Senin, 31 Mei 2010

What is Memorial Day?

While paying tribute to my daughter, who is a veteran, for her sacrifices and service, I am also so very thankful for her safe return from harm's way in Iraq.

Today is the day we honor the fallen heroes who made the supreme sacrifice for their country. I also honor the families and loved ones of those heroes. Their grief is unimaginable and I could only guess at what my grief would be had one of the fallen been my daughter.

I also think today should be a celebration of the spirit and determination of all our returning veterans who are struggling daily to put their lives back in order after witnessing the horrors of war. It is not an easy journey for those who were wounded physically, emotionally or both. I salute each and every one of you for your courage, fortitude, strength and integrity.

No one can ever know how proud I am as a father, but more importantly as a fellow American who owes a huge debt of gratitude to our men and women in the military. I love each and every one of you!

Write on,


Minggu, 30 Mei 2010

See Your America

If you are reading this blog, you shouldn't be. Get up, turn of the puter, get in, or on your ride, and go see some America! It doesn't matter if it's a Federal park, state park or just the city park. It's a beautiful day and life is way too short spending it couped up in the house.

Now, for those of you who are unable to leave the house. Google every place you have ever wanted to see and spend the day drinking soda, eating chips and travel in your mind with help from pictures on the Web.

OK, I get it. There are some folks who can't even do that do to dire circumstances. Well, know this my American friend....I pray you have someone who will share this holiday with you and describe what a fabulous county we live in.

I'm just saying,


Sabtu, 29 Mei 2010

The Next Beginning of Evil in the Mirror

The day has arrived, Evil in the Mirror is finally on Amazon! Of course, without the image of the book cover, the post looks rather small and lonely, but this too shall pass and eventually the cover will appear and life will be good.

For those who have never had a book published, my next words will fail you. I feel a tremendous let down close to depression this morning. There seems to be a dark hole you fall in after receiving Author Copies, and you see your book on Amazon, which for me happened simultaneously. Climbing out is difficult, but climbing out I must do. Now starts the next phase called, Promotion.

Well, I'll be dipped, I feel better already. The dark pit I fell into was just a product of the enchiladas and salsa I had for dinner last night. Pop, pop, fizz, fizz, oh, what a relief it is....

Have a great day. I need to get back to work promoting the hell out of my book!

Write on,


Jumat, 28 Mei 2010

Where is Jolen Whitworth?

I can't even remember how I met Jolen Whitworth on line a couple of years ago. All I know is that she became one of the most influential people in my writing career. Her devotion to newbie writers and willingness to help others bespeaks volumes about her character.

All I had to do was e-mail or Skype Jolen and help was on its way. That was until she got a free BMW! Now she is gallivanting all around England in pure luxury and hobnobbing with, God forbid, maybe even royalty?

Click on this link and read the story for yourself. It's too painful for me to relate.

Jolen, Jolen, come back....we miss you!

Write on,


Kamis, 27 Mei 2010

Border Wars

I know that no one wants to read lengthy blogs, especially ones that are political in nature. Here it is anyway. It's my blog and I will be lengthy if I want to....Senator McCain's 10 Point Action Plan is at the end of his letter, if you get that far.

May 26, 2010

Mr. Mitt Winstead

Dear Mr. Winstead:

Thank you for contacting me regarding border security and immigration reform. This is one of the most critical issues facing the people of Arizona and I appreciate knowing your views and for the opportunity to explain my position.

The violence along our southern border is increasing and impeding everyday life and the peace of mind of our citizens both along the border region and in the entire state. Since Mexican President Felipe Calderon began his war on the drug cartels in 2006, according to law enforcement officials in Arizona, the percentage of hardened criminals that are illegally crossing the border through the Tucson Border Patrol Sector has increased to over 17 percent. The violence and destruction in our border region has reached levels that I have never witnessed in all the years I've had the privilege to represent Arizona in Congress. It has led some Arizonans to feel that they are living in a lawless territory where there is little or no consequence for the violation of their land, property and well-being. I have heard first hand of the fear and difficulties these individuals live with every day and I admire their courage. For years, I have demanded the federal government must do all it can within its power to curb this violence and protect its citizens from criminals coming across the Mexican border. Arizonans living throughout the state, but especially along the border, must feel safe and secure in their homes and on their property.

To combat illegal immigration, drug and human smuggling, and violent activity in the southwest Senator Jon Kyl and I have developed a comprehensive 10-point plan to secure our southern border. We must begin with the immediate deployment of 3,000 National Guard troops along the Arizona-Mexico border and simultaneously begin hiring and training an additional 3,000 Customs and Border Protection Agents to be permanently stationed in the region. Furthermore, we must fully fund Operation Streamline in all Arizona Border Patrol Sectors to put illegal border crossers in jail for up to 30 days with expenses paid for by the Federal government. Additionally, the Federal government must complete the 700 miles of fencing along the southern border.

Our plan is supported by law enforcement officers across the state of Arizona, including Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever and Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu. Attached to this letter, I have included the full 10-point plan that Senator Kyl and I have developed. We intend to fight to see this plan implemented in its entirety as soon as possible.

It is true that some industries in Arizona continue to struggle without a sensible and fair temporary worker program. However, I believe that it would be irresponsible for Congress to take up any measure designed to address broader immigration issues while the security situation in Mexico continues to deteriorate. Before action on comprehensive immigration occurs the border must first be secured.

According to an April 14, 2010, Los Angeles Times article, the death toll from the Mexican government's three-year war on drug cartels is far higher than previously reported -- more than 22,000. This violence is an existential threat to the Mexican government and demands that we
secure our border immediately
. I will continue to do everything within my ability to ensure the federal government fulfills its obligation to protect the citizens of Arizona from the dangerous criminal elements lurking on our southern border to ensure that every one's families, friends and neighbors can feel safe and secure in their homes.

Again, thank you for sharing your views with me. Please feel free to contact me on this or any other issue of concern.


John McCain

United States Senator


Senators McCain and Kyl's Ten Point Border Security Action Plan

1) Immediately deploy 3,000 National Guard Troops along the Arizona/Mexico border, along with appropriate surveillance platforms, which shall remain in place until the Governor of Arizona certifies, after consulting with state, local and tribal law enforcement, that the Federal Government has achieved operational control of the border. Permanently add 3,000 Custom and Border Protection Agents to the Arizona/Mexico border by 2015.

2) Fully fund and support Operation Streamline in Arizona's two Border Patrol Sectors to, at a minimum, ensure that repeat illegal border crossers go to jail for 15 to 60 days. Where Operation Streamline has been implemented, the number of illegal crossings has decreased significantly. Require the Obama Administration to complete a required report detailing the justice and enforcement resources needed to fully fund this program. Fully reimburse localities for any related detention costs.

3) Provide $100M, an increase of $40M, for Operation Stonegarden, a program that provides grants and reimbursement to Arizona's border law enforcement for additional personnel, overtime, travel and other related costs related to illegal immigration and drug smuggling along the border.

4) Offer Hardship Duty Pay to Border Patrol Agents assigned to rural, high-trafficked areas, such as the CBP Wilcox and Douglas Stations in the Tucson Sector.

5) Complete the 700 miles of fencing along the border with Mexico and construct double- and triple- layer fencing at appropriate locations along the Arizona-Mexico border.

6) Substantially increase the 25 mobile surveillance systems and three Predator B Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in place today along the Arizona/Mexico border and ensure the border patrol has the resources necessary to operate the UAVs 24 hours a day seven days a week. Send additional fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters to the Arizona-Mexico Border.

7) Increase funding for vital radio communications and interoperability between CBP and state, local, and tribal law enforcement to assist in apprehensions along the border.

8) Provide funding for additional Border Patrol stations in the Tucson Sector and explore the possibility of an additional Border Patrol sector for Arizona. Create six additional permanent Border Patrol Forward Operating Bases, and provide funding to upgrade the existing bases to include modular buildings, electricity and potable water. Complete construction of the planned permanent checkpoint in Arizona. Deploy additional temporary roving checkpoints and increase horse patrols throughout the Tucson Sector.

9) Require the Federal government to fully reimburse state and local governments for the costs of incarcerating criminal aliens. Start by at least funding the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) at its authorized level of $950 million.

10) Place one full-time Federal Magistrate in Cochise County and provide full funding for and authorization of the Southwest Border Prosecution Initiative to reimburse state, county, tribal, and municipal governments for costs associated with the prosecution and pre-trial detention of federally-initiated criminal cases declined by local offices of the United States Attorneys.


Please Do Not Reply to this Message

Rabu, 26 Mei 2010

I love Charlie Daniels Music

A friend told me that one time while fishing in east Texas, he ran out of worms right when the fishing was hot. As he stood there wondering what to do, a snake came by with a frog in his mouth. Thinking the frog would make good bait, my friend grabbed the critter behind the neck, removed the frog from the snakes mouth and threw it in the bait box. The trick now was how to release the viper without being bitten. My friend grabbed his bottle of Jack Daniels and poured a little down the snakes gullet. After releasing a rather befuddled and tipsy snake a fair distance from the fishing spot, he resumed fishing.

A little while later, the snake returned with two frogs in his mouth.

I had the same thing happen to me once, but, low and behold, the damn snake came back, bit me on the ankle and left with a my half bottle of Jack.

I don't know what it is, but every time I hear Charlie Daniel's music, I think of Jack Daniels!

I'm just saying,


Selasa, 25 Mei 2010

Yes, You Can Write a Book; NO EXCUSES!


“Let me tell you, Jesse hated this job. And you would too, I imagine,
if you had to do it. Jesse was a chicken plucker. That's right.
He stood on a line in a chicken factory and spent his days pulling the
feathers off dead chickens so the rest of us wouldn't have to. It wasn't much of a job.

But at the time, Jesse didn't think he was much of a person.
His father was a brute of a man.
His dad was actually thought to be mentally ill
and treated Jesse rough all of his life.

Jesse's older brother wasn't much better.
He was always picking on Jesse and beating him up.
Yes, Jesse grew up in a very rough home in West Virginia .
Life was anything but easy. And he thought life didn't hold much hope for him.

That's why he was standing in this chicken line, doing a job that darn few people wanted. In addition to all the rough treatment at home, it seems that Jesse was always sick. Sometimes it was real physical illness, but way too often it was all in his head. He was a small child, skinny and meek. That sure didn't help the situation any. When he started to school, he was the object of every bully on the playground. He was a hypochondriac of the first order. For Jesse, tomorrow was not always something to be looked forward to.

But, he had dreams.
He wanted to be a ventriloquist.
He found books on ventriloquism.
He practiced with sock puppets and saved his hard earned dollars until he could get a real ventriloquist dummy.

When he got old enough, he joined the military.
And even though many of his hypochondriac symptoms persisted, the military did recognize his talents and put him in the entertainment corp. That was when his world changed.

He gained confidence. He found that he had a talent for making people laugh, and laugh so hard they often had tears in their eyes. Yes, little Jesse had found himself.

You know, folks, the history books are full of people who overcame a handicap to go on and make a success of themselves, but Jesse is one of the few I know of who didn't overcome it. Instead he used his paranoia to make a million dollars, and become one of the best-loved characters of all time in doing it! Yes, that little paranoid hypochondriac, who transferred his nervousness into a successful career, still holds the record for the most Emmys given in a single category.

The wonderful, gifted, talented, and nervous comedian who brought us

Barney Fife


Jesse Don Knotts.”

Senin, 24 Mei 2010

So, you want to write a book....

If your dream is to write a book, then by all means write it. Most people don't have the courage or fortitude to follow through. It takes hard work, determination and faith in your talent. The worst thing you can do is never experience the joy of finishing a writing project and bemoan the loss of opportunity.

After researching what it takes to publish a book, most people go back to their mundane lives, defeated and deflated before they even try to write a single word. Fear of success sometimes overshadows fear of failure. Get up, dust yourself off, grab pen and paper, and discover the joy of being creative.

I doesn't matter what I have or have not done. Take the bull by the horns and get on with your writing experience. For heaven's sake, let it all hang out and start writing that novel, poem or short story.

I can't tell you how many times I started with pen and paper to write a science fiction novel just to quit because I didn't think it was time well spent. I was too busy working to feed my family, or so I thought. It wasn't until I started getting my life organized that I realized there was more than enough time to spend a few hours a day writing.

In today's world of word processing and the Internet for research, it has become much easier to write things down and do research all at the same time. You don't need a library full of books when you have the Web. The world is available at the touch of a key. Can't type very well? Buy a touch typing CD and learn.

Ever wonder what you should write about? Look within at your life experiences. Each of us has a mental universe filled with exciting tales just waiting to be told. Dig deep into your passions, dreams, fears and joys. From birth, our brains start storing everything we see and hear. By adulthood, your brain has stored enough information to write many exciting books.

If you have the passion to write, please don't ignore that passion. All to often, we fill our lives with things that are not our passion and before you realize, it's time to leave the planet. It is then, and only then, that it's truly too late. Don't waste another second of your life living other people's passions. It's time to start living your dream of being a successful writer!

Write on,


Minggu, 23 Mei 2010

Those Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer

The Sedona, Arizona, Humane Society picked the perfect summer day for their Bone to be Wild motorcycle rally.

The event was very well organized and all the bikes made it back from the five stop poker run safe and sound. Olde Sedona Bar & Grill hosted the event, which included many vendor tents, classic bike show, bike games and fun in the sun. I also liked seeing all the dogs wearing bandannas, wishing to be adopted. Please, Lord, don't let me get weak. Four dogs are enough in any home....

My friend Nadia, owner of Golden Bone Rescue, was there with a vendor tent. Her store is located in Camp Verde and it's always a pleasure to walk down from our house and visit. Yes, our dogs know they are going to get a treat when they visit Nadia!

Our first poker stop was in the Village of Oak Creek where I visited with Adrian, the owner of Physical Graffiti tattoo parlor. Someday I will show off the sleeve tat he did on my left arm. He is the best in the west.

We also stopped at the Cornville Market, Biker Babes and Beyond (This is a great shop for all the lady riders) in Cottonwood, and then on to KA Cycles, also in Cottonwood.

Of course, as we headed back to Sedona for our last poker stop at Olde Sedona Grill, it was obvious my hand was dismal and I might as well tear it up. I have been riding for years, but so far never won a hand, but who cares, I am having a blast!

We all met for lunch, NA brews, laughter, rock & roll music so loud it drove my son Jay and me to the upstairs balcony. That turned out well; we were forced to look at all the beautiful bikes and babes while we ate our lunch. Picture taking was is full swing and even the news guy was filming away at all the events. I am sure there will be some great pictures to post at a later date.

As we rode back toward our prospective homes later in the day, I was reminded of earlier summers when I was young and foolish. It appears now, I am only foolish, because if tired were money, I could retire.

I'm just saying,


Sabtu, 22 Mei 2010

Connections Equine Therapy

Today, I would like to post an open letter from Andrea Baldwin, founder of Connections Equine Therapy. If there was ever a cause, this is it!

Write on,


May 2010

Dear Supporters,

Thank you for your loyalty and support. It has been a challenging yet rewarding year and we need your help to continue. It is very sad to see what our clients are going through with all the cutbacks which affect those who are living marginally to begin with.

Equine therapy may seem like a luxury item—but to riders like Caroline who loses her ability to walk if she doesn’t ride, or Donald whose riding helps him fight the effects of a lifetime in a wheelchair, or little Jesse who at 5 was unable to speak and is now talking, and last but not least, Miss Allie, a beautiful, fairy-like preteen who lived in her fantasy world with imaginary friends until she met our horse Asia who has coxed her into the real world—it’s not a luxury at all. Allie struggles socially at school, and we all know how hard teen years are, but can you imagine her experience? Here at Connections she is becoming a top rider and starting to ride independently. She stays very focused and her imaginary friends don’t come to sessions anymore. She is loved and cherished for her uniqueness and is doing something that builds her focus and self-esteem. We and her family have been anxiously awaiting her AIMS testing scores to see in writing if the changes that we’ve observed were translating to her academic work. Her family told us that, “Connections has helped Allie more than anything else they’ve ever tried.” And the AIMS results are in and Allie’s scores have soared! But she still needs our support to help her with social skills and continue in her academic progress.

I feel so blessed that you have stayed loyal to Connections and helped us to continue to serve these individuals and others. I feel blessed every week Asia gets the special senior feed he needs. I am grateful for every flake of hay I feed. I often look into big brown or blue eyes and see trust there that we still value their service and will continue to provide them with a secure home where they can do the work they love. Even the newest member of the team, little Minity “Mini,” has started helping others by putting such smiles on their faces. We have been amazed how she will go to clients and put her head on their shoulders and let them hug her—sometimes pretty roughly—it seems she already knows why she’s here and what she’s here for.

We are constantly being creative to be better stewards of your donations, and here are some things that you could do to help:

• If everyone who has an E-mail address would E-mail it to us, at, we could cut our newsletter costs by E-mailing it to you. Be assured that E-mail addresses will be kept confidential and used only this purpose.
• Take a few minutes of your time and sign up for GoodSearch. Every time you do a search on the Internet, using GoodSearch, it creates revenue for the program.
• Sign up for eScrip, which gives Connections a percentage when you shop.
• For more information and directions on these last two bullets, please go to and click on “Donations” on the sidebar.

These are areas of long-term support for us in the future, but we need your help now. Many of you may not know that we have supplemented some of the Connections’ budget by providing services through our equine-assisted work to various organizations that pay for these services. Due to the economic downturn, we have lost these accounts.

We are now very excited to announce that we have been chosen to provide corporate team building experiences in our experiential program through referrals from Enchantment Resort in Sedona. Enchantment is an amazing place that received the World’s Best Award by Travel & Leisure in 2009. You can check them out at We have also been approached to provide services for a new rehab that will be opening soon.

Soooo there is light at the end of this tunnel, but we need your help to get there!

Happy Trails…and I can’t thank you enough again,

Andrea Baldwin

Jumat, 21 Mei 2010

Summer in Quartzsite

After transplanting four trees on our lot in Quartzsite, I have become a monthly tree sitter in one of the hottest summer spots in America. I'm not complaining, the desert is beautiful in the summer. The mornings are warm and quiet with a breeze that feels good as I sip my coffee while sitting outside.

I also volunteered to water our neighbors trees while they are freezing their butts of in Idaho. I called them to pass on the good news that the beehive that moved into their outside barbecue the minute they left for the season are alive and well. It was during this call at 10:00 AM that they informed me that it was 45 degrees and cloudy at their summer home. Better them than me....I wonder if the bees are Africanized? Unfortunately, they have to be exterminated and none to soon for me.

As soon as it's light out, I am packing up and getting the flock out of here!

I must apologize for this rather mundane blog, but what can I say? It's my blog and I'll be mundane if I want to.

I'm just saying,


Rabu, 19 Mei 2010

Why I Ride Harleys

My first trip to Sturgis, South Dakota was in 1999. I had a restored antique 1975 Harley FLH that vibrated so bad that parts fell off regularly. You would think after all the money I put into that bike it would ride like a Caddy, but leaking oil (I like to call it marking its territory) and vibration was the nature of the beast in 1975. We pulled it on a trailer behind a motor home that year and missed the ride of a lifetime, but I was afraid my wife would fall off somewhere along the way and you would be able to read the back of my t-shirt that said; “If your can read this the wife fell off”! I finally sold the old girl (The Harley, not my wife) in 2001 and bought a new Harley Road King. Oh my God, this Harley didn’t vibrate or mark its territory! This girl had power to spare and a five-speed transmission to boot! I thought I died and went to Harley heaven.

When I had the opportunity to ride with friends to Sturgis in 2003, I jumped at the chance. Loading up the bike with clothes, tent, sleeping bag, air mattress and necessities for the nine-day adventure was a major challenge. I bought a travel pack for the rider’s seat that strapped to the sissy bar. The bike had hard bags on the sides that held a surprising amount of stuff and I strapped the tent and sleeping bag to the hard bag lids. I was so excited about going on this trip that I loaded the bike a week in advance and would spend evenings packing and re-packing even though it wasn’t necessary. I would sit looking at the bike for about an hour each night before I went to bed and fantasized about the dream ride ahead.

Finally, the dream day came to start the ride. My friends Tony and Donna were riding an older Shovel Head Harley and Dwain was riding a 2003 Sportster. Well, as luck would have it, the 86 Shovel started burning oil badly in the middle of the Navajo reservation. By the time we hit Durango, Colorado it was smoking like a steam locomotive. We stopped at the Harley dealer and sure enough the bike was finished. We all looked so sad knowing that if we all couldn’t go, none of us would go. There would always be next year. Donna looked at Tony and said; “We are going to Sturgis” at which point they bought a new Ultra Glide which they really couldn’t afford. We spent the night in Durango and the next morning jumped on the bikes and headed for Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Day two dawned clear and beautiful in Rockies. You could smell the clean, wildflower scented air. The mountain peaks looked pale purple with rays of gold penetrating the valley, washing your face with a warm sun kiss. My eyes were filled with beauty and awe. I could sit and watch these mountains for hours, but our next destination had to be Wyoming or we would not make Sturgis within out schedule. So, off we went on our grand adventure. Not one of us had been any further east than Durango on bikes. Tony and Donna looked like the cat that had just eaten Tweedy. I hate that new bike! Because it had stock pipes at least I was able to kid Tony that he better start it, the stoplight was about to change. Then I would roar past him because it takes 500 miles to break a new bike in at slower speeds.

As we neared Denver, the country changed to rolling flat plains and the wind picked up making riding difficult, but when you are heading for Sturgis you hardly notice such things. We hit the freeway and could see Denver to the North pushing out of the ground like a steel mountain. Soon we were in the middle of nowhere land cruising at 75 and then slowing down so Tony could catch up on his shinny new silver Ultra. God, I hate that bike! We started to see many riders going in the same direction and all had smiles big enough to catch the largest bugs!

Our troupe made it to Cheyenne tired, hungry and thirsty. We had made motel reservations a year in advance for this trip and that was a good thing because when we hit town it was covered with every make of motorcycle know to man from all over the western states. We planned to camp out only two nights in Sturgis mainly because we would have to learn how to walk again after sleeping on the ground. We are only youngsters in spirit, not in body! Hot shower, hot food, a warm bed and we were done for the night with visions of Sturgis dancing in our heads.

We awoke the next morning early raring to get on the road. Of course Tony had to wash his new ride. I hate that bike! I thought I would burst with anticipation before we finally left Cheyenne behind. We rumbled on the freeway and headed east towards the turn off to the Black Hills of Dakota. It seemed like a lifetime before we finally turned southeast to the Promised Land. We were now on a two-lane road with rolling hills and wind that made our bikes lean hard to the right. Who cares, we could see the outline of the Black Hills in the distance. We had plenty of company on the road. Picture bikes as far as you can see leaning to the right like a video game! Push on biker buds, push on. We were a two-wheel wagon train heading for glory. The Black Hills of Dakota are a sight to behold. Right in the middle of vast prairie lands, mountains jut out of the earth with dark majestic peaks of granite. When you start to leave the prairie lands from the west, the terrain changes to rolling hills and the dark mountains grow bigger and bigger with each mile ridden. The air changes from heavy grass and earth smell to a lighter, pine scented freshness that you can inhale and feel energize your whole body. The air is palatable like fine wine. We drank it freely and willingly. If there were a law against breathing this air we would be arrested and jailed for being intoxicated!

I had been to the monuments as a young person, but the grandeur was lost on youth. Crazy horse had not been born yet and we were anxious to see him in all his granite glory. Riding up to all the monuments on a motorcycle is breathtaking. You combine all the ingredients of intoxicating air, sites and sounds of thousands of bikes, clear blue skies and gigantic monuments carved from stone makes you feel like you could fly like an Eagle. Words fail me at the sight of such monumental beauty and majesty. Crazy Horse is so impressive that he gives the illusion of being a mirage that can’t be real. How can you top such beauty? I always feel the same about the places visited while riding the Harley. God, what a beautiful country we live in!

Next installment: Sturgis 2003

Selasa, 18 Mei 2010

Trashing My Birth Place, Tucson, Arizona

During my 48-year construction career, I have worked with, drunk with, cried at funerals with, dated and sung at church with, Americans of Mexican decent. I find this ethnic group enchanting, loving, intelligent, loyal, and dedicated to their children. Their houses are immaculate inside and out, as are their persons.

After I received an e-mail showing the illegal emigrant highway from Mexico to Arizona, I was appalled at the mess. I have also seen pictures of inside safe houses in Phoenix. I also have witnessed the trash left by illegal aliens at free camping areas in Arizona.

My point is this. I see this group of people not only showing disrespect for OUR land and country, but a larger disrespect for the millions of Mexican Americans who worked hard legally to obtain the American Dream. It’s not just the flaunting of our laws (which has been condoned by the Federal Government); it is the steady migration of drug dealers and illegal immigrants into wild and pristine southern Arizona with devastating results. This situation can no longer be tolerated. I support all of our immigration laws. There are legal remedies to enter this country, use them and walk with honor and pride, instead of hiding in shame and darkness.

I am sick and tired of the minority of people, with alternative motives, gaining press coverage with rallies and protest waving the Mexican flag while pretending to represent the majority. The majority of Americans support immigration laws and want action to stem the flow of illegal aliens from Mexico into the United States, and we sure don’t appreciate any flag waving except the American flag. This is not Mexico; it is the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!

Write on,


Senin, 17 Mei 2010

Fantastic Bridge Over The Damn Dam

For once I am speechless....The last time I drove to Los Vegas in 2006, the motor home was searched by Homeland Security before Hover Dam and it took forever to get over the damn dam and headed for the slots.

Take a look at the incredible bridge (click the title), in the last stages of completion, that will make getting to Los Vegas so much easier. I am already planning a trip to Sin City in 2011. I need to have a book signing party there, don't you think?

I'm just saying,


Minggu, 16 Mei 2010

On The Harley Therapeutic Trail

I was sitting here this morning looking at my "Painted Pony" Motorcycle Mustang figurine, (click title) thinking about how riding was therapeutic....

Yesterday was the perfect riding day. Bright sunshine, fresh air, slight coolness in the wind as it caressed my face and riding companions smiling as we headed south out of Camp Verde, Arizona, after a huge and satisfying breakfast.

Our destination was nowhere in particular, just riding off stress and tension from the proceeding week. Every mile ridden translates into less tension and every mile smiling means less stress. This is the best therapy money can't buy!

We stopped at Grand Canyon Harley-Davidson, in Mayer, long enough to get a cold drink and drool on the new bike offerings. I don't care how many times I stop at this store, I want to ride one of the new bikes home, knowing I can't afford the divorce.

After satisfying our thirst for cold liquid and cool bikes, we headed north toward Prescott Valley. Just before we reached the valley, my Road King's shifting lever broke and we limped back to the Harley store for repairs. No one complained, simply because it's all about the ride and not the destination. Besides, I wanted to look at a fantastic Harley trike again anyway.

About an hour later the King was fixed and we decided, because of the late start, we would head back to the Verde Valley and save the trip over Mingus Mountain, through Jerome and Cottonwood for another day. Later that day we all called in to each other to make sure everyone made it home safely. It was a fitting end to a day trip through God's country.

Write on,


Sabtu, 15 Mei 2010

Evil in the Mirror

My new murder mystery, Evil in the Mirror , can now be pre-ordered at Wheatmark Publishing. Order now and be the first to get a large dose of scared out of your skull. If you don't like murder mysteries, don't buy this book!

The book will be distributed into the wild in about a month, and then the party really begins. Promotion, promotion and more promotion. Wheatmark is having a phone seminar May 19 to help authors understand the potential of Twitter and the role it can take in promoting books. I am really looking forward to this one.

The experience has been and will continue to be a path less traveled. Exciting, rewarding, sometimes lonely, but always gratifying....

Write on,


Jumat, 14 Mei 2010

"You have to crazy to keep from going insane"

Dear Public,

"We'll be friends until we are old and senile. Then we'll be new friends and start all over again. A day without sunshine is like night, on the other hand, you have different fingers and we both know that.

42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot and 99 percent of politicians give the rest a bad name, this is public knowledge. Remember, half the people you know are below average and he who laughs last, thinks slowest, thus proving the first statement.

Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm and the early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese in the trap which is why I am depressed. Support bacteria. They're the only culture most people have and a clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory which is why I forgot my culture.

Change is inevitable, except from vending machines and if you think nobody cares, try missing a couple of payments. How many of you believe in psycho-kinesis? Raise my hand. OK smarty pants, now that you have done that, what's the speed of dark?

When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane, so what happens if you get scared half to death, twice? Smile, it gives your face something to do as the incoming cars send you to la-la land." Which is where this whole idea came from in the first place. A letter to the public....what a crock of crap!

Larry (get er done) The Cable Guy is just saying,


Kamis, 13 Mei 2010

Idioms for the Id

I have been having trouble communicating lately. Everyone, including myself, is so serious all the time. What the hell is going on? How about a little freaking humor once in a while?

I suspect it's the Mayan 2012 thing, or the Nostradamus thing, or the terrorist thing, or the economic thing, or the multitude of other negative bombardments we face everyday. I use to get on my puter to escape all that crap, but alas, e-mail has also been infected with negativitus too!

Well, I found the cure….click on the title of this blog and spend a few minutes at the Idiom Site. It’s the A to Z of neat sayings that tend to make you smile. Now that’s what I’m talking about!

I especially like the idiom, Flip the bird….

I’m just saying,


Rabu, 12 Mei 2010

The Funny Side of Authoring

I figure it's time to lighten up....sometimes I forget to stop and laugh a little. I hope you enjoy the following:

Everyone Should Have a Cool Editor in Their Book Life

What would I have done without Catherine Noble in my book life? My first novel, Evil in the Mirror, needed an editor and proofer. Thanks to my friend and high school classmate Nancy Bradley, she led me to Catherine (Cat). Cat agreed to whip the novel into shape for a very fair sum of money. Of course, I had no idea what she had in mind, but let’s face it, when you have no clue, lose the ego! Dear Cat, I stand before you naked in my stupidity. I barely graduated high school, and the rest of my education is from the school of hard knocks—you can bet she was impressed with those credentials!

One of her first e-mail questions was if I had a Thesaurus. My response to her was simple, “No, I don’t own one. That’s why I hired an editor to make it all better. I thought a Thesaurus was a pre-historic dinosaur until you ruined it for me!” It was at that point that I think she might have been reconsidering her assignment, but since Cat is a schoolteacher, she took pity on me and continued with the challenge.

In the same e-mail, Cat stated that my book was at the seventh-grade level and would appeal to many adults. What a coincidence! I graduated from high school with a seventh- grade education and then joined the ranks of construction workers who were undereducated and overpaid. As soon as the construction industry recovers from this current recession, there will be plenty of people to buy my book! She also mentioned that I was not to take her criticism personally, because this was all business. My reply to that statement was also simple. “In no way do I take your critiqués personally. You are an angel sent from the big writer in the sky to make my dream and passion come true. Yesterday I couldn’t even spell author, and now I are one!”

By the way, part of my motivation is that someday I am going to be able to speak to high school students about the importance of an education, especially in today’s world. Public speaking has always been a passion too. That is how I managed to graduate from high school in the first place.

Cat also pointed out that her knees were bruised from crawling through all the clichés in my book, but that she would prevail. What the heck was that about? I thought clichés were the backbone of American literature. “Pick yourself up, Cat, dust yourself off, bandage your knees, and suck it up. Forward, Ms. Cat, and damn the clichés!” At which point, all the horrible clichés were promptly deleted from the novel.

Since Cat is an educator, her hours are far different than mine. I am up at two in the morning raring to get to work writing. OK, that may be an exaggeration. I get up in a sixty-seven-year-old’s style…something akin to doing the moonwalk first thing in the morning.

There was no doubt that Cat and I needed to communicate with more than just e-mails. Enter Skype; at which point Cat called it “new fangled technology and doubted she would use it.” Yeah, baby, now I feel vindicated. I may be only seventh-grade material, but at least I am a seventh-grade techno nerd! It was now that I realized maybe, just maybe, her critiqués were being taken a little too personally. Oh well, I haven’t made a mistake since “what time is it?” Ms. Cat discovered she could use Skype in her teaching duties, and that is a good thing. My next challenge is to get her interested in Twitter.

Cat was impressed with my sense of humor and stated flatly that I should write a humorous novel. “Right, Cat, how in the world can I do that after writing a gross murder mystery? No problemo, my next book will somehow be funny as aliens from outer space are eating babies, while their mothers are looking on in horror! So much for the Sci-Fi novel I had started a couple of weeks ago.”

The whole humor thing started with our first e-mail exchange. I addressed the correspondence “Howdy from Arizona” because I didn’t know if “Cat Noble” was a personal name or a business name and asked very politely if they could edit and proof my novel. I received a terse message back that Catherine Noble was her name and only her friends called her Cat. She then acquiesced just enough to state, because I was a personal friend of Nancy Bradley (a well-respected author in her own right), I could, by proxy, call her Cat.

So that’s the way you want it, Ms. Cat? Let the humor begin! I immediately responded with this, knowing she lives in California. “I just love your name. No woman could be so lucky as to have a name like yours! Are you a movie star or a famous singer? OK, enough of my humor, or lack of, depending on your point of view. Will you edit and proof my book?” Humor won the day, and the fact that she is getting paid does not negate the role humor played, right? Don’t answer that! OK, I will answer it. Here is her reply:

“Hello Mitt,

I will have to re-read your other message to get all of the juicy tidbits…I am on my way out the door, but here is the essential information:
Ms. Catherine Noble
000 Dollywood Ave.
Los Angeles, California
You apparently have my phone number, as you called and left a message on Thursday. Nevertheless, it is (333) 444-5555.
Will write later.
Thank you for the job (and, yes, the financial arrangements are acceptable)!


I still can’t figure out what the “juicy tidbits” were about, but it is obvious I have her hook, line and sinker, as long as she gets the check in the mail! Of course, I didn’t remember I had called and left her a message before I asked for her phone number via e-mail, thus proving the rumor that I was a moron!

Cat and I communicate at least twice a week now. She sends me questions like— “Were there handicap parking lanes in 1968 Tucson, Arizona? I don’t believe they were passed into law until the ‘80s.” I beg to differ, Ms. Cat. I remember parking in one and getting my butt chewed out by an irate man with crutches who wanted to beat my head to a pulp! Oh, I remember now, that was 1984, not 1968. With my memory, there is no doubt I was born old. Another question was: “Were large Dodge motors called a Hemi that long ago?” Got ya, Cat, and it feels so good! I wasn’t so lucky with—“You refer to the feeling of shooting another human being as “it sucks. That slang didn’t appear until the ‘80s.” “So what’s your point, Cat?” Darn smarty pants schoolmarm!

In reality, Cat’s changes are turning my diamond-in-the-rough murder mystery into a polished, sparkling gem. I see now that editing and proofing are the keys to success for any author. Success is not only measured by how many books you sell, but it is also measured by the fact that you finished writing them. I’ve started many books in my life, but only managed to complete this first novel recently. I still say, “Better late than never.” This cliché is for Cat, just to keep her on her toes.

Selasa, 11 Mei 2010

President Bashing

This letter is my response to an e-mail I received from a friend. Their e-mail is also posted below my response.

Dearest friend,

I am a little confused. I thought Islam was a religion like Christianity; while Muslim was a sect like Baptist or Catholic. I don't necessarily disagree with your analogy concerning radical Muslims; I do disagree concerning Islam, which is what the President was referring to. Perhaps he was referring to America's modern story, not history?

I had the opportunity to study religions of the world and found Islam to be a beautiful religion, not unlike Christianity. In fact, many Islamic people also believe in Jesus. Like all religions, factions can corrupt the whole and we loose sight of the true meaning of the religion. The history of some Christian churches is much the same as the radical Muslims. In fact, the Catholic Church supported Hitler and Mussolini much more than the Muslims.

I personally didn't vote for our President and sometimes wonder how he was ever elected, but the President he is and we need to support him.

I know we have the right to express our opinions in this country and I support that right to the death. On the other hand, wouldn't our efforts be better spent combining our voices to fight all injustice in the world? Not to mention the ecological horrors that faces every country and religion on earth. The radicals want to kill thousands of us, while the environment could kill billions.

My dear friend, I have rarely disagreed with you over the years, but I fear President bashing is one area in which we all spend to much time. There is not one President who has not been praised when things were rosy and then bashed when things went south. This President is no exception.

Normally, I would not respond to this kind of e-mail, but in your case I would always make an exception.

This letter is in no way intended to offend and I truly hope you are not.

As always,


Barack OBAMA, during his Cairo speech, said: "I know, too, that Islam
has always been a part of America 's story."


Dear Mr. Obama:

Were those Muslims that were in America when the Pilgrims first landed?
Funny, I thought they were Native American Indians.

Were those Muslims that celebrated the first Thanksgiving day?
Sorry again, those were Pilgrims and Native American Indians.

Can you show me one Muslim signature on the United States Constitution?

Declaration of Independence ?

Bill of Rights?

Didn't think so.

Did Muslims fight for this country's freedom from England ? No.

Did Muslims fight during the Civil War to free the slaves in America ?
No, they did not. In fact, Muslims to this day are still the largest
traffickers in human slavery. Your own half brother, a devout Muslim,
still advocates slavery himself, even though Muslims of Arabic descent
refer to black Muslims as "pug nosed slaves." Says a lot of what the
Muslim world really thinks of your family's "rich Islamic heritage,"
doesn't it Mr. Obama?

Where were Muslims during the Civil Rights era of this country? Not

There are no pictures or media accounts of Muslims walking side by side
with Martin Luther King, Jr. or helping to advance the cause of Civil

Where were Muslims during this country's Woman's Suffrage era? Again,
not present. In fact, devout Muslims demand that women are subservient
to men in the Islamic culture. So much so, that often they are beaten for
not wearing the 'hajib' or for talking to a man who is not a direct family
member or their husband. Yep, the Muslims are all for women's rights,
aren't they?

Where were Muslims during World War II? They were aligned with Adolf
Hitler. The Muslim grand mufti himself met with Adolf Hitler, reviewed the
troops and accepted support from the Nazi's in killing Jews.

Finally, Mr. Obama, where were Muslims on Sept. 11th, 2001? If they
weren't flying planes into the World Trade Center , the Pentagon or a field
in Pennsylvania killing nearly 3,000 people on our own soil, they were
rejoicing in the Middle East . No one can dispute the pictures shown from
all parts of the Muslim world celebrating on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC and
other cable news networks that day. Strangely, the very "moderate"
Muslims who's asses you bent over backwards to kiss in Cairo , Egypt on
June 4th were stone cold silent post 9-11. To many Americans, their
silence has meant approval for the acts of that day.

And THAT, Mr. Obama, is the "rich heritage" Muslims have here in America .

Oh, I'm sorry, I forgot to mention the Barbary Pirates. They were Muslim.

And now we can add November 5, 2009 - the slaughter of American soldiers
at Fort Hood by a Muslim major who is a doctor and a psychiatrist who was
supposed to be counseling soldiers returning from battle in Iraq and
Afghanistan .

Senin, 10 Mei 2010

The Joy of Being an Identical Twin

When the idea of writing Evil in the Mirror first started forming in my mind, I was a little apprehensive about telling my identical twin. After all, my intention was to make him the truly evil one. When I did mention it to him, his response was, "I bet I am going to be the real evil twin, aren't I?" "You guessed it, Bro."

As it turned out, I made myself the truly evil one (trying not to offend) and gave him a somewhat lesser role in the evil goings on. Of course, after he read a few chapters, his response was, "You always get top billing." Holy crap....I can't win for losing. The truth be known, my twin and I have an exciting, good life and we try to live it by the Golden Rule.

My brother's daughter read the rough draft and exclaimed, "Did you and my uncle really do all the stuff in the book?" "Good grief, Niece, it's just fiction. Get a life." My mother-in-law read about four chapters and then called her daughter to tell her she was fearful for my wife's safety. How could her son-in-law write such horrible, gruesome stuff? My wife answered, "It's just fiction, Mom, and it's called imagination."

After hearing about their reactions, I knew I had a great book....I may be black listed by my niece and mother-in-law, but there is a Best Seller on the horizon!

Write on,


Minggu, 09 Mei 2010


I found a most interesting event that left me wonderng, yet again, about Tom Peter's quote: Perception...Is all there is - Manage it! There is no reality!

World famous violinist Joshua Bell played unanounced with his multi-million dollar violin while in casual clothes at L'enfant Plaza Station in DC, as an experiment for the Washington Post.

If you read the experiment article, it will become obvious that "The more you think about time - the less time you have." As an author, I am always worried about time, but the more I think about it. Why? When I am writing a murder mystery, I become one with the characters and story. The story becomes my reality until I emerge back to my life.

Is the time I spend in my life reality wasted? I think not....if I stay too long in the murder mystery reality, I could get killed!

I'm just saying....


Sabtu, 08 Mei 2010

Evil in the Mirror


I never thought I would see the day, but here it is, and now the book can go into production. I would like to thank the Wheatmark Publishing team for all their hard work and especially Kat Gautreaux for her ability to get things done and her great sense of humor while the author was often in la-la land.

It will take about a month for the book to be at Amazon and other book stores, but in the meantime, you can pre-order the book at the Wheatmark Bookstore.

Of course, now the promotional work begins. I look forward to this phase of the project. I have book signing-parties planned at the Worm book store in Sedona, Arizona, and in Escondido, California, at our class reunion. Hopefully while visiting Escondido in August, I will have the pleasure of participating in some ghost hunting investigations with paranormal superstar Nancy Bradley and her team.

The real promotion of Evil in the Mirror will be on the Web. I still have much to learn about blogs, Twitter, Facebook and Amazon. These four tools will be my selling partners for the book. This process may not be as exciting as ego-building personal appearances, but the goal is to sell books.

What a journey this has been....and the ride isn't over yet!


Jumat, 07 Mei 2010

From The Ashes Of The Pheonix

The lessons of Vietnam are relevant to today's war against terrorismn. Below is part of a Stratigic Research Program written by LTC Kenneth E. Tovo. The reason it is part of my blog is because it gave me comfort to know these kinds of programs are happening all over the free world.

Click on this title if you want to read the entire program....Mittster

For five years during the Vietnam War, as part of its counterinsurgency strategy, the United States executed an attack, codenamed the Phoenix Program, against the Viet CongInfrastructure (VCI).

The VCI were the estimated 100,000 clandestine operatives living within South Vietnamese society that supported the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese units in the field. They performed recruiting, financing, political indoctrination, intelligence collection, and logistical support tasks. It was not until 1967 that a concerted effort was made to neutralize this component of the insurgency. As the program developed over time, it was extremely effective and severely hindered the insurgency’s ability to support operations against the regime.

Today, the United States is faced with another insurgency, conducted by militant Islamic fundamentalist organizations that seek the overthrow of friendly regimes, the reestablishment of an Islamic caliphate, and the eventual overthrow of Western civilization.

This paper argues that as part of its counterinsurgency effort against this threat, the United States must neutralize the militant Islamic infrastructure (MI2) that enables the insurgency’s global attacks.

The paper provides an overview of the Phoenix Program, outlines
the nature of the current insurgent threat, and identifies critical strategic lessons from the Vietnam experience that should be applied to a modern day Phoenix Program.

Kamis, 06 Mei 2010

Women Harley Riders

My favorite Harley-Davidson dealer, Buddy Stubbs in Phoenix, Arizona, is sponsoring Women Harley Riders Month. That got my attention, especially when they spotlighted Jullian Michaels! Anyone who doesn't think she looks good riding a Harley has got to be brain dead, blind or both!

Old school dictated that women rode on the back of a man's Harley. I am so glad that crap is over. Now we can see the women who ride and enjoy the eye candy.

It takes a special woman to ride a motorcycle and a very special woman to ride a Harley. I have seen a dramatic increase in women riders in the last ten years, and the quality of their riding has improved right along with their beauty. The Harley clothes are just as spectacular as the women wearing them!

OK, I admit that this old biker dude is happily married and doesn't stray, but when I stop appreciating the wonderful world of women, you can lower me for that last ride in a pine box....

I'm just saying,


Rabu, 05 Mei 2010

It's Only A Matter Of Time

I can't help but wonder if all the security agencies who protect the U.S.A. are looking behind their backs once in a while.

It seems to me that all the half-ass attempts to cause us harm are but a smoke screen to cover up a more sinister threat from weapons of mass destruction. Call it intuition or whatever, but I am scared to death everyday that something really bad is about to happen and it won't come from some stupid ass wipe that can't even build a bomb. Are you telling me that he spent five months in Afghanistan learning how to build the piece of crap he left in the parked SUV? Smoke screen folks....

I know, we have nothing to fear, except fear it's self. I got news for you, a healthy amount of fear can save lives. My fear is for the life's of innocent men, women and children who are doing nothing more than trying to earn a living, be happy, and live in peace.

My hat is off to the individual who spotted the suspicious vehicle and reported it. Let's keep our eyes and ears open so we can all help fight this war on terrorism.

I say, take the fight to the terrorist wherever they hide and drop Daisy Cutters on the spineless bastards until they are eradicated!

I'm just saying....


Selasa, 04 Mei 2010

The Possibilities Are Limitless

There is no limit to the physical universe, big or small. There is no limit to the spiritual universe, big or small. This provides mankind with unlimited possibilities, fitting the unlimited imagination of the human mind.

In the face of ever dire earthly conditions, this knowledge should inspire us to continue the good fight towards the day when love flows from the hearts of every human being. We know what that love is. It is the love that fills the heart and soul of an infant. It is the absolute trust of a child.

It is the image and likeness of our creator, which only through the purity of a child will we ever truly understand. Dig deep into the recesses of your secret self and you will find this love. It has always been there, waiting since birth, for you to rediscover.

In loving memory of my mom....