Miller Time

Riot On The Southwest Chief (6)

UNITED STATES—The red pick-up flew along parallel to the train tracks in hopes of catching up with the train that had left Raveendran and Gloria in the dust. “I’ve got a plan,” said the man in the red T-shirt intent behind the wheel. Name of Rusty Nails. “What is it?” Gloria the Gluten-Phobe was able to say in a quieter stretch...

Riot On The Southwest Chief (5)

UNITED STATES—Raveendran’s eyes locked onto the dull silver string of cars that constituted the Southwest Chief, chased by a lone sagebrush tumbling to Ratón’s main street. The window of the general store supplied a beautiful view. Over the ridge disappeared the last car, and there only remained the rails, silver shiny on top. “A hamburger,” Raveendran said to the red-bearded...

Riot On The Southwest Chief (3)

UNITED STATES—A muffled announcement came over the loudspeaker, “This is Garden City, Kansas. If this is your stop, get off here. This will be a brief stop. This will not be a smoking stop.” The tribe of smokers on board groaned. As the groans subsided, the Southwest Chief clanked into forward movement again and Raveendran’s mouth watered as the deserted...

My Country

UNITED STATES—After being a prisoner in California for more years than I care to remember, I find myself on the road to Idaho. Outside of Winnemucca at 3 a.m. on I-80 at a truckstop, a hideously overlit place, but I am loving it because there are slots and there are two monolithic and nattily dressed seniors who look all...

Live And Let Diet

UNITED STATES—It’s often easier to go unrecognized as a diet guru. And what happened after my daughter’s 8th grade graduation, has left me with a intricate desire to scream. I could scream. That’s right. After the blazing sunny ceremony, held on the lawn of Beverly Hills High School, a couple of parents, friends and children, now teen graduates clad in togas, adjourned...

Crazy Busy

UNITED STATES—A Nigerian gentleman in Mid-City once made the astute observation, “When people in America say they’re busy, it means they’re making money.” Take it up a notch. And you get crazy busy, it means you’re sold out to the holy hustle and your soul belongs to the top five bidders. And when you’re crazy busy like a fox, there’s...

How To Tame A Wild Stew

UNITED STATES—A warm bath can be the most alluring thing in the world after a night’s filming in a makeshift football field, up in the mountains of the high desert, where the fierceness of the sun is matched only by the fierceness of the evening chill. A warm bath—that’s all I wanted. We worked from 7 a.m. to 7...

Just Say Yes

UNITED STATES—As a matter of courtesy and kindling goodwill in people who enjoy giving, I generally say yes to food gifts. It keeps the flow going. The urge to give is so heartfelt, nevermind that the gift is trans-fat loaded pastry with a mile-long list of toxic ingredients; it is something to cherish in people, the giving urge. I...

Barking Dogs

UNITED STATES—Dogs lower blood pressure. They can stand on their hind legs and make a goofy grin. I knew a screenwriter, oh so afflicted, whose life dramatically improved, where back surgery and acupuncture had failed, and then a dog came into it. The difference was huge—night and day—he radiated contentment and zest for life. You’d think with all the beneficial...

Tips For Simple Living

UNITED STATES—Simpler is better. I felt this strongly while watching “The Human Experiment,” an expose of the silent army of chemicals that pervades our clothing, cosmetics and even our houses. The motivation for this movie was a startling journalistic discovery that will pretty much blow your mind. Get this: the chemicals used in the manufacture products sold in the...
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