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My 35 Year Old Little Black Book

June 26th, 2021 by Michael Dyet

Hmmm, is time to retire my little black book?

No, it’s not that kind of black book. It is a small, coil-bound address book that I have kept around and updated periodically for over three decades. I should have replaced it several times over the years. But for reasons I cannot discern, I have kept using it.

As you can imagine, it is rather worn and tattered. The front cover tore and fell off long ago. The pages are dog-eared and yellowed. Numerous listings are stroked out as the individuals referenced have moved (sometimes several times) or in some cases passed away.

It is, however, an archive of my life over the years, albeit in some cases a reminder of things I would rather not recall. Example: The name and phone number of a lawyer I consulted years back when my employer downsized, kicked me out and tried to compel me to sign a non-competition waiver in return for the bare minimum severance pay they were offering. I stood my ground in that case and eventually got paid.

In the L section, there is a hastily entered listing for an Anna Lombardi with an 800 number and a time. Obviously, it was a reference to a meeting of some sort. But the nature and purpose of that meeting is long lost to my memory.

Some entries have no relation to addresses and were probably ill advised. Example: The serial numbers for a computer, hard drive, monitor and printer I owned in the early days of personal computers. (Yes, children, there was a day when computers did not exist.) Why I thought the address book was an appropriate place to record that information mystifies me now.

There is a P.O. Box address for Friends of Bill Mason. This entry relates to a week-long nature trip I participated in a few decades ago. It calls to mind a 45-minute, white knuckle canoe paddle along the shores of Lake Superior when there were white caps on the waves. That is an experience I am glad to have had, but have not desire to repeat.

The telephone number for Adam’s Golden Acre Motel in Kingsville brings to mind many spring birdwatching trips to Point Pelee Provincial Park over the years during the spring migration and the psychological high I experienced each time I went there. If you are a birdwatcher, this will surely resonate with you.

Unfortunately, my chronic back problem precludes pursing that passion any longer. But the magic of Pelee is front and center in the next novel I have been working on the last couple of years. Shameless plug, yes. Deal with it.

The fact that I have kept this address book for 35 years is a reflection of my being a creature of habit as well as being rather resistant to change. (Just call me Sheldon Cooper.) On the positive side, it now represents a metaphorical trail of footprints in the sand that trace the course of my life through its up and downs, its joys and sorrows, its wins and losses.

I think I will hang onto my little black address book. It is an archaeological record of sorts that my biographer might find useful after I am six feet under. I will, of course, have to accomplish something famous, or infamous, in the years to come to warrant that consideration. I have a few good years left in me to achieve that status – at least on the infamous side.

~ Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Dyet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at or the novel online companion at

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