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Family and Friends is my everyday journal. Captain's Log is where I pontificate on religion and politics.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

WC012721: Book That Most Influenced My Life

This week's topic: The movie, TV show, book that most influenced my life.

The most influential book in my life is the Bible

My life long study of the scriptures has been influenced by numerous books. Just reading the Bible is not enough. I read it cover to cover at age 15, that didn't make me a biblical scholar. Memorizing scripture doesn't make one an understanding Christian. It's a lifelong journey of faith. Here are some books that helped me grow and understand the scriptures:

How to be a Christian Without Being Religious, by Fritz Ridenour. This is a commentary or study of the book of Romans in the New Testament. When the Moral Mafia says the Bible condemns homosexuality this is the book they reference. The only problem is they only mention the third and fourth chapters which list a number of sins. They omit Chapter 5 verse 1 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
Also they forget Chapter 8 vs 1 There is therefore no condemnation... 

The message of the book is the power of forgiveness and our faith makes us one with Christ. He does not condemn us no matter what that sin is. 

This book opened my eyes the whole of Paul's message.

The Late Great Planet Earth, by Hal Lindsay.

An interpretation of the book of Revelation. The most prevalent during the 20th century and the most heretical. When I left for college I would have preached out of this book. The only problem was that according to Lindsay the world would be destroyed in 1988. I think his math was off. Later the same interpretation was  developed into the Left Behind series of books, movies, video games, etc. There's big money in doom and gloom about the future.


Worthy Is the Lamb by Ray Summers.

This is the book that broke me away from Fundamentalism. It's an interpretation of Revelation by understanding the time period it was written and the message presented to the people in that day.  How they understood the message. It's not about the total destruction of the world. It's about how to have hope and persevere during times of tyranny and religious persecution, which was what the Christians of that time were facing.

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

This is a really hard book to read and then try to apply to your life. The cost to Bonhoeffer was his life during WWII. It helped me grow in my faith, and gave me the strength to leave the Southern Baptist Convention and find a different denomination that believes in inclusion instead or exclusion.

I have incorporated my beliefs and growth in my novels:

Optimus: Praetorian Guard and Stephanus.

Human Sacrifices 

Monday, January 18, 2021

Wc 012021 Things I collected as a child


Today's topic: Things I collected as a child.
Comic Books, the one thing my parents splurged on for us. Every week we'd both get a quarter and could buy four comic books. 
My brother and I avidly read The Fantastic Four, Spiderman, X-Men, Sergeant Fury's Howlers, The Hulk, Thor, and others by Marvel. We also read Classics Illustrated. My first encounter with Frankenstein, Les Misérables, Lord Jim, From the Earth to the Moon, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Mysterious Island.
DC. Yes we read Superman, Batman, Super Boy and others.
Then one horrible day we came home from school and Mom put them all in the trash right before the garbage men came and took them away.
I ran track and cross-country in junior high and high school. I collected ribbons, medals and trophies. The one's I was most proud of were: City champion in the 660 yd. dash in 9th grade.

Team state runners up in Cross-Country junior year. 

State Champion in the mile senior year. In college we were team champions in Texoma Conference of the NAIA in Cross-country.
I finished 150th out of two thousand runners at nationals in Cross-Country in 1974. 

I was the first mile champion in the newly formed Texoma Conference setting the record, it didn't last long. I still have my trophies in a wall bookcase. The ribbons and medals are in a shoe box next to my scrapbook.

Cameras. These I inherited. My father had a photography minor and did photo shoots of weddings and birthdays for awhile. He left me an original Polaroid Land Camera. Around five of the old type 660 film cameras that you look down on the view screen. And two older 35mm cameras from the early 1960's. I've had a few offers on two of his look down cameras, but no takers on the polaroid.
One I think just about all of the members of WC have on their list is BOOKS.

These are my erotic stories under the name Javan Tenebrae. 

The Good Goddess by Javan Tenebrae is an anthology of erotic short stories.

It starts with an ancient goddess who answers the plea of a lonely man wanting someone to love. The goddess known by many names: Bona Dea, Isis, Aphrodite, Venus and others reincarnates and begins to answer the prayers of lonely people looking for love and meaningful relationships. Her followers share the love she gives them to others and they are attacked by other religions and the government. Some are martyred, but message of love and sharing with others only grows.

First Weekend is a corporate outing where everyone is into swinging.

Failure is about a man getting divorced and visiting an old girlfriend who married his best friend in college.

Triple Indemnity is about a gold digger who marries wealthy old men, even agreeing to signing a prenuptial agreement as long as she gets a multi-million dollar life insurance policy.

Toy Store I'll let you imagine.

A Bull Named Fu Manchu is about a man whose been diagnosed with terminal cancer. He decides instead of riding a bull to spend his last good days enjoying himself in other ways. 

Hadrian's Wall a Roman legionnaire gets rest and relaxation away from the wall and entertains a wealthy noble woman. 

Love Lust Story a law professor is interviewed on his life long fight against obscenity laws by recalling how it started with a fight at the University of New Mexico over the poem Love Lust by Lenore Kendall.


Wednesday, January 13, 2021

WC 011321


Today's challenge is five most interesting places I've visited.

Mexico. This is the only foreign country I've visited. Growing up as a family drove to El Paso twice and went across the border to Juarez. We didn't venture far into the city. It was fun watching Dad settle on the price of what we bought. I'm sure we overpaid. We ate a dinner each time at the Florida Club, one of the few places you could drink the water. 

Dad bought a velvet painting of a ship on a blue background. It hung on the wall of our house for many years.

While in college running track the first meet of the season was Border Olympics in Laredo, TX. In Nuevo Laredo I bought a leather hat that matched the fringe jacket I still owned from the last trip to El Paso and an Onyx chess set. No one in their right mind would eat across the border. I ran my fasted mile at the Border Olympics that year.

New Mexico. I've lived in the state most of my life. There is much to visit here. These are the places I've visited:

Mesa Verde National Monument: Cliff dwellings in the four corners area.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park.

White Sands National Park.

Bandolier National Monument.

Petroglyph National Monument, I drive by it often, it borders Albuquerque.

Elephant Butte Lake. During Memorial day and Labor day it becomes the second largest city in the state.

Trinity Site, where the first atomic bomb was exploded.

Colorado. We lived in Pueblo when I was a child we visited three places close together. Buckskin Joe's, Royal Gorge and Cripple Creek. Buckskin Joes was a mock western town that had a shoot out, trial and hanging every day at noon. Lots of trinket for sale. The Royal Gorge was built by the CCC in the 1930's. It was the world's highest suspension bridge at the time. You could walk across it and look down, but there wasn't a road on the other side so no cars were allowed. Cripple Creek is a gold mining town turned tourist attraction. There was a saloon with a stage and they put on a melodrama. It was a lot of fun booing and hissing the villain and cheering the hero.

North Carolina: I was born in this state, but Dad was in the marines and while still an infant he was transferred to California. 

Summer of 2000, I took four students from New Mexico to Ashville, NC. for the annual YMCA Conference on Youth Affairs. We flew from Albuquerque to Dallas where we joined forty other students and their sponsors. We then left Texas on a bus and drove with only minimal stops through Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and into North Carolina. The whole way it was like driving in a tunnel. There were trees on both sides of the road.

We got out of the bus in Ashville at a shopping center to buy a few necessities for the week ahead. I looked at the headlines on that day's newspaper. A city councilor was being accused of something, the mayor was under fire for something he said. We traveled fifteen hundred miles, but the politics were the same. Had a great time watching the kids debate loads of issues. It was a long drive back and flight.

KansasThe most interesting place I visited on all many trips from Albuquerque to Nebraska to visit wife's family was a stop in Abilene, Kansas at the Eisenhower Presidential Library. It's the only presidential library I've visited, and he was president when I too young to remember him, but I was impressed with the library. There's the house where he was born well preserved. He and his wife are buried in the library. I was most impressed with his military section. It housed his command jeep, uniforms, trophy case with his medals, lots of weapons and information about D-Day. In a glass case is a special commemorative sword made by the Wilkinson Sword company in England. The only other commemorative sword the made was for the Duke of Wellington.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Captain's Log 011021 I Don't Speak Whisper


Captain's Log 011021: I don't speak whisper.

Concerning Star Trek Discovery.

This last season was nearly incomprehensible as to what was happening and how it was resolved. Enough said on this point. I did like the two episodes that were in the mirror universe.

My beef with the show is not any different than other shows currently on TV and the movies, but Discovery has taken this problem to the ultimate degree. 


What is so awful about speaking by using your diaphragm? A normal speaking voice that can be understood. Not one that has so much air leaking out that the words are unintelligible.

The actor's voice doesn't need to be projected like an actor on stage, but it does need to be understood by the audience.

Does Michael Burnham played by Shaniqua Martin-Green always have to whisper? No matter how loud the volume, if I use earphones or any other method I've used to figure out what she's saying I can't understand a G#######m word. I shouldn't have to use closed captioning to understand someone speaking English!

It's irritating to the Nth degree.

The problem is that whoever she's talking with also whispers. I can't figure out any of the dialogue. Sometimes that's the only part of the show that's not action and I have to turn down the sound so the music doesn't shatter every every window in my house.

I use hearing aids and have an external speaker for the TV that filters out music and other background noise so what comes out is the voices. It works great (particularly with football commentary) but it doesn't help with whisper. Like I've mentioned many of today's movies and other TV shows go into whisper mode at times and that's just as irritating, but Discover has made it an art form.

Friday, January 08, 2021

Complete works on Amazon

 I've stumbled upon some classic writers who have complete work collections. They are at reasonable prices.

H.P. Lovecraft. I'm not a fan of his work or style, but many of my blogger friends are. Thought I'd tip them off to this.

H Beam Piper. His Little Fuzzy books are about the best ever written on colonizing new worlds and encountering alien species. Inspiration for David Gerrold who wrote Trouble With Tribbles for Star Trek. He originally called them Fuzzies, but had to change the name due to copy write law. 

I've been enjoying Pipers early short stories written in the 1940's for pulp magazines. A real trip through memory lane.

Science Fiction super pack. Classic writers like Asimov, Poul, and others.

Zane Grey. I still have a box full of the hard bound books my brother and I read growing up as they came in the mail. 

Amazon offers this pack for over a thousand dollars in paperback. As e-books a buck. Riders of the Purple Sage, The Rainbow Trail, Rogue River Feud, 30,000 on the Hoof. Oh what it was like reading them growing up.

Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Wednesday Challenge 010621


Today's topic is: My goals for 2021.

Last year started with so much promise and went bust. Writers2writers was resurrected and I was meeting  with four to five other writers at a library and we were sharing our stories and ideas. I started a story that's been on the back burner for over forty years. I was writing at the library as I can't write at home.

I revised most of my e-stories on Amazon and turned them into paperbacks. This is a launching pad for what I want to do this year.

Just when I have books that I can have book signings at Treasure House books and other places, they were shut down.

This year I'm back into an office twice a week. My attorney friend shut down his practice, but has reopened it part time. I get to use the office on the days he staying home. I'm making progress Private Pain, my next book. It's a science fiction story about colonizing new solar systems.

I have three short stories: Apple of Success, Cloisonné Heart and Convert or Corrupt. I'm combining them into an anthology and will publish them as paperback in a day or two. 
I'm hoping that the restrictions will be lifted by spring or summer and I can have book signings.

Top Ten Tuesdays


I looked at this months TTT and really didn't have much to say on the topics. I'm taking a break in this.

Saturday, January 02, 2021

Captain's Log 010221

 Relaxed New Year's eve. Son was off work so we watched all three Matix movies to ring in the New year. A few fire works, but not as many as usual. Dogs did okay.

New Years day we stayed home, read some, relaxed and watched Let Them All Talk, with Maryl Streep, Candice Bergin, and Diane Weist on a premium channel. Like watching paint dry. Watched three Mission Impossible movies, Rogue Nation, Ghost Protocol and Fallout. 

Wow three movies with the same villain that you can't kill. Brings to mind Dracula, Fu Manchu, Moriarity, and others.

Today we drove up to Santa Fe to visit my father's and mother's grave. First time since Mom died. There wasn't time to get too emotional at the site. It was cold and windy.