Friday, November 27, 2015

It Is A Black Friday Indeed

How did it come to this? When did one of the largest and most important holidays of this country’s history became the starting line for the rampage of unchecked, savage mobs?

Thanksgiving. I know that that word is lost on many of us, so I’ll go ahead and say it again. Thanksgiving. The name of a highly important day that is set aside by the people of this country to, you guessed it, give thanks. A day where we’re to consider how fortunate we actually are, as opposed to how unfortunate we could be. Really, I wonder how many folks actually consider as they complain that their twenty lb. turker is too rich, or that they don’t like mashed potatoes, or that someone forgot to buy bread rolls, that there are uncounted people in this mighty U.S.A. (some more than likely living within walking distance) who are unable to enjoy even one tenth of such a feast. We feast on this day, oh yes. It is a sign displaying our good fortune, and rightfully to be enjoyed to the fullest and not scorned. You sit around your table surrounded by the folks most important in your life and indulge with gratitude in the sumptuousness that you’re able to consume…and then you decide that it’s not enough, leap up from your table before your food has made its way to the small intestines, and rush to stake your claim among the barely controlled to the wholly unrestrained rabbles that flood the stores that own your souls.

It was with vexation and a deep frown that I was informed that Black Friday actually begins nowadays on Thanksgiving day itself. Forget the importance of the day. Who cares about enjoying what we have? It’s not worth the same length of time as a high school reunion. I wish for no misunderstanding: I do not say that Black Friday is, of itself, a bad thing. It is supremely unfortunate, however, that the very same people one will hear going on about how thankful they are for what they have early Thursday morning will be the same folks striking, shoving, trampling, and even stealing from their fellow men Thursday evening. I’ve seen the headlines, the photos, and the videos. The shopping mobs are hardly short of wild rabbles. They fall just under that mark only in that they move with an unshakable purpose. The people comprising them want one thing—To find and secure the best deals they can before the person next to them.

Why is this a problem, one might ask? I don’t care how cheap the high definition television is, I don’t care how marked down the latest ipod is, I don’t care if you can find five fantastic wonders for your children that would normally break your bank now priced like birdseed. Nothing on those shelves, absolutely nothing, is worth attacking another human being for. N.O.T.H.I.N.G. I’ve seen people trampled and ignored, I’ve read about folks taking weapons into the store for the purpose of fighting off competitors to their desired items, and I’ve seen said fights occur with such a spirit of selfishness and violence that it bordered on feral. Black Friday has become one the most shameful things I’ve seen.

It is most wretched to have to face the realization that people are not really going to do much better. In fact, if this condition continues as it is, it will most definitely get worse! Nobody loves a good deal, a really good deal, as much as I do, but I didn’t go to the store today. Without the root of thankfulness the tree of appreciation fails, and the seed of presumptuousness blossoms. From presumptuousness comes arrogance, and arrogance is the garden bed of greed.

There is little left to say really. ‘Do better’ might be sound advice, but if ordinary people can turn into wild stampeders, raging hoarders, and savage brawlers against their fellow men all for the sake of a marked down item that is ultimately going to break or be used up, ‘better’ isn’t nearly enough.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays! (Yeah, I know, kinda lame to repeat the exact words as the title in the first sentence.) However, 'tis the season for the giving of thanks and the eating of over-sized fowl, the visiting with relatives and....the reading of books!! Of course it is. Who doesn't enjoy curling up in the warmth of somewhere cozy when it's chilly outside, lost in a realm between the pages? Some people get time off from work, school, or whatever it is they would otherwise be doing this season as well. So, with a little bit of extra free time on your hands, I thought I'd go ahead and treat any who wished to accept with a sale!

The kindle version of Strife Of The Mighty is currently marked down to a mere $0.99 once more. This sale is temporary, but will extend longer than usual--long enough for all of you guys to grab yourself a copy. I hope that we can meet soon between the pages. Happy Holidays! (Ugh...I just said that again, didn't I?)

Keep Strong!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Fall News And A Muse

Ahhh, Fall. A lovely season, no? Personally, I’ve always found cold weather more romantic than warm. It seems to set a nicer mood for movie watching or a day out for a walk, a night out at the mall and especially a cruise through wild, rugged, and beautiful terrain. In fact, I think… Uhhh… ANYWAY…

So, how’s your Fall been? Where I live the colors didn’t really do what they were supposed to. They took long in coming and departed swiftly, though I shan’t complain much. So far the really cold weather has been kept at bay; this time a year or two ago there was snow and ice on the ground. I was stuck in me driveway! This Fall, though, I’ve been able to take it somewhat easier and enjoy a few of my local Fall festivals. Where I live, there’s a lovely little festival held in one of this state’s state parks (a worthy place), which features anything from ancient automobiles to carnival rides to overpriced trinkets and food. I mean, seriously overpriced. I mean not-even-kidding overpriced.

It may interest you to know that I’ve been signed onto my local library system as a sort of creative writing teacher/instructor/mentor. I’ll be tutoring and working with the young in matters of poetry and stories and so forth. I will occupy this position for several months to come, so I hope those poor guys can endure me. (P.S. To any of my local folks who are reading this, you guys should absolutely drop by or bring your kids by if you wish. We’ll have a good time. J) In other light news, Strife of the Mighty is moving forth. I received word from a friend all the way in Australia that they’ve gotten their hands on a copy. It’s nice, y’know? To find that your book is being read all the way on the other side of the world. I’ve got a few U.K. readers as well. It’s heartening to discover.

And speaking of the U.K., I’ve recently started watching Sherlock, the BBC series. Hmm… I can see what all the hype is about but… Benedict Cumberbatch is no Downey Jr. Nor is he an inspector Poirot (pronounced Pwar-oe). But he is a good character, I must say, and I think he does an okay Sherlock, but…good googly-moogly that man looks weird! And I do believe that Martin Freeman is a wee-bit one dimensional as an actor. I know that there are folk out there who would disagree, but that’s okay. It’s just my opinion after all. But take a look at him in the Hobbit, then take a look at him in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (*shudders in revulsion*) and then take a look at him in Sherlock. He acts pretty much the same way in every one of those parts. But hey, I’m no actor…

Keep Strong!