The Cursed Ruin

I’m pleased to announce that my short story, “The Adventure of the Cursed Ruin,” will appear this December in Belanger Books‘ In the Footsteps of Sherlock Holmes & Doctor Watson, now available for pre-order on IndieGoGo. In the Footsteps is “a collection of seventeen all new Sherlock Holmes stories written specifically for young adults. The … Continue reading The Cursed Ruin

The Misadventures of Sherlock Holmes: Making an eBook

Throughout January I worked, off and on, on something of a private project, to make an ebook of Ellery Queen’s long-out-of-print anthology, The Misadventures of Sherlock Holmes. An anthology of Sherlock Holmes parodies, sprinkled with a few genuine pastiches and two play scripts, essentially a survey of non-Doyle Sherlock Holmes literature to mid-century, The Misadventures … Continue reading The Misadventures of Sherlock Holmes: Making an eBook

Does Charlie Brown Have a Secret Cousin?

Sunday night I watched Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (And Don’t Come Back!!) and its follow-up animated special, What Have We Learned, Charlie Brown. Given the subject matter and the time (Veterans Day weekend), it seemed appropriate. In the movie and the special, Charlie Brown and three of his friends (Linus, Peppermint Patty, and Marcie) travel … Continue reading Does Charlie Brown Have a Secret Cousin?

Scenes from the Nationals World Series Parade

Washington DC shut down yesterday for the Washington Nationals’ World Series parade down Constitution Avenue. One month ago I was in the hospital, in the Intensive care ward. I thought there was a real chance I was going to be mostly blind for the rest of my life. Yesterday, I was at the a World … Continue reading Scenes from the Nationals World Series Parade

Saving Minor League Baseball: A Manifesto and a Crusade

Last week Baseball America broke the news that MLB is proposing a radical reconfiguration of the minor leagues, eliminating the lower levels of the minors (Short Season and down), replacing them with a quasi-independent league for undrafted players or encouraging contracted teams to reform as college summer wooden bat teams, and realigning the leagues, classifications (ie, … Continue reading Saving Minor League Baseball: A Manifesto and a Crusade

Russia, the Primakov Doctrine, and Implications for the 2020 Election

I’ve been doing a great deal of thinking about Russia and the 2020 election, thoughts that are leading me to some chilling places. You may skip over this — “Oh, Allyn’s moaning about Russia again, and it’s all ‘Fake News’ anyway” — but that’s because you’ve never asked yourself the question: “What does Russia want?” … Continue reading Russia, the Primakov Doctrine, and Implications for the 2020 Election

Negro League Night in York

We will start with a ending, and end with a beginning, as Gandalf says in Rankin-Bass’ underrated yet weird animated adaptation of Return of the King. I went to a York Revolution baseball game last night and came home with a Ross Detwiler game-used jersey. The Revolution were having a Negro League Night. From the … Continue reading Negro League Night in York

Exploring Mt. Carmel Cemetery

Late last year I had a dream that I found the grave of Captain Thomas Feenhagen, my great-great-great-grandfather. Feenhagen, the father of my my great-great-grandmother Susan and grandfather of my great-grandfather Allyn Gardner, was a sea captain. He commanded a merchant ship, the bark Seneca, in the 1850s and 1860s. From what little I’ve been … Continue reading Exploring Mt. Carmel Cemetery

My Armistice 100 Adventure

In mid-September it dawned on me that November 11, 2018 would mark the 100th-anniversary of the armistice that ended World War I. Intellectually, as an historian, I knew this. I knew it in the same way that I know that water freezes at 32 degrees and objects fall to the earth at 32 feet per … Continue reading My Armistice 100 Adventure

Scenes of Terrible Beauty

Ducks splashed in the water. Two larger ducks, adults obviously, sat on outcroppings just beyond the shoreline, while four ducklings paddled in the water. Sometimes, the adults would move from one outcropping to another. Sometimes they would see me, twenty yards distant or more, and take flight, either jump-flying to the opposite shore or, more … Continue reading Scenes of Terrible Beauty

Art at the Ballpark

Saturday I bought a painting at the Harrisburg Senators game. I had been planning on attending the Saturday game, between the Senators and the Altoona Curve, for a while, as the Senators were inducting Stephen Strasburg into their Bobblehead Hall-of-Fame. In the middle of the week, the Senators also announced that Daniel Murphy and Brian … Continue reading Art at the Ballpark

Exploring Cemeteries in Cecil County

On April 14, 2018 I went to Cecil County and explored four cemeteries, looking for graves I knew about and graves I didn’t. I had been planning this for about two months, and you never know what you’ll find until you go and look. The roots of my dad’s family come from what I jokingly … Continue reading Exploring Cemeteries in Cecil County