Thursday, June 09, 2016

Bob’s 2nd Quarter Newsletter

First a bit of business: Amazon, doing the promotional magic they’re famous for, has a bit of a deal for my books. With Twisted Perception, if you’ve purchased the e-book, you can also get the Audible version for just a $1.99. With Twisted Perception, Beneath a Buried House, and Footprints of a Dancer, if you’ve purchased the paperback, you can get the e-book for 99 cents.    

Reflective moods have come upon me lately, overcoming my thoughts on an increasing basis.
Have you ever considered that we, or at least a majority of us, might be misusing our gifts?
The content of a recent radio program caused me to think about this. The host of the show proposed, and I paraphrase, that the very thing that sets us apart from the crowd, gives us our edge, is also quite often the source of many of our problems.

A few days ago, my wife, Kathi, and I were enjoying lunch in the park as we often do. We’re fortunate enough to work for the same company and the building is close to the park. It should have been a day much like the others, but it was not. 

I pulled into a shady spot, shut off the car and rolled down the windows, but instead of fresh air we received a dose of surrealism. The first thing we noticed was the abundance of birds hopping about in the grassy areas, many more than usual, but no other people were around, no other cars took up parking spaces. A cool breeze blew through the park, causing an empty aluminum can to bump and bounce across the asphalt, the action causing the only discernable sound. For a few moments, the scenario reminded me of a Stephen King movie. 

Suddenly the silence was blasted away when a pickup truck pulled into the parking lot, its radio playing some type of weird music, a type I’d never heard before.

 I glanced at Kathi, communicating without words that perhaps we should go for a walk.
She nodded her approval and we locked up the car then crossed the lot and stepped onto the gravel path, which winds around the park. We followed the path to the large pond that dominates the west end of the park, and once there we slowed our pace to enjoy the scenery.

Canadian geese and a few ducks floated on the water, some of them paddling along, leaving small wakes behind. Turtles sunned themselves on logs that protruded from the pond. Occasionally a fish or two would swim to the surface then again disappear back into the depths. At the edge of the water, a mama and daddy duck swam with babies. 

The geese, the ducks, the turtles, and the fish all seemed to be at peace within their environment. I imagined they had no worries, held no grudges, clung to no political affiliations, or harbored any ambitions. They simply went about the business of being what they were.

That evening, while on our way home from work we saw a dogsled, being mushed alongside the road with a team of Huskies. Instead of runners, the sled had wheels. How weird is that?

Not far from the dogsled incident, an elderly lady slowly made her way along the sidewalk with a cane. She carried a sack of groceries.

The oddness of the day reached its apex when I pulled into a convenience store to get some gasoline for the car. At the pump in front of me, putting gas into a black convertible with loud music spewing from the speakers, a man, who looked as if he’d stepped off a movie set, dominated my attention. He wore black slacks and a starched, white shirt with a black tie. Cocked upon his head was a black, Indiana Jones hat, but the crowning touch was a black, leather shoulder holster complete with sidearm. He looked like a mixture of Dan Aykroyd in The Blues Brothers, Stacy Keach in Mike Hammer, and Tommy Lee Jones in Men in Black.

I’m continually reminded that this is not the world I grew up in.

God created us in his image and gave us dominion over the earth and the non-human life upon it. I don’t think we’re doing a very good job of managing either the earth or ourselves.

Perhaps we should give more thought to the animals, not so much in taking better care of them – which we should do when necessary – but in living more peaceful lives by striving to be more like them, letting go of the unnecessary, non-productive thoughts we carry around with us.

 At this point, you might be wondering: What’s happened to Bob and his whimsical newsletters?
We will both be back.

Please check out my writing by clicking the link below:
I want to thank everyone who signed up for my Reader List. We’ve already given away a nice prize. I have a lot more good stuff planned. If you haven’t signed up, I’ve placed the link below.

Twisted Perception is now out in audiobook. Please click the link below:
Please follow the link and check it out. Once you’re at the site, there’s a button you can click to hear a free sample. Charles Bice, the reader we chose, did an excellent job of portraying the characters as he tells the story. I believe you can even get the audiobook of Twisted Perception for free, if you join And who wouldn’t want to do that?

 I want to thank everyone who has signed up for my newsletter. I hope you enjoy reading it. If you know of someone who might enjoy it, too, please email it to them.

I also give programs for writing groups, reading groups, or any group that’s interested. If you belong to a club, which needs program speakers, keep me in mind.

You have permission to reprint, forward, or use the contents of this newsletter in your newsletter or e-zine. The only requirement is the inclusion of the following footer:
This article was written by Bob Avey, author of, Twisted Perception, Beneath a Buried House, and Footprints of a Dancer.