Friday, April 29, 2016

Omigosh! New Stories!

This is the year a new collection of short stories is supposed to be published by yours truly. As you can see on the sidebar, there are links under "Shorts" that take you to the stories. I'll post them there as they get rewritten and prepared. We're trying to get a few positive comments for marketing purposes, so if you read one or two and like what you see, please say something nice.

I suppose I should warn folks that some of these stories would likely be viewed as adult situations, or mature, or something like that. I don't pay a lot of attention to that sort of thing anymore. I don't write children's literature although it has been suggested from time to time that I would be more successful calling what I do children's literature. Well, everybody's a critic, right?

I am also in the middle of a new science fiction trilogy. First book is completed, second book halfway done and hope to have the third finished by year's end (that's really optimistic).

Meanwhile, what's a good title for this upcoming collection of short stories? I've got one I'm thinking about: The Devil May Care, but I'm up for suggestions.

Anyway, more stories will appear under the Shorts heading at NTD -- they're all going into the anthology and then you won't be able to read them for free at NTD anymore.

Obviously, I've got a lot to do, so best get to it. Ah! I almost forgot to tell you, as always, thanks for reading!

Favorite Movie Scenes #5

This scene, of course, is from Cool Hand Luke. If I had to pick a movie scene to represent my life, this would probably be it.

"I don't care if it rains or freezes long as I got my plastic Jesus
sitting on the dashboard of my car." -- Cool Hand Luke

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

This is a solar eclipse on Earth as viewed from space as it moves across the globe.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Don't Fear The Reaper

More cowbell!

There are so many people in the world, that, on average, 105 people die each minute. That works out to 6,316 souls an hour. In one day, 151,600 people die around the world. In a year, 55.3 million. Sounds like a lot, doesn't it? It's because it is a lot. Yet, compared to the rate of birth, those numbers more than double. For instance, there are 131.4 million births in one year which breaks down to 360,000 births per minute, 15,000 births each hour, and 250 births each minute. That's human babies, not puppies.

While we're on the subject, the average life expectancy at birth is approximately 67 years.

Click to enlarge.
All those pesky facts makes me think about an eventual population growth conundrum and, with a Malthusian eye toward the future, some day there won't be enough resources to go around.

Out of control population growth is not a new idea. It's not something about mankind that has just appeared at this time in our history. People are greedy and competitive (because often they have to be); isn't that what recorded history has to say to a great degree? That is, that the competition between men and tribes and genetic stocks and nations for resources is the story of survival of the human race.

Yet, the numbers keep rising. Therefore, we apply solutions like wars and abortion and the neglect of ravaging diseases in certain parts of the world, the widespread use of approved desensitizing drugs, as well as a socializing cookie-cutter approach to education. Throw in the acceptance of morality on a sliding scale and eventually there are more problems than there are solutions.

A practical solution to the population problem would be to emigrate people off the planet. Send your nanny or maybe Aunt Luci to a terra-formed Mars. Seems like a better idea than allowing the globalists to turn us into numbers. Oops, wait, maybe they already have.

Nature regulates all manner of species and when there's no more room for a particular animal or plant because it didn't adapt to changing conditions or became food for another species, mother nature ushers them to the door. Yes, life (and death) can be cruel. Ever feel like a fish in the sea? That's justified high paranoia. It's a fish eat fish ocean out there.

I wouldn't mind if the whole world flooded and we all had to live on boats. Oh, I suppose there could be some small islands here and there but not nearly enough for everybody. Besides, I'm certain the rich people would hire thugs to keep people like me from using their beaches. I wouldn't mind living on a boat. I could wear shorts and go barefoot (okay, some things won't change), go swimming every day, eat fish whenever I wanted, and sail instead of drive. I could listen to Christopher Cross and AWOLNATION or Van Morrison and ponder extinction and what greater plans God may have for humanity.

I feel safe in saying that the human race won't become extinct anytime soon. Heck, even if they got started today, it would take years for them to get around to locating me and shipping me out with the rest of the mongrels. Who is them anyway? By the time they get here, I'll be gone. So, you see, extinction doesn't hang me up.

It could be that humans are everywhere in the universe; that the various human genetic strains are, in fact, the end result of evolution whose rules work the same everywhere. Life appears, life progresses, evolves, and voila, homo sapiens eventually evolves. Maybe it's inevitable that humans appear everywhere and anytime there is an opportunity for them to exist.

Even if you don't believe in God, would you be comfortable in saying humanity is the pinnacle of God's achievements or that it was narrower than that, that the pinnacle was the creation (evolution, if you prefer) of man. By saying humanity is the greater thing, we lessen the value of the individual. Coincidentally, freedom and liberty are not considered "values" in group dynamics.

And so we like to say the human race is still a work in progress. Yet, quite possibly, it is not, unless we are working towards our own extinction -- or, for you progressives out there, working to avoid it. In terms of the degree of comfort in which people live these days, most of us are squeaking by, some better than others, it's true, but generally speaking the human race has a Coke and a hammock. We're doing all right. Maybe this is as good as it gets. If so, I can live with that.

So can you. See you on the beach.