Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Captain Sully's missing library book

Sometimes cable television smarm stories carry genuine punch.

In this one, Captain Chesley Sullenberger called the Fresno State Library to report that he'd lost one of its books in an unanticipated event. The library, according to the story, responded that it not only would forgive the lost book fee but also dedicate the replacement to the pilot.

The kicker, the report declares: The book was about ethics.

But what was the title of the book? If Extra TV went to the trouble to check out the story, why didn't it obtain the title? This raises warning flags in my mind: bogus Internet stories tend to be vague about specific details.

Hmm. Maybe needs to get to the bottom of this tale. I hope it's true.

LATER: A reporter for the New York Daily News did ask about the title, and he says the Fresno State librarian refused to give it, citing privacy issues. (Librarians, said the Lady Friend -- herself a librarian -- do not tell the press, or nosy cops, what books their patrons check out.) That's good enough for me. I believe the story now.


  1. The reporter should have asked, "Has the library purchased a new book this week on ethics and if so, what's the title?" Library patrons' reading records may not be public, as it should be, but the public library has to publicly account for all its funds.

  2. You're not one of those sneaky underhanded investigative reporters, are you now, Three Tree Pointer? Nudge nudge nudge.

    I suspect, however, that it would have been quite a few days, maybe even weeks, after Captain Sully reported the book missing that the library placed its order.

  3. Yes I was, but apparently not sneaky enough! Now, besides working to pay the bills, I volunteer on my local library board. I'll have to see if Steve Martinez inhabits our shelves. I know the Gin Fizz is hangared in the the aerospace section not far from Lindbergh's "We".