Universal 3 Tree Productions is now live and on the Web. 3 Tree specializes in Catholic books and videos/DVDs for young learners. Their first book, Zak and the 3 Tree, is designed to help youngsters learn the Ten Commandments.
Some friends of ours bought an old VW bus, like the kind shown here. Would love to have one myself; my folks once had an old, beige '69 box with a pop-top. Took it to Alaska and back. Wonder why VW hasn't tried making more for retro's sake. They certainly aren't any uglier than some of the newer models I see on the road.
posted by Leigh Ellwood at1:59 PM
My sister called from work and told me she had to get off the phone because somebody just unloaded a package full of dope on her desk (she's in law enforcement). How often you hear that?
posted by Leigh Ellwood at8:48 AM
No "pub" intended
Reading this page of Normisms has inspired me to break out in song:
Do, a beer, a female beer,
Re, a guy who buys me beer,
Mi, the one I buy beer for,
Fa, a long way to the bar,
So, I think I'll have a beer,
La, la la-la la la laaaaaah,
Ti, no thanks I'm drinking beer,
and it brings us back to Do!
Repeat until you pass out.
I can't take credit for the above song. I found it on another website years ago, and for the life of me I can't remember who wrote it.
Who vs. Which and That. Read it. Memorize it. Be it. Probably the most common grammar errors I find on works I edit involve these three words. Please save your editor the trouble. She'll be most happy.
I don't know how the conversation last night got around to obscure fast food restaurants and mascots. Actually, I do. We were at our regular Monday night hangout. The war had been postponed on television so that the staff at Cogan's Pizza could give us the Miss USA pageant (they were getting tired of CNN), and Malc and I were talking about the latest news. I think I had mentioned how during the Gulf War I was working at McD's. When the soldiers started coming home, one came by and said the first thing he wanted after coming home was a chocolate shake from McD's. He got his whole lunch free. Wish we could've done more.
So then we get to talking about what we would want if we had been away for so long (I'm still deciding). Next thing I know we've shifted into reverse (read: nostalgia), and every sentence spoken began with "Hey, remember..."
We wondered whatever happened to Burger Chef, Mister Donut, Sambo's, Jack in the Box, Bonanza Steakhouse, and other places we frequented with our parents as children. True, the food wasn't always great, so there's a clue right there. Other places, I have since learned, were either sucked up by other chains or simply thrived in other regions. Makes me wonder if in thirty years our children are going to remember eating at McD's and wonder why there aren't any around anymore.
Confidential to Adrian Brody: Halle wants her tongue back.
I had Barbra on mute. Would loved to have seen Eminem take the statue from her. She should be thankful Kid Rock wasn't up for it this time.
What was Sean Connery wearing?
We should never presume to know what a dead Mexican artist thinks of the war. Unless, of course, John Edwards is channeling her...
Note to Michael Moore: What is fictitious duct tape? Are you trying to disprove its existence? Red Green would not be pleased.
They left Maurice Gibb off the memorial montage. Yeah, so being in the Sgt. Pepper movie might not warrant a mention, but he did help compose one of the biggest selling soundtracks in movie history. That has to account for something.
Books for Soldiers. Got a book to spare? Consider sending it to the troops. I'm reminded of that MASH episode where the entire camp fights over a mystery novel to read. Don't think that's happening right now, but it would be nice if a few soldiers fought over one of my books.
1. If you had the chance to meet someone you've never met, from the past or present, who would it be? I've always thought this was a trick question, because you'll say something and ultimately somebody else will say, "I'd like to meet Jesus," and then you wish you had said that first. So, aside from Jesus, I'm going to say Dick Francis, St. Edith Stein, Mother Teresa, and Dorothy Parker, not necessarily in that order.
2. If you had to live in a different century, past or future, which would it be? The Regency period of England has always fascinated me, though assuming I'd still be Catholic I can't say how much fun it would have been for me.
3. If you had to move anywhere else on Earth, where would it be? It's a tie between Charleston, SC and Daytona Beach, FL. I can visit other places.
4. If you could be a fictional character, who would it be? Princess Leia, duh!
5. If you had to live with having someone else's face as your own for the rest of your life, whose would it be? Maureen O'Hara in The Quiet Man. I've always wanted to be redhead.
It won't be much fun watching the Oscars this year if Malc is going to either hit mute or flip back to OLN every time a Hollywood Halfwit flounces onstage. Besides, Gollum got screwed, so why bother? I'll wait for next year and Return of the King to see if the Academy returns to its senses.
Credit Tim Drake for finding this link: Star Spangled Ice Cream, the Ben and Jerry's alternative. I really have to wonder what an ice cream called "Iraqi Road" tastes like. More flavors are on the way, shall we suggest a few names?
In SAINTS PRESERVE US, Kathryn Lively has written a clever tale with three-dimensional characters, sparkling dialogue, and a nice sense of the absurd. This is an author clearly at the top of her game. I'm looking forward to more Ash Lake mysteries. - Brian Rouff, author DICE ANGEL
If you haven't read Brian's novel, do. It's a hoot.
We have a window unit in the bedroom, and in recent days a pigeon has taken up residence near the window. We're not sure if it's managed to squeeze inside the box, all we know is that the bird is very loud, especially at dawn's early light. It appears to have become immune to Malc banging against the window, and right now we're trying to think of alternatives which do not involve gunfire. I was thinking of buying one of those fake owls to put on the A/C unit, but I'm afraid it would get knocked down in a stiff wind. I don't want to kill the bird, just evict it.
Note to the animal rights activists: Before you start berating me about how that pigeon has a right to live where it wants, let me remind you that the A/C unit is my property, and I have the receipt to prove it. I also hold the lease on the apartment, and by "apartment" we also maintain responsibility for all the ledges on the outside of the building. Unless this bird is willing to pay me rent, forget it.
Abortion doctor murderer is found guilty. This event partly inspired Little Flowers, and if you've read my book you know it's something I do not endorse. Violence only causes more violence, and nowhere else can this be clearly seen than in the abortion clinics. Killing a doctor won't end abortion, it will only make people like Dr. Slepian martyrs for the cause.
I try not to be superstitious, but I've just hit the thirteenth chapter of the novel I'm currently editing for Whiskey Creek Press, and it appears to need more than a bit of polishing. The good news is that after this, there are only six chapters left to edit, though they are long chapters. It will be cutting into my blogging time.
In the meantime, my review queue is once again a healthy pile of megabytes and paper. If you're an author, don't be getting any ideas. Give me until mid-April when I hope to have all of these read:
The Bitterest Pill by Howard Robinson
Moving into History by John Vore
Wasted by Jimmy Mack
Wicked Stop, Georgia by Zane Smith
There are others, which I don't have here. Time me.
A bill against Internet harassment is finally on the table. Bill HB 479, sponsored by Rep. John Stargel, R-Lakeland, would create the crime of "cyberstalking" in Florida - the threatening or harassing of someone over the Internet, by instant-messaging system or e-mail. The bill is in the House Judiciary Committee now. Please consider sending Stargel a note of support.
Blogger ate the grandiose post that was supposed to be here. I don't feel like retyping it, so here's the gist: Saw The Emperor's Club, loved it; Dad comes home Tuesday; still raining, bleah; yeah, the RNR HoF is probably a joke, but I loved the Police reunion, for me it was always Stewart.
Malc's spring break has officially started, and it's going to rain all next week. This means he'll probably be spending the entire week at home trying to master the AC/DC fake book we got from Mars before they closed, and he'll be calling me at work every five minutes to ask what I'm doing.
Okay, I think I've given you enough free rides. Today's links are for some of the better eBook publishers out there, IMHO. Romances of various sub-genres are the main draw, but there is some really good stuff to be had. Some publishers also offer print editions of their books.
Anyway, when Saints is released it's going to be cheaper to buy directly from the publisher anyway, plus I'll have a link where you can order the book directly from me, signed. I had planned to sell signed copies via the Amazon.com ZShop function, but I might just do it via eBay instead. More later.
We watched Queen of the Damned the other night. Terrible movie, though Malc liked the soundtrack; I think I have a new celebrity crush in Stuart Townsend, though. I actually thought he made a better Lestat than Tom Cruise.
I read the Vampire Chronicles in college, and I could have sworn that in this book Lestat and Jesse never met until the end. I'd read the book again if I had the time, so I decided instead to do some Internet search. While at Anne Rice's official site I noticed a poll where Mrs. Rice would like to know if her readers consider her a "Catholic writer."
An interesting question. Indeed, you will find many elements of Catholicism in her work, and Anne was raised Catholic. In the book You'll Never Eat Lunch in This Town Again, Julia Phillips recounts a meeting with Anne while both were trying to get Interview With the Vampire filmed. According to Phillips, Anne told her she didn't believe in God. Of course, the conversation took place about twenty years ago; on her website Anne reveals that she had since returned to the Church. Her site doesn't appear to have been updated, however, because according to the site it mentions she lives with her husband Stan, who passed away a while ago.
So the question remains, is Anne Rice a Catholic writer? It's safe to say she is a Catholic who writes, but can her books be considered Catholic? I have to admit I've not read a Rice novel since Memnoch the Devil, which was not my favorite of the Vampire books. I couldn't get into the Mayfair series, either.
So the question remains, should we be able to lump Anne in with GK and Flannery and the like? I'd love to hear some thoughts on the subject; I'll post a few of my own soon.
Reading Victor's post about French censorship has inspired me. BTW, I got my copy of Radio Victor and loved it, especially the Kobe-san song. Best five bucks you'll ever spend outside of an FIE eBook, trust me.
Anyway, in keeping with the recent Congressional grumblings, I hereby submit the following for possible banning until this situation is resolved:
Frenchie from Grease
the singing French candle from Beauty and the Beast (but not Jerry Orbach)
Thanks to everyone to wrote privately to extend their good wishes, and to those who have left comments. Dad went in at seven this morning, and it looks like it will be a double bypass. It happened like this: Dad was going in for rotator cuff surgery, and his surgeon wanted Dad's practitioner to give him a stress test first. Dad failed the test, and his doctor reminded him of his irregular heartbeat (he's had that for years, apparently). So they do more tests and find the blockage, and now the rotator cuff surgery has been put off until who knows when. Kinda reminds me of an episode of some medical show I watched once where somebody goes in for one thing and ends up getting treated for something else. Anyway, he'll be in intensive care for 24 hours after surgery and if all goes well he'll be home in a week.
Caught up with a few former CIMians (that's what we called ourselves at Cox Interactive Media before they dot-bombed). Many are still unemployed as of last October, so St. Joseph is going to be very busy helping these people find jobs. Also learned the husband of a former co-worker is about to be deployed. He is a supply officer, so I'm not sure what the level of danger is on his end, but please remember Michael Baumann in your prayers all the same.
Read an eBook Week
Today's link: Blackmask Online adds new free classics daily, many for Palm devices.
You might or might not know that I have a website for the comic strip Funky Winkerbean. It has received the seal of approval from Tom Batiuk, though I sorely need to update it. Anyway, a reader sent this notice for those of you in the RI area:
Funky Winkerbean's Homecoming is going to be performed in Woonsocket March 22 and 23. The play will benefit the Amy N. Jarret Scholarship Fund at Mount St. Charles Academy in Woonsocket. Jarret, 28, was killed on Sept. 11, 2001 when the United Airlines flight she was on slammed into the World Trade Center.
The schalorship fund gives a deserving Mount St.Charles Academy student who needs financial help in
his/her college tuition. Funky Winkerbean's Homecoming will be held at the Stadium Theatre in Woonsocket. Showtimes: March 22 at 8 p.m. and March 23 at 3 p.m. Tickets cost $10!
The item was printed in the Woonsocket Call, which carries the strip. I've never seen the play, but I understand schools have been performing it for years.
Thanks for the prayers. I've not heard anything yet from home; last I heard they were at the hospital as of last night. My parents are the kind of people who never let you know of anything catastrophic until five minutes before it happens. Supposedly it's because they don't want to worry us. I think they need to come up with a new plan.
Read an eBook Week
Today's link: BeWrite.net is offering a selection of free books to celebrate the week.
...about the first concert she attended. Mine: Hall and Oates, the Big Bam Boom tour of '83-'84. General Public opened, remember them? My father's first show: Little Richard, at a private party about a hundred years ago.
I forgot to mention that at FrancisIsidore I have specially formatted two Chesterton mysteries for those of you with handheld devices. Just look in the catalog for the download links. More free eBook links later.
Alas, I did not take home the EPPIE this year. Tim Drake's book didn't, either, so I guess that makes me the Susan Lucci of the EPPIEs. Well, at least until next year.
Sad, it would have been fitting to win since today is the first day of Read an eBook Week! To help celebrate, here are a number of offers I have found on the Internet:
Betty LaPierre is giving away one free novel to anybody who sends her a note this week through the 15th.
Amber Quill Press is giving away one free eBook of the winner's choice each day during Read an eBook Week.
Today through the 15th only, send me an e-mail and I will send you a copy of Little Flowers at no cost. Choose from HTML, Microsoft Reader, Palm OS, Hiebook, or Acrobat formats. Murder Most Trivial remains free at my website in four formats.
Check back tomorrow for a longer list of places where you can find free eBooks.
I'm going to send a care package via Operation Military Pride. I thought it would be a good idea to include well wishes from the St. Bloggers (and anybody else who want to help) by collecting their support and prayers in a booklet to send. If you would like to send something (short note, prayer, poem, whatever), send it to me privately.
We hear so much about people sniping bullets at abortion practitioners; I don't agree with that tactic at all. Pro-life means all life, and violence is not the answer to the question of how to end abortion. Unfortunately, some pro-choicers aren't pacifists, either: Pro-Choice Violence, link via The SICLE Cell, who blogs today about how somebody vandalized her pro-life license plate.
posted by Leigh Ellwood at10:43 AM
I also recommend my favorite vegetarian cookbook, The Grit Cookbook. If you're ever in Athens, Georgia, you have to eat here, even if you aren't vegetarian. The tables and chairs are mismatched, the paint peels, but the food is justsodamngood. If you're lucky you might see Michael Stipe eating dinner there (I did twice).
A very happy, belated birthday to Mr. Dean Stockwell, one of the great character actors. I was (am) a huge Quantum Leap fan; when the show was canned I actually wrote the network to protest. I had never done that before, and haven't since. Rumor had it among the fandom that the head of the network didn't like the show, but apparently he was fond of the rest of cr*p we were forced to watch.
There have also been rumors of a theatrical Quantum Leap film, but that's more likely wishful thinking among the die hard fans. If such a project got the greenlight, I doubt Bakula and Stockwell would be cast anyway. If you want to see Stockwell on film, go rent Compulsion and Married to the Mob.
Mark Shea is taking a Lenten breather. If it seems I'm doing the same, it's because I have two books to edit for other publishers this month, and both are keeping me busy. Granted, I'll be on daily, if only just to blog something nonsensical like the fact that CNN reported today that Claritin and Monistat are two of the most shoplifted items. I wouldn't have picked either. I just thought of a really dirty joke about it but I won't share. Too close to Lent.
Regardless of what the pastel back covers of the mass market paperbacks say, everybody does not read Danielle Steel. My parents do not, and neither do my in-laws, my siblings, or my husband and his cycling buddies. I would caution to guess that these guys do not read her stuff, either.
It is, however, a good marketing strategy to imply that everybody reads your books. I've been taking a different approach to promoting Saints Preserve Us than I did Little Flowers, the approach being that I'm actually going to do something. Anybody who tells you that authors are not supposed to promote their own works is talking bull. Thus far my current publisher is running laps around my previous one, but I can't afford to sit back and wait for things to happen. I don't have the marketing budget Danielle Steel has, but that doesn't mean I can't apply some of the same strategies. Stay tuned.
It's times like these you wish The Chipmunks hadn't gone away
Malc questions the logic of running commercials for those Kidz Bop CDs during Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. Children aren't supposed to be up at eleven watching Futurama, so they aren't going to see these commercials and badger their parents to buy these CDs. I'm watching these commercials and wondering if I should feel comfortable hearing little children sing lyrics like, "My friend the Communist..." Do kids that age know what Communism is? Well, maybe the homeschooled ones do.
I've never listened to one of these albums in their entirety - are the lyrics cleaned up for these things? I had a look at their website and noticed "Livin' La Vida Loca" is on the first album. That's not the kind of song I would let my child sing in his room, much less on a CD.
This whole enterprise reminds me of a band somewhat popular during the 80s called Mini*Pops. Basically the group cut records featuring current big hits as sung by children. Only the Mini*Pops went a step further - the children were dressed to resemble the singers. Check out this album with the girl dressed as Boy George. The things we make our children do.