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Murder by Death

I read cozy and historical mysteries, a bit of Paranormal/UF, and to mix it up, I read science and gardening books on occasion.

24 Festive Tasks: St. Andrew's Day, Tasks #1-4

Task 1:  Nominate someone for sainthood.  Who?  Why?


MT keeps suggesting I nominate Steve Jobs because I haven't stopped mourning his passing and the subsequent bloat of Apple, but I'm going to go with my dad.


Why?  So. many. reasons.  There's a strong whiff of hero worship and bias in this choice.  He grew up on an island off the coast of Florida, fishing commercially with his father.  He enlisted in WWII and became a Navy fighter pilot, stationed in Chicago where he met my mom.  After the war, he became an electrical engineer specialising in explosion-proof systems and became vice president of a large electrical company before getting home-sick and chucking it all to move back home to Florida.  He took a job in Miami designing electrical systems for high-risk industries, and commuting from the west coast to the east coast every week, only coming home on weekends.  He did that for over 20 years.  


On the side, he built my mom's flower shop, remodelled our house, bred orchids (using equipment he designed and built himself), and attended every one of my baseball games.  He had three ridiculously head-strong daughters and did not go quietly insane.  He adored my mother to distraction and spoiled her rotten.  He taught my sister and I how to fix our own plumbing, tile our own floors and install our own lights/fans.  He was kind to animals, friendly to everyone and unbelievably honest. 


Did I mention he had three daughters?  I did, but let me stress:  we were not model children!  Various events that have become legend in our family include, but are definitely not limited to: one sister pushing another into a freshly tarred fish pond; washing the dog in liquid starch; throwing all the neighbour's patio furniture, plants, etc. into the pool to see what would float; there was also an incident involving walkie-talkies and one sister being strung up on a ladder, but I'm fuzzy on the details.  If I drag my brother into this, we can include a blown out kitchen wall after a chemistry experiment gone awry.


Definite sainthood material.



Task 2: St Andrew is revered in many countries, particularly in Eastern Europe, where he worked as a Christian missionary, long before his relics were brought to Scotland in the eighth century. – Tell us: Is there a book (regardless whether fiction or nonfiction) for which you would basically walk up to strangers and tell them: “Read this!”?  What would you say and do to get people to read that particular book?  


I read cozy mysteries; I don't recommend books to people unless I know them really well, and even then I make vague suggestions.  More like hints, really.  Or innuendoes.  


BUT, I'd dearly love, were I queen of the universe (or just the USA), to create and enforce the rule that any one wanting to run for a national political office must first be taken to a remote location without any wifi/cellular/television signals and left there - alone - for 3 weeks with nothing to do but read the writings of the founding fathers:  The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Federalist Papers; pretty much everything written by Jefferson, Washington, Thomas Payne, Franklin, etc.  Afterwards, they must take and pass a basic civics test.



Task 3:  Legend has it that the saltire or St. Andrew’s cross (white on an azure background) – which constitutes the national flag of Scotland – originated as a cloud formation, symbolizing St. Andrew’s being crucified on an X-shaped cross rather than an upright one.  Do you have any pictures of unusual cloud formations?  If so, share them with us!


I took this one early one morning on my way to work:



and as I was flipping through the photos looking for that one, I found this one - I don't know what I was trying to take a photo of - but looking at it now, the clouds look like a hummingbird.





Task 4:  The town of St. Andrews, where the saint’s bones ended up in the course of the spread of Christianity to Scotland, is also famous for its golf course and tournament.  List your 3 favorite books where golf is key to the plot.


Favorite would be pushing it.  Golf is not really a sport I get excited about.  But I have read a couple that involved golf and they were decent:


Murder on the Links - Agatha Christie,John Moffatt  Murder in the Rough - J.S. Borthwick