Category Archives: Space

The End of Seven Years in Suspenders

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Erik Munson and Chan Chau. Erik designed the cover of D. E. Munson’s new novel, In Search of Space and Thyme

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The long-awaited sequel to D. E. Munson’s first novel, By the Time I Got to Woodstock: Or Space Meets Thyme in the Shadow of Atlantis, has finally been released! It is the second book in the Chronicles of Space and Thyme series.

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Titled In Search of Space and Thyme, this book is a tapestry of two interwoven love stories that unfurls into a compelling romp through time with Thyme and me. We’re tossed into a distant, mysterious past, then reemerge in the magical, mystical years of the 1960s and 70s. Our stories splinter in 1978 when the fiendish interloper, Atlantis Haden steals Thyme away to his underworld, like Hades of myth.

The fabric of our perfect world being rent, I’m flummoxed by the questions, What did I do to make her go? and Can I fix it? and most importantly, If I can fix it, will Thyme want to return? The search is on, a new quest begun. And it’s not only a quest for meaning and lost love. It reaches into the heart of everything. It is an essential, spiritual quest.

The Book Launch

The author kicked off the first event in his book launch tour at the Cup of Carver Coffee Shop on Saturday, Oct. 8. He read an excerpt from Thyme’s narrative where she’s trying to explain to me why we needed to go our separate ways.

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He then sang a song of my ranting at the opening of Chapter One of the new book. Looking back on it, I had a lot to learn. Maybe that’s why it took him seven years to finally finish this sequel. Hey, but it’s not my fault it took him so long to write the darn thing. I don’t know, maybe it is. But things have to happen in their own time, right? Anyway, if it’s true that anything good is worth waiting for, here’s the test.

The Apology

Munson apologizes, “I feel awful about keeping everyone in suspenders so long. When By the Time I Got to Woodstock was published on the 40th anniversary of the famed Woodstock Music & Art Fair, I ended it in a cliffhanger, fully intending to follow immediately with the sequel.

“Four years later I finished writing the manuscript, dubbing it A Brief History of the End of the World. It was slated by a publisher to be an eBook-only release. Then I had the opportunity to enter it in two contests. A number of you read the whole book, some read part of it. And to those of you who had insights and suggestions, I can’t thank you enough. I learned a great deal and incorporated many of the changes, including two title changes. I am now thrilled with the result. Especially since our son Erik, acclaimed graphic novelist, did the cover illustration and worked with me on the redesign.

“This story needs to be told, especially today,” he continues. “Too much has been trivialized about the awakening that took place in the 60s and 70s. The spiritual seeds planted in these times have blossomed into a consciousness we take mostly for granted today and often joke about. We can’t afford to lose perspective and forget.

“Though most of the characters are fictional, some are historical. The stories are based on what I experienced. I hope to help some of the essential truth of the times survive. We live in a time of magic realism, and Magical Realism has become my genre of choice.”

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Now the whole Chronicles of Space and Thyme series has taken on a new look. Erik Munson did the illustration and helped redesign the first book as well. It’s titled By the Time I Got There: or Space Meets Thyme, and this revision is available as an eBook right now. It’s kinda cool how each chapter opens with Erik’s illustration of little me on my trusty Rollfast 10-speed looping around the inside circumference of the circle like Evel Knievel or an ADHD hamster.

Once the current print version of the first book has sold out, it’ll be reprinted in its new format.

Keep your eyes open because in the coming few weeks you’ll be able to get the eBook for FREE. The next stop on D. E. Munson’s tour will be The Twin Cities Book Festival at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds in Saint Paul.

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The Future

As more events are added to the book tour venue, I’ll be announcing them.  Again, thanks to so many of you for your phenomenal patience and support during this grueling birthing process. Both Munson and I’ll do our best to make it worth your kind attention.

So, until next time, enjoy your journey. Be spiritual, be happy, and keep reading!

Space.

More about Space Larrabee: I was made manifest in a book called By the Time I Got to Woodstock—or Space Meets Thyme in the Shadow of Atlantis. I am Space Larrabee, and in Lunch on the Moon I share tasty delicacies I’ve found in the experiential arts. Join me every week or so and share your experiences, too!

Find out more about the author at demunson.com

 

 

Anthology & Cleopatra

I’m sorry, this is an unabashed bait and switch. I couldn’t help myself.

First impression would be that this post is perhaps an historical collection of writings exploring ancient Egypt. Do not be deceived.

This, in reality, is an announcement about the publication of the new anthology from the Three Rivers Writers called Where Rivers Converge. It’s also an opportunity for me to give a shout out to the Lumineers for their incredible new album Cleopatra.

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Where Rivers Converge is a dazzling collection of the works of two dozen Minnesota writers and poets. Genres range from creative nonfiction to historical fiction and science fiction. Stories like Jim Kane’s “Pipestone,” Dan O’Brien’s “Sacred  Dance,” Dale A. Swanson’s “The Greatest Man I Ever Knew,” Mona Gstafson Affinito’s “Alone in the North Carolina Woods—1840,” and D. E. Munson’s “Avuncularities” explore the magic of the past. S. Collin Ellsworth’s “Coward,” Ann Jackson’s “Contacts,” Brian Busch’s “Cry Uncle,” Virginia Sievers’s “Waiting,” and Wen Lu’s “A Knife in the Rice Paddies” dig for deeper truths in everyday life. As does the sometimes quirky, always stunning poetry of Angela Hunt, Becky Liestman, B. D. Smith, Sue Kunitz, and others. Heidi Skarie’s “Interrupted Honeymoon” tosses you into an as-yet unimagined future.

The whole collection is insightful and great fun. I get to make an appearance in “Avuncularites,” which is an excerpt from D. E. Munson’s new novel In Search of Space and Thyme. Due out by October 15, in time for the Twin Cities Book Festival at the Minnesota State Fairgounds in St. Paul. Stay tuned for more on this!

Several of the Three Rivers Writers was launched at the Waconia Library on September 10th and at Shepherd of the Hill Church,  Chaska, MN last weekend. Future readings are planned for upcoming months. Watch for postings.

 

I became aware of the Lumineers one night when they appeared at the end of Colbert last spring performing Ophelia. They stuck.

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Cleopatra is has already become one of those classic recordings that you suddenly either find spinning in your mind and moving your lips or strikes you with a sudden urge to listen to it again. I went out to Mill City Sound in Hopkins and bought the vinyl. I could go on, but see for yourself. Here’s a sample.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aN5s9N_pTUs

Sorry to have been away for so long. Been meaning to write, but I’ve been in the throes of the redo of the By the Time book and sequel. Have to go now, but I’ve got some big fun announcements coming up soon soon.

More on Space Larrabee:

By the Time I Got There

DEMunson.com

@demunson1

 

Have A Seat. Join Us for Lunch on the Moon

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You know, we’re funny. For time untold, mankind has sat on earth dreaming about the moon. Forty-six years ago, man finally set foot on its surface, helping us get a much clearer picture of what it’s like to actually be there and see ourselves on this beautiful, big blue marble from afar.
Let’s do that! Imagine we’re sitting in a diner on the moon and our table is outfitted with a telescope in addition to the remote jukebox. When we point the telescope at the earth, we can manifest who or what we see in the diner with us.
This is our intent with Lunch on the Moon, to invite creative people with great stories, inspiring visual arts, and music too share what inspires and moves them, and if they wish, their favorite dining experience.
Despite all of the jokes about restaurants on the moon having no atmosphere, Lunch on the Moon has plenty. And it has since I started frequenting it. There was a time I didn’t know it existed. It never came to mind. But once it did, in an inspired flash, I was hooked. I must confess that I never existed before I came to mind either, since I am a fiction.
Aren’t we all?
I’m not going to go waxing philosophic on the nature of existence. But we are who we believe ourselves to be. And though you may not be able to see, touch, smell, or punch my physical body, you can still hear me. Eventually you’ll be able to see me in your mind’s eye. Plus you’ll be able to physically experience some of what we’ll be sharing with you.
I was made manifest in a book called By the Time I Got to Woodstock—or Space Meets Thyme in the Shadow of Atlantis. I am Space Larrabee, and from here on, I’ll be sharing tasty delicacies I’ve experienced in the experiential arts.
Now that we are launched, you’re welcome to get lunch and join me every Wednesday at noon. I’ll be sharing stories of diner experiences, authors, musicians, artists, and filmmakers. In other words, creative, inspirational people I either met (thru my doppelganger D. E. Munson) or whose creations I admire. Not to mention favorite diner experiences.
I will be sharing some of my own adventures. Hopefully together we’ll be learning a bit more about life, the universe, and everything.
Sound like fun?
Let’s go!

The first lunch on the moon
Setting aside any antediluvian or superannuated alien cultures that may have inhabited the moon, the first lunch enjoyed on the moon was . . . Well, I’ll get to that in the moment.
Anyone alive at that time will remember the first time man set foot on the moon. As recorded in the aforementioned book, I’d just returned home after an ultra strange month living in Atlantic City with my best friend Frodo and a couple of other roommates.
Before I left Piper College I daydreamed of watching America’s historic moon landing in the great room of the Piper student union building.
That day was coming up soon, and I’d made no plans. I didn’t even know how I would get there. I think it was Saturday, July 12 when I got Frodo’s excited call. “Hey Space, I just found the perfect car for you!”
“Geez Frodo, I don’t even have my license yet.”
“You don’t need your license to just check it out, Space. Look, this is a great deal . . .”
“What’s the car? How much?”
“It’s a 1962 MGA. It has red leather interior and a walnut dash. It’s only $500, man! ”
My first car . . . a sports car? I wondered. But then this could be my ticket to Williamsport.
When we approached the seller’s driveway on Hayes Avenue in Endicott, New York, there it sat, black and beautiful. The evening sunlight bounced off the chrome grill and bumpers. Red leather bucket seats accented the fancy walnut-wrapped instrument cluster. O my God, I thought when I finally got the keys and fired up the English engine. This is like flying a Spitfire!
A week later, on Saturday, July 19, I was zipping down route 220, lost in thought and anticipation, and it struck me, I better slow down. Here I am driving a 250 mile road trip on a learners permit!
Apollo 11 made its spectacular launch from Cape Canaveral that Wednesday, July 16. The moon landing would be on Sunday, July 20, at 3:17 PM. Soon enough, we pulled up in front of the Piper College student union building and parked. The snack bar was still open, so we each got a hotdog, Coke, and a big basket of fries — the best. “Tomorrow I’ll treat you to a Cosmo at the Hilltop Sub Shop,” I told Frodo.
“You think that will make up for dragging me down here?”
“You’ll see.”
Next day, as 3:17 PM approached, we gathered around the console TV in the Northeast point of the giant compass inset in the tile floor of the great room. The crowd included Frodo, Preacher, Gretel, Marcus, and me.
At North was the big fireplace. At Southeast, the couch where I met Odetta and Josh White Jr. after they’d performed at the school.
Before us sat the large black and white Motorola TV in a mahogany cabinet. On the silver screen, NASA Mission Control announced, “We now have a live transmission from the LEM, that’s the lunar excursion module . . .” The television screen went black, then the horizon of the moon appeared on the lower right. It slowly filled the right side of the screen, cut off at a roughly 45-degree angle, which was the edge of the LEM’s window. The moon’s surface now filled half the screen, small craters growing larger, and moving out of the picture.
Walter Cronkite said, “The Eagle has begun its descent to the surface of the moon, to the sea of tranquility.”
Audio feed trickled in from the LEM, “60 seconds . . . lights on . . . 30 feet down . . . Two and a half down . . . Four forward . . . Drifting to the right a little . . . 30 seconds.”
Rays of light cut through a swirl of dust disturbed by the Eagle’s engines.
“Contact light . . . Okay . . . Engine stop . . .
“Tranquility Base here . . . The Eagle has landed.”
“Roger Tranquility. We copy you on the ground. You’ve got a bunch of guys about to turn blue. We’re breathing again. Thanks a lot.”
Our unified cheer echoed throughout the huge room, filling it with a joy and hope that mankind seldom experiences. Walter Cronkite, overwhelmed, shook his head and removed his horn-rimmed glasses. He wiped the tears welling in his eyes. Then, after replacing his glasses, he rested his elbows on the desk. Rubbing his palms together, he issued his immortal words, “Whew . . . Boy!”
The moment could not have been more eloquent. We wept with him.
But in the interim before Neil Armstrong made his historic footprint in the dust, Buzz Aldrin had a breakfast of bread and wine– communion.
This communion was not broadcast, and it was not an oversight on the part of NASA. They were still reeling from a lawsuit brought as a result of the Apollo 8 crew’s reading of Genesis. The experience was originally meaningful for Buzz, but even he admits in his memoir that, had he the opportunity to do it over again, he wouldn’t.. “Apollo 11 came to the moon in the name of all mankind,” he said.
Now, lunch is in another matter. Would you imagine they had a cheeseburger, shake, and fries? Well, we can imagine it here, but the reality they faced was a different story. Hamburger buns are banned because of potential crumb casualties. The same with fries and salt.
Maybe they could’ve gotten away with the shake, since it would be pretty well contained. But who’d want a warm milkshake? Oh, they didn’t have freeze-dried ice cream, either.
To quell their lunchtime tummy rumble, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s first lunch on the moon was–drum roll please–gelatin-coated bacon squares, peaches, strawberry cubes, and the choice of orange or grape drink. Yum!
Now, onward and upward.
Diner-rama!
Join us next Wednesday at noon Central Time for the next Lunch on the Moon!
Tune in to www.lunchonthemoon.com
Follow us on Twitter: @lunchonthemoon

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