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Letters From the Editor

So, I Understand You Have a New Book?

Friday evening, November 14, 2003, kitchen

‘Hey there, welcome! Glad you could make it.’

‘Glad to be here, thanks!’

‘Well, the pleasure’s all ours, really.’

‘Think nothing of it. No problem at all.’

‘Good, just great. So, this little contraption here–’

‘Yes, that’s my corkscrew.’

‘Right, so you were the one who thought of–’

‘Yes, I was the one who thought of making it out of that softish metal.’

‘You’re an idiot.’

‘I beg your pardon?’

‘What were you thinking, making a corkscrew out of this stuff?’ ‘Well, the price point seemed right. It has a nice color.’ ‘Oh, good. Yeah, I knew I was getting ripped off. You know, every time you try to open a bottle of wine, the little arms bend end up, hurting the palm of your hand. I mean, it’s not like getting the cork out of a bottle of wine is an easy thing, you know? Of course you should know. Any idiot who designs a corkscrew should know that it takes some physical strength to pull out a cork.’

‘Well I guess I never thought–’

‘That’s right, I guess you never did.’

Wednesday morning, November 12, 2003, bathroom

‘Well, hi there. I just want to start off by thanking you for coming down on such short notice–’

‘Oh, it was no problem, no problem at all.’

‘Good, good. So, Mr. … Braun, is it? May I call you that?’

‘Oh, of course!’

‘Good. So, when you invented this little part here on the razor, this part that covers the spinning blades – I believe it’s called the foil, isn’t it?’

‘Yes, the foil, that’s it.’

‘Okay, when you invented the foil, I’m just curious – what were you thinking?’

‘I’m sorry?’

‘I get a little hole in my foil and I’m out, what, eight bucks? And in the meantime I’m turning my face into hamburger, and for what?’

‘Well, I–‘

‘Wait, do you know the guy who decided that those refill razor blades that have the three blades in them should be five bucks apiece?’

‘Actually, he’s my roommate.’

‘Get out of my bathroom.’

Saturday afternoon, November 15, 2003, sidewalk

‘Hi, glad you could join us today.’

‘Oh, glad to! Just glad to.’

‘Happy to hear it. I was checking my voicemail just now…’

‘Handy feature that, isn’t it?’

‘Oh! No question, no question about it. But checking it on this phone, I don’t know…’

‘Well, I’m certain you’ve noticed that it makes sure you don’t accidentally erase your messages. It confirms that you are sure that you are, in fact, deleting the message.’

‘Right, but–’

‘To prevent user error.’

‘Yes, but I already–’

‘That way you won’t accidentally–’

‘Okay, look, I get it, alright? It takes me like four minutes to get through the erasing process, and I think it’s stupid.’

‘It’s not stupid, it’s a safeguard.’

‘Against what?’

‘Against you accidentally erasing your voicemail messages.’

‘But it wouldn’t even erase my real voicemail messages. I have to go into my voicemail to erase the messages. This is just so I can erase the stupid little voicemail icon that’s on my phone and so I can get rid of the annoying message telling me that I have voicemail. The phone and the voicemail system aren’t even connected.’


‘So what do you have to say for yourself?’

‘Shall I just step into the oncoming traffic right here?’

‘I was hoping you’d say that.’

Andrew Womack is a founding editor of The Morning News. He is always working on the next installment of the Albums of the Year series at TMN. More by Andrew Womack

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