Pine nuts: What to do

McAvoy Layne
McAvoy Layne

I’ve been contemplating possible new ventures to tackle when I retire, small businesses that do not require driving or flying, and I’d like to share them with you here. First, is the possibility of opening a Mark Twain Bookstore here in the village. I remember falling in love with Ashland, Oregon because Ashland had three thriving bookstores, and I like people who visit bookstores. People who visit bookstores are easy to talk to, and I always learn something from them. Also, I’ve found that people who visit bookstores like to be among books, so, I ask you, might they also enjoy visiting with a retired impressionist of Mark Twain?

Given enough time with a customer, I might even be able to sell a book of mine about the future of Chautauqua, that is due out any day now, Living Twice. I could sign that book, and once we are old friends, inscribe something amusing in that book.

I might even like to have other things on sale besides Twain books, like Twain socks that are always fashionable, and wine glasses that boast, “I Drank with The Ghost of Mark Twain.” There is no limit to the number of Twain things I could have for sale. If you could see my living room here at Twain Haven, you would see what I mean. My only fear is that I would inevitably get caught up in an interesting conversation and fail to close the sale.

So okay, here’s another idea, and with this one, I would not even need to leave home:


Yes, you could send a friend a cordial audio salutation from yourself and the Ghost of Twain. The greeting would have to be in good taste, and no more than 30 seconds in length. Of course you could write your own greeting, and include a photo, or not…


A modest honorarium would be payable by PayPal. Here are a few samples that might bring some cheer into the lives of your distant friends…

“Richard, Ronda says you can be saved, but the angel that does so will require all eternity to rest himself.” A Happy Anniversary salutation might follow.

Here’s one more for fun…

“John Doe, he had no principles, and was delightful company.”

And one final one for the fun of it…

“Rebecca sends you forth feeling like a bottle of champagne that’s just been uncorked.”

Naturally, you might like to hear an audio to decide if this venture might work or not, so I shall record this column and make it available here:

The way I see it, we could make Hallmark number two. All I know for sure is that it could be a lot of fun and no trouble at all. So, should you happen to see me shopping at Raley’s, please do pull me over and share your thoughts…

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