60,000 and Rising
It was with great joy this morning as I squinted with sleep filled eyes at my stats page and saw I’d finally crossed the 60k mark. With one hand on my ubiquitous coffee mug and the other on my Macbook mousepad, I scrolled down and also saw that my following list had increased.
All was right in the world; God was in his heaven and my blog was continuing to grow.
On a more serious note, I’ve got to say that I am really overjoyed with how things are going with my blog and my writing. On the topic of my blog, I can only say thank you from the deepest part of my repaired heart to all the folks who keep reading and commenting and following my site. You guys really make my day. Nothing is better than waking up in the morning and seeing that my site is continuing to grow while I sip my first of many cups of coffee of the day.
While I still don’t have a huge grasp on what my particular “niche” is, I’m happy with continuing with what I am doing. It seems to be working and I don’t want to rock the boat too much!
I do need to say that my input will be slowing down. Instead of the 3 to 4 blog posts per day, I will be dropping down to 1 or 2. I will also be using some blog space to promote upcoming Tomorrow Comes Media (TCM) hosting events, which I have just started doing and the first one up will be Michael West’s brilliant anthology Vampires don’t Sparkle on May the 16th.
I’ll be featuring a guest post from one of the contributors to this brilliant anthology and I’ll have another event on the 19th of May.
I am currently spending a lot of time writing articles for the web magazines Guardian Express and What Culture! Added to that is the review work and interviews for Rogue Cinema and the research I’ve been doing for my book, so my attention is spread pretty thin at the moment.
I am getting requests from new authors to review their newest work and if you know of anyone who exchange a copy of the latest and greatest book for a review let me know!
So, intense (for me anyway) workload aside, things are going well (knock on wood) and the film Once Bitten, Twice Shy is still on for filming on the 6th of July this year and if you want to know more about this click on the link above and you’ll be redirected to the film’s website.
So before I sign off here today, I will reiterate how pleased and grateful I am for the time that you lovely folks in the WordPress community spend supporting my blog. While I am not very good at visiting other sites as much as I should, I continue to try to repay the kindness that you’ve shown me.
- Once Bitten, Twice Shy: Coming Back (mikesfilmtalk.com)
- Once Bitten, Twice Shy (mikesfilmtalk.com)
- It’s a Date! Once Bitten, Twice Shy (mikesfilmtalk.com)
- Once Bitten, Twice Shy: Short Film (mikesfilmtalk.com)
- Once Bitten, Twice Shy: Plans Underway (mikesfilmtalk.com)
- Short Film (Once Bitten, Twice Shy) Progress (mikesfilmtalk.com)
- Indie Book Store and Indie Author Team Up – Burien Books Hosts Book Signing with Local Author T.M. Franklin (prweb.com)
- Coffee Lovers Drink Up To Five Cups Of Coffee A Day (kymx.cbslocal.com)
- Building a Better Blog/Website (fmorrison42.wordpress.com)
- Write A Novel In 60 Days: New & Hot!! (libiasv.wordpress.com)
The Fickle Finger of Fate
With a speed that would make Superman himself envious, my life continues its rapid dervish-like decent into the realms of possible disaster. After a month-long wait, I finally got to see the Citizen’s Advise Bureau (CAB) today. With visions of all things positive running through my mind I answered when the lady called my name. We went into a little room and got down to business.
And business…was not good.
It turns out that the little light that I was envisioning at the end of the long dark tunnel was not an exit, but the train. All that was missing was the rope necessary to tie me helplessly to the railroad track. I think though, if I’d waited long enough, the rope would have been delivered…with a bow on it. But all allegories aside (or is that metaphors) I can now proudly claim membership to the “It so totally sucks to be me, right now” club.
It seems like my only options are to starve to death quickly or just to starve to death. My pension is not enough to house me or clothe me never mind feed me. If I take a lump sum, said lump sum will reduce the amount of my yearly pension drastically; and the worst bit is that the lump sum will get gobbled up by creditors. I will have to move because not only do I have “too much house” but I cannot afford to pay the rent any longer.
Here’s just one fun bit.
As I am renting on the private sector, no one will want to rent to me as my pension is too small and I don’t have a job (yet). Lack of job equals lack of stability, never mind how I got into this predicament. The prospective landlord will not care about my personal circumstances and that is their right. He (or she) is in the business of making money on their property, not doling out charity on a case by case basis. All my joking about cardboard boxes isn’t quite as amusing as it once was.
But part of the problem with today’s information gathering episode was me. I placed far too much importance on the CAB visit. I had pumped myself up to believe that they would answer all my questions in a way that would benefit me. They did answer all my questions, but not how I wanted them answered. The answers, when they came, only made the situation seem worse.
I am sitting here feeling slightly nauseous, partly because I haven’t eaten today and partly because of my current state of mind, and not a little depressed. On the plus side, I am not panicking (yet) and I’m not even hyper-ventilating; I think my daughter Meg is doing that for me. I think I am still in the same state of mind I was in before I went to see the kind folks at CAB. The only difference is that now I have a better idea of what I won’t be getting in the area of financial support.
The only thing I can do right now is not let the future override my present. I have to believe that no matter what happens, I will survive and thrive. I’ve had a lot of people (my family for example) say, “What you’ve got to remember is that you’re alive. You almost died; you need to hold onto that.”
I do hold onto to that thought, but, another thought tailgate’s the first one and that thought has to do with the irony of being saved from death only to starve or sleep on the street.
But I have learned a very valuable lesson today. Don’t place too much importance on thinking ahead when the future is so uncertain. Focus instead on the short-term and keep a flexible attitude. It’s okay to plan for tomorrow when you know the facts and not so okay when you don’t. Sometimes you just have to live each day and take comfort in the fact that you did at least one thing that made you happy whether that one thing was just getting up or something more esoteric.
So despite feeling a bit like the fickle finger of fate has given me a prostate exam sans lubricant, I can take a certain amount of pride in the fact that I can actually “trot” up the stairs (a feat I was not capable of last week). I take great comfort in the fact that I can walk to and from the Metro twice in one day and not collapse from exhaustion afterward. Okay, both trips were not end to end, so to speak, but not a whole lot of time had elapsed between trips.
I’ve been put off my stride, again, and I will face more obstacles as this little scenario plays itself out. I refuse to let it get me down though and the CAB did give me some brilliant websites to access for more information. The main problem with today’s session boils down to me trying to plan ahead for things that have not happened yet. Oh some of them had, but not all, and it was that problem that led to my depressing meeting.
I do know that just writing this blog post for the second time (the first draft was so full of depressing information that I could see myself being blamed for an increased suicide rate) has improved my low mood no end. I don’t feel like I can take on the world just yet, but I feel like I can at least dodge that damned train.
- Thoughts on a bad cliché (writerightmel.wordpress.com)
- Report: Pensioners worried about retirement funding (gateway-homes.co.uk)
New Year’s Resolutions: Maybe One or Two
I am not overly fond of New Year’s resolutions. Like 9.9 tenths of folks, I never keep them. I would love to hold up my hand and shout, “Yeah! I’m that point 1 tenth dude that always keeps his resolutions!”
But, I am not.
We all do it. We make commitments that we do truly intend to keep. The impending excitement of another “new” year with all its wonderful windows of opportunity is just too much for us to nonchalantly ignore. We have to step up smartly to the plate and give it our best metaphorical swing.
Who knows, we might just hit a metaphorical home run? We may just live up to that forecasted event or goal that we just know can be met in this new virginal year. After all, the New Year has got to be better than the old one right?
It is always easy to look back at the end of each year and not count our blessings, but count our disasters and mishaps. And (according to the media to some extent) that is normal.
Every year the newspapers and news channel on TV and the internet do “lists” of everything that transpired in that extant year. There is usually more than enough celebrity death, freak weather and mass death to fill up several pages of newspaper or reels of film. I am not saying that all recaps of the year are vulture-like ghoulish recaps of human misery, but there are enough of these lists to make it appear so.
There are some lists that focus on the sentimental or good things that have happened before that great big ball can descend on Times Square at midnight. Some are fun. The “best” film or film moments, for example, are always entertaining, but these do not hold the record for unhappy events nor do they make you yearn for a New Year to “make things better.”
As it gets ever closer to the time when that big ball will finish its descent and mark the beginning of the New Year, more and more of these lists and resolutions will be made public. Of course some folks will not tell anyone what they are hoping to achieve in the new year. Wise choice, the less people who know, the less you have to squirm when you haven’t accomplished this new goal.
According to Wikipedia (that all-knowing “Mr Peabody” of the internet) New Year resolutions have been around at least since the Babylonians built their tower. Roman’s also participated; presumably their first New Year’s resolution was to not crucify the son of God again…
Either way this resolution to be better, to do better, to act better has got to be a good thing. Despite the old adage that states, “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.” Surely it is better to have good intentions. Who doesn’t want to be a better version of themselves? Like the song says, ‘Oh Lord please don’t let me be misunderstood.’ Hopefully our good intentions are not misconstrued or misinterpreted. We cannot control that, but we can control how we go about these improvements.
Most of us don’t make any resolutions that involve huge change. We say we’ll stop; smoking, over-eating, binge drinking, messing around, et al. And most of us will fail. I know that I have said for years that my first resolution was to quit smoking in the New Year. *I don’t do the other things listed above.*
This is the first year that I know I will be able to succeed at this 2013 resolution. Why? Well, I’m glad you asked. I had my last smoke on 30 August this year. Thus far, apart from the odd nostalgic yearning, I’ve not wanted another cigarette, cigar or pipe. I don’t even smoke the electric cigs any more (too damn expensive).
So I know that I will be able to keep and meet this one New Year’s resolution. While I’ve been writing this blog post I had another “no brainer” resolution pop into my head. Since I cannot one hundred percent guarantee that I’ll accomplish my first resolution (after all, I have an addictive personality and we are all just a bit self-destructive when it comes to smoking), I have one more New Year’s resolution that I know I can keep.
Are you ready?
My second New Year’s resolution is to not give any credence to Mayan prophecies, like…say…the end of the world.
Happy New Year everyone!
- Do You Have a New Year’s Beauty Resolution? (bellasugar.com)
- How to Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions (apartmentguide.com)
- 3 Financial New Year’s Resolutions to Make for 2013 (askthemoneycoach.com)
- New Year’s Resolutions – think big and eat more chocolate (earlyinitiative.wordpress.com)
- Starting New Year’s Resolutions NOW (recisdempayos.wordpress.com)
- Year Ending Diary: Resolutions I Broke (chaoticsoulzzz.wordpress.com)
I’m so Proud to be Here Once Again
I once heard the hysterically funny Robin Williams spout that line on the Mork and Mindy show. I fell about laughing and I still find it funny. His delivery of the line was reminiscent of a country music singer in a lounge or an evangelical preacher in a small church.
*Williams old routines featured a lot of evangelical moments, like grabbing someone else’s head and yelling, “Heal!”*
The reason I’m mentioning the ‘evangelical’ moments is because my daughter has been watching a lot of the more esoteric evangelical programs via YouTube. Now I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade or piss on their campfire, but apart from providing some truly hilarious moments of sheer lunacy, these shows are disturbing.
We have a new group of evangelists who are asking the poor and vulnerable for money. One chap is actively touting the 1000 dollar seed. Apparently God is too busy to listen to everyone, so if you really want him to pay attention to you, just send in your prayer, with the all important 1000 dollars, and God will make the time to answer your prayer.
Oh and just in case you are interested the guy who does the 1000 dollar seed is Mike Murdock. He generally broadcasts at around 0430 in the morning so you’re going to have to get up pretty early if you want to take advantage of his great offer.
I grew up watching a load of evangelical programs. They were good for a laugh. *Before you get all high and mighty, I will point out that I was a ‘good’ boy and went to church most Sunday’s and was ‘saved’ from an early age.* I (and a few of my friends) found it hysterically funny when a ‘preacher’ would come up to some ‘poor’ afflicted parishioner/believer and ‘heal’ them through the power of God (and television) by grabbing the afflicted person’s head and pushing them violently backward. The implication, I believe, was that the afflicted was now healed and had passed out after being touched by ‘God.’
I also grew up watching Oral Roberts. Good ole Oral. Who made so much money from his evangelical practise that not only had he built a university (or at least a lot of it) and a hospital, but he had his very own prayer tower. This tower was presumably high enough that Oral was that little bit closer to ‘our maker’ and he could be heard that little bit better. Of course, Roberts fell out of favour with the big guy later. He got on national television and stated that God had told him if he did not raise a certain amount (I think it was a million bucks) God was going to call Oral home.
I was a bit confused by this. I’m pretty sure the implication was that Oral was going to go to heaven aka home. Now most Christians I know would be tickled to death (sorry about the pun) to go to heaven. Oral didn’t seem very happy at all to be going. Yep, pretty confusing alright.
Then we have Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker and their PTL club. Money maker? You bet. Tammy Faye had to pay for all that makeup somehow. Not to mention Jim Bakker‘s felonious (he did some serious prison time) activities, gambling, sleeping with women (professional women) and other things using the money that their believers sent into the PTL club.
The latest pretender to the evangelical throne, is the Augusta, Georgia independent television station WBPI-CD channel 49’s Club 36. Probably the worst sort of publicity ever broadcast in support of the Christian community. My daughter found an episode that has been uploaded on YouTube under a channel named (rather appropriately) as the Crazy Christians channel.
In a modern-day sort of ‘tall tales’ competition, Henry Lewis and Donna Martonfi tell about their personal experiences with evil, the devil, demons and Hindu spirits. Lewis, who sounds like a Mafioso foot-soldier, claims that before he was saved, he was the physical embodiment of Shiva a Hindu god of destruction. He claims that he actually manifested as a giant cobra from the waist up causing a preacher to faint. Not to be outdone, Martonfi tells of 80 foot tall demons who got into her house and swallowed her whole.
Despite the fact that both of these stories are hilariously funny, they are also disturbing. These same people go on to say that Pokemon cards are demonic, Halloween, Star Wars, Smurfs, Harry Potter are all evil. Henry Lewis’s own definition of the Harry Potter stories: “Harry has no parents, no friends, and he lives under the stairs in a closet. Harry has nothing until he reaches eleven years of age when a Giant shows up and takes him away. He is brought to a witches place called Hogswatch and he is raised by witches.” Something I am sure that Henry can identify with as he himself, he says, was raised by a coven of witches.
These type of television evangelists and their pleas for monetary support from their followers, no matter how inadvertently funny they are, are no more than a con-game. Hosted by con-artists and broadcast by the greedy. Their victims are the elderly, mentally challenged and gullible. They are living off the misery and false expectations of people who cannot afford to put money towards their false promises and, lets face it, criminal activity.
It is criminal what these folks participate in. Con-artists are jailed for fraud all the time. Unfortunately these con-artists are free to keep milking dry the poor folks who fall for their lies under the auspices of religion.
Yes it does say in the Bible that donations to the church are a necessity. But these donations are to aid the sick, the poor, and the church itself so that the congregation would have a place to worship. None of these donations or tithes (or whatever you want to call them) were to benefit the relayer of ‘God’s’ message. Don’t forget, Jesus ran all the money-grubbing [sic] folks out of the house of worship.
There should be laws, apart from the already existing ones that put Jim Bakker in prison, that prevent these shysters and con-men and women from operating legally on television. Sure I find them endlessly entertaining and it doesn’t cost me a penny. Well apart from the electricity used to watch the episodes on YouTube.
Unfortunately for the poor souls that believe the false messages being relayed by these tricksters, the entertainment or false piece of mind they get can be costing them dearly. I’d love to see that not one of these con-artists are ever “proud to be here once again.” Unless the sentiment is being relayed from the coziness of their own prison cell.
- Southern Poverty Law Center’s Lucrative ‘Hate Group’ Label (americanthinker.com)
- PTL Club Tapes (ifphc.wordpress.com)
- Jim Bakker prophesies New Orleans’ destruction and California ‘ring of fire’ (secularnewsdaily.com)
- “The Gospel Cannot Thrive in Pride”: At the Synod, The Floor Calls for “Penance” (whispersintheloggia.blogspot.com)
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