Clinton, South Carolina, Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 8:54 a.m.
Middle of the week.
Last night traded one kind of music for another. A trip to Charlotte to see my favorite band, Reckless Kelly, fell through, but I visited my nephew’s lovely children – held them, made faces, sound effects, tossed the older lightly in the air, anything to make him giggle – and then, on a lark, stopped by David Bagwell’s rustic horse barn, where folks are prone to sit around and play songs on Tuesday nights.
It filled the need of getting my mind off politics. I wish I’d thought to sing “Moaning the Blues.”
Where else could I sing harmony? Not here in the living room with Boston Red Sox Baseball on NESN on.
Now I’m writing a blog with All in the Family on. But soon I shall be working on a novel, once this – yes, this – gets me in the proper mood.
I got back in time to see the Red Sox break up a tie game in Saint Louis.
Here’s what’s changed this baseball season. During commercials, I used to switch to other games. Now I switch to see what’s the latest on our president. After Red Sox games ended, I used to switch to games on the West Coast. Now I check on Trump. Vin Scully’s retirement may have had a little to do with it.
Watching the news gets me down, so I watch the late-night talk shows to hear the hosts and guests joke … about the news. The upshot of all this is I seldom forget to say my prayers, even as I tumble to sleep with my eyes closed, listening to Seth Meyers.
Perhaps there is cleansing in this. It’s been a while since the country has been this passionate about politics and government. Perhaps some sense of reason will emerge from the unreasonable. Perhaps the middle ground will grow. At the moment, both sides say mainly to the other, “I’m smart. You’re not.”
On the other hand, I got to sing and strum.
And the Red Sox won.
If you’d like me to mail you a signed copy of Lightning in a Bottle, or any of my other novels, you can find my address and instructions at montedutton.com. (montedutton.com/blog/merchandise)
I’ve written six novels and a collection of short stories. I’ve also written a number of books about sports, mostly about NASCAR. You can find most of them here.
The Kindle versions of my books, where available, can be found above. Links below are to print editions.
Lightning in a Bottle is the story of Barrie Jarman, the hope of stock car racing’s future. Barrie, a 18-year-old from Spartanburg, South Carolina, is both typical of his generation and a throwback to the sport’s glory days.
Cowboys Come Home is a modern western. Two World War II heroes come home from the Pacific to Texas.
I’ve written a crime novel about the corrosive effects of patronage and the rise and fall of a powerful politician and his dysfunctional family, Forgive Us Our Trespasses.
I’ve written about what happens to a football coach when he loses everything, Crazy of Natural Causes. It’s a fable of life’s absurdity.
I’ve written a tale of the Sixties in the South, centered on school integration and a high school football team, The Intangibles.
I’ve written a rollicking yarn about the feds trying to track down and manipulate a national hero who just happens to be a pot-smoking songwriter, The Audacity of Dope.
I’ve written a collection of 11 short stories, all derived from songs I wrote, Longer Songs.
Signed copies of Lightning in a Bottle are on sale at Emma Jane’s (see ad above). Signed copies of all my fiction are also on sale at L&L Office Supply in uptown Clinton, South Carolina.
Follow me on Twitter @montedutton, @hmdutton (about writing), and/or @wastedpilgrim (more opinionated and irreverent). I’m on Facebook (Monte.Dutton), Instagram (TUG50), and Google-Plus (MonteDuttonWriter).