Excerpt from ‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

Excerpt from ‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay. (Copyright 2013)

Author’s Note559744_4692505032308_1564390475_n-1

A short time ago I was given an extraordinary set of recordings to transcribe by a courier who stipulated that, in exchange, I must maintain his anonymity. After agreeing to the condition, I was commissioned to set down the spoken words in book form and then publish them under my own name. To this I also agreed.

We then listened to the audio (it had been transferred neatly onto a compact disc made from the antique tapes out of which it was recorded) so that the courier could be certain I fully understood the gravity of the content. When the disc had run its course I could barely believe my own ears, and asked him why I specifically was chosen for the task.

I was informed that he represented the wealthy British gentleman who possessed the original recordings, and to whom it was of the utmost importance that a foreign, overseas writer be utilized; if at all possible an American. That was the only explanation I received as to how I was selected for the assignment. After some consideration I thought it best not to ask any further questions, and so now that brings me to the matter at hand.

The words you are about to read were spoken well over seven decades ago by none other than Dr. John H. Watson, M.D., friend and confidant to the world’s greatest detective, Sherlock Holmes. With them, Dr. Watson explains that the decision as to whether the tale contained within his recordings should ever be published would be left entirely to fate. Clearly fate has at last opted to intervene, and has made its choice.

Not to belabor or overstate the point, but the story which lies ahead is simply astonishing. I’m not certain that I would have believed it had the words not come directly from Dr. Watson himself. I now invite you to decide for yourself whether or not you believe.

Christopher J. Gay

April 13th, 2013

Hartford, Connecticut USA

Foreword

In the years since the demise of my cherished friend, it has been frequently inquired of me just how many of our great adventures remain un-catalogued. While there was a long period in which I might confidently offer an accurate rejoinder, the present truth is that as more time passes even my best efforts can provide merely an estimate. Still, at this late stage I seem to find myself with more occasions to reflect on the rather diminutive selection of our stories that, for one reason or another, I had failed to chronicle. In point of fact, to be precise, one tale in particular.

As I now embark on my ninth decade of shuffling across this mortal coil, I have little doubt that the time is nearly upon when I shall once again have the opportunity to reminisce with my old companion in person. Time and its inexorable connection to mortality is a reality from which no man escapes. That truth being what it is I feel the moment has now arrived to set the record straight.

You’ll forgive me if I appear hesitant to continue, as I’m quite certain that this will prove the concluding narrative to cap off what has been called of late, somewhat to my amusement, the Sherlock Holmes “Canon.” (A generously over-descriptive noun which elevates my writing skills to an undeserved level) As such, I may linger somewhat in relaying the facts of this case, just as I might had I the foreknowledge that on a given day I would be viewing my last sunset.

As arthritis has stolen nearly all of my power to write, I’ll instead take this opportunity to use my Dictaphone to document what I am about to relate. This wondrous machine was a gift to Holmes, later bequeathed to me, in appreciation for his solving a case for the American inventor Alexander Graham Bell. That case in itself was worthy of the telling, and surely would have been if not for Holmes’s promise to Mr. Bell to forever maintain its secrecy. In that spirit, I too shall carry it to my grave.

Moreover, I will be so bold as to state that the following account will certainly prove to be the more memorable tale; in fact it’s likely to top them all. If you are wondering why it hasn’t been previously disclosed, the reason will become self-evident as the story unfolds. If not, it surely will by its conclusion.

As I have no desire to see the publication of this communication prior to my own end, once completed these tapes will be carefully concealed within my current residence in London. I shall leave it to fate that they should be discovered by some future owner and transcribed for public consumption. In the event they someday are, I should like to state for the ages that I have never known a more talented man; a greater champion of good, than my friend Sherlock Holmes. If only I could have measured up to his standards, I should have been much the better for it.

Dr. John H. Watson, M.D. 

30 June 1940

Chapter 1

     It was a seasonably warm day, which was to be expected as the calendar page had recently turned to July. I had only just entered my study and sat down when my housekeeper knocked upon the door.

“Come in, Sara,” said I.

“There’s a telegram for you, Doctor.”

I glanced around while simultaneously patting the breast pocket of my shirt, and realized I’d left my reading glasses in my bed chamber. Sara, having been witness to this same act of forgetfulness on my part for some time now, right away understood its meaning.

“Shall I retrieve your glasses for you, sir?”

“No, thank you. Please read the missive aloud and save us both some inconvenience. I apologize for having grown old and absent-minded in your care, Sara. The steady erosion of one’s faculties is indeed a nuisance.”

Having heard on many prior occasions my complaints on the matter; she offered a silent smile in acknowledgement as she unfolded the telegram.

“It is dated 3 July, Doctor.”

“Yes. Please do go on.”

Sara cleared her throat and proceeded. “Watson. My end draws near. If no bother I should like to say good-bye to my dearest friend. If you’re agreeable, please call on me soon. Holmes.” Sara read the last part with a slight tremor in her voice. She then walked over to my desk and laid the paper down upon it.

     “There, there now,” I offered in an attempt to comfort her; but my heart wasn’t in the effort.

“My sincerest condolences, sir. When will you be leaving?”

“At once.” I picked up a train schedule from the corner of my desk and looked it over. “There’s a 3:30 to Sussex; that’s the one. I’ll go pack.”

“How long will you be gone?” She asked in that same slightly quivering voice.

“As long as it takes, my dear. As long as it takes.”

*     *     *

     A motor-carriage taxi brought me to the station, at which point I boarded the 3:30 train for Sussex Downs. Once situated in my compartment I was finally alone with my thoughts. I am set to turn seventy-eight next week, and yet it seemed no more than a fortnight since Holmes and I had spent our first night together as flat mates in Baker Street. But as the saying goes, time and tide wait for no man. And as the wheels on the track drew me closer to my friend and his last dance with life before facing the inevitability we all must, I found myself in a state of reflection.

There were so many cases; so many adventures. Though I could not have known or at least appreciated it then, I realized now that I was indeed a lucky man; and in more ways than one. Having access to such a titanic intellect for so long was a blessing. Still, there was one thing on which I pondered greatly. A still-unsettled case that Holmes never fully solved, though on that fact I am quite certain he remains completely oblivious. The question became should I bother him with it, or let him go to his reward believing his perfect record remained intact? (While he has always considered the Irene Adler case a loss, I do not. And as Holmes’s de facto biographer, what I say literally goes.)

As the scenery rolled by I thought further on this; even moreso as the train reached the Sussex station. I hired another motor-carriage taxi to take me the rest of the way to the farm and it was there, on the final leg of my journey, that I decided Holmes should know. Moreover, that he deserved to know. At several times throughout our lengthy partnership he made it a point to mention that, for honour’s sake, I should register his mistakes along with his successes. And while I was reticent to do that, fearing a reduction in the high esteem with which the public held him; in this instance it was all but certain only he would ever know.

As the taxi took me down the long driveway to the main house, I could see the remains of Holmes’ once-thriving apiary. A few wooden hives, long bereft of bees, were all that was left of his post-detecting occupation. I was let out near the door and paid the driver. As he pulled away I turned and stared for a moment at the front door; at a threshold which I had not crossed for some time. I might have stayed in my stationary position for an hour longer if I didn’t hear a very familiar voice carry through an open window.

“It’s open, Watson.”

Without response I stepped forward and entered the dwelling; not sure in which condition I might find him. I walked through the front hallway and into his ground-floor living room, where I was surprised at the sight before me. If not for his affliction it might have been the 1880’s in Baker Street once again. Holmes stood near the unlit fireplace; pipe in hand, a fragile, gaunt figure leaning against its mantle for support.

My instincts as a doctor involuntarily kicked in and, without applying much thought, I chastised him. “Really Holmes; smoking during the end stages of cancer?”

He smiled. “The operative words in your rebuke are “end stages,” Watson. The fact is I would have been better served to have taken more seriously your reprimands on this filthy habit years ago. Now though as a man of medicine I must ask you: really, what difference does it make?”

      Of course he was right. “Not much, I’m afraid.”

     “To deny myself even the simplest pleasures at this stage would be utterly pointless.”

     “Quite so,” I agreed.

     ‘Now then Watson, please. Have a seat.” No sooner had he gestured toward an overstuffed chair did he break out in an ugly cough.

     “Goodness, Holmes. Let me call for your nurse.”

     “I’m all right, my friend. Besides I’ve dismissed her from her duties for the next week.”

     “Dismissed her? What on Earth for?”

“It was not an easy task, Watson,” he stated as if he hadn’t heard my question. “As I have been in decline for some time, she has been with me for quite awhile. And I am rather certain I’ll not see her again in this world.” Holmes continued. “What for, you ask? My answer is two-fold. There is no need for her to see the sight which will shortly come to pass, and surely you’ll be staying with me to the last. Who better should I hope to have by my side than the talented Dr. John H. Watson?”

Now it was my turn to smile. “A “talented” doctor who has long-since retired but, yes; of course I will be staying on with you as long as need be.”

“Excellent. Before dispatching my nurse with your telegram I asked her to prepare an upstairs bedroom for you. I trust you will find your accommodations satisfactory, Watson. If not, take comfort in that you will not need to endure them very long.”

“Come now, Holmes. A simple cot would be satisfactory. My only concern here is for your welfare.”

     “I’m afraid we are past that, my good fellow. Now, pray unpack your things and re-join me here for some brandy and reminiscing.”

     “Certainly. Ah, Holmes-“ he cut me off.

“Second door on your right, Watson. Do take your time.”

Want to read the rest? Click here to purchase your copy of Sherlock Holmes and the Final reveal by Chris Gay, either in paperback or on Kindle. Also available on amazon.com. All Rights Reserved. No portion of this book or excerpt may be reproduced in any way without written consent from the author.)

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

#1(A!A)CJGSherlockHomesCoverCMYK1d

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

‘The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm’ by Chris Gay

CJG Full Kindle Cover For Promotions

The Bachelor Cookbook is the perfect (and likely only) addition to any guy’s collection of sarcastic culinary literature. If you’re between relationships and looking to make the most of whatever foodstuffs you’ve got until you meet that next special woman, then your prayers have been answered. Unless you’re an atheist; in which case coming across this book just means your luck was in today. For men looking for sustenance over style, I give you this spectacular cookbook. Well, I don’t “give it” to you, per se. You have to pay for it.

Featuring such taste-bud tempting recipes as:

Popcorn Salad

Meat on a Bed of Rice

Cheese and Crackers

Spaghetti Sandwich

Plus Miscellaneous Cookbook Humor, too!

*     *     *     *

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s also written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance and three humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and is currently writing his fourth and fifth humor books, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota  and  Something Witty this Way Comes; the latter being a collection of pieces written for his humor blog. His book Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, is an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective. Also, he’s writing the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath, and has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

Jpeg front cover with bleedsKindle Cookbook Cover 7.12.2013

book2book1CJGSherlock1c

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

Chris Gay Author/Writer/ Humorist on Facebook

Ghost of a Chance on Facebook

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal on Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Twitter: @chrisgay13

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

Anatomy of a Book Signing (Sarcastic Version)

By Chris Gay388982_3377538558968_401329802_n

I’m guessing that many-if not all-of you have spent long, strenuous hours at one time or another pondering exactly what goes into a book signing.  Or at least I’ll take you at my word you do. At any rate, the first thing to know is that there’s a difference between someone like Stephen King setting up a book signing and, say, Chris Gay setting up a book signing. There’s also generally a difference in both attendance and compensation. But I digress. Let’s start at the beginning, shall we? We shall.

The Great American Novel

It’s often said that everyone has a great novel inside him or her just waiting to come out. Actually, that’s not altogether true. What most people have is a delusion that they are a great writer and have, instead, a third rate pile of senseless rubbish waiting to come out. The problem is that the general public can’t tell the difference until they buy the book, and there’s only so much disposable income to go around.

Delusional ‘Writers

All people born after 1950 have generally been coddled from, approximately, their very moment of conception. Trophies just for participating, grading on curves, always being told “you’re special.” The obvious question left unanswered is that if everyone is ‘special,’ then who are all of these dull, talentless idiots you see around everywhere?

One unfortunate after-affect of this is that most people grow up thinking that they’re great when, in reality, they’re much more likely to be boring dolts, ignorant of history, science, politics and, especially, grammar. Wait-what did you just say to me? Whatever. I’m just the messenger.

Anyway, sooner or later some of these people will get to thinking they can write, and then do so. However adding words to paper doesn’t make you any more of a writer than successfully dyeing an Easter egg makes you Picasso. Then this claptrap is put out there where it ends up clogging up the literature pipeline like some kind of papery cholesterol. A lot of good writing gets lost within the sea of the inferior. That’s a lose-lose.

My advice, as once espoused by Clint Eastwood, is to know your limitations, and get the hell out of our way. Why not be a CEO of something instead? There’s good money there.

Moving Along

Okay, let’s say you’ve spent your two-to-thirty years writing and editing your novel and now it’s published, either traditionally or independently. Either way, congratulations; you’ve now been promoted to Head of Marketing for your own project. The hours suck and the pay is non-existent. However, your opportunity to run up significant debt is enormous. So there’s that.

All you need to do now is contact every place, everywhere, and ask them if they’d like to host you for a book signing at their venue. If, like 99.8% of writers,* they’ve never heard of you, that task is about as easy as slicing through a hot knife with cold butter.

With traditional book store chains, unless you know someone, or know someone who knows someone, or are sleeping with someone who knows someone, prepare to go through what has been known since the advent of this paragraph as the ‘Corporate run-around.’ Keep trying though, as there is a chance you can land a chain store signing without a name; same as there’s a chance to win yesterday’s Powerball with tomorrow’s ticket. (I didn’t say it was a good chance)

So, now what? You call everywhere. Hair salons, retail stores, financial institutions, health clubs, craft fairs, movie theaters, etc, etc. If you’re local, you stand a better chance. Also, mention that the promotion you’ll certainly do for it will bring the venue free advertising. A win-win.

Also, schedule radio and TV interviews. As an aside, if you happen to be great-looking, you’ll be much more likely to land these regardless of whatever drivel you typed onto Word, printed out, and glued between cardboard.

I’ve also heard that, if you happen to be an incredibly quick wit, that too may help you with getting interviews, as well as your ability to draw interest to your books through consistently humorous Facebook statuses.

Remember, you’ll need your own posters, placards, business cards, stands and cleverly designed bookmarks to leave out with your information on them. The latter, of course, is because everyone will take something made available for free regardless of its relevancy to their lives. Just ask anyone who passes out samples at a food membership club; those people who constantly hear things like,”I hate those pretzels. Oh, all right, I’ll try one.”

Be Prepared for Anything

Know that even if you have a great book for sale at a reasonable price, there’s always the chance you’ll make a huge effort for a signing, and then not sell a single tome. Don’t be discouraged. You’ve gotten the chance to get yourself and your name out there, and every little bit helps.

Also, console yourself with the fact that most people these days seem to be illiterate, anyway. Don’t believe me? Juste cheq the tipicahl sphelling on you’re soshul  mediuh websights.

Keys Points to Remember

As a favor to you I’ll recap the three most important points of this piece so you’ll always have easy access. Here are the best ways to sell your books, get interviews, and/or become rich:

1)      Be Incredibly Hot

2)      Be Incredibly funny

3)      Be Already Rich

In Conclusion

Be aware that if you’re trying to become a writer simply because you have the ability, and believe that writing is all you’ll have to do, think again. By the time you’re ready to start on your second book, you’ll notice that the easiest part of the prior one was just writing the damned thing. Go ahead, laugh. We’ll see what time tells. But in the meantime, as the French say: good luck. Only they say it “bon chance.”

*This percentage is a total guess, but it sounds about right. Maybe even on the low side.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

#1(A!A)CJGSherlockHomesCoverCMYK1d

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s also written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance and three humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and is currently writing his fourth and fifth humor books, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota and Something Witty this Way Comes; the latter being a collection of pieces written for his humor blog. Look soon for his book Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective. Also, he’s writing the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath, and has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

Jpeg front cover with bleedsbook1book2CJGSherlock1c

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

Chris Gay Author/Writer/ Humorist on Facebook

Ghost of a Chance on Facebook

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal on Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

The Hartford County Diet: Chris Gay’s 1-Step, Guaranteed Weight-Loss Plan for the New Millennium

By Chris Gay

388982_3377538558968_401329802_n

 The Hartford County Diet: Chris Gay’s 1-Step, Guaranteed Weight-Loss Plan for the New Millennium             

Dedication

To Irony. This humor pamphlet, (The antithesis to my upcoming humor book ‘The Bachelor Cookbook’) was written years before I decided to take my food comedy in the opposite direction. Initially this was to be a full humor book, and pre-dates all those which I’ve already written and published. Look for ‘The Bachelor Cookbook’ in 2013; look for ‘The Hartford County Diet’ blog post directly below these words.

 Prologue

This book was conceived for two simple reasons: to make money and help people; necessarily in that order. The notion of the ‘self-help’ book has been around for decades. Just recently we’ve been inundated with the likes of The South Beach Diet, The Atkins Diet and their endlessly multiplying cousins.

While these diet plans may be initially effective they are, in fact, little more than glorified, temporary shortcuts. And not the beneficial kind either, such as deftly avoiding mall traffic by taking an alternate route to a Buffalo Wild Wings in order to make it in time for the opening face-off.

Diet Shortcuts and Dating Advice

These ‘shortcuts’ most often fail for the same reason that changing your persona on a first date ultimately does: No matter how hard you try to be someone you’re not, it’s nearly impossible not to eventually revert back to your true nature. And in the case of food, take that to mean your established eating habits.

With dating you might as well be yourself and hope she falls for the real you. Then, she won’t be surprised when three month’s later you’re still the same chore-avoiding, video game playing, non-communicative couch potato she thought she’d be able to change whom she first met. With victuals, you might as well eat whatever junk you like, ignore the sarcasm, and be happy.

So, you ask, “How do I eat what I want then and still lose weight, Chris?” This is a great question; one easily answered in the following page with great accuracy. In fact, no reputable doctor could refute it.

If followed correctly, you can absolutely eat anything you’d ever want and still shed pounds. What’s better, you can maintain it for life as well. No more PLINKO chips crop-dusted with cheese powder, (rice cakes) or energy bars chalky enough for use in writing mathematical equations on a blackboard. Unless you enjoy those things. Hey, some people like anisette-flavored licorice, so to each his or her own. I guess.

Well, Obviously

If, at this pamphlet’s conclusion, you wonder why you paid good money for the blatantly self-evident, please bear this in mind: professional comedians get paid, some quite handsomely, for pointing out the obvious. What makes you laugh is their assistance in helping you see common happenstances in a new light. Kind of makes you hold them in a somewhat greater esteem, eh?

What you shouldn’t forget though, is that the obvious is still true. Why should you buy this then, when you can simply read it in a typical wait on line in a grocery store check-out line?  For one, I would appreciate the money, and two, eventually, you’ll realize that this book is the bargain of a lifetime, if I do say so myself. And I do. Good luck to you, Reader, and God bless Capitalism.

Chapter One

The first and only step to consistent and enduring weight-loss is the following:

1)      Burn off more calories than you consume.

Epilogue

Well, now you know. That’s all there is to it. It is mathematically impossible to gain weight if your various activities cause you to expend more calories than you take in. It’s foolproof! However conscience compels me to add this little tidbit: I’m certainly no doctor or nutritionist, and I must speculate that if you asked one, he or she would likely recommend eating the proper amounts of fruits, vegetables, lean meat, grain, dairy, less junk food, blah, blah, etc, etc. There, got that out of the way.

Which is the more correct of these methods is a subject for debate in the sequel to be written later for an additional cash-grab. This book only concerns itself with the weight-loss aspect of dieting. I mean, who am I to judge you? Especially since the only time I eat fruit is when it’s on the inside of a Pop-Tart. So if you want to eat a cheese danish with lemonade three meals a day, go ahead. And while that can work for you, I would think it through a bit first.

Here’s a nickel’s worth of free advice: if you work in an office where every woman has a bowl of chocolate on her desk that she herself never seems to eat, ignore them. (The candy, not the woman. You never know where a relationship might start) Keep a large, ice-filled cup of water by your side. Eat the ice too, as it tends to be considerably low in calories. And although your dentist may discourage this particular practice, well, I’m not a dentist either so it makes me no never mind.

Add a lot more lettuce to your sandwich. It’s filling, with much fewer calories. Iceberg lettuce gets a bad rap, incidentally. Some smart-alec will always tell you it’s the ‘junk food’ of lettuce. Really? It’s essentially green, solidified water, so how bad can it be? Unless you’re allergic to it in which case yeah, avoid it.

Also, go to bed earlier, wake up later,or both; as fictitious studies show it’s difficult to eat while sleeping.

If you order a pizza, share it. If you manage to change your eating habits enough to make a real difference, who knows? You may end up as an annoying yet highly compensated spokesman for a national submarine sandwich chain. But hey, if you do, don’t worry what others think of you as long as the checks clear.

Bettercreme Frosting

If you’re going to eat cake, eat cake-with real frosting. Not one with that horrifying Bettercreme. Sure, people drink a lot of diet soda, so that’s a practical switch. But how much cake do you really eat? If you learn one thing and one thing only from this book, please, let it be that life is much too short for Bettercreme frosting.

In Conclusion

Okay, last thing: Some habits are good. If you can hang on to this mathematical solution long enough to make eating less a habit, it will then become routine. Oh, and don’t eat when you’re not hungry. In fact, here’s a formula to cut out and magnet to your refrigerator. Not Hungry=Don’t Eat.

That’s it. Off you go. Oh wait, one more thing. Get off your backside and move around once in awhile. You’ll thank me later. And if you don’t, who cares? I don’t even know you. Ciao.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out my new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

book1book2

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, sponsored minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s written three humor books: Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Recipes with a Side of Sarcasm for the Single Guy. He’s currently writing his fourth humor book, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, along with the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath. He has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. He lives in Connecticut.

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

On Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

 

Exit 2016, Enter 2017

By Chris Gay

388982_3377538558968_401329802_nAs we bid adieu to another year, it falls to us writers/ humorists to throw something out there to elicit a laugh. After all, we don’t make anything useful, such as digital toaster ovens, so we might as well toss some words together for your amusement.

At any rate, here we are.  Once again, the earth has completed its annual 365 day journey around the sun. The unspoken truth is however, that it does this every day. For instance on December 4th, it had been  a year since the prior December 4th. But no one cares about that. (Except, of course, those who were born on December 4th. But it’s not very likely that that’s you.)

So now we all look back and take inventory of what went wrong, what went right, and how we might change things for the better. Also, we buy gym memberships that will be used less than an avocado juicer purchased while watching a 3 a.m. infomercial.

Resolutions

This is the time of year in which we make numerous promises to ourselves that have zero chance of being fulfilled. That’s okay, though. No one fulfills them. If it makes you feel better we all go through the motions. However if it helps, just set the bar very low. For instance, I’ve never smoked in my life. So I resolve not to smoke. Simple. But since I love junk food, I tend to avoid making those kind of unreasonable resolutions.

I also resolve not to listen to rap music or heavy metal, cliff dive off the Rock of Gibraltar, snorkel down to the Titanic’s wreck, or drive 580 miles per hour on the Bonneville Salt Flats. See? It’s easy-that’s if you know how to play the game.

Chinese Take-Out Food

On those New Year‘s Eves in which you find yourself either divorced or too lazy and/or uninspired to go out, Chinese take-out food is essential. Nothing goes better with a DVD, followed by whatever hack hairdo is hosting ‘Dick Clark‘s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve’, than a sea of sweet and sour chicken. Plus, while you’re waiting for your order, you can usually help yourself to a generously provided, free Styrofoam cup of tea, which completely wipes out any calories you’re about to consume. *

Live TV Specials

If you do stay home this New Year’s Eve, there’s likely to be a slew of year-end specials featuring untalented singers that, if you’re in your 30’s or 40’s,  you’ve never heard of. Or if you have, you could not care less about. (Though a few of the divas may be hot enough to justify some cursory viewing.)

Your best bet is to either throw in a DVD or watch whatever’s still taking up space on your DVR. Then around 11:50 p.m., switch over to watch the countdown. Though many stations will show it, who is kidding who? You’re going to go back to the network you grew up watching this Times Square spectacle occur on, ABC, with or without Dick Clark. (RIP) If you don’t remember doing that, you’re probably not reading this blog, anyway.

Times Square

At some point during the evening, you’re likely to reminisce on long ago promises made to yourself to attend in person the ball dropping on New Year’s Eve. Don’t screw with yourself. If you were born during Reagan’s first term or earlier, it’s just not happening. Who needs all of that hassle, anyway? Especially if you live in, like, Iowa.

Champagne

Some of you may wish to celebrate the Earth’s most recent revolution with a bit ‘o the bubbly. If so, more power to you. I’m a vodka man myself. If you’re home, or out with a group that includes a designated driver, whatever floats your boat. In point of fact it’s water that floats my boat; but there’s much less fun in consuming H2O.

New Year’s Day

When you awaken late morning (or more likely early afternoon) the new tradition is to watch the National Hockey League’s signature game, the outdoor Winter Classic. Or you can catch one of the TBS showings of 24 Hours of a Christmas Story. No, wait. Scratch that. I got my holidays mixed up. Give me a break; as I edit this it’s after 4 a.m. And also, May.

Biblical Implications

Technically, I’m an Agnostic Catholic. But I did attend Catholic school, and (blatant plug alert) wrote a theological, paranormal thriller novel. (Please see the even more blatant reference in my Author Biography.) So I’m fully authorized to delve into this topic with sarcasm.

You may not realize it, but our system of measuring contemporary time begins with the birth of Jesus Christ. It goes: B.C. = Before Christ, A.D. = Anno Domino, A.C. = Air Conditioning.

Having never taken Latin, I can only assume that the middle one translates to After Domino’s, & references how my early Christian brethren and sister-en ordered their more recent pizzas.

Anyway, what we’re actually celebrating each January is the number of years that have passed since Jesus’s birth. The only issue there is that He was almost certainly born in the spring. But that’s okay. Like all good writing, it got cleaned up during the editing process.

Plus it’s more convenient this way. Since Earth is over 4 billion years old, if we counted from the actual beginning of time imagine how long it’d take to write out personal checks. Not to mention the looks you’d get in the express line at the supermarket. I guess it will become an issue for those people living here in 8 Billion A.D., but who cares? That’ll be their problem.

In Conclusion

Just go with it. Enjoy the day, be responsible, and be safe. And if you sleep through it all, that’s okay. Super Bowl Sunday is only five weeks away.

* I’m not even close to a doctor, so there is a slight chance that my statement is wholly and completely inaccurate

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

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As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. For 7 years he wrote and broadcast a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and has written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective with a spectacular twist) and four humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm & Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

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http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

Chris Gay Author/Writer/ Humorist on Facebook

Ghost of a Chance on Facebook

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal on Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

Chris Gay’s Top 15 Christmas Movies

By Chris Gay388982_3377538558968_401329802_n

Typically the movie reviews I write for those particular columns on my blog are rife with sarcasm and humor. However this is the season of charity, and as such I’ll go fairly light on the satire here. (Though me being me; count on some) So here, in descending order, are my Top 15 Christmas movies of all time.

Oh by the way, to preemptively answer your two most obvious questions at the outset: the movies listed here are just that, movies; so you won’t see such obvious TV classics as ‘A Charlie Brown Christmas’, ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’, or ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer’.

Also, Elf is not on this list because it’s hard to understand how Will Farrell makes more than $2.99 an hour as a comedian. He’s not funny at all whatsoever.

Now, as Casey Kasem might say were he still with us…on with the countdown:

15) DVD of a Burning Yule Log. (4 Billion B.C.) You know, I’d bet you didn’t see this one coming. For those with a big screen TV but no fireplace, this is an awesome flick (or flicker, as the case may be) to behold. You just pop in the DVD, and then read or whatever else by the light of the TV fire and Christmas tree. Some go for as little as a dollar, and come with a flame level setting and optional Christmas music. What sounds like a joke is, in reality, a winner. And no logs to chop or mess to clean up after. You’re thinking about it now, aren’t you? Don’t even try to tell me you’re not.14.

14) Bad Santa. (2003) I’m not all that big into comedy based on vulgarities. It’s not that I’m offended in any way; it’s just that as a humor writer I find it to be mostly lazy and unfunny writing. This movie however, is the exception. It’s funny nearly from stem to stern. Billy Bob Thornton shines as a Phoenix, Arizona department store Santa who uses his job as a cover to scope it out to later rob. He spends most of his off time- as well as his on time- drinking, smoking, screwing and bumbling around. If you’re not easily offended, this movie, helped by a great supporting cast including the late John Ritter and Bernie Mac, will have you laughing till New Year’s.

13) Christmas Vacation. (1989) The third tale of the Griswold clan is the best in the series. This holiday staple, also starring a pre-Seinfeld Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, reiterates the time-honored advice passed down throughout the generations: before setting up, always check impromptu replacement Christmas trees for rodents.

12) Funny Farm. (1988) In my opinion, this is the superior and underrated of the two Chevy Chase flicks to appear on this list. At Christmastime a beautiful Vermont town, filled with residents of questionable intellect, band together to fake normalcy to prospective home buyers in exchange for a cash payoff from Andy & Elizabeth Farmer; who can no longer tolerate residing among them. The first time I watched the scene of the drunken, belligerent postman respectfully greeting the Farmers (in front of the new owners) with a linguistically perfect, “Mail, Mister Farmer” in order to obtain bonus money, I nearly fell off my couch laughing.

11) Trading Places. (1983) Outside the time of year it’s set in and Dan Aykroyd in a Santa Claus suit, calling this a ‘Christmas Movie’ is like calling Pepperidge Farms flavored goldfish “seafood.” However on a technicality…here it resides. Through the conniving, manipulative efforts of his sibling bosses and for no legitimate reason, wealthy, upper-crust commodities trader Louis Winthorp III is made to exchange places with broke, slick-talking con-man Billy Ray Valentine. After a short while, Valentine becomes successful at Winthorp’s job once he understands that commodities brokering is merely a more sophisticated form of con-game. When both realize they’re being played for fools, they team up to create a fantastic scheme to bankrupt the brothers while becoming millionaires themselves; with the help of a great supporting cast.

10) Die Hard. (1988) Bruce Willis’s Detective John McLane sends Alan Rickman’s superb villain Hans Gruber into the Oh Holy Night of Los Angeles; amidst a snowfall of ill-gotten bearer bonds.

9) The Muppet Christmas Carol. (1992) Laugh if you will, (and you will) but this gem of a take on the classic Dickens’ Christmas novel that features Michael Caine; among Britain’s greatest, most versatile actors, as Ebenezer Scrooge, simply cannot be overlooked. It also contains a roster of creative, original songs you’ll be singing long after the film’s completed. It contains both suspense & clever humor throughout.

8) The Ref. (1994) If you’ve never seen this Denis Leary comedy starring a relatively unknown Kevin Spacey, the first time you do expect to laugh so hard you’ll cry. Leary is a bumbling cat burglar who, through unforeseen circumstances, ends up stuck refereeing an endlessly bickering couple and their family in an affluent Connecticut shoreline town on Christmas Eve. Completely underrated, it’s one of the best Christmas comedies ever; if not the most tactful. (Only ‘Bad Santa’ is more profane)

7) Love, Actually. (2003) Never has a Christmas movie combined humor, romance and star power in such a way that all genre stereotypes are irrelevant. It’s a ‘Chick Flick’ that is very much suited for guys, too. This movie is a modern Christmas classic. (Featuring a who’s who of English talent: Alan Rickman, Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Colin Firth, Bill Nighy, Emma Thompson, Martin Freeman, Andrew Lincoln, Keira Knightley Rowan Atkinson)

6) A Christmas Carol. (1984) The late, great George C. Scott is almost unparalleled as Ebenezer Scrooge. He taught England that, after 150 years, if you really want to showcase the full essence of a greedy, miserly CEO, hire an American and teach him a light British accent.

5) Holiday Inn. (1942) Bing Crosby debuted what is still the top-selling single of all time in any genre, ‘White Christmas’, at his Connecticut Inn that’s open only on major holidays.

4) A Christmas Story. (1983) Nothing catches the essence of a retro-Christmas of yore more so than this fantastically crafted, humorous tale of 1940’s Christmas in America. Along with a young man’s quest for the Holy Grail of Christmas gifts, the “official Red Ryder carbine action 200-shot range model air rifle. Which includes “a compass and a stock and this thing that tells time.” Darren McGavin masterfully showcases both the tough and tender side of parenting a year before portraying a wealthy, sleazy bookie from the same era in 1984’s ‘The Natural.’

3) It’s a Wonderful Life. (1946) The snowy winter scenes of the fictional Bedford Falls, NY (based on the real Seneca Falls, NY) were filmed during a record-breaking California heat wave. This classic film features the legendary Jimmy Stewart as super-nice guy George Bailey, who, after every one of his lifelong dreams are dashed due to his own kindness, becomes discouraged to the extent that Heaven dispatches amiable Angel 2nd Class Clarence Odbody to show him what his family and hometown would’ve been like had he never existed. It ends with the all-time tear-jerking line, “Remember-No man is a failure who has friends.”

2) Scrooge. (1951) There is no question that of all the adaptations of Charles Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol ever committed to celluloid, Alistair Sim is the quintessential-& best-Ebenezer Scrooge. His performance as the renowned miser is second-to-none, and may never be topped.

1) Joyeux Noel. (2005) This is the amazing true story of the impromptu WWI Christmas Truce across No-Man’s Land between Scottish, British, French & German soldiers over Christmas Eve and Day in 1914. A group of young officers decide they’re not going to fight each other over the Christmas holiday, and instead spend it burying comrades, sharing stories, playing soccer, and exchanging information. When their superiors became informed of the Christmas Truce, all parties involved on both sides were severely reprimanded. The “Great War”; the “War to End All Wars”, was a war over nothing, & cost humanity millions of innocent lives. It dragged on until November 11, 1918; Armistice Day; now known as ‘Veterans Day’. If you can get through this movie without shedding tears, you ma’am or sir, are a better person than I.

 

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out my new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

Jpeg front cover with bleedsbook1book2

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. For 7 years he wrote and broadcast a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and has written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective with a spectacular twist) and four humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm & Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

On Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

Chris Gay’s Hurricane Sandy Journal (10/29/2012)

By Chris Gay

Chris’s Hurricane Sandy Journal (10/29/2012)

8:56p.m.-Considered taking out trash, ultimately opted not to risk ending up in Kansas.

8:39p.m.-Power remains, vodka refreshingly cold. Paused MNF game on DVR only to write this sentence. With no wish to lose electricity at this late hour, will not taunt hurricane gods by making sarcastic comment regarding their aim.

7:16p.m.-Wind howling, power still on. Catching the end of  ‘Goldfinger‘ now a distinct possibility. (Update: Watch end of movie. James Bond defeats Goldfinger; outcome never in any real doubt)

6:44p.m.-Lights flicker while Hot Pockets still in microwave. Power holds out, Hot Pockets are delicious.

5:37p.m.-Woke up from short nap in the darkness thinking power had gone out; turns out I’d just left the lights off before I fell asleep.

12:21p.m.- Watched a ‘Pumpkinhead’ sequel on DVR. Story turns out to be little different than any other ‘Pumpkinheads.’ (Oscar not likely, retroactively or other)

11:18a.m.-Considered praying that power stays on through Monday Night Football; remember I’m agnostic. (Pray anyway for ice to to stay cold for vodka later. So far, so good)

10:06a.m.-Made a Modified Shepherd’s Pie out of refrigerated mashed potatoes, frozen corn in butter, and cheap breakfast sausage. (‘The Bachelor Cookbook’ not yet published, but already paying dividends)

8:46a.m.-Go to dollar store for candles, actually get less value than what I paid for.

7:01a.m.-Woke up, listened to Buffalo, NY sports radio on phone app for four minutes; predictably, fell right back to sleep.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out my new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

Jpeg front cover with bleedsbook1book2

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, sponsored minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s written three humor books: Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Recipes with a Side of Sarcasm for the Single Guy. He’s currently writing his fourth humor book, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, along with the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath. He has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. He lives in Connecticut.

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

On Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

Better Cereal Box Prizes and Other Ideas

By Chris Gay 

Due to a rather large sweet tooth, I still eat the junk cereal on occasion. One thing about cereals these days is that they don’t seem to include prizes in the box anymore. Of course, unless the prize was even more junk food I wouldn’t have use for it anyway.

However, it did get me thinking about how cool it’d be if other products gave away prizes with their purchase, too.

I don’t mean the baking soda-powered plastic boats, compasses, or temporary tattoos of yesteryear, but rather more practical items.

For example, how about a bottle of vodka with a sample pack of aspirin taped to the bottom?

A doorbell that comes with a sensor and a downloadable secondary ringtone that can distinguish early on a Saturday morning between the FedEx guy, and the pamphlet-laden guy who’s there to ‘bring you the Good News.’ When it’s the latter, the doorbell rings the alternate tone.

A bag of microwave popcorn that comes with one of those dental-floss-on-a-stick things attached.

A greatest hits CD that comes with two free song downloads, so you can get the two greatest hits the band left off the CD in order to include their two new ones you’ve never heard of.

A clothes dryer that comes with a sensor which beeps if you turn it on and walk away without cleaning the lint trap; thus saving you two hours of your time and two dollars in quarters.

A sticker taped to your credit card that automatically turns from green to red a month before the year of 0% interest on your card runs out; thereby reminding you to look through your junk mail so you’ll have a reasonable chance to make a balance transfer before it’s suddenly 18.9%.

A pair of pants with magnets in the pockets, so when you get off the couch you still have all the loose change you started with.

Expanding to Useful Services and Ideas

A gas station that delivers, just in case you’re watching TV one night and suddenly realize you may have driven a little too long with the yellow light on yesterday.

Disposable dress shirts for people who really, really don’t like to iron.

Self-cleaning George Foreman grills for after you lose the little plastic spatulas they come with.

A dishwasher soap that gets your glassware anywhere close to as spot-free as they do in their commercials.

A television that will automatically sync-up the volume of the show you’re watching with its accompanying absurdly louder commercials.

Edible toothpaste for lazy brushers.

Green Tea and Omega 3-infused bacon cheeseburgers.

A restaurant that will fully commit to completely straining the pasta of water before serving it with their Chicken Parmesan.

Daylight Saving Time starting every Friday, and then returning to Standard Time every Monday morning.

Reality shows with minimum intellect requirements.

Tip calculators that factor in poor service.

Mandatory college courses that teach the difference between ‘loser’ and ‘looser.’

Thank you for reading. Tune in next week when the topic will be something else.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out my new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

Jpeg front cover with bleedsbook1book2

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, sponsored minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s written three humor books: Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Recipes with a Side of Sarcasm for the Single Guy. He’s currently writing his fourth humor book, Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, along with the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath. He has written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. He lives in Connecticut.

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

On Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

A Toast to Carrier, the Patron Saint of Air Conditioning

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It’s hard to believe that a century has passed since Willis Carrier bestowed upon civilization its greatest man-made gift. Looking back on the 20th Century, it’s not hard to discern its most important contribution to mankind.

Okay, I’ll grant that maybe penicillin is up there.  And maybe…okay, okay. Let’s just stipulate all the medical advances. And definitely yoga pants.

So, what’s left?

Before you all answer at once, (which would be odd, as this isn’t a traditional conversation) remember that the telephone, radio, motorcar, movie camera, record player, fax machine, Coca-Cola, Pepsi-Cola, and even television (well, technically) all have their roots planted firmly in the 19th Century and therefore don’t count. Nice try, though.

If you care about my opinion on the matter and, since you’re reading the fourth paragraph I’m guessing you do, (unless you’re just bored, which is still cool; as either way you’ve already increased my page views) it is without question air conditioning.

Yes, I’d give up DVD’s, stuffed crust pizza, the treadmill-and even the microchips that allow me to write these very words before I’d ever part with my AC.

I was born and bred in New England. So I’m sure there are people reading this in Georgia, Texas or Louisiana laughing heartily at my inability to abide our semi-annual fluctuating inferno by comparison to Southerners’ ability to handle the relentless, even sweltering-er version, of theirs.

Fair enough. In fact, I’ll even showcase our famed Northern Hospitality by not mentioning it’s their ridiculous choice to live there.

Ironically Mr. Carrier, the man who made possible such a large exodus to our South, invented modern air conditioning in Buffalo, New York. In fact his company remained a mainstay in nearby Syracuse for decades. These, of course, are two cities where spring and autumn are myths, summer is encompassed between July 16th through July 20th, and in which winter resides the rest of the year.

The reality is that nothing can truly be enjoyed when you’re surrounded by oppressive heat. I’d rather be comfortable and bored than lose a quart of water weight sitting on the couch watching a ballgame in 50-inch high definition. Besides, there’s always a book to read. (Though I guess it does depend on the game.)

So the next time someone comes up for Canonization or Beautification, (As I’m about 25% Catholic and 75% Agnostic, I can never quite remember which one applies. As a writer though, I did know to capitalize them) I’d like to nominate Willis Haviland Carrier. At the very least he was truly, literally, one cool dude.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. For 7 years he wrote and broadcast a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and has written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective with a spectacular twist) and four humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm & Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

1977287_10152267078273756_2109539589_n

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

Chris Gay Author/Writer/ Humorist on Facebook

Ghost of a Chance on Facebook

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal on Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

The Musical Burdens of Generation X

By Chris Gay 

Every generation grumbles about how they had it worse than their successors, as if it’s some rite of passage. Of course, whether they’re right-or full of it- is for posterity to decide. With that said, today I’m here to make the case for Generation X not only having it worse than our successors, but our predecessors, too. At least in terms of how we listened to music.

In the Beginning

From that beautiful day in 1877 on which Thomas Edison first introduced the phonograph, right up to the 1970’s, all anyone with a desire to hear his or her own favorite music had to master was the skill of dropping a needle straight down onto a disc-shaped shard of spinning vinyl. The only other responsibility was learning the difference between 78, 33 1/3 and 45 RPM’s. Simple, really.

In contrast, by the time I’d figured out that that little yellow disc with the oddly cut pattern was used to convert 45 RPM records for use on standard players, my mom had already moved on to 8 tracks.

Now, I’m uncertain if it was because I was very young then, or merely that I’m a techno-idiot. But not too long after I’d finally learned how to work the 8 track cartridge enough to hear Paul Simon’s Slip Slidin’ Away, a Hartford radio station was already touting a new musical miracle- the Compact Disc. Or, as they called it, the “CD”.

By that time however I’d already had a budding collection of records and cassette tapes. And to be frank CD’s didn’t sound all that much better to me than they did. Be that as it may, the writing was on the wall. (Literally, in the case of the 1979 Pink Floyd album cover).

Musical Musical Chairs

So…we Gen X’ers bounced from records to 8 Tracks and back again. We also perfected the fine art of sitting for hours next to a boom box with our ring fingers frozen to the PLAY button, and our thumbs on RECORD, while waiting for a DJ to spin Phil Collins’ song du jour in the faint hopes of capturing it on the blank cassette snugly nestled within its compartment. Sure, it sounds like a boring activity; and it was. But we’re talking Against All Odds here.

As my luck would have it though, I always seemed to get the Wolfman Jack wannabe DJ who tarnished the first third of every recording by trying to hit the post. You all know who you are. But, I digress.

Ultimately, of course, there was no holding back the CD tsunami. And along with its rising popularity came the requirement of replacing our stereos and upgrading our Sony Walkmans. Later, we had to switch out the tape decks in our cars for trunk or dashboard mounted CD-changers. Then, after spending our first few decades of life juggling audio technology like half-assed circus clowns, things finally seemed to settle down.

However, just when we thought it was safe to remain stagnant within the audio equipment water, suddenly there were music files to be downloaded onto MP3 players. I mean honestly, WTF?

Look, the Baby Boomers, Greatest Generation, and the Roaring 20er’s (Yes, I did just totally make that last one up) had records. Generation Y and the Millennials have file downloading. We Gen X’ers, on the other hand, are stuck with shoe boxes and drawers full of countless 8 tracks, records, audio cassettes and mix tapes that won’t again see the light of day until the last rays of our dying sun shine upon them in 8,000,000,000 A.D.

One also cannot overlook that during this same time period, thanks to cable television, we were trying to adapt from flipping between three TV stations by hand, to fifty- via ever-changing remote controls.

And as if that wasn’t enough, after spending our formative years learning how to work the ring pull-tabs on soda cans, the beverage industry pulled the rug out from under us and switched to pop-tops.

Want more? One day we’re trying to make heads or tails out of a combination calculator/wrist watch and work a typewriter; the next, some teacher throws us in front of a TV screen fused to a keyboard, calls it a “computer”, and gives us two pages of code to type in just to confirm that 3 x 3 equals 9.

By the way, I use the term computer very loosely. What we were taught on made the model Matthew Broderick used in Wargames look like what Hugh Jackman employed in Swordfish. Damn it, it was all just too much. And I won’t even get into VHS versus Beta versus Laser Disc versus DVD versus HD DVD versus Blu-Ray versus Digital HD versus online streaming.

I’m guessing that those of you from adjacent generations likely have little sympathy for our technological plight. Whatever. They were our crosses to bear. Along with having to walk five miles uphill to school every day in the snow.

And I wouldn’t trade them for anything.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

#1(A!A)CJGSherlockHomesCoverCMYK1d

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. For 7 years he wrote and broadcast a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and has written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective with a spectacular twist) and four humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm & Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

1977287_10152267078273756_2109539589_n

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page on Facebook

Chris Gay Author/Writer/ Humorist on Facebook

Ghost of a Chance on Facebook

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal on Facebook

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

Leap Year

By Chris Gay             

Leap Year                    

I’m not exactly certain about the origins of Leap Year, though my guess is that at some point or another, some King, Cardinal or Pope decided to muddle around with the calendar for some long forgotten, (or lazily un-researched) purpose.

The Reasoning

Apparently a year’s actual duration is 365 days and 6 hours. So the end result is, with three exceptions every 400 years,* February gets an extra day every election cycle. How happy February must be.

According to the Book of Google, it was Caesar Augustus who poached a few days from the second month. He did so in order to add them to his namesake August; evidently so as not to feel inferior to his predecessor Julius Caesar, whose own month, July, contains 31 days. And things have remained the same ever since; probably because no Caesar Februarius ever came along.

It has been speculated too that Caesar Augustus did it because the following song, as originally sung: “30 days hath November; April, June and September. Oh yeah, and February,” simply sounded too clunky. Of course, that speculation was primarily done by me in an effort to extend this blog post by an extra paragraph. Whatever. You read it, didn’t you?

Customs

It is said that on Leap Day, it’s acceptable for a woman to propose marriage to her man. Actually, that is a pretty good idea. In fact if I ever get remarried and I’m the one proposed to, I hope whoever she is uses a reproduction of the New York Giants Super Bowl XLII Championship ring.

Meteorological Impact

Although rarely discussed, Leap Year also mathematically influences weather prognostications when it puts in its quadrennial appearance. How? Because any shadow-seeing groundhogs inadvertently condemn us to six more weeks-and a day-of winter.

Leap Year’s Most Noteworthy Event

Though opinions may vary, it’s practically inarguable that the greatest Leap Year moment in all of recorded history came in 1980, when Gordie Howe, the legendary Mr. Hockey, scored his 800th career goal for my beloved Hartford Whalers. In fact, you know what? That is inarguable.

Benefits of Leap Year

Perhaps the greatest benefit Leap Year offers is that it provides yet another relatively obscure topic for comedy writers to blog on when they can’t think of anything better to write about.

* This fact may have been slightly researched, as I suck at math.

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

Ghost of a Chance Cover jpeg

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

#1(A!A)CJGSherlockHomesCoverCMYK1d

 

 

 

 

 

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. For 7 years he wrote and broadcast a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and has written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective with a spectacular twist) and four humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm & Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.

1977287_10152267078273756_2109539589_n

http://www.chrisjgay.com

Author Page (on Facebook)

Chris Gay Author/Writer/ Humorist (on Facebook)

Ghost of a Chance (on Facebook)

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal (on Facebook)

The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm (on Facebook)

And That’s the Way it Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings (on Facebook)

Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota (on Facebook)

Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota (on Facebook)

https://chrisgay.wordpress.com

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

 

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