The Random Ramblings blog takes part in a Friday meme that quotes the first sentence of book and the fifth sentence of the 56th page. He chose my book MR. MONK IS CLEANED OUT.
The first line is:
Some guys showed up the other day at the house next door, mowed the dead lawn, and spray-painted it green.
And now, for the Friday 56, I present the 5th sentence on page 56.
I also know that anyone who has evidence that could help solve a murder has an obligation to share it with the police, regardless of whether the police have just fired you and your comely assistant.
To be honest, I like both of the sentences. They aren’t exactly moving the story forward, but I find them amusing and give a great feel for the tone of the book.
Sounds like a fun meme. Speaking of MONK, Ed Gorman gives CLEANED OUT a rave. He says, in part:
One of the things that makes this series so distinctive is the full and realistic portraits we get of Natalie and her daughter Julie. The writing here is especially strong. Lee Goldberg is good at describing the way we live now.
The old wrestling come on “This time it’s personal” applies here because Monk plans to trap, humiliate, debase and defoliate the “dude” (who said Monk is out touch?) who took his money.
A truly artful comedy that has a lot to say about the people who robbed us blind over the past three decades.
Thanks, Ed. Here’s the first line of his book DARK TRAIL.
The cigarette had two or three good drags left and Leo Guild was happy to take them.
And here’s the fifth line of page 56.
“He said that he didn’t know you were a man of honor.”
Those two lines actually do a pretty good job of conveying the feel of his terrific western.
3 thoughts on “Mr. Monk and the Meme”
Thanks for plugging me.
Ever since starting to do those meme’s, I’ve been paying much more attention to first sentences. It’s funny how much they can vary.
An Open Letter to Mr. Lee Goldberg:
Many of you know me as the man who was a former police detective for the San Francisco Police Department. And then, sometime later, as a former-former detective. But even without an official badge, my friend and overseer, Captain Leland Stottlemeyer, bless his heart, appreciated the role I played as an ‘advisor’. I have this unique ability to recognize clues which are often overlooked, and which can help solve a homicide. I don’t understand how I acquired this special talent, or what some call my idiosyncrasies. It is, I suppose, simply a blessing… and sometimes a curse.
When they finished making the television series about me–they called it “Monk”–the people in charge had the presence of mind to complete eight seasons. Eight, we can all agree, is a good number–nice and round and even. These people knew what they were doing. The actor who portrayed me–the one who played a loser cab driver with a phony Italian accent in the “Wings” series–was not too bad; but he was no Adrian Monk… but then who is? And, truth be told, who would really want to be me. Most of the time I don’t.
I have read four of Mr. Lee Goldberg’s books about me. I finished the first three, so it was necessary that I read the next one right away, so now I have read four of his Mr. Monk books. Four is a nice even number. When I begin reading the fifth novel in his series, I’ll have to plan for sufficient time to allow me to read the sixth one as soon as possible.
Mr. Goldberg has now written ten “Mr. Monk” books–ten is probably the best round even number. But it’s somewhat problematic for me when I learned he is working on an 11th book; which, when it’s published, will throw the whole sequence into disarray… and we’ll be stuck on an unbalance eleven until he finally gets around to writing number twelve. Can you believe it? How much better it would be for everyone if there was a bit more planning, and we wouldn’t have to endure this ongoing problem of inconsistent and unbalanced numbers. But, that said, Mr. Goldberg is a very good writer… even though he is lacking some in the process of orderly, well-balanced mathematics… and how much better it would be for everyone if he published books 11 and 12 at the same time.
While I admire Mr. Goldberg’s writing ability, and those who wrote the television scripts, I should mention a few things in my own defense. First of all, I’m not really as superstitious as I am often portrayed; such as avoiding stepping on cracks, or touching parking meters when I walk down the street, or straightening a picture hanging crooked on a wall. Hey! I just don’t want to take any chances, okay? Why tempt fate? And, yes, I am a cautious man. Some would say I’m intelligently prudent. Or, if they’re not saying it, maybe they should. We must always be vigilant, and we must never forget… There’s a jungle out there! You’ll thank me later.
And I readily admit to using disinfectant ‘wipes’(a.k.a. ‘wet ones’) whenever I encounter a situation where germs may be rampant…like shaking another person’s hand. One never knows where that hand may have been! Natalie Teeger, who is also the storyteller in Mr. Goldberg’s books, is my assistant, and she always has a wipe ready for me when circumstances arise which require that I be decontaminated right then and there. Natalie is a widow, raising a young daughter. If I did not need an assistant by my side to help me confront the challenges of an uneven and chaotic world, she would have to seek other employment. Natalie is a dependable assistant…and what kind of a job could possibly be as fulfilling for her if I did not require as her help day in and day out? She knows me better than I know myself. That, I suppose, is her curse. But Natalie is a rare jewel who is my lifeline during troubling times, which often occur. In fact, I can hardly remember any times in my life which weren’t troubling. That is, after my dear wife, Trudy, was taken from me, many years ago, by a scumbag who planted a bomb which exploded when she started her car. I miss her every minute of every day. And every day I continue to wear the ring she unbelievably gave me, along with her heart, on the day we were married.
It won’t bring Trudy back to me. Nothing can as long as I remain in this world while she waits for me in a far better place. But if I never achieve anything else in my remaining lifetime, tracking down her killer–and bringing to him the long overdue justice he deserves–will be my most meaningful accomplishment.
The most meaningful, that is, since that day, long ago, when Trudy stood by my side and said… “I do.” –A.M.
An “A.M.” Postscript…
“Because I like–no, insist–that all i’s be dotted, and all t’s be crossed… well here’s how my open letter should be amended:
“In the fourth paragraph, the correct phrase is ‘…an unbalanced eleven…’; and
“In Paragraph 6, I should have written “…if I did not require her help…
“I know that my readers–if there are any readers–will thank me later.”