The Book

 

Now available!

Are you looking to laugh? This book just might be of assistance in that area. Humorist Brooks Palmer helps pull the rug out from under the seriousness of life. With his words of wisdom, short stories, and cartoons, he pokes fun at the human condition in a way that is inclusive and hilarious.


(Click for reviews, an excerpt, and to order.)



Recent Blog Posts (c) 2018 by Brooks Palmer

 

Neanderthals The less fancy time travel trips - Sure, the first twenty years I used my time machine just to meet famous people and see historic events. My therapist felt it was my way of feeling important. I said that was the only reason I do anything, and his eyes lit up because he knew with me he would be able to afford a really nice car. After that notorious and illustrious swatch of binge time traveling, I began looking for trips that would bring me simplicity. That's when I began to visit Paracelsus, The Cypress of Abarkuh, and Urgblap and Plemphf.. First, Paracelsus! He was the founder of Paracelsianism. Ah, you might be saying, "Isn't he famous since he founded a way of thinking?" Yes. But he's not realllly famous. He was known during his time for discoveries related to chemistry and the human body. Many people were known during their time, but they're not known now, so what does it matter? I didn't visit Paracelsus because he was known. My reasons were he was a great walker. Not a robuster. He walked delicately. He enjoyed honoring his steps. He would tell me, "I like the sound of my foot moving through the air towards the ground." Paracelsus and I would walk for hours at a time. We never got very far because he took small steps, and walked in super slow motion in order to savor the landings of his feet on the ground. This is when I began to learn how to relish and be gradual. I would time travel visit Paracelsus often in Salzburg, Austria, 1538, in the mornings because that's when he went for his walk. I would greet him at his door with a duck. Ducks back then were a way to say, "I cherish our special friendship." (Because I visited him a little over thirty times, this allowed him to establish the only duck farm in the country, for which he became renowned, but later infamous when those ducks were linked to an avian influenza outbreak that wiped out most of the chicken livestock in Europe.) Then there's the Cypress of Abarkuh. Currently it's a massive 5000 year old tree in Aburkah, Iran. But I've often time traveled back to the year 2983 BC, and sat with the tree when it was just a sapling. It was less than a foot high and ignored by all but me. I don't know what it was about the Cypress, but I'd feel happy sitting with it. I'd tell it my problems. I'd sing it songs. I'd blow a gentle breath on the sapling, watching it dance ever so lightly. Once, an aardvark was heading towards the Cypress with bad intent. Aardvarks are malicious creatures that mean nothing but ill will towards all species. I stood up protectively in front of the Cypress and hollered at the aardvark to retreat. The aardvark fumed, but went back to where it had come from. The Cypress was quivering from fear. I said that everything was okay. The Cypress calmed down. I don't know what it is about that delicate newbie that makes my heart consistently ricochet against my rib cage. Lastly, there's Urgblap and Plemphf. They were a sweet neanderthal couple that I have often time traveled to the plains of what's now Europe, 450,000 years ago, to visit. On my first visit they tried to kill me with their rudimentary tools, but at the last second when I offered them a selection of Peeps Easter bunny marshmallow candy, they spared me, and we became fast friends. I have often felt at home when they generously serve me a prepared meal of slugs and spores on a rock. At others times we would walk hand in hand naked through the desert, staring at the Sun until we went temporarily blind.
James Garfield Some things I like - I like to eat. I've always liked eating. There's something about food that really does it for me. I really like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, as well as chips, among others. I also like walking. There's a good time to be had one footing it in front of the other. In addition, I like to time travel. I do it on the average of three times a week. Sometimes more. It's exciting to get out of the drab this moment, arriving in the new one. Hang on, I'm going to do it now and I'll be right back. ..... I'm back. What a great time it was. I went to visit President James Garfield at the White House. It was July 2nd, 1881. I informed him I was from the future, and that he was going to be shot later that morning. If said if he stayed in, he was certain to be okay. President Garfield didn't believe me, nor that I was a time traveler. I showed him a book called Brockner's History of the American Presidents, 1789 to 2018. I opened to chapter twenty which was named after him. President Garfield read the chapter. He looked a little worried. But then said that any book can be written about the future. But that doesn't make what it says true. I said the difference was this book was written in the future. He said that he didn't have time for such outlandish silliness and left for the train station. I followed President Garfield to the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad Passenger Terminal. I was steps behind him, reading out loud from Brockner's, "President Garfield entered the train station at 9:28 am." President Garfield looked up at the large clock hanging from the terminal's ceiling which read 9:28. A worried look crossed his face, but Garfield continued walking toward the trains. I read loudly, "Assassin Charles Guiteau hid by the ladies waiting room near the Sixth Street Station where Garfield's train was scheduled to depart." Garfield looked back at me with great consternation, saying, "Must you continue this audacity?" There were screams. Garfield turned around and gasped as a man approached in his direction with a gun.  The man said to me, "Excuse me, but what are you reading from?" I held up the book for him to see. He read the passage with a raised eyebrow. He said, "That's astounding. This mentions me. How is it possible Brockner's could know?" By then police had arrived and took the man into custody. President Garfield sighed and said, "I am sorry to have disbelieved you. The country is in your debt." I loved hearing those words. I often don't feel I make a difference. Time travel filled that hole.  
sniff Sniffed! - I got in my time machine and traveled to 1850, Concord, Massachusetts, and the home of Nathaniel Hawthorne. I knocked at the door and when the author opened and answered, I leaned in, my nose in his jacket, and took a deep sniff. There's something about truly smelling an author. Sure, you can read their book, and get into the inner workings of their vast minds. But there's something raw, crunchy, carnal, and cosmic when you take a good whiff of the writer. Hawthorne understood. He stood still while I partook. He knew I needed more than his words could supply. When I got it, I stepped back and thanked him. He nodded and wished me the best. Recently I time traveled to October 1863, San Raphael, California, and the publishing offices of the Overland Monthly. I walked into the office of writer Bret Harte. He asked how he could help me, I said, "Excuse me," and leaned in and took a deep inhale. Bret waited patiently. When I was done, I thanked him and left. I'd never read Bret's writings, but he was especially close with Mark Twain, and I wanted to get that Twain spoor through him. I had tried to get it from Twain, but he refused saying author sniffing was sure bunk. And then there was that time I ventured to July 1816, Geneva, to the Maison Chapuis, the summer home of the writer Mary Shelley. Mary was out back, writing in a chaise lounge. I got excited because I'd never inhaled an author while they wrote. I didn't want to be pushy like I'd been with the men, and asked her if it was okay if I took a snuffle while she scribed. She asked if instead she might sniff me while she wrote, incorporating my aroma into the character she was bringing to life. I acquiesced and she took me in. That book was Frankenstein.
Rexy There’s nothing better - I like to sit around and do nothing. There's nothing better. Sure, laying down doing nothing can be a sweet and decent thing. But then it often spoils because I'll fall asleep and dream-go to some other place and circumstance where I'm up, hectically having to do things. Yeah, it is a simpler form of time and space travel. Though you don't get to pick your destination. But then if things go afoul and unfixable in the dream, I'll soon wake up, back in my bed where all is well. Unless I fall back asleep. That's why I prefer sitting and doing nothing. This morning I was sitting in my big old leather lounge chair doing nothing. I looked forward to six to eight hours of this perfect loveliness, when my dog Rexy got up from her doggie bed and walked into the Time Machine. I languidly told her to get out of there. She looked at me, said, "Whatever," slapped her pawn on the destination pad and was gone in an instant. For the first time, sitting and doing nothing was ruined. I was frantic. I had no idea where Rexy had gone to in time. She had never done this on her own before. I got up and started pacing. Pacing is one of the most brilliant things invented. Franticness is an agitator, but pacing is a nullifier. Within two minutes I'd forgotten all about Rexy. Within a few more minutes I was getting my second wind and started questioning my sitting around assumption. Perhaps pacing was better. Sure, it starts with conniption, but that assuages to peacefulness. Plus I get exercise! Suddenly Rexy returned in the Time Machine. She was soaked, covered with seaweed, and had a flopping grouper fish in her mouth. She shook off the water and the seaweed, getting much of it on me. I called her a bad girl, and she gave me the slight eye. She laid down in her doggie bed and began eating the fish. I pulled off the seaweed, and put it outside in the compost bin. I came back in and changed into dry clothes. I sat back in my big old leather lounge chair and tried to continue with the nothing, but got irritated with Rexy's loud chewing. It came to me that I was hungry. I got down on the ground with Rexy and took a bite out of other end of the fish she hadn't gotten to yet. It was incredibly fresh tasting. I thought, "There's nothing better than this."
Abraham Lincoln is my friend Abraham Lincoln is my friend - I was feeling tired and overwhelmed and climbed into my time machine and punched in the keyboard:  4pm, December 21st, 1863, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. I found President Lincoln at work in his office. He could tell I was tired. He put down his pen, got up, and invited me to the couch. Lincoln sat down and I curled up on his lap. He was a big man. About twice as big as most. He said, "Whatsoever's wrong, it's gonna be okay, Brooks." I fell asleep in seconds. When I woke up, it was dark. I was laying down on the couch, covered with two blankets. I called out to see if I was alone. No one answered. I got up and left the office and walked around the halls. There was a nightwatchman. He nodded as we passed. He knew me because I'm a frequent visitor. It was incredibly quiet. That's why I love the night. Out of all my time travel destinations, Lincoln is the person I visit the most. I feel good enough to say we are friends. Sometimes I'll visit him when I know he's feeling low. Like February 20, 1862, when his son Willie had died. I never know what to say in that kind of situation. So I figure it's best not to say anything. Stand near by, and keep an open heart. Lincoln cried and leaned his head against my chest. I held it as he sobbed. I don't think there's anyway to feel closer to someone. There was the time I visited Lincoln the afternoon of April 15th, 1865 and told him that someone would try and kill him that night if he went to the Ford's Theater. Lincoln thought about it. Then said he would go to the theater anyway because it was wrong to mess with fate. I said that messing with fate would be fate. You can't avoid fate since it's the string puller. Lincoln thought that was a sharp observation and decided to stay home. I enjoyed a nice dinner with Lincoln and his wife, Mary Todd and his son, Tad. We ate turkey, yams, and apple pie.

Older Entries