Wednesday 11 January 2017

Your 2017

Want to know what 2017 has in store for you? The smart way, I hear, is to reach for the book nearest to you, open it on page 117, and read the second sentence. That is your 2017.
 Naturally I had to try this latest form of bibliomancy, and here's what I found:

'Behind the stretch of wood, and about half a mile distant from Patrick's house, was a small property consisting of a comfortable little eighteenth-century dwelling house, to which had later been added a small byre and dairy, the cows of which pastured on what had once been the pleasure grounds of the house.'

Well, that sounds most agreeable - a nice little 18th-century house with dairy attached (and, as it turns out, a resident dairyman to do the work). The year is shaping up well.


  1. Your posting offers a fascinating diversion, so I followed your lead by grabbing the nearest book -- Collected Works of Flannery O'Connor (the Library of America edition) -- and turned to page 117 and found the 2nd sentence: "He drove very fast out onto the highway, but once he had gone a few miles, he had the sense that he was not gaining ground."
    Well, considering my most recent commitment to blogging -- with a new direction -- this sentence (although a bit like reading the newspaper's astrology column in terms of relevance and credibility) gives me much to ponder, especially as I wonder if I am gaining ground in my 2017 (final?) journey. In any case, thank you for your posting.

    1. Postscript: The excerpt, which I should have mentioned, is from O'Connor's novel _Wise Blood_.

  2. 'Transit of Venus' (on your recommendation - I'm loving it). Amazingly I am at page 117 and the second sentence - "The poor don't want solidarity with their lot, they want it changed."

  3. It seems to work rather well!

  4. "Blanche moved away and sat down; all at once she felt very tired." Hester Chapman,I Will Be Good.

    Oh dear.

  5. When I first saw this, the nearest book to me was a neighborhood directory, which might not have a page 117, or sentences on that page if there is one. Now, in Laurie Colwin's More Home Cooking, I find "You pack a knife, a hard salami, some cheese, a loaf of bread, and a cutting board and make your sandwiches when you want them." Words to eat by, of not live by.

  6. Oh dear -- the second sentence on 117 of Patrick Leigh Fermor's "The Broken Road" is terse & discouraging: "The blow had fallen tonight".
    It's sad that Laurie Colwin died so untimely. She was a delightful writer.

  7. 'There were too many for a fishing fleet he decided.'
    Arthur Herman. 'To Rule the Waves".
    I'll let you know.
    Jack Towl