Saturday, February 18, 2023

Where's My Stuff?

 There's no image going with this blog post, as it's just too hard finding copyright free images these days, and I was spending more hunting for a clever photo than writing this post, which is about exactly that -- finding stuff in these wondrous days of technologically-connected everything.

This post started with my frustration about trying to save a Word document on my laptop. Just on my freakin' laptop. Instead it wants to hide my work up there in the omnipotent cloud. Because it (or they, whoever is running the show) want to "make everything easy for us".

All I wanted to do was put it on my laptop in a folder. Nope. No can do. But, after several minutes of messing around, figuring where my stuff was going, I finally managed to create a folder on the desktop to store my stuff. Knowing the all-powerful electronic gods, it's also probably in a bazillion other places, none of which I'll ever find.

That's about all the ranting I have for now.

Peace, and take care of one another.

Friday, December 23, 2022

That Does Not Compute


After a long hiatus, I'm back.

Thinking of computers and the word ‘computer’ made me think of how the word has evolved over my lifetime. I almost called it a laptop, which is one word for it now, although I hardly ever place it on my lap. Too difficult to use that way. I suppose the word came from the idea that the computer would sit on top of your lap, but the word is actually more of an adjective, as in ‘laptop computer’. But most folks just shorten it to ‘laptop’.

 At one time we had desktop computers (are there still any out there these days?), although most desktop computers sat under the desk, so why didn’t we call them deskunders or underdesks?

 And then we called computers PCs, short for personal computers, which originally described any home computers, even Macintoshes and Apples, but then PCs came to describe non-Macintoshes and non-Apples. What, Macintoshes and Apples were impersonal computers? Seems most computers are rather impersonal, anyway.

 There are ads from the early 80s or late 70s, when home (personal) computers were getting started describing Apple computers as personal computers, so when did the switch occur with non-Apples being called personal computers, or PCs, and Apples as just Apples?

 If we trace the computer revolution and evolution back further, before all name-playing (home computer to computer to personal computer to PC, etc.), computers were just computers, big lumbering things that existed remotely from you and I in refrigerated warehouse-sized buildings, attended to by a staff of humans who constantly had to finagle and wrangle and debug and whatnot with these ginormous ‘electronic brains’. They had strange acronyms to describe them such as HAL (remember good ol’ psychotic HAL?), ENIAC, and UNIVAC. And they were lampooned in cartoons, comic books, TV shows, and movies with names such as WOPR (pronounced ‘whopper’ from the movie War Games), Uniblab (The Jetsons), Brainiac (Superman comics), and Colossus (Colossus: The Forbin Project).

 But before we had these electronic tools called computers, there were people employed in various occupations that required high-level calculating abilities. They were called computers, and used their abilities in surveying, navigational, and astronomical applications, to name just a few.

 So, there you have it. A brief trip backwards, outlining some of the word origins for these little electronic beasties that are everywhere. And what am I typing this bit of meandering on? Yup. A computer, or personal computer, or PC, or laptop….

Sunday, August 21, 2022

Of Epic Proportions

The old curmudgeon is back after a long absence. Just gonna fire out a quick post about favorite used in the media. Presented for your humorfication:

Imagine if… translates to “Nothing much happened here or will happen here, but imagine if this had been a 10 foot wall of water sweeping through the streets instead of the 3 or 4 inches I’m standing in.”  My criticism – They’re not imagining gargantously enough.

 "… unprecented"

 "… one for the record books…."

 "Looks like a war zone."

 "I want to show you how high the water got."

But my personal favorite is 'a something event', as in "... a rain event." or "... a snow event." or "... a wind event." Why can't they just say it rained or snowed or we had high winds?

Enough for now. 

Talk to ya soon.

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

A Rootin' Tootin' Western Anthology

Howdy, folks, Tom here. It's been some bit of time since my last post, and I'm gettin' ready to remedy that. And for my return to the world of blogs, here's info on a two-volume western anthology I'm featured in, along with a whole bunch of other deadeye six-gun authors. If''n you like westerns, you're gonna love these tales of flying bullets in the Old West.

To order from Amazon, follow the links below.

Volume One:

Volume Two:

Keep writing, friends. Wagons, ho!

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

The Three C's -- Cats, Coffee, and Care

There's a wonderful organization that started up in Georgetown, Kentucky, recently called Central Purrk Cat Cafe. Wen and I heard about it and stopped by today to look at the kitties and have a couple of cups of coffee.

Central Purrk is a warm, inviting place. When you walk in, there are cat-themed paintings on the wall, and a large, glassed-in enclosure where the cats that are waiting for adoption lounge in comfy beds. There was a lady sitting inside the enclosure with the babies, holding and petting one of the babies. All manner of cat ramps are attached to the walls for them to climb and nap on. They have litter boxes, food, everything they need to make them comfortable while they wait for their forever homes. Kitties looked relaxed, and were scattered about, playing or napping.

Oh, yes, and there is a full-service coffee shop, too, where you can grab cup of coffee or hot chocolate (the hot chocolate was delicious) while you watch the babies.

Keep writing, friends, and care for those who need it.

Here's their website: Central Purrk Cat Cafe

Here are few photos: 

Monday, January 25, 2021

Dragons Approaching

For a tale of fantasy and adventure, follow the young warrior Fox Lockhaven as he struggles to defeat a god and a Titan, and hopefully save all life on Gaia.

"Great world with a believable character you hope will triumph and save Gaia. Loved the language, different creatures, descriptive names for the landscapes, (Forest Black, The Corruption) tie in to mythology. A classic based tale with lots of twists to keep you reading. Loved the ending and want more...please!" -- Amazon Customer

Available at BookLocker and Amazon.

Sunday, January 24, 2021

The Old Writer and the Young Writer

Welcome to the Laboratory. This is where I experiment with new story ideas. This one is the seed of an idea I've kicked around for some time. Comments are sincerely appreciated.

The writer, Justin, walked to where the Old Writer sat in her usual place, on that one bench. Justin's words sat clogged in his throat, just as they had sat clogged his hands when he tried to write.

As he neared the Old Writer, Justin's legs stopped moving. Nothing worked. He froze. Justin prepared himself for turning around, failed once more, heading home.

A calm, yet strong voice said, "Hello, young man. I've noticed you coming in the park recently. Every day you get a little closer to my office." The Old Writer waved her hand, indicating the bench. "Is there something you want?"

"I'm conflicted. I have crazy thoughts. Write every day or not? Today, for example, I haven't written yet. Haven't for the last few days. Too many ideas, and I fear they'll come out in a jumble."

"Good. Jumbled isn't a bad thing. And conflicted. Yes. Stories need conflict."

"But should I as a writer be conflicted?"

"Oh, yes. How else can you relate to your characters. Besides, conflict is friction. And friction produces heat. That's the fire that fuels the creative process." The Old Writer, who had no name, smiled warmly. "You have many questions. I may or may not have answers. At the moment there are squirrels in your head, running this way and that, looking for nuts. So, why don't, for the moment, come over here and keep an old lady company." She patted the bench with a mittened hand. "I have brownies."

Justin sighed, relaxed. He walked over and sat beside the Old Writer.

Keep writing, friends. And comment freely. I've no idea where this story is going as yet.