"Let me bring you songs from the woodsSMOKEY THE BEAR
to make you feel much better than you could know . . ."
--Jethro Tull, Songs from the Woods
I ran into Smokey the Bear in some dim sum dive in Lansing last week. From the quantity of dead soldiers on the counter, it looked like he was into his tenth rice baijiu. Tom Waits' Swordfishtrombones was playing quietly on a single tinny speaker. "There will be no stopping here. All ya can be is thirsty in a town with no cheer . . ." His drinking companion, Woodsy the Owl, was slumped over the counter and snoring loudly.
I say, "Smokey, what's up?"
"Hey, Mick, with the budget cuts, I just found out that my job has been reduced to part-time. I guess it could be worse tho'. If Milton Friedman were still alive, I'd be out on the street."
I say, "Smokey, since you have some extra time on your hands, I could use your expertise for the Partners Page."
Smokey raised his eleventh rice baijiu and crowed, "I'll drink to that!"
1) YOU CAN CAMP UPON HIS DOORSTEP . . . Hey, Kids, I'm going to take a break from forest fires and tell you about the wonderful new edition of Jim DuFresne's Michigan's Best Campgrounds (9781933272276) 17.95. I bet you didn't know that Michigan has more campsites than any other state in the United States. That's right. There are more than 14,000 sites for you and I to choose from for a beautiful summer day. Whether you are interested in fishing, hiking, canoeing, backpacking, or biking, Jim's new 4th edition of this classic title covers it all. If you're looking for an inexpensive getaway (and who isn't in this economy), this is the perfect guidebook . . .
2) BUT DON'T YOU HARM HIS TREES . . . I love Tom Powers. Tom Powers is welcome in my forest anytime. His title Michigan State and National Parks (9781933272085) 15.95 is the definitive book on Michigan's parks. The synopsis of each park includes: an easy-to-read overview, great maps, and featured activities exclusive to each recreational area. It's simple to find out if you're headed for a busy beach or an out-of-the-way oasis . . .
3) FOR HE'S A RANGER IN HIS HEART . . . Just two short years ago Jim DuFresne updated his Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park, 3rd Edition (9781933272160) 10.95, and it was hit. This is the only guidebook that covers the entire Porcupine Mountains' trail system and there are more than 20 detailed maps that show all 90 miles of the trail network.
And remember . . . only you can prevent forest fires . . .
Odds & Sods
One genre that has had consistent sellers lately is diet books. Unfortunately, the shelf life has been getting shorter and shorter. A couple of weeks ago, it was Kris Carr's Crazy Sexy Diet (9781599218014) 24.95 that was the hot one. Last week, it was eclipsed in sales by Mike Moreno's The 17 Day Diet (9781451648652) 25.00. Both of these titles are back in stock. This week The Dukan Diet (9780307887962) 26.00 has overtaken both of the previous titles. We are currently sold out, but we hope to have more stock next week . . .
And Greg Mortensen, author of Three Cups of Tea (9780143038252) 16.00 is having the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week.