The Alibi (A John Chance Mystery) – Chapter 4

Previous entries in this novel:

Enjoy!


The Alibi – Chapter 4

 
Cisily Throne lay naked on her stomach on a white and black checkerboard beach towel. The S/V Lady Eglesia‘s Volvo Penta IPS gently thrummed. Sometimes Throne’s seventy-five foot power sail’s thrusters adjusted its position over its Boston Harbor anchorage. The low vibration transported Throne back home; one or two elders clapping, others singing, and a didgeridoo throbbing in the background.

She missed being washed in the didgeridoo’s sound, of feeling the Old Ones take semi-human shape and walk towards the fire.

But that was thirty-five years and half a world away.

Today she let the sun warm her back and stretched out until her fingertips and toes touched Lady Eglesia‘s teak foc’sle deck. Her left hand brushed past her mobile and she shoved it so hard it skidded to the fore-railing before banging to a stop.

She seldom took time off and when she did, it was understood – Nobody Bothers The Alpha Bitch.

Cisily chuckled.

Lady Eglesia served as her vacation while at work. A short dinghy ride from dock to boat and she could strip of her work clothes, close her eyes and be back home.

Her mind’s eye saw the brilliant magenta shield of Hamersley Range. She swam in pools of still, clear water, listening to the birdcalls of tiny white corella and pink galahs flying overhead. At night she would power out into deep water where the city lights grew dim. She’d shut down the Eglesia‘s running lights, lie on her back and watch the stars, so different from her northern Australia home, and remember the stories of her Banyjima, Yinhawangka, and Kurrama ancestors.

A passing launch tooted its horn. Throne rolled sideways on the towel and waved, her movement revealing her milk chocolate breasts capped by their dark chocolate aureola. Boys lined the launch’s deck and applauded. She smiled, shook her head and lay back down. Both men and women still appreciated her late forties body. Long legged, full hipped, narrow waisted, and with just enough breast to keep a partner satisfied without getting in the way. Her skin glistened without needing oils or balms or ointments. A child of biracial birth, she grew up desired and hated, a dark skinned lubra in a white goddess’s body. People assumed she was the child of rape. The thought of her black father and white mother cherishing her and each other beyond their bigoted understanding.


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Mistaken Identities

Note: this post originally appeared as a blog arc on my old BizMediaScience blog. I’m resurrecting the complete arc here as it’s referenced in That Think You Do‘s “Unhealthy Comparisons” chapter
Enjoy!


I was reading a news release in Science a while back and have been thinking about it for a while. The complete news item, In The Courts, is about a man of supposed superior intelligence who, for whatever reason, did an unwise thing.

The unwise thing this man, 70 years old and a pioneer in gene-therapy research, did was molest a young girl. He’ll now spend 14 years in prison, most likely in solitary because he’ll be at risk from the other inmates.

The news item shares that scores of letters asking for leniency were sent on this fellow’s behalf to the judge.

Sometimes, and I’m not sure why, we think that people of great intellect aren’t subject to baser thoughts and desires. I remember so wanting to meet Dr. Edwin Teller, the so-called father of the American H-bomb. I wanted to meet him because I was so enraptured by his science, by his intellect, by his ability to reason and find answers where others couldn’t even come up with the questions.
Continue reading “Mistaken Identities”

The Unfulfilled Promise of Online Analytics, Part 3 – Determining the Human Cost

Note: this post originally appeared as a blog arc on my old Analytics Ecology blog. I’m resurrecting the complete arc here as it’s referenced in That Think You Do‘s “Unhealthy Comparisons” chapter
Enjoy!


Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own governors, must arm themselves with the power knowledge gives. A popular government without popular information or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy or perhaps both. – James Madison

There was never suppose to be a part 3 to this arc (Ben Robison was correct in that). Part 1 established the challenge (and I note here that the extent of the response and the voices responding indicates that the defined challenge does exist and is recognized to exist) and Part 2 (I’ll resurrect them both if there’s interest) proposed some solution paths. That was suppose to be the end of it. I had fulfilled my promise to myself1 and nothing more (from my point of view) was required.

But many people contacted me asking for a Part 3. There were probably as many people asking for a Part 3 as I normally get total blog traffic. Obviously people felt or intuited that something was missing, something I was unaware of remained unvoiced.

But I never intended there to be a Part 3. What to cover? What would be its thematic center?

It was during one of these conversations that I remembered some of the First Principles (be prepared. “First Principles” will be echoed quite a bit in this post) in semiotics.2

According to semiotics, you must ask yourself three questions in a specific order to fully understand any situation3:
Continue reading “The Unfulfilled Promise of Online Analytics, Part 3 – Determining the Human Cost”

“It’s too accurate” (more undocumented uses of NextStage’s Evolution Technology)

Note: this post originally appeared as a blog arc on my old Triquatrotiticale blog. I’m resurrecting the complete arc here as it’s referenced in That Think You Do‘s “The Liz Effect” chapter.
Enjoy!


This post is about looking in one’s mirror and dealing with what is seen. This post’s origin is being told that the reason a company will not use NextStage’s tools is because the tools are “…too accurate.”

First – and I suppose it truly is a first– note that one of the owners of a company is sharing a reason a prospect won’t use that company’s product.

Second, I’ve actually glommed comments from a few folks into this post.

Third, because it’s too accurate???

I did thank the company for their interest, explained that we could always do business in the future, so on and so forth.

Then I hung up the phone and went back to wondering “…because it’s too accurate“?

Let me clarify this a bit. I’m honored by their decision, specifically the reasons behind it. This company’s principals were declining because they were, indeed, principled, and in a way NextStage can completely understand; before they resold our tools they would use the tools on their own material.

But there was some fear in their voice when they said, “Your technology is excellent. Nobody questions its accuracy anymore. You’ve published enough, others have published enough, it shows up in scientific material, Chris Berry even told everybody at his eMetrics Toronto presentation that they should go with NextStage if they want scientifically provable and actionable results, so nobody questions whether or not NextStage tools are accurate anymore.”

(thank goodness, that! And thank you, Chris, for that)

And then the kicker came, “We’re afraid to find out we’re full of BlueSky…” (they used another term) “…or something worse, like our designs really do suck and we always knew they did but could never admit it to ourselves. If we use your tools then we’ll have no choice but to face the facts.”1 Continue reading ““It’s too accurate” (more undocumented uses of NextStage’s Evolution Technology)”

A Lady Alone

Following up on last week’s rant about Two-Leggers attitude re bringing children into the world vs The Wild’s, more with our lovely Lady Coyote.

This video is from late March 2022 and I’m happy to announce she and her escort brought three healthy pups into the world.

They were delightful to watch, once mom and pop brought them around.

Good eatin’ at the Carrabis’, you know.

At some point we saw them less and less.

Better hunting elsewhere, I guess.

More safety, as well.

There be humans here, you know.

And The Wild knows.

Humans can’t be trusted.