WOMEN RULE THE WORLD!

Not really, but my wife and daughters made me say that.  Actually, pets rule the world, or at least America.  Did you know that there are (ruff-ly) 90 million dogs in America?  (Not counting the hosts of “The View.”)  Meanwhile, for you cat loving degenerates, there are about 86 million feline creatures in our nation.  I’m a dog-lover, but I realize that many of my blog followers think that cats are “purr-fect” pets.  (Silly people!)  In any case, I bring up these fascinating statistics because of my recent dog-sitting adventures.  (One daughter spent the weekend in Dallas for some much needed R & R, and the other daughter is in lovely Miami at a fashion trade show.)  Would you like to guess who’s in charge of the pets?  (In truth, I only had to watch one dog and one two-year-old girl, but I had my hands full.  Full of what, I cannot say in public!)

Earlier in the week, I came to understand why women are taking over the universe.  First, I spent some quality time with Ms. Melinda Perez, the world’s BEST masseuse.  Melinda employs the art of “Ashiatsu” massage.  (“Ashi” is the Japanese word for foot.  “Atsu” means pressure.)  Melinda has a lot of “sole,” even when she’s massaging a “heel” like me!  Her motto is “The Toes Knows!”   OMG she is simply marvelous!

After my rub-a-dub-dub, I went to a wonderful new restaurant owned by my dear friend, Woinee Mariam.  Woinee is the owner/chef of an incredible eatery called TASTE OF ETHIOPIA II.  (This location is on 3801 S. Congress Ave., and she has another location at 1100 Grand Ave. Pkwy. in Pflugerville.)  I had the extreme pleasure of dining on Azifa (lentils), Doro Wot (chicken with diced red onions), Goat Kikil (stew), and Tikil Gomen (cabbage).  All of the above consumed with the BEST Injera (sponge bread) in our Solar System!  If you find yourself in downtown Austin, you MUST give this place a try.  The phone number is:  (512)  814-3141.

Whence I returned to my humble abode, I had the pleasure of meeting the incredibly talented Terry Davey, a Texas Registered Interior Designer who works with John-William Interiors.  Terry has been given the task of sprucing up my casa grande in time for the upcoming solar eclipse.  (or shortly thereafter)  If you need a competent and classy touch to your home or office, I suggest you give her a call at her work number:  (512)  451-5511.

By the way, do you know that 44 percent of dogs sleep in bed with their owners?  (No jokes, please!)  I find that rather fascinating.  When I was down in Port Aransas last week, I ran into some folks who owned a turtle farm.  (I referred to it as a “Shell Station.”  They didn’t think that was funny either.)  In any event, they told me that a turtle can hold its breath for up to 10 hours!  (The human record, believe it or not, is around 15 minutes.)  I don’t know why a turtle would want to hold its breath that long, but it’s still interesting.  Whenever I hold my breath, it makes me blue.

Speaking of feeling “blue,” I see that O.J. Simpson has been paroled.  I wonder if he’ll take another stab at marriage?

Well, I’m afraid it’s time for me to take my Sunday walk.  I am now walking two or three miles per month, I mean, day, in order to get back into fighting condition.  (Just in case I run into O.J. in Florida!)  I’m actually enjoying the exercise routine, which is starting to  scare me a little.  Thank God I only have five hours to go before it’s “Happy Hour” around here.  You folks take care, and we shall chat again next week….

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

*** Anybody out there know where the following photos were taken?

 

 

SON OF A BEACH!

Would that blog title be justified if my mother served as a Wave during WWII?  (Just saying!)  Well, in any case, I recently returned from my “Beach Blanket Bingo” outing in the lovely coastal village of Port Aransas, Texas.  Whilst we did not play Bingo (thank God!) we did play some poker, and yours truly won a MAJOR tournament, by trouncing such notables players as the Princess of Portugal, Baron Lee, and Countess Connie.  (Three famous players from the European Tour)  In addition, we consumed a number of scrumptious meals and several gallons of Plantation Rum.

If you’re heading down to Port A this summer, I would highly recommend two dining establishments…  First, you must try Shells Seafood.  I got “hooked” on their capellini with seafood, served in a Thai coconut broth, and topped with wood fired mushrooms.  (While we were eating a mushroom came in and ordered a drink.  The bartender refused to serve him.  I don’t know why, he looked like a fungi to me!)

Another favorite dining spot was the Venetian Hot Plate.  Here I consumed a healthy portion of tender veal, gently swimming in a lovely brown caper sauce.  (Have you ever tried to “pull a caper?”  Very difficult.)  Anyway, I was very pleased with the cuisine and the service, and they also have an excellent wine list.

Our beachfront accommodations were superb, and as some of you know, Port A offers many distractions, including such intellectual pursuits as the “Wet T-Shirt Contest for Seniors.”  (Don’t ask!)  I won’t go into too much detail, but let’s just say that many of the older contestants were from Sag Harbor!  (Which happens to be a real town on Long Island!)

Hey, before I forget, some of you folks have been asking for more information about my author friend, Helen Ginger.  (The brilliant author of the new mystery novel, DEADPOINT.)  You can find out more about her by going to the following website:    https://straightfromhel.blogspot.com      (And don’t forget that all of her fine books are now available at Amazon.com

And since we are on the subject of great art, my other friend, the “Wizard of Watercolors,” Elizabeth Bell Taylor, has just completed a beautiful new painting titled, “Weeds.”  (These are the gorgeous version, and would look lovely anywhere.)  If you want to view her portfolio, simply go to:   Lil-Taylor.pixels.com   (You will be VERY impressed!)

By the way, for those of you living in Austin, you might have heard that one of our famous authors had his home struck by lightning last week.  Jeff Abbot, a highly acclaimed author of suspense novels, incurred substantial damage to his home in West Austin.  If you want to show your support for Jeff and his family, you can attend his book signing event this coming Tuesday evening.  (He will be speaking at BookPeople downtown, and I’m sure he would appreciate your support.)  Needless to day, we all wish him and his family the best.

Finally, as a complete non sequitur, I would like to remind you that on this day (July 16th) in 2004, Martha Stewart was sentenced to 5 months in prison for making false statements to federal investigators.  Her REAL crime, as I have recently discovered through careful research, was putting ketchup on an omelette.  (No, I don’t have a reliable endnote.  Just trust me.)

Speaking of food, if you get an email from the Hormel Company, just delete the darn thing.  (It will probably be Spam!)

Well, I must leave you now.  I just heard a young lady cough at the next table, so I must be a gentleman and offer her mouth to mouth rejuvenation.  I mean, mouth to mouth resuscitation.  God, I hope I don’t choke!

See you next week….  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

HAPPY (BELATED) INDEPENDENCE DAY!

First, a question…  Did you drink a fifth on the Fourth?  I’ll second that!  (I sound like a numbers runner.)  Well, in any “case,” (another drinking pun) I hope you enjoyed your celebratory weekend.  Ours began with a bang.  One of my neighbors attempted to light some fireworks, but the guy has a short fuse, so it did not end well.  (Who needs ten fingers?)  Other than that, we had a splendid weekend.  Hey, did you know that 56 people signed the Declaration of Independence?  Ben Franklin, age 70, was the oldest signer.  Edward Rutledge, age 26, was the youngest.

By sheer coincidence, I recently spent a few days at the Rutledge House in Charleston, South Carolina.  (I think I found one of Edward’s socks under the bed!)  The sock had a hole in it, so when I gave it to the innkeeper, he said, “Darn it.”  (Look, there aren’t many good Rutledge House jokes!)  By the way, when I was in Charleston, I received a literary award at the Middleton Plantation, and therein lies another coincidence…..  Edward Rutledge actually married a charming young woman named Henrietta Middleton.  (Her father was Henry Middleton, the owner of the world famous plantation.)  I wasn’t invited to the wedding, but it must have been a swell affair.

Speaking of swell affairs….  Helen Ginger’s marvelous book signing event was completely sold out, and my dear friend sold a fair number of books.  Thanks again to the amazing Terri Schexnayder for putting the event together.  A great time was had by all.

And since we are on the subject of great times…  I am about to leave on another mini-book tour/road trip/tequila-tasting adventure!  This time we’re heading due south, toward lovely Port Aransas, one of my favorite spots on the Texas coast.  I will be traveling with a group of reprobates, and a few members of the Portuguese Royal Family.  The Princess of Portugal and Baron Lee will be spearheading the entourage, and happily, we will be joined by Countess Conceicao de la Sequeira.  (Everyone in Portugal and the Azores has at least 3 names!)  I will share (some) of our adventures when I return, assuming that I am not detained by the local authorities on some silly, trumped up charge again.

Finally, just in case you haven’t heard the news, my second history book, TURBULENT TIMES, recently won a Silver Medal for the “Best U.S. History Book of 2017.”  The award was announced at the New York Book Festival, and there will be an awards ceremony (open to the public) later this month at the fabulous Algonquin Hotel in Manhattan.  The hotel, as many of you know, once hosted the “Round Table,” a legendary group of wits who gathered to get drunk and utter brilliant remarks.  (Much like our group in Port Aransas!)  The Round Table included such notables as George S. Kaufman, Harpo Marx, Dorothy Parker, and Alexander Woollcott.  Impressive group, but not a single member of Portuguese royalty!

Well, lads and lassies, I must leave you now, but before I go…..  How come young Scottish women are referred to as dogs?  (Lassies)  That just doesn’t seem right.  And one more thing, what’s the connection between Loch Ness and Eliot Ness?  And finally, why do Scottish men like to walk over Heather?  What did that poor girl do to deserve such treatment?

If you know the answers to any of the above questions, please write them down on a sheet of paper, staple a ten-dollar bill to the paper, and send to me at my home address.  Bless you, my children.  Have a safe and joyous week.  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

 

BETTER LATE THAN NEVER!

That sounds like something I would say to the I.R.S., but in this case, I’m referring to today’s blog.  (Which is usually posted on Sunday)  However, I do have a marvelous reason for the short delay…  yesterday was a day to celebrate the release of Helen Ginger’s new mystery novel, DEADPOINT.  The event was held at Wildflower Terrace (in Austin) and hosted by a real-life angel named Terri Schexnayder.  Miss Terri (who has more energy in her pinky than I have in my entire body) put together an author presentation, which included a book signing, and some tasty food for the overflow crowd that had gathered to cheer on our dear friend as she becomes rich and famous!

The event was a HUGE success, thanks to “Terrific Terri” and her band of merry pranksters…..  Beverly Horne, Jo Virgil, Diane Hernandez, and Pat Saunders, just to name a few.  These gorgeous and brilliant ladies never age!  (Which I find quite annoying when I look in the mirror!)  Helen is very lucky to have such wonderful friends, and they should all be proud of their good-hearted efforts.  (Helen also has one of those incredible husbands you hear about from time to time, and also a supportive family.)  Lots of love at that event yesterday, and it was an honor to be invited!  Thank you, ladies.

And since we are on the subject of books (surprise, surprise) allow me to mention that Helen’s newest book (DEADPOINT) happens to have a blurb from me on the back cover.  That alone should make it a collector’s item, but the book is also a great read, so if you love a good mystery, check it out!  I have actually begun to offer book blurbs through my literary agent, Jesse James Lipschitz, and have provided blurbs for none other than Michael Connelly and James Patterson.  (I doubt my blurbs will be chosen, but you never know.)  In any case, it is a new source of income, which might prove quite attractive.  (Do NOT mention this to the I.R.S.)

Meanwhile, sales of TURBULENT TIMES continue to skyrocket, and I would like to thank all of my blog followers for their support.  This wonderful ride would not be possible without the support of my friends and family, and I am very appreciative.  In fact, we’ve arranged for one of my blog followers to win a free trip to Athens later this year.  All you have to do is leave a nice review of the book on Amazon.com, and if your name is chosen in November, you are off to Athens!  I only have 50,000 blog followers (as opposed to James Patterson, who has 3 million!) so the odds are in your favor!

And speaking of favors… I would like to thank Baron Lee Bomblatus (Round Rock royalty) for taking me and my imminent cousin, Dr. Max Talbott, to the baseball game last Friday evening.  We had a splendid time, and I couldn’t help but notice that a lot of baseball terms are similar to dating terms.  For instance, the guys are always trying to get to first base.  (Many “strike out.”)  The bigger the diamond, the better!  There are other terms as well, but since this is a family blog, I shall move on!

By the way, I would also like to extend my very best to Mr. Jack Drucker, the host of the BookTalk Radio Show in Tampa, Florida.  Jack recently underwent back surgery, but I am happy to report that he has returned to the studio and is doing just fine.  Jack is back!  (Thank goodness)  Incidentally, I will be his guest sometime in September.  We will be chatting about TURBULENT TIMES, and I will keep you informed of the date and time of the show.

So this morning I told my wife that I was going out to get some breakfast.  She asked me how long I would be gone.  I told her the whole time.  Women ask such odd questions.

Well, it’s almost time for my nap.  Thus I shall leave thee with some fascinating trivia…..  Did you know that in Shakespeare’s time, mattresses were secured on bed frames by ropes.  When you pulled on the ropes the mattress tightened, making the bed firmer to sleep on.  Hence the phrase…  “goodnight, sleep tight.”   (Did you think that phrase had something to do with alcohol consumption?)  Now you know the rest of the story!

Good tidings, and love to all…

Doc Yanoff

**** P.S.  Attached are some charming photographs for your viewing pleasure.

 

A WORD TO THE WISE!

Make that 100,000 words!  Are you sitting down?   Well, I am happy to announce that Murder Ink Press, in association with Penguin Press, has recently revised, re-edited, and re-published by first history book, THE SECOND MOURNING.  (The Untold Story of America’s Most Bizarre Political Murder)  The brand new edition now shows 3 Gold Medals on the front cover.  The back cover has also been revised, and most importantly, the interior manuscript is flawless.  (Or as flawless as you can get!)

The pricing remains the same, and due to enormous public demand (mainly from my mother) the book is available everywhere in the universe.  (i.e., Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Kindle, Nook, and leading bookstores across the nation.)  So, if you haven’t purchased a copy, now is the time to act.  (I am going to need additional travel funds during the summer!)  Seriously, though, this edition is truly a “collector’s edition,” and I will be happy to autograph the book for you.  (Just in case you want to sell it on eBay!)

So what else is new?  Well, if you read VARIETY, you know that this past Friday was a very special day for someone in Austin.  (No, not me.)  Last Friday, the eminent judge, Hon. Susan Marquess, retired from her career as the famous “Hanging (Out) Judge” of the Texas Hill Country!  After many, many years of public service, our lovely jewel of jurisprudence hung up her robe and banged her gavel for the last time.  (Don’t worry, she missed me!)  We all wish her the very best during her retirement years!

Incidentally, as you have probably read in the New York Times (that commie rag), there was a HUGE and LAVISH culinary event marking her judgeship’s retirement.  A marvelous culinary extravaganza was held at the Hill Country mansion of Barbara and Max Talbott.  OMG, what a feast!  Honey glazed ham, Viennese potato casserole, bean salad, pecan cinnamon buns, key lime pie, and lots and lots of adult beverages.  (From what I remember, the bourbon was excellent!)  Miss Barbara simply outdid herself, and I intend to return the silverware upon my next visit.

You’ll note that I did not consume any health food during the aforementioned dinner party.  At my age I need all the preservatives I can get!

I would be remiss if I did not publicly thank my hosts (down in the quaint town of New Braunfels) for their invitation to last week’s “Meet & Greet An Author” event.  Our day began at Naegelin’s Bakery (the oldest bakery in Texas) where we consumed several pfeffernuesse German cookies and a muffin or two.  From there we adjourned to Krause’s Biergarten & Cafe, but I can’t recall what we drank, or how much.  I do remember that there was some sort of foam in the mug.  Maybe we had little latte?  (I think not!)

By the way, the Animal World and Snake Farm Zoo has re-opened.  (The owner had been suffering from a “reptile dysfunction.”)  If you would like to observe a black mamba, king cobra, or python, then this is the place for you.  (The snake farm was used as a backdrop in one of my Adam Gold Mysteries, a book titled, DEVIL’S COVE)  It’s actually an interesting place to visit.

And speaking of visits….  As some of you know, my youngest daughter, Rebecca, owns a boutique on Congress Avenue in Austin.  (COVE Boutique)  Well, in this week’s “celebrity watch,” she welcomed Kevin Bacon and Norah Jones to the ever-growing list of celebrity shoppers.  Ms. Rebecca (and her soon-to-be-hubby) are on their way to Rome, Italy, and I would like to wish them “Bon Voyage!”  Hurry home, darling!

Finally, a HUGE shout-out to Ms. Sarah Doolittle, the BEST reporter in Texas!  Ms. Sarah is about to publish another wonderful article about yours truly, and the story is soon to appear in the Four Points News.  I would like to thank Sarah for her continued interest in my (semi) modest writing career.  Her interest (and friendship) is greatly appreciated!

In closing, I would like to wish everyone a happy FATHER’S DAY.  Having two gorgeous daughters, and being hugely proud of them, I know how great it is to be a Dad.  (And like many of you, I also had a wonderful father of my own!)  I truly hope that you have a love-filled day with your children, and we shall meet again next Sunday!  Until then, love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

*****  P.S.   I am attaching a photograph of the new book cover for THE SECOND MOURNING.  I hope you like it!

 

 

HELEN GINGER ROCKS!

Well, my old friend, Helen Ginger, the “Queen of Hill Country Crime,” has written yet another wonderful book!  (Yes, I’m jealous)   With a last name like Ginger, you might have thought she was one of the Spice Girls, but you’d be wrong.  Miss Helen is simply a marvelous writer, and the author of a great new book, titled, DEADPOINT.  (Which has NOTHING to do with the top of my head!)  Without spoiling the tale, let’s just say that the plot deals with a dead maintenance supervisor and an intrusive firebrand preacher, who have popped up at Hart of Atlantis Park and Aquarium in the Texas Hill Country.  (Helen used to work – no joking – as a “mermaid” at Aquarena Springs in San Marcos.)

Although divorced from Michael Lansing, the park’s security officer, Codie Hart (the book’s main protagonist) resolves to work with him to protect her family’s business.  The book gets wild and wooly when a ritualistic killer arrives to steal newly developed technology from the park.  I shall not spoil the ending for you, but needless to say, you will be shaking from excitement!

I don’t usually recommend other mystery-type novels, primarily because I don’t need any more competition!  In fact, I have only mentioned two other books on my blog… one from my old friend Michael Connelly and one from my mentor, Elmore Leonard.  So… this book must be pretty darn good.  (and that it is!)  Miss Helen has previously served as the Executive Director of the Writers’ League of Texas (when I was a board member), President of the Sisters in Crime Heart of Texas Chapter, and volunteer chair of the Texas Book Festival.  Her other two books, both excellent reads, are ANGEL SOMETIMES and DISMEMBERING THE PAST.

I realize that 40,000 of my 50,000 blog followers live outside of Austin, Texas, but for you folks who live in Central Texas, please make a note of the following “Afternoon with the Author” program:   (Where Helen will be signing books!)

Sunday, June 25, 2017.  (1:00 – 3:00 p.m.) in the Terrace Room at 3801 Berkman Drive, Austin, Texas.  FREE champagne and caviar!  (Not really, but there will be some light bites.)  So, amigos y amigettes, be there or be square!  No excuses!

And speaking of presentations and book signings…..  last Wednesday I had the high honor and distinct privilege of presenting a brilliant oration about William H. Seward, who just happens to be the subject of my new book, TURBULENT TIMES.  I spoke to a wonderful group of folks at the Lakeway Men’s Breakfast Club, in lovely Lakeway, Texas.  Great turnout, great discussion, and a great Q & A afterwards.  I’d like to thank my good friend, Loyd Smith, for setting things up and introducing me.  I really enjoyed myself, despite having to get out of bed before noon!  I am looking forward to speaking with the Lakeway Women’s Breakfast Club in October.

Next Sunday I will have a (semi) surprise announcement about my first history book, THE SECOND MOURNING.  I shall not tease you, but the book is bound for glory!  (whatever that means)  Tune in next week and I will share all of the gory details!  Until then, be happy and thank God that you don’t live in a place like North Korea.  Do you know the name of the general who supervised that failed missile launch last week?  Sum Ting Wong.  The poor general had one very bad habit – breathing!  Alas, he no longer has any bad habits.  (or any habits at all!)

Be well and keep smiling!  AND CHECK OUT THE BOOK COVER ATTACHED TO THIS ERUDITE BLOG!   Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

**** Book Cover Attached!

 

 

 

WHAT AN HONOR!

No, I am not talking about my recent book award, but rather something of much greater importance.  This year, I have the honor of having my birthday (May 29th) fall on Memorial Day, which is Monday.  Mere words cannot express my gratitude to ALL of our wonderful military veterans.  I am fully aware (from my history books) of the incredible sacrifices that have been made to protect and preserve our country, and from personal experience, I know just how great the Greatest Generation truly was.  My father served as a bombardier during World War II, and flew across the Atlantic Ocean in a B-24, ending up in North Africa and participating in some very serious battles.

My father had planned to return to New York City and become a police detective, but a war-time injury got in the way.  My Uncle Jim served in the Air Force and Air National Guard for most of his adult life, and flew numerous top-secret missions around the globe.  My Uncle Aubry was in the Marine Corps, and served with distinction during the Korean War.  So did my Uncle Paul, who served his country in the U.S.Army during the Korean War.

I mention the above just to remind my lovely blog followers of the importance of observing Memorial Day.  Lest we forget.  Which in my house, we never will.

And before I forget something else…  I know that many of you were curious about my friend Lil Taylor, the soon-to-be-famous watercolor artist.  I inadvertently gave you her email address instead of her website address… so, just for the record, you can view her paintings at:   Lil-taylor.pixels.com    Check out her work, she’s very talented!

Less talented would be yours truly, but as some of you know, my new history book, TURBULENT TIMES, was recently chosen as a Finalist in the 8th Annual International Book Award Contest.  My book about William H. Seward was picked as an award-winning Finalist in the “History: United States” category, and for this honor, I am extremely grateful.  The 2017 International Book Awards brought in over 2,000 entries, and a complete list of the Finalists has been released to tens of thousands of national and international media outlets.  (Which should really boost sales of the book!)

If you haven’t purchased your copy yet, you can order the book from Amazon.com,Barnesandnoble.com, Kindle, Nook, and leading bookstores across the nation.  AND CHECK THIS OUT……   If you leave a nice review on Amazon.com, you will be automatically eligible to win a FREE trip to the Smithsonian Institute Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C.  I will be there, and so will some VERY important politicians and celebrities!  (A free trip will not break the bank, so why not take a chance?)

When I was a young man, I wanted to become a banker, but I lost interest.

Finally, I would like to dedicate this particular blog to Angelo Petraglia, my childhood friend and neighbor.  Angie was drafted into the Army after we graduated from Valley Stream Central High School in New York.  Sadly, at 20 years of age, he was sent to Vietnam, and shortly after his arrival, he was killed in action in Binh Duong, South Vietnam.  My friend served in the 1st Infantry Division and was killed by small arms fire on December 18, 1968.  I think about him often, and hopefully one of his family members will see this blog and realize that his sacrifice — like so many others — will never be forgotten.

If you ever find yourself at the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C.,  try to locate Panel 36W, Line 41, and if you do, please send my best to one brave soldier.  (And one hell of a baseball player!)

Have a safe and mindful weekend…  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff