Thursday, October 04, 2012

Bouchercon Day 1: Rock and roll is here to pay

Some of us remember when rock and roll stood for rebellion, particularly against greed and corporate interests. But rebellion has mellowed into concern for property rights, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame here in Cleveland prohibits photography in almost the entire museum "Due to our agreement with artists and donors."

This led to much good-natured denunciation of the 1960s by me and a crime writer of precisely my age. "Three days of inadequate sanitation, bad food, and lies about the great drugs you never took and the great sex you never had," said I about a certain well-known gathering of the period.

"Oh," said a writer previously unknown to me, beautiful and oh, so very young, "were you at Woodstock?"

"Do I look like Jerry Garcia to you?" I snapped. "That's it; the beard gets shaved off tomorrow."

Besides that reminder of my mortality, the evening's only other disappointment was that, although the exhibits included a number of U2 artifacts, I could find no Paul Hewson postcard to send to Adrian McKinty.
On the way to the Hall (site of Bouchercon 2012's opening ceremony), I chatted and renewed acquaintance with guitar nut and ZZ Top freak Stuart Neville, a copy of whose forthcoming novel Ratlines I should have in my hands by the weekend.

Highlights of a full day's panelizing included my former panelist Thomas Kaufman's nomination of Louis-Ferdinand Céline as a noir writer and Peter Farris' declaration that "I always considered myself a cosmopolitan redneck in some respects."

My "Murder Is Everywhere" panel happens Saturday (with one substitution due to a family emergency). Tomorrow, I'll look forward to a Books to Die For event plus a panel called "Cop vs. Constable: A Comparison of U.S. and Foreign Laws," with Mark Billingham, Michael Robotham, Peter James, Sara Blaedel, and Michael Connolly. View the complete Bouchercon schedule.

 © Peter Rozovsky 2012

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Anonymous August McLaughlin said...

Just for the record, I attribute my erroneous remark to your convincing portrayal of one who experienced Woodstock first hand--BRAVO!--paired with my age analysis and historical timeline ineptness. Or maybe weed residue clouded my contacts. In either case, it was a pleasure meeting you. Peace.

October 06, 2012  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Never underestimate the vanity and fragile egos of we middle-aged men. And thanks for finding my spiel convincing. I may keep the beard after all.

Equally for the record, our encounter has been one of the highlights of my Bouchercon. If we meet again, I may tell you I saw the Beatles at Shea Stadium.

October 07, 2012  

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