Saturday, November 18, 2017

When They Come For You



I just finished reading When They Come For You, the new novel by James W. Hall.  Hall wrote a series of adventure novels called the "Thorn" series, about a loner who lives on Key Largo and gets into a series of adventures, both down there and in Miami.  His last Thorn novel, The Big Finish, implies that that series is over, and Hall's latest book is a stand alone novel featuring a woman whose reporter husband and infant son are murdered because of a story he is working on.  It is a very exciting read, and even better, I was able to get it from the library without even having to be on a wait list.  The action takes place in Miami, the Ivory Coast, and Zurich, and I recommend you pick up a copy and start reading it.  Today if possible.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Visiting With George



I took another half day off and took my sister Susan to visit her husband George, who is still in the hospital in Loveland, Colorado, recovering from a serious operation.  I'm afraid George was out of it today, due to the combination of pain medicine, lack of sleep, and his age (10 years older than me).  Susan was quite distraught about George's condition, but the nurse seemed to think it was just a matter of time before George was back to himself.  They moved George to a new room yesterday, with a view of the snow covered peaks of Rocky Mountain National Park in the far distance.  With that in mind, I am featuring a photograph of Susan and George on the Glacier Gorge Trail in Rocky Mountain Park, which I took a few years ago. Here's hoping we will all be back on the trail next summer.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

The View From Loveland



I drove up to Fort Collins this afternoon to pick up my sister and drive her down to Loveland to visit with her husband George, who is in the hospital recovering from a serious operation.  Loveland is located just south of Fort Collins, and is famous for re-mailing valentines with a Loveland postmark every February.  I also recall a song by Wayne King called "I'd love to live in Loveland with a lovely girl with you," but I don't think he specifically had Loveland, Colorado in mind, but i could be wrong.  Wayne King is long gone, so we can't ask him.  In any case, I took the above photograph out the window of George's ICU hospital room instead of taking a photograph of him.  I suspect he would not like to see a photograph of himself with tubes going into (and out of) his nose and everywhere else, and even I am not that insensitive, even though it would have made a much better photo.  Much better.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The Goods!



I took the above photograph of The Goods yesterday morning through the interior glass door that connects with the bookstore where I work.  I was in The Goods with my friend Valarie this past Saturday evening, while the Denver Film Festival was taking place in the complex, and the place was packed.  However, most weekdays at lunch hour the place seems pretty empty, unless the weather is nice and people decide to have lunch out on the patio.  I hope they stay around, since it is a nice amenity to have a restaurant next door for people visit after browsing at the store.  Originally the place was called Silvi's Kitchen, then Udi's , then The Good Son, and now The Goods.   I must say the foot traffic on this part of Denver's East Colfax Avenue is not very high unless you count the high school kids from across the street or the homeless, and I don't that is The Goods target market.  I myself say you can never go wrong with free drink coupons - you'll have the hipsters pouring in.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

No Doubt About It - A Pulitzer Means Big Bucks



While I was waiting with my sister Susan and her sister-in-law in the hospital waiting room during my brother-in-law George's seven hour operation this past Friday, I had a lot of free time, and so when my sister mentioned author Annie Proulx  and her Wyoming home called Bird Cloud, I googled it on my phone. Susan seemed to think the place was somewhere in Central Wyoming, inaccessible to all but the hardiest four wheel drive vehicles, and hoped one day to see it.  It turns out that Bird Cloud is actually located just 3 miles outside of Saratoga, Wyoming, a quaint little town that also boasts mystery writer C.J. Box as a part-time resident, and is a mere 2 1/2 hours away from Susan and George's Fort Collins townhome.  We made tentative plans to visit there next summer and hang out at the gate until Proulx showed up to give a guided tour.  What I found really interesting, however, is that Proulx got the money to build Bird Cloud from the profits she made from her Pulitzer prize winning book, The Shipping News.  And that made me remember that my literary hero, Studs Terkel, who up until then had made only a modest living from his books, wrote the Pulitzer prize winning book, The Good War, and bought a large house in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago, right near Lake Michigan, with the profits his book earned.  It was that house former CBS anchorman Dan Rather was leaving when he was attacked by a man who kept asking him "What's the frequency, Kenneth?." But I digress.  My point is that winning a Pulitzer means big bucks, and if you intend to do any writing, keep your eyes on the prize.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Meeting Up With Valarie At The Goods



I got a call from Valarie, my friend and former University of Denver Bookstore co-worker, Saturday evening, who was between movies at the Denver Film Festival and was wondering if I could join her at The Goods for a drink.  Since I still had to work a few more hours, it was more like coffee and an appetizer, but that was fine with me.  I was just amazed at the crowd at The Goods, which is just next door to the bookstore where I work.  It was absolutely packed, filled with film goers waiting for the next feature. Valarie was surprised I haven't gone to any of the films, considering I work just across the courtyard from the festival's epicenter.  What can I say - duty calls, as always.  Plus, they charge money for those things. Valarie caught me up on what her kids, Cheyanne and Dillon, are up to, and how she and her husband Jake are enjoying retirement.  Since they are off to their cottage near La Veta in a few weeks and from there to Santa Fe, I must say their retirement looks good to me.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

A Rio Grande Celebration



I took my sister Susan out to The Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant Friday night in Fort Collins to celebrate a highly successful 7 hour operation to remove cancer from her husband George's lower intestine.  George's sister Mary Ann came out here from New Jersey to help out, and we all waited in the surgery lobby until we could visit George in the late afternoon.  When the surgeon came in to talk to us, I was surprised to see she appeared to be a teenage girl.  Although she did a good job, I really don't think they should let teenage girls do major surgery until they are at least 18, but that is just me.  Mary Ann googled her, and found she graduated from the University of Miami back in 2008, so she does have 9 years of experience behind her. The University of Miami, of course, is a major party school (lots of afternoons and evenings at Monte Trainer's along the bay), but I was not able to mention this to George before he went under the knife.  In any case, George is doing well and is asking for both his cell phone and rum.  Since George was not with us, and my sister threatens me with bodily harm if I try to take a photograph of her these days, I took the liberty of photo-shopping the two of them into the photograph above.  And, by the way, this is the first time I have ever eaten at Rio Grande, and it was very good.  The lines are always out the door at their restaurant in Denver, so I knew it had to be pretty decent.  However, for some reason I thought it was named after the Rio Grande Railroad, and was surprised to see no railroad memorabilia around.  That's right - there's actually a river along the border by that name, too.