When in Dome…

When in Dome...

No, this is not a Basilica in Florence, Italy, but the ceiling of a Cheesecake Factory restaurant in Los Angeles.

Taken with a Canon 300HS; edited with Photoscape software

33 thoughts on “When in Dome…

    • Thanks. I really like this chain of restaurants. I think they are local to California only, not sure. The interiors are opulent and the food is pretty good–def a 3/5 star restaurant.

          • it’s a hard choice to make if one is going to write sex scenes. I always hated those stories or movies where the lights went out or the door closed and fireworks went off outside. They couldn’t show a natural act nearly everybody does but they’ll describe horrific violence. it’s a narrow line I guess. You’ll get both in this series. 🙂

          • You make a great point. And yes, I know I get both in this book. One of the reasons I like it is because I love reading about sociopaths. I am a mini-expert in them, having worked with difficult student populations AND administrators in schools here. In my view both Jack and Slim are bona fide sociopaths. They see nothing wrong with crime and the effects it has on others. I think I just read a part where one of them says something to the effect that he likes to just use women and then get rid of them–something to that effect. Clearly sociopathic. I’m assuming you would agree with this…..

          • Indeed I do agree about Jack & company. There must be many levels re sociopaths, you’ll probably find most of them in the story. People either born that way or damaged to some degree by life.

          • I agree totally. Virtually all the literature I read on the subject say the same thing. There is actually a scale, developed by Dr. Robert Hare, that rates sociopaths on a level from 0-30. Most criminals would most likely score 20 or above.

          • I’m below 20, phew. Quite an interesting read though Michael, I followed through a few links and met many characters I had come across through the years. Being a prison officer and a copper I got to see many people at their worst.

          • I am sure and I would be SHOCKED if you even came near 20. BTW, nobody but qualified professionals who have been trained to give the test can actually give it. However, I feel semi-qualified to give people unofficial scores, and of course you are as well. Long ago, I worked with and helped a student of mine who came to ME for the help. I sort of poured my heart and soul into him, although I always knew something was off. It turned out, in my humble opinion, that he was right on the verge of developing a sociopathic personality. The mother warned me that he will eventually start using me, but I dismissed it. The father appreciated my help and was supportive. In the end, the student–over 18 at the time–did exactly what a classic sociopath does: seek me out and assess my weaknesses, manipulate, and then abandon, with no conscience. However, for ME to get closure, I hunted him down at his work months later. We had a nice talk, I believe I truly broke him down to his real self–for just a few minutes–and he thanked me for all the help I had given him. So I felt I won that battle lol. That situation got me interested in sociopaths.

          • It’s okay my shrink gave me the all clear some time ago. 🙂 although I tend to lack quite a bit of empathy. It comes from PTSD, and probably being a copper/prion officer, add an horrendous childhood and viola, you have me. I have first hand experience of living with a sociopath, my old man and I know oh so well how he could manipulate people. He was handsome and athletic, convincing and smooth as silk. He destroyed lives and didn’t give a shit, got away with two child murders and his legacy continues to eat away at his descendants. He has made me wary, doubtful of others, non trusting. I grew up watching as he drew others into his web, conned and used them, then cast them off. He could be brutal, loving, kind and evil.
            It sounds very much like your student drew you out and used you. Can you change a personality at that age? I don’t know. Now you can see where my Antagonists come from. The sad thing is my mother stayed with him until he died. In retrospect I believe she had a few issues. They’re both dead now but sadly their legacy lives on. I would like to think that your student did honestly thank you in the end.

          • wow, what an explosive, yet heartfelt story about your dad. Well told, as if its own little book. Yes, I can def see where your characters come from. I must say that I am really enjoying MOD. I do not know how well the book did in Aus, but you are def a writer to be reckoned with. It is a brutal, yet captivating and totally engrossing book. I am only on chapter 5, but I read slowly and have good comprehension.

            Yes, I really do think I honestly broke that student down at the end. That was the REAL him. And no, when you are 18 or 19, you can pretty much forget about “changing” a sociopath. But I recently connected with him on Facebook. He added me instantly and said it’s been a long time. I believe he did that out of respect. But I can tell from his posts that nothing has changed.

            Thanks for sharing this interesting, yet heartbreaking story about your father…..

          • A book in itself indeed, so I don’t have to delve to deeply for characters. Thank you for the compliment, it hasn’t been a wow on Amazon, yet I received some in depth reviews. One from an ex US army psychologist in Germany who still gives me a huge wrap. I sold my first run of ‘real books’ and have had a second printed. I probably needed to promote it more.
            At least your student showed you some respect, yet it is sad that nothing has changed. We are such complex creatures, and I don’t see mankind changing for the better anytime soon. No Utopian civilisation where are all are equal and free from crime, corruption and brutality. I guess one can do their own little bit along the way, like you trying to help that lad.
            It’s funny when you’re writing here from the notification page, you tend to forget that it’s going out to the world. I shared that story because I felt it would give you insight into me, the author. You seem to me to be someone who cares and listens. I’m not going to dump on you, it just felt relevant to speak about it at the time. Talk soon,

          • Yes, I hear you on all of this. I was well aware that we were communicating on a post for the world to see. But I figured if you are comfortable with it, I would be as well. Plus, perhaps others can learn from this. I have nothing to hide. Didn’t lose any subs yet. Always feel free to respond to a post via my GMAIL address if that seems more appropriate for you :>

            Oh, and if I didn’t like your book, I wouldn’t have said anything or said something like I am too busy to read anything right now. I will send you emails about the book from time to time to keep you posted, or at least when I am finished. It is longer than I thought so, once again, it may take awhile.

          • I see that. Luckily I created them about 3 years ago. 😉 Cohen is a character who lurks in my childhood, from when we came out to Australia. I haven’t been able to categorise him yet but he is someone I met briefly.
            With the toe cutting, I don’t know if I mentioned it but there was a gang active in Sydney for years, and they used that method to gain information on where the money was from big hauls. They gave the term pedicure a whole new meaning.

          • Fascinating stuff–it is rare to get feedback like this from an author, esp when still reading the book.

            These two are bona fide psychopaths–no doubt.

            Your portrait of Sydney is both fascinating, yet scary.

          • Sydney, especially The Cross can get quite violent. It’s what goes on behind the scenes, it has been a haven for crime, drugs and prostitution for a long time. At the same time it is a beautiful city.

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