25 Things I’ve Learned from Watching the ‘Die Hard’ Movie Series

By Chris Gay

388982_3377538558968_401329802_nGenerally when starting one of my humor posts I ease into it with a sarcastic paragraph; then finish it up with several more sarcastic paragraphs. In this case however, the entire post is simply a list; even I can’t really stretch it out.

So read it and laugh. Or don’t. I don’t care; you’ve already clicked on it so I get credit regardless.

Luckily for you though I do have integrity, and as such actually made an effort here. Don’t thank me, my name is on this. I have to at least try. So without further ado, I present:

25 Things I’ve Learned from Watching the ‘Die Hard’ Movie Series


25. While in your 30’s, walking barefoot over broken glass can cause a serious, debilitating injury. In your 50’s however, you can crash through multiple panes of glass at various high rates of speed, and emerge almost completely unscathed. Then make a wise-crack and continue on with your day.

24. Villainous German henchmen seem to better understand commands given to them in English, rather than in their native German.

23. No matter how many times you spend Christmas vacation single-handedly saving your wife from the clutches of unsympathetic, highly paid professional mercenaries, she’ll still call you selfish and want a divorce.

22. After faking out the entire NYPD and walking off with billions in gold, never try to hide your army in a Canadian truck stop long enough to have a quickie with your mistress. It’s better to just keep going and wait till you’re back in Germany.

21. A limo driver will allow himself to remain stuck in a parking garage; and then easily break through the gate hours later after all of the villains have been defeated.

20. Movie grenades used against the hero will inexplicably have a 40-second long fuse.

19. A lobby security guard will watch you spend 5 minutes struggling to figure out how to use a computerized directory before casually mentioning that the only people left in the building anyway are on the 30th floor.

18. When trying to thwart a villain who has taken over our entire computer infrastructure and whom no agency can stop, it really pays to know Silent Bob.

17. Apparently, some stores sell 60-gallon bottles of maple syrup.

16. A guard assigned to watch one of the world’s biggest criminals will be paid the compliment of being an “excellent soldier,” simply because he was smart enough to deny that criminal’s own request to remove his handcuffs for him.

15. Seemingly, you can buy dugout tickets to Yankee Stadium for days they’re not even playing. Then just walk right down, take your seat, and watch the grounds crew manicure the lawn.

14. When leaving your adversary to an unverifiable doom, never toss him a bottle of aspirin with the name of your hotel stamped on the bottle.

13. A cop coming across an angry, menacing right-handed villain who has already escaped a vicious hanging, will believe that the best way to stop him is with 5 straight rounds to the same spot in his left-shoulder.

12. The highly-educated head of the American division of a billion dollar corporation will be too busy making wise-cracks to notice that his third-in-command is a blatantly drug-addicted slime ball womanizer.

11. After barely surviving your own efforts at bringing down an entire platoon of corrupt soldiers and mercenaries in order to get your wife back safely, you’ll pause momentarily with real concern over whether the police chief whose job and backside you just saved will or won’t forgive your earlier $40 parking ticket.

10. A villain who is precise enough to take out a deodorant spray can held by John McClane from 50 feet away, will still not be good enough a marksman to strike McClane himself.

9. While checking out the rooftop in a building he completely controls, a villain will take time to memorize a few random names from a wall directory; just on the off-chance he needs an alias if unexpectedly confronted by a previously neutralized, shoeless cop.

8. While in a room desperately trying to remain hidden in an effort to evade villains who are diligently searching for you, it’s a good idea to chain smoke cigarettes.

7. After finally securing the grizzled detective and his Agency son who you’ve been chasing, the most effective way to intimidate them is to eat a carrot and do a nice little dance.

6. After a broken-down cop has spent hours alone risking his life to take out your entire crew of mercenaries one by one, and then finally gets to you-who he finds holding his wife-it’s safe to assume that that’s the point at which he’d decide to laugh and give himself up with no backup plan whatsoever.

5. When trying to get the jump on a group of villainous mercenaries, your best ally would be a dim-witted janitor who somehow has access to the all of the extensive blueprints and architectural floor plans necessary for you to do so.

4. A villain will believe that if he hires someone to drop billions of dollars worth of gold bullion 30 feet to the bottom of Long Island Sound, the state, feds, and every single person with a scuba license or a snorkeling mask the entire world over would just leave it there, forever.

3. Of all possible moments, it’s with mere seconds left to figure out how to escape their near-certain, mutual doom that is the best time for two men to get into a heated debate on race relations.

2. The odds of running into the same narcissistic, adversarial news reporter during two separate but similar evil mercenary schemes, one apiece on each coast, are not nearly as long as you might think they’d be.

1. Instead of assisting in any way, the ranking officer at the LAPD Emergency Dispatch Call Center will tell a man, who is under fire, to hang up and phone a slightly more appropriate Emergency Dispatch Call Center.

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.

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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.

*     *     *     *

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

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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.

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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

Twitter: @chrisgay13

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

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

Why Jaws is the “Quint”essential 1970’s Movie

By Chris Gay388982_3377538558968_401329802_n

Though I was only seven and change when the ball dropped in Times Square on New Year’s Day 1980, I still have a few fond memories of the Disco Decade. And while it’s tempting to write a piece on long gas lines, awful hair, absurd fashions, or the Bee Gees, I’ll instead discuss an often overlooked reality of the 1970’s; namely that it was America’s last ten years of naivety.

Some may argue that I’m a decade late; that that ship sailed in the 1960’s.  That using three that’s in a single sentence such as I did in the one prior is lazy writing. Not so fast. (On the former points at least. The latter may have some merit).

If all of the technological advancements created for use by the common (wo)man were combined, from the time we crawled out of the oceans up until slightly past the final out of the Pittsburgh Pirates 1979 We Are Family World Series Championship, they’d pale laughably by comparison to the thirty-eight years that have followed.

This made much of the 1970’s similar in that respect to the eras preceding it. The difference though was that by the time they’d ended, our world had taken its first steps toward an irreversible course regarding technology and the societal changes it brought.

At any rate, you may wonder what made a time period from our very recent past so vastly different from today. Since you’re still reading this, I assume you do. So I’ll proceed.

Consider that in the 1970’s:

  • Grocery stores had no register scanners. Consequently, you were stuck waiting for uninspired cashiers to type your order into a machine roughly equivalent to what Rutherford B. Hayes used to compose his inaugural address on.
  • The closest thing to microwave popcorn was Jiffy Pop. Although, it was way cooler to make.
  • There were three television networks for 227,000,000 people. So if a variety of TV programming was the spice of your life, the technical term for you was “SOL.”
  • Almost everything was closed on Sundays. I can only guess that that was so everyone could feel like they lived in Connecticut from the comfort of virtually any other state.
  • If your idea of tasteful interior design included a significant amount of the colors Garish Yellow, Avocado Green, and Something Kind of Like Orange, you had hit the jackpot.
  • You weren’t stuck watching a cheesy TV series like That ’70’s Show, which was a 1990’s sitcom set in 1970’s Wisconsin. Instead, you could watch a quality TV series like Happy Days; a 1970’s sitcom set in 1950’s Wisconsin.
  • Each December, in the spirit of good will, the secular and religious alike greeted each other with a festive “Merry Christmas,” and yet somehow managed to go on with their daily lives without media backlash or interference from agenda-driven protest groups.
  • Birthdays were celebrated using cakes decorated with real frosting; not a whipped cream concoction tasting like it was made by someone’s aunt giving a magazine recipe for diet desserts “the old college try.”
  • What’s known today as a Tamagotchi, was known then as a “Pet Rock.” The Pet Rock was great for apathetic people because it was impossible to neglect. And with its personality and intellect, there was also the possibility that it might get elected to some public office or another.
  • When you called someone who was already on the telephone, you received what was termed a busy signal. To combat that, as part of your unlimited monthly plan, Bell Atlantic offered you a popular feature they referred to as “Hang up & Call Back Later.”
  • Approximately no one had a home computer. It wasn’t that big a deal though, as you could easily snag a pocket calculator for around $150.00.
  • Although few people had VCR’s and DVDs were science fiction, if you’d managed to stay awake till 3a.m. you still might catch a re-run of The Six Million Dollar Man.
  • There was no X-Box, but there was Pong; a graphics-laden video game in which the difference between hockey and tennis was a few more vertical hyphens and the speed of what was, inexplicably, a square ball.

To be fair however, before we go on let’s look at a few things that were better in the 1970’s:

  • Even stupid people used decent grammar.
  •  Most people had a sense of humor.
  • The music was WAY better.
  • Lots more food was made with real butter.
  • No one knew or cared what Johnny Carson’s political affiliation was.
  • Quality TV shows were given more than 45 seconds to prove themselves.
  • 95% fewer ordinary, everyday events ended up in some sort of litigation.
  • Nosy busybodies had to work much, much harder to acquire gossip on their friends.
  •  More often than not, people disagreed with each other using their “inside voices.”
  • One could pump gas or patronize a urinal without being subjected to a product advertisement that there was no possible way to avoid.
  • Elton John somehow had less hair than he does now.
  • No one thought that either The Captain & Tennille’s Daryl Dragon or Cap’n Crunch were authentic Naval officers.
  •  Instead of a magical, portable telephone possessing nearly all the world’s collective knowledge, people carried around a Library Card. And somehow still seemed more informed than we are today. Not you though. You’re a smart one, you are.

So, what does any of this have to do with Jaws? Fair enough. Jaws is regarded as the first summer “blockbuster,” and it forever changed the way that movies were marketed and conceptualized.

It was also among the last non-period movies to perfectly capture the very essence of its own time period. There, preserved for all time, are scenes depicting the remnants of the old days we knew, yet would soon know no more. That it almost certainly did so unknowingly is inconsequential and, indeed, adds to its allure.

Here are some examples of scenes you would not have seen had Jaws been filmed just a scant few years later:

  • Beach-goers listening to music and ballgames on transistor radios similar to what MacGyver might have constructed out of a coat hanger and dental floss.
  • Quint ripping the pull-tab off his beer. Pull-tabs were the brilliantly-conceived, curled-up pieces of razor-sharp metal left over from carbonated beverage cans. They were typically dropped into the cans and forgotten. That is, until the consumer finished the contents only to discover he’d just given himself an involuntary tonsillectomy.
  • Any municipality actually thinking it could get away with hiring a shark hunter without nationwide press vilification and a public protest from PETA claiming that Jaws itself was the real victim.
  • Hooper crushing a Styrofoam cup and casually tossing it on the deck. Today, he’d be hauled in by the Green Police and heavily reprimanded for utilizing Environmentally un-friendly beverage containers, and then fined three figures for littering. Afterward, they’d go back for Quint to scold him about the waste associated with using the standard light bulb he dared to install in the lamp over the Orca’s dining table.
  • A mayor voluntarily wearing a suit publicly and on television that looked like it was stolen from Popeye’s closet.
  • Communications accomplished only through land-line phones, CB radios, or walkie-talkies similar to what I once bought at Radio Shack after saving up two-weeks’ allowance.
  • Amity’s beaches were re-opened after a confirmed shark attack for the sole purpose of maintaining profit; yet not a single lawyer endeavored to cash in at the expense of either the town or the bereaved.

Now, here are some scenes you might not expect to see regardless of the decade:

  • Any kid asking for coffee ice cream.
  • After spending hours in the ocean, a 20-foot wooden boat still remaining afloat with a head-sized hole in the hull a foot below the waterline.
  • A large group of people simultaneously deciding to throw caution to the wind and swim in great white shark-infested waters, simply because four cops and an oceanographer are cruising around the Atlantic Ocean on a couple of modified dinghies.
  • Quint seriously thinking the town council would even consider paying him $3,000 to “find” the shark. And then what; ask it nicely to stay put? Hell, Chrissie Watkins found it for free.
  • A newspaper publisher actually believing that the “grocery ads” are the least relevant section of the paper to its subscribers.
  • Quint attempting to catch a 25-foot great white shark on the open ocean using such sophisticated equipment as a rod-and-reel fishing pole, and in a boat that  I wouldn’t trust to get me across the Connecticut River during a mid-summer drought.

Well, that’s all for now. Thank you for taking a trip down Seventies Lane with me. Oh, and as if you didn’t see this coming: Have a nice day 🙂

* Though you may think it’s grammatically incorrect to begin a sentence with the conjunction “And,” in actuality there are different schools of thought on that. If you’re still drawn back to it however, there’s really not much I can do. Take heart that, at some point, you’ll most likely get past this.

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.

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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)

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

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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

Twitter: @chrisgay13

Movies:

2012:

Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009:

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

Enjoying Super Bowl Parties for the Sarcastically Inclined

 By Chris Gay                                                                                                     Chris 11 23 2011

Super Bowl Sunday Arrives

There are many ways in which to maximize your comfort and amusement while watching the game at a Super Bowl party. In that spirit, listed here are a few helpful hints to help you enjoy our unique football holiday. (Listen, if others cared enough about their own Super Bowl party comfort, they’d be reading this instead of you. They snoozed, they lost.)

Play the Food Fool

If you generally spend Super Bowl Sunday with the same people, this works along the same principle as Thanksgiving does. Either make it a point to loudly mock your own pathetic cooking skills, or prepare a dish so bland that it’d make a plate of raw zucchini drizzled with maple syrup seem more appetizing.

If you’re successful in this effort, no one will bother asking you to cook anything ever again. Then the most you’ll ever have to do in the future is make a quick stop for some whipped cream or a few bags of potato chips. (By the way, in the latter instance buy your favorite brand. As there are usually plenty of varieties to choose from at any party, you might as well assure yourself of there being a flavor that you like.)

Mockery

Have some fun at the expense of the resident Know-it-All. Each year, there’s usually someone at every party who loves to show off his or her sports knowledge. (Most often, it’s a his) There are even rumors that, sometimes, that arrogant bastard is me. Whatever. Jealousy is an ugly color.

But I digress. Make the party experience more pleasurable for all by occasionally asking him legitimate-sounding football questions.

First feign your sports ignorance, and then specifically request his expert definition of an Incarnate Interception. Or even better, ask him to explain how the Secondary is employed in the Penny Defensive Package. Even though no such terms exist, there will still be a decent chance that rather than admitting he has no clue what you’re talking about, he’ll actually try to answer. If so, it’ll provide everyone there with years of laughter as you all reminiscence annually. (“Hey, remember the time this clown tried to tell us that…”)

Clean Up and Leftovers

As the party winds down, it’s vitally important to always make a sincerity-laden request to your hostess to help clean up. The benefits of this faux generosity are twofold.
First, she’ll almost always say “No, thank you,” anyway; especially if you’re a guy. Our well-earned reputation for being uncaring, lazy cleaners really pays off here. Plus you’ll get credit for volunteering without even having to do anything to earn it. (Note: If the host is a guy, don’t bother asking. He won’t expect you to anyway, and if you do ask he’ll accept because he doesn’t care either and just wants the mess cleaned up.)

At the end of the evening, you’ll probably be asked to take some food home with you. If so, don’t decline. I mean really, why would you? You could easily snag a few days’ worth of simple meals and/or snacks for yourself. However:

Beware the Cookware Trap!

If at all possible when packing up your gratis party leftovers, use disposable plates and plastic wrap. No guy wants to be stuck with a plate or over-sized casserole dish he’ll have to chip “Mary’s Famous Chili Cheese Dip” out of for an hour, once it’s hardened into a victuals-based cement.

Not to mention having to remember its whereabouts while simultaneously ensuring it remains intact for six months to a year.

Saying Goodnight and Your Sham Promise to Host Next Time

On your way out make sure to not only thank your host/hosts, but also to mention your requisite promise to return the favor.

Yes, you’ll both know that it ain’t happening, but there is that annoying etiquette requirement thing to consider. Besides, it’s a small price to pay if you’re walking out of there with an entire plate of Buffalo wings.

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.

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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)

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)

 

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

By Chris Gay

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 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)

 

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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