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Friday, 19 April 2019

Beyond Redemption

I read recently about contenders for the most boring man in Britain, or it may have been the world. They included a man who collected 19000 beer cans and had to keep moving houses, a vacuum cleaner collector, a ‘roundabout’ spotter, a handsaw enthusiast, a mountain measurer and an aficionado of drain and manhole covers.  There are even dull men’s calendars (Amazon sell everything) and A Facebook page for dull men. 

It may be time for me to join their ranks and sign up for ‘Dull Men's Anonymous’, for I’m seriously worried that I, too, have a serious ‘dull addiction.’ Should I stand up and state proudly that it is six months since my last dabble in Pinterest? Trouble is . . . and with trembling fingers I write this admission . . . I can’t!

It started off simple enough – something alcoholics and heroin addicts tend to say, blaming Babycham or dope — I was looking for a few samples of noir images to get me in the mood for Clay Cross. But then my new ‘dealer’ wouldn’t leave me alone. Everyday, in my inbox, fresh ‘pins’ from Pinterest appeared. I dabbled. Tempted by one or two and then a few more. Next moment people started ‘sharing’ my pins, so foolishly I checked out their pages and pinched some of theirs. A week or two later Pinterest upped their game moving me on to the ‘hard stuff’ – pulp book covers, and now I have over five hundred of them on my Pinterest Board and 87 followers.

And I still haven’t done much on what started it all off – a series of new Clay Cross stories. Am I doomed to be Monmouth’s answer to George Eliot’s Causabon?  No Pinterest addict but the intellectually withered husband of Dorothea with a great plan to write the ultimate book on The Key to all Mythologies. Unfortunately for him, the poor fool spent so much time planning he never got round to writing the book, leaving only fragments for his less than grieving widow to discard.
Well, for the more intellectually inclined, here is a fine article, rehabilitating Edward Causabon 

And for those who still enjoy the trivial frisson of comics, garish front covers and blaring clich├ęs, here are but a few samples of my new addiction, putting me on a par with manhole spotting and collecting beer cans. And for those who've been tempted, you may or may not agree with Peter Chapman who's been collecting the actual books (not pinterest images) since 1952. Today he owns 7000 - and the fact that  I'm envious tells you I may be beyond redemption. As he said:  'Back in the old days, these books were 120 pages and they had a beginning, middle and end. That was it. Who needs 700 pages of crap you can't even fit in your coat pocket.'

Being blunt open any of these books and you're liable to be disappointed. But one look at the cover and open it, you will


Maria Zannini said...

You gotta love some of these blurbs.

You probably have a much better standing on Pinterest than I do. I pin my own stuff, but almost never think to pin other stuff. Too busy to browse--at least this time of year.

Mike Keyton said...

A much better standing on Pinterest? That's rather like complimenting an alcoholic who hasn't the faintest idea of what he's doing. What's really fascinating are the 'lesbian' pulp covers written by men for men. The blurbs there are something else - prurience and condemnation in equal measure. There was a lot going on in the male psyche at that particular time : - Hmm, another blog post? Perhaps not, just another excuse to post dubious pictures :)

DRC said...

I can't say much for drain covers or roundabout spotters, but look at your addiction like this: You're an art collector. There's nothing boring in that so I believe you can safely remove yourself from the dull list. I don't do Pinterest but if I did, I imagine it would be full of weird art. So please, next time I browse through Amazon calenders, don't let me see you're the fantastic new Dull Mr April...

LD Masterson said...

I have managed somehow not to get involved with Pinterest, which is a good thing because I'm sure I would become quickly addicted. But looking at these covers brings two thoughts to mind. I miss John D. MacDonald. And I remember when a paperback book was only 35 cents. (Wow, I'm old.)

Mike Keyton said...

DRC, I'm buffing my abs for Dull Mr April :)

Mike Keyton said...

Linda My favourite other than Mickey Spillane of course, was Richard S Prather.