Wednesday, September 30, 2009

RCG IV:. The Hesperian Dragon Paperback

Announcing the publication of the Red Cross of Gold IV:. The Hesperian Dragon in paperback on Amazon Createspace.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Yeah! Some Days Are Just Like That!!

Some days are just like that. You're minding your own business when... ZAP! Someone takes advantage of you when you least expect it. Of course, I may be jumping the old proverbial gun, but here I was sitting fat, dumb and happy, thinking that my transfer is going to take place on Wednesday and I would no longer be plagued by the rigors and woes of being the so-called 'Boss'. Looking forward to being one of the Indians for a while instead of the Chief of the Dumb Fuck Tribe. Contemplating the benefits of being Cheetah as opposed to being Tarzan. Glorying in the satisfaction of donning Tonto's feathers in favor of mounting up on Silver. But then someone, whom I will not name, put a tiny measure... a teeny-weeny quantum bit of doubt in my mind and my beautiful Sunday afternoon is completely spoiled! What if they don't let me transfer on the first? What if they 'make' me stay on as boss for another month? What if they try to coerce me into taking charge of the upcoming fiasco planned for October (my favorite month of the year!)? What if?! What if?!
They could do it, you know. They could. They are in control. They represent the government! Who can oppose the government?
I should have known I'd lost it when the Big Boss asked a question during his first Department Head meeting after taking over his position. He looked around, smiled and asked "How many of you are in favor of Obama's Stimulus Package?" Everyone smiled like idiots, nodded and then looked confused (what stimulus package? they were asking themselves. Who is Obama?) Did I mention my co-workers are all idiots who watch Simpson re-runs when the news is on? Anyway, I thought he wanted an answer. Little did I know that it was a rhetorical question. Most of my co-workers don't know what rhetorical means either. So I answered him with a counter-question: "What about the 9000 pieces of pork included in the Stimulus Package?" He answered with a frown and then ignored me and began to tell us just how wonderful Obama's package was and what it meant for the State of Texas!!!
If there is a God in Heaven, I will be leaving on the first. I've already figured out the names of all the people I won't ever have to see again. Don't let this happen to me!!

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Here's a picture of my good friend, Maureen Miller, that I snapped at a Tampa Bay game. She was dressed as a... yes, you guessed it.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


It's that time of year again when my mind wanders back to those high school days when getting up early rolled around again and the smell and feel of fall was creeping into the air. Underlying all the trauma of going back to school was always the excitement of the return of football season. Of course, I didn't actually play football seeing as how they actually tried to kill each other on the field in pursuit of honor and glory for the school colors. A concept that was quite beyond me in those days. I wasn't exactly a bad boy, you understand, but I did have some very questionable friends that made my parents cringe. I loved motorcycles, for example, and owned two little bikes while I was in high school. Oddly enough, my mother refused to let me get my license because she didn't want me to drive it on the highway and so, I was relegated to driving around the backwoods and swamps in my immediate neighborhood. This did not stop me from having fun, crashing into things and generally causing a great deal of mayhem for the neighbors (who all happened to be relatives). But the motorcycle thing was not all in vain. I did learn a great deal about small engine repair, clutches, brakes, wheels, etc. and the importance of all those parts as far as harmonious operation which is essential if one intends to ride the bike instead of push it up and down the road.

Back to school mean washing and waxing and shining up the leather inside my 1965 Corvair Corsair... yes, the engine is in the back or was at the time. All the gee-gaws under the hood were chrome and also had to be polished. A nice little midnight blue ride with baby blue interior. I loved that car, but it was always getting stuck on speedbumps which had just been invented in our area to slow down the maniacs driving through parking lots. The car would get stuck and I would have to wait patiently until the engine in the rear finally set the rear tires down on the pavement. If I timed it just right, I could have the wheels going fast enough when they touched down to become airborne when I blasted off again.

But school was never a problem for me. Sure, I hung out with the wrong crowd, but my grades were always good, I never studied, never did homework and still passed with flying colors. The possession of a good brain never stopped me from being stupid. The principal and vice-principal knew me by my first AND middle name. The principal's secretary disdained me openly and the hall monitors followed me around. I was often accused of cheating on tests, but there was never any proof or evidence simply because I didn't. I found High School entertaining fun and the fact that I absorbed the material taught in the classroom like a sponge kept me from agonizing over tests and such like and so I enjoyed High School immensely.

My friends and relatives were convinced that I was a juvenile deliquent headed for prison someday, but their hopes and dreams for me never materialized.

I played in the band, loved marching on the field, blasting my trombone and feeling the animosity of the football boys and cheerleaders as our little band consistently brought home trophies while the football team fell on its face week after week. As far as I was concerned, the football games were just the opening act for the real performers... the Marching Band. Eventually, a serious disagreement with the band leader brought my beautiful career to an end when I failed to become one of his 'victims'. Such a man in this day and age would, indeed, end up in prison for child molestation, etc., etc. Truth be known, the man probably punked out half of the band during his tenure at my high school, but that was, is and ever shall be the lay of the land. Some will, some won't and some just shouldn't.

At any rate, this time of year always brings back those bittersweet memories and I would give anything to go back and change a few things though I have no regrets from those days. I certainly wouldn't mind reliving them. From my house now, I can hear the marching band whenever there is a home game and it always makes me smile.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Wonderful Sunday

Wow! So this is what it's like to sleep late, get up to a brilliant morning, a good cup of coffee and a birdbath full of starlings. It has been a long, long time since I was able to sleep so well on a Saturday night. Perhaps things are really changing for the better. I have recently put in for a transfer to another branch where I will be much less responsible for my co-workers' faults! I was hesitant at first to give up my position and go for something a bit more mundane, but now that it's done, I'm sure I've made the right decision. Even the sky looks bluer without the dread thought of hanging around the telephone, waiting to be called in to work becaues someone or another failed to show up. I didn't realize what a drain on the psyche it really was. Now that I'm free of it, I feel that I will ultimately have more time and more energy and more inspiration to pour into my writing while continuing to work toward my retirement goals. I know that this post is out of character for my usual banter, but I just had to say something this morning because I feel... liberated. I feel like the little bug in the picture, at peace with the Universe at last.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

What Kind of Flu did you say it was?

Came home from work early today with some sort of illness setting in. Hives, billies, drowsiness, general discombobulation. Seems there is some sort of virus going around. Anyhow, so I get home and fix myself a nice margarita and sit back to listen to some Mozart. Such things always make me feel better in all but the most extreme cases of dire illness. So I'm starting to feel better.... just being away from work is enough to make a body cure up right away. I'm thinking I might even do a bit of editing on Book XIV for those of my fans who are anxiously awaiting the publication of said book. Even felt like revealing the name of the next title in the Red Cross of Gold Series: the Skull of Sidon. Sounds ominous, doesn't it? Well, it's supposed to. So I'm sitting back, sipping my margarita when I catch a glimpse of myself in the ornamental mirror hanging over the ornamental bookshelf that holds knickknacks instead of books (you know the kind, promises one thing and then turns out to be something else). Anyhow, I catch a glimpse of myself and almost do a double back flip out of my chair onto the floor. It was suddenly quite apparent what was wrong with me.... see for yourself!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Dr. Pepper, Texas

Well, good news after a long and flatulent work week listening to gasbags distribute hot air for four days in a concerted attempt to enrich the atmosphere’s methane content by at least 10%.
I didn’t get called in to work. And if that is not good enough, I was treated to a Saturday outing to one of my favorite local attractions: the Dr. Pepper bottling company in Dublin, Texas. Yes, it’s the oldest bottling company for sodas in the country going back to 1287, just after the Fall of Jerusalem to the Infidels. Well, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but it is old and the machinery is from the 1920’s.
I just realized yesterday that I had quit drinking Dr. Pepper exclusively in the early 1970’s. The tour guide said that Dr. Pepper stopped using Imperial Pure Cane sugar in 1973 when the Cuban Missile Crisis caused a sugar shortage. The Dublin plant, having been the original bottler, refused to use corn syrup and continues to this day to use Imperial Pure Can Sugar which is also made right here in Texas, a la the Imperial Sugar company after which Sugarland, Texas is named.
Anyway, the tour is awesome and then I had a Big Red Crème Soda (made with pure cane sugar straight from the soda fountain) float with Blue Bell Vanilla Ice Cream (another Texas exclusive: Blue Ice Cream). It was heavenly.
We then traveled on (which will come in another blog) before ending the day at Miss Lilley’s restaurant and Saloon in Hico, Texas which Is famous for its connections with the outlaw Billy, the Kid. It has also becoming a haven for bikers and bike clubbers. A beautiful hill country town well worth the trouble of searching for in the wilderness between the goats, the sheep and the longhorns. A great day!!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

More Puglet Musings

Have you ever noticed that dogs are very much like children? Probably, but have you noticed that they are especially like children when it comes to phone calls. Now you're probably wondering just how many phone calls my pug gets, but I'm not talking about those. No, I'm talking about how she behaves like a child when I get on the phone.

As long as I'm sitting in my chair, watching TV or sitting at my computer typing, she is lying somewhere, totally engrossed in sleeping, snoring and snorting.

As soon as I get on the phone, she's up! Awake! Running around, barking at crickets, barking at the birds in the back yard, barking at nothing. She jumps up on the furniture and starts ripping the stuffing out of pillows. She climbs into the dining room chairs and helps herself to fruit (especially the bananas which she loves to peel, but doesn't eat).

Sometimes I even catch her in the refrigerator trying to get the cap off the tequila. (She has already mastered pulling the cork from the Captain Morgan's). She's even worse when she's had a few drinks.

Sometimes I swear! Sometimes I don't! LOL!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Christmas in September

On the way home from work today, I was feeling a bit down. Things haven't been going well at work... they rarely do, but they've gotten a boost in crappiness since the new Fiscal Year Kicked in on the 1st. Yeah, I know it's only the 2nd, but it seems like weeks have passed since yesterday morning. Anyway, I was on my way home and feeling sort of crabby. There is a particular piece of property that I pass every day that has a menagerie of animals inside a large fenced field. I've made a habit of looking that way every day, twice a day just to see what I can see on any given day. Sometimes there are donkeys (burros), emus, goats, sheep, llamas... semi-exotic fare.

So today, I'm driving home and I look over there and what do I see but a spanking new little burro. He was a real fine looking little fellow and suddenly my mind was sent back to all the Christmas Nativity scenes I've witnessed over the years. Invariably, the larger, more elaborate Nativities always include a baby burro, along with a lamb, maybe a bunny and baby camel. Baby animals and my spirits were lifted immediately, thinking of all those Christmases and all those cookies and pies and presents under the trees and pretty lights and wonderful, but old and worn out music... It seems I never get tired of Christmas and all its trappings.

Of course, by the time I got home, I was depressed thinking of one of the depressing things occurring at work right now. Ramadan. The Muslim holiday... holiday takes on a whole new meaning in the world of Islam. Ramadan would have to be their greatest holiday of the year which puts it in line with Christmas and Hanukka (sp?). Now as far as I know, Christmas and Hanukka are joyous seasons with lots of merry-making and feasting and enjoying friends and family. Ramadan, on the other hand, requires 30 days of fasting all day, lots of prayers on hands and knees. Hmmmm. When you compare the two... well, you decide.