Becoming A Hero

PT Dilloway was one of the first people I connected with when I began Chubby Chatterbox. Aside from the fact that PT is an exceptional blogger with a razor sharp wit, he’s also an accomplished author celebrating the release of his new novel, A Hero’s Journey. Fans have been looking forward to this book for a long time and I’m honored to have him as a guest blogger: Becoming a Hero Thanks for letting me take over your blog today, Mr. Chatterbox!  ...

Music: Soulful Saturday Sounds…

“Nothing exists without music, for the universe itself is said to have been framed by a kind of harmony of sounds, and the heaven itself revolves under the tone of that harmony.” – Isidore of Seville Music: Soulful Saturday Sounds... India Arie... India Arie – Strength, Courage & Wisdom Music: Soulful Saturday Sounds... Jay Sean... Jay Sean ft. Pitbull – I’m All Yours I’ve never met anyone who didn’t have an appreciation for some type of music. While our tastes and interest in music might vary, we can all find sounds and songs ...

Where's Davy?

I’ll be the first one to admit I’m not up on the zeitgeist, particularly when it comes to music. I’m still stuck in the sixties and seventies, and it’s music from this era playing in the background as I write this. But I’ve recently noticed something peculiar going on. We baby boomers have become accustomed to corporations using our generation’s anthems to sell their products, like Ford cashing in on the Rolling Stones’ Start Me Up, or Beatles songs used ...

Twilight Zone Marathon

Every year on New Year’s Eve when the Sci-Fi Channel runs a 48 hour Twilight Zone Marathon I tell myself that I’m not going to watch. This year I watched less than previously but a few of my favorites stopped me in my tracks, rendering me powerless to change the channel. I’m not sure why since I know the dialogue of most of the 156 episodes by heart. When the program premiered in October of 1959 I was not yet seven, too young ...

5 Edible Weeds

“A weed is but an unloved flower.” -Ella Wheeler Wilcox Weeds get a bad reputation. Upon the first opportunity, these unloved plants in our backyards are immediately removed and destroyed! Gardeners don’t even think twice about it. Weeds have no place in the garden. But they do have a place in the kitchen! Before you toss those weeds into the trash, consider eating them. As your mother would say, “Don’t let good food go to waste!” Many weeds are edible and ...

Video Tutorials: How to Save Seeds From Flowers

It’s that time of the year again, where most of the annuals in your garden are looking spent and tired. But before you remove the flowers, collect the seeds! Saving seeds is an easy way to increase your stock for next year, save money, and preserve rare heirloom varieties. There are many flowers that you can collect seeds from, but only save seeds from healthy, vigorous plants! The best time to harvest them is on a sunny day, never on a ...

Multitasking

I’ve struggled with this idea of multitasking for a long time, wondering why my wife can keep so many plates spinning in the air while I have difficulty remembering to bring my plate to the sink after she’s prepared a delicious meal. Multitasking probably developed shortly after humans stepped out of caves. Men stomped off to acquire meat at the walk up window at Bison King while women frittered away hours fending off predatory animals, stoked fires, gathered fruits, grains ...

Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs…

“Everybody needs a hug. It changes your metabolism.” Leo Buscaglia Writing Challenge: Gift Of 1000 Hugs… “I will not play tug o’ war. I’d rather play hug o’ war. Where everyone hugs instead of tugs, Where everyone giggles and rolls on the rug, Where everyone kisses, and everyone grins, and everyone cuddles, and everyone wins.” Shel Silverstein  Hello there! My name is Hugo and I’m a hugaholic… I capture images of people and other life forms sharing a hug; in common and unusual settings. I travel around the ...

Fourth of July Conversation with Cleverbot

One of the more popular features here on The Daily ReTORt happens to be my conversations with Cleverbot. What is a Cleverbot you ask? Cleverbot, is an Internet-based, Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) software  that supposedly learns by conversing with humans via an instant messaging platform. While Cleverbot is not intentionally clever, conversations with it can be somewhat entertaining – especially around holidays. Here’s the most recent interview I had with this bastion of A.I. idiocy: Belated Memorial Day with Cleverbot Below, is a conversation I had with ...

Best Satire Video of 2012: Whole Foods Parking Lot

We live near Washington, DC which has exposed us to a variety of new experiences – not the least of which is the Whole Foods Market  grocery chain. Living in New York most of my life, I’d never been to a Whole Foods until we moved south of the Mason-Dixon line. In a nutshell it is a high-end grocery store that specializes in selling expensive, sustainable, green-centric organic goods and unpronounceable, exotic vegetables. It’s what the Wegman’s grocery store chain would be if ...

Fabulous Finds: Outdoor Lighting

Perhaps it’s because I live in the South, or maybe because I haven’t always, that makes me love relaxing outdoors on summer evenings. The warm air and sounds of nature’s hidden life envelop me, removing all of the day’s stress. Of course, comfortable surroundings don’t hurt either! Outdoor spaces are an extension of the home, and with the right furnishings, can become your favorite “room” of the house. Cozy seating and tables to set those cool drinks on are essential and ...

7 Questions With an Author: Ally Spotts

Writer and Blogger, Ally Spotts This post marks another installment of my “7 Questions With an Author…” series, where I ask published authors an unchanging set of questions and share their responses here. Today’s co-featured author is Ally Spotts – my friend, author and fellow blogger. She launched her first book yesterday titled Asking All the Wrong Questions  and she writes daily about relationships and other topical issues at her excellent site www.allyspotts.com. Here are “7 Questions With an Author: Ally Spotts.” 1. Tell ...

Case of the Missing Timeline

The novel I’m writing has a lot going on over the course of a year across seven characters’ intertwined lives. I have managed the timeline very carefully, double-checking myself with each new scene. A cheat-sheet of dates and events and chapter numbers has helped me keep it all straight. This morning I went to check something on it, and it’s missing! Did you take it? The piles in my office have been in worse shape. Things are looking under control, in ...

20 Texting Phrases Every Parent Must Know

Teens Holding Cell Phones According to a recent study conducted by the Pew Research Center Publications the mobile phone is the preferred method of communication for teens. No real surprise. However, it's stunning to read the following excerpts and information from the research, particularly that one in three teens sends more than 100 text messages a day - or 3,000 texts a month. According to Pew, some 38% of teens were daily texters in February 2008, and that has risen to 54% of ...

Top-10 List: Things That Smell Better Than They Taste

The only vegetable that's served in Hell... Science has proven that our sense of smell plays an integral role in how things taste. Ironically, even though some things smell incredibly good - they actually taste neutral to downright awful. Here's a list of the Top-10 Things That Smell Better Than They Taste. 10. Flavored Coffees - these various caffeinated concoctions smell wonderful when blended by your favorite barrister; however, they taste terrible - a blend of cough syrup and motor oil. 9. Mushrooms - while cooking, ...

Calling All Bloggers: Share Your Best 9/11 Writing

Zero Hour - courtesy of National Geographic This is a post about you as an individual and us as a nation. I'm asking any and all bloggers who have written about the 9/11 disaster - which occurred 10 years ago this weekend - to share a link to their best blog post they've ever written on the topic. It doesn't matter if it was written five years or five minutes ago. Please provide a 2-3 sentence description in the comments section below as ...

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Songs Of The Sea

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As always – I began with an underpainting. – burnt sienna and then blocked in with the French Ultramarine and Burnt Sienna mix as usual. I have begun with the sand area at the top of the painting. This work is taken off an image I shot while on a helicopter ride one day. Near where I live is a place called The Entrance where a narrow sea inlet feeds into a large lake system. The day I took this image I was …

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Behold I give you a new mind…

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The Battle within a mind… A Parody – The voices within a soul can be very disconcerting when in a quandary about actions or decisions to be made and in many cases conflicting thoughts can be troublesome and noisy. The kingdom of mind as used here is the realm associated with or regarded as being under the control of a particular influence and conceived as constituting a sphere of the kingdom of thought. …

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Surely Goodness and Mercy shall follow you…

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God is the only source of “good ” in the universe. He is the source of every blessing that his creatures crave. Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. All his works are devised to extend the reach of his love. Every action in the created realm blushes with the goodness of God. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations. …

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Thanks Task Force Argos

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Task Force Argos – part of the Queensland Police Service – Earlier today the Queensland Police Service posted a link on Facebook to this article about the arrest of a 38-year-old Victorian man who flew to Queensland with the intent of meeting a 14-year-old girl he had been interacting with online, and having sex with her. The investigation, and ultimate arrest, was undertaken by …

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Colour Mixing Blues

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French Ultramarine (Hidden Violet) This Violet biased Blue is semi transparent and contains a large amount of Violet. When you compare it to a green biased blue you can definitely see the Violet colour within it. Ultramarine Blue was – according to Ralph Mayer – originally made from ground and refined Lapis Lazuli and therefore one of the most costly of art materials. Even more confusing is the fact that …

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The Secrets of a Happy Marriage

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There is an abundance of guidance on the Internet, in bookstores, magazines, newspaper advice columns and talk radio about how to keep your marriage healthy. I’m not going to criticize the tips often touted by experts because they are important and I don’t want to disregard this valuable wisdom but there are things that no matter where you research get glossed over. First, let’s go over a …

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Steering my own ship

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Who is steering your ship? With so many people I know struggling with all sorts of different challenges of late, I have been interested to observe the different ways we tend to go about dealing with the difficulties life sends our way. I have been surprised to find that, even though there are no commonalities in the problems being faced, the way we approach problems and try to …

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