FAQ #25

Question: Do you have a signed Walter Brooks book? If so, I would be interested in purchasing it sight unseen .
Answer: No doubt you'd buy a pig in a poke, too. How very trusting of you! To answer your question, yes, I do have such a book, Freddy the Pilot, which I Yes, only two bucks for autographed Freddy the Pilotfound in a big box of books I bought for a dollar at a Kiwanis flea market in Aeschylus Center just a few months ago. I was really more interested in a Taber's medical encyclopedia that I spotted in the box, but when I got it home, lo and behold, there was the Freddy book. Having no use for it, I will be disposing of it at my Spring 2000 Internet Yard Sale later this year, on a first-come, first-served basis, of course. I must mention that it has no dust jacket, but that it is a first edition. Since it is signed, I'm afraid I'll have to double my usual asking price for Freddy books, so it will be up for grabs for $2.00. I still do not have a decent scanner, so the image of the title page is rather poor, but you can certainly appreciate the niceness of the signature. I am not a member of any kind of autograph dealer society, and I will not be able to provide any kind of "certificate of authenticity" with the book, but, hey, for two dollars what have you got to lose--that is if you're first in line. I suppose you could check out Mr. Brooks's signature someplace or other yourself, but I'm not sure who would be able to help you out. Now pay attention! Please do not start pestering me about when the yard sale will commence. I will let you know through the mailing list of the "Friends of Freddy." There's a link to the Freddy list on the Table of Contents page in case you'd like to subscribe, not that there's ever very much going on there.


Question: Can you tell us a little more about Jason Brewer, many of whose postcards have appeared on your website? Wasn't he once the star quarterback for the C.H.S. football team?
Answer:You have Jason Brewer confused with Irving Hill. Jason played fullback for the Centerboro football team. It was Irving who played quarterback. It is a shame that Jason never ran with the ball, so to speak, after high school. No one really knows why for certain, but most of us assumed that he became depressed when all the cheering ceased after his high school glory days. When he graduated, he joined the Army as most of us did, served overseas, and came home to settle in Centerboro. He got a job in the plumbing department of Herbert Halsey's Hardware Emporium and worked there until the business folded. Oddly, he stayed on in the same location, working as a clerk in whatever enterprise happened to occupy the old Halsey building. Some of his jobs included repairing vacuum cleaners, taking bets at an Off Track Betting office, and selling goldfish, gerbils, parrots, rabbit food, aquarium decorations, and other creatures and supplies. He retired only when a health food store moved in. He became fairly well known as a postcard and sports card collector, a hobby which perfectly suited his sedentary ways . Always thickset, he had grown rather large, let us say, over the years as eating had become his principal comfort and consolation and he experienced more and more difficulty getting around. When the poor fellow popped off to the great gridiron in the sky, his impressive collections were dispersed at an estate sale and auction, and all the proceeds went to the athletic department of C.H.S. as stipulated in his will. That was a nice gesture, don't you think? One wonders what he mused about all those years as an unassuming clerk.

Question: I've been waiting and waiting for your eating plan for the year 2000. What's the holdup?
Answer: I've just not gotten around to publishing it until now, that's all. Here it is with a small disclaimer: I am not responsible for any gastric or systemic mishaps or distress you may experience if you follow any part of my plan. My goal this year is to achieve a balanced diet.

5:30-5:50 A.M.
Monday-Saturday: A twenty-four oz. shake of rice milk, soy protein, one organic banana, and a cup of plain all-natural yogurt;  two 8-oz. cups of green tea sweetened to taste with raw organic honey. Morning medications. Sunday: A blend of wheat bran, whey protein, soy grits, oats, wild rice, whole rye, buckwheat, barley, millet, sesame seeds, and sunflower seeds. One 12 ounce glass of organic orange juice. Morning medications.
12:00-12:30 P.M.
Every Day: A fresh garden salad and a tuna sandwich on multi-grain bread with a side of steamed organic brown rice and a steamed vegetable like broccoli or cauliflower. Two quarts of distilled water.
Afternoon Snack
3:30-3:40 P.M.
Two quarts of distilled water and one handful of pine nuts or roasted soybeans. Afternoon medications.
6:30-7:30 P.M.

To balance the positive effects of "healthy" eating between the hours of 5:30 A.M. and 3:40 P.M., I will partake of assorted packaged and processed foodstuffs and beverages containing, for example and not limited to, the following government-approved additives: cocoa butter, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, FD&C Yellow No. 5 and 6, FD&C Red No. 3 and  40, FD&C Blue No. 1 and 2, FD&C Green No. 3, titanium dioxide, acetaldehyde, turmeric oleoresin, refined sugar, MSG, aspartame, saccharin, n-acetyl-l-methionine, alginates, lecithin, mono- & diglycerides, quinine hydrochloride, octafluorocyclobutane, lipase from animal tissue, methyl cellulose, trisodium nitrilotriacetate, dihydronootkatone, carrageenan, lard, jelutong, glycerine, pectin, vanillin isobutyrate, guar gum, sodium aluminosilicate, ethyl brassylate, 2-benzofurancarboxaldehyde, fungal hemicellulase, propionic acid and its salts, butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA), butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), benzoates, sodium nitrite, chloroform, formaldehyde, propane, erythorbates, chlorine, potasium gibberellate, fumaric acid, phosphoric acid, urea, rectified turpentine, lactic acid, tartrates, zinc sulfate, 2, 5-xylenol, cholesterol, ion exchange resin, hemlock oil, rhodinyl phenylacetate, polyglycerol esters of fatty acids, zingerone, succinylated monogylcerides, polyvinylpyrrolidone, and salt, salt, salt! It will be necessary to check the labels on frozen dinners, canned goods, etc. scrupulously in order to achieve this balance, but it will be worth the extra effort, I'm sure. 

Evening Snack
9:30-9:50 P.M.
One large bag of microwave popcorn w/ extra butter or one twelve-oz. bag of potato chips or three large cream-filled doughnuts. One sixteen-ounce full-strength soft drink . Evening medications.

Short Answers to Infrequently Asked Questions

  • One other memorably anxious and expensive trip to the vet with Chloe occurred when she ate an ant trap. She recovered quite well after a shot of atropine (I think it was), but I still haven't.
  • Stanley Muszkiski owned both the movie theater and the bowling alley I referred to in the "Louis Doberman and the Bowling Shoes" story in the Tales Out of School (and Elsewhere): True Stories from the Golden Age of Centerboro chapter of this website. The movie theater was demolished years ago, but the bowling alley is still in operation, although not run by any of the Muszkiski family.
  • The cook for many years at the Centerboro Hotel was Mrs. Twitch. Her signature dish was a simply splendid steamed mussel concoction. Unfortunately she was let go after a small, but lethal outbreak of hepatitis was traced back to the hotel's kitchen.
  • It is quite correct that Frederick Bean has no middle name, but I don't know any story behind that.
  • Yes, I know that Brooks says that Mrs. Underdunk's house is "a big old-fashioned brick house with a steep pitched slate roof," but that is quite incorrect. (He also places it on Main Street in Bean Home News, whereas it is on Sherman, as you know.) He has confused it with Mrs. Church's in the upper part of town. Incidentally, If you want to see a picture of Mrs. U's house, go to FAQ #7. For a photo of Mrs. Church's house, go to Picture Page 23.
  • I'm sorry you've spent so much time looking for Axon Spardoze's Mostly Water. I should have mentioned that it is one of those self-published works, and that not many copies exist. You'll be fortunate indeed to find one.
  • Mrs. U. and I watch very little television because most of it is, of course, utter stupid rubbish; however we do watch As Time Goes By, a delightful and civilized British serial starring Dame Judi Dench and Geoffrey Palmer. Once in a while I watch Antiques Roadshow to see if any of my possessions might be worth thousands of dollars at auction.
  • What does that "N.B." mean?  "N.B." =  nota bene = "mark well" (literally) or "note carefully."
  • Dear A.S., I am indeed familiar with the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement. I regard it as yet another covert, cost-effective Martian front manned by human dupes and dedicated to the self-destruction of the human species. I provide a link to the site only because it is better to be aware of such threats than unaware. However, I warn you that their nefarious site is not for the very young or the tenderhearted: VHEMT. N.B. I do not endorse the VHEMT!
  • My Chloe and Mrs. U's Pookie get along. I wouldn't say they're inseparable, but they do not snap at one another.
  • All the little towns and villages within a few miles of Centerboro? If you leave it up to me to define "a few" and excluding insignificant hamlets like Clabberstone (population 14) and cities of some size like Rome, here they are off the top of my head and in no particular order: Dutch Flats, Boonville, East Waddams, East Floyd, Remsen, South Pharisee, Clamville, Weems (sounds like something one might get a bad case of, doesn't it?), Upper Cattawampus, Honnedaga, Bounding Brook, Russia, Poland, Goshen Corners, Lakeville, Fink Hollow, Nobleboro, Alder Creek, Gomorrah Center, Gomorrah Falls, Tushville, Pocanaxon, Plutarch Mills, Ninety Six Corners, Hinckley, Samaria, Stittville, Aeschylus Center, and Ninevah Falls. There are plenty more, but these are the ones I've been to.
  • No, I still have not been able to take any kind of legal action against E. T. since I'm not even sure who she is. In any case, I haven't heard from her in quite a while.
  • Yes, there was a treehouse at the Bean farm. William built it for the boys, and it was quite a nice place to spend time Bean farm treehousequaffing lemonade, reading Tom Swift and Hardy Boys books, playing cards, surveying the countryside with a little spyglass, and (safe from adult eyes) rolling cigarettes. Here is a little picture of that sanctuary from one of the Bean family albums that I rescued from the big fire.


Quick Link