If the above quote rings a bell (or makes your body temperature drop), you probably heard the news: Ray Bradbury passed away.S ince I don’t have a couple of days free to enumerate the accomplishments of Bradbury, I’m going to need to stick with this for now. Before I read the news, I actually thought of the book Fahrenheit 451 yesterday. I don’t know what triggered the question in my head that popped up: hey, what was the tagline for Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 911 again? Oh yeah, the temperature at which the truth burns.* Then my brain’s self-defense system kicked in —don’t dwell on anything related to that movie right now, you have PMS— and went right to recalling that was a great book. I I wrote a paper on it (by choice) in high school. I also remember my brother (thanks David, if you’re reading this) giving me a copy of The Martian Chronicles to read. It was Bradbury’s short stories I recall most, I even remember where I was and how old I was the first time I read them.
When I first read The October Game, I was on a break from my job answering phones, I think age 16 or 17, and thumbing through the stories to find one I could finish in ten minutes. I sat right at my desk, the first in the reception area. It was a cheerful autumn afternoon. I remember staring at that last sentence for quite some time. If you haven’t read it–or want to re-read it in memory of Ray Bradbury– here’s a link so you can do it right now. I even found a version that includes pictures/panels from the EC Comics adaptation; I’ve read it and it does the story justice. I can’t recommend it enough.
RIP, Mr. Bradbury. You were an author who truly will live on through your works.