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People Can Fly and the Conspiracy Keeping Them Grounded

Bumble Bees aren't supposed to be able to fly

The greatest conspiracy of all-time has kept human beings from reaching their full potential for centuries. In an effort to keep people in their place, human beings have been convinced that they cannot fly. This preposterous conspiracy has been with us for so long that it’s almost fully accepted as Truth: People cannot fly.

The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.

Alice Walker

Long before Christ and the Church He spawned, people could fly. It’s depicted in legends of the gods, who were actually mortals, which makes their philandering and pettiness more understandable. The story of Icarus is about flight, but the sun didn’t melt the feathers, the weight of the feathers was too much for a human being to carry.

The secret to flight is that people can only do it while naked. That’s why witches are always found naked in the woods. They’ve been flying because they still believe they can. It’s also why classic statues are naked; they show human beings in their freest state. In order to fly, you have to be vulnerable, and humans are at their most vulnerable when they are nude.

Once the Church was established, it realized that human flight had to be stopped. The action gave people to much freedom and happiness. Because it was an innate skill that brought joy, it went against the fundamental teachings of the Church. Joy came from the love of the Savior and God. It came from hard work and toil but was only to be found in the afterlife. Human beings needed to be crushed while on Earth to be remade in the likeness of the Divine. The joy that came from free flight was an abomination. Only angels could fly.

The Church started with teachings, but that wasn’t enough. People wouldn’t give up flying. It taught that nakedness was evil because of its relationship to the Garden of Eden and Original Sin. That didn’t keep people out of the skies. The Church clothed its priests and clergy members in the finest clothing to emphasize the fact that clothing makes the man. No matter what they did, they couldn’t get people to stop flying.

Things started to change during the Renaissance. While it was a great time of enlightenment and discovery, it also had its backlash. The pendulum swung both ways, and people began to fear flying. Leonardo DaVinci tried to help with his parachute and flying machine that were supposed to make flight safer and easier. Unfortunately, people couldn’t wear anything if they wanted to fly. They had to be completely unfettered in material and in thought.

While people had started falling out of the sky, many still resisted the Church’s teachings. They had to enlist secular society to bring together a full change of people’s opinions. They talked to civic leaders, kings and queens, who began emphasizing fashion trends that were heavy and covered everything but the face. Giant powdered wigs, heavy dresses, and ornamentation that weighed down the human in body and soul.

Finally, the Church turned to Sir Isaac Newton. The mathematician created the apocryphal story of the apple and his theory of gravity. The story was so good, and the math checked out, so people started taking it seriously. In spite of their own personal experiences, many decided that people couldn’t fly, and they stopped flying.

According to math, the Bumble Bee cannot fly. No one has been able to communicate that to the Bumble Bee, though, so they continue to go from flower to flower experiencing their own power and reveling in the joy of flight and the sweetness of nectar.

Some people have kept their ability to fly. It’s why there are stories witches and why Benjamin Franklin liked to be nude. However, the ability to fly rests latent in every human being. You can see it in the history of machine-aided flying, the dreams of children who look up to the sky and wonder why they can’t fly like the birds, and in the ideas of Peter Pan, a child who never grew up, and Superman, an alien who looks just like a person. These modern manifestations provide a look into our deeper power.

Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.

Napoleon Hill

People can still fly. Ignore the doubters and the naysayers. Look into your heart and find your power. All it takes is faith and trust, and you can fly.

(Editor’s Note: This story is fiction and figurative. There is no conspiracy. If you’ve ever tried to get three people to agree on a movie, you can understand how difficult it would be to unite diametrically opposed factions of individuals to agree to tell the same lie. Do not try to fly naked. You’ll hurt yourself, and it’s illegal in many places. The Bumble Bee can fly, and math didn’t prove it otherwise.)

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Darren Lamb: Crisp, Fast-paced Action and Philosophy Create Amazing Reads with Depth

Author Darren Lamb at Salt Lake Comic Con

(Editor’s note: This article contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase from Amazon through these links, we receive an advertising fee. It doesn’t cost you anymore, and it doesn’t take anything away from the author.) Darren Lamb’s writing is particularly notable for its crisp, fast moving action sequences and their ability to deliver more than the average work of fiction. Darren’s zest for life and his philosophy of loving kindness heavily informs his writing. The fictional books mentioned below are written for adults, so expect some gore and adult situations.

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Shared Experiences: Paul Draper Brings Magic Online

Shared Experiences Can Be Done over the Internet

One of the hardest things that anyone has to deal with while staying at home during this pandemic is being alone. Even those who have family and roommates find themselves at wit’s end because the interactions are repetitive, mundane, and sometimes, frustrating. We all need a way to connect with someone outside of our regular sphere of influence. Many people miss the work or school arena for that. So, how can people maintain friendships and relationships while creating a more peaceful home life and providing for a bonding moment with those outside the home? Shared experiences bring people closer together.

Shared Experiences

People typically bond over shared experiences. Game night, a place at the pub, a hike through the woods, even working at the same company can all provide shared experiences that people can bond over. This bonding improves the feeling of familiarity and gives people something to talk about. It’s also better when the experience is unpredictable or unusual. While it may seem hard to conjure up shared experiences during this time of social distancing, it’s not impossible.

Magic at Home

There are plenty of apps that allow you to connect with others over the Internet. As long as everyone has copies of the same games, it’s relatively easy to modify them to work across the screen. Musicians give live concerts. LeVar Burton reads on Twitter. However, for a real shared experience, you need to have an interaction with what’s on the screen.

One person doing his best to bring people together during this time of staying at home is Magician Paul Draper. He has set up a way for people in different households can interact with him during his magic show online. He tailors his shows for children, adults, and mixed groups. He can do shows for virtual cocktail parties, birthdays, and any other event you can think of.

Paul Draper’s show as a shared experience has everything that you need to bring people together. It’s a magical experience that will give you, your family, and friends something to talk about other than current events. Not only will you marvel at the tricks he performs, you’ll also come away uplifted, amazed, and in a better mood knowing that there is still magic in this world. What shared experiences are you scheduling for your friends and family? Let us know in the comments.

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America Needs You! To Stay at Home: Unpatriotic, Unprincipled Draft Dodging in the Age of COVID-19

America Needs You to Stay at home

Abraham Lincoln gave a blueprint for the death of the United States of America in a speech that included this excerpt:

Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant to step the ocean and crush us with a blow? Never! All the armies of Europe, Asia, and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest, with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force take a drink from the Ohio or make a track on the Blue Ridge in a trial of a thousand years. At what point then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer: If it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we ourselves must be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time or die by suicide.

– Abraham Lincoln, Young Men’s Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois on January 27, 1838

Little did anyone suspect how literal his case would be. As coronavirus springs up amongst us, we are its authors and its finishers. As long as we continue to spread the virus, we will be responsible for our own destruction.

The United States is facing, what Surgeon General Jerome Adams is calling, this generation’s Pearl Harbor moment. We are at war with an unseen enemy, and we have all been drafted to fight against that enemy.

Still, draft dodgers abound as they claim bone spurs, bathing in the blood of Christ, and it just doesn’t seem to fit with my style, to help them gather together at church, in parks when the sun shines, and with friends and family they could just as well see over an app on their phone. These draft dodgers burn their hoarded toilet paper and cry, “We aren’t going to follow the recommendations of the experts!”

These unpatriotic individuals with false bravado wave the flag as if they were doing their duty and on the front line. While they are out partying or visiting their congregations, they are ignoring the directions of the generals put in charge to fight this war. Worse, they are putting the actual people on the front lines at risk.

No one is being asked to go and kill people on foreign soil. In fact, we are being asked to do the exact opposite. We are being asked to save lives. We can protect fellow Americans and to keep people from dying by doing one simple thing: stay at home. That’s all we have to do to win this war: stay at home. If you have to go out, wear a mask, wash your hands, and stay six feet away from other people.

What are we fighting for? Our grandparents, our parents, and our children’s future. We are fighting for the very essence of America – its people and their safety. This fight is on our home turf, literally, and the more draft dodging nimrods there are, the worse its going to get, the longer the process of healing is going to take, and the more loved ones we are going to lose. Do your part. Stay at home.

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The Future after Quarantine

Old people are more valuable than politicians

All we have to do to get through this pandemic quickly is stay at home, work from home, and be nice to each other. If everyone did that, we’d be through this in a month or so because the virus wouldn’t be able to find new hosts to spread to. As easy as that sounds, staying at home is a lot harder than anyone ever thought. Props to the stay-at-home parents and sedentary retirees.

But what’s going to happen after we get through this? Is it going to be business as usual, and by usual, we’re looking at business as it was done before the environment was protected since the protections were rolled back while we weren’t paying attention? Are we just going to go back to the same habits and systems that got us to where we couldn’t protect ourselves from a virus in the first place? Where states and the federal government are fighting over medical stockpiles and which entity they belong to? Where the most vulnerable are still vulnerable, economically and medically? Maybe, but they don’t have to go back, and some things won’t be able to go back. We can choose a direction.

Making a Habit

It’s been said that it takes four weeks to make a habit. After four or more weeks of staying at home, people will have gotten used to the convenience of having things delivered. Ordering from the Internet for everything will become the new norm. It’s going to take a lot to get people to come out of their homes and get them into restaurants and other businesses, especially if there’s any lingering fear of the infection. People from the Great Depression era had a tough time throwing things out and severely rationed for much of their lives even when the economy was booming. The economy will no longer be driven by brick-and-mortar profits but by Internet profits, including website monetization, video commercials, and sales.

Even if the U.S. Postal Service stops working in June (as its budget projections show it may), Amazon (affiliate link) will have its fleet of contractors. UPS and Fed-Ex will likely be around. Your local restaurants and other businesses will probably have delivery in place. In some places, cab drivers will become more than just a mode of personal conveyance.

People will support the arts through page views, Patreon and other sites as they realize the value that arts have to everyday life. They will have read more books, binged more movies, and surfed the Internet looking for more ways to entertain their children at home. Entertainment springs from the arts, and a more aware citizenry may be willing to fund their favorite creators.

Human Nature

Human nature will likely trump habits at least for a time. Within the first couple of weeks after restrictions are lifted, people are going to go out more than ever. The deciding factors that will temper this urge to hit the restaurants and theaters are the actual amount of discretionary income everyone has, what the weather is like, and what kind of job advertisers have done to stoke the desires of those experiencing cabin fever.

The first few movie weekends, for those movie theaters that are still around, are going to be huge. As long as people have confidence that they won’t be getting ill for going out, they’ll likely show up in droves. Chances are that these movie-goers will still be wearing masks, which could put a damper on concession sales and movie theater profits. The same could be said of sporting events and concerts. The only question will be whether or not movie companies have figured out how to capitalize on Internet releases. Hollywood, i.e. Disney, may be willing to forgo releasing movies to the theaters if they can get more people to subscribe to Disney+ or to pay for premieres in their own home.

Restaurants will fill up as people look to get away from doing the dishes and worrying about what to make. Malls will see an increase in mall-goers, if not actual consumers, especially if the weather is bad. While city parks may have been widely used, their use will sky-rocket as everyone has already created the habit and can now congregate in larger groups.

Finances and Politics

Financial pressures are going to be problematic. People who have put off their bills for a month or two and find them coming due just because the situation has been declared safe may face a mountain of debt they can’t overcome. Paying one month of rent is hard enough. If they are required to pay two months at a time to cover back rent, the country will be looking at a lot of people becoming homeless. Bankruptcies will increase. Homes will get foreclosed. The problems most associated with financial issues, alcoholism, suicides, and domestic violence will also increase.

A president may see the best way to relieve these problems is to convert the economy by starting a war. This could come from the outside where other countries are seeing the U.S. response to the virus as weak and untenable. They may think that the U.S. won’t recover from the damage that this virus and other policies have done to the country, and in its weakened state, is ripe for an invasion.

Many are already comparing the U.S. to a third world country. It won’t take much to convince the president of a former world power and now third world country to go to war. War brought us out of the Great Depression, it could cure our economic problems again.

As Americans get back on the roads, commuting to their jobs or heading to take a break from their immediate area, gas prices will increase. This will further depress the economic growth of the country and create a target in the Middle East for a war to free their peoples (and liberate their oil in the process).

No End Game

There is a possibility that there is no other side. As people, states, and the federal government refuse to put into place the necessary restrictions to eliminate the virus, the infection rate will continue to grow until everyone has been exposed. Companies will have to figure out how to replace ill employees. Funeral parlors will be a booming business, and old people will continue to be at greatest risk for infection and death due to the infection.

At some point, we’ll have to figure out how to continue, what an acceptable mortality rate is, and who will pay for the treatment for those who are hospitalized due to coronavirus. We could figure out a new way to do things to minimize the possibility of death and disease, or we could throw up our hands, as some pundits and pseudo-news people already have, and say, “F… it! We failed. I never really liked my grandparents or parents anyway, and since they’ve retired, they’ve been nothing but a drag on the economy.” In doing so, we may sign our own death warrants as the virus mutates.

We Make the Choice

The point is, we get to choose what happens at the end of this, but only if we make conscious choices to change for the better. Now is the time to think about what you want for the future and to start putting it in motion. Going back to the way things were isn’t an option, just like it was never an option after Sept. 11. If you want things to get better, you can’t cross your fingers and hope for good luck. You need to be the initiator of that change, large or small, for you, your family, the country, and the world.

If you choose not to direct the change, you’ll have to deal with whatever someone else creates to fill the voids. If you know what you want the future to look like and have some starting steps to get there, leave your suggestions in the comments.

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Never Have so Many Been Asked to Do so Little to Save the People of the World

Wear a mask or better yet stay at home

Man, it’s a crazy time! I hope you’re doing everything you can to keep you, your family, your community, and the people of the world safer. It’s hard with some of the mixed messages coming from different news and not-news sources, but listen to the experts. Stay at home, get regular exercise, practice social distancing, buy only what you need for two weeks, and limit necessary trips to the bare minimum.

To paraphrase Winston Churchill: Never have so many been asked to do so little to save the people of the world. To be fair, it’s not so much a paraphrasing as a butchering, but it still works, especially since we’re being asked to do so little to save each other.

Stay at Home

All we have to do is: Stay home. How hard can that be? For years, stay-at-home moms got a bad rap for being at home all day with nothing to do but watch daytime soaps and feed themselves into oblivion. (Maybe now we have more respect for people who choose to stay at home over getting a job. Just like we should have more respect now for teachers.)

Think about it. Even with the difficulties associated with staying at home, many of us are getting exactly what we wished for: a chance to grow and be at home away from our jobs. That’s amazing! Stay at home, play video games all day, and eat cheese from a can (if you can find it). Read, binge watch something on Netflix or your other favorite streaming service, and start a new hobby if you have the supplies or can order them through Amazon (affiliate link). Stay away from any of the hobby stores that are open; they aren’t necessities and you shouldn’t be going to unnecessary places.

We can be heroes by staying at home. Who’s pulling out the old Atari with me and getting back their old high score on Donkey Kong?

People before Profits

Still, there’s a core section of the population that is finding it difficult to stay at home. They want to work, or they want others to go back to work, or they want you to go back to work, so they can prop up their portfolios and profits. These men, and some women, are a—holes. You should ignore them. They aren’t doctors. They don’t know anything about how the virus is going to progress. Most of them aren’t even economists. They are pundits or talk show hosts, who have somehow disguised themselves as journalists or they are business people, who have somehow found themselves in a position of authority for something they know nothing about. These talking heads are putting profits before people.

Worse, even though they claim to be pro-life, they are advocating killing off up to five percent of the population, most of those being old people and those with compromised immune systems. That doesn’t make them heroes even if they are willing to make that sacrifice. These same advocates of exposing people to a deadly disease make their proclamations from their isolated basements or the sanctuary of their knowledge that their money and position will get them a test and a result in 15 minutes while the average person has to show signs of the virus and wait much longer than 15 minutes to get any results. They continue to doubt the experts and suggest that people do things that will end up in their own deaths or the deaths of loved ones. The longer they encourage people to go outside and come in contact with others, the longer this pandemic will last.

Stay Home

As long as people keep partying with their friends, keep going to their non-essential jobs, keep leaving their homes for no real reason, America will keep facing the deadly consequences of a view miscreants ill-advised acts, and the healthcare system will continue facing an overwhelming job that will result in life and death decisions due to a lack of resources. Communities can’t wait until they see symptoms and confirm that there is a case or cases in the area. It’s like a horror movie or ninjas. If they wait to act, and the action is to stay at home and do nothing, it will be too late. Getting ahead of the curve and shortening the effects of this virus means acting now.

Stay at home, stay away from others, wash your hands, don’t touch your face, and wear masks if you have to go outside. If your work requires you to go in and your job can be done from home or is non-essential, consider telling your boss, “No. I don’t want to be responsible for transmitting a disease that could kill someone.” It’s difficult to stand up to your boss, especially if you need the money. However, someone is going to have to do it. Maybe it starts with you, and it might help to send your boss a poem or that video with Samuel L. Jackson (see below). Be safe, my friends and don’t let anyone trade your life and lives of those you love for money.

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‘Quantum Souls’: a Tour de Force for Adults

Found on the Alcan Cover

Drue M. Scott’s first series, “Quantum Souls,” is a powerful and disturbing tour de force that is meant for a grownup audience. It’s adult themes and situations make it stronger as Scott explores the worth of the human experience and what It means to choose between good and evil. “Quantum Souls” (affiliate link) and its sequels are available on Amazon.

Scott’s autobiographical self-exploration “Found on the Alcan” (affiliate link) is set on the Alaskan-Canada Highway. As Scott traveled down this historic road and through Canada, he picked up a hitchhiker who revealed to Scott who Scott was as a person.

Scott is a kickass sign language interpreter who went viral for his performance at a Flo Rida concert. Of course, with the entertainment industry on hiatus, he is self-isolating and working on the third book in his yet-to-be released Blackwood Forest series.

I am currently editing the second book in Scott’s Blackwood Forest series. The first book has yet to be released because he was trying to find a traditional publisher for it. The series has such great potential, and all of it is on display in the first book. We don’t have a current release date for his next series, but I am excited to see how it ends. If you need some more great reading, check out Drue’s stories.

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How to Tell a Story

Learn how to tell a story because stories matter

You’ve been sitting at home for three or more weeks now waiting for this whole coronavirus thing to blow over, and it isn’t going away. You’ve played all the video games, read all the books, binged all the videos and shows until your eyes bled. If you’re with family, you’ve descended on each other’s last nerve and are, hopefully, learning how to live together through it. If you’re by yourself, you started talking to inanimate objects, and like Alice in Wonderland (affiliate link), they’ve started talking back. The chess pieces are telling you where to go, and you’re not sure you like the implications. But before you and your loved ones/ co-habitators fall apart, it’s time to dig a little deeper into your ability to as a human being and learn how to tell a story.

There are already some amazing things being done out there. People are recreating their favorite Disney rides. They are racing marbles and putting rubber balls through elaborate contraptions. There are people singing and dancing in the streets, or near them, properly social distanced from one another. Maybe you’ve done all those things, and you’re ready for something new. However, being stuck at home with only the supplies you have may make finding something new hard to do. Fear not! You have all the tools you need to do something memorable for the next 1001 nights.

Storytime! With You!

(Editor’s note: Contains affiliate links) Stories are magical. They transport you and whoever’s listening to another world, and they are in your DNA. Since the dawn of man, people have been telling stories. 15,000-year-old cave paintings at Lascaux tell stories. Aesop had his fables. Scheherazade saved her life 1001 times through storytelling. The Decameron is about young people telling stories during the plague in the 1300s. Walt Disney built an empire through telling stories. Mr. Rogers told stories. LeVar Burton still tells stories. You have seen enough TV shows and movies, read enough books, even if they were from the children’s section of the store or library, and heard enough fairy tales to tell your own stories. More importantly, you have all the tools you need to tell a story: your imagination and your voice (unless you sold your voice to a sea witch for legs). You can add pen and paper if you want, but they aren’t necessary. You can record them, too.

I Don’t Have an Imagination

During this crisis, have you thought about the worst things that could happen? That’s your imagination working. Have you thought about what it’ll be like without work? What life will be like if we still have to social distance six months from now? What the first thing you will do when the quarantine and self-isolations are over? That all takes imagination, and they are stories that you’re telling yourself. If you think about the future at all, you have an imagination. It’s time to use that imagination for something good rather than for the bad things it’s helped you to conjure.

Don’t Have an Audience? Yes, You Do!

As long as the electricity and the Internet are still around, you have a potential audience. Record your story for YouTube or write it for your blog. Think of your nieces and nephews, your children, or other people who are dear to you and tell the story for them. Then post it and send a link. If the Internet goes out, you may need to get creative for your audience. Use stuffed animals, action figures, or photos of friends and family. Gather them around you and tell them the story. You can even tell stories to your pets.

But How Do You Tell a Story

First, you need an idea. Rod Serling says that ideas come from everywhere. You can use anything to start your story. Pick anything in your house and start with it as your story’s main character. The Brave Little Toaster is an appliance. Buzz and Woody are toys. Think back to a story your grandparents or parents told you. Retell a movie that you love.

If you need a structure, you can use the Hero’s Journey made famous by Joseph Campbell and used in “Star Wars” among other films. An oversimplification of this would be: An everyday person stuck somewhere gets dragged into something. He or she doesn’t want to be a hero. Overcomes one obstacle. Faces a larger obstacle. Overcomes that, too. The circle goes around until the final outcome. Robert Jordan’s Rand al-Thor, Mat Cauthon and Perrin Aybara start in a tiny village as boys. Bilbo and Frodo are hobbits. Luke Skywalker is on his uncle’s farm at the beginning of his tale. The Hardy Boys are capable detectives, but they aren’t taken seriously because they are teenagers.

Collaborate with Others

You don’t have to tell a story by yourself. Recruit your family members to add to the story. Find someone online to write with. Stories are better with others, sharing them will empower you even more greatly to tell better stories later.

Still need help? Try this starting point:

The teapot on the stove whistled out that the water was boiling. Steam poured from the spout and into the air with the sound. It was time to have breakfast, but no one was sure what there was to eat…

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The Moral Dilemma of Employees at Non-Essential Businesses

Old people are more valuable than politicians

There are some people who are still going to work because they are essential. Doctors, nurses, fire fighters, police officers, grocery store workers, postal workers, the people who keep the Internet running are a few of those people. We salute them for being on the frontlines. Everyone of them deserves a pay raise for being at risk of catching coronavirus. Here’s hoping they have adequate medical coverage. By staying at home and not going any place you don’t have to go, you’re honoring the sacrifice and the risk these workers are taking to keep your community functioning and in touch with the rest of the world.

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Snow White’s Run into the Woods Mirrors What We’re Going Through

The woods may be scary

She couldn’t believe what had happened. The hunter had taken her out into the forest and raised his knife as her back was turned. Only the shadow on the rock told her how close he was to her. When she turned, the light glinted off the cold steel. She raised her arms and inhaled sharply. The hunter dropped the knife and then dropped to his knees. His hands covered his face as he cried. Through the sobs, she could hear him explain to her that her mother wanted her dead, but he couldn’t do it. Instead, he left her frightened and alone with one word: Run!

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