I found a lot more of myself in Billy Argo than I thought I would. I
used to devour mystery books as a kid, less for the intrigue and
suspense as for the puzzles involved and character-driven twists. I’m
sure it was intended in a few places, but there were several points in
the book where I started searching paragraphs for clues and oddly-placed
words to unravel a code.
When I was young, I was small for my age, and heavy beyond that. I was
never the strongest or fastest and therefore had to be the "intelligent” one among my friends. I never really thought I fit in with
those guidelines either, though. I’m not that intelligent, I’m terrible
at strategy, and a lot of my knowledge comes by the way of useless facts
that I’ve picked up from candy wrappers and the trail of Carmen
What I do have, I think, is a hunger for knowledge. I have more
curiosity than I know what to do with sometimes. I’ve spent hours of my
young life paging through the dictionary and encyclopedia, letting one
entry lead to another, just to see the weird and amazing connections
between elements in our world.
Once, in school, one of my teachers wrote a recommendation for me for
some extracurricular program. Before I handed it in, I read the note
that he had put down, describing me as an “assiduous” person. I had
never heard the word before and immediately went to a dictionary to
check it out. To this day, I wonder if he used that description knowing I
would read it and want to know badly enough that I would prove him
right by looking it up.
Some days, I just have to be the kid that just keeps asking “Why?” Not
for any particular reason, but just to know. It’s not always terribly
useful, but when a good mystery comes along, sometimes it really pays
off to just have the right key lying about to make another strange and
potentially helpful connection.
Kyle B. is some guy you've never heard of, but he's okay with that.
He's a writer and journalist (also both a lover and fighter) that
graduated from Kent State University a few years ago, with some slight
gainful employment since. He loves to read but pretty much puts a new
book back on the shelf if a couple of the first words on the jacket are
"murder mystery" or "romance."
*Post originally written July 14th, 2010 and saved for an "Oh my god I have too much to do" emergency.