Thursday, January 7, 2010


My wife and I spent the Christmas holidays in Halifax. I love Halifax; it's a cool city. We dined with family at somewhat fancy restaurants, shopped (she did, I don't like shopping) at fancy shoppes(fancy spelling there), visited a really packed Mall where my wife's coat almost got eaten by an escalator---by the way, that could have been bad since she was still in her coat at the time. It stopped the escalator dead despite the instant grumbling of those ascending people on the stairs. My wife, in her usual fashion, strode along head held high as if nothing uncommon had happened, carrying her now crumpled and dirty coat in her arms. I suggested that maybe she should report it, to which she replied that she wouldn't be able to devote the time to all the paper work involved. She had a point. We(whole family) ended the holidays at the IMax watching AVATAR. Absolutely fantastic movie!

And my wife and I spent a cold rainy afternoon at Chapters.

I must admit, Chapters is a great store, and on that day it was just filled with people buying books. Heather Reisman would be pleased, she's the CEO of Chapters/Indigo. Yes, and I would like to thank Ms. Reisman for this excellent bookstore, and the many discounts on books, but I still won't read her "Picks". Sorry. BY the way, there should be a Chapters in Sydney, Cape Breton! I've been saying that for years now, obviously to deaf ears because there seems to be no response. So here's my pitch: Hey Heather(if I may be so bold), call, email, text, tweet, me, and I'll fill you in on the details about said Chapters bookstore in Sydney. OK?

My wife and I spent around two hundred dollars on books that day---it was a delight.
MY wife got Linden MacIntyre's THE BISHOP'S MAN. I knew she would. She asked me if I would read it and I said no, don't think so. To be noncommittal about it, I'll just say that I grew up at a time heavily influenced by priests and nuns, and have had my fill with those people.
She also bought SOUTH OF BROAD, by Pat Conroy. He also wrote THE PRINCE OF TIDES a while back, a novel my wife greatly admired.
THE LITTLE FRIEND by Donna Tartt was acquired by her also. The author also wrote THE SECRET HISTORY. An interesting writer.

While we were perusing the racks, laden down with our selected books, a very amiable young woman who is employed at the store came over to us with a rather neat carrying bag we could use while shopping. The bag was brightly coloured, and very handy. We liked it. I asked this astute, helpful young woman if we could keep the bag, to which she replied---all the time with that winning smile---indeed no, you give it back at checkout. I thought, we'll see. At checkout, I informed the cashier that that this young employee told me I could keep the bag. The cashier said, "No, she didn't.", and she took the bag and threw it in a box on the floor. Well, that didn't work. Bright people these Chapter's employees.

Oh, oh, by the way, I neglected to inform you about an overt omission on my wife's part regarding the purchasing of new novels. It is this: She did NOT get Margaret Atwood's new novel BEFORE THE FLOOD. Aha. I see this novel actually went nowhere on the charts. So much for speculative literature, Margaret. Try Science Fiction. I actually brought this apparent oversight up to my wife when we were in the store. She said that she thinks she'll pass on it for now, and that she doesn't want to discuss it right now. OK. Fine with me, I responded.

I bought Kurt Vonnegut posthumously published book LOOK AT THE BIRDIE. It's a book of short stories. I read them all over the holidays. I must say, they were a little disappointing. These stories were not ready for publication, and I think they were written many years ago, probably when he was honing his skills at the craft. Every once in a while you could get a glimpse of his sharp, comic, wit--- a taste of what was to come. But I enjoyed them, nevertheless; It was just good to be reading his stuff again.
I also bought Carlos Ruiz Zafon's THE SHADOW OF THE WIND. I wonder if this book will put me in a spin like ANGEL'S GAME did in the summer on that hot August day. I like this author.
Also got BEFORE THE BIG BANG: THE PREHISTORY OF OUR UNIVERSE, by Brian Clegg. A science book. I know, I know, but I'm really interested in what the big brains are finding out about our universe. It could be useful. I've long ago expunged the word "heaven" from my vocabulary; maybe one could boot it to another dimension. My wife gives me that look when I read it. I say, "It's my never ending search for our rightful spot in this our universe". "Cute", she says.

Hey! this is my 50th blog! Thank you, thank you, I don't deserve it...really. I want to thank God...ah, no I don't, I want to thank my wife---my raison d'etre---
for all the anecdotes and silliness I retell constantly---life shouldn't be taken too seriously, we're just passing through, and after I read that book I'll let you know why we are here. I'm sure they know---that's sarcasm, of course. I do another 50? You bet.

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