2017 – A Year in Review

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Yes, it’s another year, but what a year! Not only did I relocate from Hawaii to Florida, but I outran hurricane Irma and used my Christmas gift budget on teeth.  But enough about me, let’s digest what in the world happened to the world during the craziest year in my full 58 years of life.

WWIII

Article after article suggest WWIII could break out in five different places like North Korea, the Persian Gulf, Ukraine, etc.  But I would add a sixth or seventh place of origin – TWITTER or FACEBOOK.  Is it just me but are people hurling more bombs in these anti-social media sites?

Government Corruption

Okay, no change here, moving along.

AI

Actual Ignorance increased by astronomical amounts and is expected to be the eighth cause of WWIII.  Articles such as the thief who had to text the police to pull him out of a chimney, for a house he was about to rob.  Listen dude, get off the crack and stop watching Santa movies, it’s warping your mind more than mine.

AV

Autonomous vehicles made the news more often, but if we head towards WWIII, it might be that it begins when we realize that you can only go 25 MPH.  This is when you take control to go 50 MPH and cutoff all other AV’s, when the AI (the other AI) can’t handle the computations.  I predict massive casualties and 100 million car pile-up.

EV

Electric vehicles are all the rage now.  Here in Naples, FL I’ve actually seen Tesla recharging slots at a retail center with not one Tesla vehicle being recharged.  Of the 400,000 orders in place for the Model 3, the company was able to produce 262 in the third quarter.  That means in 1,526 quarters all orders will be filled.  I think that equates to 381 years.  Technology is so blindingly fast.  Don’t get me started on Windows 10.

FUPTA

I just made this acronym up so that I’d appear all cool and hip.  Talk among yourselves and be creative what it might stand for.

Star Wars 2017

Setting records big time, but did anyone ever question why there aren’t any ADS’s (Autonomous Death Stars) and why ES’s (Electric Starfighters) are not in use?  Not so futuristic after all, is it?  Why not just let AI take hold, grab yourself a seat with a huge bag of popcorn and supersized drum of pop to watch C3PO defeat AVEV3, or listen to Alexa take down Siri in an AI intellectual death match.

Social Media Brain Washing

We’ve been told that social media is now influencing our political thoughts and that we simply are not intelligent enough to discern a foreign government’s influence in the election process.  So wake up comrades and stop viewing all the puppy and kitten videos, wine memes, and messenger requests from “Inizzi Love” or “Igotta Love” – these are all communists indoctrination ploys.

The Other AI

You’ve been warned, the start of WWIII will begin when AI decides to takeover the world. That makes about a bakers dozen for reasons WWIII is coming.  From one report I read, Facebook had two AI engines that actually created their own language and had to be shut down.  I think they were ordering pizza on the company account.

Game of Thrones – Final Season

No matter what triggers WWIII, it will only happen until we see how the really narcissistic despot rulers deal with all the distrust and hatred. I’m sure it’s not going to be a series of Tweets.

Outlander Season 3

My wife, a fan of the books and shows, convinced me to watch with her.  I’ve liked almost everything up to the point where Claire returns to the past.  This is where my logical thinking couldn’t reconcile parts of the story.  It all moved a little too fast for me – from Scotland, to Jamaica, to Georgia in such a relatively little amount of time, with no assistance from Elon Musk.  I mean really, those portals were invented by him so that Claire could bring pizza back from the future, there’s no other explanation for having them if you are not going to use them, just like a Tesla recharging slot.  Then there’s the hurricane scene that just cropped up in a matter of minutes after the completion of hanky-panky.  They survive to get rest after the eye arrives, but what about the back side?  Ah ha!  I’ve survived Irma, without any pizza portals.  I’m sure season 4 will be about pizza portal franchises as a front for sedition.

But I digress.

Happy New Year

On a serious note, we do not know when the end will arrive, so live each day as it was your last.  Find time to laugh and find time to love, even if you’ve been through hell like James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser.  Please forgive digressions, like mine.  May your New Year be filled with prosperity and hope that one day we will evolve from AI without the aid of AI (The other AI).

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CAT 4 – No More, Sweet Mother of Haggis, No More

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Hamish Goes Hawaiian

Well, we moved to paradise (Kauai Hawaii) to get away from F5 tornadoes in Oklahoma and Arkansas banjo players. What did we run to? Three Category 4 hurricanes with silly names like:

  • Kilo
  • Ignacio
  • Jimena

https://thebeachyquilter.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/jimena-headed-our-way.jpg?w=640

Today is August 31st, which means we have all of September, October, and November for more gut-wrenching weather forecasts.  We’ve also had brutally hot weather, high humidity, and no visible trade winds.  My glass of Mai Tai sweats as hard as I do. So what will the names of the next storms be?  I’m sure they will be meaningless and easy to say, so let’s just heat up the evening forecast a little. Here’s a glimpse:

  • Lolly Broch Alba gu bràth
  • Mudder
  • Nastio (twin of Ignacio)
  • Orcalina
  • Pilikilihumunumunawahiliwaikikipupututunomonomo (Hawaiian for goldfish)
  • Qi (a silly useless word that wrecks havoc in Word with Friends)
  • Reynaldo De La Quith (Rey for short)
  • Sayonara Senorita

That’s eight more storms before we have to consider any more names. But thanks to the generous sponsorship of Famous Hamish Hawaiian Haggis tours we will keep you up to date. You can hear the broadcast now, but only after the Hamish commercial jingle:

“When your feeling hot and humid what do you do?
You reach for hot haggis, neeps, and tatties stew!
Famous Hamish has it steaming and ready to go,
just in time for the hurricane naming show!

And now for the weather,

We hate to interrupt the Jamie and Claire coupling scene tonight on Outlander, to inform you that Category 5 hurricane Lolly Broch Alba gu bràth has made its way into the central Pacific basin“, or

Here’s the satellite image of Mudder in the Pacific and what a Mudder she is“, or

Hurricane Pilikilihumunumunawahiliwaikikipupututunomonomo is expected to intensify to a category 13 storm.  Please stay tuned for further development of Pilikilihumunumunawahiliwaikikipupututunomonomo!”  (As the anchor passes out), or

“Hurricane Sayonara Senorita will make landfall a category 52 storm.  Please place your face between your legs and kiss your sweet haggis goodbye.”

And that’s not all, once these storms cross the international dateline they become typhoons with Asian names like:

  • Lilipoo
  • Moogoogainpain
  • Nocomebackherebuffettmeannofulldayeatyougohome
  • Tofu

Hurricanes are a new experience to me.  I can kid about it here, but reading about hurricane Iniki which made landfall in September 1992 as a CAT 4 hurricane is no cause for humor, in fact, it is outright frightening.  What I learned from reading and talking with those that live here is that the people of the island worked and put their lives back together, truly demonstrating the meanings of Aloha and Ohana, and that gives me great comfort.  I have the highest respect for Hawaiians that have shared their land with my wife and I.

So as I wait for the 2015 storm season to end, Hamish will be hanging low through all this heat.  Learn to smile, learn to laugh, learn to love, and learn to live. We are not guaranteed another day.

Of Rape

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I am about to dig deep into a thought no one should ever have to delve into, and that is rape.  Over the course of the last month we have had two shows depicting rape that have unsettled viewers:  one from Game of Thrones and the other from Outlander.  Now I am not going to criticize either show, because I have not seen them, nor do I really care to, details are not necessary for me as a reader, viewer or a writer. I believe in leaving some details to the imagination of the reader. Far more important on the subject of rape is its weaving into the story as a whole for a purpose.  So why am I delving into this now?

Back in 2010 I released the first three stories on my planned nineteen story mythology.  This trilogy can stand on its own and provides an exciting and moving story. When completed my readers suggested they didn’t want it to end, so I interjected a thought on the continuation of the story, but from a much different perspective.  The premise, only disclosed to my beta readers had them excited, but now I have to deliver as a writer.

In 2013, I began to write the next series of nine stories dealing with the fall of entire worlds.  Now watching Game of Thrones, you have an idea of a world in complete chaos, where everyone dies, good or bad.  However, my stories deal with both sides of good and evil, and interjects a creator and fallen immortals. There is the darkness and there is the light.  So why destroy worlds and all its inhabitants?  For salacious entertainment, or entertaining thoughts deep into our very nature of being, faith, and why bad things happen to good people.  Remember I am weaving a story, not a religion or doctrine.

In the first story of these nine in the next series I deal with the fall of a young man through the direct influence of evil.  In his madness, he mistakes an innocent young woman as the love who spurned him, and he holds her prisoner and rapes her.  I do not go into detail.  I care not to.  I only use the word “defile” to lead the reader to the evil act.  Surely somewhere in your life you’ve seen or read about rape, will repeating it over again make it any less vile or more entertaining?  This why I chose not to go into detail. Use your imagination if you must, but concentrate on how the rape affects the young woman.

Even in the moment of her despair, the heroine has to rise to the aid and protection of very young children also taken prisoner, not to be raped, just that the young man’s insanity believes them to be his own children.  Upon her rescue she has to deal with the issue of her rape.  Is she pregnant, does she want to live, did she contribute to her rape or did others, will another man ever love her again? Unique to my story is that this is the first living being having to deal with the first moral dilemma.  The young man has to deal with the first moral judgement.  In the middle, is an immortal about to fall from grace from his meddling in mortal affairs, and he watches carefully over the emotions and frailties of the creators beloved mortals.

As a man, this section of my story is difficult to express in the narrative. Do I linger too long on her emotions, or move quickly away from it? Currently I am at 160,000 words, my largest work to date. What I chose to do was not focus on the destruction of the woman’s virtue and innocence, but the ability to rise above it and continue to live and love.  So without going into too much detail the heroine of this story has to deal with tragedy twice for the ending cannot be good if it is the fall of a world.

Or will it be all bad?  As a writer I plan to have certain themes in each story with little hints of upcoming events that will occur in the future stories.  If you have read the trilogy, then you know the ending, but you don’t know the whole journey, for it is still developing in my mind.

The first book in my trilogy was titled, “Rise of the Fallen” and had a dual meaning. For as darkness is rising, so is the light, wherever evil appears it is counter-balanced by good. And this thought should provide comfort.

Sound off, what story have you read that tastefully deals with the topic of rape, and introduces a heroine not succumbed by the act?

Step Aside James Alexander Malcom McKenzie Fraser

My wife has been telling me about the series of books by Diana Gabaldon for quite some time.  Now it’s on cable and I’ve been watching it with her.  And damnit – I like it!  I didn’t want to, I really didn’t.  Who wants to read about some manly Scot all sissified for wanton hussies?  I mean really!  Did you see the Wedding episode?  Of course you hussies have, you’ve been wondering what corn grinding looks like for six episodes, so they gave you one full hour of slobbering whiskey filled bliss. (Pssst… Claire drinks too much).  I think Claire needs a real Scottish man.  So step aside James Alexander Malcom McKenzie Fraser… for Haggis McGoey Fernando Louis Ernie Hamish.

Famous Hamish will do.

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Haggis McGoey Fernando Louis Ernie Hamish

You want corn grinding?  I’ll give you hash browns, French toast,  and cracker jack ring to boot!  And stop with all the meme’s like “Save a Horse – Ride a Scot“, or the new series of “Hey Lassie…”  No real Scot or Scot wannabe would be caught dead saying those things. Id ana gunna hap (Gaelic to English translation: Yo Girl it ain’t gunna happen).  Ye ken wanna id, but I canna du id.

Seriously, I’ve been looking for someone with an evil trait, and Frank, I mean Black Jack fits just the bill.  Except why didn’t he question Claire about who the Bloody Mary mix was Frank?  You see I write fantasy, so I don’t have to tie my characters to history, I just make the stuff up as I go.  This saves on the research and travel budget, which has been stuck on a corn grinding 99 cents.

And really, a bunch of fairies dancing around a rock in the 1940’s?  Puhleeze… how ridiculous is that?  Change it to the 1960’s or current day Colorado and it’s totally believable.  Then there’s the subject matter of James Alexander Malcom McKenzie Fraser’s hamburger helper torture scene.  I’ve withstood numerous paper cuts and bled worse than that!  Fainted too.

Finally, for a couple of weeks they’ve been building up this wedding scene of James Alexander Malcom McKenzie Fraser unraveling of the kilt, only to see the shadows cloak little Jamie.  I bet you hussies were a little disappointed, weren’t you now? My wife, immediately took me by English garrison surprise that night, much to my happiness.  I thank you Diana.  I’ve recorded it and play it nightly.  It has saved my marriage from the pits of the Randall hell. Just keep the dialogue less moments coming, and coming, and coming.  But please, add a little fruit and protein to all that grinding, man canna survive on corn.

Long live James Alexander Malcom McKenzie Fraser, who I now call “Bud.” Haggis McGoey Fernando Louis Ernie Hamish, who you can now call me “Ham”, thanks you too!

Character Obsessions

Hamish
The Guardian Saint of All Authors

I read via many sources that people are flipping out over actors and actresses signed on to do parts in Diana Gabaldon’s – Outlander series and E.L. James – 50 Shades of Grey series.  As an epic fantasy author (not ever to be confused with erotic fantasy), I want a reader to enjoy a story, possibly even contemplate life’s great mysteries.  But…  for a fan to go all chicken headless, missile ballistic, nutszoid – well that’s just plain silly.

I often debate (synonym: argue) with my wife about details in my stories.  I contend a reader should use his or her own imagination to visualize what they wish.  An author who does provide such extreme detail almost deserves the literal storming of the Bastille.  I don’t read that much.  Why?  Because there are usually 18 hours of extra filler in most books that add nothing to the story. Some writers love filler, it justifies the price, I suppose.  If I really want that much visual detail, I’ll wait for the movie, they are actually cheaper than the book.  I have a vivid imagination and can play off the simplest of an author’s descriptions.  Now if I wrote a narrative like this:

“Jenny couldn’t get over how much Harvey looked like Stephen King, except for the large wart on his eyelid.”

If the hypothetical story of Harvey ever made it to the big screen – I’d have all the Annie’s of the world wanting to crucify me, because Harvey wasn’t Stephen King, a close resemblance, and the wart wasn’t big enough.  (Annie Wilkes, the obsessed fan in Stephen King’s – Misery)

Authors are actually getting hate mail and death threats over the choices for the parts in movies or TV series.  To counter the chance that readers may ever get overly obsessed with my characters, know this, I have a sword and I will relieve you of your head that contains all those free roaming mixed nuts.  I repeat, I write fantasy, meaning a story completely made up.  It isn’t real.  You will survive…  The characters are immortal.  Therefore I place a little surgeon general’s warning on each of my books:

This story is a work of fantasy. Details have been withheld for fear of retaliation upon the author by nutzoid fans.
It is therefore, respectfully requested, that you take your med’s before the beginning of each chapter.

I was advised, by my attorney, that the legal fine print would never be read, as are an author’s notes or forewards (pronounced: “Four Words”).  Therefore, it had to be written as the first part of the prologue, with emphasis, such as:

Prologue

This story is a work of fantasy. Details have been withheld for fear of retaliation upon the author by nutzoid fans. It is therefore, respectfully requested, that you take your med’s before the beginning of each chapter.

Jenny loved the wart on Harvey’s nose, it was huge and grotesque, just like a Stephen King horror novel.

You are hooked, right?  It was the wart, admit it, you are smitten by the wart.

You also notice these fans never go ballistic over the ugly people in the books, just the perfect people.  So, don’t make them perfect.  Never use words like: godly, gorgeous, kilt, latex, guitar, Knight, sparkling, whips, chains, hubba hubba, drooling, lapdog, stud, Christian, Edward, Porsche, chocolate, espresso, or billionaire.  If you do, you are setting yourself up for the fall.

I am writing this humor piece because I love satire, which is meant to expose the absurdity of mortal life as we know it, and to help us become better nutzoids by exposing said absurdities.  Now that you know what satire is, maybe you nutzoid’s should give satirist  a little taste of your frustration.  We authors would appreciate the break.

So, Diana and E.L., pay attention.  If you need a little protection, call 1-800-IHAMISH.  Where my motto is:

I have blade and

I have my own tartan.

Have a nutzoid fan?

  I’ll be there to go all Spartan!

Diana, just lend me the traveling stones.

E.L., just control yourself, please! Grrrrr……

Countdown to nutzoid ballistic blastoff reader response is 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1.