Tag Archives: humor

What Came First, The Flying Saucer or The Cup?

Having written Science Fiction for many years, I have found there is an overabundance of material to use in constructing stories.  This material shows itself everywhere from your ice cube trays to that odd looking insect you’ve only seen once in your backyard.

By the way, did you know that last Friday just happened to be Area 51 Day? You know, Area 51, the secret Air Force base that didn’t exist until 2013?

I understand they’re planning a, “Storm 51 Day.” Millions answered, but only around 1500 showed up for the internet hoax. Which is probably a good thing, for what do you get when a million people storm Area 51?

My best guess would be a million dead people.

Area 51 ranks right up there with Roswell, which is a city in New Mexico where two alien bodies were recovered and autopsied after a thunderstorm caused their space craft to crash in July 1947.

So you see, there is never a lack of visible material to use to build your stories or a number of anythings you can use to construct your own, yet outlandish, science fiction epic.

Oh, and never forget, the world is yours, from that super nova to that dripping pipe under your bathroom faucet!

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A Bite When it’s Tight or a Bite When There’s Height . . No Matter However, A Bite is a Bite

Everyone’s afraid of something. There is at least one thing and probably more in each one of our lives that give us the heebie-jeebies. Arachnophobia (fear of spiders) and Ophidiophobia (fear of snakes) are probably the most frequently used examples of fear regarding creepy crawlies. It’s easy to imagine being afraid of these monsters, often appearing as the harbinger of doom in old sci-fi movies. Even now, they star as the main event because of the severe damage or even death brought about by the creature’s toxins, not to mention, the enormous amount of fodder to fuel sci-fi and fantasy novels. Just the appearance of the mottled serpent or the fur-like surface covering the hand-sized, eight-legged menace can unnerve the heart of the most stoic individuals.

Case in point: As a young man on the water in a john boat fishing, myself and two friends tied up to a small tree. This tree was probably twenty feet from the bank of a hundred foot wide river. (What I have failed to mention is one of the men was fairly good sized and terrified of snakes.) As the day progressed, much to my pleasure our catch increased. I happened to glance to my left and noticed a copperhead in the branches directly over where we sat in the boat happily casting away. Now a poisonous snake is not something I would invite into my bed; however, I was more afraid of my friend trying to get out of the boat than I was a couple glands full of venom emptying themselves into my leg. Thankfully, I was able to divert his attention and remove this snake with an oar.

Fortunately, spiders and snakes do not bother me in general. I’ll hold a tarantula, smash a wolf spider with my hand and in past years, catch non-poisonous snakes, allowing my young son to touch them and avoid fearing the scaly serpents when he became older.

I suppose the most common phobias (of which I too succumb) are claustrophobia (the fear of closed in spaces) and acrophobia (the fear of heights).

Other than hitting the ground at an abnormal rate of speed, air travel, including the heights, doesn’t bother me. On the other hand, standing on more than a half dozen stories of scaffolding on the outside of a building could push my fingerprints forever into the metal uprights of the scaffolding bucks.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, have you ever had an MRI?

Well, allow me to briefly tell you about the occurance. Imagine being pushed into a metal cylinder with your shoulders touching each side to fulfill the claustrophobic part of this event. Then, three men commence to wailing the cylinder with sledge hammers for the next forty-five minutes. Congratulations, you have experienced your first MRI.

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For Something That is Supposed to be Dead, It Looks Alive and Well to Me

I realized that Latin is no longer spoken. In fact, I’ve heard it referred to as a dead language. If this principle is held true throughout the world (and I believe it is), why is the root word in the majority of our vocabulary contrived in a dead language?

I’d like to take this a bit deeper. Let’s begin with Plato, student of Socrates and known as one of the great philosophers. When I think of someone who has devoted their life to philosophy, I think of that someone who is so ingrained in the process of thinking they would rather argue a point than prove it with evidence . . . nuff said.

I realize this is a bit out of order, but now a short blurb for Socrates. He was also a great philosopher but a thinker nonetheless and a pretty smart guy. The big difference between me and Socrates is that the grey matter in my cranium may not be as stimulating; however, the information in my sci-fi/fantasy world is recorded, something that Socrates failed to do . . . nuff said, once again.

I guess what it boils down to is writing while writing or writing by speaking and $3.00 will get you a mediocre cup of coffee . . . and this time I really mean . . . nuff said.         

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Anaphylaxis? Don’t Believe I Care for Any . . .

As a kid, did you ever have an adult tell you not to do something? What was the first thing you’d do? Allow me to give you an example. I grew up in a rural area. We were inundated each summer with every type of stinging insect you could imagine. Whether it be a hornet’s nest, a wasp’s nest, a beehive, a yellow jacket’s nest (normally built under ground), or any number of bugs with a stinger that you could pretty much imagine from anywhere, I could find that nest close if not attached to my house.

I recall being told by an adult not to mess with a yellow jacket’s nest located underground close to our backyard peach tree. I paid attention long enough to reach the tool shed, open the door, and then, grab a can of gas. I began to pour the gas down the hole leading to the nest, but leaving too much leeway between pours, the extremely agitated yellow clad warriors began to swarm, which in turn put me on the run. One of the insects chased me down sixty feet and stung me on the thumb, proving how tenacious they can be when threatened.

In a similar incident, I was warned to stay away from a large hornet’s nest built into one of our neighborhood apple trees. It was twice as big as a football and just begged to be assaulted. One of my childhood friends and I decided we were the ones to do the deed. Standing a good distance off, we hammered the nest with dirt clods until there was only about half of it left. Wouldn’t you know it; one of the black and yellow avengers nailed my friend in his upper arm.

Numerous interactions with stinging insects followed through my childhood and into my life as an adult, have taught me several things. tenacity can be a good thing when aimed at career oriented goals. (In my case writing) Furthermore, live and let live, and don’t mess with something that you believe is too small to cause you any harm.

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Stake your Stake in a Steak with a Stake. . .Then Enjoy

When I think of cooking, my mind naturally drifts to fire. To my wife’s delight, I would gladly take on all of the cooking duties that arose from an everyday dinner to the most elegant of holiday fare. Even the characters in the novels I write need a meal now and then to stave off the clutches of virtual page starvation.

You’ve heard the saying, The more things change; the more they stay the same. This indeed rings true, although we miss the notion that the more things change; the more they revert to yesteryear–case in point, cooking fuel.

Through the years, the human race has used everything from animal waste and wood to flammable fluid to cook food. This use of less than wholesome means to heat what we eat was the norm for some time. Eventually, electric coils were employed into the construction of modern day oven and cook tops, bringing the ease and a clean way to accomplish our much needed cooking duties inside safely.

So, after these kitchen innovations, why would we grab a bag of charcoal and step back outside to cook meat the primitive way, especially when it took us so long to make it indoors without burning the dwelling down by fire?

Why? I’ll tell you why. One word – –  flavor. Cook a meal on the stove top of a modern oven. You will find yourself dealing with anything from metal coils to flat European burners, glass cooking surfaces to the exotic ceramic. The next meal you endeavor to prepare, start with walking outside and loading the grill with charcoal or if plain wood is your thing fill the grill with dry hickory. Once, whichever you have chosen is ashed over, slap a slab of cow on the searing hot surface. When done to your liking, attack, and you will see why, sometimes, retro, is the only way to go.

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What Happened to the Good Ole Days, When We’d Hand Crank the Ice Cream Maker

I look back through time to the many implements that run on power, from weed eaters to toothbrushes and everything in between. In fact, there are very few devices that do not use some sort of energy to drive their core, making them easier to operate than their manual counterparts.

Electric power in the form of batteries seems to be the fuel to which we are migrating. What used to be driven by AC (plug in) power were the first to go portable. Drills took the plunge from AC to DC with outstanding results. Soon to follow was gasoline substituted with an alternate fuel, the battery cell. As I recall, weed eaters, hedge trimmers, leaf blowers and now, lawn mowers have all succumbed to portable power. Even our most common mode of transportation, the automobile, has finally developed a practical electric car.

In our day-to-day lives, batteries have grown to play a pivotal role. Batteries run everything from watches, to smart phones, heart monitors, pedometers, IPod & MP3, portable DVDs and the list goes on.

We have electric powered railway engines, battery powered submarines,and other industrial forms of transportation that utilize the all might battery. I wonder what they’ll come up with next, cause I ain’t ready to step aboard a battery powered airliner?

If I continue to write long enough, will they come out with a battery powered desktop computers, and if so, will I still require a battery backup ?  Only time will tell.

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“Slo-Mo-Syndro,” Nothing But a Thing, A Significant Thing, But Just a Thing, None the Less

In the years I’ve been writing, I cannot say I have experienced a full blown case of writer’s block, although what has not skipped my sci-fi encrusted brain is what I  call the “slow motion syndrome.”

With “slow motion syndrome,” writing a paragraph will go something like this. In the first sentence there are no problems and you breeze right through.

With the second sentence, there is a definite pause and you must think before adding the last few words.

In the third sentence, you complete half and slowly finish the sentence one-word-at-a-time.

By-the-time-you-complete-said-paragraph, it-has-been-a-slow-arduous-task-to-say-the-least.

I guess one is just about as bad as the other, of course with S.M.S. you can see some progress, even if it is minuscule.

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