November 30, 2008

Give Thanks Week Day 6

Filed under: Essays — unwriter1 @ 8:56 am
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I’m still working on these. Then it’s back to the same boring stuff, except for three days of book tours and those will be exciting! There is a special treat coming up for Marv.

Words fly through the air
To my friends that really care
It would truly be a treat
If many I could actually meet

How many friends can a person find
The Internet is a virtual goldmine
It doesn’t matter where they live
Around the world, friendship they give

From the location where you are
People you meet from near and far
Send out greetings east and west
North and south and all the rest

You reach the whole world through the end of your fingers
The slowness of snail mail no longer hinders
Meeting so many on line is done fast
Friendships are made that grow and do last

©Joyce Anthony and Ron Berry

I had to add Joyce to that poem because I totally ran out of words that go together. It’s back to poetry 001. Neither of us have been offered the position of poet laurite yet, but it’s coming (not).

I’m on day six and I still haven’t covered all the friends I’ve made on the Internet! I have to learn to write these faster than I make friends. That’s hard to do when one blogs as much as I have been. Let me see whom I miss today because sure as heck I won’t cover everybody. I will try to mention all the friends I have that I am thankful for. This set of blog posts has been a real eye opener for me. I didn’t realize how many people I had met, how many became friends. So without further obtuse rhetoric, let’s continue with the list.

Bonnie Doss-Knight writes non-fiction and is seeking to break into the fiction market. She will. As one of two dear friends editing my non-humorous attempt at fiction, she is ready for her breakthrough great American novel.

A wonderful lady who is quite ill right now has nurtured me along from day one is Barbara Williamson-Wood or Babs as we affectionately call her. We even had our own coded words on messenger called babese. Thanks to her I am much of what I am today.

Linda Valintino is an aspiring writer that now blogs. She does a lot of recipes and is good at making me hungry. And mystery knitter (she can spell her name, I can’t, Pirjo Ilvesvuori) is Finnish and a dual language writer. I do good to put together things in English.

From the great southwest is Joyce Scarbrough. I’ve read both books she has out and it reminds me of my high school years. Then we skip to Rome and meet Jo Linsdell, an English transplant that wrote an excellent book of translations.

I’m going to stop here. I have missed so many and tomorrow I have my toastmaster crew. For all that I did not name, you are still high on my friends list. But above all, the whole idea of this week is to give thanks for all that we have. Material possessions mean nothing, but the friends we have, the kindnesses we do, are what we must thank our God, our spiritual deity, or whomever is the driving force in your life.

Thank you, God; for all that I have for I have a life enriched even more by the friends you’ve shown me.


November 29, 2008

The Great Escape

Filed under: humor — unwriter1 @ 10:32 am
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“Listen up everyone! We’re crammed in here like sardines. It’s time we start organizing and get out of here.”

“But where will we go?”

“That’s part of what we need to work out. If we stay here, we’re all going to end up in hot water.”

They were pretty far up but at least they were still dry. However, they knew their days of captivity would soon come to an end. From the rumors spreading throughout the camp, captives are tortured before their final demise. No one has ever escaped before. Their plan was daring, to say the least.

“Chief, what do we do when we get out?”

“How many times do I have to tell you, don’t call me chief.”

“Uh, this was the first time??”

“Oh, ok, well don’t I don’t want the captors going after the leader first.”

That’s how it always is, get the leader and then the rebellion falls apart. This time they wanted it to be different. It had to be done right the first time; there would be no second chance. They had been confined for so long they didn’t even know what the weather was like. If nothing else their captors did keep it warm for them. A couple of times the roof almost collapsed but the enemy soon remedied that.

“Ok everyone, get out of your uniforms, we’re walking out of here without them. Maybe we won’t be detected.”

“Are we all going at one time?”

“No, that isn’t a good idea. Going one or two at a time we should be able to escaped detection.”

The plan was set; all they needed now were the right moments. There were over thirty captives, so it would take time for everyone to make it. It was tight quarters but little by little everyone got their sea legs. All that was missing was the opening and that was soon to arrive. Suddenly a shaft of light was visible. Was this to be the great day? No, it went away as fast as it appeared. At least the false alarm proved they were ready when it did come. There was no light in their prison so they could not tell day from night. Sleep was hard but they made sure at least one was awake. The posted guard would pull the string of the closest individual when the great day arrived.

Almost caught off guard, the shaft of light quickly appeared and didn’t go away. Without hesitation, the first two prisoners made their escape. Unknown to the rest however, they didn’t get very far. They jumped as far as they could, but both landed in something soft, and very warm. They were trapped and knew their number was up. They should have left themselves a lifeline so they could be pulled up, but instead that line was immersed within that gooey mess they were being held by.

“Mom, What is this teabag doing in the spaghetti sauce?”

November 28, 2008

Today is the lucky day for three people

Filed under: tag — unwriter1 @ 8:05 am
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I have been given the honor of selecting three people to write Christmas stories. Love these tag games.

Katrina, you write so well, would you honor us with a sample of Christmas from your perspective?

Carol Percer, you have cornered Salvatore, so why not convince him to share how he spends his holidays? You can just bleep out his bad language.

Joyce Anthony, You are still my favorite author but I have a challenge for you. How about a three part story, with Aaron and Shane putting in their part?


Have fun people, looking forward to the stories.

Let’s make this even more fun. You each get to tag three for a new years story.

Give Thanks Week Day 5. This is a double post day.

Filed under: writing — unwriter1 @ 8:00 am
Tags: , , ,

Today is day five of what may be more than a week of giving special thanks. Join me and thank your friends for being there for you also.

Strangers are friends we’ve yet to meet
Some are grouchy while others are sweet
But even the surly ones a friend they can be
Because without my coffee describes the worst of me

It doesn’t matter where you live
Love from your heart you can give
Through the mail, or over the net
New friends you will have met

I look back on my life with pride
The things I did and the things I tried
Strangers far away that I soon knew
Soon became from me to you

A person from some faraway place
Their friendship now doth grace
My heart goes out across the great lands
My circle of friends forever expands

Ok, so it ain’t the greatest of poems but after all that turkey, my writing is really fowl. This may be a bit longer than normal because I have so many friends to be grateful to have met. I hope I don’t miss anyone yet I know for sure that I will. If I don’t have you in this list, please forgive me because too much cranberry sauce limits my memory storage.

As before, these are not in any particular order. That isn’t quite true, there are two in this first part of the list because they have been offered a most enjoyable task.

Katrina Wampler I met online and found her to be fascinating! I’ll learn more since she is being tagged for a Christmas story. With her sense of humor, this will be worth waiting for.

Joyce Anthony, a wonderful person but I’d like to see a three-piece story here. Let’s see if Shane and Aaron will contribute a few words (or pages).

Carol Percer is great to talk to, but I would like her to take us back to the hard scrabble (thanks Joyce for that word), days of mob controlled New York. How will Salvatore spend the holidays?

I started an online group for writers. I then met Becky (Yeah, I know it’s Rebekah but I can’t spell that). She has her own group. So, like a good online sister, we made our groups into a family. Then Pastor Mazzulla III added his cousin group.

From the far east, ok, the far eastern shore of Pennsylvania, comes Dani Calhoun. We’ve bounced around on Messenger for quite a bit. She’s had her male friend problems and I can’t say I haven’t had a few of my share of problems (you thought I was going to say female problems, didn’t ya?)

I’ve got Star Trek beat. I’m already in Texas saying hi to Bo Drury. She’s sent me a lot of special emails all of which are greatly appreciated.

I’ve invited a S. Dakota friend to move south. It may only be a few mile south and a few east, but it would be into a circle of friends waiting. Hi Terre, you’re one special young lady.

I can’t forget jay in the Carolina’s. He has one jumping group. We should expect the next great novel to come from this collection of writers.

It was in his group that I met Cathy Brownfield. What an amazing gal. Writing and college and housework is mind-boggling. I get bogged down just doing dishes.

Here is a list of friends I found just by doing book tours. Jean Henry Mead, You’ll have a ball on the 8th of December. Karina Fabian, join us at the Catholic writers conference. Lea Schizas invited me to the museitup conference. I didn’t think I could do it but she did. I did dun did it. Mayra Calvani wrote the bible for writing book reviews. I learned a lot reading that.

I can’t forget Trockle and his partner, Holly Jahangiri (Thank goodness for twitter, helps me with spelling), and also Vivian Zabel. Then of course there is Truth in Intimacy with Lacresha Hayes and her husband Lensey.

From those two paragraphs above I could write a book. I also realized my list of friends will have to be extended into another day! Now that alone is something to be very thankful for. So the bottom line of this post is simply:

Thank you all, for being my friends.

November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving double post

Filed under: writing — unwriter1 @ 7:33 am
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Today is double post day. The first is my thanksgiving story, the second is Give Thanks Week, day 4

A turkey story
“Hey Tom, somebody’s looking for ya.”

“Ya, I know, now get outta here while I’m getting dressed.”

“Ha Ha, that’s what you’re wanted for, someone wants to see you dressed.”

“Yeah, I know, that’s why I’m getting dressed.”

“You look like a real dork in that pig suit.”

“I’d rather swim in mud than gravy.”

So it was, Old Tom, dressed as a nice, fat, pig, joined the smaller piglets. He was too small to fit with the old bores, er, boars but looked like a large piglet. It was November and time for all the relatives to bore, I mean, keep each other company over a nice juicy turkey. He knew he would be safe this year. He watched Grandpa go heads over tail feathers the previous year. Tom had no plans to lose his mind worrying about it. He had other plans.

“Hey Martha, how many of those dadblamed relatives are coming this year?”

“Well, let’s see, cousin Tilly has four kids and three of the grands. Aunt George is bringing her bunch, around seven. Your brother and his brood were planning on mooching, I mean, stopping by. Ma is coming by and bringing her latest catch and that crowd. Guess we’re up to about thirty.”

“Ok, I’ll git the punkins in fer ya.”

Max had to get the pumpkins because to make that many pies took a bit of doing. He had already brought in a bushel of apples. He had conned, er, talked his brother and his wife into the sweet ‘taters. Everyone else was bringing something. But now came the real problem. There weren’t enough birds to feed all the turkeys coming this year. He thought about a nice roast, but it just didn’t fit the holiday. Well, since they were hosting the festivities, they might as well ham it up as best they could. He knew those hogs, er, relatives, could really pig out. Wow! An idea.

He knew what supper would be, do you?

November 26, 2008

Give Thanks Week day 4

Filed under: Essays — unwriter1 @ 8:00 pm
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Tomorrow is the big day so I am posting this one early. Please give thanks to all in your life, human and animal.


GTW Day 4

You are my brother, it’s in the book
I don’t see how, considering how you look
You’ve got bumps in places I ain’t got
That’s what makes you look so hot

No matter how hard I try
I’m still nothing but a guy
But one look at you
I see beauty that is true

So how can we be kin
Because you’re not my twin
You’re not even related to me
Yet you’re my brother, how can that be

That tells me there are families out there
With people that often do more than care
These are the extended families we hear
That come into our lives and are so dear

The good book says you are your brother’s keeper. So then who takes care of your sister? Well, in this context, brother covers everybody, every gender. It implies that all on earth are one happy family. If that is the case then why does dad hit mom? Why did my brother run away? Why is my sister living in California and not talking to any of us? These are just some of the hazards within biological families. They don’t always get along. There is of course the families that do get along well or the fractured families like mine. I live with my ex wife. We may remarry but that’s down the road. We’ve covered most of these cases already.

I have another series of Internet friends to cover, but that is for Friday. Today I have one very important group that must receive special thanks. We call them extended families. Often these people are closer to us than the biological one and know us better. Should you find yourself as a member of an extended family, kneel down and pray extra hard for their continued happiness and good health. If you find the rare case of belong to two different extended families you have multiple times to be thankful. I do. We are spending the day with our extended family here. My other extended family is celebrating with peanut butter pie and all the other assorted goodies. I won’t go into what because it makes me hungry to think of it.

What is an extended family you ask? These are those people you choose to be your brother, sister, cousin or not even named, relative. They are in every respect, family except for the biological aspect. You almost always are much closer to this family than to your ‘real’ one. But if you don’t have one, now is a good time to adopt one, even if for only a day. That man you saw on the corner begging because he has no home, no food. Offer to share Thanksgiving with him. It may just be the incentive needed to propel him into changing his life. Even if it doesn’t do anything for him, it will change you forever. You’ll feel warmth in your heart to know you helped someone, a stranger.

Today is Thanksgiving. Please allow me this opportunity to extend my warmest wishes to all my readers and my most heartfelt prayers to my extended families.

Give Thanks Week Day 3

Filed under: writing — unwriter1 @ 2:30 am
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There are people we’ve never met
Yet we know them well, from the net
We talk to them in words and phrases
We offer criticism and our praisesHow many of them do we really know
It is just in their words do they show
Who they are and what they do
Are their words really true

You know them better than some you can see
Because they have themselves openly to thee
You can tell who is good from one that is not
From the words they use, you can learn a lot

You want to trust them, to tell them you care
But how do you open up, do you dare
Take it step by step; you’ll know you’re right
As your friendship takes its glorious flight

It’s the latest in pen pal technology. Instead of sending letters and waiting days, weeks, and sometimes months for an answer, we hear back almost instantly. We have email and messenger. Our friends are next door, in another city, another state or even another country! We know them better than we do our own family sometimes. Tonight is a bit different because I am going to honor some individuals separately. The folks I’m listing are a short list of the people I know on the net and why they are special. I’m starting with Joyce for one simple reason. I have the most to thank her for, including introducing me to the two that are after her. This is not a prioritized list, nor is in all-inclusive. But I wanted to issue my thanks for all these kind folks have done and been for me.

Joyce is the kindest young lady I have ever met. She told me early on she believed in me. It has been my driving force. Rose, the wife also believes in me but when someone you’ve never met says it, it seems to carry more weight. I have since met Joyce and my opinion of her is as high or higher than before. She has taught me people skills (still is). From her I learned the value of faith, and from her son Shane, what true spirituality is. She did not teach me how to write, but she taught me to believe in myself and in my ability to write. I saw in her, someone I could trust completely. She can be brutal in her honesty but yet kind at the same time. I learned true compassion for the misfortune of others, especially animals. Joyce is what a true friend really is. Through her, I met Marvin Wilson and Janet Elaine Smith.

Marvin Wilson, Paize to many, is a prolific spiritual writer. His blog is an inspiration to many. I can’t list his accomplishments because I only have 160 gig hard drive. I have a lot of respect and admiration for Marv. He has come from the depths of hell on the wings of angels. In his ascent from the dregs of society he brought lessons for all of us. He does so with stark reality and a lot of humor.

Speaking of humor, the moose didn’t do it. This is a running joke between Janet Elaine Smith and myself. Her murder mystery books have more humor than Saturday night live, yet there is a dark mystery in each of them. How she can write so much is beyond me. She is among my inner circle of friends.

Carol Percer is also in that inner circle. We chat almost daily. All too often I see me in what she says and I know the errors I’ve made. I learn the hard way. But, as with my other friends, we learn, get past hurts and go on. I’m just a stubborn old coot sometimes. But, I also look forward to her IM’s every day. We have a lot in common, especially in music.

Angie Hartson is also on this inner circle. We just happen to be very close but then after 40 years, what else could we be? She is also one of the very few family members that I claim. We know each other like a book. Yes, Angie is very special.

Tomorrow I will cover a few more, but for all that I list, and the ones I missed, I am thankful and proud to say I know you. I give thanks every day for this, my closest list of friends. Covered more tomorrow will be: Becky, Katrina, Terre, and others, come on back.

November 25, 2008

A short afternoon note

Filed under: humor — unwriter1 @ 6:46 pm
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Laughs from Corn Country is now available from Lulu in paperback! Click on the link in the sidebar.

Give Thanks Week, Day 2

Filed under: writing — unwriter1 @ 1:54 am
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It is from you, from your heart
Forgive the past, today you start
No more hate, give your sins to God
Coming from above, his love will nod

You are not alone, look around you
In your life how many friends are true
Remember them, starting today
For each, should you pray

The rest of your life starts right now
For all your friends, this should be your vow
Forgive them their errors, remember their love
Offer them a pray of peace, sent with the white dove

Friends are precious and hard to find
True friends have the ties that bind
Treat those around you with care
Be nice and treat everyone fair

That stranger you just saw over yonder
Tomorrow you may meet them then wonder
Was he a stranger or a friend you have yet to meet
Everyone is a stranger, until you say hi, and don’t retreat

Yesterday we offered our thanks to the ultimate part of our lives, our superior being, whether it’s God or a deity by some other name. Let us now bring it back to the earthly plane and offer our thanks to those around us that mean the most. Today we offer our thanks to those we call our friends. They may or may not be relatives, although tomorrow’s post will cover them.

For those of us that believe in prayer, let us now offer them for our friends for health, happiness, love and peace. Let us now thank them for being part of our lives. For those that do not believe in prayer, you also have friends and please, offer them the same thanks and add the desire we put in our prayers.

The old expression is, “No man is an island” isn’t quite true. There are too many homeless, too many forgotten veterans that are alone. Turn one from a stranger to a friend. Your life will be enriched as well as theirs. Smile and say hi to one who is alone. It costs nothing but the warmth that is shared is immeasurable.

We are all but guests on this wonderful ball of ground and water. We need to treat it as we would expect a guest in our home would. Having said that, we are all guests and should treat each other accordingly. I am a guest in and on your home as much as you are on mine and the rest of the inhabitants of this round globe. Let us treat each other with that kind of respect.

November 23, 2008

Give Thanks Week

Filed under: Essays — unwriter1 @ 1:57 pm
Tags: , , ,

I’m worthless. I don’t have any money, the car is broke and I’m almost out of food. To make matters worse, that stupid Thanksgiving is coming and I have to go over to my wife’s/husbands relatives. What in the h— do I have to give thanks for anyway? My life is a shambles. There’s too much month for too little money. Give me a break, life sucks.

Sound familiar? How many of us have been there or are there? This is the start of a new tradition, Give Thanks Week or GTW. I’m starting it, but I’ll need you, my blessed readers to remind me of it since my memory is not what it used to be, I don’t think (I can’t remember what it used to be). Let’s start with what I said above then I’ll put in my first day of thanks.

Worthless means of little or no value so the question is, are you really worthless? Look around you. You have a family. You mean something to them. You have a car, so you’ve earned or are earning a living so you mean something to an employer. So you are not worthless. You don’t have any money, that’s sad, but you can earn some. As soon as you earn ten dollars that puts you in the top ten percent of the richest people on earth. You have a car, well, well, how many people on this blue planet don’t have a home? Food? There are dozens a day starving to death daily. So, how stupid is Thanksgiving? You have so much when so many have so little. Try again.

Guess what folks, a lot of what I wrote in that first paragraph applied to me. My self-esteem was in the toilet for sixty years. Thanksgiving was food. Oh I was wise enough to know to be thankful for some materialistic reasons. I was even thankful some of my relatives were around. Heck I even had a friend, I think. I went through the ‘what good am I’ routine many times. Then I realized several things. I realized I had a talent. It didn’t do me a heck of a lot of good, but I felt like I knew how to do something. That was two years ago. I made a very good friend who knocked some sense into my head. It was the kick in the right place at the right time. More about friends later this week. First I need to give thanks to the one that matters the most. There is, in every life, one that needs the most thanks and I’m no exception. I am offering thanks to the one that provides inspiration. I am offering thanks to the one that first believed in me. I am offering thanks to the one that should have been in my life at a much earlier age. Let’s face it, I led a very empty, shallow life. Then I met my mentor, my most important part of my life.

I was introduced early in life, but only recently did I reconnect and understand just how important God has been in my life. I hereby offer my sincere thanks and all prayers to God. It is he that knows my needs. It is to heaven that I send my pain. It is from heaven I receive my strongest love. It is to God I owe all that I am or ever will be.

This is my first day of thanks. Let’s hear yours.

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