Once upon a time, a long time ago, there was an African man who lived in a small village. The village had, as many villages did in Africa, a witchdoctor who healed and protected the villagers with various incantations, rituals, and potions.

It just so happened that the man was having a little stroll when he heard laughing from far above him. It was the witchdoctor! He was flying and soaring and swooping, like a big bird of prey, and was having a grand old time.

After awhile the witchdoctor landed and saw the man. The man greeted him with the most astonished look on his face. "How... how... how in the world did you..."

The witchdoctor said, "How did I fly, you mean? Oh yes, it was a potion I've been working on. I drank it and became as light as a feather, able to go to and fro with the wind! It is a marvelous feeling, it is."

The man asked, "You did THAT, with a potion?"

The witchdoctor replied, "Yes, yes, it is very simple once you have all of the ingredients and you put them together juuuuuuuuust right."

The man asked, "Could you tell me and show me how to make this potion?"

The witchdoctor chuckled. "Sure, sure, let me tell you the recipe."

They spent most of the afternoon gathering all of the components of the flying potion. The witchdoctor insisted that the man do all of the work to make the potion because, well, the man was the one who wanted it.

The man listened intently to the witchdoctor as he gave him fairly complex instructions on how to assemble the potion. Finally, over a small boiling pot, the man had the last ingredient in his hand and was getting ready to throw it in. The witchdoctor stopped him and told him, "Now this is the most important part of the potion. You must not only do everything I've already told you, but you must also think in the way I've instructed, do you understand?"

"Yes," replied the man, impatiently.

"Now remember this. Whatever you do..."

...continue reading "AOFM-MWU – The Flying Potion"

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. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

--  An excerpt from the second paragraph of the United States of America's Declaration of Independence from the British Crown.

Happy Birthday, America!

 

Also, this.

1

Mary Anne and I weren't always married, though it seems like it after 20+ years. I still had a lot to learn about women when she and I first got married. One of those things I had to learn was how women had an entirely different methodology for shopping than men.

I found it best to think about it in terms of our hunter-gatherer ancestry. Men were the hunters; the first thing we saw that could provide the necessary meat for the tribe was the first thing we stabbed to death and brought home. We knew the general locations where those meals on legs could be found, so we just went there, waited for them to show up, go Stone Age on their asses, and then, VOILA, lunchtime.

Men today shop the same way, except huge discount stores make it so much easier to spot that button-down oxford shirt, sneak up on it, spear it, and drag it back to our caves.

Women? That's a whole different game. One that men will never understand, except to note it somehow evolved from jabbering at each other while wandering among groves of fruit trees.

As an example of what happens when these worlds collide, I present an account of my first married shopping trip with Mary Anne:

...continue reading "AOFM-MWU – Our First Shopping Trip"

... it'd be just as unoriginal as all the others, but a good bit more honest about it. (link for the embedding-impaired)

Includes a jab at Grey's Anatomy starting at 1:51.

Made back in 2008 just after the TV writer's strike was over.

All video clips used in this work are copyrighted by their respective owners and are for parody purposes only.

3

Hello everyone, it's Mary Anne's husband, Angry Old Fat Man (AOFM for short).

If you're a regular reader of this site, you probably know that I, AOFM, create all of Mary Anne's book covers for her. She expressed her desire to let you, the reader, have a peek behind the scenes of the creative process I go through to make nebulous clouds of thought into solid color images on thick cover stock paper.

So come along with me while I indulge her.

...continue reading "How AOFM Creates a Romance Novel Book Cover"