SoCS — Déjà Vu All Over Again

When I saw that today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt from Linda G. Hill said for us to “start your post with any adverb and just run with it.” I thought “been there, done that.”

Sure enough I dug into my archives and just over three months ago, Linda gave us this SoCS challenge: “start your post with any adverb that ends in ‘-ly.’”

So, being the lazy bastard that I am, I’m going to essentially repost (with a few minor edits) what I posted on February 9th. Here goes.


D565E643-654E-4772-8799-BCA48E331BC7First of all, let’s define the word adverb. “An adverb is a part of speech used to describe a verb, adjective, clause, or another adverb. It simply tells the readers how, where, when, or the degree at which something was done.”

Apparently, the biggest issue with adverbs is that people tend to overuse them. Some say that of all of the parts of speech, adverbs are the most likely to clutter your sentences pointlessly. Therefore, it is often suggested that writers should use adverbs sparingly.

(Hey wait. Aren’t “apparently,” pointlessly,” and “sparingly” adverbs? Oh crap. I just cluttered up my last paragraph by using three adverbs in just three sentences.)

I remember reading Stephen King’s book, On Writing, where he goes on and on about how he feels about adverbs. I was surprised by his strong feelings. He admonishes writers to minimize, if not eliminate, their use of adverbs by suggesting that “adverbs, like the passive voice, seem to have been created with the timid writer in mind.”

King famously wrote:

“I believe the road to hell is paved with adverbs, and I will shout it from the rooftops. To put it another way, they’re like dandelions. If you have one in your lawn, it looks pretty and unique. If you fail to root it out, however, you find five the next day…fifty the day after that…and then, my brothers and sisters, your lawn is totally, completely, and profligately covered with dandelions. By then you see them for the weeds they really are, but by then it’s — GASP!! — too late.”

Personally, I think Stephen King overuses ellipses…as do I.

I have nothing against adverbs. I don’t use them often, but I do use them in my writing. And I don’t think of myself as a timid writer.

But I’m not a best-selling author, like Stephen King. In fact, I’m not an author at all. I’m not even sure I’d call myself a writer. I’m just a blogger who writes posts on my personal blog.

So, as the old song goes, it’s my blog and I’ll adverb if I want to, despite how Stephen King feels.


Apologies to Linda and to those of you who read my previous SoCS post about adverbs for recycling an old post, but it’s Saturday and I have things to do, people to see, and places to go. So deal with it.

SoCS — Constraining Trump

9E567351-B700-48EA-ACC0-3DFC9AF4689AI have been under a lot of strain lately due primarily to all of the craziness, chaos, and corruption going on in Washington these days.

I worry that we as a nation are failing to constrain Donald Trump as he continues, without constraint from the Republicans in Congress, to turn our country from a representative democracy into a monarchy being run by Emperor Donald and his offspring in much the same way that Saddam Hussein, with his sons Howdy and Doody Uday and Qusay, ran Iraq before the Iraq War.

With all of the irrefutable evidence that Trump welcomed and encouraged Russian interference in the 2016 election in order to help get him elected, as well as his blatant (and continuing) efforts to obstruct justice, I can’t comprehend how 40 to 45% of the American people still support him. How 80 to 90% of Republicans still support him. How virtually 100% of congressional Republicans not only still support him, but actively enable him.

What is wrong with these people? Don’t they care at all about the harm he’s doing?

I’m an old man — I’m Donald Trump’s age — and this constant strain of living in the era of the Donald Trump presidency might send me to an early grave. I truly think that there are only three things that can relieve this strain I’m feeling.

  1. Trump is removed from office as a result of being impeached, or
  2. Trump loses the 2020 election and willingly accepts the loss and goes along with the transition of power (which is doubtful), or
  3. Trump dies.

To be honest, and at the risk of sounding a bit morbid, I prefer number 3, because I think that’s the only sure way to constrain the man once and for all.


Written for this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt from Linda G. Hill. We are asked to use “strain” in our posts.

SoCS — Chicken Little

CC6A2691-AE74-42C4-A3D0-BE2807C8D44BYou all know the story of Chicken Little, right? She was walking along, minding her own business, when an acorn fell from a tree and hit the top of her head. Chicken Little, convinced that the sky was falling, became hysterical and set out to tell the king, a lion (“The Lion King”?), that the world was coming to an end. On her journey, Chicken Little met other animals, including Henny Penny and Ducky Lucky, and convinced them that the sky was falling. She persuaded them to join her on her mission to warn the lion about the impending disaster.

As they continued on their quest to find and warn the lion, they realized that they were not sure how to find him. That was when Chicken Little and her troupe ran into sly Foxy Loxy, who assured them that if they followed him, he’d take them to the lion.02E32EDC-0ACB-4CA7-9928-19B4D8162D93 But when Foxy Loxy got them to his lair, he, as foxes by nature are wont to do, ate them all.

So why am I telling you this little tale? That’s an excellent question. I told you about Chicken Little because, for today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, Linda G. Hill has asked us to “write about anything that falls from the sky — real, imagined, or idiomatic.”

Now I admit that when I saw the word “idiomatic,” I thought “idiot.” And as this is a stream of consciousness post, my mind turned to the idiot in the White House.

When he was running for president in 2016, his campaign rhetoric was all about how the American sky was metaphorically falling. And, like Foxy Loxy, he lured the distraught voters into his lair with his “sky is falling” claims of doom and gloom and his boast that, “I alone can fix it.”

And having lured all of the worried Chicken Littles, Henny Pennys, and Ducky Luckys into his lair, he started the process of eating them in order to satisfy his own unenlightened self-interests. And so the orange fox not only did nothing to “fix it,” he did everything to make sure that the sky was, in fact, falling on and destroying our country.

SoCS —Expectations

c21f1f19-72c6-4526-a1d1-92be03a02891.jpegFor this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, Linda G. Hill has instructed us to use “xp” as a word, or to find a word with “xp”in it. When I first saw “xp,” what came to mind was the Microsoft Windows operating system, Windows XP.

I’m no expert in Windows operating systems, but I do know that Windows XP was released in 2001 to replace Windows 2000. Windows XP delivered a more stable operating system with significantly improved performance over previous Windows operating systems, which were notoriously buggy and prone to crashing. 96CC72BC-B0B7-4522-87E7-5859A060ECE1Which of you hasn’t had your heart stop when the blue screen of death showed up on your monitor or laptop?

Microsoft introduced Windows 7 in 2009 and Windows 8 in 2013 as replacements for Windows XP, although the company I worked for continued to run its PCs and laptops on XP until it ultimately migrated to Windows 10 in 2015.

My two-year old Dell laptop has Windows 10 installed on it, but the truth is, I hardly use my laptop anymore. Most of what I would need a computer for these days, including blogging on WordPress, I do on my iPhone.2FE7DDE4-8ABC-415F-A414-A07FEC896D42On a totally unrelated topic, I get monthly credit bureau rating reports from Experian, as well as from Equifax and TransUnion, the three major credit reporting bureaus. I’m pleased to say that I have an excellent credit rating!

But seriously, would you have expected anything else from Fandango?

SoCS — I’m Just Ribbing You

e4aa34ad-19a4-4e9e-9f02-53fdf9c21f39-e1555731353637.jpegFor this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, Linda G. Hill has asked us to pay tribute to the word “rib.” I am pleased to be able to make a contribution to this effort.

I don’t know if you know this, but I broke a few ribs in a downhill snow skiing accident a while back. Sure, I took a lot of ribbing from my friends who witnessed my clumsiness. But I failed to see the humor in it. You see, one attribute of a rib injury is that it’s both very painful and extremely annoying. And my doctor wouldn’t prescribe anything for pain stronger than Tylenol. Sheesh.

If you’ve ever broken a rib or two, then you know that for about a month to six weeks after breaking a rib, you don’t want to sneeze or laugh because doing so causes you to expand your ribcage, and with a cracked rib, that results in excruciating pain. For the same reason, you also don’t want anyone to hug you. What about hot and heavy sex? Fuhgeddaboudit.

And for heaven’s sake, if you’re taking a dump and you need that last big push to get it all out, be prepared to suffer. I know that I put up with a lot of trials and tribulations by having cracked a few ribs. Breaking a rib has a terribly long, sad, and lonely recovery period.

Okay, I think I’ve described the hassle of broken ribs enough for now. But, strangely, I’ve developed a sudden urge to go out to Chili’s for a rack of baby back ribs.