RENDER UNTO CAESAR…..

I’m not sure why Sid Caesar deserves all of our money, but none the less, it’s that time of year again.  What time? (you might ask)  The most “taxing time” of the year… the day that federal income tax is due.  (or in my case, past-due!)  Yup, another year has flown by, and now it’s time to cough up the dough.  Did you know that the I.R.S. (the Infernal Revenue Service) processes over 200,000,000 individual tax returns each year?  (surely they won’t miss mine!)  Believe it or not, the U.S. Tax Code is 3.7 million words in length!  (that’s longer than my next book!)

Speaking of books…..  (smooth segue, eh?)   Due to the influx of recent book awards (and blind luck) I will soon be the subject of a featured article in the upcoming issue of the Penguin Press literary review.  I was interviewed last week, and the questions were quite good.  (no so much the answers!)  In any case, the kind folks at the Penguin Group are determined to publish the article, so as soon as it becomes available I will post a link.  If you want an autographed copy, you can either send me twenty bucks or pay part of my tax bill.  (I prefer the later.  Actually, I prefer a ladder, but only because I’d like to reach new heights!)

By the way, speaking of new heights, congratulations to last week’s photo trivia contest winner…  Dr. Milburn Stone from Dodge City, Kansas.  (I wonder if that’s where “dodge-ball” was invented?)  In any case, the good doctor guessed correctly, identifying the photo as…..  (drum roll, please) my humble abode in Austin, Texas!

And since we’re on the subject of Texas….  Let me say a word or two about last week’s book signing, held in lovely (and humid) Baytown.  I used to spend a lot of time down there, boating, fishing, and drinking huge quantities of tequila.  I really enjoy Baytown, and if you plan to visit, you must try a juicy cheeseburger at Rooster’s Steakhouse.  (They grind their own meat… no jokes, please!  They also make their own fruit pies, which are quite yummy in the tummy.)  I met some very nice people over at the Baytown Nature Center, which is a very pleasant place to visit.  Incidentally, if you think auto racing is a drag, then you can also visit Royal Purple Raceway and watch the drag racers do their thing.  (My Ford-150 can beat anything on the track…  if we go in “reverse.”)

In closing, I shall enthrall your literary sensitivities (that sounds dirty!) by sharing some news with you…..   the next “Adam Gold Mystery,” titled, A RUN FOR THE MONEY, is undergoing some final editing, and should be available nation-wide in mid-May.  (I had to add a chapter to connect a few of the dots, but we are now good to go)  I shall, as they say, keep you posted.

Well, take care, and please keep in mind that LIFE is sexually transmitted.

Have a safe and wonderful two weeks….    Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

P.S.  Another trivia contest photo attached.  Good luck!

 

 

DSCN1502

 

 

BACK IN BUSINESS!

Monkey business, that is!  As some of you know, I taught various communication courses at St. Edward’s University in Austin for about 7 years, and every so often, I still participate in “relationship seminars,” which are designed to improve communication between couples and promote marital bliss.  (Where ignorance is bliss, ’tis folly to be wise!)  Well, this year I brought my wife to a seminar, and after 37 years of marriage, I learned some new things about the old girl…..

First, I learned that I had indeed married “MRS. RIGHT.”  What I didn’t know, but soon learned, was that her first name was “ALWAYS!”     Second, I learned that my darling wife enjoys “romance” in the morning.  (Right after I go to work!)     Third, I learned that my wife simply desires a man who’s loyal, faithful, patient, attentive, forgiving, even-tempered, and a good listener.  (What she really needs is a dog!)

After the seminar, we drove down to Port Aransas, a lovely town on the Texas Gulf Coast.  They have a great beach, but surprisingly, there were turtle nests all along the shore.  They’re interesting to observe, but they make a mess of your tires.  Fortunately, the turtles are on the endangered species list.  Every so often a mama turtle tries to crawl into the dunes to lay her eggs, but sometimes they run out of gas.  In that instance, she has to stop at a “Shell station.”  Hey, I just thought of something…..  If a turtle breaks down on the beach, would that be considered a “reptile dysfunction?”

Speaking of dysfunctions…..

A word about the DEMOCRAT PARTY…   President Obama’s approval rating has fallen to 35%    The drug-addicted mayor of Toronto has an approval rating of 45%   Do you realize what this means?  People would rather smoke crack than sign up for Obamacare!

A word about the REPUBLICAN PARTY…  The President is demanding that Congress do something about the Minimum Wage.  If there is one group of people who know something about doing the Minimum for their Wage, it’s definitely Congress!

A word about the PREGNANT PARTY…  I hear that Miss Kellie (Judge Susan’s daughter) had a lovely baby shower.  Why the baby needed a shower is beyond me, but what do I know?  (Not much.)  Hey, do you think they have baby showers in Bath, England?  Anyway, we wish Miss Kellie the very best and we are looking forward to meeting her clean little darling in a month or two.

Finally, I would like to say a word about my first 3 mystery novels (The Graceland Gang, The Pirate Path, and Devil’s Cove.)  I would also like to mention my non-ficiton masterpiece, The Second Mourning.  Never mind.  That would be tacky.  Simply a cheap and under-handed way to get my blog followers to think of my books, and perhaps, if they had the time and wherewithal, order a copy or two from Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Kindle, or Nook.  I refuse to stoop to such dastardly depths of depravity!  (By the way, the books can also be purchased at BookPeople in Austin.)

Well, now that my moral compass is pointing in the right direction, I must leave you for a gourmet breakfast/pool party on the veranda!  My daughter Rebecca and her boyfriend Peter are on their way to Villa Yanoff for a traditional New York Sunday Morning Feast!  (Bagels, lox, and cream cheese!)  Yummy in my tummy!  Luckily, they are also bringing Madame Romy.  Who might this be?  Check out the attached photograph that I have hopefully managed to include…..  Have a great week…..    Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

Romy

 

GOOD NEWS TRAVELS FAST!

A LOT FASTER THAN ME ON THE INTERSTATE!  Fellow travelers, I am proud to announce that I recently signed a new book contract, and that in mid-April, my fourth masterpiece will be published!  (Just in time to pay my taxes!) Please, hold your applause.  (Never mind, clap!)  Murder Ink Press, in collaboration with Penguin Publishers, will be publishing my first non-fiction book, titled THE SECOND MOURNING.  (The True Story of America’s Most Bizarre Political Murder.)  The book will reveal the true events surrounding the assassination of President James A. Garfield, our twentieth President.  I’m told that it will be available in hard-back, soft-back, and ebook versions.  Readers will be able to purchase the book on Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Kindle, Nook, and a large number of traditional book stores.  (Including BookPeople in Austin, Texas.)

I would like to thank each and every one of our 7,000 blog followers, because without your continued support, none of this would have been possible.  You folks are the best and I’m honored to be invited into your homes each Sunday.  We gained many new followers on our last book tour, which ended two days ago, and took us to Dallas, Texarkana, Little Rock, Nashville, Chattanooga, Atlanta, Valdosta, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale, Tallahassee, Mobile, Baton Rouge, and Houston!  Whew, what a drive!  Two thousand miles in two weeks!

While we were gone, the Winter Olympics “played out.”  You know what that means.  American athletes will now be appearing on cereal boxes!  (“Flakey” idea.  Too “corny.”)  I hear that Vladimir Putin wants to put his face on a box of crackers!  (Ever heard of “Putin on the Ritz?”)  Ouch!

Several of our curious blog followers have asked about my favorite road stop.  There were many great stops, but my personal favorite was Lynchburg, Tennessee, the charming town where they produce Jack Daniel’s Sour Mash Whiskey.  After a brief tour of the distillery, we sampled some Old No. 7, and from what I remember, our “spirits” were truly lifted!  (I think I met a guy named Jim Beam and a fellow named George Dickels, but don’t quote me on that!)  If you think I’m joking, I’ve got (ninety) proof!

Speaking of “blithe spirits,” I would like to say happy birthday to Ms. Barbara Talbott, who will be turning 39 or 49 tomorrow.  I forget her exact age, but I congratulate Barbara on reaching a new pinochle.  (I could have said pinnacle, but she’s a “real card!”)  Well, at least she’s playing with a “full deck!”  (Unlike me!)  Have a great day, darling!

In closing, I would like to remind you that we are now in the midst of Daylight Savings Time.  (Why don’t banks ever offer daylight savings accounts?)  Anyway, don’t forget the old motto:   “Spring back and fall ahead.”  Wait a minute, maybe it’s “Spring forward and fall back.”  Well, I don’t suppose it really matters.  Sooner or later you’ll have the right time.

Well, I’m off to the office to pay some bills, make some excuses, and catch up on my fan mail.  (I received a letter from my Mom.)  I hope everyone has a safe and happy week.  We will chat again next Sunday!

Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

 

P.S.  Depending on my computer skills, which are minimal, you might see a photograph attached to this blog post.  Be the first to identify the person in the photo and you will win a $50 gift card!  (I will post the winner’s name next Sunday.)  Good luck!

 

CharlesGuiteau

“GETTING TO KNOW YOU”

DO YOU REMEMBER THIS DELIGHTFUL TUNE?  Some folks think it’s the NSA theme song, but it was actually written by Rogers & Hammerstein for their Broadway show “The King and I.”  (Which was a musical about Elvis Presley, I think.)  Hopefully, you will get to know me better after today’s blog.  I enjoy sharing my life with 7,000 blog followers, and I encourage you to share the big events of your life with me.  Our blog is now in 40+ countries, so it would be interesting to hear what’s going on in your part of the world.

I am presently “on the road again.”  As some of you know, I was born in Nashville, Tennessee, and I have some close relatives in and around “Music City, USA.”    I drove up to Nashville to attend the funeral of my Uncle Jim, who was one of my favorite uncles and a truly great man.  Believe it or not, my uncle, James Deatrick, joined the United States Air Force when he was 19 years old, served with distinction for 41 years, and left the service with the rank of Senior Master Sergeant.  (Just about the highest NCO rank in the military!)  Uncle Jim flew on the huge C-130 aircraft, and during his career he delivered supplies and weapons to just about every combat zone on earth.

I have always had the greatest admiration and respect for our military, and the folks who have worn the military uniform, but after witnessing a funeral with full military honors, I am simply in awe.  Almost speechless.  (A rarity for me!)  What an incredibly moving ceremony.  Truly remarkable.  The precision of the flag folding, the repeated volley of rifle fire, and the playing of “Taps.”  Witnessing this event made me proud to be an American and proud to be the nephew of one of our noble warriors… the folks who keep the rest of us safe and sound.

And speaking of sounds…..  After the funeral, we returned to my Aunt Gladys’s home in Mt. Juliet, where we were serenaded by an up and coming Grand Ole Opry star named Skylar Starr.  (Her stage name.)  As her temporary agent, I can tell you that this young lady is destined for greatness.  (Remember her name!)  After her performance, I had the honor and privilege of meeting Uncle Jim’s family from “up north.”  (Michigan, Wisconsin, etc.)  What a great bunch of people!  They had never seen the sun before, and one of Jim’s brothers had never seen the ground during his lifetime!  (Too much snow!)   Naturally we had a book signing…. and I autographed several thousand copies of THE GRACELAND GANG and THE PIRATE PATH.  I fully expect to become a legend in Ann Arbor and certain counties on the Michigan peninsula.

Tomorrow I am driving down to Valdosta, Georgia, to sign some books at a local book club, eat a little pulled pork, and apologize for the Yankee intrusion known as “The War of Northern Aggression.”  (i.e., The Civil War.)    The following day I shall head due south, for the remote wilderness known as Boca Raton.  Whence I arrive, we will celebrate my mother’s 88th birthday with a semi-surprise party.  (She will be surprised when she gets the bill!)  I shall keep you informed of my whereabouts!  (we’re about out of time right now.)   Sooooo….  Have a safe and wonderful week…..

Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

 

AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE!

MODESTY IS VERY BECOMING…  (and it’s becoming quite rare)  I’m not that modest.  Every year, on my birthday, I send my mother a “congratulations card” for having me.  I just installed mirrors in my bedroom.  (no, not for that reason!)  To look at myself.  Does that “reflect” badly on me?  Well, today’s blog will not focus on me, but on my loyal blog followers!  (who I love)

Last weekend, we Austinites lost Steven Fromholz, one of the true legends of the outlaw country era.  Steve was a major talent, and he also served as the Poet Laureate of Texas.  I’m friends with his sweet daughter, Felicity, and my heart goes out to her and her family.  Your Dad was one of the great ones.

We also lost Mrs. Alice Bonefield, a gentle spirit, the mother of Paula Johnston.  “Miss Alice” was one of my favorite ladies and she will truly be missed by everyone who knew her.  She was, as they say, a class act.

I would like to extend my best wishes to Mrs. Donna Simon, who is recovering from a heart attack.  Donna and I are old friends, and she worked for Yanoff & Company for many years.  In fact, she was  the manager of our Chicago office.  We (the Yanoff clan) wish you a speedy recovery!  You did a great job for us and we all love you!  (Miss Hazel told me to send you a special kiss!)

Speaking of speedy recoveries…..  If you’re ever in need of emergency care, you should limp on over to the Texan Urgent Care facility in Riverplace.  Hopefully, you will be seen by Cindy Kelt, FNP-BC  (I have no idea what those letters mean, but Cindy is a brilliant and caring nurse practitioner!)  Tell her that I sent you and you will receive a free enema.  (Let me know how that comes out!)  We adore you, Cindy!

I’d like to give a big “shout out” to my friend Steven B. who is back in Iraq doing who-knows-what.  I hope you and your buddies are safe and sound, and we wish you a speedy return to the good old U.S.A.   Be careful if somebody offers you a camel.  (It might not be a cigarette!)

For you book lovers out there, please note that BookPeople has just restocked their shelves with 18 copies of my various mystery novels.  (The first group sold quickly.)  As you might guess, the books are to be found in the “mystery section” up front.  (Makes sense to me)

Finally, remember the secret of enjoying a good wine….. Open the bottle and allow it to breathe….. If it doesn’t seem to be breathing….. Give it mouth to mouth!  (The preceding humor courtesy of C.T. Nickles.)   C.T. is the head of my New Jersey humor division, and let’s face it, you have to have a sense of humor to live in New Jersey!

Have a safe and prosperous week!  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

P.S.  My “big announcement” will be posted next week.  This blog is for my wonderful followers!

LOVE’S LABOUR’S LOST!

NO, I’M NOT REFERRING TO BILL SHAKESPEARE’S PLAY!

Yesterday’s strike is over!  I struck out!  Judge Susan (who many of you know) has issued a temporary restraining order (a lot of folks think I should be restrained permanently!)  which requires me to go back to work and write another humorous blog post.  If I do not comply, she will hold me in contempt.  (I’d rather be held in her arms, but I digress.)  Well, you know what they say about the long arm of the law.  So…..

Did you know that Labor Day has NOTHING to do with pregnancy?  The holiday is always celebrated on the first Monday in September.  Oregon was the first state to make it a legal holiday.  (On February 21, 1887)  It became a federal holiday in 1894, when signed into law by Grover Cleveland.  (Cleveland was born in New Jersey, which was very confusing.  Supposedly, his parents wanted to name him Hoboken, but they were afraid that the neighborhood kids would call him “Hobo.”)   All right, I just made that up, but it’s still funny.

In recent years, Labor Day has become a huge retail sales day.  (Second only to the Christmas season’s “Black Friday.”)  It also marks the official end of summer, and in high society, the last day of the year when it is fashionable to wear a seersucker suit.  (I once saw a suit at Sears, and I was the sucker who bought it!)  I used to buy my clothes at Robert Hall.  (Robert threw them out and I hauled them in!)  I also had a pair of Buster Brown shoes.  (Brown on the top and bustin’ out of the sides!)  Right now I’m wearing my summer clothes.  (Summer mine, summer my brother’s!)  All right, all right, I’ll stop with the clothing jokes!

My wife (the health nut) asked me to join her at Pilates class this morning.  I thought she said “pie and latte,” so I went with her.  God, what a disappointment.  They asked me to leave!  Did you know that it is considered inappropriate to take video of a woman in tights?  Sounds like I’m “stretching the truth,” but that class was really weird.  (No coed showers?  What’s that about?)

Hey, my beautiful daughter, Rachel, was featured on KVUE this week.  (A local station here in Austin)  They were doing a segment on local artists and Rachel’s work was highlighted.  She does extraordinary custom paint designs for all sorts of businesses in the city.  (Great interview, but she failed to mention her father or any of his books!)

Speaking of books……  (nice transition, eh?)  My new publisher, Murder Ink Press, has come up with an outstanding new title for the re-issuance of THE PRESLEY PLOT.  (I’m not supposed to let the cat out of the bag until the release date.)  The new cover is also terrific, and I think that all of my fans and followers will be quite pleased.  The revised edition will be released sometime in September.

Well, I must leave you now.  I am off to a wonderful barbecue at Jaime and Gary Rubinstein’s house.  They have a gorgeous new home in Lakeway, and they are superb hosts.  A great time will be had by all.  (Gary does the cooking, and believe me, he makes food fit for a king.  Here King, here King….. )

Again, happy Labor Day.  And remember, if work is so great, how come they have to pay you to do it???     Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

MEMPHIS IN MOURNING!

NO, THEY DIDN’T RUN OUT OF PORK RIBS AT CORKY’S!

Last Friday, August 16, marked the 36th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death.  Hard to believe, but the King of Rock ‘n Roll died in 1977.  Oddly enough, his passing is “celebrated” with an annual week-long festival known as “Elvis Presley Week.”  In mid-August, the city is transformed into one big Elvis event, and each year over 400,000 people show up to join the party!  Believe me, it is quite a sight.  (Try to picture several thousand Elvis impersonators!)

Naturally, copies of THE PRESLEY PLOT will be available at various locations throughout the city.  (One vendor is selling only autographed copies….. my signature, not Elvis.)  I don’t make a great sum of money, but the publicity is wonderful, and I get to meet some interesting characters.

Speaking of books, I am currently reading a book about anti-gravity.  (I just can’t put it down!)  Incidentally, last week I mentioned that Elvis Presley’s Army uniform was about to be auctioned off in Dallas.  Well, how much do you think it fetched?  How does $35,000 sound?  While this was a decent price, it didn’t come close to the King’s peacock jumpsuit that sold for….. $300,000 in 2008!  In any case, I’ve decided to sell my socks on eBay, so don’t be a “heel” and buy a pair.  Each pair has been thoroughly washed, so you won’t get “toe-maine” poisoning.

How about some “food for thought?”   Last week’s book signing was held in Lampasas, which was followed by a Moonlight Swim at Hancock Springs.  (Although there wasn’t much moonlight at 4 p.m., the swim was wonderful, and we stopped at Hopdoddy’s for dinner!)  If you go to Hopdoddy’s, order the “Llano Poblano” hamburger…..  An angus beef patty, topped with pepper jack cheese, roasted poblano peppers, apple-smoked bacon, and chipolte mayo.  Simply amazing…. especially with a 512 IPA Beer!  (or two)

I have recently viewed the new book cover for MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE, and can report that it is simply marvelous.  The revised book should be out in early November, but by then, I may be back in the Caribbean!  Looks like we’re going on the road again, (or should I say the water?) and marching toward St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Martin.  (“When the saints, go marching in….. “)  Well, you know how that tune goes.  Yummy, yummy, more rum in my tummy!

Finally, if you want to try the BEST pancakes in the free world, come visit me in Austin, and I will take you to the Rise and Shine Bakery for their homemade buttermilk pancakes.  As Judge Susan and Princess Patty can attest, they are absolutely delicious!  I was there yesterday and I saw plenty of nice stacks.

Well, have a great week and remember not to believe everything you hear.  My wife thinks I’m a skeptic, but I don’t believe a word she says!  (Would you believe my neighbor has a skeptic tank?  What’s that about?)

Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff