Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Killing Shelf

Some books seem to spawn sequels like trout in a stream. Or a pond or lake or wherever the hell trout lay eggs. I'm not a fisherman so I don't know and really don't care. The subject here is books. For instance, Dummies. I don't know how it started, but now there's a Dummies book for anything you need or want. I was at PetSmart yesterday and saw "Ferrets for Dummies." Seriously. And there was a large ferret standing there, leafing through the book. No, I'm kidding.

The Chicken Soup books have just about taken over the literary world. Every possible age group, event, situation, holiday and emotional need now has a Chicken Soup book. My personal favorite is "Chicken Soup for the Athiest's Soul." Again, I'm kidding. But you get the idea.

So anyway, I was at Barnes & Noble the other day, a rare occurrence for me. While waiting to check out, I saw three books prominently displayed, all by Bill O'Reilly. They were: Killing Kennedy, Killing Lincoln, and Killing Jesus.

Which gave me an idea about the next book I'm going to write: Killing O'Reilly. (Note to the FBI, NSA, BTAF and Fox News: Don't investigate me. I'm not even thinking about killing Bill. This is a joke, albeit a bad one.) Imagine the cast of characters in this one.

Beyond that, I began to consider other possibilities for the
"Killing" series. There are the obvious choices: Killing King (as in Martin Luther); Killing Bobby (Kennedy);  Killing Julius (Caesar that is); Killing X (that's Malcolm); Killing Milk (think Harvey); Killing Lennon; and Killing Gandhi.

They'd all make good stories, being major figures enmeshed in the flow of history and the fortune of nations, at least to some degree. However, once you get to Jesus, as O'Reilly has done, everyone else is kind of in steerage, lower down on the guest list. "Oh, yes, we may have a table for you. What's that name again?"

The category of "killing" has bigger dimensions than this, however, as we have seen with Dummies and Chicken Soup. For instance, how about a book called Killing Bambi's Mother?
This could be rife with intrigue. What part did Thumper play in her death? Is Flower the skunk really so cute and innocent? And what about the gunshot we hear? Who is that? Elmer Fudd? That's an incredible twist, a Warner Brothers character works his way into the Disney realm.

While on the subject of Disney, we need a book Killing Gaston. He's the guy in Beauty and the Beast who ends up impaled on a cluster of spikes when he falls from a tower. Gaston provides us with the opportunity for some back-story. Why did he grow up the way he did? He leads an angry mob to do away with The Beast. The book would personalize some of the people in that mob, and their relationship with Gaston, and if The Beast threatened his masculinity. Of course he didn't just fall from the tower at the end; someone pushed him. We need to know.

Finally, and not to belabor the point nor bore you any further, I want to read a book called Killing Jimmy. Here we peek behind the steel curtain of the Teamster's Union and get the real story of what happened to Jimmy Hoffa.
The events that lead to the decision to get rid of him, who gave the final thumbs down or "sleeps with the fishes" pronouncement. He was last seen outside a restaurant in the Detroit suburbs. Maybe the restaurant owner poisoned him because he was a lousy tipper. Maybe it was really an accident because he had a platter of spoiled oysters. Maybe it was more in the Teamsters' style involving a back-hoe, a cement mixer ("putty putty") or an acetylene torch. The president of the U.S. at the time of the killing was Gerald Ford. For 25 years, Ford served as the Representative from Michigan's 5th Congressional district. That includes Detroit. Hmmmmm.

And so the proliferation of titles goes on and on. If I were a biographer, I would jump on any of these possibilities. But I'm not. I'm must a lonely blogger with the world at his fingertips considering the possibilities.

Which brings me back to Bill O'Reilly. Maybe it's time to start another book.