November 16, 2002
Yesterday morning, I had a great call to IPD, our bookstore distributor. They are going to increase our draw there significantly. We already have a very respectable 60% sell-thru at Barnes & Noble and our IPD rep assured me it will be no problem to increase our presence in all the chains. Now I have to be paitent until the payoff from the expansion trickles down to us (which will probably be sometime in the middle of next year).
Hans Olsen asked at Jana’s dinner party on Thursday night what an “Oddfellow” is (he was flown, expenses paid, to one of their lodge meetings in Detroit or somewhere). I told him I think it is a secret club, or a service group like the Elks or Moose Lodge, somewhere between Kiwanis and Masons. I believe the founder rationalized that most extraordinary men are “odd,” so he decided to start a group that would celebrate that “oddness.”. My connection to the Oddfellows is that they sponsored my Little League team when I was growing up in Kingman. We were the Oddfellow Yankees, and, yes, it seemed pretty odd to me and my teammates at the time. Plus, the damn cumbersome name, was sewn on the backs of our jerseys and for a skinny kid like me, it took up most of my back (see photo). I remember very well when I went to get my first uniform (1957) at the Oddfellow’s Hall in downtown Kingman (see photo). The room where the uniforms were being handed out was on the second floor, far left. The uniforms were wool which I remember being quite sratchy, not to mention warm— each of us on the team became a walking sauna in the Arizona summers, when our seasons played out. However, I was so excited to actually have a baseball uniform I wore the ensemble home, including the rubber cleats. I think I would have slept in it, but my mother chased me down and took it off me. Thus ends today’s odd discussion of the Oddfellows
"In skating over thin ice, our safety is in our speed".
—Ralph Waldo Emerson