In the summertime (i.e. summertime, summertime, sum sum summertime), your trendier fake news publications often wheel out their squeaky cart of dust-covered free books sent by desperate, dust-covered fake publishers in hopes of making somebody’s — anybody’s — list of fake best-selling fake books to be read at the beach.
While the enormous canon of fake rules don’t specifically limit the reading of these books to beaches, there’s always that implied moral imperative not to read them anywhere else — such as on a plane (even if flying to, over or into a beach) or a train (even if this train is bound for glory, this train) or a Zamboni (even if Mr. Zamboni says it’s okay, which he won’t, because he’s very, very late.)
The type of beach also matters. I’m going to go out on a boogie board here and say that the word beach in beach-book jabber implies and actually demands a beach that is attached to an ocean and not a lake. A sea beach will do in a pinch, but you’d still want to avoid what Arlo Guthrie calls “beaches full of peaches who bring their ukes along.”
Given that my blog falls squarely into the round hole of trendy fake blogorithms, I hereby recommend the following fake books for summertime beach reading.
One caution: as I write this in late October, I am morally obliged (by the nun chorus that follows me around, singing the mortal sin blues in Gregorian Chant), to note that summertime has actually passed. Therefore, this is a fake sum sum summertime list of fake bestsellers for fake reading on non-fake beaches.
Granted, it will be considerably cooler at your ocean and sea beaches at this time of year. The bratwurst stands will be closed, all sharks will have been jumped and Ubered back to Mar-a-lago, and Gov. Christie will be lying somewhere else.
I’ve included the first few fake lines for each fake book because there’s no better way to judge a fake book than with a fake judge (and as we all know — the Supreme Court, notwithstanding or notwithsitting, but possibly withlying — there are very few or very many fake judges out there, depending on your definition of out there.)
•The Bottle In Front of Me, a detective Johnny Boozer mystery
I don’t want to brag, but I’m not as dumb as I look. Which is how I knew the man with the hole in his forehead was dead and not merely napping alongside the road following an outpatient frontal lobotomy.
•The Banjo Player’s Wife
Cindy awoke that morning to Foggy Mountain Breakdown being picked by three fingers two inches from her one good ear. When she turned and saw her husband playing his banjo, fully asleep, yet snoring in that high lonesome sound, she thanked God for the umpteenth time that she wasn’t the Horn of Gondor player’s wife.
•The Overturned Turtle
Ed, the box turtle, longed for a tattoo on his belly. “Flip me over,” it would say. Upside down as he found himself yet again, Ed thought about moving forward. Ed thought more about moving forward. His little green feet began pawing the upside down air. It was one of his best moves. In fact, it was his only move. Then Ed saw a woman wearing a “World’s Best Gardener” apron heading his way. Quickly he tried to remember some of his better pick-up lines. And then he remembered. He didn’t do quickly. Not even semi.
•The President’s Hair is Missing
When Biff Crackerdog, the White House chief of staff, walked into the Oval Office that morning, he could scarcely believe his ears. O’Toole, the secret service agent, was saying “When was the last time you saw your hair, Mr. President?”
The bald-headed man behind the president’s desk said “I never see my hair. It’s on top of my head.”
“Not at the moment, Mr. President,” smirked O’Toole.
“My beautiful head. So beautiful.”
“Was there anything unusual about it?” asked O’Toole.
“About my beautiful hair? Other than it’s beauty?”
“Can you think of anyone who’d want to harm your hair?”
The president adopted a thoughtful look. “Crackerdog,” he barked, “Get me a Pellegrino water.” Then, to agent O’Toole, he whispered “I can think of someone.”
“Uh, Mr. President,” said Crackerdog. “We’re all out of…”
“Obama!” shouted the president. “I knew I should have changed the locks.”
“And don’t forget the bagels,” said O’Toole, pantomiming a drum roll and cymbal clang, followed needlessly by a cry of “Sha-BOOM!”
©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2017, all rights reserved.