Wednesday, March 25, 2015

With apologies to Stephen King

Does the Clean Reader sanitizing app have an Annie Wilkes setting that changes "fuck" to "cocky-doodie"? Because that would be pretty funny.

But seriously, Inktera, go cocky-doodie yourself.

TTFN
-Tony

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Since no one is asking...

I have an idea for a new Trek series called "Star Trek: Misfits."  The crew could consist of Gorns, salt vampires, a few of Harry Mudd's bimbo droids, the Clint Howard tranya baby, and the captain could be a Tribble.

TTFN
-Tony

Monday, March 16, 2015

Next time, remember...


Day one of my furlough. Today I woke up at 5:30 am instead of Four. Made myself a bowl of barf (keto breakfast of my own recipe) and a cup of coffee. Doing my morning pages before getting back to work on Book II. I can't decide what I want to do for exercise, do I want to walk a mile, or do I want to ride the exercise bike while I play Wolfenstein - The New Order? The later sounds like more fun, but while I could ride that bike all day long, the seat hurts my delicate tuchus. Wolfenstein - The Old Blood looks extremely cool, but I'm skeptical because of all the bugs TNO had at launch. That's the sad state of gaming today - you have to wait a few months until the game you want is patched enough to make the price worth it, after everyone else had spent their hard earned cash to be beta testers and report all the problems. It's incomprehensible to me why anyone would pre-order anything digital these days.


I spent the weekend at my parents' house, playing my father at pinochle, hanging with old friends (Jodi) and my sister and her kids. My nieces and nephew made a pi pie. Trying to figure out if and when I can fly out to visit my little sister in AZ. I took my to the car wash in Bernardsville, and we listened to Jim Croce while we watched from the inside. Sometimes the little things make up happy memories.


I woke up with some insights from my dreams, but I stupidly did not write them down. Maybe I just thought they were insightful?  Anyhoo, have a good one.


TTFN
-Tony

Friday, March 13, 2015

Its Sucking My Will to Live!

I'm so happy I have a job, but all this heavy street work is murderlating my will to live.

I had a bizarre dream that my father was a Jedi, but unbeknownst to him, I was an apprenticre Sith Lord. Darth Sidious (aka The Emperor) was planning to kill him, so I had to sneak up behind him, and eviscerate him with my nice, shiny, red lightsaber. (The Emperor, not my father.) Afterward, I went out dancing with some friends from high school at a church Christmas party, and Jar Jar Binks was there. He kept annoying all of us, so we figured we'd just ignore him.

Here's your deep thought of the day: Sometimes, wiping the outside of our windshields furiously with windshield wipers doesn't do it. We need to clean the inside with some Windex, a rag, and elbow grease. That's a good metaphor for life, don't you think?

TTFN
-Tony

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Morning is Broken

Yay, alternate side is in effect today, so I am back in my good old fashioned diesel VW. It's not as nice as my new car, but I'm happy it's still running after being sidelined in the snow for six weeks. Just listen to the purr of that engine, like a phlegmy Cessna in heat. Ah, the happy memories...

I spent yesterday inside a manhole, wrestling with giant wires. My muscles and back are sore, I'm really getting too old for this shit. I had to rub Biofreeze into my upper tuchus this morning and pop some Advil. Oh well, at least my job keeps me active. Just think, people pay good money for this kind of workout.

Dawn is beginning to break over JFK, and I must go start my day of glamour, electricity, and feces. Ta!

TTFN
-Tony

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The sun is shining...

Such a beautiful day to be working outside! :D

Dem Bones McCoy

Good morning, friends and neighbors. It's a balmy 45 degrees, here at the Jamaica shit plant. Last night I dreamt that I was at my cousin's house, trying to watch a few old Tom Baker episodes. She had a huge, complicated sound system that kept tripping breakers. While we were trying to fix it, obese men ran around her house wearing wet suits. Feel free to analyze this as you wish.

I went for my final LASIK check up exam yesterday, and my vision is still 20/20 in each eye. This is one of the best decisions I've ever made. I wish I had made it sooner.

The sky beneath the morning moon is ribbed with clouds, lighting the morning like an eerie, glowing herringbone.

Give 'em hell today.

TTFN
-Tony

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Shallow Thoughts

Good morning. I really don't know what to say today. I'm trying to think of a deep insight to give you.

Here's one: We think that the system is flawed, but really, is not. The universe is holding to a very specific program. It's when we try to change it that what we perceive as flaws, acts of God, or simply luck become apparent. But they're not really glitches, they're just the universe returning to its original programming, which may override or synchronize with our desires. 1 plus 1 will always equal 2, A will always equal A, and there are only four lights. It's like Robert Anton Wilson said: We evolved from primates, but when someone says they can't understand why someone acted a certain way, it usually turns out that the person was just exibiting primate behavior. Fascinating, Captain.

TTFN
-Tony

Monday, March 09, 2015

The Darkness, Double Blagh!

Good morning. It's dark on my morning commute once again, because Daylight Savings Time has really screwed me over. It's seriously time that archaic idea was retired. At least it's raining, I just want all of this God forsaken snow to wash away.

I found this really cool series on Netflix called Black Mirror. It's a British show, sort of a very dark Twilight Zone. Unlike a lot of shows that are dark just for darkness's sake, the writing, pace, and cast are top notch. Would recommend.

I've been plotting out Debris of Shadows Book II for the past few months, and I finally broke narrative grounded today. Who's got the champagne bottle to break over my keyboard?

And so begins another glamorous day of trying to get by with what I have, as best I can. We all are who we are, we all have a certain set of needs that motivate and guide us. Sometimes, all we can do is be as honest with ourselves as we can. Sometimes I feel like the only real prayer is the serenity one: to change what I can, accept what I can't, and to know the difference between the two.

Peace, love, and soul.

TTFN
-Tony

Friday, March 06, 2015

The sunlight, blagh!

Sitting in my car, waiting for the day to start. It's 13 degrees outside, and my car is warmer and more comfortable than the trailer. I heard Cardinal Egan keeled over right after lunch yesterday. I hope it was a good one.

The Sun is up in the sky, making my morning commute easier. Of course, that's all going to change after daylight savings time on Sunday. As always, there are people here who are clueless when it comes to parking. (For those who don't know, when I say here, I'm talking about work.) I'm very happy to have a job, & I hope I keep it, but I have to admit the dark and the filth are starting to wear me down. Now watch, I'll get laid off today. Why do we always seem to be grateful, and at the same time, unsatisfied? 

The Morning Sun is right behind a smokestack, and I'm watching plumes of white smoke become backlit clouds, swirling in silhouette as they dissolve into the sky. There is beauty in life, there is beauty in math. People touch our lives, and leave fingerprints for good, or for bad, and sometimes both. 

Obviously, I'm just talking out my ass today, and it's time to go in. Remember my friends, you can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can never pick your friends' noses.

TTFN
-Tony

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Here is the new link for my appearance on The Speculative Fiction Cantina tomorrow night at six (eastern.) Hope you listen and call in! :D

TTFN
-Tony
Good morning, friends and neighbors. I've been told the Speculative Fiction Cantina link for this Friday's show will change, so I've temporarily deleted the post. I'll be sure to post the new one as soon as I get it.

So where are we? It's Thursday, the "Oh great, I have only one hour to go before quitting time, I've been working hard all day - oh crap, I just looked at the clock and it's actually TWO hours" day.

What's going on in the world... Samsung has pissed off Android users everywhere by announcing that the Galaxy S6 will not have a removable battery or a micro-SD expansion slot - the two hardware features Android users love most. The idea being that if Apple can milk it's users dry over storage and battery replacement/repair costs, why shouldn't Samsung? Guess I'm never buying that model. Stop trying to court i-Toy users (I can't do what I want with it, but ooh, it's so SLIM!), and work on keeping your base customers happy.

It's supposed to snow today, but it hasn't started yet, at least not here. I'm sure it will get in full swing once I'm at work, making getting home miserable. My glass is half full, but the fly shitting in it is throwing off the taste. At least alternate side is suspended.

Why are so many of my dreams about driving? Are they supposed to be a metaphor for my life?

Anyway, everyone have a good day. Stay safe. Give a hoot, and don't pollute.

TTFN
-Tony






Saturday, February 28, 2015

"Logic is a wreath of pretty flowers... which smell bad."

The world is a little sadder today, as Leonard Nimoy has left us.

It's odd, because deep down, I'm mourning a character (who died once already) and not the actor who played him. I mean, to be honest, I know very little about Mister Nimoy, except what I read in his autobiography I Am Spock. It's actually a fascinating read. I love the fact that after Star Trek, Spock became the voice of his inner monologue, and he would often have conversations with him. But Nimoy put so much of himself into the role. There were times he cursed his typecasting and tried to leave Spock behind, but it was a character loved by millions worldwide. And, with all respect to Zachary Quinto, it will forever be his own.

Not to sound like a tragic hipster, but there was no "geek culture" when I was a nerd growing up. Characters like Mister Spock were great vehicles for escape from loneliness. He was the uber-nerd, probably the smartest man in the universe, and he somehow made it cool. He was extremely self-posessed, always calm, cool, and collected, and always knew exactly what to do. Even when his betrothed turned out to be a manipulating bitch, all he kindly said to her boyfriend was "You may find that having is not so pleasing a thing after all as wanting." Ok, props to writer Theodore Sturgeon, but you get my point. He was a hero who did not seek or need glory, love, or popularity. He was simply himself, and when the time came, the needs of the many outweighed the needs of the few... or the one.

Of course, Leonard Nimoy the man was no slouch either. In the words of George Takei, "The word extraordinary is often overused, but I think it's really appropriate for Leonard. He was an extraordinarily talented man, but he was also a very decent human being." He seemed to excel at everything he did: actor, director, writer, poet, photographer... His costars always spoke of his kindness and generosity. As William Shatner put it, "We will all miss his humor, his talent, and his capacity to love."

His final tweet was on February 23: "A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP" I have to smile that his last public statement was "Live long and prosper."

TTFN
-Tony






Friday, February 27, 2015

Lesbian Goddess Threesome to Celebrate Net Neutrality

Ah, Friday, Day of Freyja, or day of Frigg, with perhaps a touch of Venus thrown in there - depending on who you talk to. The day of lesbian goddess threesomes.

People who know me know that I'm not thrilled with President Obama and Obamacare - or more precisely, I'm not thrilled with the mainstream worship and ideology that glosses over the flaws and hypocrisy of many of his policies. But when something right gets done, I have to give the man credit. So I'm raising my tall mug of tripple-shot k-cup espresso to Net Neutrality finally being passed.

Look, I have strong libertarian leanings. But I've come to realize over the years that no one system is perfect. We need checks and balances in both our government and the corporations that run our daily lives. Some regulations are just necessary. You don't want poisonous drinking water, you don't want food that's going to cause you cancer, you don't want your landlord or boss to fornicate you if he or she chooses, you don't want you car to explode if you get in a fender bender... and you don't want the ISPs to choke and bleed your internet access dry to increase their profit margins.

I've made this comparison before, but if you've read Atlas Shrugged you'll get it: The ISPs are NOT Taggart Transcontinental, as they keep trying to paint themselves, they're Associated Steel. They did not build the internet from the ground up with their blood, sweat, and tears. Instead, they have raked in billions of government money (which came from us, the taxpayers, on top of the record profits they've received from their customers) and used all their lobbying to squash competition. This is why Comcast and Time Warner have a stranglehold on internet access in the United States, and are allowed to screw their customers regularly.

So what will change now? Nothing, except perhaps other ISPs will have a chance to compete. Why do I say that "nothing" happening is a good thing? Because the ISPs plan was to throttle down the internet access of those who used competing services. (Like Netflix, for example.) The "fast lane" access was not a plan to build a better and faster infrastructure and charge more for those who wanted to use it - it was to make the existing infrastructure more expensive, and throttle the use of those who didn't want to pay even more.

Think of it like a highway. Pretend that the ISPs own all the roads, and already charge you for their use- including the side-streets. The ISPs did not plan on building a new superhighway that would cost more to use. They planned on putting higher tolls on existing highways (which, let's be honest, ain't that great) adding tolls to highways that had no tolls before - and blasting potholes and blocking traffic in the side-streets - which you already pay to use - to make them virtually undrivable.

Is it perfect? No. I have to admit I'm a little suspicious. FCC Chairman Wheeler is a former NCTA and CITA lobbyist who has always fought against this very thing, so I always assumed President Obama's appointment of him was to keep the current oligarchy in place. His about-face now is definitely worrying. Most of all, I'm worried that this is a trade-off for TPP, (The Trans-Pacific Partnership, which will seriously fuck us all over if it gets passed.) We'll have to wait and see. But credit where credit is due, and a tip of the hat to President Obama is in order- for now, anyway.

TTFN
-Tony

For your viewing pleasure, here is a rat's nest of wires, hovering in the ceiling, waiting to leap down and envelop an unsuspecting electrician's soul:

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Cunning and Duplicity

I had a weird dream last night, that someone I don't actually know in real life was pretending to be my best friend, but in reality, didn't want anything to do with me. He gave me a book for Christmas that was all moth-eaten and torn to shreds. I went to work, where I kept having to spit, and it all turned into huge arcs of ice.

I have to take the VW today, I pray to the FSM that it has no problems in the cold. At least it's going to be balmy and in the twenties.

Sometimes I wonder if I should pretend to be politically zealous to help my career. There are some people who have a rabid following, just because they espouse everything to confirm the bias of those with a popular ideology. In reality, I see clouds from both sides, as the song goes, I can't help it. But if I really gamed the system... Sure, I'd hate myself, but I bet you it would work.

Anyway, enough Machiavellian thoughts, time to get ready for another glamorous day at the shit plant. Peace out.

TTFN
-Tony

Here is a grimy but cool looking (and cold) pit that I'm working in at the moment. When steampunk goes scuzzy!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Another Pleasant Valley Hump-Day

I used to get up early, and do the "morning pages" from a book called The Artist's Way. Basically, you were supposed to bleed your soul onto the paper for three pages, not giving a shit what you wrote. I have notebooks of them, somewhere, that should probably be burned. This doesn't count because it's for public consumption. So even though I'm writing about the time I _____, or the _____ I ____ed in the conservatory with the lead pipe, you'll just have to wonder what the details are.

I'm sick of the cold. I know I've been whining about this for months, but I really don't care. I'm sick of it. I'm sick of having all my energy sapped out of me. Side note: the shit-plant smelled particularly rotting-diaper-cheez-whiz-awful yesterday. If the air smells like rancid poop in 7 degree F weather, you know it's bad.

I had an interesting dream last week: I was in a car with some guy I don't know. We were in the back seat, and someone else was driving. He started singing "El Paso," and I harmonized with him (I took the high part.) We were doing really well, but after a bit I couldn't breathe anymore. I realized an avalanche was squishing the car. Then Yoda came with his light saber and cut us out. We never got to finish the song though, because he accidentally cut through the guy I was singing with. You'd think Yoda of all people would be better at doing stuff like that.

After making movies with friends, I have my own script idea floating around in my mind now. I'm just jotting down scenes as they come to me. Don't worry, I'm working on the next Debris of Shadows novel daily, but novels are lonely work. It would be fun to do something with friends in the meantime. It's hard, because in my mind, everything is big big big, and I have to think more conservatively with something that would require actual people, locations, etc. The most important thing to me is a good story, but first I need good characters to make the story happen. After that, everything falls into place - at least they do with prose. Production values are secondary to me if there is a good story. That's why I'll take "Genesis of the Daleks" or "The War Games" over "Kill the Moon" any day. (Or if you're not a Doctor Who fan, Dark Star over The Phantom Menace.)

Anyhoo, I guess I should put some clothes on now. May the Schwartz be with you all.

TTFN
-Tony

P.S.: For absolutely no reason, here is a picture of some AWG #14 wires peeking out of wire manager, looking like a closeup of cybernetic hairplugs. Enjoy.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Riveting!

"The most exciting book I ever read!" -Tony LaRocca Sr.

I'm starting to bitterly hate the winter, cold, Mr. Cold Miser, Elsa, Al Gore, whoever is to blame for all this. I'll have to take the diesel Jetta into work on Thursday, and I fear The Deadly Fuel Gelling. One more thing to worry about.

In the original The Love Bug, some old Chinese guy says, "Hurry is waste. Waste is a cracked bowl which never know Rice." Sometimes, a little voice in my head repeats that, but changes hurry to worry. There is also often a Yoda in my head, who jabs me with a stick, and yells "Never his mind on where he was- hmm? What he was doing!" I suppose as far as voices go, those are harmless.

Anyway, I suppose I'd better put some pants on. Bye for now, keep your teeth clean.

TTFN
-Tony

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Camera! Lights! Something!

Had a fun time this weekend, filming Case at Midnight.


The last time I was in this courtroom, I was the bailiff in The Bible Belt Slasher Pt. II, and now I'm the D.A. What can I say, I'm moving up in the world. (With Julia Grace as the prosecutor, and Heather waiting sinisterly in the background...)


With writer/actor Bradley Creanzo, and my favorite Femme Fatale, Taylor Raftree (who gets the long-sought honor of murderlating me.)

I'm sure it will take a while before this is available, so I'll keep everyone posted.  In the meantime, straighten up, and fly right, kids! ;)

TTFN
-Tony

Friday, February 20, 2015

I think I'll go for a walk outside now, the summer sun's calling my name...

It's a testicles-in-your-chest morning here at the beautiful Jamaica shit-plant. Stay frosty!

TTFN
-Tony

Friday, February 06, 2015

But Is It Art?

To park or not to park, that is the question. Whether it is nobler in the mind to fill up the far spaces first, so that everyone coming up the driveway can easily park behind you, or to park like a complete jackass diagonally across the lot entrance, so everyone has to slalom their cars and trucks around you in the ice and snow, every goddamn morning, you stupid f#@k.

TTFN
-Tony

Friday, January 30, 2015

Dream of Dreams

Dream #1:
I was at my parents' house, and I heard someone in the downstairs bathroom, in the middle of the night. Muffled voices came through the locked door. I kicked it in, to find someone had tunneled out through the wall, and into the garage. I went up to the roof, and looked around. The yard was a topiary maze, one in which anyone could hide. 

I went to my friends' house, but they didn't recognize me at first. When they did, they hugged and hugged me. My father came over, and asked for my help finding whoever was crawling through his walls. I went back to their house, and found there were medieval, iron-barred wooden doors that led from the house to the maze. They were broken.  I promised to help.

There was a giant reel of wire in the garage, and my parents helped me unwind it.

Dream #2:
I was hanging out with another guy in a bar. The king of the land walked in, and had a drink. My friend and I decided to play a game: how much could we steal from under his nose. The bartender had short bread, lottery tickets, and all kinds of plastic crap. I walked up to the bar, and asked the bartender for lottery tickets and a few cheap games. I told the king they were for my kids. He gave me hundreds of thousands of dollars to give to them, so I wouldn't have to buy them cheap toys. While everyone was watching this, my friend stuffed his jacket with shortbread.

A crowd built to watch the king's generosity, and chased him out of the bar. My friend and I stole some black SUVs from the parking lot, and drove them back to my parents' house. (Yes, most of my dreams take place in my childhood home.)

A bunch of hippies came over, sat on the lawn, and started playing their guitars. For some reason, I poured chemicals onto my mother's rosebushes, realizing too late it would probably kill them. The sprinklers came on. My mom came out to ask what happened, and I lied and said I turned them on to wash the chemicals away. She said no, they're automatic, and showed me the switch.

Sorry, I know these are anticlimactic. Let's end this with a little sketch, may detail in the future.

TTFN
-Tony
 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

With Apologies to The CTW

Oh, oh, oh,
Who are the assholes in your neighborhood?
In your neighborhood,
In your neighborhood?
Who are the assholes in your neighborhood?
They're the people that you meet each day.

Well city life sucks, you know,
Shoveling your car out of the snow.
But you just worsen your neighbor's load,
If you throw it all into the road.

Then the people who try to drive through,
Get stuck because of you.
You just watch as their wheels spin,
And others push them free again.

And the plowman pushes it all back,
Into a nice, hard pack.
Now I have to re-chisel out my ride,
Since you didn't shovel to the side.

But you're even worse by far,
If you dump snow in front of someone else's car,
If to me you ever do this thing,
They won't find your body until spring.

Oh, who are the assholes in your neighborhood?
In your neighborhood,
In your neighborhood?
Who are the assholes in your neighborhood?
They're the people that you meet,
Shoveling snow into the street,
They're the lazy pricks you meet,
Each
Dayyyyyyyy!
 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

For those of you who are old fashioned...


Yea, rejoice and be merry - for the paperback edition is now available on Amazon!

(By the way, if you buy the paperback version of this or False Idols and Other Short Stories from Amazon, the Kindle edition is free.)

TTFN
-Tony

Monday, January 19, 2015

Behind the Scenes



I approved the paperback proof of The Lies of the Sage today, but it will take a few days before Amazon has it available for sale. In the meantime, here is some background information. Feel free to read before hand, but I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy it more if you read the books first. I’ll try not to give any spoilers away.

A few real life events shaped this story. When I was young, a friend of mine lost her son to an illness. That always stayed with me, especially when both of my children spent their first few months in neonatal ICUs. (I have to state here that Alyanna’s character does NOT resemble her in any way, shape, or form - or anyone else I know, for that matter.) We also, for a brief while, owned a golden retriever named Bananas.

Over ten years ago, this book began as a short story, which took on many different forms as it progressed. Alyanna, in media res, was on the run with her son. She was being chased by a group of mysterious figures (possibly inspired by the men in black trench-coats from Dark City.) Their leader was Sigma, whose manner resembled The Lead Cenobite (Pinhead, to use the vernacular) from Hellraiser. At one point, the entire story took place in a city housed inside one giant tower.

The problem was, while I had the concept, I didn’t know what to do with it. The plot centered on Alyanna escaping with Matthew. But why did her mysterious cybernetic pursuers care so much? While the story was expanding, it wasn’t really moving in a concise direction. I found myself in a rut. I fleshed out a detailed back-story for the antagonists. To mix things up, I changed Sigma’s gender to female. Suddenly, she had an entire different set of motivations. This pushed the story in a new direction, and helped it move forward.

My son was about five or six at the time. While I’ve tried my best, I have to admit that I have been, at times, far from a perfect parent. Some of those flaws came out in Alyanna. Stephen King once said that (in his novel Firestarter) Charlie wasn’t based on his daughter, but his daughter had helped Charlie be herself. In the same way, Matthew is not based on my son, but he definitely helped me see life through Matthew’s eyes.

It made sense to me that the Cylebs would naturally think in metric terms, while everyone else sticks to the imperial measurement system.

I hate bugs.

Alyanna’s house computer was named Isis ever since the beginning. I thought of changing it after recent events, but I decided it wasn’t really necessary. Her car’s computer definitely owes a nod to Douglas Adams’s overly-helpful computer Eddie, but I do feel that electronics in general are becoming user-friendly to the point of annoyance.

When I was young, I had to see a child psychologist. When I joined the army many years later, I had to get a letter from the doctor explaining why. The letter stated that growing up, I had had the mind of an adult inside of a child’s body, and had had a hard time dealing with it. Also, having been prematurely gray since I was a teenager, people often have thought I’m older than my actual age. Hell, when I was forty, a girl at Dunkin Doughnuts gave me a senior discount.

“God Save the West” is based on the unofficial Confederate anthem, “God Save the South.”

My father and I often play pinochle. The joke he always tells when playing was a line from the Cosby Show: “No matter how dumb the dealer looks, always cut the cards.” When diamonds are played, he sings “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend.” Obviously, both of these had to be changed for copyright reasons.

As I wrote the book over the years, it expanded to about 350 pages. After I released False Idols and Other Short Stories, I began polishing the novel to publishable standards.  When I had reached the cliffhanger at the end of the second act, the first 2/3 had expanded to about 320 pages (81k words,) and still had a hundred pages to go. This would have added another year of editing. There is another novel I’ve been working on over the years with similar themes. I decided to make that novel into the sequel, and end Lies on a “to be continued.”

Well, that’s it for now, I’ll add more if I think of anything I missed. I hope everyone enjoys it. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

TTFN
-Tony

P.S. Something I just remembered. I took a picture of Bananas, and instead of having red-eye (this was back in the '80s, kids) she had glowing blue eyes from the flash. I once had a nightmare about her having eyes like that.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The Joys of Magical Thinking

(In response to a comment on yesterday's post.)

Here's something that fascinates me:

Magical thinking IS real. We all control the universe with our minds, every second of our lives. Well, maybe not the entire universe, but definitely this planet.

You don't believe me? I'll prove it.

Stand up, walk to the nearest person, and say something affirming, or confusing. Anything from "You're a spiffy person, do you know that?" to "The Cookie Monster rises at midnight!"

Hey, you don't even have to go that far. Just take a deep breath and blow, spewing some of your own personal bacteria into the atmosphere. Bonus points if you have the flu and work in a crowded office.

The point is, our brains, every day, turn our thoughts into actions, which change our world. Hell, even woodlice do it.

See how easy that was? If you want to change the universe with your mind, make a decision, and do it. Let us meditate upon this, electrician style.

Ohmmmmmmmmm

TTFN
-Tony

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Dreams and Childish Misunderstandings

I had a dream last night that I won a million dollars, and FedEx delivered the check. The driver was really scrungy looking, and heavily insinuated that she deserved a tip. I felt embarrassed, so I looked in my wallet for a twenty. She kept pressing against me and looking into my wallet, despite me repeatedly telling her to back off. Finally, I got pissed off, and said (ala the Soup Nazi) "No tip for you!" Went inside, and slammed the door in her face.

I had a conversation with my sisters via chat about misunderstandings children have, and the secret, false truths we cling to when we're a kid. For example, I would say the rosary at least once a night when I was a kid, because I was convinced if I didn't, bad things would happen to the people I loved. I would also say fifteen Hail Marys in a row instead of ten, just to show God I meant it. Also, after my grandfather died (when I was seven, I think) I used to pray that I would die in my sleep, so I wouldn't have to miss anyone else in my family.

Oh yeah, and I was convinced that I killed him, because I used to ask him to turn of his heater when the Muppet Show was on, because it caused interference. (Back in my day, kids, we had antennae, and electric devices and airplanes flying overhead used to make the picture all fuzzy...)

Sometimes we don't realize this as a parent. I can't remember who said it, but parents are butterflies who forget what it was like to be a caterpillar. For example, when my son was young, I would tell him that I wanted him to be self-sufficient, so he could take care of himself. Little did I know I was planting the fear in his mind that I was going to die soon and leave him. Kids can hold onto these secret fears without telling their parents.

Being a kid is fun, but it can also really f you up.

TTFN
-Tony

Friday, January 09, 2015

Better Late Than Never...

A couple of years later than promised, but here, for your gustatory enjoyment: Tony's Unpatented and Probably Stolen From Somewhere Else Delicious Lasagna.

TTFN
-Tony

Thursday, January 08, 2015

Je suis Charlie

Yesterday, terrorists killed twelve people at French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, including four political cartoonists. Their crime: making cartoons that satirized Islamic terrorism. (Insert honest but obligatory "I don't believe all Muslims are terrorists" here.) My heart goes out to their families and loved ones. We still live in a world where people fear the spread of ideas so much, that they feel violence is an appropriate response.

My entry for "Draw Mohammed Day"

I'll leave this with the tongue-in-cheek censored ending to South Park's  episode "201," which inspired Draw Mohammed Day back in 2010:

Kyle: That's because there is no goo, Mr. Cruise. You see, I learned something today. Throughout this whole ordeal, we've all wanted to show things that we weren't allowed to show, but it wasn't because of some magic goo. It was because of the magical power of threatening people with violence. That's obviously the only true power. If there's anything we've all learned, it's that terrorizing people works.

Jesus: That's right. Don't you see, gingers, if you don't want to be made fun of anymore, all you need are guns and bombs to get people to stop.

Santa: That's right, friends. All you need to do is instill fear and be willing to hurt people and you can get whatever you want. The only true power is violence.


TTFN
-Tony

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

FREE EBOOK GIVEAWAY, JAN 6-8!

To promote the release of my new novel, the Kindle version of False Idols and Other Short Stories is FREE on Amazon from January 6-8. If you haven't already, get your copy now!

TTFN
-Tony

PS - Wowsers, only one day (Jan 7 at 4am EST) and it's #231 on Amazon's free ebook list! Thank you everyone, get it while it's hot! :D

Monday, January 05, 2015

Debris of Shadows Book I: The Lies of the Sage is now out for Amazon Kindle!


Now available for the Amazon Kindle.

In the late twenty-first century, North America is a divided continent. NorMec is a nation of prosperity, while the West is a wasteland, ravaged by metallic insects that devour everything in their path.

Alyanna Galbraith is one of NorMec’s most sought-after zhivoi-painters: artists who create living works of artificial intelligence. But when the enigmatic Cylebs take notice, she finds herself and her son trapped within a cybernetic world of imagination—one from which they may never escape.

This is the first in a trilogy of novels, and it's taken more than ten years to bring it to light. Thank you to everyone who has gotten me to this point. Your love, friendship, and support mean more than I can say.

A print version will be available in a few weeks. Also, to promote the release, I'll be giving away Kindle copies of False Idols and Other Short Stories from January 6-8. Stay tuned for more information!

TTFN
-Tony