Monday, April 04, 2016

Reader's Diary #1290- Don McLellan: The Green Honda

Ever get hung up on a technical detail in a story that distracts from what otherwise might be a fine plot?

In Don McLellan's "The Green Honda" that technical detail involves an illegal police scanner. The owner, a man named Archie, likes to eavesdrop on stakeouts and drug busts. The problematic distraction is the inconsistent description of the audio. Sometimes, we're told, there is atmospheric interference and what is happening is unintelligible. Yet, later we're told that the technology (of microphones attached to officers' lapels) was so refined that "Archie could discern the pounding of a heart or a constable slurping coffee, every burp, every groan, every sigh."

Which is it?

Not really important to the plot, which involves a man taking life into his own hands, but nonetheless it's a short enough story that the unreliable/ super high quality audio problem was hard to look past.

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