Sometimes, after I've read a particularly good book, I go on reading strike. And somewhere, LaVar Burton is shaking his head and crying. But it's true. About three weeks ago I finished Dingley Falls by Michael Malone, who also wrote Handling Sin, which, quite frankly is either the best or the second best book I've ever read*, and since then: nothing. I mean, I'll read my Jon Carroll in the morning, my Bill Simmons, my Gasoline Hobo, my Cecil Adams, an article about Hot 97 in the New Yorker wherein a guy who was rapping there might've faked getting shot in the ass because he saw some guy in the Soprano's fake getting shot in the ass. Point is, I have nothing going day to day; been strictly short attention span since Independence Day. If I keep going like this, I'm going to devolve to the point that all I read are those little charts on the bottom left corner of the USA Today front page. Sure, I'll know that sweet corn always has an even number of kernel rows, but the greater mysteries will remain, as always, unsolved.
What's the point? Well, as I've done before, I'm soliciting recommendations. Not just for a book, but for the BEST BOOK EVER. This, admittedly, is a tall order. If I learned anything in Kindergarten, it's that sharing should be reciprocal, and I did, so now it's your turn. Neener neener neener. And so forth.
I'll actually need several, since our next tour is almost six weeks long and, well, much reading gets done in that there Patrick Stewart. I also just realized yesterday that this will be my first proper & complete cross-country roadtrip, one gigantic, swervy circle around our country, playing in something like twenty or twenty five states & driving through at least ten more. And, unlike Division Day, we can get into Canada.** There will be copious chances to purchase bad hats, worse shirts, still worse fast food, see the world's largest wooden prairie dog, and learn the geographic lessons that never stuck in school ("wait, there's a Mississippi River?"), all while spending an eighth of a year straight in one, endless, dank pub. Man. That sounds good. I'm actually toying with the idea of not shaving the entire time, but there are a few hitches in that plan. a) I've never made it past the "itchy" stage (2 weeks or so) and don't have any reason to think I will, b) my mustache grows faster than the beard, so, for quite some time, I might look like Freddy Mercury at 10 o'clock in the evening, with (slightly) better teeth, and c) I might look really, really stupid. On the upside though, I could pull at it and look contemplative. Plus, it plays into my natural laziness. Just thinking out loud here.
*The Brothers K is the only contender. And no, that is not an abbreviation of the Russian novel.