I have never won a prize.

Not even something as insignificant as a stinking door prize at some crummy grocery store giveaway.

Zip, zero, nãda, null set, goose egg, bloody nothing.

Some people – foolish in nature I should add – might conclude I am a loser.

Bah and humbug. I refuse to accept that. I am merely a temporarily displaced winner.

It’s not that I don’t try.

I have entered every magazine sweepstakes ever held; filled out innumerable Internet questionnaires that offer prizes; followed up on all my grocery and sales receipt surveys where something was being given away; bought an endless stream of Power Zillions and Mega-Super-Freaking-Ball tickets; purchased scratch-off lottery tickets by the cartload; and even resorted to bingo on Thursday night down at that crappy smoke-filled dump next to the bowling alley.

And what do I have to show for all this massive cash-spewing and affront to my patience effort?

Let me spew:

From the magazine sweepstakes — a closet full of freaking magazines I have never read. Although, I do clip out the contests and enter them. To no bloody avail (see paragraph one, above). Effing sigh.

From the Internet questionnaires – nothing, but apparently I am now on the e-mailing list for every product currently being manufactured anywhere throughout the civilized fugging world by every company with an Internet email campaign. Basically, every company on earth. Foreign and domestic. Fug.

From the grocery and sales receipt surveys — nothing, but apparently I am now on the mailing list for every household product currently being sold throughout the civilized effing world. Ditto from above, including the fug.

From the Power Zillions and Mega-Super-Freaking-Ball tickets – I have nothing but scraps of worthless paper someone told me could be tax deductible. If I ever win the lottery. See sentence one, above. Gag me with spoon.

From the scratch-off lottery tickets – I have accumulated enough of that nasty gray scratch-off dust that I cannot get it out of my furniture. Or my shorts.

From the bingo parlor – I think I got lung cancer. My gawd, how can those people smoke that much? I think I might have Alzheimer’s. Is that contagious?

Why am I forcing you to endure my pathetic litany of misery by recounting this sad tale of never winning squadoodle bumscrew abso-stinking-lutely nothing?

I’m not particularly clear on that point, but as long as the beer holds out, I intend to ramble on. That reminds me, I need to turn on my music.

My friends rag on me. Incessantly. Enoch, they say — mostly because that’s my name – why are you trying to win stuff when there is so much stuff out there that’s free?

I try to explain to them that getting free stuff is just a question of asking. Of filling out an application. Submitting a form. Kind of like begging, but I guess more upscale.

I don’t want free caca.

I want to WIN free caca.

Some of my more affluent, strike that – some of my more employed friends say, “Why don’t you gamble and try to win something?”

You mean – RISK my own resources? Do I look that stupid? Am I a fool? Do I amuse you? Gambling is only good in two possible circumstances – the first is where you own the gambling establishment (the House) and the second is where the result is rigged and you are in on it.

You know, like politics.

So, unless you own it or are in on the rigged game, gambling is D-U-M-B.

My more educated – and thus irritating – friends are fond of reminding me that playing the lottery is basically gambling.

I tell them I am supporting education and they can go screw in a light bulb or something.

You can’t win – I repeat to myself like a mantra – unless you play. Which is to say, continue to enter every imaginable contest, sweepstakes, game and whatever you can find. Despite this persistent level of perniciously stupid commitment, I still can’t win anything.

Fortunately, I have love.

That’s right – a zero prize-winning loser (i.e., me) is actually the winner of the greatest lottery imaginable – a friend, companion, and lover who has stood by my side for many years.

That is a prize never to be duplicated and is precious beyond all reckoning.

I am a happy man.

Still, is asking for a freaking $50 scratch off win too much for the bloody cosmos to accommodate?

Just kidding.

Sort of just kidding.

–E

I am comfortably ensconced in my study – okay, fine, it’s my living room recliner – contemplating my awesome Ranger Creek Oatmeal Pale Ale and thinking about my friend Tucker.

Tucker is in the movie business. Makes those animated features. Think Pixar and Disney.

Well, without the billions of dollars, hundreds of employees, or fancy equipment.

Mostly he works on grants from the government. Hey, it’s an honest living. Sort of.

Anyway, I’ve known Tuck for an ungoodly number of years and although we don’t always see eye-to-eye on politics (he’s a semi-close-minded leftist Liberal and I’m a semi-closed-minded middle-right Conservative) we still find enough common ground to be friends.

Mostly centered on tennis, fine whiskey, good-looking women, and pleasant conversation. Not always in that order.

Tuck calls me about this new animated movie he’s making. He’s excited and wants to get together to talk about it. It will involve some of that common ground I mentioned earlier, namely the fine whiskey and pleasant conversation.

And — if I know Tuck — he’ll want to meet at his favorite pub; a joint called Born to Hang.

I think additional common ground will be there – the good-looking women part.

So, we do indeed meet at the pub. Nice place. Lots of wood. Women in short kilts. We get a booth.

“Enoch, this movie will be epic,” he says as we slide into our seats.

“You say that about every movie you’ve ever made,” I comment, remembering that a good friend’s most important job is to keep his or her friend grounded in reality.

In response to the uncommon ground’s question about what we wanted to drink, we both ordered a small draft Stella and a shot of that fine whiskey I mentioned earlier. Tuck went with Crown and I opted for Rebecca Creek. Think global, act local, you might say.

“This movie is special,” he said and rubbed his hands together like a gleeful mad scientist.

I spread my own hands out in a kind of okay, humor me gesture and simply stated, “Convince me.”

“It’s about a farm,” Tuck began, “and the animals that live around it.”

I smiled innocently. “You haven’t lost me yet.” I got a smirky fake scowl in return for my obvious sarcasm.

He was quite animated. “The animals are in a constant battle with the farmer – call him Mr. Farmer for now – as they try to survive each day.” If he was this worked up already, I hesitated to think what the adult beverages might do to him. Still, he was full grown.

“Mr. Farmer is a big hunter then?” I asked. If the animals feared for their survival, this seemed a reasonable question.

“What?” Tuck said as the drinks were delivered and we were momentarily distracted until the common ground walked away. Well, as she walked away.

“Mr. Farmer is a hunter?” I repeated, knowing that Tuck was momentarily distracted.

“No, but he does shoot, trap, and otherwise harass the poor animals as they try to eat the crops.” He takes a sip of beer. I want to say something but Tuck is too quick. “You have to keep in mind these animals are really hip and cool, making snappy cultural jokes, and generally making you laugh.”

I wasn’t really laughing. “The animals who steal the farmer’s food?”

Tuck seems insulted. “The farmer is producing way more food than he can possibly need.”

I take a sip of cold beer and slowly shake my head. I speak gently. “He sells the rest.”

“He is selling FOOD, Enoch,” Tuck said with obvious distaste. “Making a profit off of something that everyone has a right to have.” He looked at me with a kindly expression. “The animals only want to live.”

I exhale. Take another – longer – sip of beer. “He’s an entrepreneur, Tuck. He bought the land. He cultivates it, plants the seeds, feeds and waters the plants, and then harvests them.”

“All for his own selfish benefit,” Tuck said in slight exasperation. He takes a long slurp of beer.

“He’s willing to work at it. Others are not.” I am trying calmly to explain this.

“That’s because they’re animals, Enoch, they don’t know how to farm.” Tuck was very indignant. “If the farmer doesn’t want the animals to steal his food, he should distribute some to the animals.”

I frowned. “They’re animals, Tuck. They don’t produce anything.”

“They exist, Enoch – you have to take care of them.” He seemed defiant as he picked up his shot glass. We are neat guys, in a manner of speaking.

It was my turn to scowl. “This animated movie sounds like a critique of Capitalism,” I said with a smile. “With Mr. Farmer cast in the role of the evil corporate exploiter of his fellow humans.”

“The animals deserve to survive,” Tuck said defensively.

“And the farmer – who has worked his ass off to make his crops grow – deserves the right to defend them against thieves.” I took a sip of whiskey to hide my foul expression.

“No one owns the land,” Tuck said lamely.

“Tuck, you are an idiot,” I replied and stood up. “See you around.”

Which is how I ended up in my recliner thinking about Tuck and wondering how such a nice guy could end up being so freaking stupid.

Bottoms up.

-E

Depending on whatever critically important story-of-the-moment is being broadcast from some “thoughtful” and “reasonable” news outlet or network — relayed with cheerful and effervescent professionalism by carefully quaffed and coiffed humans — I either find myself infuriated, amused, bemused, saddened, or horrified.

Truth be told – mostly I am just vexitated. Equal parts vexed and irritated.

It seems like we – the general public, the hoi polloi, the unwashed masses, the proletariat, the rank and file, the slavish minions – are subject to widely differing viewpoints from the Left and Right which (upon alert and curious scrutiny) are discovered to be but one and the same message, artfully and deliberately disguised to keep us fat and happy.

We are subject to outlier extremism at both ends of the political spectrum – Left and Right – but this is nothing but outright deception, and it reminds me of the expression of “playing both ends against the middle.”

The middle in question being the middle class – the centrist, common sense, regular, and normal American who acknowledges the validity of many divergent political views – and it is being deceived, exploited, and conned by a Left and Right that only views the middle class as a source of revenue, either in the form of taxes, donations, consumer expenditures or expanding debt.

The members of the middle class are not humans — we are just accounts to be drained.

Look around at what is being shown on any digital news outlet – no one can convey the truth to you because we have lost the thread that leads us to the truth. We are lost in the woods, and our breadcrumb trail is gone. The Wicked Witch of State is about to eat us alive, trying to tempt us into feeling at ease with candy, candy, candy while she monitors the temperature and prepares the stove.

Don’t eat the candy. Don’t drink the cool-aid. Red pill, or blue pill?

Don’t trust anyone simply because they say “I am Left,” or “I am Right.” Listen to the message. Examine the content. Discern the truth for yourselves. So often we are subject to supposedly learned men and women parading around their academic credentials as though that is the ultimate confirmation of truth. Or, equally disheartening, we are presented with celebrities whose ability to sing, dance, play a musical instrument, or parrot lines of text somehow qualifies them to convey truth and reliability that we must accept with unquestioned cheerfulness.

The final insult comes when our elected officials are held up as some sort of irrefutable symbol of authority and knowledge, and any criticism of them is either racist, a sign of intrinsic ignorance, or a symptom of some kind of anti-social mental illness.

Do not be daunted or intimidated by what others say or do – think for your Self and act on the basis of the greatest ethical and moral beliefs we have as human beings.

Question all forms of thought which seek to instruct you on what to think instead of how to think. Question all forms of authority that demand your unquestioned allegiance simply because they are from the State, and you are not. Question any system of thought that requires the complete submission of your Will and self-determining being. Question those who want only to speak at you and never listen to you.

Question ignorance and barbarism in all its clever forms.

I wish you the best in your search for the truth – always remembering that you cannot fight fire with fire. Unless your fire is much, much, bigger – and burns brightly within you.

–E

We should all be familiar with the succinct and profound military attack plan best expressed as “divide and conquer.”

It is a simple and robustly elegant strategy which is designed to splinter one’s opponent into smaller and more manageable groups incapable of uniting to deal cohesively with a common enemy.

Disorganized and isolated groups subject to such a strategy languish in malaise incapable of any unified effort.

There are many organizations in America that directly benefit from the disarray and chaos engendered by heightened racial tensions. It contributes significantly to their financial success and political power to stoke the flames of racism and — if no racism can be found — to locate kindling and build their own fire. Usually the latter.

I would like for you to examine your own life for just a moment. Slow down and think about this — we are constantly “informed” that all of us hate people on the basis of the COLOR of their skin. We are repeatedly told by those organizations noted above that we are all racists. When was the last time that you personally expressed your own bigotry, felt it from others, or witnessed others committing acts of racism?

Judging from my experiences, the answer is not very often. In truth, you have really got to be kidding me — how on earth have any of us been sucked into buying this line of carnival crap about race? Do we honestly dislike people because of the EXTERNAL color of their skin? If this is true, then why not hate people on the basis of the color of their shirt, the size of their shoes, or how they comb their hair?

We are letting the race hate-mongers and corrupt politicians control our minds. They are manipulating the electromagnetic (EM) waves — any digital signals containing data — in order to divide black, brown, white, yellow and whatever color you want to add to the mix.

Separate and equal in chaos — and useless to face the true enemy.

It is absolutely NOT the skin color of a person — not some mere external variable like that — that leads us to dislike someone. It is what lurks INSIDE the other person that repels and irritates us. It is their behavior as a direct expression of what is INSIDE that disturbs us.

What we truly hate is our animal nature.

We have been battling for tens of thousands of years to be human – and be more than human – and what we hate are humans who are NOT truly human, because they act like animals – in point of fact, they ARE animals.

And these non-humans can be any color. All colors. Color does not distinguish when it comes to bestiality.

The legends of vampires, werewolves, zombies and such are — of course — pure nonsense, but they do illustrate a simple and completely undeniable TRUTH — we fear, loathe, and hate our unrestrained animal nature. We hate those who are out of control and use no rational thought to guide their actions.

They are not human.

When heinous acts are committed by such people — be they white, brown, black, yellow, red, or purple — we face the horrible truth of our unconscious animal side. True humans do, indeed, hate and abhor the sad sight of that. It is reminder that the divide between civilization and barbarism is narrow indeed.

However — that is not racism – it has NOTHING to do with race, but only with cultural values in disarray – values that glorify sex, violence, drugs, and hate. Values with no genuine moral or ethical basis. Respect magnified to a vice.

Failure to embrace a culture that values such important things as hard work, dedication, sacrifice, virtue, honesty, family, and self-responsibility

And it affects all humans, of any race.

Trying to uphold the highest standards of human conduct with true morality and ethics – and expecting others to do the same – is NOT racism.

It’s called being a conscious human being.

If you call it racism – what is it you are really hiding? What are you really seeking?

Manipulating hate for gain is evil. Period.

End. Of. Story.

–E

Postscript: Be sure to check out my other entry –> Losing a Culture

Our American culture is not something that automatically passes intact and fully functioning from generation to generation. The ethics, morals, principles, ideas, themes, mores and all other critically important aspects of a culture must be taught and demonstrated to each new generation.

Well, assuming the new generation is still receptive to such concepts after being inundated with “transforming” ideas that reflect a radically different perspective.

Despite that, there are ideas (some of which are unique to America and have helped make this country great), which have invoked tremendous antipathy, resentment, jealousy and outright hatred among many different countries, organizations, religions, and political groups. Primarily because the success Americans have achieved by putting such ideas to work on a daily basis seems unattainable to others.

Ideas that actually work.

American ideas like self-determining self-hood, personal responsibility, love of liberty, a strong work ethic, a willingness to make short-term sacrifices for long-term gain, embracing competition, righteous anger in the face of inequity and barbarism, and a dynamic ethical and moral belief that encompasses the greatest insights of human thought.

Such incredibly valuable ideas are not inherent or innate within the human mind. We are born neither civilized or conscious. We must be taught those values. We must learn.

Humans are born as beasts. We are animals, pure and simple. We must acquire the knowledge necessary to overcome that bestiality. Young humans must be taught how to become truly conscious people. The things that permit that (e.g., compassion, honesty, loyalty, respect, honor, et cetera) must be carefully and faithfully transmitted from generation to generation.

It is possible—indeed, one could argue it is happening now—that if the modes of such transmission (e.g., education, politics, entertainment, news dissemination and such) are subjugated to the will of a perspective that is not American in origin, then over the course of time American culture can, and will be, slowly lost.

It will vanish.

The current population of young adults—the next generation of Americans—is losing the connection to those distinctly American values that helped make this country an example of what humanity, working in a spirit of harmony and cooperation, could achieve.

A primary example is a complete disconnect from the intent and meaning of the Declaration of Independence, which was the loud and raucous cry of the human spirit seeking freedom from the oppressive yoke of despotic, tyrannical, centralized planning and unfeeling bureaucratic control.

Let’s make a brief examination of just a few of the most important concepts in the Declaration and how we desperately need to embrace and understand what that means if we hope to salvage what is rapidly wrecking our Republic.

There are many stately-minded people who will happily inform you that what was written in 1776 has no relevance for us in the year 2016. Nothing from the past could possibly be of value to the enlightened humans of the New Millennium. Such people seek only to transform the present to match their narcissistic visions of the future. To believe the wisdom of the past is of no relevance to modern humans is a belief that leads to tyranny. To believe that way is to negate and obviate every bit of human wisdom hard fought and gained over thousands of years of human struggling and development. It matters not what your individual belief structure is in terms of religion or philosophy – the fact is that ancient wisdom reflects manifest and obvious truth.

Are the Indic vedas, Buddhist thought, Talmudic formulations, Christic teachings, Quranic admonitions, Platonic or Socratic musings, Confucian advice any less useful because they originate in the distant past?

It would be the height of arrogance and foolishness to assume that no human in the past ever achieved a similar state of conscious awareness as someone currently alive.

Let’s look at just one small sentence—an absolutely vital part—of the Declaration of Independence.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

The first thing that strikes me is the phrase “these truths” and I say this because there are many, many, people today who do not believe in truth. Certainly not absolute truth. They see truth as something malleable, flexible, ever-changing, subject to the whims and vagaries of whatever the ruling elite desires. Situational ethics. To such people, it doesn’t make any difference what you say or do. Either something works (it lets you succeed) or it doesn’t. Truth is not relevant and certainly not important—only results matter, without regard for the kind of ethics or morality that absolute truth demands. State-mandated pragmatics.

Truth is not relative. It is not situational. It is not flexible. There are truths—as we read further in the Declaration—that are “self-evident.” Now we really need to pause and take stock of what this critical concept embodies, for it is essential to our understanding of the whole.

The key here is obviously awareness and consciousness. Nothing is “self-evident” unless you are intelligent, awake, aware, and conscious enough to even possess a Self. To overcome the beast and become human. When you do possess such a Self, then it is obvious that there are—indeed—some truths which stand out.

They are, indeed, self-evident.

All men—all humans—are created equal. What we are taught, learn, experience, and discover as infants, children, adolescents and young adults ripples through our mature lives and is reflected in what we become. Since those things are unique to each of us, it means that — over time — what we achieve will be different, and the skills and talents we exhibit will be different, but in the very beginning the Equality that the Declaration is concerned with involves Rights.

At birth, you see, all humans are “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.” That is the basic equality. Of course, some individuals are born into good circumstances and some into bad—but those are human-created scenarios and ever-changing variables. The Declaration is concerned with absolutes. Such a significant statement about Rights requires some serious consideration.

Let’s start with the word “endowed.”

It means that you are provided with or have been given a quality, ability, or asset. One could argue rather convincingly that the genetic traits (internal and external) that you are born with constitute your natural endowment. According to the Declaration, this endowment flows from the “Creator.”

Ostensibly many folks immediately jump to the notion this means God or some external Supreme Being. Yet this misses a bit of the meaning here because every human being, past and present, is a created being, brought into existence by the unification of XY genetic factors. This is true whether this is handled the traditional way through the intimate relations of a man and a woman, or some odd new way engendered by technological “innovation” that fertilizes an egg in a machined environment. Either way, life is created and there is a Creator. Life has been created, no matter the methodology, and such life has “certain unalienable rights.”

There are now three big ideas as we move forward.

“Certain” is one of them, as in “certain unalienable Rights.” Not all rights are being addressed here, as some of those stem direct from the social structure humans choose to live in. They are granted, earned, or made available and—as such—are not necessarily similar to unalienable (inalienable) rights, which are rights that are absolute, innate, and should never be taken away from the individual.

Among these Rights — which implies there are others — the following are the most important: “…Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Once a life is created, it has a right to life. It is now a created being—whose potential is both unknown and unlimited. Barring medical, ethical, or valid legal reasons, a created life has a right to experience life.

Beyond the idea of the “right to life” is the simple idea that all living humans have a right to continue to live once they have an existence. That is to say, the other person’s right to life is inviolate unless they seek to negate your right to life. Defending one’s self is understandable.

Still, it’s difficult to embrace the sanctity of human life unless you have liberty.

Without freedom, life is nothing but a prison. Sadly, many people fear freedom. They want to be told what to do, how to do it, and when to do it. Prison is preferable to the hard work of freedom. That’s because freedom is painful. It requires great effort. It demands sacrifice. Most people are unwilling to make the effort to either earn, deserve, or even preserve freedom. However, self-aware and conscious people fully grasp the true meaning of freedom (liberty) and its inextricable and sustaining link to life.

With life and liberty in hand (hopefully secured by a friendly government) one now has the ability to make the “pursuit of happiness.”

A difficult concept, to be sure.

To Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, happiness depends on the individual and what they believe, and how they act in their daily affairs. Happiness is living a virtuous life, and is little like the Buddhist middle way—avoid excesses and do the right thing. However, the whole point is kind of moot because the fact is the Declaration does not really concern itself with the actual or specific meaning of Happiness, as ultimately it is a subjective state of being for each and every human. The Declaration is only saying one of those unalienable rights centers around the “pursuit” aspect.

With your life you have the liberty to choose the course of action (within the prescribed boundaries of acceptable conduct in a civilized society) to pursue happiness as you understand it. Such pursuit implies a dynamic and active participation—you must actually STRIVE to EARN your happiness. No one can pursue anything sitting on their butt, though the amount of money paid out in federal entitlements might suggest otherwise. It is sad that there are vast segments of our society that are told by their religious, political, and social leadership that it is pointless to work, pointless to strive for success, and pointless to strive for happiness because the system is stacked against them and they have no opportunities.

That is simply and absolutely not the case.

The “pursuit” of happiness is available for any American, but they must embrace that critically important sentence from the Declaration we have been discussing in order to achieve anything—by failing to endorse that distinctly American idea they are sounding the death knell to self-sustaining self-hood, personal responsibility, and any hope for the glorious vision elaborated by the Declaration that inspires humans to greatness.

A society of the people, by the people and for the people is fading away unless we revitalize what it means to be a real American and recapture the essence of our ancestors.

The idea of being an American is beyond all ethnic, racial, religious or other demographic boundaries. Being an American means embracing the ideas we have been discussing in this article. People in this country who do not endorse those ideas are not Americans.

Do not let our culture slip away. Do not let the mindless hordes destroy our heritage. Do not let barbarism become acceptable and endorsed by a society that has lost all respect for itself and others.

You must teach the children the truth. You must fight against ignorance and hypocrisy. You must rail against deception, fraud, and lies. You must stand up for what is right and true, or the great American dream will slide into an abyss of soulless bestiality from which it can never recover.

Do not let that happen.

exophobe_cover

Okay, today I have on my pimp clothes and I am going to do my best to promote Exophobe.

Hang on, that just doesn’t sound altogether wholesome.

How about I slip on my carnival barker suspenders and hat?

Crap, still wrong.

Snake-oil pitch man? Presidential candidate? Used car salesman? Radio talk show host?

Fug. How about just an author that believes in his book– and it’s not just me that likes the book.

I hope the comments below motivates you to the point of action, with that action being going to the Exophobe website.

Think excellent book and a free T-shirt. Plus, I’ll name a character after you in my next book.

Okay, that last bit is a lie, but the other stuff is true…

Check out what these fine readers have to say ➡ –>

 

William Pullin —

A great addition to my home library! I don’t read very much fiction, but this work was well worth the exception. Looking forward to the next literary journey…

 

Keith M Green —

Reading this book often caused annoyance. Mostly because I would dive into the creative and thought provoking world of Exophobe on an early morning train ride and subsequently find myself confronted with sultry looks from haggard faces as my laughter pierced the hypnagogia of their commute to work. So, if you do read this, make sure you’re not in a library. A rambling adventure that casually struts the tight rope of cohesive writing and a tangent filled flustercluck, this book has just the right blend of wit, charm and mystery to keep you guessing and guffawing at a rapid pace. The story follows a Enoch, a regular guy through an international conspiracy concerning a number of secret organisations and touches on ideas surrounding aliens, arcane magick and the occult. A mixture of chaotic internal monologues, good ol’ (and new) fashioned sci-fi concepts and glimpsing phrases of truth and meaning, ‘Exophobe’ delights and excites with a twist at every turn and a writing style that not only captures the reality of human thought and group dynamics, but tops it off with a more than a pinch of humour. Like a lot more. Seriously. There were so many puns in this book that even me (who enjoys a lot of punishment (get it?)) got a bit annoyed at the protagonist making so many jokes, but hey, being someone who often does/attempts to do the same, I’d have my pants on fire if I said I’d never pissed anyone off by making a joke an inappropriate moment, so all in all it added to the realism of the characters. That was definitely one thing that I thought D. Kenton Mellott really had down, the characters were truly 3 dimensional (even the ones that didn’t exist in the physical world) and it added a tasty layer of reality to this novel work of fiction. Combine that with a decent plot that builds to a tingling climax through compound meaning and the result is a thoroughly enjoyable adventure with the pages set to pun. All in all a great read, lots of jokes, good story arc, cool aliens and enough sexual tension to make you blush. Just what you want from a sci-fi.

 

Margaret V

Hello Sir! I just wanted to share with you that this book is one of my favorite books ever. The imagery, detail, diction, all of it was flawless to me. I stumbled upon this book in a small out-of-the-way bookstore and I am so glad I did. I can’t explain it, but I really connect with this book in ways I haven’t before. So thank you for Exophobe.

 

Jeremy

This has easily become one of my favorite books of all time. I can’t wait for the next one! The style of writing is unique, entertaining, and highly immersive. Any passerby that witnessed my reading of the book would have surely thought me to be a raving lunatic. Often I would burst out with laughter and in return receive strange looks. I will recommend this book to everyone I know!

 

Mike Wilson

I bought the book at Dallas Comic Con and just started reading it last night. It kept me up all night, and now I have not been productive at work today. Thank you.

Julie M. Coffey

I finished your book, Exophobe, and I wanted to let you know that I enjoyed it completely. As your reader, I couldn’t help but imagine Enoch to be you, so now you have some special powers in my mind! As a writer, you forced me to slow down my reading so that I would catch the subtle wit and clever twists that you included. There were no periods where the action dragged along, and the characters were sympathetic and realistic. Most of my reading was done in airports, so I want you to know that I held the book up high where other travelers could get a good look at the cover/title and maybe search for it. I am anxiously awaiting the next book, so put me on your email list and let me know when and where I can buy it.

 

Angela Bullock

I started reading your book last night. Thanks for keeping me up until the rooster crowed. Not a real rooster, mind you, but you get the picture. I met you for a brief yet enjoyable moment at Dallas Comic Con on Saturday. You, sir, are a character! Thank you for taking the time to tell me about the book and pique my interest. I shall post my overall impressions of the story soon.. most likely tomorrow. I have a LOT of coffee on hand.

 

Most people love cats or dogs. Maybe birds.

Shoot, even reptiles. Snakes. Hamsters. Gerbils. (Seriously, gerbils?)

I love the dung beetle.

I know, it just seems so wrong. I think the immediate response of most people has to be “huh,” or some more colorful derivation thereof.

A great many people simply stare at me blank-faced and ask, “why?”

Good question.

Let me slip on my pointy pontificating hat and ponder.

Pause for just a wavering moment and contemplate what the dung beetle accomplishes.

It takes what we regard as an absolutely repellent by-product of living (e.g., scat, poop, excrement, fecal matter, sh*t) and instead of stepping gingerly around it and moving on, the dung beetle labors feverishly to accumulate, organize into a spherical shape and roll the “fruits of its labor” back to his or her abode.

Where the dung beetle uses said ball of smelly goo to feed and raise its young. Thereby allowing the lowly dung beetle to replicate, survive, and subdue its world.

The dung beetle is an awesome role model.

Here’s why –>

Think about how much crap all of us deal with on a daily basis.

It might come from our boss, from our clients, from our co-workers, from our spouse, from our friends, from our relatives, from our Internet social media “followers,” from mainstream media, from non-mainstream media.

Generally, from the Cosmos as a whole.

In fact, someone, somewhere, at one time went full frontal dung beetle and made a lot of money with a simple bumper sticker that merely states the dung beetle motto – “Sh*t Happens.” For the sake of a more genteel discussion, we will use the less offensive term “poo” so as not to offend the Internet’s automated word censors.

Having reflected on the success of the dung beetle, I am immensely happy that poo happens.

Poo gives us opportunities – in life for sure, but especially in business. It doesn’t matter whether you are in business for yourself, or are an employee of another. The poo of someone else is your opportunity to make yourself useful and valuable, because you can step in, locate the client’s or employer’s poo, organize it, shape it into a nice little ball, and roll it away.

Best of all – you get paid for dealing with their poo.

The next time poo happens to you – regardless of the source – make a careful evaluation of how you can turn a disgusting by-product of living into something useful and valuable.

Never be afraid to implement a solution that others seem doubtful about.

The ensuing success may just surprise the poo out of you.

Oh, and please buy a copy of Exophobe, my novel, which is sort of my ball of poo. Hmm… That doesn’t sound altogether right — but go read it!!!

–E

risemachines

Robots, automation, enhanced computer intelligence, machine-run cloud computing and other such non-human oriented technological advancements will have a significant impact on employment, income, and economic stability in the very near future.

There is an implicit thread underlying these developments that should make every discerning soul pause in careful consideration — it is the simple yet eloquently complex fact that humans must become more intelligent in order to succeed in such a highly advanced technological world.

However, there is a very serious challenge here.

Once we assume increased intelligence is an absolute necessity, and forms the fundamental structural truth for this discussion, we are inextricably drawn to one of two possible scenarios –

(1) Humans must educate, train, and gain experience to become more intelligent and productive members of society or;

(2) Because of genetic realities as reflected in the Bell Curve, over 75% of average humans are destined to be overwhelmed and displaced by AI, robotics and the like and are incapable of any improvement of the basic intelligence they were born with.

I am hopeful that the first scenario is true, but I fear the second – especially as I look around at events transpiring in America and around the world. A revolution is coming.

The next great revolution will not be racially motivated.

It will not be grounded in religious beliefs.

It will not have ethnic origins.

There is foreshadowing and ample clues available to the discerning mind about what is coming. When you hear the words “income inequality,” you should stop and give this some serious thought. When you hear the phrase “winners in life’s lottery” bantered about by adept politicians, you should stop and ponder this deeply. When you hear the phrase “multi-cultural harmony,” you should stop and wonder at the meaning.

The next revolution will be between the cognitively-challenged (i.e. uneducated) non-producers and the intelligent achievers.

If the first scenario elucidated above is true, humans can rise to fight the challenge of the coming technological changes and the ensuing entropic chaos they cause by implementing creative processes where the goal is a dynamic equilibrium, if you will permit me to employ that phrase.

If the second scenario above is true, then it means the coming revolution will basically pit 75% of the genetically-challenged human population against 25%. The sheer size of the former dwarfs the ability of the latter to stave off the entropic chaos which will erode and eventually destroy civilization,
primarily by having the economy collapse under the weight of its own maintenance requirements.

Too many takers and not enough givers.

To determine which scenario any government believes and endorses, you merely have to study the nature of the policies the government supports.

Government Option 1 – In this scenario the government believes that most human beings do not have the cognitive skills and abilities necessary to survive in a modern technological age and, therefore, must be cared after; like a shepherd tends a flock. The Bell Curve — they believe — is static, not dynamic. Most people will never be successful. You are fated by birth to your level of intelligence – or lack thereof. Like bad luck and cancer, according to the experts, it is in your genes. Therefore, the only choice available to the government is to amuse and placate the masses (the barbarians) through entitlements, welfare, recreational drugs and entertainment catering to the lowest of tastes. High standards of ethics and morality are not promoted or acknowledged. Truth is relative.

Government Option 2 – In this scenario the government believes humans can be made more intelligent, can become more conscious, can rise above their genetics, but the government – in a desire to maintain its tight grip on its own power – deliberately chooses to keep truth, knowledge, and opportunity hidden from the general populace. Only a special elite are permitted to rise to positions of authority and control. The government seeks to sow discord, chaos, and strife in order to maintain confusion and force people to turn to the State for guidance and salvation. The government (and its minions in the culture) will constantly reinforce the notion that achieving success is impossible, that there are no pathways available for most people, and that hate, prejudice and bigotry are rampant.

Government Option 3 – You can have a government that embraces self-responsibility, hard work, dedication, and opportunities for success made available for anyone who endorses American societal and cultural values. Such a government will strive for a solid education system that teaches people how to think and not just what to think. Freedom is encouraged, even though it is painful. The Bell Curve is dynamic, and people can (with hard work) move from the left to the right. No one is entitled to anything except “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” – and such happiness must be earned.

What does your government believe?

Remember the words of Lao Tzu –>

“Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habit. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.”

EM: Greetings to Debris From the Wreckage blog subscribers, Net surfers, literary aficionados, as well as all other interested electromagnetic entities. Not up to and including government monitoring agencies.

DKM: Now you sound like a conspiracy theorist.

EM: (Laughs heartily). My name is Enoch Maarduk. I’m here today with D. Kenton Mellott, the author who wrote about my adventures in Exophobe and Exophobic: Making Waves. I usually just call him DKM.

DKM: Among other things…

EM: Well, DKM, tell our reading and listening audience why you started writing.

DKM: I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. Mostly for my own amusement.

EM: You must be easily amused (subdued chuckle).

DKM: Especially by your blog (equally subdued chuckle).

EM: I’ve known you for quite a long time, and you have eclectic tastes in writing. What genre do you prefer?

DKM: Well, E… Can I call you E? (Both laugh). When I said I write for my own amusement, I really mean it. I figure if I enjoy it, then others will as well.

EM: That’s a little bit arrogant.

DKM: (Shrugs). I think every author has to believe in themselves. If you don’t have confidence in the story you’re creating, how in the world will anyone else give a damn about it?

EM: You’re a point maker.

DKM: Sometimes…

EM: What prompted you to write Exophobe?

DKM: You and I were having dinner at Vitellos…

EM: As I recall, dinner involved several expensive bottles of wine and some Copper Gorillas.

DKM: You said PHANTASM was paying for it.

EM: You said you’d go easy on the wine…

DKM: (Shrugs again). Writing is hard work.

EM: (Coughs humorously). Speaking of writing, for those folks reading this that haven’t yet read your first novel, Exophobe, can you give us a quick synopsis?

DKM: Well, in this book there’s this guy named Enoch Maarduk…

EM: Seems vaguely familiar…

DKM: (Grunts). It’s Friday and he’s too tired to go out partying with his pals…

EM: This must be a work of fiction.

DKM: (Mock scowl). Our hero decides to do a little social networking on the computer, but gets sidetracked by ancient Sumeria and the story of Gilgamesh.

EM: I think it was the Stellas that did the sidetracking.

DKM: Enoch is always trying to figure out a way to make a buck.

EM: Mostly just trying to figure out how to pay rent.

DKM: Are you going to interrupt the entire time?

EM: Only when I can enhance what you’re saying; so, yes, the entire time.

DKM: (Flashes the one finger salute of minimal respect). Enoch, with the Stellas consumed and after stumbling on a graphic about the Electromagnetic (EM) Spectrum, decides the best way to make money is to write about things that can’t be proven or disproven.

DKM: (Pauses, looks at his friend in anticipation). You got nothing?

EM: I’m masticating on future pontifications.

DKM: (Shaking his head). That doesn’t sound altogether sanitary.

EM: Pray, continue. (Gesticulates).

DKM: Enoch decides he can also make money writing about nothing, so he starts to write about electromagnetic entities that live in the EM Spectrum as forms of unconstituted energy.

EM: Hang on, you made that word up.

DKM: Fine. The EM entities live in the Spectrum as energy without corporeal form.

EM: Better.

DKM: These entities can be invoked to Earth in human form by the use of high-tech pentacles using computer processors located at the five pentacle points.

EM: (Smiling). You can’t prove any of this.

DKM: (Smirking). Funny guy. Anyway, when these EM entities are invoked to Earth, they are controlled by whoever puts blood (and thus their DNA) into the special pentacle. Plus – to make matters worse – these EM entities have the ability to overlay their brainwave thought patterns onto the minds of other people.

EM: Damn, that sounds serious.

DKM: It is, because the affected person believes they are thinking those thoughts. The good news, however, is that it only impacts people with low levels of intelligence.

EM: Holy crap, humanity is in real trouble then.

DKM: Not really, because Enoch just made all this up. Mostly for the amusement of himself and the people who read his blog. The blog where he posted this ridiculous idea.

EM: Whew! So, nothing to see here, please move along.

DKM: Not so fast Mashed Potato and Gravy Face. It turns out that there is an agency in existence that monitors the EM Spectrum. Make sure no ones uses electromagnetic waves to adversely impact or take advantage of people.

EM: They should arrest most of the people in Hollywood.

DKM: I think you just blew your chance to sell a screenplay.

EM: Whatever. (Shrugs). What’s the name of this agency?

DKM: PHANTASM. Preventing Horrors and Nightmares Through Active Spectrum Monitoring. And they decide to recruit Enoch because the world needs to be saved.

EM: And we did it!

DKM: Are you trying to ruin this interview?

EM: Well, we did, though it was a bit of a close thing.

DKM: No spoilers – people should read the book.

EM: Yes they should. Kirkus Reviews (established 1933) calls it—

“…a sci-fi adventure that keeps both the narrator and the reader on their toes. … this action-packed tale will satisfy readers looking for entertainment with substance.”

Former school teacher and book reviewer Suzanne Yusiw writes–

“If you like your science fiction leavened with humor, brainy wordplay, and a whiff of romance, look into D. Kenton Mellott’s latest novel, Exophobe.”

DKM: You’re making me blush.

EM: (Eyebrows shooting up). I find that hard to believe.

DKM: The book is available in hardcover by ordering though the website www.exophobe.com. Digital versions can be found in the Apple, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobles stores.

EM: You’re not giving it away for free?

DKM: Well, E, it took a year and half to completely write, edit, and get published. Seems only fair I make a little money on the deal. It’s fairly priced and I have bills to pay.

EM: We’re about out of time, but can you give me a quick summation of the second book, Exophobic: Making Waves?

DKM: I was only going to write one novel about your silly ass life at PHANTASM, but it appears people want to know more.

EM: I’m flattered.

DKM: You should be. Anyway – the second book takes place six months after the first and is a completely new story.

EM: So, I don’t really need to read the first book, Exophobe.

DKM: You may be the worst interviewer ever. (Gives EM a jaundiced eye). Of course people need to bloody well read the first book. Did I mention I have bills to pay. (Frowns). Besides, it’s a damn good book.

EM: If you don’t say so yourself.

DKM: Can I finish now?

EM: Hurry…

DKM: As I said, it’s six months later, and Enoch–now CEO of PHANTASM–must join with Phoebe, Dee and the rest of the crew to face some disturbing developments. Such as a virus designed to lower human intelligence; tracking down and finding two new possibly (probably) dangerous, electromagnetic entities (eemees) who entered our world through hi-tech pentacle portals; figure out who hacked into the NSA; and stop whomever (whoever) is responsible for manipulating electromagnetic waves and spreading absolute freaking chaos throughout the digital world. And Enoch thought all he had to worry about was getting married…

EM: I’m still worried about that, by the way.

DKM: E, thanks for giving me this forum and I hope people will read the books.

EM: They really are good. (Nods head). Until next time, E knock out. (Looks at DKM). Get it, “Enoch Out?”

DKM: Yeah, I got it. It was terrible.

EM: (Fading voice). That’s bull. It was funny…

Enoch here. An old friend of mine wanted to make a little pitch for his books and — because I’m featured in them — I figured I’d let him post some disjointed and rambling thoughts and see what happens. So here it goes –>

________________________________________________

My name is D. Kenton Mellott. I’m the author of the novel Exophobe – which is a work of fiction with science in it. In the book I hardily attempt to be informative, provocative (within the bounds of good taste), entertaining, and funny. Sometimes this works quite well, and sometimes it is an epic fail.

Nonethemuchmoreless, I consider it a worthy effort and – happily – many people who have read the book agree with me. A comfort in my reclining years, lazy boy that I am.

The book is available for digital devices from Apple, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobles and while I myself enjoy said electronic contraptions, I still have a soft spot in my head for hardbound books. Something substantive and real that I can hold in my hand or hurl at the neighbor’s annoying cat.

I’m just kidding.

I’d use a shoe instead.

Anyway, today I am cajoling, pleading, pontificating, and otherwise badgering you to consider buying the hardcover version of the book.

Why should you even consider such a thing? Books, the Tech Elite cry out, are dead.

Well, let me regale you with the multitudinous benefits of the hardcover version of Exophobe.

Reason the first: It is a limited first edition of approximately 2000 copies. Eventually it will be worth more than it is now. Probably just after a virus wipes out all other authors. Be that as it may, it is a quality item and would be a notable addition to any library. I am wearing my solemn look with a face full of veracity.

Reason the second: I’ll personalize and customize the inscription specifically for you. Hey, that might actually increase the value – you never know. Plus, you can make up a really good story about it. I’ll back you up on it.

Reason the third: If an EM pulse wipes out all conventional sources of energy, you’ll have something to start a fire with. Assuming you have some matches or a lighter, or rub sticks like that Bare Grills guy, or whatever his name is…

Reason the fourth: My storage unit costs are killing me and I need to move a few of these damn hardbound books out.

Reason the fifth: Don’t get sucked too deep down the digital technology rabbit hole. Make a statement about the power of the written word. Plus, you can order and pay for the book online. Dang, that sounded better in my head.

Reason the sixth: A lifetime warranty on the dust jacket. Okay, technically not true, but we will send you an extra one if you need it. Assuming I can find one in the storage unit.

Reason the seventh: No batteries required for book operation. Plus, it looks better to actually have books on your bookshelf. Just saying.

Reason the eighth: You can hurl it at the neighbor’s annoying cat.*

Beyond all this nonsense, you can go to the website at www dot exophobe dot com and purchase the book. Plus check out my new book – Exophobic: Making Waves – a completely new adventure featuring the same group of characters from Exophobe.

Go to my website now and get the books(s) ordered before a virus wipes out most of humanity or the machines take over. Or, an asteroid takes us out. Or, whatever…

Thanks !!!

d kenton mellott

 

* As per Federal regulations, we are required to state that we do not endorse, encourage, or promote the hurling of books at cats or other animals, unruly or not.