|Ray Bradbury (Photo: AP)|
Since I work out of the Arizona office, I will be emailing in a photo of an aquatic-themed ensemble that will hopefully slay the competition.
But under the surface this Halloween I will be thinking a lot about Ray Bradbury. The giant of science fiction, horror, and fantasy who so inspired me as a young boy passed away just a few months ago. Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles, and Dandelion Wine are but three of his many classic books. Any other writer would have been happy to have written just one of those, but Bradbury, during his most fertile period (approx. 1942-1970), proved capable of spinning just about every random idea that occurred to him into literary gold.
He was a great friend of libraries too. In lieu of a college degree he boasted of having “graduated from the Los Angeles Public Library.” During an EnvisionWare trip to California a few years ago I learned that I had missed my hero by just a few days; the library staff had managed to coax him out of semi-retirement by sending him a fax (Ray didn't use a computer) stating that any reading/book signing he did would be a very effective fundraiser for the library. Apparently that's all he needed to hear: he promptly showed up to host an event.
In honor of this great man, and in the spirit of the time of year he liked best, here is a suitably unnerving Bradbury short story recently reprinted by Esquire. Enjoy!
Ray Bradbury: Last Night of the World