Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Patchwork and Stopgap and Makeshift, Oh My!

Hi. As I mentioned last week and the one before, I'm juggling a bunch of upgrades. I've got a new PC with a newer operation system (Windows 7) and I'm trying to convert to later versions of most of my software.  I also want to launch a new website which would include my blog, and make a decision about "branding."

I'm making progress. We're talking about a pace somewhere between snail and sloth, but still moving forward. Unfortunately, the world isn't waiting for me to catch up so this week I've been doing patch work. You know, spreading a little fresh asphalt on the pot holes until I can re-pave the road.

Did you notice I played with the layout of this blog page? For one thing, I moved the "About Me"  a little closer to the lead and changed the text. I've decided - my love of gruesome murders aside - that I like making my blog buddies laugh. So for now, I'll be going back to funnies. I just need to settle on a schedule.

I also gave my website a little once over. It's still "homegrown" and I know it looks it but if you want to pop over and check it out, I'd appreciate your feedback on what, if any, of the content I should keep in the new site. You'll probably need to view it on your computer. I haven't figured out how to make it behave on mobile devices (looks great on my phone, overlapping text on my grandson's).

I don't feel too bad about the mobile device formatting issue because I happen to know New Zenith Magazine was having the same problem with their splash screen. Looks great on a PC though. Don't you love the cover?


Why am I talking about New Zenith Magazine, you ask? Well, in addition to their just-released first digital issue (print version to follow), NZM offers a mini-web issue for free. You can check it out here. And if you do, you'll discover the second story from the top is "The Mark" by yours truly. I hope you'll give it a look.

Okay, this post is running way too long so here's one funny to hold you over until next time.

A police officer called the station on his radio.

He said, "I have an interesting case here. An old lady shot her husband for stepping on the floor she just mopped."

The station responded, "Have you arrested the woman?"

He answered, "Not yet. The floor's still wet."

Well, would you risk it?

And how about an "aw" for these good buddies?

Now this is a little embarrassing since I'm just getting back to blogging, but I'm not going to be posting next week. On Thursday, I'm leaving for the Killer Nashville mystery writers' conference. I've done this one before and it's great. But as soon as I get home from Nashville, I'm leaving for West Virginia with our church's Disaster Recovery Team to help with the re-building after last spring's floods. So please look for me the week of the 29th. I'll have some funnies for you, I promise.

Thought for Today:

P.S. I loved that so many of you jumped right in last week on "Jeremiah was a bullfrog..."

Monday, August 8, 2016

Microsoft Hates Me

I had a different post in mind for today. For one thing, I planned to post it bright and early this morning. Obviously that didn't happen.

I've spent the last several days locked in mortal combat with my new computer, a brand new installation of Office 2013, and Microsoft's product activation system, which refuses to activate the product.

Since Friday, I've been to a hundred and seventy-two websites (okay, I wasn't really counting), have followed numerous different instructions for "resolving this issue", have uninstalled, rebooted, run disk cleanup, rebooted, re-installed, and rebooted so many times I know the steps by heart.

Right now I'm waiting from a vendor support callback promised by very nice young lady in India (if I recognized the accent correctly). I'm only semi-hopeful since she was having trouble with the difference between an eight and a nine in my area code. And she promised a ten minute return time and it's been forty.

Naturally, my eldest is taking advantage of the situation to remind me of the virtues of Mac's over PC's... while I'm staring at my brand new PC. Not helpful.

I was delighted to have so many friends drop by to say they hadn't forgotten me while I was off wandering in the wilderness (or hospital corridors or wherever).  And since several of you said you missed my funnies, how about instead of my planned post I offer these:

Do you think I should take my computer to these guys?

They have very convenient office hours.

 That even beats the Beatles. 
(Eights days a weeeek.)

This isn't connected to anything but it made me laugh.

And it's been a long time since I shared an "aw". 

Will this do?

Yeah, it worked for me, too.

Hey, while I was working on this, I got that call back. Got a new product key from the vendor. Did the whole uninstall, reboot, re-install thing again but this time - Alleluia and Amen - the Microsoft Mama Ship accepted her brand new bouncing baby Office installation. I have been activated!

Now I just have to finished transferring my files, set up Outlook with my multiple e-mail addresses, reconfigure my home network, move the old PC to the extra bedroom, set up my new PC where it belongs, learn a whole new version of Office and...oh yeah...I also bought Scrivener. Gotta learn that, too. It's going to be an interesting week.

I'm going to stick with posting on Monday's for a bit while I'm figuring things out so please look for me next week.

Have a great week!

Riddle for Today:

  Sing it with me!

Monday, August 1, 2016

Are you still here? Anybody? Anybody?

Yeah, I know. May 2015 to August 2016 does NOT qualify as "two or three weeks".

What can I say? I just wanted to get this project finished and that one started and these couple of things organized. And then there were a couple health issues and family matters and one harrowing 911 call followed by lots of initials like ER, O2, ICU, and finally PT (beloved spouse tried to scare me to death but he's much better now). 

So I decided, since I'd been gone so long already, this was the perfect time to build a new website - mine is dying of old age - and incorporate my blog into it. But I ran into technical difficulties so it's not ready to launch. 

I also wanted to re-think my content. I loved doing the Hump Day Funnies but is that the best "brand builder" for someone who writes mystery and suspense? 

Bottom line, I've been chasing my tail for a year...and I miss everyone. So I'm back. This isn't the new improved me. It's not exactly the old regular me either. I guess this is the new figure-it-out-as-I-go-along me. 

It will take me some time to make the rounds and say hi to everyone but if you happen to see that I'm back, please leave a comment so I can start getting re-connected. 

And if I seem to be having trouble with my direction, it's not my fault.

I'm just following the signs




I do have a couple things to share with you but not till I've had a chance to say hello. 

I hope you're all still here.


Thought for today: A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.  


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Saying Bye For a Bit

Hey, blog buddies.

You know the signs...my posts are late and my visits/comments are even later - if I get there at all.

Yup, I've fallen behind again on...well, just about everything. And to get caught up I have to set my blogging aside for a bit. Not too long. Just two or three weeks should do it.

Sorry to leave you to get over the mid-week hump on your own. I'll be back as soon as I can.

Here's a mini-hump-day-post to hold you over.

Okay, I'll admit it. I love all things minion.

Gotta have a joke...

A group of Americans was traveling on a tour bus through Holland. One of the stops was a cheese farm, where a young guide led them through the process of making cheese from goat's milk. Then she showed the group a lovely hillside where many goats were grazing. 

These older goats," she explained, "are put out to pasture when they can no longer produce. What do you do in America with your old goats?"

A spry old gentleman answered, "They send us on bus tours."

True. True.

And, of course, your "aw"...

Gotcha, little buddy.

That's it for now.

Be good while I'm gone, and take care.

Fitting Fact for Today:

Last year I joined a support group for procrastinators. We haven't met yet!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Dads and Birthdays and Favorite Stories

Happy Hump Day

Hope you don't mind but I'm going to start with something a little different today.

My father was a great story teller. Not fiction, he'd just tell stories of his life but he was so good at it people always wanted to listen. I remember my brother once complained that his friends would come over to hang out and end up gathered around Dad, just listening to him talk.

This week I'm thinking a lot about a story Dad loved to tell. It's the story of his 24th birthday - the day I was born. I'm going to try to tell it the way he did, in his words.

I was working days and going to school nights on the G.I. Bill, like most guys after the war. It was about 10:30 at night and I got off the bus a couple blocks from Kay's parents place. We were staying there so they could help take care of Corky - he was about two then - while Kay was pregnant. I was coming down the sidewalk and I saw the car at the corner, with Kay and her mom and dad, waiting for me.

I said to myself, "Well, isn't that nice? They've come to take me out for an ice cream for my birthday." I didn't want to spoil the surprise or act too excited so I was playing Joe Cool, sauntering down the sidewalk, taking my own sweet time. As I got to them, I said, "Hey, what are you guys doing here?", like I wasn't even thinking about it being my birthday.

Kay's dad, who never swore, smacked his hand on the steering wheel and yelled, "Will you get in the G-- damn car. She's having the baby."

I got in and we raced to the hospital. I was wheeling Kay in - you know, in the wheelchair - and this nurse stops us. She's got a clipboard and a pen and she says, "Hold on. We've got to complete these forms before we take you upstairs."

And Kay, in that quiet way of hers, said softly, "Oh, I don't think we have time for that."

Something must have told the nurse Kay was right because she shoved the clipboard at me, told me to start filling it out, and took Kay upstairs.

Fifteen minutes later, Linda was born.

I know I don't tell it as well as he did but I just felt like sharing it today.
He always said I was the most expensive birthday gift he ever received.

Growing up, there were times I actually resented having to share my birthday. Every cake always said, "Happy Birthday - Linda and Dad".

As I got older, I loved sharing that cake with him and singing "Happy Birthday" to each other..

I'm very lucky that we got to spend all of our recent birthdays together. Including his last one.

This Saturday, May 9, will be the first birthday I haven't shared with my Dad but I think I'll sing to him anyway.  And I'll put both our names on the cake.
Happy Birthday, Dad.

Okay, I know it's still hump day and you need your funny, so here's a quick joke. (Dad would have loved this one.)

Two little old ladies, Connie & Evelyn, were sitting on a park bench outside the town hall where a flower show was in progress.

Connie leaned over and said, "Life is so boring. We never have any fun anymore. For ten dollars I'd take my clothes off and streak through that stupid flower show."

"You're on," said Evelyn, holding up a ten dollar bill.

So Connie slowly fumbled her way out of her clothes. She grabbed a dried flower from a nearby display and held it between her teeth. Then, completely naked, she streaked (as fast as an old lady could) through the front door of the flower show.

Waiting outside, Evelyn heard a huge commotion, followed by loud applause and whistling. Finally, the smiling Connie came through the exit door surrounded by a cheering, clapping crowd.

"What happened?" asked Evelyn.

"I won $1,000! First prize for 'Best Dried Arrangement!"'

Come on, you know you laughed.

 And, of course, I wouldn't leave you without your "aw".

How about this one?


That's it. Thanks for letting me share a bit of my dad today.
Hope we got you over the mid-week hump and cruising to the weekend.
Have a good one.

See you next week.

Thought for Today:

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Hump Day Senior Funnies

Happy Hump Day

Well, I had a pretty interesting week. How about you?

Last Thursday, our volunteer Disaster Recovery Team was called out to help with the clean up from a small tornado that touched down one town over.  Luckily, no one was hurt and there was minimal structural damage but lots of trees down.  Our chainsaw crew cut them up and the rest of us hauled the limbs and trunk pieces to the curb for pickup. 

 Was I sore after? Oh, yeah.

 But I perked up over the weekend for a special event. Our younger grandson's Confirmation.
Isn't he handsome?

He even tied his bow tie himself. No clip-ons for this young man.
(He said it only took him twenty minutes.)

Okay, on to your funnies.

I've done a few little old lady jokes lately. Let's give the guys a turn.

An old man loses his job but, because of his age, can't find a new one. So he decides he'll have to live off his wits instead. He opens a clinic and places a sign in the window that says:

“Get Treatment For Any Condition - $50, If Not Cured Get Back $100.
Limit three visits per patient.”

The young doctor in town sees the sign and figures he will show up the old man and earn a quick hundred dollars in the process, so he goes inside and says, "I need help. I've lost my sense of taste."

The old man tells his nurse, "Bring medicine bottle seven and place three drops on this patient's tongue."

The nurse complies.

The doctor quickly spits out the liquid, saying, "That's not medicine, it's gasoline."

"Wonderful," the old man replied. "You have your sense of taste back. That will be fifty dollars."

The doctor is furious at being fooled and returns the next day to earn back his money. "I've lost my memory," he told the old man. "I can't remember a thing."

"Nurse, bring bottle seven and place three drops on this patient's tongue."

"Wait a minute. I'm not falling for that one again. That's gasoline."

"Excellent. Your memory is restored. Fifty dollars, please."

The doctor pays the fee but comes back the next day for one last try, determined to get his hundred dollars back.

"Please help me. My eyesight is failing. I can barely see."

The old man thinks for a minute then says, "I'm sorry. I can't do anything for you. Here's one hundred dollars."

"Oh no," the doctor tells him. "You can't trick me. That's only a fifty dollar bill."

"Congratulations, your eyesight is all better. That will be fifty dollars."

I guess the moral of the story is...don't mess with senior citizens. 

And for you teenagers who think you're putting one over on your poor ancient teachers...

Nope, you're not fooling anyone.

Running a little long here so let's go straight to your "aw".

The caption almost made this one a "funny" but the poor little guy was an "aw" for me.

How about you?

Did that do it? Enough of a boost to get you over the hump and coasting toward the weekend?
I hope so.

That disaster work has put me behind schedule on a couple end of month deadlines (and the month ends TOMORROW! Yikes!) so I won't be visiting anyone for a few days. I'll try to catch up soon.

Congratulations to everyone who completed the A-Z challenge this month.
Please stop by next Wednesday. I've got something special for you.
Have a great day/week/weekend.

Thought for Today:

Ain't it the truth?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Hump Day - Short and Sweet

Happy Hump Day

I've noticed my hump day posts have been running a little long lately and since most of us have limited time for blog reading, I'm changing to a shorter format for a while. Please let me know what you think.

I love dogs. We've always had dogs as part of our family. I believe dogs are incredibly loving and faithful and intelligent. But sometimes...just on occasion, I question their honesty. 

You know what I mean?

How about a little old lady joke? (My favorites.)

Sylvia and Wanda, two very old friends, meet up in heaven. They're startled to see each other.

"Wanda! What are you doing here? I didn't know you'd passed."

"Oh, it's just been a couple days. I didn't know you were here either. How did you die?"

"I froze to death."

"Oh, my dear, that sounds terrible."

"It wasn't so bad. After I stopped shaking, I began to feel all warm and sleepy and just drifted away. What about you?"

"Heart attack. My own fault really. I thought my husband was cheating on me so I came home early to catch him in the act."

"And did you?"

"No. He was sitting there alone watching TV. But I was sure there was a woman there somewhere. I started searching all over the house. I ran up to the attic and down to the basement. I went through every closet and checked under all the beds. I kept racing around until I was exhausted and I just keeled over with a massive heart attack and died."

"Too bad you didn't look in the freezer, dear. We'd both still be alive."

Be honest. Did you see that one coming?

Time for your "aw".

I've done a lot of "aw" pictures with puppies and kittens and babies. Even otters.
How about a pair of loving fawns?

Did you say it?

Okay, that's it. Are we there? Over the mid-week hump?


Does the shorter post format work for you?

Have a great day, week, and weekend.

See you next Wednesday.

Thought for Today: