Category Archives: Uncategorized

Please Pray for My Sister

My sister, Alice, is still doing her workaholic thing, which involves her driving home from work at midnight and nodding off behind the wheel. This is not good; but it’s a compulsion with her, and has been for most of her life, and no one can say anything to get her to stop. So please pray for her.

O Lord our God, in Jesus’ name, please intervene in my sister’s life, and save her. She doesn’t know how to stop what she’s doing, and it’s dangerous. Have mercy on her, O Lord, and save her. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Nude Bus Driver Wins Powerball

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You know that old saying, “Never trust a nude bus driver”? I mean, gee, look what shape his bus is in! Maybe he can fix it up, now that he’s won $459 billion in the New Jersey Powerball. Like, he now owns the place… the whole state…

Sorry for the click bait, but I’ll do just about anything to try to boost my readership. Ever since they started Daylight Saving this year, my numbers are way down. And anyway, if you don’t think a prodigy like the one described above can happen, then you don’t know New Jersey.

P.S.–Remember, all the post you missed are waiting for you in the blog archives.

Joshua & Jeremy, ‘I’ll Fly Away’

I really enjoy the way these two friends of ours play music. I’ll Fly Away is a traditional country him.

What do we have to do to get these guys to sing, too?

‘What a Send-Off!’ (2015)

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The haka is often seen at sports events.

This demonstration of esteem for the departed is called a haka by the Maori people of New Zealand, who invented it. It can also be harnessed to praise the living, but it’s usually a funeral rite.

Click and watch the video: this is what I call a send-off! I wish I could have staged one for my brother-in-law. As a tribute to the dead, you can’t beat it.

Censored! (That Would Be Me)

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Well-nigh instantaneously, as I tried to post my weekly “Joe Collidge” piece on Facebook, I received the following message:

“Your message couldn’t be sent because it includes content that other people on Facebook have reported as abusive.”

What “other people”? Who had any opportunity to read it? I’d only just written it. Do they mean Mr. Algorithm?

I think I’ve figured out, though, which particular phrase set off the robot’s alarm bell. As an experiment, I’ll go back and try a minor edit. If it works, I’ll return to this post and add a P.S. In the meantime, I hope the picture of the happy puppies can spare me further censorship.

P.S.–I made the edit and still can’t post it. This time it’s some razzmatazz about not being able to download the message from my URL, whatever the deuce that means.

If any of you would like to experiment, try sharing the Joe Collidge post on your Facebook page and see what happens–and let me know.

Computer Hell

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I lost a big chunk of this morning because, as I was peacefully, innocently typing the last post some two hours ago, the computer suddenly decided it didn’t want to type anymore. Hit the keys, tap-tap-tap, and nothing happens. The screen did display a warning box of some kind, which flashed on and off in just a second, much too fast for me to read it. Something about “filter keys,” whatever that is.

So I went and did our weekend’s banking and grocery shopping alone while Patty stayed here and fixed the computer. The keyboard was locked, she had to unlock it: shut the computer down, then start it up again, easy as pie.

Michael Crichton had a pet peeve about stupid design in technology, which he mentioned in several of his books. Here, one of my fingers must have touched whatever key locks the keyboard–I have no idea which, and certainly never did it on purpose. The computer keyboard provides all kinds of opportunities for disaster. All it takes is one little slip-up. I once lost five chapters of one of my books because I hit a wrong key somehow, and that whole great big job of work simply disappeared forever. Maybe some Martian has it. I had to do the whole job over again. How wise I was! to decide to type up my books in limited-size chapter sets, and send them to the editor as I finished each one. It could have just as easily been the whole 80,000-word novel. But if I go on about it any more, I’m going to wake up screaming.

Time for a cigar.

A Provocative Thought

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We’re hearing a lot of alarums and excursions about measles and the need for everyone in America to get a measles vaccine, pronto.

But has anyone taken the trouble to wonder: What if you’re, like, real, real small? Say, the size of a dried pea? What then? How do you vaccinate a patient who’s that small?

We always talk about “measles.” It’s hard to see how such a tiny patient could ever carry a full crop of measles. Isn’t it much more likely that he or she would have room for only one measle? But is there any such word as “measle,” the singular form of measles? Has anybody ever had just one measle? We might even say “one measly measle.”

Are all measles pretty much the same size, or do they scale themselves according to the size of the patient? Someone knows.

Have you ever heard anybody say, “I have a measle”? I wonder what the treatment is, for just one measle.

Somebody’s gotta think of these things…

‘Bell Mountain Movie’ Contest–Hello? Hello?

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After a great February, this old blog has been in the doldrums so far this month. And the Bell Mountain Movie contest is even deeper in the doldrums. It’s still ongoing, but you’d never think so. A few readers have played it with great gusto, but they haven’t had much company.

To play, all you have to do is nominate actors to play four characters in a Bell Mountain Movie that will be made as soon as we can scrape up $200 million. Any four characters, any four actors. The winner gets an autographed certificate that’ll look fantastic on your resume when you apply for a job. There can even be more than one winner. And if you want to cast actors who aren’t with us anymore, that’s fine–it’s what I always do.

Of course, in order to play, it helps if you’ve read one or more of the books. Ah, there’s the rub!

I meant to keep the contest going until Book No. 11 in the series, The Temptation, is published. I don’t know when that’ll be, but it should be soon. Meanwhile, the contest needs more players. (Ah, for the days of the Christmas Carol Contest! That was a blast, wasn’t it?)

Anyway, we’ve got some interesting posts and great comments today–tell your friends what they’re missing.

Another Blogging Milestone

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WordPress tells me that today I have blogged here for 1,700 days in a row. Is that a milestone or a millstone? I must be crazy.

When I got up this morning there was an inch and a half of snow on the ground and the governor of New Jersey had declared a state of emergency. This is rather hard to believe.

Anyway, here I am with 1,700 days in a row. Maybe it’ll help my books find readers. It’s not like I can put up a billboard or something.

I have no way of knowing what kind of fruit, if any, my writing will produce. Sow the seed and pray it lands on good ground.

Music for the ‘Bell Mountain’ Movie

This is not part of the movie contest–which is still on, by the way–it’s just my non-negotiable demand that Bernard Herrmann compose and conduct the music score. The above is his introductory music for Jason and the Argonauts (1963), one of my all-time absolute favorite movies. It’s got everything a good movie should have–a homicidal bronze giant, flying harpies, a skeleton hit squad–and whatever was happening on screen, Bernard Herrmann had the perfect music for it.

As for the cast-the-movie contest, we have entries so far from (he pauses to count on his fingers) half a dozen readers. Shoot, I was hoping to at least run out of fingers.

I know, I know: you can’t cast the movie if you haven’t read any of the books. I also know I need more readers. Like, lots more.

Let’s keep the contest running a little longer, in hopes of getting more entries. The winner or winners will get a signed certificate in recognition of their wisdom, perspicacity, and good taste. Let’s face it, with only six entries–albeit quite enthusiastic entries which most of us have enjoyed reading–this is something short of the Irish Sweepstakes. I’m sorry I didn’t let Lord Reesh run the contest, but it’d too late now.

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