The Royal Magician of Oz Trilogy is a 3 volume tale of magic and wonder that recalls the cherished values of friendship, loyalty and courage. This timeless tale of Oz reminds us of the value of overcoming our deepest fears and conquering the challenges that might otherwise defeat us.

Volume One; Magician of Oz, Volume Two; Shadow Demon of Oz and Volume Three; Family of Oz are now available for your reading enjoyment, as well as The Ozian Adventure of Pickleless & Blu.

The Emerald Slippers of Oz
, featuring an Introduction by Roger S. Baum; great grandson of L. Frank Baum, as well as Tails of Oz are also
available for your reading enjoyment.

The newest adventure in Oz, entitled: Nomes of Oz is now available and fast becoming a best-seller in the Land of Oz.

All are available in both paperback and Kindle.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Indy 500 !!! What A Race~ Part III




Finaly, we find ourselves wrapping up my journey to the Indy 500 this year and as you may recall from my last posting, we had just left the Hall of Fame Museum within the grounds of the IMS track.

One of the nice things about the hours leading up to the race is the Fan Zone, which has loads of stuff, swag and Corvettes!!!


Them's some purty cars...

We also did the usual stuff, including the virtual racing games in the Chevy tent. I won this year!!!!!

Naturally, there's always at least one Indy car people get their pictures taken next to it. We were no exception.

 

I also found the little bastard that wouldn't let me ride him an hour or so before! I showed him who was 'da man!!!!



Of course, wearing an Amercian Flag outfit, which I've done now for over 20 years, everyone wants a picture with me, be it a really tall Uncle Sam or various other fans of this great country!!!


God Bless America!!!

One of the most unique things that happened this year was an episode of Serendipidy when Brion and I ran into his brother, Derek. 300,000 people and we run into his brother. What a hoot!!!



Finally, we get to our seats just in time for the opening ceremonies, including a wonderful flyby by a B-17 Bomber and some P-51 Fighters, all from World War 2.


Then, the fun really begins with the Parade Laps leading up to the start of the Indy 500. As you can see, we had really good seats.


Here's the I-Phone video I took of the start of the race, just to give you a feel for just how exciting and intense it truly is!


What a start!!! This was the most contested race we've ever seen. The weather was perfect and the Indy Brats were even better this year!!!


Next year, we hope to be in Turn 4, a place we've never seen the race from before. Till then, race on!!!

James C. Wallace II
Royal Liaison of Oz

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Indy 500 !!! What A Race~ Part II

So, when last we left our heroes, they were headed for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum several hours before the race.

Now, if you've never visited the Hall of Fame Museum located on the inside of Turn Two of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, better known as the Indy 500 track, do yourself a favor and go! At $5.00, it's a bargin and we had time to kill and neither of us had ever been in it during any of our previous sojourns to the track prior to the race.

The museum is filled with all things Indy 500, and a bit more. Here we see the first winning car from the first Indy 500, driven by Ray Harroun (with a relief driver named Cyrus Patschke); it's a Marmon Wasp.


I love the rear view mirror on this beast!


There were rows upon rows of cars, all of whom were Indy 500 winners.



Man, there sure were a lot of cars! Of particular interest for me was some of the most beautiful grill-work on the front of these vehicles.


Of course, there were some other cars, including my personal favorite, the 1957 "SS" Corvette!


And I don't believe this car ran on the track, but it did go really fast on the Bonneville Salt Flats!


They even had a display of old motorcycles, which makes sense now that they have motorcycle races at the track.


And of course, NASCAR shows up as well.


Finally, we made our way out after about an hour and headed for the pagoda, but was stopped short by crowds and the scene of our 2nd incident of madness last year.


We thought better of it and turned back to find our seats. Why tempt the racing gods this year?

When next I blog, I'll talk about the run-up to the race and the race itself. it was a magnificant day all around!!!

James C. Wallace II
Royal Liaison of Oz

Monday, May 27, 2013

The Indy 500 !!! What A Race~ Part I

So yesterday was my annual trek to the Indianapolis 500 and has been since 1988. It used to be my father that I would go with, but alas, he joined Houdini across The Shifting Sands in 1992. Greg Putman took over that role for a few years, then Brion came along. For us now, it's a 13-year tradition that ranks pretty darn high on our list of best 500's. Year 1 really set the bar high as our best ever, but this year's was nearly as good.

As always, we meet at Steak-and-Shake in Plainsfield and head to the track. This year, we met at 7:30am (uugghh!! I am not a morning person) and through our usual good planning and luck, we were parked and walking to the track by 8:05am.

After the usual routine of entry, which was thorough and speedy, we made it back to the Back Nine; part of the Brickyard Crossing Golf Course; where we caught up on the previous year's madness.


You wouldn't think just a 5 minute casual walk from here, cars will be zipping by at over 230 miles-per-hour. I found a golf ball here this year and brought it home. I'll try it out next time I play.

Getting there early was crucial, as we saw long lines once we made it to the outside of Turn Two. There were greater police presence this year than we could ever recall. As you can see, the Stye was full. Last year, we remembered only 1 car present.


Cops notwithstanding, we soon discovered easy access to the track,



 
but I behaved myself. Besides, this was pre-race and it was closed and locked when we returned after the 2nd yellow.

The scene of our madness from last year was also exposed,


just like last year when we had some fun. You can just make out my American Flag outfit to Brion's left.


This was a restart and below is the result. Amazing video!!!


Never been closer! The concusion wave from those cars is impossible to simulate. This year, the spot was manned by a yellow-shirt, which we appreciated.

We spent some time in the Fan-Zone, where I ran into some snail from a new movie called "Turbo." Little bastard wouldn't let me ride him!

 
When next I blog, perhaps tomorrow, I'll take you into the Indy 500 museum inside the Indianapolis Raceway in Part II. A fun place for all lovers of cars and things that go Vroom!


James C. Wallace II
Royal Liaison of Oz

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Emerald Slippers of Oz has reached a milestone!

Over the last few months, my wife Amanda and I have been deeply engrossed in the completion of our first novel as co-authors.

It is titled: The Emerald Slippers of Oz and was originally an idea of my wife, who had expressed an interest in writing.



When we first met 30 years ago, she dabbled in poetry and I had always encouraged her to write more and express herself.

30 years later, she finally took my advice and came up with a wonderful idea for a very nice storyline. Why did it take her 30 years? Well, there's 5 kids to raise, 14 grandkids and dealing with my idiosyncracies.

Finally, we have completed the writing and I now throw myself into the editing, proof-reading and formatting needed to make this book a reality.

Over the next few weeks, I'll be posting loads of info on aspects of the process and decisions taken to make this book uniquely ours.

Look for an official release on the Summer Solstice!

Per Ardua Ad Alta!

James C. Wallace I
Royal Liaison of Oz

Sunday, May 5, 2013

How NASA Celebrated My 1st Birthday!

Today is my 53rd birthday, which means I'm another year closer to Death!!! Hopefully, I'll make it past 57, which would be quite a feat considering that the last 5 generations of Wallace males have not lived past the age of 57. Cancer has been the killer in my family but so far, I'm healthy as a horse. I don't take a single pill, all my numbers are great and I live a fairly healthy lifestyel

Knowing my luck though, the day before my 58th birthday, I'll be struck down by falling space debris or some odd thing like that. Go figure?

Anyways, as I mentioned, NASA had a great way of celebrating my 1st birthday in 1961. They launched a man into space!

According to Wikipedia:


In 1959, Shepard was one of 110 military test pilots invited by the newly-formed National Aeronautics and Space Administration to volunteer for the first US manned space flight program. Following a grueling series of physical and psychological tests, NASA selected Shepard to be one of the original group of seven Mercury astronauts.



In January 1961, Shepard was chosen for the first American manned mission into space. Although the flight was originally scheduled for October 1960, delays by unplanned preparatory work meant that this was postponed several times, initially to March 6, 1961 and finally to May 5.

On April 12, 1961, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin had become the first person in space and to orbit the Earth.


On May 5, 1961, Shepard piloted the Freedom 7 mission and became the second person, and the first American, to travel into space.


He was launched by a Redstone rocket, and unlike Gagarin's 108-minute orbital flight, Shepard stayed on a ballistic trajectory—a 15-minute suborbital flight which carried him to an altitude of 116 statute miles (187 km) and to a splashdown point 302 statute miles (486 km) down the Atlantic Missile Range. Unlike Gagarin, whose flight was strictly automatic, Shepard had some control of Freedom 7, spacecraft attitude in particular. The launch was seen live on television by millions.


Shortly before the launch, Shepard said to himself: "Don't fuck up, Shepard..." This quote was reported as "Dear Lord, please don't let me fuck up" in The Right Stuff, though Shepard confirmed this as a misquote. Regardless, the latter quote has since become known among aviators as "Shepard's Prayer."
According to Gene Kranz in his book, Failure Is Not an Option, "When reporters asked Shepard what he thought about as he sat atop the Redstone rocket, waiting for liftoff, he had replied, 'The fact that every part of this ship was built by the low bidder.'"


After a dramatic Atlantic Ocean recovery, Commander Shepard observed, "…didn't really feel the flight was a success until the recovery had been successfully completed. It's not the fall that hurts; it's the sudden stop."

After his successful return, Shepard was celebrated as a national hero, honored with parades in Washington, New York and Los Angeles and received the NASA Distinguished Service Medal from President John F. Kennedy.


As I said, NASA chose a stunning means of celebrating my 1st birthday.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

#AtoZChallenge : Zardoz and The End!

Zardoz is a most oddly bizzare and yet compelling movie, especially if you ain't quite normal anyways!



Wikipedia describes this film as follows:

"In the year AD 2293, a post-apocalyptic Earth is inhabited mostly by the Brutals, who are ruled by the Eternals. Eternals use other Brutals, called Exterminators, as the Chosen warrior class. The Exterminators worship the god Zardoz, a huge, flying, hollow stone head.
The Zardoz god head supplies the Exterminators with weapons, while the Exterminators supply it with grain. Zed (Sean Connery), an Exterminator, hides himself within Zardoz for an initially unknown purpose. He shoots and apparently kills its pilot, Arthur Frayn (Niall Buggy), who has already identified himself as an Eternal in the story's prologue. The stone head containing Zed returns to the Vortex, a secluded community of civilized beings, protected all around by an invisible force-field, where the immortal Eternals lead a pleasant but ultimately stifling existence."


It seems that this was one of the first films Sean Connery did following his time as James Bond.


REALLY Sean? This is what you left James Bond for???

Here's the trailor for Zardoz, in case you haven't suffered enough. And in case you're wondering, Zardoz is a shortened variation on the Wizard of Oz title. Must be because of the big stone head! Go figure



And now, April is over and so is the challenge.

James C. Wallace II
Royal Liaison of Oz