Musician Greg Lake, of Emerson, Lake and Palmer and King Crimson fame, has died.
In my youth I drove my parent’s old 8-track equipped Dodge Monaco, with The Best of Emerson Lake and Palmer one of the few 8-track albums I possessed and thus in very heavy rotation. (Among the annoyances: All but 10 seconds of “Tiger in a Spotlight” was on one track, and then a KERTHUNK for the very end.) I never saw one of their elaborate live shows, but I did had tickets for the Austin leg of the Emerson Lake and Powell tour before it was cancelled.
Here’s the obligatory Emerson, Lake and Palmer track:
Alas, there does not seem to be a full version of the original “In the Court of the Crimson King” on YouTube, or that would be here as well…
Here’s another beautiful Charnel House limited edition:
Ellison, Harlan. Coffin Nails. Charnel House, 2016. First edition oversized hardback, a Fine copy, #73 of 200 signed, numbered copies, sans dust jacket, as issued. The usual lavish Charnel House production, an attractive brown patterned (“crackle paper”) binding, with embossed silver nails spelling out “HE” on the front cover, and a giant silver nail on the cover. Features 25 uncollected Ellison stories from across his career.
This came in just before I sent out the latest Lame Excuse Book catalog went out. I still have one copy for sale if you want one…
This was my only notable book find in Houston over the Thanksgiving weekend:
Straub, Peter. Sides. Cemetery Dance, 2007. First edition hardback, #89 of 300 numbered copies signed by Straub, a Fine copy in a Fine dust jacket and slipcase. Non-fiction pieces. This was published at $50, but Half Price Books had it at half the price of the trade edition at $12.49, then took an additional 20% off, so I got it for 1/5th cover price. Supplements a copy of the trade edition, also signed by Straub.
(Burroughs, Edgar Rice) McWhorter, George T. Edgar Rice Burroughs Memorial Collection: A Catalog. House of Greystoke, 1991. First edition oversized trade paperback original, a Fine copy in vinyl overlay wraps. Inscribed by McWhorter: “To my good friends Roy and Dela White — who have stood by me/in this publishing ordeal. Best wishes! George T. Mcwhorter — 11/11/91”. With the Roy and Dela White library collection slip laid in. Comprehensive bibliography of the Burroughs collection at the University of Louisville by the curator. Won off the Heritage auction of the White Burroughs collection for $16, plus buyer’s premium, plus shipping.
Burroughs is typically before the period I collect, his important firsts generally go for far more than I’m willing to pay, and Burroughs bibliophiles are a world unto themselves. But I am big on SF/F/H reference works and bibliographies, and was happy to snag this for a lowball bid. Though it has some overlap with the Heins bibliography (which I also have), McWhorter is a lot more heavily illustrated.
Swanwick, Michael. Not So Much Said the Cat. Tachyon, 2016. First edition trade paperback original, a Fine copy, new and unread. Signed and dated by Swanwick. His latest short story collection.
Swanwick, Michael. Solstice Spirits. Dragonstairs Press, 2015. First edition chapbook original, #62 of 100 signed, numbered copies, a Fine copy new and unread. Four brief seasonal tales. Though dated 2015, I was only able to obtain it recently, and it’s already sold out from the press.
Copies of both of these will be available in the new Lame Excuse Books catalog I’m sending out on Monday.
Here’s a signed Lansdale set from the UK that has a much smaller limitation than most Lansdale items:
Lansdale, Joe R. and John L. Lansdale. Hell’s Bounty. Short, Scary Tales (SST) Publications, 2016. First edition hardback thus (the Subterranean Press edition, which I also have, precedes), 55 of 200 signed, numbered copies, a Fine copy in a Fine dust jacket. Weird western, heavy on the action and bloodshed.
Lansdale, John L. Zombie Gold. Short, Scary Tales (SST) Publications, 2016. First edition hardback, 55 of 200 signed, numbered copies, a Fine copy in a Fine dust jacket. More weird western mayhem.
Note that I will be offering up a few additional sets in the Lame Excuse Books catalog that I should be emailing out on Monday.
Here are two signed books I picked up during the most recent Half Price Books coupon sale:
Buckell, Tobias, The Apocalypse Ocean. Self-published, 2012. First edition hardback, a Fine copy in a Fine dust jacket. Inscribed by Buckell: “To Sarah,/Tobias Buckell.” Originally offered at $50 through Kickstarter. Bought for $6.39.
Kaufman, Lloyd and Adam Jahnke. The Toxic Avenger: The Novel. Thunder’s Mouth Press, 2006. First edition trade paperback original, a Near Fine copy with a crease to bottom front corner. Inscribed by Kaufman: “To Cynthia & Kazuyoshi/Toxie Loves You!/Lloyd Kaufman.” Novelization of the cult film by its writer/director. Bought for $6.98 (though at one point Half Price had it marked at $50).
I dislike Macy’s (for numerous reasons I need not detail here) and am bored by parades, but when I came across this image of an early balloon from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, I thought it was so cool it must be fake:
Turns out that not only is it real, but it was among the very first balloons featured in the parade, and was designed by a man named Tony Sarg:
In 1921, Tony Sarg, a celebrated illustrator and puppeteer, bought a home on Nantucket and eventually opened a toy store in town. From his off-island studios nestled in Times Square, Sarg’s artwork appeared on the covers of magazines, on the pages of children’s books, and eventually in Macy’s department store window displays. Beginning in 1924, Macy’s held an annual Christmas parade to celebrate the holiday shopping season in New York City, and appointed Tony Sarg as its chief designer.
After three years of the Christmas Parade, in November 1927, the president of Macy’s, Jesse Strauss, announced to America that the parade was going to take it up a notch, way up. The press and the people of New York City swelled with anticipation, all waiting to see what Tony Sarg had in mind. At one o’clock, Thanksgiving Day 1927, Sarg unveiled his lofty creations—first a twenty-one-foot balloon man that peeked into second story windows and then a jaw-dropping sixty-foot-long balloon dragon. The balloons were a huge hit, and have been the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving Day Parade ever since.
Later he used the same balloon (or a modified version of it) to hoax the media that there was a sea serpent out on Nantucket. What a card.
Anyway, I don’t think Macy’s has had a balloon in the parade nearly as interesting since.
Insert your own (SFW) Man from Nantucket limerick below.