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Rich Calo, Author

Let’s get the resistor and resisting part out of the way right now, because I don’t want confusion.

I resist two things: the atrophying of the imagination and its accompanying sense of wonder, and the atrophying of concern or compassion for others, especially those others that are not like us. How do I resist? If you’re reading this, you’re looking at resistance in action.

Yes, I also resist toxic politics, which is any politics that does not have the common good at its center. And also toxic masculinity, which has no good at all.

That’s four things. . .


When your life takes a literary turn…

The Madness of Lone Coyote

From the back cover: What happens when the world discards a man? For Lone Coyote, what happens is – he becomes Lone Coyote. Now, in the mad belief that he’s a special operative of some kind, he’s on the road catching terrorists. He has learned that a number of cells are organizing for a coordinated attack in upstate New York and it is his duty to stop them.

What he can no longer see is that his military vehicle is a minivan spray painted in camo; his weapon is a set of PVC toilet pipes; the PRC-152 radio transceiver is a chrome toaster; and his companion, one Sanford Chopanza, is a big fat guy with a Santa Claus nose who swims in and out of Lone Coyote’s madness with no reason and no predictability. Meanwhile…

Read More . . .

Find at: Barnes & Noble
Find on: Amazon
Or ask at your local bookseller

Tears in the Garden

Tears in the Garden

A Novel

(Scheduled for release, spring 2018)

My editors haven’t settled on cover copy yet, so I’ll say my own bit about it for now. Tears in the Garden is not a satirical work like The Madness of Lone Coyote. It is a philosophical one – which is to say, deeply human and introspective. The theme is Love with a capital “L,” and the problem is this guy Marc.

Obviously I cannot give away the ending, so you’ll have to content yourself with knowing that Marc and Celine, who have three small children and live in a house in the woods, are in serious marital trouble, and frustrated, miserable, full of blame for each other, they’ve decided to get a divorce. The story heats up from there.

Read more . . .

Want to read the opening chapters? Click here

American Prom

Back when I was still a college professor, it seemed prudent to start publishing books that were at least scholarly in intent. American Prom was my first such effort – after which I lost interest in professoring altogether and went on to do other things. American Prom, however, remains with us. The research is solid and was several years in the gathering. The book itself is a study of coming-of-age practices in North America, among middle-class Americans for the most part. The premise is that given how other cultures have “exotic” coming-of-age practices, ours should have these practices too; but they would only seem “exotic” to outsiders, because for us they’re totally natural. Right?

Read more . . .

Or find it on Amazon: American Prom

I don’t know if other writers doodle with words – I’ve never asked – but I do. When I remember, I put the doodles up on Facebook; it seems fitting that they end up there, as a species of ephemera, along with any political statements I happen to make.

Daylight Savings

If I were a clock, this morning my heart would have skipped a beat. While that’s OK for younger clocks, grandfather clocks need to be cautious. As for digital clocks – no worries there, they don’t have souls.


Count – that’s one of those slippery words that can’t afford to lose a vowel.


Mary had a mutant lamb,
Mutant lamb, a mutant lamb.
Mary had a mutant lamb,
Its feet had one less toe.

Mary had a mutant lamb,
Mutant lamb, a mutant lamb.
Mary had a MUTANT lamb,

Imagine a Society

Can you imagine a society with free higher education and free health care? An educated and healthy population can do ANYTHING…except be exploited by government and corporate interests.


It would be nice if we could teach eels to speak because then we could ask them how their day is going. This is info we all need.


Wikipedia declined my definition of Thesaurus – I can’t understand why: “The Thesaurus was a large theropod, about 26 ft in length, weighing between 1.6–2.9 tons. It lived during the late Cretaceous (99-65 million years ago) and its fossilized remains have been found from Patagonia in Argentina to Joanna Smith’s house at 237 Lincoln Drive in Augusta, Kansas. A meat eater in the family Dictionarae, it subsisted mostly on Synonyms, although during extended periods of drought it was known to have eaten Acronyms, and perhaps even Antonyms. This last is conjectural.”

Santa Eyes

He sees you when you’re sleeping.
He knows when you’re awake.
It’s just a little creepy.
So stay dressed for goodness’ sake.

Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin had felled a neighbor’s cherry tree and an altercation ensued. During the trial, Mr. Franklin denied the allegations and convinced the jury that he had no motive. He was acquitted on all counts, and on presenting a kite with a key dangling from its tail as further proof of innocence, he was exonerated and also awarded the felled cherry tree. But in some minds, there was still a lingering suspicion. Anyhow, late one night, he was whittling himself some wooden teeth from that cherry tree when the Tooth Fairy appeared – although not to him. She appeared to Paul Revere and told him what Franklin was doing. Despite that it was nearly midnight, Revere said he’d set out at once and let the people know what Franklin was up to, in particular, that this might constitute motive after all and therefore provide grounds for reopening the case. Revere was already on his horse when the alarm sounded that the British were coming. So Revere, deciding – wisely – that this news was more important than Franklin’s teeth, took that to the people instead. True story.


I forgot my glasses, which I need for work, so I went to the bar instead and got their glasses – suddenly, everything is looking great!

Liquid Nitrogen

Hey! I’ll bet you’ve never been to a liquid nitrogen party!! It’s so Cool!!! In fact, it’s held in a vacuum chamber at -210 centigrade.

The Underworld

You would think that a garden in the Underworld would be a spooky place full of crystal trees and flowers that bloomed blood red and ghost white. But it isn’t. It’s a place where Campbell Soup lids stand in for leaves and Monsanto’s part animal part plant experiments crawl about begging for extinction.

Mummified Hand

I keep a mummified hand on my desk. Shocking, I know. More shocking is that its fingernails continue to grow. So I file them from time to time then the hand gives me a thumbs up. Sometimes I let it pick my nose.


Cowboy. I was drawing my gun to shoot him, but I shot myself in the foot. Then as I was bandaging my foot, the bullets dropped out of my gun. I was putting them back in when the stupid barrel for some reason fell off. Then when I got that back on – I shot myself in the other foot. So I bandaged that. By the time I was done, the guy I was going to shoot had gone. So impatient.

Two Owls

If two owls were sitting in a tree trying to talk about a third owl it would never work because they would never get past “Who? Who?”


People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. People who live in mud houses shouldn’t throw water. People who live in space stations shouldn’t throw up. People who live in Santa’s workshop shouldn’t throw ho ho.

35 Year-old Female

Hello, I’m a 35 year-old female, recently divorced. Sandy blond hair, blue eyes, 5’8″ tall, fit. I’m calling from inside a dead man’s stomach. I have a rotary phone in here with me – it’s pretty crowded. I was looking for the man’s heart because someone told me, The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach – except he died while I was in here. Now it seems I lost my way. Can you help? Esophagal map or something?


If Shakespeare had been a wombat, would we have those amazing plays today? Obviously not. Wombats would.

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