Dixie Peach: John Wilkes Booth Murdered My Sleep

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

John Wilkes Booth Murdered My Sleep

I finished these socks a couple days ago.


Technical details for those who dig technical details:
Pattern: Tidal Wave
Yarn: Regia 4-ply Color
Colorway: 5030

Finishing these socks would normally mean that within ten minutes of grafting the toe closed on the second sock I'd be casting on for my next pair. And I did. Some pretty pink socks done in a cotton/poly blend yarn that's going to be crazy soft when I'm finished. I knit the cuff and about half of the first pattern repeat before I made an error that required me to unknit a half round - which, of course, I promptly bollocksed up in a way that required me to rip the whole thing apart. I started it again, knit two rounds of the cuff and put it down. That was last Sunday and I haven't knit a lick of it since. I've been so frenetic with my knitting lately that I need to take a break from it so I picked up and began to read again a book I'd started and put down after three chapters. Now I'm all into the story and I can't leave the book alone long enough to go back to knitting.

I'm reading the book on the assassination of Abraham Lincoln I got about a month ago and it's fascinating. Well - maybe not to you but to an American history geek like me, it's fabulous. It's very well researched and it's dispelled some myths that I'd always read were true but suspected weren't true and lo and behold! they aren't true. Since there are very few books about Lincoln's assassination itself - most writings are book chapters or pamphlets or articles - details are explained in much greater detail than in anything else I've read on the subject. One is able to really see the players involved as actual fleshed-out humans instead of merely two-dimensional characters and I've found that the whole story before and after the actual act of assassination is more complex than I knew. This book is like watching a suspenseful movie with all sorts of nefarious players and I'm utterly sucked into it. I'm also a big fan of true crime books - they scare me in a way that regular horror books or movies don't - so this book not only feeds my history geekiness but feeds my true crime need-for-a-scary-thrill cravings.

I have, however, made a little mistake. My sleep has been messed up for days were I've been awakened too early and then I take a too-long nap later to to try to make up for it. That insures that I don't get sleepy until later than I want but then I'm again awakened too early which makes me need a nap and the cycle starts again. In an effort to try to get sleepy and because I'm finding it hard to put this book down - I'm reading it quite slowly, flipping to the back to check out the author's notes in the back when it's indicated - I've been reading it before bed. And as is normal for me when I read true crime books at night, it's been creeping me out. One may not think that a story as well-known as Lincoln's assassination would creep anyone out but it is. And the photo on the book of John Wilkes Booth and his soulless, beady eyes - well...eye, since half of his face is shaded out - is creeping me out even more. I read until I am so sleepy that I'm nearly dropping the book, put the book down, switch off the bedroom lamp and then lose my sleepiness because I'm feeling all freaky about John Wilkes Booth's ghost possibly being in my bedroom. Never mind that I don't much believe in ghosts, live in Germany and am pretty certain that John Wilkes Booth was never even in Germany, let alone left his ghostly spirit here. When it's 3am and you're tired, already sleep deprived and have been reading just the sort of book that pushes your freak-out buttons, anything seems possible.

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Anonymous PKB said...

Thank God it wasn't storming outside. I can just see you all hunkered down with that book and the thunder booming then the electricity goes out like when we were kids.

I'd like to read that book. I might pick that up.

12:13 PM  
Blogger Maria said...

I do the same thing - I'm falling asleep over a book and then the minute I turn out the light, my mind goes into overdrive. Also, no matter how many times my mother told me that nothing is there at night that it's there in the daytime, I STILL can't watch any TV shows about hauntings after dark.

2:21 PM  
Blogger Dixie said...

Me too, Maria. I can't watch any episodes of Supernatural that I've recorded if it's after midnight.

PKB - I really like this book. I've always been fascinated by this story and finally I have in one book a detailed account of the events.

I swear, if I was rich I'd call this author up and say "Dude. We gotta make a documentary of this story. Multi-part documentary. This story rocks.".

2:35 PM  
Blogger sari said...

Today I was at the grocery store and saw a guy with literally one eye - and where the other eye should have been there was just this big crumbly red flappy hole.

It was GROSS. And now I'm going to think John Wilkes Booth and keep seeing that creepy flappy eyed guy with the wild hair trolling around the deli counter.

My friend was with me and we were like "DUDE! Eye patch, PLEASE!" (but only whispered afterwards because we were afraid that a guy that would walk around like that would come back after us).

Hmmm...maybe I'll blog about that.

6:03 AM  
Blogger Dixie said...

"...big crumbly red flappy hole"

Every time I read that I nearly burst out laughing. And I know it's so wrong to laugh at anyone's big crumbly red flappy eye hole!

12:52 AM  

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