As I number myself among those who will always do what is necessary to aid a friend, no matter how impossible the task or difficult the friend, I must once again, even under these circumstances, take up the pen and offer some remarks for the dust jacket of the Borderlands Press edition of LOST BOY LOST GIRL, Mr. Peter Straub’s latest novel-length fiction. That this work incorporates into the usual Straubian murk several e-mail communications from a person no longer living more than justifies flap copy written by someone in the same position, i.e. one who has “passed over.” Folded his hand. Departed. Not to put too fine a point on the matter, the author of these remarks passed over and folded his hand and departed the earthly realm some eighteen months prior to publication of this volume, and while I’m on the subject, I’m still mighty steamed about the witless, slanderous, insulting conclusions drawn by nearly all of my friends, acquaintances, and professional colleagues from the circumstances of the (extremely unpleasant) event.

It is true that Popham College, the reputation of which I burnished for nearly two decades in my ground-breaking tenure as Chairman and only member of its Department of Popular Culture, entered into a Bolshevik period upon the death of President Bob Liddy and put me, the most distinguished faculty member that gutless place ever had or ever will have the pleasure of underpaying, out to pasture via the mechanism of “forced retirement,” which is the same as getting the axe, except you still keep getting your benefits and they don’t cut off your pension, such as it is. I was obliged to leave my comfortable dwelling-place and take up lodgings in, ugh, the Moosehead Motel on Rt. 9 in the nearby town of Lead. Therefore, it was my duty to remove from my former home all my worldly goods, very much including the trove of erotic journals discovered fanned out around my corpse at the bottom of the basement stairs, which is where I landed, already a goner, after suffering my fatal heart attack. The journals were research materials, not autoerotic stimulants!

In any case, the best one can say about this effort from my old pal is that it is at least mercifully short. His attempts to represent my present location, which he coyly calls “Elsewhere,” are ludicrously misinformed.

Putney Tyson Ridge