Search
  • Clarke Wallace

Updated: 4 days ago

You must expect changes when you hit age twenty-one. Your reaction is a little slower, your get-up-and-go isn’t quite what it used to be. Starting up takes a little more effort. And getting whacked by the thick butt end of a tree doesn’t help matters.


This isn't about me, but my 1999 Mazda Miata sports car. It’s red with a short, snappy gearshift, the car coming with a clutch. It gives your left foot something to do while driving. It comes with a soft top, windup windows and an engine that makes my Miata run like a deer.


“What did you do?” murmured Lionel Roberts, owner of L.G.E. Auto Collision in Woodbridge. It was the second time I’ve come here; the first some 15 years ago when a look-good metal add-on on the SUV’s passenger’s door fell off. The dealership would only sell me a new one.


Back then I had dropped by Auto Collision where owner Roberts greeted me with a sly smile. “You want me to glue it back on?” He used a strip of double-sided tape, charging me nothing. It was still there when I traded in the SUV.


The same grin spread across Lionel’s face when he glanced at the Miata. “You hit a tree?’


“A tree hit me,” I said, it having slammed butt-first butt down on the hood. Another smaller branch knocked a hole in the spoiler. Yet another totaled the windscreen, and punched out the soft top’s back window.


Lionel penciled the damages onto a small pad: roof needed replacing, spoiler might be fixable; windshield replaced. The metal strut - where the window wipers are attached along with the hood - bent way out of shape.


A heck of a mess, he said, but fixable. He disappeared into the little office next to the main building. He joined me with a digitized sheet of what was needed. The cost would be less than that, he told me, depending on what he could find in the marketplace.


He had already found a used canvas roof in good shape. He’d patch the hole in the spoiler. The windshield would be new. He looked up from the pad, giving me a ‘don’t worry, we’ll work it out’.


Author’s comment: Lionel Roberts made one frowning observation, little indentations most noticeable on the hood. Hail, he decided. No I said. From acorns dropping each fall from a nearby oak tree. I got the feeling he didn’t believe me.


  • Clarke Wallace

Updated: May 26

What with this COVID-19 keeping many of us housebound, there‘s some thing that comes out of it that’s both interesting and enjoyable. It’s those watching television personalities, or anyone else being interviewed, taken remotely from their living rooms, dens or other parts of their homes.


When would we ever see where they live? Sometimes not much: a blank wall behind them. An empty wall made of bricks. A back garden with or without a pool. Or…


Nine out of ten times these days they’ll have a bookcase crammed with books behind them. You don’t believe me? Look for yourself. All sorts of bookcases, some filling the screen. It must give the interviewee’s persona a lift.


I’m usually not listening to the interview so much as I’m scanning the bookshelves to see if any of the books are mine. Particularly the recently released HARM’S WAY, the international thriller. Or HARVEST, set in France.


I’m batting zero so far.


What if an interview is planned to be taped – or live – with you in your house? You don’t have a bookcase? Hmm. Try the Yellow Pages. Surely someone would deliver a rental mobile bookcase full of real books. You sit in front of it, do the interview and later the bookcase is taken away. No fuss, no bother.


Author’s comment: Mind, I’d rather do a remote interview on radio where I feel more relaxed. In a bathtub full of soapy, warm water. Or in bed under a cozy duvet. With no one being the wiser. By the way, that's my office bookcase. (See below).


The official website of Author Clarke Wallace

© 2019 Clarke Wallace. All rights reserved.

  • White Twitter Icon
  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Instagram Icon

CW