OK, I have just–four days after returning from a one-week trip away from
home–caught up with all my e-mail. Many, many thanks to readers who wrote
in. Just to get through it all, I had to abandon my usual reply algorithm.*
Everything got read, though (everything ALWAYS gets read, unless from
obvious lunatics or the really tedious sort of lefties), and I appreciate
the trouble people go to to write me. An extraordinary number of people got
pleasure from my “Dispatches from a Real War on Terror” piece
last week & emailed in to tell me how much they liked it–way, way
outnumbering the half dozen readers who e-mailed in to tell me I was crazy
as a coot.** Thanks to all. I promise to take the syllogismobile on
another trip sometime.
* Which is: (1) Always reply to a reader who has bought one of my books.
(2) Time then permitting, reply to any reader who identifies him/herself as
an NRODT or DNRODT subscriber. (3) Time still permitting, reply to any
reader who asks a serious question to which I know, or can quickly find, the
answer. (4) Time still permitting, reply gratefully to all flattery. (5)
Time still permitting, reply at will to any non-abusive e-mail that takes my
** The coot turns up in two common English similes: “Crazy as a coot,” and
“Bald as a coot.” Considering that no more than 0.01 percent of the
population of the English-speaking world has ever actually seen a coot, I
think this is amazing. Does any other animal occur in more than one simile?
What is it about coots? What the heck are they, anyway? Other than bald
and crazy, I mean.