patrons library

The Patron's Post

Patrons of the Pollak Library

California State University Fullerton


Volume  XII            Number   2             Spring 2008 

Patrons of the Pollak Library, California State University Fullerton

P. O. Box 4150, Fullerton, CA 92834-4150



Dorothy Heide

     As we near the end of the 2007-2008 academic year and my term in office, it seems appropriate to consider all the changes that have occurred on campus and within Patrons of the Library during these past three years.

     Many campus construction projects either welcomed students in fall 2007—the Nursing Skills Lab—or just welcomed students—the Student Recreation Center with its rock-climbing wall—or will do so in fall 2008—the Mihaylo College of Business and Economics.   All these projects broke ground during these years.  The University’s student body also continues to grow.  More than 37,000 students enrolled for the 2007-2008 year, the largest enrollment in the system.

     Patrons also were active during these three academic years.  The Patrons’ Boswell map project got officially underway in July 2005.  And at this point, over 1200 of the approximately 1500 maps have been digitally photographed and cataloged.  To help showcase the Boswell maps, Patrons will host the California Map Society 2008-2009 winter/spring meeting. 

     Since the map project is nearing completion, an ad hoc committee met to consider a new project.  The committee identified the Library’s Special Collections as an area in need of some attention and the Board agreed.  This is an especially relevant project area since Patrons own some of the collections.  Watch for some exciting news about the project during the next academic year.

     In spring 2007, Patrons started planning for the first Student Book Collection Contest.  It was held in the fall and the winners were announced in January, 2008.  They received their awards at the February Board meeting and charmed all the members.  The Board voted in March to make the Student Book Collection Contest an annual event. 

     The Annual Meeting is scheduled for June 1 at 2:00 p.m.  Rick Lozinsky, the featured speaker, is an expert on the geology of Orange County.  Plan to come and join us to hear this exciting presentation.

     If you are interested in greater involvement in Patrons activities or if you’d like more information about joining the Patrons, please let me know either by telephone (714-637-5131) or by email

big  red book


June Pollak


     Since 1995, the Book Sale Center has been selling used books from donations and excess volumes from the CSUF Library.  Our very low prices of $1, $2, or $3 per book are set to help the CSUF students and others purchase books which are usually extremely expensive.    All proceeds from sales are designated to purchase books for the Library, vitally important in this era of tightening state budgets. 

     Our regular hours are 11 to 3 on Tuesdays, 11 to 7 on Wednesdays, and 1 to 5 on Thursdays.  Please visit us when we open for the 2008-2009 academic year in September.  We’ll be open throughout the fall and spring terms, but not during intersession.

     As always, we need your donations to keep the shelves stocked in L 199.   Please call Lorraine Seelig at 714-278-2182 to make arrangements.  If you are interested in joining the Patrons and Emeriti volunteers working in the Book Sale Center, please call June Pollak at 949-661-0463.

three fat books                         


 Gordon J. Van De Water


      Our first Student Book Collection Contest, while it did not attract a large number of contestants, was a success in realizing that many students still collect reading material based on a unifying theme … one book, then two, and before they knew it …  a collection!

      This particular contest was restricted to undergraduate students, with judging enthusiastically conducted by three members of the Patrons Board who interviewed each contestant and reviewed several items from his/her respective collections.  The collections covered many fascinating areas ranging from a large collection of books on the English language, to books on Latin America, and yet another on science fiction.  There was also a collection that specialized in writings relating to biblical studies and Roman history.

      Each contestant, when receiving the very welcome monetary awards, gave a brief talk about his/her book selections to Board members and thanked the Patrons for the opportunity to participate in this worthy competition. 

      The Board has approved a similar contest for the 2008-2009 academic year.  The committee will study how the next contest will be structured.   We hope to attract a larger number of people with collections that have been gathered and treasured over a period of many years.  Our aim is to have the second contest up and running as the next school year commences, with judging to take place around Thanksgiving.  Wish us and the students well.

  See final pages of this edition for additional information and entry form.



Nancy Holmes


     Since its founding over 40 years ago, the Patrons has focused on enhancing the Pollak Library in numerous ways. These range from purchases to augment library holdings to supporting services such as photocopying.  Further, the Patrons sponsors endeavors and activities that include the digital cataloging of the Roy V. Boswell Collection for the history of cartography, field trips to libraries and other cultural venues, lectures by writers and other artists, the Book Sale Center offering used books and periodicals at low prices, a well attended book discussion group and the student book collection contest, which was established this year.

     Membership in the Patrons aids this wide range of support for the library. It also accords borrowing privileges at the library plus discounts at Titan shops, campus eateries and CSUF performing arts and athletic events.

     In the past five academic years, the Patrons Annual membership has increased from 116 to 171 and the Life member number from 76 to 80 for a total membership rise from 192 to 251, over 30%. This year, the total membership has grown by 12% and now includes 47 Alumni, 107 Basic, 1 Benefactor, 5 Enhanced, 3 Family, 3 Faculty and Staff, 5 student and 80 Life members.  An expansion of membership categories initiated several years ago, coupled with a reduction in the cost of a Life membership, has been significant factors in this membership increase.

     We hope that you maintain your membership in this valuable organization and participate in its wealth of activities. Should you need additional information, please feel free to contact me via email at, by phone 714-738-5590 or visit our website for additional information, membership applications and a calendar of our events and activities. The site can be accessed from the Library web site:, under Information, Patrons of the Library.

brown book


 Gordon Van De Water

      A five member committee gathers on a monthly basis to select those extra valuable books not included in the State budget.  Along with regular purchases, such as an annual subscription to the London Review of Books, and publications from the Book Club of California, the committee culls through the wish list presented to us each month by librarian Lin Ford, Acquisitions and Database Support, who compiles the many titles, including those requested by various professors for use by their students; she gathers review information and presents the information to the committee for its consideration.

      The titles selected range from the zany to the very serious, the primary requirement being that they have importance for the CSUF students in pursuit of their studies.  Here is a sampling, in no special order, of the acquisitions funded by the Patrons this year.  It is by your patronage that we are able to continue to provide new and valuable research material to the university.  We thank you! 

Krazy & Ignatz by George Herriman, Fantagraphics, 2007.

Letters of Noel Coward by Barry Day, Alfred A. Knopf, 2007.

Frida Kahlo by Helga Prignitz-Poda, Schirmer/Mosel, 2007.

Robert Moses and the Modern City by Hilary Ballon, W.W. Norton, 2007.

Cartographia by Vincent Vega, Little, Brown and Compant, 2007.

Teapot Dome Scandal by Laton McCartney, Random House, 2008.

Early Modern Ottomans by Virginia H. Aksan, Cambridge Univ. Press, 2007.

H.P. Lovecraft:Tales…by H.P. Lovecraft, Library of America, 2005.

Rolling Stone: Cover to Cover, Rolling Stone, Bondi Digital Pub., 2007.

Hawley’s Condensed Chemical Dictionary by Richard J. Lewis, Wiley

Interscience, 2007.



Howard Seller and Suzanne Serbin

      The special activities for the members of the Patrons began last fall with a visit to the A.K. Smiley Library in Redlands.  The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  The special collections division of the Smiley Library also maintains the Lincoln Memorial Shrine, which is located in an adjacent building.  It houses the only collection of Lincoln and American Civil War manuscripts, diaries, images, and artifacts west of the Mississippi River.

     This year’s Patrons’ Lecture Series began in January with a presentation on Earl Warren by Jim Newton, whose book, Justice for All: Earl Warren and the Nation He Made, is an in-depth treatment of the life of the former California governor and Supreme Court chief justice.  During the question period following his lecture Newton discussed not only the subject of his book but also his experiences as a reporter for several major newspapers, including The New York Times, The Atlanta-Journal Constitution, and the Los Angeles Times, where he has worked since 1989.

     Our February speaker was Barry Glassner, professor of sociology at USC, who has written several books on topics of concern from violence to food.  He focused on his recent work, The Gospel of Food: Everything You Think You Know about Food Is Wrong.  His lecture and his answers to questions from the audience offered much relevant information about food and diet and also included many revealing and amusing stories from his encounters with restaurants, chefs, and food critics. 

     Our final speaker, in March, was D.J. Waldie, who has written two popular books about southern California: Holy Land: a Suburban Memoir and Where We Are Now: Notes from Los Angeles.  He read some selections from his books, addressed some of the problems and challenges facing the region, and shared stories of growing up in Lakewood, where he has lived all his life and where, since 1977, he has served as the city’s public information officer.

     Our final scheduled event will be the Patrons’ Annual Meeting on Sunday, June 1 at 2:00 p.m. in room 360 of the library.  Our speaker will be Rick Lozinksy, who is on the faculty at Fullerton College; he will discuss the geology of Orange County.  We look forward to seeing all of you there.


Patrons of the Library

California State University Fullerton 

Please Join Patrons for the

Annual Meeting

Sunday, June 1, 2008 at 2 p.m.

Room #360 of the Pollak Library

Proposed slate of officers 2008-2009


President                                          Suzanne Serbin

1st Vice President, Membership     Nancy Holmes

      2nd Vice Presdent, Activities          Howard Seller and

                                                                                                                                             Lis Leyson

3rd Vice President, Book Selection  Gordon Van Der Water

Treasurer                                           Claude Coppel

Secretary                                           Carolyn Eckert 

Guest Speaker:  Dr. Rick Lozinsky

  Dr. Lozinsky is a professor in the Department of Natural Sciences at Fullerton College.  He is the author of

Our Backyard Geology in Orange County and will speak on this subject.

Refreshments will be served.



Gordon J. Van De Water

Coming home each day from high school in Alhambra during the 1950’s, I would pass by the local PTA Thrift Shop.  It had a fine selection of books, most priced at 10 cents, and very few over 25 cents.  This was the perfect place for a kid who loved books, yet had limited earnings from mowing neighborhood lawns.

On one of my shopping trips I came across an autograph book priced at 10 cents.  It was the standard autograph book of the time, sturdily bound and containing some 60 pages.  Inside the cover was the name and address of a young lady and the notation ‘2nd book.’  Seeing this, I searched the entire stock in the shop for the ‘1st book’, but alas! it could not be found.

Once home, I went through the new-found treasure and realized, even then, that I had something quite special.  There were approximately 120 autographs of many of the leading movie stars of the day.  All the pages were dated, most with location, and in some instances illustrated with a photograph of the star.  Cornel Wilde signed the first page on March 16, 1947 at the Lux Theatre, and Judy Garland signed last, location unspecified, on June 11, 1947.  In between were the autographs of, among others, Sonja Henie, Gary Cooper, Dick Powell, Lucille Ball, Kirk Douglas, and John Wayne.  It would appear that the young lady, to obtain the signatures, waited outside nightclub spots like the Brown Derby, La Rue’s and Ciro’s, or would catch the stars as they exited radio studios such as CBS or NBC.  There was even a signature of Edward G. Robinson that was, according to the notation, given on fight night at Hollywood Stadium.

During the 1950’s through the 70’s, this little book remained in the Southern California home of my parents.  When they relocated to the Sacramento area, the accumulation of almost twenty years was sorted out for the move, and my father was merciless in throwing away what he considered to be junk.  I feared the little book had been discarded.  Once my parents settled in their new home, there were some twenty storage boxes left over that were put on shelves in the garage; there they remained, unopened, for twenty-five years.  When a long-distance move had to be made once again, it was almost decided to throw out these boxes.  After all if they hadn’t been looked into for 25 years, what could they hold of importance? 

But curiosity won the day and when I opened the second box, there on top was the autograph book. My heart gave a little jump.  What a pleasant surprise to discover a tiny treasure thought long lost!  I returned home, this time with the autograph book safely secured.  I soon took it to a well-known autograph dealer in Los Angeles who offered $800 for it.  I declined the offer and still have the book, amazed that my 10-cent purchase had increased in value some 8000-fold over a period of approximately 42 years.

There was one blank page left in the autograph book that is no longer so.  On April 18, 1998, at the Huntington Library, John Lithgow had recited “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” and was about to walk off and enjoy the gardens when he graciously signed his name on that final blank page.

I sometimes wonder what happened to that young lady, Helen,and why her second autograph book ended up in a PTA Thrift Shop in Alhambra only a few years after the autographs were collected.  Maybe her interests changed or perhaps she moved and her mother considered the book as chaff…

three books with coffee



Albert R. Vogeler

     A literary friend of mine has provided me with some new titles from the Spring Lists of some rather obscure publishers.  I offer them here to reassure my readers that variety, ingenuity, and solid scholarship are still to be found in the marketplace of books.  To each title I append a brief excerpt from the advertising blurb or a reviewer’s comments.

     A Bee or Not a Bee, by Bea Beebe.  Buzby Books, 2008.  Sometimes insect imposters rudely probe the petals of innocent blossoms before their proper pollinators—bees—can arrive.  This is a provocative expose of improper pollination, and how to prevent it.

     Mollusks on the March, by Sandy Shore.  Tidal Basin Books, 2008. The author makes a convincing  case for modest intelligence in clams, oysters, mussels, and scallops, arguing that  the shellfish gene is the key to understanding the evolution of life and mind.

     The Hen as a Bird of Prey, by Egmont Hatcher.  Brood Books, 2008. This book deftly punctures the myth that hens are merely scatterbrained ground-bound cluckers, and provides examples of how, when aroused, they can take wing and become fierce raptors.

     The Fecund Fungoid, by Mike Allogy.  Humos Books, 2008. “This learned contribution to the mushrooming science of non-lethal spores is rapidly gaining an enthusiastic following among truffle aficionados and the luminaries of haut cuisine.”

     As the Worm Turns, by Anna Lydd. Foote Imprints, 2008. “This ground-breaking study delineates the previously unsuspected sophistication of these unsung heroes of the underground, their playful nature, ethical principles, and aesthetic aspirations.”

     The All-Too-Human Einstein, by Laura Van Ersha.  Raumzeit Books, 2008. “The author shows conclusively that Einstein was relatively conventional, generally muddleheaded, and a mediocre violinist.  This will predictably infuriate the complacent doyens of physics.”

     The Nearest Stars, by Proxima Santori. Celeste Press, 2008. “Dignifying what would otherwise be mere celebrity gossip, Ms.Santori recounts her exciting life and richly rewarding experience as the next-door neighbor of several famous movie actresses.”

     Coming to Terms with the Future, by Kay Syrah. Watts-Cumming Books, 2008. “Chances are, you’ve occasionally worried about tomorrow.  Ms. Syrah argues that wisdom lies in unquestioning acceptance of whatever the fates may bring.  She may or may not be right.”

     The Annotated Children’s Dracula, by Borgo van Pyre. San Gwen Press, 2008. The unspeakable bloody horrors of the Victorian thriller have been sensitively edited into an entertaining tale for preadolescents. It will introduce them to the problems of adult life.

     Lighten Up! by Mort Todt. Lou Gubrey Books, 2008.  Death and dissolution are commonly regarded as morbid unpleasant subjects unfit for light conversation at the dinner table.  Todt shows how they can be introduced to good effect in a nonchalant manner.

     Funny Farm, by I.M. Agricola. George Eclog Books, 2008. Known for their sly wit, sage wisdom, and stoic reserve, tillers of the soil have traditionally been reluctant to cast their pearls before swine, but the editor has convinced them to relent and share the fun.

     The Nomonecricon, by H. P. Kraft.  Miskatonic University Press, 2008. The story of how a bespectacled librarian breathlessly retrieved from her reserve book shelves a long-lost volume of secret knowledge and powerful spells, and then forgot where she put it.

     My God, by Ray Valation.  Creationist Press, 2008. Here, for the first time, is the unvarnished truth about the Big Guy upstairs who made it all happen.  Told in a down-to-earth style, with an appendix listing earlier and now outdated works on the subject.

     A Dictionary of Dictionaries, by Watts Wordsworth. Tedium House, 2008. “If you’ve always hankered after a fully-annotated, illustrated, India paper, morocco-bound compilation of all the dictionaries ever published, this is your book!  Best in class!”

     Carrion, by A. Carr Cass.  Cook’s Books, 2008.  Here is a lavishly-illustrated guide to the preparation of roadkill for the gourmet table. This “food of opportunity” presents a real challenge to the ingenious chef and the adventurous epicure. The sauces help a lot.

     Haiku for Everyone, by Polly Glotte.  Interlingua Publishing, 2008. All language buffs will celebrate the author’s hauntingly sensitive 17-syllable Haiku poems in Estonian, Basque, Navaho, Hawaiian, Icelandic, Swahili, Albanian, Urdu, Inuit, Cambodian, and English.

     Evolutionary History of the Preposerous, by E.O. Seene. Strata Books, 2008   Precursor of the rhinocerous, the preposcerous is now recognized by palaeontologists as an evolutionary anomaly, far sleeker, swifter, and smarter than its slow, ponderous, stupid descendant.

     The Book of ReallyAdvanced Puzzles, by Otis S. Hard.  Branebooks, 2008. This challenge to puzzle-lovers offers three-dimensional sudoku problems integrated with palindromic protocols.  Those with IQs under 160 are strongly advised not to even attempt them.

     Italian Wartime Intelligence, by Donatella Nobatti. Notabene Books, 2008.  Contrary to the practice of the Nazis, Fascist espionage authorities never got around to debriefing their agents.  Overstuffed with information, they surrendered in droves to get relief and respect.

     GPS for Hikers, by Lawson D. Woods. Latlong Publishers, 2008. “GPS technology has already made it possible to know exactly where you are. Woods hold out the hope that newer GPS devices will eventually be able to tell you why you are there."

      Manipulative Quantification, by Cal Cueless.  Tomes Books, 2008. This is the long-awaited distillation of the author’s mathematical procedures for minimizing magnitudes, maximizing minutiae, and quantifying qualities. “A triumph of rigor and clarity.” 

     The Podiatric Dialectic, by Olive Tentoze. Lightfoot Imprints, 2008.  The world-famous female chiropodist demonstrates from the annals of her own practice how all human left and right feet are locked in a lifelong struggle for domination and prestige.

     Wolverine: the Last Pet You’ll Ever Have, by Lupe Fox. Savage Books, 2008. This book teaches you how to train a wolverine to forget he’s the world’s most aggressive predator and eat out of your hand. Should you survive the course, he will become your faithful friend.

    Learn to Yodel, Swiss-Style, by O. Leo Leahy.  Echobooks, 2008.  “Whether acapella or accompanied by alpenhorn, yodeling has become a formidable influence in western music. Those to whom the Swiss-German manuals are impenetrable will appreciate this book.

    Red Meat and the Errant Thumb, by Raimund Carver.  Packer’s Press, 2008. “The best guide ever written to the practice of artful bovine butchery, with clear instructions on how to avoid making all kinds of bloody mistakes.” (Comes with CD and surgical bandages.)

     A Wardrobe for All Seasons, by Luke Howard Fitzhugh. Fashionable Books, 2008. “This is the cutting-edge book for fashionistas.  It persuades us that we can be both stylish and comfortable with just one tailored black costume, worn day and night, all year round.”

     How To Do It Right, by Al Fixette. Practical Publishing, 2008.  “Gives concrete instructions, with helpful illustrations, on how to accomplish a variety of filthy repugnant tasks with dignity and good humor. Shows how some fixes may also be profitable.”

     From Scrubwoman to  Socialite, by Celia Bates. Phoenix Paperbacks, 2008. “The inspiring tale of an abused and illiterate scullery maid who transformed herself into an elegant society hostess by practicing a strict regime of celibacy, cycling, and prayer.”

     A Bookman’s Courage, by M.T. Page. ExPress. 2008. “These days, with the rush to make literacy  a prerequisite of librarianship, it is refreshing to find one brave bookman who is not intimidated, and refuses on principle to become a slave to printed letters on a pag                                


 The Patrons of the Library Second Annual

 Student Book Collection Contest



  • Entry is open to any CSUF student enrolled with a minimum of 6 units in the fall 2008 semester 
  • Previous winning collections cannot be resubmitted&nbsp
  • Only one entry per person&nbsp
  • The collection may be on any subject but must be based on some unifying principle or theme  
  • The student must own a collection of at least 25 items with the emphasis being on books, but up to 20% of the entire collection may be non-book items (e.g. pamphlets,periodicals, maps, manuscripts, photographs, etc.) that support it. 


  • Entry applications must be submitted by e-mail to Richard Pollard, Librarian, CSUF, at 
  • Entries must be received by midnight, Tuesday, November 4, 2008.&nbsp
  • Each entry application must be typed and accompanied by a 300-400 word essay describing the collection and its importance to you, and a bibliographic listing of the entire collection. In the listing, highlight at least 10 key items by adding two or three sentences that summarize why you consider those books to be meaningful to you as part of your collection. It is recommended that the MLA or APA style be used, or you may reference the Chicago Style Manual. You can refer to hhtp:// for additional help. 
  • All applications will be evaluated by a committee of members of the Board of the Patrons of the CSUF Library.  Only finalists will be given the opportunity to meet with the committee members prior to final selection of winners. 


    Final judging for the contest will take place between November 5 and November 21. Finalists will be asked to bring five items selected from their collection for review, and will be invited to comment on those items. Winners will be determined by the scope of their collection, their presentation, and the quality of the essay. A panel of judges will consist of individuals representing members of the Patrons of the Library and Library staff.&nbsp

Judging will be based on the following:

  1. Evidence of creativity in building the collection
  2. Significant aspects of the collection and its value or usefulness for the collector
  3. Clarity of the collector’s essay.
  4. Correctness and completeness of the application packet.



FIRST PLACE: $500.00


THIRD PLACE: $100.00.

    Winners will be notified by the President of the Patrons of the Library; the prizes will be distributed at a Patrons meeting with the winners present.   In addition, winners may be invited to display up to 15 items from their collection in a prominent area of the library. The Patrons of the Library will retain the entire application packet.



Student Book Collection Contest

California State University, Fullerton

Patrons of the Library


Date: ______________        Number of Units - Fall 2008  ________

Name: _______________________________________         (  ) Graduate

 Address: _____________________________________         (  ) Undergraduate



Email address: _______________________________ 

Phone Number:  ____________________________ 

Title of Collection: ______________________________

 Please submit the following for a complete application: 

  1. This form completed
  1. A 300-400 word essay describing your collection
  1. A bibliographic list using correct bibliographic form

For guidance, refer to PROCESS, point 3.a. and 3.b.

Send complete application materials to Richard Pollard, University Librarian,

at by midnight on November 4, 2008.