Clinton, South Carolina, Friday, September 25, 2015, 9:44 a.m.
I’m fond of walking into a tumultuous atmosphere, looking around, and proclaiming, satirically, “Another … big … day.”
My days and nights are generally pretty calm now. Writing fiction is like being confined to a monastery, though not so spiritual. Also, I get out more often. On Thursday, for instance, I dropped by the post office, chatted about old times for at least 15 minutes with Benson Roth at Printers Associates, dropped by a friend’s house, and had two ham sandwiches for supper. The Red Sox and Redskins lost, but the barn burner was between Memphis and Cincinnati, 127-126, Memphis, I think it was.
So far this morning, I’ve watched a little more of the Pope, sipped coffee, and completed the day’s first social-media perusal. Dean Martin is starring on TCM as a Southern politician who plays guitar. Right now he’s thumb-strumming a song called “May the Lord Bless You Real Good.”
After two months on the market, my latest novel, Crazy of Natural Causes, has fallen off in sales, and I spent a good bit of last night reading up on how I might be able to spread the word a little further out into the Twittersphere, the Amazon jungle, the iVerse, and the Me Generation. One way is for those of you who have read it to write down what you think of it, and I’d recommend a customer review at Amazon or Goodreads, but I’d be appreciative of a recommendation, by whatever means, to what few people you know who still read.
(Actually, more read, but it’s 140 characters at a time, and it’s hard to write a novel that way, which is, indirectly, why I sometimes tweet in haiku.)
Two years, nine months, and 21 days after my job “was eliminated” (“nothing personal, it wasn’t you, it was the job, which, coincidentally, you happen to occupy”) I’m back to fast-paced weekends. Tonight I’m pinch-writing at the Laurens District 55 High School game because the Clinton High School is taking a well-needed week off to “prepare for the region.”
On Saturday, I’ll be writing a little in the morning, then heading off to the Furman University to write about a football game with the Virginia Military Institute. Once that story is safely transmitted to posterity, I’m hoping to catch the latter half of the Presbyterian College playing the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. I try not to be as rushed as I’m going to be tomorrow.
(In the previous two paragraphs, I have been using “the” in a coy and deeply insignificant satire on the way broadcasters tend to say THE Charlotte Motor Speedway and THE New Hampshire Motor Speedway, as if they were THE Ohio State University or even THE United States of America.)
Now a crowd in the streets is singing “May the Lord Bless You Real Good,” and, apparently, Dean Martin’s character is named “Bo,” which strikes me as an ill-fitting name for Dino. Today’s star of the day must be Susan Hayward because, earlier this morning, she was in the British Isles somewhere — probably either Scotland or Ireland — getting herself suspected of murder.
Which brings me, for no apparent reason, to NASCAR and this week’s race of the Chase in the pastoral setting of Loudon, New Hampshire. I’m really excited, even if it’s because the race isn’t at night, so I won’t be writing, selecting pictures, perusing Twitter and Youtube, stacking numbers, and inventing a poll until three in the morning. I might even be done in time to catch the latter half of the Sunday night football game, whichever teams are playing it.
To summarize, Kevin Harvick, who won last year’s Powerball, now has his back to the wall in New England, where he must try to win or at least watch while others screw up similarly to the way he did in Joliet, Illinois, where the Blues Brothers lived for a while.
The odds do not favor him, but that is for what the Chase is intended.
Michael Waltrip Racing, the team with “nuttin’ to lose,” lost all its points when NASCAR officials uncovered its diabolical treachery in Joliet, where the Blues Brothers lived for a while. If Clint Bowyer, who really must be happy about all this, wins the Praise the Lord for Curt Schilling 313.7 (or whatever it is), NASCAR officials will undoubtedly bring in inspectors of the Atomic Energy Commission to handle post-race examination, just in case MWR put a breeder reactor under the hood.
Meanwhile, I’m hoping my Ryan Newman banner arrives in time for me to put it up in the living room for the rest of the Chase.
Who’s my pick? Hang on a minute. Heads an odd-numbered car, tails an even. Okay. Heads. That narrows it down to Jamie McMurray, Denny Hamlin, Carl Edwards, Paul Menard, Newman, and Kurt Busch. Next round: Heads, not prime. Tails, prime. Heads again, and we’ve got a winner, Paul Menard!
This is going to be quite a story. Now I can’t wait for Sunday. To New Hampshire and beyond!
Meanwhile, of course, I’ll be in my living room, switching to football games during the commercials.
Buy my latest novel, Crazy of Natural Causes, and that way I won’t have to sell peaches in a vacant lot next year. http://www.amazon.com/Crazy-Natural-Causes-Monte-Dutton-ebook/dp/B00YI8SWUU/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8
Buy my first two novels, The Audacity of Dope and The Intangibles, and that way I won’t have to become a telemarketer. http://www.amazon.com/Monte-Dutton/e/B005H3B144/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1416767492&sr=8-1