150 Years Of The CML

Yesterday the Columbus Metropolitan Library officially marked its 150th anniversary. Today we celebrated the sesquicentennial in classic library fashion–by walking down to the Main Library, doing some browsing, and borrowing a few books from the collection. There was a special program there, and the library was hopping with visitors, as well as being decked out with a nerdy book cake, shown below, and other decorations for the CML’s big birthday.

Public libraries are one of the most important elements of a free society, in my view, and the Columbus library system has been a crucial part of the central Ohio community for its entire 150-year history. We know this first-hand because we are frequent users of the library, its services, and its book reservation system. You can read about the Columbus Metropolitan Library and its history, from its humble beginning on March 4, 1873 as a single reading room in the old city hall, at the library website here.

Happy birthday, CML, and thank you for being such a key part of our city!

The Bear Friendship Test

Somebody at the National Park Service apparently has a sense of humor.

The NPS Twitter account published some bear safety tips as we move from hibernation season into spring, a period where famished, reawakened bears living in national parks can expect to be much more active. One useful tip was: “If you come across a bear, never push a slower friend down, even if you feel the friendship has run its course.”

A bear encounter under such conditions would be a pretty good test of a friendship.

The real advice was to travel in groups, keep your distance from any bear you see, not surprise a bear that hasn’t noticed you, and “identify yourself” as a human to any bear that notices you by standing still, talking calmly and waving your arms. I’ve seen exactly one bear in the wild, when I was hiking in Glacier National Park, and my approach was to quietly turn around and skedaddle in the opposite direction. That worked for me.