Saturday, December 22, 2012

It's the Little Things

Just a few random thoughts during this holiday. With Christmas just a few days away I am always mindful this time of year that it is the little things that count in life. It’s not about gifts and decorations, it’s about the moments that you share with others. A laugh, a smile, an encouraging or complimentary word.

It’s been a long year for a lot of people. The economy still sucks. In my region the main economic driver is the energy sector and thousands of families are out of work during this holiday season. Recently the school shooting in Newtown, CT reminded us that there is evil in this world and that life is precious and sometimes cut way too short.

I got a package in the mail yesterday that emphasizes this point. I opened the box with a kid-like excitement and smiled and laughed at every trinket in the box, things for ages 3 and up. Oh, and some really great hot chocolate powder that I refuse to share with anyone! But I was reminded again that it is the little things that count. There could have been a $500 gift inside of that box. But nothing compared to the fact that someone thought about me and gave me some gifts to keep me chuckling. Just being thought about was priceless. I called to say thanks for the gifts and probably spent over a half hour laughing over the phone. A great conversation is a gift that lasts forever because it is in your memories going forward. Something as goofy as a socket monkey night light brought a lot of joy.

So remember this holiday how it’s the little things that matter. My older sister is going through chemotherapy for breast cancer right now. Spending some time with her goofing off is priceless. Sharing some laughs and some funny gifts with someone special is priceless. Remember those things that money can’t buy and that’s where you’ll find the best gifts of all.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Top 10 One Hit Wonders of the 80's

When I think back on growing up in the 80's I remember mostly how dynamic and fun the culture was. It was a time of excess on all levels. "Excess" is a word I use a lot in my book The Ultimate 80's (available for all eBook formats at online retailers). Excess in fashion, excess in movies and television, and mostly in music. The 80's kicked off with the new wave phenomenon and the rise of MTV and its impact on the culture at large, and on the politics of the day.

I cover a lot of fun topics in my eBook, including a ton of personal top ten lists in the world of fashion, music, television, and movies. You'll find a lot of interesting trivia in the book. But one topic I didn't cover in much detail was the one hit wonders of the 80's. There were a lot of them! So I thought I'd toss in my personal top 10 one hit wonders of the 80's. Got a few of your own favorites, feel free to share them.

10. Eddie Grant - "Electric Avenue"
9.  Nena - "99 Luft Balloons"
8.  John Parr - "St. Elmo's Fire (Man In Motion)"
7.  T'Pau - "Heart and Soul"
6.  The Outfield - "Your Love"
5.  Rockwell - "Somebody's Watching Me"
4.  Gary Numan - "Cars"
3.  Modern English - "I Melt With You"
2.  Big Country - "In A Big Country"
1.  Flock of Seagulls - "I Ran"

Saturday, December 15, 2012

NOOK and Kindle!

Since I am in the process of writing a new novel, I thought I'd take a moment to share with you the link for my author page on Barnes & Noble's website. (At the bottom of this blog).

So far I have 7 books available online for eReaders. Four are in a horror series (Legends and Landmarks), two are short story compilations. Those short stories are kind of like horror meets the Twilight Zone. The other book I have is a humorous nostalgia book about the 80's.

Also, I have a short story available for free that is titled Game, Set, Match. I wanted to make something free for readers so those who haven't read my work can get a fun sample before spending your hard earned money. Everything is under $10, no need to charge high prices for something that has no overhead or uses physical materials like paper and ink.

My books are available in all eReader formats. Thanks to those who have bought my work. If you haven't, take some time to at least get the free download and see if you like it. eBooks make a great Christmas gift! I appreciate all of my readers, and thanks again.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Hooray Beer!

According to a Yahoo news article, the consumption of beer can help fight off the common cold. It seems like a chemical compound found in the hops provides the human body with the ability to fight the virus behind the common cold. The study was conducted by a Japanese beer company, but I’ll still consider this bit of news the gospel until told otherwise.

Did you know that studies have also shown that beer consumption can also help with bone density and reducing the risks of heart disease and Alzheimer’s? It’s true. So next time you decide that having a few beers with your pals is a good idea and your wife wants to complain about it, just tell her that you’re drinking for your health so you two will have many more years together.

Who was it that said beer is proof that god loves us? Well, whoever said it was a wise man. Enjoy some famous quotes about beer and drink up! For your health!

"I would give all my fame for a pot of ale and safety."
-Shakespeare, ‘King Henry V.’

"Who cares how time advances? I am drinking ale today."
- Edgar Allan Poe

"Always remember that I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me"
- Winston Churchill

"I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer."
-Abraham Lincoln

"24 hours in a day, 24 beers in a case. Coincidence?"
–Stephen Wright

"Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, "It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver."
-by Jack Handy

"Beer, the cause of, and solution to all of life’s problems."
- Homer Simpson

"You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline – it helps if you have some kind of football team, or some nuclear weapons but at the very least you need a beer."
- Frank Zappa