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The LawDog Files





Last Build Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2018 12:06:46 +0000

 



Ten years ago

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 18:49:00 +0000

Trans-Siberian Orchestra recorded this video.  It has become something of a tradition here at The LawDog Files to play it when we finally accept that it's the Yule Season.

So:

width="320" height="266" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="https://i.ytimg.com/vi/MHioIlbnS_A/0.jpg" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/MHioIlbnS_A?feature=player_embedded" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>

Happy Holidays, Gentle Readers.

LawDog



Busy, busy, busy

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 16:51:00 +0000

Okay.

Both books -- The LawDog Files, and The LawDog Files:  African Adventures -- are now available in both digital editions and print editions.

As a Christmas gift for blowing my mind on book sales, if you will send an e-mail to:

sales|.|thelawdogfiles|@|gmail|.|com

 -- take the vertical lines out of the address, please (Death To Spambots!) -- with the name of the person to whom you wish to dedicate the book, any message you'd like, and a mailing address, I'll send you a signed bookplate to put in the book.

I'll do this for emails I get through December 31.

Audiobook versions of both are in the works, further details as things progress.

More in a bit.

LawDog



Anthology is live

Sat, 28 Oct 2017 18:46:00 +0000



My story -- "By Hook And Crook" -- is in Calexit - The Anthology, which has gone live on Kindle (see the link) or dead tree edition.

It's my first ever anthology, so I'm a little stoked.

Good bunch of authors.  Good stories.

Now back to my zombie short story that keeps trying to become a novella.  Bad story!  Bad, bad story!

After that, the Rural Fiction.  Busy, busy, busy.

LawDog



Gun Raffle!

Sat, 28 Oct 2017 01:09:00 +0000

I know this is a lousy time to ask for money, but one of our extended family is in need. FarmFam’s daughter-in-law, Andi, 33 and the mother of two small boys, suffered a stroke in mid August. Unfortunately, it wasn't diagnosed correctly for two weeks, delaying treatment.

She's facing a year to 18 months of physical therapy to get back to full function.

Therapy costs are running $200-500 per session, and she needs therapy once a week. Andi has not been able to afford health insurance, because she her husband own a small business that makes too much money for them to get assistance with health insurance, but not enough for them to be able to afford health insurance, and raising two boys.

Any help will be much appreciated, as Andi has begun physical therapy, and without health insurance she has to pay the full cost of every session.

In order to help her out, we are doing another gun raffle to try to help her with her therapy. One change from what we did for Tam is to run this through a Go Fund Me, https://www.gofundme.com/andrea-keenan-medical-fund, so that the money is immediately available to her for her therapy. One IRS change is that Go Fund Me $$ are now counted as income for the family, so we are shooting for a goal of $25,000 to offset the tax burden they will be hit with.

Here are the ‘rules’ $10 per chance, $50/6 chances, $100/12 chances, etc. Make your donation to the Go Fund Me above, and copy your donation receipt to 4anditherapy@gmail.com. This will count as your entry into the raffle. If you have already donated, we will accept prior donations to the Go Fund Me.

The raffle will run from now through the end of November, with the drawing to be held 1 December via a random drawing program. First number gets their choice, second gets their choice, etc.

The raffle packages are:

  1. Taurus .44 Magnum pistol
  2. Ruger MK-II bull barrel .22
  3. Custom sub-MOA AR-15
  4. Remington 870 pump in 20ga
  5. Chinese copy of a 12ga coach gun
  6. Springfield Range Officer .45 with 7 magazines and custom holster
  7. Springfield Range Officer 9mm with 7 magazines and custom holster
  8. LawDog’s personal Rock Island 1911 9mm, reworked by Joe Speer with 6 magazines
  9. A ladies package consisting of a ring (late-Victorian-style design with either high-quality glass or mid-grade garnet stones. The mount is jeweler's metal, size 6 3/4 or 7). A unicorn necklace, late 1980s-early 1990s James Avery sterling silver charm on a silver chain. A coin necklace, an 1904 Indian Head penny, silver dipped in a gold-plated mount with a gold-plated silver chain. And a handmade necklace and earrings from Phlegmmy.
  10. Signed copies of LawDog’s, Peter Grant’s, Dorothy Grant’s, and JL Curtis’ books
  11. TBD (other possible packages are being discussed)

All guns will be shipped FFL to FFL for winners. Pictures of the various packages will follow in the next couple of days.

Thank you in advance, I know she will appreciate the help, and this will take a little pressure off the family!

LawDog



"Gun Rights Cake" Analogy

Tue, 17 Oct 2017 01:11:00 +0000

Sigh.

I first wrote the "Gun Rights Cake" analogy on this page in 2010.  I re-posted it here three years later.

Later on, a Facebook group called "The Hypocrisy and Stupidity of Gun Control Advocates" put in cartoon form:

Note the proper attribution at the bottom of that cartoon.

With the events of Las Vegas, I'm seeing my own work coming across my Facebook feed and my e-mail -- only my name appears to have become "Bentley", or "Robert", or "Rupert". 

Goodness, my parents would be startled.

One gentleman -- when gently corrected -- stated that I actually stole that analogy from "someone" on AK47.net.

Bedamned, I most assuredly did not steal that analogy from anyone else.  I bloody well wrote the sodding thing. 

And by-the-by:  whomever added the extra language about the "Dick Act of 1902" in one of the versions that's going around -- if I'd've wanted that in my analogy, I would have added it. Keep your meat-hooks off of my work, if you please.

Gentle Readers, if someone sends you my analogy, uncredited -- or claimed by someone other than LawDog -- please gently correct that person.  Likewise, if one of the cartoons comes by you with the attribution clipped off of the bottom.

You can point them to this post, if you'd like.

Thanks,

LawDog



Oh, look.

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 00:42:00 +0000

(image)


My first anthology!

Looks like about three weeks, give or take.

LawDog



Green chili stew

Tue, 03 Oct 2017 22:47:00 +0000

Ah, autumn.

Take:
2 pounds of pork
Oil
1 big white onion
1 tablespoon of Squeeze Garlic
2 tubs of Knorr Swiss Chicken In A Tub
6 cups water
1 pound red taters
1 to 2 cups (ish) of roasted, peeled, and chopped Hatch chilies*
1 tablespoon Chipotle Topper
Salt and pepper to taste.
(If cilantro doesn't taste like soap to you, chop some of that.)

Get out your big stew pot, cut your pork into one-inch cubes, and toss it into the pot on Medium-High with some oil.  Chop your onion, bung it in there, too, and brown the pork.

Once the pork is brown, run the heat down to Medium, drain the oil, and toss in the garlic.  Give it some stirs until you start to smell that lovely nutty aroma, add the water, and bump the heat back up to Medium-High.

While you're waiting for the boil, chunk your taters into 3/4(-ish) inch bits.  When you get a rolling boil, throw in the taters and both the tubs of chicken.  Chop the heat down, and let it all simmer for about an hour, or until the spuds are cooked.

Once that's done, throw in the Hatch chilies*, and the Chipotle Topper.  Simmer for about another 15 minutes.

(Now is the time to stir in the cilantro, if you like, but not for me.  Stuff tastes like diswashing detergent.)

Serve over rice, with a salad.

LawDog

*Please be advised:  Hatch chilies come in two heat levels.  Mild, and Spiky.  If you send someone to the market for some freshly roasted Hatch chilies, and they're not aware of this little fact, they may come back with some Spiky ones.  Damned fine flavour, but if your guests are expecting the Mild chilies -- because Mild ones are all they've ever gotten from your kitchen -- and get a mouthful of Spiky chilies, there may be startled exclamations.  Forewarned is forearmed.



Meditations on crowds

Tue, 03 Oct 2017 04:38:00 +0000

By nature, by profession, and by training I bloody well hate crowds.A man I admired once informed me that the IQ of a crowd could be ascertained by taking the lowest IQ of any single person in the crowd, and dividing that by the number of people in the crowd.For myself, I always think of a crowd as one large, dumb, and happy organism ... right up until something decides to take a thunder run at the crowd, and it becomes a large, dumb, and dangerous organism.Unfortunately, it is a Fact of Life that, upon occasion, crowds must be endured.And while there are several types of dangerous crowds, and several ways in which a crowd presents a danger, the focus of today's musing is confined to that crowd phenomenon called the "crush" or the "stampede".A "crush" is when a crowd takes it into its' multiple little mind that Something Bad Has Happened, and decides to unarse the A.O.There are two things that should be noted here.  1) 90+% of all deaths resulting from a panicked crowd are from traumatic asphyxia or compression asphyxia; and 2) The majority of the victims of compression asphyxia will have died standing up.The obvious question is:  "LawDog, what is 'compression asphyxia'?"Glad you asked.When you get a large mass of dumb and panicked suddenly moving in one direction, Dumb and Panicked tends to bring a lot of force to the dance.  How much force?  At several scenes where fatal "crush" events have taken place, After Action Reviews of the incidents have revealed steel railings bent and deformed by nothing more than the press of multiple bodies.  In at least one (the 1979 The Who concert stampede.  I think)  recreations of the accident show a horizontal application of force equaling about one thousand (1000) pounds.One half of a ton of force, plus or minus, applied sideways.It takes far less than that to compress the rib-cage of a normal human being to the point that they can no longer inhale.  Without the ability to draw air into your lungs, unconsciousness sets in at ten to forty seconds, brain damage starts at about four minutes, and death follows fairly quickly after that."Traumatic asphyxia" or "compression asphyxia" is what happens when a squishy person gets between an immovable object -- such as a wall -- and the irresistible force of a mass of a panicked crowd.So.  How to avoid this?First off, stay away from crowds.  If you can't avoid that, stay away from crowds in confined spaces -- and by "confined space" I mean any place with more walls around the area than open air.However, if you find yourself having to be in a confined space with a crowd, I'd like you to keep at least two things in mind:1)  Crowds are made up of people.  And people are creatures of habit.  One of those irritating little habits is that people want to go out of an area the same way that they came in.  And that goes double when they're panicked.When things go agley, and The Crowd decides that it's Time To Be Somewhere Else, The Crowd will escape the area the same way it came in.  Only a lot faster, and damn the torpedoes.That means that if 99% of The Crowd came into the dance venue by way of those two double doors right there, unless there's A Damned Fine Reason preventing such, when the crush happens, The Crowd is going to go right out those two double doors right there.  At full, berserk speed.  And they will do their damnedest to fit the entire Fire Marshal's Maximum Occupancy Number into that one doorway, all at the same time.So, the best way to avoid this crunchy, sticky mess is to exercise some of that Situational Awareness when you first enter the venue, and spot at least two exits that aren't the main entrances.Given our druthers, we'd like these exits to be unobtrusive, and on walls as far away from the walls that the main entrances are on as possible, b[...]



Quick-and-dirty chili

Thu, 24 Aug 2017 03:37:00 +0000

If tongue-scorching heat is your thing, this recipe probably isn't for you; but if you'd like a mild little chili that's done in less than an hour, you might give this one a try.

Take:

2 pounds chili-ground lean beef, or venison. (Hamburger meat will do, lean.)
1 pound mild Italian sausage
1 medium-to-large yellow onion
6 cloves of garlic
1 Chipotle cube
3 teaspoons(ish) chili powder (if you're not mad at Penzeys, sub in 1 teaspoon(ish) of their Chili 9000 for one of the regular chili powder)
1/2 teaspoon smoked salt
1 can Rotel Fire-Roasted tomatoes & chilies
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (I prefer fire-roasted, but up to you)
1 small can Hatch diced mild green chilies
Glug or so of a decent red table wine

Dice your onion, toss it into a frying pan, bung in your meat, and brown the whole mess.  Drain off any grease, and dump into your chili pot.

Mince your garlic cloves, and drop them in.  (I use squeeze garlic, but I'm lazy.)  Put the chipotle cube into a bowl, and mush it into powder, add your chili powder and the smoked salt, muddle the mix a bit with a spoon, and toss it into the pot.

Stir in the Rotel, all of the other tomato, and the chilies.  Simmer for about twenty minutes, glug in the wine, stir, simmer another ten minutes (plus or minus), then serve with shredded Mexican cheese mix and crackers.

Voila!  Quick and dirty chili.

(Again, if you're looking for a spicy chili, this isn't for you.  However, if you're not sure of the heat tolerance of your dinner guests, and don't have all day to simmer a proper chili, this might do you.)

LawDog



Support starving authors!

Thu, 24 Aug 2017 02:51:00 +0000

Friend Peter has a new book out.

This time he's trying his hand at fantasy.

If that's your thing, you might have a go at it.

LawDog



And Voltaire wept

Mon, 14 Aug 2017 23:05:00 +0000

"I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it"~ Evelyn Beatrice Hall, in "The Friends of Voltaire".As a man of fifty-plus years on this little green dirtball -- and a significant portion of that life outside of the United States -- I'm accustomed to thinking that if I haven't seen it all, I've seen enough to be able to handle the rest.That was until recently, when the sheer number of folks calling for outright bans on the right to free speech -- and especially folks who should bloody well know better -- hit epidemic proportions.Gentle Readers, free speech is messy.  It is ugly, precisely because free speech that everyone agrees with does not require protections.  Why would you protect speech that upsets no-one?  Why would you need to?Even worse is the call for the government to declare that certain speech is "hate speech" -- because getting the government involved always works out so well -- and to give the government (and the flawed, flawed humans who make up that government) the power to declare bans on certain speech.To put it in simple language even a college student can understand:Do you really want President Mike Pence deciding what is protected speech, and what speech should be banned?Because that is what you're going to get in the future.How about President Greg Abbott after Mission Creep gets into the mix? How would you feel about President Ted Cruz deciding what speech you should go to jail for?That, ladies and gentlemen, is exactly what you're setting yourself up for when you start yick-yacking about the government banning speech."But, LawDog," I hear you snivelling, "Some speech is an incitement to violence, and should be against the law."You know what?  Let's look at that.I have heard folks chanting, "What do we want?  Dead cops!  When do we want it?  Now!" rather recently.  About me, and those like me.Is that not an incitement to violence?  Ask Dallas PD, and their dead brothers.  Should it not be "against the law"?No.  It is protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.I can show any number of YouTube videos of imams calling for jihad, for the slaughter of Westerners, for the genocide of an entire people.Is this not an incitement to violence?  Ask the dead in San Bernadino, at Ft Hood, at Orlando, at the Boston Marathon.  Should it not be "against the law"?No.  It is protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States."But, LawDog, Nazi-related speech is banned in Germany!"I don't give two hoots in hell about how they do things in Germany.  You like their restriction on free speech -- move.  Delta is ready when you are. Scram.So.  To break it down Barney-style:  your calls to ban speech -- even Nazi speech -- is un-American.  And once you've begged government to pass that first law banning speech, it's a simple amendment to expand those bans.  Think about the absolute worst politician you can think of in the White House.  Worse than Trump -- because they're out there, and they've got as good a chance at the Oval Office as Donald J. Trump had -- think about that politician being able to amend a law banning speech.The wearing of the burqa is a free speech issue.  Think there isn't a politician out there somewhere that would love to ban the wearing of the burqa?  Just one little quiet midnight amendment to an already existing law you're trying to give to government.Pro-choice?  How's that work out when free speech regarding the issue is banned?  Anyone reading this think there isn't a politician who wouldn't dot their cupcakes at the ability to ban speech about abortion?  You really want to let their nose under the t[...]



Book, the Second

Thu, 10 Aug 2017 03:16:00 +0000

Well, the second LawDog Files book (Africa and other stories) goes live tomorrow.

I think most of my Gentle Readers will be happy to discover that there are some Africa stories in there that have never graced the pages of this blog.

Then I think I'll go catatonic for a bit, because pounding that one out so quickly was one ... interesting ... experience.

It'll have to be a short spell of not thinking, because I've got a short story due for a zombie anthology, another short story for a mil-sci anthology; and I'm going to dabble my fingers in the world of self-publishing with a Rural Fantasy book that's been kicking it's way around my brain for a while.

For now, though, I'm going to turn off my brain and sleep for a bit.

LawDog



Wow. That was ...

Wed, 26 Jul 2017 00:58:00 +0000

... quicker than I expected.

The dead-tree edition of The LawDog Files just went up on Amazon.

LawDog



Let's see if this "pre-order" ...

Wed, 19 Jul 2017 22:40:00 +0000

... thing works.

Allegedly, if you click on this link, you will be taken to Amazon where you may "pre-order" the next book.

I remain suspicious -- as always -- of technology.

LawDog



Sneak peek

Wed, 19 Jul 2017 15:47:00 +0000

... shh.  Don't tell anyone.


LawDog



Holy dancing two-toed sloths!

Tue, 18 Jul 2017 22:16:00 +0000

That, ladies and gentlemen, was one of the most thrill-inducing rides of my life.

I seriously expected to make it into the top 1000 on Amazon Kindle, and when I went to bed at 1009 Paid in Kindle Store, I was perfectly content and happy.

Then Larry Correia dealed himself and his fans into it.

Oh, my dear and fuzzy gods.

When I finally went to bed, my little scribbles were at #87.  I am informed that they got up to #82 in the wee hours.

There has been much hyperventilation on my part.

Thank you, my friends.  I knew that my little brain-droppings were popular to a small segment of the Internet, but I honestly didn't think they'd have much appeal outside of my regular Gentle Readers.

I've been somewhat cured of that misunderstanding.

And I'd especially like to thank Peter Grant, Dorothy Grant, Jim Curtis, Larry Correia, and all of Larry's fans.

If you'd like to thank them for dragging me kicking and screaming into writing books, well, nothing says "Hey, thanks" like buying their books.

Of course, the biggest "Thank you" goes to the lady the book is dedicated to.

Whoo.

Okay.  News, since y'all seem to be interested.

The next LawDog Files will be out somewhat quicker than I had thought -- I'm collating and editing it now.

The dead-tree copy is due by mid-August; and I wonder if y'all would be interested in an audio-book?

LawDog



And here ... we ... go!

Mon, 17 Jul 2017 09:30:00 +0000

(image)

Ok, Gentle Readers, here it is:  The LawDog Files, The Book.

I hope y'all find that it was worth the wait.  The print edition will be out in the middle of August.  Herself maintains that signed copies are vitally important, so we've got some adhesive ex libris plates coming in.  If you see me at a signing before the dead-tree edition drops, I'll happily sign one of those (if you'd like) so that you may add it to your physical book later.

I am collating the second book -- which will be Africa stories and random stories that don't fit anywhere else -- and hope to have it off to the publisher by October at the latest.

Enjoy!  Herself and I are off to quiet places far from cell-phone coverage, so we'll check in very late tonight.

Mildly freaking out, I remain:

LawDog



Memorandum For Record

Mon, 17 Jul 2017 03:28:00 +0000

To:  Daenerys Targaryen, First of Her Name, so on, and so forth.

Your Majesty,

Your security detail sucks great big rocks off of the ocean floor.  No, I take that back -- if they sucked they'd actually be useful for something.

You do realise that your dramatic return to your home dirt could have been  cut short -- nay, pounded flat -- by a half-starved, illiterate beggar with a big rock, a bit of leverage, and a decent understanding of gravity?

What the hell did you think you were doing by tip-toeing through the tulips of a castle (maybe) formerly held lock, stock, piglet by enemy forces; and you two body-lengths ahead of your five-man security detail?  A security detail which also appears to be the advance party/survey section of your amphibious landing?

No, wait.  Your security detail is made up of the same people who were getting their butts handed to them by a bunch of business-men in stupid masks and skirts earlier.  My bad.

*sigh*

I don't remember what they cost you, but I seriously think you over-paid.

Yes, I understand that you're "The Queen".  I don't care.  Unless you relish the title of "The Former Queen, Gods Rest Her Soul", sit on your hands on a ship until the entire island has been searched -- twice -- by loyal forces, and the castle has been searched, dusted, searched, sanitised, and searched.  Then you can pull your MacArthur imitation in the centre of a properly-trained security cordon.

I swear unto Cheeto Jeezuz that idiot clients like you are what give the Personal Protection business a bad name.

Frustratedly:

LawDog



Gobsmacked

Sun, 16 Jul 2017 03:13:00 +0000

Official launch of The LawDog Files is Monday, but some folks got an early look at it, and it's spread like wildfire -- and I'm tickled pink about it.

The publisher is a bit giddy, too.

Some questions have popped up.  Yes, there will be a dead-tree release.  It's skedded for mid-August -- about a month, more or less.

We are working on the second book as I type this -- mostly Africa and cat stories, maybe some recipes -- and I hope to have it to the publisher no later than October of this year.

I am annoyed with myself after realising that there are a minimum of six cop stories that I somehow left out of this book; I'll have to get them into a volume somewhere.

Folks have gently pointed out that I have enough essays on this blog for a third book, and that's something to keep in mind, however, I have mentioned fiction in the past, so I'm going to dip my paws into writing some fiction.

That's about all that my furiously-spinning mind can come up with for now.

Monday!

LawDog



Question

Fri, 14 Jul 2017 01:59:00 +0000

Wow. This question is officially moot.  Lord, but I love my Gentle Readers.

Thank you.

LawDog



Seven days

Tue, 11 Jul 2017 02:39:00 +0000

Whoo.

Ok.

We're seven days out from publication date.  The name of the book is (what else?) The LawDog Files.  Author will be LawDog, although apparently Amazon requires at least a first initial and last name, so it will be listed at Amazon under "D. LawDog".

There will be a PO box set up if you want autographed copies -- although we're still working out the fine details on that one.

Last, but not least, I will be at AMA-CON in Amarillo on 05 AUG 2017, working a booth with J.L. Curtis, Peter Grant, Dorothy Grant, and Alma Boykin so if the dead-tree copy of the book is out, I'll happily sign autographs.  If it isn't -- we'll sort something out.

Cordially panicking, I remain:

LawDog



Eleven days to go

Fri, 07 Jul 2017 03:09:00 +0000

I am somewhat amused that I can tell a story involving the sentence "dumpster diving for midget porn" and my Gentle Readers will promptly begin debating the civility of dipping one's french fries into the chocolate shake.

Y'all really are the best kind of folks.

As of yet there isn't a "pre-order" set up for the first LawDog Files book, but if one does pop up, I'll announce here as soon as possible.

LawDog



Book update, the first.

Tue, 04 Jul 2017 17:14:00 +0000

Ok, Gentle Readers.

The LawDog Files will be released as an e-book on Amazon on 17 JUL 2017.  That's about 13 days from today.

Print copy will follow a little later.

Castalia House is the publisher.

Of your kindness, when you read the book, please leave an honest review on Amazon.  Apparently reviews are what drive book listings -- I'm still learning the fine details of the publishing world.

Now, I'm going to go breathe into a paper bag for a bit.

LawDog



LibertyCon 2017 AAR

Tue, 04 Jul 2017 16:06:00 +0000

Well, I'm home after LibertyCon 2017.

My second LibertyCon was better than the first one, in that I knew what to expect and I saw people that I recognised.

However, a lot more people recognised me as LawDog.  Not going to lie -- I spent more time hiding this year than I did last year.

I met the original Kirk Conover from Monster Hunter:  Alpha -- there may have been squeeing on my part.  He and his lovely wife are the recipients of the first ever LawDog autograph.

Broke bread and had coffee -- at different times -- with Colonel Tom Kratman, John Van Stry, and Tom Rogneby.

Watched a panel on self-publishing put on by J.L. Curtis, Tom Rogneby, and John Van Stry that was incredibly informative and rather well done.

My all-time favourite panel of this LibertyCon was the "No [deleted], There I Was" panel where John Ringo, Tom Kratman, and other military veterans told side-splittingly (and R-rated) funny tales of their military service.

Got hugs from Jonna Hayden (Costumer Extraordinaire) and Sarah Hoyt -- did my gentlemanly duty and escorted Sarah to a book reading -- and witnessed Peter Grant baptising a couple of sprogs in the gardens of the Choo-Choo.

Met old friends; may have made new ones; found a decent coffee shop to hide in.

Although -- to a child of Africa -- "Frothy Monkey" does not present the kind of mental image that the owners might have wanted.  Just saying.

All in all, a wondrously good time, and I shall be back as often as they'll have me.

LawDog



Ah-hah! A witness!

Tue, 27 Jun 2017 17:47:00 +0000

Thing 1 hurt her arm earlier, and has been moping around the office with her dominant arm in a sling.  I am watching her holding something from falling with her good arm, and flailing away at something  else under the stack with her slinged arm, and -- being the ever-helpful boss -- I opine, "It's okay, dear.  All the dinosaurs feared the T-Rex."

This earns me a suggestion that I'm not perzackly sure is anatomically possible -- kids these days -- and then she yelps, "Oh, hell!  I've got to pay off the Outside Inmate Work Crew!"

I pause in the sipping of my tea to raise an eyebrow at her.

"Remember?  Dumpster diving for midget porn?"

 I smile happily at OldNFO, who blinks at her, then, in a slow Cajun drawl, he announces, "Girl, you ain't right."

I am tallying up the fact that -- finally -- an Innocent Third Party has witnessed the sort of shenanigans that fly past me on a regular basis, when Reno's voice rumbles out from behind a bank of monitors, "What are you paying them off with?"

Thing 1 chirps, "Wendy's frostys."

"Chocolate?"

She sniffs, "Of course."

Again the rumble, "And french fries?"

"Yep."

"Excellent."

Thing 1 continues, "Although I really don't understand dipping your french fries into chocolate ice-cream.  That's just ... weird."

"Well," says Reno, meditatively, "You just might be a Communist."

OldNFO blows coffee across the stack of files he's carrying.

Today ... is a Good Day.

LawDog