Monday, December 28, 2009


people who read mysteries tend to have favorites. Two of mine are Sue Grafton (the alphabet lady) and Robert Parker. I have recently noticed, however, my increasing irritation with the style of both of these writers and I'm beginning to wonder (meaning, it may be time to read for writing style as well as for content) if other mystery writers do the same things; one, the excessive and annoying use of the personal pronoun--i.e., "I walked to my door, went out, down my front steps, shrugging into my jacket as I went, out to my new car, etc etc" and, at least in Parker's case, there seems to be a dearth of semicolons. Only once in the first fifteen books did I actually find one, and that seemed to be unavoidable, so he used it.

That, and the fact that any time you write a first person mystery there is a necessity for backstory, (or appears to be), partly to explain the references for new references, but it also is a neat way to pad the pages.
Maybe it's unavoidable, I dunno.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

book stores

Today in the local mall I found out that our resident (and only, actually) bookstore is closing in about a month. It's a Border's, and while I don't always agree with their choice of books that they allow us to read, it is still a bookstore, and the only one, incredibly, between the seacoast and Concord, a span of about 80 miles.

The clerks were angry, and sad. I am too.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

spel chek

spell check is humbling to a touch typist who learned on an old office machine, and is now confined to a plastic monstrosity referred to as a keyboard; it's like trying to perform Swan Lake in a closet.

Friday, December 11, 2009

you have to wonder

last week we became the parents of a cellphone. Wednesday of this week we had a large snowstorm. About 9 AM I got a call from him, saying he had just been in an accident on one of the back roads. He was fine, the truck was bunged up a bit, and they were waiting for the wrecker to drag him out of the ditch he had landed in, to avoid someone slewing around the corner at him on a very steep hill. It's a treacherous spot even in good weather, and in a snowstorm it's like Russian roulette.

I suppose without the cell he'd have ended up at home eventually and told me about it, but there seems to be some kind of strange connection in my head with "have phone/need phone" at this point. In other words, the folks who Watch Us with great glee and sniggers wait for things like this, and then twist the dial a bit, just to make it more interesting. "After all", they reason, "he's got the phone..."

Saturday, December 5, 2009


The mister went out and got himself a cellphone. As long as I don't have to deal with the mysteries of one, im cool with that. He wants to continue this hiking thing he (we) started last summer, and I realized very early on that my dislike of trudging up mountains and then coming back down has solidified into loathing, partly because the body no longer will tolerate those kinds of stresses. And with only one eye to work from, there is no depth of field, no way to judge just where the ground is when you step down from a ten inch rock. ow.

But he has gotten wistful, saying he'd like to go but he knows I don't. With a cell phone, he can go without feeling uncomfortable about being out there alone, and if he gets in trouble he can call for help. And I won't have the guilts about any of it.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Turkey update

I seriously do not know what part of the brain functions with the Fish & Game people here; after our two summer turkeys disappeared into what I can only imagine is someone's freezer, the other day there were ten turkeys all milling about in a great huddle. Now they seem to have sorted themselves out, and the three that have taken over our field are behaving suspiciously like half tame, hand fed, newly released into the wild turkeys, with all the cunning and wild turkey skills of a baby duckling.

When I drove up into the yard this afternoon there they were, chowing down not ten feet from the car, never even looked up. I got out, slammed the door, one of them looked up for a minute and then went back to eating. I suspect if I offered them grain out of a pail they'd mob me.

I think turkey season is over, so basically what we're getting is free meals for the coyotes, at least the ones who don't mind talon marks and being beaten to a froth by enraged turkeys...