposed changes but this excuse is always used to keep the status quo, when there are worthy changes they should be made. The next reason given was that women wouldn’t win as much, I should mention that my colleagues in this discussion were all female and I do not share this notion.

Also, it’s important to mention that this is the exact reason why Chris Rock said the Oscars should create more categories, to ensure diversity amongst the winners.

Should we create more awards to ensure that we have a diverse group of winners? Or should we make sure that prejudices do not change the outcome? Perhaps, we should ensure a diverse group of judges.

Another point that was mentioned to keep the status quo was that the Oscars need the excitement of a broader array of awards. I actually believe the Oscars would be more exciting by narrowing it down to just one actor or actress. The buzz around such an award will only grow with more competition.

Just think, who had the best performance, Leonardo DiCaprio in the Revenant or Brie Larson in Room? Even better, who would win from the 2013 Academy Awards, Daniel Day-Lewis in Lincoln or Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook? By narrowing down the award to one person you create more excitement.

If I still have not convinced you that there is no justification to having separate awards, I would ask you this, do you believe there should be separate awards for the best male and female directors, or is that just silly?

music equals memory

Music = Memory

If someone should ask you to recite the alphabet, would you automatically sing it? Most English speakers in the United States were taught the names and order of the letters by the “ABC Song” (Honestly, don’t you find yourself singing snatches of it in your head when having to alphabetize something?). Words and music join together to imprint a lesson that is the basis for literacy. Just like pieces of Velcro, the music and the message become bonded.

The so-called “hooks” of songs are lyrics created for the purpose of insinuating themselves into our brain by being insistent, assertive, and having a catchy tune. Endless repetition is what creates “ear worms” and Top Ten Hits. In a darker vein, think of all the commercial jingles imprinted upon your mind by advertisers since childhood. Because the words are attached to a melody, the retention of information regarding a product becomes inevitable; think of Peyton Manning who can’t get that Nationwide jingle out of his head.

Many studies have been done regarding the use of music as a teaching tool. There are numerous websites that promote using music in the classroom as an aid to learning a variety of subjects and explain the rationale behind their methods (for instance, see www.songsforteaching.com). For generations, nursery rhyme songs have been used to teach children about the wonders of the natural world (“Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star,” “The Itsy Bitsy Spider”), along with cautionary tales about climbing hills and having an overlarge family (“Jack and Jill,” “There was an Old Lady”). At the same time, however, they are teaching phonological awareness by using rhyming words and stressing syllables, usually giving each a different note. This breaking down of language into discernable components aids in early literacy skills, such as sounding out written words, and building vocabulary. Best of all, this kind of teaching can take place in any setting, not requiring props or electricity. (Caregivers, who feel self-conscious about singing, take note: a child doesn’t care if you can carry a tune as long as you’re singing with them!) For a great sampling of songs beneficial and fun for young children, take advantage of programs given by the Children’s Department that implement music and movement.

At the other end of the spectrum, great strides have been made in helping people with Alzheimer’s regain a connection to the present world by listening to music from earlier times in their lives. Daniel Cohen, founder and Executive Director of Music and Memory (musicandmemory.org) has used iPods with personalized playlists to connect individuals suffering from memory loss to beloved tunes from their youth, creating a pathway by which individuals can regain a sense of identity. Just as a particular smell or taste can trigger a recollection, a song can bring back where you were and what you were doing at the time when you listened to it. By the way, you can learn more about this group via the Adult Reference Department here at the library.

Perhaps music aids in memory because it moves us emotionally. It can trigger a response that becomes indelibly linked with those words and melodies. It can recall a celebration or a tearful break up. It can remind us of friends and family. Music sets the tone for our various forms of entertainment, signaling the romantic kiss, alerting us to a frightening villain, or creating suspense for an inevitable denouement. We use it to soothe us, to rouse us into action (or a funky dance routine for us ex-disco queens), to stir our patriotism, to give praise, to clear our minds, to create bonds with others, to give us pure joy. With all that is still unknown about the brain and its relationship to our less tangible components (“soul,” “essence?”), music may be one key to unlocking the complexities of human cognition. It should be a memorable moment when and if it is found to be so.

A Different Kind Of Entertainment

​When borrowing a movie from the library, most people seem to want the latest blockbusters or something by way of children’s television shows to keep the troops busy while grown-ups take care of business. How about trying some family viewing that’s a little out of the ordinary when making your video selections?

Our Children’s department offers a large and varied collection of non-fiction videos, some of which will open your eyes to fresh experiences and fill you with a sense of wonder. Others will teach you a craft or skill you always wanted to learn. Yet more may explain something you’ve always questioned but never got an answer for, whether it concerns events or people in history, how something works, or what it’s like in places you’ve never been.

For instance, we have many DisneyNature, National Geographic, Eyewitness, and family-friendly PBS videos. Of special note are Mysteries of the Unseen World, a Blu-ray that reveals phenomena all around us that is invisible to the naked eye; Animal Odd Couples, which celebrates heart-warming friendships among different species; and visually stunning IMAX films that open our eyes to the glorious natural wonders of the Earth, such as Ring of Fire, Tropical Rain Forest, and Deep Blue Sea.

Are you interested in learning sign language, origami, or how to play the drums? Are you coaching children’s baseball, basketball, lacrosse or soccer and need some drills for practice? Are you an educator or home-schooling parent who would be helped by science, math, and history videos that teach and reinforce skills vital to the Common Core (our Schlessinger Media films even include booklets that aid in creating lesson plans)? Curious about the lives of the famous (or infamous)? We have DVDs that cover all of these subjects and more!

Short historical documentaries and biographies (10-15 minutes long) are also available at the end of each episode of George Lucas’s Adventures of Young Indiana Jones, a television series that covers Indy’s exploits from ten years old to young adulthood. He encounters revolutionaries, inventors, artists, writers, idealists, criminals, and other major historical figures while participating in world changing events. This special features option expands on topics and people Indy meets, and even includes an interactive timeline.

Also, as parents, we don’t always have the answers to child rearing dilemmas. Our Parenting Collection videos can come to the rescue! Notable experts have created films that cover a wide range of subjects, such as potty training, the vaccination debate, sleep solutions, child development, discipline, learning about and living with differently-abled family members, grieving, and divorce. Newly pregnant couples have access to resources that ease the transition from pregnancy into parenthood, including exercise and breastfeeding. Babies can learn about their world with our Baby Genius videos. Family vacations can be planned, and experienced with ease as well, by watching our Travel with Kids series.

Whether they are informing us about our world in an entertaining fashion or creating a way to share an “I didn’t know that!” moment with our families, non-fiction videos are a great alternative to the usual and the ordinary.

Movies & More

​by Matt

Binge watching television shows has never been more popular then it is today. HBO, ShowTime, Starz, Netflix, Amazon, and more have been pouring money into great television shows, pushing the boundaries of what we expect. Some of the shows created today come with mind blowing production costs, top tier actors, and amazing writers. All this results in must see TV with every episode leaving you wanting more. Here is a list of must see shows for all types of viewers. If you’re a fan of comedy try Veep starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the Vice President of the United States. It has been nominated four years in a row for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series, winning the latest one, and Louis-Dreyfus has won an astonishing four consecutive Primetime Emmy Awards. Romance fans will love the Outlander series based on the Diana Gabaldon’s historical time travel books. It’s become a quick favorite amongst many of the staff here. Any fan of gangster movies will love Boardwalk Empire starring Steve Buscemi as Enoch “Nucky” Thompson. The show is loosely based on historical crime figures during the Prohibition era; such as, Arnold Rothstein, Charlie Luciano, Al Capone and more. The series won 20 Primetime Emmy Awards, including two for Outstanding Drama Series. For a steamy psychological thriller try the Affair, told by two different characters that leave you questioning where the truth lies. The series won the Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Drama. Game of Thrones is a fantasy series based on George R.R. Martin’s, Sea of fire and Ice. The show reaches beyond fantasy fans with a lot offer; intense action, a great storyline, amazing actors, stunning scenery, and mind blowing events. The series won an outstanding 26 Emmy Awards. There are so many more great series available at the library: Homeland, Olive Kitteridge, House of Cards, Mad Men, Mr. Selfridge, Ray Donovan, Downton Abbey, True Detective, Call the Midwife, Vikings, the White Queen and many more. A fair warning, many of these shows have strong violence and nudity. Come in and talk to the librarians so that we can find one for you will love!

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