Friday, April 20, 2018

Bezel Time

By Ruth Clagan, from the Clock Shop Mystery series by Julianne Holmes

In my life, the word bezel has two meanings. First, it is the grooved ring that holds the crystal of a watch or clock in place. Bezels in this context serve an important role, and are a decision that clock and watch makers consider carefully. I consider it very carefully, and have dozens and dozens of options at my disposal every day.

Bezel is also the name of my cat. I inherited my gray haired beauty along with my shop, The Cog & Sprocket. She was named by my grandfather. He always named his cats after clocks. I remember Simon and Seth from when I was a little girl. The cat right before Bezel was named Silas. There was a Sprocket and Fly Wheel (Fly for short) in between.

That doesn't mean that having cats living above a clock shop is easy. It isn't. Especially this time of year, where the weather fluctuates between winter and spring on an hourly basis. Shedding is happening, but Bezel feels like it would make more sense to hold on to her undercoat given the flurries this morning. (The crocuses are delaying their appearance as long as they can.) Nevertheless, we wrestle with the brush at least once a day, and the fur literally flies. I try and get the fur off before I head downstairs to the shop, but my efforts are futile. No matter how hard I try, stray strands of Bezel fly about and usually land on a crystal. Which is better than on the inside of the clock itself. My step-grandmother Caroline shakes her head every time she picks fur off a clock.

Lately I've taken to wearing a Cog & Sprocket smock (say that fast three times) that Caroline ordered for all of us. It is long, and gray, and has a retro lab look that I don't actually mind, but don't tell Caroline that. I like to make harumphing sounds. Every time I do Caroline says I remind her of my grandfather, and that makes us both smile.

Cat fur and clocks. Not a great combination, but a Clagan family tradition.

Luckily for me.


Julianne Holmes writes the Clock Shop Mystery series. J.A. Hennrikus writes the Theater Cop series.


  1. Any chance of this series continuing? Or the Theater Cop series? I sure love them both.

  2. Same question as Barb W. I own the 3 books in print and really REALLY want this series to continue. Do you own the characters or was this a special contract deal?

  3. This would be my daughter's favorite cozy series. She has a collection of over 50 clocks and timepieces. :)