Tag Archive | Books

My new buddy! Ruger! He’s a real son-of-a-gun.

This is RUGER! He’s my new relative. Cousin Ruger has more energy than tens dogs should have

Meet the newest addition to our family. He is an Australian Shepard named Ruger. Ruger owns my human’s daughter and her family. Ruger, Lori, Mike and Bradley came down to visit and fish with the Geezer. Did you notice his eyes? Intense!

Of course, Ruger is a puppy. His perpetual puppy spring is still wound tight. He’s always on the move chasing something or somebody. From the time he bounded up the stairs until the time Lori and Mike’s pickup left for North Carolina … I was his primary objective. Being young and being male, well I’m sure you understand. I was polite and didn’t get harsh with him. However, I spent a lot of my time in a sitting position.

Ruger is a chaser. Balls … birds … beagles … boys … it doesn’t matter. He’s a very love-able character. Enthusiastic about everything, I got tired just watching him.

Ruger and me. Note my position.

 

“Chow Hound” should be Ruger’s nick-name. Here he drools over a lobster toy

 

The Geezer, Mrs. G, and I all enjoyed the not-so-little guy. Oreo our black and white cat was less thrilled. They stared at each other from a distance and Oreo chose the high ground. Stairs. The balcony. Back of the couch. The high ground.

 

#  #  #  #  #

 

Why, a question we need to ask more frequently, but alas … don’t.

 

Here I am in the act of pondering why things are as they are. Anyone have an aspirin?

I wonder if there is a more powerful or disturbing word in any language than why. It’s a painful word. Why? (There’s that word) It makes us think. That is something many don’t like to do. I find thinking is particularly distressing for human’s to attempt.

Dogs’ “why” questions normally can be logically answered. Consider our questions and our answers.

Q. Why do dogs chase cars?  A. We feel like bullies chasing squirrels.

Q. Why do dogs have to go outside for bathroom duties?  A. Humans put the toilet paper in places we can’t reach when sitting on the john.

Q. Why do dogs fetch balls or sticks when a human throws them.  A. Humans are too stupid to give treats to their dogs unless prompted.

Q. Why do dogs hate cats?  A. We don’t, but we have to pretend we do so humans think we’re normal … don’t humans all hate some group? Republicans? Democrats? I could go on forever.

Q. Why do dogs chase their tails? A. We only do this when we are bored and need exercise. This can be the result of watching too much television. It is also caused by trying to emulate Congress.

Notice that canines have straight-forward, logical answers to our “why” questions. Dogs admire logic. I’m sure a canine poll would disclose that Mr. Spock would be among our favorite media characters.

Dogs tend to admire strong minded, low key people who control their emotions. That’s why we bite so many TV commentators and politicians.

I think its interesting to consider some of the common “why” questions that humans struggle with.

Q.  Why did the chicken cross the road?  A.  Human’s actually debate this. My question is … Why is there any doubt? The damned chicken wants to get to the other side. So simple, yet humans wrestle with an answer. Who knew ………..

Q.  Why do humans cheat on their spouses?  A. They wear clothes. No one knows what they’re getting until its too late!  (Note: We dogs have a clear vision of what the “possibilities” are!)

Q.  Why do politicians lie?  A. Humans struggle with this and try to come up with all manner of explanations that have to do with ideology, character, etc. Come on humans! Politicians lie for 5 reasons: 1) They believe voters are stupid. (in some cases this is correct) 2) The shape of their tongue (forked) makes telling the truth impossible 3) Most have no idea what the truth is 4) They want to get elected and don’t care about honesty. 5) They will get their own health care plan and don’t have Obama care if elected.

Q. Why do humans buy fancier cars and bigger homes than they can afford?  A. They need the space to contain and carry around their egos.

Q. Why do dogs develop conditioned responses while humans continue to repeat the same errors? A. Pavlov never had to try to teach a human.

Thinking is painful and difficult for homo sapiens. They do other things better. As an English poet once wrote, in part … “Ale man, ales the thing to drink … For all of you it hurts to think.”

#  #  #  #  #

 

 

My goodness, is there really a cat-house in River City?

This is not the type “cat house” my friends were speaking about.

It has been sometime since I’ve attended a meeting of the Canine Chowder & Marching Society. I have to admit I miss the gossip, but lately it seems every get-together conflicts with my schedule.

Last meeting was held the same day Mrs. G went to the bank. Couldn’t miss that. The lady in the drive-through window is a real softy. She always gives me triple treats and if I look disappointed she doubles them up. Time before I had a case of the “Shags” … you know, a dog’s condition when his human looses the defurminator. I couldn’t stand thinking of all the comments that would be made about my coat. You know, the neighborhood dogs can be so catty! There was a reason I missed the meeting prior to the one before the last meeting I missed that wasn’t the last meeting. Or something like that. I’ve missed so many recently I can’t keep up.

My friend Lucy, the cocker spaniel, asked me to go. There was a motion to adopt a no peeing on the rose bushes rule that the lady Marching Society members backed and the male contingent opposes. You’d think the boys wouldn’t mind that little restriction on their lift and sprinkle, but no … Honestly, they are screaming like we were asking for universal castration. Male ego … Ugh! I decided to support my gender so I went.

We hadn’t gotten a place to sit when Fifi the poodle raced up to us and said breathlessly, “Did you know there’s a cat house on Pine Island?” Gossip! Wonderful, gossip!

I tried to act relatively uninterested and naive. “A cat house? I live in a cat house, or at least a house with a cat in it. What’s unusual about that?”

“Not that type cat house. The other type of cat house.” Fifi looked exasperated. Lucy looked consumed.

Lucy said, “Oh how exciting! What can you tell us about it!”

“Exciting?” I said. I ignored Fifi’s statement about another type cat. “What’s exciting about having cats in your house. I have one. Fifi you have a Siamese and Lucy your human has three. What’s the big deal?” Sometimes I get great pleasure from being obtuse. Maybe its a gal thing.

Fifi leaned close and whispered, “They’re two legged cats.”

I tried to look dumb and remain silent. Both are difficult for me.

Fifi forgot to whisper. “They’re whores!” Everybody at the meeting glanced our way. Fifi lowered her voice. “I saw four of them sitting at a table playing cards and talking about rubbers.”

“Are you sure about that?” Lucy asked.

Fifi was emphatic, “YES!”

I asked, “How do you know? Were they wearing fishnet stockings, short shorts, high heels, and driving Mercedes convertibles.”

“NO! They all were wearing tee shirts that said, I’m a proud Matlacha Hooker.

Lucy and I laughed. I said, “Fifi, you’ve had a brain fart. The Matlacha Hookers are a lady’s civic club.”

Some dogs shouldn’t be taught to read.

*  *  *

My human asked me to include some of his propaganda in my post. He feeds me so I figured I’d better.

 

Welcome to the Menagerie

Hot author behind hot books in Matlacha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’d love to have all of you that can, visit me at the Matlacha Menagerie this Saturday from 10:30 to 3:00. This unique boutique gift and book shop is located at 4604 Pine Island Road. Matlacha is a quaint village located west of Cape Coral. The 40’s buildings and Bohemian decor are reminiscent of the “old Florida Keys.” Loaded with art galleries, unique gift shops, and sea food places, Matlacha is on the way to Florida’s Mango capital, Pine Island. Come chat for a while.

 

Here I’m doing my historical presentation, “The Loyal 14th Colony, Florida in the Revolutionary War”

Excuse me, I have to brag a little. Sandman Book Co. owner Heidi told me she put a RSVP for 30 seats at this presentation and 20 were filled in the 1st hour.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had a great crowd at the Sandman Book Co. last Saturday. The attendees were enthusiastic and really into history. The type of people who attend these presentations prove my contention that READERS ARE THINKERS.

 

#  #  #  #  #

I

July & the temperature’s sweltering. Florida’s less fun in the summer.

Florida in July & August. It’s too hot to move.

“Summertime,” the song from Gershwin’s classic, Porgy and Bess, tells us the living is easy this time of year. Well, the fish may be jumping here in Florida, but it’s because the water is so hot they are afraid they might get boiled if they stay in it too long. And the humidity … Yuk! My human just smiles when I complain. He’s lived here most of his long life and is reconciled to be miserable three months of the year. If my grumbles get loud, he laughs and says, “Sandy, just keep counting the days. You only have 75 more until October and relief.” Not funny!

I get even when he takes me for a walk. Even if he’s just left the shower, his clothes are drenched with perspiration by the time he reaches the driveway. Plus, I get a little more revenge. Early in the mornings when we go out, the clouds of sand-flies and mosquitoes are active and hungry. My Golden coat protects me. Not he … he, he, ho, ho, ha, ha.

Even the owls are staying underground!

The wildlife is smart. They stay in the shade and take it easy during the middle of the day. Those that can, conduct their “business” at night; the rest get things done mornings and evenings. Even gators and snakes look for a cool hole to hide in.

I envied Margret the Manatee … until she told me the water is 89!

Everyone in our house stays inside and slows down this time of year. Oreo, my feline brother, slows to stop. He’s shown below after he ate lunch. Oreo is always demanding, but this time of year he insists that his fish fillets be cut into very small pieces so he doesn’t have to expend energy wagging his jaws. He told me he requested his litter box be mounted on an I-Roomba and be programmed to follow him around so he didn’t have far to go … to go, but the Geezer turned him down.

Oreo prostrate from his toughest activity of the day … eating.

The Geezer may give me a hard time about complaining, but I’ve noticed he’s not scheduling any out-door book events right now. An example. This Saturday he will be doing one of his historical presentations, “The Loyal 14th Colony, Florida in the Revolutionary War.” I notice it is going to be held in the spacious, air conditioned environs of the Sandman Book Co. Sandman Book Co. is located at 16480 Burnt Store Rd., in Turtle Crossing Plaza, near Punta Gorda, Florida. He’ll be speaking from 11:00 AM until noon. If you live near by (or not) stop and see him. You’ll be cool!

#  #  #  #  #

 

Happy 4th! … Bring the Cannoli and leave the Firecrackers!

I’m watching from the car as Mrs. G prepares for her ride in the 4th-of-July parade.

It was fun! I got to watch one of my humans participate in our community’s celebration of the birth of our nation. Mrs. G was in Pine Island’s Parade. With the sky-roof open the windows down and the AC running, I felt like an executive in a luxury box at a big-league stadium.

Mrs. G was a pirate. Aaarrggghhh! The boat-float’s slogan was “Give me freedom – or walk the plank.” It works …

The Geezer snapped these pictures before and during the parade. He tries, but he’d be better off writing about what he saw. He uses a camera as well as our cat Oreo swims … not very good. The only thing I didn’t like was the clown (literally) tossing firecrackers closer to me than I liked. The Geezer saw that ended quickly.

“Standing by the corner watching all the floats go by” The Geezer told me to write that. Mrs.G is in part of the boat he didn’t cut off.

It was fun! Now, I’m looking forward to one of those ribeyes I saw in the grocery bags. Grilling Beans, potato salad, and ice cream, YUM! Bring the Cannoli and leave the firecrackers. Happy 4th to you all!

 

#  #  #  #  #

 

 

When a dog brags about something, is it called crowing or barking?

The Geezer deep in thought … or the best he’s capable of

I have to crow about this one! He’s done it again. The Geezer won another award for his writing. His short story, “There are no lights in Naples,” won the Novel Writing Festival’s contest and is their featured reading this month. If you’d like to sample his writing, visit the home page of his website (click the link … DLHavlin … on the left side of this post.) You’ll see the announcement that his short story, There are no lights in Naples, won. Click on the link (underlined and in bright yellow), it will take you to Novel Writing Festival’s home page. It’s featured at the very top … simply click on the image … Elizabeth Rose Morriss does the reading and does a great job of capturing the spirit and essence of the story.

The Geezer at the Copperfish at a previous event.

If you’d like to visit with the Geezer, he’ll be at Copperfish Books in Punta Gorda, Florida today at 6:00 PM. The street address is 103 Marion Avenue. He’ll be signing his latest novel, The Bait Man. Its a suspense/mystery set in Florida that received a great review from Kirkus. I know he’s been waiting to talk to the Charlotte County folks and others close by about this book. Come see him. The Copperfish phone number is 941-205-2560 if you have questions.

 

#  #  #  #  #

 

Vindicating vacation value …

“Where do you want to go, Geezer?” I asked.

He thought for at least two minutes, that’s a long time when you’re waiting for an answer. Finally, he spoke, “Remember Seinfeld famously said his show was about nothing? So, I want to do the Seinfeld thing … Nothing. I want to go where I can do that.”

I looked at him wondering if the steam in his boiler had escaped. “Nothing? You can do that at home.”

“No Sandy, I can’t. The phone rings, the Internet calls, my next chapter demands to be worked on if I stay here. So … I’m going where no phone will bother me, where there’s no wifi, and to a place I’m far away from my research notes and computer.”

“Is there such a place beside heaven?”

“Yes, I think I’ve found utopia.” He smiled. “We’re going to Amity.”

The view from Amity Cabin’s front porch – A beautiful 38 acre lake we had to ourselves. Except for fish that lined up to strike our lures.

 

The place DL found was off the beaten path. Let me rephrase: This wonderful piece of seclusion was off a once used game trail. Located in Mississippi near the Alabama line, the farm Amity Cabin is built on isn’t close to anything most Americans recognize as a “destination.” The rolling terrain, the beauty of the unspoiled pines, magnolia blossoms, curious deer, and mirror-like-lake, wrapped  a serenity blanket around us.

Pines in the morning mists

A full house … The Mississippi Martin Family

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’d been at Amity for three days when the old boy’s wisdom became undeniably evident. He’d found the ultimate location and way to relax. We sat on the porch, watching martins pilot their bodies over the lake, dipping, zigging, zagging, and intercepting insects that would be their babies’ lunch. “I have to tell you, Geezer, I thought you were crazy. You weren’t. This is the closest thing to a battery charger for humans I’ve ever seen.”

He nodded. “The one solace accumulating years brings is the wisdom experience imparts. I spent years going on vacations that were scheduled tighter than my work regimen prescribed. I’d race from attraction to attraction, take advantage of sight-seeing or night-life at any place I happen to stay, and squeeze in some work to salve my misguided conscience. The result … I was exhausted at its conclusion. A vacation from the vacation seemed necessary. Then, I discovered this is what I needed. When I returned from a true rest, I found my productivity and creativity returned to the 150% I strive for.”

Mrs G and I had time to read our favorite magazine, Garden & Gun – Wow – what a luxury.

The Geezer rockin’ the day away on Amity Cabin’s front porch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While our life style was definitely not an episode of “Naked and Afraid,” we were able to commune with nature. Deer visited daily … herons, owls, hawks, martins, robins, cardinals, and a multitude of other birds flitted around us … quail whistled “bob-white” from sun-up to sun-down, and a raccoon peered through the glass front door each evening, daring me to give chase. I didn’t even bark at him … not after his first appearance. It was my chance to relax, too.

 

A magnificent magnolia blossom. – The candle holders in the photo show size – each is 5″ in diameter. These flowers’ fragrance sweeten each day at Amity.

 

Most importantly, it was away from the filth Washington and the New York media dumps on us daily. There are no (vomit) politics on the farm. There are no assassination attempts at Amity. The only ABC we saw was in books we read. The FOX we watched had four legs. The Washington Post found its best purpose … to wrap garbage.

Yep, the value of our vacation was vindicated.

 

#  #  #  #  #