A Little Common Sense about Heat.

This is long but please read it to the end. It’s getting to be summer and looks like a hot one. Why did I bother to write this. Cause you are my friends or at least friendly acquaintances and I want to get Christmas cards from you.
I’m a born and bred 6th generation Texican, 64 years old. In the AF I was in Korea and froze my ass off. In Saudi Arabia I was happy with the 135 degrees. Of course, I wasn’t humping a 60 lb pack either, but I could do everything I was supposed to.

 

The point of my story? You have to be very careful in high heat. Stay hydrated, wear protection of sunscreen, long sleeves and a hat with a brim that’s not touching the top of your head. And stay out of the sun in midday. Siesta is a way of life to us old timers. It’s not a cute custom, its necessary. Did I say drink lots of Water! Coke, beer and coffee don’t do it. Remember, once you get Heat Exhaustion its like malaria, it never quite goes away and you have to be extra careful. My German farmer ancestors would get up at daybreak, do whatever needed to be done, come in at noon, eat a good meal of protein, carbs and veggies, then take a long nap. Then they’d work in the house or barn until 4 PM or so and go out to work to dark. No A/C at all cause it didn’t exist back then.
As a 911 operator I saw two heat-related deaths. Both AF guys in great condition. A pilot and a high ranking officer. Both went out in the midday heat wearing skimpy clothes and ran for exercise. The pilot was literally found in a ditch, no ID so it took fingerprints to tell us who he was. The other gent was running around perimeter road. But they knew him cause of who he was. But his rank didn’t save him.
So, here’s the third tip. When you do decide it’s safe to run, at the very least carry your identification and a list of your medications. That way if they do find you alive its easier to help you.

 

And last but not least, if you run at night, please run in a well-lit area, and wear reflective clothing (or at least white). I was driving out to our old barn along a dark road, no lights whatsoever. All I saw was little flashy things close to the ground but I pulled over as to not hit the bunny. As I passed by I saw it was a young lady in a dark sweat suit running beside the road and in a large grassy field. I went on out to do the horse thing and noticed a very large tractor mowing the grass. This Scared me stupid. On the way back, I passed the gal again. This time I stopped and made her get in the car and took her back to her car. Why? She was running in the dark in a place that had rattlesnakes, coyotes and stray dog packs. But what really scared me was if she had fallen, been bitten by one of the above or passed out, that big ole tractor would not have seen her. She would have been found by someone in the morning all shredded. I still get the shivers.

 
So, here you go. Please, please think of the worst thing possible and move to prevent it. I’m not that smart, but my grandparents and their parents taught me some common sense and self-preservation. I can only hope this tirade of mine might, just maybe prevent some unnecessary injuries or save a life.
I’m through now. Thanks.


What I have learned by joining a writing group.

Two years ago I joined The San Antonio Writer’s Guild. I have learned much from the monthly meetings with both independently published authors and authors with contracts.Then there are the weekly Critique meetings where your work is read aloud by another member then opinions are given on it by the others. There are a few things I have learned that can be put in little rules. I thought I’d pass these on to my friends who want to write a memoir or short story or even a novel. This is what I have learned:

1. You must write to edit. If there’s nothing on paper you can’t fix what’s wrong.

2. If you mention bringing a gun with you, you must also use it or take it with you at some point.

3. There are always too many thats in the world.

4. Do not use the same word four times in the same paragraph.

5. Do your research!

6. Do not have too many people in a scene at the same time, you will confuse your audience. This includes dogs and horses.

7. Show, don’t tell. Let your character(s) feel free to walk around the room and do things. Don’t stick him in a chair and make him pontificate. I have noticed that some men have trouble accepting multitasking by the women characters. But the women will get it.

8. For us old folks, only use one space after a period and Oxford commas are now looked down upon.

9. If you use a mythical creature, be certain you know the myth.Fairys, elves, leprechauns, trolls, pookas and gorgons are all very different things.

10. And for pity’s sake. Do your research!

Of course, this is not all by a long shot, but if you start here, you’re on the right track.

But most of all it is your story. You can do whatever you want, so don’t take any critiques personally. Write for yourself and your audience but do us all a favor and do it the best you can.Good luck. Go to your yellow legal pad/typewriter/dictaphone/computer and write.


A Lady Walks Into A Bar

Rated G, friendship. DC Cinematic Universe.

The bar was dimly lit, the old mahogany wood showing signs of wear with scuffs along the walls and benches. A man sat alone in a booth, nursing a Guiness beer. His blond hair was cut short, his face a pattern of age lines and scars, his clothes those of a working man.

The elegantly dressed woman entered the bar softly, so as to not disturb the ambiance. She approached the bar and slid onto one of the high, vinyl covered stools. The barman took her order. “Red wine, please.”

As she waited for her drink, she looked around the room. There she saw the subject of her search. When she received her wine, she dismounted her seat and eased over to him as if not to startle the man away.

“Good evening, my friend,” She slid in opposite him, depositing her Gucci purse on the hard wooden bench.

“Good evening, Diana,” He nodded with a sad smile. His voice rough from ages of shouted commands.

“And how shall I call you?” she nodded encouragingly. “Khufu, or Carter?”

“Carter for now,” he lifted his empty mug at the waitress who nodded. He put it with a collection already on the table. The young woman came with another beer and a second glass of wine.

“Do you know why I sought you out?”

He shook his head and took a drink. “No, but I can imagine. Another foe to conquer, another enemy at the gate. Sorry, not interested.”

“I’m working with the Batman for now. There is something big coming.”

“Haven’t you learned that working with mortals will break your heart.” He sat the mug down and drew circles in the water rings with a calloused finger. “Making friends, then losing them, is so sad.”

She looked at him with a little smile. “Neither of us is immortal. You more than I know it.”

“But we are both old.” he drew a symbol on the table. “You are hundreds of years old. Me, thousands.”

“I can die by a weapon if I’m not careful.” she said.

“And I will.” He looked at her with his present blue eyes. “Shy’era is already dead. She is calling to me. You know I cannot refuse the curse.”

“Can you not resist it for a little while?”

“No, the time is too close. I would go, and by dying, break your concentration.” he sighed and drained the mug again. “Perhaps in our next incarnations, my wife and I can be of help. But now, I am only tired. My very bones ache. The wings grow heavy and the mace difficult to control.”

Diana looked at her old friend and saw his depression. She was saddened by it.

“Bruce and Arthur will certainly help,” he said. “I don’t know of the others but I’m sure you will prevail…with Clark.”

“Clark is dead.”

“Not so much I think,” He shifted his weight and climbed out of the booth dropping a hundred and a fifty on the table.

She stood up gracefully and faced him. “So you are now a Priest of Apollo with portents for me?”

“Always follow the sun, daughter of Themyscira. Never look to the shadows.”

“I will see you again, my friend.”

“I hope so. But, in the casting of the bones of chance one never knows where he may find himself.”

She reached out to lay her hand on his shoulder. “I pray you find her quickly.”

“May the gods hear your words.” He took her hand in his and kissed it. “Farewell, daughter of Amazons. Fight well.”

The man turned and walked out of the bar.

The waitress came to collect the glassware and the money. She looked in dismay at the large denominations. “I can’t take these. We don’t take anything bigger than twenties.”

Diana looked at her. “The money is good. Enjoy your tip.”

The girl looked at her doubtfully. “I don’t know. Do you think he’ll be back?”

“No, child.” the woman shook her head as she picked up her purse. “Not in this lifetime.”She gave a sad smile and left the dark room for the sun.

 


What you can do to help prevent Horse Slaughter

Info Dump from Me.  It’s heartbreaking in many ways but scary in others. Some horses are lucky. They live a good life, get retired and loved until they die of natural causes or are humanely euthanized.
Some lead a good life, then are sold off into Hell. Loaded in a cramped trailer, no food or water, driven hundreds of miles then butchered, often inhumanely with knives or clubs.
So who goes to Horse Hell? Surely not anyone I know. Yes, you do. From the parks, the race tracks and the television. In fact ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND American Horses go to slaughter for human consumption in Europe and Asia.
DRAFT HORSES (Belgiums, Clydesdales, Shires, etc.) go to slaughter quite freqently, but so do other types and breeds.  The big horses are ‘preferred’ by Asians and are shipped to Japan to be sold as sushi.
In fact a Budweiser Clydesdale was rescued from a kill pen. It wasn’t Buds fault. The older horse had been placed in a ‘safe home’ but due to circumstances was rehomed twice and then sold at auction. His old trainer stepped up and helped with his rescue.
But most have no such luck. They are work horses and their owners get rid of them when they are too old to work. The AMERICAN MORGAN horse also falls in this catagory because of its popularity as a carriage/ buggy horse. You know, the one you rode in his buggy and fed him carrots. Yeah, that horse.
Did you know that the AMERICAN QUARTER HORSE ASSOCIATION is so interested to breeding their wonder horses to get registry money that on average SEVENTY THOUSAND of their breed, many with papers, go through the Slaughter pipeline to Mexico or Canada either to be killed for human consumption in Europe or Asia?
The AMERICAN THOROUGHBRED Race Horse and STANDARDBREDS are also sold into the Slaughter business when they break down or just don’t perform and win money. Many fantastic beautifly horses are shipped to be eaten by people. They are the next most likely to suffer this inhumane fate.
And the American Mustang, Icon of the freedom of the west, is also vunerable. Initially, the horses that HAD to be removed from their historic homelands according to the Bureau Of Land Management, were held for adoptions. You could buy a wild horse for one hundred and twenty five dollars. Then after a year, you received title to that horse. Then you could sell him to whoever you wanted to. Some of them also go to the slaughter houses.
Now, thanks to the poor management of the BLM, there are over 40,000 wild AMERICAN WILD MUSTANGS in holding pens. There is a new motion in the upper echelons of our government to sell the ‘unadopables’ to slaughter to get rid of them. I’m not blaming the new people in Washington, but the old school who allowed this program to run rampant. They allowed the taking too many horses off their range to lease their homes to Cattlemen, oil men and other companies that want the land for their own benefit. Business wise it may appear like a good idea, but is that good idea worth the American Icon’s disappearance from our country? Surely, we can do better than to murder a vast number of animals  (think Ten Thousand innocent wild horses) that have been living in horse jail for years.
There are many more tragedies committed on purpose, but I would also like to mention horses that are STOLEN from their home pastures. They could be a child’s horse, a therapy horse that is being used to rehabilitate, a show horse walked right off the show’s property or even your pet horse from your barn. These don’t even see another place until they are purchased by a kill buyer and loaded on a huge trailer that is crammed full of horses suffering the fate of the damned.
I want to mention # 11 to these ten ways.  If you are against horse slaughter then call and write your Governor, your Representative, your Senator and your President and express your disapproval for their plans to support horse slaughter. Look up the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act.

The Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act would prohibit the slaughter of horses in the United States for human consumption, as well as the export of live horses for the same purpose.

“The permissive allowance of such horsemeat used for human consumption poses a serious public health risk.”1

If I haven’t lost you yet remember the restaurant that made the news last month for selling horse meat in a major city.  Yes, its illegal here now, but the move is on the way to change that.
Anyway, here’s the original blog from Draft Horse Rescue Resource.
And for more info, join the the american-canadian horse warrior forum on Facebook. Lots more info.
10 Things YOU Can Do To Help Stop Slaughter

TShirts

Subject: tshirts. I have too many darned tshirts as it is, but some companies always come out with new ones. It used to be

It used to be bumper-stickers. My old cars would have lots of bumper stickers all over it. But I got a new truck and I’m keeping the number down as I will have it for many years. It only carries Proud Woman Veteran, true Texan, and a Jack Russell heartbeat.

But I constantly get ads from (evil) facebook about new, funny, cute and irresistible t-shirts. Pictures of puppies, horses, dragons, and witty sayings. Today it is ‘Take care of the earth, its where I keep my dog.’ I recently got one that said things about writing.

Then there’s all the Viking ones, ‘I’m not a Princess, I’m a shieldmaiden. Then the protest ones ‘Stop horse slaughter’, ‘Protect the American Mustang’, and the begging ones ‘buy this shirt will feed 8 shelter dogs’,

I have the advertisement for Russell Rescue of Texas and All my conventions (Dragoncon, Revelcon, etc). There are the funny ones ‘ be yourself unless you can be a. Batman, b. a dragon, c. a unicorn’. (Hint: Always be Batman cause his superpower is being rich). 

And of course the ones I make. Michael Shanks as Hawkman (reference Smallville season 9 and 10), the cover of my book ‘The Homestead’, and Jack O’Neill as the Green Man. (you’d have to see it).

Now I have too many t-shirts and only a few none print shirts to wear to normal activities. (Though I’ll wear the writing one a lot.) And I need money for my next trip. Four of these bad boys are at least $100 dollars.

And they’re not cheap. $25 to $30 apiece. Well, the ones I make aren’t that. The Chartreuse Hawkeye shirt was $5 cause I got the shirt on sale and did the printing on my computer.

I think I’m getting the rep as the old lady with the funny t-shirts. But then, I can live with that. Though I’d much rather be known as the next JK Rowling. Sigh, I guess I’ll stick with the old lady with the t-shirts.


For new and prospective Terrier Owners.

Dear people who want a terrier. I see a lot of lost terriers on facebook. I know many of them get out of yards and go a hunting on their own. But bad things can happen to the babies in the big bad world. Here are a few suggestions from me and maybe some other terrier moms can pitch in their words too.

1. Lock the gate. If someone comes in, chances are the Jacks will get out. They are fast little stinkers. No one can successfully grab a terrorist on the fly.
2. Be sure your fence has good footing. A new fence with soft dirt is nothing to a digging dog. Pour concrete, lay big rocks or attach something as simple as chicken wire at the base of your fence an cover it with grass or gravel.
3. Don’t leave your dog outside alone for long periods of time. People will steal them, hawks and owls can take them and coyotes will kill them. Just don’t. ESPECIALLY in a storm. They will panic and if that fence goes so will the dog.
4. The underground electric fences are a joke. These little guys laugh at electricity. They see a cat or a squirrel and they go right through the zap. Also, other animals can come and go as they please. That chain link is a whole lot better.
5. If you have a wooden fence, be sure to check it regularly. If they can force their heads through an opening one day, the next day they will be gone. Be sure to check your fences after a bad storm. Lots of pets get run over when they get out.
6. Don’t leave them alone in a yard with an underground pool. As smart as they are, they may not swim or know how to climb out of the pool.
7. Keep them on a leash. Forests, parks, wilderness areas, lakes and oceans are also dangerous. Things live in them that can bite, poison or eat a little dog. Alligators, boa constrictors, (yeah, you read that right), sharks, bears, lions and the ubiquitous coyotes. Your little warrior will see prey and head for the wild open spaces. There, he will be the prey.
8. Be sure their leash, harness or haltee fits properly before you leave the yard or house. A terrier who can get loose WILL get loose.
I never put ID tags on a leash thing. I like a separate plain collar to carry their ID with my phone number and address. I use a martingale collar for the leash so the tag stays With the dog if he slips away. This is important. If you do lose a dog, a nice neighbor can call you if they find your dog or even a police officer may do it. If all you have is a city or vet office tags no one can help as the offices are all closed after 5 PM or weekends.
9. Carry a stick, a cane, golf club, etc in case you are attacked by loose or wild animals.
10. Microchip your pets. They work to help return or Identify your pets. Even if the worst happens it’s better to know.
11. Get your dog a job! Obedience, agility, flyball, hiking or just walking together. A Tired Terrier is a happy dog. And you’ll be in better shape too.

If someone has other suggestions, please feel free to add on. This is important enough for a village.

A friend wrote in and advised she has her Driver’s License Number tattooed on her dogs. She said it helped her to get her dogs back from a ‘neighbor’ who wanted to keep them.


Family stuff and kudus for a friend.

Honestly, I didn’t think it had been literally months since I’ve posted here.

Real Life is a bitch. And when you get older its full of surprises.  Quick commentary husband in hospital and now awaiting surgery. Me back in Physical Therapy and yeah, awaiting surgery too.  Has anyone used Dragon software? How do you like it?

Now some more exciting news.

Last night I spent a great evening gathering with writers and friends at 400 Josephine, a lovely and quaint little bar to Celebrate the initial release of KL White’s first novel, Dark Waters. The groups represented were The San Antonio Writer’s Guild, San Antonio Romance Authors and a few more I didn’t hear their actual name. Dark Waters is published by Carina Books and is available on Amazon.com as an e-book. Sadly no paperbacks available in this type of deal
.
Dark Waters is an adult fantasy book involving a Kelpie and his human friend in war’s aftermath. Be advised this is an adult book and involves interspecies romance. PS a Kelpie is a shapeshifter Scottish water spirit, somewhat like a Pooka to the Irish often appearing in the form of a horse.

I’ve seen the first chapter and enjoyed it. I’m excited for my pal and hope to see many more books from her.