Randall's Ramblings

Randall’s Ramblings, February 27, 2022

ukrainian-waving-flag-28While I normally refrain from making any political comments in my posts, the situation in Ukraine certainly calls for action.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the brave Ukrainian people as they fight against the brutal onslaught from a deranged despot.

The price of gasoline (petrol) increased by two pence a liter overnight. This brings the cost to £1.47 a liter or $7.60 for a U.S. gallon.  Glad I filled up on Friday!

Here’s this week’s quote (Compliments of http://www.wisdomquotesandstories.com/): “When someone is rude, keep a smile on your face. When you stay on the high road and keep your joy, you take away their power.”

So who was born on this date in history? Let’s find out who in the writing world was born on February 27th, the fourth and final Sunday of the month.

Franciscus Raphelengius, Dutch book publisher; Edward Cave, English editor and publisher; Elias Annes Borger, Dutch theologist/poet (To the Rhine); Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet (Song of Hiawatha); Alfred Pollard Edward, Civil War journalist; Richard Garnett, English author (Ananda the Miracle Worker); Alice Hamilton, physician/writer (workmen’s compensation laws); Manuel Ugarte, Argentine diplomat, politician, newspaper owner, and author; Angelina Weld Grimke, American journalist, teacher and playwright (Harlem Renaissance); Georges Migot, French composer, and poet (Les Agrestide; L’Arche); Allison Danzig, sports writer (Tennis Pictorial History); John Steinbeck, American author (Grapes of Wrath-Nobel 1962); James Thomas Farrell, American author (Studs Lonigan trilogy); Peter De Vries, author (Reuben, Reuben, Prick of Noon); Lawrence Durrell, Indian-British writer (Private Country, Alexandria Quartet); Kusumagraj, Indian writer; Irwin Shaw, American novelist (Rich Man Poor Man); Mervyn Jones, English author (Nobody’s Fault, 5 Hungarian Writers); Richard AFM Auwerda, Dutch journalist/writer; Josh Greenfeld, American author and screenwriter (A Child Called Noah); Peter Stone, American writer; Edward Lucie-Smith, British poet and poetry critic; N. Scott Momaday, American author (House Made of Dawn, Pulitzer 1969); and Michael A. Burstein, American writer.

Any names familiar to you? I know three names of today’s list: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, John Steinbeck, and Irwin Shaw. Whether you recognize anyone on the list or not, if today’s your special day I hope you have a great one!

My Work in Progress

Slide1This week I completed chapter twenty-five of Ultimate Escalation and posted it to the two online subscription writing sites I use. My manuscript received another seven reviews, bringing the total to 559. Once again, plenty of suggestions to enhance my writing and showing me what’s working and what might need a tweak.

Here’s another snippet:

ISI Major Ejaz Bangash stepped to the door of his spartan office. “Tea—and be quick!” He returned to his desk and gazed out the window.

Members of a Pakistani infantry company raced through an obstacle course before joining the growing formation on the parade ground.

Our excellent military is keeping themselves fit. How many will live through their first encounter with the Tehrik-i-Taliban or succumb to injuries fighting the Indians over Kashmir? He shook his head as he returned to the latest intelligence report that required his attention.

“Here, sir. I brought you some biscuits, too.” Zafar, Bangash’s aide, bowed as he set a tray on the desk before running out of the office.

Bangash sipped the hot brew and grimaced. No sugar—again. He removed the lid of the sugar bowl and added three heaping spoonfuls into his cup. He tried the tea again. “Ah, much better.”

He reread the report regarding the latest action of the Pakistani Taliban within the Khyber-Pahktunkhwa province. After adding his commentary to the report, he sent it to the next office on the distribution list.

Bangash scooted to his private laptop, resting on a roll-around cart in the corner. After logging in with a thirteen-digit password, he stared at the ceiling before composing a new message:

Thank you for your recent payment, duly received in the appropriate account. Our Russian ‘friend,’ and I use the term with trepidation, departed from Peshawar and is heading toward Lahore while his accomplice and several others flew to India. I anticipate an increase in calls for the reunification of Punjab in due course, including demonstrations and riots. Will advise when additional details are available.

Bangash sent his message and closed his laptop before glancing at the wall clock. Just enough time to get to Governor’s House for the reception. Perhaps I’ll collect a few more nuggets to send to my friends with the deep pockets.

More next time.

Books I’m Reading

I haven’t been doing much reading lately. With the college basketball season well underway as the conferences get ready for their tournaments and March Madness, I’ve been glued to the t.v. Once March Madness ends, I’ll be back to reading and reviewing on a regular basis.

This brings us to an end for another week. I hope you found something of interest. If you have any suggestions for a topic you’d like to read about, please let me know. Until the next time, thank you for reading and hope you drop in again.

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