Monday, March 30, 2020

Hunkering In Place: An Anthem.

SUNG TO THE TUNE OF “YOU’VE GOT A FRIEND”

When you're stuck in the house
Because of Covid-19
And you ain’t,
you ain’t got nothing to do.
[MUSIC BREAK]

Just remember it could be worse
You could be out of paper for poo.
But you ain’t,
so brighten your face with a smile.
[MUSIC BREAK]

Now, now write a song about it
And put it on your feed
And we’ll watch it,
oh yeah, again and again.
[MUSIC BREAK]

End of winter, start of spring, y’all,
You know, too, you can text and call
And I’ll be there,
more than six feet from y’all.
More than six feet from y’all.
Oh, yeah, yeah.


You’ve got a friend.


by ANGELA K. DURDEN
Your cheerleader and voice of reason in this time of a weird season.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

A Morning for Angela Anagrams


A Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman 
and The Most Brilliant Woman in the World 


During this "Beer" virus downtime I have done lots of those little things that need doing. I've organized all my spaces. I've had my son help me build shelves. I've worked on sewing projects. And, with the 10-human crowd-size limit, I've done streaming house concerts with Misha Stefanuk and Joel Edwards since we cannot perform in public. I'm reading a manuscript by a '60's pop icon for a book he submitted to my publishing company.

But this morning I reached a new low of looking for something to do. I went to an anagram generating site on the Internet and put in my name: Angela Durden. After copying and pasting the list into a Word document, I went through and got rid of 463 that were either meaningless or nasty. The remaining 37 are below; you can read the entire list for yourself.

However, I have chosen my faves out of these and have added punctuation to make it even more meaningful where that works. What makes an anagram my fave, you ask? If it is something others have called me. If it is something my ex would've called me. They are:

Things my ex might've called me:
Adrenal Nudge
Annual Dredge
Laundered Nag

Things others have called me:
Danged Unreal
Danged Neural

However, the best fun of all was the book titles I came up with. Something that would make a title for a book that John D. MacDonald* would've written. They are:

Book titles: 
A Dangled Rune
A Gnarled Nude
A Dunned Lager
[The] Unread Dangle
A Gerund, Laden
A Regal, Dunned
[The] Nude Nerd Gala
Run, Dead Angel, [Run!]
[The] Dead Regal Nun


Was that fun or what? It was fun. Spurred me to greater heights of creativity. Not that I need much spurring which you would know if you have purchased any of my books. What? You haven't bought any of my books? Well, why not? Click the link below or go to Amazon.com and type in Angela K. Durden in the search bar. 


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THE ENTIRE LIST:
Annealed Drug [to heat and then cool]
Adrenal Nudge
Uganda Lender
Annual Dredge
Laundered Nag
Danged Unreal
Danged Neural
Ungraded Elan [vigor, spirit]
Dungaree Land
Dangle Unread
A Dangled Rune [mystery, secret, character of the runic alphabet]
A Gnarled Nude
A Laden Gerund [word ending in -ing]
A Lager Dunned
A Regal Dunned
Agenda Led Run
Gala Ended Run
Gala Nerd Nude
Add Leaner Gun
Dead Angel Run
Dead Angel Urn
Dead Angle Run
Dead Lager Nun
Dead Regal Nun
Leaded Nag Run
Graded Ale Nun
Landed Age Run
Landed Age Urn
Darned Ale Gun
Adder Gale Nun [Snake Storm Nun]
Adder Lane Gun
Adder Elan Gun
Dread Gale Nun
Dread Lean Gun
Dread Lane Gun
Leader And Gun

*I had opportunity to meet his grandson at Bouchercon 2018 in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Friday, March 20, 2020

The "Beer" Virus Concert

Misha Stefanuk, Joel Edwards, and me, The Most Brilliant Woman In The World and Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman and Songwriter bring you The "Beer" Virus Concert. Enjoy!




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Tuesday, March 17, 2020

How to keep kids busy during this mini-apocalypse.


TMBWITW*** and MMSW****.


A Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman and The Most Brilliant Woman in the World 


Are your kids home for several weeks while Coronavirus runs amuck? Don't know what to do? Let The Most Brilliant Woman In The World and a Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman help you out.

I recognize that P-HWPCDLRSFCs* and purveyors of FLOTSAM** could very well have some issues with this list and maybe will accuse me of "not caring" and "child labor laws breaking". I can assure you that I, TMBWITW*** and a MMSW****, ain't skeert of those opinions and thazzafact! [See Footnote]

So, let's get to it.

First thing one must do is not to feel out of control. I recognize that this is probably the first time in many years that you will have your child home for any length of time without having planned activities to send them to where others will teach, entertain, and inspire your little rug rat, or lil' squirt if you prefer, and you only must remind to brush teeth and go to bed.

Buck up! You will get through this with the handy-dandy tips from TMBWITW and MMSW.  

  1. Make a Domestic Engineering List to include:
    • Sweeping
    • Vacuuming
    • Toilet scrubbing
    • Tub scrubbing
    • Dusting
    • Bed making
    • Laundry folding
    • Pet exercising
    • Pet feeding
  2. Disconnect the Internet. [Trust me on this.]
  3. Disconnect the cable. [Trust me on this one, too.]
  4. Unplug microwave. Better yet, put it in your trunk. [You'll thank me later.]
  5. Stack books around.
    • Encourage the making of their own play based on scenes from the books.
  6. Provide simple foodstuffs that do not need heat to prepare.
    • Let them peel boiled eggs and add mayo and salt and pepper and mash them all together and spread on bread
  7. Schoolwork must be done, of course. 
  8. Cook a meal together.
  9. Teach them how to prepare a grocery shopping list.
  10. Shop for groceries together.
  11. Break the grocery shopping list up into segments to equal how many children you have who could possibly navigate grocery store aisles and read a list.
    • Assign to those children. Sit on a bench at the front of the store with a book and be there to answer any questions they may have.
  12. Let them put up the groceries. 
  13. Be sure to explain the entire scientific methodology of and reasoning behind storage of shelf-stable foodstuffs versus that which needs refrigeration.
  14. Be sure to explain all of that in great detail.
  15. Share stories with the next generation about how tough your childhood was. Don't forget the snow drifts, tiny coat, and hills that went up way far both to and from school.


Well, I have more, but I realize that this list will probably be a strain on you. Once mastered, please feel free to ask for more apocalyptic hints and tips. 


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P-HWPCDLRSFC: Pussy-Hat Wearing Politically Correct Democrat Liberal RINO Socialist Fascist Commies
** FLOTSAM: For Liberal Opinion That is Serious and Actually Matters
*** TMBWITW The Most Brilliant Woman In The World
**** MMSW Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman

FOOTNOTE: "Ain't skeert and thazzafact!" is the Southern way of saying "Truly and really, your P. C. outbursts do not scare me in the least and you can take that to the bank and deposit it."



Sunday, March 15, 2020

"It's a Jungle Out There" Monk theme by Randy Newman.

shared by Angela K. Durden
A Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman and The Most Brilliant Woman in the World 


Apropos for today with all the event cancellations. Adrian Monk would feel right at home.





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Friday, March 13, 2020

The sky is not falling, y'all.

Garlic: Good for what ails ya.
Angela K. Durden
A Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman and The Most Brilliant Woman in the World 

I was just at a large meeting yesterday morning with about 200 people. Nobody was shaking hands. They were bumping elbows, instead, and saying, "Don't want to catch...errrr...spread anything."

However, they were busy handing out food, paper materials, banners, and business cards, and sharing pens and microphones. Folks were hugging (hands everywhere) and getting in real close for photo ops.

See? Stupid.
C. S. Lewis reminded folks who panic that they should not exaggerate the novelty of their situation. Panic helps no one. Panic changes nothing.

Look. The sky is not falling, y'all. When it falls, you won't have time to go out and buy toilet paper. If you've got time to buy toilet paper, then you'll be fine.

Okay, okay, okay. Maybe you will die, but so what? You're going to die anyway at some time. Nobody lives forever. But, sheesh, stop it with the f***ing panic.

Coronavirus is a real thing. But the #CrunkNewsNetworks and certain politicians are using it as a way to disrupt your life and grab control over it. Do not be mistaken on this. If you are panicking, then you are the prey.

Do you want to be the prey? Then keep on with the panic response.

Otherwise, wash your damn hands.
Stay home if you're sick.
But stop it with the overreacting.



















Article with C. S. Lewis quotes

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** FLOTSAM: For Liberal Opinion That is Serious and Actually Matters

Sunday, March 8, 2020

The Death Rattle of SXSW

Those who remember
history...
by Angela K. Durden
The Most Brilliant Woman in the World

SXSW, or South by Southwest, has been held in Austin, Texas, since 1987, making it thirty-four in March 2020. It has steadily grown from a first year opening day attendance of 700 — which surprised everybody involved — to over 73,000 in 2019, by which time the event was many days long and included music, film, tech, and interactive media presented and discussed and paneled out the wazoo.

In other words, SXSW went from an event friendly to music creatives and fans of, to something that was Important and Meaningful, sponsored by multi-national corporations, slap full of P-HWPCDLRSFCs [1], and covered by media outlets who were happy to spread FLOTSAM [2] everywhere.

In 2020, Austin, Texas, cancelled the event because of an overreaction to the coronavirus [3]. Since event insurance doesn't cover pandemics and natural disasters, well, the financial hit will be even worse for organizers, vendors, etc.

Actually, I don't think it was the city that overreacted per se. One news report says it was the pullout by Facebook, Twitter, Intel, Google, and TikTok [a Chinese company], among other large corporate sponsors, that spelled the death knell for the March 2020 festivities.

Whatever.

Can you tell I'm not too upset about the cancellation? Let me tell you why.

Remember Comdex? I went to it when it came to Atlanta in 1997. Held in the Georgia World Congress Center, it was a thing of beauty. I was fast outgrowing my first PC [running windows 3.1 over a Dos 6.0 shell, featuring a 65 megabyte hard drive, floppies A and B, and it had a modem!] and, as a power user of technology [I fully expected it to do what it promised], I wanted to know how I could upgrade and better use technology to make money. My eyes were opened and my inner nerd was born that day.

But when large IT sponsors pulled out because of the fast-changing business environment, well, Comdex was doomed even as users of technology were blossoming.

When events that celebrate creativity and are exciting and affordable, begin to be filled with conferences and panels of experts and badge prices skyrocket, naturally it will end. Conferences grow from small to large and then they fail. It's the nature of the beast.

This cancellation of SXSW in 2020, sure it hurts the pocketbook. But I've been hearing from too many attendees for too long that the event was so big, so spread out, and so expensive that it was no longer friendly to the Indie creative, much less fans. One man told me, "Angela, it would've been cheaper just to visit Austin another time and hit the bars with live acts. I would've met more and better." 

The SXSW we know today is so far from its roots that it needs a course correction. Maybe this cancellation will spell the end of it, or at least the beginning of the end as, maybe, organizers will, like the Comdex organizers, try to reinvent themselves for a few years.

I'm going on record here this eighth day of March in 2020, that it won't be too very long and SXSW will be just another entry in Wikipedia visited by folks who thought it was an urban legend.

I'm not sad about that because with change comes, well, change. And that change has been in the making for some years now as Indie creators' ranks swell and fandom is being reinvented around the world. 


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[1] P-HWPCDLRSFC is Pussy-Hat Wearing Politically Correct Democrat Liberal RINO Socialist Fascist Commies
[2] FLOTSAM means For Liberal Opinion That is Serious and Actually Matters
[3] Insurance doesn't cover SXSW cancellation.



Friday, February 28, 2020

Where is Orson Welles when you need him?

The Most Brilliant Woman in the World

In 1938, totally as Halloween entertainment, Orson Welles did an audio version of the H.G. Wells' novel The War of the Worlds. The broadcast scared a few folks who thought it was real news. 

And from that time until January 2020, broadcast news has been king and king maker as well public confessional and warning prophet. Remember the Y2K debacle? The world was ending all because somebody tried to save some space on hard drives by shortening dates. My own (now ex) husband thought I was going to disappear with my data the night of the changeover. I believe he was disappointed I was still there on Jan 1, 2000.

For some time I've been writing about the FLOTSAM* spewed by all the news agencies I've listed as part of the #CrunkNewsNetwork. But until this January of the year of our Lord 2020, these agencies still had some clout — or so they had us believe.

Remember when to make the news the standard was "If it bleeds, it leads"?

Now that standard is "If it scares, we care".

To show how much they care, they will beat a story to death even if it isn't true.

But the coronavirus killed off any remaining gravitas MSNBC and CNN — and any other agency that emulates them — may have had.

Stick a fork in them. They're done. 


Together, MSNBC and CNN have done everything in their power to start a panic about the coronavirus but nothing is happening. It is now public knowledge they've lost all potency in the market, not to mention any legitimacy they may have had.

I don't feel sorry for them. They have not learned their lesson. They will not change. They are still


I bet Orson Welles could stir up some scary sentiment about coronavirus and not one person would think it had anything to do with beer.

FLOTSAM means For Liberal Opinion That is Serious and Actually Matters

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Thursday, February 27, 2020

Dining Fine, or My Adventures in French Restaurants.


The Most Brilliant Woman in the World


Admittedly I was young and unsophisticated, so I don't blame the waiter at the French restaurant for his response after I called him over and quietly whispered, "Excuse me, sir, but can you find some rolls that aren't as hard as hockey pucks?"

After a long look down a longer nose, what he said was, "Excuse me, madam, but those are our finest rolls."

Now it was my turn to stare as my somewhat-new husband tried to disappear. Then I said, "Well, I know where you can get some good soft yeast rolls that don't make your teeth fall out when you bite into them. And did you know —" here I held up one of his rolls "— these are cold?"

I'm sure he was thinking, "What a gauche young woman. What did I do that God should so punish me by sending such a person into my orbit?" I'm sure he was thinking that because, well, it was written all over his face.

I merely bring this up to let you know that Fine French Dining and I simply do not get along. I'm much too practical and I do not impress easily. Those of you who have read my book Conversations In Hyperreality will attest to this. If you have not read the book, then make the damn investment and find out for yourself. You will not be disappointed and you will be supporting The Arts. See what a fine thing you're doing?

Digression over. Back to les grenouilles and their condescending food.

So, years and years pass. How many is none of your business. But my Awesome Aunt Number One [AANO], Pearl, was being visited by Awesome Aunt Number Two [AANT], her sister Virginia. Naturally they wanted to go out to eat and so I picked them up and headed to Pearl's fave eatery, a French restaurant. "My treat!" she yodeled.

This was a real French restaurant, too. Seriously. I walked in and there was a bunch of Catholic priests in their uniforms. I could tell who the top honcho was because he was at a table with no other priests and surrounded by people who were obviously sucking up to God. Nobody was smiling. Nobody was chatting or laughing. [I kid you not. I was looking for the table full of Nazis in full regalia.]

They were there to eat and be seen and by God and Mother Mary and Jesus and all the Saints they were going to eat and be seen doing so, in the right company, of course. This was serious business.

Those poor folks who had to crowd around a table with a lowly priest stared enviously at the main table.

We three non-Catholics stood out like sore thumbs in the hammer aisle at Home Depot. The host condescended to seat us and we got some sort of round booth smack-dab in the middle of the place where absolutely everybody stared at us.

Now, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "Angela, I hope you didn't say anything stupid this time and just minded your manners and acted all polite and stuff." I'm sorry you are thinking that because that is not what happened.

Not that I didn't try. I did. I tried really hard. But when you find out what happened, you will not blame me this time. This time I was deliberate in my declarations, or as les grenouilles would say, déclarations.

Here is what happened.

AANO and AANT ordered chicken and rice. I ordered some sort of beef with a sauce. There's a name for what I ordered, but I've tried to put it out of my mind, so I do not remember it at this time. Their dishes came and then mine was placed in front of me.

Well, of all the foods I've ever eaten, I can tell you Roasted Gristle Cut-on-the-Grain with Meh Brown Gravy Slopped Over and Presented With Wan Potato Not-Au-Gratin is not my favorite.

AANO and AANT immediately saw the look on my face and they whispered urgently, "Angela, DO NOT COMPLAIN. Just eat it. It's FRENCH." As if that helped.

Well, says I, I ain't paying for this sh---, I mean merde. Right there, in the middle of the restaurant, with everybody looking, I raised my hand and started looking around for our waiter. He saw me and, seeing a possible defector who might just start a riot, hot-footed it over to the table and bent over me with a Oui, puis-je vous aider? Yessir, you can help me, says I.

Firstly, I did not order Roast Gristle. Secondly, your bread is hard as a damn hockey puck.

Both AANO and AANT almost fainted dead away. AANO said, "I'll swap with her and she can have my chicken." I said, "Pearl, your chicken is rubber, you just said so. I don't want to swap gristle for rubber." Then turning to the waiter, who by this time was furious along with the rest of those who were Dining Fine, I said, "Look. You take this back. You tell that chef of yours to cut my piece against the grain —"

He interrupted with, "MahDAHM, NO wahn hassss EVER return a deesh to le chef."

What a frickin' fake French accent. I marveled that he got away with it. But I continued and said, "Shall I walk it back there? Because I can and I will."

And he knew I would.

Those who know me know I'm not lying nor exaggerating.

Anyway, out came a much better piece of meat, this time cut against the grain. Almost fell apart, it was so tender. The gravy was fresh. The potatoes just about stood up and saluted. And the rolls had been heated and buttered. It was all still bland, but it was better. I added salt and pepper and I ate it.

Well, you could have heard a pin drop when this better dish came out. Even the Big Catholic Boss was staring at me. Who the hayle are you to get better food than moi? The waiter was staring from me to the chef hovering in the doorway of the kitchen and back, both had expressions of Qui diable êtes-vous, femme? Glad you asked, sirs. Let me tell you who the hayle I am.

I am a Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman...and don't you forget it. See? That's how we saved your boohineys in WWII. Just saying. 


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Sunday, February 23, 2020

Philip Haney: Careful and cautious; never a quitter.

The Most Brilliant Woman in the World

I knew Philip Haney. He wrote the foreword to the book by Jedwin Smith that I edited and published called "I AM ISRAEL — Lions and Lambs of the Land". Jedwin and I had lunch with Phil in Downtown Decatur one day. The conversation was great. We were all having such a good time. Not often I've had opportunity to converse with a man of such brilliance and integrity.

While working with him on the foreword to the book, we spoke often on the phone and emailed edits and tweaks back and forth. He always laughed when I said, "Philip, you're wrong, here's why, and you should change it." I'd make my case for his choice of word or phrasing and how it could be misconstrued or made much clearer. He always made the change.

When he spoke to Jedwin, he always called me Firebrand. That made me laugh. He wasn't afraid of much, but he was afraid of me! Even now in my grief, I smile at the memory. I will miss him.

He had recently been widowed when his wife, Francesca, died after very long being ill. She was the love of his life. However, he was still very busy and engaged with projects for agencies that dealt in national security.

He was outspoken against both the Bush and Obama administrations and how political correctness and the Deep State allowed terrorists to get a foothold in the U.S. He tracked funding to U.S.-based cells and could prove where it came from and to whom it went. His book "See Something. Say Nothing." documents what the Deep State attempted to do to shut him up.

Philip Haney was a man of God who loved life in all its many iterations. It would never have entered his mind to kill himself.

However, his life was in danger and he kept on the move. He was careful. He was cautious. But he was not a quitter. Philip Haney did not kill himself.

#PHDNKH

SHERIFF'S OFFICE BACKTRACKS ON SUICIDE.
WHAT HANEY WROTE.
AMERICANTHINKER.COM
THE BOOK WITH HANEY'S FOREWORD.
REPUBLICAN LAWMAKERS "HANEY DID NOT COMMIT SUIDICE".


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Friday, February 14, 2020

The Principles of Engines and Sex



The Most Brilliant Woman in the World


Please be advised this content is for non-P-HWPCLDRSFCSJWs*. If you self-identify as a P-HWPCLDRSFCSJW, DO NOT CONTINUE READING.  If you are a distributor of FLOTSAM**, you know how to reach me for clarification of any statement you deem inflammatory, is not approved by P-HWPCLDRSFCSJW or your masters, contains information you've never heard, or for any other fashion you wish. If you want to blame this on President Donald "The Hammer" Trump, please do not contact me, and instead reach out to the White House Office of Press Relations Management and take it up with them. 


Fuel-powered engines operate very simply in theory. Everybody understands how engines work. You put a key in a slot. You turn a key. And boomshakala-Bob’s-yer-uncle, there you are, ready to put’er in gear and move right along.

Never mind the reality that gears and rack and pinion and tires and seals and filters and brakes and oil and other important fluids and parts must also be maintained or else major repairs costing mucho dinero will hound you for years. You see? You understand? The simple theory of how cars work is totally explained in the opening paragraph and that is the simple theory of how people look at their car.

And how they think of sex.

You put a Whangdoodle in a little fill’er neck. You turn this way and that and boomshakalaka-Bob’s-yer-uncle, there you are, put’er in gear and moving right along.

Never mind the reality that over-shoulder-boulder-holders may or may not be involved. Never mind the reality that bits of sheer fabrics and lacy peekaboos may need to be slowly removed or ripped off in a rush, dodged or fondled, and so forth, and if not done properly can result in much heartache. Never mind that just when you think you’re home, the gas runs out; are the aging vehicle can’t keep up with demand; or while you’re happily “driving down the highway”, a seal springs a leak leaving you with future obligations the likes of which you think will never end and you swear off sex…or at least promise to be more careful.

Just like engines look simple but are complicated, so is sex. Chemicals (gas for engines, hormones in bodies) involve internal combustion designed to convert energy in the chemical into mechanical energy. In both cases, “pistons” move up and down in a linear motion inside “cylinders” that, in turn, move “crankshafts” in a rotary motion. If pistons and cylinders are misaligned, not properly milled to spec, or so antique they give in under the pressure, the desired converted energy is lost and the trip is postponed.

You may infer the quotation marks in the above paragraph to imply tongue-in-cheek commentary; that phrase — tongue-in-cheek — is not meant as a pun.

But let’s say that the energy is converted, there is still danger. If the converted energy is weak the “engine” may not know the “trip” has begun much less is over leading to “check engine lights” coming on and somebody whispering that excitement-killing phrase, “Daddy-O, are we there yet?”

We humans simply take engines and sex for granted. We believe they will always work when we want them to and are surprised and angry when they don’t. I once had a mechanical engineer explain to me how engines work in four simple steps. One: Engine intakes air and fuel. Two: Compresses it until it Three: Explodes. Then Four: Exhausts. Or as he said it, and these are his words:

1. Suck. 
2. Squeeze.
3. Pop.
4. Phooey.

Need I say more?


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P-HWPCDLRSFC is Pussy-Hat Wearing Politically Correct Democrat Liberal RINO Socialist Fascist Commie Social Justice Warriors
** FLOTSAM means For Liberal Opinion That is Serious and Actually Matters



























Fuel-powered engines operate very simply in theory. Everybody understands how engines work. You put a key in a slot. You turn a key. And boomshakala-Bob’s-yer-uncle, there you are, ready to put’er in gear and move right along.

Never mind the reality that gears and rack and pinion and tires and seals and filters and brakes and oil and other important fluids and parts must also be maintained or else major repairs costing mucho dinero will hound you for years. You see? You understand? The simple theory of how cars work is totally explained in the opening paragraph and that is the simple theory of how people look at their car.

And how they think of sex.

You put a Whangdoodle in a little fill’er neck. You turn this way and that and boomshakalaka-Bob’s-yer-uncle, there you are, put’er in gear and moving right along.

Never mind the reality that over-shoulder-boulder-holders may or may not be involved. Never mind the reality that bits of sheer fabrics and lacy peekaboos may need to be slowly removed or ripped off in a rush, dodged or fondled, and so forth, and if not done properly can result in much heartache. Never mind that just when you think you’re home, the gas runs out; are the aging vehicle can’t keep up with demand; or while you’re happily “driving down the highway”, a seal springs a leak leaving you with future obligations the likes of which you think will never end and you swear off sex…or at least promise to be more careful.

Just like engines look simple but are complicated, so is sex. Chemicals (gas for engines, hormones in bodies) involve internal combustion designed to convert energy in the chemical into mechanical energy. In both cases, “pistons” move up and down in a linear motion inside “cylinders” that, in turn, move “crankshafts” in a rotary motion. If pistons and cylinders are misaligned, not properly milled to spec, or so antique they give in under the pressure, the desired converted energy is lost and the trip is postponed.

You may infer the quotation marks in the above paragraph to imply tongue-in-cheek commentary; that phrase — tongue-in-cheek — is not meant as a pun.

But let’s say that the energy is converted, there is still danger. If the converted energy is weak the “engine” may not know the “trip” has begun much less is over leading to “check engine lights” coming on and somebody whispering that excitement-killing phrase, “Daddy-O, are we there yet?”

We humans simply take engines and sex for granted. We believe they will always work when we want them to and are surprised and angry when they don’t. I once had a mechanical engineer explain to me how engines work in four simple steps. One: Engine intakes air and fuel. Two: Compresses it until it Three: Explodes. Then Four: Exhausts. Or as he said it, and these are his words:

1. Suck.

2. Squeeze.

3. Pop.

4. Phooey.



Need I say more?

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Spitting Excellent Epithetical Expletives Like a Pro

The Most Brilliant Woman in the World

Anyone who has read my memoir will understand. Those who have not read my memoir should sure as hell bloody well buy it now so they will.

Notice in the above paragraph how I appropriately commanded you, the reader, by using excellent epithetical expletives [from hence on shortened to E-E-E!]? See? I told you I was a pro — and you will see more examples of my professionalism if you keep reading.

And as well I should be a pro because I studied the art form from the time I was around three years old until I was pregnant with my first child.

You are probably wondering how many years that entails. I will not tell you because, g*d d*mn, how nosy can you [effin'] be?

Growing up around violence, drugs, drink, and other wanton and evil lifestyle choices including the free and easy and quite imaginative use of expletives, you would have naturally assumed that I thought these things were all normal and that I proceeded to beat up people, get high and drunk, be a wild child, etcetera and so forth, and employ E-E-E!

You. Would. Be. Wrong.

I did not utter my first curse words until I was seventeen and to say those were uttered would be a gross understatement. I screamed them to the high heavens right smack dab into the face of my stepfather when I said, "Shutup, you [E-E-E!]" When he asked for clarification of what I just said, I repeated, "I said shut up you [E-E-E! E-E-E!] and furthermore..." Well, it's in the memoir, so buy it.

Everybody was so shocked that Angela cursed. This rocked their little world because Angela did not curse.

Then I did not use another curse word after that for many long years. You see, when I make up my mind not to do something, I don't do it. I have a funny story about when I was twelve and how I made up my mind not to pick my nose because I wanted to be a lady, but I'll spare you that story.

The many long years I did not use curse words ended a couple of years before The Big D — by which time the children were well along into adulthood — and has not abated until this day.

The use of E-E-E! now is so frequent that even as I spit it out I'm sometimes clapping a hand over my mouth and saying "Sorry for the French!" because the timing is just not judicious. Other times I revel in the freedom and young men who think I'm a timid schoolteacher are shocked. I've even had some say "But-but-but...you...you cursed!" like it was some sin or something.

Yet, here I am. Spitting Excellent Epithetical Expletives like a pro — and proud of it.

You are now asking, what makes one professional in the use of E-E-E!? You may check your professional usage of E-E-E! by this list here.


  1. You do not deploy E-E-E! casually.
  2. You mean E-E-E! every time you employ it.
  3. You do not apologize meaningfully for using E-E-E! 
  4. You sometimes apologize but everybody knows you really don't mean it, you're just making the faint of heart not hate you as badly.
  5. Cups of coffee are never referred to as "[E-E-E!] coffee" unless it was really a bad cuppa and therefore deserved it.
  6. You find yourself in front of an audience, getting ready to sing a song you wrote, remembering that the mic is live and working really hard not to blurt out something inappropriate in case young ears happen by.
  7. You find  yourself in front of an audience, getting ready to sing a song you wrote, remembering that the mic is live and working really hard not to blurt out something inappropriate in case young ears happen by and working really hard in coming up real fast with appropriate stand-ins for E-E-E! and everybody thinks you're being a comedienne and they laugh because they know what you really were going to say. 
Numbers 6 and 7 may not apply to the general public, but you get the drift. You could be at work. Making a presentation to the Big Bosses. See? Or you may be frustrated because the person you're talking to is saying, "You write...books AND you write...songs?" like a book is something they've never bought and the writing of a song is something reserved for those blessed by the saints they pray to and they cannot believe you are so blessed.

You know what? I'm getting mad right now and my fingers sure are twitching to spit out some E-E-E! But I'm not going to...I know I promised I would...So sue me. I need the free column inches.


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Friday, January 31, 2020

Boxers don't whine. Neither should those who enter the debate ring.


The Most Brilliant Woman in the World

Besides being The Most Brilliant Woman in the World, I am also a Magnificently Methodical Southern Woman.

I do not apologize for being clear about my strengths and recognize that if it's a fact it ain't bragging.

I mention these two titles simply to say that what you will read next is only one more example of my brilliant methodicalness and if you have to put on sunglasses to protect your eyes as you read it, then you have been forewarned.

I am one member of a 42K+ Bacefook group built around Thomas Sowell. I happen to like Thomas Sowell. Have done since the first time I read his column in Forbes back when the Internet did not exist and the magazine came in the mail.

My father-in-law had a subscription. He kept a pile of the magazines next to his chair. When we'd visit for the weekend, my nose stayed in the magazines all weekend. Drove my (now ex) husband mad, but that's another story. Anyway, even my father-in-law got tired of me pawing his stack, so he bought me a subscription to Forbes and paid for it for over twenty years. He couldn't have given me any better gift.

I looked forward to two columns: Thomas Sowell and Joseph Garber. I ended up writing each. My letter to Sowell prompted him to ask if he could use my letter in his 2001 book "The Einstein Syndrome", which permission I gave and which was included. My letter to Garber got a response from him wherein we found we had a lot in common and wrote back and forth until he died. I've never met either, but I am a writer and so were they, so the written word was perfectly fine for us.

This Bacefook group is under fire for not toeing the party line and have started a backup group on MeWe should they be shutdown on Bacefook.

So there I am on a particularly fine morning, checking in with my Bacefook peeps, when what assails my eyes is this [you can see by the check mark which I chose]:



I was dismayed because for some time trolls joined the group whose sole purpose was to stir up trouble for trouble's sake. They had nothing of any intellectual honesty to add and delighted in doing nothing more than calling names and hurling other insults just to see who would respond with their reptilian brain thereby self-identifying as an easy victim. Henry Fu, the moderator, has had an almost full-time job refereeing them.

After I took the survey, I added my comment as to why I chose the option I did:

"The rules as they exist in this group are fine with me. They remind me of the ropes around a boxing ring, a ring in which boxers live by rules, and, when the mind gets too reptilian, a ref is called in to remind one of those rules.

"But the contenders in the ring don't whine. They know why they are there: To pummel! They know their goal is to represent.

"And in that ring, they know that at the end of the bout they will shake hands and go do the press conference wherein they praise the effort of the other and say how they look forward to their next fight. The loser may even say with a smile and not few words of smack, 'I will kick your boohiney next time, buddy, so just you watch out!'"

And those who simply comment "I agree", or who post a meme comment, or whatever, are the crowd letting the contender know they appreciate their effort or think they suck.

See? Boxers don't whine. And neither should those who enter the debate ring. So, if you don't like the sport, don't buy the ticket and put your butt in a ringside seat and then complain.*


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* Do you notice how I could've said "Put on your big-girl panties", but I chose not to?

Sunday, January 26, 2020

O Garlic! How you linger.

Ode to Garlic 

In the morning, cold with dew,
there is nothing like the smell of you.
Freshly peeled and crushed just so,
in the morning how I love you so.
Garlic! Garlic! How you linger
in the air and on my fingers.
Holding court all the day
just so you can hear me say,
"O Garlic! Inside my breast your pungence swells
and lo, therein, does ring my bells."
Some say to Amaryllidaceae do you belong
with shallots, onions, chives, and leeks.
But these are merely posers, as to the
Allium longiscuspis you do keep.
In the wild the others grow, but 
you are carefully cultivated just so.
They lure cows to eat their tops
which makes their milk a great big flop.
For days upon end onion-flavored milk
assails noses of farmers who cry, "Oh, ick!"
But, Garlic, never do you wander.
Of yourself you never ponder.
Stay in your place, you faithfully do,
on meats and salads and in my stews. 




Your Magnificently Methodical
Southern Woman as she
contemplates her morning garlic.
The Most Brilliant Woman in the World


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Saturday, January 25, 2020

The Simple Secret to Good Writing


by Angela K. Durden
The Most Brilliant Woman in the World
Business writer.  Songwriter.  Protecting creator's copyrights. 


Imagine a fresh plate of steaming hot, crispy French Fries. The plate is set in front of you. Your taste buds are salivating eagerly and your fingers twitch with excitement. But before you can take one small morsel, the chef pulls out a box of salt and dumps half of it atop the potatoes.

What is your reaction?

Of course you recoil in horror. You yell, “Stop! Stop!”, but the chef says, “No. This is how I like to serve these. I don’t really care what you like,” and he continues to pour on the rest of the box of salt and soon you do not see the beautiful taters that you so looked forward to and that had been promised.

Sure, somewhere in that pile may be a fry or two that did not get any salt, but are you really going to go digging through it to find them?

Now imagine that same plate being set before you and the chef brings out a shaker and lightly dusts the potatoes with salt. Aha! You will hail the chef’s total genius in preparation and presentation and you will quickly dig in and enjoy.

Think of that plate of potatoes as your story and you are the chef. Are you “dumping a box of salt” atop your story so that the reader cannot see it?

Salt and interesting words/combinations in moderation make the taste of fries and stories pop. Too much of either ruins the very foundation of what the chef and writer serve to diners and readers.

Yet we find certain chefs and writers do not care what their diners and readers want — that is, something enjoyable — and insist on torturing the same. 

Just as diners don't want to — nay, will not! —  dig through a pile of salt-covered potatoes to find one they can eat and that might fill their tummy, readers do not want to — nay, readers will not! — search through thousands upon thousands of words to find the few that carry the story.

Allow your readers opportunity to hail your writing by employing this one simple secret to good writing: Go easy on the salt.


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