SHOES

img_20150919_115744The creek rippled with the powerful invigorating force of spring. Winter snow gave up its passive seat as the warmth of the sun penetrated the snowflake layers sending its new form cascading down the rugged slope of the mountain. I properly anticipated the weather dressing with layers, none of which I had yet to peel off.

I removed my sunglasses from above the bill of my baseball cap. A dark blue hat with two smiling baseball players shaking hands. The twinsretro hat, one of my favorites, signifying my Air Force brother’s beloved team from the upper Midwest. Glasses now in place, their effort to block the sun rays piercing through the majestic pine trees appreciated, I could now see, without straining, the creek’s opposite bank. I calculated the distance across, confident I would be able to make the leap to the other side without soaking my feet and brand new shoes.

I struggle with the reasons behind why I would care if my shoes get wet. Water dries eventually and it would not ruin these shoes. My mind settles on leaving my wife of twenty one years less than a week ago. The constant barrage of her negativity and false illusion of normal family lifealien-ont-departure no longer weighed me down. My immersion in the power, strength, and calm serenity of the woods propelled me forward with cleansing thoughts. The first purchase I made with my new freedom was the shoes. A new symbol of my independence. At first, I felt they needed to stay clean. Untarnished have you. The now clear message from my inner-voice preached a different yarn. I looked upward at the sun, penetrating the thick Oregon pines and laughed as I playfully walked through the  creek’s spring chill, soaking my new shoes. The universe nurtured me, tugging my soul as she showed the cleansing, healing force of the outdoors.

I’ll Disturb the Sound of Silence

T4733365he lonely walk on the rough cobble-stoned path to the lab appeared more cold and dreary than usual. The eyes housed in my head could see the path was bumpy but my feet didn’t return the sensation to my brain. Like always. I scanned my memories and found those necessary to push out tears. Feeling no grief, I noticed as the saline solution trickled down my cheeks and evaporated in the cold air. I wanted my artificial heart pumping artificial blood through my artificial veins, to ache. Something I never dreamed I would ever wish. My brain tried to relay the memory of the pain downwards into any essence left of my being. The fake body would never be able to duplicate the human range of emotions I once thought stressful. The last one hundred and fifty years has taught me a number of things about the human mind and existence. I have watched as the artificial technological landscape has become one of perfection, peace. Absent of struggle. There is no longer genuine joy or sorrow. Humans have always wanted to part with sorrow. I understood it as a young man, and I still understand it at two-hundred and one years old. I will only speak for myself. I hear the others, but choose only to speak for me. I hear the whispers at the theatre, fundraisers, athletic events, and social gatherings. Cryptic references made in the social atmosphere of our wired and connected brains housed in micro-chips. None of us are happy, that much I do know. We simply exist. Suicide is strictly forbidden and very difficult to achieve. The greater good propels all of us now to remain connected and intertwined in a binary language that has no nuance of feeling. A language based strictly on survival for the greater good.

I reached the lab, in precisely thirteen minutes and thirty-nine seconds. The same exact time as every other day I had an appointment for programming, upgrades, or a diagnostic evaluation. I grabbed what should have been 4828903a cold metal handle and felt nothing.  Searching the deep recesses of a once fully functional human mind, encased in flawed synthetic flesh, I tried to remember the feeling of snow. The sensation of cold. The chill in the air which spoke to the mind about satisfying, secure, warmth. My mouth turned upwards in a computer driven response. Walking inside I moved through the lobby acknowledging the receptionist. He was more a watchdog than anything. There were no spreadsheets or calendars to check off, no names to confirm or IDs to show. We were already connected. Without asking he knew who I was, why I was there, and where I was going. Entering the sterile room, I sat in a chair, allowed my arm to be plugged into the mainframe and sat knowing this was my sad ongoing life. But for how long? Death came to very few. Recycling was paramount and re-purposing the new norm.

lonely-bridgeLooking in the mirror one final time, my processor chip was reconfigured in the base of my skull. There was something peculiar and faulty in this latest upgrade. The reasons, as of yet unclear, offered the remaining human in me hope. I focused on clarity, allowing the upgrade to proceed so as not to alert the mainframe that a complete reboot would be necessary. I didn’t want to go through the lengthy scrubbing process again. Not so soon after the last one, a short six hundred forty nine hours, fifteen minutes and twenty-nine seconds ago. My once fleshy conscience fought for control as the upgrade concluded. I removed the connection from my arm, and nodded to the young lab attendants who never had the pleasure of sorrow or loss. They were machines through and through.

As I exited the lab, I breathed in with the full force my plastic lungs would allow. I hoped, another dead word — hope, my brain would somehow provide the sensation of cold clean air filling my lungs with the satisfaction of another life-sustaining breath. Exasperation I think. Or was it the absence of? Nothing but a memory. I headed home, thinking in a seldom used partition, not caring I was connected. It was time to die.

 

Featured Friday! Mike Walters

91afedb367485dcb5efc57e5a978612a0122cc07__300x0Mike Walters’ debut duology, The Outlaw River Wilde – Book I, and Still Wilde in Outlaw River – Book II, sprung from an idea while watching Ancient Aliens on the History channel. He intertwines his love of Native American culture and a passion for the Pacific Northwest, primarily his birth state of Oregon in the Supernatural SciFi Mystery. Mike sat down one day and started writing. The characters and story came to life as he wrote.

Mike is the Director of Marketing & Product at a Library Software company, Auto-Graphics, Inc. based in Ontario, California. When Mike isn’t working, he can be found bicycling around Southern California, hiking the Claremont Loop, or writing.

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A Born Skeptic Confronts the Extraordinary

 stillWord Slinger Publicity

July 12, 2016

Mitch Wilde never believed in aliens—that is, until he was left with no other way to explain the strange events happening around his small Pacific Northwest home. With scattered appearances of ghostly Native American riders, a series of odd break-ins by unknown intruders, and hints that more could be coming, Mitch, along with his cantankerous old neighbor who is becoming a new friend, vows to unravel the mysteries and preserve the comfortable life he has worked so hard to build.

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The Outlaw River Wilde (The Outlaw River Wilde Volume 1) by Mike Walters

91afedb367485dcb5efc57e5a978612a0122cc07__300x0The Pacific Northwest is Under Attack. Ancient Alien Intrigue: Can Mitch Wilde save humanity?
A very impressive debut. Original and impressively well written novel! – Portsmouth BOOK REVIEW

An original and impressively well written novel, “The Outlaw River Wilde” is a deftly crafted and highly entertaining story by an author who will leave his readers looking eagerly toward his next effort. – Midwest Book Review

Mitch Wilde never believed in aliens, that is, until he was left with no other way to explain the strange events happening around his small Pacific Northwest home.

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Still Wilde In Outlaw River (The Outlaw River Wilde Volume 2) by Mike Walters

stillJuly 09th, 2016

Cold Coffee Press Endorses Still Wilde In Outlaw River (The Outlaw River Wilde Volume 2) by Mike Walters by Cold Coffee Press on 9 Jul

Still Wilde In Outlaw River
 (The Outlaw River Wilde Volume 2) 
by Mike Walters

Rescued from a desperate situation, Mitch Wilde finds the stakes raised for him, his loved ones, and his small Oregon Town of Outlaw River. Mitch’s wife Mabey is alone and on the run, fighting for her own survival. Jasper, Mitch’s cantankerous old neighbor and investigative paranormal sleuth, and best friend Jack Jenson, also return in Book Two of Mike Walters’ debut supernatural duology.

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Indie Author Mike Walters Explores the Potential Problems That Outer Space Aliens Could Pose in Book II of His Supernatural Duology

duologyI Will Vote For Trump If He Vows To Build A Wall Around The Planet, And Gets The Aliens To Pay For It

Jun 06, 2016, 11:48 ET from Mike Walters

LOS ANGELES, June 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Mike Walters, exploring a potential threat to earth, announces the release of the second and final book in his Supernatural duology – Still Wilde in Outlaw River.

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Myths, Mysticism, and Adventure

91afedb367485dcb5efc57e5a978612a0122cc07__300x0
Taken from Lightning Chronicles – A. G. Moye’s anything and everything blog and his works. 
By Mike Walters

“Mulder, it is such a gorgeous day outside. Have you ever entertained the idea of trying to find life on this planet?”

“I have seen the life on this planet, Scully, and that is exactly why I’m looking elsewhere.”Being a close-minded person can choke off possibilities readily available to all of us in the form of Myths, Mysticism, and Adventure. I became a fan of the X-Files when it debuted back in 1993. At the time, I had no idea it would start me down the path of formulating some of my own stories with the ultimate desire of putting them down on paper. (more…)

Charline Ratcliff Interview

new-picture-21Charline Ratcliff Interviews: Mike Walters, Author of ‘The Outlaw River Wilde’

Charlene Ratcliff: Good Morning Mike! I’m happy to be to feature you, and your book, on my blog today!

Thank you for the opportunity to spend a few minutes with you and answer some questions.

To start out, why don’t you tell us about yourself. As a child, where did you grow up? What was it like? Did you enjoy where you lived? And — what activities did you do for fun? (more…)