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

 

LEST WE FORGET…..

TOMORROW IS MEMORIAL DAY!  That being the case, I would like to start with a huge THANK YOU to all who have served in our nation’s military.  We appreciate your service to our country and I salute you for your efforts to keep us free.  God bless each and every one of you!  I don’t know if I ever mentioned it, but my father was in the Army Air Corps during World War II.  Airman Yanoff flew across the Atlantic Ocean on a B-24 (a rare event at the time) and served as a tail-gunner during the campaign in North Africa.

I used to kid my father about the first 3 aircraft he shot down.  I told him that he would have gotten a medal if they hadn’t been BRITISH aircraft!  He would laugh, and then tell me that he might have gotten a medal AND a promotion if they had been FRENCH aircraft!  Like most men who served back then, he had a sense of humor about his experience, but was also very proud of his involvement.

Thanks to Sgt. Max Talbott, I received a long-overdue medal for “good conduct” from the U.S. Air Force.  (I tried to enlist, but failed the entrance exam.)  I received the medal (after a 30-year wait) because I returned the test pencil!  Better late than never.  Not to brag, but I once worked for the Salvation Army.  I was stationed in Times Square, and if I remember correctly, I raised quite a bit of money.  (Of which I only kept half.)  Hard service, but somebody had to do it.

In case you’re wondering, our Friday night food festival was a big success.  We had the pleasure of entertaining the Princess of Portugal and her wealthy hubby, Baron Lee.  Judge Susan was also in attendance, as well as some uninvited guests…..  which brings us to the main course….. roast COATIMUNDI!  (A truly amazing delicacy from South America.)  Trust me, you haven’t dined lavishly until you’ve eaten a ring-tailed Coati with fried onion rings.  After dinner, we watched “Fiddler On The Roof,” which seemed oddly appropriate, since that is where we caught the main course.

If I sound like I’m rambling, it’s because I’ve only had one cup of coffee.  Still, I think I’ve discovered a Sunday morning pattern…..   Denial.  Anger.  Bargaining.  Depression.  Acceptance.  Yes, these are the five stages of waking up!  What a gift to be young (?) and talented!  Reminds me of an old adage…..  “Talent is good.  Practice is better.  Passion is best.”  Frank Lloyd Wright said that, he knew about talent.  He and his brothers, Orville and Wilbur invented the first airplane….. the one that flew at Kitty Wells.

In closing, I would like to thank all of my blog followers for supporting my recent literary effort.  (THE SECOND MOURNING)  I have been fortunate to receive some excellent reviews, but I am fully prepared for a bad review!  If and when I receive some unkind words, I shall order the following license plate for that mean old person…..    are you ready?

How do you like this plate?          370HSSV

To get the full effect, you must read the plate upside down!

Yes, I know, talent on loan from God!   Have a safe and wonderful week!   Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

 

 

SecondMourning

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY….. MAY 11, 2014…..

WELL, IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN…  Time to send my beloved mother a note of congratulations for giving birth to me.  Last year we took my mom to a gourmet luncheon at MacDonald’s, but since she had gained a few pounds, she got stuck between the arches.  Needless to say, it was NOT a “happy meal.”  This year we sent some Omaha steaks.  Well, actually it was ground beef, but I think she’ll like it.  Hey, you can’t eat flowers.  Is it any wonder that I’m her favorite un-incarcerated son?

Since we’re discussing “pick of the litter,” I am happy to report that the “dogs of war” have been returned to their rightful owners.  Yep, we finally got rid of Romy and Baker, the dynamic duo of dirty dogs that we were dog-sitting last week.  And not a moment too soon, I might add.  Romy, as you might recall, is a labradoodle puppy.  (i.e., a furry chewing and chomping machine.)  That mutt left her teeth marks on all of my furniture and some of my private parts, too!  (Let’s not go there.)  I LOVE dogs, but after 3 days with Romy, I did something awful.  (I tried to sell her on eBay.  Naturally, nobody bit…. except Romy.)  By the end of the week, I was searching for labradoodle recipes!  (Hey, isn’t that where the term “hot dog” comes from?)

Don’t worry, both dogs were returned unscathed.  (Which is more than I can say for my couch and crotch!)  In the end, I came away with a new appreciation and understanding of….. cats!  It may be a dog eat dog world, but from now on I’m sticking with felines!  (or clotheslines.)

I am also happy to report that copies of THE SECOND MOURNING are literally flying off the shelves.  (Especially in earthquake zones.)  If you purchase a copy and would like an autograph, just let me know, and we can work something out.  And please don’t forget to leave a nice review on Amazon.com when you’re finished reading… my mother will be very pleased.  (as well as my publisher.)

On a personal note or two, I would like to say “Happy Birthday” to my brother-in-law, Tim McCloskey.  (I’m not allowed to mention his age, but…..  he’s kind of old.  His first homeowner’s policy covered fire, theft, and Indian raids!  He remembers when Howard Johnson only had two flavors!  He was around when Burger King was a prince!  Well, you get the picture.)

I’d also like to thank Helena, Princess of Portugal (And her husband Viscount Lee) for another splendid feast, this one celebrating the release of THE SECOND MOURNING and the guest appearance of the lovely “Miss Julieta.”  Both were sweet, strong, and intoxicating!

In closing, I would like to remind you that you and yours are invited to join the fun at my upcoming Austin book signing and wet t-shirt contest.  (Just kidding about the t-shirt thing.)  The gala event will be held on Friday, June 6, at BookPeople on Lamar Blvd.  Show time is 7 p.m.  (The bookstore is right beside Whole Foods, which might be a good place to dine before the show begins.  They have lots of free parking.)  I hope to see you there!

Well, I must take my leave…  time to consume some biscuits and honey.  Remember not to take life too seriously.  (after all, it’s not like you’re getting out alive!)  Still, we should all make an effort to take care of our planet.  (Earth is the only place that has chocolate!)  Have a safe and wonderful week…..   Love to all….

Doc Yanoff

 

 

 

THE DOG DAYS OF SUMMER!

DON’T ASK ME WHY, but for some ungodly reason I actually volunteered to “dog sit” my two grand-dogs this week.  Baker is a cockapoo, eleven years old, and rather well behaved.  Romy is a labradoodle, still a puppy, and proof positive that mental illness is hereditary.  (You get it from your children!)  Yep, little Romy is adorable, but hell on wheels.  How can one dog chew on sooooo many different substances?  You’d think metal and rocks would be off-limits, but not with this little lady!  Her motto is thus:  “I came.  I saw. I chewed to shreds.”

As you can tell, I am having a “ruff” week, but this too shall pass.  (Won’t it?)  My daughters are off to weddings and vacations in San Diego and Hawaii, and I’m stuck at the dog pound!  (And believe me, there are times when I’d like to pound you-know-who, but she’s just too dang cute for words!)  Baker is white (which rhymes with right) and Romy is brown.  (Which rhymes with “nervous breakdown.”)  Why couldn’t my daughters get cats like other kids?

Oddly enough, I also had an unusual week book-wise.  As many of you know, THE SECOND MOURNING was recently published, and thanks to folks like you, is doing quite well in the sales department.  (Over two hundred books were sold on the first two days alone!)  However, I spent most of the week discussing THE GRACELAND GANG, as the Elvis Presley Center in Tupelo was interested in obtaining some more books for their gift shop.  What started as a simple phone call, ended up as a full-fledged interview with their newsletter editor.  (By the way, a number of buildings were severely damaged in Tupelo during last week’s storm, but the Presley Center was spared.  Definitely ‘Divine Intervention!’)

During my telephone interview, the editor asked me about the most surprising thing I discovered about Elvis Presley.  There were plenty of surprises, but one of the most interesting was the fact that Gladys Presley’s grandmother was Jewish.  (Gladys was Elvis Presley’s adored mother.)  Interestingly, The King was quite fascinated with his religious ancestry, and during his lifetime he wore a “chai necklace” and often carried yarmulke in his pocket!

When I visited Graceland, I met one of the caretakers, and he told me something intriguing that I did not know…  Elvis actually spoke Hebrew and often sang in the Hebrew language!  The next time you go to Memphis, go to Graceland, and you will notice that his mother’s tombstone (She is buried in Meditation Garden) is engraved with a “Star of David,” to acknowledge her own roots.  If you would like to learn more, just buy a copy of THE GRACELAND GANG, and you will be ready to go on a quiz show and win some big bucks!

Did you read the Wall Street Journal on Friday?  A recent study has found that women who carry a little extra weight live longer than men who mention it.  Hmmm.

A funny thing happened to my neighbor last week.  He went to a dude ranch in Bandera, Texas, and rode a donkey!  (He’s afraid of horses.)  While he was riding the range, a horse kicked up a rock and knocked him off the donkey.  Don’t worry, he wasn’t injured.  In fact, he just got stoned off his ass.  (Ouch!)

I don’t mean to be annoying, but please don’t forget to SAVE THE DATE.  (Friday, June 6, 2014.)  As some of you know, I will speaking at BookPeople in downtown Austin at 7 p.m.    You are all invited, and please remember, everything is free.  (Free admission, free parking, free books.)  All right, I’m lying about the books, but everything else is free!  Hopefully, the margarita machine will be working!

Well, my friends, it is time to take the dogs to the butcher, I mean, the park.  (Freudian slip!)  I do hope that my daughters appreciate me.  (and my wife, who is doing the early morning shift.)  I fully expect not only a case of beer, but an ocean-front condominium in the resort area of my choosing!)  Ideally, a condominium resort that does NOT allow pets!!

Love to all, and please, keep me in your prayers!!

Doc Yanoff   (And “Ma Barker!”)

MOONDAY IS TUESDAY!

YES, I KNOW THAT SOUNDS CONFUSING…..  However, on Tuesday, April 15th, the moon will become blood red!  How can this be?  Are the Russians invading?  Are we facing another Ukraine?  No, my friends, this is all part of the upcoming lunar eclipse.  Sounds nutty to me.  I’ve heard of a moon beam, Jack Beam, and beam me up, Scotty, but a pink moon beam?  This I have to see.  By the way, in case you’re interested, some enterprising Aggie (a student at Texas A & M University) is selling tickets to the viewing.  Unlimited viewing for only $25.00!  Now is that “out of this world” or what?  Hey, if you brought a watch to the moon, would you be a “lunar-tick?”  Hmmm.

Tuesday’s lunar event means a great deal to me, because as some of you know, when I was in college I was studying to become an astronaut.  Well, I was actually taking up space.  In any case, I know a great deal about heavenly bodies.  (I dated a lot.)  The eclipse will peak at 3 a.m. (eastern time) and will mark the beginning of lunar festival, which will feature 4 consecutive total eclipses happening at about six month intervals!

Let’s come back down to earth for a moment, shall we?  Question:  What is 500 pages long, has 731 endnotes, an incredible plot, brilliant cover, and will soon (around May 1st) be available on Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Kindle, and Nook?  If you said THE SECOND MOURNING (The Untold Story of America’s Most Bizarre Political Murder) you are right!  The book is now in its final stage of production, and since I was forced to read the darn thing, I can assure you that you are going to love this one.

Speaking of historical events…..  last week’s trivia contest was won (thirty seconds after I posted the image!) by…..  Ms. Karen Anne Smith of Lopez Island, Washington.  OMG, do I have some brilliant blog followers.  Within minutes, the correct answer (Hiram College or Hiram Eclectic Institute) was given by Randall Holahan, Larry Wood, and Leigh Ann Woodward!  Three certified geniuses!  Well done, folks.

Here’s today’s trivia question:  What historical “medical person” offered to help President Garfield after he was shot?  (Hint:  The person was a “she.”)  Unfortunately, she wasn’t allowed into the White House, but she did make an effort to help.  First prize will be an autographed copy of THE SECOND MOURNING.  Good luck!

A friendly reminder:  Tuesday, April 15th, is also the day that you must be concerned about dollars and taxes.  (I once went to Dallas, Texas, which is similar, but different.)  I still don’t understand why they call it a “tax return,” when all we do is send them money and seldom get anything in return.  Nonetheless, be a good citizen and send in your returns in a timely and painful fashion.  Does anybody know if you are required to file a return EVERY year?  Just curious.  My account (Jesse James Lipschitz) isn’t sure about that part of the law.

So get this….. my wife went to “Red Box” and got a movie that she thought was about our marriage!  (12 Years A Slave.)  Turns out, it had almost nothing to do with marital bliss.  I enjoyed the movie, and have now re-thought my position on slavery.  I wanted to watch “Gravity,” but my bride “wasn’t down with that!”  (Are these jokes “reel bad?”)

Well, it’s time for breakfast (noon) so I must run.  Enjoy your day and don’t forget to watch the night sky!  Have a safe and wonderful week!   Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

YANOFF WINS MEGA-LOTTERY MILLIONS!

BEFORE YOU GET TOO EXCITED, OR ASK TO BORROW MONEY…..  I would simply like to remind you that April first is just around the corner.  (i.e., April Fools’ Day!)  Perhaps I should have gotten your attention with a different headline.  How about…..  CRACKPOT WINS JACKPOT!  Did you know that our national day of pranks is based upon ancient Roman and Hindu festivals which occurred just after the VERNAL EQUINOX?  (Which is similar to the VENAL MAALOX.)  Me neither.  Some folks believe it was ushered in as part of “spring fever,” and others think it is connected to the Jewish spring holiday of Purim.  (One of my favorite holidays.  You bring the wine, and the host will pour ’em!)  I think it has something to do with the I.R.S., but I can’t prove it.

Today, March 30th, was an interesting day in history, too.  On this very day, in 1856, Russia signed the Peace of Paris Treaty ending….. the Crimea War!  (What goes around, comes around.)

On this day, in 1870, Texas became the LAST Confederate state to be readmitted to the Union.  (Clearly a foolish mistake on our part.)  Whose idea was that?  (Somebody get a rope!)

On this day, in 1976, INDIANA went undefeated and won the NCAA Basketball Championship.  Are you from Indiana?  Hoosier mama?  Hoosier papa?  What the heck is a hoosier, anyway?

On this very day, in 1992, Anthony Hopkins AND Jodie Foster won Academy Awards for acting in a sweet, family-oriented animal movie.  (The Silence of the Lambs.)  Hey, I’m only trying to “pull the wool” over your eyes… this is one scary movie!

Speaking of scary things…..  Last week I appeared on a local radio show, sharing some insurance insights into the tragic disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370.  You might be interested to know what I discussed with the host…..  The Boeing 777 that was lost was valued at….. $320,000,000!  (Yep, you read that right.)  The plane contains over 3,000,000 different parts, manufactured by over 500 different companies around the world.  The insurance coverage is “All Risk,” which covers nearly every peril known to man.  (Which is why the companies involved have already begun to pay out claims.)  The high cost of the aircraft is due, in part, to the fact that it can travel at close to 600 mph — and has a cruising range of 6,000 miles.  I thought you might like to know these details, as the “insurance angle” is seldom discussed in the media.

On a lighter note…..  My esteemed publisher is working on the final book cover revisions for THE SECOND MOURNING.  I am very pleased with the cover and will be doing the final editing one day next week.  I really think you’re going to enjoy this story and I will keep you informed of my progress.  In the meantime, if you would like to listen to my coast-to-coast radio interview of last week, simply go to the website I listed on last Sunday’s blog.  You will find a convenient link.  Let me know what you think.

If are the first person to correctly identify the attached photograph, you will win a $25 gift card to Target.  (But if I were you, I would not give them your credit card information!)  Unless, of course, you want to become a target.  (Of identity thieves)  Did I mention that somebody stole my identity last week?  The son of gun cancelled his credit cards and told the police that he was embarrassed to be me!  He actually resumed his former identity!  (The cops told me that he was a voracious reader, whatever that means.)  Well, have a great week, and love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

On this day, in

FREQUENCY IS IMPORTANT!

NO, NOT THAT KIND OF FREQUENCY!  I’m referring to your radio frequency, ergo I shall remind thee of my upcoming radio interview, scheduled for this Tuesday, March 25th.  If you prefer, I will post a link to the podcast and you can listen at your leisure.  I’ve heard a tape of the interview, and I was very pleased.  (I only mispronounced my main character’s name once!)  The host, Jack Drucker, was exceedingly complimentary, which was a very pleasant surprise.  (He must not read a lot!)  Mr. Drucker thinks I might become a household name.  (If I change my name to Stephen Can-Opener.)  In any case it was a great experience and a terrific opportunity to discuss DEVIL’S COVE and my other semi-brilliant mystery novels.

As some of you know, my first non-fiction book, THE SECOND MOURNING is now in the hands of my publisher.  I’m told to expect a publication date in mid-April, which is a lovely time of year down here in Austin, Texas.  (Wildflowers and such)  I shall keep you informed of my progress.  So, how was your St. Paddy’s Day?  Did you know that St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland?  (One reptile kept asking, “Are we there yet?”  Another had to stop and use the bathroom.)  I’m not sure, but I think the snakes were driven west, toward the District of Columbia.  Just saying.

My literary agent (Black Bart Berkowitz) tells me that my name was recently added to Vladimir Putin’s “no travel” list.  (I am now persona non gratitude in Russia.)  No big deal.  Did you know that there is a group of Russians that are claiming that Putin is a ruthless tyrant?  Do you know what they’re called?  Missing.

Speaking of oddities, did you hear about the “Woman’s Butt Size Study” that was conducted at Harvard University?  The results were quite interesting:   10% of women think their ass is too skinny.  30% of women think their ass is too fat.  60% say they don’t care, they love him, he is a good man and they wouldn’t trade him for the world!  (Would you folks like to guess which category my wife is in?)  Women!

After a short absence (due to parole requirements) I have returned to the world of professional, high-stakes poker.  Registering under the name of The Mighty Cobra (a lot of snakes in this blog, huh?) I managed to make the final table at the huge Steiner Ranch Tournament last Thursday!  If you can identify the photograph attached to this blog, I just might share my winnings with you!  (All right,  maybe not, but I will autograph your copy of THE SECOND MOURNING.)

Finally, I would like to mention that my book signing at the Barton Creek Mall has been postponed.  (At my request.)  I must attend another function, a birthday party hosted by the eminent Judge Susan!  We will be celebrating the birthdays of Patricia E. Yanoff (a living saint) and Ms. Barbara Talbott (a true martyr)  Gifts are not necessary, unless you want some food or drink or don’t care about walking around with a black eye and a broken arm.

In closing I would like to remind you that life is short….. so smile while you still have teeth!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

RoscoeConkling