A BRIEF TIME OUT…..

In light of current events, I think it would be inappropriate to post one of my typically lighthearted blogs.  Instead, I would simply like to say that my thoughts and prayers are with those who lost loved ones on the Malaysia airline tragedy, and with my family and friends in Israel.

Fear not…

This too shall pass.

See you next week,

Doc Yanoff

SUMMER IN THE CITY…..

HOT TOWN, SUMMER IN THE CITY.  BACK OF MY NECK GETTING DIRTY AND GRITTY…..  Hey, I remember that song!  It wasn’t written about Austin, Texas, but it could have been.  Actually, it was about New York City, penned by John Sebastian and recorded by the Lovin’ Spoonful in 1966.  (I hate to admit it, but I graduated from high school in 1967!)  So how hot is it down here in the Lone Star State?

The Jehovah Witnesses have started telemarketing!

Congress has installed a fan in the debt ceiling!

I caught a FRIED catfish in Lake Travis!  (Now that’s hot!)

Speaking of Lake Travis, my semi-brilliant mystery, DEVIL’S COVE, has recently been named as one of the Top Ten Mysteries of the Year by the Albany (N.Y.) Times Union newspaper.  There was no cash award (darn it!) but it’s still a wonderful honor and one that is greatly appreciated.  The book is now on its third printing, so if you haven’t been able to obtain a copy, now’s your chance.  He who hesitates is lost!

Incidentally, I would like to thank Ms. Emily Garrison for all of her hard work in reference to typing and blocking mystery number four, RANSOM ON THE RHONE.  The next “Adam Gold Mystery” will be published sometime in the fall, and this one takes place mostly in France.  (Hence the title)  The book was originally titled “Life On The Mississippi,” but the publisher thought it was a little long and a somewhat confusing.  (What do they know?)

And since we’re on the subject of publishing, I recently read some interesting things in our local newspaper…..     The finals of the World Cup (Germany vs. Argentina) might attract the largest television audience in history!  I’ve never seen any of the World Cups, but I did meet Dolly Parton when I went to Pigeon Forge.  (This would be a visual joke!) …..   Our current immigration crisis means no more Olympic teams from Central America.  (All of their citizens who can run, jump, and swim are coming to America!) …..  The Republicans have chosen Cleveland as the site of their next national convention.  The Democrats are looking at Baghdad, Gaza City, and Chicago.  (The first two are getting the most votes!)

Last night was “Pool Party Number 200,” and a great time was had by all.  We dined on grilled mahi-mahi, shrimp, fresh salads, and sushi.  Our creative host (Me) prepared a large batch of homemade sangria, and lo and behold, every drop was consumed by our prestigious (and thirsty) guests.  Nude bathing was kept to a “bare minimum,” but that’s the last time I send out invitations with a “clothing optional” message.  (Don’t ask where I dropped a hot shrimp.  And NO jokes about shrimps of any kind!)

Jeez, I’ve heard of THE SECOND MOURNING, but not THE FIRST SCALDING!

Well, my dear friends, I must leave thee now.  Time to head for a late breakfast and some homemade biscuits.  (I would like to thank Miss Rebecca Yanoff for supplying the Colorado honey and Chokecherry Jelly .  (The actual name!)  I can’t wait to gouge myself, I mean, gorge myself with these goodies.  In the meantime, you folks take good care of yourselves, don’t worry about me over-eating, and have a great week!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

cropped-wallpapers-c2b7-nature-tropical-island-paradise.jpg

THE RETURN OF CAPTAIN KIDDER!

I am happy to report that the infamous pirate/punster (Captain Kidder) and his female accomplice and first mate (Poker Patty) have returned to port…  (we found a bottle in our luggage!)  After we consume the port, our intention is to unpack, which might take some doing after logging 3,545 miles on our recent book tour/family visitation/Caribbean voyage.  Nonetheless, somebody has to do it, so it mighty as well be Patty.  (I only handle booty….  no jokes, please!)

All in all, it was a remarkable venture, which began in Austin and continued east, with stops in Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, Eleuthera (Bahamas), Jamaica, Cayman Island, Cozumel (Mexico), and then up through the Florida Straights to Miami.  Whew, what a trip!  Too much food and drink, but just the right amount of Texas Hold ‘Em Poker.  (We won enough loot to fill a small treasure chest, or Dolly Parton’s bra.)  Incredibly, the seas were almost flat (no more bra jokes, please) and every day was sunny and warm.  Needless to say, we got very lucky.  (And missed Hurricane Arthur!)

While each day brought new adventures, some events were truly memorable…..  For instance, I learned that the good folks of Jamaica, in preparation for my arrival, named a culinary dish after me.  It’s called “Jerk Chicken,” and just like its namesake, it is hot and spicy, and easier to swallow with a hefty dose of rum.  When we reached the Cayman Islands, we saw the maritime version of that movie about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  (JERSEY BUOYS)  After a glass or two of tequila, (in Cozumel) I actually tripped over the Captain’s Log!  (What was he doing on the bridge?)

The highlight of our trip was meeting new people and making friends with some wonderful folks from all over America…..  Kathy & Ernie from Naples, Beth and her hard-working hubby from Illinois, Susan and James from Florida, Jeanie & Carl from Michigan, and the list goes on and on……  (please forgive me if I left your name out!)  Like I said, the best parts of travel always include the amazing, unselfish, hard-working, honest, loyal, and intelligent citizens that you meet.  What a blessing to live in a country with so many wonderful human beings!

Which reminds me…..  Happy Birthday, America!  (You still look great for your age!)  We celebrated part of the Fourth by drinking some fine Caribbean rum in a famous water-side tavern…. a tavern that was once frequented by Captain Kidd.  (The tavern was mentioned in my second mystery, THE PIRATE PATH)  I was surprised to learn that some Caribbean bars actually charge you for resting your fists on the bar while you’re drinking!  Imagine my surprise when they handed me a…..   “Bar Knuckle Bill!”    (Hey, they don’t call me Captain Kidder for nothin’!)

Well, mates, I must leave thee now….. time to return to the mundane world of law and order… and a different set of bills.  (Electric, gas, water, etc.)  If you get a chance, check out the new reviews for THE SECOND MOURNING which have been posted on Amazon.com   Thanks for your continued support, and please continue to spread the word about the book… I may need bail money for my next voyage!  (Especially if I don’t get some new material!)

Have yourself a safe and wonderful week!  Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

 

 

 

 

THE PIRATE PATH!

HEY, THAT SOUNDS LIKE THE TITLE OF A GREAT MYSTERY NOVEL!  Well, it is, but it’s also the path that I’ve chosen in life…..  Following in the footsteps, or should I say boot steps of Captain Kidd, I am now sailing through the majestic Caribbean in pursuit of fame and fortune!  (I’d settle for the fortune.)  My crew and I have everything we need, sans a few wenches, I mean, winches.  We certainly have plenty of sand.  Our little dinghy is filled with provisions and rum.  (Enough rum to keep us dinghy!)

In order to gain the respect of the crew, I have taken to wearing a black eye-patch, which has become something of a tripping hazard.  Even worse, the damn parrot keeps pooping on my shirt.  Sooner or later, we shall be dining on parrot stew, which is really for the birds.  My first mate, Princess Patty, thinks I should wear my hair in dreadlocks, but I dread lox, unless it’s on a bagel.  Something fishy about that!

Speaking of fishy…..  our ITALIAN chef died of food poisoning last night.  They asked me to deliver a little sermon, so I came up with the following tribute…..   “We will all miss our chef, Luigi.  I can’t believe he pasta away!  Here today, gone tomato!  I guess he ran out of thyme.  I’m sending olive my prayers to the family.  You never sausage a beloved man!”  And so it went, until there was not a dry eye in the house.  (Especially after I did some onion jokes.)

Well, you never know what you will encounter on the high seas, or even the low ones.  I’ve reached the age where my train of thought often leaves the station without me, but I still retain some incredible, deep thoughts…..  such as…..  “DO NOT TRUST ATOMS.  THEY MAKE UP EVERYTHING!  The same could be said for genies…..  One of our fellow passengers asked a genie (they are all over the Caribbean) to make him desirable and irresistible to every woman on earth.  The dang genie turned the poor fellow into a credit card!  Be careful what you wish for, my friends.

Well, right about now you’re probably wishing that this blog post would end, and guess what, your wish will now be granted!  But before I leave, I would like to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Ingrid Kaminski and Sharon Francia, two of my beautiful blog followers!  Have a great day, ladies!

The rest of you folks, please take care and have a wonderful week.  I will keep you posted on my Caribbean voyage.  (Next stop Jamaica and then the Cayman Islands.)  Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

 

THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH!

Following in the footsteps of the great Spanish explorer, Ponce de Leon, (who was NOT related to Leon Redbone or Leon Spinks) I have come to the Sunshine State (Florida) in pursuit of a magical elixir!  (Rum and tequila.)  I am delighted to report that I have discovered vast quantities of both!  From what I remember, there are no impending shortages on the horizon.  Of course, the horizon was a little blurry at the time, so I might be overly optimistic.  Which reminds me, my uncle was an optimist.  He sold eyeglasses at the mall, but he missed a lot of work because he had an eye problem.  (He just couldn’t see coming to work.)  On second thought, he might have been an optometrist.  In any case, he had to quit, because he was starting to envision optical delusions.

As you may have surmised, I am still consuming alcoholic libations, but my true goal this trip is pursuing fame and fortune, and a bronze-colored body.  (Not necessarily my own, either!)  Thus far, we are off to a good start.  I am traveling with my semi-domesticated partner, and the weather could not be better.  We spent the morning at nude beach (by accident) and we both felt quite uncomfortable.  The wife is from Texas, and she thought the sign said “DUDE Beach.”)  She was wrong.  I, being the courteous type, asked the lady sitting next to me if I was making her uncomfortable by not wearing a swimsuit.  She replied, “No, it’s no big thing!”

Needless to say, she ruined my morning, but I got over it.  (I consoled myself with a pastrami sandwich from the Flakowitz Deli.  Accompanied by a Dr. Brown black cherry soda.)  Life is good.

I may have mentioned this already, but I have recently been invited for another interview on the National Book Club Radio Program.  The host, Jack Drucker, wants to have a chat about THE SECOND MOURNING, and I am very pleased and honored to return as a guest.  My first appearance resulted in a surge of book sales and some very interesting speaking invitations.  We are tentatively scheduled to conduct the interview in mid-August, and I will keep you informed of any changes, and provide the exact broadcast time when it becomes available.

In the meantime, I will be doing some “Caribbean research” for the movie version of THE PIRATE PATH.  After our stop in Florida, we are heading down to Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and Cozumel.  I know what you’re thinking.  How do I handle the intense pressure?  How can one man survive the trials and tribulations of becoming a literary beach bum?  How does this fellow avoid a full-scale investigation by the I.R.S.?  (Would you believe I’m friends with Lois Lerner?)  On second thought, maybe that was Lois Lane.

Well, I must leave you now, mainly because the boss wants me to clean my room before we head out for some snorkeling.  I told her that I have ADCD, but she doesn’t believe me.  In case you’re curious, ADCD is Attention Deficit Cleaning Disorder.  Every time I start to clean up, I realize that my efforts are futile, and I’m compelled to lay down and take a nap.  This is usually followed by a violent headache.  (Caused by a hard strike to the head.)  One of these days…..

All right, gang, I’m outta here.  Please have a safe and wonderful week, and keep those cards and letters coming.  The next time you hear from me, I shall be sailing through the Caribbean, bound for ports unknown.  (Thank God I love port!)

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!

I think it would be fitting and appropriate to begin today’s blog by wishing all of you fathers out there a Happy Father’s Day.  For those of you who live abroad (that would be overseas, not as a woman) I should explain that today is the day when American children honor their dads by giving them the most useless gifts they can find.  These gifts usually include, but are not limited to, horrible ties, boxer shorts, heavy metal or rap music, and the always welcomed photo of your children looking like they have just posted bail.

Since I was my dad’s favorite (or one of them) I have fond memories of this uniquely American holiday.  If it was a warm June day, my dad would take me to Jones Beach on Long Island and we would do fun things together.  Just the two of us.  For instance we might play an abbreviated version of hide and seek.  (I would hide, but he wouldn’t look for me.)  Sometimes he would bury me up to the neck in sand, but he always came back the following weekend to dig me up.  (The only negative thing about this game were those pesky high tides.)  On clear days we would walk up and down the beach, and my pop would encourage me to collect some seashells, and as many Portuguese Men of War as I could hold.  Gosh, those were swell times.  (Some of the swells were over my head!)

Speaking of the Portuguese…..  Last night was my sixth birthday celebration, this one hosted by the Princess of Portugal and her hubby, Baron Lee.  (We do at least six parties to make sure we get things right!)  We were all delightfully surprised to encounter Countess Connie at the event.  Even more surprised to sample her world-famous rice pudding.  It was nearly the perfect dessert.  (Mine had a tad too much cinnamon.)  There were other guests, but to be perfectly frank, or Steve, they were just assorted riff raff from Steiner Ranch.  Nice people, but a little boring.

In case you’re wondering, my latest masterpiece, THE SECOND MOURNING, is quickly climbing up the charts.  Unfortunately, the record charts, which is a bit puzzling, but still pretty cool.  By the way, my second mystery, THE PIRATE PATH, which is dedicated to my father, has just been re-issued due to popular demand.  Talk about good timing!  In all seriousness, this was a lovely father’s day surprise for me.  You know, I don’t know if I ever mentioned this, but my dad always hoped that his first son was a boy.  Which reminds me, do you know that my birthday is the same day as when I was born?  Amazing coincidence.

Speaking of giving birth…..  I’d like to send my love and best wishes to Laura Talbott and Kellie Hogan, two charming ladies who will soon have a special delivery to share with the world.  (Laura is using FedEx, Kellie is going with UPS)  Our thoughts and prayers are with you, ladies, so hang in there!  Hey, I have a question about the birth process…..  Does it take 18 months for TWINS to be born? Just curious.

Well, dear friends, I must leave you now.  I am watching the 2014 Brazil World Cup Soccer Tournament.  Unfortunately, the dumb announcer has not said which country is hosting the event, but it looks to be a South American venue.  Then again, it might be Arkansas.

Y’all have a marvelous day, think of how lucky we were to have such a special father in our lives, and enjoy your week.  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

P.S.  As a super special Father’s Day treat, I am attaching a rare photograph from last week’s book signing in Austin, Texas.  We were astonished to discover that Robert Stroud’s children (Stroud was the “Birdman of Alcatraz) attended the event and allowed us to take a picture of them.  (They were “perched” in the front row.)  For contrast, I have included a photograph of some normal human beings.

 

 

DSCN1366DSCN1363photo-5

A NIGHT TO REMEMBER!

Yes, this happens to be the title of a wonderful film about the Titanic.  (1958)  And yes, it is also the title of a short article about my honeymoon.  (1978)   However, I am not referring to either of these remarkable events, but rather to the hugely successful book signing event that occurred last Friday evening.  (Still, I find it somewhat amusing that the Titanic went down in water, and I went down in flames!)  Where was I?  Oh yes, the book signing…..

Well, as expected, we had a standing-room only crowd.  (They forgot to put out chairs.)  Just kidding, there were plenty of chairs and lots of folks.  In fact, I was told by the book store staff that we had one of the larger crowds of the year!  I would like to thank each and every person who came downtown on a busy Friday night to attend this special event.  It was so great to see all of my family and friends, and some not-so-well disguised reps from Murder Ink Press and Penguin Books lurking behind some shelves.  (These two rascals are the co-publishers of my books.)

For those who missed the gala event, you can watch the entire show on PBS this Sunday night.  I’m not sure what time it will air, but I think it will follow an intriguing Bill Moyers documentary about Indonesian sea sponges and the effect they are having on global warming.  Speaking of sponges……  I just read that the original Bergdahl swap included Joe Biden.  (The Taliban said no!)  Poor Joe.  He recently offered to escort a young lady to the senior prom, but her father nixed the offer.  (He didn’t know what Joe Biden did for a living!)

Frankly, most folks don’t know what I do for a living.  Neither do I, but it seems to be working.  My intention is to live forever, or die trying.  Accordingly, I have recently signed my fifth book contract with the good folks at Murder Ink Press.  They will be publishing the 4th “Adam Gold Mystery” sometime in late August or early September.  The book is titled “RANSOM ON THE RHONE” and it takes place in Europe!  (Mainly in England and France)  The story involves the theft of a priceless tapestry, and the pre-reviews have been outstanding, so I think you guys are really going to enjoy this one.  I will keep you “in the loop” as they say at the Hula Hoop factory.

Meanwhile, I am happy to report that the gift shop at the Elvis Presley Center in Tupelo has asked for more copies of THE GRACELAND GANG.  As some of you know, I met with the folks who run the place and they generously offered to sell my book at the gift shop.  (Fifty-fifty split on the proceeds.)  Some of my blog followers have asked to see a photo or two from my trip to Tupelo, so I have attached some photographs of me wandering around the grounds.  (NOTE:  The small white shack is the actual home where Elvis Presley was born!)  I hope you enjoy the photos, and I promise to post some more from time to time.

The next book tour on the agenda involves the Caribbean, and I will reveal some interesting details about our trip next Sunday.  Tonight marks the official start of “Pool Season” down here in Texas, so I must take my leave to check on the beer and tequila supply.  (My wife drinks a lot.)  My mother-in-law loved soda.  She once drank Canada Dry, but that’s a long story.  (They got over it!)  So…..  until next Sunday…… take care and have a safe and wonderful week!   Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

P.S.  I would like to thank Judge Susan for NOT asking me about Angelina Jolie during the Q & A session on Friday night.  (Brad is really the pits!)DSCN1220DSCN1243DSCN1226