Monthly Archives: June 2016

Not Your Usual Birthday Card – A Card With Something More – ‘Shut The Door’, Once Pretty in Pink.

How’s this for a Birthday Greeting – Not your usual Birthday Card

By Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Today is the honored birthday of my one and only sister, Shelby Burleson. It is my privilege, as the very much older brother to a very much younger sister, to stand up for the rights of older brothers everywhere to ridicule, torment, point at, deride, mystify, distort, and thousands of other activities which belong to elder brothers and to no one else. I know that my sister will feel a tinge of red embarrassment about her cheeks when she sees me at my brotherly work, for I am giving her a present that increases its value year by year.

It is called:

‘M’ is for the million things she gave me. Of my mother,
my sister, and ‘Shut The Door’, once pretty in pink.

She would, I know, wish that a fierce gust of wind would pick up the pages while I was reading them on the veranda, and that those mischievous papers be the only recollection of this article. But of course she would be mistaken, for brothers and all of our ilk do things which are embarrassing, and of course, hilarious in the extreme… getting away with murder our palpable right.

And so, on this birthday day, I make use of my well established privilege to remind her that I once let her invisible animals loose, whereupon my mother was forced to enlist the support of the neighbors and the postman to capture what only Shelby could see.

I put her in the clothes dryer once, just to prove that the Bendix cycles were the most gentle of all.

I wrapped her firmly in a carpet, a la Cleopatra when she was presented to Julius Caesar. I own to feeling an acute satisfaction when she said, in terms completely unmistakable, that she couldn’t move her arms. Aha! Another success.

I drive her crazy, or as near about as doesn’t matter, on every subject known to man (and woman). What is the point after all of having a little sister if torment is not exercised at frequent intervals with joy and exactitude.

As it says, as it reminds us in the story that follows, my ingenious plots and plans for her started early in her life, when I launched the canard that she was going to be exchanged for a goat. Luckily for all, that deal fell through.

I also mooted the proposition that she be Christened Zenobia, so that her nickname would be Zany. That too, failed. But when I named her Prunella, that stuck. Should you ever wish irritate Shelbita, simply point to her and say as sweetly as possible, “Deeeaaar Prunella!”

Like all little sisters, she has her ways of tormenting me back. Thus we provide justification, one for the other. She was a lively child, a lively young adult, and a lively adult, consumed with all aspects of birth, animal or human. I told her the day she went into labor, that the filming of the arrival of her eldest son for her nursing class was perhaps a bit unorthodox, but really, I admired her ingenuity… although I could not bear to watch the birth myself.

Shelby you are now old and gray, yes it’s true, says I, who am older and grayer. You have kicked during your lifetime any number of behinds for any number of worthy projects or causes. I admire you, I admire your matronly skills, and constant stream of ideas, some quite ludicrous. But what can you expect from a younger sister?

What, I ask you? I’ll tell you what I expect. Love, consideration, and the occasional ear… and with Shelby, I get them. For, you see, I no more intend to give up my rights as senior brother than she will give up her rights to torment me from now until eternity.

So, with gratitude and love, and just a touch of asperity and condescension, I give to you an article which you may have never read before. But I ask that you read it now. For no one knows better than I the shrieks that greeted your discovery that “Shut The Door” was gone forever. In God we trust… all others pay cash.

Happy birthday, and do what I know you will do… kick up your heels, and make a fearful fracas. And I, to the extent one can at such a distance, will add to the mayhem and confusion as I have always done throughout your adventurous and affectionate life.

Happy birthday, Prunella.


Listen in for Dr. L ant reading and read along with the text below.


‘M’ is for the million things she gave me. Of my mother,
my sister, and ‘Shut The Door’, once pretty in pink.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.

Author’s program note. If you were alive on any Saturday night in 1915 and were of good family, soon after the dinner dishes were removed, soon after the gentlemen’s secret potation was poured and savored, you gathered in the drawing room with its spotless antimacassars and the hapless canaries trapped in eternal flight under the great glass dome that Cousin Billy, aged 8 and dangerous on roller skates, had managed to crack so noticeably one day a long time ago.

You, and that meant all of you from Great Aunt Freida whose dentures came from the Montgomery Ward catalog and were obviously askew, to Miss Elizabeth Ann who, aged 12, had received special permission to stay up late “just this once” so she could enjoy and learn from the “improving” ballads, for she was a sweet child given special treats because she had the consumption (and the tragedy that might so easily bring); all these, each a recognized and important part of the living family tree, which would always and forever have a place for you. It was the one place in the world where, no matter how negligent and selfish you had been, you were home —
welcomed, accepted.

Cousin Fannie, honored in the family for her feminine achievements at the near-by Ladies College, had asked whether she might sing this night. The lady of the house knew why and approved. Mr. Benjamin Lowery, aged 28 and an up-and-coming businessman, was accounted the reason and so this evening graced the board, trapped and well and truly polished off by the succulent weapon that was Fannie’s rhubarb pie.

Thus, at an appropriate moment, Miss Fannie was asked if she would favor the company; was allowed to demur and nominate others for notice, thereby demonstrating her gentility and fine manners, only then to be persuaded. Her skirts beat a graceful rhythm against the highly polished oak floor and its worn Turkey carpets. She positioned herself for best advantage, where Mr. Lowery could see her just so, imaging the delights of “tea for two” to come.

Then she turned, nodding to her accompanist Sister Jane from the Reformed Methodist Church on Third Street; such a pity her squint was quite so apparent. A social rite was about to commence, here and around the Great Republic and a grand new song by Howard Johnson and Theodore Morris sung with such deep and abiding feeling by Eddy Arnold (among so very many) started on its certain work of touching every heart.

It was called “M-O-T-H-E-R (A Word That Means The World To Me”), and you should find it now in any search engine. It was this song I learned at my Illinois elementary school, Puffer School, half a century later. It brought tears to my eyes the day Mrs. Hazel Knight, erstwhile music teacher of tenacious optimism and purpose, resplendent in the opulent orchid she always wore on recital days, sat down at the piano to provide the accompaniment to the tune which never failed to find its rapt audience. It is the tune that with another half century brings the bittersweet memories and the insistent tears I cannot help and shed without embarrassment.

My mother, the gift of springtime.

My mother, Shirley Mae Lauing, was named after the spring into which she was born. It was singularly appropriate for the duration of her life she, like the very season itself, brought renewal, optimism, hope; a festival of joy and revival. Yes, she was very like that which you, too, would see at once if you would bend over my shoulder and help me sort the raft of unmarked photographs, a project I say I will do someday, but without conviction.

There she stands, her smile marked by brilliance and an unmistakable touch of insight and wisecrack, never demur, always forthright, smart, a smart aleck; the ’40’s girl fun on a date in bobby socks; the young suburban matron in Eisenhowerland circa 1955 scrubbed young sons in tow; alluring, provocative a la Elizabeth Taylor in 1960, sun drenched in the ’70’s in a California which she came to love fiercely and where, despite life’s obstacles and hindrances, many of her many aspects came together, as they sometimes do, producing happiness, bliss, satisfaction, a woman whose radiant smile summarized who she was and what she could

It was in this time that Je t’adore was born…

Pink, plush, poodle, a present…

My mother gave gifts as easily as she breathed… although there were moments when we wished she hadn’t; like my primo collection of cat’s eye marbles she gave away when I was in college “because you won’t be needing them any more, love” and my extraordinary and much loved Lionel trains which were used, amongst so many ways, to transport my Roman gladiators to the battles at which they made all the difference. She gave those to a “poor boy who had so little. I knew you wouldn’t mind, darling.”

I can imagine how Je t’adore joined us, seen in a store window, arresting her attention, saying, siren-like, “Shelby would like me”. And so an American toy, still in those far-away days made in the USA, was liberated for an American girl… Shelby Allison… aged about 4… at whose birth I told my teacher we intended to swap her for a goat. It says volumes that this same teacher, a friend of the family, called POM (Poor Old Mother) to see. Now this sunny child (the goat deal having fallen through) was given a gift that was also a clarion declaration: Je t’adore, “I adore you.” Of that there was never
any doubt. And so Je t’adore joined the family where Shelby gave her unstinting love and a lasting name, “Shut the door”. It stuck.

All-consuming passion.

From the first moment, Shelby’s passion for Shut the Door was obvious, total, a thing of joy and rapture. Of course this obsessively loved friend went everywhere Shelby went; no possible excursion could occur without this object of her affection. Thus, favored friends learned to inquire about Shut the Door and her well being while wags like me, quips and cracks always at the ready, inimical to family serenity, were warned off as a menace. Thus did Shelby and Shut the Door, tied to each other by more than the string on Shelby’s arm, become an item and a veritable smile machine.


But in time, pure love was sullied… Dragged hither and yon, Shut the Door became an object not welcomed but banned; noisome, unhealthy, a cautionary tale even I, saddened, disdained to deride. And so Shut the Door’s fateful encounter with the washing machine began. Just 30 minutes in the wash cycle were about to change everything…. As soon as she opened the hatch, it was immediately apparent that she would be spinning this story.

Shut the Door lay before her, clean to be sure, never cleaner, but limp, shapeless, lifeless, inanimate, defunct, her eyes not as amiable and loving as before. Immediately POM, who had literary propensities, thought of Princess Lise in “War and Peace.” “I have loved you all. Why have you done this to me?”

POM was frantic and applied applications grave and frivolous to solve the problem, but of course nothing could be done; the saddest words in any language. “Why have you done this to me?”

In due course, with Shelby expected home far too soon, POM resolved on the subterfuge of deceit and so dashed to the store where once Shut the Door had resided. The problem was solved… Shut the Door had a twin… cost was no object with so much at stake.

Thus, when Shelby returned and at once asked for Shut the Door POM (role perfect) opened the drier, where lay Shut the Door, plump, prosperous — a plausible fraud. Shelby’s screams, never stinted at any time, now alarmed the neighborhood. This was not Shut the Door, the beloved. No facsimile could possibly deceive any true lover; certainly not this one. And so Shelby, her shrieks masterful and piercing, learned what I already knew, with love…

“R” means right, and right she’ll always be, Put them all together, they spell ‘MOTHER’ a word that means the world to me… especially at Christmas, when I miss her so.

The author’s dedication… to Veronique Van Der Linden — “Nicky”, the good mother who loved this story so because it makes her laugh and remember the good times. At Christmas, 2012.

About the Author

Dr. Jeffrey Lant is known worldwide. He started in the media business when he was 5 years old, a Kindergartner in Downers Grove, Illinois, publishing his first newspaper article. Since then Dr. Lant has earned four university degrees, including the PhD from Harvard. He has taught at over 40 colleges and universities and is quite possibly the first to offer satellite courses. He has written over 40 books, thousands of articles and been a welcome guest on hundreds of radio and television programs. He has founded several successful corporations and businesses including his latest at …

His memoirs “A Connoisseur’s Journey” has garnered nine literary prizes that ensure its classic status. Its subtitle is “Being the artful memoirs of a man of wit, discernment, pluck, and joy.” A good read by this man of so many letters. Such a man can offer you thousands of insights into the business of becoming a successful writer. Be sure to sign up now at

More can be found on Dr. Lant on his author page at: 

plus the “Writers Secrets” channel on Youtube.

Get a FREE Copy of “Create An E-Book Today. Publish It On Profit From It for the Rest Of Your Life!” by Dr.Jeffrey Lant Get Your FREE Copy CLICK HERE

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Div. Jeffrey Lant Associates, Inc.

All Rights Reserved

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Excerpts from “You were never lovelier, you were never so fair.” June 2016. Flower Power Vol. 3″

Proudly presented from Book Series

Excerpts from “You were never lovelier, you were never so fair.” June 2016. Flower Power Vol. 3″ by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Tune in for a special reading by Dr. Lant at:


Some thirty years ago or more, when I moved into my
condominium hard by the Cambridge Common (never call it a
park at your peril, for the locals are pernickety about such
descriptions), the Common was a public menace. It’s 8.5 acres
were defiled by the harmless mentally disturbed who slept willy
nilly on the ground and on benches, and who turned the pride
of the Pilgrims into a noisome urinal. It was a disgusting display
of what happens when civic “leaders” forget what they are in
office to do, thereby leaving a disgusting eyesore in the middle
of the city for all to see.

Each day, for week after week, month after month, I called the
mayor’s office, I called the office of the city councilors, I called
the parks division to do something, and do it now. At the
beginning, they treated me like they treat so many people with
good ideas… like a crank, a menace, someone who interrupted
the happy rhythms of their usual slothful day. That was at the

Soon, the mere mention of my name caused weary secretaries
and bureaucrats to swoon. “Yes, Dr. Lant.” “We know, Dr. Lant.”
“The mayor is busy, Dr. Lant… but he will call you back. We
promise.” “The councilors are busy, Dr. Lant.” “The responsible
bureaucrats are busy, Dr. Lant. No one can see you.” And that
was a match to the tinder. Day in, day out, in inclement weather
or radiant sun, I made my daily calls until I could hear the sheer
joy in their voice, so that progress was beginning to take effect.
Hey presto! One Cambridge mayor was produced. Voila!

I literally took his honor by the hand and showed him where to
look and where to sniff. He made a note of both. And so, the
great wheels of government began to turn, ever so slowly. I
said to his honor, the mayor, “Any official in any European city
our size would regard the absence of green grass properly
cut, trees properly tended, and pots of flowers in riotous
numbers as a disgrace.”

But Americans, here as in so many other ways, regards flowers
as superfluous, unessential, and a waste of money. That was
several years ago. And slowly, ever so slowly, improvements
came to the great Common, where I might, by law, allow my
cattle and horses to graze, should I ever get any. They,
however, were not my immediate purpose.

And so, bit by bit, the homeless people were removed to places
one hopes are better suited to their needs than a park bench
during a blizzard.

New trees began to be planted, and mirabile dictu new grass
covered the old patches, so that it became what is was meant
to be, to always be, a verdant presence, a place restful to the
eye and to the spirit, where one could sit upon a bench or
under a tree, and lose one’s self in a good book or computer

All this is good, but it is not yet good enough. What is missing,
you say? There is the great statue of Abraham Lincoln, who
visited Cambridge on at least two occasions. One was to check
up on his son, Robert, who was flunking out of the Law School.
Even the most famous of parents are called upon to deal with
domestic crises of this nature, and great Abe was no exception.

There is the statue of John Bridge, Puritan, who brought the
benefits of public education to the Commonwealth in the 17th
Century. There the misplaced statue of the Irish emigres who
fled Ireland during the great famine. It is a second rate piece
of work which belongs in a lesser space, in a lesser place.

But you will look in vain for snatches, even the smallest
snatches of color, riotous color, color that thrills you. And why
not? Flowers have that power, but we have no flowers. Peter,
Paul, and Mary once asked “Where have all the flowers gone?”
And should they come to Cambridge they would know… they
didn’t come here at all, for no one insisted on their presence,
except for the citizens who were happier each day they saw
them enlightening the Common.

Perhaps the City Fathers and City Mothers think that we
Cantabrigians, for such we call ourselves, are not yet broken
in as regards flowers. They may think the careless folk, little
aware of how difficult it was to get the flowers here in the first
place, might allow their urinating dogs to pollute them. I concur,
that could well be an issue.

Or perhaps they will think that hoodlums might do wheelies
through all the color, for the shear joy of being destructive
and “cool”. This, too, is a potential worry.

Or young lovers, of whom we have a plethora, an
overabundance, might pluck the fairest blooms to give to a
lover, who might be superceded in an moment or two for
someone better in every way. This, too, could happen.

But we cannot deny the great majority of our fellow citizens
the beauty of flowers… even if the first crop, and the second
crop, and, yes, the third crop be destroyed by one menace or
another. We must be tenacious and insist upon beauty as the
goal, no matter how long it takes to achieve it. Are you listening
Mr. Mayor? Are you listening councilors, great and powerful
councilors? Are you listening well paid and slow moving
bureaucrats? This is Dr. Lant, remember me?

And in case you do not know or understand the value of these
flowers in all their majesty and beauty and color, I have now
written three volumes on flowers, this being the third. You
have only to read a few pages to understand what flowers can
bring once they are welcomed, and not denied.

Here, in this book, in this three volume series, you will find all
the reasons you will ever need to put flowers in our Common,
and complete the long pending task. For without flowers there
cannot be, will never be a conclusion that is suitable for the
people of this great, internationally renowned and much visited
city, settled by Puritans for the work of God.

And if you do not think that planting flowers is the work of God,
then you need to stop and look about you, for each flower is an
emissary of God to cheer us in our miseries, as the stories in
my three volumes show so well.

Musical note

I give you two musical notations.

One, “You were never lovelier” (1942) starring Rita Hayworth
and Fred Astaire, with music by Jerome Kern and lyrics by
Johnny Mercer.

“Make a note, and you can quote me,
Honor bright,
You were never lovelier than you are today”

This is what we should be saying about our Common, and
all our parks across the Great Republic.

Two, “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” (1962) by Peter,
Paul and Mary.

“Where have all the flowers gone?
Young girls have picked them everyone.
Oh, when will they ever learn?”

They will only learn if we put the flowers in, not if we keep
the flowers out.

About the Author

Dr. Jeffrey Lant is known worldwide. He started in the media business when he was 5 years old, a Kindergartner in Downers Grove, Illinois, publishing his first newspaper article. Since then Dr. Lant has earned four university degrees, including the PhD from Harvard. He has taught at over 40 colleges and universities and is quite possibly the first to offer satellite courses. He has written over 40 books, thousands of articles and been a welcome guest on hundreds of radio and television programs. He has founded several successful corporations and businesses including his latest at …


His memoirs “A Connoisseur’s Journey” has garnered nine literary prizes that ensure its classic status. Its subtitle is “Being the artful memoirs of a man of wit, discernment, pluck, and joy.” A good read by this man of so many letters. Such a man can offer you thousands of insights into the business of becoming a successful writer. Be sure to sign up now at

Get a FREE Copy of “Create An E-Book Today. Publish It On Profit From It for the Rest Of Your Life!” by Dr.Jeffrey Lant Get Your FREE Copy CLICK HERE

More can be found on Dr. Lant on his author page at:

George Quacker Production

Div. Jeffrey Lant Associates, Inc.

All Rights Reserved



Excerpts from “Writer’s Secrets Vol. 1 – Writing About Famous People You Know”

Advanced notice! Sir Maximiliano von Rabbit (“Max”) is pleased to
announce on behalf of Dr. Lant, this important news. Dr. Lant’s new book, his 45th, is well along and will be released in the next few days. Here is the musical link for this important book

Update: Writer’s Secrets Vol.1 NOW RELEASED –

Go to:

Click here for a complete list of all of Dr. Lant’s books, with additional free articles.

Dr. Lant on his new Volume 1 of Writer’s Secrets – Tune in:


Excerpts from “Writer’s Secrets Vol. 1 – Writing About Famous People You Know”

Dear fellow scribblers,

It is with the greatest possible enthusiasm, even glee, that I
open this first volume of my new series from Writers Secrets.
This series has been developing for a very long time, for over
fifty years in fact. I have not only written, but have helped
thousands of people worldwide to write, too.

However, today, I take you to a whole new level. Never done
before, I will show you how to master every aspect of writing
so that you will know what to do, when to do it, how to do it.
And, I will give you helpful models so you can see how I do it.

In no educational institution with which I am familiar can you
learn every essential point of what it takes to be a successful,
that is to say, a money-making writer.

Hitherto educators in the field of writing have simply said “To
be a writer, one must write.” This fatuous advice is neither
useful nor productive. One needs to know more, and more again
about writing before showing that writing to anyone.

Once you’ve read the volumes in this series, you will be amongst
the elite of the Earth, because good writers get all the goodies,
name recognition, esteem, veneration, and, of course, money.
For let us never forget, that “None but a blockhead writes but
for money” (Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1709-1784, inventor of the first
English language dictionary).

I am tired of meeting people, particularly young people, who have
been given that useless advice… to be a writer, one must write.
In these pages, I shall show you the verities of writing, and the facts
which will advance you… or, should you fail to use them, destroy
any chance of your success.

As we begin this exciting series of absolutely unique and
unprecedented volumes, I want you to know that my goal here
is cosmic, exhaustive, thorough, inventive, and powerful. By
following these steps, and not the vagaries of any previous
instruction you may have had, you will find yourself awash in
trophies… including fame, notoriety, affection, appreciation, awe,
recognition, honor, and certain reverence.

For all these, and so many other benefits, can and must be
yours, if you will but understand the structure of successful
writing, and work for a lifetime to perfect your skills. You see,
the world loves writers, and I, therefore, love the world. For
so many years now that I cannot even remember, writing has
been my unstoppable rocket, matched by nothing else.

You say, upon being asked, “What do you do for a living?” The
response launches the beneficial process… “I am a writer.” And
by that we mean superior, intelligent, clever, shrewd, inventive,
creative, and for the nonce, charming to a degree no average mortal
can even wish for, much less attain.

I shall be attending you every inch of this fabulous journey.
For now you have an advisor of note, dexterity, inventiveness,
truth, and may I say it, love. For seeing you advance will be one of
the glories of my life. And I shall say as I see you rise, “This one
came from me!” Be that one.

Now let us begin. The topic of this first volume is not just
writing, but writing about famous people you know. I have
started with what could be construed as an advanced class
because once you master this, you will be able to gain
access and commendable results from any famous person
in the universe.

You will never say, if you have ever said, and might truly say,
that you have nothing to write about… like a woman going to
a closet full of gowns and saying “I have nothing to wear”. You
will never say again, having mastered this chapter, that you have
nothing to write about. Master these guidelines, and fly high…

Preparing to write.

Successful writers are obsessive writers. We do not just write,
we think about writing, write about writing, think about writing
subjects, research writing subjects, add words, delete words,
fight with words, than which there is nothing more difficult. Yes,
words, because on the field of words, our destiny will be played

Let us begin to prepare for this great battle of your life… a
battle which can exist everyday, and from which you may
squeeze victories, notable and significant, or not.

I am giving you advice about how to write about famous people
you know first, because I want you not just to write, but write to
be read, write to be admired, write to generate demanding and
persuasive discussions, write to instruct. These are the worthy
objectives of writing.

This moment, I want you to brainstorm and ask yourself whether
you have any famous people amongst your circle of friends and
acquaintances. In my experience, everyone has at least one or
two such people. Why do you want to write about them? Because
they’re famous, of course. And there is one thing about our
obsession with celebrities… we’re all drawn to them, thus you
have a ready market for any celebrity article you write.

So let us now consider what you need to know, and do, before
commencing a profile or any other type of article about a famous
person or acquaintance.

When you are writing about a famous person known to you, then
you know you are most usually in touch with that person. There
are subtle but significant differences between writing about a
famous person you know, and a famous person you don’t. This
particular article must be based on some of the myriad of facts
you could use to write about this celebrity.

Picture for a moment the following pair of subjects… you could
write about the Emperor Napoleon, or you could write about the
current Prince Napoleon. What is the difference? When you
write about a subject like Prince Napoleon, you can gain
access to that individual and people who know him, and that
would subtly and significantly change the direction, emphasis,
and results.

For instance, let us say you wanted to describe the room in
which the interview or article takes place. To get an idea about
each element of the room would take an enormous amount of
research because contemporary writers and commentators,
much less those from the past, almost never provide a good
basic overview of everything they see, no matter how important
these details might be for an apt presentation of the subject.

They would not have written, because they did not observe, about
the shade of the drapes, the number and kind of chairs, what
Napoleon had on his desktop, what sandwiches might be sitting
on the side board, or the pair of muddy shoes next to the door
providing access to the great man.

In other words, one person from the past, no matter how
observant, would have left over 90% of the essential information
where they failed to find it in the first place. Mirabile dictu. This
is writing sacrilege! The wanton destruction of essential
information, which, when properly used, gives us the basis
for seeing reality, and rendering it for readers now, and hundreds
of years hence.

When you read the articles which follow, models of their kind,
based on famous people I have known, you will understand how
important the tiniest shred of information can be to creating lively
and alive prose.

How will you arrive at this desirable conclusion? By arduous effort.
For example… never do an interview or profile before you have
had the opportunity to test your skills of observation and
remembering. Take a single sheet of paper, and give yourself
a test. Walk into any room that you know, for say five minutes.

Then, exit the room to another which is disconnected, and where you
cannot see in. Now, write down everything that you remember about the
room you were in just moments ago. You will say, “That was a
great many things!” However I will tell you this… be more concerned
about what you have remembered, than all you have forgotten. If
you find yourself remembering with difficulty, then you know how
essential it would be for you to perfect that skill.

Good profiles, superior profiles succeed because you have
mastered each essential element of the life you are profiling.
The more you will know about the subject, the more of that
subject you will capture. Writing about people is always an
exercise in sleuthing and detailed research and analysis.

I have included with this chapter, five articles on celebrated
people I have known. You will notice how I presented these
people and told their stories. I am no respecter of persons,
neither must you be. What you must respect instead is the
detailed and truthful information you gather before writing.

Writing must always be the last of a long detailed process,
designed to capture and present truth. If, as the saying goes,
the truth shall set you free, then most assuredly the truth,
and the integrity you bring to your writing, will free you, too,
and set you on the path where your very designation as
writer will cause readers to stand up, take notice, and applaud.
When they do, you will know you are a writer.

Musical note

I have selected the elegant film score from the 1994 version
of “Little Women” by Thomas Newman. It is smooth and tranquil…
perhaps too smooth and tranquil for those of us who have read
the immortal novel (1868), or seen Katharine Hepburn in the
starring role of Josephine “Jo” March (1933).

We love Jo because she is rough around the edges. She does
“scandalous” things, cannot rise to the necessity of perfect party
manners, and has a frustrating tendency (for her, not for us) to be
indiscriminate in her always candid opinions. For our purposes,
we must remember just one thing… she was an aspiring writer, and
she approached her craft with avidity, enthusiasm, and a “damn
the torpedoes full speed ahead” disposition.

She made mistakes, she made them often, she blundered, she
got it all wrong from time to time, but… and this is the significant
conjunction, she kept at it.

She wrote constantly, she carried a little notebook and pencil to
jot down her ideas, she wrote regularly, and always submitted her
work product for review, evaluation, and publishing.

She then took what she had learned and put it to immediate work,
and therefore her life, her writing, was simply an ongoing measure
of her improvements.

She was rejected often, often simply ignored, but she never quit,
and so out of the criticism and commentary, sometimes hurtful,
often painful, came stories of insight and human understanding.
In short, through failure judiciously studied, came success.
Reader… this lesson is for you.

We love her, and we do love her, because she was one of us.
And we hope in due course to be rewarded just the way she was,
and as lavishly, our name, our work, eternity bound… just as hers
soars forever.


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About the Author

pic for ebook cover Dr. LantDr. Jeffrey Lant is known worldwide. He started in the media business when he was 5 years old, a Kindergartner in Downers Grove, Illinois, publishing his first newspaper article. Since then Dr. Lant has earned four university degrees, including the PhD from Harvard. He has taught at over 40 colleges and universities and is quite possibly the first to offer satellite courses. He has written over 40 books, thousands of articles and been a welcome guest on hundreds of radio and television programs. He has founded several successful corporations and businesses including his latest at …

His memoirs “A Connoisseur’s Journey” has garnered nine literary prizes that ensure its classic status. Its subtitle is “Being the artful memoirs of a man of wit, discernment, pluck, and joy.” A good read by this man of so many letters. Such a man can offer you thousands of insights into the business of becoming a successful writer. Be sure to sign up now at

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Of principals and principles, my mother at her glorious best, the First Amendment and me. University High School, Los Angeles. High Noon 1963.

Proudly presented from Article Series

Of principals and principles, my mother at her glorious best, the First Amendment
and me. University High School, Los Angeles. High Noon 1963.

By Dr. Jeffrey lant

Author’s program note. In 1962, my father Donald Marshall Lant was invited to accept a better job in West Los Angeles… and as a result, having removed ourselves from Downers Grove, Illinois, where we either knew or were related to absolutely everyone, we found ourselves in the City of Angels where the only people we knew were my father’s boss and his numerous progeny.

Thus, for the first time, but no where near the last, I entered a place where I knew no one and no one knew me. It was do or die… sink or swim… up or out. It was University High School…. and here, in due course, I discovered some very useful things about who I was and what I could do, not the least of which being a certain talent for mastering communications media and influencing people, skills I am putting to work right here, right now.


On October 4, 1957, the Great Republic and its comfortable verities were challenged by a device called “Sputnik”. In it we saw the end of civilization as we understood it, “Leave It To Beaver” and all. Yes, we saw the future (or surely thought we did) , and it was ominous, threatening, and Red.

This hysterical vision of living hell, more lurid than Dante, got more insistent, likely and proximate when just a few weeks later in November 1957 the Russkies launched a dog named Laika. If they could launch a pooch, surely they could — and lickety-split, too —
launch a man with The Bomb. This vision developed further when the infernal Soviets put cosmonaut Yuri Gagaran into orbit. From that date, April 12, 1961, we were sure, absolutely, positively that Armageddon was nigh…

but it wasn’t… not by a long shot.

One big reason why was the first active, direct relay communications satellite Telstar 1, launched on top of a Thor-Delta rocket on July 10, 1962. It successfully provided the first
television pictures, telephone calls, fax images and the first live transatlantic television feed. Unwittingly it was the most effective weapon the Great Republic could have lobbed at Moscow and company… for it enticingly showed its oppressive regimes and oppressed millions what awaited them if only they had the good sense to surrender and stop spooking us.

Of how sweet life could be with… Coca Cola…Skippy Peanut Butter… Swanson TV Dinners … Kraft Mac and Cheese… Chevrolet (with Dinah Shore’s sweet down-home invite) … Kool Aid
…Lux Liquid… and, of course, Mr. Ah-Wunnnerful, Ah-Wunnerful himself, Lawrence Welk and his irresistible “Champagne Music Makers” and their impossibly immaculate lives.

Those Commies with their grim KGB realities and gelid gulags never had a chance despite the stolid attributes of Laika, Juri, and a commissar named Kruschchev whose abiding dream was to bury us. Kinky. None of it worked against the verdant lawns and anti-BO aerosols of “American Graffiti”. They were omnipotent.

And thus for the music accompanying this article I give you “Telstar” the 1962 novelty instrumental record performed by The Tornados. It was the first single by a British band to reach number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. Written and produced by Joe Meek, it worked because its over 5 million purchasers heard in its eerie space-like sound effects a future that was sure to be good for them and the world.

Sadly, that wasn’t true for Meek who killed himself just three weeks before a court awarded him the whopping royalties from this very popular hit. It was all about the money… as it always is. Here’s the link to Meek’s signal contribution to culture… its distortions and background noises the authentic music of the spheres.

Telstar satellite up. Telstar song up. Me on the launching pad.

I knew very early in life that I wanted a career with words, a career which would pay me for thinking, writing, talking, influencing not just mankind but the galaxy and beyond. In short I wanted to put the universe under my microscope and report on what I saw, good, bad, absurd, painful, whatever, just so I got it right, got it first, got it the most beautifully written, no holds barred. As such I naturally gravitated to the journalism department where being new and friendless didn’t matter at all; all that counted was being able to use words properly and meet deadlines. Everything else would follow.

Mr. Germain.

I think I understand Mr. Germain now; I’m much older after all than he was when I knew him. I suspect he wanted to be a journalist… wanted to move multitudes and influence the course of human events with words, powerful, motivating, challenging, demanding words. But he had bills to pay, perhaps a family to support, and he couldn’t just give up a good job cold turkey… yet the evenings and week-ends that he had didn’t seem enough time to write. And so he became the most unhappy of people… the writer who could not write… and perhaps it was this which accounted for the whiff of sadness and resignation about him for otherwise he was likable indeed.

We got along at once. I saw in him what I needed… a place where I could write, find supportive criticism and rewrite to perfection. He found what every teacher wants… a bright student who will listen and justify their career choice. And so on this basis I became
a cub reporter and in short order I requested and was given what every commentator must have — a designated space in the newspaper (called “the Warrior”) that was mine, all mine. It was my launching pad… and so the boy who entered University High School knowing absolutely no one, quite literally without pal or buddy, was shortly known by all.

In hot pursuit of the story.

I could be found roaming the expansive campus that “Uni” provided talking to people, taking notes, always scribbling. One aspect of my column concerned favorite tunes and who was listening to what. “Telstar” popped up again and again on the most popular list. So did my interviews with Hollywood stars, reviews, etc.. One of the great perquisites of my office was access to an unending stream of “comp” tickets sent to “The Warrior” by every movie and television studio. I didn’t drive then and so I bribed my friends like Norman Leavitt with a free pass if he’d chauffeur me and generally be my good gofer. It was a system that worked.

I particularly liked events that took place during school hours. We had a pre-authorized pass available to hand to the teachers whose classes we would miss… I loved using it with the gym teachers whose petty brutalities affronted me. I knew where I needed to
be and sweating profusely with adolescent boys wasn’t it. Cruising down Sunset Boulevard in Norman’s bright red sports car en route to one studio or another was.


In due course, I rose to the position which might have been created just for me… Editor-in-Chief. I was, I think, still a Junior when I was elevated. I had no precise agenda, certainly
no list of abuses to expose with the power of the press. Still, newspapers have editorials for a reason, and therefore I must have editorials, too. And thus came trouble… its name was
Hugh Foley, Principal. He might have come straight from central casting, tailor-made for the roll of petty bureaucrat, porcine, tyrant, prig. You know the type. We hated each other on sight. And so we both bided our time, wary, guarded, certain something would happen .

The editorial, the reaction, just the bare facts.

Let me be clear with you. I was not an editorial fire brand like, say, William Lloyd Garrison and “The Liberator”. I liked my life as it was, perks and all, and didn’t mean to rock too many boats. Still, I thought then what I continue to think today; that each of us has the duty to improve matters where we can do so. And on this basis, I typed an editorial that urged certain positive (in my opinion) changes, including changes in Principal Foley’s administration.

He learned of this (mild) editorial from his snitch, the print shop teacher. He alerted Foley who left his throne long enough to march to the print shop, rip the editorial off the printing press and order the paper printed with a blank space where my article had been.

A sensation.

Of course, the entire school, administrators, teachers, staff, students, were immediately a buzz. My name was on everyone’s lips… and, to many, I became an instant celebrity, the truthful man oppressed by wanton authority. This opinion surged when Foley cashiered me as editor, thereby establishing me as akin to Joan of Arc or Martin Luther. This was Big… and I would have savored the story except for the fact that it was about me.

It was at this point that my mother Shirley Mae Lant (nee Lauing) intervened in the matter. Parents in those days were, it seems to me, much more actively involved with their children’s education and school in general. My parents surely were and in no case more
than this one. And so she went to see Mr. Foley. The matter was about me, but I was largely an onlooker, almost the fly on the wall every commentator wishes to be.

Adamant mother, adamant principal.

My mother was a formidable woman, a fact Principal Foley was about to discover. She also had the better case, buttressed as it was by the Constitution of the Great Republic and its sacred First Amendment. For she had been a cub reporter once upon a time and for her the Amendment meant exactly as stated… “Congress shall make no law….” And so Hugh Foley, to his acute chagrin, found himself defending the indefensible against a practiced foe who wasn’t about to let him get away with a grave injustice that besmirched my name and record. I never admired her more than then.

And so Hugh Foley, the most petty of tyrants, backed down, reinstating the culprit, but vowing revenge in his heart, all done with the most ill grace possible. But here he was wrong. I was no
revolutionary, no trouble maker. He would have done far better to make a friend, an ally. My mother and I would have welcomed such an amiable solution, and it is that which shows that 1963, its manners, its mores, are those of the old regime, about to be swept away, collateral casualties of Vietnam and all its consequences, including pictures of carnage, napalm and death transmitted worldwide by Telstar, a revolutionary machine which in every aspect changed the world, one eerie beep at a time.

About the author

Dr. Lant continues to influence and move people worldwide.

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Excerpts from “Wish You Didn’t Have To Go. Summer 2016”

Proudly presented from Book Series

Tune in to a special reading by the author Dr. Jeffrey Lant


Read along with these excerpts from “Wish you didn’t have to go. Summer, 2016.”


If you’re lucky, when you read this book, it’s summer, and
you’re listening to the score from Billy Wyler’s 1953 film
“Roman Holiday”.

Our holidays may not have been as grand as Audrey
Hepburn’s, but the key points were the same.. to go far away,
to eat different foods, to accumulate a lifetime of picturesque
memories, to take goofy pictures of yourself and your
traveling companions, to wear clothes that would take abuse,
and most of all, to find love… perhaps even the love of your

Summer is not just a line on a calendar, it is a whole new way
of living. The goal is to jettison everything normal and prosaic.
You are a different person… a more adventurous person. A
person of boldness and audacity. You will talk to strangers
about intimate subjects, knowing you’ll never see them again.

You will shower outside under ice cold water, under a starry sky,
and not think it odd that you emerge smiling and singing some
honkey-tonk classic.

You will visit campgrounds that are a gaggle of people from
everywhere, seeming to know everything about the nation and
its problems.

You will meet the boy or girl who will excite your dreams for the
rest of your life, and will regret the fact you never said more
than hello.

You will, for the first time in recent memory, play with your
siblings, for, after all, most of the time you forget you even have

Fathers will emerge more competent, mothers, less burdened.
She’ll smile the smile that snagged your dad. Even the family
pets can come, though they are safer staying at home, where
rattlesnakes will not bite, and giant fleas enjoy them. Yes, this
is summer, but only a part of summer, for summer gets better
and better, whenever you think about it.

And so I looked in the looking glass with the most intense
scrutiny. I thought of everywhere I’d been in summer season,
and everything that happened to me… how two bears entered
our campground in Yellowstone National Park and caused a
hell of a fracas. They might have been dangerous, but they
seemed uninterested in our utterly conventional camping
equipment and experience.

I remember the summer in South Dakota at my great uncle’s
huge ranch. I say “huge” not out of hubris, but because it
took a huge ranch to have even a meager living. I remember
my cousin Bernie… the handsomest boy in South Dakota he
was, decked out in silver and turquoise, a “howdy ma’am”
always available.

He got me on a mule one unbearable July in Blunt, South
Dakota. Damned critter took one look at me and fixed his
purpose, for he was mean spirited and onery, and defrocking
Eastern boys was his particular joy.

And so, in the desert of South Dakota, I found myself bucked
into the one remaining water hole, and, to the general hilarity of all,
emerged muddy, irritated, and vengeful. How that beast must
have laughed inside.

Because once you get started with these memories you have
to keep going with these memories, I have to tell you that my
severely irritated father picked me up by the scruff of my neck
and said, “Jeffrey Ladd, you are going to get back on that
mule and ride, because if you don’t get back on that mule now,
you never will!” Which did not seem so bad to me at all.

I remember that summer when I was fourteen or so, and filled
brown paper bags full of maple seeds that fell off the tree like
so many helicopters. Kevin and I packed up thousands of these
babies, and had a grand purpose in mind… to throw them over
the side of the Grand Canyon and watch them fall hundreds of

It was a great idea. We certainly had enough seeds in the back
of the car. However, when we looked for a vantage point to pour
our treasures over the side, we discovered the Grand Canyon is
not a sheer drop, but a series of inclines that trapped our seeds
and sapped the drama.

Thus, like Thomas Alva Edison, we scratched our heads and
worked for an alternative, and as we worked, our supply
diminished, ’til there was but a handful left, and, with
abandonment, we tossed them as far as we could. ‘Til this day
I swear that down, down, deep down in that profound decline,
there is a maple tree which proudly proclaims to the winds,
“This is the magnificent maple that Kevin and Jeffrey planted.”
It’s right there now if you look closely.

And what about that sylvan glade in Yosemite Park? One of my
Carter cousins discovered it… it was dappled with sunshine, a
real life swimmin’ hole, which, in a moment, had its full
compliment of cousins.

Then they did the thing that scandalized my Puritan soul to the
core. For in an instance, they were out of their tight-fitting bathing
suits, and flaunting their adolescent beauty which God Himself
had bestowed. It was a scene of Currier and Ives innocence and
eroticism, perfect and unique, for this never happened to me

The list of summer adventures goes on and on… the summer
we panned for gold in Colorado… the summer some drunken
Indians invaded our camp in New Mexico looking for booze,
and found nothing stronger than chocolate milk. The most
horrifying aspect of affairs was not what might have happened,
but that there was blood on at least one of the knives. What was
its story, I never knew.

There were of course excursions closer to home, including
the day my father taught me to fish. It was in the Potawatomi
River in Illinois. There my father, with limited patience, showed
me how to put a worm on a hook. I empathized with that worm,
and thought the 25 cents we had just spent for a canful might
better have gone to some creamsicles, for they were at the
top of my summer eating list, and worms were not.

Our family rule was that if you caught a fish, you had to gut
the fish to be able to eat the fish. That problem, too, was easily
solved… make sure you catch nothing. You are absolved from
responsibility, but not from scorn.

My plan was foiled by a gigantic catfish, a particularly
grotesque thing, that determined to give up the ghost, ridicule
of me being thereby assured. I’m glad the damned thing died,
and want you to know I never did my share of the scraping, nor
of the eating.

I remember too the summer in the day camp, when, during
archery practice, I had an epiphany, namely, that I hated
archery practice in general, and in every particular. Never
being a man merely to complain, I took decisive action by
escaping, only to discover I had to walk through four towns
on a hot asphalt road to get away. It was worth it.

There were aspects of summer that were, of course, not as
attractive. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t memorable. There
was the summer my grandfather got the only seated mower in
the town. He loved gadgets, and anything to improve the look
of his property was encouraged.

Then there were the love affairs, blossoming as easily as
dandelions. It didn’t seem to matter who was loved, just that
there was love. Notes were written, then sent by unusual ways
to the beloved who would be waiting breathlessly for your
effusion, their own to follow, as quickly as nimble fingers could

These notes, the entire experience, was redolent of Edgar
Allen Poe, Charles Dickens, and the latest horror movie.
Threats were made… secrets breathed… relationships heated
up at the midnight hour, only to be cooled by morning. It was all
delicious, and I remember every adolescent stratagem, tactic,
trick, trap, and lie with enthusiasm.

I remember the summer I stayed with my grandparents in
Downers Grove. It was the summer after we moved to Los
Angeles, and I didn’t know anyone there, while I knew
everyone here. I conceived a way of beating the heat and
demonstrating my bold audacity. And so, I turned on the
sprinkler, and, when the clock struck twelve, doffed my
clothes and ran through the cool, clear water with abandon,
emerging breathless and excited at the end. Life was good,
and my life among the best.

That is why I wrote these two volumes, for this is a very special
offer of two books for the price of one. I wanted you to
remember, as I have remembered, the precise details of the
summers of your life. Don’t stint… summer was probably your
favorite time of the year, save for Christmas.

And therefore, if you close your eyes and stretch out, you’ll
be rewarded with one summer adventure after another. Make
sure you get your share.

Musical note

For the music to accompany these two volumes, I have selected
the lush theme from Billy Wyler’s 1953 film “Roman Holiday”.
The music is exhilarating, joyful, innocent, and just plain fun, which
is just the way all summers should be.

Get a FREE Copy of “Create An E-Book Today. Publish It On Profit From It for the Rest Of Your Life!” by Dr.Jeffrey Lant Get Your FREE Copy CLICK HERE

Copyright 2016

Jeffrey Lant Associates, Inc.

All rights reserved

You Are About To Be Indiscreet. Midsummer’s Night.

Proudly presented from Book Series

Excerpt from “Wish you didn’t have to go. Summer, 2016. Vol. 2” by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Chapter 1 You are about to be indiscreet. Midsummer’s Night June 21, 2011.

Author’s program note. You are alive for one of nature’s most
important events: the summer solstice. It is a matter of myth, fable,
science and awe…. and you must, absolutely must, be prepared
to enjoy this once-a-year event. To assist you, I have chosen  music
by one of my favorite geniuses, Stephen Sondheim (born 1930). You can find
it in any search engine.

This tune, not as well known as it should be, is perfect for today. It’s called “Night Waltz”
and appears in “A Little Night Music,” (1973).  It was written for you for this day! Don’t
fight this music… for it is insidious and will have its way with you…. and you will
be glad of it.

“Today the very heavens moved… and puny man did sport as did,
so equally resolved’ on raucous mayhem, the very gods themselves.”

June 20-21 is a day that reminds us we are but a part, and not perhaps the most
important part as we suppose, of the Cosmos… and that while we are getting on with
our little concerns, so all engrossing, the universe is, quite simply, taking us for a ride,
a ride majestical and grand.

Today occurs one of earth’s two annual solstices, days when the rays of the sun
directly strike one of the two tropical latitude lines. June 21 marks the beginning of
summer in the northern hemisphere and simultaneously heralds the beginning of
winter in the southern hemisphere.

Today television meteorologists, well schooled  and anxious for this moment,  share sage
observations, in 10 seconds or so. Thus they transform this profound event into mere
factoids giving us the illusion that we know what is happening today, far above
us, to our species and our ever-moving, never stable habitat. At such a moment,
mankind, born a searcher, strives to understand the inexplicable and so  myths
and fables are born, from every land on Earth.

This is the day when we finally emerge free from the trammels of winter and when
the promise of springtime becomes the reality of summer; at this moment we give
thanks by indulging ourselves,without worry about tomorrow or regret. This day is
dedicated to indiscretions, past, present, and future.

“Perpetual twilight is really a most  unsettling thing”.

In 1955 Ingmar Bergman, a man who lived to expose the unending foibles
of humanity, released his film “Smiles of a Summer Night.” Stephen Sondheim, master
of the heart’s often unwise whimsies and obsessions, later transformed the great director’s
observations into waltz time, so lush, so evocative, so enchanting that you never
knew the music was leading you to the maddest thing of all… love!

The waltz, more provocative than the French Revolution.

Historians, who have their idee’s fixes, about what is important and what we really
should know, often miss the forest for the trees. I am about to outrage the sterner
members of the Academy by suggesting this: the waltz was more important than
the storming of the Bastille.

You see, the history of mankind, both of its male and female varieties, is a tale
of how to get close together, very close together, oblivious to every other soul in
the world without outraging the proprieties.

A wild new dance emerged from Vienna about 1830. It was the waltz, and it took the stately measures of polonaise and minuet and, by putting a man into enticingly close contact with a
woman, outraged every propriety.  But even queens didn’t care — if they were young
enough — and bold. Queen Victoria (just 18 at her accession in 1837) lived to waltz…

… and, with nimble feet… she knew exactly what the mad measures of a waltz could give  her.
She like the rest of dance-maddened Europe wanted more. She knew that waltz time was the food of love… and commanded “Play on!”, while aging dowagers clucked and whispered of the debaucheries in their midst. The more honest, remembering their own indiscretions, knew better…and longed for the chance to be indiscrete again and whirl by in satin slippers and flying ribbons.

Such things do happen on Midsummer’s Night… and why we now, just hours
before the event, grow impatient for its arrival. We know its possibilities… and we are
keen to enjoy them, with not a moment lost.

The great event begins to take shape…

Whilst we may have difficulty taking in the unceasing movement of the planet and the
unearthly music of the spheres which accompanies it, we have no difficulty at all in
marking this event with a party.

Midsummer’s night provides the perfect party time, for the world, at least its northern
hemisphere, is seen softly, an evocation. It’s the abundant twilight, unceasing in
northern climes. This light, soft, caressing, immensely flattering to even the oldest,
is crucial to what comes…. even the oldest look young in such light…  and are
reborn in it.

Then music!

What could such a party, held but once a year, be without music?  It fell to the lot of
young Felix Mendelssohn to ensure we never found out. Just 17 in 1826 when he
finished the Overture to Opus 21, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, homage to his
Master, Shakespeare.  In it he challenged Mozart for the crown of creating the “greatest
marvel of early maturity that the world has ever seen in music.” (George Grove).
It contains the celebrated wedding march that accompanies so many down the
aisle….  the unceasing, inevitable result so surprising to men everywhere, who now
truly know the power of music. (You can easily find Mendelssohn’s youthful masterpiece
in any search engine.) It’s  pulsating with youth! It’s grandiloquent! It’s exuberant! It’s
the way a wedding should be, a thing of radiant optimism, unafraid of whatever may
come, joyful in each other.

And then the guests…

Somewhere between 1590 and 1596, Shakespeare created in “A Midsummer Night’s
Dream” the guest list for a memorable evening and even stipulated the games to
make us roar.

There was the Duke of Athens, Theseus, and the Queen of the Amazons, Hippolyta;
four young Athenian lovers and a group of amateur actors (one a perfect part for
you). There was a forest of fairies, Oberon their king and Titania, his playful queen.
For generations, they, their tricks and shenanigans have made us laugh and they
will make us laugh again tonight.

Then, the world still in twilight, the special people, the lovers for whom this night was
cast, will find solace in each other. American poet  Louise Gluck (born 1943) remembers

“On nights like this we used to swim in the quarry,
the boys making up games requiring them to tear off the girls’ clothes
and the girls cooperating, because they had new bodies since last summer
and they wanted to exhibit them, the brave ones
leaping off the high rocks — bodies crowding the water….

Then the heat broke, the night was clear,
And you thought of the boy or girl you’d be meeting later,
And you thought of walking into the words and lying down,
practicing all those things you were learning in the water…”

It’s all just hours away…. the indiscretion you’ll savor for life and grateful.

Musical note

For the music to accompany this chapter, I have chosen the brilliance of
Felix Mendelssohn. Particularly, his renown “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
(1826). Click on the link to start the overture.

About the Author

Dr. Jeffrey Lant is known worldwide. He started in the media business when he was 5 years old, a Kindergartner in Downers Grove, Illinois, publishing his first newspaper article. Since then Dr. Lant has earned four university degrees, including the PhD from Harvard. He has taught at over 40 colleges and universities and is quite possibly the first to offer satellite courses. He has written over 40 books, thousands of articles and been a welcome guest on hundreds of radio and television programs. He has founded several successful corporations and businesses including his latest at …

His memoirs “A Connoisseur’s Journey” has garnered nine literary prizes that ensure its classic status. Its subtitle is “Being the artful memoirs of a man of wit, discernment, pluck, and joy.” A good read by this man of so many letters. Such a man can offer you thousands of insights into the business of becoming a successful writer. Be sure to sign up now at

More can be found on Dr. Lant on his author page at:

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Of “A Connoisseur’s Journey, Being the Artful Memoirs of a Man of Wit, Discernment, Pluck, and Joy.

Dr. Jeffrey Lant talks of his memoir, “A CONNOISSEUR’S JOURNEY Being the artful memoirs of a man of wit, discernment, pluck, and joy. ‘

Available at: http: /

A gloriously written memoir which give you what you want in a memoir… humor, indiscretion, secrets, stories of the rich and famous, stories about places and situations you’ve longed to visit and enjoy. You will learn much in the least demanding of ways… and feel more and more intelligent as you read.

You will be in the hands of a man of learning, privilege, and audacity, who has been there, done that, and lived to write the tale. There is nothing fair or objective in what you’re about to read. Nor should there be. For a memoir is all about you, your life, your point of view, your unique journey wherever on Earth and in whatever way you choose to make it. And if some — even you! — cavil or object to even a single word or sentiment, why then write your own memoirs, for the genre is open to all.

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Excerpts From “Last Dance. Last Chance For Love”. Thoughts on Orlando and Our Ongoing National Shame.

Proudly presented from the Book Series.

Excerpts from “Last dance. Last chance for love”.
Thoughts on Orlando and our ongoing national shame.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

The phone rang, and it was Robert Dobson. I knew instantly
from the catch in his voice that it was bad news. Perhaps
about his mother, who was elderly and frail. But it was worse,
far worse. And through his tears he reached out and said,
“Tell this story. Please, tell this story.  For what you say and
how you say it will touch the heart of every civilized person
who reads it.” Robert, I trust I have not disappointed you.


This is about a place named Pulse, and the historic massacre
that took place on June 12, 2016 on a dance floor in sleepy
Orlando, Florida, where the Chamber of Commerce tells you
nothing bad ever happens. Only it did.

It touched the lives of thousands of people around the world,
who, like good-tempered Robert, conscientious Robert,
tax-paying Robert, cannot understand the burden of hate, bigotry,
mayhem, and confusion that distinguishes so many of our
fellow Americans, and manifests itself in these murderous
and explosive events.

And so, this chapter, this book, is for you, Robert, and for
everyone like you, who leads a good, kind, decent, affable life, which
can become in an instant, the devil’s own cauldron.

I confess, that every time another of these shameful episodes
takes place, my progressive nature is challenged, and more
and more, I don’t want understanding, I want revenge.

Good kind Robert said to me, “I wish there was something we
could do to that killer that would compound the pain for him,
and spare the innocent,” and I wish this too, as my liberal
stance towards life shreds, is challenged, and more challenged,
until I sit here in the capital of progressive thought in America,
Cambridge, Massachusetts, and think the darkest thoughts,
wondering what we can do, where we’ve gone wrong, and most
of all, why.

This morning, I looked into the eyes of a particularly revealing
photograph of the president. He looks grey now, his hair white,
his enthusiasm even for the greatest job in the world has paled.

He is marking time. He is baffled.. you can tell he is baffled. And
in the several remarks he made upon the occasion of the
massacre at Pulse, there was one phrase that summed it all up,
“It’s crazy.” And if that isn’t the comment of a man just throwing
his hands up in despair, I don’t know what is.

So this is the thing I want to stress: it isn’t crazy at all… It’s the
way we do things in America nowadays. Craziness implies some
kind of aberration, distortion, confusion, but that’s not what
happened at Pulse at all. For it was not craziness that brought
down over a hundred people, it was cool deliberation, expert
planning, and most of all, commitment, even unto death.

The gunman, Omar Mateen, 29, knew exactly what he was
doing, and so arrogant was he, that he actually got 911 on the
phone, and told them he was an ISIS supporter, a 100% go
ISIS man, and thus it seemed perfectly normal between part
one of his attack and part two, where he made sure everyone
on the floor was goners, shooting human beings at point blank
range ’til the floor ran with the blood of the victims, just like they
say in the movies.

This isn’t craziness, this is the kind of commitment the rest
of us don’t have, and so we call it crazy because we don’t
understand it.

So let’s picture the scene, as it really was. The reporters on this
story make Pulse seem like a community center, a place to go
for a handshake and a Coke. “Hiya, how’s it going?” But this isn’t
what Pulse was. It was a temple of love and lust, where people
went to find new lovers, and maybe to discard old ones. For
the air itself was erotic, and liberal amounts of flesh were shown,
and more promised.

There were probably drugs, quite a lot of drugs that night. There
usually are in such places. The drugs have names like ecstasy
and molly. Their names promise their destination. And so you have
hundreds of young men and women in the prime of their libido,
gunning their bodies to go higher, baby take me higher. On every
level their is a discarie, who had one job and one job only… keep
it hot, keep it moving, make sure no one stops and wonders, and
just keeps dancing.

For you see, Pulse is a temple dedicated to dance, for dance
in a gay disco is as close to God and true love as anyone will
ever get. Those boys, and mostly they were boys, preened for hours to
get the right look. The look that says “I’m so damned cool. You’ve
never seen someone as cool and I’ll dance you a merry measure, until
I give you what you want — maybe.”

Thus the discarie’s function is monumental, for he keeps the
temperature going higher and higher, and the place explodes…
with erotic potential beyond what Main Street America has ever
known or imagined. And the more flesh there is, the more it
touches other flesh, the more successful the evening.

Anything could happen on the dance floor. You could, it happens,
leave with the person you came with, or, you might leave with
someone new, unblemished, promising everything, and you
believe them — for a little while — for love, even the promise of
love, is everything.

Then into this temple of eros and revelry came a man. A man
with a purpose. He was a foot soldier in the war against America,
pleased as punch that he had the chance to interrupt our
great country, the greatest country on Earth, now again distraught
and frustrated, because our massive strength and resources
seem meaningless against these pernicious worms.

He savored his triumph even before he had his triumph. He came
early and did a reconnaissance, went away, and came back
for more.

Yes, he was savoring this moment. He had achieved nothing in
his life, been nothing, had nothing, but would suddenly be thrust
onto the front pages of every newspaper in the world. “Hey mom,
look at me! I’m famous!” And the damned thing was, he was.

Every time he moved before he struck, somebody saw
something. Every step he took was a recorded step, and yet,
no one from the FBI down put two and two together. Thus,
we are left wondering what possible good these high authorities are
in a war in which we are clearly losing.

And so I borrow the great questions Senator Samuel Ervin of
North Carolina used in the Nixon Watergate hearings… “What
did he know? When did he know it?”

For I can tell you this: enough people saw this man as he
prepared his bloodbath for eternity. Enough saw him, but no
one put the dots together as he prepared his bloodbath for the
record books… either could not, would not, or just plain didn’t.
Thus, the deliberate murderer walked in when the music was
hottest, and began systematically destroying the lives and
hopes of a hundred people who only wanted love and acceptance,
which he denied them.

As the first gunshot boomed out, dancers thought it was
part of a theatrical display, as big as Gay Pride itself. However
in a moment, the hottest dance floor was a slick of blood,
more blood, nothing but blood, and unearthly piercing shrieks,
where people who went to their early graves wondered why.
Why now? Why us? Why here?

Of course there aren’t any answers to those questions, anyway
not one our authorities can grasp and deliver. That is the tragedy,
for this heinous deed sets up the next and the next after that.

I don’t want Pulse to be sanctified. I don’t want to see
piles of cheap flowers, and some personal mementos of
these hundred victims. I don’t want to transform sensuality,
eroticism, their last vivid moments into something suitable
for parents who never knew their kids were gay. They were
your kids, they deserve your love. Don’t turn away from them
now, when they need it most.

For these parents are now in denial, and that’s not what Gay
Pride is all about. Pride means you’ve accepted yourself,
and planned to ride that pony as far as you can, loving
everyone along the way, whether they love you, or not.

Thus, I give you the Queen of Disco. She knew it all, and
kept the dance music moving with the hottest possible
beat. So now take a minute to listen to Donna Summer’s
legacy, now the legacy for all the victims who died, so many,
so young, so that one man could show off. We’ll never forget
them. We’ll never forget these moments of hell and horror.

Here’s their song, you can see them dancing on their way
to eternity. So let’s dance the last dance, and let’s do it
with vengeance, determination, high style, for if we must go, let us
go our own way, and let the beat be adamant and never

“Last dance
Last dance for love
Yes, it’s my last chance
For romance tonight

I need you by me
Beside me, to guide me
To hold me…”

Musical note

Before you continue with this book, take a moment to listen
to Donna Summer’s signature piece, released in 1978, and
remember the victims as the music takes you higher and

About the Author

Dr. Jeffrey Lant is known worldwide. He started in the media business when he was 5 years old, a Kindergartner in Downers Grove, Illinois, publishing his first newspaper article. Since then Dr. Lant has earned four university degrees, including the PhD from Harvard. He has taught at over 40 colleges and universities and is quite possibly the first to offer satellite courses. He has written over 30 books, thousands of articles and been a welcome guest on hundreds of radio and television programs. He has founded several successful corporations and businesses including his latest at …

His memoirs “A Connoisseur’s Journey” has garnered nine literary prizes that ensure its classic status. Its subtitle is “Being the artful memoirs of a man of wit, discernment, pluck, and joy.” A good read by this man of so many letters. Such a man can offer you thousands of insights into the business of becoming a successful writer. Be sure to sign up now at

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