Dear Boston: Hey, You’re in the Book!

Did you know? It’s true: Boston has a cameo appearance in Redshirts. I call out the Freedom Trail and everything! That means we’re the best buddies ever!

And that’s why, when I show up the COOP tomorrow, June 15 at 7pm, it’ll be like we’re old friends. Because, hey, I don’t give a shout out to just any old city. It has to be special. It has to be fantastic. And that’s you, Boston. Full of fantasticosity. Yes, that’s a word. A word I just made to encompass everything about you.

So, what do you say, Boston? Will you come on down? I mean, I know that technically the COOP is in, like, Cambridge, which is not precisely Boston. But the love is still there! Honest. Remember: fantasticosity. I don’t just make up words for every metropolitan area I meet, you know. Think about that.

Think about it on the way to the COOP. We can discuss it when you get there. Right? Excellent.

22 Comments on “Dear Boston: Hey, You’re in the Book!”

  1. Does that mean that, since Des Moines gets a shout-out in Redshirts, it’ll be added to a book tour soon?

  2. You know that it’s REALLY HARD for a Bostonian to cross the river, right?

  3. I’m thinking of driving down (given that I need to be down there the day after) to get my copy signed!

  4. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang, now with more Klebin 3000

    MAINE will be fully representing.

    This is a pants optional place, right? The pangolin and I are really digging the summer and getting our fresh air on. And in.

  5. There are at least three Coop locations — Harvard, MIT, and Harvard Med. Want to tell the nice people which one you’ll be at?

  6. 7 pm at the Harvard Coop, in the Square, Our Fair City. A stone’s throw from Dewey, Cheetham, & Howe.

  7. There is only one true Coop and that’s the Harvard one. You know, where all the red (okay Crimson) shirts hang out. I’m voting for dinner at Tory Row, staring up at DC&H while waiting.

  8. I flew across the country to get my friends book signed for him. Possibly the best birthday present I’ve ever given him. *grin*

    Ok So I flew from CA to MA to visit my mother and see my birth city (shout out to Newport RI).. Getting the book signed is just an extra special perk! Oh well and I guess meeting you is cool too. hehehe

  9. But did you sneak Boskone in there? Donald Kingsbury did that in ‘The Moon Goddess and the Sun.’ Sigh, wish he’d written more.

  10. I’ll be there! I’m very excited! And look – I have a ukulele to bring along in case anyone feels like singing…

  11. Totally asking my girlfriend to go pick up a spare copy of Redshirts (and maybe whatever else you’ve got copies of on hand). Also, love the new book! Read about 1/2 yesterday and finishing today on my day off!

  12. Argh! I’ll be on a ferry (which is pretty awesome as well) but still! I’ll be sending good thoughts towards Cambridge.

  13. Can’t wait! I’ll be taking the T up from RI (because I refuse to drive in Boston). Had to volunteer to work this weekend so I could have a weekday off, but it’s worth it!

  14. See you there, tonight! Will buy book there, for you to sign. Also, bringing ukulele for you to play, just in case no one else does.

  15. So much fun, such a great event! Thank you very much for coming and and also for signing my books, John :)

  16. Agreed, you sure know how to entertain a crowd! Thank you for coming to Boston! The next time you’ll have to reserve a larger venue, though.

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