Uncategorized

Cafeteria Politics

Those who know me, know that I’m a fairly even keel, middle of the road kind of guy. I am like that with my political views as well. I’m not a Republican nor am I a Democrat. I hate that America is pigeonholed into a two party system. I like ideas from both sides of the aisle. 

I wish, instead of a rightwing bag lunch or the liberal combo, I could order my politics à la carte. I just don’t understand why you have to choose sides and swallow your particular political party’s ideology hook, line, and sinker. 

I want to do bong rips at a gay wedding, firing guns in the air while having the peace of mind that comes with sound fiscal policy.

I also dislike that every political debate turns into school yard name calling. Don’t call each other libtards or Nazis, we are all doing our best and different life experiences shape each of our ideas.

If it ever gets tiring come sit in the middle with me I will save you a seat.

Uncategorized

Summer Daze

Have you ever watched monkeys put together a jigsaw puzzle? This is my afternoon. My neighbor is a hairstylist and slightly OCD. She doesn’t trust anyone else with her hair but she is unable to do the back. She calls my wife to come help her mom cut her hair. 

I show up to watch this debacle and the three of them are watching a YouTube video of the style my neighbor wants. Needless to say it is not going well at the moment. 

There has been much bickering and snatching of scissors. Might be the end of friendships or even a slight murder by the end of this hairdo. 

Did I mention that my wife has little to no experience cutting hair?

Myself, I have been enjoying the show. In fact there should be a reality show based on amateurs cutting a stylist hair based on verbal directions. I would binge watch the hell out of that. 

Personal thoughts

Parenting and The Importance of Bedtime.

Bedtime

I know from the title that you might to expect this to be about the importance of children getting enough sleep. —No, those little snots still have the eternal well-spring of energy that comes with youth– This is about how important it is to banish them to their room and for the parents to take the house back.

Be gone Disney, be gone asinine YouTubers,  farewell fidget spinners.  Your Mom and I have had enough squabbles over the remote, enough questions about when we can make slime, enough 4th grade drama, and enough of you.

This post may seem to be coming off mean.  It isn’t; I promise. I love my kids, I really, really do, but I also love doughnuts and as sweet as they both are (doughnuts and my kids both) having them all the time is neither good for your body nor mind.

This is why bedtime was invented. Think about it, if it were logical,  the poor working parents would go to bed before the kids, but no, we stay up later and get up earlier. While we manage our jobs, feeding the family, doing the laundry and etc.  It gets tiresome and I am the husband… My poor wife.   Instead we send the little balls of energy to bed to be well-rested, so they can be full of annoying vim and vigor all day tomorrow, while the slow grind of life wears us down to dust.

There is a reprieve, at the cost of less rest, we get a a magical hour or two of blissful peace. A time to watch shows that are not appropriate for ten-year-olds. A time for wine, beer, couch cuddles, and mutual tablet or phone zombie time.  This is the time of day where the marriage is rebuilt, the time when you are reminded that not only did you procreate with your spouse, but that you actually like spending time with them.

It’s great. You can curse, tell each other bawdy drinking stories, and gossip about the neighbor.  You no longer have to be the paragon of moral virtue and set an example for the part of the future generation that you spawned. The masks come off and the real you comes out like a werewolf on a full moon.

Try an experiment. Tonight or tomorrow, if you are reading this during the magic hours, take note of the tension in your shoulders through out the day. I would wager that as soon as you sent the Mongolian hoard that are your kids to bed, that the stress melts off of you like a toddler’s popsicle on new carpet.

Yet we love them. They are our world. But for Pete’s sake give us a break and go to bed!

 

 

Book Reviews

The Long and Short of It: The Chronicles of St. Mary’s Book Nine

The Madness of St Mary’s

Buyer beware if you think this is a whole new book.

This is a collection of short stories and all but one has been released before.

As much as I love the novels I think that the short story format is wonderful for this series. It allows the inherent silliness that you have come to expect to shine through with out having to worry about dealing with the consequences of events for a whole novel.

If the novels are the meal then these little tidbits are the desert. Without the supporting universe they would be of little substance, but in the context of the whole they deliver a satisfying experience that gives us a little slice more of the world that we crave.

I also like the insights to events that were previously off stage. and how they affect the crew at St Mary’s. I like seeing Markum shine in the spotlight, I enjoy the Dr Whoish Christmas special, I like that familiar characters show up on the very first jump. This fills in the gaps nicely.  If you haven’t read the whole series then I would steer clear because spoilers abound.

I highly recommend this anthology as a temporary fix while you wait for the next installment. Brew a cup of tea, put your feet up, and enjoy your visit with favorite gang of historians and supporting cast.

Kindle

Book Reviews

Beyond the Shadows (Night Angel, #3)

I wanted to rate this book higher than 3 stars. I became attached to the characters but the story changed during the course of the series from small scope to epic scope. I feel like the author did not earn the ending that he gave it.  I am not bad mouthing Brent Weeks, I have read all the Lightbringer books and enjoyed them very much indeed, but I came to the Night Angel books after reading Mr. Weeks’ later books. He has since improved his story-craft.

 

This book is the conclusion to the trilogy  and I would have preferred a less video-gamey ending. 13 year-old me would have been ecstatic, but I am well past that point in my life and need more substance and less flashiness. The interactions in the book feel forced on occasion especially the romantic relationships. The unrequited love angle is played  to almost comic levels and character over reactions are the norm. Subtlety is not the story’s strong point.

For all that being said, The characters are likable and you do make a connection to them. The action is well written and filled with moments of levity. There were moments where

I thought Mr. Weeks really had nailed down some plot point or device only to spoil it in the next scene,  but that is just me quibbling.

I would recommend that you read this series before the LightBringer series, because it is a downgrade  and if your read these books first and hate them then I strongly suggest you give Brent another shot. He improves vastly with his later series.

 

Amazon

Book Reviews

Just One Damned Thing After Another: The Chronicles of St. Mary’s Book One (The Chronicles of St Mary’s 1)

Have you ever known someone with a personality so engaging that you overlooked their flaws? This book is that person to me.

Don’t mistake my meaning this book is extremely well crafted and the writing is top notch, but the focus is on the main protagonist, Max, and her interactions with the rest of the cast of characters. Ms. Taylor pulls this off perfectly

This isn’t a spoiler but this book involves time travel and it does create some plot holes, but it doesn’t matter. The tone and pacing of the books are incredible and if you happen to listen to the audio books  the narration is stellar.  Don’t get bogged down if some of the details are glossed over Enjoy the ride. Remember no one complained about the absurdity of Douglas Adams because it felt right.

I am an American who grew up watching, Are You Being Served?, on PBS. If you combine that show’s humor with the sense of adventure that you get with, Indiana Jones, adding a cup of tea to the mixture you will have the essence of this book.

Link to the Kindle edition

Personal thoughts

Here we go…

To all,

The purpose of this Blog is to give myself a place to post my thoughts and short fiction I will be writing.  I expect that there will be book and movie reviews, among other thing along with the cluttered rambling my deranged mind. I have started blogs before and they have never gained an audience.  Hopefully this time will be different, I will remain positive.

I might ought to explain the title, Black coffee and Bourbon… This is the beginning and ending of a damn good day in my life and it a nice ring to it when I was bouncing around ideas in my head.  So like the title I hope to be the start of a good day when you read this in the morning or a nice end-cap if you’re reading this on your phone in bed and if you are reading this in the middle of the day at work I promise I won’t snitch on you.