Author Archives: sgtmajcarl

About sgtmajcarl

A little crusty on the outside...but inside?

The door swung open

Return to Fort Justice Banner Previously: They couldn’t help but feel sorry for those deeply disappointed folks who now had nowhere else to go—and no way to get there.

The mood of the marshals brightened instantly with the arrival of Deputy Flutters, “Looks like you guys have been having a party—with all those happy faces.”

“We were just waiting for you to arrive, Flutters,” Jay grinned, “What’s a party without a carrier pigeon present?”

“Fun?” Pepper muttered quietly to Buttons, causing her to laugh out loud.

“I can see my arrival made your day, Buttons,” Flutters misjudged her laugh (of course), “I have news from Mac.” Continue reading

“ELEVEN troopers?”

Return to Fort Justice BannerPreviously: “You have lawmen here?”

“We did, until he was killed. We now rely on the cavalry to keep the peace.”

“We’re not without experience in peacekeeping,” Sarah said, “Perhaps that’s a better opportunity?”

“Pardon me, Ma’am,” Vance laughed, “But, two of you are women.”

Jay Cooper sighed as he thought, “Oh no—you shouldn’t have gone there…”

And finally—The Adventure Train pulled in to Fort Justice… “Wow! This place looks deserted!”

“It certainly does, Boomer,” Mac replied, “Time of day?”

“I doubt it, but I guess we’d better head for the fort and check-in with the colonel.”

“I don’t think we’ll be very happy with what he has to say.” Continue reading

“Riders approaching”

Back to the past BannerPreviously: Meanwhile—Somewhere in Dakota Territory… They came upon the Overland Stagecoach Company stagecoach at the gallop. Reining-in their horses, they fired-on and killed the shotgun guard, and ordered the two passengers out of the coach.

“Throw down that strong-box, driver—unless you wanna join your friend—dead on the ground!” Lacy Dalton ordered.

“You two,” Paulo pointed his pistols at the passengers, “Please be so kind as to put your valuables in this bag.”

It was over in minutes—it ended when Lacy calmly shot and killed the driver and passengers, “You didn’t need to do that!”

Turning her gaze on Edward Slater—and with it her rifle, “Yes—I did. Do you have a problem with that, Eddie?”

“Throw down that strongbox, driver” Throw down that strongbox, driver” Continue reading

“Throw down that strongbox, driver”

Back to the past Banner Previously: Meanwhile—the Adventure Train was streaking across the Kansas Prairie…making 120 mph (remember—GENTLE READER—the tracks under the train ARE 21st Century tracks) and the marshals and James & Black Hawk were making their plans, “Chris and the Coopers have North Fort Justice covered, what roll will we have?”

“We will be under Lt. Col. Cooper’s command,” Mac replied, “It will be at his discretion where and when we’ll all be assigned.”

“He has been tasked with dealing with the indigenous people?”

“He has, and he has many natives voluntarily serving as troopers,” Sergeant-Major Yatkov replied, “He has been honored as a friend of the ‘First Nation” people in Canada.”

“That is good,” Black Hawk smiled, “Perhaps he will impress us as well.”

Suddenly—the Adventure Train slowed—quickly.

Why? Continue reading

Decision

~ by Carl McIntyre

(This episode is based on an actual conversation)

Previously:

And finally, just before dawn, they were greeted by a smiling Big Mac outside Joe’s Café & Coffee…

Season 8—Chapter 8—Changes—Episode 2:

Continuing our story—outside Joe’s Café & Coffee… “I figured you’d end up here,” Big Car Mack was grinning ear-to-ear.

That transparent, huh?”

Big Mac & Boomer outside Joe's Café & Coffee

“That transparent, huh?”

Yeah, but you were less-than-forthcoming at Silverthorn’s.”

What do you mean by that?”

You said you were contemplating reverting the blog back to the way it was in 2007.”

Yes?”

I may be off-base, but I think you were considering ending the blog.”

The thought crossed my mind. Visits ARE way down, and since the virus attack, I’ve lost Photoshop 7, and now am stuck with Photoshop 11; which seems to be a far less capable program for drawing. Besides, many of my blogging friends quit a long time ago. No blog lasts forever.”

Hmmmm… I seem to recall that when you lost that old MS-Word program you used for original drawings, you thought you could no longer make drawings, and when you first got Photoshop 7, you thought the same way, yet you found work-arounds, and the illustrations actually improved.”

Okay, there probably is one, but I’ve yet to find it, and still, readership is way down.”

You ever look at the sidebar? There are 488 subcribers there.”

Most of whom never actually come to the site. Some have feed-readers, where they can read the blog without ever actually logging-in, so they don’t show up on the blog-stats. Others simply delete the email notice.”

So, it’s settled then?”

I need coffee, Carl, let’s go inside.”

Inside Joe’s Café & Coffee—the conversation continued…

Well, lookie who’s here,” Trigg Guudelender made note of Boomer’s arrival, “The blog-killer himself.”

Hello Trigg,” Boomer grinned, “Hyperbole, much?”

Inside Joe's Café & Coffee

“The blog-killer himself.”

Proud Czech Josef Rusicka chimed-in, “I just get this fancy new café and you’re gonna kill us off. I suppose you expect some coffee?”

Yeah, that would be right.”

Good luck with that!”

How do you feel about being erased?”

It sounds to me, at least,” Camille Farkleberry grinned, “You’ve made your decision.”

I have.”

Well?”

We’re all still here. Where we belong.”

To be Continued…

Preparing the Café

By Carl “Big Mac” McIntyre

A little background—if you don’t mind too much:

The original coffee shop was set in the West 7th/Fort Road area of Saint Paul, MN. Because our WordPress blog’s cheesy fiction takes place in the fictional “Moosehead County,” located along the Minnesota North Shore of Lake Superior on land “borrowed” from Cook County near Grand Marais, and more importantly because Boomer has already drawn most of the characters and locations, and is unlikely to agree to making drawings just for me.

Moosehead City, is the largest in the county, there are two others, Williams’ Station and Port of Danger Bay, but they will not come into our story as it is in Moosehead City we find “Joe’s Café & Coffee” owned and operated by Proud Czech Josef Rusicka.

The usual suspects at Joe’s are here…

Early morning at Joe's Café & Coffee …And there is plenty of room at the counter for guest victims—and for you.

I am currently enjoying my final retirement after a career in the US Army (Vietnam era), a second career at the Ford Plant in Saint Paul, and a short 3 year experience selling cars for Saturn. I am younger by a decade than as portrayed in the old coffee shops series having just turned 72. My wife and I are living the dream, motoring about the country in our RV, and only occasionally return to Saint Paul to visit our kids and grandkids.

I have our first conversation in draft form, and will publish it fairly soon…in the meantime if there is anything you would like us to discuss from the point-of-view of folks outside the RE business, please let me know.

Thanks in advance.

Saturday Spam

Old Men & Coffee Shops ©Jack BoardmanHanging out this morning with Boomer at our favorite early-morning haunt, Joe’s Café and Coffee “Pretty Good Food & Great Coffee” and sharing a couple of comments which didn’t make it past our filters.

Now deleted…but too funny not to share!

Spam comment 1 [from “Homepage”]: “The luxury proposed may be incomparable; citizens are never fail to looking for bags is really a Native goals. The concept numerous insert goals uniquely to push diversity with visibility during the travel and leisure arena.”

Spam comment 2 [from “My Homepage” – they must be related]: “You made some first rate factors there. I seemed on the internet for the difficulty and located most people will go along with together with your website.”

Old Men & Coffee Shops—998th Post!

Collie and I are parked in our biggass motorhome in front of the Grand Canyon Park Headquarters here in Arizona as we prepare to continue our dream of visiting all forty-nine North American states. After leaving Saint Paul December 2008, we’ve spent extended time in thirty-eight states. This is, in part, why I don’t often post/comment here on The Port of Danger Bay. On Tuesday I received this email from Boomer with my marching orders:I received this email from Boomer

So—after the obligatory Old Men & Coffee Shops Banner display—required by this blog’s owner—we’ll begin or early morning meeting:Old Men & Coffee Shops Mini Banner

I’m here at Joe’s Cafe & Coffee (Pretty Good Food & Great Coffee) and with me are the usual suspects: Medford Ambrose, Erik Hare, my lovely bride Collie McIntyre, Me & Boomer. Behind the counter is Proud Czech, Josef Rusika dispensing vast quantities of Organically & Shade-Grown, Fair-Trade, French Roast Coffee. There are a couple more usual suspects seated at a table by the windows, but they are not part of this particular post.July 21 at Joe's Café & Coffee

Med looked askance at Erik, “What words of wisdom are you about to share?”

The 1,000th post on any blog is a bit of a big deal—a big deal that I have done extensive reading and analysis on. Did you know the first blog ever to reach that milestone was the…”

…Yeah, yeah, Erik,” Boomer interrupted his friend & neighbor, “I know this isn’t the first-ever blog to reach 1,000 posts. It IS the only blog I’m interested in—save for Barataria—of course.”

I had to laugh, “You two crack me up!”

Coffee, anyone?” Josef had the carafe at hand, as always, and filled the mugs as required.

So what is the plan for that post?” Collie set down her mug and covered it with her hand signaling she was coffeed-out.

The plan is to monitor the post for comments through Sunday. Either Boomer, Daisy or I will reply to comments. We will also encourage multiple visits from current & alumni IRL characters along with any of our GENTLE READERS who wish to interact on the blog,” I replied.

Now I’m looking at YOU, GENTLE READER—Please accept our thanks for your support and please stop by and…

JOIN THE PARTY!

Old Men & Coffee Shops—May 2011 – Month End Blog-analysis

Old Men & Coffee ShopBoomer & I are enjoying the early-morning air of Old Saint Paul, Minnesota, outside Joe’s Café & Coffee (Pretty Good Food & Great Coffee) where it is 68°F and partly cloudy.
We are also enjoying our custom Joe’s mugs of organically & shade-grown, Fair-Trade, “Upper Town” blend of dark coffee as we contemplate this little hobby-blog’s May stats.
After analyzing all the data, comparing month-to-month statistics for unique visits, Google-searches, comments to post ratios, and top secret blog-analysis tools to which almost NO ONE else has access (only those of us important enough to be invited) and consulted absolutely no “SEO Experts” (they don’t know anything—REALLY); we feel confident enough to offer the following detailed Blog-Data-Review:

YEEEE-HAAAAW!


Thanks for your support, GENTLE READER!

Making People Drawings

The usual suspects remained at their usual places at the usual time at Joe’s Café & Coffee (Pretty Good Food & Great CoffeeTM), as this story-line thus far occurred all on the same morning. Seated at the table by the windows we see Andy (blue shirt), a retired mail carrier, and Stan (Gray Shirt), recently retired from 3M Company out there in Maplewood along I94. Standing by the table we find John—the only non-codger early morning regular at Joe’s, at the counter are me, Carl “Big Mac” McIntyre, the now officially a Codger, Boomer Jack, DaisyLegsBeagle, Ambrose and Erik. “Proud Czech” Josef Rusicka is behind the counter, dispensing his famous organically & shade-grown, Fair-Trade, Sumatran-Roast coffee, and occasionally unwanted advice.

At Joe's Café & Coffee—Layed Off

"...dispensing his famous organically & shade-grown, Fair-Trade, Sumatran-Roast coffee..."

Let’s just pick up the conversation where we left off when…Boomer mulled the suggestion, “But is there a market for that, and would it have an acceptable ROI? Those drawings take hours…”

How long?” I asked.

Oh—I’m guessing here—as long as four hours…”

You don’t know?”

Not really. I generally try to do multiple drawings at a time. I have an entire page of just heads, just jackets, hands, mugs, pants, caps and other parts I use to create or update characters.”

You can’t use those for avatars?”

Real World people are more finely defined than cyber-people.”

But we’re talking avatars here…not realist paintings.”

I notice YOU don’t use your avatar-drawing anymore, Carl. Neither does Erik. Ambrose uses one, but not one I drew, his is actually a good caricature avatar.”

Ambrose had been listening to all this, “Why not at least put it out there? Who knows? There may just be a market for your drawings and unless you make it known that you’ll do them, you’ll never know.”

I’ll have to think it over…”

What is there to think over? You make the drawings for fun—why not make them to help pay the bills?”

Okay,” Boomer gave in and turning his gaze towards YOU, dear reader, “If I agree to draw for hire, are you interested and what’s it worth to you, Gentle Reader?”

Well, I guess we convinced our reluctant friend to make an effort…the rest is up to you.

Photo-Graphic by Jack Boardman