Playfulness offers relief from the stresses of…well…I needn’t enumerate them…so I wasn’t surprised when Charles insisted that he come to the launch of Seven Stitches this Thursday at Another Read Through. After all, Charles and I go back more than a year, when I decided to do some fact checking for the story.

In the Seven Stitches of my imagination, a stuffed blue giraffe is the beloved companion of a homeless girl who lives in Portland. Problem? I’d never seen a stuffed blue giraffe. To find out whether one existed, I went to the purveyor of virtually all things material: Amazon.

The result? Many, many, many, and even many more stuffed giraffes live in cybermarket world, and an amazing number of them are blue. Who knew? The choices were so vast and I was so intrigued that I bought three. Yes, I auditioned three stuffed blue giraffes for the position of Charles. I gave two away and trust that they are in loving hands.

Charles lives in the corner of my office most of the time. He wonders if he’ll have a role in the next book. And he reminds me that my home is comfortable and secure, that my refrigerator and pantry are well stocked, that my…well, you can see where this is heading. Still, here’s to play, and here’s to a fun launch. And here’s to Charles!

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