Progress can be a wonderful thing
January 19, 2011
By Slim Randles
You’d think winter would give Sarah McKinley a bumper crop of readers down at the Read Me Now bookstore. You’d think.
But for some reason, she finds the need each winter to have some crazy promotion to peddle books. Last year, it was celebrating President James Monroe’s wedding anniversary (120 years now, and they said it wouldn’t last!) We’ve come to speculate (our No. 1 indoor sport around here) on what her promotion would be this winter. Right after that cold snap, we found out.
On a big banner taped up in the front window, we saw: “Help Celebrate Orf Day! Come in and see the specials.”
After two days of fruitless speculation, we agreed to once again send Doc into the breech.
“Orf Day, huh?” Doc said, cruising nonchalantly past the section called “Love and Other Fiction.”
“I figured it was about time we celebrated Orf, Doc. He just never gets the kind of respect and recognition he deserves.”
Doc raised an eyebrow. “Hockey player, wasn’t he?”
“That was Orr. No, he came along a long time before Bobby.”
“Oh yeah,” Doc said, nodding, “the composer. I’ve heard his stuff. ‘Carmina Burana,’ right?”
“That was Carl Orff with two f’s,” she said, smirking a little bit, “Orf was way before Carl.”
“I guess I’m not familiar with Orf, then, Sarah.”
“Granddaddy of them all, Doc,” she said. “Orf was the first reader.”
“One of those cave guys?”
“Near as we can figure,” she said, with a straight face. “You know, we don’t have a lot of written history of those times.”
“So, what did Orf read?”
“Before written words, there were cave drawings, of course, but they lacked a lot in the communication line, so that’s when the first writer tried language.”
“And the first writer was?”
“Urglia,” Sarah said. “Orf’s wife. Near as we can figure, the first writing was a note to Orf telling him to take out the cave detritus, making him an official midden manager.”
“Well, ain’t progress wonderful,” Doc said, grinning.
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