Not eating or drinking anything because I am chasing a puppy around trying to get him to poop. Today’s meeting is a birthday meeting! It is my 39th birthday. For my birthday I have given myself a new puppy. You can see a picture of Cedric Doggery and me to the left. It’s not his birthday, he was born in July. It *IS* Lady Sabine’s birthday as well. Actually, I don’t know her birthday, but I got her late-October 10 years ago and I assume she was born about 6 weeks earlier. Sabine and I celebrate our birthdays together. By celebrate I mean, she does the same thing she usually does (eat and sleep) and I get cake.
I actually share a birthday with my mother. In honor of her birthday, this week’s meeting is a book that takes place in Miami. Why? Well, because she lives there and I grew up there. Many birthdays have been celebrated in Miami.
Here is the thing about being from Miami and reading a Carl Hiaasen book: I know that place. Since he writes primarily about Florida and I have been up and down Florida most of my life, I know a lot of those places. Lucky You takes place in Miami (among other locations). When he references a rib place in South Miami, I know he is talking about Shorties. I know because I have been there many times and is one of my parent’s favorite restaurants.
The same thing happens when I read books that take place in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. I know these places because I live around them. New England is great for audiobooks because people don’t ever pronounce the town names correctly. I know their pain. Leominster should be pronounced: Leo-minster. BUT NO! It’s pronounced: lemon-ster. Haverhill has a silent middle ‘h’ and silent ‘e’: hayv-rill. Worcester= Wuss-ter. Never mind the dropped ‘r’s that get added to other words. They swear this is how the British pronounce these words. I call bull shit.
My mother still makes fun of my mistake about Leominster. It’s not like anyone I know ever talking about it for me to know the proper pronunciation. You can’t sin with word pronunciation if you have never heard the word said out loud and region is whack-a-doo about said pronunciation.
Back to the point. I often enjoy reading books that take place in a location I know, especially when the author knows the area well. The internet makes it really easy for authors to research a location without ever having gone there. Locals writing about their homes have a nuisance the internet can’t deliver.