Friday, March 27, 2009

Two for the weekend

A twofer today:

1. In cleaning out the attic these last few weeks, the Lady Friend and I discovered several boxes of new, uncirculated copies of my nonfiction books Flight of the Gin Fizz, Zephyr and What's That Pig Outdoors? Most are hardcover, a few are paperbacks and some are in Dutch and German.

When initial sales declined to the point at which the publishers decided to remainder the remaining copies, I bought a few boxes for what, I don't know, some vague idea of posterity. They've just been gathering dust all these years.

And so they're all for sale, along with a custom personal inscription. If you're interested, write me at

2. For the last couple of weeks the New York Times has been publishing a cool new blog, Schott's Vocab, dedicated to clever and sometimes just off-the-wall neologisms. Those are newly coined words that have never before existed and may have no real reason to do so, but in a few cases just might stick around and become part of our collective vocabulary.

For instance, twitturgy, or religious tweeting on Twitter. Instead of 5,000-word Sunday stemwinder sermons, pastors can issue up-to-140-words tweets such as:

Move into my neighborhood, God. Come sing in these suburban streets. Love the loveless. Laugh with the lonely. Spray the walls into beauty.

Ben Schott, a Londoner, writes the blog with the dry English humor he has infused into his celebrated miscellanies and almanacs, those arbitrary, anarchic and addictive book-length collections of facts, factoids, lists and charts for trivia hounds. I'm hooked.


  1. Ginger just bought me Seasons Revenge in paperback. My blood sugar crashed this morning about 1 am so I ate something to bring my blood sugar back up and started reading it. I couldn't put the book down. Great stuff. You're my hero Henry. I can't wait until your next book comes out.

  2. Thanks for the kind word, Jeremy. The other novels are in the Ontonagon Public Library, by the way.

  3. NO, no! "...pastors can issue up-to-140-words tweets..."

    A tweet is 140 characters, not words! We want succinct sermons, like:

    "Sin. Die. Go to Hell."

    See, not so hard!

  4. Characters? My God. Twitter would not be adequate for loquacious geezers like me.

    Can anyone say anything profound in 140 characters, anyway?

  5. I'm not trying to sound like a brown nose but if I borrowed the books from the library I couldn't own them and add them to my book collection. Like I told you 6 or so months ago, I've put your books next to my Louis L'Amour's. I've just recently started adding ebooks to my collection. I'm planning on using my mp3 player which supports ebooks in txt files. I should have it Monday or Tuesday. I've already got most of the Star Wars, Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms and Death Gate Cycle series ebooks. That's almost 1000 books.