Thursday, November 6, 2014


I found the following very interesting.

"You’ve probably heard ads saying that milk is extremely good for you, but is there any truth to this? Trace reveals some evidence that milk might not be all it’s hyped up to be.

Go to to get a FREE Audiobook of your choice when you sign up today.

Read More:
3 Servings of Milk a Day Linked to Higher Mortality in Women
“Drinking three or more glasses of milk per day may be harmful to women's health, a new study suggests.”

Milk intake and risk of mortality and fractures in women and men: cohort studies
“During a mean follow-up of 20.1 years, 15 541 women died and 17 252 had a fracture, of whom 4259 had a hip fracture. In the male cohort with a mean follow-up of 11.2 years, 10 112 men died and 5066 had a fracture, with 1166 hip fracture cases.”

Heavy milk drinking may double women’s mortality rates
“Despite delivering calcium and protein, drinking a lot of milk doesn’t seem to provide a net health benefit for women and may even hinder their long-term survival prospects, Swedish researchers find.”

New study claims milk increases risk of death, cancer - but an expert says the findings are flawed
“Analyzing more than 61,000 women and 45,000 men, Swedish researchers found that women who drank three or more glasses of milk every day had nearly two times the risk of death and heart disease, and a nearly 44% increased risk of cancer, compared to women who drank less than one glass a day.”

Milk loving Swedes could suffer from high intake
“It might be time to forget all you have heard about milk increasing your bone strength.”

Milk may be linked to bone fractures and early death
“‘Drinking more than three glasses of milk a day may not protect bones against breaking – and may even lead to higher rates of death,’ the Mail Online reports.”

Famine may have driven evolution of milk tolerance
“Most of us grew up drinking milk. We were told it was the ultimate health drink. It is packed full of nutrients like calcium and other minerals, vitamins, including vitamin D, protein, fat and sugar in the form of lactose.”

Got Milk? You Don’t Need It
“Drinking milk is as American as Mom and apple pie.”

Got Proof? Lack of Evidence for Milk’s Benefits
“There is no biological requirement for cow's milk. It is nature's perfect food, but only if you are a calf.”

Yes, You Can Still Eat Cheese And Be Healthy. Here’s How
“We love cheese in all its many iterations. Halloumi, paneer, mozzarella, burrata, cheddar, blue, brie ... the list goes on.”"

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

So, this Combat Medic walks into a bar...

As soldiers, we were trained to improvise and overcome obstacles. Here is an example of my own personal experience as a soldier, with improvising and overcoming a given situation. The incident took place many years ago when I was asked to save a chair in the E-Club, by a female soldier who was leaving the table to use the latrine. When she returned, I had several other soldiers working with me, as we had her chair on it's back, on the floor, with two guys performing two-man CPR on it, and we had used items from around the bar (Napkins, straws, swizzle sticks, etc) to splint the chair, run an IV, and cover it in different kinds of bandages. She stood there in shock, asked, "What the hell are you doing?" To which I told her, "You need to back up, ma'am, we are saving your chair!"

Never ask a slightly inebriated combat medic to save your chair. Or even a sober one, as a matter of fact.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Thousand Yard Stare - New Painting

    A brand new piece I did for a Vietnam War novel cover, that I was given a lot of freedom to create. In it I wanted to convey that thousand yard stare so common amongst war weary soldiers. I wanted  to have a soldier, peering through thick jungle vegetation, during monsoon season.

    Now, after I finished the painting, I learned the book I was hired to do the cover for, was actually specifically about the battle at Hue City, during the Tet Offensive. There was no jungle in the book. Not one to be beaten by my own stupidity, I did a variant of the cover, by separately painting a damaged temple wall and window, from Hue, and then, once done, adding it as a new layer, over my original painting, so the Marine is now peering through the damaged temple window. I still am keeping the original jungle painting, for my own gallery and displays.  I am just really fond of it. My brother Steven served as a marine in Vietnam, and he served as an inspiration for this piece. So, I guess that is why.

Below is a great photo of my brother Steve and his buddy John Green, in Vietnam, 1970.

Friday, August 29, 2014

New Cover art for Josh Becker's "True" World War II novel

Cover art I painted for my friend Josh Becker's new "true" novel about Pearl Harbor, called Day of Infamy.

I am very proud of this cover.

Visit Josh's site at

Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Past

For a lot of my childhood friends from Fredericksburg, Virginia, none of them knew when we were kids, that I was the product of a kidnapping.  For his own reasons, my father took me to Fredericksbug, to raise me there because he believed that my mother and siblings wouldn't be able to find me.  I lived in fear for a few years, when we moved there, afraid to speak of my mother. You see, I made the mistake of speaking about my mother to my school counselor once, and the hour plus long nightmarish car ride around town with my father afterward was something I never wanted to go through again; threatening me with my mother, "Do you want to go back to her?! I'll just make you go back to her." So, I never spoke of my mother or six siblings to any of our teachers and especially to any counselor. I didn't trust them.

My father was never a good father. He tried, but he didn't have the temperament, so he failed. It didn't help that he was an alcoholic. When he was drinking, he was a monster, and he drank until I was 16.  Though it did slow quite a bit after I was 13, because I began shaming him for how he acted drunk. I would tell him the things he said and did. The way he would threaten me. Then, as his back got worse, there were the prescription drugs. He was taking so many. He would do things, when he was on them, that when I would tell him later, he began to doubt me and called me a liar.  I tried believing in my dad, but, once he began denying what he was doing, I was finished with him.  I wasn't a child anymore. I never had been. I was already working two jobs, and was failing school because of it.  That lead to one of the worst things he ever did. It took place just before I left home, when I was nearing 18. I wanted to quit the jobs, and focus on school, because I was doing so poorly. He told me I had to keep the job and refused to listen to me. My reaction was the first time in my life, really standing up to him, saying, "I am not doing this anymore! I'm just a kid!" To which he told me I will, and I responded by storming from the car, to go deliver newspapers on my paper route and and replied, "Fuck you, I am going to quit." I heard his car door open and close and the sound of him hobbling toward me on the crutches he used because of his bad back. I turned as he got closer, and saw the look of murderous rage in his eyes. But, i was done being scared. He'd pushed me too far, and my one time pushing back was too much for him to bear, so, there he was, stepping up into my face. His left hand let go of the crutch and pushed me back against the mailboxes. His other hand left the other crutch, so now he was completely leaning on his crutches, pushing into me, his left hand now up and grabbing my throat. His right hand had reached into his wind breaker pocket and he pulled out the Colt .45 Commander, and shoved it into my chest. I really don;t even remember what he said to me. Something akin to Bill Cosby's line about "I brought you in this world, I'll take you out." But, I was sick of it all. So tired and unafraid. I should have been afraid, but I wasn't Instead, and he could see it in my eyes, that I didn't care anymore. He could see that I just accepted it and had this expression of, "well? You going to do it or what?"  Years later, after my father died, the Colt was left to my cousin's husband. I should have wanted it, but I didn't. My cousin never saw that side of my father, they didn't know how much of a monster he could be. I am glad. Everyone should have someone who sees the good in them.

You would think, for me to receive such rage from my father, I must have been an awful kid. But, you see, I was a good kid. I did what my dad said, without fail. That is until I saw him for who he really was; an abusive, pill popping, alcoholic who kept me around solely for the money I brought in.  he got more from his disability because of me. That is until I turned 18. The closer I got to 18, he was making it clear I had to pay for myself. Remember, I was in school and failing because of this.  But, once he lost that war of wills with me in that apt building hallway, it was over.  I had no value to him and wasn't afraid of him, he was done with me.  From that point forward he would do things to get me to leave. In one last effort to get me to break, after I got off work, I came home and he wouldn't let me in the house, because he'd gone into my wallet and had read a letter from a sealed envelope that I'd written to a girl. I thought to myself, "I don't do drugs, I am honest, and a good person, so what's his reason for going into my wallet, retrieving a private letter to someone else and reading it. In it, I was angry that he wouldn't allow us to have a phone, even if I paid for it. "I don't want your mother or her kids calling here."  So, in the letter to the girl, I said, "My father is acting like an ass about getting a phone."  My dad then told me I had to apologize for calling him an ass. To which I told him, "I didn't call you an ass, I said you are acting like one. Besides, what were you doing in my wallet, and opening my private mail? I don';t do drugs or do anything illegal, so what were you looking for?" He didn't like the redirect, and kept trying to go back my needing to apologize for saying he was acting like an ass. To which I said no. An unstoppable force just met an immovable object.

That was the end. I walked away, sought help from my godfather for a place to stay, until I could figure out what to do, he only had to help me for a few days and then another good friend gave me a place to stay, until I figured out what to do or found a place. I left and never looked back. My father's and my relationship was rocky until the end. His senility near then end really aggravated an already frayed relationship, to the point I refused to even talk to him the last year of his life.  He would say awful things about me to my cousin, whom I love very much. I told her, "You can have him. I can't deal with him anymore." He'd done one decent thing for me, and that was help me pay my attorney's fees, so I could keep custody of my daughter. But, he was such an awful human being, he couldn't let me have that. He resented "having" to help by allowing me to sell his gun collection, my "inheritance." he was fighting throat cancer at the time, and was afraid he wouldn't make it. But, I made it clear, "If I lose my daughter because you won't help with the one thing you can help with, you won't have a son to leave them to. I will leave this life and you can leave it to someone else."

After that, he agreed, begrudgingly, but he still agreed.  So I brought a friend of mine to his house, and my friend made notes of all the weapons we collected and my father told him how much each one was worth. Then, with them sold, I was able to pay off the last bit of what i owed my attorney. I was awarded sole custody of my daughter and I thanked dad for it. What did he do? Unbeknownst to me, he told my cousin I stole the guns from him to pay for the lawyer bill, even though I have a a friend who was a witness, and knows better. It didn't matter.  It took me six years to find out about this.  In one phone call he managed to take away the ONLY good thing he'd ever done for me.  I called my cousin and found out more he had said.  I was done with him.

We never spoke again. He died a year later, just before Christmas.

I loved my father, but I also hated him. Here is the weirdest part, despite everything, I even miss him. When he wasn't being a pompous self righteous ass, he was fun to talk history with; the one passion we shared. Despite the mean and awful things, I miss him. He and I were left unresolved. Our life ended like a favorite TV drama that got canceled after a cliffhanger ending.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Just a few samples of work I have done recently