Wednesday Night

M & M came by Wednesday night. We gave them their Festivus Pole and a book about the "holiday". It was a nice evening of conversation. Something I don't think many people our age are good at. Imagine, conversation without a party, alcoholic drinks or party music. It was with coffee, jazz and Christmas lights.

Late Post

My Brother's show... I totally forgot to post it. He is the Supervising producer for Murder By the Book on Court TV


New York Times Review -Noir Master’s Biggest Mystery: A Murder Very Close to Home
By ANITA GATES (11/13/06)

James Ellroy, it seems, loves to shock people by playing the role of tough cookie. Or maybe he really is as brutally cold as he appears.
Either way, he cuts an impressive figure as a hard-nosed straight shooter in the first episode of “Murder by the Book,” a Court TV series that has its premiere tonight. The premise of this new show is a famous author devoting an hour to the real-life crime that fascinates him or her most.

In the case of Mr. Ellroy, 58, the author of “L.A. Confidential” and a dozen or so other genre novels, that crime, understandably, is his mother’s murder in 1958.

He was 10, living in a small house in El Monte, Calif. (which he saw as a white-trash town and hated), where he had moved with his mother after his parents’ divorce. Geneva Hilliker Ellroy — “my hated, lusted-for mother,” Mr. Ellroy calls her — was 43.

While little James was visiting his father in Los Angeles, Mrs. Ellroy, known as Jean, went out to the Desert Inn bar, a local hangout. She was seen there drinking with a swarthy man and a blond woman with a ponytail. Later she was seen with the same man at a drive-in restaurant. Her body was found the next day on the grounds of Arroyo High School in El Monte. The case was never solved.

In 1994 Mr. Elroy asked to have the case reopened because he wanted to write a magazine article about it. (The story of the investigation became his 1996 nonfiction book, “My Dark Places.”)

With the help of Bill Stoner, a California homicide detective, he went over every interview, every lead, every piece of evidence, as does this episode. It is a tribute to Mr. Ellroy’s forceful narrative style and to a skillful use of the dramatized re-creation form that this episode is engaging, since he and Detective Stoner don’t make much progress.

The only inherently interesting development is the interview with the carhop who waited on Mrs. Ellroy and the swarthy man that night. Part of her job, she recalls decades later, was to write down the license plate number of every car she served. But because these customers were adults, not giddy teenagers (the sort who might be expected to run out on the check), she didn’t bother.

Other episodes of “Murder by the Book” will feature the writers Michael Connelly, Faye Kellerman, Jonathan Kellerman and Lisa Scottoline.

MURDER BY THE BOOK

Court TV, tonight at 10., Eastern and Pacific times; 9 Central time.

Ed Hersh, executive in charge of production; Jessica Shreeve, Robert Kirk and Rob Lihani, executive producers; David Cargill, supervising producer; Nino Lopez, John Bassett, producers; Madelyn Brudner, coordinating producer; Peter Hankwitz, producer.