Monthly Archives: February 2014

At City Lit Books, Chicago

Here I am at City Lit Books in Chicago, after a duo-reading with Christine Sneed (“Little Known Facts”). I forgot to take a photo during the event so I rushed back after dinner but the bookstore had closed.

I did do a reading there, though. Really I did.

City Lit Books

Thanks to City Lit owner Teresa Kirschbraun, super book-master Javier Ramirez, and author Christine Sneed for arranging the event.

Comet Cocktail No. 6 at Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge, Milwaukee

Comet Cocktail No. 6 comes from Milwaukee. My friends Laura Misco and Chris Screiber (who also happen to be husband and wife) took me out to Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge, named 2013’s Best Bar in America by Esquire magazine.

The bar was dim and ancient, as a good bar should be. Comet Cocktail No. 6, alas, was not one of the best. It involved, I think, Grand Marnier and Cointreau, and tasted a little like cough syrup. It’s the drink on the right in the photo:

Comet Cocktail No 6

The Pink Squirrel, on the other hand (the tall, frothy, pink one), made up for everything. I could drink a dozen of those. Cheers, Milwaukee! Cheers, Chris and Laura!

Laura and Chris

Laura (a fine writer) is always accompanied by that bright white light you see floating above her head. Very unusual.

At Cardinal Stritch University, Milwaukee

George Bishop gestures dramatically to emphasize a point about “character” during a creative writing workshop at Cardinal Stritch University, Milwaukee.


At Magers & Quinn Booksellers

Enjoyed a reading during a rare sunny winter day in Minneapolis at Magers & Quinn Booksellers yesterday, with authors Eric Vrooman, John Jodzio, Will Alexander, and Mary Logue.

Here I am with events manager Aaron Rosenberg. Say hello, Aaron!

Magers & Quinn with Aaron

Comet Cocktail No. 5 at Bouligny Tavern

Denise at Bouligny Tavern, uptown on Magazine Street in New Orleans, whipped up the frothiest and tastiest comet cocktail yet. Here’s Denise and her drink:

Denise and Cocktail

It’s made with 1 oz. of Ron Zacapa dark rum, 1 oz. of ruby port, 1/2 oz. lemon juice, 1/2 oz. of simple syrup, 1 eqq white, and club soda. It tasted almost like a root beer float, only a very delicious one.

The froth represents the head of the comet, the lemon peel the tail, the white layer in the middle are clouds, and the dark ruby layer at the bottom is the New Orleans night sky.

Here’s what it looks like half gone:

1:2 cocktail
Merci beaucoup, Denise!

One of the best things about Bouligny Tavern, by the way, besides the cool, dim, retro decor, is that the bartenders spin LPs on a stereo behind the bar. Tonight they played Paul Simon’s “Graceland,” Donovan’s “Greatest Hits,” and The Beatles “Rubber Soul.”

Carl Zeiss Planetarium Projector

The Carl Zeiss Planetarium Projector gets a cameo in THE NIGHT OF THE COMET. This is what it looks like. Kind of creepy, isn’t it?


The Theater of the Sky
Zeiss Projector, Adler Planetarium, Chicago
Date Unknown

“While the spectators sit comfortably below, as we see them here, the Planetarium, through an electric control board is caused to project upon the overarching vault an amazingly realistic representation of the pageant of the heavens.”

(Thanks to Will Amato’s FB page for this.)