Monthly Archives: September 2015

Missed the blood moon eclipse— and consideration of cats and dogs Sept. 27/15



This isn’t it. It is a shot of the moon I got about three months ago. But it’s pretty red! It was cloudy last night and we missed it. We — I mean I was riding with friends Mark and Nancy and June, and afterwards we had wine and other great stuff at June and Wayne’s place, God what a sybaritic life I lead. Good wine good friends and stories about Wayne’s family which I could listen to forever. We rode on June and Wayne’s neighbor’s place, also named Chism but I think with a U — Chisum. Strange to think that name and all spellings of the name come from the English place-name ‘Cheeseholm’. ‘The valley where they make cheeses’.

Waiting anxiously for rain and cold weather.

October 8th I fly to Denver for a convention of the Mountain and Plains Independent Bookstores people — to plug ‘News Of The World’. Evelyn O’Hara flying with me, to visit her daughter near Denver. So good to have a traveling companion.


The Grady Cat will stay in the house by himself for three days, won’t kill him. Since I lost Rita have to think about getting another dog in November sometime. For an early-warning system if nothing else. Grady has ruled his little kingdom here all by himself now for months, don’t now how he’ll take it.





Great movie! Highly recommended Sept 24/15



Friend April Baxter treated me and June Chism to a trip to San Antonio to see this movie. It’s a documentary, of four guys who traveled 3,000 miles on horseback from the border of Mexico/Arizona to the Canadian border in 2013.  It is beyond compare. The cameraman shot 500 hours of film and produced this. So incredibly good. It is the first movie I have seen in at least three years or more.

The four are recent graduates of Texas A&M, all about 21-23 years old, full of strength, hope ideals, energy, resilience. Lots of accidents and horrifying moments caught on film, as when a horse rolls backwards down a steep rocky slope, guys are bucked off (these are recently gentled mustangs) and other spoilers which I will not repeat in order to save the great moments for you. And some of the moments are heartbreaking.

At one point they have to go through a tunnel cut through a mountain, the cameraman is directly behind one of the boys leading a packhorse through, the packhorse suddenly balks, (No tunnel shit for me!) the horse starts to run backward right into the lens, the camera turns upside down and all goes black for a moment. Well-cut, brave cameraman.

The four speak directly to the camera at various points. The cutting is not sentimental, or overly gorgeous. The cameraman and the editor have, let us say, an unsentimental eye but on the other hand the country they pass through, from the Arizona desert to Glacier National Park on the Canadian border it would take a heart of stone not to open the heart of the eye to it. The rapid cutting when they reach a town and get happily and publicly drunk, get a shave, a bath — this is a cliché that could have been heavy and dragging but it was cut very very fast, and was quite funny.

Inside the daily grind and the accidents and the joking is a subtle theme of conflict and betrayal. You will have to see it for yourself. But one of the guys pulls a dirty little backstab at the very end. And I thought, ‘you bastard’. He rode all that way just to get in his petty revenge against the leader. But this only made it a true drama.

It is everything I said in a earlier post about the universal and ancient theme of ‘the band of brothers’. The guys are all photogenic (but who is not when one is young and fit?) and they grow to know and love every horse they have and finally make it. So go see it.






Continuing with my research and readings in Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Dystopias/Post-Apocalypse works. Just discovered Wright and he is stunning. Love his work. This is the first one I read and am continuing with others. For evocations of terrors and humanity’s struggles to live on in a world without sun or oxygen, this is one of the best. Some millions of years in the future, the sun has either gone out or Earth has whizzed off into a forgotten corner of the galaxy and the remains of the human race live in this great pyramidal city. Our Heroine, a member of the Redoubt’s ruling class and the princess of a great family, goes out into the dark nightlands to recover her brother’s body.

Things live out there.

“The encampment and stronghold of Usire, I knew from my books, and from my memory-dreams, lay to the north by north-west beyond the shoulders and back of the Northwest Watching Thing. there are other Watchers more dreadful but none is more alert, for the ground to the north-west is wide and flat in prospect, and is lit by the Vale of Red Fire, and there is neither a crown nor an eye-beam more wide dome of light to interfere with the view the monster commands.”

Some of these creatures have not moved in thousands of years. But they know you’re there.

I have been doing a lot of research also on the Internet, to see what’s happening in the SciFi/Fantasy publishing world. Blogs, File 770, Making Light, the Tor blog, Vox Populi, Brad Torgerson’s blog, Wright’s blog, many others. Turmoil!

Wright is highly recommended.





European migrant crisis Sept 3/15


I have sworn never to get into politics on this site and give readers a relief from the incessant pressure of political thought pouring in on them but this is the most insane thing I have ever seen. So this is the first, last and only comment on the contemporary scene on this site.

They are all young males. The disconnect is galactic. The same newspaper article that cries out that we must take care of these refugee families publishes pictures of thousands of young, strong men crashing Europe’s borders, with hardly a woman or a child to be seen. The men are young and strong and hardy from a life of poverty, they can use weapons, my guess is they have most of them been trained in the use of weapons, they are from a culture that values aggression in males — a warrior culture — and they make most European males look like Frost Princesses.

One thing is for sure, the Euro-elite will not have to live with millions of migrants crowding them next door. The Euro-bureaucrats, the nomenklatura, will continue to live in the same exclusive neighborhoods of Brussels and London and Paris, eat in the same exclusive restaurants, and take their children to the same spotless parks for walks in the manicured landscapes as before.

That’s why they are being so generous in allowing in tens of thousands of what is being called ‘fighting-age males’. It won’t be on their dime, in their time, in their suburbs or next door. Let the common people deal with it.

They are going to regret this.


Light Years will be out in four days!


This is by my friend Caroline Woodward, with photos from her husband Jeff George. It’s a journal of their years on the Lennard Island Light, also tales of babysitting other light stations while other lightkeepers went off on vacation; so there are many real adventures here on light stations all over the coasts of Vancouver Island.


In a post on the 5th, when it’s out, I will provide a link to Amazon. So proud of you, Woody!