Dear Library Staff,

Dear Library Staff
            I recently received a letter from you containing a flash drive that I’d forgotten at one of your computers. Getting my flash drive back absolutely made my day. I figured it was long gone, never to be seen again. I am so very glad for policy of not only keeping such things but also giving the extra effort to return them the their owners.
            I feel the need to explain why this particular piece of software is so precious to me. While my occupation of in landscaping, I am also an aspiring writer (emphasis on aspiring). I’ve been working on the first chapters of a fantasy novel. Finding the time and motivation to buckle down and work out the fine details can be difficult, so as a means of personal coercion I told my thirteen-year-old niece about the project and promised her to let her see the first chapters. She’s a fan of Sci-fi/Fantasy and also a super sharp young lady, with an intellect and a wit that exceed the average teenager. The deal was that she would give me honest feedback and if I didn’t get the chapters to her before a certain that had free reign to “make fun of me”. She gladly accepted.
            Unfortunately, the computer file containing my infant novel became corrupted, which erased the project. This wouldn’t have been an issue if I hadn’t lost track of this flash drive which had the only other copy of the file. When I received your letter with my flash drive, I did what some people might call a “happy dance” followed by a impromptu song, boasting on the greatness of libraries everywhere.
            While I am vastly relieved to them back in my possession, I did miss my deadline and, at my next family gathering, will no doubt be subject to the tauntings of a snarky teenager. At least I can finally get back to work on my book.
            Again, thank you for the returning the flash drive. I will attempt to be less forgetful in future visits. Thank you so much for the services you provide.
Andrew S.

Berlin/New Berlin

I love the state of Illinois. I really do.

The same state that brought you San Jose (pronounced like San Joes), Athen (Aye-thens) and Cairo (Care-o) now bring not one, but two brilliantly original names for obscure, small central Illinois towns.

Part of me wonders: do the town’s residents tell everyone that they live in “Bear-lin” or “New Bear-Lin”? Something to think about.