I’m lounging around the house feeling crummy — stuffed nose, a cough, the usual. When I feel crummy I read Elmore Leonard, a prose genius and a funny guy who cheers me up.
So, I’m lying bed reading “Mr. Paradise” and I come across this bit. A crook hires a teenager named Ricky to keep watch on the female protagonist, a dangerous beauty. The crook says to Ricky, “You have my number — right?”
“I got it somewhere,” Ricky says.
To which the crook says, “Ricky, don’t lose that number.”
I laughed out loud. Leonard was making a private joke between him and the reader. Leonard knows Steely Dan. He must have giggled when he wrote that. I love you, Elmore Leonard.