Thursday, June 09, 2011

A Visit to the House of Scott

Art Scott is, as some of you know, a regular commenter here, and he was the Official Editor for DAPA-Em, the only amateur press association devoted to crime fiction, for just about its whole existence. He was the OE, in fact, for my entire tenure in that illustrious group, a tenure that was pretty much matched his as OE. I visited him at his home when I went to the San Francisco Bouchercon in 1982. He lives in a different house now, but Judy, Angela, Tom, and I found our way there with no trouble at all. It was quite a nice place, as you might expect, but the outside wasn't what interested us. Or me. I was more interested in the interior and its contents.

One thing we didn't expect was the cut flowers in honor of our anniversary. A nice touch, but then Art's that kind of guy. He also provided me with Dr Pepper, of which I drank copious amounts.

Now about the stuff you're interested in. Where to begin? With the LPs? Thousands of them. Art has listened to them all on his incredible sound system. Even I, who have no ear at all, can tell the difference in his system and others I've heard. It's for audiophiles, and it'll blow you away.

Or how about the McGinnis originals? You can see some of them in the photo of me and Judy with the flowers. Art even has the sketch of himself that McGinnis made for the book that Art did. (It's appreciated considerably in value since I bought mine.) And speaking of McGinnis, Art has every book that McGinnis did a cover for, two shelves of them, double stacked. He has quite a collection of McGinnis movie posters, too, including some obscure and rare ones.

And then there's the book room. That's where I spent the most time. Amazing. I lingered over the British digests with their great titles and covers, and then spent a bit of time with other things before moving to what I'm convinced is the world's greatest and most complete collection of Novel Books and Merit Books. If not every title is represented, I don't know what's missing. Art really needs to start a blog about those two imprints. Great stuff, for sure.

While I was doing all the looking and admiring, Judy, Angela, and Tom were off with another friend, Bruce Taylor, touring a few wineries. Bruce was once known as "Mr. Bouchercon." Now he lives in Napa, where he's devoting his studies to Broadway shows, among other things. When they came back, Art grilled some skirt steaks and served them with corn and potatoes. Bruce provided the desserts, various pies. I had the chocolate. It was a fine meal, and we talked about books and movies and music and such. The best kind of talk.

We had a wonderful time. This visit was a highlight of our trip to San Francisco.


Anonymous said...

I SO wish I'd been a fly on the wall, or even better there in person, for that visit! I was invited to visit after the 2010 SF Bouchercon, but was unable to go. Thanks so much for the photos! You and Judy are looking great, and I'll bet all those books were a real treat for you to browse.

Anonymous said...

Come back anytime, you're always welcome & Dr Pepper's a cheap price to pay for your scintillating company.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Next you need to visit George Kelley's basement. Awe inspiring. Thanks for a peek.

Cap'n Bob said...

To think I knew him when. It would be a trip to sit there reading his books for a year or two.

George said...

I wish I could have been there! Art's house is a magnificent showcase for all this great books (and LPs and CDs). You'll not find a more genial host!