Today is Black Friday, the day tradition has it that U.S. retailers finally become profitable each year. Each year the day after Thanksgiving becomes an orgy of consumerism with special sales, a limited number of loss leaders to get customers into stores, and unabashed hype. It seems to work. I try to avoid all stores between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day, instead looking through catalogs and shopping online. Neither requires getting dressed, wet, cold, or stressed. And I burn no gasoline in the process. If I need to get into the Christmas spirit, I can always watch Miracle on 34th Street again.
As some may have guessed, it's not unusual for people on my gift list to receive books. Since I can't send books to all of you, I send you instead a recommendation for a series you may have missed.
Jon Jefferson is a former Oak Ridge National Laboratory writer and technical editor who also has established credentials in journalism and documentary films. Their first collaboration was in writing Dr. Bass's 2003 memoir Death's Acre.
To learn more about Jefferson Bass, click here.