122 Rules by Deek Rhew

Monday, February 16, 2015

Valentine's Day and 50 Shades - Deek Goin' Deep!

This weekend was Valentine's Day, arguably one of the biggest Hallmark holidays of the year. Ruh roh, Raggy, Deek's gonna go all self-righteous on us! Well, no and yes, I guess so, but that isn't really the point of my blog post today. See, I got to spend the day with my lady, Erin Rhew. We didn't buy each other cards, or things that blinged, or things that tweeped, twerped, or sparkled. Yes, we did buy a little something: Pizza, Coke, Pepsi, and our absolute favorite, Reeses.

Valentine's Day pizza, Pepsi, Coke, Reeses, and movie!

But that sounds so...unromantic. Actually it isn't. What did we give each other? Time and attention. Time is our most precious commodity. There isn't anything else we could give that has a greater value.

Money! What about money?! Remember that the age old question? No. Not for me. Money is a thing. It's tangible. Yes, yes, yes, it is impossible to live without it, but if the basic needs are met, then time will always rank #1 in my book.


Erin means the world to me. I love her more than I ever knew it was possible to love another person. I married her because I want to live my life with her, and I am beyond lucky that she wants to live hers with me. One of the factors in our decision to get married was because we each wanted to be together every possible minute. Really, who doesn't want to spend all their time with their best friend? She makes me laugh and smile, makes me feel warm when I'm cold, and holds me up when I'm feeling down. I try and give back as good as I get, but the gifts Erin bestows upon me in love, kindness, and giving could never be matched.

So yesterday we dinked around at the mall--didn't buy anything except some black-framed nerd glasses--and just walked hand-in-hand, window shopping and chatting.

Melrose Place, The Geek Series
Wut? We're nerds? OMH!

Went to lunch at Panda Express--one of our absolute favorite sin-foods--and shared pizza, soda, and Reeses later that night while we watched The Proposal. The simple pleasures in life rule.

BTW, that scene in the woods with Betty White, OMH! Eee. Eee-o! Eee. Eee-o! The walls. The walls as the sweat runs...uh hum. If you haven't seen it, here is a little clip I found on You Tube.

We danced and talked and shared. For me, it was absolutely the perfect Valentine's Day, with the person I want to spend time with more than any other.

I don't need much monetarily--pay the bills, food, medicine, roof over my head, and a car that will get us from point A to point B. But I waited my whole life to be with someone who has the same values as I do, who wants to be with me, and who cherishes closeness. openness, and sharing.

Erin and Deek Rhew

These aren't just things we do on holidays either. We each try and do them every single day. We share and talk and reconnect. We place value on our relationship and put effort into us. The world can tear you apart, break you down, but my love for this lady, our relationship, is the core that keeps me sane and all but untouchable.

Erin and Deek

To me, this is what Valentine's Day is all about.

On to another topic: 50 Shades of Grey. Deek is going to get on his soapbox for a few minutes. So if you don't like it, you may want to turn away, close your browser, and wait for another of my meandering blog posts.

50 is the first in a novel series that sold like gang-busters a few years ago and has now been turned into a movie. It's totally crazy how many people from all walks of life have read it. It is EVERYWHERE! Being the inquisitive type, I wanted to understand what the big deal and hype was about, so I read the first volume. It was really bad. But since everyone thought it was so great, I thought that maybe it would get better, so tried reading the second...and grew bored.

Congrats on being uber rich, E.L. James, but your books stink. I hate hate hate knocking another author, but really, in my humble opinion, this is simple erotica. Nothing more. Overall it was poorly written with two-dimensional characters and had zero to do with love and romance. Why it is so popular escapes me. The genre is bursting with similar books, and though I am not a consumer, I have to think there exists those that are written better.

Okay, so on to the real reason I brought this up. I have a huge problem with this going mainstream--though apparently I'm in the minority as it opened with a record breaking $81.7 million weekend. Scary because when something is a financial success, copy cats lurk in the wings. The issue I have with it is that I think people are completely unaware of the severity of the topic. In a BDSM relationship--yes, that's what this is--one person is the dominant and the other a submissive. The idea being to completely take the submissive's power away and humiliate them. To degrade and punish them. To break their will and their spirit. To hurt them and strip away all their dignity and humanity. 

Does this sound like love?

I'm sorry to all you movie-goers who laid down your $15 for a ticket plus the price of popcorn, soda, and JuJu Beans, but this isn't sexy, it isn't hot, and it isn't romance. It's abuse. This is the glorification and justification of domestic abuse by a man in power against a woman. He has everything. She has nothing. Yet, he takes her virginity and takes advantage of her naiveté. He uses her--yes, even though she "asks" for it. He ties her up, hits her, beats her, tortures her, and somehow this is supposed to be hot? In most stories, isn't he the one that goes to jail?

I simply can't get behind this concept. Sorry. No. Consenting adults or not, this is exploitation.

Okay, Deek. What the hay? Why bring this up as the other half of your Valentine's Day post? Because, it was released on Valentine's weekend as a romantic thriller. Couples shared their evening together watching it. And I'm sure that more than one pair went out after and suggestions were made and things were bought and later, disillusions fabricated upon the silver screen smashed into real life.

50 is the opposite of affection. The opposite of desire. It's the opposite of love.

Sigh. I could prattle on and on, but I'll stop for now. I implore each of you considering any of these ideas to really really think things through before stopping in at Spencer's. What are your trying to do? Are you doing it to please the other person? If so, is losing your dignity and humanity worth it?  Is that really what you want?

Once you've gone there, you can never go back.

Next time, I'll be back to my usual fluff, but on this topic, I just couldn't sit by and not say anything. 

Hope y'all have a great week!


Thursday, February 12, 2015

Kevin Springer Cover Reveal for Extraordinary Sam

I am happy to be hosting Kevin Springer as he gets ready for the launch of his debut novel, Extraordinary Sam. The is cover wicked cool. Also, I can personally vouch that this a brilliant piece of literature and Kevin a brilliant author based solely on the fact that both his and my main characters have the same name.

Kudos, Kevin. Kudos.

Without further delay...Extraordinary Sam.

Extraordinary Sam Cover

This box may seem empty,

But there’s more than meets the eye…

Sam Miller seems like an ordinary 12-year-old boy, until he discovers a mysterious box. Suddenly, he lands in a magical world in which he must battle deadly pirates, savage warriors, giant man-eating spiders, and a fire-wielding tyrant. To survive, Sam must overcome his fears, solve riddles, and most of all, be extraordinary.

Kevin Springer author of Extraordinary Sam

Kevin Springer grew up on a farm in Maryland where his imagination could run free. He was able to reconnect to that creativity through telling bedtime stories to his two boys. One of those stuck and evolved into Extraordinary Sam. What started out as a simple story of a boy who had a magical hatbox turned into an exciting story of adventure and self-discovery.

Kevin is a self-proclaimed dreamer and a kid at heart. When he’s not writing or reading, he is watching movies or helping with homework. He lives outside of Atlanta with his wife, kids and dogs.

Connect with Kevin on Twitter @kevinaspringer

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Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Superbowl, The Everybody Pays 10% Plan, and Seattle: Deek's Attempt to Procrastinate Doing Taxes

So, I've always thought I'm a little off my rocker, off my game, but mostly I've only been off my blog as of late. This is a good thing and a bad thing. It feels like there are million things vying for my attention and, woops!, a month or more goes by and no blog post.

So today, I'm going to do a little catch up. Maybe this is just a way of procrastinating our next task: taxes. Ugh. I HATE taxes. For all you out there that are CPAs, tax preparers, and book keepers, I am thankful that y'all are out there doing your thang because your job would be my idea of hell on Earth. Sorry!

Anyway, so yeah, Erin and I have to work on our taxes this afternoon. Sigh, sometimes it is a real pain to be responsible. I'm still hoping that my Everybody-Pays-10% plan catches on. Then we can do away with all this bloody paperwork. Here is the form you would have to fill out by April 15th every year:

IRS Form -- Uber Simple and Makes Sense 10% Plan 1.0

How much did you make?
x 0.10                         <----Multiply by 0.10
_________________ <----Total owed for the year

_________________ <----Subtract how much you paid

_________________ <----If this amount is negative, you have a refund coming. Go you!
                                           If this amount is positive, please write a check and send it to the IRS, who
                                           thanks you and plans to spend most of it on Pay-Per-View and Green
                                           Lantern comic books.

Thank you for your patronage and participation in the USA government tax plan. Your cooperation is highly encouraged, but if not we're happy to just bust in while you're sleeping and haul you off like a bag of trash on garbage day.

Your friends at the IRS,

There you are that's all there is to it. No bazillion forms and oddities like use box A, subsection B, to tell us the market value of aunt Trudy's gallbladder when she had it out. Use for 1098.883434 GBR (Gall Bladder Removal) to depreciate (or is it deprecate? Ha-ha, we here in the wild and crazy IRS are not exactly grammar wizards. Ha-ha!) it to estimate how much value is left after aunt Trudy (selfishly) used it.

NOTE: Use form 1099.8888 Gall Bladder Used Without Explicit Consent of the IRS to calculate fines assessed.

Sure, with just the one form system, a few government employees will lose their jobs, but ask yourself this: Has there ever been a day in your life when you wished for MORE IRS agents? Ever?

Okay, I'm a little side-tracked. I can blame ADD, but, again, I'm just procrastinating...and griping. And taking cheap pot shots at the wonderful institution that collects funds from us and uses them randomly on things no sane person would ever spend their money on.

Tax funded study of the mating habits of the African hermit crab? Do they feel love? Do they take their shells off before they...uh hum, do "it?" These questions must be answered and by gosh, we're gonna use your money to pay for it!

Sorry, distracted again.

Okay, moving on. A couple of nights ago, Erin and I spent a couple of hours brainstorming the sequel to 122 Rules. I was getting lost in the hodgepodge and needed to work it out. Fortunately for me, my lady is brilliant and an amazing author, so she helped me sort through the jumble in my head. So, this morning I put quill to paper on 122 Redemption.

Note to Erin: Thank you, my love. You saved me again!

Speaking of 122, while we were in Seattle a couple of weeks ago, we saw massive support for the Seahawks -- this was the week before they lost to New England--and they apparently also are huge Sam Bradford (the main character in 122 Rules) fans! Wut? Wut? Yep. It's totally true. I have photographic evidence!
Sam! Obviously they mean Bradford!

Seattle, by the way, was just awesome. Erin and I rode the train--Ride the trai-ain-ain! Ride the train!--and it was comfortable and relaxing. Highly HIGHLY recommend it!

Here are a some pics from our ride!
Puget Sound from the train

Puget Sound from the train

More views of the Sound from the train

The station in Seattle

Erin and I at the infamous Bubble Gum Wall near Pike's Place
Erin and I with full-on Soap Opera mode

Erin and I in our Wut? Wut?
Erin wrote and amazing post about it on her blog.

Let's see, in addition to this, we watched the Super Bowl and, sadly, the Seahawks did not quite pull off a win. Sigh. But we had great food, friends, and fun. Read about it on my lady's blog.

Plus there were some just awesome commercials.  I'll wrap this rather random blog post--did I mention I'm procrastinating working on taxes?--with one of my fav ads from the game.

Until next time!