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Cat in the Stax: The Perfect Time to Decorate

By Ethan Shea

"Halloween 1982 Villanova"

Boo! This Halloween photo from 1982 can be found in Falvey’s Digital Library, and although it may not be the most terrifying image, that’s fine by me.

As someone who is a bit weary of the supernatural, I tend to keep the season’s ghouls and goblins at arm’s length. If you feel the same, you can check out my blog from last year with some fall films that are far from frightening.

However, this doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate some high-quality Halloween decor! The big question is, when should the autumn adornments make their appearance?

"Halloween Decor Unsplash"Most people (emphasis on most) can agree that mid-July is too early to assemble the plastic skeletons, but is mid-September premature as well? I feel like everyone has a relative who’s known for either decorating far too early or keeping their artificial cobwebs up for far too long, so this topic carries weight for many.

Now that it’s officially October, it’s safe to say that any and all spooky decor is welcome. In fact, according to Martha Stewart, the first half of October is the most popular time to break out the frightful fall decorations.

However, this all depends on your community. Whether it’s your neighboring dorms or the cul-de-sac you live on, if everyone is up for coordinating some early ornamentation, why not go for it? I personally love when communities coordinate their decoration plans. This applies to all holidays but especially Halloween and end-of-the-year festivities.

Decoration timing also depends on the potency of your Halloween decor. You can probably get away with leaving a mushy pumpkin on the doorstep, but a faux undead corpse propped up in the front yard may begin to turn heads (in a bad way) not too long after Halloween.

Lately it’s been too damp to spend time decorating outdoors, but regardless of the weather, let us know what your thoughts on Halloween decorating are? Is it ever too early for eerie embellishments, and when, if at all, will you be decorating this year?


Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a graduate student in the English Department and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.


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Caturday: Hoops Mania 2022

T-Pain. Image courtesy of the Belle Air Yearbook.

T-Pain. Image courtesy of the Belle Air Yearbook.

Nicki Minaj. Image courtesy of the Belle Air Yearbook.

Nicki Minaj. Image courtesy of the Belle Air Yearbook.

Wiz Khalifa. Image courtesy of the Belle Air Yearbook.

Wiz Khalifa. Image courtesy of the Belle Air Yearbook.


Happy Hoops Mania, Wildcats! Take a guess at the surprise performer this year!



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Photo Friday: One Book Villanova

Jose Antonio Vargas snaps a photo with Luciana MacNamara, a Staff Psychologist at the University Counseling Center.

Jose Antonio Vargas snaps a photo with Luciana MacNamara, a Staff Psychologist at the University Counseling Center.


Thank you to everyone who came to the 2022 One Book Villanova talk and book signing with Jose Antonio Vargas on Wednesday, Sept. 28. If you were unable to attend, please join us on Tuesday, Oct. 25, from 1-2:15 p.m. in Falvey Library’s Speakers’ Corner for an interactive luncheon discussion on this year’s One Book Villanova selection, Vargas’ Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen.

Copies of the memoir are available at Falvey Memorial Library.


Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 


 


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Curious Cat: Fall Festivities

By Olivia Dunn and Ethan Shea

"Curious Cat Banner"

Happy Thursday Wildcats! Welcome to the Falvey famous Curious Cat blog! If you’re new here, the Curious Cat is a recurring blog that features Falvey patrons answering various questions throughout the semester. If you hang out in Falvey enough, you could be featured too!

This semester’s Curious Cats are Olivia Dunn and Ethan Shea, and they’re starting off with a timely topic, your favorite fall festivities. For this week’s Curious Cat, six members of Nova Nation were asked: “What’s your favorite thing to do in the fall?” Here’s how they responded:

Curious Cat 9/29

“Eat Reese’s pumpkins.”
—Tierney Schiff ’23

“Wear hoodies and shorts.”
—Ishan Varma ’23

 “Enjoy the crisp fall weather.”
—Adam Gaughan ’23

“Guess who the Hoops Mania performer is.”
—Michael Correia ’23

Curious Cat 9/29 (2)

“Apple Picking.”
— Christina Tillinghast ’24

Curious Cat 9/29 (3)

“Pumpkin picking.”
— Emily Krzemienski ’26


Olivia Dunn HeadshotOlivia Dunn is a senior at Villanova University. She works in Falvey Library as a Communications and Marketing Assistant and majors in Communication with specializations in both Journalism and Public Relations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a graduate student in the English Department at Villanova University and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.


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TBT: Vasey Hall in the Fall

Image of Vasey Hall in the fall of 1993.

Image courtesy of the Villanova University Digital Library.


For this week’s Throwback Thursday (TBT), check out this fall image of Vasey Hall from 1993! The inscription on the side of Vasey Hall reads, “Originally known as the Commerce and Finance Building, this structure was later named for the Augustinian Provincial, Rev. Nicholas J. Vasey, O.S.A., 1918-1926.” Many theater productions were held in Vasey Hall before the new John and Joan Mullen Center for the Performing Arts opened in 2020. Villanova Theatre’s newest show, Men On Boats will be running from Sept. 22 through Oct. 2, so be sure to get your tickets for this comedic satire!


Anna Jankowski ’23 CLAS is a senior Communication Major from just outside Baltimore who ​​works as a Communication & Marketing Assistant in Falvey.

 

 


 


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Cat in the Stax: A Game of Chess

By Ethan Shea

"World Chess Hall of Fame"

The world’s largest chess piece and the World Chess Hall of Fame in St. Louis, Missouri

Last week I traveled to St. Louis, Missouri to attend the Annual Meeting of the International T.S. Eliot Society. St. Louis is arguably the chess capital of the world, and Eliot, who was born in the city, was an avid chess player himself. In fact, The Waste Land, Eliot’s most famous poem, has a section titled “A Game of Chess.” This timeless piece, which was published 100 years ago, is available for pick up here at Falvey.

"Chess Exhibit"

World Chess Hall of Fame Exhibit

During my visit, I made sure to visit the World Chess Hall of Fame. The museum’s current exhibit focuses on the famous 1972 World Championship match between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky. Fischer’s underdog win made him the first ever American World Chess Champion and ended 24 years of uninterrupted Soviet chess dominance.

I believe it’s safe to say that almost everything people know about chess these days was learned from the hit Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit. This isn’t a bad thing, so if you’re interested in the show, check out this “Dig Deeper” blog that provides lots of resources on chess strategy that are available in the Library.

My visit was timely, as an ongoing controversy in the world of chess has been making headlines lately. Reigning World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen recently resigned from a game against 19-year-old American Hans Niemann in the Julius Baer Generation Cup after playing only one move. This came as a shock, as having the world’s top player quit a legitimate tournament without even trying could be a bad look for the sport.

But the situation is deeper than that. It all started in St. Louis during the Sinquefield Cup. Niemann was entered in the tournament as the lowest seed and somehow managed to win against Carlsen, who even had the advantage by playing with white. The next day, Carlsen unexpectedly resigned from the tournament and posted a strange tweet claiming he can’t talk or he’ll be in “big trouble.”

"Grad Lounge Chess Board"

Graduate Lounge Chess Board

This led fans to assume Carlsen suspected Niemann of cheating. Although Carlsen has not directly said this, fans speculate his resignation against Neimann at Julius Baer essentially confirms Carlsen’s stance. Niemann does have a history of cheating and has even been banned from chess.com, the world’s largest online chess forum, so the accusations are not entirely out of the blue.

The St. Louis Chess Club has said they do not suspect there was any cheating during Carlsen and Niemann’s game, but the resolution to the situation remains a mystery.

I’d certainly describe myself as a fan of chess. I’ve even read a couple books on chess strategy in futile attempts to improve my skills at the game. Although I might not be the best chess player, I love the endless variations and strategies the game offers. They’re always entertaining and often beautiful.

If you’re a graduate student, there’s a lovely chess board in the Graduate Student Lounge on the third floor of Old Falvey. If you’re looking to play, check it out!


Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a graduate student in the English Department at Villanova University and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.


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Cat in the Stax: A Summer to Remember

By Ethan Shea

Heat

Tomorrow, on September 22, summer will officially be over. This may be hard to stomach, but don’t fret. There’s plenty to look forward to in the fall!

If we’re being honest, summer really ends when the school year begins, but I understand the world does not revolve around our academic calendar. If you’re a meteorologist, summer ends when August does. Tomorrow’s autumnal equinox only signifies the end of Astronomical summer.

During the autumnal equinox, which signifies the beginning of fall, the sun is directly above the equator. This means the amount of daylight the Northern and Southern hemispheres receive is nearly equal. Because our Gregorian calendar is not precisely in tune with the Earth’s revolution around the sun, hence our use of leap years, the dates of equinoxes vary within a few days.

Essentially, the vernal (spring) and autumnal equinoxes are opposites of the summer and winter equinoxes. During summer and winter equinoxes the Earth’s tilt, either toward or away from the sun, is at its peak. During vernal and autumnal equinoxes, the Earth has essentially no tilt relative to the sun’s rays.

"Heat Maps Summer 2022"

Data: NOAA; Chart: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

Personally, I’m happy to welcome autumn and the cooler weather it brings. The hot summers are tough for this born and bred New Englander. But I wasn’t the only one feeling the heat this year, as the summer of 2022 was one of the hottest ever recorded. In fact, this summer tied summer 2020 as the hottest summer globally on record. Read this Washington Post article at Falvey Library’s website to find more stats about how this summer’s heat stacks up against previous years.

 

In addition to more temperate weather, we have fall’s vibrant foliage to look forward to. Check out  this TBT post which includes a picturesque autumn photo from the 1965 edition of Belle Air.

Let us know in the comments what your favorite season is! Are you someone who likes it hot, or are you eagerly waiting for a cool autumn breeze?


Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a graduate student in the English Department and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.


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Welcome to Falvey: Iliana Chaleva Joins Resource Management & Description

Iliana Chaleva

Lia Chaleva, Acquisitions & Licensing Librarian. Photo by Kallie Stahl, Communication & Marketing Specialist.


Iliana “Lia” Chaleva recently joined Resource Management and Description as Acquisitions & Licensing Librarian. Resource Management & Description “builds and cultivates collections through acquisitions, licensing, description, discovery, and access to resources for Villanova scholars and community.”

Before joining the Falvey Library staff, Chaleva was the e-Resource Librarian at West Chester University. She also worked as an e-Resource Librarian at Bryn Mawr College for nearly 15 years. After coming across the job posting for Falvey Library, Chaleva knew she wanted to explore the opportunity at Villanova University. “I live on the Main Line and I’ve always had an affinity for Villanova’s campus. Especially these last few years, driving past and seeing all the progress that has been made. Its such an inviting place.”

Originally from Bulgaria, Chaleva earned her Master’s in Library & Information Science (LIS) from Rutgers University. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Relations from the American University in Bulgaria. Her interest in LIS began when she worked at the European Union (EU) Information Center in Bulgaria after graduating from the American University in Bulgaria. “The space had a small library with documents about the EU, work stations, free brochures. I worked at the public information desk answering questions: It felt like I was working in a mini library. I became interested in learning how to effectively organize information. Rutgers University was a perfect fit for me. I was able to conduct research and work on a variety of library information projects while completing my degree.”

Chaleva compliments her colleagues when discussing her role as Acquisitions & Licensing Librarian. “I work with a wonderful team. We are always working to get access for all users. I am responsible for reviewing current contracts with publishers and ensuring those terms and conditions are favorable for the Villanova community. My role entails a lot of technical information, but ultimately those technicalities can benefit Falvey Library patrons. Acquiring new resources is a collaborative process. Everyone has input, and we all work together to ensure we are obtaining the best information from vendors.”

In her free time, Chaleva enjoys spending time with her family and watching her children’s sporting events. “My family and I like to be outside. We like to kayak, hike, and fish. (‘We catch the fish, but always put them back!)'” She enjoys reading and watching historical movies. Her reading recommendations for Falvey patrons: Antarctica by David Day, Pennsylvania Good Eats by Brian Yarvin, and True Crime Philadelphia by Kathryn Caravan.

Chaleva’s office is located on the second floor of Falvey Library, room 232. Email iliana.chaleva@villanova.edu; 610-519-4731.


Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 


 


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1842 Day: Support Falvey Library

1842 Day has arrived, and Villanova welcomes alumni, students, faculty, staff, as well as friends, family, and supporters to join the fun by supporting Falvey Library!

The Library will be celebrating on our social channels and in-person on the first floor of Falvey, so stop by! You might even win a prize!

Located at the heart of main campus, Falvey Memorial Library is the interdisciplinary academic center of the Villanova University community. Students, faculty, and staff visit Falvey over half a million times each year. Whether to discuss research with a librarian, attend a book talk with an accomplished author, or find a quiet place to write or study, a visit to the Library is an essential part of a student’s life at Villanova.

Gifts to the Library on 1842 Day over the past six years have helped enhance and impact many areas of the Library, including e-journals, databases, books, and treasured items in Distinctive Collections, benefiting students and faculty for generations to come. Past donations were used to purchase public health materials and preservation supplies for rare materials, including a specialized vacuum to safely clean books in Special Collections and archival boxes to rehouse thousands of at-risk, rare materials.

In 2021, Falvey continued to expand diversity, equity, and inclusion materials within the collection, including adding a Jewish newspaper collection, The Jewish Exponent (1887-1990.)

“This effort utilized 1842 Day funding in an impactful way,” says Millicent Gaskell, University Librarian. “The Library represents a link from alumni’s shared past to current students. Where the University’s memories and history is preserved. And a hub of academics and research support for students to excel, both in their undergraduate careers and beyond.”

Make your gift on 1842 Day, or beat the rush and donate early!

 


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Liz Roche Company’s “Yes and Yes!” Performance

By Ethan Shea

Yes and Yes by Liz Roche Company

On Tuesday, September 13, Liz Roche Company put on the first professional dance performance in the John and Joan Mullen Center for the Performing Arts. This performance, titled “Yes and Yes!”, is inspired by the 18 sections of James Joyce’s magnum opus, UlyssesThe show ran for a total of 70 minutes with no intermissions and was met with a standing ovation.

Formed in 1999, Liz Roche Company is an Irish contemporary dance group led by choreographer Liz Roche. In 2020, Roche herself was elected to Aosdána, an affiliation of artists whose work has contributed significantly to Ireland’s creative arts. Among other achievements, Liz Roche Company has produced more than twenty original productions and performed in several nations, from China to the United States.

Regarding Tuesday’s show, there were a total of four dancers who took on the demanding performance (Diarmuid Armstrong, Sarah Cerneaux, Grace Cuny, and Mufutau Yusuf), and each of them left everything on the stage.

The performance managed to fit an immense amount of material from Ulysses‘s lengthy body of text into the relatively brief performance. In a post-performance Q&A with Dr. Joseph Lennon, Villanova’s Director of Irish Studies, Roche explained that she was taken aback by how clear Joyce portrays location throughout the piece. “Yes and Yes!” strives to maintain that quality of the text through Roche’s choreography.

Liz Roche Company would not have graced the stage of the John and Joan Center for the Performing Arts without the help of the Center for Irish Studies. With study abroad opportunities, Irish language courses, and classes offered in seven different disciplines, Irish Studies at Villanova is full of exciting academic opportunities.

If you’re interested in learning more about Irish Studies, check out the Irish Studies Research Guide on Falvey Library’s website.

Moreover, Falvey grants access to ample amounts of information on contemporary dance. For example, you can learn all about contemporary dance with Marc Strauss’ book Looking at Contemporary Dance: A Guide for the Internet Age, available for viewing online.

Keep an eye out for more Irish events planned for the Fall Semester, including a musical performance by Ian Lynch of the Dublin folk music group “Lankum” on October 20.


Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a graduate student in the English Department at Villanova University and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Memorial Library.


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Last Modified: September 15, 2022