By 5pm yesterday the house was so hot I could barely stand it. I think it was too hot for the swamp cooler to have any effect, and it was just blowing hot air. I saw that the thermostat on the wall registered 99 degrees in the living room and decided I was going to go out for a while, so I drove over to Straw Hat Pizza and got myself an individual pizza and a pitcher of beer.
When I arrived I saw that a band was tuning up and my heart sank - I thought I wouldn't be able to stay long if they played the Beatles tunes that every band seems to be stuck on.
The band turned out to be sort of dixieland/swing, and the music was fantastic. The entire place was packed and everyone, including little kids, were jiggling to the music. I had taken a book along with me so that I could sit and read while sipping my beer, but the book was saved for the one intermission the band took. All in all it was an enjoyable evening, good food, good music, and good cold beer. Don't ask me how I finished a whole pitcher myself, but I was there for quite a while and just sipped it.
Now for the book I'm reading, it's a collection of short articles written for Field & Stream by Patrick McManus. I haven't laughed so hard in a long time, and this guy is so funny. Field & Stream was never a magazine I read, unless I had a long wait in a doctor's office and that was the only available reading material. The book is called "A Fine and Pleasant Misery", and is written about McManus' camping experiences as a young boy, starting out in the backyard. I remember the first time I slept in a tent in the backyard because two of my little brothers wanted to try it, but they wanted protection and I was it. They lasted until midnight at least, and I slept out the entire night. It was the beginning of a life-long love of camping in a tent.
I don't know if Patrick McManus still writes for Field & Stream. The selections in the book appeared in Field & Stream from approximately 1968 to 1978. I'll have to pick up a copy of the latest F&S when I next see one just to find out what it's like now.
Just looked McManus up online and see that he has written several mysteries and many articles about the outdoor sporting life, and even has his own web site. I have tired of reading books that leave you either sad or angry, or both, and it's good to find a book that just makes me laugh.
OLD IS NEW AGAIN
12 hours ago