Tag Archives: Shopping

Oxygenated water nonsense Part 2

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Oxygenated water nonsense

Junk science in the marketplace

 Unless you have gills, it’s just an expensive burp!

oxygenated water2Part 2

This is part two of an article posted by a retired chemistry college professor concerning the fallacy of Oxygenated Water and other hypes.

Not just for drinking!

Oxygen in your bath

The MicroSilk™ Hydrotherapy site hypes baths and spas featuring a recirculating aeration spout which “saturates the water with billions of oxygen-rich microbubbles, increasing oxygen levels up to 70% higher than common tap water.” Well, so probably can any aerating faucet, but to describe the bubbles as “oxygen rich” is a bit much, given that air is only 20% oxygen. They go on to make the ridiculous claims that

“This luxurious cloud of oxygen blankets your body, energizing skin cells, stimulating the immune system, killing bacteria and promoting healing, reaching where mere water and soaps can’t, entering your pores, bonding to impurities and gently lifting them away, leaving your skin soft and clean in a way you’ve never experienced. MicroSilk™ also creates therapeutic levels of anions, which are known to improve serotonin levels, helping to relax the mind and body, promoting deep sleep, and enhancing recovery from physical exhaustion.”

“Eloptic” water hype

This thankfully now-departed site promoted “Electrically engineered eloptic energized stabilized oxygenated water” (sounds impressive!) which was described as

…an industrial-strength, multi-purpose cleanser that will meet all your personal care and household needs. This God-given, concentrated formula is made from all natural ingredients that will clean, degrease and deodorize anything, from your glass and mirrors, carpet and upholstery and even heavy cleaning such as grease traps and oil spots on the concrete garage floor to your baby’s bottom.

Well, I don’t think I would want to apply something strong enough to remove grease from the garage floor to my bottom, which is admittedly far less soft and supple than that of a baby! Among the ingredients are “ash of dedecyl solution (foaming agent), sea grass (for color) and the anointing of God.”

“Nobody has Enough Hydrogen or 02, Not on this Planet”

This is one of many lies offered up by an outfit that flogs a worthless “oxygen-plus” supplement to the scientifically challenged at $22 per bottle.

The air we breathe formerly contained 50 percent oxygen. But today, we only have about 20 percent in our air and there is even less in large cities. The medical profession has confirmed that most viruses, parasites, bacteria, fungus and pathogens are anaerobic—they CANNOT live in oxygen. If we are not getting enough oxygen, our bodies become fertile breeding grounds for disease.

The “50% oxygen” is of course pure fiction. And yes, many bacteria are anaerobic, but few viruses, parasites and fungi are. And these hucksters fail to mention that O2 is a cellular poison in the wrong locations and the source of those nasty free radicals that are supposed to accelerate aging. But if oxygen supplements can hook the suckers, so can hydrogen, so the fibbing continues:

The purpose of hydrogen is to give structure to the body. What do you get when you bubble hydrogen through vegetable oil? You get margarine! Now, imagine hydrogen without oxygen. Your cells could become like margarine. [link] remember that it is the smallest Critical Element and is capable of passing through the cell wall. In order for our cells to function they m”ust communicate with each other through electrons but electrons can not move in the body without hydrogen. Cells must have oxygen but oxygen does not work without hydrogen. Cells cannot multiply or grow without hydrogen. The very fabric of our being, our DNA, is held together by Hydrogen bonds. Hydrogen is literally the fuel of life. [link]

When we are born we have plenty of Hydrogen but as we age our Hydrogen pool becomes depleted. When this occurs, free radicals steel it from essential areas thus accelerating aging and disease. [link]

The Big Pitcher

The Big Pitcher is a water-oxygenator which is misleadingly claimed to remove chlorine, radon and sulfur, neutralize harmful bacteria, and increase ones energy and metabolism, improve sleep patterns, etc. etc.

…and deuterium too!

In my humble opinion, there are few health-quackery Web sites that contain a higher proportion of false and deceptive statements than those promoting Cellfood:

Cellfood is created by a proprietary nine month process in which these all-natural nutrient-rich plant substances are held in a negatively-charged suspension of deuterium (an isotope of hydrogen).

Deuterium? Well, this stuff is present in water in trace amounts (1 out of every 6500 hydrogen atoms), but the above statement can easily fool the majority of people who don’t know this. And the “negatively-charged” stuff is similar nonsense.

According to one sales site for this classic snake-oil:

[Our product] has the unique ability to disassociate the water molecule into nascent hydrogen and nascent oxygen. This water “splitting” technology enables the release of hydrogen and oxygen gases simultaneously in a chain reaction that involves one five-hundred thousandths of the available moisture at one time. Water “splitting” is achieved by means of shifting and weakening the bonding electrons (ionic transfers) of the water molecule towards oxygen and away from hydrogen. [It] allows the bonds in the electron distribution to be unsymmetrical (polar). [link]

Anyone who has taken even an elementary chemistry course will recognize this as erroneous nonsense. There are the usual unsubstantiated and ridiculous health claims (“aids clear thinking”, “helps to reduce and/or eliminates menopausal hot flashes and night sweats”). The product itself is described as a

“super energized colloidal mineral concentrate. … Di-base, Di-pole Deuterium Sulfate provides an incredible oxygen source and delivery system to the body at the cellular level.”

Deuterium sulfate? Deuterium is the isotope H2 (often given the symbol D) which makes up about 1 out of 10,000 of the hydrogen atoms found in nature. Although extensive research has shown that organisms are unable to survive on heavy water (D2O is well-known to thoroughly gum up most enzymatic reactions), the same sites go on about its supposed benefits, spinning a tale about an inventor/con-artist/imaginary (take your pick!) Everett M. Storey and a ficticious “Deuterium Freedom Act” purportedly passed by the U.S. 99th Congress that confirms deuterium’s ability to “speed up the digestive process”. However, the extensive list of chemicals in CellFood does not mention deuterium, although the list does include such falsely-claimed-to-be-beneficial elements as actinium, gadolinium, neon, technetium (!) and xenon. Another sad case of selling snake-oil to the suckers.

Stable fables: oxidants are actually good for you!

FTC Attacks “Stabilized Oxygen” Claims

‘Various products referred to as “stabilized” or “aerobic” oxygen are being marketed with claims that they can cure disease by increasing oxygen delivery to the cells. Some claim that “oxygen deficiency” or “oxygen starvation” is an underlying cause of disease and has been increasing because the oxygen content of the earth’s atmosphere has been decreasing and junk food does not contain enough oxygen…’ See the entire article here.

See also this cease-and-desist letter that the U.S. FDA has sent to Aerobic Oxygen USA.

A huge part of the alternative-health-quackery industry is devoted to supplying those free-radical fighters known as antioxidants (Whose benefits as dietary supplements are entirely unproven— but that’s another subject.) But pseudoscience knows no bounds and can be twisted in any direction, so here’s an Idaho company (where else?) that flogs a nostrum they call stabilized oxygen. A thankfully-now-disappeared Web site goes on at great length about the importance of protecting our cells from oxygen deprivation:

Oxygen plays another important role in the body acting as a guardian and protector against unfriendly bacteria and disease organisms. One of oxygen’s major functions is disintegration. Rubble, garbage, toxins, refuse, debris, and anything useless are destroyed by oxygen and carried out of the system. Just as a clean house holds little interest to passing flies, likewise, an oxygen rich body is a difficult fortress to assail.

… all errant nonsense, of course! Anyway, they go on about how their product helps you to enjoy the tremendous benefits of oxygen to the body other than through the breathing process. Oxygen is very difficult to stabilize and until a recent scientific breakthrough, oxygen has not been stabilized in a beneficial non-toxic form.

This flapdoodle overlooks the fact that oxygen is not present in the blood as O2, but is complexed to hemoglobin which controls the amount of oxygen delivered to cells through an exquisitely-evolved feedback mechanism. What these hucksters mean by “stabilizing” the oxygen is not entirely clear. We are told that

Stabilized oxygen is an oxide of chlorides compound stabilized with the richest known source of nascent oxygen with several atoms per molecule. Whatever they mean by “oxide of chlorides compound” could be any number of substances from chlorine dioxide (ClO2) to perchloric acid (HClO4). The first is a poison and the second is explosive, so I presume they have come up with something in between. The term “nascent oxgyen” (see below) usually means free oxygen atoms as opposed to the stable molecule O2 which make up 20% of the air we breathe. But it gets more complicated:

[This product] is a safe, non toxic, stabilized liquid concentrate of electrolytes of oxygen, which are made available to your body, in molecular form, when ingested. … The genius of it is the formulating of the two most abundant and important electrolytes of body fluid, sodium and chlorine, to act as the oxygen carriers. The molecular oxygen is released through the digestive process, and is absorbed into the bloodstream. … In an ordinary glass of tap water there is on the average, 7-12 ppm of oxygen molecules. In Stabilized Oxygen the amount of available oxygen increased to about 12,000 ppm or 1,000 times.

Wow! This appears to be a good description of sodium hypochlorite NaOCl, otherwise known as laundry bleach. Thanks, but I think I’ll pass on this one!

“Nascent” oxygen dietary supplement nonsense

The ordinary oxygen that we breathe is really the molecule”dioxygen”, O2. “Nascent” oxygen (a term not used much by contemporary chemists) refers to plain oxygen atoms. These species normally have only a transient existence before they react with themselves (to produce O2), with water to produce hydrogen peroxide H2O2 (a cellular poison), or with just about any carbon-containing substance around them— such as your body! Any claims that this stuff can posssibly be good for you or that it can somehow “stabilized” are plain lies. Also, any agent capable of generating atomic oxygen (as chemists call it) would do even more damage to the body, so I think claims that any dietary supplements can even produce it are untrue.

None of this appears to stop various outfits from hawking oxygenated snake oils such as the one making claims that their product

is unique in its ability to create nascent (meaning newly-born) oxygen. In biochemical terms ‘nascent’ oxygen refers to the newly born singlet oxygen (O-) that has not yet entered the biochemical reaction. Free radicals (which many biochemists believe are a primary cause of aging and degenerative disease) are positively charged ions of oxygen (O+). Since nascent oxygen molecules are negatively charged, they actually seek out and attract these dangerous free radicals, combining with them to form simple pure stabilized oxygen (O2).

Well, ionized atomic oxygen (O– or O+) does exist in the upper atomosphere, but it would be instant death to any body tissues. And far from being a free radical fighter, any form of the “singlet” oxygen they refer to is either itself a free radical or capable of producing them when it reacts with water or virtually any other cellular component. If you feel comfortable consuming a product from an outfit that exhibits this level of chemical incompetence, be my guest!

Of course they don’t stop there, but go on to evoke even weirder pseudoscience, claiming that the product

will tend to normalize the body’s acid-base balance by delivering its 78 essential minerals as enzymatic cofactors— assisting critical enymatic reactions to proceed optimally.

… which is biochemical hokum, and

Scientists Simeonton, Likhovsky and Bovis estimated that the average human body radiates a life force frequency of 6,500 angstroms— with cancer patients radiating at 1,875 angstroms (the same measurement as for refined white bread). Just one drop of [the product’s] powerful ‘electromagnetic equation’ in 6-8 ounces of water emanates 77,000 units of radiant life energy— bringing a dramatic increase in life force to every cell of the body.

… pure nonsensical fantasy.

But if this is not enough, a product formerly hyped as “Seven-Sided Oxygenated Water” “penetrates into dehydrated structures of the body and breaks apart the ionic bonds of substance or structure that are atypical to the bodies normal function.” This site is a fount of misinformation (for example, that the atmospheric concentration of oxygen has been rapidly decreasing over the last millenium, and that this, and anaerobic conditions in general, promote cancer.) They make the highly dubious claim that their bottled water contains 400-600 ppm of oxygen. And of course it protects the body from infection, helps reduce pain levels, and enhances carbohydrate metabolism, etc. etc. The current product site is not quite as goofy.

Ozonated water and ozone therapy

Ozone, O3, is a gas that it widely used to disinfect municipal water supplies. Being highly unstable, it decomposes into ordinary oxygen by the time the water reaches the consumer. Which is just as well, since ozone is toxic to both plant and animal cells.

But some hucksters don’t seem to know this. One of them tells us that

Ozone is used extensively in medicine in Germany and Cuba by either infusing it or injecting it directly into the blood stream. In medical applications: “It is the aim of ozone-oxygen therapy to stimulate or reactivate oxygen metabolism, without damage to the protecting oxidative enzymes…

Don’t believe this crap! Ozone attacks mucous membranes, destroys enzymes, and gobbles up DNA. Far from preventing cancer, it acts as a carcinogen. The guy behind this is apparently one Robert C. Beck, “D.Sc.”, described here as an “acclaimed physicist” (who, as far as I can see, has no record of scientific publication). This site seems to be associated with a variety of goofy quack treatment methods.

Another site is full of “testimonials” attesting to the miraculous effects of ozone in curing cancer, and yet another promotes a variety of ozone-quackery.

See this QuackWatch page for more about oxygen- and ozone therapy.

Oxygen skin-care

Will these “oxygen-infused skin serums bring life and health to the skin”? It’s true that the living tissue beneath the dead epidermal layer requires oxygen which is supplied by diffusion from the blood, and a 2010 article shows that “topical dissolved oxygen” can penetrate skin and may be useful aid to wound healing.  But if there is any clinical support for the idea that highly oxygenated waters can benefit ordinary skin, the developers of this “Gas infusion Technology” for supersaturating water with oxygen make no mention of it.

Oxygenating colon cleanser

This misinformation-filled site promotes a magnesium oxide preparation, which they claim will liquify all that solid gunge that is supposed to be clogging your intestines. Well, by the time magnesium oxide has passed through the stomach, it becomes magnesium chloride which acts as a mild laxative. To add to the hype, they claim that the product releases “monatomic oxygen” into the intestinal tract. It is just as well that this claim is almost certainly false, since atomic oxygen is a known carcinogen.

By using Oxy-Powder, you can melt away or oxidize the compaction from the small intestine, large intestine and colon safe and effectively. Organic Germanium-132 has demonstrated in multiple scientific studies to be a powerful oxygen facilitator and immune system stimulant. Oxy-Powder is also harmless to the good bacteria in the intestinal tract.

The stuff about Germanium-132 introduces another favorite food-fad that the FDA is beginning to crack down on because of fears of Germanium poisoning; there is no credible scientific evidence that it has any benefit.


 

 Article posted by Stephen Lower, Retired faculty member of Simon Fraiser University, Vancouver Canada.

You’ve earned your rest, Daddy

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         You were at the beginning of my life

Now I’m at the ending of yours

You’ve gone from this world

Joining mama on the other side

A part of me is joyous for you

the other part feels sad

My world seems empty

Because you aren’t here

Your life here on this earth

Meant so much to so many

You loved and were loved

By your family and friends

Even though I can’t see you

You will always be with me

I will carry you in my heart

Every day for the rest of my life

You’ve earned your rest, Daddy

 My father passed away this week from complications of heart failure. I will not be posting for a little while. As soon as I can, I will get back to writing my blog.  Right now my heart is a little to heavy.      Shirley

Darius Figgaro: Legends of the Shoemaker (Short Story)

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“I swear it’s true, every single word.”

“I’m sorry, Mr. Giorgio, I’m unable to accept your statement. What made you think a story  so far-fetched, would  be believed?”

“Why would I lie about something that could cost me my life, Detective Johnson? That man died just as I said he did. I’m an honest man, and I do not lie.”

Detective Johnson got up from the table and walked from one corner of the room to the other. He couldn’t get his brain around the story that Mr. Giorgio was telling. “Do you care if I smoke, Mr. Giorgio?”

“No, I don’t care, Detective.”

“Thank you. Now let’s stop the formality. I’ve known you all of my life. You call me Peter, and I’ll call you, um, um. I don’t know your first name. I’ve never called you anything but Mr. Giorgio.”

Mr. Giorgio smiled as he listened to Peter. “Peter, my first name is Tony. Actually, it’s Antonio, but everyone calls me Tony. I guess it’s easier to remember.”

“May I call you, Tony? I’m sure I will fall back into old habits and call you Mr. Giorgio, but I’ll do my best to call you by your name. Ok, let’s start from the beginning, once again. Don’t leave anything out.”

“I haven’t left out anything, yet. Peter, there is more to this world than what’s here in Summerton. Things people have no idea is happening in this world. Have you ever heard of Darius Figgaro?”

“No, I can’t say I have. Is that the guy’s name we found in your shop?”

“No, I don’t know who that man was. Darius was from the third century BC and a shoemaker as I am. He lived in a small village, in Armenia. He was known everywhere for his excellent shoes. In fact, he was so talented he was chosen to make shoes for the God’s as an offering, when the festival happened, in a few months. Aramazd, and his attendant, Grogh were made boots. For Aramzd’s son, Mehr, he made the softest, kid, leather shoes, and finally for the Goddess Anahit, he made slippers from a new shiny material from China made by worms. Nothing was finer in the entire world.”

“If anything was going to bring the town prosperity, it would be Darius Figgaro’s shoes. The God’s would certainly think of Artashavian as their favorite place. The village leaders were so confident in their plan, they already had a sign made for outside of town. In large red letters, it read: Artasavian, home of the God’s shoes.”

“You’re kidding, towns back in the third century BC didn’t put up signs.”

How do you know, Peter? Were you there? People are remarkably resourceful, no matter when or where they lived. Think about the pyramids in Egypt, or the great lighthouse in Alexandria. All through the ages, people have accomplished exciting and beautiful things. Now back to my story. Are you going to interrupt me anymore?”

“I’m not planning to,” remarked Peter.

“The time for the great festival of the gods arrived in Artashavian. You could palpate the excitement in the air. Everyone was happier and looking forward to the three days of fun and homage to their gods. Darius’s excitement ended abruptly when he went to gather his offering and found the shoe cupboard empty. I know I put those shoes in this cupboard. What am I going to do now? Darius sat on his cobbler’s bench and prayed to the gods to help him find his offering. A loud booming voice sounded in Darius’s head.

“Darius sweep the floor using your new broomstick.”

Darius stood as he thought a moment where his new broom was located. Once he thought of the location, he walked to his back porch and grabbed the broom. “Ok, god, I have the broom, and I am obeying you even though I don’t know what good sweeping the floor will do.”

Sweeping the dirt floor was not an easy thing to do. You had to sweep but not stir up the dust and yet sweep aggressively enough to remove the debris on the floor. Sometimes Darius would place a course woven material down on the floor is he could buy the yardage at a cheap enough price. It’s been awhile since he purchased any, so his floor was bare.

He swept the center out of the floor but then decided he’d best do the corners. There’s a box here. I don’t remember this. When Darius looked inside the box, he yelled aloud, “Thank You, thank you”. There were all of the god’s boots and shoes. Tomorrow I will present them as my offering to the gods.

Before sunrise, the next morning, Darius gathered his box of shoes and headed to the temple. He felt fantastic and had extra energy. It was a glorious day. There were other people gathered at the temple also. Sunrise was the appointed time for giving of gifts. If your gift was accepted by the gods, you received a special blessing. Darius was hoping they would give him continued good health, so he could continue to make his shoes.

Just as the sun was coming over the horizon, Darius placed his offering on the altar. The ground shook and lightening streaked the sky. Women were screaming and running away, but Darius stood his ground. He looked at the altar, and his offering was gone. Everyone else’s was still there. What does this mean? Have I displeased them with my offering?”

“You have not displeased us Darius. You have used your talents to make a personal offering to us. Because you have pleased us so much, we are going to bless you for each pair of shoes you made. Kneel Darius facing the sun.”

Darius was on his knees with the sun shining brightly in his face. He heard a female voice call his name. “Darius, my slippers are magnificent and feel glorious on my feet. For this, you shall have eternal life. You will continue to share your shoes with all you meet. Everyone will want a pair of your shoes. My child’s feet are protected with the soft leather of his shoes. Because you have given him protection, I shall protect you.”

“Thank you, goddess, for your blessing. I could not ask anything more. I will continue to work and make my shoes”, Darius said.

“You shall prosper though your work,” Grogh commanded. “You shall never go without food or fine housing.”

Aramazd asked Darius if there was anything else he desired. Darius declined. “Then go Darius, knowing you will be protected, have a long life and will be sharing your shoes with the world for all time.”

Darius bowed his head as the bright light was removed from his face. He stood, not quite believing what occurred. “I’ve been blessed. What more could I want in this world.”

When Tony finished his story, he looked at Peter and asked, “Do you understand now?”

“Understand what? You told me a fairy tale that has nothing to do with the man’s body in your shop.”

“You are no different than the thousands of other people I have told my story to. You go through this life thinking you know everything, and you actually don’t know anything at all. I can’t explain it any further than what I already have. You have to open your mind, and actually listen to what I said.”

“I don’t have enough evidence to hold you for the man’s murder. I’m going to let you return home but do not try to leave town.”

“I’m not going anywhere, Peter. I will be at my shop working on some shoes. I have a particular order from the Pope. He likes his kid, soft leather shoes.” Tony left the room, heading back to his shop.

Peter kept running Tony’s story around in his mind. Maybe when I hear from the Coroner’s office everything will fall into place. Returning to his office, Peter pulled out the evidence folder on the dead man. It was empty, not one thing to go on so far.

“Peter, the Coroner’s Office is on-line 1.”

“Thanks Sam. Hello, Doc, what do you have for me? You are kidding me, not one thing. What was the cause of death? Heart failure, so it’s natural causes. Sure, I’ll let the prosecutor know about the findings. Thanks, Doc, for the info.” Shaking his head, Peter couldn’t believe it all meant nothing. He knew he wanted to talk to Tony again about the legend of the shoemaker and to tell him about the findings.

When Peter opened the door to go into the shop, he couldn’t believe his eyes. The room was empty. Not one shoe or even a sign anyone had been in the building. Cob webs hung from the ceiling corners, with thick dust on the windowsill. A desk sat up against the wall. It was polished to a brilliant shine and had a paper lying on top. When Peter walked over to the desk and looked down at the paper, it made him take in a deep breath, before reaching down to pick it up. His name was printed on the folded paper. He opened the paper, and he knew his world would never be the same. It read, I am Darius.

 

 

Do you let life interfere?

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I have been terrible at blogging this past week. I have let life interfere with what I love to do, and that is writing and blogging. I also seem to be spending more time than I like with the social networking. I do love people and communication. Those sites let me talk to people all over the word. I consider that a blessing from my Lord.

This week I have been running around like a chicken with its head cut off. In case you don’t know what that cliché means, it is a country girls way of saying, I was going so many directions, I didn’t get anywhere. I did manage to get my granddaughters prom dress and of course she looks lovely in it. I’m also looking a houses so my husband and I can pick out our retirement home. I was also the caretaker for my adopted mom while she had a doctor visit and found out she has to have surgery. All in all it was a full week, but I let my blogging and writing go. How do you handle what life throws at you? Share some tips with me on how you make time for everything. My goal is to continue writing and sharing through my blog, but I have found that is sometimes very hard to do.

My Family Will be Thrilled…..

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It was so easy it scared me.  I published my Christian Poetry book on XenXii.com.  For some reason I thought it would be harder.  It was a little time-consuming for me to get the poems and pictures into one document.  Thank goodness this was a small book. I wanted to see what actually happens with the process.

Now comes the hard part of trying to sell the book.  I think publicizing is the hardest part of the book writing process.  I probably won’t get on Good Morning America or Anderson for the world to see me  and listen to me say how wonderful either of the books I have out now are. I have read everything I could get my hands on about selling a book and they all start with the social programs.  What works, what doesn’t work and what might work when your networking. So I’m on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, but who I’m connecting with is other writers trying to do the same thing I am.  I think it is a vicious circle.

I am beginning to do Pod Radio interviews now and I must say it has been interesting.  I plan on doing more of them just because I like to talk and I can hear myself on the radio. That is something I never thought would happen.  I know I can get my family to listen and tell me how good I sounded and how absolutely wonderful the books sound.  There’s nothing like having people who love you.

I think I’m going to try my hand at doing a book commercial. That will be fun and once again, it will thrill my family.

Oh by the way drop by http://www.xinxii.com/en/verses-for-my-king-p-333636.html?osCsid=gmcb03bri8khs1hcqg1s9gtf03 and have a look at Verses For My King.

The Find

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I have always been fascinated with archeology. The findings of our ancient world and what they could mean to us in the time. In Mississippi I remember looking at the southern submarine they raised from the mouth of the Yazoo River. Those men sitting scrunched up with their hand cranks. Our forefathers were very ingenious.  I have written a fictional short story that i hope you enjoy reading. You might have figured out by my previous statements it has something to do with archeology, but you wouldn’t have figured it doesn’t have anything at all to do with that submarine.

The Find

I’m falling through the earth. It feels like a giant slide, and I never reach the bottom.  What is going on?  I hear chanting, and I can’t get my eyes open.  I can’t move, what is happening to me?  I can’t open my mouth, but my mind is screaming.  Can I move my hand?  I can turn it slightly but not lift it.  I feel cold stone.  I’m lying on stone. The chanting is louder, I have to open my eyes, but I can’t make them open.

I am Dr. Mary Danvers, from The University of Virginia Archeology Department. For the past three years, I’ve been the Chair of the Archeology Department. I’m in Guatemala studying the ritual sacrifices of the Aztec. My love affair with archeology began as a child, when my father and I found a piece of gold jewelry. It was a gold nugget with a tie, which would let it be worn around the neck.  When my father had the tie radio tested, it shows the age to be AD 620.

My father was strict and extremely straitlaced when it came to rules and regulations. That reason in itself made it difficult for me to understand what my father did the day we found the nugget necklace. He stuck it in his pocket and never mentioned again. The Oxford Archeology Department who was funding my father’s dig made it known that everything found was to be cataloged and turned in. In effect, he stole a nugget necklace that belonged to the university.

My father died six months ago, and as I was going through his safe-deposit box, I found the necklace. I’d forgotten all about it. I’m one of those out of sight, out of mind, kind of people. As soon as I touched it, I knew I’d be returning to the site where the necklace was found.

I made it to the site within three months. There was a force driving me that I couldn’t understand. Everything in my life seems to have led to this moment in time. My years of study about the Inca’s and their belief system would give me information that kept driving me forward.

They worshipped the dead, ancestors, founding culture heroes, their king whom they regarded as divine, nature and its cycles. The worship of nature and its cycles suggest that for them time, and space were sacred, and consequently the calendar was religious, and each month had its own festival.

Another part of Inca religious life was divination. Everything, from illness, to the investigation of crimes, or the definition of what sacrifices should be made to what gods, was all done by consulting the oracles, observing in a dish the meandering of a spider, or disposition of coca leaves, by drinking ayahuasca (a hallucinogen), or even by examining the markings on the lungs of a sacrificed llama.

On special occasions, human sacrifice was practiced, or to ward off a natural disaster. We found where 200 children were sacrificed when a new king ascended to the throne. Adults as well as their animals served as sacrifices also.

My eyes are opening and I can see what is going on around me. I’m naked lying on cold stone. Men and woman are on their knees bowing towards me and chanting something. A man is walking around  the stone. He has to be their religious leader. He has on a robe of bright-colored feathers and a headdress that looks like a crown of feathers. He is holding up the nugget necklace, and a straight blade knife with a gold handle for all to see, then bends down to my face and places the necklace around my neck. Everyone cheers. I know what is happening. I’m going to be their sacrifice. I still can’t speak. This can’t be real the Inca civilization is gone. I know they’re gone and have been for a thousand years. All this feels real, I can’t move my body and that man is coming at me with something that looks like a cockatoo head. No, No, I’m not drinking it, I’m not. He holds my nose, and I feel liquid fire going down into my stomach. The world is fading from sight.

“Dr. Danvers, Dr. Danvers, wake up. Can you hear me, Dr. Danvers?”

One of my students is sitting by my bedside holding my hand as I slowly open my eyes. I could see I was in my tent. What has happened to me?

“We found you by the entrance to the pyramid. You had a high fever and were delirious, ranting about birds and feathers and a gold nugget.”

“I’m wearing a gold nugget necklace that my father found here when I was a child.” I put my hand to my neck but could not find the necklace. “What happened to my necklace?”

“Doctor, you were’nt wearing a necklace when you were found. We did find a gold handled knife by your side.”

“What did you say?”

“We found a knife by your side.”

I know I had that necklace around my neck. Was what happened to me real? It couldn’t have been, but the necklace is gone and the knife is here. The necklace was used in their sacrifices, but so was the knife. What happened makes no sense. Maybe I will find out the meaning in time.

Good Intentions, bad results

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A bottle of peanut oil.

Image via Wikipedia

How many of us has done something you thought would be so nice and work out wonderfully.  Today, I am posting a short story about a woman with good intentions.    You never know what will happen in this life.  Every action as a reaction.  I hope you enjoy the story.

Good intentions Bad Results

The Road to hell is paved with good intentions.

Friday, April 16, 2010 is a red-letter day.  I have a new job, I live in my own condominium, my health is good, and my family loves me.  I have so many blessings I cannot list them all.

I have a boyfriend, Andy Wilson.  He is such a loving person.  He makes me happy. I keep a smile on my face when I am with him.  I am falling in love, and I never want it to end.  He’s a man who has everything. He is wonderful, happy, smart, rich, educated; handsome beyond words, and is still single.

The doorbell is ringing. I slowly cross the floor and open the door.  “Come in, Andy”.

“Wow, you look wonderful”.  He grabs me, pulls me towards him, and kisses me.

“Dinner will be in about ten minutes, relax for a few minutes.”

“Dinner is served, sir.  We have a standing rib roast, mashed potatoes, Sautéed asparagus’, honey sweetened baby carrots and yeast rolls.  I made fresh strawberry short-cake for dessert.”

“This is wonderful and I don’t want it to end.  Would you care to dance?” Andy asks.  We dance as my mind keeps telling me; this is too good to be true.

“Paula, I don’t feel well.  My throat feels a little tight.”

“Sit down on the couch. Would you like a glass of water”?  His face was beginning to swell, especially around his mouth.

“Andy, I need to call an ambulance for you.  You are beginning to scare me”.  I called 911, gave them the address and went to Andy.

His respirations are fast, and he is starting to squeak when he exhaled. “What is happening to you”, I asked.  He couldn’t answer me.   My mind is screaming, where are they, it is taking too long.  I can hear the sirens. “They are almost here, Andy.  Hold on honey, please hold on.”

I follow the ambulance to the hospital.  It seems I waited forever, and then the door opens and a nurse in scrubs comes to me, and asks if I am the person with Andy Wilson.

Yes, I’m his girlfriend”.

She took my hand, ”I’m so sorry, but we couldn’t save him.”  My world went cold and black.

Andy died from anaphylactic shock.  It turns out he was highly allergic to peanuts.  I kept running our dinner repeatedly through my mind.  Where could he have gotten peanuts with our dinner?

I went to the pantry to get down my oatmeal.  My eyes scanned the shelves; I notice two bottles of oil sitting next to each other.  One was a light corn oil and the other was, the other was, oh my god, it’s peanut oil.  Now I know, I killed my Andy with good intentions.

 

You Can Never be Sure

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Cover of "Kindle Wireless Reading Device,...

Cover via Amazon

My blog today is going back to the subject of writing and publishing.  It was brought to the forefront in my mind today that you can never be sure that your book will come out from the publisher like it was sent to them.  My problem only came to my attention because of a cancelled book tour.  I was told my book was not ready to be toured.  I couldn’t understand what was going on.  I had gone over my book with a fine tooth comb and couldn’t find a problem.

When I received my galley from the publisher they were fine, and I signed off on them and sent them for printing.  I received my author books and they looked great.  That took place about a month ago.  Since that time I have actively been advertising my book and a sold a few ebooks.

Yesterday after my book tour had been cancelled I went back over my book and could find nothing wrong.  It dawned  on me that I’d never looked at my ebook, so I downloaded me a copy to my Kindle.  I looked at the first page and it immediately jumped out at me that something was missing.  In fact it was absent throughout the book.  What had been left out was the italicized print for the characters inner thoughts.  It made it look like I was changing tense in the middle of paragraphs.  When your writing that is a big NO, NO.

I immediately got on the phone with my publisher and told them of the problem.  It took awhile for me to convince them they caused the problem.  I finally got through to the ebook department after explaining the situation to at least three people.  I was then told sometimes the code messes up in the ebooks and it makes an error in printing.

It makes me want to jump up and down screaming at the top of my lungs that I did everything right and it still came out messed up.  So the moral of this story is check your ebooks to make sure they are correct. I made the mistake of assuming because my hard copies were correct my ebook would be also.  Learn from my mistake.

Grave Injustice by Jada Penn

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Grave Injustice by Jada Penn is one of those books I didn’t want to put down.  The protagonist is Lisa, she is caught between two men and seems to be continually making the wrong choice. She is a very strong willed woman, who wants to run her own life.  She does have the support of her parents and Grandmother.  She lives on an estate which has been in the family for generations.  Jada’s writing is very descriptive of everything around Lisa.  It was easy for me to visialize the characters as well as the surroundings.

Outside influences begin to cause problems .  Strange things happen to Lisa, and she confides in her long time housekeeper.  The man Lisa tries to distance herself from is having problems himself and is doing everything in his power to get Lisa for himself.

If you enjoy reading a good paranormal, mystery you will enjoy Grave injustice.  That’s my two-cents for today.