Monday, July 6, 2015

After the Fireworks . . .

. . . calm descends to abide awhile, again. That's how it goes. Up-down, wild-still, crazy-lazy, high-low. Life flows. Things come to pass. Troubles don't last always. Our Independence Day was a big dose of trauma-drama. We survived. All is well. So, to quote Linda Ellerby, "And so it goes." 

How was your 4th? Your 5th? Your today? Mine was fine, thanks for wondering. JC flew to his home-away-from-home in Georgia this morning. The house was too quiet so I hit Hobby Lobby and Barnes & Noble. They are two of the places I frequent where I find kinship with others seeking the noise of other voices. I practically ran into my favorite bookseller the moment I stepped inside; we made a tentative date to meet on Friday.  It's her day off.

This year I seem to buy books that have something or other to do with letters. Not on purpose mind you, which makes them noteworthy in my book. The pun was not intended, but appropriate nonetheless. Side note: Do you ever wonder if you could make a living designing book jackets? Do you ever wonder about some of the people who do? They're usually artists you know, so that means they have to read the books they design jackets for, yes? Hmm. Sometimes I wonder.

I thought you'd enjoy the letter. Someone did a decent imitation of vintage handwriting, but it's not convincing enough to make a believer out of me. Read on.

Sincerely, The End.

The beginning. I like this page almost as much as I like the jacket and the little note. It made me think of lampblack ink and lines drawn with a blunt goose quill. 

Illustrations? In a book for adults? Interesting. So . . . I'm going to make you work for this one. Google the title and read what's afoot. Read an excerpt to be sure . . . Did you know that Gandalf is the new elder/older Sherlock Holmes? (grinning)

"The Price is Bite?" Such a lame title. "Well, I'll Be Doggone" sounds much better, don't you think? And, the mailman looks like a . . . he doesn't look like a mailman at all, does he? He looks more like one of the Gardai instead. The piece, in "Houstonia"magazine, was written by one Trey Strange. Ha! Surely a pseudonym? Strange wrote: "Irresponsibility: that's why there are so many strays, why there are so many attacks on mail carriers, why Houston is perennially at or near the top of the list of America's most dog-violent cities." Los Angeles holds the number one spot for having the most dog attacks on letter carriers. 

Please accept this as an act of contrition for making you read "The Price Is Bite." Texan Philosophies #3)  Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier 'n puttin' it back in.

Remember these?

A letter/notecard ready for tomorrow's mail. The Card Catalog notecards are sold at B&N now. There were refills last week. They're all gone now! 

An envelope waiting for a letter. Doodling is soothing. 

An unexpected find you'll hear more about in an upcoming post. Mail is really catching on! It's everywhere. My favorite "closet" show ended with a letter last night. I am adrift. Surely you can tell by this post? My post office box's renewal fee is due in four days. I'm not sure why I'm waiting, trying to decide if I will or won't . . . Maybe I'm floating on the down side of a long weekend's adrenaline rush?  After all, I have that box number engraved on my envelope charm. 

Have you noticed the new "modern" calligraphy lately? It's everywhere too. Seems plain old calligraphy is another not-so-dead art that's made a come-back and had a baby. Ahem. Yes, I subscribe to "Chicken Magazine."

And I paid eight bucks for a blank greeting card (!) 

. . . that accompanied the cake I got for the nursing staff that took such excellent care of JC. Eight dollars? If I can truthfully say, "I can make that!" about a thing I'm seriously contemplating purchasing, and have the wherewithal to do so, chances are great I won't buy it. But I didn't do that yesterday. I said it, but didn't act on it. The young cashier looked so frightened, I felt bad, and worse, after she asked, "Do you still want to buy it?" This is my signature gift cake. The employees at our post office like it as much as we do, and my doctor's staff . . . so I'm sure the good folk/medical staff enjoyed it too. The colors match the holiday we missed! (very big grin!)

In the end, all is well.

Oh! These are for me.


  1. Oh I love roses so I cant wait to buy a house and buy a couple of bushes ....I will have to check out those titles you mentioned . Have a lovely day . Had a banner letter day , 6 letters and yes 6 answers going out ...boy I sure do give the mail people a work out LOL .

    1. Roses were Erin's favorite flower when she was a girl. The hemp rose soap is my favorite because the faint scent is unlike any I've ever nosed before.

      Congratulations! Not much beats a handful of letters in a single day. I'm behind as usual but it's the journey to catching up at a leisurely pace I'm learning to enjoy. No more marathon penning sessions for me. I hope I've learned my lesson. :) Mailing packages is a different thing all together though. :)

      Hooray for your banner letter day! :)

  2. Oh...I love those card cataglog note cards! I've gotta get them! :-)

    1. They're sweet. I ordered mine from Chronicle books. I hope B&N orders more refills. Then I won't have to pay for S&H.

      Let me know how you like them. They're small but fun and you get to be creative.

  3. Lovely, lovely, lovely. I received your package and your note yesterday. Will be putting up a post today or tomorrow. Thank you so much. That Paris coloring book is awesome. You are awesome. I will definitely share when it is complete or when I have a least a section colored.

    1. Oh, goody! I'm super happy that you like it. I almost gave it away when I scanned parts to use in a post. LOL! I remembered you said you like such "special" things. ;) . I almost bought one of the most unusual I've ever seen but could not justify paying $13. You're welcome. It's fun therapy.

      I appreciate you still being a girl at heart. :)

  4. Oh, and yes I think "Well I'll be Doggone" is a much better title.

    1. LOL! Maybe I'll tell Mr. Strange that he has two votes against him.

  5. Snap! I just added The Book of Speculation to my reading list a mere half hour before I saw your post. :)

    But I'm afraid to say being both an art college graduate and a former bookseller (i.e. lots of friends in illustration/design), book cover designers don't necessarily get the full manuscript. Instead they usually get a short brief describing the marketing and placement of the title...and a budget.

    Book proofs or ARCs (advance reading copies) are usually given to reviewers and book buyers/sellers with a suggested design treatment and marketing campaign to stir up publicity and orders. Although, as a bookseller, I found getting the time to read them was the trick!

    1. The review is intriguing, yes? I hope we both like "The Book of Speculation." Is The Good Shufu" on your list?

      Oh, how you've dashed my imaginings with facts! We designed a single book cover in art school as an assignment. I don't recall what I did, but I had a brief friendship with an artist who designed an occasional jacket and worked on album cover for a vinyl recording of birdsongs. I never thought to ask if she had to read the books. I imagined all sorts of lovely things. (sigh) :) Thanks for a teachable comment.

    2. Keep up the imaginings! Whilst it is unsual it's also not impossible, especially if a friendship develops between an author and illustrator. A classic exapmle is the collaboration between Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake. I'd hate to dash anyone's dreams with something so humdrum and commonplace as facts. :)

      As to 'The Good Shufu' it wasn't on my list but is now! Sounds great, alot like 'Almost French' by Sarah Turnbull, which I loved. Have you come across it?

    3. I have no choice! I cannot turn them off. :)

      I don't recall reading about the Dahl/Blake collaboration, but I will. I have a small stack of Dahl's books to finish. Am a late comer to the Dahl fount.

      Facts are often as much fun as fiction and run away imaginations. One new fact from my day was the true story of our national anthem. I did some fact checking before posting a little drawing about our flag. Live, be curious, and learn something new every day. :)

      I almost bought "The Good Shufu!" I've read the Japanese version of how to be an American housewife twice. If you read Shufu first will you please let me know if it's worth reading? "Almost French" is something my daughter might like but I'll check it out. Thanks.