pinkmonkeybird

...busting up my brains for the words

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Letter to lileks

I labored for many untold minutes on writing this short letter, emailing it to Lileks and then, ultimately dragging and dropping my saved letter into Firefox's browser's view of Blogger text editor and publishing. IE for Mac mysteriously works well with some functions, not at all in others.

Dear James. We are all very excited that your next book is out; Mommy Knows Worst. I have a question about the title, which perhaps would be handily answered for me if I just bought the book. And perhaps I shall, as I am laid up with a broken arm and could use some therapeutic text/image interpretations, both humorous and insightful. For this is what it seems to me a James Lileks book is. Has one yet been written that has no pictures? Jackie Gleason was a good actor. Even if he were "a fine actor", I doubt we'd say so. "Fine" is reserved for actors like Larry Olivier. Yes, he had an inner buoyance. Isn't Don Rickles in the fat club? I think he had good membership standing with the fat, the bald and the funny clubs. Rickles also had good inner bouyancy. Is there a James Lileks virtual stalker blog? I know about "LiliksWatch" but it's dried up. I'd like to buy another book from you. Please publish a book of your very best mail, electronic and dead tree sources both. But I haven't asked my question yet. Assuming the new title is a riff on the television show from the '60s entitled Father Knows Best, why isn't your new title Mother Knows Worst? My uneducated guess is that someone has already used it. A quick search at Amazon shows not a one. Why "Mommy", James? Why? If there isn't a virtual Lileks stalker, there oughta be. I think there is at least one layer of intrigue going on in your writing that merits additional scrutiny. Of course, I am not volunteering for the job. And of course, your private life should be respected and kept as private as you should wish it to be.

Being the meter traffic whore I am, I'll be sure to point out to you any reply Mr. Lileks may leave. Also, the editor [ed...ah, that would be me.] wishes to note that some misspellings were corrected in the letter before publishing this post.

UPDATE: Nothing yet. Let me put a little bait on the hook...a link to the author.

ADDITIONAL UPDATE: As you can see, I have the obligatory hyperlinks to Amazon *dot* com's purchasing page for Mommy Knows Worst and, just as importantly, to Lileks *dot* com, so a Technorati scan will point to this posted letter.
But today I take it up a notch. For I am now broadcasting that I have just used my Mastercard to purchase one copy for myself and one copy for my actual mother, or "Mommy", as Lileks would call her.
At least, reading the title cues me into the spelling of "worst". Few of us would be surprised to learn he's written a book about outdated and outlandish home practices with accompanying poorly lit photographs of mommys and liver wurst sausages.

Put Gnat through college. Buy this book in preparation for the day you are laid up in bed with your own illness or broken arm.

UPDATE THURS: Just heard Lileks' appearance on the Hugh Hewitt Show. He didn't answer any of my questions. But then, no one raised them, either. And still no answer in my email inbox.

UPDATE FRI: I got an email yesterday from Amazon *dot* com informing me that both I and my "Mommy" should expect our new Lileks books to be delivered between Tuesday Nov. 1st and the 3rd. The air is crackling with excitement. Soon, very soon, I will be flipping through dead tree pages of old photos with accompanying interpretations in text written by the one and only Jimmy Leeks. I wonder if my mother will appreciate this.

UPDATE SAT: No glimmer of an answer from Lileks. Of course there isn't any glimmer of an answer. He's busy these days trying to sell books. But I see my link is tracking in Technorati. The good news is that my meter is gradually climbing a little bit due to the untold thousands of devoted Lileks readers who check this blog in order to discover if Lileks answers his fan mail. Even the dull ones.

UPDATE SUN: Still no reply to my letter. Last night as I was tucking myself into bed, I ruminated on this post. Why am I doing this? It's not fair to Lileks to challenge him to reply. I certainly don't expect he will, nor that he is obligated to. I guess I'm doing it because I'm both curious and bored; a strange, irrational combination of motives. If this post is offensive to Mr. Lileks, then I apologize. My guess is that he either doesn't know about it because he is too busy writing and promoting, or that he pities me for my pathetic impulses.
In any case, I look forward to receiving my copy of Mommy Knows Worst this week. You can be sure I will review it in this blog. Since I'm an unhinged, pathological fan of Lileks' writing and off-the-wall humor, you should expect a glowingly favorable review. As I'd mentioned, I bought a copy for my mother, too. So I will be telling of her reactions as well. She's in her mid-70s, so her impressions will go a long way toward saying if this book makes for good gift-giving. After all, my mother was active raising 6 children in the 1960s, so she has first-hand experience in the subject.

UPDATE HALLOWEEN: Nothing. I'm a little embarrassed over this post now. I think it's silly and rather selfish of me to have written it in the first place. Why I would want to inconvenience Lileks, a wonderful humorist and a fine person, is beyond me. Unless.....hmmmm, I cooked up this idea right after I was released from the hospital and was prescribed daily doses of percacet. Is it possible this whole thing is a fever dream brought on by percacet? I'm saying yeah because I'd much rather blame drugs than my own inborn sense of decency or lack thereof.

UPDATE NOV. 1: I've received my copy of this book today. This will be my final update to this post. I'll write my review in a new, specially designated post. Unfortunately, my mother did not receive hers yet. Hopefully tomorrow.

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