Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Latest

Just to keep you all up to date. I'll be speaking at the Brentwood Library on Saturday, November 22. I can't wait. It's always fun to talk about Pulp Writer and my grandfather's life as a pulp fiction writer and the history of pulp fiction. Nowadays, it's a great diversion from the more stressful things happening.

I have found myself leaning towards wanting to read more about the Great Depression lately. Coincidentally, a few weeks ago I picked up Hard Times, Studs Terkel's great oral history from that era. I had always admired his work, not just because of the extraordinary work he had done with oral histories (In the past, I have thought about becoming a personal historian) but also because of his work on the Great Depression. Hard Times has to be one of the most extraordinary books published on the Great Depression. Another one that comes to mind is Robert McElvaine's book Down and Out in the Great Depression: Letters from the Forgotten Man, a compilation of letters that Franklin D. and Eleanor Roosevelt received from American citizens during that time. McElvaine's history The Great Depression is also excellent.

As for the "house saga," here is the latest. It has now been a month since we accepted an offer on my house, and a month since we sent in all of the paperwork so the mortgage holders would do a short sale. A month. And it was only until last week that my realtor was able to talk to a real human being at one the banks ( I have a first mortgage and an equity loan to deal with). She had been calling the banks for almost two weeks, leaving messages on answering machines, waiting for them to call her back. She finally was able to talk to someone on Thursday. You know what they told her? That they had lost all my paperwork and needed her to send it in again.