Sunday, January 21, 2018

Right Lane, Wrong Road

I’ve written about this before and while I hesitate to recycle old material, it is evidently that time of year again—meet a car on my side of the freeway season! Not that there is an actual season, at least I hope not. Besides, a season would suggest a regular spate of fruit, ripe for the harvest. In other words, me meeting a lot of vehicles going the wrong way. And I’d rather limit those incidents. But, I don’t think it’s up to me. In any case, perhaps “season” was not the best choice of words.

As you’ve most likely guessed, last week, I was once again privileged to run across (and not into) a car coming toward me on the freeway. This happens occasionally, or frequently, since it hasn’t been that long since the last time.

I was only a couple of miles from my exit, finishing up my night and going home, when the unmistakable shine of headlights on my side of the median told me my uneventful night might turn out to be a little interesting. With a combined speed of around 140 mph, a guy doesn’t have a lot of time to react when this happens. I was able to determine the vehicle was in the left lane—which they usually are since the disoriented driver THINKS they’re in the right lane. (Like how I refrained from saying the driver was an idiot?)

I flashed my lights repeatedly; hoping whoever was behind the wheel would see the error of their way. No such luck though; the driver kept right on cruising and simply flashed their lights back, presumably to show me they weren’t driving with their high beams on, which was thoughtful of them. Still, I’d prefer they just drove on their own side of the road. Call me crazy but I’d feel much safer having a headlight dual with some sort of barrier separating us.

I tried to get a look at the driver as the car zoomed past but couldn’t see much. By this time, other drivers were aware of what was going on and the CB was blaring away. Someone said they’d called 911; others were strategizing on how to stop the car before there was a major crash. Figuring there was nothing I could do, I took my exit and headed home, glad to be done dealing with the insanity.

Then, two days later—or two nights, since I drive at night—the insanity returned. On the road ahead of me was another fast-approaching set of lights. The lights of a semi this time. A car is bad enough but a semi? Really?

Thankfully, again there was no crash. But now I’m a little leery every time I head off down the road. A pattern seems to be developing here. On second thought, perhaps “season” was a good choice of words after all. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Monday, January 15, 2018

The Painful Truth

A few years ago, I learned that dogs do not feel pain—at least according to the person with whom I was speaking. Pain, this person insisted, does not affect a dog, they feel nothing. This was an “educated” person. A person who should know. A person who has a lot of experience with dogs. Still, I think I’ll have to disagree.

While dogs may not show it in the same way humans do, and while they may not complain much, I’m quite certain dogs feel pain. I realize sometimes it can be difficult to know if a dog is in pain and if so, how much, and I know they are quite resilient creatures, but it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that canines are not insentient to pain.

Recently, I’ve been reminded of the conversation with the above-mentioned person. My wife and I have an aging collie that is beginning to have trouble getting around. Going up and down steps is becoming more difficult for her, as is simply standing up. The problem is we’re not really sure if she’s in pain or not. She doesn’t really give any indication of pain, no yelping or anything, so perhaps it’s just her joints are a little stiff. Unfortunately, we can’t simply ask her. Well, we can—and do—but she doesn’t really answer. If the problem continues to get worse, we may have to consider medication, I suppose. We certainly don’t want the dog to suffer; i.e., experience pain.

Incidentally, pain is defined as a physical hurting sensation caused by an injury (or illness) to the body; it is not unique to the human race, as anyone who has ever owned a dog knows. Common sense should be enough to settle any debate. Even a complete imbecile should be able to figure out that dogs do indeed feel pain. So, obviously, the person who told me dogs are immune to pain took a crash course in junk science. Which is odd being that the person was a veterinarian.

On a related note, we no longer use that particular vet. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

On Second Thought

Well, the year has gotten off to a great start—most of the snow is gone and temperatures are warmer. A few more weeks and winter will be gone!

But as I was told by my grandson, Christmas will be back. This was after he sadly lamented that only a little Christmas remained, pointing to the scattered remnants of snow piles. I guess that is winter’s one redeeming aspect—Christmas, because it makes all the kids happy. Not sure if that makes up for all the cold, snow, icy roads and the like but it does help.

He also informed me that I do not need to wait for Christmas to give him gifts. I could do that any time of the year, he said. He just turned four so he thinks everyone else in the world exists to do his bidding!

We were taking a walk across a bridge and looking down, I saw an acorn. I picked it up and handed it to him. “Here’s a gift,” I said.

“What is it?”

When I told him it was an acorn, he shook his head. “That’s not an acorn, it doesn’t have the top.” (The cap had fallen off).

“It’s still an acorn,” I said.

“Will it still make an oak tree?” he wanted to know. So much for explaining the acorn turning into a tree to him! Apparently, he already knows this.

“Maybe.” I was hesitant to give him a definite answer. He’d plant it and something would kill it off and then he’d blame me for not having his tree.

He was shaking his head again. “I don’t think it will. It’s broken.”

“That doesn’t matter,” I said. “It’s what on the inside that counts.”

He didn’t answer for a little bit. Finally, he says, “Grandpa, you can just wait until Christmas and then buy me a gift.” Guess he wasn’t impressed.

Think I’ll wrap an acorn for him for next Christmas. One with the top still attached, of course. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy New Year!

So, in the larger scheme of things, a new year is rather miniscule. Yet, for some reason, we feel compelled to celebrate it as if it’s a huge event. It’s as if we actually believe things, or life in general, will change somehow; that everything will improve.

But really, the changing of the calendar year has no power to do anything—except make people write the date incorrectly for a month or so. Other than that, it’s no different from any other day.

So, why do we feel this yearly urge to celebrate what is ultimately a non-event? I think it’s nothing more than an excuse; a break from the norm. After all, everyone likes to engage in festivities from time to time and apparently, there are simply not enough other occasions throughout the year, and so we made up another one.

And that’s okay, I suppose. I have nothing against celebrations. I just find it odd we celebrate something that holds little significance. But, as it nears midnight, the noise of the fireworks outside demonstrates that most people do find the day significant. I just wonder how long it will take them to realize that 2018 is no different than 2017. A few months I’m guessing. And then they’ll all be looking forward to 2019—and another New Year’s celebration! ~



Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Monday Morning Blues

Merry Christmas!

Yep, it’s that time of year again. Already. Maybe it’s the cold, or the snow, or just winter in general, but Christmas sure comes around a lot more often these days. It seems like just weeks ago we were celebrating Christmas but apparently, it’s been a year. Funny, when I was a kid, it seemed like there was at least a decade between them.

Actually, as I write this, it’s Christmas Eve. Everyone, including the dogs, is asleep at my house—except me of course. Not that I’m staying up to wait or anything, I’m just a night owl and can’t go to bed until well after midnight. And I’m definitely not a morning person.

I’m sure my wife will be up bright and early though, getting things ready for when the children, and the grandchildren, arrive. She’s one of those (strange) morning people. But not the annoying type; she doesn’t think that just because she’s up everyone else in the world has to also be up. Unless there’s a good reason, she usually lets me sleep.

Unfortunately, I believe Christmas falls under the category of “good reasons.” So, I guess I better wrap this up and get it posted and then TRY to get some sleep because apparently, on Christmas, I have to be a morning person.

Oh well, Merry Christmas anyway! ~



Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Wasted Endeavor

Well, we finally got our Christmas shopping done. And with a week to spare! Okay, I’ll admit, this is mostly my wife’s thing but I did help. A little.

Now comes the wrapping part. This is almost worse than shopping for me. It’s not that I can’t wrap packages; I used to wrap 15-20 packages every day when I worked at the dental lab. I learned to do it well and fast. That might be why I don’t really like wrapping now, too much like work. Or maybe it’s the thin paper as that prevents me from going as fast as I’d like. Whatever the reason, I usually avoid wrapping gifts. (Although I do end up doing a few here and there).

Thankfully, my wife comes to my rescue every year. This year was no different. She informed me tonight that the gift-wrapping is all done. That was nice to hear, especially since I haven’t wrapped any of them. But they did look nice, all piled up in the corner.

My wife will also be doing most of the cooking for Christmas. And since she is a great cook, I of course, will let her. I’ll be there for moral support though.

I know: I don’t like shopping, avoid wrapping, get out of cooking, so what exactly do I contribute to this Christmas celebration? Well, my job comes later. After Christmas. As you may know, I haul garbage for a living so it only makes sense that I would be in charge of getting rid of the huge pile of boxes and wrapping paper that a typical Christmas morning produces. All that pretty paper, that’s no longer so pretty, and all the food that no longer appears appetizing; it’s up to me to clear it out of the house and take it away. So, while my job may not be the most esteemed or prestigious—or even difficult—it is, by far, the trashiest! That’s gotta count for something, right? ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

The Way I Heard It

When I was a kid one of my favorite pastimes was lying on the floor, right next to the stereo speaker, listening to music. My mom would put on a stack of records, five or six albums, and my brother and I would stay there listening until the last song played—and then mom would turn the records over and we’d listen some more. Yes, we spent a lot of time just listening to music.

I loved the music, the singing; I loved it all. But one particular song used to bother me every time I heard it. In the song, it said “...and defeat is one word I don’t use.” What I heard though, instead of “defeat” was “the feet.” I remember always thinking that’s not one word, it’s two. And, I wondered why in the world did they say they wouldn’t use the word, or words. To make it worse, earlier in the same song, there was a line that said something about “my feet.” So, I wondered, why was “my feet” okay but not “the feet?” It was all so confusing. Keep in mind that I was only two or three years old at the time.

I must’ve gone a year or more agonizing over all this. Finally, I decided to ask my mom. After she explained it, it all made sense, except...

I still took issue with the fact that in saying they didn’t use the word, they used the word. In later years, I realized that from a songwriting standpoint, it was a great line—and still it bugged me. Still does.

Some of you may know that I like to record songs these days (in my “spare” time). A while back, I recorded the aforementioned song. Strangely, or ironically, I had a little difficultly with the recording equipment not cooperating during that session. But I’m patient, or stubborn, and I persevered (for several hours) until I got the song done. Why? Well, because “the feet” is one word I don’t use. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Not Going To Work

Vacation! My yearly winter vacation is underway. And, what does a truck driver do on vacation? Well, as typically is the case for this truck driver, I’ll be driving. But not far—just a quick trip to take my wife to the airport. Yep, I’m getting rid of her for a week.

Due to my job, and a few other factors, separate vacations happen quite frequently for us—but usually not on the same week. We didn’t really plan it that way this time either; it’s just the way it worked out. So, while she is jetting around the country, I’ll be here just taking care of the dogs. And working on, well, stuff. After all, what is the point of a vacation if a guy can’t get a few things done?

I know, I look at things a little differently than most. But having a job that requires me to be gone most of the week, I look forward to having some free time at home—to work on things that I want to do. And I have a busy schedule lined up: recording, writing, and fixing a few things around the house.

You’d think that staying busy would keep me from thinking about my wife being gone but as I know from experience, that doesn’t really work. I’m not sure what the difference is, some weeks, I don’t see her from Monday to Friday anyway, but there definitely is a difference. When I was younger, and managing a restaurant, I’d tend to fire people when she was gone. I no longer do things of that nature (because I do not manage anything these days) but the older I get, the more I miss her when she goes away. I suppose that’s a good thing.

In the future, we may have to reconsider this separate vacations thing. But for now, that’s the way it is. Maybe next year we can try pretending to be normal. Yeah, that probably won’t work. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Not Likely To Happen

I’m really not much of a shopper. I don’t like shopping, even when there are certain things I need to buy. The whole experience bothers me; looking for a parking spot, the crowds of people, wandering through the store (and not finding what I want), the frustration of being limited in my choices, and I really don’t like not being able to compare prices—without running all over town to different stores.

And that is why I am extremely glad for online shopping. It eliminates all the hassle. 
Unfortunately, online shopping is not always an option, since my purchases can’t be delivered instantly. So, at times I’m forced to shop at a store. Like last Friday. Black Friday.

Finishing up a home project, I needed some last minute things and without thinking about what day it was, I headed to Home Depot. And found no place to park. So, truck driver that I am, I went to the docks and parked—out of the way of trucks, of course.

Inside, things got worse. People were crowding everywhere; all looking for that great buy of the century. A nightmare in other words. It took a while to navigate the treacherous aisles but I finally made it back to the trim boards, found what I needed and went to wait in the checkout line.

After a good half hour, I’d paid for couple of items and was gone, promising myself next time I would NOT make the mistake of shopping on Black Friday.

But then, I seem to recall doing much the same thing last year. And the year before that. Probably just about every year, because I’m always busy doing something. Maybe a better option would be for them (whoever they are) to discontinue Black Friday. Then guys like me, who can’t seem to remember it’s Black Friday, and always end up needing something, right then, could get in and out of the store in a timely fashion. Just a thought. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, November 19, 2017

Going For Broke

Well, I paid my property taxes last week. So, I guess we can continue living in the house for another year. That’s nice. I’d hate to move. Too much stuff. Too much work. Pretty sure my wife wouldn’t be happy at the prospect either, especially since I just installed her new floor.

Besides, moving seems like such a hassle. It’s been a while since I’ve done it but I remember the routine. The endless packing, loading, unloading, carrying boxes and other items up steps, down steps, through narrow doorways and halls is work. And smashing fingers and elbows while lifting heavy objects isn’t exactly fun either. And the cleaning—of both houses—is a never-ending job. Then there’s the canceling of utilities, (and setting them up at the new place), address changes, (which involves notifying half the population of the planet) and a whole lot of other stuff, I’ve gladly forgotten!

And invariably, something—usually a prized possession—gets broken. Or, some important items, say birth certificates, get lost. Yes, I speak from experience on that last one. We once lost the birth certificates for the entire family. No worries though, the losing of a birth certificate doesn’t automatically end one’s status as a living entity. All five of us are, in fact, still very much alive! It did cost me almost $200 for replacement “official” birth certificates, though.

But aside from all that, and even without such a fiasco as losing birth certificates, moving costs money. Lots of money. So even if I wanted to, I really can’t afford to move—I just paid my taxes! ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Monday, November 13, 2017

Singing The Blues

I’m feeling a little like Johnny Cash lately. The skies have been overcast and “I ain’t seen the sunshine since I don’t know when.” Thankfully, only the clouds are to blame and I’m not stuck in Folsom Prison—or any other prison for that matter. But then, neither was Johnny Cash so, I’m not sure that matters.

Back to my point; it’s that weary dreary time of year again—for those of us who are summer people, anyway. The sky is nothing but a foggy haze. Continually, it seems. Depressing is what it is, especially knowing that winter hasn’t even really started yet. That means I get to look forward to cloudy skies for at least a few months. And I gave up looking for the silver lining behind every cloud years ago.

Actually, I did see the sunshine on my way to work the other day—for about five minutes. The brief reprieve did brighten up my day! Then it was back to reality.

But at least it isn’t snowing yet. Last year at this time, I was already immersed in wintery driving conditions. And the long, drawn out winter that ensued was discouraging to put it mildly. I’m hoping this winter is not a repeat performance but I’m told by the “experts” that it likely will be. Sigh. Just the thought brings dismay, discontent, and dread—along with several other “D” words, all equally distressing.

But, I suppose there’s not much I can do about it. What will be, will be. Or, to quote another Johnny Cash song, “I don’t like it but I guess things happen that way.” ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, November 5, 2017

A Simple Oil Change

In some previous posts, I’ve mentioned that I like to do things myself—rather than pay someone to do them. Part of the reason is that I’m a cheapskate—or thrifty, as I prefer to call it. But it’s more than that. Having someone else do the work usually makes more work for me—when I have to fix it.

This past weekend, my wife’s car needed an oil change. So, after purchasing the oil and filter, I went outside in the cold to change the oil. The job should have taken no more than fifteen minutes. Should’ve, but didn’t.

The first problem I ran into was I couldn’t get the drain plug out. The socket wouldn’t stay on the bolt. At first I thought I just didn’t have things lined up but on closer inspection, I saw the corners of the bolt had been rounded off. Odd, I thought, because I’m the only one who changes the oil. Who had been messing with my vehicle? And who in their right mind would crawl under a vehicle, ruin the bolt, and then just put it back? It wasn’t like the vehicle had been low on oil either. But obviously, someone had done something; I knew it wasn’t like that the last time I changed the oil.

And then I remembered. The last time the car needed an oil change, my wife had been gone on an impromptu trip to Wisconsin. One of those oil change places had done the job. Which was okay, since I wasn’t there—until this weekend.

So, I set to work, selecting a slightly smaller socket, driving it onto the bolt, and then smacking it with a hammer. But the bolt didn’t budge. I did manage to break a socket and bend a few other tools though!

And then it all made sense. I can’t be certain, but what I imagine happened is whoever changed the oil last time used an air wrench and over tightened the bolt, stripping the head in the process.

Eventually, with the help of another socket and a bigger hammer, I got the plug out. And then moved onto the filter, which I discovered was the wrong one. (I did double check to make sure I hadn’t been putting the wrong one on all this time). The filter fit so it did the job but taking it off was another matter. My oil filter wrench was too large. But with a little friendly persuasion, I got it off. I finished changing the oil in the dark—thanks to the annoying time change—but at least I got it done. The job had taken an hour and forty minutes, a lot longer than the fifteen minutes it should have been.

And that’s why I do things myself. It saves time and hassle later. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Monday, October 30, 2017

My Money's Worth

I continue to be amazed at the cost of, well, pretty much everything these days, but in particular, groceries. We went grocery shopping this past weekend and, once again, I felt the pain of sticker shock.

It’s not like I only go to the store once in a great while either. We usually go shopping at least once a week. And still, the prices sometimes astound me.

But the high prices are only half the story. The packages are getting ever smaller as well. So, my money is buying less and less.

For instance, cereal boxes have become so small, there’s barely any room for the cereal. One popular brand I noticed has nearly doubled in price in the last few years while the box has shrunk to less than half the size. In effect, this is a 300% increase, or four times the cost. And cereal is just one example. There are many products that have done the same thing.

I know, this phenomenon is called inflation. It’s nothing new—been going on for years. It just seems like it’s progressing a little faster these days. Actually, inflation wouldn’t be so bad—if wages kept pace. Unfortunately, mine do not.

So, I started thinking (not always a good thing, I admit). If this process of price increasing and package size decreasing continues at the same rate, in a few short years, we’ll all be paying an awful lot of money for a tiny box of absolutely nothing. Hmm... maybe I should start selling groceries for a living. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Monday, October 23, 2017

Structured Chaos

As I’ve mentioned in a couple of previous posts, my wife and I are in the process of installing a new floor in our house. The on-going mess, constant moving of furniture, and general disarray of the place is a bit annoying but we’re learning to live with it. As for the grandchildren—not so much.

This past weekend, I was told by not one, not two, but three different grandchildren that I really needed to clean my house. One of them in particular was not amused with the bathroom door being removed. And the stacks of boxes of books from the bookshelves, dishes from the hutch, and other knick-knacks are bothersome to kids who are used to having the run of the house when they play—or whatever it is they do—did not impress them.

So, after the several “complaints,” I informed them that I was almost done. I meant with the floor; I’ll still need to put on the baseboards and other trim, put the furniture back in place, and empty all the boxes. Eyeing all of that, one of the grandkids gave me a wide-eyed look and shook his head. “No, you’re not.” he said.

Sadly, he was right. It’ll take another week or more—emphasis on the more—to get everything completed. Longer if I keep taking breaks, like writing blog posts. So, it’s back to work—gotta keep the grandkids happy! ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, October 15, 2017

On This Date In 1997

Twenty years ago today, my family and I arrived in our new town—after moving 2000 miles across the country. I can’t believe it’s been that long. But, I double-checked the calendar and it appears it’s so; it has indeed been twenty years. Still, it’s kind of hard to grasp because it seems like just the other day we drove into town in the U-haul. It seems like just yesterday my kids were young, running through the house, playing, laughing—and yelling at the top of their lungs! And now they are all grown. And I have grandkids. How could that be? Where did the time go?

Away, I think—to answer my own rhetorical question. Gone. But not forgotten.

I remember thinking back then how the idea of my kids moving out on their own seemed so far away. That was fine with me because I rather liked my children (still do too). So, while the empty nest thing concerned me, I didn’t really think about it much. I guess I figured there’d be plenty of time to worry about it in the future. Well, the future is now.

Not that the house is empty, really. I’ve made sure to fill it with lots of stuff—junk mostly, according to my wife. Still, it has a certain emptiness. For the most part, I think I deal with it okay. But sometimes. Sometimes, my overactive memory kicks in. My memory that remembers events, facts and figures, along with other useless trivia—and dates. Like today. October 16th. The date we arrived in Oregon. And then, as you can see, I start my trip down Memory Lane. ~


Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, October 8, 2017

Sound Of Summer

Anyone remember the ice cream truck? I do, at least when I lived in town, for some reason they didn’t come by my house when we lived five miles out. I was too cheap to buy anything from them usually; I got a lot more for my money at a store. But occasionally, I’d splurge.

In later years, once I had kids, I learned that being cheap was not an option. When the ice cream truck came by, it was a requirement that we buy something EVERY TIME! These days, my grandkids make sure to keep that rule firmly in place. Needless to say, the ice cream truck makes the drive down my street quite often—all summer long.

This past weekend however, there were no grandkids visiting, no one was home except me. I was using the occasion to work on our floor and after several hours of bending over, working on my hands and knees, my bones were complaining that they weren’t as young as they used to be. They seemed to think I should consider a different weekend activity. I ignored them for the most part but every so often, (usually when I stood back up) I thought about how much easier this kind of work was when I was younger. I used to work non-stop all weekend with no ill effects. “I need a time machine,” I told myself.

And that’s when I heard the music. The familiar merry-go-round type music announcing the soon arrival of the ice cream truck! My first thought was that the ice cream man was going to be disappointed since no kids were at my house. But then another thought occurred to me. Maybe the jingly music was the sound of my time machine coming!

In need of a break anyway, I dropped what I was doing and went outside to wait. In just a few a minutes, I was scarfing down my ice cream. The first ice cream I’d bought for myself—from an ice cream truck—in years.

Sadly, I discovered there were no anti-aging effects associated with said ice cream. But it did bring back a few memories of a time long past. So, for a brief moment, I was a kid again.

Oh, and by the way, at $3.00 for one ice cream, I can still get a lot more for my money at a grocery store. ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, October 1, 2017

Off To Work

Several years ago, back when I had a normal job with normal hours, I used to sleep until the last possible minute before getting up for work. This was due, in part, to not wanting to go to work but mostly because I stayed up until two or three in the morning. Once I finally decided to go to bed, I didn’t really want to get up.

As a result, I spent nearly every morning in a rush, a rush to get dressed and then in a rush driving to work. I usually arrived right at eight o’clock—or a few minutes late. But most everybody else arrived a little late as well, including the boss so it wasn’t that big of a deal. Still, every once in a while, I’d try to change my ways and get there early.

One particular Monday morning, I set the alarm a half an hour earlier than my customary wakeup time—and actually got up too! Instead of being in a hurry, I took my time getting ready and then drove to work without speeding. On the way, I noticed there wasn’t as much traffic as I usually dealt with and I remember thinking what a difference a few minutes made.

When I pulled into the drive at my job, I was pleased to see that no one else was there yet. Not even the guy who usually opened the place and he got there about six or so. I had beaten everyone! I sat in the car and waited for the others to arrive. And waited. As the clock approached eight and then the minutes ticked by, I began to wonder why no one else had shown up. It took to about twenty after, before I realized why they weren’t there, and why the traffic had been so light—it was a holiday and we, like a lot of other businesses, were not open.

I drove back home, amused, and a little irritated. For once, I’d been early—and it had all been for nothing. There hadn’t even been anyone there to see it. But what’s worse, I could’ve stayed in bed! ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Monday, September 25, 2017

Not-So-Old Friends

Went to a friend’s birthday party this past weekend—a friend from high school. We have seen each other relatively few times since the days of our indoctrination, I mean, education. Still, there was no awkward strain or lack of conversation. I walked in and immediately we were getting along like—well, like old friends.

I know that people change, or so I’ve heard, and that after a few years have passed they no longer have much in common. But, although it’s been 35 years since we were in school, aside from physical appearance, neither of us has really changed a whole lot. I suppose some would say that not changing means we haven’t grown up and maybe that is the case. And that’s okay with me. Life is better if everything doesn’t change all the time.

We spent a few hours talking, reminiscing and catching up. And telling stories from our teenage years. I’ve heard that’s the sign of true friendship, when you can go for years without seing each other and pick right up where you left off. And that’s the way it seemed. It was almost like no time had passed—at least for a little bit...

There was a younger person at the party who noticed that we still got along like high school friends. She said, “I hope when I’m old I have a friend like that.”

I think that was supposed to be a compliment, but old? We aren’t THAT old! I didn’t take offense though, just nodded in agreement. “I hope I have a friend like that when I’m old too.” ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Monday, September 18, 2017

A Few More Miles

Several years ago, I took my pickup to the shop. I usually do repair work myself but I had a minor engine problem that I couldn’t figure out. I thought they would diagnose the problem and give it a quick fix—for a nominal fee. Instead, I was told the engine was shot. They said I could expect it to go at any time. But, they were happy to offer to sell me a rebuilt engine and install it for only $4,000.

At the time, the truck had roughly 100,000 miles on it. I chose to ignore their “advice,” had them put it back together and kept driving it.

A few years later, I again took the pickup to the shop—a different shop—this time for a transmission issue. After taking apart the transmission, they told me it was worn out and I would need to get a new one. Wouldn’t last more than a couple of thousand miles, they said. They quoted me a price of $2,500 to have it replaced.

By this time, the truck had 175,000 miles. Again, I chose to ignore their “advice,” had them put it back together and kept driving it.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, I started having more problems. The truck wouldn’t shift right. I tried a few cheap fixes but nothing worked. At first, I was stubborn and chose to keep driving it. Then reluctantly, I admitted it was maybe time for a new pickup. After all, I can’t expect a vehicle to last forever. Still, I wasn’t happy about it.

But then I found the perfect truck, almost a duplicate of my old one but four years newer. So, I bought it and kept the old one for parts—and partly because I just didn’t want to get rid of it. Yeah, I’m still a little saddened that it broke. But I can’t say I wasn’t warned the transmission and engine wouldn’t last. They were right too, I suppose—sort of. Did I mention the pickup now has 317,000 miles? And aside from the annoying shifting issue, it is still going. I’m thinking both places were just trying to rip me off, which is why I prefer to do my own mechanic work. ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

The End Of The Road

Due to the fires mentioned in last week’s post. The freeway (the normal route I drive for my job) was closed on Monday. So, I had to take an alternate route. Problem is, the alternate route is over Mt. Hood. Usually when I take this road, it’s in the middle of the winter and the abundance of snow combined with the extra miles, along with the slow climb, adds two to three hours to my run, and instead of making two trips, I can make only one.

This time though, it is summer and no snow—on the road anyway, the peak of the mountain is nearly always covered. So, I was figuring the detour would only cost me an hour and a half or so. I’d still be only able to make one trip but I’d get home sooner. Things went well on the first half of the trip but on my way back...

Rounding a corner, somewhere up on the mountain, I saw a bountiful display of flashing red lights shining in the night sky. As I drove closer, I could see the massive tree blocking the entire highway. With no way through, the police had coned off the road and were directing traffic onto a side road. Making the turn, I saw a parking lot that would do nicely to bypass the tree but it too, was coned off. So, with no other options, I followed two other semis up this narrow, winding mountain road. The further we went, the worse the road became. All three of us were becoming a little apprehensive but still hoping the road would lead back to the highway at some point we kept going. It wasn’t like we really had a choice; there was nowhere to turn around.

About two miles into our side trip, the lead driver saw a small road cutting up the hill to the left (a sharp left) and decided this would be a good turning around point. A good idea—if there had actually been room. It took only a few seconds for his truck to get high centered on the trailer’s landing gear. And there he sat, truck jackknifed across both roads, unable to move. He called a tow truck, and we all waited.

Meanwhile, a couple who lived in the area showed up, wanting to go down the road. While the other two drivers discussed (loudly) their rotten luck, I chose a more pragmatic approach—talking to the people in the car. The conversation proved to be rather helpful!

I learned the road we were on did not lead back to the highway. But, they said, up ahead about four miles was a pull off where we MIGHT be able to turn around. When I was hesitant over the “might,” they offered to give me a ride to see what I thought. After seeing the place, I decided there was enough room to make the turn—barely.

Back at the blocked intersection, I assured the other two drivers we’d be out of this mess in no time, providing Mr. High-Centered got out of the way at some point. Surprisingly, it didn’t take the tow truck long to arrive. As soon as we had room to squeeze by, the other driver and I headed on our way.

When we got to the turn around point, the guy in front of me stopped, not convinced he’d have enough room. But with a small wooden bridge ahead, a bridge we would crush, it seemed to be as far as we could go. For us, the road had ended. I should mention that backing down a rough and curvy mountain road, with the possibility of other vehicles coming up the hill, was not really a viable solution. Worst-case scenario, I’d do it but I’d really rather not; we had to turn around. However, about halfway through my turn, I was thinking backing down would have been a better choice. As you’ve probably guessed—since I’m back to civilization and able to post to this blog—we made it. But if the space had been even a couple of inches more narrow, we wouldn’t have. And just let me add, it’s not the best feeling, jockeying a semi back and forth with the trailer tires only inches from a cliff. For those who may not know, when a semi is turned sharp enough, the trailer actually backs up—while the cab is going forward, which made things a little harrowing. For a brief moment, I had my hand on the door handle, ready to bail.

But, all is well that ends well, or so I’ve heard. And in a few minutes, we were headed back to the highway. The tree was still blocking the road but by this time the police had figured out to route traffic through the parking lot—yeah, the one I thought would make a great bypass in the first place. The little adventure, that had cost me an hour and a half, could have been avoided. I ended up getting home about my regular time. But such is the life of a truck driver. On the bright side, at least the unplanned excursion gave me something to write about! ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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Sunday, September 3, 2017

Burning Memories

I’ve heard that history repeats itself, and I’m thinking that may be true. I started this blog in September of 2011, six years ago. At the time, I only planned to do it for a year or so. But here we are in 2017 and it’s become a regular Sunday night ritual; write something, type it up, and post it to the blog.

Sometimes I’m not really sure what to write about, not sure anything I have to say will be interesting to anyone. Other times, I feel inspired and write way too much—as my wife makes sure to tell me!

So today, I was wondering what to write and walked out on my deck to think—and saw the smoke. Lots of smoke, filling the sky. That’s really nothing new; the last couple of months we’ve seen quite a lot of smoky skies. But, since I was thinking of my blog, the smoke reminded me of my very first post—Fire Season.

I went back and read the post and although it’s six years old, it sounds almost like I’m describing the current conditions. But then, we have fires every year so that’s not too surprising. Still, it definitely seems like history is repeating itself. And so, in keeping with that theme, I’ve re-posted the first post below.


Smoke to the west. No black ominous billows, just a brownish tinged haze mixed with dingy white puffy clouds rising into the clear blue summer sky. A brushfire most likely, or maybe grass. Winds are particularly light at 5 mph. No cause for alarm, fire fighters will have the blaze extinguished in short order.

This is the fourth fire this week within sight of my house. The others were put out in less than a day causing no major damage, rather remarkable considering the high wind area and extremely dry conditions. This is all typical for the arid climate of the central Oregon high desert, but this year has been fairly mild with relatively few fires. The surrounding landscape is only slightly marred with the grayish black sooty remains of sparse vegetation.

And now, the September air is turning cooler reminding us that the fall rains will be returning soon, marking an end of the fire season, a.k.a. summer. The good news is that we’ve all survived with our personal property mostly intact. The bad news is winter is on its way, which means snow—and lots of it. The frozen white crystals will cover the ground, blanket the sagebrush and juniper trees, and decorate the distant mountain ranges, creating a picturesque scene of majestic grandeur.

Admittedly, the snow is pretty but snow brings its own set of problems - the cold, the slick roads and resulting wrecks, the roof cave-ins, and avalanches, which can potentially destroy entire areas in an instant. Yet, despite its foreboding and destructive nature, snow is a necessary evil. It provides the high desert with a vital water supply for the coming summer months in a region prone to draught. Aside from the usual benefits of drinking, cooking and cleaning, we’re gonna need the water—to put out the fires! ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.

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