Welcome to the Chubby Chatterbox Newsletter, where I’ll be posting favorites from the Chubby Chatterbox archives. In addition, my complete thriller Return of the Mary Celeste will soon be serialized here for those who have asked for something beyond a regular post.

My novel is based on a true event, arguably the greatest maritime mystery of all time. In 1872 the crew and passengers of Boston brigantine Mary Celeste abandoned their seaworthy ship and its valuable cargo, vanishing in the middle of the Atlantic. Speculation over their fate has never abated. History records that after the Mary Celeste tragedy no one from that fateful voyage was ever seen again. History is about to be rewritten…

Return of the Mary Celeste

Prologue

Tragedy struck the brigantine Mary Celeste on the morning of November 25, 1872. The hourly log was later recovered from the deserted vessel; At 8 a.m. the last notation was made. By 9 a.m. no one remained aboard to chalk the next entry.

Something had terrified Captain Benjamin Briggs and his crew, prompting the seasoned skipper to make a decision certain to affect not only himself, his ship and crew, but his family as well—his wife and two year old daughter were aboard Mary Celeste. Much ink has been spilled in fanciful and scientific attempts to explain the calamity that engulfed this perfectly seaworthy ship, yet all that is known for certain is this: in a matter of minutes Captain Briggs became convinced that the only way to save their lives was by ordering everyone into a hastily launched lifeboat. By giving the order to abandon ship, he also launched the greatest of all maritime mysteries.

On December 5, 1872, a month after leaving New York Harbor, Mary Celeste was found drifting on a calm and empty sea. The ship was in fine condition, perfectly intact with valuable cargo safely stored in her hold, but the crew and passengers had vanished. None were ever seen again.

Until now….

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Five of My Favorite Posts


Gentlemen's Club

August 11, 2011


When our son CJ turned twenty-one his mother and I wanted to do something special for him. We didn’t want him to drink and drive, so we flew him and a buddy who’d already turned twenty-one to Las Vegas where they could celebrate without the need for wheels.

After checking into their hotel, our son’s buddy went to the concierge desk and said, “Today is my best friend’s twenty-first birthday. Can you suggest an interesting way for us to celebrate?”

The concierge said, “Dress in the best clothes you have and be in front of the hotel at ten p.m. I’ll send a limo to pick you up.”

So that’s what they did.

At ten p.m. they climbed into a limo that drove them out into the desert. Twenty minutes later they pulled up in front of a swank gentlemen’s club where a doorman in an Armani suit ushered them in.

I won’t bore you with CJ's vivid descriptions, but I will say that his mother didn’t look pleased when he related what went on inside. She listened patiently while he bubbled over with enthusiasm for the well-endowed ladies, and when he finished she said, “I’m glad you had a nice birthday, but bear in mind that the breasts on those women aren’t real.”

The look on my wife’s face was priceless when our son said, “They sure felt real!”




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