Gary Sharp at “Koobdooga”

Gary Sharp at "Koobdooga"

Gary Sharp in Eugene, Oregon, around 1982

When I lived in Eugene (for the second time) I hung out in a bookstore called “Koobdooga” (A Good Book spelled backwards). I thought it might improve my terrible reading skills to just be near books and people who read them. Seriously. Well, I was right because the manager of the store, Gary Sharp, helped me learn how to read by recommending good books to me and encouraging me to become more “literary.”

Gary and I went on to become good friends during that time and our friendship continued after I moved back to Connecticut and he left to take a job as assistant and then director of the North Bend, Oregon Public Library.

I find it hard to believe I never scanned and posted this image which I treasure but I searched and can’t seem to find it on Flickr.

Gary remains a dear friend and this may be the very first time I met him. Amazing.


  1. Wow!!! Thanks for posting this photo of me, Richard, which brought back such good memories of the early days of our great friendship. I’m very grateful that Koobdooga Bookstore introduced me to you and was such a fine place to work during library school at the University of Oregon. It was always so good to see you walking through the door to see if the New York Times Book Review had arrived. And led to such spirited, fascinating discussions about books & more at Koobdooga and at Prince Puckler’s Ice Cream Shop!

    1. Gary: Right, it led us to Bachelorhood, tales of the metropolis, among other things. I think you or I might have read a review of that book in the Book Review and then we both read it. I think I still have it here somewhere.

  2. A wonderful, timely happenstance for both of you. And then you introduced Gary to me at the TRLD conference in San Francisco and I got to meet another nice person.

    1. Diane: Speaking of your conference, I was going through boxes of saved stuff from my “old life” and found all my various badges from your conference. I might have to line them up and do a photo shoot someday. I have fond memories of a great conference in a city I love and Gary meeting me there in later years was an added bonus.

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