"Strings of street lightsIt Was the Night That The Lights Went Out In Lansing
Even stop lights blink a bright red and green
As the shoppers rush home with their treasures . . .
You'll hear silver bells, silver bells . . . "
--Livingston & Evans, Silver Bells
Apparently, the Lansing area had the 'Storm of the Century' last night. To top things off, our power at home went out at about 8:30 and it was not anticipated to be repaired until at least midnight. (Notice that I've used the word 'anticipated.' Actually, our power would not be back on until almost 2:00.) We lit some candles and my daughter suggested we play Scrabble. I agreed that I needed to reassert my dominance in this diversion, so I blundered downstairs in the dark, grabbed the game, and snatched our copy of The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary (9780877799290) 7.50 from the bookshelf, which by the way, is always a fan favourite during the holidays.
I went first with the word 'gist.' (I had crappy starting letters.)
While I waited for my daughter to come up with a word, I mentally began to run down my list of Christmas gifts for my family. I am blessed with a family that loves to read, and fortunately, none of them own an e-reader. My brother Jay said he couldn't put down Unbroken (9781400064168) 27.00 by Laura Hillenbrand, which is still selling well in hardcover. I haven't seen anything similar yet, but I think Ian Toll's Pacific Crucible: War at Sea in the Pacific 1941-1942 (9780393068139) 35.00 should work for him.
"Hey, I don't think 'yon' is a word."
My wife replies, "Yeah, it is. For example: The people went hither and yon."
Resignedly, I add, "Humph. I guess you're right."
My brother Matt is a Star Wars freak. He has so many Star Wars collectibles that he dreams of opening his own museum some day. Seriously. So I'm penciling him in for a copy of LEGO Star Wars Character Encyclopedia (9780756686970) 18.99 or How To Speak Wookiee (9781452102559) 16.95.
"Hey, wait a second Holly, 'B.C.' is not a word."
She says, "Dad, I thought abbreviations were okay."
"That's not a valid abbreviation."
My other daughter is in cooking school in Florida. She's actually more of a baker than a cook, so I think she will enjoy Cake Pops (9780811876377) 19.95 by Bakerella. And I know my nephew Ian is going to love getting Peter Yarrow's Puff the Magic Dragon Pop-Up Book (9781402787119) 26.95. He likes that hippy music.
"Oh look," I put down 'V-I' tiles in the triple word score next to the 'E' and say, "That will be 27 points. And I believe that's game, set, and match."
Odds & Sods
Well, it is Steven Spielberg. We have already sold out of our first batch of Michael Morpurgo's War Horse (9780545403351) 8.99, but we are expecting more copies in a day or two. One of my customers has already seen a preview of Mr. Spielberg's new film and she said that she'd give it a nine out of ten. It opens on Xmas Day . . .
Susan Orlean, author of Rin Tin Tin: The Life and The Legend (9781439190135) 26.99 will be on NPR today. Speaking of dogs, this video will get dust in your eyes: www.beaglefreedomproject.org/video.php
Give your dog a hug.