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Life and Times of an itinerant slacker in Sacramento. Thrills, Spills Galore coming soon. Not to mention lots of opinions.

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Sunday, November 29, 2009

More From Justin's Dad

I couldn't resist sharing this gem.

"Son, no one gives a shit about all the things your cell phone does. You didn't invent it, you just bought it. Anybody can do that."

You can see more of the same at .

Sometime Justin's dad says just what I'm thinking.  I fear to even begin to ponder about what that says about me.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Novel Preview

Yes it is done! 50,000 words in 25 days!

Just about 50% of my regular readers have demanded to see more.

It's a challenge to balance the needs of my most obsessed fans with the rigors of the cutthroat negotiations for the movie rights.

I noticed that this novel has no female characters, with the action centered around smelly old men and Tibetan monks. I figured this out too late to do anything about it. The zombies lack noticable gender characteristics, beyond poor table manners.

The thought that there will be no role for Meryl Streep has broken my heart. I'll just have to negotiate for even bigger bucks for the movie deal. Hoping for at least a guarantee of one half dozen donut holes.

This is the last chapter, an epilogue. I passed the 50,000 word mark somewhere near the middle of this.

Chapter 38 – Time Passes

Years passed. Isaiah picked up his morning newspaper and dropped it on the table. He grabbed some cereal, and went to the features section, in search of the comics. He had developed an interest in the daily activities of talking crocodiles. Before he had folded the section open, he saw the culture column’s headline, “Tibetan Buddhist Monks from Dharamsala, India to build sand mandala, perform dances and rituals at local church.”

The article included an interview with one of the monks, whom the columnist described as having been a monk for forty years, but still speaking with a thick English accent. The monks would be available to talk with members of the public throughout the week as they worked on their sand mandala, which they would destroy in a ceremony on Friday.

Isaiah came to see the monks on a quiet afternoon. A grey haired, pale complexioned monk stood out like a parsnip in a bag of carrots as he stood back from the mandala in progress, acting as a host to the rubberneckers. Isaiah walked up to greet him. The two men stopped and stared at each other.

Cedric began speaking, “We have taken great effort to put the few days we spent together behind us. We do not speak of those times.”

Isaiah added, “In my own way, I have done the same. I am glad to see you doing so well here.”

Cedric said, “Roit, me moits and oi, we’re a sensation, the flavour of the month where ever we go. Loverly it is. Oh, come join us for tea at four on Friday. You should stay for the ceremony to dissolve the mandala. You may learn somethin’.”

When Isaiah came for tea on Friday, he was pleasantly surprised to see Ben and Jerry. They drank their tea, ate some cookies, and talked about the life of a traveling show business monk. At four thirty, the monks put on large hats and wrapped saffron yellow outer robes over their regular orange robes. They walked into the large gallery, where several monks standing by the mandala were already filling small vials with sand from its edges.

Monks blew into long trumpets, crashed cymbals, and chanted, as Cedric swept the remaining sand off the table. He spoke into a microphone to explain the symbolism of the sweeping as a lesson in impermanence. He took a small vial from one of the younger monks and handed it to Isaiah. He said, “This is your lesson, most everything in the world is impermanent, but some things, like this vial, persist. Oh and, you’ll forever be a waynker.”

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Still haven't figured out how to get quotes to come out right.

Literally, That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Too Many Pigs at the Trough...

Makes for some entertaining squealing.

Apparently, the shareholders of Goldman Sacks the Working Stiffs have shown the audacity to suggest that the Goldbrick Slackers shouldn't lavish themselves with record - breaking lavish bonuses when stockholders see dividends remain flat.

The big picture, when you see a feeding frenzy, keep your hands a way from any body's mouth.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

How To Run A Restaurant Real Good

I'm not an expert in this subject, but methinks the Lehigh Pub in Bethlehem PA ain't doing it right.

View more news videos at:

BTW, are the Bethlehm cops smoking crack? that couple did seem pretty annoying, but come on, guys.

That'smy stroy and I'm sticking to it.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Bill Gates Reviewed My Novel!

Yes ,it's true!!! Bill Gates Reviewed (OK,really summarized) My Novel,using his very own Monkeysoft Word Autosummarize function.

Here's his very insightful summary:

Isaiah always felt close with Abe.
'Whom. . .' thought Isaiah.
Isaiah thought, 'Zombies, holy shit, zombies.
Dirty old men, always', thought Isaiah.
Moe pulled Isaiah aside.
Abe presented Isaiah with his clubs.
Isaiah began;
Abe and Isaiah joined the group.
Isaiah, Isaiah, come back here!

The work of a literary genius viewed through the lens of an evil genius's mind. Brilliant!

That's my story (in ten incoherent sentences), and I'm sticking to it.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Novel Cloud

I used a cool web app to make a word cloud from the first 30,000 words.

You can click on the image to make it large enough to read.

Pretty cool, donchyaknow.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Happy Belated Veterans Day

This fits with every story I've ever heard.

Ultra-Realistic Modern Warfare Game Features Awaiting Orders, Repairing Trucks

But seriously now, I substituted for a missing clarinetist at a Veterans Day Concert in a Pops band for a Veterans Day concert at Sun City Roseville. Besides the obligatory Stars and Stripes Forever encore,the best part of these concerts is the "Armed Forces Salute" which was written by an Air Force Band director years ago, but is actually a decent piece of music.

We were not even almost as good as these folks. BTW - This is one of life's only chances to hear three piccolos play in tune.

It's been beyond me how having hundreds of professional musicians on the payroll helps win wars. But hey,enjoy it, you already paid for it.

Note to Peace Corps: Get a Service Song already.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Halfway Point

Well,I'm cranking it out as fast as grapenuts go through a goose.

I just passed the half way point, with a 25,301 official word count.Here's the unfinished episode that crossed the boundary from the first half to the second:

(Note,WE ARE EXPERIENCING TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES - quotation marks inthe text appear as thick vertical bars here. I'll need to figure that out sometime)

Abe and Isaiah joined the group. They could see two shadowy figures walking randomly in the border area, closer and closer to entering the Golf dimension, sometimes scratching their heads as if they were trying to understand the very same strange experiences that Isaiah had when he first crossed the border in the other direction. The nervous old men crouched in a bunker by the green, as the shadowy figures entered their territory, revealing the forms of two slouching grey – skinned figures with the blue Tramlaw jumpsuits, and long and slightly unkempt hair.

The figures repeated the same nonsense phrases over and over. The taller of the two repeated,”Is this a good place, they can’t see us here, do you think?” followed by the short zombie’s reply, “Hey, what drag, what drag. It’s cool” The taller zombie said,”This’ll do. If we can’t see them, they can’t see us. Now, where is it?” The shorter zombie reached into his jumpsuit and pulled out a book of matches and a sloppily rolled cigarette. They relaxed on the edge of the green, lit the cigarette, and passed it back and forth between them, while vacantly looking at the setting sun between puffs.

“Well, knock me over with a feather”, said Abe, “Wacky Tobbacky! We’ve got a couple of slacker pothead zombies sneaking here to smoke! Life is full of surprises.”

The professor whispered in a more serious tone of voice, “They may look harmless, but they are still zombies. I wouldn’t want to be around when the get the munchies for brains”.

After the zombies finished smoking their puss - encrusted spit – soaked roach, they stared into the sunset and stopped moving. “Now’s our chance”, said the professor,”these two are hapless, we can test our weapons”. The men quietly returned to the edge of the green opposite the zombies, and gathered their weapons.

The professor produced a pen, pad and clipboard. “OK, give them what you’ve got, and I’ll document the results.”

Abe nonchalantly picked up a golf club, dropped a ball on the green, and made a perfect chip shot into the head of the taller zombie. The nearly brainless creature rubbed his head, quickly jerked his head to look left, and then right. He didn’t seem mortally wounded. He rubbed his head again, and said,”Hoo wow, it felt like something hit me in the head, what a rush. Dude, that’s good weed”. The Professor wrote, “Golf ball shot with club – long range, minimal impact”.

Shemp silently crawled along the edge of the raised green infantry style, cradling his long range high accuracy sniper grade seltzer bottle. He raised the bottle to blast the shorter zombie with a two second geyser directly to the face. The vertically challenged zombie immediately raised his torso to an upright position, as Shemp slithered away at an incredible speed for an old man. As soon as he sat upright, the dripping zombie flopped back to the ground. In an answer to the tall zombie’s asking, ”Dude, what’s going on with you?”, he answered, ”Whoa, that is good shit. I just felt paralyzed for a couple of seconds, you know, like may arms and legs just wanted to do their own thing, aah, stony.” The Professor wrote, “Seltzer spray - medium range, stuns and temporarily slows zombies down.”

What will happen next? I'd tell you if I knew.

What ever does happen, I guarantee it will happen with bad sentence structure. Just no time to deal with that in nanowrimo .

If I were to start over or when actually edit any of this, I would get rid of the stooges and replace them with more original (and less litigious estates) characters. The slapstick will stay, in any event.

Oh another addition to the list:

Stephen King, I ain't.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What's a Project Without a Banner?

Although The novel itself is showing the preliminary symptoms of suckness syndrome,I've got 23,244 words down, a title, and an awesome Banner.

Create your own banner at!

That's my story and I'm sticking to it,up to 50,000 words,that is.

New London CT Learn Where Put Corporate Interests First

I laughed when I heard the news that Pfizer has decided to pre-emptively abandon its research facility in New London, CT, before the facility was even built. Laughed so hard I thought I'd lose my lunch.

I'm not a bad guy, I don't like any burgh to lose a potential source of jobs. What's funny is that this is the very plant where the City of New London went to the Supreme Court to argue that they could use eminent domain to evict and flatten a fine neighborhood that had no blight issues. The Supreme court held in favor of the city, that if the city could possibly get more tax revenue by having their "jack booted thugs" pull good, hardworking citizens out of their houses, and bulldozing the their well-loved homes, bulldoze the houses, that is just fine and dandy. Assignment: Home ownership in New London,CT and East Jerusalem,compare and contrast, discuss amongst yourselves.

Well, in a whirlwind of poetic justice, The City is stuck with a lot of non-revenue producing land. No jobs, No tax revenue. But, they won their Supreme court case (at great lawyer fes to their taxpayers,including those to be evicted).

What a bunch of dumbasses.

BTW " Noetic Book of the Dead is up to 22,267 words, would be more if i wasn't procrastinating now.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Novel Teaser Number Two

As of last night (end of day three), I am up to the novel 8,566 words. I expect to be over 15,000 words by the end of Friday, and passing the half way mark (25,000 words by the middle of next week.

For teaser the second, I decided to share something a little darker and less sentimental than the previous excerpt. In this section, A cyberpunk venue and zombies first appear. I hate when that happens in real life.

Jacob walked down the long corridor. Very little changed as he walked. The end of the aisle was so far away that ten minutes of walking did not make the end look any closer. Shelves as high as he could see, with crate staked upon crate upon crate. No doubt the crates were full of bargain priced stuff that everyone needs. Jacob thought as he walked, and after another twenty minutes, he came to the conclusion that he knew absolutely nothing about where he was.

The longer he walked, the more he accepted that he wasn’t asleep, he wasn’t in the hospital, and, happily, he was no longer attached to a urinary catheter. Once he noticed that, more than anything else, he wanted to find a place to take a piss like a normal person.

Only moments after that thought, he found a sign with an arrow below the words, “RESTROOMS THIS WAY” He followed the arrow to a doorway wedged between two stacks of crates. The doorway lead to a short and narrow corridor with two doors, one on each side. Jacob entered the door labeled “GENTLEMEN’S” on the right side of the hall.

As Jacob walked back out the restroom door, he noticed that, in the few minutes it took him to pee and reflect on the pleasure of peeing once again, a new sign had appeared on the outside of the door. The sign said, “RESTROOMS FOR CUSTOMER USE ONLY. ALL OTHERS WILL BE PROSECUTED AS HOMOSEXUALS”.

Jacob read the sign, and looked over his shoulder. Seeing no one else, and turned to read the sign a second time. Nothing changed on a second look, he had read the sign correctly the first time. He turned back to the main corridor and began walking in the same direction, hoping he would eventually find an exit. All he wanted to do was leave this strange and spacious yet confining structure.

As he continued down the aisle, Jacob was confronted by more strange signs. He passed a table topped by an empty wicker basket, under a sign that proclaimed “SAMPLING WITHOUT SUFFICIENT INTENT TO PURCHASE WILL BE PROSECUTED”.

After about thirty more steps down the aisle, he saw a sign that said “MANDITORY COMPLIANCE ASSESSMENT, STOP FOR INSPECTION HERE”. The sign made Jacob even more uneasy than he already felt, so he increased his pace as he walked past the sign.

“YOU!” Jacob heard as he felt a heavy hand grab his shoulder from behind. Jacob lunged forward, freeing his shoulder. He tried to run as he felt a hand around his wrist yank him in a wide circle, like a roller derby queen cracking the whip. As he was whirled around, he saw four weak chinned and nondescript but slightly flabby and widely built men in blue jumpsuits moving toward him. Each jumpsuit had a patch just below the left collar bone, embossed with the phrase “Welcome to Tramlaw Where We Protect and Serve” in a nauseating shade of pink. The men looked vaguely unhealthy.

The men made a circle around Jacob, and asked several questions simultaneously, in broken phrases. As Jacob had experienced with cops all his life, they asked questions without expecting answers. ”What you here for? You not buy? You not buy, why you here? You homosexual? You here break law! You criminal! You need punishment? Want trouble you? You go prison?”

Bill Burroughs I ain't.
James Joyce I ain't.

This is becoming a great process for defining a self identity. Each time I need to exercise a different writing skill (like, y'know action, thought exposition, pathos,etc.) I find another great writer that I ain't.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Novel Excerpt

I cranked out 3,533 words on Nanowrimo day 1. I need to average about 1,667 words per day to win.

I decided to share a small sample, where a character named gramps gets introduced to the reader. Please rest assured that I do not intend to fictionalize any other relatives, unless i end up desperate. If I do need to harvest relatives for charqacters, I will try to wake the dead rather than annoy the living. My mom gave me permission to use her father, and even asked me to make sure he gets to smoke lots of cigars.

All I ask is that, as you read this, please remember that November is National Novel Writers Month. Novel Editing month does not start until December. This is raw from the netbook, typed while watching all my favorite NFL teams lose.

Excerpt from chapter 2, where a character from another world are revealed:

Of his uncountable older relatives, Gramps had always been the slacker of the family. Jacob’s great aunts and uncles worked like hell to make their fortunes in Chicago. Gramps and Grandma left that scene to move to a small city in Wisconsin. Grandpa was able to make a modest but comfortable living working as a manager in a local department store. They had dozens of good friends and a small prefab house. They had everything they needed, and Gramps was able to come home every noon for a lunch and nap. They were slackers before the word was invented,and they were damned good at it.

The more he thought about old Gramps, the more real and alive the old guy seemed. Just for a second, Jacob thought he could hear an old man’s voice in the middle of his head, somewhere near where he believed the tumor had been removed. He thought he could see his grandfather standing by the window.

Jacob wasn’t sure if his eyes were open or closed. He forced himself to open his eyes, and Gramps was still there. He closed his eyes as tight as he could, opened them again, but nothing changed.

Grandpa was still standing, nonchalantly looking out the window. He shuffled across the small room, and stood by the bed, near Jacob’s head. Gramps cleared his throat loudly, like he always did before speaking, and said, “Jacob, what’s going on here? What are you doing here? You look like a mess.” Jacob didn’t say anything, all he could do was stare, as his long dead grandfather said, “Don’t worry, Gramps knows what’s going on, that’s why I’m here”.

After reading this, I fear that jacob is at a critical risk of evolving into a Mary Sue. I need to either kill him or marginalize him as soon as I introduce a few more characters.

Dang - looks like my word file doesn't tramslate too wellinto bloggerscript. The fat vertical bars are quptation marks.

That's my story (I really mean ity this time) and I'm sticking to it.

Confucius Was a Price Gouger

My various writing projects have lead me to this unavoidable conclusion:

A picture is worth about 50 words, so any Ancient Chinese Font of Wisdom who tries to tell you it's worth 1,000 words must be trying to rip off tourists or just itching for a fight.

Hey, don't take my word for it, weigh the evidence for yourself.

At the default settings for Microsoft Word on my computer, (12 pt font, normal looking margins of 1.5 inches left and right, 1 inch top and bottom) I got about 530 words per page on average in the first 6 pages of my wrimo novel. Our one page XMAS letter,which has a 3 by 5 inch picture in it, has 479 words.

I have 530 words without a picture, and 479 words with a picture. This allows us to determine that a picture is worth exactly 51 (i. e., 530-479) words. QED.

Now that you know we have proven a picture is worth about 50 words, so dont pay the inflated Chinese tourist price of 1,000 words.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

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I must enjoy shouting into a vacuum, but I think about getting my act together one of these days. My mom says I am very handsome and intelligent.

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