Is it mere coincidence that The Baker Street Journal comes out four times a year, suspiciously close to the four major Wiccan sabbats? After recently learning that one of the major Sherlockian publishers of the past may have secretly been creating “force books” for magicians under the guise of Sherlock Holmes books, I’ve begun to wonder what manner of supernatural forces are truly at play behind our everyday world of Sherlock Holmes fandom.
Take this evening, for example. The “Autumn” (note how they so intently avoid “Samhain”) issue of The Baker Street Journal showed up on my mail cart, upon my return home from the day’s labours. I applied letter-opening blade to that virgin-white paper envelope it now comes in, pulled out the heart of the package, and immediately, I was transfixed by its loveliness. It truly seemed to be the most beautiful issue of The Baker Street Journal that I had ever seen. In was uncanny. It was unnatural. It was almost as if . . . I had fallen under its spell.
“No!” I cried, having been a loyal critic of the Journal for so many years, and I paged to the first article. An article which began as a reverse inset in a Sidney Paget drawing. What manner of voo-doo was this? This is not the cold, machine-like typesetting of decade after decade of past issues! No, this was something new, something from another place, another . . . .
I set the journal aside, for fear of being further drawn under its power. This is something to be encountered on another day, when I’ve come prepared.
So the new issue of The Baker Street Journal has arrived, as foretold in the prophecies upon the Facebook and the Twitter. Take all precautions.