Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Twelve things learned in 2020

2020 —Here are 12 things to consider as we get closer to closing the door on one of the most horrible years of our lifetime: 
 
1. The dumbest thing I ever bought was a 2020 planner.
 
2. I was so bored I called Jake from State Farm just to talk to someone. He asked me what I was wearing.
 
3. 2019: Stay away from negative people. 2020: Stay away from positive people.
 
4. The world has turned upside down. Old folks are sneaking out of the house & their kids are yelling at them to stay indoors!
 
5. This morning I saw a neighbor talking to her dog. It was obvious she thought her dog understood her. I came into my house & told my cat. We laughed a lot.
 
6. Every few days try your jeans on just to make sure they fit. Pajamas will have you believe all is well in the kingdom.
 
7. Does anyone know if we can take showers yet or should we just keep washing our hands?
 
8. This virus has done what no woman has been able to do. Cancel sports, shut down all bars & keep men at home!
 
9. I never thought the comment, “I wouldn’t touch him/her with a 6-foot pole” would become a national policy, but here we are!
 
10. I need to practice social-distancing from the refrigerator.
 
11. I hope the weather is good tomorrow for my trip to the Backyard. I’m getting tired of the Living Room.
 
12. Never in a million years could I have imagined I would go up to a bank teller wearing a mask & ask for money.
 
Merry Christmas to all and here’s hoping for a Happier New Year!
 
I "borrowed" this from a co-worker in our work chatroom.

Monday, December 28, 2020

VA EAGLES NEST COMMUNITY LIVING CENTER UPDATE

Forwarding on Behalf of Ann Brown, Medical Center Director, Atlanta VAHCS

 

Good Morning Everyone – I’m writing today to provide an update regarding the Eagles’ Nest Community Living Center here at the Atlanta VA Health Care System.

 

At the beginning of this pandemic, we made the difficult decision to move the Eagles' Nest CLC residents to other nearby facilities in areas experiencing less of a surge of COVID-19 cases for their safety. As a result, no Atlanta VA CLC residents that were moved currently have the virus.  We thank the other VA Southeast Network facilities for continuing to provide high-quality healthcare during the pandemic that our residents are accustomed to receiving.  It has since been determined that the building is no longer suitable for residential patient care.

 

VISN 7 and the Atlanta VA Health Care System leadership are taking decisive action to take care of Veterans' needs in Georgia now and into the future. The Atlanta VA Health Care System is developing a comprehensive plan to expand the long-term care services in the metro-Atlanta area to ensure greater access within the local community for the Veterans we are entrusted to serve.

 

Each Veteran's family are being contacted  right now to ensure they are informed of the short and long-term plans for their loved one's care. We will continue to provide opportunities for the Veterans to virtually connect with their family and loved ones during their time at the other CLCs within our region.

 

We know this is not going to be easy for our Veterans and their families. However, while the decision to not relocate the residents back to Eagle’s Nest was difficult, I firmly believe it is the right one.  Our Veterans deserve the best, and we are committed to ensuring our Veterans and their families are provided world-class care safely and in a high-quality facility without delay.

 

My staff and I are committed to providing updates to our Veterans and their families as we have them and as we can share. We will keep you and your staff informed as well as our long-term plans are finalized.

 

Thank you, and if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

 

I hope each of you and your families have a wonderful holiday season!

 

Ann

 

EDITORS COMMENTS:

 

THE SECTIONS ON BOLD ARE WHAT I CONSIDER TO BE THE POINTS OF INTEREST. 


The VA has experienced some problems at Eagles Nest and is good to see that they are trying to do something to fix it, 


I'm glad none of the residents were infected with COVID and that they are receiving quality care.


My questions are how did Eagles Nest  become unfit and why it took a pandemic to decide on that status. If it is unfit for residential use, does that make it unfit for a homeless shelter? For overflow in-patient service?

 

I would hope that the VA has a plan in the works to re-establish this facility into a top notch operation. If the problem is funding, lets get an increase in the budget to take care of veterans. We deserve it and the 22 Vets who commit suicide every day deserve a chance to live.


I have always received top notch care in the VA Medical system and have terrific Doctors who take pride in their work and take satisfaction in helping rather than monetary rewards.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Depression tips

 

Shower. Not a bath, a shower. Use water as hot or cold as you like. You don’t even need to wash. Just get in under the water and let it run over you for a while. Sit on the floor if you gotta.
 
Moisturize everything. Use whatever lotion you like. Unscented? Dollar store lotion? Fancy 48 hour lotion that makes you smell like a field of wildflowers? Use whatever you want, and use it all over your entire dermis. 
 
Put on clean, comfortable clothes. 
 
Put on your favorite underwear. Cute black lacy panties? Those ridiculous boxers you bought last Christmas with candy cane hearts on the butt? Put them on.
 
Drink cold water. Use ice. If you want, add some mint or lemon for an extra boost. I always use lemon. 
 
Clean something. Doesn’t have to be anything big. Organize one drawer of a desk. Wash five dirty dishes. Do a load of laundry. Scrub the bathroom sink. 
 
Blast music. Listen to something upbeat and dance and loud, something that’s got lots of energy. Sing to it, dance to it, even if you suck at both.
 
Make food. Don’t just grab a granola bar to munch. Take the time and make food. Even if it’s ramen. Add something special to it, like a soft boiled egg or some veggies. Prepare food, it tastes way better, and you’ll feel like you accomplished something. 
 
Make something. Write a short story or a poem, draw a picture, color a picture, fold origami, crochet or knit, sculpt something out of clay, anything artistic. Even if you don’t think you’re good at it. Create. 
 
Go outside. Take a walk. Sit in the grass. Look at the clouds. Smell flowers. Put your hands in the dirt and feel the soil against your skin.
 
Call someone. Call a loved one, a friend, a family member, call a chat service if you have no one else to call. Talk to a stranger on the street. Have a conversation and listen to someone’s voice. If you can’t bring yourself to call, text or email or whatever, just have some social interaction with another person. Even if you don’t say much, listen to them. It helps. 
 
Cuddle your pets if you have them/can cuddle them. Take pictures of them. Talk to them. Tell them how you feel, about your favorite movie, a new game coming out, anything. 
 
May seem small or silly to some, but this list keeps people alive. 
 
**Your absolute best won’t ever be good enough for the wrong people. At your worst, you’ll still be worth it to the right ones. Remember that. Keep holding on. In case nobody has told you today I love you and you are worth your weight and then some in gold. So be kind to yourself and most of all keep pushing on!!!!
**copied and pasted, feel free to do the same**

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Vaudeville Never Died 2

  If you’re American when you go in the bathroom… and American when you come out, what are you in the bathroom? European. 

 What did the fish say when he swam into a wall? Dam. 

 What do you call a fish with no eyes? A fsh. (That's why it swam into a wall. (BRH))

 Why are you scrolling down? It's your turn to say something. 

 I sold my vacuum the other day. All it was doing was collecting dust. 

 What is Forrest Gump’s email password? 1forrest1. 

 Did you hear about the guy who invented the knock knock joke? He won the “no-bell” prize. 

 Did you hear about the fire in the shoe factory? 10,000 soles were lost. The police said some heels started it. 

 Two guys walk into a bar. The third guy ducks. 

 What do you call a fake noodle? An impasta. 

 Did you hear the story about the claustrophobic astronaut? He just needed some space. 

 What do you call an alligator in a vest? An in-vest-igator. 

 What kind of tea is hard to swallow? Reality.

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Vaudeville Never Died 1

 A man and a giraffe walk into a bar. After a few drinks, the giraffe falls over and dies. The man begins to walk out when the bartender stops him. “Hey, you can’t leave that lyin’ there!” The bartender yells out. The man turns around: “It’s not a lion. It’s a giraffe.” 

Why can’t a nose be 12 inches long? Because then it’d be a foot.  

Why don’t dinosaurs talk? Because they’re dead.

The wedding was so beautiful. Even the cake was in tiers. 

What did the janitor say when he jumped out of the closet? “Supplies!”  

What did the buffalo say when his son left? Bison! 

What do you call a can opener that doesn’t work? A can’t opener!

Did you hear about the Italian chef who died? He pasta-way.

Monday, December 21, 2020

News of the Weird 2

 DIY meal kit -- The Design Museum in London has included a "DIY meal kit" featuring steaks that could be grown from a diner's own human cells among the nominees in its Beazley Designs of the Year exhibit. Developers of the Ouroboros Steak envision that an individual will be able to harvest cells from their own cheek and feed them with serum derived from donated blood that has expired, Dezeen reported. After about three months, the steaks would be fully grown. "People think that eating oneself is cannibalism, which technically this is not," said Grace Knight, one of the designers. Researcher Orkan Telhan added, "Our design is scientifically and economically feasible but also ironic in many ways," he added. [Dezeen, 11/13/2020] 

o-o-O-o-o

Hand Sanitizer Hazard -- College student Benjamin LaRose of Millis, Massachusetts, is recovering from third-degree burns he suffered at an outdoor party with friends this fall when someone used hand sanitizer as an accelerant in the fire pit they were gathered around, Boston25 reported. "It was rather sudden how quick it reacted," LaRose said, "very much like napalm," catching his leg and shorts on fire and requiring skin grafts to treat the burns. LaRose's pediatrician, Dr. Lester Hartman, warned of the dangers of using hand sanitizer and then being exposed to open flames: "Alcohol is very volatile and explosive ... and people that are doing a barbecue or even lighting a cigarette or lighting a candle" need to let the alcohol evaporate first. Or, experts say, use soap and water. [Boston25, 10/5/2020] 

 

Saturday, December 19, 2020

News of the Weird 1

Name Change -- After more than 1,000 years, the Austrian town of F--king is getting a new name, The Local reported. English-speaking tourists have had a field day snapping selfies with city signs, even stealing them, and the 100 residents of modern-day F--king have had enough. According to the minutes of a municipal council meeting published on Nov. 16, the town will change its name to Fugging as of Jan. 1. "I can confirm that the village is being renamed," said Andrea Holzner, mayor of the surrounding municipality. "I really don't want to say anything more." [The Local, 11/28/2020] 

o-o-O-o-o

Walking it Off -- After a heated argument with his wife in late November, a 48-year-old unnamed man from Como, Italy, stepped outside to walk it off and kept on walking until he was stopped a week later by police officers patrolling after curfew in Gimarra, more than 260 miles away, Oddity Central reported. The man said he had walked the entire way, without using any other modes of transportation and relied on the kindness of strangers for food and drink. "I'm fine. I'm just a little tired," he said. His wife, who had reported him missing, picked him up the next day, but had to pay a fine of almost $500 for his violation of the curfew. [Oddity Central, 12/3/2020] 

o-o-O-o-o

Monoliths -- Germany has also experienced a recent monolith mystery, according to the Associated Press. Local media in southern Germany reported the disappearance on Nov. 30 of a wooden phallus sculpture about 7 feet tall that inexplicably appeared on Gruenten Mountain several years ago and had became a destination for hikers and tourists, even appearing on Google Maps as a "cultural monument." But over the weekend, someone chopped it down, leaving only a pile of sawdust. Police in the town of Kempten are investigating. [Associated Press, 11/30/2020] 

o-o-O-o-o

Incompetent Criminal -- Daniel M. Rizza, 20, of McKeesport, Pennsylvania, driving a gray Audi SUV, ran out of gas on Nov. 27 and called state police to ask for help, but when he was told a trooper would be responding, he abruptly said he'd changed his mind and hung up, according to court documents. WTAJ reported the trooper responding to the call learned en route that a gray Audi had been reported stolen nearby earlier in the day, and after a check of the SUV's make, model, identification number and registration, he arrested Rizza, who was charged with a felony count of receiving stolen property. [WTAJ, 11/30/2020]

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Army Missing Soldier Policy Created

Army Missing Soldier Policy Created to Prevent Disappearances Ending in Tragedy 

 The Army has announced a new classification system for missing soldiers in response to an independent review of Fort Hood, Texas that found that many sergeants showed an "unwillingness or lack of ability" to keep track of their soldiers. 

The new policy is designed to create greater urgency to find soldiers when they fail to report for duty. It comes in the aftermath of the disappearance and murder of Spc. Vanessa Guillen and other Hood soldiers who were found dead after being listed as absent without leave. Guillen, a 20-year-old 3rd Cavalry Regiment soldier, went missing in April. It wasn't until July that her remains were discovered and identified. She was allegedly murdered by a fellow soldier, Spc. Aaron Robinson, shortly after leaving base.

Guillen's murder prompted the Army to form a five-member, civilian Fort Hood Independent Review Committee, which made a two-week fact-finding mission to Hood in late summer to examine the command climate and culture at the massive post. "The murder of Spc. Vanessa Guillen shocked our conscience and brought attention to deeper problems," McCarthy told reporters at the Pentagon 8 DEC. 

In response to the findings of the independent review, McCarthy signed a directive giving clear guidelines to leaders on actions to take when soldiers are missing from duty. "The policy will assist in tracking and finding missing soldiers," McCarthy said. "It clarifies expectations and responsibilities of unit commanders and [Army] law enforcement authorities focusing on the first 48 hours of when a soldier is missing." 

Under the new policy, commanders must determine from evidence that a soldier's absence is voluntary to classify their duty status as AWOL. Otherwise, commanders will classify absent personnel as "missing," and the Army will simultaneously initiate a "duty status whereabouts unknown" (DUSTWUN) casualty case, according to an Army news release on the policy. Opening a DUSTWUN casualty case is designed to provide the soldier's family with a liaison officer while it attempts to locate the missing soldier. 

Guillen wasn't the only Fort Hood soldier never again seen alive after going missing. Pvt. Gregory Morales was last seen on Aug. 19, 2019, days before he was set to be discharged from the service. He was originally classified as AWOL and later listed as a deserter. Morales' remains were discovered in a field on 19 JUN as investigators were searching for Guillen, leading Army officials to suspect his death was the result of foul play. 

The independent review committee found that the command climate didn't recognize "the slippage in accountability procedures and unwillingness or lack of ability of noncommissioned officers to keep track of their subordinates," according to the report. "The accountability for soldiers at the first muster, or various musters during the day, had slipped, particularly during COVID-19," said Chris Swecker, chairman of the review committee and retired assistant director for the FBI. 

Part of the problem was that NCOs didn't seem to know enough about their soldiers, he said; the other part of the problem was with all the regulations and all the protocols in the Army and all the procedures, there was none for a failure to report. "There are rules and procedures around AWOL and when to carry that as a status ... but at the front, first-line level, each NCO had to rely on their own devices and their own judgment and their own experience as to whether that failure to report was under suspicious circumstances or circumstances where the soldier might be in jeopardy," said Swecker, who applauded the Army's new policy for missing soldiers. "It starts on hour one. Any missing person case, the first 24 hours is extremely critical; you can't get started 24 hours into it. You have to start on Hour One. 

The review included nine findings and 70 recommendations addressing major flaws in the Army's Sexual Harassment and Assault Response Prevention (SHARP) program at Hood, as well as a "command climate at Fort Hood that that was permissive of sexual harassment and sexual assault," McCarthy said. The report also found Fort Hood's Criminal Investigation Command (CID) detachment "was under-experienced and over-assigned, factors which adversely impacted investigations of sex crimes and soldier deaths," according to the Army release. 

 As a result of the committee's findings, the Army announced 8 DEC it has relieved or suspended 14 Fort Hood leaders, firing Maj. Gen. Scott L. Efflandt, deputy commanding general for Support at III Corps, Col. Ralph Overland and Command Sgt. Maj. Bradley Knapp, the 3rd Cavalry Regiment commander and command sergeant major. "We are holding leaders accountable, and we will fix this," Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville said, adding that he had talked to Guillen's mother, Gloria, about the actions the Army is taking. "I told her that we are going to fix these issues, and change, the culture that allowed them to happen. I told her we must and will provide a safe, secure environment for America's sons and daughters serving in the Army." 

[Source: Military.com | Matthew Cox | December 8, 2020 ++] 

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Richard Corben, 1940-2020

 

Richard Corben, Iconic Heavy Metal Artist, Has Died

RIchard Corben, the iconic award-winning comic book artist best known for his work for Heavy Metal, has passed away at the age of 80. 

Click on the link to get the details.

 https://www.cbr.com/richard-corben-heavy-metal-obituary/

 Like a lot of the members of my generation, I discovered the marvelous, mind shattering art of Richard Corben in the so called "head shops" that sold alt-lifestyle clothes and paraphernalia. Most of them carried SCREW Magazine and underground comix.

After discovering Frank Frazetta's covers for the Edgar Rice Burroughs paperbacks from ACE under Don Wollheim; Richard Corben was the next great artist I followed. From Corben, Jeffrey Jones, Berni Wrightson and Michael Whelan followed expanding the worlds of horror, fantasy and damn fine story telling.

Den, Bloodstar, Fantagor, Heavy Metal, Metal Hurlant - the more you followed Corben, the more you discovered other like minds and talents.

Then one day I stopped in at The Record Shop and there was Corbens' cover for Meatloaf's Bat Out of Hell. My worlds had come full circle.

And now, after all those years I'm filled with emotions. I remember the joy of the first finding something awesome; and, now the pain of it going away.

My condolences to Dona, his family and to the world as it has become a sadder place.

Strategy

A Taliban Army Platoon was on patrol when the commander noticed a lone Marine standing on a hilltop above their location. 

The commander told two of his soldiers to go take out the Marine, so they dropped their packs and promptly ran as fast as they could toward the Marine. 

Just before they got to the top, the Marine ran over the other side of the hill. The two soldiers followed. 

For the next few moments there were bloody screams and dust flying in the air. Then as quickly as it had started, it stopped and the Marine appeared back on the hilltop. 

He brushed off his cammies, straightened his cover, crossed his arms and stood there looking down at the Taliban soldiers. 

 The infuriated commander called for a squad to go get the Marine. They promptly ran as fast as they could toward him. 

Just before they got to the top, the Marine ran over the other side of the hill. The squad followed, and for the next few minutes there were bloody screams and dust flying in the air. When it stopped, the Marine again returned to the hilltop. 

He brushed off his cammies, straightened his cover, crossed his arms and stood there looking down at the remaining Taliban soldiers. 

 The commander was really hot now. He ordered the rest of his platoon to attack the Marine. 

Determined that Taliban soldiers were far superior to one lone Marine, they had blood in their eyes as they ran up the hill. 

Just before they got to the top, the Marine ran over the other side of the hill. The blood-thirsty soldiers followed. For many minutes there were horrific screams and clouds of dust flying in the air. It continued and continued. 

When it finally stopped, one lone soldier came crawling back to the commander, all bloody and beat about the head and shoulders. His uniform was torn, cuts were all over his body. 

The commander demanded a report. 

The lone soldier, trying to catch his breath, replied in a forceful yet trembling voice, 

"Sir, run... it was a trick. There are TWO of them!!"

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

A Winter's Tale

 

 

This is available on Amazon Kindle now and there should be a print edition available in a few days. If you are in the Atlanta area, stop by Dr. No's Books in Marietta and get Cliff to sign it for you. On some days, Charles may be around as well.

A Marines Sense of Humor

 A Marine was deployed with 1/7 in Vietnam. 

While he was there he received a letter from his girlfriend. In the letter she explained that she had slept with two guys while he had been gone and she wanted to break up with him. AND, she wanted pictures of herself back. 

So the Marine did what any squared-away Marine would do. He went around to his buddies and collected all the unwanted photos of women he could find. 

He then mailed about 50 pictures of women (with clothes and without) to his girlfriend with the following note: "I don't remember which one you are. 

Please remove your picture and send the rest back."

Sunday, December 6, 2020

Punography

 Why is England known for being such a wet country? The queen has been reigning there for generations. 

 Knock, knock. Who's there? To. To who? I think you mean "to whom." 

 What did the time traveler do when he was still hungry after finishing his dinner? He got up and went back four seconds. 

 What do you call a bear that does not have ears? B. 

 What do you call a fish that does not have eyes? Fsh. 

 Why did the skeleton decide to stay home from the school dance? Because it had no body to dance with. 

 What part of the chicken can you make music with? The drumstick. 

 Why are Saturday and Sunday the strongest days of the week? The rest of the days are weak days. 

 What do you call an alligator that breaks the law? A crook-o-dile. 

 What do you call an alligator that makes a living solving crimes? An investi-gator. 

 What does the ocean say when greeting its friends? Nothing. It just waves. 

 What did the beach say when the evening tide came in? "Long time no sea." 

 Santa Claus' helpers are known as subordinate Clauses. 

 She had a photographic memory but never developed it. 

 The two pianists had a good marriage. They always were in a chord. 

 I was struggling to figure out how lightning works, but then it struck me. 

 The grammarian was very logical. He had a lot of comma sense. 

 A chicken farmer's favorite car is a coupe. 

 What do you call a person rabid with wordplay? An energizer punny.

Monday, November 30, 2020

Covid Strikes Again

 Ben Bova haas passed due to Covid-19 related problems. Ben was a good friend, a terrific writer, and all around fine human being. I think we first met at the DAW 10th Anniversary Party in Atlanta. A lot of time and friends have passed since that day.


Dave Prowse has also joined the force. Darth Vader may have been his most famous portrayal, but he had many other roles including several in Hammer films. He was a big man with a bigger heart.


This has been a rough year on all of us. As I get older, I guess I will be losing more and more of my friends and colleagues.Highlander and Queen asked "Do you want to live forever?" I don't I want to or will, but can't it wait for some of us.

Friday, November 20, 2020

 

Space opera and military sci-fi combine in the newest from Walter Jon Williams

"Space opera the way it ought to be . . . Bujold and Weber, bend the knee; interstellar adventure has a new king, and his name is Walter Jon Williams."

—George R. R. Martin

 

The Praxis, the empire of now extinct Shaa, has again fallen into civil war, with desperate and outnumbered humans battling several alien species for survival. Leading the human forces are star-crossed lovers Gareth Martinez and Caroline Sula, who must find a way to overcome their own thorny personal history to defeat the aliens and assure humanity’s survival.

 

But even if the human fleet is victorious, the divisions fracturing the empire may be too wide to repair, as battles between politicians, the military, and fanatics who want to kill every alien threaten to further tear the empire apart. While Martinez and Sula believe they have the talent and tactics to defeat an overwhelming enemy, what will prevent their fellow humans from destroying themselves?

 

Fleet Elements will be on sale December 8th, pre-order now!

Thursday, November 19, 2020

The Burning God by R.F. Kuang

 

The Burning God by R.F. Kuang is now on sale!

"Bringing her complex Poppy War trilogy to a poignant conclusion, Kuang shines a searing light on the devastating price and valiant sacrifices that


warfare requires of all involved."
   — Booklist (starred review)

 

After saving her nation of Nikan from foreign invaders and battling the evil Empress Su Daji in a brutal civil war, Fang Runin was betrayed by allies and left for dead. 

 

Despite her losses, Rin hasn’t given up on those for whom she has sacrificed so much. Returning to her roots, Rin meets difficult challenges—and unexpected opportunities. While her new allies in the Southern Coalition leadership are sly and untrustworthy, Rin quickly realizes that the real power in Nikan lies with the millions of common people who thirst for vengeance and revere her as a goddess of salvation. 

 

Backed by the masses and her Southern Army, Rin will use every weapon to defeat the Dragon Republic, the colonizing Hesperians, and all who threaten the shamanic arts and their practitioners. As her power and influence grows, though, will she be strong enough to resist the Phoenix’s intoxicating voice urging her to burn the world and everything in it? 


The Burning God is available now wherever books are sold. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

The Rush's Edge by Ginger Smith

 


Halvor Cullen was built to be a hero.

But he's never felt like one.​

As a gene-spliced, tech-enhanced 'VAT' super soldier, Hal was made to fight hard and burn out young, then spend the short remainder of his life forever chasing an elusive adrenaline rush. Thankfully his best friend and former commander is determined to prevent that from happening by keeping Hal busy salvaging crashed spaceships along the Spiral's Edge.

But when a new member joins their crew, and a mysterious sphere they bring aboard the ship unleashes an alien presence, Hal's desires and malfunctions threaten to bring them all to the point of destruction...

Available at Amazon or your favorite bookseller

Monday, November 16, 2020

Refraction by Christopher Hinz


If Aiden Manchester had to have a superpower, why couldn't it be something useful? ​

Like predicting the future? Or Jedi mind tricks? Instead, Aiden is afflicted with 'manifestations', mysterious balls of goo which materialise mid-air while he sleeps.

But then, Aiden learns he was a 'Quiver Kid', one of seven orphaned children drafted for an illicit experiment at Tau Nine-One. Setting out to find the perpetrators and his fellow victims, Aiden's quest quickly turns lethal when he's kidnapped by a maniacal Quiver Kid with a dark agenda.

As he uncovers the dangerous truth about his past, Aiden's very essence is called into question. Will a hellish confrontation at Tau Nine-One reveal the ultimate purpose of the Quiver Kids?

Available at Amazon.com or your favorite bookseller.

Saturday, November 7, 2020

Husbands and Wives (2)

THE PHONE 

A young man wanted to get his beautiful blonde wife something nice for their first wedding anniversary. So he decided to buy her a cell phone. 

He showed her the phone and explained to her all of its features. 

Meg was excited to receive the gift and simply adored her new phone. The next day Meg went shopping. Her phone rang and, to her astonishment, it was her husband on the other end. 

“Hi Meg," he said, "How do you like your new phone?” 

Meg replied, "I just love it! It's so small and your voice is clear as a bell, but there's one thing I don't understand though..." 

"What's that, sweetie?" asked her husband. “How did you know I was at Woolies?” 

HE MUST PAY 

Husband and wife had a tiff. 

Wife called up her mom and said, "He fought with me again, I am coming to live with you." 

Mom said, "No darling, he must pay for his mistake. I am coming to live with you. 

REMEMBER 

An army first sergeant and his wife were in a busy shopping center getting things for their youngest child’s upcoming engagement announcement. 

The wife suddenly noticed that her husband was missing and as they had a lot to do, she called him on his cell and said " 

Where are you, you know we have lots to do." 

He said "You remember the jewelers we went into when we were stationed here about 10 years ago, and you fell in love with that diamond necklace? I could not afford it at the time, and I said that one day I would get it for you?" 

Little tears started to flow down her cheek and she got all choked up… "Yes, I do remember that shop." she replied.

"Well, I’m in the gun shop next door to that." 

TODAY'S SHORT READING FROM THE BIBLE 

From Genesis: "And God promised men that good and obedient wives would be found in all corners of the earth." Then he made the earth round... and 

He laughed and laughed and laughed!

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Husbands and Wives (1)

SHOPPING

A wife asks her husband, "Could you please go shopping for me and buy one carton of milk and if they have avocados, get 6. 

A short time later the husband comes back with 6 cartons of milk. 

The wife asks him, "Why did you buy 6 cartons of milk?" He replied, "They had avocados." 

If you're a woman, I'm sure you're going back to read it again! Men will get it the first time.  

WATER IN THE CARBURETOR 

WIFE: "There is trouble with the car. It has water in the carburetor." 

 HUSBAND: "Water in the carburetor? That's ridiculous” 

WIFE: "I tell you the car has water in the carburetor." 

 HUSBAND: "You don't even know what a carburetor is. I'll check it out. Where's the car? 

WIFE: "In the pool".  

STATISTIC 

THIS IS A FRIGHTENING STATISTIC, PROBABLY ONE OF THE MOST WORRISOME IN RECENT YEARS. 

25% of the women in this country are on medication for mental illness. 

That's scary. It means 75% are running around untreated...

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Military Maxims

o 101st Airborne Division -- "When it comes to Combat, we care enough to send the very best" 

o "When in doubt, empty the magazine" 

o "Sniper - You can run, but you'll just die tired!" 

o "Machine Gunners - Accuracy By Volume" 

 o "Except For Ending Slavery, Fascism, Nazism and Communism, WAR has Never Solved Anything" 

 o " U.S. Marines - Certified Counselors to the 72 Virgins Dating Club" 

o " U.S Air Force - Travel Agents To Allah" 

o "The Marine Corps - When It Absolutely, Positively Has To Be Destroyed Overnight" 

o "Death Smiles  At Everyone - Marines Smile Back" 

o "What Do I Feel When I Kill A Terrorist? A Little Recoil" 

o "Marines - Providing Enemies of America an Opportunity To Die For their Country Since 1775" 

o "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Anyone Who Threatens It" 

o "Happiness Is A Belt-Fed Weapon" 

o "It's God's Job to Forgive Bin Laden - It was Our Job To Arrange The Meeting"(Gen H. Norman Schwarzkopf ) 

 o "Artillery Brings Dignity to What Would Otherwise Be Just A Vulgar Brawl" 

o "One Shot, Twelve Kills - U.S. Naval Gun Fire Support " 

 o "My Kid Fought In Iraq So Your Kid Can Party In College and Protest" 

o "A Dead Enemy Is A Peaceful Enemy - Blessed Be The Peacemakers" 

o "Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But the US Marines doesn't have that problem. 

 The American soldier does not fight because he hates who is in front of him; he fights because he loves who is behind him. Amen? 

AMEN!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

The Phlebotomist by Chris Panatier

In a near future where citizens are subject to the mandatory blood draw, government phlebotomist Willa Wallace witnesses an event that makes her question her whole world…​ To recover from a cataclysmic war, the Harvest was instituted to pass blood to those affected by radiation. But this charitable act has led to a society segregated entirely by blood type. Government blood contractor, Patriot, rewards your generous gift based on the compatibility of your donation, meaning that whoever can give the most, gets the most in return. While working as a reaper taking collections for the Harvest, Willa chances upon an idea to resurrect an obsolete technique that could rebalance the city. But in her quest to set things into motion, she uncovers a horrifying secret that cuts to the heart of everything. AVAILABLE FROM AMAZON OR YOUR FAVORITE BOOKSELLER

Monday, October 26, 2020

Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire by Dan Hanks

In the post-war peace of 1952, ex-Spitfire pilot Captain Samantha Moxley should be done fighting bad guys. ​ Instead, she finds herself dragged into a clash with a mysterious US government agency known as The Nine, when they take an interest in the work of Jess, her archaeologist sister. Pursued by The Nine, former Nazis, and a host of otherworldly monsters, Sam must fight to protect her sister and uncover two hidden keys which promise to unlock the greatest archaeological find in history: the fabled Hall of Records. From the skies over New York, to the catacombs of Paris, and finally to the ruins of Ancient Egypt, her quest takes her into the ashes of the past in search of the dying embers of an empire....and a discovery that could transform the world, or bring it to a terrible end. AVAILABLE FROM AMAZON OR YOUR FAVORITE BOOKSELLER

Saturday, October 24, 2020

Night Terrors by Tim Waggoner

In a world where dreams can cross into reality what would it take for you to team up with your childhood nightmare? Meet Detective Audra and her partner Mr Jinx, the clown who haunted her childhood dreams. Together they are working to protect the real world from Maelstrom, the world of dreams, but then things start to go sideways and they find themselves in disgrace. It doesn’t take long for Audra and Jinx to realise that there is something sinister afoot, more dreams are escaping to the real world than ever before and it’s up to them to save both worlds before it’s too late. AVAILABLE FROM AMAZON OR YOUR FAVORITE BOOKSELLER

Thursday, October 22, 2020

The Sensation by Amanda Bridgeman

A series of brutal murders has the homicide division of San Francisco's Hub 9 working overtime. But as the bodies mount, they begin to question whether the attacks are random or somehow connected. When one of their own falls victim, Detective Salvi Brentt and her team join forces with the narcotics and cyber divisions to track down those responsible. They soon discover that a volatile new drug-tech experience, involving black market neural implants, has hit the streets, causing the epidemic of violence and missing persons. With the clock ticking and the death toll rising, Salvi must go deep undercover in the seedy Sensation club scene to find out who is behind the deadly drug-tech. But in the secretive playgrounds of the rich and powerful, some will stop at nothing to protect their empire... AVAILABLE FROM AMAZON OR YOUR FAVORITE BOOKSELLER

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Keep Those Grey Cells Active 2

See if you can figure out what these seven words all have in common? 1. Banana 2. Dresser 3. Grammar 4. Potato 5. Revive 6. Uneven 7. Assess Give it another try.. Look at each word carefully. You'll kick yourself when you discover the answer. No, it is not that they all have at least 2 double letters.... Look below IMPOSSIBILITIES IN THE WORLD for the answer. IMPOSSIBILITIES IN THE WORLD 1) You can't count your hair. 2) You can't wash your eyes with soap. 3) You can't breathe through your nose when your tongue is out. Put your tongue back in your mouth, you silly person. Answer: In all of the words listed, if you take the first letter, place it at the end of the word, and then spell the word backwards, it will be the same word.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Keep Those Grey Cells Active 1

Ten (10) Things that are known about you. 1) You are reading this. 2) You are human. 3) You can't say the letter ''P'' without separating your lips. 4) You just attempted to do it. 6) You are laughing at yourself. 7) You have a smile on your face and you skipped No. 5. 8) You just checked to see if there is a No. 5. 9) You laugh at this because you are a fun loving person & everyone does it, too. 10) You are probably going to send this to see who else falls for it.

Saturday, October 17, 2020

CONPLAN 8888 | Counter Zombie Dominance Plan

DoD Training CONPLAN 8888 | Counter Zombie Dominance Plan 

So if a zombie were to come lumbering up your block right now, what would you do? Reach for your weapon? Bolt the doors and windows and stay inside? Rush to your nearest gun shop? Maybe try to make it on post? 

If you've watched even one episode of The Walking Dead, or if you're a fan of any of the jokey zombie movies that have come out in the last few years, you and your buddies have probably spent at least one evening over beers talking about what you would do if zombies suddenly decided to rush you. It turns out that you're not the only one thinking about these plans. 

In fact, the DoD has been considering what the military should do if a zombie apocalypse were to take place. "This plan was not actually designed as a joke." So starts out CONPLAN 8888, better known as the Counter Zombie Dominance Plan (CZDP), unveiled by the Joint Combined Warfighting School back in 2009. It's easy to make fun of, for sure, but there might be some real training gems nestled inside this strange idea. The plan's overall purpose isn't to actually train and prepare for zombies, but what the military should do to "preserve non-zombie humans" from the very significant threats posed by a zombie horde. 

It's also endearing that the DoD is thinking outside the box when it comes to training. Even more comforting is knowing that even if an army of the undead were to attack civilization, there's no chance they'd win. 

Here's why: 

o Aircraft -- No matter if we get attacked by fast or slow zombies, they're no match for modern aircraft. Fighter jets have serious destructive potential, and they're incredibly accurate. And since we're pretty sure zombies never got the training on how to shelter in place, they'd probably just stand out in the open with fighter jets zipping overhead. 

o Body Armor -- This goes without saying but putting on your gear will definitely help prevent you and your buddies from being bitten by zombies. In most zombie scenarios, they're limited to human strength, so we're pretty sure they can't chew through your IOTV. 

o Landmines -- Landmines are nothing to mess with, but fortunately, most humans know to stay away from minefields once the first device is detonated. We're counting on zombies not being so smart and would expect them to continue navigating the field, even while the mines exploded all around them. And since zombies are fairly easy to predict, herding them into minefields could be an effective way to deal with them. 

o Machine Guns -- Mass charges are all zombies really do. They overrun their target and bite them until they become zombies too. Machine gun fire would put a stop to that quickly. 

o Tanks -- This one is pretty obvious, but so often overlooked in a takeover of the undead scenario. The truth is that the explosive firepower of tanks means that very few zombies could survive an attack. Even if ammo was low, tanks could easily just run over swarms of zombies, fixing the problem.  

Training against fake nations and fake enemies is nothing new CZDP explores what would happen after a political fallout, a broken chain of command, and a target-rich environment, as would happen if zombies were to suddenly take over the earth. It's just like when the military issues training guides to combat fictional nations like the "Pineladians" or the "Krasnovians," both fictional countries the military trains to fight against. Fictional countries the military trains to fight aren't new. In fact, it's a standard part of lots of military training. Zombies aside, the military does this by design – in part to ensure that they don't set off any political red flags by having our service members train against nation-states, and because it helps things stay light in the face of what could be some really dark scenarios. 

Of course, the Pentagon doesn't actually believe that a zombie takeover is likely, but the training for battling the undead is remarkably useful for other training events. And, since the training manual is so absurd, students at the Joint Warfighters College actually paid attention, were engaged in the lesson, and explored the basic concepts of planning and order development – all very important things for the future leaders of the military. 

[Source: We Are The Mighty | Jessica Evans | October 07, 2020 ++]

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Bennett R. Coles' Dark Star Rising

The misfit crew of HMSS Daring is back in Bennett R. Coles' Dark Star Rising Exuberant after scoring a major victory against enemy pirates, the star sailing ship HMSS Daring eagerly embarks on its new mission. Until the pirate network is dismantled and its mysterious leader Dark Star brought to justice, the safety of the empire remains in jeopardy. Supported by the ship’s misfit crew, Subcommander Liam Blackwood and Quartermaster Amelia Virtue go undercover, following leads that take them deep into the pirate network. Yet the closer they get to its center and the elusive Dark Star, the clearer it becomes that all is not what it seems. Pirates aren’t the only danger the duo face. Empowered by imperial decree, an old enemy is murdering noble families and taking their property—an enemy that has a personal grudge against Daring and her crew. And now he is on his way across the galaxy to exact revenge. Caught between ruthless pirates, a vengeful enemy, and their own increasingly intense feelings, Liam and Amelia must use all their cunning, charm, and daring to get out this alive. Dark Star Rising is now available in paperback.

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

The Burning God by R.F. Kuang

Get exclusive content from R.F. Kuang with pre-order of The Burning God! The epic Poppy War series is nearing its stunning conclusion. As a special treat for fans, receive exclusive bonus content from R.F. Kuang, with three key scenes from the trilogy presented from Nezha's point of view when you submit your proof of pre-order for The Burning God! Despite her losses, Rin hasn’t given up on those for whom she has sacrificed so much. Returning to her roots, Rin meets difficult challenges—and unexpected opportunities. While her new allies in the Southern Coalition leadership are sly and untrustworthy, Rin quickly realizes that the real power in Nikan lies with the millions of common people who thirst for vengeance and revere her as a goddess of salvation. Backed by the masses and her Southern Army, Rin will use every weapon to defeat the Dragon Republic, the colonizing Hesperians, and all who threaten the shamanic arts and their practitioners. As her power and influence grows, though, will she be strong enough to resist the Phoenix’s intoxicating voice urging her to burn the world and everything in it? On sale November 17th, The Poppy War is available for pre-order.

Monday, October 12, 2020

The Neil Gaiman Reader

A Must-Have for Your Bookshelf: The Neil Gaiman Reader The Neil Gaiman Reader goes on sale October 20th, and we've created social media accounts dedicated to all things Neil and his upcoming book. In celebration of Neil's literary genius and legacy, these pages will feature exclusive quotes, excerpts, photographs, and videos that you can't find anywhere else. Follow The Neil Gaiman Reader on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. The Neil Gaiman Reader is the definitive collection of Neil Gaiman’s vast body of work—52 short stories and excerpts that span his career, selected by his most devoted readers. Pre-order your copy from your favorite bookstore today.

Sunday, October 11, 2020

The Bladebone by Ausma Zehanat Khan

The fourth and final novel in Ausma Zehanat Khan's powerful fantasy quartet is now on sale "Bringing such a complex series to a satisfying end is no small feat, and Zehanat Khan pulls it off with grace." — Publishers Weekly (starred review) Armed with the powerful sorcery of the Bloodprint and supported by the Talisman, the oppressive One-Eyed Preacher is on the verge of conquering Ashfall, the Black Khan’s capital in the west. Yet not all is lost for Arian, Sinnia and the Council of Hira. If these brave female warriors can uncover the secrets of an ancient magic weapon known as the Bladebone, they can defeat the Preacher and crush his cruel regime. Neither Arian and Sinnia, nor their allies, the Mages of Khorasan, know the Bladebone’s whereabouts, and not all may survive the search to uncover it. Pursued by a nefarious enemy aligned with the Preacher, they become separated, each following a different path. Then, in their darkest hour, unexpected help appears. But is the Khanum of Black Aura a friend or foe? Arian may discover the answer too late. The Bladebone is now available in paperback.

Saturday, October 10, 2020

Military Q&A, Part 2

How Do They Separate the Men From the Boys in the Navy? With a crowbar! How Do You Knock Out a Marine Drinking Water? Slam the toilet lid on his head. How Many American Officers Does It Take to Screw in a Light Bulb? Only one, but they do it from 30 miles away using laser targeting at a cost of $8.3 million. What Do You Call a Marine with an Open Head Wound? Ajar head. What Branch of the Military Do Babies Join? The infantry! What Did One Sailor Say to the Other When They Had the Same Problem? "We're in the same boat." Have You Heard about the Karate Champion Who Joined the Military? He nearly killed himself the first time he saluted! Why Was the Sergeant Upset That His Son Got an A in Math? Because he spent more time dividing than conquering! What Don't You Say to a Marine? I thought you had to be in relatively good physical condition to join the Marine Corps. What's the Difference Between Aeroflot & The Scud Missile? Aeroflot has killed more people.

Friday, October 9, 2020

Welcome to issue #105 of the Donald M. Grant Newsletter

Welcome to issue #105 of the Donald M. Grant Newsletter 6 October 2020 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. PHIL HALE - KICKSTARTER - USE MUSIC TO KILL 2. STEPHEN KING ARTIST/GIFT EDITIONS AVAILABLE ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. PHIL HALE - KICKSTARTER - USE MUSIC TO KILL We are publishing a new Phil Hale art book - USE MUSIC TO KILL - which showcases the last fifteen years of Phil Hale’s art and are initially selling it through a Kickstarter project. USE MUSIC TO KILL is a collection of over two hundred paintings, photographs, drawings and collages in Phil's distinctive style, from a career that has spanned fine art, portraiture, illustration, fashion photography, film and music. It is a full color 11” x 11”, 272 page hardcover book. For Donald M. Grant, Phil illustrated THE DARK TOWER II: THE DRAWING OF THE THREE and A MONSTER AT CHRISTMAS as well as three books of art - GOAD, MOCKING BIRDS/RELAXEDER and LIFE WANTS TO LIVE - as well as the collaborative DOUBLE MEMORY: ART AND  COLLABORATION with Rick Berry, This new book will be available on our website after the Kickstarter project is over but at a higher price. If you have friends who like Phil’s art please let them know about this. The Kickstarter information is here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/philhale/phil-hales-use-music-to-kill 2. STEPHEN KING ARTIST/GIFT EDITIONS AVAILABLE Still available are the Artist Editions of THE DARK TOWER VII: THE DARK TOWER (signed by Michael Whelan) and THE  WIND THROUGH THE KEYHOLE (signed by Jae Lee). Please note that these two Artist Editions were released prior to the Trade Editions and so are First Editions of these books. Links to the specific pages are at: https://secure.grantbooks.com/product/wind-through-keyhole-artist/ https://secure.grantbooks.com/product/dark-tower-vii-artist/ Thank you. Robert K. Wiener, President Donald M. Grant, Publisher, Inc.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Military Q&A, Part 1

Military Q&As How Do You Play Air Force Bingo? B-52...F-16...A-10. What Do You Call a Soldier Who Survived Mustard Gas & Pepper Spray? A seasoned veteran. What Do You Call a Marine with an IQ of 160? A platoon! What's the Difference Between the Army and the Boy Scouts? The Boy Scouts have adult supervision. Which Month Do Soldiers Hate? March! What's the Main Mission of the Marines? To make sure the Army never get their feet wet. What's the Difference Between a Fighter Pilot and a Fighter Jet? The jet stops whining when the engines are shut off. What's Long, Hard, and Full of Seamen? A submarine! Did You Hear about the Accident at the Army Base? A tank ran over a box of popcorn and killed two kernals!

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Ten Days of Military Jokes, Day 10

Joke #10 A soldier and a marine were walking through the woods one day when they came upon a bear. The soldier immediately sat down and began digging through his rucksack. He pulled out a pair of running shoes and started putting them on. The Marine said “Are you crazy? You know you can’t outrun a bear, right?” The soldier said, “The way I see it, I just have to outrun you.”