Changes

The next few days should be deliciously interesting…. Yes! It’s funny because yesterday I visited an online tarot site just for grins and to kill a few minutes. I selected the cards and to my utter amazement it said that I might be about to enjoy a new car! Well, it is spot on. On Tuesday night I do pick up my new car. Nope – it isn’t the Porsche I dreamed of but it is a very nice Mazda CX5 SUV. I can’t wait because I am a sucker for cars and I adore driving.

Funnily enough, on the very same day, I will end my job and on May 1st start a new one basically working for myself with a partner in Houston. This one means a lot of changes. Initially, working from home then seeking an office (furniture, phones etc.), developing portals, finding clients and creating new companies. A lot to be done here for sure.

And finally, this weekend may just be the moment when Hull City get promoted. If Watford lose on Friday, its a done deal. If Hull win on Saturday its a done deal. Fingers and everything else crossed this weekend……

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Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

Rocky and I just got back from a walk up the hill here in Prague. The sun is shining and its already warm….. Rocky, who thinks he is a dog, marked every lamp post while I surveyed the city lying in the valley below. It’s a nice city that is for sure. The view and the walk gave me some perspectives on things.

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See, I just quit my high powered and highly paid job. It feels good not to have to deal with that stress any more nor have to worry about the silly staff issues, politics, owners, forthcoming regulations, keeping costs down and so on…. But I face a new challenge because I am going back to running my own business with a partner from Houston, TX. The stress now will be can we make enough money each month to pay ourselves! I guess I should be scared shitless but to be honest I am calm. I reckon everything will work out just fine. It usually does and that walk has put me in a calm mood.

What I would really like to do is to write. For that I need an audience. I’m not worried about that either for some reason as I suspect I will find an audience too in good time.

On days like today, I am reminded of that silly but so right song – Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

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I intend to be…. now, I must do some work.

We Have A Date!

Today, if you didn’t know it, is St. George’s day. The patron saint of England who slew the dragon. Maybe its a fitting date then for Roundfire to actually set a publication date for The Last Observer? Yep, I awoke this morning to discover that it will be published on the 30th August 2013. It has its own page too with all the key details. The print book will retail at 6.99GBP or 12.95USD and the eBook at 6.99GBP or 9.99USD. I also have an author’s page there.

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Gosh, wouldn’t it be nice if the book really did well!

Here are several endorsements. My sincere thanks to Herbie, Alan, Gordon and Anthony…

Dennis Wheatley brought up to date with a liberal spicing of speculation about the nature of reality, quantum physics and parallel worlds. This thriller novel is written by a practising occultist and it shows in the authenticity of every page. Highly recommended. ~ Herbie Brennan, New York Times best-selling author of Whisperers: The Secret History of the Spirit World.

The Last Observer is like the Devil Rides Out but on steroids. Magic and Science collide, dragging bookworm Stanley into a fast-paced adventure full of intriguing twists and turns and culminating in a battle over reality. Vasey combines ancient magic and quantum physics in a seamless picture of what reality might be and uses it as a theme to weave the devil of a story. It’s a gripping and thought provoking ride. ~ Alan Richardson, Author of Magical Kabbalah and many other books…

We all perceive reality differently, yet the evil Zeltan plans to control the universal consciousness. Because Stanley possesses a unique imagination, he is marked as another victim for the satanic tyrant. While fleeing from this threat, our innocent discovers his soul while Alison, dabbling in the occult, nearly loses hers. The author has created a convincing world of magic, quantum and mind-blowing ideas in which to set an endlessly surprising adventure. Along the way, enormous questions are being asked about how power should be used, whether it is scientific or magical. ~ Gordon Strong, Author of Merlin: Master of Magic and many other books.

Gary tells a classic tale of mystery and suspense but weaves within it a series of themes that would be at home in any modern physics text book. He masterfully uses his own extensive knowledge of modern magical rituals to create a tale that is both mysterious and intriguing. However the mystery soon gives way to something far more sinister and terrifying, a terror that explodes into a finale of epic proportions in which the fate of the universe itself is at stake. Once started this book cannot be put down and once finished you may just find yourself checking the shadows to catch a glimpse of the Lord of the Elements. ~ Anthony Peake, author of Is There Life After Death? The Extraordinary Science of What Happens When We Die and many other books.

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The Last Observer – Getting Closer to Reality

My novel now has a full cover including the following text on the back of the book…

The Last Observer is a compelling tale of magic, alternative realities, murder and conflict. An ordinary man is abruptly dragged into the middle of a violent struggle between black and white magicians who both seek to use his extraordinary powers of imagination and observation. He soon learns that reality is not at all what it seems before being called upon to play a decisive role in determining whose reality will prevail.

“Dennis Wheatley brought up to date with a liberal spicing of speculation about the nature of reality, quantum physics and parallel worlds. …. Highly recommended” – Herbie Brennan, New York Times best-selling author of Whisperers: The Secret History of the Spirit World.

Dr. G. Michael Vasey writes about the nature of reality and our ability to shape that reality from an occultist point of view.

Also – it would appear it will retail in paper form for 6.99GBP or $12.95 in the USA…..

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eBook is next and then we will see but I am guessing August, 2013 release date….

A Non-Smoker

Almost immediately I stood upright getting out of bed this morning, I started to cough. The coughing is usually followed by a dash to the Lav as gravity seems to really play a role in my mornings. I don’t cough as much as I used to though because…. (drum roll)… I QUIT smoking two months ago. Yep, the last bought of pneumonia was the last straw. I quit the bloody things.

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One tip to help us quit smoking is to calculate our savings. Actually, living in the Czech Republic, this isn’t too effective. Cigs are relatively cheap but nicorette patches are priced beyond the reach of the average earner. The net result was, that by my calculation, quitting smoking cost me about 200USD. Never mind, I have now quit the nicorette too so I’m surely going to profit financially soon….

The real downside has been the 6 additional kilos I put on. Wow – I look like a beached whale. How did this happen? I haven’t changed my eating habits… I guess my metabolism has just slowed down. At least my weight is now stable!

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So, the next ‘to-do’ for me is to lose weight. Not just the 6kg but I think I will go for 20kg. Fit and healthy at that weight. I started already. Last night, I had my haircut for the first time in 4-months. That was a few grams less right there.

Dear Mr. President

Hi our Prezza! How the hell are you? Had enough vacations on my tax dollar, thrown enough star studded parties yet to actually DO something – anything? Or still pinning the blame for everything (like all of your loathsome kind) on your predecessor. Yes, I’m sorry, I don’t care much for politicians of any party or persuasion.

Actually, to tell you the truth, what I want to ask you about is rather selfish of me but here goes….

When I became a US citizen, I was quite proud, especially when the examiner at the joke of a test that passes for a citizenship examination told me “Congrats, you got all the answers correct, most Americans couldn’t do that!”

“Really?” I asked, “How many would they get right then?”

“Three or four out of ten if you are lucky,” says she…..

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So, I digress, apologies.

Everything was OK until I decided to move back to Europe. It was only then my problems started. See, I know that you with your millions of dollars in income only pay what – 19% taxes?, well, I with my low six figure dollar salary pay something like 28%. Guess I am the rich you want to squeeze except? I mean that’s fine, if I am sat in the US actually using the place but when I am here – in Europe – for 7-years, it gets a bit tiresome to pay you taxes so you can get elected again promising free phones on my hard earned dollar.

Ok – yes, you are right. I don’t pay all of my taxes to the US. I pay my Czech taxes first and then we take what I would owe in the USA, subtract the Czech taxes (more or less), and what is left I pay the IRS. Fortunately there is a tax treaty in place. But I still have to file a 60+ page tax return and that costs me a bunch of cash too in fees every year.

To be honest, I don’t mind paying the taxes for nothing in return. It’s just that as far as you are concerned all overseas Americans are crooks. Yes, we are viewed as criminals. That’s why we have to also produce an annual report listing all of our overseas bank accounts and balances and submit that as well right? That’s why my Czech bank has to report to the IRS as well right? You want COMPLETE visibility into my finances just so you can be absolutely sure I’m not cheating.

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But, Mr. Prezza, this causes me some issues. Most banks here won’t accept US citizens as customers because they don’t want to have the expense and burden of reporting stuff to you all of the time. So, its kind of tough to find a bank to deal with…

Oh, I could use my US bank you say!

Yes, well, since I have no US residence, I don’t have an address there do I? You know what that means right? Yep – no US bank account for little ol’ me…. can’t have one without a US residential address.

Its OK Mr Prezza, I think its great I can’t open a bank account anywhere as it means I can keep all my cash as cash. That way, when you and your government decide to make a grab for more of my money, you won’t be able to get it.

But wait, without a bank account, how do I pay my taxes…….?

While this is a tongue in cheek article let me tell you all, the US government is making life for US citizens overseas almost impossible and demanding more and more visibility into our private affairs. I for one have had enough so I am looking at dumping that citizenship….

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Oh wait, to do that I have now to pretend to sell everything I have, pay capital gains taxes on everything, and only then I am free…. Think that through people……Nice.

Plumbing

I’m not sure what consciousness is and apparently scientists are clueless too but, I do know that I am conscious – most of the time. Consciousness is associated with the brain – I guess people would argue as to whether the brain is an instrument of consciousness or actually creates the illusion of it. I prefer to believe the former of course. However, if you really think about what we are we are just brains on sticks. The stick is the spine of course but that’s pretty much what we are right? A brain on a stick. The rest of it is plumbing and a sack to hold it all in.

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The problem is that occasionally, the plumbing goes wrong. It did for me. About 18-months ago, my plumbing had a blockage and the blockage needed to be removed. Some 10cm of my plumbing was removed and stitched back together again. The whole experience really made me see myself as so much plumbing equipment so that my brain – on a stick – can be kept fueled. It’s quite an efficient arrangement actually and even the sack that holds it all together can sometimes be rather attractive!

The idea of a brain on a stick was also sort of put forward in the past too. In Comte de Gabalis, one finds Merlin’s Prophecy and in that we find reference to the stick…interpreted as follows;

The spinal cord is “just like a tree with its innumerable branches covering the whole of the human body, the roots being upwards and the branches downwards.” * The spinal cord is the tree whose roots and branches are here mentioned, and connects those minor brain centres which are seats of the higher consciousness in man and which when energised enable him to draw spiritual nourishment and illumination from the heaven-world”. “As trees by their extremities are rooted in the earth, and through this are earthly in every part, in the same manner divine natures are rooted by their summits in the One.” PROCLUS. To-day man is rooted in the earth. To-morrow, awakening to a consciousness of his divine nature, he shall be rooted in the One, and such radiation of Spiritual Light will result that the newness of the world will be a miracle.

In fact, there are many veiled and not so veiled references to the brain on a stick in ancient texts and documents.

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So I quite like the idea of being a brain on a stick with plumbing and a sack to hold it all in…. hope my plumbing holds…