The Lunatic Assylum*


Coming in 2013

Someone wrote me asking what I’m publishing this year. Here is the rundown at The Lunatic Assylum on Blogger

Looking for The Lunatic Assylum Front Door?

Are you looking for The Lunatic Assylum?



The Lunatic Assylum and the chief lunatic writer have moved to Blogger.  You can find them HERE

Looking for these stories?

Memorial to a Warrior, a Memoir

Jan Kellerman Marshall Wants My Love Child

I’ll Have the Shortstack

They’re at The Lunatic Assylum  Thanks for reading. See you over there?

Coming Oct 2013 eBook and paperback

Coming Oct 2013 eBook and paperback

New Assylum

The Lunatic Assylum has moved lock, stock, and monopoly game to it’s new location on Blogger.

Same beautiful building. Same lunatics. Please click over, read, and follow. Thanks.

Recent posts at The Lunatic Assylum on Blogger:

One in 7 Billion. Don’t ask why she loves you. Just feel lucky.

Vegetarianism is Destroying the Earth. It’s true. It has to do with cows and carbohydrates.

Coming Friday 5/24: Deteriorata We hold these principles to be self-evident.

See you there? Thanks for reading.

Coming Oct 2013 eBook and paperback

Coming Oct 2013 eBook and paperback

Hurley Wisdom on Twitter


I realized only my Twitter followers were receiving the questionable benefit of my 140 character wisdom. With this post I correct that mistake. Herewith a few pearls from the loony who tweets at timothyhurley3. [For nitpickers who will count the characters in each of these quips: okay, I admit it. I edited some for clarity and hilarity.]


I say it every spring: For the next six months, everything I do wrong is the fault of Daylight Savings Time.


You know you live in New York when your neighbors in the next apartment order in breakfast from a diner 5 blocks away.


I had a good writing day: 1200 words of pure crap. I credit the cappuccino.

To read the rest of the post, please go to The Lunatic Assylum at the new location on Blogger.

If you like it, please follow there on Google or by email.

Thanks for reading.

Give Me My Frequent Flyer Miles Back and Announcement from The Assylum

When you fly you need plane reservations. Only seagulls and Bob Hope can do without them.


I just flew in from California, and boy, are my arms tired.


So I made reservations online using my frequent flyer miles, because I can’t afford to fly back and forth between New York and San Francisco and pay for it. Do I look like a one per-center in my blue jeans and T-shirt?

I won’t say which airline simply because they have lawyers on retainer and I don’t. Actually they have nothing to fear from this post.

wo1284 2.tif

Not the actual plane I flew on


After I made reservations, I learned friends would be flying the same day but two hours earlier. So I clicked my way to a reservation change from 8:30 AM to the 6:30AM flight and put myself in a seat next to my friends. But I soon discovered I had also clicked my way from a 12,500 miles charge to a 25,000 miles charge. And then insult to injury: another 25,000 mile charge appeared. My account had dropped 50,000 miles and I’d only spent 12,500.  Just like when I invest on Wall Street (which since the Crash of 1989 is never).


Not as bad as all that


My first remedy was to talk online with Alex. Alex was an automated voice and a pretty picture of a European woman who responded to my typed questions in a soothing feminine European voice. No matter what I asked, she told me she was sorry she couldn’t help me and told me to look at the window that popped up and find the answer there.


Is this the party to whom I am speaking?


I found a 1-800 phone number and dialed it. A kindly, authoritative European male voice told me my wait to speak to a human was three minutes—easy, I could surf the net for three minutes and delete my web history later.


Going for the cute dog lover audience


Sure enough in three minutes I spoke to the first of my three friends at the mileage service center and the reservations department. I’m a student of accents, so I guessed they weren’t born in Brooklyn or the Bronx. Staten Island, maybe, but that was a distant 7th on my list. I won’t say which southern Asia country I guessed because that might sound prejudiced, and I’m anything but prejudicial toward people in other countries or immigrants from any country. Immigrants are the blood transfusion of America. Without them, I’d have to eat at Irish restaurants, and a potato and a six-pack isn’t my idea of a seven-course meal.

world map

Hint: It’s one of these countries


My three friends were most desirous of resolving my issues (since around 1990 I stopped having problems and began having issues—nice change.). But our communication dilemma was this: although they understood me fine (of course, I speak American), and even though they spoke flawless English—well you know. It was difficult, even though I had the phone to my good ear. Eventually we were all on the line together in a conference call for one hour and twenty-six minutes. They invented the word polite and exercised infinite patience with my requests to repeat and slow down. When one asked me four times for my PIN, and I didn’t know it, she said it wasn’t a problem, and she  created one for me. And then she asked me for it to confirm my account. I came close to crying only when Mr. Reservations asked me for my reservation confirmation number which was in an email I received a month ago. Not a problem, he said, and we proceeded without it.


Should I write it down?


Low and behold Ms. Customer Service admitted there’d been a mistake, even though she couldn’t fix it. Mr. Reservations put me on hold for 18 minutes to go talk to his superiors. No problema. I’m retired and had 18 more minutes of surfing. When Mr. Reservations returned, he informed me it was my lucky day, all was forgiven, and he restored the missing miles to my account. He enquired if there was anything else he could do to help me. I toyed with asking him about global climate change and world peace, but decided to be satisfied with my miles.


Don’t press your luck on climate change


We hung up, and that’s when I cried. We need people like that here in Brooklyn. If they come, I hope they’ll open a restaurant. I love their food.


Typical Brooklynites going to dinner

Bonus joke for those who stuck with me and read all the way to the end:

New Yorker 1: “Why can’t those immigrants speak English?”

New Yorker 2: “Which immigrants?”

New Yorker 1: “The ones from England.”


Find the true New Yorker


IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: The Lunatic Assylum is moving. Same building. Same Loonies. Same funny writing. But we’re moving lock, stock, and monopoly game to Blogger. For the time being I may continue to double post, but eventually the plan is to switch over to Google Blogger and Google +. You can check it out HERE. The follow button is at the top of the right side bar.


It’s been fun with all you folks here, and hope to see you all hop over there and follow.

I’m In Love With My Line Editor

My line editor is awesome, and I’m pretty sure I’m in love.

HemHospWounded by cupid’s arrow

 It’s like when Hemingway was wounded in the war and fell in love in the hospital with his nurse.

HemNurseNot my real line editor, but beautiful also.

  I fell in love with my Poe’s Black Cat line editor. You’ve heard me brag on how PBC was accepted for the fall release of Dark Muses, Spoken Silences from Firbolg Publishing. Well, in writer-lingo it was accepted with rewrite requests which means some plot changes. I worked my talents to the bone and have a stronger story I hope readers will like.

DarkMusesCoverSee, Dad, Mom was right. I amounted to something. A paying gig.

Now it’s round two—line editing.


And a potential title change to Poe’s Black Cats. And even though my sister-in-law’s adorable, but mysterious and reclusive Scout has the lead role, there are more than one black cat, after all.

scout (3)The Star of Poe’s Black Cat(s) in his trailer

When I received the file I experienced the universal writer’s reaction to revision requests: how dare anyone question my creative genius, I’m the artist here. (See Memo to Hell for a similar reaction that got a writer in hot water.)


So I did the uncharacteristic. I closed the file and didn’t touch it for 48 hours while I got drunk.

funny-drunk-people-grocery-410Me letting go and seeking mindfulness

When I went back to it my reaction was: hey, these edits aren’t so bad. Another day went by and I said I could live with them. Then hey, she’s right. And finally: she’s a freaking genius, I think I’m in love. This could be Stockholm Syndrome but I think it’s the real thing, and I should ask her out.

PattyHearstNot me, but how I would look if I had Stockholm’s Disease

Except for the complication that I’m married, and I’m pretty sure she is too. If I were a Romance writer

romanceNot my genre

that wouldn’t stop me, but, alas, I’m not.  The best love affairs end in tragedy (thank you, Mr. Shakespeare.) and this one looks like it’s headed there. Or I run the risk of murder-by-spouse(s).


But meanwhile Poe’s Black Cat(s) is coming into final polish (unless there’s a round 3).


I go down in round 3, right?

Thanks, fellow loonies, for reading and being there for me.


<a rel=“author” href=“”>Timothy Hurley</a>

The Hairbrush Murderer — by Timothy Hurley and Delilah Buckle

Admitted to The Lunatic Assylum

I woke to the sound of a tapping upon my chamber door. Thinking it to be that pesky raven, I shouted, “Nevermore!”  Rap, rap.  Alas, it proved not to be an avian visit.  I rose from my bed, adjusted my nightcap, and put on my dressing gown.


Not an accurate police sketch of Timothy Hurley

Turns out it was a Lunatic Assylum reader who wanted to know how to follow The Lunatic Assylum blog. I made tea, we sat down, and I wrote out the instructions. The reader bade me good day. I reminded him you can check out of The Lunatic Assylum any time you like, but you can never leave.

While singing a John Denver song about holding hands and following, he suggested that I put a placard with the written instructions on the door so others could follow.

To FOLLOW The Lunatic Assylum (Which everyone who reads should do—all my relatives do, and they’re still okay.):

physician studying the affliction

Close approximation of Timothy editing

1. Go to  (If you’re reading this, you may have noticed you’re already here. But we’re in a lunatic assylum; I don’t make assumptions.) Make sure it’s spelled with TWO ss. (The explanation is on the ABOUT TIMOTHY HURLEY AUTHOR page.)


Peoria State Hospital for the Incurably Insane. Timothy was born in a snowdrift nearby.

2. Go to the right sidebar. At the top is a Follow The Lunatic Assylum box where you can put in your email (Which I don’t get to have, but WordPress does—and they’ll keep it safe.). Click OK and, boom, you’re signed up to receive an email each time I wake up in the middle of the night with an annoyingly brilliant idea and post it. Except you don’t have to read the email in the middle of the night.

symptoms uncontrolled

This one is accurate.

3. You only get an email if I post (And I’m a lazy bastard, but I’ll try to do better). When you get the email, click on the blue title and it will admit you to The Lunatic Assylum (where the inmates will serve you cookies and the beverage of your choice. I always choose Jameson’s.)

4. BONUS Points: If you are a Word Press blogger, log onto Word Press; then go to At the top of the window you will see a black bar with a white FOLLOW button. Click it. A tiny window appears, tells you (well, not out loud) that you are following and The Lunatic Assylum new posts will appear in your Word Press Reader when you login.

5. Bonus Bonus. If you friend Timothy on Facebook, or circle up with him on G+, or tweet like a birdy with him on Twitter, you’ll get notifications there too ‘cause The Lunatic Assylum talks to them. (Links for those are in the side bar, or click Links page.)

There, you are now a member of The Lunatic Assylum and may freely speculate about String Theory.


 Not the real String Theory

<a rel=“author” href=“”>Timothy Hurley</a>

Seldom Seen Slim’s Wild West Adventure


Seldom Seen Slim leaned forward in the saddle, rested his forearms on the horn, and squinted into the hills.  “What’s it gonna be, Mr. Briggs?  Way Cheyenne’s gang’s hol’ up in them rocks, if’n you go after ‘em in daylight, you’re buzzard bait.”  Neither Slim nor his horse, Pinto Bean, flinched when bullets from the hills kicked up crimson dust around the skittish posse.

It took a lot to rile Seldom Seen Slim.  His hips were far from the ground, but his thin legs bridged the gap just fine.  His sandpaper skin was as abrasive as his talk was smooth.  And he moved slow and methodical like a gila monster.  But when he moved to bring in a bad guy like Cheyenne, he struck like a rattlesnake.

Slim was Marshal Brigg’s deputy, and nobody west of some river Slim couldn’t remember the name of had gotten the drop on him—ever.  Folks called him Seldom Seen because when he wasn’t at the sheriff’s office, he was at the Pecos Public Library checking out books and writing in speckled, black and white notebooks.  He piled the notebooks everywhere in his hotel room—on his table, his dresser, even in the bathroom in case he got an idea while taking a bath.  And he had rolls of number two yellow pencils—lots of them, with a small red pencil sharpener—the kind he shoved a pencil into and twisted.

Deputy was Slim’s day job.  Slim was a writer.  He wrote stories about bad guys.  Tough guys.  Dangerous guys.  Guys who were no match for Seldom Seen Slim.


Then the day came that Cheyenne and his Red Rock Gang held up the bank, got clean away, and holed up in the hills.  Marshall Briggs and his posse got Cheyenne pinned down behind the boulders, but couldn’t flush him out—not for the better part of the day—in spite of the withering sun and the rising temperature.  The posse was getting mighty thirsty and the gang had to be miserable too.

Slim had stayed behind in town to edit a story, but now he sat easy in the saddle on Pinto Bean.  He didn’t need to hurry.  No one got the drop on Slim—never had, never would.

“I’m stymied, Slim,” the marshal said, removing his Stetson and wiping his brow.

“Dunno how to get Cheyenne outta them hills.”

Slim regarded the marshal, moved his eyes slowly up the hills, and wrinkled his nose.  He gritted his white teeth, and they barely parted when he spoke.  “Way I see it, Marshal, ya got no choice.  Can’t wait til dark.  Cheyenne’ll sneak off.”

The marshal rubbed his chin with one hand and slapped his Stetson against his jeans with the other.  “They got lotta firepower up there, Slim.  Somebody’s gonna get hurt.”

Deputy Slim moved his jaw from side to side and spit into the sand.  “Lemme think on it.”  Then he pulled a dappled notebook and a lemon colored pencil from his saddlebag and scribbled a few lines.  He ripped out the page and handed it to the marshal.  “Have Shorty take that back to town and give it to Jake down at the General Store.”

The marshal stared at the paper a moment and glanced at Slim.  “What the—?  You sure about this, Slim?”

“Trust me,” Slim said, touching the pencil tip to his tongue.  Marshal Briggs handed the paper to Shorty, and Shorty mounted up and galloped off in a cloud of red dust.  Slim dismounted and sat down on a rock.  He flipped open the cardboard cover of a notebook, began to write, and became as engrossed as a dog with a new bone.

The sun moved an hour’s worth, but Slim didn’t notice.  A trail of rising dust and the rumble of Jake’s white van interrupted Slim’s contemplation.  He closed his notebook and put it in his saddlebag with the pencil.  Jake pulled to a stop and stepped out on the sand.

“What now, Slim?” Jake said.

“Fire up the music,” Slim replied.  Jake reached into the cab and flipped a switch.  Tinkling chimes blasted from the van, and the marshal and posse broke out in smiles.

“Catchy tune—Turkey In The Straw,” Marshall Briggs said, grinning.  “Now what?”

“Give ‘em a minute,” Slim said, narrowing his eyes and placing his right hand on his pistol butt.

The marshal’s smile disappeared and the posse turned serious.  Everyone watched the hills.  A moment later the marshal threw up his hands, and the posse cheered.  “They’re comin’ out, boys.  Keep ‘em covered,” Marshal Briggs hollered.


Sure enough, Cheyenne and his gang scrambled down the rocks and ran to the van like third graders at an Easter egg hunt.  Bold, blue letters on the van proclaimed Ice Cream, and pictures of cones and popsicles decorated the sides.  The gang, waving quarters in the air, ran to Jake and pushed and shoved like folks at a Black Friday sale.  Shouts rang out:  “It’s the ice cream man!” and “Root beer popsicle, please!”

Cheyenne, unwrapping an ice cream sandwich, stepped up to the marshal and handed over his gun.  “Nothing beats an Eskimo Pie,” he said grinning, “Not even bank robbin’.”

Marshal Briggs and the posse slapped handcuffs on each gang member.  “Finish up, boys.  We’re headin’ back to town.  Gotta hand it to ya, Slim.”

Slim touched the brim of his Stetson.  “Sure ‘nuff, Marshal. I figured the ice cream man would bring out the Cheyenne Kid.”

Slim mounted his horse and moseyed down the trail.  Someone asked, “Where’s Seldom Seen headed, Marshal?”  Slim turned back in the saddle, grinned, and licked a fudgsicle.  He gave a little wave and then rode off as the sun turned the sky orange.

Marshall Briggs gazed at horse and rider like a proud parent.  “I expect Slim’s headed to the library.  Likely gonna write a story.  His work here is done.”



<a rel=“author” href=“”>Timothy Hurley</a>

Memo to Hell Reviewed at Smashwords

Memo to Hell, get it at Amazon Kindle

Memo to Hell, get it at Amazon Kindle

Memo to Hell was reviewed at Smashwords. Sure seems like he liked it. Thanks, JDeWayne for the read and for the nice review. I salivate like a puppy when anyone compares me to my hero, Mark Twain.  I really appreciate that you took the time to read and write a review.

Review by: JDeWayne Pierce on April 17, 2013 : star star star star star
I saw this short story on Hurley’s page and at 2,039 words I thought. What the heck, it’s free and I’ve got 5 minutes. Besides, I see in his bio, this guy is a retired sawbones so I’ll enjoy putting him on the operating table. There’s no way this story will be any good and I’ll get to justifiably rip him a new one.
Wow, was I surprised! This guy can write and entertain at the same time. A lost art these days, even by best sellers and he’s not afraid to offend. A refreshing touch in these ‘Let’s give up on Liberty’ Days.
This short story is well worth reading and I’m still chuckling as I write this review. I recommend it to anyone with an adult sense of humor. Cannot wait to read more of his wit and works. Dr. Hurley kinda reminds me of an R rated Samuel Langhorne Clemens.
(review of free book)

Memo to Hell. Funnier than a lawyer-walks-into-a-bar joke, Blogger-jerk gets Cookie Monster’s color wrong, argues with Manhattan lawyers, and watches his writing career sink into the East River with subpoenas and depositions, claiming he’s learned his lesson—or not.  Adult language

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