Every year I’m so tempted by the April A to Z challenge. I love the idea of writing a post about every letter of the alphabet but there’s no way I can cram that into 26 days straight, not with the day job and all the other stuff. I give huge kudos to those who can manage it!
So I decided this morning that there was no reason I couldn’t do the challenge anyway, but on my own terms. So here I am with my letter “A”. Now the thing about me, which you probably know by now, is that I’m very stream of consciousness when it comes to posts. If you read my Word Whores posts on Saturdays over on their website, you’ve seen this facet of me in operation! Unless I have a very specific topic with enough aspects to inspire me to outline and provide a structured discussion, I kind of bounce. I also love the test-taking theory of put the answer that comes to mind first.
Accordingly, the initial thing that the letter “A” inspires for me is the book Alas Babylon by Pat Frank. It was my first exposure to the whole idea of the manmade or natural apocalypse in one form or another and the life a person would have to live afterwards. The book was one of my Dad’s favorites and I devoured it. I still reread it from time to time and have the original paperback (much thrashed) in my bookcase. Of course the words live on my kindle now. I thought I was alone in my passion for this novel until one day I looked it up on Amazon and discovered how much of a classic it is. SPOILER ALERT – I always want Randy Bragg’s brother Mark to be alive, somewhere, and I always wish they could save Malachi. I LOVED the TV series “Jericho” because it felt so much to me like a modern take on Alas Babylon, at least in the early episodes, before things got all conspiracy-complicated. (And Skeet Ulrich is very easy to look at….but I digress.)
“A” is also for amber in my idiosyncratic illustrated alphabet. My favorite piece of amber probably isn’t real – that would be John Hammond’s giant chunk of amber from “Jurassic Park,” adorning his cane, with a prehistoric mosquito chock full of dinosaur blood forever trapped inside. (“dino-sawer” as that narrator from the Park’s video says). We saw the props from “Jurassic Park” at Universal Studios, back when this kind of exhibit hadn’t really been done before. Somehow we took a wrong turn at the theme park and got into the back door of the ehxibit (my mistake, I swear) so we had the area to ourselves for a few minutes. Then of course the crush of people came in but it was still an amazing experience to see the recreation of the kitchen where the velocipraptors stalked the kids and touch the triceratops as she laboriously breathed in and out and watch the egg incubator turning big eggs.
I have my own little mini collection of amber, mostly in rings. No trapped insects though!
And there you have my kickoff post in the alphabet challenge! (I’m either 113 days behind the rest of the world on this series of blog posts or 352 days early LOL. You can decide!). Next week I’ll arrive at Point “B”….