Shane, a western classic that was made into an iconic film starring Alan Ladd was the novel this week. It was a strange read. I enjoyed it, but the love, for lack of a better word, shown by the writer for the violent acts and the attractive man involved in most of them was odd. It was a ‘the gun and the man became one and it was beautiful’ kind of thing. The plot was traditional, homesteaders and the lone gunslinger versus ranchers, but there was enough character development that it wasn’t too predictable. And surprisingly for a book written in 1951, there was an awkward, powerful and recognized attraction between Shane and the married woman of the farmer he worked for. But it went unrequited, of course. A dated but recommended book. I’m thinking of writing a short story using a similar plot line. It interests me. Oh, and the movie was very good too. A stylized tour de force. But the kid in the movie who is the narrator in the novel ends up being very irritating to the modern ear.
This allergy season is proving to be the worst I’ve experienced in at least ten years. Twice in the last two weeks I have been completely unable to see as my eyes have been itching and tearing up so badly. I have drops and pills and over the counter spray (love you Flonase) but the time they take to work has been agony. I also developed anaphylaxis as an adult. Mangoes, papayas and cashews are off the menu, and once they were on it. Weird how this affliction comes and goes. Anyway, my writing does not go well at home so not much getting done this week as I sat in filtered air conditioning trying to see.
I was present at a demonstration of a clever anti concussion device in our preseason football meeting. Called Topspin 360, it consists of a weight at the end of a bar attached to a football helmet that pivots around a central point on the top of the head. The user moves his/her neck to get the weight moving in a circular direction like a bucket of water on the end of a rope. It has proven to be very effective in strengthening the neck muscles in such a way that brain injury in athletes trained on it are much less frequent. It works for males and females, who are by the way, far more prone to concussions than men, no matter what the activity. Its expensive, but I think its worth it.
Witnessed the St. Louis Blues and the Toronto Raptors win championships this week. I am not a Bruins fan and the Raps are Canada’s team, so it was enjoyable. Sports allow us to get good news at least some of the time and that is refreshing.
Man, I am counting the hours at work, which I did at the bank years ago but never as a teacher. I guess once you decide, you start to leave. Career as a novelist, here I come.
Have a great week!