Friday, May 14, 2010

Good Friday

No, not that Good Friday;  more like just one of those days where many generally nice moments converge, and make you glad you showed up for the day.

A customer came in the store this morning looking for a book on Africa.  He had something pretty specific in mind, which we did not have, so Cheryl invited him to look over her shoulder while she did a search to see what we could find and get for him.  A short time later I sat down in front of the computer where the list she'd pulled up was still on the screen, and the word "Lompopo" leapt out at me. 

I told Cheryl I couldn't see that word without remembering listening to a recording made by Boris Karloff of Rudyard Kipling's The Elephant's Child, wherein that particular child wanders down to the "great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River" and gets a comeuppance that had everlasting repercussions. 

Well, I'll be darned if later in the day a customer didn't come in and ask if we had a copy of Kipling's Just So Stories. We were out, but I related to her the Lompopo moment from that morning, and my delight at remembering that wonderful old Caedmon recording, and turns out it was exactly that story for which she was looking!

These sorts of things just make me happy, so imagine how much more tickled I got when even later another customer came in hunting for yet another title by Kipling!   There's no telling how many months have gone by without a single request for anything by old Rudyard, and here he was the Theme of the Day. 


As if all that happy stuff weren't enough, I met the most delightful man today, the import of which requires I back up a bit.

Some months ago I sold a copy of Sister Bernadette's Barking Dog to our customer, Mr. Scott, that he thought would make a fine gift for a friend of his who, like me, has a deep appreciation for  the lost art of sentence diagramming.  Once or twice he's mentioned it to me, and we've laughed over my insistence that there's nothing wrong with America that a really fine session of diagramming couldn't cure.

Imagine my glee, then, when Mr. Scott came into the store today with his friend Gene Moutoux, who -- literally -- wrote the book on sentence diagramming!   I am not kidding, and if you'll click on Dr. Montoux's name, you'll see for yourself!  

For those who might be finding themselves thinking I am making this up, well, here.

Dr. Gene Moutoux, Drawer of Sentences

I suspect some of you (even those of you who know me best) didn't fully understand until this moment just how much I mean it when I say it just doesn't take much to make my heart go ZING!


  1. I LOVED diagramming sentences when I was in school and we didn't do nearly enough of it. It was like English and Geometry all rolled into one. FUN!!!

  2. Exactly! I flipped through his book, and it was ART. My heart was in my throat, it was so beautiful.

    I hope you clicked on that link up there that takes you to the pages on his site that diagram the ENTIRE GETTYSBURG ADDRESS.


  3. I actually liked diagramming too! How cool!!!

  4. Obviously, all the cute people did.