On further investigation, big chunks of the story about my father’s crib book and its effects were completely inaccurate. In particular, the meat of the thing is rotten: Fred’s life arc began with books and also with collecting, and he was all along a bibliophile. The original post has been edited to reflect this; please read it before repeating my own error.
Also, I used the word “partner” to refer to his wife, and this has been corrected as well.
Like my father, I make stories in my head and defend them against the world, even when this is disastrous. I apologize to Fred for wedging him into one of my stories, especially when it was his story to begin with.
Hell of a good story, though. Hope it happened to somebody.