*A Collection of Antiquarian Curios & Relics*
"Do you want to know what happiness is?
Happiness is the absence of unpleasant information . . ."
--William T. Vollman, Europe Central
B. TRAVEN JR. -- CONSPIRACY THEORIST AT LARGE
The package had come addressed to him. The VHS tape was in one of those off-yellow single copy envelopes that inevitably exploded in a puff of little gray shreds of almost paper no matter how carefully you tried to open them. To make matters worse, they also were imbued with a ridiculous amount of static electricity and the paper mulch seemed to attach itself to everything. After several minutes, he wiped enough crap off of the tape with his hands to insert it into the VHS player.
There was a moment of blackness on the TV screen and then an unfocused shot of a man with a pith helmet. He spoke, "Trey, B. Traven Jr. here and . . .", he cupped his hands together to make his voice echo," . . . I am your father. Ha, ha! But seriously, if you are watching this tape, I am already dead. So be it. However, I have some words of advice for you that I could never tell you before. Remember these two words: Nathan Hale . . ."
Trey mumbled aloud, "Revolutionary War spy."
His father continued, " . . . No, not that Nathan Hale. Nathan K. Hale. He writes a series of graphic novel histories for youngsters called 'Hazardous Tales.' I have found his books to be indispensible in my time traveling forays. His most recent book is the Donner Dinner Party (9781419708565) 12.95, which follows the travails of a group of American settlers heading for California in 1846. Without his book, I might have forgotten to bring my own food. And that could have gotten really awkward. Ha, ha!"
He turns to his right and shouts at someone off-camera, "No, Tim! I don't think The Donner Family Cookbook would be a very good idea!"
B. Traven Jr. looks into the camera, "And don't waste your time on Edward Klein's Blood Feud: The Clintons vs. the Obamas (9781621573135) 27.99. He has proven to be a serial liar who just regurgitates the same half-truths and innuendos about both the Clintons and Obamas from the past and then presents them as fact. Although when I heard the title, I did imagine a Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome throwdown by both families in a pay-per-view cagematch. Ha, ha!
"Speaking of Mad Max, with the Fuel Wars soon to begin, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of reading and implementing William Gurstelle's Defending Your Castle (9781613746820) 16.95. It has step-by-step intructions for building everything from catapults to crossbows to moats. It is going to get ugly. In fact, it will make George Saunders' CivilWarLand in Bad Decline (9781573225793) 14.00 look like a walk in the park. So Trey, be careful."
Trey stared at the blank screen for a minute, sighed, and mumbled to himself, "Well, here we go again . . ."
Odds & Sods
I have no idea who Jenny Mollen is. I'm not proud of this. (Okay, maybe I am.) But apparently, she is the most hilarious voice on Twitter. From what I could glean on-line, she's married to a famous actor and she does some acting herself. What I do know is that her book, I Like You Just the Way I Am (9781250041685) 24.99 is just about sold out at Partners. Her writing style has been compared to Chelsea Handler, author of the cringe- worthy title, Uganda Be Kidding Me (9781455599738) 27.00. So yeah, Jenny has a potty mouth . . .
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