Spring, introspection and book links

Posted 12-21-2013

Well, spring is upon us, I know that because half of my friends are depressed and the other half remembered to take their Prozac. And everywhere you look on-line there are people having conversations about what spring is about for them… Renewal, gardening, how they love each other and all of humanity. Yeah. Unless you believe in some fundamental difference in religion or the world that they don’t. Then they don’t love you quite so much, which is probably a good thing, because if they are that borderline you really don’t need them as a friend, and this may be the perfect opportunity, with all the rush of warmth and good feelings to lose them. In fact wouldn’t it be great to take them to Walmart and lose them there? Sorry, wishful thinking I guess.

I did have a pretty good week. Had a few good conversations during the week that were worth having too.

So the week is wound down and I spent the beginning of this year spreading myself entirely too thin. Carpenter, Writer, Plumber, Electrician, Webmaster, Son, Father and more. I stopped playing guitar, music and video games. I guess in an alternate universe that could be a good thing, but in this universe those are things that keep me sane… At least I think they do, unless I’m not sane and don’t know it. Hmmm. But seriously, I need to take that time to escape from pressure. We all do. We all have different ways we do it, but we do it. So I have promised myself that this year I am going to make time to do those things. Sure. Except, I really am going to figure out a way to do it, I just don’t know what that will be yet. Something will give in one direction or another and the time will be there. Maybe that would have been better saved as a new years resolution.

As a writer, choosing a somewhat public life, I have been frustrated a few times this past year when it has come to being able to speak my mind. There was a time, not so long ago, when I did speak my mind and I didn’t care about the consequences. I still have a great deal of admiration for people, who have chosen public paths, yet still do speak their minds. I always feel conflicted, speak my mind? Don’t speak my mind? It’s an issue for me because of the things I have seen changing in society lately, otherwise I would stay away from it.

When I was younger there seemed to be a live and let live attitude in this world I call home. Not so much anymore. Now it seems to be a ‘You better think like I do or else,’ world. That bothers me. And so the guy that never takes issue with anything is going to present an issue to you.

Here is how I look at life. Grant you life has shaped me, and is partly responsible for some of what I am, but that is a small part. Many years ago some one said to me, ‘You can make your choices in life, or you can let someone else make them.’ I thought, just let someone try to make my choices. But the fact is he was right. So I really do work on making my own decisions now. I don’t want someone else to make them for me, or fate, or whatever you want to look at it as. I want to have as much control of my life as is possible.

So I look at the world, what it has morphed into, what it continues to become as it changes and changes, and I choose, as I said, to walk the non-committal line. Now, for those of you who know me, that is different. I will talk about nearly anything with the people I call friends. My ears are open, my mind too, and I’m not only willing to listen, I’m willing to let it change me if it makes sense. I think that is a responsible position. But when I write, either Blog or fiction, or non fiction, I have a different level of responsibility. I am responsible on a different level because I am purposely reaching out to the public and giving them my opinion. Is that always true? I mean, do I set out to do it that way? No. Never. But that doesn’t matter a great deal either. I have seen words people have authored, that were committed to electronic media, or traditional print, come back and bite them. So, I try not to do it. I try to walk my fine line.

So as I said, when I was younger, it was live and let live. That is what my generation promoted. Now that has changed, and everyday it seems to become more extreme. If I don’t speak it really is allowing someone else to make my choices for me. So here goes.

I don’t have a problem with gays. I am not gay, I know that, but if I were I would not have a problem with it. I guess easy for me to say. I do not think Christ has a problem with gays. I don’t want people to send me six thousand scripture references telling me, ‘Yes he does,’ or ‘God hates it,’ or whatever. This is my opinion. I didn’t ask to argue about it. I have read the Bible, in fact I have studied the original scriptures, Gospels, Texts, Translations, Greek, Chaldee. I know what it says, and I know what it doesn’t say. I have read it. I don’t have a problem with Paganism, Wicka, Native American beliefs, or any other religions or spiritual beliefs. No problem. Sexual orientation, color, heritage, pride of heritage. No problem.

I do have a problem with people who are not tolerant of other people. People who hate for the sake of hate. Maybe I am the danger that is changing the world. Maybe I am the sickness that has leaked into our society. If so, good. I hope a great many others get sick. I hope the world gets sick and stays sick. If you are shocked by the words I have written then you should flush this page and never read any of my Blogs or books. I say that because I assumed that my outlook on life was pretty clear. I assumed I was making a statement with my writing.

I don’t want to make this blog all about striking back at things I don’t like. I do want to say what that person said to me. Make your own decisions. If you don’t someone will make them for you. Maybe you are like I was then and you don’t understand it yet. You will. That’s the great thing about life. All that advice. All those warnings. All that critical feedback people gave to you? It will all come back to you. You will eventually understand that you don’t know everything. This world is also about others.

So there is my stance. Not wishy-washy that’s how I feel. And that brings me full circle. And not having the time to take a break from life. Relax. Lately I have been re-examining my life. What is important, what is not important. What is not important is pretty clear cut to me. I don’t have a lot of time for game players, time wasters. I don’t have time for intolerance or people that like me if I change this or that. I’m not interested in joining anyone’s club, and I’m not trying to get someone to join mine.

I guess that means I’m not really walking that line any longer. I regret that I walked it so long, because some people made assumptions about me and what I think because I didn’t speak up. Proof positive that you can always change for the better.

As for people who do hate, hey, it’s your prerogative, but don’t do it in the name of God, or Jesus, or Allah, or the friggin’ Easter Bunny for that matter. And if you feel you must tell me all about your opinions, fine. I’ll be polite. I probably wont even light you up and tick you off. I’ll just listen and nod, and at the end I’ll tell you I don’t agree with you. Sorry. I have to, because if I don’t you might believe that I agree with you, and if you are about hate I don’t.

So that’s out of the way. What am I going to do this year? I think something has to go. The house will go. I will finish it. I spent this past week dry-walling the new laundry room and that is up and running. More work ahead, but it is getting less and less. So, that will go. The next thing to go is one of these careers. Am I a writer or am I running an on-line business? Well, both right now, but one will go. I will either throw it all behind one thing or the other. And it will be a question of return on investment. I know that sounds cold, but it has to be that way. If you really think about it the entire world works on return. If you give someone a compliment and they do not acknowledge you, do you give another? Not usually. If you are looking for a new social activity and you go and no one takes the time to greet you and say hello? Probably not going back. I’m no different. If the writing goes it doesn’t mean I’ll stop writing, it only means I’ll go back to writing for me, which is an entirely different thing…

Guess that’s it for me this Wednesday. I try not to be too political, but sometimes when you have a bad taste in your mouth it has to go. I am not, by the way, comfortable with the public side of writing. I do not go to book signings. I belong to only one writers group. It really irritates some of my author friends that I will not travel to promote my books, but I won’t. I watch them go to dozens of organized book signings. It doesn’t hurt my feelings. And I think that says everything I need to say about my writing. I do it because it is there. If you like it, great. If you don’t, great also.

I will leave you with a free preview of Hurricane which should be published sometime this coming year…


Hurricane

Copyright Wendell Sweet 2017, All rights reserved.

This preview is licensed for Geo Dell’s Blog. If you wish to share this preview with a friend, please point them to this blog. This material may not be copied, quoted, or transferred electronically, or in standard print for any reason, with out the copyright owners permission. Permission is granted to use small excerpts in critical articles both in standard or electronic print.


This material is copyright protected

This material is NOT edited for content


One

Elements

Monday:

“It’s bad luck to skip school on a Monday,” Amy Knowles said to her best friend Deidre Blevins.

“I know,” Deidre said, “But I hate it. I just can’t be there. I can’t deal with those Goddamn Nuns today. You don’t have to come if you don’t want to, Aim… I didn’t even tell Jimmy.”

“I know that.. Obviously I want to go… I mean,” Amy fell silent.

“What,” Deidre asked?

“We’re friends,” Amy said. “It’s been me and you way before Jimmy or Mike came along… It’s just that, sometimes we get too far away from that.” Her face colored.

Deidre nodded. “We do… So, where do you and me go today…. With no car… No way to get nowhere. I hate being on foot…. It’s just about all I keep Jimmy around for. That and the pot,” Deidre said.

“Really,” Amy asked?

She thought about it. “I could think of something better… For right now he’s okay. I like him well enough.”

Amy wondered what the something better might be. Deidre had colored a little bit when she said it. She didn’t ask though. It was good enough just being together. She didn’t want to complicate it with feelings.

“I smell rubber burning,” Deidre said and smiled. “A penny for your thoughts. That’s what my dad always says to me,” She said.

“They’re worth more than a penny,” Amy said as they reached the parking lot. She slipped her hand through Deidre’s arm. “Lead on,” She said.

Deidre was surprised by the arm, but pleasantly surprised. She liked the feel of it, she decided. She looked up at the sky then back down at the parking lot. “We could hitch out to your place or we could walk around downtown.”

“We could get picked up by some Psycho too,” Amy said.

“Never have,” Deidre countered.

“Okay, but if some Psycho picks us up and kills us I am going to be so pissed at you,” Amy said. She tried a little smile on her face. Deidre answered it with one of her own.

“Never happen,” Deidre said as they started across the parking lot.

“I’d probably follow you anywhere,” Amy said softly. So softly that Deidre was not sure she had even heard her.

“Yeah.. I wish that were true,” Deidre said every bit as softly.

Amy looked up at her. She had heard the words, but she was looking away. She was about to speak when Jimmy’s voice interrupted her. She looked up and there he was. His blonde hair hanging in his eyes, head half out the window of his truck. When no one answered he spoke again.

“I said, I thought you was staying at school today?” He said again looking a Deidre.

“Well, you said you might be here, so Amy and I thought we would try,” Deidre said quickly and smiled.

Amy nodded and smiled.

The car behind Jimmy’s truck blew its horn and Jimmy twisted around and glared back at the driver. He popped up his middle finger and showed it to the driver and then looked back at Deidre. “So, where we gonna go?. I didn’t make no plans and I ain’t got no money,” Jimmy said.

Deidre had about forty dollars on her, two tens in her pocket and the rest in her sneaker. She pulled out the two tens. “This will get us a little way, right,” She asked?

Jimmy took the two tens and slipped them in his pocket. “We can go out to Mike’s,” he looked at Amy. “He’s working on the Nissan today… I can help him… We can hang out… We have enough for beer now and gas to get there too.” Jimmy said.

The car behind him tapped its horn once more. Jimmy levered open the door jumped out and started to turn back to the car but Deidre caught his arm.

“Baby, you’ll get us in trouble. We’ll get caught,” she said as she pulled him away.

The guy in the car rolled his window up quickly. Jimmy smiled at him, flipped him off again and then turned back to Deidre and Amy. “Luck for that little fuck,” he said. “Come on.” He held the driver’s door open as first Amy and then Deidre crawled across to the passenger’s side and then turned and looked back at the car. The young guy behind the wheel refused to look back. Jimmy flipped him off again and then climbed back into his truck.

~

“What does it look like,” Bob Travers asked? He was at his own desk but he called up a view of the latest National Weather Service radar on his monitor.

Rebecca Monet leaned closer to the monitor, her breasts brushing against his shoulder as she did. “It could be the big one. It’s building fast and they are already predicting a path that will bring it right to us,” She told him. “I want to be the one that gets it if it does. I mean, I know I’ll have it at first but if it goes big I want to keep it instead of it going to Bethany,” she said in a low voice, nearly a whisper.

Bethany Jacobs was the anchor woman for Channel Eight News. She sat next to Bob during the newscasts. He had his pick of the big stories and left the rest to Bethany.

“Becca, you know I can’t do that,” Bob said in an equally low voice.

“Bullshit,” she said sweetly and smiled. “I know what your contract says. You schedule. You appoint. It’s your call.” Her breasts pressed more firmly against his shoulder. “Come on, Bob. I’m good. I can do it. You know I can,” Rebecca pleaded. Her hand came up and rested lightly on his upper arm. Her perfume was subtle but intoxicating.

“Bethany will go ballistic,” Bob whispered.

“So what,” Rebecca said.

“We have a …. A sort of,” Bob started.

“I know. It’s not like it’s a secret.” Her hand stroked his bicep. “I would do anything you want, Bob,” she said. The weight of her breasts against his shoulder suddenly seemed to increase ten fold. “I mean anything,” she said leaning closer and whispering in his ear. Her lips brushed his ear.

“Are we talking about the same thing,” Bob asked, his voice low. His eyes scanned the room looking to make sure no one was watching or eavesdropping.

“I’ve got a few minutes… I’m sure your dressing room is empty. Let me show you what I’m talking about. I think we’re on the same page,” Rebecca whispered. And this time her lips not only brushed against his ear they seemed planted there.

“I… I can’t right now,” Bob said.

“Can’t stand up,” she asked with a musical little laugh.

“Something like that,” Bob agreed.

“I’ll meet you there… I’ll let myself in,” She asked?

Bob nodded. The weight of her breasts were instantly gone, but the sound of her voice and the scent of her perfume were in his head. ‘Boy was Bethany going to be pissed off,’ he thought. But Tad Edwards, the station manager, had already dropped hints to him about seeing Rebecca work more, and a few other hints about how he thought Bethany was not aging well, meaning to Tad she was past her prime at twenty seven and he thought it was time for a fresh face. A younger face. Rebecca was all of twenty, and she was… He made himself stop thinking about her. He had to, or else, he told himself, he’d never be able to get up.

‘Man oh Man was Bethany ever going to be pissed off,’ he told himself again.

~

Paul lay in Jane’s bed. He had left early this morning on the pretext of having to go over the paper work for the year end audit, and that was partly true, but the real truth was that they had been getting less and less time together and he had simply needed to be with her.

“We have got to go,” Jane said from beside him.

“I know,” Paul told her. Her body was pressed to his own, one of his arms holding her to him. He didn’t let go. She felt so good. She reached over and bit his chest softly.

“Ow,” Paul said… “Okay… Oh all right… Maybe tonight? I could say I’m working late.”

“I can’t… You know I’ve got classes… Tomorrow?” She countered.

He smiled “That will work.” His hand slipped down and rubbed across her buttocks, squeezing gently and then, reluctantly, he let her go.

She held him a second longer and then kissed him before she rolled away. “I love you,” she said.

“I love you to,” he said automatically. “I’ll go first?” He headed for the shower and a few minuets later he was merging into traffic on I 65 and heading towards the Airport Road exit.

He and Janey had been an item for about a year. Paul Blevins didn’t really think about it as cheating on his wife Peggy any longer. He was pretty sure she was pursuing her own interests anyway. It just was.

He didn’t think too hard about the love aspect of the relationship either. Sure, he told her he loved her, and he did. She had a perfect body, and he loved it. And her attitude was great, he loved that too. And, she was completely devoted to him, how could he not love that? But the other kind of love? The kind that made you cry? Made your heart ache? No. He had loved Peggy like that at one time. He loved his daughter Deidre like that. She could probably get anything at all out of him. But she didn’t abuse it. She was a pretty good kid most of the time. Not out running around getting involved in all of the bad stuff that kids her age got involved in. He had no real concerns or worries about her. All of his real love. The kind that could hurt him anyway was reserved for her. She had never abused it and Paul didn’t think she ever would, or could for that matter.

He and Peggy had fallen apart a few years before and there seemed to be no way to fix it. Janey was pushing lately for them to be together. Her little boy, Lincoln, who was just two years old, already thought of Paul as his father. And Paul supposed that eventually he and Janey would probably be together.

Deidre had about six months of school left and then she would be off to college. Local if he had his way, New York if Peggy’s father had his way. And there was not too much that Peggy’s father did not get his way on. Money did talk and he had a lot of it.

Either way there was no reason to stay after Deidre was gone. There would be nothing there. It would feel too weird sleeping in the same bed, keeping up the charade. For what? For who? They really only kept up the pretense now for Deidre’s sake. If she was gone, what would be the point?

There would be no point, he told himself. Janey would most likely get her way… Sooner rather than later.

The radio played low as he drove and he listened as he watched traffic. Nothing much new. A tropical depression building off the coast of Africa. A big One. One that bore watching the weatherman said. Maybe it would be something, Paul thought, but he doubted it. They almost always slipped off and shot up the coast, or veered off and hit Louisiana or Texas. Most likely this one would too.

He came to a near dead stop in a long line of cars making their way onto Airport Road. Janey would be along in another thirty minutes or so. With Peggy’s fathers money it wasn’t a good idea to make themselves an easy target. On the surface Peggy might not seem to care, but Paul suspected she had to be thinking about the future too. Six months from now was the future. Or the end of their future. Six months from now, divorce most likely, and he didn’t mean to make it easy for her. So they were careful. Never leaving at the same times. Not being seen together.

The only reason he had stuck it out these last few years was Deidre. He wanted no custody dispute that she would be dragged into. No loss of seeing her. Peggy and her father’s money could make him look bad. Take her away. That would kill him. And, he knew it. She knew how much it would hurt him, which is exactly why she would do it. For Spite. For payback. Women were like that. Women whose fathers had deep pockets were even more like that, he thought. He had no doubt that had he pulled the plug a few years ago she would have made sure he never saw Deidre again until she was old enough to make her own decisions. But then Peggy may have poisoned her mind completely.

He could do without Peggy, Jane too, but not Deidre. So here he was, day after day. Six months to go and it would all be over. He inched forward through the traffic trying to clear his mind as he went.

The audit. Now there was a sobering thought. Janey really was helping with the audit. He had bought her in. It was a mess. There were real problems there. Problems that would take Janey to fix if he could convince her to do it for him. She was helping. Going through the mounds of paperwork. She was smart, she would see it. He would let it be her own idea. He hoped it would be her own idea. He pushed the thoughts away.

The line of cars suddenly poured onto Airport Road and he sped up just making it out and merging into the middle lane at the expense of a blaring horn and a pissed off driver of a beverage delivery truck who had not wanted to let him in. He made the left lane finally, signaled at the light and cut across the feeder road and then into the restaurant parking lot.

A few cars, and, for the second time in as many weeks a moving van was parked in the lot. Companies did that all of the time, but he could not remember if there was a moving company nearby with that name. Peggy was what he was thinking of. Peggy and her fathers deep pockets. Her fathers money that could hire a private detective to follow him. To poke around. Six months, he reminded himself as he parked, got out and walked to the restaurant. She could do as she pleased with Daddies money after that.

He whistled as he walked to the door, unlocked it, and stepped inside the restaurant.

~

Dave Plasko shot the ball under his knee and across to Steve Minor. They had tried letting Darren Reed, who was part of their little group, play but he was too slow mentally to keep up. It confused him and then it panicked him, and once he was panicked he might do anything. Best to let him watch from the sidelines as he was now.

Steve caught the ball, faked left then nearly walked himself to the right, put the ball up, and it barely kissed the rim as it went through.

“That’s it. You dudes are done,” Dave said.

“Another one?” Light said. “One more?”

“Got to work, Light,” Dave said. “Outside clearance. Can’t fuck that up. We’ll play when I’m back this afternoon.”

“Now, how is it you three white boys got that all sewn up,” Light asked?

“Hmm… We’re white? … It’s Alabama? How the fuck should I know. This is your fucked up state not mine, Light. You know we ain’t on that shit.” Dave told him.

Light bounced the ball across the small basketball court that was just off the main prison yard, and into the Recreation box on the other side.

“Yeah.. If you could only play that fuckin’ good all of the time…” Dave joked.

“I do, New York. You motherfuckers just cheat too Goddamn much,” Light laughed.

The yard gate opened and Jack Johnson, an overweight correction officer stepped in and looked around the yard. “What the fuck, Plasko,” he asked when his eyes fell on him. “You and your girlfriends ready to go to work or not? I ain’t got all goddamned day you know.”

“Later,” Plasko told Light. They touched fists. “On our way, Mister Johnson,” he called out. He looked to Darren and Steve and the three of them headed across the rec yard to the gate.


I hope you enjoyed the preview. Please visit my sponsors:

Earth’s Survivors

Have a great Wednesday, I’ll be back Friday…


People of the world and news from Dell Sweet

Posted 06-09-13

Well, Earth’s Survivors Three is available now. I gave it away over the weekend. Usually that is about 150 books or so for me, but this came to several hundred. I hope those of you who downloaded it enjoyed it.

I am currently working on the second space novel (Just editing for Geo) Tomorrow I will start upload the first Earth’s Survivors Outrunner book. I will send that to Jay and Geo next week or the week after. For a guy who dropped out of school and lived on the streets, could not read or write because of that and had to be taught by someone, it amazes me that I spend all of my time either reading or writing now. If I don’t have a book I have either written or intend to write running around my head at any given time, something is wrong.

It’s raining in New York. Heavy, cold rain. Spring is official, but has been pretty hard to find so far this season. I thought I would share part of my past week with you…

I use Windows Seven for my operating system. Not because I like Windows Seven, but because Linux is not universally accepted yet. So I use Linux as much as I can and then Windows Seven when I have to.

I purchased a new machine a month or so ago and it came with Windows Eight. Oh, I could write a whole blog about how I hate Windows Eight. And I do. It compromises you and your information on every level, because it insists on having it. It insists on knowing everything there is to know about you. Do you have five freckles on the inside of your left thigh? That would be about the only thing it doesn’t ask or know about it, but I would not count on the fact that it doesn’t know, it just might. Anyway, for me, too nosy. I buy the software and so I guess that means I am supporting the invasion of my privacy. But I would like it to be more like a car. A Toyota will drive me anywhere I want to go, but, so will a Ford, or a Chevy, or a Dodge, or, well, you get the idea. So why is it we only have Windows? Where the hell is the support for Linux? Or something else? Okay, That’s all I have on that.

So, I deep-sixed the machine I bought because, as it turns out, you can not easily delete win 8, at least on this machine. It would not allow me to install my Win 7. I struggled with it for a week. I decided in that space of time that there was not redeeming quality there and then one day I went online, ordered the parts from Amazon to fix my old machine. Kicked myself for not doing that first, and once they came I spent a few hours fixing the old machine. Once I was done I unplugged the new machine, stuck it back in the box and slid it under my desk. It made a great foot rest until my mother’s machine locked up the other day.

Moms machine is my old machine. I wrote several short stories and my first novel on that machine, a lawn sale item I had all of 40.00 dollars into. “Well, how would you like a Windows Eight machine, Mom,” I asked? For her it’s great. She is a social animal, mom is. I think something like 600 face book friends. She has all her on-line shopping places, her Kindle account. Huh, I said to her, people actually use computers to socialize? Mom just laughed at me. She figured out Win 8 immediately and has no problem with it. Humph…

I use Windows Seven and it makes me money, or helps me to make a living. It’s a tool I use to run the software that makes my living, and allows me to access the publishing services I need to be able to make my living. It also allows me to buy and sell on-line if I so choose, use software to listen to music, manipulate my artwork and create Artwork too. Record Music of my own. Read other E-Books (Yes, I read other authors, not just the ones here at independAntwriters). In short I spend a great deal of time in the Windows Seven environment and all I ever do is complain about it, uh, sort of like I am right now. But once I got a load of Win 8 I decided I would embrace Win 7. No more complaints from me.

So, last week I went to Google for a translation for a phrase spoken by one of the characters in Earth’s Survivors Three. Candace Loi is Japanese and African American. Her Grandmother spoke Japanese. I remembered the pronunciation for Grand Daughter in Japanese, but did not want to hack the spelling. And, growing up and hearing it, having an idea in my head what it meant, and then what it really means are different things sometimes. I went with Magomusume instead of Mago. Magomusume is more formal, and not really used often. But, I didn’t want to confuse things, it’s not like the character can launch into a long explanation about why it is not usually used in the Gender specific form.

So, I found it, but, when I had searched, it had also shown me a few images of people that indirectly related to my search. Japanese life. Yes, for once, not porn that always seems to pop up, but actual people… With their clothes on. I was awed, and I did something I rarely do, I spent about four hours more on Google looking for more pictures of people from all walks of life. So when you read Earth’s Survivors Three and you reach the point where Candace explains Magomusume you will know that as soon as I wrote that I then spent four or so hours Googleing stuff. I went ahead and clicked the ‘Images’ link on Google. Like I said, usually I am Leery of it, but this time I carefully restricted my keywords and was rewarded.

Poor, Gypsies, Vietnamese, Japanese, Native American, African and African American. One simply led to the next. And, why look if you don’t intend to keep? The reason I thought of that is because I know a man who, whenever I visit, has his desktop machine (A MAC, Ironically) set to show different life scenes. And this is on his office machine, so, while I’m waiting, I watch the picture show. I have been there enough times to know the pictures, and so I anticipate certain ones.

I sit in the padded leather chair, in his office, in America, where even the very poor do not starve to death in the streets, or get shot or terrorized by soldiers, or shot, killed and dumped in a ditch somewhere. At least not as the normal course of a day. Violence does happen here too. Having both grown up poor, and spent time actually living on the streets as a teen, I understand that what we see on the surface is only a poor reflection of what is under that surface. But I sit in his padded leather chair and I watch scenes from all over the world. People, Artwork, Animals, Architecture and more. It’s pleasant to watch. Soothing. I suppose it is for him too.

But the images I discovered that day were people who knew nothing at all about me. My life. My computer. The life I lead is so far from their life that it might just be incomprehensible to them. In any case, for most of them, they will never live this type of life. And, they don’t look all that unhappy about the possibility of never living this life to me.

Yes, in some instances I’m sure they are. When their basic rights are violated, when they are oppressed, when they are hungry. Not our version of hungry, I mean when they have not eaten. Maybe for days. So, their life is not all roses, but they don’t miss what they have never thought about, seen, or experienced. And I looked at the pictures and I thought this is what I need to look at every day. This is what can keep me connected to the real world. That is important to me. Being grounded. Staying grounded.

So I spent about four hours and downloaded every picture that I came across that I liked. I put them in a folder and I have added to that folder a few times now when I have thought of other people I would like to see. Then I set my desktop to that folder and voila. I Guess I am bringing it up because it affected me in some unexpected ways.

First, I have dual monitors, so as I work I can see the pictures change, for the most part. The only time I can’t is when I have something else up on the second monitor. But, I found that I tend to leave that monitor blank most of the time now. And that, throughout my day, I am watching the faces pop up. A mother in Africa with her baby. A band of Gypsies Exiled by Hitler before or during the war. He hated them as much as he did the Jewish people. A proud but poor Father in Mexico posing outside of a house most of us would not want to step inside of let alone call home, with his family. All smiling. Looks like they have a lot of love if not money.

A young Native American mother sometime back in the 1700’s staring wide eyed at the camera, her child held in her arms. She looks so young and scared. A little Boy smiling up at the camera, tribal scars on both sides of his face. He looks so happy. His smile is genuine. A mother nursing. Rebels posing with Machine Guns on a road in a jungle somewhere. A young Vietnamese woman making her way through the ruined streets of some Vietnamese city. A Chinese woman with her child on her back, wrapped and looking at the world go by as mom makes her way to where ever she is going. And more…

A family on the road. A father carrying his children. Images of war, images of peace. Images I have no context for, only the people looking into the lens of the camera, or away: Caught unawares. I realized it really was keeping the world in my mind. Why is that father carrying his children? What does that mother feed her children? Do they know about the western world? What do they think about it? I like it. It keeps the world on my mind. The part of the world that is important.

I don’t mean our jobs, bills, house payments aren’t important, I am only saying that people are more important. Seeing these people from all over the world. Some surely still living, some long gone away, keeps me grounded. If only because of what I just said. Know some a re gone. Some still here. It reminds me that there were times with my family, friends, I wish I could have back, had cherished more. Some of those people are gone now. If I remember them as I look at the pictures it’s like they never left. And, there are the questions I have for those I see in the pictures too. It keeps the important things in the world in perspective for me.

It has been an interesting week, and I am glad I made the change. It even makes me grateful, yes, grateful, to Microsoft for this desktop where I can watch those changing pictures. Or whoever came up with the idea. Does that mean I can’t complain about Windows anymore?


Take a look at my books on Amazon: Dell Sweet


Lost pet food lottery

Posted by Geo 02-13-2017

 

Good morning! I think luck has come my way this week. No really. You know those bags of dog food, cat food, cow chow, goat chow that have the woven string that if you pull a certain way are supposed to open right up? You know, it’s like they’re sewn shut, you pull the string the right way and voila it comes apart like butter. Never has for me. I’m 55 and for all of my years I have pulled the string, it starts to unravel, and then it stops dead. I pull more… And more, but it’s stuck. Finally I give up and get a steak knife and cut the top of the bag open. Why a steak knife? Because it would be too easy to just get a pair of scissors and be done with it without possibly cutting a finger, which is pretty much mandatory for me. So my point is it has never worked before. Never. Not once, but this morning I went to open some cat chow, pulled the string and it opened like, well, at least like margarine. I was so shocked that I nearly dropped the bag. Fred Meowed at me, probably thinking I would drop the bag. But I gathered it in and just stared stupidly at the string in my hand. It’s like magic… Magic I tell you…

No I am not scheduled to fly on a plane today, but if I was it would probably be the perfect day to do it without risk of crashing on some DHARMA controlled island. I mean luck is completely in my corner. I should play the lottery, today, right away. Okay, well maybe I’m not that lucky, but it would be nice to be. Of course some folks don’t believe in luck at all, it is all fate, or preordained. And some are carefully plotting out each footfall so they get where they want to go in one piece. I am already in several pieces so I’m not so careful. I have my GPS off, but I know the general direction. I’ll stay in the car, shoot anybody that approaches armed and shooting or looking like they might shoot, and I’ll get there, maybe, because there are no guarantees. And that, my friends, is why I do not sweat it; life I mean.

It is possible to control some things and not possible to control other things. I spent a great deal of my life thinking “Okay, when I hit a certain age I’m going to do this and that.” And that was a great plan except my wife and I became divorced, the kids grew up, I changed careers and then I had major surgery that completely altered my life. You do not get to choose the things that happen in your life. Yes, there is some control, but far less than you think and unplanned things do pop up that can cause major changes or even slight changes that can then cause major changes. I think life is a gift. Live it. Cherish it. Be glad you didn’t wake up in the U.S. today… Homeless… Living on a sidewalk or under a bridge abutment still trying to believe it’s all okay.

I remember a social worker once who really should have been in another line of work, telling me that when I was on the street as a teen I had choices I could have made. And yes, on the surface it appears that way, but just below that surface it is not that way at all. The choices kids have are not as wide as you think. We should support, far more than criticize them. Sometimes when you are in a situation it is not as easy as saying “Okay… I will quit doing coke.” or “I’m done drinking.” Sometimes that avenue is as closed as anything could be because of things even the person who closed it doesn’t understand and maybe never will. One of the things I get on Christians about is shutting people out. I have seen churches who will not accept people who are different from them, or gay, or dress differently, or foreigners. It is stupid. They say “Well, it might infect my church! My mind! My children!” Good, change is good, maybe that is the way to get there! But my real complaint is that if you are a christian how can you turn anyone away if you are emulating Jesus?

I am not going down the religion road. I am against organized religion myself for many of the reasons I just mentioned. I think faith is faith, you have it, it is personal between you and God and that is that. It is no ones business at all. But I just took you from lighthearted to deep, and that is what writers do. You are supposed to tell good stories, teach, impart information. My information to you today is be you, and if it is your super lucky day don’t fly on Oceanic flight 815, okay? Stay home.

I have taken a few swipes at LOST. I love it. I am watching it over again. It isn’t just that the show was good, it was, it was that the writers wrote good material for the actors and then the actors too were awesome. It caused us as viewers to love those people we watched. The entire LOST episodes are on Netflix. Nope they don’t write my paychecks I just like LOST and Netflix.

Okay, I have to actually go and get some work done. Hope you remember to be grateful for your life and remember it is probably just one go around so treat everyone kindly…

I will leave you with the Zombie Plague links on NOOK. Enjoy and I will be back on Wednesday, Geo…

The Zombie Plagues Book One 

What if the world ended tomorrow? What would you do? Would you be able to survive?

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-zombie-plagues-book-one-geo-dell/1116974111?ean=9781492798668

The Zombie Plagues Book Two 

The Zombie Plagues books follow a small group of men and women as they struggle to survive on a vastly changed earth

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-zombie-plagues-book-two-geo-dell/1116974114?ean=9781492798743

The Zombie Plagues Book Three 

Life is good for those who are lucky, but out in the real world it’s a different story…

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-zombie-plagues-book-three-geo-dell/1117027340?ean=9781492798798

The Zombie Plagues Book Four: The Outrunners 

I saw the Zombie on Madison take a mouthful of her back, just below the curve of her neck

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-zombie-plagues-book-four-geo-dell/1117475716?ean=2940045439084

The Zombie Plagues: Book Five 

The Fifth Book picks up the Story of Billy and Beth and their flight out of the ruins of L. A.

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-zombie-plagues-geo-dell/1121785682?ean=2940151878876

The Zombie Plagues Dead Road: The Collected books 

Contains books 1 thru 6. Books One through five were published, book six was not…

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-zombie-plagues-dead-road-geo-dell/1124233945?ean=2940153142777


Mister Bob and some humor for your Monday

Posted by Geo 01-23-2017

Today is an assortment of humor and a free short story, Mister Bob, at the end. This is all stuff I have written and set aside. There is so much of this sort of stuff that sometimes I wonder how I get any work done at all. Please take it all with a grain of salt, or two, or three…

My Friend Bob.

My friend is stupid. He called me up and said…

“Listen, I’m really worried.”

“What’s wrong, Bob,” I asked? I was concerned. Must be seriose for him to call me.

“Well, I’m concerned about this Transvaginal mesh thing on the T.V.,” Bob says.

“Oh… Wife?”

“Huh?”

“Wife had the surgery?”

“You know, I never even thought of that,” Bob says.

“Oh… Mother… Sister?”

“Jesus, now I’m really worried… I was worried about me… That time I had the surgery for the hernia.”

“Um… Ok… So, you were worried what, that they used transvaginal mesh to repair it?”

“Oh, that’s bad,” Bob says. “I didn’t even think of that… But, no… When I went to see that shrink a few years back he told me I had to get in touch with my inner Vagina.”

I choked. I couldn’t help it. “He said that?”

“I think so… The thing is he was saying a lot of shit, I really wasn’t paying attention. Inner femine side, vagina, something.”

“Okay… Well, is it possible he said inner child? And … Get in touch with your feminin side?”

“Maybe,” Bob allowed. “But, you know we are all female in the womb and that means we must have a vagina and that’s what’s got me worried.”

Things on TV that I don’t want to see or hear:

“If you have an erection that lasts more than four hours contact a doctor”

“Less leakage with our pads.”

“Let’s talk about our Bums.”

“Hail to the V.”

Important things to consider:

Bears can not wipe their asses at all.

Beavers are really an animal with buck teeth they can cut down trees with. How does that equal a vagina? Oh… never mind.

Groundhogs are really just rodents so you don’t have to listen to anything that they say. Such as, I don’t know, predictions from that fat bastard groundhog in Pennsylvania.

Boogers, there was a time as a child when you considered this food.

Assholes, what if everyone that was an asshole had to look like one? I know, right?

Hamburgers have no ham in them. Is that a lawsuit or what?

Politicians, what if everyone that was an asshole had to look like one? I know, right?

Loose ends

Riddle me this the big Dummy asked: What wind speed would it take to knock a 270 pound Idiot-Man flat on his butt on an icy driveway, while shoveling, in the middle of a blizzard?

You may ask, “Well, what was the idiot doing out there shoveling if it was a blizzard?” But that is self explanatory, he’s an idiot.

You may say, “Shouldn’t he have a Prozac and watch the snow pile up from somewhere safely inside?” But that should also be self explanatory.

Give up? Well, um, apparently all it takes is 16 mph winds from the West. I checked with the weather service after I got up. And, although you didn’t ask, I’m fine. Just fine, and, bonus, I apparently provided a smashing show for the guy driving by in the green truck. Happy to be of service, Guy in the Green truck…

Tough guy lines

“Hey… Hey, let me have your fucking attention for a moment if I might. Why don’t we do this. Let’s just shut the fuck up and accept what I’m gonna do or else I’ll put a fucking bullet right in your fucking eye… Okay? Are we cool with that?”

“Okay… Okay… I see. You are objecting to the way I’m handling this problem… I got that right, right? You don’t think I’m being fair? Okay. Well then, obviously I gotta make a change. Fair is fair. So, why don’t we compromise and do it this way. You’ll have your say and then I’ll do what I was gonna do anyway and you’ll shut the fuck up and quit jabbering about it. That way I don’t gotta shoot you in the fuckin’ knee… Now who says I can’t compromise?”

Things a dolphin might say if a dolphin could talk

1: Please don’t eat me.

2: So, you a fisherman?

3: I hear the Snapper is good.

4: Well, you could take me home… Keep me in one of those little bowls…

Things a dolphin might say if you get them drinking.

1: “So, me and my buddy were over by the coral reef when this huge frickin’ shark cruises in like he owns the place. Well, I says to my friend, let’s just see about that. So…”

2: So, she says to me. “You come here often?” Often, I says. Often? It’s the freakin’ ocean! Whad’ya’mean often!

3: Well I used to be a Loan Shark.

4: Sushi… I mean Susie… Ow! Stop it! Why are you eating me!

Truth in advertising

Used Cat, 2013 model with gray striping. Yellow/green/red/demonic eyes. Very low miles, sleeps all the time. Has claws, poops in the house, does not respect humans, dogs, bugs or pretty much anything else. Has chewed the cords off seven mice and three power supplies, still in all is a very likable cat.

Bad dog. Very cute. Has piddled or pooped in every spot in the house. Dug up garden. Bit mailman and killed neighbors cat. Very affectionate. Cheap. Papers included, newspapers I mean, because he is sure to crap all over your house too.

Microsoft Backup in the old days

Waiting for a backup is like watching paint dry… Nope, the paint is dry and the damn backup is still ongoing. I suppose, as a writer, that I should feel fortunate that I have so much stuff to back up, once upon a time I only had those first few words too. It has said … ‘About Four Minutes Remaining’ … for like twenty minutes now. Oh, what a surprise, I wrote that, went back and checked, and it still says … ‘About four minutes remaining’ … Figures. I do not believe that Microsoft Windows Backup can count. See, I wrote that too and it still says it!!!! ARRRGGGG. Lol. The Backup dilemma, do I have five hours to waste today to do a backup?

Scenes of Elvis I have cut out of books I wrote…

In a rusty old trailer, in the Palmview Park trailer court, in Miami Florida, a dark haired heavyset man sat at his kitchen table.

The power had been off for days, and the cheap plastic cassette player’s batteries had finally run-down. He had tried to be careful, had tried to only play it occasionally, but they had run-down despite his efforts.

He no longer wore the white leather outfit. He had hardly ever worn it anyway, only occasionally, only when he needed to, when he wanted to remember.

He had put it away two days ago, and he had no intention of ever wearing it again. It hung in the musty closet in his bedroom at the rear of the trailer, and as far as he was concerned it could hang there forever.

He removed the dark sun glasses and rubbed his tired eyes, started to put them back on, and then decided against it. They too had to go. Old stuff. Stuff that wasn’t important any longer, he knew. He ran his fingers through his thick hair, as he carefully set the glasses aside. He had thought of cutting it. Like maybe he should cut it, but he hadn’t been able to do it. In fact, he didn’t want to do it, so he had left it, along with the long graying sideburns. He liked them, they suited him, and he couldn’t let them go. He supposed they looked silly, even made him look older, but he didn’t care. And besides, he thought, he was old. The hair made him feel young, the hair made him remember, and if only for that reason, he wanted to keep it.

He sighed as he stood up from the table, glancing once more at the cheap plastic cassette player. It was time to go, time to leave, and although he didn’t want to go, although he really wanted nothing at all to do with people again, he knew that he had to go.

He had known, just known, when the batteries had finally died, that Florida was about to die too. He had to leave, unless he wanted to die right along with it. He levered the old door open for the last time, and stepped out into the warm morning air.

He took one last look at the rusted and faded trailer, and then set off through the park.

He walked slowly, looking around at the run-down park for the last time as he did, and headed for the marina that was just down the road. He hoped to find a boat of some sort, and leave.

And… Go where? He asked himself.

He pushed the thought away. It didn’t matter where he went, only that he went…

From a later book

Aaron walked slowly out of the bedroom and into the kitchen area. The music had cut off, and suddenly too. And for just a second there. For just one small second there, he had felt as though the last ten years had slipped away, had been made unreal somehow, and he was back in the run-down trailer in good old Palmview trailer court, in Florida. Which was ridiculous, had to be ridiculous, and even he knew that it was ridiculous, but it had felt that way.

It had, thank God, nothing to do with that though. It was ten years later, he wasn’t in Florida, and everything was… Well, regular. The damn breaker had flipped again.

Ira, had helped set it up, and most of the time it worked just fine, but sometimes like this time, he thought it didn’t.

Sometimes when the sun slipped behind a cloud the thing just shut down. And the reason was clear. The electricity was solar, and they had hooked up a battery back-up, but the back-up was shot, kaput, done, finished, the damn thing couldn’t hold a charge more than fifteen minutes on a good day, and the last several day’s had been far from good days. Barely any sunlight six days running and it didn’t look as though there would be any real quick.

No big deal, he thought, as he switched off the main breaker, and then reset the one that had tripped. It wasn’t like there were factories just pumping out batteries any longer.

He had come a long way since his days as the king of rock and roll. And, he really had been the king for a while there, even after he died, after he was supposed to be dead, he had still been the king: Still on top, and no one had come along to knock him out of that top spot either.

The Star Reporter had still been doing articles about him ten years ago. ELVIS LIVING AS A VEGETABLE IN BRAZIL, was his favorite.

Really? Please, give it a rest. How much, he wondered now, did they have to pay those people to say those things? Probably, he concluded, as he always did, with a dry chuckle, absolutely nothing. They were glad to say it, needed to say it even, and would say it regardless of whether they were paid or not.

Wouldn’t they be surprised to know that he had really spent those years since he was supposed to have died flipping burgers in a run-down diner on the outskirts of Miami?

No, he decided, that would be too boring to print. They would have never gone for that.

Aaron chuckled once more, and walked back into the bedroom. Ira had stopped by just a few hours before, and invited him over to dinner, no time to think about Slander Sheets now, time only to get ready, and not just for dinner with Cora and Ira. After all, there was some serious business ahead. Very serious, and Ira might not know it yet, but Aaron did, he knew it for a fact. And he also knew, had a feeling really, that this time… This time the king might really die. He might really die, and…

He chuckled once more, an uneasy chuckle, and again began to trim the bushy sideburns that had been one of his trade marks so long ago. It made no difference. Not to him, and most surely it wouldn’t make any to Ira. If it was time, it was time. Life hadn’t been so bad, at the least the last ten years hadn’t, not at all. In fact the last ten years of not being the king, of not living in the shadow of being the king, of not reading all that garbage every day, those years had made all the other years more than worthwhile. If he died so be it, Mamma would be there, and Aron would be there, and he had spoken to Ira about death, so he was no longer afraid of it. It was a known thing now, an understood thing, and if he had to go he would.

The sound of a motor came to him from outside, slightly loud. The exhaust, he knew, was going on Ira’s old truck. It was too dark in here to see all that well anyway without the light. He set down the scissors, and left the bedroom just as a short and feeble-sounding toot came from the truck outside. He could use a new horn too, Aaron thought, as he opened the front door, and walked to the truck.

A word from turtles

Thousands of turtles are run over each day, while doing nothing more than trying to reach their homes across the busy interstate. This wholesale slaughter can be averted. We are currently working to provide turtle overpasses on many of the nation’s busiest highways. Won’t you give to help this worthy project? Just ten cents a day could save the lives of these poor unfortunate turtles who are being run down and left for dead as you read this.

For ten cents a day you can give a turtle a safe alternative to reach his home. Won’t you consider it now?

Okay. Hope you found some of that humorous. I am going to leave you with a short story. Before I do that I wanted to let you know that I will be gone a good part of this coming week, possibly into the next week. I have posted concerning that so I won’t reiterate it. I’ll be back as soon as I can with fresh posts and blogs for you. Until then, have a great week, try not to hurt anybody on your way through life. That’s it for me today, Geo.

MISTER BOB

Mister Bob is Copyright © 2015 Wendell Sweet and his asignees

Additional Copyrights © 2010 by Wendell Sweet All rights reserved

Cover Art © Copyright 2015 Wendell Sweet

This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you are reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your bookseller and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

LEGAL

This is a work of fiction. Any names, characters, places or incidents depicted are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual living persons places, situations or events is purely coincidental.

This novel is Copyright © 2015 Wendell Sweet and his assignees. The Name Dell Sweet is a publishing construct used by Wendell Sweet. Portions of this text are copyright 2010, and 2011, all rights reserved by Wendell Sweet and his assignees. No part of this book may be reproduced by any means, electronic, print, scanner or any other means and, or distributed without the author’s or assignees permission.

Permission is granted to use short sections of text in reviews or critiques in standard or electronic print.

_____________________________________________

MISTER BOB

The Middle of the night: Lisa

She awoke suddenly in the darkness of the bedroom. Panic rode tightly in her throat, but nothing in the silence told her anything she needed to know.

The clock read 2:38 AM, green numerals lighting the bedroom in eerie, fairy half light. Spooky light, she decided. It was adding to her sense of something wrong. Would red be better, she wondered. She would pick up a new clock… Make sure it had red numerals.

Don slept on beside her, apparently undisturbed, but the sense of panic, touch of fear, would not leave her.

“Mommy…!” Alandra, sobbing, calling her name. She threw the covers aside and nearly leapt up, out, and to her feet in one motion: The cotton night shirt fell to her knees as she ran for Alandra’s bedroom. Behind her, Don grunted in surprise, but she barely heard him: Her mind had kicked into a higher gear; suddenly working overtime.

…Nightmare? … Kidnapping? …Killers? … Burglars? … My baby! …

And why is it, she thought, as her mind threw all the worst possibilities at her, that your mind does exactly that? Why?

She pushed it all away as she pushed the bedroom door open to find Alandra sitting up, staring at the closed window that looked out over the back yard.

She reached the bed and gathered Alandra in her arms… “What, baby? … Bad dream?”

“No,” Alandra sobbed. “Not a dream. You have to stop them, Mommy. They were killing Mister Bob… He told me.”

Lisa let her eyes fly quickly to the window, and then flit around the bedroom, alighting here and there, in case there was some wack-job standing in the shadows… Closed window… Tree limbs outlined outside it in moonlight… Closed closet door… She thrust one foot at the darkness under the bed.

“Baby, there’s no one here.” She pulled Alandra’s head away from her breast which was already wet from her tears.

“Honey, Alandra.” She waited until she turned her tear stained face up to her own. “Baby, there’s no one here… See?” She turned her eyes to the empty room.

“Mommy, Mister Bob,” Alandra said. “Look at the window.”

Lisa looked more closely at the window, but saw nothing more. “Honey, are you saying that Mister Bob was at the window?”

Alandra nodded solemnly.

Dan was supposed to take care of getting the tree outside the window trimmed. Lisa had been concerned of just this thing: Someone climbing that tree and having access to Alandra’s bedroom window. A spike of fear lodged directly in Lisa’s heart. “Stay here, baby, okay?”

Alandra nodded once more. Lisa gathered herself, rose from the bed, and went to the window, wishing she had thought to grab her pepper spray. Better yet, her mind supplied, Don’s 9 mm. The window was closed, but the thumb lock was off. She eased up next to the window, holding herself in the shadows, and scanned the back yard. … Nothing … The bedroom door opened suddenly and she turned quickly, her heart hammering hard against her rib-cage.

“Whatzit?” Dan asked.

“Jesus, Dan,” Lisa said. One hand went to her throat.

“Sorry…” He turned to Alandra. “What’s wrong, honey-pie?”

“She said someone was at the window,” Lisa supplied.

“Christ,” Dan muttered. He walked across to the window: A big man who moved fast. His eyes scanned the yard.

“Well… I don’t see anyone now,” he said.

“I don’t either, but I thought…”

He nodded. “Tomorrow morning, noon at the latest. It’s spring… He’s backed up.” Dan shrugged helplessly. “I’ve been on him, Lissy. I have.”

“Dan.”

He held up a hand. “Or I’ll take the day off and do it myself… Promise… I’ll call him in the morning before I leave.” He sighed.

Lisa yawned.

“Honey, you want to sleep with Mommy and Daddy,” Dan asked?

“Uh, uh. What if Mister Bob comes back?” Alandra asked.

“Mister Bob?” Dan asked.

“He told her that was his name,” Lisa said.

“Were you dreaming, honey?” Dan asked.

“She wasn’t dreaming, Dan,” Lisa warned.

“Well… Cops… Should we?”

“There’s nobody… What do you say exactly? No… Just make sure it can’t happen again,” Lisa finished.

“Okay… Okay.” He turned back to Alandra. “Come on, honey. Sleep with Mommy and Daddy tonight. Tomorrow we’ll make sure Mister Bob can’t wake you up in the middle of the night again.”

“Mommy will stay in here with you,” Lisa countered.

Alandra nodded.

Dan looked from Alandra to Lisa. Lisa shrugged.

Dan frowned and then turned and left the bedroom. A few minutes later he was back.

“Here,” he said as he handed Lisa her pillow. His own pillow and a wad of blankets were tucked under his other arm

“We’ll have a camp out,” Dan said. He looked at the floor, yawned deeply and then spread out the blankets and tossed the pillow to the floor.

Alandra giggled as Lisa climbed into the narrow bed and pulled her close.

~

Dan was already softly snoring and Lisa was sure that Alandra was sleeping too. Her own thoughts were getting farther and farther away from her. Her mind free falling into the spiral of sleep when Alandra whispered.

“Mister Bob is my friend, mommy.”

She came up from the edge of sleep just that fast.

“He talks to me every night.”

Lisa pulled her closer. “When, baby?” she whispered back.

“All kinds of times… Sometimes when I’m awake, sometimes he wakes me up. He’s not mean, mommy. He’s my friend.”

“But, baby, a man shouldn’t be climbing a tree to talk to you,” Lisa told her.

“But he doesn’t, mommy. He’s already there. Mister Bob is a tree. My tree.”

“Oh, baby… A tree? The tree in the back yard?”

Alandra yawned. “Uh huh. My friend, Mister Bob.”

Lisa nodded.

“He talks to me… He said… He said, they’re going to kill me, sissy. Don’t let them kill me.”

Lisa’s heart leapt in her chest. Sissy had been Alandra’s nickname until she had discovered that she liked her real name better in Kindergarten and had solemnly told she and Dan not to call her Sissy anymore. Lisa yawned in spite of herself. She pulled Alandra closer. Maybe it had been a dream after all.

“He calls you Sissy?”

“I told him I’m not a baby.” She yawned again and the rest of what she said was lost as she began to drift into sleep.

The fear that had been rising in Lisa’s heart bled out just that quick. Her own lack of sleep caught up to her. She yawned too, and a few seconds later she drifted down into sleep thinking about talking trees that spoke to little girls and called them by their nicknames.

Morning:

She heard the alarm from her own bedroom. Dan had turned over, pulled the covers over his head and balled the pillow up under his head. He slept on, oblivious. She recalled a dream of her own. Must have been after all that had happened, she thought. She had dreamed that she had awoken briefly to hear Alandra holding a conversation with Mister Bob. Something like, “I told her… She’ll make sure you’re okay.” And the impression of another voice. Deep, resonant. She couldn’t understand it. A weird dream provoked, no doubt, by what had happened earlier and what Alandra had told her. She looked down into Alandra’s sleep eyes.

“Want to sleep a little longer, honey?” Lisa asked her.

Alandra nodded.

Lisa kissed her forehead, got out of bed and then tucked her back in. She turned to Dan.

“Do you want to sleep in a little longer too, honey,” She asked.

The wad of blankets surrounding his head nodded.

“Well, you don’t get to sleep in. Come one. Get up.”

Dan groaned. He struggled briefly with the wad of tangled blankets that surrounded his head. Alandra looked over the edge of the bed and giggled. Lisa looked at her.

“You’re not going back to sleep are you.”

“Nope,” Alandra agreed.

“Well come on then. We’ll get breakfast and coffee going while Daddy gets his shower.”

Late Morning:

Lisa shifted through her email: Nothing too pressing. She closed the browser and popped open her scripting editor. She worked for the next three hours straight after she had gotten Alandra off to school. The website she was writing a script for was nearly done. She had written the site, incorporated the graphic elements, and was finishing up the scripting that would load the cart system for the site and control purchases. She had one small script to write yet, and a few graphics to tweak and that would be it. She reached for her coffee cup, found it was empty, and headed for the kitchen.

She had just poured the coffee when she heard the sudden roar of a chainsaw. She knew the sound. She heard it often enough in the spring and fall, but it was close. Much closer than it should be, and that rattled her. She took a deep sip from her coffee, set it down on the counter, and headed for the back door, glancing through the windows as she went: Two men she didn’t know were in her backyard.

At first it alarmed her and then she realized they must be there to trim the tree. She levered open the rear door and popped her head out anyway. They both looked over and nodded.

The bigger one held the chainsaw in his hand. A bigger saw than the models she had seen used for yard work. Somewhere, probably in the garage, they had one of the small ones tucked away for just-in-case themselves.

She smiled. “Here to trim the branch?” It made her blush. She felt a little foolish asking, but the saw was huge. Maybe they were at the wrong house… Wrong job… Something.

“The tree, miss,” the smaller man answered over the roar of the chainsaw.

The smile left her face. The words Alandra had said the night before surfaced on their own but she couldn’t quite get them. Something like, Mister Bob was her friend… A tree… This tree, in fact, and they were going to kill him… Trying to kill him…

“The branch,” she said.

“Uh, uh,” the small one said. He pulled a notebook from his breast pocket, studied it. “Danny said… Danny said take the whole thing.”

“Well that just can’t be right,” Lisa informed him.

“Well, miss. I got it right here in black and white.” The big one was revving up the chainsaw and looking at the big tree with something like desire on his face.

“Well, see, I give Danny a good price, ’cause we’ll just cut this son-of-a-whore-tree…” He seemed to remember that he was talking to Lisa, met her eyes and blushed deep red. He turned away. He continued after a few seconds of silence.

“This ol’ tree, we’ll cut her up for firewood,” the bigger man continued. He had let the chainsaw fall to a rough, popping idle as they talked. From the kitchen came the ringing of the telephone.

“Excuse me,” Lisa said. She turned to go and then turned back just a quickly. “I’ll have to call Dan… Maybe that’s him. It’s only the limb though, not the tree.” She turned and headed for the back door.

The phone stopped ringing just before she reached it. She cursed under her breath, picked up her coffee, sipped at it, then picked up the handset, punched in Dan’s number.

The house phone was something that their friends considered an oddity and she considered a necessity. She liked it. She had a cellphone she rarely ever used. She had no real reason to. Her cell phone dislike wasn’t part of some strange phobia, it was just a habit she had never developed. She was a stay at home mom, what did she need a cellphone for, she asked her friends when the chided her about it. Secretly she hated it. More truthfully, she knew, she loathed it. It was something akin to being tracked everywhere you went. She had tried one for a year and that was how it made you feel. You didn’t have to slip it in your pocket, but you did. You didn’t have to answer it in the super market, but you did. While driving, while gardening, she had even tentatively answered it once when she had been in the bathroom.

That had been it for her. The cell phone had gone in a drawer, and the next time she had been at the big shopping center she had bought a wall phone with a built in answering machine. She had bugged Dan to get the house phone put in and things had been perfect. Calls went to the machine: If she felt like answering she did. But she didn’t rush to answer. She didn’t buy a portable phone to add to the line. She liked it the way it was.

Smooth silence greeted her on the line, then it clicked and a voice was in her ear.

“Hello? … Hello?”

“Hello?” Lisa answered.

“Miss Stevens?” A voice asked.

“Yes.”

“That’s so weird… It never rang… Just sounded as though a number was being punched in,” the voice said.

“You must have been there when I picked up to dial,” Lisa said. “Sorry.”

“No… No, it’s okay… Miss Stevens, this is Ms Edwards… Joan Edwards?” Alandra’s teacher.

“Is something wrong?” Lisa heard the panic as it jumped into her voice, but she couldn’t have stopped it if she had wanted to.

“No… No, but, well, Alandra’s upset… Very upset. I’ve honestly never seen her like this… She wants to talk to you… About Mister Bob? I know her father’s name is Daniel, and the explanation about Mister Bob is hard to understand… She”s upset of course, but whoever this Mister Bob is, she believes…”

“Someone is going to hurt him?” Lisa supplied.

“Well, yes… Her words were stronger.”

“Kill?” Lisa asked. Her words seemed forced, her heart hammered right at the back of her throat, fast, hot, her tongue was dry and hard to move.

“That was it… I know it’s unusual, but I’m here in the principle’s office…, She’s quite upset.”

“Put her on? Put her on,” Lisa told her. “Baby? Alandra?” The sound of Alandra’s sobbing came to her. “Baby, what’s wrong…? What about Mister Bob?” She was getting more than a little freaked out. Two men had come to cut down her imaginary friend the tree. But there was no way she could know that, was there?

“Mommy, they came to kill Mister Bob.” Lisa only understood it because she was listening for it. Otherwise, it was just broken sobs and syllables. In the backyard the chainsaw revved up to a high whine.

“Honey, they won’t cut down Mister Bob.”

“Kill, mommy, kill.”

“Kill… They won’t kill Mister Bob. They won’t kill Mister Bob… I promise.”

“Mommy, I want to come home, mommy. I want to. I want to see Mister Bob!” She sobbed even harder. The phone clattered and the teacher was back on the line.

“Miss Steven’s, I don’t know…”

“Ms Edwards… Ms Edwards I’m coming to pick her up. I’ll explain when I get there, but I’ll come to pick her up.”

“Well if you think…”

“I do… Thank you so much, Ms Edwards.” The phone was back on the hook before the teacher answered, and Lisa was palming the back door open. The big guy was getting ready to cut a notch into the tree. She waved her arms and yelled at the smaller guy who tapped the bigger guy on the shoulder. He seemed to hesitate, then he turned to face Lisa. She motioned impatiently at the saw: Reluctantly he shut it off.

“Did I say you’re not cutting down my goddamn tree?”

“Miss… The mister said…”

“I don’t care what the mister said. The tree stays.”

“Miss,” the big one soothed. “It’ll be quick. I’m insured if that’s what you’re worried about. Let me take this ‘ol bitch down and get it over.”

“It’s a he,” Lisa said.

“What?”

“A… Never mind. You’re not cutting down my tree… Are you really standing here on my property arguing with me about my own goddamn tree?” She took a few steps toward him and he stepped back, flinching as he did, despite the fact that he was easily twice her size.

“Miss,” he started, but the smaller one patted him on the arm. He turned, paused, and finally seemed to realize he would not be cutting down the tree after all. “We’ll be going,” he said after a long period of silence.

Lisa didn’t wait. She walked back into the house and was backing her Honda out of the driveway before the two men had finished loading up their truck.

Late Evening:

Lisa popped her head into Alandra’s room, but she was fast asleep. Dan looked over the top of her head.

“Okay?” He asked.

Lisa nodded, closed the door a little farther and then followed Dan down the darkened hallway to their own room.

“A talking tree,” Dan said, not quite laughing as he changed for bed.

“She believed it… Believes it… I can’t cut down her tree.”

Dan shrugged. “Willy and Timmy were pissed off.”

“So was I.” Lisa said.

“I heard.” He held up his hands. “Not that you didn’t have a right to be… I should have told you. I made a deal to just take down the tree. I figured I’d just end up trimming the thing for years… It’s a bad place… But, if it stays, it stays.”

“I didn’t say the tree talked to me,” Lisa said.

“I know,” Dan agreed.

“I feel a little defensive.”

“Don’t.”

“Don’t?”

“Don’t… It’s over.”

“Would you have done the same thing?”

“Are you kidding? Nandie crying on the phone? I would have run them both out of the yard.” He sighed.

Lisa smiled. “Okay, that made me feel better.” She reached for the light, casting the bedroom in half light from the glow of the red numerals on the clock. Dan noticed but said nothing.

“I didn’t like the other clock,” Lisa said.

He pulled her close. “Okay,” he agreed. “Red’s good.”

“Baby,” Lisa pulled back and looked up into his eyes. “Do you think, well, do you think trees can …”

“Talk,” Dan supplied.

“No, I was going to say feel pain… Weird, right?”

“Well, they’re alive, aren’t they? But pain? I don’t know… Are you serious?”

“Well, Alandra was so upset… So hurt and…”

“It was a bad dream. You know how a dream can seem at that age. Like everything… Real. Completely real to a kid.”

“You think?”

“I think,” Dan soothed. He pulled her closer.

Lisa snuggled her head into his chest, meaning only to close her eyes for a few moments, but she drifted off into sleep instead.

Late Night:

“Sissy…” Softly on the wind…

Alandra’s eyes opened in the darkness of her bedroom.

“Mister Bob,” she whispered. She sat up and looked to the window, got out of bed and walked over quietly raising the window a little. She sat down on the floor and looked up at the branches that were only a few feet outside the window. The blue-gray moon floated above the limbs far above the tree. The name came again on the wind. Softly… Barely there.

“Sissy…”

She smiled. “Mister Bob,” she whispered once more…

________________________

Check out the full collection of stories in Mister Bob with free previews

Here if you are from the UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B017YKQX6I

or here for the US: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B017YKQX6I

 

Don’t forget to get your free copy of Earth’s Survivors: Apocalypse:

UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00YDAXFLE

US: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00YDAXFLE

Have a great week, Geo.


Hockey – Skiing – The cold

 

 

01-13-2017 Geo

Happy Friday!

Yes, you really did make it, now all you have to do is get through the day, throw yourself in the car, make it home and kick back. It is officially weekend territory once the work day is over…

Hey, I’m just proud of myself, I have not yet typed 2016 instead of 2017. Of course I just jinxed it right there.

What is on the agenda today? I will, I hope, be writing most of the day away. I worked on this website a little yesterday, and I did get some writing done in the new novel. It is coming along fine.

The weather here is cold. Yes, sub zero four days ago to rain, sleet, more rain, snow last night and now the needle is plummeting again. These are the sort of weeks I ask myself why I stay in New York.

The Skiing? Not a skier. I ask myself; why would I go out into the cold, ski down a mountain at uncontrollable speeds, possibly break my neck, leg and other stuff? Is there free alcohol if you make it one piece? No. Will there be prize ladies like in NASCAR handing you an award and taking pictures with you? No again. Will it help your self esteem? No and no, because nothing messes with self esteem quite as much as crashing into a tree and then having to have a ski pole surgically removed from someplace in or on your body, and that would happen to me.

The Snowmobiling? Are you kidding? See above, except with a motor. And, besides, since I heard the first horror story about a fence wire and a snowmobile that was it for me. And, as an addition, what if you drove your snowmobile out into the middle of nowhere and then ran out of gas. And there is just you and this blonde college girl who suddenly showed up out of no place… And an old farm house with a rickety porch. You cautiously approach the house, but as you pass the barn you see a collection of scythes hanging just inside the door. Curious you step closer and that is when you see the corpses hanging from the roof rafters! You scream, the college girl who just showed up screams too! You both run for the snowmobiles, but then you remember they are out of gas… Need I say anymore? So, no, no snowmobiling in  my lifetime…

Ice Fishing? My God… Let me get this straight, and I can because I have lived here all of my life… Going out on the ice, chopping or drilling a hole in it. Maybe setting up a shed over the top, maybe not. Setting up the tip-outs to fish and then freezing while you wait for a fish. Meanwhile the fish are in a different part of the lake drinking hot cocoa and laughing about you trying to catch them. Or they are down in Florida for the winter and not even home!

Hockey? No. The last time I hit someone with a stick I nearly went to jail, nobody is hitting me with a stick either or they’re going to the hospital. No hockey for me. Yes, this is an area that produces hockey players. Sort of like the Midwest produces corn. I remember one of my first dates. Beautiful girl, I think it was fourth grade, and then she smiled. I don’t know, all those missing teeth just put me off dating girl hockey players. And here everybody plays. Girls, boys, the family dog, aunt Bev, everybody.

So here are all these winter sports I don’t participate in and it got me wondering, why are there so many winter sports here? Well, stupid, I often call myself stupid when I am answering a stupid question I have asked myself, it is because there is so much nasty, cold, snow type weather here! That’s why! Idiot. And I ponder that and come to understand the truth in those words. Uh, not the idiot part, the snow part. So maybe, I think, it is time to move south again. After all, birds fly south for the winter am I so much better than my feathered cousins the ex-dinosaurs? No, just dumber apparently.

And, follow me here, the Birds learned the hard way. Look what happened when they didn’t migrate the first time! Two stories high, with little arms and claws. Tails the size of a city bus. I’d pay to see Colonel Sanders deep fry one of those suckers. But my point is they were huge! Ruled the Earth! And what happened when the didn’t migrate? The were nearly wiped out. Yes, all true. Then they had to make a comeback as birds, chickens, robins, etc. A horrible way to live. So, migrate. See, I taught you something that you didn’t even know about the extinction of the dinosaurs that may or may not be true, but I prefer o think it is. But you know what? I’m not a migratory kind of guy. I think I’m a stay here and complain about it sort of guy.

Okay, so it is really Friday. I hope your week went fine. I am going to get back to that book and I’ll let you get back to work. I hope I helped to illuminate the wholly inadequate explanation of the Dinosaur extinction and why it happened all those years ago.

Hey, take a look at my some of Dell’s books on Smashwords! I Tunes or Kobo! All offer free books to get your Friday and the whole weekend rolling in the right direction! See you Monday, Geo…


Learning the ropes

Posted by Geo 11:50 AM 01/11/2017

What I am up to…

I am working on a new book today, enjoying the process. It is a beautiful day in the city today. The cold is gone, tomorrow’s temperatures are predicted to be record setting.

Misspent youth: How I got beat up the first few times – And Old School Mothers…

When I was a kid there was no Internet, phones were barely more than curiosities that not everyone could afford, and Jesus was only in the second grade. Uh, before God zaps me let me explain that, that would be Jesus Santos whose parents had moved to Galveston where I went to school at Island Elementary, not the savior that died on the cross.

But, that brings up a point, why name the kid that? Wouldn’t you be a little concerned that some smart Alec like me would come along and say. “Hey, are you that Jesus?” and “So, where are your disciples?”

Anyway, after Jesus punched me I realized that people with funny names can fight. And right after that I realized if you point that out to the person in casual conversation Jesus just might punch you again. I was not a smart child, a little brainy, but lacking common sense. What would have been great is if I could have taken Jesus through life with me to help me see those things. But no, not too long after that we moved to New York and I realized that people with funny accents tend to want to smack you when you point that out to them. And, not only that, they’ll turn it around on you and claim you have the accent because you came from Texas… I think I fought every day for the first few weeks.

But I fought. I didn’t call their cell phone and leave a nasty message. I didn’t leave a nasty note on their Facebook account, or hack it. That’s all I read about lately. That’s how it’s done. No face to face stuff. Of course, as I said we didn’t have Internet and phones were not for causal calls. I could see me picking up the phone and calling Jesus’s house…

Oh… is this little George? How is your mother?”

And that would have been the end of it right there. Small town. Maybe we had a half dozen phones, and everyone knew everyone. His mother would have recognized my voice, asked about my mother, and then what could I say? “Oh, she’s fine, and, by the way, Mrs. Santos, do you know if Jesus found his disciples yet?”

Even if I had done it I would have no more hung up the phone than Jesus’s Mom would have been on the phone to my mom. My mom would have hung up the phone and, as we used to say back then, my ass would have been grass. The shit would have hit the fan. Never mind ‘Wait until your Father gets home’ Moms were prepared to deal with you back then. They may have looked like lightweights… No tattoos or piercings, gym bodies or anything else. They were just tough no nonsense moms hanging out in the kitchen in their June Cleaver shifts baking pot roasts and meatloaf, but they were tough. Truthfully, if you asked a group of old school mothers where Jimmy Hoffa is they could probably tell you. They were that tough.

Do you know who that was?” She would ask me…

Mother Mary?” See, once you start down the road of smartassery it’s hard to stop.

Have you ever eaten soap? I have, and a conversation that made smart remarks about both Jesus and his mother would have been a soap eating offense.

But we didn’t do those things, mainly because we didn’t have the technology and secondary to that any kids mother could put a foot in your butt back then. It was a federal law. I’m pretty sure. So whatever you did it was coming back at you, so kids took care of things themselves.

The whole thing with Jesus taught me about emotion and how boys handle it. Taught me to duck a punch too. You would think it would teach me to shut up, but no. I decided that since I seemed to have a big mouth, and that teeth were made to last a lifetime, I had better learn how to fight. Somehow I decided in my head that learning how to fight would be easy. And then? Well, if I wanted to make smart remarks about Jesus and his little disciples I could. Of course the part of the equation I had missed was learning. I had to learn to fight, and learning to fight meant getting punched in the face. So, not only was I still getting punched in the face, I was volunteering to do it and I couldn’t even punch them back!

I think it was around my third time in an actual boxing match that I began to think it might be smarter to, one: Read about it first. Two: Try really hard to fall down with my face off to one side. Big noses break easy. Three: Find some other way to spend my Saturday instead of getting beat up.

After I woke up from my last fight I decided that Karate was probably smarter. I mean Kato was really cool. It looked so easy. That was great until I realized that not only would people be punching me in the face they would also be kicking me … In the faceReally hard... And anywhere else their feet could reach… Kids have bad aim. But the good thing I learned was, it is really hard to break your eye… Either one of them. And a point of fact, people with funny names can also kick box like crazy too. And a punch from a gloved hand or foot can still ring your bell. So if, let’s say the guys name was Frances, and he hated the name Frances, it might not be too smart to say things like ‘Frances Is A Sissy’ (Francis of Assisi) damn Catholic school knowledge. Or do you know what Nun means? None for you and None for me! Ha, ha, ha, ouch! My mouth is broken.

After a while I learned to fight. Either that or all the kids with funny names or in Catholic school would have just continued to beat me up all through school and I couldn’t have that. And I learned to fight when I realized I had a funny name too. Huh. You know I think kids can turn any name into a funny name. Gladys becomes Glad Ass, obviously if your last name is Kuntz you’re in for it. A kid in my class had that name. And a kid named Beeman… “Hey! Where’s your Bees Man?” Oh… We were so clever.

So, I grew up and got a job as a writer. Now when I don’t like someone I just kill them off in a plot and then throw a disclaimer in the front of the book saying it wasn’t them. Piece of cake. And if I want to pick on someones name I let the characters do it for me. And I never allow any of the characters to pick on my name. After all, they’re my characters.

Okay. I have to go. That whole Jimmy Hoffa thing has me curious. I have to go ask Mom about it!

Hey, get the Zombie Plagues free at Smashwords, Nook, I-Tunes, Diesel, etc… Here’s the Smashwords link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/byseries/5280

Have a safe week, see you Friday, Geo…


WordPress

Posted by Dell 01-06-2017

I’m in for Geo today who is digging out from under even more snow than I am…

Wow. I woke up this morning to about three feet of snow. The pictures above are the same place just two mornings apart. The one on the left is Wednesday morning the one on the right is this Friday morning. The rains of Wednesday turned to cold rains by late Wednesday, freezing rain just before evening, and a blizzard shortly after nightfall. Then the lake effect machine fired up and the rest is history. Thursday we were pounded with snow. We have about 3 feet on the level but there are places around us that got double that easily. Many places are still under fire this morning in northern New York. A little south and the the snow is still coming down measured in feet. So drive careful if you have to drive.

I spent the last two days in the world of Petra and Mike on Star Dancer. The story is coming together. I like it and I am looking forward to the writing schedule. There is no actual schedule, I just write as I feel it.

The new WordPress site:

I have noticed that there is much to like with this WordPress site and also a little to dislike. The likes are all because of the platform. It is well written. The CSS implementation is done well, the themes work well. Probably because they have also been written well and tested well. Good plug-ins, really you can browse through the available plugins and find just about anything you can imagine.

The dashboard works well. Not too cluttered, a lot of thought seems to have gone into it. Since I had used Concrete for so many years I thought the switch would be really bad. In fact I was willing to go back to the last open version of Concrete rather than make the switch. Stupid really, but you might understand how you can get caught in that I Don’t Want to Change place.

Anyway, glad I did. WordPress is far superior to Concrete. The dashboard is easier to use. The plugins and themes are a breeze to implement. Even starting with a stock theme you can use widgets and add-ons to change it completely. And many of those plug-in and themes are free. Free and quality, because let’s face it, free isn’t much good if it is garbage. Venture outside of free plug-ins and themes, widgets, and you’ll find top shelf add-ons that are most definitely worth the money. Not out there on a limb, no busting the budget, just reasonably priced, and believe me, just look, you will probably find what you want for a layout all ready for you in a theme you can download and have working in no time.

I found the PHP implementation easy to handle too. In fact I did the  one click install at One.com and it did it for me. No problem. I was used to doing the databases myself for Concrete and having to sort out any conflicts. Not so with One.com my ISP, one click and the entire package installs. A few short set up questions you need to answer and you are done. Ready to start building your website.

From there I opened up the page for themes, chose the one I wanted to build on: Added a few of my own graphics and I was done with the basic site. After that I tweaked a few things, but really not much. I did decide that I wanted to add buttons for Social Media to each new post or page. There was a plug-in for that, it installed with a few clicks, a short couple of parameters to set and it was working. I needed to be able to display banners and I wanted them to be able to be random. I easily found a plug-in for that, set it up, added my banner links and that was that.

In all I spent just a few hours setting up my WordPress site and I am happy with it. As I said, the software is great. What I did find was that the spammers are not so great.

It took only a few days before they began inundating me with garbage. At first just a few a day. They do this in the form of responses or comments to your posts. They post some bogus comment that includes a link to whatever they are pushing. If you approve it, there goes your traffic. The link poses as an innocent topic related link, but grabs your visitor and takes them off site to ads and click throughs many for things that have nothing to do with the topic of your website. Porn, sneakers, you name it. Anyplace they can get someone to pay them for a click.

Off course your visitor has to click it, but they are usually attractive and designed so that they will. This was discouraging to me. One night I had well over 200 posts or responses that I had to wade through. That is what they count on, that you will not check all of those posts and so approve them in bulk. If you do they have stolen a good portion of your traffic. You may as well just have them send the posts to you and you post them for them.

What to do?

First. Mark every email that does this to you as SPAM and block that email address. Second I set up a few links of my own and so now when someone sends a bogus comment or post I simply replace their link they are trying to push with my own. Believe me. They are about stealing traffic and making money: Block them enough and they will will grow tired of opening new email accounts just to spam you. Put your own link into that carefully worded link they spammed you with and you have taken that traffic they were trying to steal from you back. They won’t want to do that for you too often.

In short I decided that dealing with spammers is part of the gig. If you do this you will have to. I found that after just a week or so the spammers began to let me alone. Yes they still do try, a few a day, but nothing like the crazy amounts I got the first few weeks and months until I figured out what to do.

So I hope you got something out of this post. It is possible to build an attractive site very easily. One that is mobile friendly, browser compatible and that you can enjoy working with.

You can go through your own web host or ISP like I did with One.com and use the one click app to install a working WordPress site. Or you can host directly with WordPress or even download a version of WordPress and install it with another ISP or Host. There are many ways to get the job done, I chose the easiest.

Mentioned in this article: WordPress.org  One.com web hosting

That is me for today. I hope the weather is good where you are. It’s Friday and that means Free eBooks. Thanks to my publisher Smashwords.

Free eBooks all formats, instant downloads, actually free, no gimmicks. 

That is it for me. I will see you on Monday, Dell.



2016.999

12-30-2016

Well, it’s almost over for this year, time to start thinking seriously about 2017 and what it might bring you. Here is something it will bring you, free eBooks: https://www.smashwords.com/books/byseries/25786 You can download those books in any format you might need for your Nook reader, Kindle or anything else you have. And they really are free, no strings attached. I don’t give that web address a lot of publicity so please pass it on to people you think might like it. Horror, crime, SciFi, there is a little of everything there.

That is my view out the office window. The huge storm that was predicted didn’t get us too badly here. Maybe six inches. Not bad considering they were talking a foot to a foot and a half. This time of the year it is good to see the predictions off in a good direction.

Sad to read yesterday that after Losing Carrie Fisher he Mother Debbie Reynolds also passed. Sometimes I look at the world and I realize that every day it is becoming less and less the world I know. Less the world i grew up in, and I am almost always shocked when an icon passes, as though I really did believe that mortality would somehow pass them by, that they really were as magical as I believed them to be.

I am working on writing today. I know Dell posted the 5th installment of Earth’s Survivors today: http://dellsweet.com/2016/12/30/earths-survivors-five/ so drop by there and read it. I would also point out that now that most of the content from the old blogs is now here the regular posts will be Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. There are probably a few more articles that were missed. The old blog http://blog.sotofo.com/#home will remain a few more months until the traffic drops and then we will close it down.

I will leave you with an excerpt from Dreamers…

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DREAMERS

Dreamers is Copyright © 2015 Dell Sweet & Geo Dell

Copyright © 2010 – 2015 by Dell Sweet & Geo Dell All rights reserved

Artwork © Copyright 2014 Wendell Sweet

This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your bookseller and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

LEGAL

This is a work of fiction. Any names, characters, places or incidents depicted are products of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual living persons places, situations or events is purely coincidental.

This novel is Copyright © 2010 – 2015 Wendell Sweet. No part of this book may be reproduced by any means, electronic, print, scanner or any other means and, or distributed without the author’s permission.

Permission is granted to use short sections of text in reviews or critiques in standard or electronic print.

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In The Sunlight:

The Book Of Memories;

Laura

I started from the first page of the book of memories. It was not a long book. Not a new book. The leather covers were old, mellow, but it had been taken care of. The pages were yellowed, slightly stiff, but they were not falling apart. A slim book, but I felt that what words it did contain most likely more than made up for the size. I began to read from the first page…

… In the beginning there was only the Creator. There was no Earth Mother. No Grandfather Sun to shine. No Grandmother Moon to light our way in the night. No Animals. No Thunders. No Directions. No legends to tell, because there were no peoples.

The Creator lived with the Star People in the heavens. But The Star People were not talkers, and so the Creator became lonely and wished for someone he could talk with.

One day as he walked among the Star People, he decided that he would create a world where he could go and talk to his creations.

Now all the things that ever were, or ever could be, lived within the Creators words. Within himself. So even though he had never walked on a world of the kind that he had in mind, he knew exactly what he wanted and what it should look like.

As he walked among the Star People thinking it out, he realized he did not want just another world full of rocks and trees, mountains and plains. The stars were full of worlds just like that. Those were worlds that were alive, but they were not the kind of life that the Creator was. What the Creator wanted was companionship. Someone he could visit with. Talk with. Someone like himself.

Now a tree or a rock could be visited, talked to, but what he had in mind was something that would answer back. At that time trees and rocks were not much on talking. There came a time within the legends when the trees and the rocks, when many things we do not think of as talkers, did talk. But that was not at this time.

Many cycles passed by as the Creator decided on what he wanted to do and how he should do it. What it would look like: Where it would live. And what the Creator would talk about with this new creation.

Finally, the day came when the Creator decided to create. He chose the earth as the place to create. At that time the Earth was a small, dead world with no Sun. No Moon.

He formed the Sun from the Star People around him and he set it into the void. He formed Grandmother Moon from a small part of the Earth and set her on her path. They had no life of their own at that time though, they simply reflected the life of the Creator.

The Creator then began to speak the words of life as he stepped from the stars onto the Earth, coming to stand in a summer tall field of wheat.

Next he made the directions and named them. The winds; and he gave individual names to each wind. But there was nothing yet to move the winds. No reason yet to the directions. No purpose yet to the greenery, for the wheat, for the rocks. For the Creator had not yet made purpose.

The Creator then bent and placed his hands upon the Earth and spoke her into life, calling her Mother. The Mother of all that could be.

As he stood from the ground he began to create purpose and assign it to his creations: The winds to move the air. Mother Earth’s breaths to move the winds. The directions so that the winds could find their way over the Earth Mother as they moved.

Mother Earth took her first breath and the tops of the Wheat began to sway as the winds picked up her life giving breath and began to carry it to all the corners of the Earth.

The Creator and Mother Earth spent the next several cycles talking. The Creator was pleased with his creation.

Now the Creator enjoyed Mother Earth’s company, but he also had many friends and favorite places among the Star People. Sometimes he would go for long walks among the Star People. Every time he left Mother Earth would become lonely and long for his companionship.

One day when the Creator returned from a walk among the Star People, Mother Earth spoke about her loneliness. The Creator understood her loneliness. It was the same loneliness that the creator himself had suffered through. So The Creator reached deep inside of himself. Taking a part of himself, the Creator mixed this with the words that lived within him, the words of Power and Life. He sowed this seed into the soil that covers Mother Earth.

“These seeds are the words of life become whole. They are of me,” the Creator told her. “Part of your Creator. They will speak themselves into being in the fullness of time and you will never be lonely again.”

The Creator lifted his hands and spoke Grandfather Sun and Grandmother Moon into life, causing the Creators own breath to fall upon them; and so they began to move on their own paths of purpose. “They will be for Times and for Seasons,” he said.

Now several cycles passed and the seed that the Creator had planted within the Earth Mother began to grow. The day came when Grandmother moon came down to hold Mother Earth’s hand and comfort her during her birthing of life.

Grandfather Sun spilled his light upon them and spoke quietly with the creator as the Earth Mother cried out in her birthing pains.

The peoples came first. Red, Yellow, Black, White, the Brown man, and all the shades in between. The birth waters gushed forth from her as Mother Earth’s womb opened and all the peoples were born.

The birth waters became oceans, lakes, rivers and streams.

The Clan Totems and Animal Totems came next. Their place was not on the Earth. Their place was among the Star People where they would live with the Creator. But they bought the Earth animals before them and instructed them on what they were to be for, before they themselves ascended into the Heavens.

Mother Earth’s sacred birth waters bought life to all that they touched. The fish swam in them. Brother Eagle came from the waters and ascended to the sky. Brother Wolf walked from the birth waters and made his home in the forests and the mountains with brother black Bear. Each animal found its place and knew its purpose.

Now the people had no spirits living among the stars. They had no ancestors to guide them. They did not come to fully know the Creator or the Mother Earth. They had no leaders. Knew nothing of totems. Spirits. Brotherhood. And they did not seek to learn because there was no one they would listen to that would tell them.

Now after a time the people began to divide themselves according to their colors. Leaders arose, but leaders who ignored the purpose within their souls, so they began to provoke wars among each other. With the other peoples. This was their nature.

Mother Earth became sadder and sadder as the peoples continued to war and fight. Many died, sending more and more of our kind into the spirit worlds, but they were proud. They didn’t understand life or purpose and they would not lift their arms or their voices to the Creator or the Earth Mother to ask for help. In fact as time passed they did not speak to Mother Earth or the Creator at all. They withdrew and became laws and Gods unto themselves.

One day a little boy was born to a great war chief. The chief held him in his arms at the naming and called him ‘He who speaks with those unseen.’ He did this because even with his first words he began to speak to the ancestors and those who had passed into the spirit worlds and now lived among the Star Peoples.

As the boy grew he spoke of the things that the ancestors told him with his people: He told them everything that the ancestors talked to him about.

He warned them about war. Spoke to them about peace and how all people, every one, were made for a purpose, to live a purpose. How part of that purpose was to live together. Even so the way of death and war continued.

But his own peoples believed and they began to worship the Creator. Speak to the Earth Mother. Sending praises up to the Creator and asking Mother Earth for guidance. In return The Creator and Mother Earth taught them about purpose, life, and to respect all living things on the Earth.

As the creator listened to his peoples, he realized that many of them wished to live in peace, even though some of them desired to make war and follow the way of death. With Mother Earth’s help he made places for all of them to have their own territories; and he separated them with oceans and deep lakes to keep them apart.

“We will have to hope that they have learned to live in peace by the time they learn to cross the great waters,” the Creator told the Earth Mother.

Time moved on. ‘He who speaks with those unseen’ grew up to become the leader of his people. They prayed to the Creator and kept his ways. They held Mother Earth in great regard, respected her ways, and the people grew and prospered. There were no wars, no famines, no sickness in his people.

‘He who speaks with those unseen’, finished his time and went to be with the spirit people among the stars. As the generations passed, however, the peoples again forgot the ways of the Mother Earth and the Creator. They learned to cross the great waters. They learned to hate again: To make war again. And Mother Earth called to the Creator to separate them once more, but he refused to do it.

“They will only come to kill each other once again. To Enslave. To make war. They must learn to make their own peace. Learn their lessons as a law. Come back to us as they should: As they once were. They will have to learn what peace means. Respect, until then we can do nothing with them.”

Mother Earth knew that the Creator was right. Even so with his words she wept. Her tears became the rain that we know. Lifted into the air and carried by the cloud people, to bring her gift of life from the heavens to all peoples through her tears.

It is said that they will continue to come as Mother Earth weeps for all the peoples. And they will be a sign for all peoples to remember that war and killing is not the way.

They will be a sign to us that Mother Earth will continue to bring life from death, the peoples cause. Sending her tears to us in hopes that they may heal us. And to show us that her love will always be with us.

I held the place in the book as I closed my eyes and sent a small prayer to the Creator for allowing me to read those words.

Across from me Bear slept. His paws twitching. The fire crackled companionably. I opened the book and began to read once more…

~
Enjoy your weekend! If you would like to read more of Dreamers, check out the links below…

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/617155

NOOK: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dreamers-dell-sweet/1123470056

I Tunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/dreamers/id1087476401?mt=11

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/dreamers-18


Fat men like me

Posted by Geo 12-22-2016

Okay, today I wanted to talk about a very sensitive subject, fat. Being a fat guy myself I completely understand the problems that fat men face. So today I have some tips that I hope will help you as much as they have helped me. As usual I would like to handle what I have to say with sensitivity and empathy but we all know I probably wont. Just please don’t write and tell me I am mean to fat people, I am one, so the rule I am one so I can say what ever the hell I want to is in effect.

First thing: The biggest problem we have is eating those extra things that we just shouldn’t eat. Passing by the toaster before bed when it is whispering things like “Real Butter” or “You can make toasted cheese like sandwiches in the toaster! No, Really. Toast the bread, throw the cheese on it and then nuke it in the microwave.” or even “The wife hid the doughnuts behind the coffee maker!” Or maybe opening the refrigerator door to get that diet coke you waited all day for and seeing that there is a half of pizza left over from the pool party the kids had. And you can smell the sausage… The pepperoni… And it is so hard to resist it. Well, there are alternatives. My first alternative I like to call To Hell With It.

To Hell With It is a novel approach to dieting. It assumes that no matter what you do you will get fat anyway so why not just say To Hell With it? I mean, after all, did you really think that cute chick that you see every morning at the Stop and Gas really digs you? Or would if you could lose three hundred pounds? No. Stop fooling yourself. She is probably barely holding on to that job as she spends her nights being a crack whore. Barely getting those cravings into check in time to make it to the store so she can sell your fat ass a box of doughnuts every morning. No. Give up the dream. She will never notice you and if she did, it would probably be one of those drying out stages where she realizes she hasn’t eaten in the last three weeks and starts to wonder if maybe you might not taste good with a little salt and a pinch of garlic powder.

So now that you have set your sites a little lower, lets adjust our attitude and learn to live with the fat instead of fighting it all of the time. There are tons of very good looking women that are, shall we say, not skinny? Yes. We’ll say that, because I don’t see where it would benefit us to have a bunch of fat women writing to us to complain about our insensitivity to their situation, when actually we are very sensitive to it. So open your eyes, unless the lids are too fat, then you can use tape to keep them up. In any case, get them open and look around you. The world is full of opportunities for you just the way they are.

The second option is to actually buckle under and diet. I don’t like this option at all. This option leaves no other options and I find that completely unreasonable. I mean, how can there be no options? This isn’t Russia, is it? I’m not a man living in the mountains who has just come of age and was promised at birth to my cousin Edwina, am I? No. So there must be options. And choosing between a sensible salad and a carrot stick … WHOO WHO! … Is not an option. Choosing between a lettuce sandwich and a Quarter Pound burger, now that’s an option. So really the option part comes before this, diet or no diet and we have already made that decision so to hell with spending time on this.

So no diet it is and full steam ahead with no diet. After all fat is stored energy, that’s all it is. Do skinny people make good lovers? We’ll never know because they run out of energy too fast. No stores! And if the zombie Apocalypse happens tomorrow? Skinny folks are screwed. They will already be half starved, low on energy, meanwhile us fat guys will be like, … “Hey, get the hell out of my way! It’s dinner time you $%%## A$%%$# What the $$%$## did you think you were doing trying to %$%$## eat me? … Zombies or skinny people we’ll just knock them all right out of the way. And truthfully, in the end? I think the zombies will be screwed too. When a fat man gets hungry he’s hungry. If it’s between me and a zombie I’m winning. Simple as that. I will learn how to make me some Zombie Burgers with fries. So we live with our fatness and we adapt.

Say you went out on a date with a skinny woman and she doesn’t want you the way you are? Her loss. Leaves all that much more for you to eat. Really. Order a second desert. Laugh loud at the movie. Eat all the popcorn. Who cares. Make jokes though to put her at ease. A good one I like to use is, “You know if ass sold by the pound you’d be broke!” This will make her feel more at ease with her skinniness. She will realize that you see her for just what she is. Not a piece of meat. Not an object. Just a woman that does not belong in your world. And don’t be a dick. Offer to pay for both of you. After all how much could she have eaten?

Another problem is clothing. For the fat man it isn’t all that easy to get dressed in the morning. Well you’ll be glad to know I have solved that problem too. You actually have a few options. My option of first choice is the sweat pant option. Sweatpants are great. Stretchy band. Hey they’re sweat pants so it does count toward a workout. And unlike the old days, manufacturers are aware that we wear these for everyday clothes so they come in all sorts of styles now. Striped, piping down the legs. Matching tops, Hell even matching footwear! You can look damn smart in these clothes, attend a local luncheon, shop at your local Walmart. What else do you need to do? And best of all, they are like an expensive hotel, big ball room.

But for those days where you do need a second option, I would like to recommend the stretchy jean. These are great. They look like jeans but they will stretch right across that XXX ass like they were painted on. No really. I’ve seen them. They do look painted on.

And for those of you who are a little less adventurous? Coveralls. These things are great too. Just throw on a T-Shirt and a pair of boxers and then slip inside the coverall. They come in all sizes, so fit is not a problem. Feeling a little wild? Go commando! Who’ll know? Tug that zipper up and your finished. Set for the day. They have plenty of pockets. They give you the appearance of actually working, so no more heckling from your girlfriends parents … “Get a job you fat bastard!” And they come in a array of stylish fashions and fabric finishes. What I like about them is that they make a great throw cover for the couch to keep that pesky cat hair off it when I’m not wearing them..

Solving Common Problems: Bending over to tie your shoes in the morning.

Now this is a tough deal. The problem is that you have become so fat that you can not bend over to tie your shoes without either crapping your pants or running out of breath and passing out. The problem is that there is simply too much fat crammed into a very small space, IE: your rib cage and your lap. So when you try to bend over that fat just crushes up against your lungs and you can’t breath. Or it presses right down on your lower intestines and, well, we know the deal there don’t we.

Fortunately there is a solution for this that works every time without crapping your pants or passing out from loss of air and tumbling forward onto the floor where you are at the mercy of your pets, who could think that this is the end and eat you. Sure, laugh, but many fat people have been eaten by their trusted pets once they became incapacitated.

Okay. This is a three part exercise designed to help you with this problem. I myself practice this method every morning and have had excellent results both with tying my shoes (Or slipping the shoe on if you have given up on laces as most of us have. For this demonstration we will use the lace method of putting on the shoes.)

Okay, first, firmly grasp your left thigh and push it over to the left, and then repeat this same exercise on the right side. What you should have now is your belly, unsupported by your lap, swinging free and threatening to crush your man parts. No worries. Arch your back and lean back as far as you can on your comfortable couch. This should allow you to reach the waist band of your trousers. Firmly grasp the button or clasp and wrench it free. This may be difficult to do as it may have retreated into the flab of your belly, but a bit of searching should turn it up. Now be aware that as you release this dam of flesh there may be some rolling and excessive movement. You will have to ride that out. When it has ceased movement you will find that you now have a much greater range of forward movement, and you should be able to easily bend and tie your shoes with no further problems.

Caution: Upon completion do not attempt to refasten your trousers while in the sitting position. Now that you have tied your shoes, simply stand and then safely re-clasp the button or clasp on your trouser tops. At this time if you have a belt that you have removed, it would be safe to once again attach it. Always check to make sure you have not damaged your man parts at this time, and of course be careful that there are no small pets or children around that could be injured by the length of the belt swinging freely as you reinsert it through the loops of your trousers.

Hailing a Cab: Cab companies have phone numbers. They have them for a reason so that you can call them and ask them to come and get you wherever you are at. This is great, because if you try hailing a cab the driver will pretend he or she didn’t see you, like that’s possible. And you will not be able to chase them because you are lucky you got up, got your trousers on and out to the street and still had breath left. You will never catch that cab and that cab driver will go have lunch with his friend and laugh about how the fat guy couldn’t catch him or her. Bastards! So call. This way there I not a damn thing the cab driver can do. When they ask for their tip? Tell them to get an AllState agent.

Okay. I hope that I have helped some of my fellow fat men in the world. I would just add that women are attracted to fat men. No really. I’m a writer, it’s my job to know these things. So don’t worry about whether women find you attractive or if it is only your dog/cat/hamster. I mean, does a dog hump the leg of someone they don’t like? No.

Okay. That is me for today. Check out the Earth’s Survivors SE 1 eBook, now available for I Tunes. I hope you are all doing well. I will be back soon…

Earth’s Survivors SE 1

Dell Sweet

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

Earth’s Survivors SE 1 contains the complete text from the first two Earth’s Survivors books, Apocalypse and Rising From The Ashes. It also includes bonus material, a complete major character bibliography, plus information from the series and the future plans for the series. Save when you buy both books at once and get more of what you want…
The Series follows survivors of a worldwide catastrophe. A meteorite that was supposed to miss the earth completely, hits and becomes the cap to a series of events that destroy the world as we know it. Police, fire, politicians, military, governments: All gone. Hopes, dreams, tomorrows: All buried in desperate struggle to survive. From L.A. To Manhattan the cities, governments have toppled and lawlessness is the rule.
The dead lay in the streets while gangs fight for control of what is left. Small groups band together for safety and begin to leave the ravaged cities behind in search of a future that can once again hold promise.
Los Angeles: Billy and Beth start out with a small group and wind up on their own as they make their way across America trying to find others and safety.
Manhattan: Adam leaves the safety of his apartment to find his way out the dying Manhattan, gathering others as he makes his way.
Old Towne New York: Conner is alone for the first few weeks, but then he finds Katie and a reason to live again. They set out to survive and find much more than survival.
Watertown New York: Mike Collins goes to sleep thinking about his first vacation in many years that he will start in the morning. He awakens to destruction.
The Earth’s Survivors series of books follow the people that survive and set out to rebuild their lives. At first hoping only to make it day by day, but ultimately looking to the future and rebuilding a society where fear does not rule…

…More

Have a great week and I’ll be back next weekend…