Back in the day, when I was busy defending my country, I would occasionally be required to issue a “Sit Rep.” In official military parlance, the Sit Rep, or Situation Report, is a document issued by an officer to his underlings advising them of military conditions. This useful concept was immediately appropriated by us swabbies in a parody of official behavior. Just about everything we did was, in one way or another, a parody of official behavior.
For example, after an all-night recon patrol in some Sailortown ghetto of honkey-tonks and strip clubs, my running mate might say to me, “Sailor, what’s your sitrep?” Whereupon I would issue said report, to which he would respond, “Outstanding!”
“Outstanding!” was the obligatory reply to any sitrep. If the sitrep was a good one – “I just found a $20 bill rolled up in my sock.” – the “Outstanding!” would be genuine and heartfelt. However, it worked just as well when deployed ironically, as in “I think I broke my ankle stepping off the curb. I can’t walk.” – “Outstanding!”
All of which is prefatory to my sitrep for July 17, 2017, my favorite time of year.
The gardens are flourishing
The painting of the back of the house in nearly completed
The Tour de France is more interesting this year than it has been in quite a while. Any one of half a dozen riders has a chance to win.
I sent Maritime List 250 to my customers via e-blast last Monday night. By Tuesday night it was 50% sold. Over the next week I received only one more order. Instanter!
And ever more connected. On Sunday there was a little country auction on the South Shore that had a whaling log. I received five calls and emails from all over the country from colleagues advising me of the existence of this item. Last Friday I went down and previewed the whaling log. It proved to be a mediocre example of its kind. Some nice whale stamps, but minimal narrative and broken parts of two successive voyages. I left a mediocre bid and went on about my business. Of course, with the eyes of the entire nation upon that whaling log, my sensible bid didn’t stand a chance. The logbooks sold for $2250 higher than my bid… not counting the 20% premium. Sheesh! People just got too damned much money.
Well, I don’t care. I’m going to finish painting, give everything a good watering, and spend a while at writer’s camp in Canada to wrap up my novel.