Aristotle Canasta

Created by MW Taylor

“A private investigator’s main purpose is to discover kernels of truth hidden in the lies and deceits he encounters each day. He must feel proud of his profession but never privileged. No part of him can be soft yet he still must have compassion. There’s no pension, health plan or gold ring to comfort his old age, only remembrances of the dead and the few who might be living by his actions.”
Aristotle gets philosophical

Just say ‘No’?

1960s San Francisco private investigator ARISTOTLE CANASTA is an ex-cop with a list of problems. In his only appearance to date, 2020’s Psychedelic Detective, we learn that

  • he never says “No,” particularly to hallucinogenic substances
  • he drinks too much
  • he’s attracted to women who aren’t exactly good for him
  • the Irish mob and a slew of corrupt cops are out to get him

No wonder the occasionally addled dick spends so much time philosophizing… when he’s not spitting out bon mots like “You’re one lonely canary who stares into space” (like, he should know) or “I drove those ponies deep inside her corral then kicked the gate shut.” The latter is him relating a sexual encounter, in case you were wondering.

The cheese quotient is high in this one. Just not sure if it’s intentional, a riff on a tuned in, turned on Shell Scott or not.


MW Taylor grew up in northern Ohio and attended the University of Cincinnati, and worked in technology sales before he started writing detective fiction. He cites Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett and Cornell Woollrich as his primary literary influences. The author now lives in Central Florida.


  • There’s no connection between Aristotle and Brad Dharma, Psychedelic Detective, the private eye who appeared in a series of comic strips and an animated series that appeared as part of the third season of MTV’s Liquid Television in 1994.


Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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