Project Agatha, or “This could be a long one, Baby Andy.”

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Gentle Reader,

This morning pretty much stunk.  I had to do something that I knew when I Became what I Became that I might have to do, but that thought had occurred to me in a headier time involving such things as “YAY! NO MORE SCHOOL!”, “SCHOOL’S OUT FOREVER!”, and then finally, “YAY!  NO MORE EXAMS, EVER!” (also known as “OHMIGODIPASSED!!!!!!”).  So the knowledge of my potentially having to do what I had to do this morning was: 1.  Not grounded in the concretest of realities, and 2.  tempered with a massive dose of “I don’t care because did I mention the part about NO MORE SCHOOL????”

To give those of you who went through that entire experience with me a tiny bit of perspective, remember the first year class we had whose named rhymed with “Borts”?  And then remember who I had for Borts?  His name rhymed with “Tight”.  I would sooner take another of Tight’s Borts exams again than do what I had to do this morning.

My heart still hurts, and this afternoon?  I have spent it being very conflicted.  I even gave The Sir a chicken nugget because the gaze of adoration, loyalty, and appreciation usually returns my world to rightness.  And I got the gaze, and he WAS extremely handsome and sincere, but then he figured out I was in a vulnerable state and kept begging for more nuggets.  I take back any earlier assertions of his lack of intelligence.

So to put my mind onto happier things-murder mysteries!  When one of my dearest childhood friends, A, and I hit pre-adolescence, we became fascinated with Agatha Christie.  We read many if not most of her books.  (Full disclosure:  A read more of them than I.  I REALLY enjoyed making lists of all of the books we/she/I had read and books that we/she/I still needed to read, and then since some of her books were released in the US under different names than in Merry Olde England, this opened up NEW WORLDS of list making opportunities.  And while this near-clinical obsession to detail might sound neurotic and nerdy (HINT: yes), it also served as a really great tool to procrastinate actually reading anything.)

An aside:  A has seen me with a perm AND with bangs.  The fact that she has not capitalized on the photographic evidence of this unfortunate phase in my hair life?  Means that A is one of the most singularly great friends a person could ask for.  (And I’m not even going to rewrite that sentence.  It’s been a rough day.  Grammatical error duly noted and frankly, I don’t care.)

I would post a photo here, but A also had a perm and bangs, and in a good number of our photos together, there is a WHOLE LOT of acid wash going on with our jeans.  Not to mention the fact that the jeans?  I just didn’t know they made “mom jeans” in junior sizes.  Nine inches of zipper, pleats, hip pockets.  Mama?  Mrs. C?  HOW COULD YOU????

So instead of a picture, know that A is taller and blonde, with blue eyes.  Me?  Shorter, more round-y, brown hair and eyes.  And our bangs arched in opposite directions.  Yes, we applied the Rave aerosol (or, when we found out about its superior gravity-defying ability, Aqua Net) to our hair both before attacking it with a curling iron, and also WHILE IT WAS ON THE IRON.  For the sizzle.  That’s how you know it’s working.  The fact that neither of us got blown up in a tragic bathroom explosion coupled with the fact that neither of us is bald is proof that indeed there is a God and that He protects babies and the stupid (as my senior English teacher used to say…).

Anyway, since it’s summer, and I LURVE me a good project, and since it’s too hot to embark on any kind of exercise regimen, and I refuse to engage in any home improvement projects around The World’s Smallest Apartment, I’m going to do my own summer reading project!  You know, like when we were little and if you read so many books at the library by a certain date you got a free Dairy Queen?  (Only this time, I’m hoping the Summer Reading Program Fairy will reward my literary curiosity with a new purse or a Chocolate Lab puppy.  What say ye, Fairy?  You don’t want to squelch this young girl’s thirst for the written word, do you?????  DO YOU????)

I promise this is going somewhere.

So I’ve decided to tackle, for once and for all, the Agatha Christie canon.  Beginning to end.  (Except maybe her plays and screen adaptations-I don’t believe those types of things were meant to be read silently…And I talk to myself enough without reading all of the parts of a play aloud.)  And, full disclosure, when I told A about my plan, I gave her FULL OPPORTUNITY to wiggle out of doing it with me.  But she volunteered.  Since she has children and a husband now (I can only assume he didn’t see the acid wash jean phase photos before he asked her…) I am also hereby making the ruling that her baby sister and her mama can also do the challenge along with us and she can claim credit for them if things like the feeding and growing of two children get in the way of her reading.  (Note:  A had one of the best wedding dresses I’ve ever seen.  LURVE.)

And since I think we’ve well established my aversion to commitment (daily posting on the blog, finishing my OT homework on time, etc…) I’m not going to make this a big THING on the blog, but I’ll update y’all on my progress and if there are any of you who would like to read along, well, that would be fun and chime in with your progress, too.  I’d say we could discuss the books, but there are approximately 847 of them, and they all involve the death of one or more humans, usually in a small town in Merry Olde England, so that might get monotonous quickly.  (Note:  I am taking the OT class again this year.  We’ll call this the year of finishing what I start.)

So there we have it.  In long form, the description of Project Agatha.  Low commitment, books cheap and easy to find at your local Half Price Books or on your electronic gizmo.  Join us.  We’re starting at the beginning with, “The Mysterious Affair at Styles”.  Numero uno.  (And A, to answer your question, the only one I know I remember I know the ending to is “And Then There Were None”.  And I’m pretty sure once we get to “Death on the Nile”, I will remember it, but I don’t right now.  Other than that, I’m a blank slate.)  (Professor Tight would definitely agree with that assessment.)

Start reading!



2 thoughts on “Project Agatha, or “This could be a long one, Baby Andy.”

  1. What was the thing you knew would happen? (Was it paying your lifesaver fees, cause I forgot about that one until I got an e-mail last night reminding me we’d be doing that…) Something ickier? I highly approve of the Agatha project, but seeing as it’s August, and she wrote three million novels, perhaps instead of calling it a summer reading project, you should call it a 2012-2015 reading project. I grew up on Agatha, not through actual reading, mind you, but because my parents were really into the PBS Mystery show, and it was basically the Agatha Christie hour in the eighties. I think my parents let me watch it with them because they thought it was cultural, but some of those Miss Marples gave me nightmares.

    • I’ll message you, and you’re right about the time requirement for this particular project. It’s going to be just a “Reading Program”. I watched those Miss Marples, but I REALLY REALLY loved David Suchet as Poirot. There was a little bit of a crush going. Because it’s totally normal for a 12 year old to have a crush on an older, bald Belgian TELEVISION CHARACTER. The intro to “Mystery” was a piece of animation genius, no? The widow swooning at the grave? I can still hear her.

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