With the new year usually comes the happy anticipation of the Sherlock Holmes birthday weekend in New York, for one and all. Even those who can't attend can get buoyed up by those who are, and those who go regularly are in hog heaven. (Not sure what "hog heaven" is, but it's an expression that's been with me all my life, thanks to my farming forebears.) But this year, I'm finding myself a little nervous about the whole business.
Perhaps it's the non-Sherlockian issues going on in my life at present, perhaps it's regretful aftershocks of some disagreements that were had on the subject of the Irregulars last spring . . . I could write it off as having several causes. But things have gotten just a little weird lately with the old Sherlockian establishment, and I wonder where it's all headed.
There's been a bit of a Baker Street Irregular civil war going on during the weekend for years now, yes, though it's easy to dismiss with the ready influx of Sherlockians happy to fill any void that might occur in those ranks. "Hey, how can anything be wrong? People keep showing up!" And they will continue to show up, just as the crowds come to Times Square on New Year's Eve, as it's New York and one of those "bucket list" traditions that people want to hit at least once, just like the Times Square turn of the year. All kinds of wonderful people to meet and spend a few moments with . . . good times!
And yet . . . and yet . . .
I don't know. Sometimes all the helpful advice on behavior at the events and idealistic suggestions for B.S.I. membership almost make it seem, from a distance, like . . . ah, but it's that "from a distance" thing, isn't it? Surely, if one saved one's pennies and made the trip, all doubts would pass. But I don't see that happening soon, for assorted reasons, so doubts remain.
Perhaps I shall just have to find someone to tell me merry stories about the whole New York weekend once the event has passed . . . and then, maybe on some distant January, if rising ocean levels haven't moved the event further inland by then . . . well, we shall see.