Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Tankon Beckons

In a few hours I'll be off to the wilds below Mt. Rainier for the semi-annual gathering called Tankon. Just me and four other curmudgeons at a remote cabin with every amenity but running water. Sloth and eating are the main entertainments, with reading, movie viewing, and chatting/arguing following close behind. I also plan to bring my laptop and write a bit.

Festivus was fine. I spent Festivus Eve in the dark and rain, holding a flashlight while Darryl changed the alternator on his van. Festivus morning I was awakened from a deep, restful sleep by Kristine, who couldn't wait another minute to open her presents. I got some nice presents and one really great one: a Daisy BB gun. I've wanted one since I was a kid, but my mother was one of those You'll Put Your Eye Out wet blankets, so I never had this rite-of-passage weapon. Luckily, some friends did and I shot up scores of non-refundable bottles one summer.
Later that day I went to my other daughter's house for some more presents and a good pot roast dinner. My girl, Stephanie, has been working so much at Taco Bell (Our Motto: Each Worker a Peon) she fell asleep after the presents were exchanged, so we went back home and declared it a good Festivus all around. I have three gift cards to use: $15 at Target, $30 at Home Depot, and $100 at Wilson's House of Suede and Whips.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Just in Time for Festivus

Don't delay, my well-hyped novel LOVE, DEATH AND THE TOYMAN is now on sale. The regular retail price is $25.95 but you can save a few pennies at places like Amazon or Overstock.com. Or you can go to Limehouse Books and pay a mere $54.16 for a copy. Holy Hypermoderns, Batman! What's that guy thinking?

There's even a copy in the main branch of the Tacoma Public Library. No, they didn't religion all of a sudden. One of my shills asked them to stock a copy.

Yesterday Amazon had one copy in stock. Today they have two. Hurry before they have dozens.

As I type this there are promos on TV for an interview Katie Couric did or will do with the wife of one of the men who died climbing Mt. Hood in Oregon.
Now, I'm very sorry these men died and I feel for their families, but I can't help but also feel that they're all a bunch of damn fools for leaving the relative safety of flat land to climb a dangerous mountain during the winter, especially when the weather recently has been horrible. These were totally avoidable deaths and the dead men would have been wise to think first of their families before risking their lives on a foolish venture.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

K-Mart, K-Mart, Spare That Tree

The other day I went to K-Mart to buy a DVD for Kristine's birthday. That's all I bought, one DVD. I ran across the receipt a few minutes ago and was stunned. It was 19 3/4 inches long. Naturally, most of it was advertising for their wares or discount promises if one took advantage of, say, a one-day special on certain toys or jewelry.

I hate going to that store anyway, but getting a sales tag long enough to make a necktie kind of jerks my chain. Perhaps if I was a logger I'd feel different.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Tacoma's Libraries, Part 2

I happened to be downtown today and stopped into the Tacoma Library's main branch to see if they'd order my novel. At first I didn't say who I was and they thought I was just some patron trying to get the book. I finally told them I was not interested in reading it, but just checking to see if they had ordered it or indeed would order it.
That's when the bureaucracy started:
"We rely on reviews (LJ, PW, KKK)." I said I have had five published reviews and all were positive but one (asshole at KKKirkus).
"We don't buy just because an author is local." Well thanks for supporting Tacoma's arts, cousin.
And on and on about procedures and policies. It's like I stuck a quarter in a jukebox and got a recording of the Kiwanas' by-laws.

The Multnomah, Oregon, library system already has eight copies of my book on order, sight unseen, but my wonderful home city acts like I'm trying to get them to spread a disease. I was right the first time. The Tacoma Library System stinks on ice.

BTW, that last positive review came from the one and only Harriet Klausner. Or maybe she's the four and only. Rumors abound that she's the front for a reviewing factory. Whatever the case, she liked it. Frankly, I'm surprised. Pleased, but surprised. I didn't think she'd like a book like this.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Happy Birthday

Today is my baby's 16th birthday. Happy Birthday, Kristine. It's been nothing but great.

Also, this is the anniversary of the birth of George Armstrong Custer. He's 167.