At the time, I didn't get the reference, but I later learned that a British novelist named Edward George Bulwer-Lytton penned that sentence (well, actually, he wrote "It was a dark and stormy night"). In honor of his painful prose, a California university has an annual contest for the opening sentence of the worst of all possible imaginary novels. Here is a link to this year's winners, including my favorite:
Sex with Rachel after she turned fifty was like driving the last-place team on the last day of the Iditarod Dog Sled Race, the point no longer the ride but the finish, the difficulty not the speed but keeping all the parts moving in the right direction, not to mention all that irritating barking.
Can you believe it was merely runner-up in the romance category?
*And if Franklin gets off his heinie and manages to respond to my million or three emails sometime before noon tomorrow, I will post on this blog a vintage photograph of me in costume.