A continuing tale of life in the boonies

No. 173

Fall books reviewed

A rash of works by Farmington authors have hit the bookstores recently and so to help you make choices as the season for Christmas (not Xmas, Mrs. Flynn) gifts approaches, the best of their number are reviewed below.

God Is A Woman by Floyd A. Parshley: Floyd has come up with an action-packed winner set right in Farmington. The main character, also Floyd, meets Marcia, has a fling, fathers a child, meets her dad and discovers they're both from outerspace, and that's only by page 22. Read on, McDuff. 150pp $7.95

God Is A Ball by Mike Whaley: The Courier sports editor covers the whole realm of sacred spheres. Basket balls. Volley balls. Bowling, tennis, wiffle, beach, billiard, ping pong, soccer, pool, soft and golf balls. He also reveals the divine mysteries of hockey pucks, shuttlecocks, darts, horseshoes, and much, much more. Strongly recommended as a cure for insomnia. 1,128 pp. 99 cents.

Jonathan Livingston Dolphin by Pat Benoit: Ms. Benoit tells the heartwarming story of JLD who escapes from the terror of a tuna net only to land in the living hell of a Florida aquarium. Finally, with the help of his Farmington friends, JLD is sprung loose and receives a ticker tape welcome at his new home in the Cocheco headwaters. 16pp $29.95

In the Eye of the Beholder by Royce Hodgdon: Henry Wilson's reincarnation makes the case, in his well-researched study of second hand stoves and freezers, that a thing of beauty is a guaranteed joy for at least 30 days. How to landscape ingeniously with 70 appliances is lucidly demonstrated with b/w photographs. 151pp $7.94

Stardom or Bust by Wail-on Tufts: The Rusty Rudder's best loved C&W guest shares his hopes and dreams for the big-time. And his fans have their say, too. Read why Lem thinks he sounds even better with a heavy cold. A cross between Roy Orbison and your ordinary man in a Middleton street, Wail-on describes the thrill of fame thundering towards him like a locomotive - and him tied to the rails. 152pp $7.93

Boondocker's Guide to the Galaxy by Crowbar Tufts: Middleton's answer to the Bronte sisters, the Tufts, have produced another splendid book recently, this one from the pen of Crowbar, who paints a delightful word picture of the mud and Bud crowd lurching around the tote roads and wood lots of North Strafford County. An appendix contains many of the area's better-known ballads like Hiawatha's Mudding, Chevy Chase and Booning through Woods on a Snowy Evening. 499pp $3

River Road and other Goat Tracks by Rantin Ramgunshoch: A companion guide to Crowbar's travelogue, Rantin traces the rise and fall of River Road, and makes the argument that is should become a NASA test ground for lunar landing craft on account of the street's unpredictable dust storms and impish moon-craters. Discover how a teenager's vehicle was launched by this mischevious road right into Rantin's garden. Read Candy Lee's contributary chapter of how she narrowly missed bathing in the Mad River. Crowbar, incidentally, warns mudders to travel River Road at their peril. 200pp Free.

Nolan ain't God by Clark Hackett: Farmington's well-loved road agent cuts the smart-mouthed outsider down to size with a series of scintillating pen thrusts. Readers are reminded that this broken-down hack doesn't even hail from Massachusetts. Clark also devotes one chapter to River Road, and defends the case for no street sign by pointing out that if you don't know where it is you probably got no business there anyway. 897pp (3 vols.) 10 cents each.

Turning Dogs into Dough by John Fitch: The man who used to turn dough into donuts shows how to convert dogs into dollars, and explains how enterprising communities can make the canine population become their tax collector's best friend simply by howling at residents night and day for a $6 dog license. There is a clip out and mail in section where-with you can betray your neighbor's unlicensed dog. 153pp $7.92

You Betcha! by Thomas B. Robert: Written along the lines of The Old Farmer's Almanac, this publication makes predictions and sets the odds for various happenings in Farmington during 1991. Will Rufus Rundlett or Elfreda Otis retire? It's 10-1 against for both, says You Betcha. Will Davidson pay for Wells 4 and 5? Even money, but not until 2007, says You Betcha. Another Henry Wilson Winter Carnival? 500-1 against.

Eye in the Sky by Jeannie Blinkinsop-Blinkinsop: Chesley Mountainís tower T.V. camera, especially positioned by the C.I.A., continues to monitor the activities of Farmington's most tenacious protestor. Jeannie writes a courageous account of living under the 24-hour gaze of Big Brother, and reveals that her 37 cats help to confuse the beamed-back signal. Handwritten. With sketches. 27pp 50 cents.

Plain Talk for Woodsy Folks by Gopaleen na Lander: Farmington's premier educator of the young at last unravels the mystery of a side step (slide down) consequence. Frankalpuissance is broken down stage by stage, sochemaunce is illuminated and vivmain of copycharged serjaunty thoroughly explained. A must for all jargon-lovers. 560pp $152.50

Sledgehammers open Walnuts by Selectmen 3: Farmington's famous threesome makes a case for the draconian approach to controlling a feisty population. In the works, they disclose, are ordinances to guillotine dump pickers, harpoon unlicenced dolphins on sight, sump downtown snow on River Road, and pulverize sidewalk bicycles with Royce's crusher (when it's working in 1992). Many other tidbits of astonishing information included. Highly recommended, but a hard-to-find item. Less than 10 copies printed. 149pp $7.96

Two Trees Or Not Two Trees

Citizens will be on tenterhooks as selectmen meet on Monday evening (Oct. 22) to decide the fate of two trees which may, or perhaps may not, sprout from the sidewalk of North Main Street near Stuart Pease's Village Bouquet and Greenery. Clark Hackett maintains they would impede the passage of the motorized sidewalk snowplow and last Wednesday gave an onsite demonstration that strengthened his argument. Meanwhile a crowd of hecklers with Styrofoam coffee cups drifted out of Mros's yelling helpful comments like "What happened to shovels?" and "You never liked trees, anyway."

Selectman Biff Silvia was branded Mr. Negative, but Mr. Negative or no, Biff politely snarled that two other selectman would help decide the saplings' fate. Then he took one of the hecklers, Fred Alfrey, to task for being a Middleton resident, who was therefore not entitled to his two cents worth on Farmington trees. Biff also recalled that years ago, long before the Pease family arrived in town, a tree in the very same location gave all kinds of trouble. Mr. Paul Pease responded that he had been in town 23 years, had arrived in time to witness the said tree in its stump phase, and countered that it gave no trouble at all. (To be cont.)

Nightmare on Elm Street

Disaster struck the lower end of Route 75 East, known as Elm Street, on Oct. 16, with a rampage by pumpkin smashers. Now there's a subject for a draconian ordinance! But,You Betcha predicts it won't be.

Henry Wilson Grange News

Congratulations are due to HWG for blue ribbons won at Stratham, Deerfield and Rochester Fairs - credit goes to Joan Jackson, Betty Webster and Mary Russell, according to newly elected master, Bernice "Bunny" Eastman. In other seasonal changes Flora Pouliot is Lecturer, and Gladys Richards is Flora. Marion Kimball is Pomona, Florence Hill is Ceres and Mr. Ramgunshoch is Piffle. The rest of the happy gang, Walter Richards, Ralph Russell, Betty Webster, Lorraine Doe, Eleanor Longo and Cindy Russell, also have important roles to play.

October 22, 1990

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