Good Morning Ted and Jody:
Nancy and I went back to the same restaurant last evening that I had steak fajitas at when you were there to celebrate the day between our two birthdays. I do love their steak fajitas. We drove the Aztec and filled it with gas so it would be ready for Liz and her friend to drive back to Michigan tomorrow morning. We pick them up tonight at PDX sometime after 11. They then have to midafternoon Monday to drive back to Michigan. I have always thought the people in this world are too much in a hurry. I think my stationary bike, where I get nowhere very fast, is the best way to travel—no fuss, no muss and I never have to leave home except to go out for lunch. Nancy did finish the binding on that quilt she is sending back with Liz (fewer loose threads that way).
I am still concerned that the pestilence and the focus on his tweets and actions distract too much from the need to look into the Russian (or any foreign) meddling with our election and news content. While the pestilence may be the best candidate for a straight jacket I have seen in public office, the Russians seem to want to be at war in cyberspace and we do need to set up some defenses and offenses to counter their efforts. Listening to some of the speculation about Comey’s testimony it did occur to me that the best front group for Russian fake news releases are conservative talk radio hosts (especially Russ Limbaugh) who have gotten their listeners used to consuming “alternative facts” and turning molehills into raging volcanos. God Help Us!
I trust this finds you happy, healthy, wealthy, wise and insulated from the nonsense in D.C.
Warmest regards, Ed
044 Agent White Stirs Another Pot
Fiction in 927 words by T. Edward Westen, 2017
“It is good to see you again, Mrs., Blackwell,” said Agent White.
“Julia, please call me Julia,” replied Mrs., Blackwell. “For years while we lived in officer’s country. All the wives called me Mrs. Blackwell as George was their husbands’ boss. I rather grew tired of the lack of intimacy by not being known by my Christian name.” She sighed, “Even George called me Mrs., Blackwell. It took several years here before I convinced him that I was indeed his wife, always would be and would never forget it. Finally, he caught on and I became myself again. She smiled. “So please call me Julia.”
Agent White stuck her hand out and said, “Julia, I would be honored if you would call me Amanda. While it is complicated, I lived wit a bunch of women who were also named Amanda for a long time and we used titles and last names to not confuse who we were calling, talking to or about. So, I would also enjoy being just Amanda.”
“Are you still looking for some criminal and think George is the bad guy?” asked Julia Blackwell.
“Not exactly,” replied Amanda White. “Your tour of the home and explanation of your husband’s commitment to this period of time went a long way to dispelling any hit he is, as you put it, the bad guy. Since he as both operational experience and is now a successful writer, I thought to pick his, and your, brains. Is he here?”
“Yes, he is writing right now,” replied Julia Blackwell. “He writes for at least three hours every morning. He says his best work comes in the morning.” Julia looked at the antique grandfather clock in the hall and said, “I suspect he will be done shortly for today as he has already been at it for close to three hours.”
Pointing to the clock, Amanda White asked, “Is that a family heirloom?”
“No,” said Julia Blackwell shaking her head, “but it will be when we pass, our son will want it.”
“Oh, where is your son?” asked Amanda White.
“Back in real time,” replied Julia Blackwell. “He comes to visit once a . . . .”
“I see have the pleasure of Agent White again, Julia,” said Co. George Blackwell interrupting the two women. “Have you invited her for lunch?”
Julia Blackwell turned to Amanda White and said, “Of course, you will join us.”
Amanda White replied, “I would love to, it seems that breakfast was hundreds of years ago, literally.”
Co. George Blackwell raised an eyebrow and asked “Literally?”
“No, fugitively,” replied Amanda White. “As I was telling Julia, I am here to pick your brains, both of you. I should think over lunch would be a perfect time to do that.
“We are having chili con carne,” said Julia Blackwell.
“I thought that was what I smelled when I came in,” replied Amanda White. “Over rice?”
“If you like,” said Julia Blackwell. “However, I have a special concoction that is halfway between chow main noodles and seasoned taco shells. We top it off with melted sharp cheddar and sour cream.”
“I’ll try your concoction,” replied Amanda White. “It sounds Devine. “
“I’m intrigued,” Col. George Blackwell said. “What, could Julia and I have in our brains that you would like to pick, Agent White?”
“I am confronted by facts that simply don’t make sense when assembled. You, being a writer, sir and your wife being somewhat of an organizer, may be able to help me put these facts into a context, a story if you like, that makes sense.” Taking a forkful of the chili con carne over Julia’s concoction, Amanda White rolled her eyes chewed, swallowed and said, “You need to mass produce these. They would sell like hotcakes.
Julia beamed and her husband said, “Dishes like these are what is responsible for me no longer being in fighting trim. That and the fact that I always take seconds. But, enough of the talk about my wife’s fabulous cooking. What are the set of facts that don’t make sense?”
Agent White sighed, put her fork down and said, “A time traveler is hiding his identity behind a hologram. HE recruited two petty criminals from the 21st Century to sell dead bodies in the 27th Century, but securities in the 23rd Century, kidnap a child in the 21st and dig for pirate treasure in the 20th Century. ” Amanda White paused. “As far as I can tell the master criminal has yet to actually profit from any of this.”
Col. George Blackwell said, “If I tried to get a book published based on that, the publisher would send me packing. And tightly so, for it makes no sense at all. What do you think Julia?”
“George, it sounds like somebody trying to prove something to somebody else or even themselves,” replied Julia Blackwell to her husband.
Co. George Blackwell shook his head. “If there is no gain or positive result for the person or persons doing these things, what could they possibly prove by doing them.”
Julia Blackwell stood her ground. “George, you are a man of action. Did you always have positive results or gains from when you took action?”
Col. George Blackwell shook his head. “No, but we went in with goals to achieve and we did our best to achieve them. Sometimes we succeed and sometimes we did not, but we always had a goal and we always made our presence known.”