Barney's Brainery

General discussions of interest to readers and fans of Harlan Ellison.

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David Loftus
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Barney's Brainery

Postby David Loftus » Wed Oct 22, 2008 12:23 pm

So I took a quick look at your MySpace announcement this morning, Barney. Congrats and best of luck on the endeavor!

I'm curious about a few things. Are you starting this by selling off much of your own personal collection? Have you an array of identified sources for future stock? Do you expect to be visiting a lot of estate sales?

I'm not familiar with that part of the state -- I spent a week in the 'burbs west of Philly many years ago and made a genealogical trip to Indiana/Clymer/Windber roughly a decade ago. Nazareth is the town that looks about 8-10 miles northeast of Allentown, right?

I don't suppose there'll be an Ellison section to your shop, no?
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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Chuck Messer
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Postby Chuck Messer » Thu Oct 23, 2008 2:43 pm

Barney,

Congratulations on the new venture. LOVE the name. May your shop be properous and interesting, even fun!

Chuck
Some people are wedded to their ideology the way nuns are wed to God.

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robochrist
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Postby robochrist » Thu Oct 23, 2008 3:15 pm

Definitely sounds like a niche offering ratha - ahem! - "exotic" take-out; a joint I'd love ta drag muh woman to!

But - yeah! - I absolutely dig the concept and the name. I hope the place does really well for you, man.

Maybe you could eventually post some "tour" shots of the store online. Now, if they could just move PA to Los Angeles I'd drop by every week.

Will you be setting up a store website?

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Barney Dannelke
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Postby Barney Dannelke » Sat Oct 25, 2008 6:22 am

A couple of things now that I see there is a thread devoted to this. ;-)

First, I updated that MySpace blog piece yesterday with some more off-list cross-talk to answer a few more questions.

http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fusea ... =442381797

Second - It's NEVER going to be called "Barney's Brainery" or the "Brainery Book Barn" or "Barney's Book Barn." ESPECIALLY that last one which may yield the fabled bum's rush. It's either simply THE BRAINERY or, perhaps "The Christian's Spring Brainery." Christian's Spring is essentially the intersection the three properties (Tavern/Barn/1760 House) all reside at. To call this a "town" would be to tell a cruel lie.

Just needed to say that. ;-)

As for my stock versus my"collection" - lots of people don't REALLY understand how many books I have - or how easy it is for me to acquire them. At the moment I have about 5,000 books on LibraryThing and I have another 12-14 thousand to be cataloged. My Rudyard Kipling alone is probably 250 books in variant editions. So that's about 18-19,000 titles comprising my core collection and PERHAPS 5% of that may end up in Brainery stock - depending on my mood and sunspot activity. At the elevated age of 49, owning every single Robert Silverberg and Andre Norton title is just absurd. So, there will be periodic purges. But I don't envision my private library ever shrinking below 8-9 thousand titles. I don't trust my culture that much. What will happen is that I will always be upgrading. I just got rid of a vintage Arthur Koestler DARKNESS AT NOON for a 1st and I just sold some DelRey OZ books as I got a nice set of HC editions done in the early 1950's with the larger reproductions of the original illustrations. My library, like Harlan's is a process although a rather scattered one at the moment.

ASIDE from that I own perhaps 40,000 books that are NOT "in my library" that are stored presently in 4 different locations. I acquired another 900 books last week and picked up perhaps 35 books just yesterday. Within the area I have a bit of a reputation - and once every couple of weeks someone will call me. Point being I don't hunt for books much anymore as book owners have started to seek me out. What I will REALLY need next year is a tree chipper because people will definitely be dumping crap on me once I'm open in a physical location and that shite will not be seen on the premises. I'm picturing Time-Life/Reader's Digest Condensed Books Sacrificial Bonfires and the occasional Wicker-Man treatment for shoplifters.

I'm not kidding. Fred and I are seriously considering building a trebuchet on the premises. Fun WILL be gotten up to.

There will also be a "book vault" behind my office, one wall of which will be studiously over-priced because I won't want to sell it and two walls of which MAY feature a smallish percentage of some of the best Twain and Ellison collections in the state of Pennsylvania. Only people I decide I *Like* will be seeing that room.

- Barney
History is a vast early warning system. -Norman Cousins (1915-1990)

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Barney Dannelke
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Postby Barney Dannelke » Sat Oct 25, 2008 6:26 am

I'm sure there will be a store website. That's still about 6 months out.

If anybody wants to throw mad html/java/whateverthefuck skills at that project for store credit and a place in the Hall of Heroes get in touch in the spring when the place looks like something and I have some graphics and logos.

- Barney
History is a vast early warning system. -Norman Cousins (1915-1990)

Alan Coil
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Postby Alan Coil » Sat Oct 25, 2008 3:25 pm

"The Brainery at Christian's Spring"

Names the name and the location all at once. Does have kind of a snooty air about it, but hey--you didn't have to pay for this suggestion.
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robochrist
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Postby robochrist » Mon Oct 27, 2008 11:31 am

"The Brainery at Christian's Spring"

I feel proselytized, already!

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Barney Dannelke
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Postby Barney Dannelke » Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:05 pm

Well Rob, it's currently owned by atheists - and they used to make beer on the premises - so it's a pretty painless process.

- Barney
History is a vast early warning system. -Norman Cousins (1915-1990)

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swp
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Postby swp » Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:52 pm

Barney Dannelke wrote:Well Rob, it's currently owned by atheists - and they used to make beer on the premises - so it's a pretty painless process.

- Barney

Surely beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy!

(you set me up for that one)

:)
swp

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Barney Dannelke
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Postby Barney Dannelke » Mon Oct 27, 2008 1:22 pm

If you give God credit for the beer then you have to blame God for the hangover. Fair is fair. My way is simpler.

- Barney
History is a vast early warning system. -Norman Cousins (1915-1990)

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David Loftus
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Postby David Loftus » Mon Oct 27, 2008 2:48 pm

Reading is my alcoholism . . . and where I get most of my hangovers.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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FrankChurch
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Postby FrankChurch » Mon Oct 27, 2008 5:12 pm

No Liferoaches in this bunch. Maybe Rob.

Gwyneth M905
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Postby Gwyneth M905 » Sun Nov 02, 2008 2:44 am

Hi, Barney,
This is great news! It's fabulous that you're opening your own "brick and mortar" store, with a coffee house to boot. :-)

It sounds like you're going to have a lot of fun. If I'm ever in Pennsylvania (perhaps for a Bryn Mawr reunion) I'll be sure to stop by.
(I promise not to drool over your private Ellison Collection, and to buy books!)

Congratulations and Good Luck!
Gwyn

P.S. Do you have any Olivia Bettie Page books, or a copy of Dave Stephen's Rocketeer? If so, I'd be interested in buying...

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Barney Dannelke
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Postby Barney Dannelke » Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:20 am

Was up at Christian's Spring last night. It is now a private club with keypad entry and "keep your own sixtel on the premises" privileges. Fred worked a deal with the jukebox vendor so that device is staying in addition to some interesting external hard drive musical options and a Quite Large digital projection system now located in the bar room proper.

Fred owns the pool table so that's good to go. New sticks purchased and new felt and rails pretty soon.

Irish Derek had a VERY nice winter ale on tap for $1.00 suggested donations and I had some of that and the remains of my OktoberFest scavenger hunt booty plus some Oatmeal Stout and Strongbow Cider (Go LEEDS U.F.C.!!! "Leeds 'til I die!")

- and two bottles of Challenger Double Bock which comes with little plastic rams dangling from the necks of the bottles in case you can't read the label for potential damage warnings by that point in the evening. I could, but I'm me. Oh, and perhaps some Balvenie 15 year old whisky with Kevin Kiernan to celebrate his successful scoring of the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari which was presented at the Jim Thorpe Opera House (the Switzerland of Pennsyltucky) the previous evening.

Plus I won at pool most of the evening.

So, yes, I don't really know you - but I can drink you under the table.

But none of that is important. What IS IMPORTANT is that THE BRAINERY now has an entirely NEW ROOF!!! That is, one that does not let in rain and sunshine and bats 24/7 OR shed a fine patina of ancient slate dust on everything all the live long day.

And so it begins.

Monday or Tuesday I break down a useless flagstone riser in the middle of the floor and Fred and I do some patching and then the framing of the office walls begins the very next day. Fred is now predicting a partial opening before Christmas. This seems insanely overconfident but I've seen Fred do things in 5 hours that would take me a week so this may not be bullshit.

I cannot friggin' wait.

- Barney

Progress, PA.
History is a vast early warning system. -Norman Cousins (1915-1990)

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David Loftus
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Postby David Loftus » Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:32 am

Totally. Way-Cool. Awesome.

You go, guy!
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus


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