In the ink well

Dog Ear

November 5, 2020

Blind Eye (DOG EAR)

Here’s one: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” -George Santayana And here’s another: “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” -Joseph Goebbels nd that’s what pisses me off these days. Things that are known facts are distorted by lies. History that should NEVER be repeated, such as the Holocaust (Goebbels had his fingers all over this one) and the Chinese Cultural Revolution (where Mao and his communist cronies waged full ideological war on political rivals, intellectuals and scientists) suddenly are distinct possibilities. And that’s […]
October 29, 2020

Writing Length (DOG EAR)

his hit me while writing a blog for the morrow (as they say in Treasure Island, which I was enjoying) – the length of a written effort. I’ve written (professionally) in a number of formats. When I write fictional novels, my chapter lengths are always four to six pages long. Same when I post anonymous erotica online (hey, it’s a hobby). In my sister’s medical book, Don’t Jettison Medicine, the chapters were all two pages long – consisting of short paragraphs. In the radio scripts I wrote, everything was maybe two-three paragraphs (the issue, the discussion, the recommendation). Blogs, as […]
October 22, 2020

Are you Robert Raymond? (DOG EAR)

ould you possibly hope to be the world-adventurer, man about town, writer, game designer, rocket engineer? Review the list below and score your points (1 for each thing you’ve done). Then look to the bottom to see if you are Robert Raymond. 1) Flown an airship? 2) Ridden a bike 60 miles in one go? 3) Lived in foreign country for several years? 4) Written a novel picked up by an agent and publisher, and placed on bookstore shelves? 5) Read thousands of books? (The list for the last decade is HERE) 6) Dispatched a complex model railroad? 7) Written […]
October 15, 2020

Fake News (DOG EAR)

ossibly I missed the critical news of the year – Covid-19 has an effective vaccine now? No? Nothing changed? Then why are we opening bars, tossing off our masks and acting like it’s VC day? Today I went into an Ace Hardware and there in the paint aisle was a guy standing there, deciding if he wanted Cherry Red of Valentines Pink, breathing unfiltered, unmasked air, too proud to respect a store full of others, assuming that his risks should be run by all of us. Needless to say, I loitered outside the aisle until he’d fumed his way up […]
October 8, 2020

Pud (DOG EAR)

ack when I worked as a summer hire for the Navy in Cubi Point, Philippines, Chief Mullens would always yell “Don’t just stand there with your pud in your hands!” The things you carry forward in life. So now, fifty years later, I’m in a world we could have scarcely imagined. We have/had space shuttles (I even worked on them), computers beyond imagination, an ability to travel the globe and a pandemic that came, in part, because of that. And now I’m an old guy, retired, and I’m out riding my thirty-mile ride. Everyone I pass on the trail, baby-pushers, […]
October 1, 2020

False Narratives (DOG EAR)

here’s this Texan thing – a guy living in the middle of the Dallas/Ft. Worth metropolitan area, surrounded by concrete all the way to the horizon and not within a hundred miles of a single cow, wears a cowboy hat. That’s the Texan narrative, the proud cowboy (even though, historically, their economy was more based on rice and cotton than livestock) and the cowboys that were wore everything from straw hats to bowlers. But they wear their funny headgear, 150 years out of date. But that’s how modern (and, largely, American) society works. Surrounded by more facts and truth than […]
September 24, 2020

A nice review-review (DOG EAR)

while ago I read a delightful short story from a collection from a going-out-of-business and lamented-over publisher. The story was Gelato Parlour, and was a very quirky story about a gentleman of adventure. You can read the review HERE. So that was a while ago. But the other day I received a very nice email from the author, Rose Biggin, telling me how much she appreciated my review (the one thing about reading quirky short stories from other people – you might be their only review and she implies I was). But I had been enthusiastically supportive of her story […]
September 17, 2020

Reckless (DOG EAR)

ast night, a car came around a sharp corner behind our house, travelled 200 feet with perfect visibility, street lights, no rain, and managed to plow right into the back of a parked car. The debris field was scattered another 200 feet down the road and both cars needed to be towed. I’m willing to suspect, since external factors were nil, that the driver was either drunk, distracted, driving-too-fast, or drifting. You shouldn’t operate a motor vehicle in any of these states. Nor should you read a book in this condition. There are all sorts of books, brilliant books, world-changing […]
September 10, 2020

Juniors Diner (DOG EAR)

e used to love going to Juniors Diner, a little hole-in-the-wall place just around the corner from us. When I was working, we’d go in on Sunday and try to time it between the church rushes. Still, once it got discovered by the swells of Baldwin Park it really crowded up – there could be a forty-five minute wait for a table. Still worth it. We loved eating omelets slowly, drinking coffee and reading our books. Once I retired, we shifted to Thursday mornings. That made it a walk in for us, right over to our favorite booth. With lighter […]
September 3, 2020

Summer Reading List (DOG EAR)

dear friend of mine wrote me Monday – she’s got two girls and for next year, they have to list forty books they might consider reading. Since she’s inert as a reader, but I devour books like a wood chipper, she asked if I could come up with some sort of list. Okay, I couldn’t come up with forty (challenge; can you?). But since they consider a book 150 pages and longer ones count as two books, I might have made the cut. Anyway, below is the response I sent her. See how many of these you’ve read and maybe, […]