This one time, I was drunk at a party…

Gather ‘round kids and I’ll tell you of a time I was drunk at a party…that’s right, come on over there’s plenty of room. Ready?

This one time, I was drunk at a party. It was in Los Angeles (or somewhere close by, but totally north of Irvine so it counts) at the end of a century of excess. Elmo was celebrating. She was down two pieces of clothing and it wasn’t yet after 11pm. Increasingly uninhibited humans were pressed against each other both intentionally and accidentally. Someone was chanting in the back yard. There was a guy passed out on a couch. His red solo cup of party liquids perched precariously on the edge of an industry mag on the table in front of him. The Beastie Boys were encouraging us loudly from a stereo in another room or possibly outside. Concentric circles of their beats pulsed through the party liquids on the various surfaces. The solo cup tipped and flooded the surface of the coffee table. I rescued a mass market paperback novel. Several hours later, Elmo was yelling at me for embarrassing them.

“Oh my gods, Cookie?! What the fuck are you doing?!” She whisper shouted while snatching the book from my hands. “This is an honest to gods Hollywood Party and you haven’t left the living room!” She dropped Red Dragon to the floor and looked around to see if anyone noticed. “I can’t take you anywhere… where’s my top?”



DrD, UBB, Ret.

I’ve decided to claim retirement.

Desiree Ducharme, Used Book Buyer, Retired.

Retired adjective 1. having left ones job and ceased to work. 2. archaic (of a place) quiet and secluded; not seen or frequented by many people.

“Are you buying books still?”

“No, not professionally. I’ve retired.”


Privileged Experience

“After visiting there last summer I was saddened by the garbage piles, and homeless encampments I saw there. I hope that Portland can clean up and return to the beautiful city it has been in the past!” – Entitled Tourist, February 2022


The year I moved to Portland, I was homeless for four months. I worked 60+ hours between two jobs that were temporary, part-time retail. I showered at work on more than one occasion. Everything I owned fit into the trunk of a 2000 Nissan Maxima. As a single, 35 year old woman in the 21st century, I did not qualify to rent an apartment without a specifically male co-signer. The deposits to move into our apartment topped $2500, of which only $300 is refundable when we move out. This did not include first month’s rent. Personal, out-of-state checks were not accepted.



Re: Annual Counting of the Tomes 2021

From: Reconciliation Office

To: Budget and Planning

Re: Annual Counting of the Tomes; 2021

To whom it may concern,
The raw data on books read in 2021 is included below. First quarter (Q1) was rough with a total tome count of 2. Second quarter (Q2) showed steady, positive increase to around 75% of Q2-2019. Q3 and early Q4 matched 2019. Projections at the end of Q2 triggered resetting productivity goals to a total of 12 to aid recovery. Goals met in early Q3 reduced stress, allowing staff opportunity to exceed expectations. Holiday, covid surge, and weather impacts stalled Q4 recovery efforts. Full analysis forth coming. Italicized items caused spikes in productivity on all levels.

Q1 Jan-March:
1)Name of the Wind; Rothfuss; Fantasy
2)Arsene Lupin, Gentleman-Thief; Leblanc; Mystery

Q2 Apr-Jun:
3)Tower of Swallows (Witcher #4); Sapkoski; Fantasy
4)Lady of the Lake (Witcher #5); Sapkoski; Fantasy
5)The Daughter of Time; Tey; Mystery
6)Fugitive Telemetry (Murderbot 5); Wells; Science Fiction
7)English Country House Murders (Short Stories); Godfrey (editor); Mystery
8)Song of Achilles; Miller; Fiction
9)The Agitators; Wickenden; US History

Q3 July-Sept:
10)Season of Storms (Witcher #6); Sapkowski; Fantasy
11)The Odyssey; Homer; Wilson (translator); Fiction
12)Skyward; Sanderson; Science Fiction
13)Starsight (Skyward #2); Sanderson; Science Fiction
14)Troubled Blood (Cormoran Strike #5); Galbraith; Mystery
15)Outlawed; Anna Norton; Fiction
16)Bedknob & Broomstick; Mary Norton; Mid-Reader (problematic)
17)Project Hail Mary; Weir; Science Fiction
18)Elric at the End of Time (Elric #? seriously, even Moorcock doesn’t know the timeline); Moorcock; Fantasy
19)Arsenic & Adobo (Tita Rosie #1); Manasala; Mystery
20)Gods of Jade & Shadow; Moreno-Garcia; Fantasy
21)A Psalm For The Wild-Built; Chambers; Science Fiction
22)The Only Good Indians; Graham-Jones; Horror

Q4 Oct-Dec:
23)Halloween Party (Poirot #37); Christie; Mystery
24)Mrs. McGinty’s Dead (Poirot #28); Christie; Mystery
25)An Elderly Lady is up to No Good (Short Stories); Tursten; Mystery
26)After the Funeral (Poirot #29); Christie; Mystery
27)An Elderly Lady Must Not Be Crossed (Short Stories); Tursten; Mystery
28)Detective Inspector Huss; Tursten; Mystery
29)The Honjin Murders; Yokomizo; Mystery
30)Mexican Gothic; Moreno-Garcia; Gothic (currently in the freezer)

Year End Total: 30

Hoping you are well!

Rec Office


2021: My Year in Books

No one reads the same book. For a complete list, see Memo from Reconciliation Office RE: Annual Counting of the Tomes.


The Miracle at Arabella

The sound of ultimate suffering split the dawn. It was coming from a masked figure, all in black. It raced across the courtyard and knelt beside the dead man. [Roberts arrives too late (64, Dawn & 15 sec)]

“Inigo!” The cry bridged the gap between night and day, living and dead. Out of respect for her grief, the dawn left a cloak of shadow around them. The blade lay dull on the stone. [Mercy Stops the Dawn (65, Dawn & 26 sec)]

Faria raced to the courtyard. “Please, he is at peace now. His suffering has ended.” Faria, openly weeping, rested a hand gently on the figure’s shoulder. [Mercy in Mourning (66, Dawn & 30sec)] Rosaline pulled the mask from her face. Her hair cascading free with her tears. She took Death’s hand in hers. [Grief Unmasked (67, Dawn & 37 sec)] The survivors gathered in the arch ways of the arcade surrounding the courtyard. [The Wake Begins (68, Dawn & 40 sec)] Hugh’s smudging was deafening in the stillness.


The Death of Inigo Montoya


The horse appeared solid, heavy. It’s legs sounding into the earth, announcing its own existence. The rider was insubstantial. All in black, night and shadow struggled to believe he was there at all. Death twinkled in the starlight on their left side. They rode hard through the night, slowing only as they began the ascent to Arabella. The rider dismounted at the sign post before the small village square. The thin shadow of a man approached the fountain at the center. Death glowed at his left hip. The eerie light cloaked the man in shadow, nearly erasing him, confirming his lack of essence. The horse wandered behind him. It did not fear death. After drinking their fill, rider and mount parted company. The horse smelled grass nearby. The rider smelled frozen earth, pine, and death. Like the horse, he followed his nose.


This is not that story.

An introduction to Waverly’s Tale, part 3

The next part of this story is difficult to tell. It contains the strangeness that occurs when we retreat into personal cocoons and long to outgrow them. Heroines often have a space of time redacted from their history. We tend to avoid talking about how little girls become women, how common becomes uncommon. How truths become fiction. Goldman cuts this part from Buttercup’s story. He does it with the phrase, “What with one thing or another, three years passed.” Like Buttercup, we learned a lot. Though our education could be described as nothing more than intense drudgery with a side of general, Gen-x angst. We’re going to skip it.

What with one thing or another, two years passed…


This is not that story

An Introduction to Waverly’s Tale, continued.

A lot happens to a kid in the 2190 days between 12 and 18. The once little girls who wove a self-styled cocoon of acceptance around each other, emerged as full-fledged pre-teens. This is a dangerous and difficult time for women. We’re fragile, yet flexible, eager to find the limits of our malleability. Our bodies expand and lengthen at alarming and completely random rates. We gain knowledge with a terrible cost; life is pain. Our internal organs declare war on comfort. The first battles of womanhood rage within us. We turn on those closest to us. Especially our parents. (Sorry, parents.) They knew this would happen. Every month? FOREVER!? It was inconceivable! It remains total bullshit. (Sorry, kids.) We learn to weaponize our self doubt and throw daggers of insecurity with surprising accuracy. We toughen our own skin and fabricate our first set of emotional armor. Bonnie was challenged by cherubic curves, all at once. She spent her days in agony as her spine took its time lengthening. I was challenged by sharp edges and stagnation. I spent my days honing acerbic wit and sarcasm. At night, I remained small and in the shadows of becoming but not quite.