Sunday, March 12, 2017

Reloading Bullets & Beer

© by Gerald So | 5:30 a.m.

Last week, "Graybeard2003" commented that he had undertaken restoring and possibly updating Mike Loux and Bob Ames's Spenser fansite, Bullets & Beer, as a Wiki.

Before 2015, Bullets & Beer had lain dormant since Bob's work shift changed in 2008 and he lost interest in the site research. In the absence of an official Robert B. Parker website before 2006, Bullets & Beer was the best place for Parker information and fandom. Out of it sprang the first Parker discussion list, Spenser-L.

Nostalgically, I'm glad to see the revival effort, but I wonder how long "Graybeard2003" will be interested in researching the books. A signature feature of the old site was its meticulous annotation of every literary and pop culture reference.

I was studying the Romantic poets in college as I first read the Spenser books, and I enjoyed knowing where Parker got some of his best titles: Mortal Stakes, A Savage Place, The Widening Gyre, Valediction...All these facts are fun to know, but not essential or that important to enjoying the books. And since the official Robert B. Parker website and Facebook page are up to date, fans don't have the same need to look to homegrown resources.

In a similar way, I don't know that anonymous Wiki contributors can capture the feeling of Mike's old site, a virtual Cheers bar for Spenser fans, where everybody knew your name.

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