It was an interesting time for me when David Guterson visited the Starbucks support center as part of his launch of The Other, to be sitting cross-legged in the audience giving him eyes like the mole in Erin Brockovich. Well, kinda sorta. Certainly I was the only one between us who knew that he wasn’t the best writer in that room.
Jack Olsen used to come to the store where I worked before he passed away, and that was interesting on a whole ‘nother level. Surely, if I was the best, he could have ranked no higher than second, and yet he was so ridiculously accomplished. I once left a disturbing message on his answering machine that led to some interesting byways; it told of the existence of my book-in-progress and desire to speak with him, but it felt so crazy for me to expose myself in this way that it came out like I still might have been psycho.
As result of that call, I spoke with an officer at the police station and two what were they– psychologists? But I never spoke with Jack as intended, except to satisfy him briefly that I hadn’t meant harm. A few years later I became a grocery clerk and inherited Jack as a patron. Always wondered as I dished out change if he might recognize my voice, but I don’t think he ever did.
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