Mary Peiffer reading Sue Henry

Once upon a time, in a movie made long  ago, there was a beautiful fairy who helped a poor little girl. You do not remember the movie. You remember the voice. It is the voice of Mary Peiffer.

This time the movie is not about a little girl. It is in fact not even a movie. It is a book, about a woman, who comes from Alaska, and lives in the cold,  with dogs.

Mary Peiffer’s lovely, ringing, good witch voice, turns every book into a fairy tale.  Sometimes the tale is about not so little girls who grow curiouser and curiouser. Sometimes the girls get into trouble and sometimes they almost die. But always they are found by a voice which wraps itself around them like a shawl against time.

Hope to Die by Lawrence Block

What a wonderful Upper West Side between Broadway and Central Park West in the 70s voice to listen to …. when you’re on a boat to Kabul or Talibaq. Close your eyes and you can see the doormen, the yellow taxis, the short, balding, murderous psychoanalysts, walking their dogs between appointments with depressive middle aged lawyers suffering from garden variety impotence.

It must be comforting for the patient, I said, to have a shrink who
can pull a gun on you if you start acting out…You’re on the verge of
this major breakthrough, really getting in touch with your anger, or remembering
what really happened when your uncle came into your bedroom that night,
and you look up from the couch, and there’s Dr. Nadler, and he’s pointing
a gun at you….

Nope. Theres nothing as insidious as a bald jewish shrink on the Upper West Side — except a bald Jewish shrink with an aphorism: What do you get? You get what you get.

Seize the Night by Dean Koontz read by Keith Szarabajka

As Marcus Aurelius would say, there are good mixtures and bad mixtures.

Consider: A man, a dog, a Ford Explorer.
An American, a surfboard, a wave. Or: an experiment, a scientist, the DOD.
Good or bad?

Koontz doesn’t say. But incredible the speed with which we move to position ourselves
behind the good, or the bad. Koontz is laughing at us, watching
the gymnastics. Scratch. Is this the good or bad mix? Give me my surfboard
and my cape. Bobbiedom or die.

Bobby? Bobby (the friend, the ancillary character, the SECOND) is without a doubt the
most rocking Californian surfer dude in a century of surfer dudes. (What a voice Szarabajka has. And isn’t it always a member of the mobile immigrant army that tells America what it is? Read Marx) Bobby is every immigrant girls dream of an American boy. Bobby is the dude in Apocalypse Now water-skiing behind the PT boat in the Mekong Delta.

Chorus:”Carpe noctum “…Carpe cervisum….” [seize the beer]

Best Quotes:

I am not forbidden to know the comfort of a woman, but I am denied
all but the most meager light. Therefore, every form of illumination is
imbued with a shimmering, erotic quality….
Among humankind, for every Moe, there are thousands of Curlys and Larrys.
The genetically engineered retro-virus was brilliantly conceived by my mom….who
somehow still had time to make terrific chocolate chip cookies.

Best Words: “bobbiedom” “urinom ania” “skegin”

Best Scene: Elevator
Message: “Absolutely NEVER accept a dinner invitation from a monkey, unless you know precisely what’s on the menu.”