Tuesday, January 1, 2008

January 1, 2008 - Inforat* (for Information)

For your information, this is the Chinese Year of the Rat, and perhaps the most informative rat in all of literature was Templeton, who at the behest of Charlotte would take daily trips to the dump to score scraps of words for her to copy into her web. (Although, Kenneth Grahame's Ratty and Julia Cunningham's Andrew both spin great yarns as well.) Thus we are informed that Wilbur is "terrific," "radiant," and "humble." In other words, "Some Pig!" Here's hoping that 2008 proves equally exemplary for all of you. Inforat* is a "moderate probability" typo, appearing nine times in OhioLINK. (There are fully 11 more variations on this typo currently to be found on the Ballard list also.) Librarians, as we all know, are friends of both information and good writing, and as Wilbur says at the end of the book: "It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer. Charlotte was both." (Illustration by Garth Williams, from Charlotte's Web by E.B. White.)

Carol Reid

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