By Laura Grimes
Quick. Mr. Scatter is on the road, so let’s post while he’s not looking.
Some people call. Some people text. I believe in the more sneaky form of communication — surprise blog posts broadcast to the world. Consider them entertainment and information all scrolled into one.
Dear Mr. Scatter,
What’s news since you left this morning?
Holy hot tub, I received an email with the below attached picture of a souvenir for the upcoming royal wedding (it’s good to have friends in low places). If you can’t tell, they’re tea bags.
Continue reading Caution: Blogjacking in progress →
By Laura Grimes
I said hello and called her name. She sat on the side of her twin bed, reading an aged book. She didn’t respond. I called her name again. I stood in front of her for several moments. I raised my voice. Nothing. I finally stooped down and looked into her face.
Josephine raised her head just a little, looked at me and smiled. She put a mark in her book and closed it. Gold serif type spelled out two words on the blue cloth cover: Silent Spring.
I put my bag on the floor and moved a portable potty out of the way to give her a sideways hug.
I looked at her square in the front again. “Hello,” she said cheerfully. “It’s been a long time.”
“I know. I never meant to stay away so long.” It had been more than four months.
I looked around for the low wooden stool I usually sit on and found it under a wastebasket. She was wearing a purple dress with white polka dots, the material a thin synthetic. Two strands of Mardi Gras beads matched the color of her dress, one of little hearts and one of little dice. She wore a short-sleeve jacket with a cut out lacy design on the collar, all white like her hair.
Continue reading Josephine, Chapter 2: The long return →
I’ve been keeping someone to myself much too long. I’ve collected reams of notes and have a stack of material. Now I feel somewhat prodded, thanks to Rose City Reader, who posted this review of Anne Fadiman’s “Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader.”
I left this comment on her post:
My copy of this book first belonged to my friend, Josephine, who was exactly twice my age when I first met her. She writes in pen in all of her books. She underlines words she doesn’t know, she makes little comments, she traces routes on maps, and on the very last page of every book she reads she signs and dates it and sometimes writes a short comment. It doesn’t matter if it’s a paperback or a gorgeous leatherbound edition from Easton Press. When I pointed this out, she shrugged and said simply she was a carnal book lover. When I was confused, she said I had to read this book and gave me her copy. In the middle of Fadiman’s essay about courtly vs. carnal book lovers, Josephine wrote in very scratchy script at the bottom of Page 40: “Mom used to use a bill to mark her place in a book. She told me to look through her books when she died. Yes, I found a few bills. I was astounded a couple of months ago to find $60 in a book I had read some time before. My mother’s daughter.” The last page is signed: “J.D.P. Jan. 16, 2009. Truly loved this book!” She was 92 years old at the time.
Continue reading Books are for lovers: Meet Josephine →