Random Thoughts

Disqualified...NOT!

Rejected by the judicial system...

NOT!!!

I was recently notified I've been summoned for jury duty in the US District Court for the month of April.

The last time I was summoned I was ultimately deemed "disqualified" because I was deaf.

I'm still deaf... but deaf with a difference: Bilateral cochlear implants. I made the court aware of my implants. The reaction? Well, this time I am swimming in the jury pool.

How do I feel about it?

Like another closed chapter in my life has been opened again.

Yes, jury duty can be an inconvenience. But it is an essential part of our justice system. It is a duty that pales compared to the sacrifices of those who risk their lives day in and day out, at home and abroad, to protect and serve and assure our way of life.

And also, for a guy who regularly eats at his desk, a "courthouse lunch hour" is practically a vacation.

I just hope my fellow jurors won't mind the aroma of chicken wing sauce after lunch.


* * *

OK...on to the next project...

...but I'm not sure what that is!

What I have to guard against is a little streak of laziness when I finish a project, and there's a temptation to kick back a bit after finishing Patience.

But I think I will keep at it. I'll probably concentrate on From the Sky for a bit. It's much closer to completion than No Cognitive Defect. I also have numerous early drafts of stories to rewrite for submission. In short, after all these years, I finally have enough "Schtuff" to start sending multiple things out while I work on new material. I think I'm the kind of person that needs a rhythm of some type when they work.

Meantime... there's snow-a-coming. Again. I can't wait for this winter to end. I may try and dispel it with a ritual of spring (grilling on the deck). I'll offer burnt hot dogs and dried-out burgers to the gods of weather. --Jimbo

New Fiction on the Horizon...

Coming soon...

Coming Soon... Patience

Patience

...A new and complete new short story draft from James O'Meara

Is Dynamo Dreaming Chicken Wing Dreams for 2011?

Dynamic Dynamo at 11:50 PM EST New Year's Eve 2010...

Dynamic Dynamo at 11:50 PM EST New Year's Eve 2010...

This is solely the result of eating two giant plates of linguini with clam sauce and a big bowl of cold shrimp with cocktail sauce very late on New Year's Eve.

In the interest of full disclosure, maybe I had a wee bit of rum punch on an empty stomach beforehand. Just a glass. Okay, a big glass. Three of them.

I did rally in time to greet the New Year, then had a steamed clam or two as my first meal in 2011. Maybe more than two or three. Okay, it was a couple dozen. With lots of butter.

(Editor's note: linguini, shrimp, rum punch and steamed clams do interesting things to your innards at 4AM. I think it was the butter. I'll cut back on that next year.)

* * *

HAPPY CHRISTMAS...


NCD House Cleaning and other niblets...

Since the election ended, I've been concentrating on fiction. It's hard to mope around feeling sorry for myself after losing when I'm completely immersed in the lives of the characters who have been waiting patiently for me to get back to work on them!

On that note...

I'm about to post the 16th segment of No Cognitive Defect. It struck me that I have to reorganize the NCD menus. NCD started out as a short story idea that popped into my head while I was out for a walk. But it became much more. I have to reorganize things a bit so that it's a bit less intimidating to readers. If I do it right, it's just a little "house cleaning" that won't mess up the reading experience.

Next... I'll be zipping off to Harrisburg on Wednesday, December 1 to participate in a Cochlear volunteer event. This is an area where I feel I can really "Make a Difference" (hey, that was a decent campaign slogan, wasn't it??).

Finally, I've really enjoyed watching my Nittany Lions post-election. They're a very young football team that will give opponents fits over the next two years. And, being a NEPA guy, I love a walk-on quarterback from Scranton getting the starting nod. Scranton! Where soap opera writers send characters to die!

"I'm off to Scranton, Gil!"

"See you soon, Marnie dearest."

Next episode, the phone rings.

"Gil. It's Dr. Biff. Marnie had an accident. She fell down a coal chute in Scranton. She didn't make it."

Yup. You gotta love the idea of a Scranton kid with a lot of moxie guiding the Nits. Go get'em, Matt McGloin...


* * *

To paint, or not to paint....

...this was the question yesterday.

I gave the shed its first coat and went inside to eat lunch before applying the second.

I checked in with the Penn State-Ohio State game. The Lions were up 14-3 at halftime. On the road.

The temptation to finish the shed on Sunday sank in immediately. After all since 1978, when the Lions beat OSU 19-0 on the road, my boys haven't scored more than 13 points in Columbus.

And here we were, 14 points already, and only halftime!

To paint, or not to paint.

And then, from on high, a booming voice: "I'm just screwing with you Jimbo. Get back to work."

The Lions lost 38-14.

The shed's done. You don't mess with the Almighty.

Call me, Jimbo...

Back on September 18, just as my campaign was starting to enter the home stretch, I attended my 35th year high school class reunion. If you believe Hollywood, class reunions are supposed to be torturous affairs no one wants to attend but does so out of a sense of duty. Or maybe just to see if others are aging better or worse than you are.

Not so with Wyoming Area's class of 1975. Our reunions are a blast. We have a great time. And I'm happy to report that we still have the hottest-looking women of any class that ever attended that district.

On that note, my story begins. When I pulled into the parking lot at the reunion, I was driving "campaign central" ...an old red Buick with a magnetic campaign sign slapped on the door. This made me an easy target for a practical joke. When your name's on the door, everyone knows which car is yours.

The reunion was great, and it was well after dark when I headed home. The next morning I was about to drive to church when I found this under my windshield wiper:

Give me ring, Jimbo...

So which of those gorgeous ladies planted this on the car (instead of planting one on me)?

It's a mystery.

But it gets better. About a week after finding that card under my visor, I was driving my daughter up to Misericordia.

"Hey Dad?" she asked. "Why is there lipstick on your window?"

Sure enough, the window on the driver's side door had a big, fat lipstick-kiss planted on the glass.

I thought about getting DNA evidence. Maybe sending a scraping of the lipstick to the FBI crime lab.

I GET TO PICK DINNER ON MY BIRTHDAY. GUESS WHAT I WANT??

The perfect birthday dinner...

Here's how I'd have written Forrest Gump:

Tell me about wings, Bubba.

Well, Forrest, there's deep-fried wings, broiled wings, bar-b-cue wings, breaded wings, beer-battered wings, hot wings, nuclear wings, mild wings, cajun wings, honey wings, boneless wings, garlic wings, garlic honey wings, dry-spiced wings, bleu cheese wings, tabasco wings, 5-spice wings, sweet and sour wings, hot-sauce-and-cola wings, plain, crispy wings...

Gee, Bubba that's a lot of wings. Any wings with shrimp in them?

This ain't no box of chocolates, Forrest. It's all about wings.

The Election is over...

...and Dynamo will be returning soon. But tonight, it's all about propping up my aching feet, putting a pillow under my wobbly right knee, laying a big plate o'chicken wings on my smaller belly, and DOIN' NUTTIN.

...well, doin' nuttin For about two hours. That's about as long as I can sit still....

Jimbo

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