Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Too Many Faux Intellectualists

This is the faux intellectualism we are faced with today in America.

People who in trying to APPEAR intelligent, who wish to believe in their superiority, in their conflated intelligence, who may indeed seem and in general may even be smart people, still do not have the depth of mind, experience (or energy apparently) to see (or look) into a situation and NOT say:

"Well let's hear the other side of this, we don't know the other side."

Sounds typically reasonable, right? Well, not always to be sure.

Sometimes that statement merely points out how ignorant if not outright stupid we can be. I've certainly known people like that. In point of fact, we now even have a president who is the ultimate purveyor of such nonsense (one might even suspect "Nonsense" could be his middle name).

Everyone wants to think they are brilliant and yet at times, when no one is watching, you can see them if not metaphorically then physically walk themselves into a door frame. Apparently they are fully unable to hit the space between the doorway's borders. More often metaphorically, if you watch and listen carefully. Though many times anymore, not even carefully.

Some make these repeated faux pas simply because, though they may have booksmarts, they certainly seem to lack any sense of streetsmarts. There is simply no depth to them, no natural or learned sense of reality. At times even in the most simple of things and situations. And their followers, follow along, as if mesmerized by a pied piper of political absurdities.

In 1982 Billy Wilder on the Dick Cavett show spoke of two interesting things. More only two, but two that I'm mentioning here. One was how a friend of his went to see the play, The Diary of Anne Frank with a younger American friend.

Afterward the man said to this younger friend, "Can you imagine such things can happen?" To which his friend replied exactly and as I mentioned above, "Well let's hear the other side of this, we don't know the other side." Seriously? How uneducated or unintelligent does one have to be to make such a statement?

We have been hearing this same exact mindset from our American (supremacist?) right so much anymore and so sadly about white supremacists, right wing bigots and racists, and about authoritarianism and authoritarians, about Donald Trump, his family his klan.

The other thing was Wilder being asked how Jews in Berlin could possibly have stayed when they actually saw for themselves what the Nazis were doing to their friends and neighbors in dragging them away. Was it because they believed it couldn't happen there in the country of such great thought and giants of human culture?

And yet, it did. Could it now happen elsewhere too? Could it?

It is a sobering thing to consider. For we are there, now.

#POTUS #realDonaldTrump #GOP #Republican #Conservative #NeoNazis

Monday, December 25, 2017

A Christmas Reflection

Merry Christmas! May we all ever better mind our own business!

Walk with me a moment.

Yes, an atheist and a Buddhist of my own orientation, I can certainly celebrate Christmas. Especially having been raised with it as a Catholic. After all it was something that started out as a pagan celebration and was blended with Christmas and Christianity by the Catholic church in order to assimilate those pagan's lands they wished to acquire.

It certainly can be a pagan or secular holiday, too and has become one more and more anyway. And no we don't have to remember what it's roots are in order to celebrate it. But, it is wise to do so for several reasons.

Odd, I know. But true enough.

We can easily use it as a positive reason to treat one another with respect and love without needing to bring a deity into it. A strange consideration for a theist of that particular denomination but hey, there it is.

I think Jesus might just be more accepting of that than many want to believe, or his followers could accept.

Moses? Probably not so much either.. But then, he was a kind of an Old Testament sort of guy.

Muhammad? Well, let's face it. He had some pretty weird ideas and wasn't the brightest bulb in the pack and pretty much the same with anyone believing in all that.

I suppose Jesus had some odd ideas himself but he wasn't actually the one who turned his beliefs into magic. He wasn't the Buddha surely, but then according to the Dalai Lama, Jesus himself was a Buddha. And he taught some basic Buddhist beliefs in order to alter Judaism.

Perhaps Mohammed too was a Buddha, though I have my doubts on that.

Jesus had that need to blend with Judaism and the old Testament in order to build change into the nonsense he had grown up and into. Teachings that weren't so ridiculous back then before the advent of refrigeration and other advancements. Though he did as I said, incorporate elements of the Buddha Dharma to create his new Judaism (later, Christianity) and well, that was a very good thing.

But let's face it. In simply reading the record...we have Mohammed on the bottom, then Moses, Jesus and finally and foremost, Buddha, from least to most. It doesn't take a genius to see that's the order. Sad? Perhaps. But reality can be difficult. And besides, that is to be expected since Gautama Buddha, Siddhartha, was the best educated and least superstitious of all of them.

Still it matters little as all their legacies have been abused and subverted by some or many. It is after all what you pick and choose to believe. Sad as that is. It is much like trying to decide which is the best martial art. A foolish endeavor and does no one much good, for it is all about how you use what knowledge you have chosen, how you apply it, that is most important.

It isn't because I understand Buddha (not his descendants, not his followers, but The Buddha), makes more sense than all the rest of them combined. Consider, Jesus in his life had access to the teachings of the Buddha from travelers, if not from his own. He incorporated those teachings into Judaism and tweaked it so it worked to lead Jews into a more sane belief system. Just as Catholicism centuries later would incorporate paganism into their beliefs in order to assimilate new tribes and beliefs as they infected their world. These aren't wild beliefs. Just reality and history.

I read, I discussed, debated and analyzed and that's how it panned out. Look, don't get mad at me. If God supported anyone of those guys (and I don't think he does, or exists for that matter), then He would have made it quite obvious who was on top. Not much more to say after that, is there....

Yet that's not really what is important here, though. No, really. It's not.

First... allow me to wish you and yours a happy holiday season. Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, a cheery whatever you wish you want to enjoy and celebrate at this winter solstice time.

But what is all this really? Let's lay off for a moment with what history, reality and tradition tell us and just think about what actually is.

You see, there is after all, magic in life.

It isn't the magic of religion or Gods or what we wished (or fear) exists. It's the magic of Humanity. Though we're mostly too humble to allow ourselves to accept that. As vain and greedy, terrified in the face of the universe and life as we are, we are still too humble to accept that we are it. That this is it. All of it.

Isn't that odd?

There is a movie that exemplifies what I'm trying to say here. A 2011 film with one of my favorite entertainers in it, Eddie Izzard. The film is Lost Christmas. It's not about religion but the magic that is Life. And if that doesn't work, here's some others who can explain Christmas a little better.

In life, we have who we have and the memories we have with them. We also have what we believe we will have and those memories that we will then have with them, whomever "they" will be. What we leave, after we no longer exist, really isn't what we will have ourselves at all. Though sometimes we act like it, but it is really what others will have after we are no longer there.

So all we really have is ourselves, our others, our memories. Then we're simply gone and it's the end.

It is hard for many to contemplate dying, or not existing. We don't relate to it as humans. And so we have invented ways, som rather bizarre ways, in our ancient ignorance to deal with it. Okay.

So now let's take a step beyond that and talk about....

Religion and Guns.

No, really, bear with me a moment longer.

Believe it or not, there is something familiar there between those two things.

I'm going to tell you a secret. Something people need to share. Something people need to not keep quiet about. In fact if you need one thing in life to shout to the world, this would be it.

Those who want to spread the "word" will tell you otherwise, but that is from their inside out. Possibly your inside out, too. But that is dysfunctional. It is dangerous. It is against the need of the many, the need of all. Here it is.

Do not share your religion with everyone. Please. Keep it to yourself. Share it with others of a like mind. Offer to those who inquire of you about it. And let that be it. For the benefit of us all. Be open to sharing. But be quiet about forcing the issue on others. You're only doing yourself and your beliefs a disservice. And a disservice to all the rest of us. Regardless what you religion or leaders tell you. Especially in the money grubbing  super churches and many of the evangelical corporate thinking type endeavors.

Evangelicism being one of the great banes America has infected the world and our nation with.

Although some of us do believe you should be ashamed to share your "faith" in these beliefs you hold, with anyone, you are welcome in my world to live your life as you see fit, to pursue happiness for the most part, as you see fit. This is America, still, and hopefully we will survive Trump and his minions.

And so everyone is welcome to their own delusions which we all have. Just be aware, if you bring down our most basic ideals of freedom in the  name of a faux freedom as designed by the greedy now in charge, you will eliminate not on that freedom but your right to your own personal delusions. In religion, in everything.

And you will have to begin to believe in what those in power want you to believe. Much as Trump is doing now, in forcing fakeness and diatribe upon us all in order to enrich both himself and his cohorts.

With only this exception.

For the good of all you should wear your faith under your coat, not on your sleeve for all to see. Signs of your Faith, quiet signs like jewelry, is fine. But the vocal part, you should wear just as you should wear your gun under your coat and out of sight. If you have a gun, and want to carry it around.

Though better it is best for all for you to leave it at home. Rather than forcing force by vigilante actions, force the government to apply funding and resources to protect us properly. THAT is a far better way. Hold our representatives to task to protect us so we do not have to protect ourselves to the degree tha is now perceived, many times incorrectly, but so many. And so many whoa re ignorant and believe whatever their favorite pundits say.

Faith extremists will tell you to preach the word to all and any! Spread the word to assure the continuation of your addiction! Shove your beliefs down the throat of any and all because your God demands it!

But no. That is the way of the immature.

As in religion they will say, propagate, raise your children up with your religion. Force religion down the throat of all humanity until they have no choice but to be subjugated to whatever your choice of religion is and to Hell with all others! Because they become indeed then, The Others.

But that is from within. Don't you see?

From without, from within the whole of humanity, we are many and varied. Diversity is good. But delusion not based in reality is of late, endemic and dangerous and could bring about our own demise.

We need therefore to coexist in order to be, together. That means we need to allow others to seek their faith as they see it. Even when it seems foolish or anti to your religion. Because your religion (even if it's guns) may seem anti to theirs.

Maybe you're right. Maybe, they're right. Because, what if you're wrong? But then, your religion doesn't allow for that, does it? Would it? No, because that is the design of religion in the first place. Isn't it.

And that is fine, I suppose. Mostly. For now.

I would say that in today's world it has now reached a point where we need to kill those who push their beliefs on others so that those who do not, who live to allow others their lives and beliefs, can be the ones in the end to survive and prosper.

Because we do not need those who will push their beliefs on others. Besides it will only, counterintuitively lead to the demise of those who are most obnoxious and pushy. As religion is on the decline globally anyway. It just seems like it's growing because any animal dying and in a corner, becomes louder and more dangerous, until it's dead.

For they are the troglodytes, those who push the ancient and archaic mythologies as reality. The proto humans who need to die off so the evolved humans can survive to propagate and replace them.

Just as children one day finally need to leave their childhood selves behind so that they too can become adults.

We all need to grow. But we do not all need to make others into our own image. Even if we believe that is the image of our God. We need... to all live together. Together in ways that will allow us all to live and prosper and be happy. Together.

And those who do not believe that?

They need to find their end. Quickly. And if they cannot then they need, they are asking us for, our help to end them in their difficult journey.

Hard words, right? Well? Life is hard. But it doesn't have to be. Global warming is real. To think that "God will save us" or "God will fix it", is ludicrous and childish.

We don't need to be making it any harder. Regardless what our beliefs are. We just need to get along. Believe what you will, but remember to treat others with respect and leave the judging to your God. Because if you don't believe your God will judge them, then you do not believe in your God. So either way...stop being demeaning to others.

So, a cheery winter's solstice to you and may you be happy and may you leave others alone, when they need it.


I wish you all the best, the best of Life, Memories and the after...for your others.

One last thing....treat one another as if all you know was:

And you only have, one another.


Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Special Post: US Government UFO Program Sightings

Hopefully this fascinating news release isn't just another #realDonaldTrump / #GOP distraction, cuz the timing is amazing.

The most important thing this former government official says in this interview about the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP) is:

"A lot of times when we don't have information we tend to fill in those gaps with what we think is logical. And there's still by the way, a lot we really don't know."

And that, is how we get conservatives, Republicans, and nutty conspiracy theorists.

Just become it seems like it could be something has little bearing on what it actually is. In studying espionage over the years, and that is a good example of UFO studies, you see things that aren't there, and you don't see things that are there. Also, viewing in hindsight is very different from viewing in foresight, or actual eye witness accounts supported by facts (remember facts? I so miss facts in public discourse).

What we have discovered in #UFO sightings, that is, and listen to how he describes in an intelligent way, what he is discussing, it is left open for other unconsidered possibilities, many of them benign.

Aside from weather balloons, swamp gas, or aliens (extraterrestrials), our own experimental aircraft and drones (which have been sighted and labeled UFOs), we could be seeing natural phenomena explained by physics dealing with little known natural phenomena (interdimensional coalingments), rather than aliens from other planets, it could be us, from our own future, it could be others stepping through into this universe (so pan dimensional, not extraterrestrial), other things, or things we haven't even considered, thought of or known about.

Yes, it could be extraterrestrials. But we've remained too focused on that as an answer due to our own, especially public mindset.

IS someone visiting us and why? Perhaps they have monitored our insanity at putting Trump in office as president and they finally decided we really needed to be saved from ourselves.

Or perhaps it is exactly what some people fear. IS it yet another distraction from Trump, from government officials distracting from Trump and Republicans, or somehow from Russia interference to distract us yet again? Odd coincidence of timeframe.

The point here is, don't be so closed minded. Zanshen, total awareness, and not closed minded considerations. Some conspiracy types think how they don't want to look stupid because they don't "see" what is "really" going on. When that is typically exactly what they do.

And if it IS just aliens? So far, they don't seem to be interested in contacting us overtly. They haven't taken us over (unless they are running the Republican party (a group pretty alien and apparently anti Human after all). Yes, I jest (somewhat) about Republicans and even some conservatives (not so much about Trump, nothing like letting an idiot lead).

Anyway, try not to be stupid in trying to be "smart".

And also, this...and this from a Navy pilot.

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Beatles 1966 Concert in Seattle at The Coliseum

I recently watched the Ron Howard documentary, The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years (2016). If you're into that sort of thing also consider the new two part documentary, Rolling Stone: Stories from the Edge. A fascinating documentary about an important American magazine on American culture.

Okay, back to The Beatles....

In the beginning it is stated that this may be the first time the remaining Beatles have ever actually heard what they sounded like in concert from those years. I can definitively say I fully understand what that means. The sound in the concerts in the film are excellent and a far cry from what my slightly older sister and I heard when we saw them ourselves in Seattle at The Coliseum (now called, Key Arena), August 25, 1966.

They had been to Seattle in 1964 which was famously documented and covered by the media.
When I saw them I was in sixth grade. My sister was in ninth.

As I understand it, my older brother had tickets but heard no one could really hear the music over the screaming girls at other venues, so he didn't want to go. And so my sister got the tickets and I got asked. I was beside myself in not only going to such a grown up thing (and I was surprised when I arrived I was more grown up than most of the audience), but also to actually get to see the Beatles!.

Seattle Times 1966
I remember the place being packed with screaming girls. We were on the left of stage mid way up above and I seem to remember the banister right before us. So lower mid level or lower upper level. But we could see them well enough though I wouldn't have wanted to have been any further away either.

According to this we must have been in section 42
I had my ticket stub until a couple of decades ago when I realized that I had the wrong end of the stub and it had no indication on it whatsoever so I tossed it.

Not my ticket stub but example
What |I remember most is The Beatles coming on stage and the girls screaming. My sister leaned over and complained that if the girls would stop screaming we could actually hear them play. We were both upset that we came to hear a concert and we weren't getting to.

I looked around me and I didn't see a girl not screaming. My sister was sitting there like me, steaming over not hearing the band well. If I listened closely, I could just make out what song they were playing, but not consistently throughout the song.

I remember noticing the size of their amps. Simply not sufficient for this sized venue. See, my sister and our older brother had a band themselves, Cindy and the Barons, in Tacoma, WA. I was used to band practice every Thursday night from 7:30PM to 10PM (curfew times).

Cindy and the Barons
It was obvious to me even at eleven that they didn't have big enough amps or PA system. I couldn't then and do not now understand as this wasn't their first concert, how they (someone) couldn't have figured out they needed more equipment. I suppose they probably saw it as a cost analysis decision. The fans don't care about the music, it was an Experience. And in a way, they were right.

As for Ron Howard's documentary, it is an excellent documentary and the Rolling Stone documentary is an excellent companion to it.

Monday, December 11, 2017

God, Humanity, Religion, America

You must please forgive me, for I cannot help myself to not consider things and openly share them.

For it occurs to me that the ridiculous strictures upon Humanity by such things as religion, or the ten commandments, by conservatives, by the Republican party of late in blending so much religion with politics in a country that has forbidden that, have been so much a bane to our Humanity.

Having over-focused on so many of the wrong things, these and such things have led us to misunderstand our Humanity.Much as religion does from time to time. Think ISIS. Think GOP.

Remember that the ten commandments ignored slavery, domestic violence, child abuse, abuse against women, and why?
Anti Roy Moore poster
I don't see where blacks should be offended by that flyer going out (above). How very true is it first of all? Let's face it, this wouldn't even be an issue to dump Roy Moore if he were black.

So called Good Christians are actually going to vote for Moore. Confusing. Stupid. Some say because Trump, a man who has crass and base views in life, whose sense of class and style is brutish at best, was also accused repeatedly and more so of sexual harassment which he admits to, and yet HE became and is somehow still, president. Although his acceptance rating is at 32%, the lowest for any president ever in American history. Now there's a precedent, right?

Let's face it, none of what this says is a stretch
These are religious people? "Good" Christians? Racists? And let's face it, if Moore were white as he is but had been chasing after young black girls, he would lose his race hands down, not because they were young black girls per se, but because he was after girls who weren't white.

What can one say but... The South. And... Republicans. Conservatives. Silly people. Better a seat in the Senate than a Democrat, even if an old geezer was a young girl chasing child molester who had been blocked by the local shopping mall and YWCA because of those behaviors. But hey, better a pervert than a Democrat or someone liberal. Good grief.

"Forty years ago in Alabama, people could get married at 13 and 14 years old. My grandmother at 13 was married, at 15 had two children and a husband. If Roy Moore was guilty, if he was at the mall hitting on this 14 year old, forty years ago in Alabama,there's a lot of momas and daddies who'd be thrilled that their 14 year old was hit on by a district attorney." Southern focus group male member this week on Vice News.

OMG, seriously? That's the American South? And they admit it? In public? On national TV?

Okay, so Alabama admitting to its perversions. Things that it has recently been ruled on the world stage in other countries is child abuse and sexual molestation and needs to stop.

But in our American South, oooorah! Go get em Roy! Perve away on our young daughters. Woohooo! You old rascal! Just like our President! Nail that girl to the bedpost old sir!

#GOP is being pretty slimy....Republicans are still supporting perverts and openly and no one's gonna stop them! Remember decency? Yeah, it's fading.

Red is a good color for Republicans at this point as the blood of our morals leaks out as they are dying, all across America's Congressional floors.

In limiting our behavior and with due consideration to Humanity's sense of innate OCD, or of extremizing things, we have consistently misunderstood and denied ourselves of just who we are. Better of who we should be and what is best to try to achieve to be.

And so ridiculous strictures have sorely damaged us again and again as in our misunderstandings against such things as sexuality in just who we are. We have consistently misinterpreted these as denying any aspect of us.

Rather than our reveling in it all. Instead of merely having mature and controlled attitudes about it. Instead we have forced archaic and immature attitudes about it and shied away from more mature reasonings about it.

For instance rather than has self discipline and practicing not raping or abusing women, some cover women up hiding their appearance so men won't what? Really men, you can't act like mature adults? Grow up. We're not letting ourselves practice maturity. So how do we get people like Islamic terrorists? Huh, I wonder. It's been built in.We did it to ourselves.

Which was why I created The Church of the Pure Purple or Purpleism back some years ago as a reaction against not only the ridiculous in religion but also against the ridiculous and ignorant things forced upon us in our lives, by ourselves (as a species). The smartest (absurdist) religion in the world says:
    First rule of Pulpleism is, no killing over religious issues! 

    That, if there really were an all knowing all seeing God, should be the FIRST Commandment OF ANY and EVERY religion. But then again, a God did not set up any of these religions and so we see what we have seen for millennia. Ludicrous behaviors supported by those in power and abused all the way down the line to the most common and ignorant and then back up agains from the bottom.

    Yes, yes good things have been done by religions throughout history too. But serial killers have also done good things. What's your point? If not for religions, more rational types would have done these things. So that's not even an argument. If not for religion, we'd already be out into the solar system and yet, we're barely now off this planet. You don't see that? Read history. Learn about all the science that was put down, destroyed, scientists through history murdered, all by religion. Yes, religion supported some science, but more so, it tried too many times to destroy it.

    We have found because of established religions a need, no, a desire...to be interpreting things in the most ridiculous of ways. Such as in Islam covering its women up completely merely to protect men from themselves rather than teaching and requiring of them to have a mature sense of discipline about it. We have stoned non heterosexuals because they deviated from the norm. A norm to this day many religions deny. Then we have male religious leaders sexually abusing male boys. And hiding it in a systemic way.

    In reality the norm is exactly what we have in their existing. Yet we deny reality for the status quo of defending and perpetuating the belief system.

    We have ignored our inhumanity to one another over the worship of what we cannot see, over entities who have demanded of us even in their having been fully created by men, demanding of us our full and undiluted attention all while fully against reality and... one another.

    What then is the true crime against Humanity? If not merely that of the considerations of our crimes against worshipped idols, regardless what it may deemed to be?

    All we need to do for now is simply to drop religion form politics and vote sanity.

    Vote Humanity.

    Vote compassion and humane treatment of our fellow human beings. Vote, American. Vote our most basic of ideals in separation of church and State, in order to allow freedom of each citizen and that of their choice to suffer worshiping the ethereal in the sky.

    Look. Enjoy your personal delusions. It's America. Just allow the rest of us, ours.

    It's not rocket science people. 

    Monday, December 4, 2017

    America Private Civilian (non) Militia Playtime Armed Forces (APCnMPAF)

    We should all be sick by now of the abusive nonsense by conspiracy paranoids, extremists, Republicans, conservatives, agents of our enemies, and agents of profit seeking special interests pushing ridiculous agendas.

    This nonsense about the 2nd Amendment by those who cannot understand the difference between their current situation in a powerful and well established America and that of the original and tentative America founded through our US Constitution and the need not that much later on for Amendments to that Constitution.

    Look, entire books have been written about this subject. The Supreme Court even unwisely ruled on it. I'm not saying I'm smarter then them, but partisan issues to come to bear there. I've read some of the books on this, many articles and papers and researched this to my own satisfaction as a university educated and professional researcher. Which means I'm not seeking to prove my beliefs, but to find the truth. Remember that? Truth? I'm not going to expend lots of verbiage here on this. I'm going to try to simplify it for those who want a quick answer and for those (probably those against what I'm saying here) who seem to have trouble understanding the second amendment.

    Or even the simplest of concepts. Like how a Pres. Trump is bad for America (yes, worse than even a Pres. Hillary Clinton from what we're seeing, far, far so much worse) as well as the entire world. But that's another topic where now several (not one or two) government investigations are under way.

    Those who cannot understand this are our ignorant and apparently poorly uneducated (or if not, then simply disingenuous) Americans who appear to be willing (like our current travesty in Pres. Trump) to lie, cheat or steal in order to keep their favorite toys (military assault weapons) easily available to literally it would seem, anyone.

    Do we need to appeal the 2nd Amendment of the US Constitution's Bill of Rights?

    Because those who are abusing its meaning and intent now 200 years after it was written, seem to have no idea what it means or indicates? Do we need to restate its meaning? I'm beginning to think we need to restate it merely so these people can understand clear and modern English.

    Amendment II

    A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

    Civilian so called militias are not the militia indicated in the 2nd Amendment at all. The intended may be referring to, using civilians as militia, but it refers to a top down not a bottom up, entity.

    Also, to bear arms seems to confuse some people. For instance, we need to define, bear and to bear.

    In the Oxford Dictionary, it means to bring something to bear, which is a good point in relevance.

    That is to bear down upon or aim at. To bear arms therefore indicates taking up a weapon against someone seen as enemy with intent to aim at and kill them. As in martial actions against another. But as governed by the state.

    Even if militias organize, practice (some would say for many of them, playing at) for the good of the state in the case of the GOVERNMENT needing them for the security of a free state.

    Not the security of the civilians against a free state as many now believe. Rather to be ruled over or governed by the state over those militias.

    That means that a  militia is allowed to be prepared, but not against the state, as many of them feel they are. Rather FOR the states and against as should most reasonably be considered, all enemies foreign and domestic! We now actually have to concern ourselves with whether this includes our current Pres. Trump and his administration. Brought to us by many of the same people who cannot understand the meaning and intent of the amendment in question here.

    There is also the point that one does not bear arms against a rabbit. Therefore it does not actually indicate hunting as so many claim.

    Also, arms as in the right of the people to keep and bear seems to confuse too many people. Far too many people, actually. But then that gets into our abuse and lack of support of our educational system. We have been dumbing down Americans who cannot afford a decent education for decades now.

    And here we have the results. Uneducated if not outright stupid Americans voting against their best interests and unable to understand what the Founding Fathers thought was one of the simplest of amendments. But one they knew people would misinterpret, which is why it was worded as it was. Also though, worded as it was merely because they wanted to get something passed and put into law, accepted by all the states then voting. And they did.

    Though I doubt they could have foreseen the nonsense we're seeing today they more assuredly saw some of it. But only perhaps, a third of it. I doubt they foresaw modern assault weapons or even the self contained firearm cartridge for that matter.

    The bottom line here is that the second amendment is for the government, not the citizens.

    We also have to be wary of religious militias. Christian militias for instance. We've seen what so called Muslim militias can do in other countries in the form of ISIS. The last thing we need in this country are religious based militias. Or even conservative, right wing, ultra extremist militias.

    Granted, although some militias may take themselves seriously and professionally, we still have to deal with the many that do not. Some of which shouldn't even be allowed near a gun to begin with. And even the professional militias, still need to be governed under the government and not aligned against it, as so many covertly (or overtly) are.

    And that is its orientation. In now having a standing army, we no longer need militias. Therefore that amendment no longer has any real standing or need.

    It may be sad that Thomas Jefferson was against America even having a standing army, as it begets empire building (actually kind of as we've been seeing).

    There are instruments so dangerous to the rights of the nation, and which place them so totally at the mercy of their governors, that those governors, whether legislative or executive, should be restrained from keeping such instruments on foot, but in well-defined cases. Such an instrument is a standing army. Thomas Jefferson to David Humphreys, 1789, 549

    Yet, in over two hundreds years we're not seeing this happening. So it's become a moot point. Was Jefferson wrong in his concern? No. But the system as designed would seem to be working well enough that it has not become an issue.

    And let's not forget other wise things Jefferson said:

    What then is the issue? The second amendment. Not really so much that of itself, as those who wish to twist its meaning and bastardize its intent for their own reward (NRA, gun industry, conservatives) and benefit (maintaining power, self aggrandizement, financial reward).

    There are several things we now need to address and remove in our government because of the abuses we've been seeing that have led us here to this dysfunctional point.

    First and longest term, we need to address our educational system. Free school at least up through a two year degree...for all. Better, four year colleges should be free, and more of them (and less (and NO more or any at all, private corporate) prisons, which is entirely another important topic).

    Removal of the Gerrymandering process which has corrupted our system for far too long.

    Removal of the electoral process which again has corrupted out system for far too long.

    And finally, removal or rewording of the second amendment which has been corrupted in meaning and intent through disingenuous definitions by mostly conservative interests and greed.

    I would argue for removal of the amendment since until we address the other two issues (three if you wisely include fixing and bolstering our educational systems which will take at least a generation to return wisdom to our culture in properly educated citizens), we will find any attempt at rewording the second amendment will merely further corrupt it in the dysfunctional direction I have just pointed out above.

    So here we are where we now need to move forward and stop the slaughter at home of civilians by civilians.

    Or will we simply remain at the current and dysfunctional status quo, which conservatives so love and have forced into place while we all know that moving forward, being progressive, is the only way to progress and to move forward.

    Monday, November 27, 2017

    Finally. Purpleism defined

    Purpleism? You don't know what, "Purpleism" is? I've talked about it before on here, but today is to show progression.

    But Really? Never heard of it, huh? Never heard of the Church of the Pure Purple?

    No memory of "The Religion Purple", Purpleism, huh?

    Well, your loss, I suppose.

    Basically, if you have generally accepted pet peeves in an area of entertainment or, discipline of endeavor (that we care about), Purpleism may be for you. It is an absurdist (faux) "religion". Religions have abused us for so long, we thought it time, in the same vein perhaps as the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster the far better than the more ridiculous "religion" of.... Scientology (the most ridiculous religion ever and needs judicial actions as other countries have banned it, and to lose its official standing as religion in America), and others.

    The UrbanDictionary.com  as of October 1st, 2011, has a definition of Purpleism. Wikipedia not so much.

    Purpleism also has a theme song by the great Gypsey Punk band, Gogol Bordellow, of course, called, "Start Wearing Purple".

    Purpleism was started by two disenfranchised individuals in the Pacific NorthWest of the United States of America. Where else could it have started? Home of Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Jimi Hendrix and so much creativity it's unreal. The web page is hosted on JournalED.com which is the "Journal of ExtraOrdinary Diversions, a web site that has been online since 1995 and was born of an attempt in the 1980s to create a magazine of the same name for the purpose of displaying some of the NorthWest's writing talents (no poetry was allowed, but experimentation was greatly appreciated). Purpleism is definitley an ExtraOrdinary Diversion.

    The High Holy Leader is a Mystery, but it is known he is one of The Two. The "Other" is known as "Nik, the Most High Adjudicator".

    Purpleism was born of irritation one night when two guys, a father and son, were watching a TV show and the commercials were out of hand, the hacking up of the show was ridiculous. Ends of shows have been cut, compressed, the credits are shrunk till you can't read them, ads display across the bottom of he screen while you are watching a show. It's embarrassing.

    Channels like the IFC, the Independent Film Channel tout themselves as independent but aren't much more now than a lame commercial channel, with commercials showing lame shows that aren't anymore independent or creative than Channels on Broadcast.

    Finally that night, it couldn't be taken anymore and the absudist pseudo Religion "Purpleism" was born. It was a reaction against Wall Street, banal management by Film, TV and the Music Industry, who frankly, have gotten what they deserved.

    It's purpose to to draw attention to the reaction against what has been done on producing and displaying the Art of our culture. To have a platform from which to respond to how we feel about being abused by too many commercials during TV shows. To react against the poor content being shoved down our throats. The bastardization of our films in their being cut up, altered, shortened, compressed, and even cut off, sometimes by the creator themself, the director, the worst of all abuses where a Director abuses us through abusing their own product.

    And that lead into other things, from a mutilated movie on a cable channel (Syfy), to other areas. It was then realized that there was a common chord here that ran through all of our culture. There are things that annoy and downright piss people off and they have no where to turn, no format wherein their complaints can be treated with concern by those who are doing the abusing. It is still small, but growing. Check it out.

    So, what exactly is Purpleism?

    The easiest way to explain it is simply to show some of the Manifestos and Tenets of the Religion that is always growing, always evolving:

    Purpleism has Manifestos on:
    The Tenets:
    • Those who cannot understand will see the following as, a single Truth. Know that the Universe, has no single Truth.
    • Be careful, for all ye who can actually hear the Truth, become instant converts! Peace.
    • Of all the colors in the universe Purple is the most divine.
    • The Color Purple is not just the color of Royalty.
    • Ask yourself: Is it Why, or How?
    • What makes the color Purple so heavenly?
    • "The Religion Purple", or "Purpleism" is constituted of those Believers who accept the reality of The Color
    • Communication of the Universal Ethers is also known as The Color Purple.
    • The Religion Purple Priests are never taller than 2 universal cubits and 2 palms (or for US Standard, 3'6") because that puts their eyes at precisely the right point to be able to see clearly, The Color Purple, as it is most visible at that height off any horizontally planed surface. Think the Star Wars critters called Jawas, in the robe (above) that is purple without the bandoleers. They must wear robes of heavy dark materials that are breathable (natural fibers being preferred) and have hoods to block light, enabling them to see more clearly, The Color Purple, as ever it portends itself.
    • Purpleism is most notable near Universities.
    • Purpleism is greatly discussed with in the inner cities, the most uselessly notable adherents are from the upper echelon circles of the rather well off; that subset of the young and hopelessly bored social strata who simply will never, "get it"; and therefore, we will never give it to them.
    • As there can be no nothing, something must exist. Therefore, the concept of God is a non-sequiter.
    • There is no Inner Circle in Purpleism.
    • There is however, a Coherent Beam of individuals in Purpleism, made up of the most enlightened and bright lights. These are only assimilated into the Beam, through their lights brightly shining which can be seen by any of the Priests and are allowed in only by invitation.
    Why all these weird rules and stipulations? Isn't that what makes a religion? Only this one, has some stuff mentioned that we care about. It seems to have some relevancy to daily life. Stuff like that.

    And that is Purpleism.

    Learn it, live it, love it.

    Monday, November 20, 2017

    Firewalling Sexual Abusers

    "Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't.” - Mark Twain

    My view of sexual harassment, domestic abuse especially against women and children, slander or libel against women especially for merely speaking out against those who are abusive, has always been the same. Stop it from happening, support women in fighting back. Firewall those who are abusers, cut them off, block them.

    Stop calling women liars, stop slandering them, stop muckraking them through the media mud. Support our women, support the abused, don't just ignore them, turn away, abuse them even more!

    This is not a partisan issue, nor a political issue. It's a human issue. Men need to lock arms with women over this. In a nonsexual, platonic, professioanl fashion, supporting women for their worth, their skills, their equality to us men. And not just a pretend equality, but a real and substantive one.

    I suspect most men may be good and decent people, but enough men are not that this has to be addressed and we have to stand for those who are abused and then more especially abused when they are brave enough to speak out about it and who is being abusive toward them.

    We have a culture of abuse against women by men in power over them.

    We have elected a president in Donald Trump who has admitted he is a predator. We have people declining invitations to the White House because of him and that. Enough obfuscation about peopple like Bill Clinton, or even Al Franken, when we have an actual accused predator in the oval office RIGHT NOW.

    And Republican Judge Roy Moore. A man who has been an historical embarrassment and obvious sexual predator of minors. Who been removed from the bench twice for refusing directions from the Supreme court. Who had his own community when he was a district attorney, ban him from their Gadsden Mall, and from the local YWCA for inappropriate behavior of soliciting sex from young girls. And he is still running for Congress and being supported into it.

    Women who have a claim against Bill Clinton should be supported to seek their closure, but as a nation we need to pay attention to what is here and now of those in power at this time. As for Franken, it feels less than it's made it out to be and regardless, an investigation is in the works. But I suspect it will end in little being discovered as those who know Al seem to see it as I do, that what was reported was an outlier in being a bad behavior, and not a bad actor as we see in Trump, Moore and others like them.

    We are America and we need to start acting like it, and clean up our act!

    It's wrong. I can't believe this is happening, still! But then, I first saw this kind of thing when I was in my teens and in a way that really put my life on the line for it. In part that event from 1974 set a tone for me throughout the rest of my life even up to today.

    Maybe it's because I had so much of my childhood governed by women, my sister, my mother and especially my mother's mother, I've always been more understanding of their plight. And I've always been easily angered at hearing of their abuse.

    I had an awesome grandmother. In so many ways, she has my thanks for who I am today. In finding out I hadn't learned multiplication tables because of how often we had moved, because at one grade school they learned those tables in fourth grade while my next school in third, she wrote out the multiplication tables from one through twelve all over her kitchen wall. At every meal we would go over them whenever I stayed there, until I had learned them all.

    I grew up loving women, respecting them, and also in having a solid sense of self respect in that regard, in having a great respect for women. I had trouble learning and K-12 was kind of a nightmare. I had a step father who seemed to hate me and tell me at every turn that I was stupid. It wasn't until the military and later college and a university that I truly began to believe that just perhaps, I wasn't stupid after all.

    So men who lay blame for their actions against women are because they had poor self esteem, or couldn't talk to women and so use their power and control to get sex, just doesn't wash with me. It's lazy, it's abuse pure and simple.

    There is a theme going all though my fiction of empowered women. Or of bad things happening to the men who abuse them. An example from my own life of my orientation in being pro women, is uniquely available to the public, as I've written a true crime semi biopic screenplay.

    This may seem like a shameless plug for a screenplay I'm shopping around to producers and studios, but hey, it's hard getting a screenplay sold. That being said however, it is also a pretty amazing example of my orientation on supporting women in my life and I would also argue, a very good example of how we need to stand up for women. More than once I've put myself physically on the line for women against some guy, usually their guy, and women that I sometimes, many times, did not even know. AND most importantly, I had expected NOTHING from them for my efforts.

    I stood up for them merely because... it was the right thing to do!

    I currently have two titles for it as I shop it around. Teenage Bodyguard, or Slipping "The Enterprise" (see links for more). "The Enterprise" was what that mafia group called themselves and what we tried to do that week in trying to slip by them until the woman in the screenplay could leave town at the end of that week.

    She introduced me to a lifestyle that I'd had no idea about. I'd read The Godfather in high school, I saw the film. But didn't realize just how women truly were treated by some of these guys, if not most.

    The screenplay details an actual week in my life at eighteen in 1974 where I protected a woman from the local Tacoma Carbone crime family until she could leave town. Why do I bring this up? It's not to go on about a screenplay I'm currently shopping around, but to point out that even at eighteen, I felt strongly about women's rights and treating them decently, that I put my life on the line for a woman.

    I've gone through my younger years and throughout my life being disgusted by what has been put upon women, merely for being female, or attractive, or in a position where a guy having power or control over her, can feel free to be abusive. Not just in sexual but also in issues of power and control. To be fair, these men I'm detailing in this were abusive to human beings. They abused their control and power over men also, and in many cases, murdered them. The ultimate abuse.

    In my screenplay and back then in reality, I had been introduced to a woman who was around ten years older than me. I was initially just asked to give her a ride to her new location where she was to stay there for a short time. I found out later it was because my "friend" wanted her out, fearing the mafia who was looking for her and in the process, put me front and center in their crosshairs. To be fair, they didn't know I'd accept helping her. They just asked me to give her a ride.

    I was naive about many things in life back then, and in some ways so was she. She was also obviously traumatized. My reason for bringing this up regards why I took on the challenge of protecting her, with a gun, for that entire week.

    Once I got her to where she was going to be staying for that week, she sat me down and handed me a newspaper clipping about a recent murder. It was the murder of a bouncer at a local (Tacoma's first) topless club, run by this crime family and called the Tiki restaurant in Lakewood, Washington, just south of Tacoma. It was a murder she said, even though to this day it is labeled an anonymous murder, was done by the crime family, to one of their own.

    She outright asked me if I had a gun. I admittedly said, yes. She then took a chance, seeming lost, asking if I would get that gun and stay with her for that week until she could leave town. She feared they would find her and take her, and potentially murder her too for what they believed was being a murder witness against them. They did that kind of thing fairly regularly, all through the 1970s. I didn't know what to say until she explained further.

    It was her explanation that convinced me that I had to help this woman.

    I bring this up because even at eighteen, I felt I needed to stand up for women. And, as this case clearly exemplifies, I put my money where my mouth is. I put my life on the line for this woman, because I was so horrified at the abuse this woman and others at her job had been put through.

    I've had that orientation all my life. I've stood up for women when I saw them being abused but sadly, many times, the women went right back into that abuse, much to my shock and dismay. But we do what we can. And in this case, I did.

    I'll just share that scene in my screenplay:

    Do you have a gun? You don’t happen
    to have a gun do you?

    A gun? A gun. Oddly enough, I do.

    What. A rifle, probably--

    Yeah but a handgun, too. .357
    magnum actually.

    Can you use it? You know how?

    Yes. Yes, I do.

    Self-assured but naive and it slightly confuses her.

    I don’t know why, but I trust you.

    Again, I have that affect on
    people. I’d have to go home, just
    to get the gun.

    You live with your parents?

    No. I have an apartment.
    (light chuckle)
    Graduated, got out at seventeen. I
    have a job, an apartment, car
    obviously. I’ve had a job since
    ninth grade. Days. I’ll need to go
    to work. Have to pay the bills,
    rent and stuff. Could take the week
    off but, really can’t afford it.

    No, that’s fine, I understand, you
    need to work, pay bills. If I need
    to go anywhere I’ll just wait for
    you. No one knows where I am or how
    to find me. That’s what all that
    was about at Erik and Dave’s. It’s
    safe here. Really. I never told
    anyone about them. I don’t want to
    take any chances. Not mentioning
    this to anyone goes without saying.
    OK? And don’t let anyone here know
    you have a gun.
    I don’t want to-- freak anyone out.
    Especially Mary being PG and all.
    You know?

    I get it, I’m used to it, really. I
    don’t show if I’m carrying. About
    these guys--
    (Indicates newspaper clipping)
    Dangerous I take it?

    Sometimes. I was in the office that
    day with Ron. He was all worked up
    over something so I let him throw
    me up against the wall for a bit.
    That always calms him down. I know
    they killed Danny. The bouncer. He
    was nice. To me, to all the girls,
    not like the others.

    Sorry? You let him throw you up
    against the wall?

    (Confused he doesn’t get
    it, uncomfortable)
    You know. Sex. Most of the girls
    let him do that. Like I said, calms
    him down then he’s much easier to
    deal with. Danny I think just got
    in their way. He stuck up for us.
    Maybe they finally had it. I know
    they killed him though. I do know

    Why not just fire him?. Who kills a
    guy for sticking up for women?

    She looks away.

    Johnny Carbone does. May have been
    something more, I donno. Maybe he
    heard something, spoke up at the
    wrong time? Who knows?

    OK, well, look. I’ll head home.
    Back in a few. I won’t be long.

    When she asked me if I had a gun, I told her I did, but I wasn't convinced yet. It was when she made it clear what her working environment was, and there was more than I put into the screenplay, in how it was for all the women there. And my research for this screenplay has proved this to be true and even then some. My mind was made up. Screw those guys, she had me 100% on her side.

    That's the kind of motivation and support we need to give women today.

    This nonsense has to stop. Men need to not just support women, but themselves in not acting like animals just because they have a little (or worse, a lot) of power.

    Women, as has been said repeatedly over time, are our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, daughter and friends. They deserve our respect and support. Even if we have to pick up a gun to support them (obviously not illegally, go to the authorities if need be).

    And that is the end of it.

    We have now elected a president who has admitted he is a sexual predator. Well, I didn't and wouldn't have voted for someone like him. Women have come out against him for his abuse and what have we done, what has he done?

    Abused them in the media. Dragged their reputations through the mud and slime that sexual abuse leads to.

    But that is changing. Times have changed and it needs to change. We will ALL be all the better for it! As we will when women more and more have positions of power and control over men and women.

    Stand up for them. Support our friends and loved ones who have historically suffered abuse all through history.

    #MeToo #SexualHarrassment #StandForWomen #Producer

    Monday, November 13, 2017

    The Irresponsible Generation?

    I don't get this attitude that I see so much of today. Blame laid anywhere but on oneself. Yes, times are hard, but they've been harder.
    And sure, there's always some of that involved....
    How do you not know you are going to graduate High School when you have been working for twelve years to get to that point? What happened to being responsible for oneself? Thinking for one''s self, thinking outside the box to get to where you need to be?

    There seems to be some kind of a virus going around that absolves people from being responsible for themselves. It's a super virus among many conservatives, to be sure. You'd think in twelve years during K-12 years one would figure out they are one day going to be out on their own.

    "I am 17, and my parents are going to kick me out on my 18th birthday in August to make me homeless. What do I do? I don’t have a driver’s license or a bank account."

    Seriously? I suppose we can blame our parenting? I was a bit of a mess when I left home at seventeen. But I had a driver's licence, I got a job that started the day after HS graduation. I took responsibility and figured it all out on my own. My parents weren't any help, they assumed I'd do what I needed to. And I did.

    It was painful. But no one helped me, I helped myself. I had no other choice. My parents weren't highly educated. My mother only got to ninth grade. My step-father graduated high school, but wanted little to do with me and was a blue collar warehouse worker. There were no expectations from them for me which was a good and a bad thing. Good emotionally. Bad career wise. But then, I had to figure things out for myself before I moved out and because of that, I handled my own situations after that.

    What helped me more than anything was a friend back then telling me something important. He had said:

    "Be responsible for yourself, because no one else will be. Yes, your parents may be to blame for your emotional problems or more. But once you are an adult at eighteen you need to accept responsibly for yourself. Even if your situation is not your fault or responsibility, take that responsibility on yourself. Because by accepting it you will be far ahead of the game."

    And so I did that. It took a while but it was worth the pain over that next year or two as I adjusted to stop blaming anyone but myself for everything. In taking that responsibility, it gave me a brand new and more productive perspective.

    We're seeing this lack of responsibility even in older generations now in things like the issues about Russian and even Republican disinformation campaigns. For over two decades now we've seen this kind of behavior in the GOP and with conservatives, with the NRA, with the tobacco industry, the car industry, and with many global corporations. Selfishness, greed, "me before others", this simple overall lack of accepting responsibility for our own actions and situations. Win at all costs, even if we are liars or abusers. I may even be in part an explanation for much of the sexual abusers we're now hearing about in the media that led to the "Me Too" campaign which was long overdue.

    Once I had accepted responsibility for myself and my actions, my life got better. Eventually. It hurt, and it was painful. It took over a year to accept it, to get used to it. but life got better from that point on. It took a while for my living situation to get better but my mindset, my emotional state, my life orientation, even my friend's attitude toward me (and mine toward them) was instantly enhanced. And the rest of my life was all the better for it, than it would have been.

    America needs to start doing that overall. Not just about our children, not just about ourselves. Not just about family, but about community in general and about our nation.

    Perhaps in some ways we've confused a generation in our being so oriented to not do to our children what our parents did to us, in our being overly PC, in being too protective of our children. Perhaps our parents, even if misguided, actually (even if inadvertently), knew something we were msising?

    I suspect one day this generation will get their act together, raise their kids differently and  (hopefully) do a better job than we did so their next generation will get it together overall and for us all.

    Perhaps this is in part what is wrong with our government too. Not about our children obviously but about their parents who are now in power. We can see some of them, their attitudes, selfishness, being focused only on theory and defective agendas, not on humanity, process, or people, and not on our children.

    Or perhaps this next generation will be even worse off? Well, hopefully not.

    Our hope as it always is, is in our young. We need to invest in them, their education, healthcare, mental health, social health, and our own understanding of parenting them. I can only hope, we all can only hope, that they will be our hope and our future.

    A future that will eventually get better than the ridiculous nonsense that is currently saturating our culture and our country,

    Monday, November 6, 2017

    Hollywood Girl Goes Author!

    You may remember my Hollywood Girl blog on a web series created and starred in by the amazing Courtney Zito. Check that blog out for more about her and her show. Or you may remember my blog: Just why is Courtney Zito crashing the SuperBowl?  Both obviously about the same lady.

    What this blog here and now is about is that she has just turned her talents to being an author and writing a book. What kind of book would this dynamic, attractive and talented actress, and comedic producer of a very funny show... write?

    Well, a supernatural thriller of course! Titled Peripheral Vision, it's available now to pre order on Amazon. Check out her new video book trailer for it. It's pretty sweet! Drop by her Facebook page and let her know you hopefully pre-ordered the book. Coming out as an ebook first, it will later be released in print format. Teaming up with her in writing this book is writer Timothy Hammer.

    See the Amazon description below at the end of this blog.

    Courtney's an amazing talent (just watch an episode or a season (or three) of Hollywood Girl) who has been lost not only to the single crowd (she's married), she has also entered the role of parent. It seems like only yesterday she was a free and crazy Hollywood Girl and now she is branching out into a multitude of endeavors as only she can.

    Far beyond the triple threat many fear as competition, just get out of her way and see where she goes!

    Hollywood Girls has broken the bonds of videohood and entered the international realm of the novel.

    Cheers, readers!

    From the Amazon page:

    Sometimes the deepest secrets hide in the the darkest corners.

    As a little girl, Sarah suffered a horrific tragedy that would forever change her. She saw it coming before anyone else, but she could only describe it as the feeling. From then on, she always considered herself an “extra sensitive”. It was as if her mind knew something was going to happen, but she wasn’t able to fit all of the pieces together until after the fact. At night, while she dreamed, her visions played out both the past and the future, and sleep was often elusive. But with the help of doctors, and sleeping pills, she was able to silence the feeling for the better part of her life.

    Now, as a thirty-something, “living the dream” in Los Angeles, she’s built a solid life for herself and put the tragedy behind her. But when she’s met with unexpected news, it causes a cataclysmic shift in everything she thought she knew about herself, and her family. Sarah’s estranged Aunt has died, and she has inherited her old farmhouse in the small Nebraska town of Homewood. Deep within the house, she discovers some very dark secrets. What she finds, opens up some frightening doors to the small town's past. Doors that were better left closed.

    Oh yeah...this should be good!

    Monday, October 30, 2017

    Author's Reading at Studio 724 - Port Orchard

    Saturday I went to another Author's reading at Studio 724 in Port Orchard. I have written about the Studio 724 Gallery and it's dynamic owner, Louis King before. I've been at a lot of events there this year with more coming.

    This time I got to meet a couple of interesting authors and hear them read passages from their works. One I already knew previously (Marshall) but hadn't gotten yet to know his writings. The other was new to me and a very interesting guy with an interesting book, an interesting take on the vampire genre, with more to come.

    Today's readings were by Mark Allen and Marshall Miller.

    Mark Allen is retired military and has written a vampire book titled Nocturnal. I that book he did not want to follow the trend in vamps being glittery or romantic. Not an easy thing to do now a days to come up with a fresh slant on vamps. His vampire is scary, clinical in his actions and not ever quibbling over his situation, the ethics, the pain of being him.

    He knows who he is. He lives how he does. And he's unapologetic about it. He is realistic however and he does cull food with a sense of economy and reality. Some are just not targeted as his food sources, children, the weak, the innocent. But he didn't choose this path out of compassion or ethics. Rather he chooses the dregs of humanity out of a sense of efficiency and his own sense of perfection. not unlike perhaps, a wolf in targeting the easy kill or the choice of what is perhaps inadvertently the best for the herd.

    Mark gave an impassioned reading and one felt he truly felt his protagonist deeply. His next book he is already working on will venture into the realm of werewolves, but with, as is Mark's nature, a fresh take on them and their greater endeavors in society. Mark also mentioned that he writes screenplays, has an L.A. agent and has directed an indie film.

    Marshall Miller has written a series of books about an alien invasion that is certainly worth a look.I've known Mark for a little while now, through the Studio. He hosts a show on public access with another author, Peter Stockwell, for KLAW (Kitsap Literary Authors and Writers), and Kitsap Publishing based in Poulsbo, WA. They usually air on Saturdays at 6PM PT.

    From a description on Writer's in Kitsap County on MeetUp.com:

    Kitsap County has a monthly television show filmed at Bremerton public television station by the fairgrounds. Want to get involved? Want to be interviewed? Come by the station every last Tuesday of the month, we take over the station at 2 PM. Come learn how you can help.

    Someone coined the phrase for Marshall that his three volume TSCHAAA series (from Kitsap Publishing) as the War and Peace of alien squid invasion novels. Marshall read from his first book, The Gathering Storm. It was a fun and intense section he read of his book.

    As his own write up says:

     If you like Sci Fi/Speculative Fiction with Adult Themes that make you THINK; If you like books with exciting and well-developed characters; If you like strong heroes and heroines, unusual but interesting Aliens, and slam bam ACTION that harkens back to the Golden and Silver Age of Pulp Fiction, you’ll LOVE this series.

    These were both very interesting authors and we look forward to their next efforts. I also personally look forward to the next author event at Studio 724!

    Shameless plug for one of my own books, Death of heaven (video book trailer).

    Monday, October 23, 2017

    America, Who Are You?

    Before I get into it and because of that this will be a shorter than normal blog this week, I'd like to share a couple of personal things with you if you don't mind. And thank you beforehand.

    First off, the latest addition to a horror anthology I'm going to be in, the Dark Chapter Press A-Z [Horror] Anthology, is out! It is the letter "L" for Love Letters, by Roma Gray. With each letter's release I'm yet another step closer to my own letter, "X"! My story will be X The Unknown about a Seattle FBI agent at day's end that takes a drastically disturbing turnI had originally written, as some of you may know, Xibalba Unleashed, a story based on Mayan mythology. But I went over the word limit (long story, but if you're curious you can read my blog on this anthology and what happened regarding this and why). And so, it's to your benefit (if you'd like to see it that way) as you can read it long before my letter actually comes up (these stories come out every two weeks or so).

    "Love letters is a fond token of remembrance, a treasured means of communication between loved ones, a primitive form of sentiment that has outlived the intrusion of modern technology. Love letters are cherished; they contain intimate secrets and private thoughts, but they can also reveal a darker side to the human emotion, a very real evil that is more than just words on a page." #ebooks #horror

    Secondly, I have released a new non-fiction ebook. For now it's only on Smashwords. I call it SpiritQuest Weekend 1991.I recently found a few pages of a journal that I had kept over a weekend in 1991 as I was headed into a divorce. In reading it recently I found it interesting, as I had forgotten some of what I wrote about. As did my brother who also read it and suggested I publish it.

    He thought people might find it interesting, entertaining, even useful in relation to their own lives as you get a bit of insight into my own thoughts back then. I also added a bit of history before it for context and even more afterward for the curious. It's a bit raw and brutally honest as I was going through a painful time. If you check it out I hope you find it useful and interesting enough to find it a worthy distraction. Some weird stuff happened around that time and I'm kind of glad I lived through it. #journal

    Okay, back to today and this week's blog:

    It occurred to me... were I a conservative NutCase like, say were I an Alex Jones, say Trump was a Democrat...I'd be screaming voraciously about how Las Vegas was a scam and Trump was just staging that attack because of Russia, to distract, to save myself.

    And hey, I don't know, I'd be screaming something else really bad too most likely and at the top of my lungs. And other conservatives would be propping it all up. No matter who stupid what I was saying was.

    But I'm not. He's not. It wasn't. Yes, there is more to it we don't know. But it wasn't some stupid conspiracy. It was whatever it was.

    Bad people do exist. After all, I've seen, we've all seen, Trump on TV.

    Good people who go bad also exist. Maybe that's what happened in Las Vegas.

    Then again I've heard reports about some disturbing things. Like the shooter was using professional techniques, as if someone trained him. Then again, he was rather sloppy about some things, as if not a professional. Which he wasn't. He may have simply watched some YouTube videos. The reasons behind his actions are still unknown.

    Then again, we have those who we know clearly what their intentions are and yet we suffer them day in and day out to run this country.

    We are all organic beings.

    Sometimes, we just go wrong and do bad things.

    Then again some of us are very consistently bad while people give us way too much leeway in the bad actions we actually and sometimes obviously do.

    Las Vegas was sad, very sad.

    It's good to see people are waking the hell up and agreeing something can and should be done. Finally. It only took the biggest mass murder in US history. And after some Republicans got shot on a baseball field on their home turf. But will anything happen? It never has in the past. Not yet.

    It also only took someone like Harvey Weinstein to be outed, finally for being a really horrible human being who needs psychological help. Someone who needed help for years. In his throwing things at people in board room meetings. In punching his own brother in the nose. In being a consistent bully, a misogynist, a serial sex offender. Not unlike our president.

    The "Me Too" movement started maybe ten years ago. Not recently. Bad people, sex offenders, abuse has been around forever. It's high time we do something about it, to at least to stand up against it. To speak out, and keep speaking.

    But we also need to stop talking and do something. SOME thing. We need to stop talking about sex offenders in power, and do something. SOME thing. We need to stop talking about mass shooters, about assault rifles, about weapons of war on our streets and do something. SOME thing.

    We are after all what we do. Who are we? Who are you?


    Monday, October 16, 2017

    Blade Runner -1982, 1989 and 2049

    We live in a strange new world. Not so much a brave one. We have too many cowards in our world today. Those who view lies and fake realities over that of actual facts and reality, just because it suits someone, allows them to win, or to profit.

    I went alone the other Monday to the Bremerton SEEFilm Theater to see Blade Runner 2049 in 3D. It was worth it. It looked and sounded great. I had planned to go on a work day so no one would be there but when I arrived they mentioned it was a holiday (Columbus Day). But still, only about seven people showed up for the 2PM showing I attended.

    As I sat before the show began playing with my Kindle Fire and trying not to listen to banal adverts on the screen, I got an odd feeling. We have had so many mass shootings, I couldn't shake the feeling of impending doom.

    I hadn't brought a firearm myself even though I legally could. I hadn't even thought about it, On concealed carry, I have a rule. If I think I should take one I do. If I can't make up my mind, I do. If I don't feel it necessary (which is usually), I don't. But sometimes you just don't think about it, until later. This was one of those days. Typically, not a big deal. Let's face it, there is a lot of to do about nothing most of the time. Most people don't ever need to carry a gun. But that's a topic for another time. I only mention it because it calls to my state of mind in the theater.

    I was just focused that day on going to see the long awaited, and potentially never going to happen, Blade Runner sequel. So in sitting in the theater, I tried to shrug it off. But with things like the recent Las Vegas mass shooting, our biggest mass murder to date, it was kind of hard to shake. So many nuts around anymore. However, once the show started, thoughts of it evaporated.

    I've had an interesting experience with the Blade Runner universe. Same as many, different than most.

    It goes back to when Blade Runner came out. I saw it just like everyone else and fell in love with it, just like many other. I started to check out all of Ridley Scott's films. I liked his late brother's films too, like Top Gun when it came out and others. I worked at a few Tower stores in the 80s (Tower Posters, Records and Video stores, in two cities) and watched Ridley's other films on both VHS and Beta as I had both, and came to love especially his first film, The Duelists.

    Anyway, the quality of the film in the theater was excellent. The film itself, I couldn't be happier with. At the end, I just sat there... stunned. I planned to watch the titles to the end as I frequently do, and just after the best of the initial title music, I realized we were all still there and I flashed again on the whole mass shooting issue. I had to wonder...what if?

    What if someone hated the sequel we had just watched? What if they wanted to watch the film, then just kill us all and go out on a Blade Runner (a violent film) high note? It was then that I remembered the death threats I'd gotten back in the late 1980s when I had said online that I was considering writing a sequel to Blade Runner.

    I put those thoughts behind me for the moment. I just wanted to enjoy the last vestiges of this new film, even if it was just the titles. Besides I like to try and see if I know any names I see scroll by. Not to mention, I've had to generate my own title sequences in films before and it's interesting to note how new films are put together.

    Finally, I realized I was alone in the theater. Then a theater attendant showed up. We ignored one another for a moment as I contained to read and listen to the end title sequence. He said something to me from the end of my aisle. I couldn't make it out so I reluctantly got up and walked over to him, a little disappointed in my somewhat euphoric mood being broken.

    When it first came out, BR was my favorite film for some time (along with Brainstorm which I based my first screenplay, Ahriman, on in various ways). Toward the end of the 1980s I had decided I wanted to write a sequel to Blade Runner. Back then I was on various newsgroups on the Internet, which at the time was all text based. The World Wide Web still had a few years to get started up. My web page back then, JournalED.com (Journal of ExtraOrdinary Diversions, based on a print magazine I never quite got off the ground in the 1980s), which eventually grew to a sizable web site, and is now just online for historical purposes (but still, it's been online since 1995).

    One newsgroup in 1989 had been talking about BR and I felt emboldened to mention I was thinking of writing a screenplay sequel to it. Within hours I had two death threats for even considering writing one. I was happy to note however that within a day or so someone offered to help me if I liked, and we both disregarded the death threats. I had thanked him, but I didn't really feel I needed the help.

    I was married at the time. We had a young one year old son. I told my wife about all this and she agreed one night to help me come up with the concept. So we sat down at our dining room table in our ratty little apartment above a wine store on 65th and Revenna in Seattle, got a bit drunk, had fun maybe got stoned on some pot, and recorded the session. I still have it. It wasn't great, but in the end there was a concept. In listening back on it I can hear that she really didn't offer much and I did most of the talking, but it was fun and it lent some emotional support in my creating the concept.

    I found that cassette, after all those years of it having been lost in my papers. A tiny little cassette tape for a micro-cassette recorder that I'd inherited from my late grandfather. Through the first of the 1990s and after we divorced, I worked some more on from time to time. I have the paperwork from that period on those efforts. I plan now to get them together and write something from it. It just won't (obviously) be a Blade Runner story.

    At the end of the show of the sequel it had left me in a kind of fugue state. As if in a trance, almost. All these years since first seeing the original. I'd once had the Criterion Laser Disc version of it. I had magazines on it. I watched documentaries on it. I saw the Director's Cut when it came out and premiered at Seattle's Egyptian Theatre. I read the sequel books (yes, there's sequels and I didn't much like them). And all the other things about it that had left me sitting there in the theater a bit stunned. So I thought I'd come home and write this up to share it.

    And here we are.

    I have to highly recommend the film as well as Ridley and his chosen director Denis Villeneuve and writers Hampton Fancher, Michael Green, with story by Hampton Fancher. Of course initial credits have to go to the great Philip K. Dick in being based on characters from his novel "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?"

    As I've said, I have a long and personal history with BR as well as Ridley. Many do. There were two choices for me about a BR sequel, the original being somewhat of a near religious consideration for many. A sequel, most sequels really, are either worthy of being a sequel in the first place, or not. Anything over that is gravy. I saw it in 3D.

    All I can say and the highest praise I can give it is... I accepted it. And I liked the gravy.