Sunday, April 28, 2013

Next Step - Publishing "Three Tale Tales"

This is a snippet from my third short story, to be included in Three Tall Tales.  The title is - Tarr's Lament.  Enjoy!

Widukind made sure that Tarr had the best seat by the fire, and a bowl of water and cloth to wash his hands and face.  Then Widukind served Tarr a large bowl of hot food and a cup of ale, which Tarr quickly drained; Widukind promptly refilled it.  Tarr was so hungry that he practically swallowed his food without chewing.  He could have eaten more but did not want to appear to his kinsman like a glutton.  But Tarr’s concern was unfounded as Widukind refilled his bowl and insisted that he eat his fill.  Tarr knew well the code of hospitality; he could not refuse his kinsman’s food, especially since he was told to eat his fill - it would have been an insult.  As Tarr happily ate he began to relax.  And, after the two men shared a cup of ale, toasted the gods, and each others health, the conversation began in earnest. 
            Widukind was well aware about the murder of Tarr’s son, Helgi.  He also knew about Tarr’s revenge and was concerned about Tarr.  Widukind needed Tarr to have his head in the right position and thought that talking about the dastardly event could help Tarr.  But, it would have been rude and out of place for him to speak first about it and, out of necessity, made some small talk until Tarr interrupted him and brought it up. 

            “Widukind, my friend, brother-in-arms, and kinsman, I know that you are aware of Helgi’s death.  It saddens me in many ways when I think of it.  I can still see him lying there, alone.”  Widukind saw the pain in Tarr’s eyes as he spoke.  It was as if the eyeballs themselves were cracked open in pain.  

                                       Copyright - Tarr's Lament @2013 Terry Unger

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Another Book Project In the Works!

I am happy to announce that soon a new book of mine with be available to the public.  The working title is - Three Tale Tales - and, as the title suggests, it will be three short stories.  These fictional stories will be about  the life and times of one of the characters I've developed while introducing another.  Below is a snippet from the first story.

                                           Tarr and His Amazing Flying Machine 

Tarr loved to sleep and dream under the stars.  And since he was more or less ‘retired’ from the active leadership of his tribe, he had more time to dream.  He was not in any shake of the stick old; Tarr just wanted to do more in his other tribal position as their Vitki.  Tarr had his share of battles and many times he led his tribe to victory over their foes.  His face was living proof:  a scar, laid there by an enemy’s sword, extended from above his right eye all the way past his cheek bone.  His loving wife did her best with a healing salve to ward off infection but in the end, the hot blade of his seax, made cherry red by the hearth’s fire, finished the task.  Then, there was the damage to his sword arm. 
             Tarr had taken one too many hits to his right shoulder and bicep muscle.  But still, he could wield a sword as well as any man; Tarr was not just any man.  He was a major chieftain, who some called Gothi and his tribe’s Vitki.  Losing Tarr would be a major blow to the tribe, and his loss could create an unstable condition within the region.  In battle, if a chieftain was a hare’s second slow, he died.  Tarr was aware of that.  Being selfish was not a part of his tribe’s frith, even though there could be found a few men who would want all of that glory.  But Tarr being Tarr had an idea that would benefit the tribe and allow him his personal desires.  These following words and deeds are what led to his, ah… ‘Retirement.’  
            Althing always was held in neutral territory with plenty of space to accommodate all of the freemen and their booths (tents).  And as was the custom, there had to be plenty of room for feasting and drinking.  Tarr loved the social mingling that happened during Althing.  Every man had a chance to speak, cast votes, and then tell of his daring-do.  Even though Tarr was head chieftain, he loved it when ............

                                                  Copyright @2013 Terry Unger                                                

Friday, April 12, 2013

Sweet Dreams

When I put my head on my pillow at night, I prefer to NOT remember anything when I awake in the morning.  Sure I dream, just like everyone else.  I just like to draw a blank when I wake up. Unfortunately, that does not happen every morning; my nightmares really suck.  The few people who know me know the reasons for my nightmares.  And on those freaky nights, I sweat gallons.  I am plagued with many, all of them recurring, and when they do, another piece has been added to the script.

After a night like that, all sweaty and freaked out weird, a good cup of coffee and a long run chases them away - until the next time.  I know that they are harnessed to me, because of what I have experienced in my past.  My freedom from them, at least I hope, will come when I check out from Hotel Earth.  These nightmares of mine are my personal hell.  But, my check out will not happen for many, many years; just too much to do.  And, I prefer to deal with my nightmares my way, even though there probably is a pill that will block them and make my life better.  Well, better life through chemistry is too easy.  But I must say, at least in a figurative way, we all seem take a 'pill' to help us ignore what is happening around us.  This 'pill' is called apathy.

Rising prices at the pump and the grocery store?  Oh hell, that stuff is a fact of life and and we can't do anything about it; I guess we took an apathy pill.  Our elders constantly being ripped off from all directions?  Well, that's not gonna happen to me, no sir!  I'm way smarter than that.  When we take our apathy pills, we can sound really stupid.  Our right to defend ourselves being taken away?  Oh please, that will not happen because the 2nd Amendment guarantees that right!  But there are those people who are working to do just that.  Apathy pills put us into a full blown coma.  And, we seem to take these pills for damned near everything.

It appears that as long as we have and can get our hands on "stuff," we are apathetic about things that do not, at the moment, directly effect us.  The simple examples given in the previous paragraph are certainly not the only ones; they are the current hot button topics in the media.  Nobody is immune from losing what they hold near and dear.  When that loss happens, we eventually get around to knowing that we should have given a damn when it would have counted.  But then it's too late.  Start with what should really be near and dear to you.

If you ignore your spouse, you will pay the price.  If you blow off your kids, they will do the same in the future to you.  The family, your family is the foundation of your life.  When you clearly see this, "stuff" ceases to have its hold on you and you will not have a desire to pop an apathy pill.  Now, I need a nap.  Last night was hell.

                                                    copyright @2013 Terry Unger

Monday, April 8, 2013

When We Betray and Deceive

Thanks to the rabid media craving for the sensational, and those few people who are willing to rat out others, we have seen so many of the mighty fall from grace.  This group of infamous people include movie and sport stars, politicians, preachers, and one or two people who have formed some sort of alternative religion.  At first glance, it appears that these people do not have anything in common.  But they do.

All of them at one time or another in their lives just did not think but believed that, because of who they are/were, they could get away with whatever it was that they wanted to get away with.  Those people are/were not special or different from the people that they believed to be their lesser.  This is one of the illusions that made them think that the social norms and laws of a civil society did not apply to them.  What those people failed to realize was that, because of their so-called elevated social status, they became an easier target of opportunity.  In other words, they were more visible than the average Joe.  So, when those people put their fingers into the philandering cookie jar, somebody took notice.  This stuff is not like the time when you took a dollar from your mommy's purse - shame on you!  It is not like the time when you told your friends one whopper of a lie to get out of doing something with them - oh, how could you!  This is the big time, big boy league of betrayal and deception.

All of us need to understand that if we break the law in any manner, we will have to pay the price, in one way or another.  If we do something really stupid, like sending naked pictures of ourselves to a person we are trying to coerce for sex, sooner or later we will be on the evening news.  In today's fast paced informational age, you should not expect less, especially if you are an elected official.  In cases like this, the shame, public embarrassment, and continual ridicule may be far worse than a prison sentence.  And if you are married and have kids, how do you explain it?  You cannot, unless you are talking to a couple of bags of dirt, which is what you thought about your family when you initially  posted the pix.  If we are elected officials, and have illegally taken just $100.00, we have betrayed our electorate and are no better than Bernie Madoff; we deserve to be Bernie's cellmates.  If we stand in front of a religious denomination of any stripe and preach some sort of righteousness and commit abominations, we deserve a jail cell.  And, if we intentionally break the trust of those who respect us, we are damned.  Trust is something that in most cases, is lost forever.  The people who committed these things believed that they would never be caught, that they would never be found out.  But they were.  This stuff should serve as a lessen for all of us.  We are accountable for everything that we do.

Always, we must be vigilant with our words and deeds, constantly beating away the temptations of a fast buck or fleeting fame.  If it sounds too good to be true, it usually leads to trouble.  Yes, it is easier said than done but never the less, we should remind ourselves before we sleep and upon waking in the morning about this vigilance.  Remember, we are human, make mistakes, and are far from perfect.  Knowing that our words and deeds are a major part in molding our future gives us an upper hand in plotting a successful course for our lives.  In other words, when we place orlog into the Well, whether good or evil, it cannot be recalled.  Think before you act.

                                                Copyright @2013/2017 Terry Unger  


Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Problem With Proselytizing

On any given day in the week, a knock on your door could be made by someone wanting to share the "good news" with you.  And by my count, there are at least three sects of this belief who are willing to interrupt your day.  Contrary to popular belief, there is no war on this religion or any of its sects.  That was a statement made by a few of its adherents; maybe this religion can no longer get what it wants when it wants it.  Times do change.  Now, if you tell these good meaning people to piss off , they win; you made them martyrs for their god and cause.  If they manage to get inside your home, they win; they have shared the "good news" with you, if only by leaving a pamphlet on your coffee table.  We all have the right to practice any form of religion, or none, and be happy doing so.  One of the practices of Christianity (like you really needed me to tell you that this was about the door knockers and bell ringers) is to tell the world about "their good news."  And to these good meaning folks, a sign on your front door that reads, NO SOLICITATION means absolutely nothing.  They believe that they are not trying to sell you anything.  The "good news" is free to all who want it.  Yeah, right.  They do not get that far in the Ungerlands.  The king and queen of the realm will have none of that.

Today, the word 'racism' is bandied about more than a futbol during the World Cup.  In most cases, the word and its current meaning are used incorrectly.  It usually is given to a person by the Politically Correct Elite Police to shut that person's mouth.  As a man of Austrian/German descent, I enjoy my cultural heritage.  After all, it is mine and I have a right to enjoy it, just as people from other cultures have a right to enjoy theirs, and I sure as hell have no intentions of stopping them.  Enjoying bratwurst and swilling beer while knowing the details of Teutoburger Wald and other facts of my culture does not make me a racist, or for that matter, 'superior' to anyone or anything else.  I also know many facts and various details of other cultures; the love of history breaths deeply within me.  Historical fact and the interest in one's own culture does not make a person a racist.  But it appears to me that there are those who "spread the good news" who seem to have a problem with 'culture.'

More than one Saturday or Sunday breakfast in the Ungerlands has been interrupted by the proselytizers of the "good news."  In the past, when we opened the door in response to their knock, we were not what they expected; we are of the lighter skinned variety of human.  As they walked away, they muttered something about sending someone else to see us; it had nothing to do with language, their English was just peachy.  The very next day, as sure as fireworks on the 4th of July, white folks showed up to talk to us about the "good news."  I make no apologies for giving any of these folks the boot.  We do the same when somebody comes to our door wanting to sell us snail oil as a cure-all.  But, because the replacements were so damned obnoxious, they were given the steel-toed boot.  This has happened twice.  Here is one point:  when I sing the praises of bratwurst, I open myself up to be labeled a racist, while the proselytizers of the "good news," who are not of the same culture as my wife and I, will not try to sell us on the "good news" because we are not of the same culture.  They send in white replacements.  Were we offended?  Are we offended?  Do bears shit in the woods?  Do wolves eat meat?  Do whales swim in the ocean?  In today's common verbiage and contextual meaning, it is hard to think that the behavior of those proselytizers is NOT racist.

Now let me be very frank.  If you are purple and have three tits and come to our door trying to sell us on your religion, you will get the boot.  Well, if you are that way, we will take a picture of you first to post on Facebook.  Then comes the boot.  That brings up another point.

These proselytizers are trying to sell their sect's version of Christianity; it is something that their religion tells them to do.  But Christianity as a whole, never was a religion of inclusion; it always was and still is an exclusive club.  And, Christianity's history has much to say about its previous methods of proselytizing:  the ethnic cleansing, at sword point, of pagans and heathens throughout Europe, the Crusades, the Inquisition with its Witch Trial sub-set, and the outright murder of indigenous populations in North and South America.  All of this was done to spread the "good news" of the White Christ.  And people who bathed on a regular basis and who were well groomed, were forced to accept a false religion that preached that the body was evil and bathing and grooming was a vain act in the eyes of  the White Christ.  Those people were known as Heathens.

Today, Real Heathenry  is making a resurgence.  Take note, I said Real Heathenry.  While it is true that the present struggles to understand the past, rest assured that Real Heathenry has nothing to do with, playing dress-up, like in a Renaissance Faire, Dungeons and Dragons, flogging, or any form of slavery (even in a make believe sense).  Real Heathenry is about personal empowerment and freedom.  It is about becoming industrious and self-reliant, in our time.  I have been told that there are many pretenders who claim the title Heathen as their very own.  And, some of those have used their charisma for personal gain, but they have fallen from their self-made pedestal.  Real Heathens want to study the old principals that guided their ancestors, and apply them to their lives in the modern world; they will make the needed adaptations.  There is no need to fear that a Heathen will come knocking on your door; it just does not happen.  You either have it or you don't.  Maybe one day you will.  The problem with proselytizing?  In today's world it's just plan rude.


                                                 Copyright @2013 Terry Unger


Monday, April 1, 2013

A Snippet From My Latest Short Story

The Fires At Midnight

The old man sat by his fire, wrapped up in his bear skin.  So far, he had seen eighty-six winters but the current one was by far the worst.  Scars from past wounds and poorly healed bones, earned in battles long gone, racked his body with pain.  His hair was scraggly and chalk white; the scar over his right eye that extended past his cheek bone made him look hideous to the common stranger.  He could not relieve his body from the grip of cold, regardless how close he sat to the fire or how much ale he consumed.  He was tired, very tired. 
                        Segil carefully watched her Tarr; he first noticed her two days ago.  She was as tall as most people, but more shapely, with raven hair and emerald eyes.  Tarr knew exactly, who and what Segil was, but he was not ready to follow her.  Soon, he knew, he would pass from his current life to the next.  But it would not be tonight; Tarr had one more job to finish.  Segil too, knew that.  She had infinite patience with her Tarr, something that she always gave to him for all of his life. 
                        The old man was teaching a group of young folk the lore of their people and tonight was their last lesson.  Tomorrow, before the Sun was directly overhead, Tarr’s group of nine charges would be initiated into the tribe and takes their place as adults.  His students would arrive when the Moon shimmered between the now barren twin oaks.  Tarr cursed the cold and damned to hell the infirmities of old age.  Segil could feel his pain but knew that her Tarr could not go on much longer.  She quietly, so as not to disturb Tarr, asked Woden and Frigga to give him just a little more strength so he could finish his assignment and follow her home.  As Tarr began to nod off, he heard the familiar knock on his door from the self-appointed leader of the group. 
                        Tarr gruffly told them to enter.  As they quietly filed in, six boys and three girls, Tarr thought that they were an odd lot.  From the scrawniest to the fittest, they arranged themselves on the dirt floor around the old man.  The smallest of his charges saw that his drinking cup was empty and dutifully refilled it from the bucket of ale that was by Tarr’s side.  But before he drank, he ordered the two strongest boys to help him go outside so that he could relieve himself.  When they returned, Tarr resumed his seat, drained his cup, and began.  

Cop                                                       Copyright 2013 Terry Unger  

Unity of a Forgotten Kind

The world and all it contains, both seen and unseen stands with mankind in a state of consubstantiation.  Our ancestors understood this as...