The Six Dollar Man

Yes. I know it’s disgusting … but also interesting, don’t you think? This is the exterior view where a piece of titanium surgical mesh is poking through the skin over the bridge of my nose. It’s not as painful as it looks … except when it is.

Mo’ Betta Surgery

Looks like I’m headed back to the University of Miami Hospital to get some of the bone graft work they did on my forehead back in 2012 redone. The titanium surgical mesh has come adrift, probably due to some osteoradionecrosis, and needs to be removed and possibly replaced.

Osteoradionecrosis is a gradual death of bone tissue caused by radiation treatments. Doesn’t always happen. Doesn’t usually happen this late in the game, but my case has been an unusual one from the beginning. I am lucky to still be walking around and making trouble for people, so I try not to grouse too much.

In any event the surgeons are going to have to peel off my face once again to get at the affected areas. Fortunately they won’t be chiseling away any cancer this time around, but it’s still not shaping up to be a lot of fun for yours truly. Surgery will probably be in January. I now have appointments in November to get another opinion, discuss options, and schedule the procedure. Continue reading

Five Reasons to Love Louise Linton

The New Poster Girl for White Privilege

Louise Linton DeplanesHoly Cow! Steve Mnuchin’s new Mrs. hashtags her entire wardrobe as she gets off an Air Force plane. Then, when the social media universe takes exception, she unloads in a snarky ‘bless-her-heart-but-ain’t-she-cute’ rant against a young mother of three for not being privileged enough to pay more in taxes than most people make in a year. She is so deliciously out of touch with reality that I am making her my new fantasy girlfriend. (Apologies to Kelly Rippa. It was bound to happen sometime, Sweetie.) Continue reading

Six Steps to Perfect Humility – No Effort Required

Two Approaches to Humility

Old Rusty Car The Hard One

Real humility is a virtuous ideal embraced by most religions and theologies. There are spiritual exercises and practices designed to engender humility in the individual seeking enlightenment and improvement. Humility is a virtue, a first step, a fundamental principle. Humility is the foundation for charity, piety, discernment, justice, and even faith. Continue reading

Mr. Dancin’ Man

New Flash Fiction

A new bit of flash fiction in dialect. Enjoy!

antique jukeboxMr. Dancin’ Man

by Jonah Gibson

Vassar was in one a them moods where you don’t give him no shit, no matter what he wants to do, on account of he is gonna do it anyways. So what he does is, he takes all my change offa the bar while I’m sittin there watchin an plugs it in the juke they got over in the corner. He presses buttons an that juke starts to playin every weepy, pedal-steel country song there is—least the ones give country a bad name—an the next thing I know he’s got some ole gal out on the dance floor, pushin her around in a passable two step while he grabs himself a big ole handful of ass. Continue reading

When Lambs Lie Down with Lions

 

Bobcat wearing a fedora and smoking a cigarette

Wildlife: Cool? For sure. Friendly? Not necessarily.

Nature Can Be Cruel

Periodically I run into people who claim to be spiritual rather than religious. They believe in a creator, but they do not believe that creator is to be found in any organized church. In fact most of them seem to believe that any form of organized religion is the antithesis of spirituality, and that adherence to the tenets and precepts of a particular faith is one of the surest ways to remove oneself from god’s presence…or to remove god from one’s own, whichever the case might be.

Although I understand where these people are coming from, and what they mean by that, I must confess that I almost always think that they are just making excuses for their inability to embrace their own essence as beings created by the creator they say they believe in.

Usually these irreligionists point to nature as the place where they feel most at peace and most in awe of the god of their understanding. They are not comfortable in church where too many rules and too much ritual and way too many people get in the way of encountering the divine. They see these things as impediments to experiencing the true creative genius of the god they are able to accept. Continue reading

Billions and Billions

Can Finance Ever Be Truly Fascinating?

I’ve been binge-watching Showtime’s in house series, Billions. with Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis. For my money it’s the best thing on TV. Of course I’m an accounting and finance geek, so there is probably a lot of stuff in it that appeals to me but leaves people who are easily bored with such matters cold.

I know they’re out there. Econophobics. The kind of people who get a headache when conversation turns to interest rate swaps or in-substance defeasance of advance refunding bond issues. In fact, I’m pretty sure our president is one, but he has people for that stuff. (Not that he would ever listen to them.) I can’t say it’s their fault. I mean, really, that’s pretty arcane territory for anyone but a financial savant. Continue reading

Death and the Law of Attraction

Deathbed Regrets?

 

I wonder if my mother blames herself for using the last seconds of her life to shoot a skunk-eye at a hapless volunteer because he interrupted us. I also wonder if she blames me for attracting the interruption.

I’ve been interrupted so many times in my life that I’ve begun to believe that it must somehow be my fault. I don’t know if Mom shared my view on this, but she never in her life hesitated to take me to task for whatever she thought I had done wrong. It was not in her nature to allow flawed behavior to go unmentioned or uncorrected. Continue reading

Depth of Character

When Characters Write Themselves

If you’ve read any of my fiction, you know I have a soft spot for quirky characters–the kind we used to call half a bubble off plum or a couple of bricks shy of a load. These are the most fun to write and perhaps the most instructive, not that anyone is reading my stuff to achieve enlightenment.

In Speedster I have two favorites, Dwayne and T-Ball, a couple of neon-haired slackers who spend their days complaining about the fundamental unfairness of their lives and trying at the same time to achieve fairly lofty goals without putting in any effort. Much like real life, the smarter one, T-Ball, is continually over-ridden by the loud one, Dwayne, whose loutish ignorance is exceeded only by his abiding self-confidence. I imagine that T-Ball’s daily trials are very similar to those of the current crop of staffers and hanger’s on in the White House. I can sympathize. Continue reading

Five Signs You’re Probably Wrong

fireworks displayPost Truth Society

We live in a post truth America. Virtually all the information we get these days is suspect in some way. This blog post is no exception. I write fiction after all, so if I ever get to the truth of something, it is usually through the side door and often by accident. At least I am honest in this regard. You won’t get that accommodation from anyone else, certainly not from your president or your legislators. Continue reading