A Christian Couple Evacuating from a Hurricane

I had been thinking of writing something like this throughout the summer of 2021. There are factors from my life that inspired part of this, but it is mainly a work of fiction. I used the likeness of what I think a very nice future spouse would be like as inspiration for this story.

Without further ado, here is the story:

…Late Summer…

…Wednesday Morning…:

We are woken up by our weather radio and notified that our whole area is now under a Hurricane Warning.

I’ve been monitoring this situation for days and am not surprised at all.

The weather radio mentions our parish as being under a mandatory evacuation.

At once we kiss, use the bathroom, then get ready.

My wife and I have been married for almost nine months and we make each other incredibly happy.

In fact, we are so happy with each other, that we are not worried about how our trailer may be destroyed in this storm, just as long as we can still be together.

This is the second marriage for both of us and my prayer is that this is also the final marriage for both of us, because she fits my standards perfectly. She tells me how I am the answer to her prayers. Both of our previous marriages were quite faulty, but this is one of the reasons why we fit together so well.

I am thirty-five and she is twenty-nine, but we often pretend that she is nineteen and I am twenty-five!

At once, we pack.

I get my SwissGear EDC backpack and fill it with all that I usually carry plus all the gifts my wife gave me and any extra supplies that I may need.

She gets the SwissGear overnight bag that I gave her as a birthday gift and fills it with her valuables and other gifts I gave her.

We then get our SwissGear rolling suitcase and pack our clothes in it. I place my favorite tee shirts and pants in there, she places her favorite blouses and skirts in there. We both also place our undergarments and toiletries in there. I take several boxes of Little Debbie Doughnut Sticks, two jars of Community Instant Coffee and Chicory, and placed them in our oversized reusable shopping bag. I place our milk into several used water bottles along with my carton of Great Value Half ‘N’ Half and place them in my Igloo Playmate Cooler. I get my G. E. Superadio and she grabs our fireproof box containing all of our important papers and other valuables. We load up her white Dodge Caravan, pray over our property then head out.

She takes the wheel and I navigate.

I hold her hand the entire time.

We pray together and reassure each other how God is in control.

Two-hundred-seventy-five miles later inland, we pull into a truck stop for some fuel. She parks by a pump and I pay with my credit card, then fill up her van.

I then buy us each a bottle of Lipton Brisk Tea and a prepackaged turkey breast sandwich.

We park by an outside table, say grace then eat.

A tall gentleman notices us praying over our food, then asks us if we are evacuees.

We tell him how we indeed are.

He explains how his pastor is volunteering his church as a shelter and we should come there.

We agree then exchange contact information.

Then we eat our meal, and head to the church.

We park, then unload our clothes and food.

Immediately, we are welcome with open arms.

After being assigned our spot, we begin to fellowship with those in the church.

My wife assists the women with keeping watch over the children and I assist the men with cooking.

Despite, us being storm refugees, we are having a wonderful time.

We all eat a wonderful meal of spaghetti and meatballs, then we watch movies.

It’s now nightfall and several other evacuees wish to know what is going on back home, so I turn on my G. E. Superadio and can tune in to the AM stations back home. Several others are amazed by this as we all listen.

There are numerous reports of how conditions are starting to deteriorate and all lifelines are being cut off.

The pastor prays over us and we are comforted.

My wife and I then snuggle together, even though we are sleeping on a floor, we are so grateful to be together. She partially covers my body with hers and says, “You’re mine forever and no one else can have you, Mister!” I look up at her and shower her with kisses as I reply, “You’re the only one I want, so don’t ever worry, baby!” I pause then whisper, “But I think it’s very sexy when you act possessive of me!” She giggles and playfully smothers me with her breasts. I am powerfully turned on to her and she is equally turned on to me, but we realize not to cross the line with our affections since we’re not alone.

So she wraps us up in a blanket, then we fall asleep in each others’ arms, after exchanging many sweet kisses.

Thursday:
The next day, the pastor offers the church WiFi, so we’ll be able to conserve our mobile data.

I assist the elderly evacuees with connecting their iPhones and iPads through the church WiFi.

We learn how the storm is moving quickly through and that damage was minimal but all lifelines are still cut off. The storm’s remnant is forecast to go to the northeast of where are.

My wife continues to assist the ladies in watching the children and I continue to assist the men in cooking for everyone. Today I help them make Red Beans and Rice. I also show them how to make my version of ghetto punch.

We all eat together then watch movies, once again.

At night I tune in to our home stations and the reporters are saying how lifelines are being restored by we dodged a bullet for the most part.

Several people breathe a sigh of relief.

I call my pastor at home and check on him and his family. I then give him the contact information of the church where we are staying, in hopes that we can ally the two churches.

My wife and I then fall asleep together after having a war of kisses. We would be much more affectionate, but we are surrounded by many other people. How I long to fondle her thick love handles and caress her plump caboose, but I know I must be respectful of everyone around me! She giggles as she whispers to me, “Oh baby, how I wish I could pull your pants down!” We wrap our arms around each other and she sleeps partially on top of me as she says, whispering, “I don’t want you anywhere but underneath me and I cannot wait until we get home, Mister!”

Friday:
The next morning comes as we are slowly waking up. We are fed biscuits, fried eggs, and sausage patties that were donated from a local deli.

Gratefully, my wife and I say grace then eat.

I share my milk with the children since it will expire in a few days.

The church supplies me with ice for my Igloo Cooler.

The men at the church recruit me to cook with them once again saying how we need to make a very nice meal since the all-clear is about to be issued and many will go home without a hot meal for a while.

I describe to them my fried chicken recipe then they agree to make it.

Several of the men bring in fresh chicken, herbs and spices, and flour and oil.

I also tell them how some sweet peas and mashed potatoes would be good with that.

I prepare the chicken and the sweet peas, and another gentleman makes the mashed potatoes.

They also have me make my ghetto punch recipe once again.

We prepare a huge meal as my wife assists the ladies in watching the children.

Finally, we, serve the food, say grace then eat.

We then watch a movie until it is dark.

I tune in to our home station and learn how the all-clear will likely be issued sometime tomorrow and that, cell phones, natural gas, and tap water are restored, but cable and electricity will be up to a few days more.

The pastor prays a prayer of thanksgiving over all of us. Relieved, my wife and I exchange our affections until we fall asleep.

Saturday:
When morning comes, we are once again fed biscuits with fried eggs and sausage.

Happily, we eat.

I assist the men in cleaning everything up until the all-clear is issued.

We are instructed to go home and take care of ourselves and that if we are ever up here again, to come and visit them.

I give them my church’s contact information, then we lovingly bid farewell to each other.

The pastor prays over us for safe travels.

My wife and I load up her van, then we head back home.

Halfway through the trip, we fuel up and I buy us some more Lipton Brisk Tea and turkey breast sandwiches.

We arrive home in mid-afternoon, then survey our property.

There is no structural damage to our trailer, praise God!

My wife unloads her van and I clean up our yard.

Then I fix the skirting on our trailer.

I have a powerful craving for a hot cup of coffee and chicory along with some doughnut sticks.

Unbeknownst to me, my wife is preparing that very thing.

She comes outside and hands it to me.

I eat and drink, then ask, “What do I owe you, ma’am?”

“You know what I want, mister!” She replies as she teasingly lifts her skirt at me, revealing her white lace panties.

She then yanks me into our trailer, straight to the bedroom as we peel each others’ clothing off.

We pelt each other with kisses.

I then begin to kiss her neck, then her busty breasts, then her thick stomach then her nether regions between her creamy thighs as I unzip her skirt then remove her panties while she pulls down my pants and boxer briefs.

We make love with intense passion then cuddle in the sheets all night long.

Sunday:
The next morning, to which we are happily greeted with the electricity coming back on.

Fervently we praise God for taking care of us during that stressful time and also praise Him how He turned something meant for evil into something good. Subsequently, we get ready for church…

Yes.  I think it is clear that this marriage from which the narrator is describing is a rock solid marriage.  It could be close to the pinnacle of human love.  However, there exists a tremendously Greater Love and it is available to all who surrender to it.  The best part is that this love does not have all the stringent prerequisites of fleshly love.

Back to “A Christian Marriage”

Synopsis of and Commentary to my “Grocer and Writer” Stories

On June 30, 2021, it made seven years since I began writing my infamous “Grocer and Writer” stories. I have caught both flack and praise for writing them and yes I’ll admit that they are quite polarizing. In 2016 and 2017, I had written offshoots of them, trying to be less offensive, but I haven’t been able to elaborate on them as much as the original stories.

In this piece, I will try to document every source of inspiration that I drew from to create these stories.

It is a love story between a mildly Autistic young man who is a twenty-two/twenty-three-year-old Grocery clerk and his girlfriend, a supersized seventeen/eighteen-year-old honor student turned high school dropout. I know that in and of itself brought a lot of flack due to the high amount of controversy, but I was only trying to teach that everyone deserves to be loved.

These weren’t written in chronological order, by the way, they were written as the inspirations came to me.

WARNING: There are some sins that take place in these stories, but there is also repentance for these sins so if you, the reader, find this offensive at all, then don’t read it…

On June 30, 2014, I wrote my first piece of the series. I had previously worked as a grocer for a company I had hated, but this was 2010-2011 and there were no other jobs available, little did I know that working for this said company would cause me to draw so much inspiration. The piece takes place in January and starts with my male character whom I now will name Garth Cooper getting off of work from his God-awful grocer’s job. The name of the store where he works is known as “The Downtown Grocer” and its location is based on the New Orleans Central Business District. He fires up his old car, a 1989 Toyota, and heads to his girlfriend, an honor student turned dropout, whom I have now named Samantha Abbott, parents’ house in the suburbs which are based on Metairie/Old Metairie (a suburb directly west of New Orleans.) He brings her to his house, which was based on my Maternal Grandma’s house located in Metairie, but instead his neighborhood is inspired by Mid City, New Orleans.

In early July 2014, I wrote a piece on how they met. It is Thanksgiving and Garth Cooper is in the municipal park, writing stories in a composition book. He has the day off and uses it to focus on his passion, writing love stories. The park is based on New Orleans City Park, but also Central Park in Manhattan, New York City. The fictitious city in which they reside is inspired by a combination of New Orleans, New York, and Detroit and their respective suburbs. While Garth is writing in the park, Samantha takes a walk to the park to get away from her arguing parents. She first notices him and is attracted to him. She can get him to allow her to sit with him, even though you, the reader, will find out that she is seventeen and he is twenty-two. At first, he is reluctant but realizes no one else wanted him. They exchange phone numbers and he reads to her, making her want him all the more. They end up as a couple and sit together until the sun and Mercury go down. He drives her home, concluding the piece.

In either July or August of 2014, I wrote a piece consisting of a day at Garth’s God awful job, which is based on some personal life events I had previously experienced and Samantha’s miserable home life, which was done by observing others I had formerly known. It takes place on The Winter Solstice. As mentioned before Garth’s job at the Downtown Grocer, which is located in a neighborhood which is based on the Central Business District of New Orleans and Samantha’s parents’ house takes place in a neighborhood, based off of Old Metairie, which is a suburb to the immediate west of New Orleans. Garth is on a break along with the male janitor and the female cook. He is texting Samantha when the janitor sees the bliss in his eyes and wants to know if he is talking to his girlfriend. Garth says he is and talks about how he loves and reveres her. The cook then starts badmouthing Samantha and refers to her as a whole because she cannot stand to see a happy or chaste couple. Garth stands up to the cook and to which she threatens him with an edged weapon. All in all, Garth threatens to record her making the threats and turn the recordings over to the police to which she quiets down. Then the break is over, to which Garth begins stocking the shelves. A gentleman asks him to help him find the remoulade sauce and then helps him get some fresh fish from seafood. Garth takes care of his customer, who we later find out is none other than Samantha’s dad. The assistant store director chews Garth out for conversing with the gentleman, to which the gentleman backs him up. The assistant store director comes down harder on Garth and the gentleman overhears to which he cancels his revolving account and says how neither he nor his business partners will ever shop there again because of the way they treat their employees. Garth is forced to stock the boxed gelatin from now on. Meanwhile, Samantha is in her room listening to one of the music channels. Her pill-addicted mother is woken up by the music. She accuses Samantha of stealing her Xanax and threatens to beat her. Samantha calls her dad, to which he intervenes and tells his wife to look under the sofa for her stash. She then takes the Xanax and crashes. I wrote another piece following this where Garth gets off of work and goes pick up Samantha, then brings her to his home, which his neighborhood is based on Mid City, New Orleans. They tell each other about all that went on during the day over a simple dinner of oatmeal. Both contemplate only in their minds that they should live together as soon as Samantha turns eighteen. Then they discover their synchronous thoughts. The piece concludes with Garth looking at the clock on his dining room wall and realizing that he has work tomorrow. She tells him how she doesn’t want to go home and be around her mother. So he lovingly tucks Samantha into the bed in his extra bedroom, then goes to sleep in his bedroom, concluding the piece.

In August of 2014, I wrote a piece consisting of their first time being intimate with each other. It takes place on Christmas Eve, and Pachelbel’s Canon in D Minor had a lot of inspiration for it. Yes she is seventeen in he is twenty-two, and while they didn’t fully realize that she was legal they lovingly had sex anyway. Since the location of these stories is mostly based on Louisiana and the age of consent in Louisiana is indeed seventeen, no laws were broken. The piece begins with Garth getting off of work then going to pick up Samantha from her parents’ house. He then drives her to his house and they sit on the sofa. He offers her virgin egg nog, to which she says she shouldn’t drink because she is so fat. He reassures her that he would love her no matter what size she is. Garth then turns his television on, to where he learns of several murders that occurred over the past twenty-four hours and he also learns of the world preparing for global conflict. Samantha suggests that he turn the television off and that they focus on each other. She then confesses that she wants to be intimate with him. He doesn’t know that seventeen is legal, so he is hesitant. She convinces him that they are not guaranteed tomorrow and they should make tonight worth it. She says how she wants him so badly because he accepted her when everyone else she was interested in so cruelly rejected her. Eventually, he agrees and they go to bed together and deflower each other, falling even deeper in love.

Later in 2014, I wrote a piece of their first date together. It takes a place a week and a day after they met and became an item or a week and a day after Black Friday. Before this, they had been religiously texting each other and getting to know each other. He calls her and says how he’d like to take her on a date to a place that is based on The Riverwalk in New Orleans. She agrees, and as the phone call is finishing up they exchange those three little words! She gets dressed then texts him that she’s ready. He comes to pick her up and they go to his job to pick up and cash his check. They hold hands in the store until his boss the assistant store director orders them to stop holding hands. He cashes his check and pays the $5 cashing fee, then they go to the Riverwalk. They eat breakfast at a restaurant based off of Cafe` Du Monde, then they have lunch at a fish and chip shop, based off of the Louisiana seafood restaurant Spahr’s, which doesn’t have a presence in New Orleans. He then buys her a Casio Baby G watch at a gift shop. Afterward, they walk until the sun goes down and he takes her home. They plan to see each other again on his next day off.

Even later in 2014, I wrote a piece consisting of the night before Samantha’s eighteenth birthday and her moving in with Garth. It takes place in early February. It starts with him getting off of work and heading to the suburbs to pick Samantha up. It is a very cold evening. She is waiting for him on her parents’ driveway. His headlights illuminate her stature. He gets out of his car then opens the door for her and she gets in. He drives her to his house and they settle in. He asks her what would she like him to order her for her birthday dinner. She says something Asian. He begins to look through his telephone directory, to which she replies how she has an app to order it on her phone. She orders and soon the delivery man comes. Garth takes the food, pays him then escorts him back to his car. Afterward, they eat dinner in the dining room, to which Samantha says how the food made her sleepy. They go to bed, this time in the same bed, and cuddle, soon falling asleep in each others’ arms. They are awoken by the loud noises and subsequent explosions of a train derailment. Since this series takes place in New Orleans, but in the future almost, I had written it to where the Norfolk Southern Back Belt railroad line was rerouted from Old Metairie to Mid City, though this has yet to take place in real life, a little over four years later. The train derailment knocked out transmission power lines and caused a blackout. Samantha looks at her phone and sees how it is midnight and she is now legal to stay with him. A few minutes later, however, there is a knock at the door, and a policeman, I haven’t decided if it was a state trooper, a railroad special agent, or a city cop, orders them to evacuate.

At some point in 2015, I wrote a piece detailing their first phone conversation, on Black Friday the day after they first met. This is how they begin to get to know each other and they keep in touch on the phone for a week, mostly texting. Garth finds out that Samantha is a virgin but he doesn’t admit to her that he is as well. He also finds out that she is a high school dropout, but it doesn’t bother him. Samantha finds out how Garth wound up in the city and she is also impressed as to how Garth uses proper grammar even when texting and she decides to do so as well. Samantha tells Garth about her dad’s job and how he puts it before anything else. She also makes Garth promise that no matter how successful a writer he becomes to always sets aside time for her. He promises but states that he doesn’t know whether or not he will ever become a successful writer. Samantha tells him to be patient and have some faith. The piece concludes with Samantha’s mom waking up and being very belligerent.

In June of 2015, I wrote a piece taking place on the Sunday after their first date. Samantha texts Garth and asks him to come over. He is just waking up but gladly accepts. So he drives to her parents’ home and picks her up. He then drives her to his home for the first time. He warns her about his shady neighbors and states that his home isn’t the best. She states that it doesn’t matter to her. After they enter then he reads to her from his computer until he hears her stomach growling. He asks if she is hungry. She replies about how she is and that her mom went on an eating binge and ate all the food in their house. So he feeds her some pork n beans, the only food he has in his house. She wolfs them down. Afterward, they watch Breaking Dawn parts 1 and 2 on broadcast television, while they snuggle on the sofa. After watching the movie, they eat rice pudding and drink a coffee, chicory, and milk blend then he takes her home.

At another point, sometime before July of 2015. I wrote the piece which takes place in the early morning hours of Samantha’s eighteenth birthday. They are complying with the policeman’s orders and leaving the city. Traffic is very dense as they discuss where should they go. Samantha says she doesn’t want to be with her mother. Garth says the only other option is to go to his parents’ house which is five hours away. She agrees. Traffic is still at a standstill. Finally, traffic begins to move. At some point, Garth calls his mother and explains the situation to her. He tells her that he also has his girlfriend with her. The route I planned to have them take is based on Interstate 10 from Mid City, New Orleans to around Gonzales, Louisiana with its junction with US 61/Airline Highway. They continue towards Baton Rouge on US 61 then west on US 190 until its junction with US 71, between Port Barre, Louisiana, and Krotz Springs, Louisiana where they head North. They stop at a diner for food and fuel in a town based off of Bunkie, Louisiana. Garth goes to pay for the gasoline, but Samantha insists that she will pay instead and that he can repay her “all night long.” She then hands her debit card to the cashier, to which she says how she thinks they are so cute. In July of 2015, I once met a cashier at the Race Trac in Paradis, Louisiana, who very much reminded me of the cashier in this story. As they explain the situation to the waitress, she gives them free food and a thermal mug with the company name on it. These two pieces were inspired by the Country song “Callin’ Baton Rouge.” Since Garth Brooks covered that song, I named my male character Garth, his surname Cooper comes from Dr. Sheldon Cooper on Big Bang Theory, since they are both on The Autism Spectrum, but still high functioning. By the way, Samantha also got her name from that said song and she is “such a strange combination of a woman and a child.” The last name Abbott comes from the Abbott family on “The Young and the Restless” since her dad is a business executive and reminds me of a combination of Jack Abbott and Victor Newman. I already had created a character with the last name Newman in another story I wrote, so that is why I used Abbott. I did watch Y&R a little before creating this series, but I didn’t watch Big Bang until years after creating it. You will see that Garth’s mother is also a lot like Sheldon’s mother, which was totally by accident. Anyway, after eating and talking with the waitress they get back on the road. The diner was partially based on “The Highway 71 Sandwich Shop” which was located in Bunkie, Louisiana, but I don’t think is any longer in business. They continue North, at some point deviating from what is based on US 71 and ending up on the Northeastern Louisiana Delta at Garth’s parents’ soybean farm. They are greeted by his mother.

At another point in the Summer of 2015, I wrote the piece which takes place on Christmas Day. It starts with Garth making a breakfast of French Toast for Samantha. She is sitting on the bed researching on her smartphone and finds out that she is legally at the age of consent, despite still being seventeen, in their state (which is based mostly on Louisiana where seventeen is indeed the age of consent), unbeknownst to Garth. He serves her breakfast and they awkwardly eat. She says how he should meet their parents since it is Christmas Day. There is freezing rain but they head out. During the car ride, Samantha says that she did some research and found out that she is legal. Garth is confused and asks what do you mean. She explains that seventeen is the legal age of consent in their state and that he didn’t break the law. She then confesses that she is afraid he won’t feel obligated to stay with her now that he knows this. Garth assures her that there isn’t anything in creation that could cause him to leave her. She asks him point-blank what if he got her pregnant. He then said how he would then marry her and that he already wants to, it’s just he cannot afford a ring on his low wages. Samantha brightly beams after hearing this. Her dad then calls wanting to know where she is. She explains who she is with that he is good to her and that he does indeed love her. She then says that they are headed to the house at the moment. Upon arrival they ring the doorbell and Samantha’s dad answers, saying how they’ve met before. Samantha is confused and wants to know how do they know each other. Her dad explains how he waited on him and The Downtown Grocer and took very good care of him, but was punished for talking instead of working. Garth says how he is on thin ice because of that incident. Samantha’s dad says how he can easily get him a better job but wants to make sure that he is committed to Samantha first and then asks how did they meet. Samantha interjects and tells the story and goes on to say that Garth is the only one who accepted her despite her weight. Her dad then says how she has an underactive thyroid gland and the weight is not her fault. He goes on to say how it tore him up seeing her rejected and lonely all the time. Garth despite being Autistic looks him in the eyes and says how he knows rejection too and that Samantha is the only one who wants him despite his quirks and awkwardness and that he would never dream of breaking her heart. Her dad then says how he is holding Garth to that statement and knows people who could tar and feather him. He then invites them in for Christmas Dinner, which is Asian takeout since he refuses to shop at The Downtown Grocer anymore. Samantha’s mom enters the room and asks Garth who the hell are you. Samantha replies that’s her boyfriend, and to not embarrass her. Her dad quickly says, let’s all eat, it’s Christmas and it should be peaceful. Thus the piece is concluded.

On November 7, 2015, I was sitting in the Paradis, Louisiana library and wrote the piece on when Samantha meets Garth’s parents while evacuating from the train derailment. After being greeted by his mother, she suggests that they must be tired from their trip and that Samantha can have his old bed and Garth can sleep on the sofa. Samantha becomes very distressed and Garth says how that is not necessary because they are both adults. Garth’s mother asks Samantha her age, to which she replies how she just made eighteen and she was in the process of moving in with him. This upsets Garth’s mother even more because they aren’t married. Garth’s dad wakes up and walks into the kitchen, wanting to know what is going on. Garth tells about the terrorist attack. His dad curses the terrorist groups. His mother commands him to explain the rest. Garth says how his mom is angry because he and Samantha want to sleep in the same bed. His dad tells her not to be so hard on him and they thought he wouldn’t ever find anyone because of his condition. Samantha gets very upset and wants to know what condition he has because she thinks it is something life-threatening. Garth’s dad says that he is mildly Autistic. Garth then looks at her and says how he was afraid to tell her because he thought she would leave him. Samantha replies reassuringly how she never would leave him because he loves her and reveres her. She then goes on to say that she is so fat anyway. Garth tells her that he likes her beautiful curves and that he feels bliss holding her at night. Garth’s mother then sharply commands him to watch it. Garth’s dad suggests that they all hit the sack. Garth’s mother walks to her liquor cabinet and takes a shot of whiskey, then another and tells them to do what they want. Garth’s dad shows them to the bedroom. Though I wasn’t watching Big Bang Theory at the time, I can say for sure that Garth’s mom is very similar to Sheldon’s mom.

In March of 2016, I wrote the ending piece [but not the final piece.] Garth has now become a famous writer, so he fixed up his house, bought a new truck, a new computer, and an engagement ring for Samantha. He then drives to her parents’ house to pick her up. He had asked her dad’s permission to marry her previously (in a piece which has yet to be written) to which he happily agreed. Garth then opens the passenger door for her and helps her in. He then drives her to the park. After they arrive, he suggests that they go sit on the bench where they sat when they first met. After sitting for just a moment, Garth gets down on one knee, pulls out the ring, and proposes to her. Her eyes swell with tears and she happily says yes. The cook from his former job is in the park with all of her illegitimate children. Garth stands on the bench and says how he just proposed to the girl of his dreams and she said yes. Everyone in the park claps and cheers. The cook then starts yelling to the crowd how Samantha is fat and Garth is retarded and that they will be on disability and all of the people will have to pay taxes to support them and any children they have. Garth then stands up to the cook and says he just secured a job as a romantic novelist, but that probably means nothing to her. He then says that either she leaves them alone or he will call the police. The cook pulls out a revolver and shoots Garth dead. She then aims for Samantha but several people wrestle the gun from her. Samantha sees Garth dying and her heart explodes. She then collapses on top of him and dies as well. The cook in these stories is based on several women whom I had the unfortunate experience of being acquainted with over the years. She is violently jealous of Samantha because she is only intimately known to one man, Garth, who exceedingly loves and reveres her at that, whereas the cook has children for several different men all of whom used her. The piece was also inspired by Meghan Trainor’s song “I’m Gonna Love You Like I’m Gonna Lose You.” That song was popular around that time. I caught a lot of flack for writing this, especially from my then-wife, now ex-wife. After writing this, I decided that the series was too offensive and the world wasn’t ready for it, so I decided to start writing another series, “A Train Conductor Meets a Disabled Writer”, which I haven’t had much success with.

In November of 2016, while sitting at the Raceland, Louisiana library, I wrote two more pieces covering the time Garth and Samantha spent in the country while they were evacuated from the train derailment. It starts with Garth and Samantha waking up in his old bed at his parents’ house and finding out that the heater isn’t working. Garth turns on his flashlight that he had packed (a vintage First Alert Ready-Lite that came with his house) to check the thermostat but then the bulb burns out. Samantha calls for him to come back to bed, which he does until they are both overtaken by the hunger pangs. So they walk to the kitchen where Garth’s mother is putting pancakes and bacon on the table. They eat, though there is great tension in the air. Garth says how the heater is broken. His mother corrects him and says how it is just out of oil. She then tells him to make himself useful and to go to the hardware store and get more oil. Garth says he plans to go there anyway to get a new bulb for his flashlight. Quickly they leave the house and go into town. They arrive at the hardware store just as it is opening up. Other customers are being waited on, so Garth and Samantha walk around the store. Garth meets the owner’s son and a former classmate of his while Samantha takes a call from her dad and goes into a corner. The owner’s son was once a football star but ended his career in college from an injury. He says how he now tries to be the best hardware salesman he could be. Garth explains how he is in town because the city he lives in was evacuated because of the train derailment and he needs bulbs for his flashlight and oil for his parents’ heater. The salesman looks in the computer and says there are five bulbs left. Garth says he will take all five of them, then says he’ll be paying cash for the bulbs but to charge to oil to his parents’ account. The salesman suggests he buy a Mini Maglite LED flashlight because the power might be back on to charge his flashlight. Garth says he doesn’t have enough cash for both the bulbs and the Mini Maglite. The salesman says to charge it to his parents’ account. Garth says they would be livid if he did. Samantha comes out of the corner from her phone call and says how she will gladly buy the flashlight for him like she bought gasoline for him at the truck stop. She goes on to say how he can pay her back all night long. Several people point and stare at them, then whisper amongst themselves. Garth charges the oil to his parents’ account, pays cash for the bulbs and Samantha buys him the Mini Maglite LED with her debit card. At the time of writing this, I had never been to Northeast Louisiana the first time I had gone there was in mid-April of 2018. The hardware store reminded me of one I had worked at, in Houma, Louisiana, just in a more rural setting. It also reminded me of one in Thibodaux, Louisiana. Earlier in April of 2018, I went to a rural hardware store in Napoleonville, Louisiana, and purchased a 2 AAA Mini Maglite LED just like the one featured in this piece. I was trying to recreate and live out these stories in my weird way, I guess. The piece concludes with Garth opening the car door for Samantha and then getting to the driver’s side. His mother calls him on the phone wanting to know why he and Samantha were acting lewd in the store, because of her saying he can pay her back all night long for the flashlight. She then commands them to hurry and come home because it is freezing there. This scene was based on a campaign speech I heard from Mike Huckabee where he stated that he lived in a small close-knit community and if he did anything “wrong” several people would have already called his parents to tell them, before he even got home. Also, I grew up in a small town and lived in another (Raceland, Louisiana and Mathews, Louisiana) where the people there are a bunch of nosy busybodies. The second piece of this begins with Garth driving Samantha back to his parents’ house and explaining to her that the people in the hardware store called his parents’ house about the comments she made about him paying her for the flashlight and that he is not angry with her and that he indeed will pay her back all night long, but she needs to be careful what she publically says and does in a small town. He comforts her by saying that she probably never went to a small town and didn’t realize that “everybody knows everybody” -a line from a certain Tracy Byrd song about living in the country and that small-town people are busybodies. They soon arrive at Garth’s parents’ house to which he hands his mother the tank of oil then they go to his bedroom. Garth installs a new bulb in his flashlight then opens up the packaging of the Mini Maglite LED and installs the batteries and turns it on. He is impressed by the brightness and reminds Samantha that he will indeed pay her back all night long with tips and interest compounded nightly. His mother is secretly listening to the conversation, then barges in and wants to know from Samantha how long have they “been screwing out of wedlock.” Garth tells her she doesn’t have to answer that. His mother says for them to find another place then. Samantha breaks down and says, how they first had sex on Christmas Eve. Garth’s mother gets angry with him and accuses him of charming Samantha. Samantha said how he didn’t charm her, that he does write beautiful stories but she wanted him before that and he was the only one who didn’t reject her, despite her size. Garth’s mother then insists that if they will live like a married couple then they will have the responsibilities of a married couple. She orders Garth to help his dad on the farm and Samantha to help her cook and clean. She even forbids them from sharing a kiss before going to work. Garth sulks, walks to the barn, and enters, turning on his new flashlight. His dad is impressed by the brightness. Garth says how Samantha bought it for him. His dad says she is a keeper and that he had been praying that he finds someone. Garth says how his mother isn’t happy about the relationship to which his dad says she just doesn’t like seeing him all grown up. Garth says how his mother wants him to work on the farm for as long as he stays there. His dad then asks him to help change the fluids in the tractor, then to organize the barn, as he used to when he was a child. He has said that it has gotten into disarray since he moved out. Garth’s dad is loosely based on Noah Calhoun’s dad from “The Notebook.” Garth spends the day organizing the barn until the sun goes down. Samantha helps Garth’s mom cook and clean then she also reads some of Garth’s older stories, falling even more in love with him. Finally, the day is done, Garth and his dad come in and are served green beans and seared chicken breasts. As they are eating dinner, Garth and Samantha get alerts on their phones that the evacuation order is lifted. Minutes later, the assistant store director calls Garth and tells him he has twenty-four hours to return to work or he will be terminated. Garth’s mother comments on them going home and screwing. Garth’s dad walks them to the car and suggests they get married.

In 2017, I had rewritten most of the series, but also began working on another replacement offshoot, known as “A Disabled Electrician turned Writer” which was supposed to have similar themes as these stories but without so much controversy. I had slightly more success than my previous offshoot but haven’t written any more of it since 2018. Also in 2017, I began writing “Two Foamers in Love”, yet another offshoot replacement, but haven’t gotten much of it done.

On September 4, 2018, I wrote a piece of the series which is/was a prequel to the whole series. From Garth’s perspective, he is stocking salad dressing at “The Downtown Grocer” and how he hates his job and wishes at twenty-two he would have done so much more with his life. He thinks about his loneliness and how if someone loved him for him, he would love her immensely in return and treat her with the utmost reverence. He then thinks about his writing and tries to remember all of the inspirations coming to him in waves. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and he will be off, to which he plans to go to the park and write. He works late into the night, sweeping the warehouse and taking out the trash after the store is fronted and blocked. He gets off at 11:02, goes home, and goes straight to bed not realizing that tomorrow he will meet the love of his life.
Meanwhile, from Samantha’s perspective, her mother just took several Xanaxes and then has crashed into a deep sleep. Samantha then goes into the kitchen and eats some canned fruit and drinks some milk. She says how she hates her life and how it isn’t like most seventeen-year-olds. She talks about her underactive thyroid gland and her weight problem and how she has liked many boys but they all reject her. She says how she wishes she could find a boy or even a young man who would love her for her and how she would treat him like a king. She says how she dropped out of school because she cannot get a ride to the private school she was attending because her mom is always loaded and because of her weight, she knows she would be tormented and harassed relentlessly if she began attending the public high school in her district. She contemplates suicide, by taking all of her mother’s Xanaxes at once. However, a voice in her head tells her not to give up. She goes into her room and watches “The Notebook” on demand. She watches until she can no longer keep her eyes open. Her mom then wakes up from a deep sleep and is belligerent. Samantha hears the voice again, saying just a little while longer. Her dad then comes in and argues with her mom all night long. Samantha goes to bed and dreams about those little encouraging voices, little does she know that tomorrow she will meet the love of her life…

In the Spring of 2020, I wrote my latest piece of my “Grocer and Writer” stories consisting of Garth waking up with Samantha to lightning and thunder, then sharing and hug and a kiss. Samantha then prepares breakfast whilst Garth gets ready for work. They then sit in the dining room of his house and eat breakfast, lovingly staring at each other. Garth realizes soon that he needs to be at work, so he collects the flashlight that Samantha previously bought for him and his phone then heads out the door. Samantha pleads with him to be careful, to which Garth asks her to pray for him. They then exchange those three words and one final kiss. Samantha then engages all of the locks on the door, then takes a nap. Garth drives to work and immediately clocks in. For hours, he stocks to boxed gelatin all by himself as the storm gets worse. The power is then knocked offline. Garth uses the flashlight that Samantha gave him to escort customers through the store. Samantha texts Garth about a storm cell near him and alternates between praying for him and keeping an eye on the RADAR. Garth stays in touch with Samantha discreetly by texting her from in the bathroom. Just before that, Samantha’s dad contacts her and tells her that his company is looking to get Garth published as a writer. She texts Garth and tells him that she has good news for him but wants to tell him. The cook (from the God Awful job scene) sees Garth’s flashlight and demands to use it to help repair the oven in the deli. Garth refuses based on how it is sentimental to him because Samantha bought it. An argument quickly ensues afterward the cook once again refers to Samantha as a whore. Garth threatens to sue for defamation. The assistant store director overhears and they both get written up. He also tells the cook to just charge a flashlight from the housewares section to the store’s account. Garth works diligently until break time, in which he texts her asking for the good news. She replies how she wants to tell him in person instead. They then describe their day and Garth tells Samantha how he got written up yet again, for basically refusing to allow that hateful cook to use his flashlight. Samantha tells him to hang on a little longer and that things are about to turn in his favor. He asks her if she is mad that he was written up and she replied that if she had her way, he would never work there again. Garth then tells her how he loves her with all his heart and she replies that she loves him the same. Garth then gets back to work and works until dinner time, then during the dinner break, he texts Samantha from the terrace whilst eating. Garth then works until 9:00 PM then after sweeping the warehouse, clocks out and goes home. He knocks on the door and Samantha lets him in as they lovingly kiss each other. Samantha tells Garth that the good news is how her people in her dad’s company want to make Garth a published writer and how there are still a few things to iron out but his days as a grocer are over. Garth tells Samantha how he is indebted to her and her day. Samatha then tells Garth to love her for the rest of his life and to make time for her to pay back the debt, to which he asks, how else will he have the inspiration to write what he writes? Samantha asks him what does he want to do now. Garth replies how he is tired but he wants to hold her all night long and then tomorrow they will do something together. Samantha agrees, then they walk to the bedroom with Garth setting his window unit to the coldest setting as they cuddle all night long. I think the series itself inspired most of this piece as I have borrowed elements from all previous pieces…

That’s all I have as of July 10, 2021. There are still some loose ends that need to be tied up and I am not sure of when I will get to doing so. I regret not making much of a statement to celebrate the seventh anniversary of the beginning of this series which was on June 30, 2021. All I can say is that I have been suffering some serious writer’s block. It has been quite an adventure writing these stories and I hope that anyone who reads them will realize that the main theme I have been trying to teach is that everyone deserves to love and be loved. I know there was quite a bit of controversy, and yes in some areas my heart wasn’t in the right place, but I would like to think I’ve since had my heart corrected. As I mentioned before, I have since written other stories which have been offshoots and improvements. I guess this, therefore, concludes my synopsis and commentary of my “Grocer and Writer” stories.

Back to “Works of Fiction”

Excerpts from “Bohemian America”

I began writing this story in late February of 2020, just before Coronavirus became an issue for the USA.

I imagine it to take place in New York City and the suburbs thereof, but one of my main characters is from Southeast Louisiana.

The story is about a blossoming romance between a tortured visual artist named Carlisle Snowden and a violinist named Alexandra Barbu with a troubled past of her own.

I wish I could write more of this, but unfortunately I have been suffering severe writer’s block.

I do admit that some of this story needs to be redone because of the sinning that occurs in these stories, but I pray that God give me the grace to remove it.

I do have other pieces which are innocent enough to share, though…

So, below are some excerpts from the story:

EXCERPT ONE:

Alexandra’s abusive uncle was waiting in the front to pick her up, when he witnessed pianist and most experienced member Davis Istre giving her a handful of cash, saying, “You earned it girl, with those mad violin skills! You bring our group to a whole new dimension, and you were awesome at our last gig, so go buy yourself something nice!”

She hugged him and thanked him, then saw her uncle.

“Let’s go!” He said impatiently, “I want us to get out of this part of the city before the sun goes down and all the riff-raff come out!”

Saxophonist Leroy James answered him, “Chill out man! And don’t be so full of hate!”

“Spoken like a true blue dope head,” Her uncle replied with disgust, “I’m surprised you don’t use your saxophone as a bong pipe.”

He then looked at Alexandra and said, “Now you come with me right now young lady!”

Alexandra rolled her eyes and then left with her uncle.

They walked out of the abandoned building and into his single cab older GMC truck.

“I know that those in your band smoke that dope. I better not find out that you smoke dope or I will kick you out of my house.”

“No, I don’t smoke dope. I’m already fat and if I smoke dope, I’ll likely get fatter and have wrinkles as well.”

“Well, the fact that you are fat means you will never make it in the music industry. So you should go back to school or get a real job like everyone else.”

Alexandra was now getting angry, but kept calm and concealed it, saying, “I don’t know, what about Meghan Trainor?”

“I never heard of her,” Her uncle replied.

“That figures, otherwise you wouldn’t have made that ignorant statement.”

“Watch that attitude young lady, you will never be too old for me to backhand you.”

“That’s where you are wrong. If you lay a single finger on me, I will press charges.”

“How dare you! You are riding in my vehicle and staying under my roof and you would press charges on me after all your aunt and I did for you.” There was a tense silence but then he continued, “You know what, give me your money, you owe me for food and rent!”

“I need that money to keep my phone turned on so I can keep in touch with my band,” Alexandra protested.

“Well, that’s too bad. Now give me your money or you can find somewhere else to stay.”

“You’re such a jerk!”

“No, you just need a dose of reality, big time! Now give me your money…”

“I’ll speak to my aunt first,” Alexandra said, pulling out her phone.

“If you call her you can get out right now.”

“Then put me down right here. I’ve had enough of you anyway.”

“Fine, have it your way. Now get out!”

Alexandra unbuckled her seat belt, opened the door and stepped out onto the sidewalk.

Her uncle then flung her violin in its case out the door then said, “And take that stupid instrument with you!”

EXCERPT TWO:

An elderly black lady came outside and said, “Carlisle, I heard you shouting what happened, baby?”

Alexandra spoke up and told her, “It’s partially my fault, ma’am. My uncle was driving me to his house but we had an argument and he kicked me out of his truck. He then threw my violin out as well and it knocked this young man’s easel down and ruined his painting.”

“Well, I’m going to have to call the police then, people can’t just be abandoning minors on a city street.”

“But, I’m not a minor. I’m actually twenty-going-on-twenty-one,” Alexandra said, then continued, “But I do, however, have no place to go.”

The artist spoke, “Wow, I thought I had issues. I’m very blessed compared to you! My name is Carlisle Snowden by the way.”

“You are blessed, Carlisle and your blessings will continue as long as you be a blessing to others. Just remember to keep taking that medicine, keep letting your light of kindness shine to others around you and keep painting those beautiful pictures!” The elderly black lady said.

“It’s nice to meet both of you, I’m Alexandra Barbu.”

The elderly black lady answered her, “You can call me Mother Nellie. I look out for the whole neighborhood and I pray for everybody.” She paused and then said, “Something tells me there was a reason that both of you met.”

Carlisle’s face grew very serious as he looked at her and said, “Mother Nellie, if you’re suggesting what I think you’re suggesting, I believe Alexandra is a bit too young for me.”

“Child, age is just a number. Besides, I know how lonely you are and how you’ve been praying that the Lord send you someone special. She just might be the answer to your prayers! I know you’re one of the few white men in the neighborhood and she is also white. I’m very aware of the racial tension that exists, so I think you and her would be perfect together! While I think mixed babies are beautiful, I know they receive a lot of ill-treatment in this cruel, hateful world.”

“You don’t look that old anyway,” Alexandra said.

“I just made thirty-four,” Carlisle replied.

“Wow. I thought you would have been twenty-two or twenty-three, twenty-five, tops. I mean, you are very cute!”

“Well, thanks. I get that a lot. But, see, I’m probably too old for you.”

“What if I told you that I’m very mature for an twenty-going-on-twenty-one-year old and I do like older guys?!”

“I don’t know. You are very pretty and you seem sweet, but I have a lot of reverence for you and…”

“You’re making me blush! It’s a good thing though if you have reverence for me, that means you would treat me well.”

“Yes, that’s true, I suppose.”

“We also have a lot in common, I mean we’re both artists in our respects. I bet I could play my violin while you paint and inspire you to create some beautiful portraits or I could study your previous paintings and be inspired to play some beautiful music.”

“Come to think of that, as Mother Nellie said, I have been praying that the Lord send me a significant other, and I would want my relationship with her to have exactly those attributes. Maybe age is just a number after all.”

“Well, duh, silly!” Alexandra replied, then continued soberly, “But am I too fat for you, though?”

“As I said before, I think you’re very pretty, weight included! And more importantly, you have a beautiful heart and a brilliant mind!”

“You’re making me blush even more, but I feel so giddy!”

“I can see you blushing and I think it’s adorable! I’d like to kiss you where you are blushing, but I don’t want to overstep my bounds.”

“Aw, that is so sweet. By the way, you wouldn’t be overstepping your bounds. I’d want you to kiss me. In fact, come here and kiss me right now!”

Carlisle walked off the steps and onto the sidewalk.

Mother Nellie said, “I’ll leave you two alone.” She then went inside.

EXCERPT THREE:

I would like to be in on their jam sessions and paint while they make music.”

“They would be flattered, I’m sure.”

“When is the next time you practice with them?”

“Not tomorrow but the next day.”

“Do you think I could come and paint?”

“Sure!”

“Where does your band meet to practice?”

“There’s an abandoned building a few blocks away.”

“Wow! Just from what you describe your band seems very genuine. I bet they make the most awesome music. What is their name?”

“A Little Bit of Everything (And Not Too Much of Nothing.)”

“That is so original! I now cannot wait to hear you play with them!”

“I would like to see some of your paintings, if that’s all right.”

“Of course! I’d be honored to show you!”

Carlisle walked to his closet and pulled out several painted canvases.

“There’s this blogger who’s work I love to read,” He said, “I typically read the fiction page of his blog and then meditate on his stories, once my heart and mind are full of inspiration I try to bring those stories to life in my paintings.”

He began to show them to Alexandra one by one:

“This first one,” He said, “Is a portrait of a young couple sitting in an urban park. He is reading his stories to her and she is hanging on to his every word. Look, you can almost feel what they are feeling!”

“It’s kind of like us, but in a parallel universe,” Alexandra replied.

“Here’s another one, two teenage runaways hiding under an overpass on a cold night. It’s them against the world but look how much in love they are!”

“Yes! Yes! I can feel it! Show me some more!”

“Very well: Here is a teenage couple laying together in the fields on a dreary day. He is cradled in her lap, but look how he stares up at her with so much love!”

“I want to cradle you in my lap if that’s all right with you. There’s so much more I want to do with you as well!”

“I desire those things as well, Alexandra, but you do command a lot of reverence!”

“Then if you revere me so much, give in to my desires!”

EXCERPT FOUR:

Carlisle hugged Alexandra then they share a few kisses once again.

“I would like to cradle you in my lap, that is if you would want that as well.”

“Sounds wonderful to me. Let me pull out the mattress on my futon.”

“Yay!”

“I have a Sony portable radio that’s probably older than you and I use it to listen to NPR. However, I’m probably the only resident of this building who listens to that network. There’s some fine music on at this hour if you want to listen.”

“Wow! I too would try to listen to NPR, but then my uncle broke my radio in a fit of anger when he caught me doing so. He took a sledge hammer and crushed it to pieces. Of course, he did that also to my computer, which I lost so many of my recordings.”

Carlisle said, “He sounds like a terrible person and how I saw him act today further backs that assumption I have about him,”

“You assume correctly though!” Alexandra answered.

“I don’t have it in me to act like that, unless I’m severely provoked,”

“Well I think someone would have to do something extremely wrong to provoke you.”

“You’re right.”

Alexandra smiled at Carlisle and he plugged his radio into the electrical socket, then extended out the FM antenna and turned it on, placing it on the window sill as he said to her, “Well, for the record, in my place, you may listen to NPR or anything else you wish to hear until your heart is content!”

Alexandra then sat on the mattress of the futon and Carlisle rested the back of his head in her lap and looked up at her face with admiration.

She played with his curly hair and spoke as they listened to classical music, “I’ve never met a man like you, but I must confess I am falling for you quickly!”

“The feeling is mutual! I’m so sorry I misjudged you about your age because you do seem so perfect for me!”

“It’s quite all right. All that tells me is what a decent guy you are!”

“Thank you. That means a whole lot coming from someone like you!”

“Well, I mean every word of it,” Alexandra said as she continued to play with Carlisle’s hair and rubbed his face with her soft hands.

They rested on the futon and listened to the radio until Carlisle heard Alexandra’s stomach growling. The noise became increasingly loud.

“Are you hungry?” He asked her.

“Yes. I haven’t eaten since Noon. All my band and I had were doughnuts and coffee.”

Carlisle looked at his SwissGear wristwatch. The hands pointed to 10:17.

“Good Lord, you need to eat, as do I,” He said, then continued, “I made a pot spaghetti around lunchtime, but I can heat it up.”

“That sounds good, I’m not picky. Of course, I’m not picky, look how fat I am!”

“With all reverence due, I think you’re very sexy!”

“Aw. Thank you! Just so you know, there’s a lot of sexy things I want to do with you!”

“As do I but let’s eat first. We both need some nourishment.”

Carlisle and Alexandra walked to the kitchen and he began to heat the pot of sauce and the pot of noodles on his stove.

In time the noodles were steaming and the sauce was bubbling.

He grabbed himself and Alexandra a plate and served both of them a generous portion of noodles and sauce.

He then took a two Liter bottle of Cherry Coke from his refrigerator and poured them each a tall glass as he said, “I don’t know if you prefer Wild Cherry Pepsi or Cherry Coke, but I buy whichever one is on sale.”

“Either one is fine like I said, I’m not picky.”

They then sat down at Carlisle’s coffee table and ate quickly.

That’s all I am willing to share at the moment.  I hope I can clean these stories up and make them more appropriate, both for Christians and non Christians alike.

Back to “Works of Fiction”

A Review of the BellSouth 1010 FRS Transceiver

Just so we’re all operating on the same wavelength, I do not own the featured image on this page. I give credit to whomever credit is due.

Between the summer and fall of 2001, my interest in radio electronics was taking off astronomically.

It began in the spring of 2001 but in reality, I had always been interested in radio electronics.

I discovered Family Radio Service in either late September or early October of 2001.

Later in October of 2001, I purchased my first FRS transceiver, a BellSouth 1010 Ranger Communicator, made by U.S. Electronics. And that is what this piece will be a review thereof.

I purchased this radio during one weekend of October 2001. I believe it was a Saturday. Of course, I was planning to purchase it for several weeks. The night before I purchased it, I saw several people using them at the Chackbay Firemen’s Fair.

When I got home, I installed the batteries and then began to use the scan feature.

Even though I wasn’t in a very populated area, I heard quite a few people talking on different channels. Some of them would answer me back in a friendly way, others would get annoyed that I tried to join their conversation.

Most of what I heard were spouses talking and hunters in the woods. Now and then, I heard people traveling in caravans. Once or twice I came across other teenagers.

I would soon discover that the maintenance crew at my school also used FRS transceivers at the time and that is how I began to befriend them. They gave me my first job in the summer of 2005.

FRS had two things going for it twenty years ago:

First, while the advertised range was only two miles, you actually could get two solid miles of communication range. This is unlike nowadays when the advertised range is maybe 35-50 miles but in practice, you’re doing well if you can get a few blocks of communication range.

Second, there were fewer people with cell phones because cell phones cost more two own and operate, weren’t as user-friendly, and could only call, text, and maybe play a few basic games. There also were very few if any people with unlimited calling plans. So this made FRS a much more cost-effective communications plan, at least for short-range communications.

Now in 2021, I am in a slightly more densely populated area and can set an FRS transceiver to scan and won’t hear anything for hours or if I do, it’s a GMRS repeater on one of the shared channels. Most of FRS traffic is antenna tower climbers and land surveyors. Although on Christmas Day, I’ll hear some kids and teenagers playing on the FRS transceivers they got for Christmas.

The BellSouth 1010 had amazing audio quality and despite being very affordable was built pretty solidly, although the belt clip was flimsy. It could also transmit the signal a solid two miles and hear units two miles away. It featured all fourteen channels (which was the legal limit back then), a backlit LCD, a scan function, volume control that was loud enough even on the lowest setting, a light to indicate the unit was transmitting, and a call tone feature. It operated on 4 AAA batteries and the run time was pretty generous for its time. An optional charging adaptor and batteries could be purchased. There were no CTCSS or DCS tones, but the radio made up for it with range and audio quality.

During Thanksgiving Week of 2001, we were eating at New Orleans Hamburger and Seafood Company when my parents’ car had an electrical problem. I used the radio to summon help and one person answered me and offered but the problem with the car was too complex, so eventually, they had to get it towed to a mechanic.

I had realized there were even more FRS users in larger metropolitan areas, much to my delight.

I carried this radio with me until August of 2002 when I upgraded to a BellSouth 2231 and I tried out several other FRS radios since. I have since bought duplicates for sentimental reasons.

It was FRS that got my feet wet with radio communications and would be one of the catalysts that caused me to get an Amateur Radio license. I now hold a General Class license and plan to start studying for my Extra Class.

I wish FRS transceivers were made this well in 2021. And it would be nice to add some of the modern features such as CTCSS, DCS, multiple call tones, waterproofing, weather radio, USB charging, to name a few.

If you’re wondering what FRS transceiver I am currently using, I now use a Motorola Talkabout T600.

For years though, I used a Motorola Talkabout T6250, which I initially purchased in October of 2003 and I wish Motorola would bring that model back!

I should write a review on both of those radios because I do like them as well. Stay tuned!

By the way, I give this radio 4.75 out of 5 stars! I took off a quarter-point because of the flimsy belt clip.

I suppose this concludes my review of the BellSouth 1010 Ranger Communicator.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed, entertained, and enlightened.

May God richly bless you!

Back to “Product Reviews”

A Review of the Coby CX-17 AM/FM/Weather/TV Audio Receiver

Just to let everyone know, I do not own the featured image on this page. Rather I downloaded it from eBay. I give credit to whomever credit is due!

It was Labor Day September 3, 2001. I was out shopping with my Mom because I had some extra cash on me from doing various odd jobs.

I was hoping to buy some CDs with that cash, but the employees of the music store refused to sell them to me because I wasn’t old enough and the lyrics were explicit.

In the previous summer, I had begun to cultivate my interests in all radio electronics. At that point, I was amazed by the fact that television signals could still be received over the air for free. I wanted to experiment with that. I had even asked my parents to put up a television antenna so I could experiment but they flat out refused. They were never supportive of my electronics interests at all, but they sure call me up whenever one of their electronics is on the blink. They had subscribed to cable since before I was born and they didn’t like the idea of watching over-the-air television. To this day, they still don’t. Must be a Boomer thing…

So, while my Mom was shopping at Southland Mall, I had wandered over to Big Lot’s which had recently been established there and was only a few feet away. In those days Big Lot’s had a much better selection of electronics than they do now.

I had seen a few interesting things in there but what caught my attention was a Coby CX-17. Not only could it receive standard AM and FM broadcasts but also the audio from TV channels 2-13 and Weather Radio broadcasts!

And that radio receiver is what this piece will be a review thereof.

Technically this was my first Weather Radio, although I never used it for that purpose nor do I remember it ever picking up the weather broadcasts.

I wanted it to be able to hear the television audio, so I could experiment with that.

When I got home, I remember standing near the dog kennel in my parents’ backyard and listening to FM. I don’t recall which station I was hearing but it was playing, “Push” by Matchbox 20. I did appreciate the audio quality when it was indeed able to lock onto a station.

In the following days, I tried to be able to hear the television signals with varying degrees of success. The stations that were easiest to hear were WWL-TV which was on Channel 4 and WDSU-TV which was on Channel 6. I could also hear WYES which was on Channel 12.

Unfortunately now, this radio is mostly obsolete because television audio signals are no longer analog FM as they were before June 12, 2009. The FM selection is nowhere near as good as the selection on even the cheapest dedicated FM receivers. This is because it shares the bandwidth selection with TV channels 2-6. So there’s not much space for FM and therefore very poor selectivity.

I think I was only able to receive the stronger stations on AM but I wasn’t much of an AM listener at the time.

For the Weather Band, I don’t ever recall hearing a weather broadcast on this radio, but maybe I never tuned it down to that position, since TV Channel 13 was at one end of the band and Weather was at the other end. Also, this isn’t the strongest of receivers and the two weather broadcast stations nearest me were about 40 and 50 miles away, respectively.

On Friday, September 7, 2001, there was a teacher conference and so I was with my siblings and younger cousins at our Grandparents’ house. I was experimenting with that radio. The day was quite stormy and we were in between thunderstorms. I commented on how my radio is picking up a lot of static, so I think another storm is coming. My Paw Paw commented that the static had happened because he “just expelled a gas.” For those that knew my Paw Paw, you would all understand, but for those who didn’t, he was constantly cracking dad jokes or toilet jokes. He probably made me laugh more than anyone else.

A day later my brother had a bantam football match in the Superdome and I stayed with my Grandparents again. I was trying to improve the reception with aluminum foil but only had marginal results. There was some tennis match being covered, I remember that.

So this wasn’t the best of radio receivers, not by a long shot.

However, it does have sentimental value one for it helping me further cultivate my interest in radio electronics. And this was the radio I had with me on September 11, 2001. I don’t think any American alive on that horrible day will ever forget where they were when those radical islamic terrorists carried out their egregious attacks.

I was in class, an Eighth Grader at Vandebilt Catholic High School.

I did have that radio in my pocket throughout the day.

I wasn’t carrying a flashlight at that point in my life out of fear of harassment for liking flashlights.

Carrying a knife or multi-tool to school would have meant automatic expulsion and criminal charges.

One girl pointed out that I had a radio in my pocket during lunch and she threatened to tattle on me. I have no idea how I talked her out of it.

Later that day, after school I stood on my parents’ driveway and tuned in WWL-TV’s audio signal. Dan Rather was covering the aftermath of the terrorist attacks.

I carried that radio with me everywhere until October of 2001 when I began to get interested in FRS and bought a BellSouth 1010 Communicator. I should do a review on that radio as well.

My Cob CX-17 broke some time a little over a year later and I was disappointed because of the sentimental value it had.

Earlier today, I ordered another one on eBay, for old times sake. I plan to keep it in a safe place when it comes in.

If I had to give a rating of it, I would give it a 3 out of five stars. While it is very compact and does indeed look cool. And yes the audio is fairly decent. But the selectivity, especially on FM is poor and the receiver sensitivity especially on Weather Band is also poor. This radio would have been more appropriate for those who dwelled in a major city, not someone living on the broadcast fringe like myself.

All in all, I guess this concludes my review of the Coby CX-17.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed, enlightened, and maybe, somehow even entertained.

May God richly bless you!

Back to “Product Reviews”

Hurricane Katrina Ruined Radio Broadcasting in New Orleans

I was always interested in radio.

Starting at the age of eight going on nine, I listened to the radio regularly. From that age until the age of fifteen or sixteen, I mostly listened to stations that played Top 40 music.

Starting at age 15, I began to become interested in talk radio, though I didn’t start to listen to it on the regular until the Summer of 2003 at the age of sixteen and a half.

Part of this was a desire to experiment with AM radio and the other part of this, was because I was starting to think politically.

By the Fall of 2003, I was listening to talk radio more than music radio. I was then sixteen going on seventeen.

Because of many policies of the Bush Administration (2001-2009), I remember commenting in my World History Class that America had become “a police state.” I was echoing what former Libertarian Presidential Candidate Harry Browne, God rest his soul, said on his talk show. The teacher barked back saying that I “listen to too much talk radio.” He was right about me listening to too much talk radio, but, America during the Second Bush Administration had become very much like a Fascist police state. Do me a favor and read the 14 Points of Fascism and see for yourself. Another time, this same teacher personally went up to my desk and referred to the French as “cheese-eating surrender monkeys” because they refused to participate in the Iraq War. He durn well knew that nationality of my surname is French and he frequently made fun of it.

Okay, I may seem off topic but I’m going somewhere with this.

Between the time I started listening to talk radio in 2003 until late August of 2005, there was a lot of awesome talk radio content to choose from in the New Orleans market and even in adjoining markets.

A very wicked woman named Katrina ruined all of this and many other things. Some things have rebuilt themselves out of the ruins, but unfortunately, talk radio in New Orleans has not. Even most of the current content on WWL is pretty boring for someone like me.

In this piece, I will try to list the stations in the New Orleans market that was once very entertaining and informative but have since either gone dark or were converted to something more boring.

I think the best way to do this is to list by frequency. I will be going mostly by memory but I do have the assistance of good ole Wikipedia. Some stations are still in operation, but during that time I didn’t listen to them. Keep in mind that the period I am referencing for these stations is between June of 2003 and late August/early September 2005.

Here we go:

600 kHz WVOG-So I didn’t listen to this station until after I came to Christ in July of 2004. Afterward, I listened to it quite a bit until I began to backslide for the first time in March of 2005.

690 kHz WTIX/WIST (now WQNO)-I discovered this station in October of 2003 and it was carrying a show hosted by former Libertarian Presidential Candidate Harry Browne. The station had a feed from a radio network that carried other interesting shows. I wish I could remember the name of that network. Harry Browne came on every night at 10:00 PM Central Time but before Harry Browne came on, there was a show about astronomy that I would tune in while waiting for Harry Browne to come on. I almost began to cultivate an interest in astronomy just from listening to that show. At the top of every hour, there was a news broadcast from CNN Radio and at the time CNN was more moderate, very much unlike today. In April or May of 2004, the station became more conservative, which I was opposed to conservative values mostly because I had not yet come to Christ and I was young. Furthermore, I was staunchly against blindly following those in authority just because they were indeed in authority. It seems that so many around me blindly supported George W. Bush, no matter what, and I was appalled. The station began playing news broadcasts on the hour from Fox News, which I eschewed. Another thing I eschewed was so much dedication to sports on that station. There were still some talk programs but only aired while I was in school. One program that stayed on until maybe Katrina was a local show hosted by Gerry McCann who was an electronics technician in the New Orleans area. Seriously why can’t there be more shows like these? By the time Katrina did her evil deeds, I didn’t listen to this station. 690 kHz used to put out 20,000 Watts but now puts out less than 10,000 during the day and even less power at night. I’m not complaining at all because the station now carries catholic community radio and also some feeds from ewtn. I cannot endorse anything catholic anymore and maintain a clear conscience.

750 kHz KKNO-I received this station a couple of times whilst trying to receive WSB out of Atlanta, which is on the same channel.

800 kHz WSHO-I didn’t listen to this station until after coming back to Christ in late 2008, so I cannot comment much on what it was like pre-Katrina. I know now that I enjoy Christian music and some of the Bible studies aired on this station.

870 kHz WWL-my Dad listened to this station a lot all while I was growing up, especially during sporting events and whenever preparing for a hurricane. I discovered “Newswatch Magazine” hosted by David J. Smith on this station in the Summer of 2003 but didn’t listen to his show on the regular until the Spring of 2004. That show was a contributing factor in me having a mental breakdown in June of 2004 but that mental breakdown was also a major factor in making me realize that I am a sinner and therefore my need for Christ. I finally came to Christ in July of 2004. I always thought there was way too much sports programming on WWL and of course, I think sports are boring. This station was very helpful though in relaying information during and in the aftermath of Katrina. While I was with my family in Bossier City, Louisiana, they were wondering if they could find out what was going on in New Orleans. So after sunset, I was able to tune in to WWL and they were all amazed.

940 kHz WYLD-I never really listened to this station for any lengthy amount of time.

990 kHz WGSO-I could only catch this station sometimes and only on higher-end radios such as a car radio. I remember it being a business format. I also remember it carried the audio feed to WWL-TV newscasts.

1010 kHz WCKW-I never really listened to this station during that time and it was many times difficult to catch anyway.

1060 kHz WLNO-I did listen to this station quite a bit after coming to Christ in July 2004. In fact, it was on this station at some point in the Fall of 2004 that I was listening to Irwin Baxter’s program about the end times and it was through his program that the roman catholic church was exposed. He stated that the roman catholic church is indeed the great harlot mentioned in the 17th Chapter of Revelation. I didn’t take this too well since I was going to a catholic school at the time and because of my young and inexperienced Christian faith, this was a factor in my backsliding.

1230 kHz WBOK-I don’t ever recall listening to this station during that time, nor do I think the radios I had were sensitive enough to receive it.

1280 kHz WODT-I never had any reason to listen to this station at the time because it was a sports station and as I’ve mentioned before I think sports are boring.

1350 kHz WSMB (now WWWL)-I listened to this station extensively starting in the Spring of 2004 until some time in 2005. Besides WTIX/WIST I think this station was most adversely affected by Katrina. I initially started by listening to Coast to Coast AM on this station. Then I had a mental breakdown in June of 2004. I started listening to the radio again in the Fall of 2004. I remember shows such as “Dig In” with Chef Duke (the theme song was cool and catchy), The Phil Hendrie Show, and others. I listened to this station the most in April and May of 2005, then later secured my first job and didn’t have as much time for radio.

1400 kHz WFPR-I don’t recall even knowing about this station until I was doing my research for this piece.

1540 kHz KGLA (now WFNO)-I don’t speak or understand Spanish, so I never listened to this station.

1560 kHz WSLA-I’ve only caught this a handful of times during this period and when I did, it was almost always sports, so I quickly lost interest.

I could also list the FM stations but they change formats much more frequently than their AM counterparts. In my mid to late teens, I was more interested in talk radio than music radio because while Pop and Punk/Indie music was pretty good back then, there weren’t too many stations in my area that would play it. Most of the stations in my area that were supposed to play Top 40 music (including Pop and Punk/Indie) instead were playing more Rap music. And Rap music got stupid some time around late 2003 or early 2004. Amazingly around this time, Country music was pretty good, but I would listen to that genre on a station closer to me. Unfortunately now, and since about 2013, Country music has become stupid. The only current Pop artist that I am even remotely familiar with is Billie Eilish and while she’s very genuine, she can be weird at times, but maybe I am no longer into what is considered trendy. I never really was. In the late 2000s and throughout the 2010s decade Punk/Indie music was awesome but I’m ashamed to admit that I’m not familiar with any of their current hits. Rap, these days, is sometimes stupid yet some of it is funny too. I am most familiar with Contemporary Christian Music these days and I do indeed like it, which is amazing because there was a time I didn’t like it, yes even after becoming a Christian and years afterward. The genre of music that I liked most in my mid to late teen years was New Age because it did indeed help me early on as a writer. I have recently stopped listening to it because I am a Christian and such music hinders my relationship with Christ.

Okay, enough about my music tastes, this piece is supposed to be about how radio broadcasting in New Orleans was ruined after Katrina and has not recovered at all.

I wish there were some stations in the New Orleans market that carried talk shows about politics, history, science, technology, culture, the arts, literature, health, and other intelligent topics. And have them from diverse viewpoints, not just one. Sure there is WWNO which carries NPR for most of its broadcast cycle, but NPR is way too biased these days, unfortunately. I wish there were more stations to choose from. And I wish there weren’t so many sports stations, especially since there is hardly any other type of programming. New Orleans is a very culture-rich city and is the perfect home for visual artists, musicians, writers, and thinkers. The City is also a wonderful place for those in the medical and technology sectors. So I think the broadcasters owe good radio content to the people of New Orleans and those in the surrounding communities. I will admit that a lot of people do indeed love The New Orleans Saints and I certainly would want those people to have a medium for all topics concerning their team. We all know that there is a whole lot more to New Orleans than just sports. While I think sports are boring and pointless, I get that they make many people happy. Of course, these same people become irate if a bad call is made or their team does poorly, so I don’t see exactly how it makes them so happy. However, I’m all for the policy of to each his/her own. That’s the former Libertarian in me talking, I’ll admit that I still espouse many Libertarian ideals but since about 2019, I have been fiercely Moderate. And I’ve been all over the political spectrum throughout my life. I will also say that Christ not only helps form my current political views but He trumps all of my political views. With all that being said, I think that those like me ought to have a broadcast medium to cover our interests, I mean we once did in the days before Katrina, at least to some degree. Why can’t we have it again?

I know that I’m not that important but maybe there is a reader of this blog who will see this piece. And maybe he or she has plenty of influence and will use that influence to change the way radio broadcasting is done, not only in New Orleans but in all markets or at least the ones that are lacking.

It definitely would be nice to have the programming that was on par with that of WTIX-AM circa 2003.

I won’t hold my breath for it though.

I know that Internet Radio and streaming, in general, has probably taken a good bit of revenue from analog terrestrial radio, but I don’t see how programming on the latter in New Orleans has not yet recovered from Katrina when so many aspects of life in that City things have. I know there are others out there like myself, albeit somewhat few and far between. And it just seems we cannot band together.

For now, I have found other ways to enrich my mind and learn about what interests me. Unfortunately, it is rarely through local radio.

I guess this, therefore, concludes my piece on how radio broadcasting in New Orleans was ruined by Hurricane Katrina.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed, enlightened, and maybe even entertained.

May God richly bless you.

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A Review of the Grundig Yacht Boy 400

First off, let’s be transparent:
I do not own the featured image on this page and I am giving credit to whomever credit is due.

I had known about shortwave (HF) radio since 2001. My Paternal Grandmother was the first person to mention it to me.

I wouldn’t own a shortwave receiver until December 1, 2002, and then it was only a mediocre model.

In 2004 or so, I discovered the Grundig Yacht Boy 400PE. Since then I had coveted one for almost two decades. Earlier in June of 2021, I found a Grundig Yacht Boy 400 (the predecessor model which comes in a no-nonsense black instead of that goofy platinum color electronics of the early-to-mid-2000s had.) And that is the radio of which this piece will be a review thereof. I was able to acquire one for only $54.79 and that included the tax and the shipping was free!

What made this particular model stand out is that it was capable of receiving not just AM signals on the shortwave band, but also Single Side Band signals on there.

Though it wouldn’t become full-blown until 2015, my interest in listening to Maritime communications was beginning in 2003-2004. Though my knowledge then was limited, I knew I needed an HF receiver that was capable of demodulating Single Side Band transmissions to hear long-distance maritime communications.

I soon realized that the Grundig Yacht Boy 400PE was capable of receiving such, but I was an unemployed seventeen-year-old in 2004 with parents who were not interested in technology at all. So there was no way I could ever afford one. I’m not aware exactly how much a Grundig Yacht Boy 400PE had cost in 2004 but I think it was between $120-170 not including shipping.

The first time I saw a Grundig Yacht Boy 400 PE in real life was in January of 2009. I was briefly employed as an HVAC Technician and was assisting a job at a camp on Grand Isle, Louisiana. We were working on a central system for some rich folks. There I saw it on their dining room table, maybe they too wanted to hear Maritime Single Sideband transmissions. Sadly I didn’t have the time to try it out, as much as I wanted to.

I had since used a few other budget Single Sideband receivers but they all lacked the features I truly wanted.

Then in early June of 2021, I was on eBay looking for shortwave Single Sideband receivers and came across this one. Though I probably didn’t have the money, I bought it anyway because I knew I couldn’t pass it up. After all, I had wanted one for the past 17 years!

It was delivered to my residence on June 13, 2021, but I was out of town. I returned home on June 19, 2021, and my neighbor handed me the package. So that means at the time of this review I am in physical possession of this radio for a couple of days at the time of writing this. I figured out how to properly use it on June 20, 2021.

So this review will be my initial reactions:

Since 2004, I have had a copy of the manual in portable document format saved on various storage media. I will say that operating this device is difficult without reading the instructions first. But once understood, it’s fairly simple.

Two clocks can be programmed, of which I programmed my local time for Time 1 and UTC for Time 2. There is also an alarm feature that I don’t think I will use.

As for band coverage, it receives the following:
Long Wave 144-351 kHz
Medium Wave 520-1710 kHz (US)
Medium Wave 527-1606 kHz (International)
Short Wave 1600-30000 kHz
FM 87.5-108 MHz

I wish something could be done with the Long Wave Band here in The States like maybe some sort of civil defense broadcasting like was once available. I did pick up a handful of non-voice signals. What I didn’t like is that longwave coverage stopped at 351 kHz. I truly think it should have gone all the way to the medium wave band, so I could receive the NAVTEX broadcasts on 518 kHz if I so chose.

Medium Wave is fairly decent, better than most, although it doesn’t hold a candle to my GE Superadio, except that it displays the frequency with much more accuracy.

As for shortwave, I’ve pulled in some CB traffic, the US Time signal and, various amateur radio transmissions. I had heard some ham radio traffic that pertains to RV drivers on 7264 kHz but I couldn’t make it out. I later heard some amateur radio traffic on 3685 kHz almost clearly. It picks up the times signals nicely and I also heard some foreign and domestic broadcasts.

The one station I tried on FM came in flawlessly, which is a miracle because I live near an FM transmitter which causes interference on most of my radios.

There are only 40 memory presets available, which will have to do, for now. I wish there could have been more but this radio is over 25 years old.

I’m also curious to know in which country was this radio built? I don’t see it anywhere on the unit unless it would be behind the battery door and I didn’t look well enough.

I do like how it can accurately tune single-sideband signals, but I wish they could come in a little clearer because some of them are still unintelligible. I do appreciate the direct entry of any frequency and I will see exactly how accurate the clock is in the coming weeks.

Some say that the Yacht Boy series of Grundig radios were designed for use aboard yachts, maybe to receive long-distance transmissions. I’m sure it would work better on the open sea than in an apartment surrounded by electrical noise, right?

All in all, I give this radio a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars, because I wish the speaker could be a little louder, I think it should run on 6 C or D cells instead of 6 AA cells (would not mind sacrificing some of the compactness) and there is a gap of coverage between 354 and 519 kHz. So, therefore, I deducted a tenth of a point for each of those aspects I didn’t like. Other than that, so far it is a very nice radio and I hope to get plenty of use out of it.

This, therefore, concludes my review of the Grundig Yacht Boy 400.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed, enlightened, and maybe even entertained. May God richly bless you!

Back to “Product Reviews”

A Review of the Kaito KA-210 Pocket-Portable AM FM Weatherband Radio

Just so we’re all clear and understand each other, I am not the owner of the featured image on this page. It is the property of Kaito Electronics.

So, for a while now, I have been trying to reduce the weight I carry in my EDC backpack. My physician advised me to do so, because of my lower back injury.

And because of this, I realize that my AM/FM radio and my Weather Radio should be consolidated.

For the past few years, I would carry a Sony ICF-P26 and a Midland HH50B for those purposes.

So, I stopped carrying the Sony radio among other items to lighten my load.

I still sometimes carry the Midland radio if feel the need to do so.

From December of 2020 to June of 2021, I had tried to EDC several radios that were pocket portables and could support AM/FM as well as Weather.

None of them satisfied me. They all had issues.

The one I tried to use most was a RETEKESS PR-15, but I find it wasn’t loud enough for noisy environments and it was very finicky about what position I could stand in to receive the Weather Broadcasts. This was an issue, especially when commuting to church on foot and needing Weather Information. Although it was very compact and easy to transport.

So, in the earlier parts of June 2021, I ordered a Kaito KA-210 and it came in today, June 11, 2021, a day earlier than expected. I hope the Postal Service is getting back to delivering the mail promptly as they previously had done so before this Covid nightmare. That radio is what this piece will be a review thereof.

For those who were forwarded from my YouTube video, first of all, thank you for checking out this piece (please consider looking at other pieces on this blog.) And secondly, I was highly impressed when I recorded that video because of the superb circuitry on this radio. I mean, it pulled in a Weather Radio station over 30 miles away and did so almost completely clearly without having to stand in a finicky position and being next to a WiFi computer and a television, both of which do cause a great deal of electrical noise. I know I said that I would wait to write a review, but I tried some FM listening with this radio and was even more impressed.

As I have mentioned multiple times, I live near an FM transmitter tower, just a block or two away. Therefore on just about every one of my lower-end FM receivers, this station’s broadcast signal bleeds all over the dials.

But when I tried some FM listening earlier today, I find that this Kaito KA-210 was pulling in FM stations better than other radios of mine in a similar configuration. It either features a Digital Signal Processor Circuit or an Automatic Frequency Control Circuit, maybe even both and the FM stations I wanted were coming in quite decently.

I’ll admit I even listened to NPR for a minute or two, but then got irritated by what was being discussed on the broadcast.

NPR’s fall from grace is another topic I’ve written about to some degree.

But the fact that this radio pulled in the NPR station which is considerably difficult for most of my other radios to pull in is what impressed me and compelled me to write this review today instead of a few days or weeks in the future.

I will say that it isn’t the most solidly built radio, but I think it would be good enough for light EDC and getting weather information while commuting on foot. I know that I have a smartphone, but in a way, I can sometimes be old school and desire to listen to a Weather Radio instead. I think that is the ham radio operator in me coming out, but I digress.

I will also say that the weather in South Louisiana is constantly changing and quite unpredictable except for a well-seasoned meteorologist. So access to accurate and up-to-date weather data is a must for anyone who works in, resides in, or otherwise frequents South Louisiana.

The best way I can describe this device is that it is very sensitive but still excellent at filtering out unwanted interference. It is compact and reasonably built but seems to be loud enough for a noisy environment, at least for personal use.

I can owe its better audio quality to the fact that it has a more powerful speaker and therefore is run on AA instead of AAA batteries. Therefore, it has more current to power the components much better than a model that runs on AAA batteries.

Throughout this spring season, I have commuted to church a handful of times and it began to rain just as I found cover under the metal awning. I would sit and wait for my Pastor to arrive, and then would monitor the NOAA Weather Radio broadcast, in case of something more severe occurring. This was difficult to do with similar radios, I guess because of the metal but also the electronics from the church security system and surveillance cameras. But, I shall see how well this radio performs. I have a hunch that it shall do better than the other and I will update you, the reader, of my findings.

I’ll admit I have yet to use it for AM reception but I have other radios that I would rather use for that band.

I’ll try to take it with me on a walk later today and see how it performs.

Here are some details about this product as provided by the company website. I’ll add my commentary:

Features:
AM/FM NOAA weather tuner-Quite sensitive too, especially for the price!
Ultra compact for convenience & portability-Perfect size for EDC
Built-in speaker-Loud enough for personal use almost anywhere.
Headphone jack (earphones not included)-I’ve been told it even does stereo!
LED tuning indicator-Bright green light confirms that you’re locked onto a signal.
Telescopic antenna-Long enough to properly pull in signals, but short enough to be easily carried.
Requires 2 AA batteries (not included)-Thank God it’s not AAA batteries!

Physical Dimensions English: 4.5 x 0.8 x 2.8 inches.
Physical Dimensions Metric: 11.43 x 2.032 x 7.112 centimeters.
Weight English: 0.5 pounds (8 ounces.)
Mass Metric: 0.226796185 kilograms (226.796185 grams.)

I’ve been trying for some time now to figure out what is the perfect portable pocket radio for traveling and I think this comes rather close. I do wish the weather channels were either crystal controlled or phase lock loop synthesized to allow an automatic scan for the strongest weather station signal, but then that would drive up the cost. I also wish these antennas could be much more sturdy but still retractable and replaceable. I don’t have the credentials but I think I could be an excellent electronics designer at least where the appearance, form factor, build quality, and user interface are concerned.

The MSRP is $19.99+tax and/or shipping which I find to be generous since it performs so well. Look $20 actually goes a decent way, even with all this wretched inflation!

Try one out for yourself. Maybe give one as a gift.

It’s perfect for the backpacker, boater, car/truck driver, or any other commuter/traveler. Maybe even the freight train hopper, something which I must not condone but still do find highly interesting, could appreciate this device. I don’t like sports at all, but even a baseball fan could take this to a game. When I go to sporting events with family, I notice that fans don’t bring radios to games like they once did. Of course, I would advise only AM listening at such an event because an unruly spectator or even a foul ball could destroy the external rod antenna.

That brings up another point: If incarcerated convicts have radios with short stubby, but rugged antennas encased in rubber or plastic, why can’t these also be made for radios sold to the general public?

If any executives of radio manufacturing companies are reading this piece, just consider that last statement I made!

As for a rating, I give this product a 4.93 out of 5 stars because I wish the cabinet material was a little more durable and wouldn’t mind the extra weight. I also wish the battery door was secured better as to not get lost. Finally, I wish the writing on the radio was much more permanent. These are all small potatoes though.

This, therefore, concludes my review of the Kaito KA-210.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed, enlightened, and maybe even entertained.

May God richly bless you!

Back to “Product Reviews”

A Christian Honeymoon

I know that I am currently single at the moment, but I often pray and wonder what my future spouse will be like. There are also certain standards that I have for her and my prayer is that God will honor those standards.  These aspects are the desires of my heart.

I hope you, the reader, enjoy it.

Here it is, without further ado:

It was a quiet ceremony, just our pastor as well as a few family members and friends as witnesses, but I am now married to a wonderful young lady.

I am thirty-four-going-on-thirty-five and she is twenty-eight. God had to constantly remind me that my future spouse would be six years my junior.

I know we’ve only been seeing each other for the past six months, but I have never been so compatible with anyone else. And not only that, we are crazy about each other and can’t keep our affections under control. So, as the Apostle Paul suggested, we got married.

We are saving our sexual intimacy for the honeymoon, but the beautiful part is while neither of us is virgins, our sexual and romantic pasts are completely equivalent.

We even have the same number of previous partners!

Both of us are divorcees coming out of faulty marriages where we were mostly in the right. Everyone thought we were crazy to marry after only six months, especially because of our status.

Her previous marriage was arranged by her former church, which is nothing short of a cult. Unfortunately, it was to an abusive, insensitive, and eventually unfaithful man.

My previous marriage was considerably more consensual. But I was bound to a quarrelsome and quick-tempered woman who constantly tore me down.

In the six months, we have been seeing each other, we never once argued nor have we even been angry with each other.

We now sign the marriage license, thereby making it legal to the earthly authorities.

Initially, I wanted to get married without the government’s involvement. However, my pastor pointed out that while we wouldn’t be living in sexual sin, we would still be lying and cheating both of which are indeed sins.

So, we may lose some of our government assistance, but I know for certain that our God shall provide for whatever need that may arise, both seen and unseen, known and unknown.

We then change into our street clothes. I put on some Navy blue pants, and a plaid work shirt. She dons a baby blue tee shirt and a long denim skirt. We also cover up in jackets, because it is cold and rainy. She still feels the need to dress the way her former church commanded, but I don’t mind at all. If anything, I think it is very sexy and feminine. She somehow likes the fact that I wear long pants year-round, though several times she mentioned how she cannot wait to pull them off of me!

Now we are packing our suitcases with our favorite clothes and headed to an off-grid cabin situated on the shore of a beautiful lake for the next two weeks! Of course, as usual, I also have my backpack and she has her purse. We load everything into her white Dodge Caravan then drive to the North. The trip will take about a day and we plan to take turns behind the wheel.

We commence our trip. It is still cold and rainy, but what do you expect for late November?

We pray for God’s protection as we drive through the squall lines.

She finally drives us out of the squall line and we continue pressing on.

I check the RADAR on my phone, it’s clear.

She’s getting tired, so I take the wheel.

I drive diligently through the night, while she sleeps-even her snoring is cute. Then at sunrise, she wakes up and takes over. I sleep for the next few hours.

Now I am awake again.

It’s mid-morning and we stop at a travel center for food coffee and fuel. I park by the pump, then insert my credit card in the payment terminal and fill her van up. She goes into the store and buys us each a cup of coffee and two cherry cheese Danishes. We park her van near the entrance then sit at a table, say grace then eat our breakfast. She’s so cute as she scarfs down her pastries. We walk to her van and I open the driver’s door for her, then I sit in the passenger seat and take a nap. She gently wakes me up. It’s near lunch time and we’re stopped at a welcome center. We walk to a picnic table with our Igloo Playmate Cooler and eat some turkey sandwiches along with chocolate Moon Pies and drink from our gallon jug of sweet tea.

After eating we relieve ourselves in the family restroom, then she begins to drive.

A few more hours pass, and, finally, we arrive at our destination.

She drives up to the office and we both check in.

The clerk hands us a key with a numbered tag on it. She drives to our unit.

I step out then open the driver’s door for her.

She deliberately swings her legs out and I can see her peach-colored panty right up her skirt. I stare for just a moment, blushing.

She giggles then grabs me and kisses me.

I get our bags then we walk up the steps and onto the front porch.

“How are we going to cross the threshold? I know I am a big girl and you have a bad back.” She asks.

“What if I open the door for you? That way, you can walk in first, then grab me and pull me in!” I reply.

“Good idea. Will do!”

She then hugs me and plants several kisses on my face. I caress her love handles and she rubs my buttocks.

We are lost in each other’s embrace for just a moment, then she hands me the key.

I unlock the door and open it for her and say, “After you, my lady!”

She grins at me with mischief, swivels her shapely hips, and walks in.

A split second later, she grabs me and pulls me inside with great strength.

After I am inside, she places a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the outside doorknob, then locks us in. I set our bags at the base of the stairs then she grabs me again.

I begin to playfully lift her skirt and she says, “Don’t just lift it, take it off!”

“Oh, honey your wish is my command!”

I then unbutton her skirt and it falls to the floor.

She begins to unbutton and unzip my pants and then aggressively pulls them down.

We begin to walk up the stairs.

She pulls her shirt off and I likewise remove mine.

I admire her thick stomach and begin to kiss it as I say, “My God, you’re beautiful.”

“You’re so sweet. Now it’s time for me to pay you back for how wonderful you make me feel, get ready for me to rock your world!”

We continue walking and are now in front of the bedroom door

I then kneel in front of her and begin to rub her thick creamy thighs.

She moans and giggles with happiness.

“I finally get to have you!” She says beaming.

So I stand up and pull down her panty and she removes my boxer briefs.

Finally, she takes off her flesh-colored brassiere, then pulls me into the bedroom.

With great force, she shifts her sexy hips and ample-sized caboose, bumping me. From the impact, I lose my balance and fall onto the bed. She climbs on top of me.

“I love you so much!” She says as she catches her breath.

“I love you too and I’m only just beginning.”

She holds me down and begins a barrage of kisses on my face until I am overtaken by a tidal wave of love and lust for her.

We change positions then begin to have intercourse so much love with each other. In due time, I fill her with my seed and, seconds later, she sprays me with her fluids.

Now we collapse into the bedclothes and begin to snuggle.

We exchange many more kisses as I caress and her plump naked body. With tremendous adoration, I behold every pound, curve, inch, and dimple of hers.

She notices the loving gaze in my eyes and says, “You have revived the passions in me that I thought were long dead and I’ve never felt so cherished. I remember after my ex would finish with me he would either fall right asleep or go watch sports.”

“It’s his loss, but more importantly, my gain!” I tell her as I gently cup her supple bare breasts with my hands.

“What was it like with your ex, if you don’t mind me asking.”

“The instant she and I were done having sex it was right back to nagging and yelling. Sometimes she would even hit me.”

“Mine too.”

“Let’s never be like that with each other.”

“We then need to make sure that Christ is forever at our center.”

“You’re right.”

The sky begins to darken and the sunlight coming from our window vastly diminishes.

I see a Radio Shack Weather Cube and a Garrity LED lantern on the nightstand.

“Wow, I’ve never noticed these until just now. And well, you know how I am fascinated by all this. You truly had my undivided attention, baby!”

“Aww. I saw them right as we walked in and was wondering if you would notice. You were focused on me, instead. And I know how much you like that stuff, so I feel pretty flattered.”

“Was the intimacy good?”

“The best!”

“Yes. I have to agree, it was the best for me as well! I promise as long as my flesh is capable that I shall be intimate with you whenever you desire!”

“Aw! God knew what He was doing when He put us together!”

“And I promise to snuggle with you and cherish you both before and after, just to make sure that you know how much I love you!”

“I love you too and my only regret is that we couldn’t have met sooner!”

Suddenly there is an abrupt flash of lightning.

“Do you mind if I turn that Weather Cube on, just to see exactly how bad the weather is?”

“No, I don’t mind.”

I press the Play button on the but hear nothing but a hiss.

“Shucks. Maybe I need to adjust it,” I say.

So I turn the Weather Cube upside down and begin to turn the tuning knob. Seconds later, I hear that familiar computerized voice.

“There we go!” I say, then set it upright on the nightstand.

“You’re so sexy when you fix things. Every time I saw you fix the church computer, I felt tingles in my lady parts, even though I was in church!”

I come back to bed and start caressing her again as the weather radio plays in the background.

“Well, I must admit that I’ve had those stirrings in me ever since I first laid eyes upon you and no matter where we were, they happened. I guess because of your sexy body, your sweet face, that long beautiful hair, and of course the way you dress all drive me wild!”

“Anything besides my looks?”

“Yes. I remember the first time you made biscuits for me and they were so delicious. After we were full, you told me to take the rest home because you said if you would eat them, they’ll go straight to your fanny. I wanted so much to tell you how much I thought your fanny was lovely and no matter how big or small But I was also amazed at how wonderful the biscuits were.”

“I remember that. I was highly turned on by the way you were wolfing down my biscuits. You were so cute and the fact that you were enjoying them made me feel very confident! My ex simply demanded that I cook for him, but never once showed any appreciation for it.”

“It’s not just your looks and your cooking skills that I find sexy. It’s also how you treat me so well, you love me despite every strike against me, and, of course, you cause me to put my best foot forward in all that I do.”

“Aww! I know I say it a lot, but you make me feel so special. Even though we’re going to lose some of our government benefits, it will be worth it if we can be together forever!”

“Do you remember the first time we exchanged those three little words?”

“How could I forget? We said them in unison!”

“I was going home for the evening because my ride had arrived and we were lost in a kiss then our lips unhooked for just a moment and we said it. I instantly pitched a tent, but then quickly grabbed my backpack to hide it and then left. I didn’t want you to get the wrong idea of me.”

“If it makes you feel any better, my lady parts were drenched and dripping that very moment and I was afraid you could smell my fluids.”

“Why were you afraid?”

“Because I didn’t want you to smell the pheromones and lose control then fornicate with me. I feared that God would have punished us and maybe caused us to split up.”

“See, God provided an escape route out of our temptation. We need to always keep Him and His Christ at the center of our lives and marriage, so He will continue to honor and bless us.”

“Even while I was married to my ex, I prayed for a better man. When you came along, I knew you were the answer to that prayer but I was constantly afraid of losing you.”

“Wow. I too prayed for a better woman even while I was previously married. I prayed for years after the divorce. Then you showed up at my church. When I first laid eyes upon you, I knew you were the one. I too was very scared of losing you. But that only caused me to walk the line!”

She smiles, pulls me towards her, lays partially on top of me, and says, “You’re trapped, Mister! And I’m never letting you out. That way, we cannot lose each other!”

I rest happily under her super-sized body and am beginning to feel the powerful combination of love and lust yet again.

“Don’t ever let me go!”

“Believe me, I won’t”

Suddenly we hear the alert tones on the Weather Radio followed by a voice that tells us about a Marine Thunderstorm with a history of waterspouts moving onshore.

“I’m scared.” She says nervously.

“Let’s get dressed and stay in the closet under the stairwell, at least until the weather calms down.”

She nods and grabs the LED lantern.

We pick up our clothing piece by piece and I also grab the Weather Cube.

At the base of the stairs we quickly dress each other, then I grab my backpack and her purse, and we take shelter in the closet.

By the light of the LED lantern, I shield her body with mine as I pray, “Heavenly Father, thank You for putting us together and honoring our relationship. Please protect us not only from this threatening weather but from all threats to our marriage. May we keep You at our center of it all and may You give us the grace to be unequivocally kind, patient, reverent, and faithful to each other for life. Please calm this storm and allow us to enjoy our time together. We make these petitions in Your Son Jesus’ Holy Name, Amen.”

“Even when you pray, I’m turned on!”

“If I wasn’t so nervous about the weather, I’d go down on you right here, right now!”

“Don’t worry, we have a lifetime for that!”

We listen to the Weather Cube as the storm rages on. Finally the “all clear” is issued.

It is now late so we walk back upstairs.

I place the Weather Cube on the nightstand and she places the LED lantern next to it.

I give her many more kisses as we climb into bed.

We embrace as I say, “My greatest desire is to hold your beautiful body close to mine every night and wake up to your sweet face every morning for the rest of my life!”

“Then I’ll be tremendously happy to fulfill that desire for you!”

“I love you with all my heart!”

“I love you too!”

She switches the LED lantern off.

It is now totally dark as we fall asleep in each others’ arms, happier than ever before.

This story is indeed beautiful, at least I think so.  However, it is a mere representation and reflection of a much Greater Love and yes I know and you, the reader, as well should know that these characters also possess that Love in addition to their love for each other, though more of the carnal side is shown in this piece.  It is That Love that will sustain their marriage when the newness has worn off, if they keep their focus on it…

Back to “A Christian Marriage”

A Christian Family in Nazi Germany (inspired by a 1942 magazine picture)

Just for the record, I do not own the cropped image featured on this page. It originated from an American magazine in 1942 and the main message of the magazine image was that in America, as opposed to Nazi Germany, the people are allowed to listen to whichever broadcast they so choose and form their own opinion. They are also able to do so in their living room instead of a hideout. I cropped those details out, so the image would fit better on this page.

I’ve been told all my life, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” I find that statement to be entirely true. And not only that, God has given me a gift in which I can create stories by just looking at certain works of art. I began to utilize this gift around the age of 31 when I started my “Christmas in July” posts on Facebook and Instagram. I can also credit my Mom for helping me realize this gift because when I was a toddler, she would show me images in “The Reader’s Digest” and tell me stories about them on the spot.

So, I’ve been well aware of this image for some time now. For almost as long as I have been aware of it, I’ve wanted to turn it into a story detailing the lives of the four persons pictured:

It is my guess that they are in a secret hideout listening to an illegal radio which is capable of receiving foreign broadcasting services (definitely not a Volksempfänger AKA People’s Receiver.) They appear to be very troubled over the news they are hearing. In addition, their troubled facial expressions are also probably indicative of the fact that they are hyper-vigilant as to not get caught listening by the Gestapo…

The older gentleman on the far left is a skilled 60-year-old blacksmith living in Nazi-era Germany. He worked his way up from an apprentice and eventually obtained his own shop. Even though Germany has been a poor state from the end of World War 1 until the rise of Hitler, he has prospered because his business has several contracts to forge hand tools for those employed as electricians and telephone/telegraph linemen. Therefore, he is well established and has the money and connections to afford one of those sophisticated but illegal radios and furnish a hideout to secretly listen. At the beginning of World War 2, he was listening with his wife and daughter, they were all listening to a Christian broadcast and because of their uncertain future in addition to realizing their sinful conditions, they all gave their lives to Jesus Christ and subsequently began attending their local church. This gentleman has secretly been supporting underground churches financially and otherwise.

Next is the young lady, the blacksmith’s 25-year-old daughter. Up until recently was employed by their local church as a children’s Sunday School teacher. Their church has now gone underground, due to extensive persecution from the Nazi authorities. She realized that God had gifted her with the ability to teach and out of her love and dedication to Him decided to teach the very young of Germany in hopes that they too would come to Christ. Whilst attending the church, she met and fell in love with her future husband, a young minister and pastor’s assistant.

Further along is an older lady who is the blacksmith’s wife, a 52-year-old former socialite. She has been married for 36 years and was employed in her parents’ bakery since her early teens. Up until recently she and her siblings were still running it, where she was employed as the manager. The bakery was raided and shut down by the Gestapo as punishment for their kindness to Christians and Jews among other groups tormented by the Nazis. Because of her husband’s connections, she manages to escape further trouble but secretly uses her baking skills to provide food for the underground churches.

Finally, on the far right, is the bespectacled young gentleman, a 31-year-old Christian minister who up until recently was furthering his education and employed assisting the head pastor of the aforementioned church. A troubled child, he came to Christ in his late teens and subsequently felt the call to ministry, thus entering seminary. They met when he graduated with a Bachelor’s and had been appointed to this local church as the pastor’s assistant. There was an instant spark of mutual attraction between them, both physically and emotionally. Not long after, he began courting her. The young lady’s parents were impressed by his strong morals, eloquence, sobriety, and dedication to Christ that they were overjoyed when he asked for their permission to marry her. When the Nazis began persecuting The Church, they were quietly married and her family hid him from the Gestapo. From his hiding place, he would secretly write letters of encouragement to Christians who were scattered about and Gospel tracts for anyone who wished to know Christ. He also received secret cash payments for his ministry, to help support his young wife and his in-laws.

What will become of these four Christians?

Now, these people are definitely in love with their spouses.  For the younger couple, though, it is a much Greater Love in them that drew them to each other.  It is also that Greater Love that keeps the marital bonds of the older couple so strong.  This Greater Love is so powerful that it compels those who possess it to propagate it even under the threat of torture and death.  It is the Greatest Love there is and best of all it is available to all who accept it.  Furthermore it does not have the stringent prerequisites and conditions that carnal human love associates itself with.

Back to “Works of Fiction”