It occurred to me last night that I haven’t actually been in Montreal proper — that is, east of the airport — in some 23 years. And the less said about that, the better. Last night’s reading at Drawn & Quarter was, in any case, kind of an away-from-homecoming.
I found myself installed in a hotel room featuring a non-functional Jaccuzzi tub and mirrors on the ceiling. Actually, that isn’t precisely true: there is only one mirror on the ceiling, but it is exceptionally large. I celebrated my arrival in these fine digs by drinking The Famous Grouse out of a plastic cup. It is not clear what part of the grouse is used to make this so-called whisky, but it is my view that it is probably made from by-products.
Drawn & Quarterly is a nice bookshop, from which I escaped with credit limit intact only by that superhuman willpower for which I am not precisely well known. I did buy a copy of Harold Hoefle’s book, The Mountain Clinic.
Harold read first, by dint of losing the coin toss. Somehow, although the chances are fifty-fifty, it always comes up heads. You’ve got a lot to learn about coin tosses, I said. Alexander MacLeod read from “Wonder About Parents,” one of my favorite stories from Light Lifting, and one he hasn’t read from before.
He also kindly introduced me with a ringing endorsement of my book: “It’s about war. It’s about pornography. And it doesn’t suck!”
And I announced, to universal approval, the topic of my next novel:
My next novel will be about a courageous lesbian puppy growing up on a farm in Saskatchewan, who rejects the hyper-masculine pheasant-hunting culture of her pointer forebears and embarks on a heart-warming journey to the big city, where she rescues a small child from a fucking well.
I feel this one will be a real winner. Now, on to Ottawa.