A Finish Unknown

One of Sherlock Holmes’ many observations was this one:
“When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

The words were, of course, those of a fictional Sherlock Holmes, the super sleuth created by author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930). Sir Arthur had Holmes give that advice in Chapter 6 of his work entitled “The Sign of Four”, published in 1890.

Improbable as it may seem during the living of it, life itself does glide steadily toward a finish line known to none. We truly are without a clue.


Scan of the VHS cover of “Without A Clue”, Orion Home Video, 1988, ITC Entertainment Group, from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg



If you enjoy the board game Scrabble, you might find my Scrabbled Short Story challenge interesting.


At my Fans and Gamers blog, challenge yourself to unscrabble several words presented on a Scrabble board.

Interpret the words as they stand into a short short story.

The challenge is good (and entertaining) practice in cutting down your stories to the bare bones of showing, rather than telling.

Photo from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg


Doing Enough…

Are we doing enough to preserve our natural resources?

Sometimes, I believe, we put too much criticism into our efforts to awaken those who don’t give much thought to the important practice of conservation. This is not to say I think we’re doing enough, and let’s back off. Not by any means!

However, we tend to forget “the best idea we ever had”, according to an author named Wallace Stegner. He was speaking of the designation of our (USA) national parks. The parks are treasure troves of wildlife, wild flowers, mammals, plants, deserts, mountains, etc., and they are there for the public to enjoy and to become better educated about conservation.

(BONUS Trivia: How many national parks exist in the United States?
ANSWER: 60!)

Find lots more national parks trivia at my “Lines of Gratitude Blog”. Each post there shares bonus trivia information about the miracle of our national parks.

Photos from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg

Thank You Veterans

Have you thanked a military Veteran today for your freedom? It’s Memorial Day, 2018!


To Veterans, we owe our freedom in America. Many men and women gave the ultimate sacrifice in conflict and war to make that possible. Don’t ever forget them! And say thank you on more than one occasion during the year!

Always remember! Never forget a Vet!


I love this screen The Weather Channel used to depict one of World War II’s decisive battles of World War II, at Iwo Jima, during the station’s Memorial Day Week 2018 broadcasts.

First Photo from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg



John Wayne Died Nine Times

In The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, John Wayne’s character was already dead. The story, starring James Stewart, was done as a flashback, in which John Wayne told part of the tale. It’s a very good film, with the ultimate bad man, Lee Marvin, playing Liberty Valance to the height of his villainous ability.


In the less known movie, The Deceiver, Wayne actually played a corpse around which the story unveiled itself.

Find the answers to the following scenarios at the end of this blog.

A.) Nine times in his films, John Wayne’s character died. Twice he was shot outright, in The Cowboys  (1972), and The Shootist (1976). Who were the dirty, rotten famous actor shooters?

B.) Once, Wayne was lanced to death. In what 1960 film did that happen?

C.) Our man went down to the sea in ships three times. Do you know the names of these movies (1933, ship); (1949, ship); (1955, plane crash into the ocean)?

D.) In two war films, Wayne was done in by snipers. Name them.

E.) Final drum roll: How did our hero meet his death in the film Reap the Wild Wind (1942)?  

And the answers are!!!

A.) Bruce Dern and Richard Boone, respectively
B.) The Alamo, (playing Davey Crockett)
C.) Central Airport, Wake of the Red Witch, The Sea Chase, respectively
D.) The Fighting Seabees (1944); Sands of Iwo Jima (1949)
E.) by squid 

John Wayne made over 170 movies, becoming a star after his role in Stagecoach (1939). One of Hollywood’s most revered personalities, John Wayne, born Marion Robert Morrison, still rocks the celluloid to this day.

Photo courtesy of http://www.pixabay.com

For more movie fun and trivia, visit my blog:

A Fourth Place Tie in Short Story Writing

I’m pleased to announce my short story Normal Things received a Fourth Place three-way tie award in Amazon best-selling author Dan Alatorre’s March 2018 “Word Weaver Writing Contest”!

Dan’s scanned award proclamation follows:




Normal Things will be featured during the last week of April at Dan’s blog. In the meantime, hop over to his place and enjoy reading the No. 1 awarded story, What If, and some of the other winners, day by day.

Great writers, here at WordPress, and great stories to share!


My Amazon Author Page is:

Bless the Farmer


Come on, Spring, and the art of farming!

Paul Harvey, the talented radio host, once said: “God looked down on his planned paradise and said, ‘I need a caretaker.’

“So God made a farmer.”

I’m a farmer’s daughter who still loves the land for all it can provide for the created human race!

Photo from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg

See my Amazon Author’s Page:

Words to Think On

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Consider the Power of Words:

Albert Einstein once observed:
“I know not with what weapons World World III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”

Comedian Robin Williams painted a darker picture yet, quoting a PENTAGON OFFICIAL who said to him: “…the people who would actually push the button probably have never seen a person die…the only hope (a strange thought in itself) is if they placed the button to launch the nuclear war behind a man’s heart. The President, then, with a rusty knife, would be required to cut out the man’s heart, kill(ing) the man, to get to the button.”

These dark thoughts shared may be an enlightening warning to the living!


First Photo (moon with clouds) from the personal and copyrighted collection of Barbara Anne Helberg
Second Photo (hands) courtesy of http://www.pixabay.com