Archive for October, 2012

“I can’t help thinking that you’re as much a philosopher as you are a chronicler. There are little pearls of wisdom and poetic observations dotted amongst the crisp dialog and engaging scenes, that makes this a beautiful poignant study of what it is to be human.” – Drew Robinson

 

“Incredible! So well told, and an amazing story unfolding. There’s not many men who write stories about love, let alone any who do it so well.” – Patricia Vandenberg

 

“Wow!… Your “Steven” has elements of Forrest Gump in his purity of heart, W B Yates in his undying love, and I just loved the obituary. There is so little male writing on the subject of love… other than in the great poets from Shakespeare to Donne, and modern greats like Whitman. Your book encapsulates the epigram “Love is what we leave behind.” – Francis Albert McGrath

 

“I’m not into romance. So why do I find my heart stirring? Damn you, damn you and your writing! I’m a Sumerian, and Sumerian’s do not cry. Very good, I thoroughly enjoyed watching how you skillfully pluck heart strings.” Jupiter

 

“This is wonderful stuff, although I do feel like I’m trespassing on someone’s innermost thoughts. Beautifully written and probably the closest thing I’ve read that answers that age old question, “What is love?” Beverly Thomas

 

“Ghost of a Rose has such an urgent importance to it for us as human beings. A lesson in true love. This fine novel will be studied for years to come. True and raw emotion, love in its most real, desperate, and vulnerable form.” – Andrew

 

“I had a couple of minor cardiac plunges reading the obituary……..I thought Jesus, this book starts at the end…!! Well done, very creative and original… A premise that leaves you with no choice but to read on…. And I don’t know why, but all the more poignant because its been written by a man.” Lynette Hopkins

 

“This is heartfelt and wonderful, and it’s so rare that we get to see the greatest human strength and weakness, love, from the male perspective.”- Abigail Knight

 

“I’ve met few passionate men, most have problem admitting their emotions let alone expressing them the way you have in the pages of this book. The tense, tone, and readability of this is remarkable.” –Catherine

 

“I want to begin by telling you that I admire your courage. It takes a tremendous amount of courage to unzip your soul and turn around and grab your ankles and ask the world to judge you. And that’s what an author does when he writes. And everyone knows that. That’s why fiction was born. Because the friction between pride and fact chafes a man’s marrow. So congratulations of the courage of composition. And I swear to the good Christ I mean that.” – Mark Trost

 

“Congratulations on writing a wonderful, powerful book. Yours is a very important story to tell – because it’s from a man’s viewpoint (not a perspective we hear from enough).” – – Leslie Morgan Steiner

 

“Great story. There are many compelling components within this story. I have to say the first that come to mind …Courageous…Honest. There is a deeply personal, intimate place the reader is allowed to visit. I think you do this openly and honest. It comes through in your writing. The writing is excellent. The premise is dynamic. I like the integration of the Gemini into the story. I also belive the age of 45 years is significant. It is an age range (40’s) when many people reach a turning point. I see a trend lately in recognizing this fact. The realization of a need for ‘truth’ is never trite. For better or worse it is through love and romance we make these discoveries or are driven to do so, as readers we identify strongly with those components. This is an Awesome story told well.” – Samantha Sutton

 

“I couldn’t stop reading this. I loved it. I want to read more!” – Karoline Lucas

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I have a very calm disposition, and everyone who knows me, will say that I’m almost always happy, upbeat, and smiling. That’s true the majority of the time, but there are a few things that irritate the hell out of me, mainly ignorance and stupidity. Most of the time my brain to mouth filter works exceptional well, but there are those times when a huge hole is popped in it, and this is one of them. Men and soda fountain machines! What happens to a guy’s brain when he’s filling up a plastic cup of carbonated syrup? It’s as if at that very moment his cup reaches the nozzle to dispense the imitation colored battery acid beverage, he goes brain dead.
It takes me an average of one minute to remove a cup, add ice, fill it with soda, put the lid on, and insert a straw. It’s that quick, simple, and easy. Where I get annoyed is, every single time I run into a store to grab a quick drink, there is always, and I mean “always” some guy standing there that I end up waiting for. He stands there with a look as if nothing is going on upstairs. His movements become animated and he goes into slow motion mode. First he precisely adds his allotted amount of ice cubes. I’d swear he takes the time to actually count them. What is this all about? Is he trying to figure out the correct ice to soda ratio in order to get his full amount of money’s worth? Does he feel he will be short changed on soda if too many ice cubes are in the cup?  Instead of filling the cup up with soda, he stops at approximately one third of the way. He waits a few seconds for the fizz to settle down before taking a sip as he stares blankly at a wall. He repeats this process on an average of 4 times, all the while, he is totally aware of the line forming of people waiting to use the machine, but makes no attempt to speed up or make room for someone else. He continues filling the cup up in short spurs; stopping momentarily to let the bubbles subside before continuing. It’s like, tap…fizz…tap…fizz…tap…fizz. You get the picture. Once the cup is full, he then takes a huge gulp of soda and consumes one quarter of the beverage. This puts him right back to his filling up the cup ritual. What is it? Does he think he’s getting one over on the store by getting more than he’s paying for? Stupid, they’ve already got one over you. That 44oz Super Big Gulp is actually only 16oz of soda after the cup is filled with ice.
By this time, a huge hole has been punctured in my brain to mouth filter, and out spews, “Son-of-a-bitch! I could fill my truck up with gas, take a shit, wipe my ass, wash my hands, get an energy drink from the fridge, and flirt with the girl at the counter before this guy gets done filling up his damn cup!.”
Men become zombiefied at soda machines, this guy, and many others on different occasions, when insulted to their face, the verbal onslaught goes right over their head; nothing registers in their mind as it is too consumed by the task at hand. I laugh inside knowing that somewhere down the line, maybe a day or two later, it will actually register in his head that he was mocked in public. On a few occasions, the guy was much larger than I, and could probably kick my ass, but he just stood there dumbfounded.
It became a joke at the corner convenience store closest to my house. I would walk in and immediately the girls behind the counter would look over to the soda machine. Sure enough a man would be standing there blankly looking into space, and the girls would bust out laughing, “Oh no. Here it goes.” And they would patiently wait to hear what would spew from my mouth.
One day I was having lunch with a friend and told him of my pet peeve. He’s a huge soda drinker and I asked him if he’s ever encountered this. He couldn’t recall it happening to him. After lunch we walked outside and continued talking outside the building. He excused himself and went back inside to refill his soda cup. It was many minutes before he returned, and when he did, his face was beat red from holding in an outburst of laughter. I said, “Let me guess, a guy in front of you at the soda machine?” He nodded his head, laughing even harder because he couldn’t believe it just happened to him. Now every time he goes to get a refreshing drink, he will always think of this and giggle or it will drive him nuts, as it does me, when it continues to happen.