Thank you inventors of chicken broth, Ginger Ale, Saltine crackers, Bayer aspirin, ice cream, sore throat lozenges and let’s not forget Kleenex.
Man, how the high and mighty have been laid low. A good solid body blow from the flu will give a smug, healthy, fit person humility in the milisecond it takes for that first shaking chill — The Chill That Will Not Be Warmed Away — to reduce a person who normally wears a tank top and gym shorts and goes barefoot in the house all winter to an inchoate mess layering on sox, sweatshirts, sweaters and gloves.
Most of all, thank you Greg Iles and Stephen King. From Friday until last night, I have read Greg Ile’s book, Turning Angel, and Stephen King’s scary, entertaining as hell book, Cell. I always enjoy Ile’s books, and his latest is so steeped in the color and detail (some fictional, some real) of his boyhood hometown of Natchez, Mississippi, where he still lives, that I found myself wondering if he has both a local fan club and a local anti-fan, run Greg out of town, club. These two prolific writers have been my constant companions this weekend. Their imaginations and my fevered brain worked together to unleash a stream of vibrant, detailed, colorful, noisy, exuberant, shocking, complex dreams so that I remained entertained night and day, blessedly distracted from physical discomfort.
These two guys have done more in a couple of days to reinspire me to get with on storytelling than all the non-fiction didactics on my book shelves. Epiphany comes where it finds you.