Reading thru a cold….


photo by my Chandra

I don’t get sick often, but I did so now and this whatever-it-is is a humdinger. It’s so attached to me, it’s reluctant to leave. As a result,  here I am stuck indoors and fighting cabin fever.

Years ago, I recall thinking it would be great to be sick for a little while, comfortably tucked in my comfy bed with a good book and hot coffee and tissues within reach. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. When I have a cold, my eyes are so bleary, reading isn’t the pleasure it usually is, or as I imagined it would be when ill. I admit I spent most of my time this week just watching Netflix.



A book certainly worth a read

I was deeply involved in reading H.G. Wells’ ‘The War of the Worlds’, which I had picked up with my grandson, Remy, in mind. (Remy consumes books the way some children consume sweets.) Because Remy is eleven, I like to pre-read the books I buy him before I pass them on. I could hardly put this book down. I had heard of ‘The War of the Worlds’ but had never read it, yet i seemed to know what it was about. How come?



The successful H. G. Wells wrote over 100 books

It took my clever son, Rafi, to solve that puzzle. When we discussed the book by phone, he immediately referred to Orson Welles’ famous 1938 radio broadcast, which I had, indeed, heard of even though I was too young to hear it.


The young Orson Wells broadcasting in 1938

That realistic radio dramatization of ‘The War of the


One of many headlines in 1938

Worlds’ created a nationwide panic throughout America. Many believed the world WAS being attacked by Martians. Orson Welles, all of 23 at the time, and his Mercury Theatre, had decided to update the story. The results were shocking.

The original book, which I’ve about finished, is


H.G. Wells, 1866-1946

shocking as well, considering it was published in 1898, long before astronauts, space exploration, and so many other modern technologies were even thought of. Perhaps ‘The War of the Worlds’ IS the original alien invasion story.

dame rebecca west

Dame Rebecca West considered Wells the love of her life

In trying to learn more on the Internet, I am told Mr. Wells. a most successful science fiction writer, had a ‘scandalous sex life’, was comfortable with committing adultery, and believed in free sex! Mr. Google, willing to gossip, said Mr. Wells once claimed ‘Sex is as necessary as fresh air.’

If I felt better today, knowing me, you can be sure I’d be checking further into all this. You know what a ‘histerical’ (I just made up that word) gossip I am, but since I’m only now getting better, I’ll leave checking into his many love affairs up to you.

Happy hunting…..

newspaperwarof worlds

Terror after Orson Wells’ radio presentation in 1938



6 thoughts on “Reading thru a cold….

  1. I was glad to see your post today, Maughm…I figured you must be feeling at least a little better if you had the energy to do that! I didn’t want to call as I know you were uncomfortable talking. I’m going to hold you to your promise to talk my ear off as soon as you are able!

  2. I am not a science fiction person. But, your blog as usual sparked my interest in the book you just read, War of Worlds. I witnessed Orson Wells scare at the age of 9.
    My entire family was sitting around the radio when the “the martians just landed in the USA”. My Mom panicked. my Dad joked by saying “if they knock on our door I will offer them fried chicken livers with onions and garlic”, (his favorite dish). That would start a friendship with aliens. I do love science non fiction so I did some homework. I learned that Dr. Robert H.Goddard, an American Rocket pioneer, was very much enlightened by the invasion of aliens in England. Years later Goddard patented a formula to make liquid fuel for rockets. This formula is in use today by NASA. To honor Goddard for his miraculous invention NASA named a building after him: THE GODDARD BUILDING. Amazing how science and science fiction are similar to bread and butter. Different but delicious when taken together. Great blog Muriel.

  3. Thank you for taking the time to read this Joe, while you are celebrating such a special birthday! I too wasn’t a science fiction person, which is probably why I never read ‘The War of the Worlds’ before. I bought it for my grandson, who devours books like some kids eat candy. It was a new and fascinating experience for me. I have a brilliant nephew who read a lot of science fiction as a youngster and then grew up to be one of the Canadian engineers who contributed to the building of the space station.
    Loved your information about Dr. Robert H. Goddard. Imagine!
    Happy Birthday and here’s to many more years to come. Muriel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s