Addendum to My Ex Post Facto Piece, and an Embarrassed Apology to D.A Timothy Cruz

This piece is going to be short and sweet. In my longest article to date on AC, "Extortion, Ex Post Facto..." et cetera, I described a disgustingly corrupt incident - an example of police incompetence and defying of the United States Constitution. Read the piece for more details.

Unfortunately, I got one of the details pretty damned wrong. I implicated D.A. Timothy Cruz as the guy who bullied me at what I have recently learned was an actual arraignment session. I figured, he's trying to get me to say I'm guilty and just take his offer of a humiliating little slap, and I'm on the other side of the table where, if I could have afforded it, I'd have had a defense attorney with me.

Thus, I assumed, that the guy on the *OTHER* side of the table must be the prosecuting attorney - or D.A. . Oh, the Plymouth County District Attorney *IS* one Mr. Timothy Cruz, but D.A. Cruz was NOT the guy on the other side of that table, who behaved criminally and callously and yes, very much like a mobster. He treated me like shit.

I got mad. So I decided I'd get justice with the "pen" if I couldn't get it through the due process I now know is not as available to American citizens as I thought.

That scumbag took advantage of a scared and neurologically disabled guy with decent word skills, but AWFUL pragmatic, social and "common sense" capabilities. As such, justice was kicked in the nuts.

And then I kicked Mr. Cruz in the nuts, figuratively. And that was completely unfair. This is not an act of self-preservation, as I now know that Mr. Cruz is and will be in no way directly linked to my continuing conflict with Massasoit or the personnel at Brockton District Court, where this despicable miscarriage of and arrogant winking at justice continues.

I am not about to answer an injustice with an injustice. Well - not when I know better.

I now know better, and it is my moral obligation, and for my own conscience's self-preservation and that of my eternal soul (if indeed there is anything after the last blackness), to apologize publically and sincerely to Mr. Cruz in the same venue I maligned him. After seeing a page 2 picture in the Patriot Ledger of D.A. Cruz with a bundle of microphones in his face (about a kidnapping case in Hanover), I got up, vomitted, washed my face, and got on here. THAT is NOT the guy who mistreated me. CRUZ did not do the things I said he did.

There is much, OH SO much more to say about this situation - and I am about to embark on yet another strategy, with a "little" more teeth, in my efforts to restore my rightful justice. But - I cannot let myself conclude this piece with an "I'm sorry, buuuuttt......". So, to O'Sullivan, Holland, and that grunt prosecutor who extorted me and enjoyed it, fair warning: I'm still coming.

And to Mr. Cruz: I am sorry.

The Best of Project Savior or “ganymede creationism”

It’s been 6 months, 100 Posts, $7.50 in adsense revenue, and $2.50 in revenue from referrals to writings on Associated Content. I thought it would be a good time to look over this site and reflect on what articles I liked the most.

First I tried to see what was most popular on this site. I don’t have any advanced tools for tracking visitors just adsense reports saying I get 14 to 40 visits a day. So I looked over at Alexa to see what they said about my site. Most of the results weren’t surprising I’m ranked 3,191,381th as far as traffic. I have revenue under $10 million a year, I’m right in the middle as far as load time, ect. But the thing that caught my attention was the keywords people use to find my site. Most people who come to this site through search engines do it when searching for “Ganymede Creationism”.

A quick google search of “Ganymede Creationism” on its own doesn’t pull up Project Savior (it probably will after this article) in the first 15 pages so the people who found me through that must be very determined.

Adding Project Savior to the search for “Ganymede Creationism” pulls up 55 entries, I didn’t think I talked about either subject that much but the bots seem to think so. So I will look at my articles that deal with those subjects.

Ganymede or Space in general.

I first talked about Ganymede in my Space Tourism Series saying it would be a great place to go Skiing or Scuba diving.
I started the Space Tourism Series after looking around to see what blogs were popular. Tourism blogs are very popular but the people who write them do seem to leave their house more than I do. (I hate having to remember to get dressed and people outside complain when I forget.) So I could either write about a great getaway to my kitchen or write about places that only a couple of people, if any, have been to.

I didn’t want my kitchen to become a great tourist hot-spot (at least not until I refinish the hardwood floors) so I wrote about how different objects in the solar system would make great tourism spots.

The entire series is here:

Kuiper Belt





The Moon

I’ve been toying with the idea of writing a children’s book about a 10-year-old girl and her cat going to all these places. I think kids would love to imagine themselves on other worlds and at the same time it would teach them about the solar system in a fun way.

As far as other Space Related posts it’s easy to see that I’m a Space Geek. I grew up during the Space Race and was promised that I would have a chance to go to the Moon if I worked hard enough. I my teen years it was obvious that wasn’t true so I stopped trying.

I hope I can do my small part in building enthusiasm to get people to demand we have a real Space Program again.

Here are my Space Articles:


As far as the Creationism part that has drawn people to my site, I’ve talked about Creationism a couple of times:


Now some people might wonder, what’s the harm in a few nutters pushing an easily discredited idea like Creationism. Basically they are pushing a way to lead the nation into tyranny.

Evolution is an applied science. That means people need to use it to get results. If you can brainwash kids into thinking results can’t be predicted by rules that govern what happens after an action is taken, not only science, but laws and truth become meaningless.

In my book “Project Spare-Rib” the bad guy was going to use Bush’s “War on Science” as a way to set up his authoritarian rule of the US, here is an excerpt from his evil speech:

“Throughout the nation Science will start to be viewed as a cult religion, Universities will be viewed as Elitist Clubs, Teachers will be viewed as union pawns who’s only purpose is to spread liberal heresy. Truth will be a matter of perspective as logic and reasoning become viewed as tools of the Evil Elitists.

“Teaching of the scientific method, evolution, and logical fallacies and even math, except for in select technical schools, will all be banned.

“With that tide of public opinion on our backs, knowledge will become the enemy and logic a menace, we will no longer have to worry about ruling a nation under laws as Knowledge, logic and truth become suspect, then so to are the laws. This nation will be ruled as I see fit, as the Constitution and all Laws will be just quaint relics from a different time that only Activist Judges will care about.

“Everything you and your friends believe in, the endless pursuit of knowledge, the joys of unraveling the secrets of the Universe, the very concept of a Universal Truth will all be outlawed under the New World Order. There will be one, and only one, truth and that is Might makes Right.”

So while it is easy to laugh at the Creationists and their kind as just people who are Arrogant in their Ignorance crying about what they see as a liberal bias of reality, you can never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

Moving on from creationism into other parts of Politics, I have commented on current political affairs often, I try only to comment on politics when I can either: 1) make a valuable observation that I haven’t seen someone else make. This is tough because two of the blogs I follow are Wisco’s Griper Blade and Down With Tyranny both of these offer excellent political commentary that I can rarely compete with. 2) If something strikes me as extremely funny.

My favorite in the funny politics category was when I had Sean Penn explain the financial meltdown:

In case you missed the reference, Sean Penn gave a speech denouncing Bush’s invasion of Iraq in it he used the term “Soiled and Blood Soaked Underwear” to describe Bush’s policy three times. The phrase became so famous that Stephen Colbert had a Meta-Free-phor-all with him. Watch it,it is fantastic.

I couldn’t resist applying the metaphor to the financial meltdown.

Also in politics I love pointing to the fact that you don’t have to be crazy to be a Republican politician, but if you happen to be nuttier than a fruitcake it isn’t a detriment. That’s why I like writing about Sen. Bunning of the Great State of Kentucky.

Senator Bunning: Kentucky's other crazy Senator

Obama's a homosexual Darwinist From Outer Space

You have to love that someone who believes “Little Green Doctors” are out to get him is allowed to have a seat in the Senate.

On a more personal note I did the “Getting into Hot Water” Series.

This series had a dual purpose, first as I explained in the post my hot water heater exploded and I don’t have the money to replace it so as a DYI project, I built my own Solar Hot Water heater.

Second, most of America spends the Summer Months heating at least 30 gallons of hot water when at least 320 btu’s per square foot of energy is beating down on their roofs and they then have to use air conditioners to remove that heat.

If I can build a cheap solar water heater out of scrap then it isn’t a huge leap to think that during the summer months May-Sept the US could cut the amount of energy used to heat hot water by 90% if we set our minds to it.

This act alone would drop our energy consumption by at least 10% that’s 2.5% of the world’s energy usage or the same as discovering 2 Saudi Arabia’s.

Any energy policy has to take Solar Powered hot water into consideration, it is the easiest way to save energy and I have shown it can be done without harming kittens.

Writing on Writing

I am a semi-professional writer now, magazines actually pay for my stories. So of course, I have to shamelessly promote that fact.

I’ve written about my fiction writing here:

Double Edge Publishing

Long Term Thinking

Cursed Ship

I’ve been advised that as a semi-professional writer, I should start a semi-professional website to promote that. It is in the works and I will link to it when it is online.

A tip of the hat to the now deceased Thisisby.us.

When the writing site Thisisby.us was up and running, I published 50 articles over there. I still miss it, it meant writing to a crowd and getting critiques. I believe it honed my writing skills, which had gotten a little rusty.

When I started this site up I moved some of my best articles from there over to here.

Superhero Chicks I Would Never Date

6 Things Smokers and Non-Smokers can Agree on

How Much Head Should a Girl Give in a Day

That’s what he said. (Translating Guy-Speak for Chicks)

Dear Hollywood Executive

A Letter to K-Mart

I’m sure there are more but those are the ones that generated the most votes over there.

This post has gotten a little long so I’d like to wrap it up by thanking anyone who has taken the time to read my 5 pages of rambling about the last six months.

I’d especially like to thank all the people that have visited my little site over the past 6 months and read some of my 100 posts. I really can’t express how happy it makes me when I pull up adsense in the morning to see 40 people have stopped by to read my writing.

Hopefully, over the next 6 months I’ll post another 100 or so articles and I can do another best of/ New Year/ Anniversary Post.

And for those of you who came here searching for Ganymede Creationism, leave me a line and let me know why you waded through at least 15 pages of google search to get here and why you were looking for “Ganymede Creationism” in the first place. If I knew what it was, I’d probably write a post about it.



back then, back when,
we measured men
by the cut of their jib,
back when a man was
only as much as he
could give,
back when living
meant the will to live,
that's when we knew
that the strength of a man,
was not just in his arms,
not the sum total of his
manly charms,
but in the strength of his
resolve, and all the many
puzzles that he could sit
and examine, and
solve, and so that is why
we often want to go back
to the good ol' days,
when there was little in the
haze, and when we were
absolutely convinced that
what lay ahead was
better days.

June 29, 2009, for Grampa.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


the day lilies extend themselves
skyward, reaching,
hoping, believing,
a slender troop of mendicants,
their orange faces
upturned, burned
to the kiss from above,
the promise of fealty,
the whisper of love;
and their graceful, prayerful stance
makes me think of you,
and what a lucky fool I am.

June 29, 2009, for the Wifey.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

Historical Tweets Part IV

Of course these stocks are real

Historical Tweets Part III

Of course these stocks are real.


sailing free

if I am such a genius,
why am I not out there
on that sailboat,
feeling the wind take me,
feeling like I am on the verge
of being free;
why am I sitting at this
grey picnic table,
noticing the verdant contrast
of the overcast sky
and the rolling green grass
as it slopes toward the sea,
dragging my eyes to
the ever-widening circles
the gulls make in search
of breakfast,
as the man runs with
bandaged knees, and the kite
approaches Heaven?

June 28, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

smoky desire

Henry Louis Gabbedeaux
changes the left front tire
on his aging Pontiac,
in the park on an overcast
Sunday morning, while
his wife, Gloria, reads
steamy romance novels,
one after the other,
as their two children play
on the jetty,
trying to catch gulls;
she is not the looker
that she once was at the
county fair, but he is no
longer the star running back
either; he is looking at her
with love, and she is
looking at him with
smoky desire.

June 28, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

nothing else

I try to tell you things,
and you try to listen,
as you worry about the gaps
in our conversation,
worry about what we're missin',
and I remind you,
yet again,
that the music is really
the spaces between the notes,
and you get all misty on me,
and we wind up drinkin' too much wine,
and we spend the whole mornin'
just laughin'
and kissin'
and I realize
with my own eyes
that I need nothing else.

June 28, 2009, for the Wifey.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

tears #2

the sound of a billion raindrops
falling in this thunderstorm tonight
is unsettling,
but does not come close
to the number of tears
that she has cried
in my ears;
they cannot measure
her pain:
I cannot describe it.

it is better now,
but it is the souvenir
that she will never lose:
a scar, reminding.

as the rain, and her tears,
I wish for peace.

June 26, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


just sitting there today,
taking a break after
mowing for nearly two hours,
I noticed the mama and papa wrens,
darting back and forth,
between the birdhouse
and the trees, and the grass,
getting food
for their babies,
and it reminded me
of all the years
that your mom and I
have done pretty much
the same thing;
and I just wanted
to take a moment
to express my joy
at how well all three of you
are chirping
these days and
how I would give you
my last bite.

June 25, 2009, for the three.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


the ravings of a lunatic

thought that I might jot
down all the thoughts
that I've thought,
put a lid on all that
I have learned,
as a result of being taught
the hard way, time after time
after time

but then realized that all
of that is meaningless,
worthless, bent, buckled,
burned, destroyed,
left lying in an alley
rolling around with empty
beer cans, pizza boxes
and used Trojans

not much point to any point,
since I am no less worthless
than you are, or the next person,
and writing it down does not
make it any less so

poets look at the sunrise
and see promise
I look at it and see nothing but
regret, remorse and futile discourse
where the puppies all bite,
the kittens bleed,
nothing is adorable,
and silence is all a soul needs

so in lieu of wasting more of your
time, and to avoid you sending me
a bill for it, I'm going to stop now,
and go mow the grass

and you thought I had nothing to say:

June 27, 2009.
Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved. As if anyone would want to steal this.


my arms

they are just my arms,
but they are strong --
they can
push the world away from you,
when you need them to --

they are just my arms,
but they are strong --
they can
hold you and comfort you,
when all you need is a hug --

they are just my arms,
but they are strong --
they can
protect you, and keep you,
safe from any harm.

June 25, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

Some thoughts from People that don’t think, but are against Healthcare Choice.

Karl Rove:
“The first is it's unnecessary. Advocates say a government-run insurance program is needed to provide competition for private health insurance. But 1,300 companies sell health insurance plans.”

There may be 1,300 companies, but the simple truth is if your employer doesn’t offer health insurance, you can’t get a real plan. I’ve tried as a self-employed person to get Health Insurance and went to several legitimate companies filled out the forms and never heard back from them.

Looking at the other Insurance Companies, I did a simple test I called around to see if doctors, dentists and optometrists took their Insurance. Turned out my only options were Insurance companies that offered policies that no one in the healthcare industry would take.

That is not competition when your choice is only companies that are offering coverage that is worthless.

“Second, a public option will undercut private insurers and pass the tab to taxpayers and health providers just as it does in existing government-run programs.”

We currently pay 6 times per capita what other industrialized countries pay for healthcare and are near the bottom of list as far as effectiveness. So what Karl is saying here is there is no way private industry can compete with the Federal Government especially if the Government has to take all the sick people that the Private Insurance Companies refuse to take. Because obviously there is no room to save money by being more efficient, like only spending 5 times per capita what other nations spend.

Oh, and my heart just goes out to all those private insurance companies that refuse to cover me.

“Third, government-run health insurance would crater the private insurance market, forcing most Americans onto the government plan.”

Yes, The Americans who are self-employed that the private insurance companies won’t cover, the Americans who work at small companies where one employee with an expensive illness makes insurance too expensive for the rest of the workers, The 1.5 million Americans a year who lose their homes because their insurance companies won’t cover their medical bills, the 20,000 people a year that die because their insurance companies deny them life saving treatments.

Yes, those people will be forced onto the government plan because Private Insurance Companies won’t cover them.

“Fourth, the public option is far too expensive”

Compared to what? Compared to the fact that Factories will not open up in America because healthcare costs make it too expensive to operate here in America.

Compared to the loss to the economy that 1.5 million foreclosed homes causes when they drag down the housing market?

Compared to the number of small businesses that are being crushed as healthcare costs overtake profits.

Compared to the loss of spending capital that someone making $30,000 a year loses when they are spending $12,000 on health insurance?

What exactly is it too expensive in comparison to, Karl never does explain.

“Fifth, the public option puts government firmly in the middle of the relationship between patients and their doctors”

Just like how the Government is firmly in the middle of my relationship with my mom, because we send letters through the mail.

Look everyone has had to deal with government red tape, and everyone has had to deal with private industry red tape. The difference is when dealing with the government the person at the bottom will try and help you the best they can then switch you up to the next rung on the ladder. It’s irritating but when dealing with the government you can at least make some headway if you have the patience.

When dealing with a large private institution (like the bank that holds my mortgage), the person on the bottom will tell you what is on their computers screen and if it doesn’t help refuse to let you speak to anyone higher up.

The Government is required to be transparent with their decisions, they aren’t always, but at least they need to go through the motions and if enough people demand that they show the reason for their decision they will eventually.

Private Companies have no such requirement when they get in the middle of your relationship with your doctor.

Karl Rove’s arguments are just stupid, but to really delve into the mouth of idioticy I must turn to someone I can always count on to be a total idiot but at least knows the basic rules of grammar (unlike Ann Coulter), Larry Elder

“What about personal behavior? Obesity leads to serious health problems, including heart disease. One-third of Americans are obese — almost 50 percent more than the British and Australians, over 100 percent more than the Canadians and Germans, about 250 percent more than the French and 1,000 percent more than the Japanese.

“So don't blame the "broken health care system" for lower life expectancies. American health care actually helps us cope with the consequences of unhealthy lifestyles, keeping our ranking from being even lower.”

So are healthcare costs are high because Americans are denied access to preventative care (like nutritionists and real weight-loss doctors) so therefore we shouldn’t blame the system that denies preventative care to Americans for high costs.

You can’t argue with that logic, you can only shake your head and back away slowly, taking care not to make any sudden moves.

The reason that opponents of giving Americans a choice in healthcare sound like idiots is that they are totally in the wrong.

The simple fact is, if an invading Army came in and killed 20,000 Americans, forced 1.5 Million people out of their homes and stole 2.5 Trillion Dollars of America’s wealth, we would demand action. Any Politician who helped them would be found guilty of treason and hanged in a public square. Yet we allow the healthcare industry to do that every year.

Rodney Dangerfield and Healthcare.

Listening to the healthcare “debate” reminds me of the one scene in “Back to School” where the professor accused Rodney of cheating and the Dean responded “I don’t think you appreciate exactly how big the check he gave us was.”

You can easily imagine that same argument floating around the halls of the Senate.

“80% of Americans want a public choice in their healthcare.” The Progressive Senator says.

“True, but I don’t think you realize exactly how much money the Medical Industry contributes to my campaign.” The Conservative Responds.

“20,000 People are die each year because the Insurance Companies deny them treatment.” The Progressive Senator continues.

“True, but you need to understand that the health Insurance Companies donate quite a bit to my campaign.” The Conservative tries to strengthen his argument.

“In the United States we spend roughly 6 times the amount per person as other industrialized countries, yet we rank near the bottom as far as overall health.” The Progressive Senator tells him.

“Isn’t that great, It gives them plenty of money to support my campaign.” The Conservative Senator states.

“For employers Health Insurance is the fastest growing cost, it rapidly taking overtaking profits.” The Progressive Senator hammers on.

“Well, the Insurance companies have to get money to give to my campaign from somewhere.” The Conservative Senator says condescendingly.

“One and a Half Million people were forced out of their homes last year due to foreclosure because of unaffordable medical costs, greatly contributing to the housing crisis.” The Progressive Senator tells him.

“That’s OK, we can bail out the banks that lost money because of that, after all they still have plenty of money to fund my campaign.” The Conservative Senator responds.

I could go on but it is obvious that those members of the Senate that are against giving people the choice of a public option in their healthcare have just formed a wall built out of the money given to them by the Insurance Companies and will refuse to listen to the will of the people.

There is one thing that these Conservative Senators should take in mind, during the reign of George W. Bush many Progressives became Pro-Gun for some reason. So while they help their buddies divide up the spoils of their robbery of the American Citizens and call it Democracy, they might want to remember the words of Benjamin Franklin:

Democracy is two Wolves and a Lamb voting on what to have for Dinner; Freedom is an Armed Lamb contesting the Vote.



The thing about them, the most important thing at least, is that they keep coming back, no matter how much abuse is heaped on them, no matter how many bad things happen to them. Okay, they aren't indestructible, but they are pretty hardy little warriors. And another really important thing is that they have a terrific self-defense system in place, and no matter how careful you are, they are going to fend you off if you attack, and you will be left bleeding: every time, without fail, no matter what precautions you take. It is also worth noting that they propagate profusely, and spread like a wildfire.

So if you plant them properly, you should get delicious fruit every other year from an individual plant. Plant enough of them, and you should be able to get fruit every year from half of them, while the other half of the plants die back, and send out new shoots all over the place.

I was thinking about her as I dug the plants up with my neighbor in her backyard. My neighbor does not like any kind of berry, and considers the plants a nuisance, so she offered as many as I wanted. I know that she likes them though, and I imagined her joy at being able to get fresh raspberries now that Spring has finally arrived. And I continued thinking about her as I carefully loaded each plant into the wheelbarrow, one by one, doing my level best not to get them all tangled up with each other, since the leaves of one plant are prone to get snagged by the thorns of another. She loves precision, and attention to detail, and I was being very precise, and very attentive as I worked. She would be proud of me, I thought: proud of my careful, precise work, and happy that all the plants were saved, to produce more berries.

I was still thinking of her as I arrived at the new site for the plants. I carefully removed each plant from the wheelbarrow, and laid it in its own spot on the grass, and managed to do so with only a couple of them getting tangled up with each other. In all, I discovered that I had come away with 29 plants, which would constitute a fine patch when I was done. This would make her very happy, I thought, as I turned on my MP4 player, and some early Pink Floyd began to fill my ears.

I knew that I wanted a proper patch, not just sticking the plants into the ground, willy-nilly, and that I would have to remove the grass completely, and then till the soil down at least four or five inches, to maximize the success of the transplantation. They did not require that much preparation of their new home, but I was on a mission to do a perfect job of it, and I decided to do the whole thing with small hand tools rather than the long-handled tiller or spade. As Roger Waters wailed on his guitar, I reached for my hand trowel, and sat down in the grass to begin my work.

As I sunk the trowel under the first chunk of grass, it made a grainy, sliding sound against the earth that I heard even through the music coming out of my earbuds, which surprised me. And I suddenly realized that I was no longer thinking of her, the source of so much joy in my heart, the one that I love. I realized, as the trowel repeated its journey into the ground each time, that I had begun thinking about you, the one who caused me such misery, such ghastly emotions, emotions that I had done my best to bury with my old life, the one that I left behind when I came here. I remembered how you had left me to die, how you had treated me so miserably, how you took from me, how you robbed me of everything that I had, leaving me nearly penniless, leaving me brokenhearted, leaving me to scramble to save my life, to make a new life. And not surprisingly, the more I relived the Massacre of '08, the more I began to feel the rage inside me begin to boil, begin to grow, begin to consume me, begin to take over my mind and my body both.

And with each successive plunge of the trowel into the earth, I imagined that the trowel had become an assault knife, much like the one that I carry under the seat of my car, just for emergencies, with a long carbon steel blade and a serrated back edge. It is not the knife of a hunter, or a sportsman of any kind. It is the kind of knife that trained killers carry, designed to do maximum damage with a minimum of effort: the first plunge of it, up to the hilt, properly placed, does the job. I know this knife well, just like a trained sniper has only one friend: his rifle. In the same way, in a life-or-death situation, I have only one friend: my knife.

And so as I plunged the trowel into the ground hundreds of times, I relived all the horrors that you visited on me, with each thrust. In minutes, I was soaked with sweat, and my heart was pounding, but I had much more to do, and so I ignored the signs of my exertion, and continued, plunging the trowel in to the dirt. With each thrust, I felt your blood splatter flying toward me, and the knife had its way with your flesh. I heard your screams, only a couple before you were dead, and then I felt as the knife struck bone, and laughed, covered in your blood, as I heard the sound of your ribs cracking under the force of my blows. My hand became warm from your exsanguination, as the trowel continued to till the earth, deeper, deeper, deeper, loosening everything in its path, ripping everything from its moorings. I continued to move along, finding more area to work on, pushing both the trowel and myself really hard, working steadily, but with great force with each push, and I realized that I had still quite a way to go before I had a bed big enough for all of the plants. I continued to move along, finding more of your lifeless body to stab, pushing both the knife and myself really hard, working steadily, but with great force with each push, and I realized that I had still quite a way to go before I had completely pulverized every inch of you. I shuddered with excited fury as I felt the knife finally crack open your skull, and felt the sloppy wetness of your brain tissue strike me in the face. I wiped my face off, and surveyed my work: a good, proper bed for the patch, with plenty of room for all the plants to thrive, and propagate.

So that's why, deep down, I had such reservations about us meeting for coffee to talk about things, and to this day, I wish that I had just not shown up. But when I think about how lush and full those plants are going to be, with such thorough preparation of the soil, and with such excellent fertilizer, well, that's when I think about her again, and thankfully, not about you.

June 24, 2009.
Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

farewell tour

most of them
to prop up those
who snorted,
toked, or hiccupped
their way through
all their success,
to help them
once again
feel great, and
have enough money
to pay the freight
to wherever they're goin';

don't have all the stops
penciled in yet,
but I'll be sure
to come by,
one last time,
over there near you.

June 24, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


A Few Minutes with Betty, Chapter 13: "IM Me First!" (or, "Is That a Knife in Your Gut?")

"If I didn't IM you, would you ever IM me first?"

"Hi, Betty. Well of course I would. Have I been a jerk?"

"Well, not any more than usual. But I noticed a trend: if I don't IM first, I get not a peep from you. And seeing as how, without me, you would have no humor series, A Few Minutes with Betty, I would think you would be a little more proactive."

"Well, you're right, I am going to have to correct that. I'm sorry. I've been writing a lot."

"Hey, I figured if I didn't say something, you probably wouldn't realize it, Shakespeare. I'm not angry. I just feel sorry for you."

"Things with the book are really heating up."

"Angry would be: HEY BITCH! IM me first!"

"Yes, that fits the anger models I have heard about."

"Oh, well write then. The book is very important. It might mean that I will eventually receive a check from you, Mr. Humorist."

"I am picturing you with a hunting knife between your teeth."


"And your hair pulled back."

"No, the knife would be in your gut."

"Ha ha. You are a stitch, and I will need some stitches. Ha ha."

"I wasn't joking. Okay, that's all I wanted. Go write. I'm going to ply my kids with ice cream. If you are on later, I will be back."

"Okie dokie golden-tressed goddess of all that is supernaturally good pokie."

"Shut up and write. You will be that much closer to sending me money."

June 23, 2009.
Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

I am the Hollow man, which is better for drinking

I have purposefully refrained from posting on this ghost site, this shell of the TIBU bones, but now I'm just drunk enough to do so. I've broken, maybe, a woman's heart . . . again. I'm unloveable. Why do they try? It's like a strange kind of self-torture, a strange challenege.

I've discovered the ultimate aphrodisiac: honesty. No, really, hear me out. This isn't like dating strippers or hookers or undercover cops. This is me telling them that I'm not the kind of guy they should be dating. They need someone who hasn't been rotted out from the inside from lost love, who hasn't dedicated their life to debauchery, drinking, sex, smoking, farting in elevators, and other types of subtle vandalism. I do prefer subtlety over, say, gassing and lighting a cop car on fire.

What happens when a woman of my age (40) . . . (ish) . . . discovers a man like myself who is funny, creative, just mean enough to be interesting, just romantic enough to be endearing? No, she doesn't fall in love. Heh. That's for better and more worthy men than myself. She dedicates herself to "companionship". I've become a stop gap measure. I feel like I'm building missiles just to keep up with the Russians. Substitute the word "missile" with "sperm" and you get the general idea.

So I'd like to give a shot out, to all women of my age (40) . . . (ish) . . . who really want true love and a man to knock them up and marry them and give them the white picket fence. I'd like to thank you for settling for me to knock boots with while you wait for someone worthy of your amazing beauty, grace, sweetness, heart and powerful, powerful depth of soul. While all those assholes get their act together, I get to enjoy all the benefits of your years of experience, libido, and deep desire for someone slightly harrier and uglier than yourself to share a meal and / or a bed with.

And best of all . . . there are so many of you.

There's just one of me, but I promise . . . I'm working my way through you all as fast I can before we enter the nursing home.

Read the damn COMIC!!!

never too late

too late is the setting sun, too late is when all
the winning's been won, too late is when none
of anything is any fun, too late is when you
have absolutely no where left to run, too late
is never great, as you slowly asphyxiate, too
late is when all you can do is hyperventilate,
and baby, this time, right now, this is none of
those, this is not a curtain, not a close, this is
not something we chose, it chose us, and we
can sit here, and imagine fear, whisper in each
other's ears, and it can take the last that we
have to give, it can rob us of our will to live,
or we can renew the pledge, we can climb off
this ledge, and we can have again what got
trampled in the dust, we can have the two of
us, back again, just like way back when, and
I've seen enough curtain calls, and ungraceful
trip-and-falls, baby, to know, we can come
back from this, it's a chance we can't afford to
miss, either one of us, apart is a minus, and
together is a real big plus, and these hearts
have gone through enough, what we've
talked about and what we can't discuss,
enough to prove not just tender but tough,
and if we just take a deep breath and wait,
I know that we will both know that it is
never too late.

June 23, 2009, for her.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


the american poetry review

a writer's life
is papered
with rejection slips;
not the first,
won't be the last;
they're only poems,
not hearts.

just an old dope
with no words left, baby;
you will do better
next time.

most writers end that way,
out of words,
nothing left,
as Billy Collins said,
to compare
anything to anymore;

just talking to themselves
in a dark room:

occupational hazard.

June 22, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


I went by your grave yesterday,
Veteran's flag flapping wet in the rain;
the space in front of the headstone,
where I put you, it
seemed suddenly so small;

but then I remembered
how you had shrunk
in those last years,
and then the space there
didn't seem very small at all;

I had planted things there
before Memorial Day,
and everything looked pretty good,

except when I looked
in the car mirror,
and saw you staring back at me:
a little, sad, tired man;
and I realized
how fast I am
actually traveling.

June 22, 2009, for Daddy.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

heading home

sometimes the carnival
loses its appeal
like when I leave
the field o'plenty
with empty hands,
or when I stare
at the empty doorway,
remembering her silhouette;
sometimes the rides
are no longer much fun,
and of course you know
that the games
are all rigged,
just time-killers
while you wait,
for the line to grow shorter
for the rides;
stale popcorn,
sticky fingers,
and a swirling head:
time go home.

June 22, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All right reserved.


On a street in Tehran,
as chaos stumbled,
and tore through the city,
a 16 year-old girl,
peacefully demonstrating,
was shot through the heart
by a hidden sniper;

she fell to the pavement,
eyes open,
her legs splayed,
as her father
rushed to her side,
begging her to stay awake,
to fight to live;

and she died on that spot.

where people cry for justice,
and freedom,
and for the honest count
of their vote,
we all must stop and listen.

June 21, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


old school old times

I think it was probably
Jackson Browne,
the original emo hero,
who compared a heart
to a fist,
and all these years later,
Jackson, I can't resist
takin' that one out
for another spin,
maybe on the back of
a flatbed Ford, Mr. Frey,
but dammit
I am so overcome
by the Wifey,
who I wronged so badly,
that I just need
a Bob Weir miracle

June 20, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


The Life and Death of My Daddy

I wrote the piece that follows in response to a writing challenge issued by my friend Amy Hickman last year on the now-defunct writing website, thisisby.us. With Father's Day arriving tomorrow, I am reminded that this one will be the fifth consecutive one since my daddy died on January 8, 2005. Like most such losses, it does become more bearable, more capable of being accepted, with time. But I still miss him, and I thought that in his honor, since I won't be getting him a card or some dopey necktie again this year, that I would share the piece with all of you. Maybe there is something in it that will speak to you.

The Life and Death of My Daddy

Response to ahickpoet’s writing challenge: Whose death has impacted you most and why?

I have lived long enough so far to have had a good number of people that I loved and cared about up and die on me, and no matter how much of it one goes through, I am here to report, to those of you who do not know, that dealing with death does not get any easier with practice. I remember my dear father-out-law saying many years ago, as his childhood friends started dying off, that he was really not sure if he wanted to be the last one left, and the older I get, the more sense that seems to make to me. I keep meaning to ask him if he still feels that way every time that I see him, as he turned 88 last year, and is up for 89 in two months’ time. That should be an interesting conversation.

January 8, 2008 will mark three years since my daddy died at the age of 76. He had had a number of health problems in his later years, including becoming diabetic, which he was lucky enough to be able to manage with diet and exercise. Best I can recall, he died of a heart attack, right on the floor in the dining room of his house. I remember my mom telling me that he had gotten up to look for his glasses; why anyone who wore glasses all the time like he did at that stage in life would take them off and leave them somewhere where they weren’t remains a mystery to me, but that’s what happened right before he fell to the floor. Luckily, it was a good thick wool carpet, so I am fairly sure that the fall did not hurt him very much.

My daddy did much better than his own father, who died at 32, when my daddy was only 16. So generationally speaking, we continue to improve, as I was 50 when my daddy died, and my youngest daughter turns 16 next month. My daddy’s mother, Bertie Julia, died sometime in the mid-1960s, and I am not quite sure when, I would have to look it up, and it not being central to this story, I am not going to bother just now.

The report of my daddy’s death that appeared in the local newspaper two days later noted that he was married to my mom, but failed to mention that they had racked up 52 years on December 27, 2004. I remember December 27, 2004 pretty well because that was when I had the idea to fly up to Massachusetts with my three daughters to surprise my mom and dad for their anniversary, and make them dinner. So we did: rented a car, stopped at a grocery store, bought everything to make dinner, and just showed up at their house. I really do not think that either of them had been so surprised ever before, or at least not so as they said so. Looking back, it was one of the best trips that I have ever thought of, because 12 days later my daddy was gone. They might not have been each other’s first love, or only love, but they did it pretty much alright.

Gene Everett was born in Walker County, Georgia on May 14, 1928 to his daddy Everett and his mother, and he grew up in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He joined the United States Navy when he was 17, and served during the waning of the Second World War and during the Korean Conflict. He left the Navy as a Petty Officer Third Class, and his service, like most young men at the time, was one of his proudest achievements. He moved to my hometown shortly after marrying my mom, and with the help of her dad and several others, added two bedrooms and a kitchen to a little house with one room, and the family homestead was born in 1956.

He was raised a Baptist, not atypical of southern Tennessee, but when he met and fell in love with my mom, he converted to the Roman Catholic Church, and remained faithful to it his whole life. He was an usher at church for years, and also sang in the choir in his later years. I think his faith was pretty strong, although tested at various times throughout his life, but then we all go through those things.

He worked for New England Telephone and Telegraph (later Verizon) for 28 years, until he was forced to retire on disability because of his back. He was a journeyman cable splicer, drove one of those big trucks with the bucket lift on it, and he worked very hard every day of his life. He never got rich, but he supported his family, and we never really lacked anything that we needed, even the year that he was on strike; he found other work to do when he was not on the picket line, and meals arrived on the table just like always. Of course, me being an only child, it was not that big a family to support, but still.

Daddy was a life member and former president of the Telephone Pioneers, a volunteer organization of retired telephone company employees (we used to only have one telephone company, but that is another story) that performed charitable work like repairing talking books for the blind, which my daddy did for the Perkins School for years. He was also a member and former King Lion of his local Lions Club, a former Cub Scoutmaster of Troop 53, to which the author proudly belonged, a pretty fair carpenter, and a master woodcarver. He also did a lot of volunteer work at the hospital where I was born, being cheerful to folks who always needed cheering up. He was a patient there himself more than once, and everybody in the joint knew Gene.

He had a brother, Bob, who died about a decade before he did, and a little sister, Martha, who still lives in Tennessee. He had two very close cousins, Johnny and Charlotte, both of whom live in southern Virginia now.

And he left behind scores of friends, including former co-workers, who came to pay their respects at the funeral home. The number of people coming in was a sight to behold, with the line at one point going out the room, down the hallway, and out the door of the place. He was well loved.

At his funeral Mass, we sang “Amazing Grace,” “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “All the Ends of the Earth,” and “Sing a New Song.” One of the readings, which said a lot about my daddy, was from chapter 16 of the Book of Proverbs, verses 1 to 9: “The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord. All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, But the Lord weighs the motives. Commit your works to the Lord, and your plans will be established. The Lord has made everything for its own purpose, even the wicked for the day of evil. Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord; Assuredly, he will not be unpunished. By loving kindness and truth, iniquity is atoned for, and by the fear of the Lord one keeps away from evil. When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. Better is a little with righteousness, that great income with injustice. The mind of a man plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.”

My daddy taught me a lot of things over the years, and while he did not get all of the answers to life’s questions right, he got enough of them correct enough to get by, and to leave a mark on more than a few folks whose lives were the better, and the richer, for having known him, and having been around him. He taught me about working hard, and earning what you had, and he demonstrated that you should never get so proud, or feel so high-and-mighty with your opinion of yourself that you are afraid to break a sweat doing honest labor, or are afraid to get your hands dirty when necessary. He taught me that you can always wash your hands.

He also taught me that giving your word to someone else was your bond; papers might be required by lawyers, but your word was good enough for him. He taught me that my good name had value, and that treating others according to the Golden Rule was not only good for the karma, but that it was a good way to live, allowing you to sleep better at night. I learned from him that you should never find yourself so busy with other things that you cannot lend a hand to someone who needs your help; at the same time, I also learned that you have to know your own limitations.

The day that my daddy died, I wrote the following, which pretty well sums up how I felt about him, and which I somehow managed to read as a eulogy at his funeral:

For My Dad, January 8, 2005

I come to praise my Dad,
And to bury him.

For so many years of my life,
He was the strongest man on earth.

In the end, he was just like me,
Just a man.

But what a guy!

He died today,
But he lives on.

He lives on in the eyes
Of his three granddaughters,
Those beacons of light
That will go forward another generation.

My dad was a union man,
As am I.
I will never cross a picket line,
Nor would he.

My dad taught me the value of a dollar.
He also taught me the value of a person’s labor.
He taught me about the value of hard work.

Especially, my dad taught me about
Giving back.

Being involved with the Cub Scouts,
The Boy Scouts,
The church,
The community,
That was my dad.

My dad was a million things,
More than I can recount,
But more important than most
A man of some account.

Friends have asked me recently,
How do I do all that I do:
I answer them quite naturally:
It was what I was brought up to do.

I will miss my Daddy forever
But in my heart I know that’s not the end,
For someday, my Daddy,
Together we will be, and that’s true.

There is so much more to say,
But that will have to save,
For another day.

I love you, Daddy.

The impact of my daddy’s death on me was substantial in the near term, as it is for most folks when they lose a parent. Over the short years since, as the pain has eased, and the reality set in, I guess I miss him the most when I have a big decision to make, and when I would really like to have his advice. If he were here, of course, he would probably tell you that I never took his advice as often or as completely as I should have, and in many cases over the years, that is likely pretty much true. But I still find myself, on a fairly regular basis, of asking him what I should do, and I am not completely sure, but most of the time, I think he lets me know. I miss him being here to revel in the continuing success of his three granddaughters, turning into fine young women. I miss his laugh, his blue eyes, his sense of humor, and his love of all that is beautiful in this world and in this short life that we have in it. Mostly, I just miss the fact that he is gone, and I am reminded from time to time just exactly how much I really hated having to say goodbye. I am great at hello, but I am lousy at goodbye, just like my daddy was.

January 7, 2008

Copyright © 2008, 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


I long for the day
when my cheek and
your thigh are
when you are spread
out before me
like a buffet;
that will be the moment
when I am
when all I have
longed for
is at hand;
when you are
all I can stand.

June 19, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


the many scents of the flowers
on Pearl Street this morning
are intoxicating to me
as I walk south,
heading to the water;
after Water Street,
a hundred yards from the harbor,
their delightful aromas
give way to the smell of salt,
and then, in the harborside park,
the wild roses
and the cedars
mingle their enticing smells,
overwhelming me,
as I think of her:
fiery eyes dancing a bossa nova,
lips full and pouting out a kiss,
her body languid, yet fluid,
in repose, but ready
like a sleeping cat
of the mouse chase.

June 17, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


don't you know

he smelled of coffee,
whisky, garlic and tobacco,
and she tasted like
strawberries and jalapeños,
and it was all just like
candy, it was so damned
dandy, just aces,
and they talked
on the regular,
as he sipped his cupa joe,
and she dreamed of a day
when everything would be
because sometimes
dreams are just like that,
don't you know.

June 16, 2009, for the Wifey.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

my apple

I am not proud of it, at all,
in fact,
all these years later,
I am still ashamed,
dreadfully so:

I once starved a worm
to death,

holding that apple
just centimeters
from his tiny mouth.

I am a bad man.

the government says
that things will be better soon.

Give me my apple.

June 15, 2009, from the forthcoming collection, Spoken Rage.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


something like hello

been lyin' in the weeds,
when I shoulda been out there,
raisin' hell and climbin' trees;

I was sure that she would
meet all of my needs,
but it turned out that what
she takes was more than
what she leaves;

and so I just closed my eyes,
finally, and let her go:
she's spinning out there, somewhere,
exactly where, I don't know;

but if you should see her,
tell her that her
former shadow,
the one that she used to know,
he says
something like hello.

June 15, 2009, for Alannah.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

Famous Historical tweets. (If historical figures had twitter) Part II

We’ve razed a bold and beautiful city.


How to save 60% on your Auto Insurance.

Everyone is talking about how much single payer healthcare will cost, but very few people, at least in the mainstream media have mentioned how much it would save the average American.

Believe it or not you probably do have a form of health insurance, it just doesn’t cover you, it covers other people.

This insurance is your auto insurance.

The largest part of a typical auto liability policy is covering someone else’s healthcare costs. The reason is if you lose control of your car and hit someone, it isn’t fair that they should have to pay the medical bills for your mistake.

Naturally (if you aren’t a totally cold-hearted person) you would want to see them made whole and that’s why you have insurance in the first place, that and of course because the state forces you to.

You also have medical insurance for yourself and the passengers in your car, it is filed under PIP, Personal Injury Protection, or just Personal Medical.

PIP is necessary under our current Medical System even if you have regular health insurance because if you get into an accident and need to be taken to the emergency room and the police have to call your insurance company and find out which hospital they will pay for and the ER doctors have to find out what procedures are covered and what ones aren’t, your odds of dieing would shoot up significantly.

To cut through this red tape Auto Insurance Companies have PIP so that the Ambulance ride, the Emergency Room visit and all the things to keep you from dieing immediately are covered. The amount of minimum coverage varies by state.

If single payer healthcare became reality in the US, PIP and Personal Medical would become totally unnecessary, as the Ambulance ride and the Emergency Room visit would be free.

In my case, that would save me $77.23 every six months.

The second place it would save is in the BI, or Bodily Injury, part of my insurance. Under a single payer plan this part of my insurance would be significantly reduced but not completely eliminated.

The Bodily Injury portion of auto insurance covers the other person’s medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages.

Even under a single payer system you will have to pay the family the lost wages if you kill someone and you’ll be responsible for someone’s pain and suffering but the biggest part of Bodily Injury is the other person’s medical expenses. You can expect those costs to go down about the same amount as the PIP.

The third place on you insurance bill that you will save is on your uninsured/underinsured Motorist coverage. The uninsured motorist coverage covers your medical bills if someone with no insurance (or a hit and run) injures you. Obviously under a single payer system these bills wouldn’t exist.

After getting rid of all these medical costs from your insurance all that is left is coverage for pain and suffering, lost wages and property damage. So you could be looking at a savings of 60% on you auto insurance.

As well as lowering your Auto Insurance, your employer would save on workers comp, the vast majority of that is for medical bills. If you’re a homeowner your homeowners insurance would go down as most of your liability coverage is for medical bills as well as all of your guest medical coverage.

Taken altogether a single payer healthcare plan will save the vast majority of Americans a great deal on the non-healthcare insurance they are already carrying.


Famous Historical tweets. (If historical figures had twitter) Part I

Would it kill my husband to take me out to the theater once in awhile?


no doors

she's trapped in a room with no doors,
yeah, there's some windows way up
high, and sure enough, those walls are
real thick and of course there's a wet
floor and a dark ceiling, but figuring
out how to get to her has me reeling,
and I am not sure, maybe she knows
too much, or maybe she knows just
enough, maybe she is just in there,
healing, or maybe she is out of luck,
and her heart is stealing the future
to pay for today and yesterday, maybe
she already knows all the things I will
say, maybe she is just tired of dealing,
or maybe I am the one who is stuck,
awestruck, lovesick, reacting a bit too
quick, yeah, coming off just a little too
slick, or maybe I'm just a silly fool for
feeling this feeling, but I've been a
fool before, and that's when I knew
where to find the door, and now she's
trapped and I have to get to her, but
there's no doors.

June 14, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

Five Minutes More

"Where is it?"

"In the basement."

"Who told you to do it?"

"Murphy. Who else?"

"Why does he want him and his family to get it?"

"They musta crossed him."

"Where in the basement?"

"Near the furnace."

"How much longer?"

"Twenty minutes."

"It must be awful."

"What must be awful?"

"Goin' quick without even knowin' it."

"Yeah, must be awful."

"You ever let your job get to ya?"

"Nah. I do what I'm told. It's the only way."

"I wonder if he knows Murphy was after him?"

"Must. Murphy's been warnin' him for a long time."

"How many kids has he got?"


"How old?"

"Real young."

"Pretty wife?"

"Yeah, man, beauty queen."

"How much longer?"

"Fifteen minutes."

"How long ya been workin' for Murphy?"

"Ten years."

"You good friends or sumthin'?"

"Nah, I jus' work for him."


"How long you been workin' for him?"

"Six months in Reno. How much longer?"

"Ten minutes more."

"You blow up a lotta stuff?"

"Yeah. Twenny jobs like this. Used to work for McMasters in Philly. Best bank man in the whole damn country."

"Gee, I never knew that. Murphy must like you, huh?"

"How come you said that?"

"Well he must like you if he gives you this job."

"He don't love me or nothin'. I jus' do my job, that's all."

"Wonder what he's doin' inside, him and his wife that their young kids."

"Who knows? Probably watchin' TV or sumthin' like that."

"You never get scared?"

"About what?"

"This kinda work ya do for Murphy."


"How much longer?"

"Five minutes more."

"Guess this'll be the last of them."

"Yeah, guess so."

"You ever feel like runnin' out and savin' somebody?"

"You crazy? Me, cross Murphy? He'd hit me hard and fast."

"Yeah, I guess you're right."

"Sure I am. I don't give a damn about who I'm killin', else I wouldn't take the job."

"Yeah, you're right."

"Should be any minute now."

"There it goes! Boy, I'm glad that's over."

"Yeah, me too."

"Let's get outta here. I think we oughta report to Murphy."

"Yeah, let's go."

"Ya know, it must be awful."


1971; edited 2009
Copyright © 1971, 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

la ciela

he would look at her,
sleeping like an angel,
and think that his blessings
were too many,
that he had received too much;

but then he would
close his eyes,
and just bask
in her glow:

la ciela;

and it was more than

June 12, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


An Angry Saturday Afternoon

The sidewalk café on Water Street was busy, bustling on this gorgeous, sunny Saturday June afternoon, with the temperature right at 69 degrees Farenheit, even though it was just the beginning of tourist season, with only the most dedicated "summer people" in evidence. It would have been a great day for a margarita, but for some reason, he had chosen a tequila sunrise, and it was going down very smooth, when he heard the clicketty-clicketty sound on the cobblestones, announcing the arrival of her stilettos. Ordinarily, he would never sit with his back to the door, or in this case, the street, but it had been the only table available. Just as well though, because when she wheeled around the table and sat in her chair with more than a small huff, he could see the daggers leaving her eyes, even though she was wearing those big brown and gold shades. The sundress showed enough of her, but not too much, merely a promise.

"Hi. You seem agitated," he said.

"Hi yourself, you dickwad," she whispered softly, followed by her usual wry smile, "I am so royally fucking pissed at you right now that if I had a piece in my purse, I might put a cap or two into that big fat head of yours."

"Um, okay. But you always have that little .22 in your purse, baby. So, I guess I can count good luck as part of my portfolio today."

"You can count luck however you want to, you sonovabitch. Here's what you really need to count though, gringo: you steal my work again, and I'm going to rip your balls off and wear them on a charm bracelet. Order me a drink before I lose my temper completely."

He motioned for the waiter, and ordered her a sunrise as well. She sat immobile, not even removing the shades. "Yet again, I find out after the fact that you have sold yet another story, filled with my ideas, and my words, and yet there is no check filling my mailbox. Are you just trying to piss me off, or what? I can't wait for your bullshit excuse this time," she seethed.

"Baby, you know your check will be there as soon as I get paid, which has not yet happened. Hell, they publish, and a month later, they send a check. You know how this works," he offered, sure that she would not be satisfied by such a lame excuse.

"I don't buy that for a second. And here's the thing: we are supposed to be writing partners. Partners. P-a-r-t-n-e-r-s. You keep me like a fucking mushroom: wet and in the dark. This shit has got to stop before I dismember your member, dude."

He looked into her eyes, still shielded by the shades. He needed to get inside there. "Baby, let me see those beautiful browns, please," he cooed, "let me look into your eyes and reassure you." Her mood seemed to soften slightly, and she shifted in her chair as she took a long sip of her drink.

"Maybe they should stay on, dude. Maybe that way I will not fall prey to those killer electric blues you have. Maybe then, I will keep my composure, and get what I came here for today."

"You might be right about that, baby," he offered, "I would not want to take advantage of you right here in the middle of town. It would be a crime to do something like that, here in front of dozens of people." The words had barely left his mouth, when her hand was moving to the shades, and they were coming off in a fluid motion straight down to the surface of the table.

"What makes you so sure that you could take advantage of me right here in the middle of town," she asked, again with the wry smile.

"I am hoping that I will get lucky, and that your anger has gone away, baby. I am hoping that history will once again save me, and that my wrongs can somehow be forgiven, that you can redeem me, save me from a life as a beast, a dog," he whispered, his eyes never leaving hers.

Her edge had left her face, and those unbelievable browns glowed with a familiar fire, a fire he had visited so many times that he should bear at least a few scars. "Eh, dude, once again, you charm me like no one on this planet can," she murmured, "so let's leave this pop stand, and go for a walk on the beach, and talk about your wrongs." All at once, she stood, towering over him, still sitting, looking into her eyes. He was lost in her eyes, lost like a little boy far from home. He hesitated for a moment before getting up from his chair, and she crooked her finger in that familiar way, and said "Eh, get up and come here, dude. Get up and come with me."

June 13, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.


if you know
that you are
going to be
you might
as well be

June 12, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

mama dilly

she told me that
she was a little nervous,
as she had never climbed that high,
and being the gentleman
that I hope one day to be,
I looked her straight in the eye,
and I said, "darlin', don't you
worry yer purty lil head
one bit, I'll stay here at
the bottom, and I'll take hold of it,
and if you should fall, I'll catch you,"
and she smiled "thanks," and
went on up, it's true;
and brother, from down here,
what a view.

June 12, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.



in the rusty old
galvanized bucket,
not just a contradiction in terms:
many straight nails,
ready to render,
but a few badly bent ones
as well;

the bent ones
will likely be
thrown out,
which I lament:

they maybe
could be
at least

June 11, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

desert island reading

the Bible,
the Bard,
and Miss Parker:
the only three
to remain
continuously in print;

I would want all three.

June 11, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

Private Industry vs. Government led research

Obama has promised to return science to its rightful place in America, pledging to restore Government funding in Research back to 3% of GDP up from its current 0.6%. Whenever anyone suggests raising the amount of Government money spent on research, someone will always respond that Research and Development is better handled by private industry.

Private industry has shown that it responds to a huge technological challenge much better than the Government, just look at the two different approaches taken during the 70s energy crisis.

When Hubbert showed that American oil production had peaked and the world’s oil demand would outstrip world oil production between 2005 and 2010 countries took two different approaches.

Japan started a government lead consortium that did major research and development into making fuel-efficient cars. They shared this knowledge with the Japanese car companies who then competed to market cars that used this fuel-efficient technology.

In the US, the home to the largest three auto manufactures in the world, Jimmy Carter proposed a similar plan but the big three argued that private industry could handle a crisis better than the Government could and all three companies handled their own R & D.

As history shows, private industry handled the crisis. That’s why the big three American Car manufactures still dominate the world car market and hardly anyone has ever heard of Japanese cars like Toyota, Nissan, and Mazda.

Oh I got that wrong, Toyota and Nissan are the largest and third largest auto manufactures and two out of the big three American auto manufactures are bankrupt.

Private Industry alone cannot handle large technological challenges for a simple reason private industry has to focus on the short term. Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip Two is a great example of this. It is a neat relatively low cost solution to send people into space.

It is built out of existing materials used in unique ways to achieve a modest goal. Unfortunately its performance is limited by how well carbon fiber can handle extreme heat. Manufactures of Carbon Fiber Resins will of course improve on their product’s ability to handle extreme heat but it is already near its physical limit.

In order for something like SpaceShip Two to go into orbit, the next big leap, it would need to be built out of something as light or lighter than Carbon Fiber. There is already a material like that: Buckypaper. Composed of nano-tubes (carbon molecules formed to circle around forming a tube that is one molecule and as tough as diamonds) in a polymer. Buckypaper is as strong as steel and you could cover a football field with it and it would weigh less than a gram, additionally its heat conductivity is higher than copper.

Unfortunately, Buckypaper is too expensive at the present time to be used in any applications and because of this, it isn’t mass-produced so its costs won’t go down so it won’t be mass-produced.

Industries that could use this product (just about any industry) know if they started using it they would only need to use it for a few years as loss leader (losing money) to drive the costs down. But no large company is going to step forward and be the first one.

The reason is simple, they don’t want to spend all that money to completely revolutionize an industry only to have their competitors start using the product that they spent the money to get on the market.

That’s where the Government comes in. If the US Government started ordering huge amounts of Buckypaper to use in the space program, military, and start making a limited edition Corvette out of it (The fed owns 60% of GM why not get some use out of it) The costs would go down.

As the costs go down SpaceShip Three could use it to go into orbit, Airplane Manufactures would start using it place of Aluminum and finally we could have cars that weighed 100’s of pounds instead of tons, saving billions of barrels of oil every year.

Once the Government put forth the initial money for research and developing a technology through its bleeding edge (the time when it is losing money) private industry could pick it up and run with it and do what it does best make incremental improvements to existing products and use them in unique ways.

As new products are brought to market based on the technology that was developed through Government funded research the Government would start getting its money back in the form of taxes.

There is no shortage of problems that the Government could use this approach to, The race to the Moon, Peak Oil, Climate Change, and the great thing about it is this method has been proved to boost economic activity.

During World War II a huge portion of GDP was poured into research to win the war. Afterwards that research was plowed into civilian consumer products that made their pre-war counterparts look a century old, not just a decade old.

During the Space Race whole new industries started up based off research done to get us to the Moon.

In a 100% peacetime application the example I used above of Japan Inc. from the 70s and 80s brought a defeated little island nation to be an economic powerhouse for decades.

When it comes to the question of the Government funding vs. Private Industry in research, history shows that hands down the Government funding research and then handing it over to Private Industry is the winning approach.

You Wouldn't Speak to Me in Plain Language, so Now Let Me Show You What I'm Learning About Yours

This is What Happens when You Motivate a Pathologically Anxious and Depressed Person with the Only Force Greater Than His Dysthmia: FEAR

You could have been decent. Ideally, you could have let, er, sleeping drivers lie*2 (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/lie). Or, you could have woken him and told him to leave. OR, you could have said *NEXT* time, he's trespassing

You could have been decent. Ideally, you could have let, er, sleeping drivers lie*2 (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/lie). Or, you could have woken him and told him to leave. OR, you could have said *NEXT* time, he's trespassing. OR, you could have asked him if he needed medical attention. OR, you could have taken him to the station, voluntarily, to ascertain his fitness to drive. OR, you could have questioned him more thoroughly at the scene - and taken notes when he showed the first officer who ever found him sleeping on your campus (or was it the second time - there were SEVERAL) the prescription bottle that states drowsiness as a possible side effect.

Oh, but don't you worry about that this month. Due to an insurance transition hiccough that is still unresolved, one of my medications (fluoxetine, 100mg/day) ran out about a week and a half ago. So I'm not gonna be at risk for any drowsiness side effect. Can't even say for sure if it effected me that way - but I'm not a doc. All I know is that right now I am as far away from sleeping as I have EVER been. I am SPITZING, BLAZING, barely coherently HOT PISSED right now!!


You could have taken several measures to not only ensure the public safety (okay, sure, and order) and at the same time respect the dignity of a guy who has never been in trouble with the law before but for a speeding ticket and, back when he was 17 (?), when he rear-ended another driver on the way TO SEE HIS OPTOMETRIST!!!

Yeah - I've had many of the mishaps and troubles of the geeky and socially inept clutz. I didn't realize that it was a crime to be "odd". I didn't realize it was a crime to be on the property of a PUBLIC community college (where personal safety is, is it not, likely higher) too dog-tired to just start his car and buzz off.

I didn't realize this. Officer number 5 (I think it was number 5 - you wouldn't let me see the records), who told me that "you know, these have been recorded as trespassing don't you?".

I stammered. I was short of breath. I was shocked and pissed and taken aback and scared and outraged and angry and confused and panicky all at once. You wanna see how that feels? No, you do not. Anyway, that was the first time I realized that I might get myself into trouble if I was found on campus asleep in my car after hours again.

So, I wasn't. BUT, wouldn't you know that, at about twenty after 9pm on the very next Friday, one Officer Christopher O'Sullivan just happened upon my car, among the many others in the parking lot at that time, and approached me with what is now a well-accounted incident. Basically, he was looking for me, it would seem, and rather than tell me that I was forbidden from the campus *period*, of which I was unaware, or believe me, I'd have been to a lawyer or judge or some advocate to press charges against YOUR department for this unjust infingement of my liberty and access to public resources, he chose to be confrontational and sarcastic and insulting.

Yes, even then, apparently, I maybe had the power to avoid arrest. I overheard the conversation O'Sullivan had with the desk/dispatcher - while he was searching my vehicle subsequent to my willful and cooperative consent (and of course resulting in nothing suspicious or incriminating except for the pillow in my back seat - as if that's a crime!) - and he indicated out loud over the radio that he was disposed to "let me go" with a summons to appear to answer for this idiocy.

I must have pissed him off when I answered his question truthfully (and very literally, as is my tendency and neurological pathology)) when he asked me, clearly becoming exasperated with me, if I'd rather discuss this with a judge.

I answered "well, yeah, if that's okay" or "yeah, actually, that'd be good" - or something equally, in hindsight, stupid. But my tone was calm, respectful, and yes, a little scared. But I honestly would have prefered to explain things to a judge (by definition, a scholar) and not a police officer (my general impression of this profession being that it is staffed with those who prefer action to thinking, and don't look kindly upon geeks and other wimps).

I don't like that kind of person. I just feel very uncomfortable around them, whether they are wearing a badge, a football helmet, army fatigues, mechanics overalls, or a hardhat. Yes, these are generalities and as such are not universal. But the feeling I get from a guy who grunts or smirks at my vocabulary, or takes one look at my short, long-haired bespectacled self and visibly - YES, VISIBLY!!! - reduces his respect for me on the spot, is one of familiar anxiety and social isolation the likes of which makes me wish I had beaten up on the jerks in high school who shoved me into lockers and laughed at me in gym class.

But, I'm not that kind of person.

I'm a wuss. I'm pathetic. I'm a victim unless I learn to once and for FREAKIN' all stand up for myself and say NO MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hey, O'Sullivan: NO MORE!!!! Hey, Holland: NOOOOO MOOOOOOOOOOOORE!!!!!!!!!!

You are NOT going to scare me. Go ahead, file more bogus charges. I'll add that to my list of transgressions for which I fully intend to compel YOU to answer.

It is my intention to compel you to appear and answer to violations of the following statues, not all inclusive:

-Chapter 268: Section 6A.
-Chapter 268: Section 13B
-Chapter 265: Section 21 (you remember the ATM visit, Chris?)
-Chapter 263: Section 5 (how can I confront or question witnesses who remain where I am forbidden to go??)

There's more, but I don't wanna show my hand.

I am DONE being the victim. At this point, NO consequence could be worse than continuing to cower before bullies, and that includes the possibility of self-inflicted death depending on the outcome of my little court date on July 10th. But, in all honesty, the way my ears are burning and my arms and hands are shaking and my stomach is cramping and my head is pins and needles and my heart is roaring out of my chest right this very minute - and every time I think about this, I may not last until then. If life isn't fair - I am SO done with it. Whether the bullies haunt me from within, whether they are grunting at me as they toss the pig-skin, or whether they cower behind the badge that gives them an authority they clearly don't respect or deserve.


I am DONE!!!

I am *FUCKING* DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Wear Your Helmet

The beauty of living on Hammond's Hill, in addition to being almost immune to the ravages of the occasional hurricane, was that nothing could approach without some sort of warning, be it sound, or sight. It was, in military strategic terms, a "must-own" piece of the local real estate. All of which had nothing whatever to do with his becoming involved with her. That was all pure happenstance, whatever the hell happenstance was, although he was fairly sure that it had something to do with chance, since the two words rhymed.

Nightly, he would hear the long echo of the approaching vehicle, whether from the west, long and slow, as it made that big climb up the hill, or shorter, shallower, as it came from the east, its headlights lighting the tops of the oaks and the maples, a good minute or two before it even reached the crest of the hill. Night after night, he watched them as they made their way up, across, and then down the hill.

On this night, though, his vigilance assumed a special importance, as he knew that Paul had learned she was leaving, and also to whom she was going. He knew that Paul would be headed his way for a showdown, for a shootout, for one of them to lie dying in the wet ground.

Paul, for his part, eschewed practicality, and had nothing extra with him but his Sig Sauer and a whole bunch of anger. His Harley still in pieces in the garage, he hopped on his beaten-to-death Honda, gunned it, and sped on down Route 6.

He was as prepared as he needed to be, however, and one hell of a lot smarter than Paul, or Paul's .45. The tripwire had been easy to install, and as Paul topped the eastern side of the hill, he could hear the crack, pop, crack, crack, crack of the motorcycle, Paul's unhelmeted head, and the chassis, as they successively hit the pavement.

She was his.

June 10, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.



she told me
that she was not
and more than
just my eyes

she told me
that she had hard
work to do,
and every part
of me agreed;

she told me
I have a one-track
mind, and I
decided how to

and quickly
dropped to
my knees.

June 9, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

happy ending

when your pain
has pain, brother,
when your dark misery,
has a little misery
of its own, sister,
that's the time when
you know the blues
are not going to
rock you to sleep
this night:
that's the time when
you know,
deep down inside
your very deepest insides,
that these may well be
your last blues, brother;
you may be goin'
home, sister;
and every story
does not have a
happy ending, oh no.

June 9, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.

A Brighter Tomorrow

Some of my earliest memories are of sitting in front of the TV at my Grandparents house watching the Moon Landings. Even as a five year old seeing those 12 astronauts walking on an alien world filled my young brain with hope for the future.

I thought I would get a chance to walk on the Moon as well, because just like when my mom was growing up Jets were a new technology that only a few people could travel in, but by the time I was growing up they were commonplace. Taking it back further when my Grandmother was growing up Lindbergh’s non-stop solo flight to Europe was a technological feat.

Now my wife and I are thinking of having a kid, I call this Project Scion, and even though I look forward to watching Moon Landings with the kid, this was not supposed to be a generational event.

Looking at the world today with the total economic collapse, the fact that last year demand for oil (the life blood of our industrial civilization) outpaced oil production, the fact that the largest climate shift in human history is looming, and thousands of other signs of doom and despair you might wonder why we have chosen this time to raise a child. The answer is simple for the first time since I was a kid growing up I feel optimistic about the future.

Over the course of my life I have watched science, research and development budgets being slashed. I was a kid when Nixon cut the last three Moon Missions, but the Skylab missions still had me hopeful of the future.

I was old enough to know that the Apollo-Soyuz was the last mission for the indefinite future I lowered my expectations. Even with NASA boasting of how the Shuttle would be all things to all people and would cost only pennies a day to operate it was obvious that it wouldn’t be the spacecraft to return us to the Moon and I’d have to wait for space technology to advance.

While that was happening I did have a glimmer of hope, Jimmy Carter announced that freeing us from our dependence on foreign oil would be the moral equivalent of war. I imagined a brave new world, where we could use our brains to advance as a people and put the vast scientific know how that allowed men to walk on the Moon to solve the problems that plagued mankind and in the pursuit of those goals we would make discoveries that would let us once more go into that final frontier.

Then he was laughed out of office.

I watched as Reagan and Bush slashed not only NASA’s budget but all funding towards Science and Technology even as Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were putting some of the space technology (microchips) to use in the hands of the public.

If it wasn’t bad enough that they slashed Science budgets, the whole tone of the nation started vilifying science and by extension intelligence. Being intelligent in America became a curse.

When Bill was elected I thought things would change, clearly an intelligent person would recognize the importance of inspiring other intelligent people to succeed instead of having to hide, but instead he put on an “aw shucks” routine and played dumb while slashing scientific research in this country to the bare bones.

By the time Bush came through and declared war on science and the “Intellectual elite” it didn’t mean much as even when discoveries were made they wouldn’t be developed. Bucky Tubes and nano-technology have been around for a couple of decades now. If they had been funded so they could develop into mature technologies we could have cars that weighed hundreds of pounds instead of thousands, as well as planes and of course spacecraft.

Seeing policy makers turn public opinion into down right hostility against anyone who could think for themselves made me decide against having a child that, if genetics is any indication, should be a super-genius.

But now it seems that people are looking around and noticing what 30 years of embracing stupid and rejecting science has led to.

No new innovations in science has led to innovations in money making like Default Credit Swaps, and Mortgage Backed Derivatives.

Not inspiring our children to wonder “What if” has meant all our industrial products come from overseas as Japanese and Korean’s wondered “What if we did this to improve a car?”

In times of great crisis there is great opportunity. To overcome the challenges that are in front of us we will need to once again foster an environment where an interest in science is considered something to be praised not scorned. Where critical thinking is seen as the solution to a problem and not “the problem”.

After watching a country’s Science policy go from science and research being a source of strength for our nation to something that should be despised, I wouldn’t have a genius kid while our leaders considered logic a menace and truth the enemy.

We’ve seen what happens when we embrace the stupid; Peak Oil, Financial Ruin, Death and Destruction on a massive scale.

It’s time to put intelligence back to work, and that is why I am hopeful for the future.

It will be a long time before we can forget what embracing stupid does. 60 years if history is any guide. So that gives my kid plenty of time to grow up in a world that values intelligence, honesty and a strong work ethic.

So America I am putting you on notice, I will watch the Moon Landings with my kid but I will not sit by and let the world make it an event to have me watch the Moon Landing with my Grandchild.

You’ve got 60 to 80 years to make sure that a Moon Landing is no more eventful than a plane crossing the Atlantic.


An Unexpected Monday Afternoon

Fairly sure that she had abandoned him at last, he sat on the aged chaise-lounge in the brick-floored piazza outside the patio, looking nowhere in particular, and lit a cigarette. He thought about her, about everything that had curled, and swirled, and covered their two lives in the few short months that they had been together, and again marveled at how this completely unexpected, unpredicted, unsought love had blossomed, bloomed, and surprised the hell out of both of them. They laughed about it, not nervously, but hysterically.

"Me, with you? No way," she laughed, "no way that anyone would have predicted this thing, baby."

"I know, I know. 'She is not his type at all,' people would say, 'and he could not be further from the kind of men she is attracted to; for one thing, he writes poetry! Poetry? She is no poetry fan, believe me, sister.' And that makes me laugh so much when I think of it, baby."

As he watched his cigarette burn, and studied the paths of the ants scurrying between the bricks in search of food, he wondered how he would ever go on without her in his life, and he felt a mantle of sadness, of real gloom, descend on him like an unbearable weight, pushing him down closer to the ground. As the ash and ember fell from the cigarette, he watched as the fire slowly went out, and everything turned to grey, all of the red nothing but a memory.

But it had been their ritual, all these months, that even though other responsibilities were part of each of their lives, throughout any given week, but owing to their regular schedules, Monday mornings were just for the two of them. No distractions, no obligations, just the two of them. And rarely had anything even come close to disturbing their standing date day. They had just talked the night before, and nothing was said about a change in plans that would prevent their Monday morning together.

And so all morning, from about 8 on, he had waited patiently for her arrival, and he was a patient man. But 8 turned into 8:30, and that turned into 9, and then 10, and then 11, and then as 11:30 drew near, he became despondent, knowing that she met the school bus at that time. What had gone wrong? He searched his memory in vain, for something he said, for something he did, for anything that would explain this breach of their routine. Nothing.

As the cigarette burned itself out, he noticed, and feeling no pain from the burn, snuffed it out on a brick between his feet. Just like my pathetic life, he thought, here for a short time, and then gone, nothing but dust under someone's feet. The world around him, all the birds, and squirrels, and chipmunks, and bees, and worms, and yes, even all the ants, everything seemed to have stopped, frozen in their tracks. And he felt lonelier than he had ever felt before in his life.

And then, as misery seemed to seep into every pore, as despondency climbed over the top of the tallest cedar tree above him, his eye caught movement to his left, near the side garden, and he saw something coming toward the patio, slowly, deliberately.

"Eh, dude, how are you? I thought I would surprise you," she grinned, crooking a finger his way, "so are you surprised? Come here."

June 8, 2009.

Copyright © 2009, Ricky A. Pursley. All rights reserved.