Donald Of Arabia.

Before the scoffing gets out of control, I’d like to point to a visual from the television on Sunday morning: Donald J. Trump at the podium in the royal meeting hall of the House of Saud. Less than 50 feet from the King, and less than 20 feet away from the President of the United States sat an Orthodox Jew and his wife. In the Royal presence.

Now, if you’re a follower of the Arab and Islamic world, you’ll see the significance of this in a heartbeat: Israeli Jews are not given visas to the Kingdom. But here, because of the prestige and influence of the President of the United States, two Jews, members of the First Family sat on the same stage as the leaders. While not Israelis, it’s still a huge thing in the Arab world.

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To continue, it was a great speech. Not only did Trump not put his foot in his mouth, he stuck to the script and engaged his audience. I watch things for content and subtext. In that hall, on that morning, almost everyone was paying rapt attention to the man. Not the translation in their ear, but the man on the stage. There were exceptions, but those idiots were also Skyping with their niece in Chicago during services on Sunday morning from the back row of the church – you know who I mean.

During the speech Trump touched upon common facets of both civilizations. He addressed Islam and terrorism. He rightly pointed out that the terrorists have killed more Arabs and Muslims than Americans, and that it’s a mutual threat that needs to be eliminated. Most of all, he brought out the issue of financing. Once it’s clear that financing, and harboring, of these animals will not gain you anything from here on, it’s a matter of time until some of it withers and dies on the vine. Not all of it will, I’m not stupid enough to buy that, but a lot of it will go away once it’s no longer profitable.

Item next: travel back over time and look at presidents visiting Israel. They never, to my knowledge, fly directly there from an Arab nation, nor do they fly to an Arab nation from Israel. They always make a stop in Italy, France, Kenya, or somewhere else so as not to make it a direct connection. Donald Trump is breaking with that tradition. The message is clear: I don’t pander to your prejudice, and all of my allies need to get along.

This is not as big a leap as it would have been 10 years ago. Say what you will about Barack Hussein Obama, but he did unite the Arabs and Israelis in the last few years of his rule. Not in a good way, but by creating an existential threat to both with the groveling and cave-in to Iran. He not only let them off the sanctions hook, but he empowered their nuclear weapons program.

If there’s anything the Iranians hate more than the Israelis and the United States, it’s all those apostate, smug, Gulf Arabs in Saudi Arabia and the Emirates. Those people offend Allah, and the Iranians have done as much as they can to intimidate and suborn the governments across the Straits of Hormuz as they can manage. Their nuclear weapons will be first used on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, especially since the Kingdom now actively cooperates with Israel on a wide range of security matters.

Once the visit with our strongest ally in the region is underway, I suspect we will hear all sorts of wild rumors about settlements, additional breaking news about Comey’s bunions, and the fact that someone living three blocks from the White House heard gunshots, and they’re pretty sure Donald Trump is shooting black children from the roof. But the conversations will be kept under tight wraps, and both sides will gain something that they want in the process. Trump and Netanyahu are natural partners on a great number of levels, mainly their steely love of their own countries.

The Vatican will be a trip to let the world’s Christians know that President Trump values the stability of the Roman Catholic Church. I’m not sure that it has any great meaning beyond hitting all three of the major religions (what ever happened to Buddhism and the Hindus?) in one trip. It’s symbolic only, unless a surprise comes out of the visit. That, ladies and gentlemen, would not be a huge surprise given the man on the trip.

So far, it seems to be a great trip for the White House. My one hope is that they hid his phone and changed his Twitter password so that he can be judged on the merits of his policy, and not on the spelling and bravado of a 140 missive. He’s much better in the long form.

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Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!

When you finish reading any book (especially mine) please review it at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.goodreads.com. Your review increases the chances of someone looking for a new book greatly. Authors appreciate your review, even if it is just “I thought this was a good read and will give it to my dog to chew. I especially liked the ending, because it made me feel better when he killed all of the main characters. (no spoilers, please)” Those few words (more than 20, fewer than 1,000 is ideal), and a 1-5 rating, make or break how the search engines find us. Thanks in advance.

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Not An Interview With Larry Timm Regarding “Murder For Emily’s Sake”

Several years ago I met Larry Timm at a writer’s conference. He was the other guy there. Seriously, it was mainly well dressed women. And Larry. We were both waiting for our chance to go and flop in front of agents and publishers. To prepare, we both wore ill-fitting clothing and sweat that oily stuff that coronary patients exude. For the next two days we went from table to table together, inflicting our insanity on unsuspecting women at the conference. They usually gave us their desert just to shut us up.

Knowing a good racket when we found it, we continued this schtick at other writers conferences for the next two years. We at a lot of other people’s creme brulee. Along the way, we became great friends, and we somehow weathered the storms of new authors without losing what was left of our warped senses of humor.

Larry W. Timm


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Larry’s book, Murder for Emily’s Sake, is now on sale. Since he asked me to write a blurb for the book (it had better be on the cover) I thought it only fair to interview him for the blog. I am honor bound to only give the book one star. I threatened him with it, and we both thought that was pretty funny. We’ll see how funny he thinks it is when it appears on Amazon later tonight. (The actual rating will be higher – maybe. Depends on how quickly his check clears.)

Anywhooo…

Where was I? Well, I was going to interview Larry for the blog, but since we talk to each other on the phone, or he annoyingly texts me (I hate texting) at least every other day, I figured I could answer the questions without even asking him. His lovely wife will no doubt be the judge of the content here, so I’ll just get on with it.

Here is my non-interview with Larry W. Timm, author of Murder for Emily’s Sake:

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Joe: Larry, it’s very nice of you to take the time to talk to me today. I appreciate it.

Larry: So I’m supposed to pretend you’re not delusional and you’re actually talking to me. Fine. I was done mowing the lawn and had to sit down for a while. I didn’t realize I’d eaten that much bacon this morning, and I’m a little dizzy. Seemed like a good time to get this out of the way.

Joe: Yes. I can see that when I look at your twitching left eye. I understand your book is now available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and several other platforms. How exciting is that?

Larry: It’s considerably better than not being published. I worried about that for a long time. I messed up when pitching the book and told some of the publishers that I knew you. Thankfully, Eddie Jones at Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas decided to take a chance on me anyway. It appears he’s forgiven you for disrupting his lecture at the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference. He does, however, wonder if you still have that cane you were trying to break chairs with?

Joe: No. But I remember him, and it’s nice to be noticed!

Larry: Aren’t you even going to mention the book?

Joe: Why?

Larry: Because I’m here to sell books. Let me take over. I wrote Murder for Emily’s Sake over the last five years. It was a project near to my heart, as I’ve been a pro-life advocate for a long time. I got to combine my passion for this cause with my sense of humor, and work a few details in from my time as a Funeral Director. Somehow, in spite of being your friend, I managed to sell the book to a publisher. I think it’s pretty darned good, and should be popular with Christian readers.

Joe: I can’t disagree. You’re doing okay, keep going.

Larry: The book focuses on the travails of a team of women who have helped save a baby by counseling the mother-to-be at an abortion clinic. Unfortunately, the young woman … Am I giving away too much of the plot?

Joe: Not yet, but you tend to go bonkers if nobody stops you. Let’s just leave it at “A book with both humor and drama.” You don’t tell them any more than that here, they can click this link and go read the blurbs/sales pitch on the website. Fair enough?

Larry: Very reasonable for you. Do your readers know about your sick sense of humor?

Joe: Yes. Now, back to you: is there a sequel in the works?

Larry: Not a sequel, but I’ve got some other things I’m working on, and one of them involves you, a detective agency, and a small car.

Joe: Thanks for dropping by today, Larry W. Timm. I hope you see all your wishes come true with this book. I’d hope that includes bacon.

Larry: Why is a picture of your book in our interview about my book.

Joe: Because I couldn’t find a picture of bacon. I suppose I’d better do this:

Larry: Thanks. It’s been very strange not being interviewed today.

Joe: You’re welcome.

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Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!

When you finish reading any book (especially mine) please review it at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.goodreads.com. Your review increases the chances of someone looking for a new book greatly. Authors appreciate your review, even if it is just “I thought this was a good read and will give it to my dog to chew. I especially liked the ending, because it made me feel better when he killed all of the main characters. (no spoilers, please)” Those few words (more than 20, fewer than 1,000 is ideal), and a 1-5 rating, make or break how the search engines find us. Thanks in advance.

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Lighten Up, Francis: Comey Had To Go.

Just a little note on this fine spring morning to all of the nattering-nitwits on the news: shut up.

Let’s start with all of you who were howling for Comey’s head last fall when he “stole the election from Hillary.” Yes, you know who you are. Okay, your wish finally came true. Happy now?

Chrissy Matthews and company are saying that Trump’s a fascist for firing Comey.

Seriously? In real totalitarian governments, when the head of the secret police (which is a role the F.B.I. fills, among others) gets fired, he usually gets a firing squad as well. Not a gig speaking on CNN. The whole thing is how a democracy works. Comey lost the respect/faith of his agents, his superiors, and most of the Congress if you look at the last 8 months. (Don’t let the memory hole get you: you all wanted his head in October…)

What do bosses do with employees like that? They fire them. Which is what happened.

Nobody was rounded up in the night. Nobody was beaten to death in a dank basement. Nobody shut down the media for 48 hours to let it get done.

Nope. None of that.

So all of you can now go back to your daily activities and quit acting like morons.

If you were not acting like a moron, don’t take this personally.

I have to go to work. You see, life goes on. For Comey as well.

Please follow me on Twitter, and “Like” the Facebook author page. Don’t forget to subscribe (the box is on the right side of the page) to be eligible for free e-books and other benefits! Oh yeah – grab a copy of Assault on Saint Agnes if you’re of a mind.

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Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!

When you finish reading any book (especially mine) please review it at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.goodreads.com. Your review increases the chances of someone looking for a new book greatly. Authors appreciate your review, even if it is just “I thought this was a good read and will give it to my dog to chew. I especially liked the ending, because it made me feel better when he killed all of the main characters. (no spoilers, please)” Those few words (more than 20, fewer than 1,000 is ideal), and a 1-5 rating, make or break how the search engines find us. Thanks in advance.

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The DSM5 Hasn’t Gotten Around To Gardening – Yet.

Let’s start at the beginning:

Yes, at the heart of it all it begins with dirt. Lots and lots of dirt. This is half of what came to visit (and stay) a few weeks ago. I decided to get the new garden going early, so that the soil would settle in before planting. It has now rained, and snowed, on the evenly distributed dirt.

Obsessions sometimes manifest slowly. My obsession with gardening started with Tulips when we bought the house. Over the years I’ve planted about 1,000 bulbs. The squirrels have dug up almost 700. I’m way ahead. Great crop growing right now. The next step was corn. Just wanted to see if I could grow it in my yard. It is delicious.

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In the last decade that madness has morphed into a “what can I grow that will be fun” kind of thing. Much of what I hope to grow this season will not be consumed in my house. My wife doesn’t even like a couple of my main items, but they are a challenge to grow and that’s all I need.

This year I may have hit the zenith: habaneros. There are approximately 30 spots where I’ve planted seeds. I have eight varieties, and planted about six seeds in each spot. I have no idea which ones will come up in which place. That’s half the fun. What, you might ask, will I do with approximately 6 bushels of habaneros? I will dehydrate a bunch and give them as gifts in decorative Mason jars. They are quite pretty. The dehydration will take place in my nifty Cabela’s unit on the back deck: if you do it inside it produces pepper fog and the dog dies. Seriously. The gas from last fall’s experiment would make your eyes water 50 feet away. It was not a good week to be downwind.

That dehydration bunch counts for a small fraction of the haul. I will use the red/yellow/orange ones to make hot pepper sauce. I am already eye-balling small glass bottles that can be sealed and labeled with custom labels. Yeah – that kind of obsession. I may even give some away on the blog. Something inside makes me happy when I can things and share them. Consequently the basement looks like a glass store, as I cornered the market on jam jars when the fall clearance season hit. I really need another $50 worth of glassware (that I’ll give away) to make it complete.

I have a hunch a bunch of the produce will be given to the homeless meal program I work with – fresh beets will be on the menu at some point. I grow a nice, sweet variety. Same with the corn. Get a ton of it, and there’s only so much salsa a guy can make. But I will.

There are a few lessons along the way, some of them good, some of them bad. Examples abound on the good side: it’s good exercise, I like cooking, I like the look of the garden when it’s weed-free, I love the bees taking care of the plants, and I love eating things I grow.

On the negative side, I hate hornets (they love corn and beets), some creatures eat faster than I can grow things (Edzell, my late Sheltie, loved corn and fed himself well on my stalks before I got wise to him – I’d been blaming the squirrels…), and planting for 1.5 hours is just like doing squats. That one I discovered two days later when I couldn’t walk without looking like I’d been riding a horse. Something about moving about the patch, digging with my fingers and dropping seeds, all from the squatting position. I only stood up to see how things were laid out overall. Yeah, need to do squats at the gym, it seems.

The season is young. But my mental health will improve on those very hot days when I stand next to the garden and water for a few hours. Something about working up a nice sweat, listening to Al Stewart, and watching God provide me, and others, with food is pretty good for the soul.

Happy gardening to the rest of you addicts.

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Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!

When you finish reading any book (especially mine) please review it at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.goodreads.com. Your review increases the chances of someone looking for a new book greatly. Authors appreciate your review, even if it is just “I thought this was a good read and will give it to my dog to chew. I especially liked the ending, because it made me feel better when he killed all of the main characters. (no spoilers, please)” Those few words (more than 20, fewer than 1,000 is ideal), and a 1-5 rating, make or break how the search engines find us. Thanks in advance.

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Free Audio Book Contest. Attack Of The Seawolf Is Now Available.

Boy, is this easy: want to win a copy of Attack of the Seawolf? Send an email to seawolfcontest at voxmasters.com (email address corrupted on purpose to keep the spambots from wrecking my day.)

I’ll be giving out 10 copies on Monday to Facebook/Blog followers. Just include your name, and why you like thrillers/should win a copy. I’ll email you a promotion code good for one free download. That’s $24 and change you save.

By far the best audio book I’ve done – you do learn as you go in any business – this is a classic of the genre.

Please follow me on Twitter, and “Like” the Facebook author page. Don’t forget to subscribe (the box is on the right side of the page) to be eligible for free e-books and other benefits! Oh yeah – grab a copy of Assault on Saint Agnes if you’re of a mind.

So get on it. If you’d like to listen to the sample, it’s available at the link:

Attack of the Seawolf.

Have an amazing day.
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Assault on Saint Agnes is available here. Just click this link!

When you finish reading any book (especially mine) please review it at www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, and www.goodreads.com. Your review increases the chances of someone looking for a new book greatly. Authors appreciate your review, even if it is just “I thought this was a good read and will give it to my dog to chew. I especially liked the ending, because it made me feel better when he killed all of the main characters. (no spoilers, please)” Those few words (more than 20, fewer than 1,000 is ideal), and a 1-5 rating, make or break how the search engines find us. Thanks in advance.

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