Saturday, May 21, 2011

2010 Nebula Awards

SF Signal: WINNERS: 2010 Nebula Awards

Click the link for the list.

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

Teacher arrested for 'sex with FIVE students during home orgy'

And So It Begins . . .

Scientists say Iceland's most active volcano has started erupting

Today's Vintage Ad

It Ain't Gonna Rain No More

Drovers CattleNetwork - Texas drought losses to agriculture approach $1.5 billion


John Faulkner, Ain't Gonna Rain No More, Gold Medal, 1959

New Story at BEAT to a PULP

BEAT to a PULP :: Katy Too :: Alec Cizak

Top 10 Pizza Flavours

Top 10 Pizza Flavours

Top Cars for Audiophiles

Top Cars for Audiophiles - Best In-Car Sound Systems

Today's Western Movie Poster

First It Was the Thin Mints Melee . . .

Man killed in stabbing after neighbors argue - San Antonio Express-News: "Investigators were called to the Park on Goldfield apartment complex in the 4000 block of Goldfield near Rittiman Road before 2 a.m. Friday after other residents at the complex said they heard the two men get into a dispute over some children throwing eggs.

During the argument, witnesses told police that the victim attempted to walk away, but that the other man followed, pulled out a knife and stabbed him at least once in the back."

iPad Games for Cats

Games for Cats!: "Friskies is excited to feed your cats’ senses with three new games made just for cats. The colors, movement, and game-play have been researched and tested for maximum feline fun."

Video at the link.

I Depends on What You Mean by "Normal" "It was a far cry from a normal home.

Mom and dad ran a marijuana-growing business, according to authorities, and dad pointed a gun at a state trooper when he arrived to shut it down.

And a third man living at the home was busy making pipe bombs."

Politics in Kelley Country

TPMDC: "The national Chamber of Commerce is using misleading quotes from the local Tonawanda News in a TV ad to suggest the paper backs Republican Jane Corwin in the NY-26 election, according to the paper. Upset with what they claim is an intentionally phony endorsement, the newspaper's editors are demanding that the Chamber pull the TV ad and that Corwin's campaign disavow it."

When Gators are Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Have Gators

NewsChannel 9 WSYR: "A six-foot-long alligator named 'Howard' and an eight-foot-long albino Burmese python named 'Sponge Bob' were seized Friday morning by officers of the State Environmental Conservation Police. Legally, the animals are not permitted to be kept as pets."

Just as I Suspected

I'm still here. Am I the only one? Is there anybody reading this? Maybe the big event is supposed to be later in the day. I should have prepared for this eventuality be reading these books, but it's probably too late now. I think I'll just go outside and get in on the looting.

Lassie Come Home


Friday, May 20, 2011

Even Better than the Sword at the Pizza Hut

Woman Threatens Dairy Queen Employees with a Grenade: "Police say a woman entered a Dairy Queen restaurant and threatened employees with a grenade."

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

The Raw Story: "A Texas police officer pleaded guilty Thursday charges that will garner him a 6-year prison sentence for attempting to give a prisoner a cache of heroin concealed in a delivery of tacos."

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

Blog - Murderati: Brett Battles on his new e-book: "HERE COMES MR. TROUBLE is my first foray into the world of younger readers. Technically I think it would be considered a cross between middle school and tween genres, but in reality can be enjoyed by anyone 10 and up.

It’s a mix of reality and my own brand of mythology, with humor, suspense, and more than a couple scary moments thrown in. Oh yeah, and thrills, too. I can’t get away from that.

I can’t tell you how much fun this was to write. I’ve wanted to work in the middle school/YA market for a while. Part of it is because I read and love the genre books, but probably the biggest reason is that my kids are in that reading group. I think some of the most innovative and interesting work is being done for readers 20 and under.

To say MR. TROUBLE holds a very special place in my heart, would be an understatement."

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

Last year about this time I reviewed an earlier novel about the chubby, chain-smoking Inspector Singh, one that I liked a lot. Now comes a new one with Singh, who's unappreciated by his superiors despite his considerable crime-solving skills, getting shunted off to Cambodia for a war crimes tribunal. He's just an observer, but when one of the witnesses meets an unexpected demise, Singh is put in charge of the investigation by the UN liaison.

Singh's at a big disadvantage, being in a strange country and not knowing the language, but he sets to work and uncovers things that a lot of people would rather keep secret. It's tough to write about a crime on the scale of genocide, but Shamini Flint does it with skill and compassion, and she even manages to keep the low-key humor that's a hallmark of the series. Check it out.

Ross Hagen, R. I. P.

Variety: "Ross Hagen, a regular on the 1960s TV adventure series 'Daktari' who went on to write, direct and produce some low-budget pics, died of prostate cancer May 7 in Brentwood, Calif. He was 72.

The actor guested on TV Westerns such as 'The Big Valley' and 'The Virginian' during the mid-'60s while also appearing on the bigscreen in the Elvis Presley film 'Speedway' and low-budget biker pics such as 'The Mini-Skirt Mob' and 'The Hellcats.'

He joined the cast of CBS' 'Daktari,' starring Marshall Thompson as an American running an animal study center in Africa, in 1968. He appeared in 12 episodes as Bart Jason, a hunter who had become a photographic safari guide."

Macho Man Randy Savage, R. I. P. "TMZ spoke with Randy's brother, Lanny Poffo, who tells us the wrestling legend suffered a heart attack while he was behind the wheel around 9:25 AM ... and lost control of his vehicle.

Earlier this month, Savage celebrated his 1-year anniversary with his new wife Lynn.

Savage was 58.

Macho Man began wrestling in the WWF in 1985 and became a superstar with his trademark catchphrase 'Ooooooh Yeaahhhhh.' Savage was so popular, he became the spokesperson for Slim Jim in the mid '90s ... and became virtually synonymous with the brand."

First It Was the Thin Mints Melee . . . "Police say a woman involved in an argument at a Louisville Pizza Hut raised the stakes considerably when she tried to pull a sword."

Today's Vintage Ad

Comic Strip of the Day

Seepy Benton's Lyrics Go for a Bit Less

BBC News: "John Lennon's handwritten lyrics for the 1967 Beatles song Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds have sold $237,132 (£145,644) at an auction in the US.

The sale of the sheet, which features the song's third verse and the opening words to She's Leaving Home, took place at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills."


Philip B. Kaye, Taffy, Avon, 1951

No Comment Department Houston: "Houston police were searching for a suspect Thursday who tried to rob a bar that officers were staking out but slipped away unnoticed before he could be caught."

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way "A woman caught up in a bizarre case after her firefighter husband was killed in the line of duty is now going to star in her own reality television show.

Wharton volunteer firefighter Thomas Araguz III was killed in July 2010 while fighting a fire. Legal battles over his death benefits brought to light the fact that his widow, Nikki Araguz, was transgendered."

It's Not Me

The most influential man in history

Criminal Genius of the Day

Wrong Number, Suspicious Circumstances Lead to Drug Arrests: "Brownwood Police netted a drug arrest on Wednesday, according to BPD officials, after a suspect dialed a Brownwood narcotics officer’s cell phone by mistake, offering him a chance to purchase drugs."

Today's Western Movie Poster

It Could be Worse

Butt rot.

Getting Ready for May 21?

James Randi Educational Foundation: "Forty-Four End-of-the-World Prophecies——That Failed"

Zane Grey: King of the Cowboy Books

Zane Grey: King of the Cowboy Books on AbeBooks

Forgotten Books: There Was a Crooked Man -- Day Keene

The other day I found a Gold Medal book in a Half-Price store. That hasn't happened in years. The last time might have been the now-legendary experience when I managed to slip eight or ten of them away from Joe Lansdale when we were at the World Fantasy con in Corpus Christi back in the year 2000. The book last Saturday is the one pictured on the left. My own copy was about to fall apart, so I was glad for the upgrade.

The "crooked man" of the title is Clay Burgess, a good cop in a corrupt town, who goes along to get along and soon finds himself liking the money that comes with being bent. Eventually he's as bad as anybody, but then his daughter gets polio. He steals a bundle and disappears, but it's too late for his daughter. I'm not spoiling anything here, by the way. We learn all this in the first chapter, which sets up a flashback in which we find out all about the decline and fall of Clay Burgess. Okay, maybe not all about him, but nobody who reads this blog is going to be surprised by the big reveal at the end. I doubt that Keene expected anyone to be. He does throw a nice curve in the ending, though. A little sentimental? Sure. But I don't mind.

Even if you know where things are going, Keene's propulsive writing carries the day. You keep right on reading to find out about Burgess and what drives him and how low he's going to go. At 144 pages, the perfect Gold Medal length, the story covers a heck of a lot of ground, and it's just right for a few hours of good reading.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Jeffrey Catherine Jones, R. I. P.

Steve Rothaus' Gay South Florida: "Transgender comics artist and fantasy illustrator Jeffrey Catherine Jones died Thursday at 67, reports Comic Book Resources.

Born Jeffrey Jones 1944, the artist celebrated a long career whose highlights included a 1970s run doing cover paintings for major fantasy novels like Fritz Leiber's 'Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser' and a number of comics including 'Idyl' for 'National Lampoons' and 'I'm Age' for 'Heavy Metal.'"

First It Was the Thin Mints Melee . . .

Karaoke triggers Murray bar brawl | The Salt Lake Tribune: "Four people have been charged with a felony count of riot after a fight that court papers say began with insults during a karaoke song at a Murray bar."

Hat tip to Jeff Meyerson.

Texas Unleads the Way

‘My bad’: Willie Nelson un-endorses Republican Gary Johnson | The Raw Story: "Willie Nelson has had a change of heart.

The iconic country singer reportedly endorsed Republican presidential candidate Gary Johnson this week, but now he's taking it all back."

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

Rough Edges: Dreams in the Fire is Now Available: "A unique collection of voices, an amazing range of fiction and verse, all inspired by the great fantasy and adventure writer, Robert E. Howard (1906-1936), and written by the members of the Robert E. Howard United Press Association! Featuring stories and poems by Charles Gramlich, James Reasoner, Rob Roehm, Barbara Barrett, Robert Weinberg, Christopher Fulbright, Frank Coffman, Jimmy Cheung, Patrick R. Berger, Danny Street, Angeline Hawkes, Amy Kerr, Mark Finn, David A. Hardy, Chris Gruber, Gary Romeo, Morgan Holmes, and Don Herron, with an introduction by Rusty Burke."

10 Novels That Will Disturb Even the Coldest of Hearts

10 Novels That Will Disturb Even the Coldest of Hearts

Hat tip to George Kelley.

Fuzzy Nation -- John Scalzi

How to deal with this one? It's a "reboot" of H. Beam Piper's Little Fuzzy, and while there are movie reboots all the time, it seldom happens to novels, unless of course sea monsters or vampires are involved. There are those who'll think John Scalzi should have left Piper's book alone and that he's at worst a plagiarist and at best someone who had no ideas of his own and has turned fanfic into a published book.

Here's the thing with me. I can't criticize anybody for writing fanfic, having written and published six or seven Sherlock Holmes stories, myself. And while I have avoided all the sea monster reboots, I like Scalzi's work and thought I'd give this one a try. I read the Piper original when it appeared back in 1962, but I've also read Ardath Mayhar's Golden Dream: A Fuzzy Odyssey, which I suppose some might label fanfic as well.

But look at it this way: Most of the people who read this book won't have read Little Fuzzy. The vast majority of them weren't born when H. Beam Piper was writing, and I suspect they've never heard of him. If they read this book, maybe they'll be curious enough to read the original or even Space Viking or A Planet for Texans.

As I said above, I like Scalzi's work. I've reviewed his books on the blog, and very favorably. I like his writing style, which doesn't call attention to itself, and I like his pacing and his characters. And I liked Fuzzy Nation.

Jack Holloway, the protagonist, isn't a nice guy, but, like a Heinlein character, he's a competent man, good at just about everything. If you don't count human relationships, that is. He's terrible at those. He's happy to help the big bad corporation rape a planet if it fills his pockets, too (there's a little Avatar in here, I guess). But then the fuzzys move in. Literally. They move into his house. Are the sentient beings? If they are, Jack will lose the huge fortune he's just discovered, but it falls on him to prove that they are.

Humor, rousing courtroom drama, despicable villains, action, and a great dog. All good stuff. If you revere Piper and his memory, not to mention his fine novels, you might want to skip this just because. If you want to read an entertaining SF novel, then by all means give it a try.

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

For your Kindle. I need the validation.

Today's Vintage Ad

Croc Update (Family Tree Edition)

Cosmic Log - Study reshuffles crocodile family tree: "A fresh analysis of a fossil found in the 1970s suggests that the family trees for crocodiles, birds and dinosaurs diverged earlier than some may have thought.

The study represents the latest chapter in a long-running debate over the relationships between dinosaurs and the ancestors of two dissimilar types of modern-day creatures — crocs and birds."

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

Texas Exes | UT Professor Discovers New Fossil Primate Species In West Texas: "“Great discoveries are waiting in our own backyards,” says Chris Kirk.

He should know. Kirk, an associate professor of anthropology at UT, has announced the discovery of a new species of fossil primate, Mescalerolemur horneri. The small primate inhabited West Texas about 43 million years ago."


Ray Cummings, The Princess of the Atom, Avon, 1950

Okay, Now I Might Vote for Him

TPMDC: "Reporters did discover one aspect of Gingrich's campaign today that's likely a first: his cell phone, which went off at a rally, uses ABBA's 'Dancing Queen' as its ringtone."

Two Real Pros Discuss Their Careers

An evening with Lawrence Block & Robert Silverberg at the Belmont, California Public Library, sponsored by the M Is For Mystery Bookstore. Photo by Art Scott.

Cloned Kitty Update

First cloned cat turns 10 | Life | - Houston Chronicle: "Whatever happened to CC, the world's first cloned cat? It seems like only yesterday CC's baby pictures were being flashed around the world as Texas A&M University researchers presented their scientific triumph to the media.

Almost 10 years later CC, aka Copy Cat, is still in the College Station area. She has a mate, Smokey, and they live with their three offspring in a cat mansion built by Dr. Duane C. Kraemer, an A&M researcher who helped bring CC into the world.

A framed photo of CC the kitten hangs on the wall of CC's two-story abode, which has a screened front porch, air-conditioning, heating, plumbing, catwalks, lofts and an enclosed outdoor play area."

Adorable photo at link.

40 Classic Books Every Horror Buff Should Read

40 Classic Books Every Horror Buff Should Read

Today's Western Movie Poster

Three Books For The Grammar Lover In Your Life

Three Books For The Grammar Lover In Your Life

Badass Women of the Pulp Era

Badass Women of the Pulp Era

I Found a Penny in the Street Last Week

Rusty cars that could be worth millions - Yahoo! Autos: "For car buffs, it's an almost mythical concept. But, unlike Big Foot and Mermaids, barn finds really do exist."

Great photos at the link.

Clint Walker Update

Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Clint?

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

Texas drinking water makes pipes and plumbing radioactive

And Keep Off Her Lawn!

Maria Gomes Valentim Named Oldest Living Person: Guinness World Records Taps 114-Year-Old Brazilian To The Honor

You Too Can Explore Space

SETI@home Project Lets Computer Users Search For Alien Life on 86 Planets: "As scientists suggest they're close to discovering the first habitable planet beyond our own, 86 individual planets are now being scanned for signs of aliens in the cosmos. And people can use their home computers to join in the search."

Jolson Sings Again


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Australia Leads the Way

Space beer brewed for zero-gravity thirst: "'It's going to be the first beer that will be specifically designed to be drunk in zero gravity with upcoming space tourism,' said Jaron Mitchell, who owns the 4 Pines Brewing Company, a microbrewery."

Hat tip to Jeff Meyerson.

They Were Practically on his Lawn

Maryland Man Shoots Shotgun at Group of Skateboarders; 15-Year-Old Struck in Leg: "He told police that he saw seven or eight teens on their skateboards using profanity and attempted to intervene. He said one of the teens called him a profane name, so he pepper-sprayed them.

Arminger went back to his home and retrieved his shotgun. He said he intended to fire the shot to scare the juveniles, but struck the 15-year-old."

Things are Getting Serious

CDC Warns Public to Prepare for 'Zombie Apocalypse'

Hat tip to Art Scott.

Worth a Look

Mail Online: "In the bleak light of the Depression: Rare colour photographs of the era that defined a generation"

Today's Vintage Ad


A. Merritt, Seven Footprints to Satan, Avon, 1950

:.. Buddy Holly Tribute Compilation

Under The Radar ..:: "Buddy Holly Tribute Out in June
To Feature Covers by My Morning Jacket, Paul McCartney, The Black Keys, Modest Mouse, and others"

15 Writers With Lives More Interesting Than Fiction

15 Writers With Lives More Interesting Than Fiction

Today's Western Movie Poster

The most hated baby names in America |

The most hated baby names in America

And Keep Off His Lawn!

Winter Haven-Lake Wales News: "Winter Haven Police have arrested a 71-year-old man with attempted second-degree murder after he cut another man in the neck and face during an argument over a female."

10 Strangest Trees on Earth

10 Strangest Trees on Earth

Two From Texas

10 College Mascots That Are Actually Cool

The Jolson Story


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Edward Hardwicke, R. I. P.

Reuters: "Edward Hardwicke, who played the faithful Dr. Watson opposite Jeremy Brett's 'Sherlock Holmes' in the famed Granada Television series of the 1980s and '90s, died Monday, the Telegraph in London reported. He was 78."

Gator Update (New York Edition)

3-foot alligator captured in western NY yard: "A call of an alligator on the loose snapped police into action in western New York.

Police in the city of Jamestown say a resident called about 7:45 a.m. Tuesday to report an alligator in a side yard."

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

The Raw Story: "The Teapot Party, founded by country singer and activist Willie Nelson, has officially endorsed former New Mexico governor and current Republican presidential candidate Gary Johnson."

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

I'm an old guy, so now and then I get a little jolt of future shock like I did when I got into Simon Wood's Lowlifes. First of all, it's a book. You can buy it and hold it and all that. It's got one of my favorite kinds of stories: the guy who wakes up with amnesia and can't remember if he's killed somebody or not. The guy in this case is druggie cop Larry Hayes, and to find out if he done it, he has to disappear into San Francisco's homeless community. It's a ripping good yarn.

So you read the book and that's that, right? Wrong, Old Guy! You can, if you want to, read the book and say, "That's that," but you don't have to. Wood and filmmaker Robert Pratten have created a whole transmedia experience here. After you read the book, you can go to this site and start clicking around. There are two series of videos that show the story from two more perspectives. There's an interactive game. You can order a DVD. And you can get all this on your phone if you want to. See what I mean about future shock? Maybe you whippersnappers think this is all old hat, but it's not to me. Check it out.

Harmon Killebrew, R. I. P.

Harmon Killebrew Dies; Baseball's Humble Slugger : NPR: "Baseball fans are mourning a legend — Minnesota Twins Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew died Tuesday, ending his battle with esophageal cancer. Killebrew was a top power hitter in the 1960s. And he helped the fledgling Twins put down roots in a place that until 1961 had never had a major league team."

Leather boots are still in style for manly footwear

How Mexican men have embraced bizarre trend for pointed footwear

Hat tip to Art Scott.

Today's Vintage Ad

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

Victoria Advocate: "A birthday party ended Friday night with one man dead and two brothers, including the honoree, in jail.

Matthew A. Chapa Zapata, 20, of Victoria, died from a gunshot wound to the head after he accidentally shot himself while playing with a handgun, officials said."

Just What You've Been Waiting For!

I have a new blog post on Criminal Element. You don't have to read it, but click the link, anyway, so they'll think I have millions of fans and they can justify my huge paycheck. Thanks.


Robert Briffault, Europa, Avon, 1950

Call in the Bomb Squad "Watermelons have been bursting by the score in eastern China after farmers gave them overdoses of growth chemicals during wet weather, creating fields of 'land mines' instead of the bounty of fruit they wanted."

Hat tip to Art Scott

Conan -- The Sequel

The Raw Story: "Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has admitted to reporters that he fathered a child over 10 years ago with a longtime member of his household staff.

Breaking the news of this to his wife, Maria Schriver, largely contributed to their split."

21 Doomsday Prophecies that Fizzled

Apocalypse Not: 21 Doomsday Prophecies that Fizzled

Added to the Blog Roll

I've reviewed Chris Knopf's books numerous times, and now I've added his blog to the roll. Check it out here: knopfnotes - Articles

Today's Western Movie Poster

Gator Update (Long Island Edition)

| Long Island Press: "Why was the Alligator on the side of the road?

That’s what investigators are trying to figure out after a driver spotted the young reptile on the eastbound side of the Long Island Expressway 1.5 miles east of exit 68 in Yaphank at about 10 a.m. Monday."

Baby Names Update

The Raw Story: "Stumped for an original name for their newborn daughter, an Israeli couple took inspiration from social networking site Facebook and named her 'Like,' Israeli daily Maariv reported on Monday."

Bob Flanigan, R. I. P.

ABC News: "Bob Flanigan, an original member of the four-part jazz vocal harmony group The Four Freshmen, has died in Las Vegas at age 84, a manager of the group said Monday.

Flanigan died Sunday at home of congestive heart failure, with family members nearby and several local trombonists playing songs, IVI Management agent Dina Roth said.

'Flanigan's voice was indestructible,' said Ross Barbour, the last remaining original member of the four-man group. 'He could drive all day and all night without stopping between gigs, and when our voices were on the edge Bob was still in full form.'"

James and the Giant Peach Turns 50

James and the Giant Peach and Other Fruity Adventures on AbeBooks

Forgotten Films: A Place in the Sun

I was ten or eleven years old when I first saw A Place in the Sun. I'm sure I didn't understand it at, but I was bowled over by the beauty of Elizabeth Taylor and the sadness of the ending.

Later on I read Dreiser's An American Tragedy and saw the movie again. I liked it even more that time. I think of the book (along with Frank Norris's McTeague, which appeared not long before it) as proto-noir. The movie is shot in black and white (don't let that photo on the left fool you), so it has that in common with noir films along with its plot.

Montgomery Clift is George Eastman, a guy with little education and less money. He gets a job at a relative's factory, proves to be really good at it, and gets promoted. Eventually he's invited to a party with some of the biggies and meets Angela Vickers, played by Elizabeth Taylor. They fall in love. But there's a problem named Alice (Shelly Winters, and if you remember her only from her later years, you should see this movie for that reason alone). Clift has been going with her, and she's hard to shake. Especially when (insert shocking for the 1950's plot development). She threatens to Tell All, and if you've ever read a Gold Medal original, you know what that means. For Clift, it's all downhill from there.

This movie has it all: real movie stars giving fine performances, beautiful B&W photography, doomed love, a social message, and more. Okay, I lied. There are no explosions, no car chases, no zombies. Check it out anyway.

A Place in the Sun


Monday, May 16, 2011

With Friends Like These . . . .

Head Found with Chainsaw Nearby: "Police who found a man's dismembered body outside a vacant house, with the head and an arm stuffed into a trash bag and the rest of his remains in a backyard next door, arrested his best friend Monday for murder."

First It Was the Thin Mints Melee . . .

Greeley Tribune: "A bizarre case in which a man was accused of beating guests at his party with brass knuckles and then holding them captive with a Samurai sword has taken another strange turn. Now the suspect’s wife has been arrested, accused of being an accomplice in holding the men and threatening to sic her pit bulls on a mother who rescued the victims in her pickup truck."

Hat tip to Jeff Meyerson.

Mary Murphy, R. I. P.

iWon News: "Actress Mary Murphy has died at 80. She was discovered in a coffee shop and landed a role as the small-town wholesome girl opposite Marlon Brando in 'The Wild One.'"

Hat tip to Jeff Meyerson.

First It Was the Thin Mints Melee . . .

Italian ham slice dispute lands four in hospital - Yahoo! News: "Four people were on Saturday hospitalised in Italy after a dispute over the thickness of a supermarket's ham slices turned violent, the ANSA news agency said in a report.

The row broke out when a 50-year-old woman shopping in the Tuscany town of Livorno in central Italy protested that the ham slices being cut by a counter assistant were too thick."

Pulp Pusher Update

Pulp Pusher is back. Check it out.

The Only Thing We Have to Fear . . . . "During the trip, another passenger's Chihuahua urinated on his backpack.

So, he stashed the wet bag in some bushes while he went inside to answer a disorderly conduct citation.

But then a retired police officer saw the bag and alerted security.

The bomb squad was ultimately called in. Officers used a robot to determine that the bag didn't contain anything harmful."

Kasey Lansdale Update

Adventures In Writing: "The talented Kasey Lansdale has just agree to be a book cover model and character in the RANCHO DIABLO book series in the near future. Look for her story in the fall!"

Today's Vintage Ad

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

I've been using these posts to plug books by others, and I figure I deserve a little space, too. So expect more plugs of my own work here, including this one for the third book in the Rancho Diablo series. The first one, by Mel Odom, gets the series off to a rousing start, and James Reasoner's second volume moves things along in great slam-bang style. Naturally you should read their contributions, too, but especially mine since they're outselling me. We can't have that, can we?

Here's the Plot for Your Next Big Crime Novel

Cop ran Pleasant Hill brothel, co-defendant says: "A Concord private investigator at the center of a law enforcement scandal admits he helped run a house of prostitution in Pleasant Hill, but says the former commander of a Contra Costa County anti-drug task force was the architect of the operation and shut down competing brothels, the investigator's attorney said Thursday."


Kenneth Thomas, The Devil's Mistress, Gold Medal, 1958

Life Imitates "Art" Houston: "The explosion of the feral hog population in Texas has become a major concern for a Fort Bend County neighborhood.

Brandi Gibson, a 10-year resident of Cinco Ranch who lives adjacent to George Bush Park and Barker Reservoir, said the hogs have started to venture into the neighborhood more than ever before.

'They’ve torn up the cul-de-sac and they’ve actually gone down both sides of the street,' she said."

Ripper Update

Scotland Yard fights to keep Jack the Ripper files secret - Telegraph: "Scotland Yard is fighting an extraordinary legal battle to withhold 123-year-old secret files which experts believe could finally provide the identity of Jack the Ripper."

Today's Western Movie Poster

10 Historic Sports Accomplishments That Are Forever Tainted

10 Historic Sports Accomplishments That Are Forever Tainted

All Righty, Then

Forgotten Michael Jackson photos could power the world, inventor says -

Criminal Genius of the Day

Man arrested for huffing in sheriff's parking lot

Live Long and Prosper? "The six astronauts flying on NASA's final flight of the space shuttle Endeavour are a serious bunch, but they've got a fun streak too. Case in point: The astronauts apparently like the science fiction franchise 'Star Trek' enough to re-enact its most recent movie poster."

Hat tip to Stan Burns.

Captain Kronos: Vampire Hunter


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Serial Killer Update

NYPD cops being eyed in LI serial killer probe

Geraldine Brooks' Favorite Books

Geraldine Brooks' Favorite Books

Today's Vintage Ad

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Interesting Books to Your Attention

Crossroad Press is publishing a number of my backlist titles in e-book format, so naturally I'm happy to plug this anthology. It's just $.99 for 10 short stories, all of which are rare, one never before published, from five Crossroad Press authors. The idea is that its sales will boost interest in other Crossroad Press titles, including mine, even though I don't have a story in the book. It's a bargain. Snap it up.

Catching Up with Kasey

Meet Miss Lansdale


Barthold Fles (editor), The Saturday Evening Post Fantasy Stories, Avon, 1950

50 Funniest Movie Title Translations

50 Funniest Movie Title Translations

Link via Neatorama.

Len Deighton Interview

The Deighton Dossier: Exclusive to the Deighton Dossier: Q&A with Len Deighton

Maybe This Is for Real

There seem to be a number of models for sale here.

Today's Western Movie Poster

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

Houston Chronicle: "At some point, someone put a knife on the victim’s bed. Not knowing it was there, the man jumped onto the bed and landed on the knife, Smith said.

Paramedics took the man to Ben Taub General Hospital, where he died."

First It Was the Thin Mints Melee . . .

Hot-dog vendor slashed in face by rival wiener seller in front of Time Warner Center

Bernard Greenhouse, R. I. P. "Bernard Greenhouse, acclaimed cellist and founding member of the renowned Beaux Arts Trio, has died of natural causes at his home in Massachusetts. He was 95."

Who Knew?

ZOMBIE RESEARCH SOCIETY: "May is the official Zombie Awareness Month of the Zombie Research Society."

Hat to Fred Zackel.

The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll