Mrs. PG has written another book.
When she goes quiet on PG, his suspicions are raised. Either she has gambled away an inheritance or she’s back in the drug trade. Or perhaps a holiday is approaching and she’s planning a surprise party. Or one of the PG offspring is pregnant or married to someone who’s pregnant.
Finally, it comes clear, the reason why he’s been finding heavy boxes marked Georgia Pacific in the trunk with the groceries when he unloads the results of the latest Costco run.
Mrs. PG has written another book.
But PG repeats himself, himself.
What’s the book about?
The Russo–Japanese War?
Athenian naval tactics in the Peloponnese?
An intimate history of the Federal Reserve System?
Wrong on all counts.
It’s about Love Unexpected or (to use the 21st Century formulation), Unexpected Love.
PG says Love needs to modernize itself or it will fall behind.
The gas bill always arrives on the expected date. The UPS guy (Hi Mike!) shows up when PG expects him to arrive with a big box marked Amazon.
Sunday! Does Sunday ever happen any time when you don’t expect it?
PG admits surprises are occasionally OK, but unexpected surprises?
Baseball season never shows up unexpectedly. It will begin on Thursday, March 29, 2018, and feature the first full slate of Opening Day games in 50 years. See, there’s a baseball change, but it’s an expected change. And it only happens every 50 years.
But back to the book.
There’s a gal named Lady Marianne Deveridge. She goes to London to dance because dancing was this giant fad in London during the Regency.
“What’s the Regency?”, you ask.
It all goes back to little-understood 200-year old typo.
History tells us that a guy named George was the king. Another guy named George was almost king. One of the Georges had to die before the other George could become king. Or maybe it was the other way around. There was probably a lot of arguing about George.
“I’m George,” said George.
“No, you’re not,” replied George.
“Am too!” shouted George.
“Are not!” expostulated George.
You get the idea. Revolutions have been sparked over lesser disagreements than Who’s George?
But PG digresses.
George was dictating a letter to the other George and said, “This guy Napoleon needs to put a sock in it. Did you hear what he said recently?”
Sounds pretty simple, but the scribe who was writing all this down made a mistake. Of such mistakes is history made.
When the other George received the letter, it read, “Did you hear what he said, Regency?”
The other George was confused, so he asked the Comptroller of the King’s Horse what it meant.
“Well, Your Georgeness, the meaning is clear,” replied the Comptroller. “Other George is trying to quell the confusion among the people about which George is which, so he’s proposed that you be called Regency, the second principal participle of the ancient Latin term, Regentius Porpoise, generally translated as ‘Why swim?’ This will finally solve the quandary of which George is which and there will be great rejoicing throughout the land.”
“Will this rejoicing cost me anything?” asked George, soon to be Regency, with canny suspicion.
“I don’t think so, Sire. We’ll just double the tax on rejoicing and it will all balance out.”
We’ve had enough history fun, so we’ll get back to Lady Deveridge (Flopsy to her closest friends).
There’s a Regency guy named Captain Saunders who’s in the British Navy. PG thought he should have lost an arm and a leg in The Battle of Trafalgar, but Mrs. PG didn’t think that would appeal to Flopsy, who liked a full set of appendages on her men.
So Captain Saunders is taking a little vacay from the navy and thinks Lady Deveridge is cute. In a fit of love, he calls her his little Flopsy.
“How did you know that was my nickname?” she demanded with flashing eyes.
“I didn’t!” he protested. “It was an innocent mistake! Onboard HMS Redundant, we killed a bunch of Frenchies tout suite as the admiral ordered and the cook made a special dish for our celebration. He used the tar kettle to mix together lobscouse and Spotted Dick with spun sugar double-thick and dyed with port and a jollier feast you’ve never seen.”
“That’s no explanation for you calling me Flopsy without my leave,” replied Lady Deveridge, her eyes flashing again.
“There is a perfectly reasonable explanation,” objected Captain Saunders, his eyes flashing.
“Well, out with it! I’m waiting,” said Lady Deveridge, her eyes flashing and her toe tapping impatiently.
“Well, despite what landlubbers think, sailors have a sensitive side,” said Captain Saunders, his eyes flashing and his toe completely still.
“Undoubtedly,” responded Lady Deveridge, her eyes flashing sarcastically.
“Aye, they do, lassie. You see, some of the lads are little embarrassed to talk about Spotted Dick except in private. I’ve told them many times if Sawbones calls it that, it must be proper, being he’s been to Cambridge and all,” said Captain Saunders, his tone kindly and his eyes flashing.
“Speak on, Captain,” said Lady D, her tone becoming more tender and her eyes flashing.
“Aye, lassie. So the lads warn’t mollified by anything Sawbones told ’em, him being all bloodied up most of the time and smelly to boot. I could foresee we were going to have a mutiny on our hands when old Smoky, the gunners mate, popped up and said, ‘Then let’s call it Flopsy and we’ll have none of that Spotted Dick on this ship no more, her bein’ a lucky ship and all.’ And so that’s why that Flopsy name came flying out when my heart warmed toward thee,” said Captain Saunders, his eyes flashing.
A lump rose in Lady D’s throat and she had no words capable of expressing the emotions of her heart, so she stood mute, her eyes flashing.
. . . .
Here’s a link to Love Unexpected, currently on pre-order, and here’s the cover.