Who's asking: Jane Cleland, Margery Flax, Alison Janssen, Jennifer Jordan, and me
Being a well-balanced person requires a diversity of interests, so yesterday afternoon a few of us crime-fiction types headed to the far side of BookExpo's upper exhibit floor in hopes of seeing the one and only Tim Gunn signing his new book.
Getting there meant passing a signing line for James Patterson that was -- I'm not exaggerating -- at least a quarter of a mile long. I was nervous, because if James Patterson could attract so many people, how many would be waiting to see the man whose approval is one of my most-cherished fantasies? (If I have to explain that, you don't get the Tim Gunn phenomenon and I can't explain it to you.)
It seemed wrong when we got to the publisher's booth and found no line at all. "Where is Tim Gunn?" we asked.
"The book [i.e., the BEA program schedule] was wrong," the publisher's rep said. "He was here yesterday."
It felt like being told the birthday party had just run out of cake. We were so dismayed that we stood around for 15 minutes in front of the booth and told Tim Gunn stories to each other, as if it were a wake.
On the way back to our regularly-scheduled BEA adventures, Jen Jordan and I stopped to watch a Sufi whirler for a few minutes. It wasn't the most unusual thing on an exhibit floor that included people impersonating God, Santa Claus, Elton John and Albus Dumbledore, but it was the coolest thing I saw all day.