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A total of 17 Woodbury, and Afton, residents have received blue ribbons in this year's Minnesota State Fair. Check Woodbury Bulletin as more results are available.
Adversity and achievement. Ryan Englebert has experienced both in a dramatic fashion. It's the hard work between those two disparate mile posts that the former standout Division III football player says led him to where he is today - a small business owner who wants to help young athletes achieve their big dreams. Englebert and his wife Heidi are the founders of Englebert Training Systems (ETS) in Woodbury. The sports performance training center housed in the business park just off Commerce Drive, does not look like your typical gym. That's because it isn't.
There's an old saw that says Edgar Rice Burroughs never visited Africa, but managed to write a slew of books about Tarzan, his mate and his ape. Maybe that's what's wrong with the Tarzan books. Lines like that remind me of the Shakespeare apologists in the 17th century who said that the Bard was so good he never had to delete a line. In response his contemporary Ben Jonson, said "If only he had blotted a thousand." All this literary history by way of introducing "Missing Mark," by Julie Kramer (Doubleday, $25). Kramer, a resident of White Bear Lake, is a freelance TV producer.
When Jim Perelman's mother died in 2007, he resolved to produce a book of poems about grief. Perelman is the founder and publisher of Holy Cow! Press, a high quality literary house located in Duluth. The result is "Beloved of the Earth: 150 Poems of Grief and Gratitude" ($16.95, paper), edited by Jim Perlman, Deborah Cooper, Mara Hart and Pamela Mittlefehldt. In her introduction, Mittlefehldt tells how Holy Cow! got the ball rolling by asking for submissions. Two thousand entries poured in from famous poets like Pulitzer Prize winner Maxine Kumin and writers they had never heard of.
'They roused him with muffins -- they roused him with ice -- They roused him with mustard and cress -- They roused him with jam and judicious advice -- They set him conundrums to guess. When at length he sat up and was able to speak His sad story he offered to tell: And the Bellman cried, "Silence! Not even a shriek!" And excitedly tingled his bell. There was silence supreme! Not a shriek, not a scream Scarcely even a howl or a groan, As the man they called "Ho!
Several years ago, my friend novelist Carolyn See wrote a tell-all book about her family's century-long love affair with alcohol addiction, written with her usual literary flair. See is a fine California novelist ("Rhine Maidens," "Making History") who doesn't get enough attention here in the Midwest. She was coming to read at the Hungry Mind in St. Paul, so I wrote a column about here appearance and hied myself over to see her. What a surprise! The place was packed with people - standing room only.
There's an old saying that goes "The reason most academic debates are so prevalent and so acrimonious is that there is so little at stake." After spending 20 years in the groves of academe I've always subscribed to that saying, but now I'm not so certain. That's because I just finished reading "Woodrow Wilson: Princeton to the Presidency," by W. Barksdale Maynard (Yale University Press, $30).
Many years ago a Star Tribune colleague and I co-published a book of stories that had earlier appeared in our newspaper. We were surprised to learn that the Twin Cities Reader, an "alternative" newspaper wanted to do a story about us and our new book. Surprised because the Reader never had much good to say about the biggest newspaper in town. Surprised and a bit worried. Was this going to be a hatchet job? A young reporter came to the newspaper, we drank coffee and talked. He took a few notes, but not many. He was a very hip guy and we wondered what he thought of us old fogies.
Here we are in the shadow of the Oscars and here I am with two books about the movie industry that you may want to peruse. First is "Not the Girl Next Door," by Charlotte Chandler (Simon & Schuster, $26). This one's about actress Joan Crawford. No, no! It's not another "Mommie Dearest," the book about Crawford written by her ungrateful daughter. This one is written by Charlotte Chandler, Crawford's grateful biographer. In this admiring biography, Crawford does nothing wrong.
"Mid-List" is a word that doesn't get much play any more in the book world. In the old days most publishers had a "mid-list" section of books for sale. These were good books, but books that didn't promise to make a lot of money right away. They weren't at the bottom of the heap, but not at the top, either, at least in terms of sales. This all changed a quarter century ago when Congress -- in its wisdom --decided to tax publishers' inventories, just as it taxes the nuts and bolts and nails in storage at hardware manufacturing companies.