Tag Archives: gambling

Crap-Shooting

The other day I got a letter from my life insurance company, and the first sentence was a friendly “We hope you’re enjoying the benefits of your policy.”

I thought, “Oh, that’s nice…”

Then I realized that in order to ‘enjoy the benefits’ of a life insurance policy, I’d have to die.  Exactly what were they trying to say there?

I’m ambivalent about insurance anyway.  I’ve always considered myself an optimist, but buying insurance means I’m basically betting that something bad is going to happen to me.  The insurance companies (the true optimists, apparently) are betting that everything’s going to be fine.  This completely messes up my worldview.

I won’t get started about how insurance companies stubbornly pretend everything is still fine even after you submit a claim.  That’s a different rant, but I will say this:  If you want the most comprehensive list of weasel-words ever compiled, take a look at the wording of an insurance policy.

But I suppose policy wordings aren’t actually that much different than playing poker:  The rules are set out before the cards are dealt, and you can ante up if you want. I’d just feel better about the whole thing if it wasn’t my own wellbeing in the pot.

If I’d saved up all the money I’d spent (and will spend in the future) on insurance, I wouldn’t need the insurance.  But I don’t dare cancel it, because I haven’t saved up all that money.  And with Murphy and his Law breathing down my neck, I just know that if I cancelled, I’d somehow manage to launch my vehicle into the middle of our living room the very next day, destroying the car and house and leaving myself disabled with huge medical bills.  And I’d probably run over somebody in the process, so I’d get sued into the bargain.

Hmm.  Maybe I’m not as much of an optimist as I thought.

Anyhow, insurance might be a crapshoot, but here’s a sure thing:  We have a cover and release date for Book 14!

The big day is Wednesday, March 27, and pre-orders should be available by this weekend.  (If you’ve signed up for my New Book Notification list, you’ll get an email with all the purchasing links.)

Here’s the big reveal:

Secret agent Aydan Kelly’s supposedly-dead mother Nora has resurfaced after thirty years, and the chain of command assigns Aydan to investigate her for treason.  With only two weeks before Nora leaves the country under diplomatic immunity, Aydan struggles to piece together her mother’s questionable past.

Two days into Aydan’s investigation Nora announces she’s leaving early, and Aydan’s director gives her an ultimatum:  Solve the case before Nora escapes, or face imprisonment for dereliction of duty.  Meanwhile, an unknown enemy is stalking Aydan’s friends and the threats are escalating. 

When time runs out and prison walls loom, claustrophobic Aydan must make an unthinkable choice: Sacrifice her friends, or lose her freedom forever.

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What Was IN That Salad?!?

So, the other night I was gambling in Vegas with James Spader and a couple of Klingon women in 70s-style fun-fur maxi coats.

Then things got weird.

As I noted in I Dream Of Dillweed, I usually don’t remember my dreams unless I’m sick.  Well, physically sick.  Let’s not get into the delicate issue of mental health.

But the other night I had this vivid dream, and James Spader was in it.  I have no idea why; I haven’t watched TV for years, and the last thing I saw him in was Boston Legal.  Also, though he’s a fine actor, if I was going to dream of an actor there are lots of others I’d prefer to meet in my dreams, ifyaknowwhatImean.

The Klingon women made sense… I guess.  I’ve been a Star Trek fan pretty much all my life, but Klingon women aren’t really my type.  Though they could have been Klingon men in drag.  It’s hard to tell with Klingons.  Either way, they weren’t doing it for me.

Also, I was winning in Vegas, which is weird in itself.  I was playing video poker (my game of choice, so that was normal).  But the machine was spitting out real coins, which doesn’t happen anymore.  And I was chortling and stuffing the coins into the capacious pockets of the white painter’s coveralls I wore.

That was all fine until I got the Superhero Distress Call.  I thought my blogging buddy Tom was the only one who has an inner superhero, but apparently I do, too.  Sadly, she seems a little on the incompetent side.

In the first place, I got my cape on backward.  Which actually turned out to be a good thing because I’d forgotten to put on the rest of my superhero suit, so I was running down the sidewalk holding the cape closed over my bare ass.

But that started to make sense when I arrived at Superhero Central a few moments later, and it turned out I had the clumsiest superhero suit ever invented.

All the other superheroes were suited up and leaping into flight, and I was still struggling to pull my suit out of the storage locker.  It was stuck underneath its belt, which consisted of a bunch of heavy diving weights strung together on aircraft cable.

I was still trying to yank it free when the Bad Guy launched himself into the air from a black spiderweb trampoline.  (The Bad Guy was dressed like Robin from the old Batman comics, except he wore black gloves.  That actually makes a bit of sense, because I’ve always thought Robin was disturbing anyway.)

Fortunately, one of the other superheroes realized I was in trouble and came back to rescue me.  And he was a handsome superhero, too, which was nice.  In fact, he looked remarkably the way I picture John Kane, one of the characters in my books – no surprise, since I’ve been writing my fingers to the bone the last couple of weeks.

Problem was, he didn’t do anything useful; he just jammed a Cone Of Silence (anybody remember that from Get Smart?) over our heads.  And then I woke up.

Earlier that evening at the pub I had eaten what they called a “California Salad”:  Mixed greens with Brie, spiced roasted pecans, sliced apples… and laced with much-too-sweet cranberry sauce.  And no, I didn’t dream that, though I kinda wish I had – the cranberry sauce was gross.

But now I wonder what else was in there…

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