Wednesday, August 1, 2012

A rare collectible from another reality.

On the third night of Sherlock Holmes Week, my neighbor wrote to me . . .
“Watching ‘Written In Blood’ – heavily infused with Holmes.”
Sharing media in the internet age is a beautiful thing.  When a friend with Netflix streaming e-mails that they’re watching a movie of interest, you can pull up your own Netflix queue and start the same movie at the beginning. Shared experiences, even without leaving your respective houses.
Before long, a murder scene has the word “RACHE” on the wall. Another murder has a card with V.V. 341 written on it. We are in Holmes territory indeed!
It’s the kind of movie with that loosey-goosey camerawork that makes me nauseous very quickly, so I mostly listen to it, while working on the computer (typing this among other things).
Ah, the star of the movie, Michael T. Weiss, starts reading The Complete Sherlock Holmes (and an actual edition you’ve seen in bookstores, no less). He’s also given a concordance, which “lists every word from every Sherlock Holmes ever written, tells you how often it’s used, where it comes from, you know, stuff like that.”
The second book, the concordance, is a hardback as thick as the Complete, but it’s called The Baker Street Companion, with a pipe on the spine, no author listed, and a logo that . . . freeze frame . . . has an “A” and an “M” in a circle as the publisher’s logo. So, like I good book person, I google this odd book. I own two concordances of Sherlock Holmes and neither is that thick, one comb bound and the other an over-sized paperback.
The Baker Street Companion shows up on Amazon, of course, and it says it’s an import from “Tiny Tomes.” Suddenly that spine on the television clicks in my head, and I run up to where I keep my collection of tiny Sherlock Holmes books (the book bathroom, cutest room in our house) . . . and there it is, The Baker Street Companion. Only it’s not a concordance, and it’s only an inch and a half tall!
How Michael T. Weiss’s gorgeous office gopher came up with a giant-sized version of The Baker Street Companion that’s also a concordance, we shall never know, but collectible movie prop that has probably disappeared forever? That is kind of cool.
Now they’re talking about Hosmer Angel . . . back to the movie. If they have any more magical non-existent Sherlockiana, I’ll let you know.

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