The WeatherPixie

Hi, I'm a weather pixie. OK, stop laughing. I SAID, STOP LAUGHING, DAMN YOU. Click here if, for some ridiculous reason, you'd like to know more about the current weather conditions in Knoxville, Tennessee. 



Wednesday, 11/30/05 - Have you ever got one of those "inspirational" PowerPoint presentations sent to you in an e-mail? The kind that is a slideshow consisiting of a series of photos with "words to live by" superimposed and includes sappy music in the background?

Well, I got one yesterday and, tiring of seeing these syrupy things, decided to improve upon it with a little text editing. I know, I know... the original author was sincere in his purpose of creating the original for others to hopefully find some enjoyment and inspiration from its heartfelt messages... and here I come along and butcher it in just a few minutes. Well, you should know by now what kind of cruel bastard I can be. But you'll laugh when you see it, so what does that say about you? Yes, we are all one twisted family.

There are two versions. One is my version, the second is by none other than Christopher T. Shields, who took my version and tweaked it some and added his own "messages" here and there.

Enjoy both of them, and feel free to send them to the far corners of the earth to anyone and everyone with an e-mail account.

And if either or both of these make their way back to the author of the original presentation... hey, sorry.

(Both of these are PowerPoint slideshows about 2 mb each)

Longmire version

Longmire and Shields version

If you have or know of any more of these sappy slideshows, (I fear I will regret this) send them to me or give me a link to them.

Wednesday, 11/16/05 - Speaking of Elvis, and we weren't, a couple of times in the past I've told you about my father's sole contribution to the vast quantity of Elvis paraphernalia... the design of an Elvis quilt. It wasn't his idea, mind you, he was just hired to do the artwork shortly after The King's death(?).

Anyhoo, this quilt was shown in a tongue-in-cheek television documentary titled Elvis USA which aired on TBS in the mid-90s. Hosted by comedian Paul Provenza, the show poked fun at Elvis fans... I mean, the type of hardcore fans that have no lives because of their obsessed devotion to Elvis.

Below are a couple of clips from the show that I finally captured from video to present to you...

(Click on image for video clips)

A dream of "Alvis"

Elvis's last moments

Sunday, 11/13/05 - I added a couple more e-mail jewels to the E-Mail Extravaganza.

Saturday, 11/12/05 - You're sitting in your car in the mall parking lot at 9 p.m. You're there to pick your daughter up from work. You're waiting and you're bored. What do you do in the meantime? YOU TAKE PICTURES OF YOURSELF, THAT'S WHAT YOU DO!


I spent the day hiking in the Smoky Mountains, climbing the Chimney Tops trail on a beautiful Autumn day...

Sunday, 11/6/05 - Hi, I'm back. Did you miss me?

Today is my birthday. I am now 46.

I spent the day hiking in the Smoky Mountains, climbing the Chimney Tops trail on a beautiful Autumn day...

Click on thumbnails for a larger view

It was exactly the thing I needed to get away to clear my head and throw out some mental baggage that has been dogging me recently. And a birthday is a good milestone date to start anew, just like New Year's Eve December 31, 2003 was the day I gave up smoking cold turkey. It's important to have a memorable date to use to track your progress.

Anyhoo, detouring the subject slightly...

With the freakish natural disasters (tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes, etc.) occurring for the past couple of years, there has been some discussion and concern that the end of the world may be coming soon. Jeez, there's even a TV movie about it on tonight.

Well, I'm here to tell you not to worry about it.

I can assure you that the day the world ends is the very day that I am happily married, have all my bills paid, house paid for, and I'm financially secure and fully able to finally enjoy life without struggling through it.

The moment I say "I do" and walk down the aisle with my new bride, there will be a blinding flash of lightening and a deafening crack of thunder heard all round the world to announce the commencement of the boiling of the seas, the arrival of the flesh-eating locusts, a deadly bird-pig-cow-horse-cat-dog-ferret-platypus-tree-sofa flu, the moon exploding into a rainbow shower of Skittles, and the revolt of the apes.

So, as you see, this won't happen for a long time, unless I win the lottery... then we're all toast. As long as I keep screwing up in my life, the world is safe from annihilation.

You're welcome.

Saturday, 9/10/05 - Update on Christopher T. Shields (see yesterday's post). Christopher and his wife and daughter are fine. Their home received minor hurricane damage and they are enduring power and telephone outages. Christopher works for the Mississippi Department of Transportation as a computer tech, so you can imagine that he's been very busy restoring systems down there. My thanks goes out to Keith Volkmar for responding to my post yesterday and relaying the information to me.

Speaking of Hurricane Katrina, that reminds me of something I forgot to tell you yesterday. A few nights ago I saw Richard Simmons, of all people, make an appearance on Larry King Live. Simmons, a New Orleans native, was commenting on the terrible post-hurricane conditions down there. I'm sorry, but it's hard to take the guy seriously with his afro hair and him wearing a glittery vest with no shirt on underneath. At one point, and I swear I heard him say it and I'm not making this up, he referred to New Orleans as "the Venice, Italy of the world." Um.... I think that the actual Venice, Italy is considered by most people to be the Venice, Italy of the world there, sissy-britches.

Today on the SciFi channel, they're running a marathon of Bruce Campbell movies leading up to the premiere of his new film, "Man with the Screaming Brain," which Bruce wrote, directed, and stars in. If you're familiar with Campbell's post-Evil Dead movies, it's a given that this new movie will suck like his others (with the sole exception of Bubba Ho-Tep)... it's a question of how bad it will suck.

It airs at 9 p.m. Eastern time tonight.

For an extra-sucky bonus, tune in two hours earlier at 7 p.m. to see Alien Apocalypse, starring Bruce in a hand-me-down flight suit from Planet of the Apes, and see him save the world's supply of lumber from invading insectoid-aliens

Friday, 9/9/05 - I added two new wildly amusing e-mail conversations to the E-Mail Extravaganza!

Read the last sentence in this news article I copied from's home page...

Girl Captures Gator After Watching TV Show

By Associated Press

Nicki Hilliard and several friends saw the animal swimming in the Allegheny River.Hilliard said she learned how to catch the animals safely by watching the television show "Crocodile Hunter." The secret is to grab the animal's snout and hold its mouth closed.The kids put the animal in a beverage cooler and took it to the police station, where it was locked inside a cell until owner Belinda Thompson arrived to claim it.

Thompson said neighborhood cats opened the fence in her back yard, enabling Crocus to escape.

Yeah... blame it on the cats. They always get a bum rap. A likely story. Why would the neighborhood cats release an alligator into the neighborhood... THEIR OWN neighborhood? That would be like inviting a serial killer to live on your street. Now, I might be willing to believe it if it were some cats from a rival neighborhood...

Still, I would have liked to have seen the cats actually do that.

By the way, don't think that by me continuing to post humorous items that, by not mentioning it, I don't care or I'm ignoring the incredible events that have happened to New Orleans and the gulf coast area. Just like you, I've watched the news coverage of the devastation and chaos and couldn't believe it was actually happening. My heart goes out to all the hurricane victims.

I'd like to send a personal shout out to Christopher T. Shields and Jonathan Clark, who both reside near Jackson, Mississippi. I haven't heard from either one of them since Katrina struck. I've tried to call several times but the lines have been out. I hope they're doing well.

Thursday, 9/1/05 - BLASTOFF!

"Houston, we have a problem..."

Monday, 8/29/05 - This morning, I was converting an old vinyl LP to mp3 files to burn to a CD. The record happened to be the soundtrack album to that sci-fi television series from the late 70s, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. Listening to the lyrics of the show's main theme, it occurred to me that it could very well serve as the official theme song for Alzheimer's Disease.

Yeah, I said it.

Judge for yourself...

Far beyond the world I've known, far beyond my time
What am I? Who am I? What will I be?
Where am I going, and what will I see?
Searching my mind for some truth to reveal
What thoughts are fantasy, what memory's real.

Long before this life of mine, long before this time
What was there? Who cared to make it begin?
Is it forever, or will it all end?
Searching my past for the things that I've seen
Is it my life, or just something I've dreamed?

Far beyond this world I've known, far beyond my time
What kind of world am I going to find?
Will it be real or just all in my mind?
What am I? Who am I? What will I be?
Where am I going, and what will I see?

Speaking of Buck Rogers, two years ago I saw Gil Gerard, who played the title role of the short-lived series, at Knoxville's AdventureCon. He had really let himself go and I think he should be referred to as Bulk Rogers now. Because of this, his table wasn't very busy with autograph seekers...

"They think they can snub me? Well, THE HELL WITH THEM... I'M BUCK ROGERS, FOR GOD'S SAKE! I'm packing up my shit and leaving. Yeah, that's right... I'M LEAVING! I don't need this podunk town... That'll show 'em... yeah, that will show 'em ALL. That damn Twiki gets all the attention. Damn it. Goodbye Knoxville, you dwarf-loving bastards! Yeah, that's right... I'm not coming back!

I'm hungry..."

Tuesday, 8/16/05 - I'm thinking about writing an unauthorized autobiography.

Friday, 8/12/05 - Instant Karma got me.

Let me tell you what happened.

A couple of days ago, I went out to lunch with two coworkers named Greg. One Greg had just purchased a new Jeep, so he was driving to show it off to us. Lunch was uneventful. We left the restaurant and I got into the back seat, Greg got into the driver's side, and the other Greg was in the process of getting in on the front passenger side. It had been raining slightly, so when he opened the door, some water ran off the soft-top roof into the vehicle, he pretty much just stood there and watched it while driver Greg kept urging him to get in quickly to minimize the water pouring in, Finally, passenger Greg did get it, but ending up sitting in a damp seat.

I said "He's used to having a wet ass, anyway."

Big mistake. The Gods of Karma must have been listening and decided to pay a call on me.

Minutes after we got back to the office, I sat down at my desk and resumed work. I could start to feel some normal after-effects of my lunch, and as I leaned over in my chair to rip one, like I do a dozen or more times a day, I got a totally different and unexpected result... the unmistakable sensation of liquid filling the seat of my pants.

Who has the wet ass now, right?

NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! Horror-stricken, I immediately jumped out my chair, in a useless effort to minimize the after-effects of the blast, and ran/waddled to the restroom. Fortunately, no one was present along the way to witness this or to engage me in conversation and I reached my destination unheeded. Even if someone had seen me, they probably wouldn't think twice as I am known for walking funny from time to time.

Seated in the restroom stall, I surveyed the damage.. and it didn't look good. Well, of course, it wasn't going to look good regardless, but this case was particularly bad. I won't go into detail, but I can tell you that it wasn't just going to be a quick and simple mop up job. I had stainage through the undies and onto the exterior of the pants.

I had to think quick. Another stroke of fortune was that I had worn an Hawaiian-style shirt that day, so I had large shirttails that could just almost hide the seat of my pants. That would get me out the door because it was plain to see at this point that I needed a clean pair of pants and fast.

Drying myself as best I could, I left the restroom, went back to my office as quickly and quietly as I could and told a coworker that I was going out for a minute to do something I had forgotten to do during lunch. I grabbed my light jacket (another stroke of fortune that it was raining that day), wrapped it around my hind end and tied the arms around my waist. It looked normal enough. Now, off to a new pair of boxers and pants.

As you can imaging, it was an uncomfortable ride to the nearby WalMart. Once inside, a made a beeline to the men's clothing department. I made my selections very quickly, as I was starting to chafe in my tender regions at this point. Of course, I saw a coworker when I was at the cashier, but thankfully they didn't notice or comment on what I was buying... not that it would have been strange for me to have been buying those items anyway.

I got back to my office, closed and locked the door, and proceeded to change into these new life-saving garments. However, Karma wasn't quite through with me yet. In my haste to buy the replacement garments, I had unwittingly purchased sized 2X underwear.

Okay, I thought... minor setback and waste of money... let's get these babies on, regardless. I put the oversized undies on. They came down almost to my knees and just barely stayed put on me. If I had exhaled or moved slightly, they would have fallen off. I put the new pair of jeans on and tucked the enormous boxer shorts in... and tucked, and tucked, and tucked.

Finally, I was set. I wrapped up the soiled garments, put them in a plastic bag and into a large desk drawer. Note to self: don't forget to take those home today.

Ahhhh, nice and comfy. Problem solved. You take for granted the feel of dry pants.

Now I got to thinking... what could have caused this? My lunch was a grilled chicken sandwich with seasoned fries. Ahhhh.... the seasoned fries. I had never had those before at this particular restaurant. That must have been it.

Moral of the story? I don't think there is one, really, since I think this was just an accidental fluke and a coincidental self-fulfilling prophecy after I uttered those now-infamous words "He's used to having a wet ..."

Nope, I'm not going to say it again.

Why did I swallow my pride and risk ridicule to tell this tale? I don't know, I guess I just wanted you all to know that beneath the beautiful exterior and magnificent physique, I am a normal human being just like the rest of you, and I sometimes crap my pants like you do... just not as often as you.

So, if you happen to run into me after reading this, be kind. Rather than calling me "Mr. Shitty Britches" or "Poopie Pants," if you have to call me anything that refers to this tale, I prefer you address me as "Double X."

Thanks in advance.

Wednesday, 7/27/05 - OK, here's something weird... as I write this, I am currently working on my 4th Corona beer, I just ate half a tray of mini-taquitos, and the taste in my mouth at this exact moment is the exact same taste of communion wafers. I kid you not.

Monday, 7/11/05 -

A mind may be a terrible thing to waste, BUT IT MAKES ONE HELLUVA LAUNCH PAD!!!...

Monday, 6/6/05 - For your reading pleasure, two new e-mail exchanges have been posted in the E-Mail Extravaganza.

Some more fun with video...

Click on image to view video
(video clip is approximately 3.8 Mb)

Wednesday, 6/1/05 - Videos-A-Go-Go

Here are some video clips that may give you a chuckle or two.

First up, I was going through some old videotapes last week to burn onto DVDs when I came across this jewel. It's just one of many, many cartoons I taped for my son when he was small. It's a half-hour Saturday morning episode from the 70s, but the first two minutes featured here are hilarious. Who knows if the humor was intentional at the time. The dialogue of the egotistical, temperamental Magneto, and the sight of his ridiculous-looking Magneto-Mobile, are golden. "This is not every car" is an understatement. I suspect that Magneto may actually be Bob Dole... since he prefers to speak in the third-person... and talks to himself rather frequently.

Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present to you, "Magneto vs The Fantastic Four."

Click on image to view video
(video clip is approximately 2.6 Mb)

Next up, is a trailer for an old horror movie called "Black Sabbath," starring Boris Karloff. It's got a few unintentionally funny spots in it...

Click on image to view video
(video clip is also approximately 2.6 Mb)

Speaking of horror... and I was... below is a shot from a classic episode of Night Gallery titled "The Doll."

When the episode first aired in the early 70s, when I was a kid, it scared the holy crap out of me for months. I saw it again for the first time since then on DVD last month.

It's still pretty scary-looking.

Last, but not least, is a link to some hilarious office-themed videos on Netscape's web site that I received today via e-mail.

You're gonna like these.

Ahoy, ya'll... shee-it!

My friend and coworker Greg Watters... who from this moment on shall be referred to as "Greg Watters"... went to Long John Silver for lunch today. Big mistake. Oh, as far as I can tell the food was as good as could be expected but the place was run by backwoods hicks. One Gomer in particular was more stupid than the others. When we were ordering he was behind the counter talking his head off about how dirty the trays were. And... and I swear this happened... he lifted one up from the stack to discover that it was dripping with ketchup and tartar sauce. "Well looky here, ya'll!" he said as he picked it up and displayed its underside to everyone present. I asked Greg, uh... I mean, "Greg Watters," if he still wanted to eat there, but too late... he had already ordered by that time.

After this event, Gomer took his break and proceeded to the dining area with what looked like to be a square slice of chocolate cake. He yelled out to some small black children repeatedly, "I DONE GOT MINE! I DONE GOT MINE!"

I have no idea what the hell that was all about.

The kids seemed to not pay any attention to him, but their grandmother looked concerned and avoided any and all eye contact with Gomer.

As "Greg Watters" and I consumed our seafood sensations, Gomer then proceeded to sweep the floor area around the tables. A couple of women stood by a table while he kept sweeping. He asked them, "Who you waiting for?" One of the women muttered something and they sat down when he finally got out of their way.

"Greg Watters" and I, naturally, started thinking up our own answer to Gomer's question if he had asked us... like telling him that we were waiting on Santa who was outside parking the car... so we could watch him run outside yelling "Santy, SANTY!!!!"

Then I observed that two of my hush puppies were melded together to form what looked like a fried scrotum. "Greg Watters" suggested that they were Gomer's and that I should return them to him. I said, "WHAT? And have him reproduce???"

Then, just for fun, we strategically planted a chicken plank onto the scrotum to complete the package, and contemplated leaving the plate on the table for the employees to find. We didn't... but it's funny how moments before these items were edible food (and actually still were) but in their latter configuration were not to be even touched... in accordance with The Straight Guy's Handbook. Every straight guy knows the handbook from cover to cover even though it's an unwritten set of rules that exist only in our heads. There's some things guys just don't do.

To sum up, there was a bell at the side of the exit with a sign that read, "If we did it well, ring the bell!" We contemplated, again, to yank the bell's string so hard that it would come off the wall so we could take it to use as a hood ornament... but of course we didn't. But I DID pull it real hard and sounded a large "BONG" when we left. So there.

At my workplace, for some reason the custodians come in and start their duties around 3 pm. We get treated to the sounds of squeaky cleaning carts going up and down the hall, vacuum cleaners, and interruptions of trash emptying. And if you want to use the restroom around 4:30, you can forget it.

Anyhoo... today, by accident actually and probably due to the Long John Silver lunch, I farted a big hot one a split second before the janitor entered my office to retrieve my trash. It was a room-filler and I didn't even have time to fan it any. He probably was wondering why I was looking away from him staring at the wall laughing... no, I take that back... I sure he knows why I was laughing, and I bet he wishes now that he was scheduled to come in after hours like custodial staff in the real world.

I think I've said this before, but I must reiterate...

"If it comes out hot, it's gonna rot!"®

Monday, 5/30/05 - Happy Memorial Day!

I hope your day was more fun than this guy's...

He and his chicken look like they're having a blast.

I was burning a DVD of a movie called "The Tao of Steve" for a friend this evening. The main character in the film, a major slacker of a fellow, was smoking a bong for breakfast when his soon-to-be-love-interest asked him, "Don't you ever want to do more with your life?" to which he replied these classic lines...

"Doing stuff is overrated. Like Hitler... he did a lot of stuff, but don't we all wish he would have just stayed home and gotten stoned?"

Speaking of Hitler, who was probably one of history's most evil characters, I was watching Penn and Teller's "Bullsh*t!" on Showtime the other night. On an episode titled "Holier Than Thou," they were exposing the less-than-saintly behavior of figures such as Mother Teresa, Gandhi, and the Dalai Lama when Penn said something simple yet prolific...

"The lesser of two evils is still evil."

On another episode, they blasted "life coaching." One method in particular was extra-stupid... "cuddle parties."

Friday, 5/27/05 - As promised, a video clip of the MSNBC segment as it aired on Wednesday...

Click on image to view video

I'm heading up to Louisville, Kentucky tomorrow to attend Wonderfest. If by any chance you'll be up there too, look for me. I'll be the one wearing the Princess Leia outfit.

Wednesday, 5/25/05 - A few brief shining moments...

Let me tell you what has happened very recently. Last week, I received a couple of e-mails telling me that the romance novel cover parody page was mentioned in the "Backspace" section of the latest (June 7) issue of PC Magazine...

Click on image for an enlarged version

And just today, I was checking my e-mail and found that Tony Maciulis at MSNBC had written me interested in mentioning the page on the "Connected: Coast to Coast" show. After he got my official permission and politely refused to pay me (just kidding, Tony!), the piece aired at 5:20 pm ET this evening... live on COLOR television.


It's all about the LOVE, baby. The LOVE.

Incidentally, I noticed that one of the hosts of this show is Ron Reagan, son of the late president. Good thing Ron was was off today and had someone subbing for him, because if he dug a little deeper into my site he would have found this thing that I did last year when his dad died.

Yeah, I know... what was I thinking?

Anyhoo... I got the MSNBC feature on tape and I will create a video clip very soon to share with you.

Friday, 3/25/05 -

Date:  Wed, 23 Mar 2005 04:15:00 EST

Here's how I answered you on my web page.
The Prickly Pear

Instapundit  links to a web site of, as he calls it, amusing spoofs of romance novel covers. The site is amusing unless  you're one of the 9000, mostly women, romance writers who have to put up with this kind of stuff all the time. Though most romance writers I know, and I know a lot of them, have a sense of humor and probably would laugh at the site.  Romance writers also know that those who make fun of them usually have never read a romance novel. Or if they have, the critic deliberately picked one of poor quality  in order to make fun of it. (As in any other genre there are both good and bad writers.)

So, I'd like to take this opportunity to educate Instapundit and Longmire about the romance genre. After all, It never hurts for a man to know what 51 million women like does it?

Romance novels cover the spectrum of historicals, mysteries, thrillers, sci-fi, and westerns, all with  a woman as the protagonist. The genre has become so successful that at 48.8% of all paperback sales romance novels overshadow all other paperback genres combined. Romance novels are books about commitment and good vs evil. They're also about strong women who save the day instead of being victims, unlike they're portrayed in many novels written by men.

What kind of women write these books?  Romance Writers of America answers the question.

The writer-members of RWA have worked as doctors, engineers, attorneys military officers, actors, artists,stay-at-home mothers, scientists, mathematicians, musicians, businesswomen, scholars, teachers and a hundred other professions.

Romance novels are good entertaining reads. Ask any woman who reads them. Glenn and Longmire might be interested to know that men, whose women read these books, find another benefit out of the read. I'll let your imagination figure it out.


Hey Mama, lighten up.

Do you also defend chickens when anyone asks why they cross the road?

I don't think that little 'ole me is going to do any harm to the romance novel industry. You're taking this way too seriously.

I've received close to a hundred e-mails about the recent intense popularity (which probably won't last very long) of this page and all of them except for two have been very positive and complimentary from people with a sense of humor. And 95% of those have been from women, most of whom admit that they read romance novels.

My page has also been referenced in an infinite number of blogs across the country with all favorable comments.

I might add that a member of the "All About Romance" website ( contacted me and invited me to use the covers on that site, from their current "best of 2004" cover contest, as a source for more parody versions. Go figure.

So, it seems that you and your comments are in the minority.

I guess you could say that I'm literally judging a book by its cover... and the covers are pretty dumb. Hey, I'm only commenting on what I see.

You say, "After all, It never hurts for a man to know what 51 million women like does it?" Does that mean that 51 million women like to be seduced by caucasion-looking Indians and mermen? And what's with the whole merman thing anyway? Is it some kind of fish stick fetish?

Anyhoo, I think a lot of the romance novel covers are insulting to intelligent women. A lot of the ones I've seen feature posed scenes of caucasion Indians, mermen, and guys in plaid skirts forcing women down to their knees to do Lord knows what. It's probably physically easier for the mermen to do this, being underwater and all.

You also state that I "might be interested to know that men, whose women read these books, find another benefit out of the read. I'll let your imagination figure it out." Hey, my ladies don't need no books to start their motors. All they need is an advance warning to take a step back before I let down my pants.

So, anyway, as long as you have covers like those out there, you should expect to be made fun of.

- Mark Longmire

This will blow your mind.

However, this Flash piece, "Touch Someone," WON'T blow your mind. Well, on second thought, maybe it will. It will probably just sadden you. Go ahead and take a look... I'll wait for you here.


Were you able to sit through it all?

"In your heart you will know, you don't need a face to be a true friend forever."

And here's a whole page of them!

Wow... I've got to parody one of those. Does anybody out there know of a good source of MIDI sound files free for the taking? If so, tell me.

I found "Touch Someone" as a link on one of my all time favorite websites, The Dan Daily Site(s). HIS SITES ARE AWESOME, MAN. While I was there recently, I also found this new saying that Dan penned...

"A smile is the lighting system of the face, the cooling system of the head and the heating system of the heart."

"Please Pass it Around!"

If that doesn't get you to thinking, well, then you've just got something wrong with you. That's all I've got to say about it.

This odd panel from a Sunday newspaper comic strip caught my eye...


Wednesday, 3/23/05 - Just one more mention of the romance novel parody page and I'll stop. Since I've been doing my website, I've never before experienced such a sensational wave of praise and recognition. The page has been linked, and select covers featured, on an infinite number of blogs across the country as well as mentioned on a Colorado radio station. I realize that I'm probably at 14:45 at my little 15 minutes of fame, but it's pretty cool. More covers, from myself and readers, were posted last night.

Last week, I was also in the local news. Well, another Mark Longmire was. I'm actually related to him as he is my third cousin or something. Seems that he got caught waist deep in a sewer line trench collapse. It was strange to hear "my" name on local television and radio.

While we're on the subject of fellow Longmires, I'd like to pay tribute to this guy...

I found his picture on the web and have no idea who he is, but I'd like to honor him anyway and proclaim today and every March 23 from now on as "Brookie Longmire Day." This site needs some traditions anyway.

Speaking of traditions, I saw this photo on the web a couple of weeks ago and decided to mess with it...

Click on image for an enlarged version

In other local news, The University of Tennessee fired its men's basketball head coach, Buzz Peterson, after a dismal four years...

"So, THERE!"

Also in local news, East Tennessee experienced a 2.5 earthquake although I didn't feel a thing.

"Blount County Sheriff's Office dispatchers said callers reported hearing a loud boom followed by shaking and trembling."

I didn't know that earthquakes started off with a large boom.
It was probably the sound of a meth lab blowing up. We've got LOTS of those around here.

You'd think the SciFi Channel could do without this promo...

People actually got paid for thinking up and filming a scene of a guy blowing into a dog's ass.

That's the American Dream right there, folks. That's why immigrants still flock to our country... to have the basic human right to inflate lap dogs anally without persecution. As George W. Bush would say, "Let freedom reign!"

See this canine molestation and other SciFi Channel promos on this page.

That reminds me... for you Bruce Campbell fans out there, don't miss the premiere of Alien Apocalypse this Saturday night on SciFi. It will probably suck, but what the hey.


A new mini-series to watch for...

"And next month, NBC will debut its six-part apocalyptic thriller "Revelations," starring Bill Pullman as a scientist who teams up with a nun to try to thwart Armageddon."

Okay... exactly how do you thwart Armageddon? Isn't it like, you know, foretold in the Bible, and predestined to happen and stuff? Oh wait a minute... it says "try." That's better. Never mind.

Thursday, 3/10/05 - Hey, everybody... I've been busy in the real world with some renovations at home: painting walls, new door installations, and a bathroom redecoration and painting. Man, it's hard to get feces off a ceiling!

Anyhoo, the romance novel covers really caught on and became quite a hit... after sitting on the site for about a year unnoticed. The e-mail response was overwhelming with over 40 cover submissions from you readers out there. The covers are posted here.

Thanks to everyone who sent covers and complimentary e-mails. I really appreciate it!

Wednesday, 2/9/05 - Following up on the romance novel thing from yesterday, I posted some covers submitted by a reader that I received last month.

Tuesday, 2/8/05 - Hey, I've been "challenged"...

"I think we all can agree that romance novels are pretty silly and are just asking to be ridiculed. So that's exactly what I did. I bought a few of them at the used book store and got to work on them. The artwork almost writes its own jokes."
- from Longmire Does Romance Novels

I can agree that the artwork of romances from 20 to 40 years ago is a bit silly. I've never cared for the 'clinch' cover myself. However, as a writer of romance and member of Romance Writers Of America I have to object to you saying that all romances are 'pretty silly' and are 'just asking' to be ridiculed. Certainly these covers might be, but unless you go to a bookstore or local library and pick up a romance that has been printed in the last 5 years you really cannot assume what their content is.

You do make me and many of my fellow romance writers laugh at these covers. They are pretty silly as artwork goes. It takes intelligence to make a good spoof. I'm betting you're intelligent enough to drop your assumptions and be willing to pick up a romance at your library or bookstore and read it. Don't read the first one you pick, instead look at the titles, the covers, the names of the people who are writing. Read the blurb. See if there's a story you might be interested in. Act like you pick out something to read every day. ;-) After that, sit down and read it.

That's my challenge.

Sandra Richards

That's a very pleasant, non-angry letter, but I have to decline this challenge. I have no interest in reading a romance novel. I'm sure they have an intelligent audience that's large enough to keep the writers and publishers in business, but it just ain't for me, just because of the subject matter in general.

Hey, I'm an average guy and we don't read that stuff.

I guess I "judged a book by its cover." I should revise my opening statement on that page to read:

"I think a lot of us can agree that a large number of romance novel covers are pretty silly and are just asking to be ridiculed. So that's exactly what I did. I bought a few of them at the used book store and got to work on them. The artwork almost writes its own jokes."

Monday, 1/31/05 - Last Thursday, January 27, marked the 38th anniversary of the Apollo 1 fire that took the lives of astronauts Gus Grissom, Ed White, and Roger Chaffee. NASA had this nice Day of Remembrance tribute on their site. It also honors the crews of the lost Challenger and Columbia space shuttles.

I've always had an admiration for ole Gus. He was one of the seven original Mercury astronauts and was the first man in history to go into space twice. He was a true hero but seemed a tragic figure to me. In the movie The Right Stuff, he was inaccurately, and unfortunately, portrayed as being panic-stricken during his Mercury flight and was blamed for blowing his capsule's hatch prematurely after splashdown which resulted in the capsule sinking in the ocean. The filmmakers portrayed him as an embarrassment and failure.

That's odd, because this "failure" was subsequently assigned to the maiden voyages of both the Gemini and Apollo spacecraft, and some say he was slated to be the first man to set foot on the moon.

Ah, what might have been.

Wednesday, 1/26/05 -

I have heard your voices, and I feel your pain...

I know, I know, it's been a long, long time since the last chapter of my Planet of the Apes... funkified came out, and I have broken promises of the "release date" of the next chapter (#9, The Cave). I'm really sorry about that. I had every intention to get it done, but I had an intense period of burnout where I wasn't inspired to do much of any online publishing. I think the reason was that I had so many half-developed, half-baked ideas that it overwhelmed me to the point where I didn't want to do anything for a while... if you can understand that.

I've read your emails and also comments made in my message board (going to get a petition up, eh?) and I realize how popular this parody has become. Out of curiosity, I did a search of "Planet of the Apes" on Google and to my surprise the site comes up sixth in the results! Wow.

I've also realized that I have actually made some of you out there mad with the delay of the next chapter. Once again... sorry, didn't mean to. No need for the death threats, please.

Well, I'm happy to say that I am now actively working on the next installment. You won't believe this, but the inspiration came back to me in a strange dream. Yeah, with this story, of course it had to be a strange dream. I woke up (thankfully, in a dry bed this time) with most of the jokes already planned out in my head.

Now, it still will take a couple of weeks to get all the Photoshopping done (and there's quite a bit in this one) and some other little features I'm planning, so hang on just a wee little bit longer.

Now, after all this time, I hope you won't be disappointed, but this upcoming one is already shaping up to be on par with the preceding ones.

And I even have a new little friend helping me...

Yes, he did leave a stain on my shirt.

Saturday, 1/22/05 - I found this photo of my friend Brian and myself as I was cleaning out some folders on my computer...

Oh, don't worry... Brian survived the fall and recovered quite nicely.

Thursday, 1/20/05 -Wow... this is scary. A human skeleton was found in the town where I work.

Saw this billboard near my house a couple of days ago. I'm not sure what the point is other than some sort of love-hate relationship with smut. Yeah, I said it... SMUT.

I was surfing and saw portly American Idol winner Reuben Studdard's latest album. Jeez, has fame gone to his head? He seems to be very demanding now.

Wednesday, 1/19/05 - I tried my best, but the old beaver head ended up STILL ugly.

What the #$%& ??? Richard Hatch, winner of the first Survivor show, didn't report his $1 million prize, and other related income, to the IRS? How could he possibly think he could get away with it? It must have been some kind of "strategy."

Wednesday, 1/12/05 - I know that you've seen those magnetic yellow ribbons that some people put on their vehicles. You might even have one yourself. Most of them say "Support Our Troops." That's cool. I don't agree with the dubious reasons for our war in Iraq, but I do support the troops.

I'm thinking about putting this one on my car...

Heh, heh, heh, heh... uh, yeah.

Okay, you're right, that was pretty bad... but it's nothing compared to this idea for a car magnet that I came up with yesterday.

I have to warn you that this one's pretty vile, both visually and in concept. So, if you're squeamish, ultra-patriotic, easily offended, any or all of the above, DON'T click on the link below.

I bet you can't wait to see it now.

This is your last warning... don't click here.

Tuesday, 1/11/05 - This Christmas card I received has kept me on edge for the past weeks, fearful for the toddlers of America...

"Yes, just a little closer Timmy. Feel the warmth and joy of Christmas. Just a little closer, feel the magic..."

Click on image for an enlarged version

When you open the card there is a quote by someone named Teresa Langdon that reads "Believe as a child believes, and the magic will find you."

Well, what I see is an evil teddy bear using mindpower to force a toddler to walk into a flaming fireplace. Why it would want to do that, I don't know, but I think we all can do without that type of magic finding the children. Yes, the children.


Monday, 1/3/05 - Last year, Victor Ashe, the former mayor of Knoxville, became, of all things, the U.S. Ambassador to Poland. I'm not kidding. I guess a transition from Knoxville to Poland is only natural. Anyhoo, this photo of "The Littlest Ambassador" inspecting that country's national treasure ran in the Knoxville newspaper few months ago...

Victor Ashe, U.S. Ambassador to Poland, checks out the merchandise.

Click on image for an enlarged version

Saturday, 1/1/05 -

Hello, my babies... I'm back.

I don't know what happened really. One day of not feeling particularly funny or inspired turned into two days, into three days, into a week, into a month, and into a total of four months. I guess that after doing this blog for over five years, I kinda got burnt out on it and needed a break.


During my absence, plenty of stuff happened, both in the real world and The Wonderful World of Longmire. I'll catch you up as best as I can in the days to come with the major highlights... in my world, that is. You saw the crap in the real world just as I did.

Right now, my current project is converting all of my old analog music cassettes to digital format to burn onto CDs. I found some really cool sound recording/editing software on the web to do just that. You can also convert your wav files to mp3, or vice versa. It's very easy to use and you get a free two-week evaluation period to try the program out. The only expense I've had so far is that I had to purchase a stereo cable to run from my tape deck to the line-in jack on my PC. After the trial period, it's just $29.95 if you choose to buy it. I'm definitely going to purchase it as it's a very useful tool.

If you want it, here it is, come and get it.

As I was going through my cassette tapes (about a hundred crammed in a dresser drawer, hence the need to convert them), I found some lost treasures. A few years ago, in the olden days before the "no-call" list, I recorded a couple of telephone conversations with telemarketers that had the misfortune of calling me. Enjoy...

(I wasn't kidding about the amount of tapes, as you can see here in the "pyramid of power" that my daughter and I built from them.)

Oh, by the way... Happy New Year!!!

©2004-2005, Mark Longmire, The Wonderful World of Longmire