Grace's Mosaic Moments

Saturday, December 19, 2020

Politics & More Politics


to all as we attempt to keep traditions alive
in times more dire than most of us have ever known

As a grandmother, I'm not quite sure how to react to the following photo. Initially, Wow! Later, a bit of a cringe. And yet I come from a long line of gun-toting Nebraskans. As I recall, my mother was better at hitting a target in a lake in Maine than either my father or his friend from Harvard Graduate School who owned the cottage where we were staying. But basically, that's the only time my parents shot after moving to New England (too many people around, my father said), and I was raised gunless. The same for my three children - my husband gave away his guns when we were married. But my daughter married a devoted member of the NRA, and the grandgirls learned to shoot at an early age. Looking back, I'm inclined to think that's probably more good than bad, but there are times this photo gives me the willies. Nonetheless, I give you . . . the Reale Rangers. (And yes, the guns are real.)

Hailey, Riley, Cassidy



I've been avoiding politics since the election - no sense beating a dead horse, as the saying goes, but since our President has been so busy doing just that, I can't resist posting a couple of things that have come my way in the past week. The first was shared by my son. Please note that it is a FABRICATED rebuttle to some Texans threatening to secede from the United States if Trump does not remain in office. But it's extremely well done, and well worth reading. (It comes under the heading: "Some People Are So Clever!")


This content was created by a Daily Kos Community member.

From the Office of President of the United States.

Dear Texas,

We have received your petition to secede from the United States, and have forwarded it to Congress who will act on it with their usual speed.

Any Texas citizen holding a US passport is required to surrender it immediately. Entry into the US will require a valid Texas passport. Anyone staying longer than two weeks will have to obtain a visa. Any Texas citizen (those with birth certificates issued from Texas or currently holding a Texas driver's license unless they can show a non-Texas birth certificate) in the United States have 72 hours to leave or be deported with a permanent ban on returning to the United States. This includes former Representatives and Senators from the former State of Texas.

Funding for highways, transportation, bridges, infrastructure, education and medical facilities will cease immediately. Your representatives to the US Congress are ordered to leave Washington DC immediately.

All US licenses to do business are revoked. All business interests headquartered in the Country of Texas are immediately severed from doing any business in the United States, until appropriate international business agreements are in place and appropriate international business licenses are negotiated. All power lines and pipelines that cross the border will be disconnected immediately, to be reconnected only when appropriate international contracts, treaties and agreements are in place.

The FAA will no longer operate at your airports, and all air traffic controllers are terminated. All air traffic management over the new independent Texas is your own responsibility, effective immediately. All Federal Civil Service employees in the country of Texas are terminated. All flights between Texas and America are canceled until appropriate international agreements are in place.

The FCC will no longer operate in Texas effective immediately, so you will be responsible for licensing your own telephone, radio, television and Internet providers. All telecommunications circuits between the two countries will be severed immediately, to be reconnected once appropriate international agreements are negotiated.

All US Federal services operating in Texas are terminated and their functions will be relocated to the territory of the United States immediately. Citizens of Texas who were formerly employed by the US Federal Government and wish to continue in their now-relocated jobs may apply for United States green cards through the usual channels.

All payments for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and Disability to Texas citizens are halted with immediate effect. Recipients will have to reapply, and Congress will decide if foreigners are allowed to receive payments from the United States government. Any funds coming from the United States federal government will be halted immediately.

Effective immediately, the independent country of Texas will no longer receive protection from the United States military. All military bases in Texas will be closed, and personnel relocated to bases in the United States, except for a contingency left to guard the Texas-US border. Effective immediately, the United States Coast Guard and Immigration and Customs Enforcement will no longer operate in Texas waters, aside from actions specified by International Maritime law and custom. U.S. Customs officials will be removed from all border crossing stations immediately. We suggest you form your own navy and immigration department immediately to protect your borders against foreign invaders, drug smugglers, terrorists and illegal aliens.

Good luck.

Sincerely, Joseph Biden
President, United States of America

P.S. Attached is an invoice for your portion of the bill of the National Debt.

~ * ~

And on a more serious note, here is a commentary on the Trump presidency (found on Facebook):

Over the weekend, Republican Steve Schmidt, who ran John McCain's 2008 campaign for president, was interviewed on MSNBC. In response to a very general question regarding the Trump Presidency, Mr. Schmidt spoke for two solid minutes and gave the most insightful and brutally honest response of what the Trump Presidency has done to our great country.

“Donald Trump has been the worst president this country has ever had. And, I don't say that hyperbolically. He is. But he is a consequential president. And, he has brought this country in three short years to a place of weakness that is simply unimaginable if you were pondering where we are today from the day where Barack Obama left office. And, there were a lot of us on that day who were deeply skeptical and very worried about what a Trump presidency would be. But this is a moment of unparalleled national humiliation, of weakness.”

"When you listen to the President, these are the musings of an imbecile. An idiot. And I don't use those words to name call. I use them because they are the precise words of the English language to describe his behavior. His comportment. His actions. We've never seen a level of incompetence, a level of ineptitude so staggering on a daily basis by anybody in the history of the country whose ever been charged with substantial responsibilities.”

"It's just astonishing that this man is president of the United States. The man, the con man, from New York City. Many bankruptcies, failed businesses, a reality show, that branded him as something that he never was. A successful businessman. Well, he's the President of the United States now, and the man who said he would make the country great again. And he's brought death, suffering, and economic collapse on truly an epic scale."

"And, let's be clear. This isn't happening in every country around the world. This place. Our place. Our home. Our country. The United States. We are the epicenter. We are the place where you're the most likely to die from this disease. We're the ones with the most shattered economy. And we are, because of the fool that sits in the Oval Office behind the Resolute Desk."

~ * ~


A reminder that The Making of Matthew Wolfe is designed to add cheer to your Holiday Season as well as to help alleviate the Covid blues. And it's on sale at 99¢ through December 31. (You can take advantage of that 20% free read on Smashwords to see if it tickles your funnybone.) And for those who do not own an e-reader, Amazon makes it very easy for you to download books directly to any device, including your computer and your phone.



For a link to Matthew Wolfe on Amazon,  click here.

For a link to Matthew Wolfe on Smashwords, click here.

 You will also find background details on the Who, What, Where, When, & Why of Matthew Wolfe on my Facebook Author Page.

For a link to Blair's Facebook Author Page, click here.


 For a link to Magic on Amazon, click here.

 Please note that Making Magic with Words is FREE on Kindle Unlimited.


Thanks for stopping by,

Grace (Blair Bancroft) 

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Would you believe - a Sports post?

 Photo gallery first this week:

I fear Ganesh may be in for a surprise.

Found on Facebook, though none can rival the town in Wales - the name that extends all the way across Ireland. (I've been there, by the way.)

And for something even odder than the names above - our Hailey playing Powder Puff football at Lake Mary High, with the boys' football team acting as cheerleaders. 


Hailey & friend

For a video of girls playing football (American style, but no tackle), including actually completing a couple of passes, click here.


Grace note:  I've been saving the article below for when we were most in need of a smile, and these dark days seem to be it . . .


A Soccer Tale

From the front page of the Sports section of the Sunday Orlando Sentinel, November 22, 2020 (columnist - Mike Bianchi):

If only Exploria Stadium could have been filled to the rim with chanting, cheering supporters in order to give thousands more of our city's long-suffering sports fans the opportunity to witness the greatest moment in Orlando City [soccer team] history

That is the only regret of this historic, euphoric day in Central Florida when Orlando City played, hosted and won its first playoff game in the most dramatic, ecstatic, amazing, hair-raising, heart-stopping, champagne-popping manner you can possibly imagine.

How does this even happen? How does Orlando City break a 1-1 draw and win on penalty kicks with a substitute, fill-in goalkeeper who hasn't played the position since he was a kid out on the soccer sandlots in his native Argentina?

Can you believe it?
Can you conceive it?
What a team.
What a coach.
What a game.
What a magical moments in time.

So, what caused Mr. Bianchi's euphoria? It seems the game was tied in Overtime, the Orlando goalkeeper ejected on a penalty. The referee declared that substitutes were not allowed, and there was Orlando City facing a penalty kick with no goalie. So one of the team on the field, who had played goalie only as a child, volunteered. And saved the day, Orlando later winning on a penalty kick in a second Overtime period.

~ * ~



I just finished Chapter 5 of the next installment in the Matthew Wolfe series, tentatively titled, Matthew Wolfe—the Adventures Begins. I invite you to check out our young hero (who is rapidly growing up) with a 20% free read on Smashwords, so you'll be ready for what comes next.

For a link to Matthew Wolfe on Smashwords, click here.

For a link to Matthew Wolfe on Amazon,  click here.

 You will also find background details on the Who, What, Where, When, & Why of Matthew Wolfe on my Facebook Author Page.

For a link to Blair's Facebook Author Page, click here.


Thanks for stopping by,

Grace (Blair Bancroft) 


Saturday, December 5, 2020

Update on Writing Oops & Photo Gallery

 Just a quick note to remind everyone that The Making of Matthew Wolfe is designed to add cheer to your Holiday Season as well as to help alleviate the Covid blues. Take advantage of that 20% free read on Smashwords to see if it tickles your funnybone.

For a link to Matthew Wolfe on Amazon,  click here.

For a link to Matthew Wolfe on Smashwords, click here.

 You will also find background details on the Who, What, Where, When, & Why of Matthew Wolfe on my Facebook Author Page.

For a link to Blair's Facebook Author Page, click here.

~ * ~



 I plowed through the rest of the book mentioned two weeks ago, and here's what I found:

I ended up deciding that it was a pity this author had not been a newbie in the days before indie-pub. Really good potential, but yet another debut novel published before the author was ready. Simply too many things wrong to pass this book off as anything but an amateur effort. The misuse of words continued—not typos, but out-and-out incorrect words, to the extent I continued to wonder if English was the author's second language. (An even more urgent reason to have the book previewed by an expert in English usage.) Beyond that, there was a whole slew of beginner's mistakes: incorrect titles, errors in punctuation, profanities used in the presence of ladies (in Regency society), use of modern expressions, etc., etc.

And worst of all, the plot that had drawn me to the book in the first place began to deteriorate about half-way through, moving beyond the realm of "suspended disbelief" to total incredulity.

Moral of this tale: exactly what I've been preaching for the last ten years. Do not be arrogant enough to believe you're ready until you have done something to prove yourself. Enter writing contests; find a critique group; read, read, read the best in your genre; do your research. And above all, be aware that authors don't blossom, full blown, without having grown a strong stalk, waited out the bud stage, and added the fertilizer of extensive reading and research. 

I'm not saying you have to go ten years before publishing that first indie book. But please, do not shoot yourself in the foot by publishing something that's going to put off readers from any future book you write! 

~ * ~

And don't forget that somewhere around 200,000 words of Writing & Editing advice are available in my Making Magic with Words.

 For a link to Magic on Amazon, click here.

 Please note that Making Magic with Words is FREE on Kindle Unlimited.


Earlier this week, I was rummaging around in a box of stuff that needed to be filed or thrown out or something and discovered a couple of gems I scribbled down—who knows where or when. I have no attributions, just the words I recorded in a tiny notebook I keep in my purse. (I hasten to add I read them somewhere; I cannot claim them as my own.)

"Romance is the literature of hope."

 "A writer is a writer not because she has amazing talent. A writer is a writer because, even when nothing you do shows any sign of promise, you keep on writing anyway."

This Week's Photo Gallery


Ganesh made it to the top shelf


Here's a great parody a friend shared on Facebook:



And for the most spectacular photo of the week, the Milky Way - by Stephen Harry & Neil DeGrasse Tyson

For a link to Blair's website with a list of all my books, click here. 


Thanks for stopping by,

Grace (Blair Bancroft)