Wednesday, February 24, 2016

National Tortilla Day - Feb. 24


National Tortilla Chip Day needs to get together with National Margarita Day!
 (See Feb. 22 post).

 And when is National Guacamole Day?

The Tortilla "holiday" is called corny by some, but not me. Just a few decades ago, Americans seldom ate corn chips and salsa or cheese, or a combo thereof. (Although we devoured Fritos by the bagful when I was a kid, and I still love them best.) Tortilla popularity has grown to be one of America's favorite munchies. Doritos, anyone?

The corn chip was born in Mexico and then imported by recipe to the U.S. by Texas businessman Elmer Doolin. Although first mass-produced in Los Angeles in the late 1940s, tortilla chips were always considered to be a Mexican food, known as totopos and tostadas. 

 According to Wiki, that know-it-all (sometimes) online encyclopedia, "the triangle shaped tortilla chip was popularized by Rebecca Webb Carranza as a way to make use of misshapen tortillas rejected from the automated tortilla manufacturing machine that she and her husband used at their Mexican delicatessen and tortilla factory in southwest Los Angeles. Carranza found that the discarded tortillas, cut into triangles and fried, were a popular snack, and she sold them for a dime a bag at the El Zarape Tortilla Factory. In 1994, Carranza received the Golden Tortilla award for her contribution to the Mexican food industry."

So now you know.

Gerrie Ferris Finger

AMERICAN NIGHTS - Released Aug 2017

Monday, February 22, 2016

Who sets these dates anyway?

I like Margaritas, especially those concocted with freshly made agave (tequila) at Pablo's in Fernandina Beach, Florida.


(I also like tequila, also known as Mexican Mule, for a reason.)

Now you don't have to wait for Cinco de Mayo to taste the variety of recipes of this Mexican drink which can be done in different styles and flavors, including cranberry, peach and lime.

Let's make a Classic Margarita: 
(From Epicurious)


2 ounces tequila made from 100 percent agave, ( preferably reposado or blanco)

1 ounce Cointreau (AT LEAST)

1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice

Salt for garnish


Combine tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice in cocktail shaker filled with ice. Moisten rim of Margarita or other cocktail glass with lime juice or water. Holding glass upside down, dip rim into salt. Shake and strain drink into glass and serve

facts garnered from other websites:

Tequila is distilled from the blue agave plant. Blue agave is larger in size and sweeter than regular agave.

According to, Tequila is made primarily in the area surrounding the city of Tequila in Mexico.

"Mexican law states that Tequila can be produced only in the state of Jaliscoand." reports the website.

Just like the French. Champagne is only Champagne when it comes from the Champagne region in France. I like Champagne. When is Champagne Day?

Another fun fact: Don Cenobio Sauza, the founder of Sauza Tequila and Municipal President of the Village of Tequila from 1884 to 1885, was the first to export Tequila to the United States.

And the rest, as they say, is hysterical. Enough to make you take your clothes off.

Thanks to Total Wine for this kickin' recipe:


Gerrie Ferris Finger

AMERICAN NIGHTS - Aug 17, 2016

Saturday, February 20, 2016

RIP Harper Lee

It's always sad to report the loss of a talented, much-loved author, or any human for that matter.

I was a young girl when I first read To Kill a Mockingbird. I did not understand it at the time. We lived in the country where there were no black folks. This was west St. Louis County, Missouri. One thing the years have taught me -- as I write from my desk in south Georgia -- that collectively we must experience the framework of ethnic groups to fully understand people of different religious, cultural practices, race, and attitudes, and their places in time.

Could the events in "Mockingbird" happen today? Of course. We have also learned that technological progress over time doesn't translate to people progress.

Harper Lee was born in 1926 in Monroeville, Alabama.

Go Set a Watchman was written by Lee before Mockingbird, but published decades later. It became a phenomenal #1 New York Times bestseller when it was published in July 2015.

Harper Lee received the Pulitzer Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and numerous other literary awards and honors. She died on February 19, 2016.

Respectfully submitted,

Gerrie Ferris Finger
Journalist and Author

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

What it's like to be Dru and Running with Wild Blood?

I had been retired from journalism and writing another series for a few years when I read a Jack Reacher novel by Lee Child. Now let’s just say Reacher is so much larger than life, he’s on a physical plane all by himself. That caused me to search my brain for a woman in a series that was like Reacher. There may be a few, but lacking female Reachers in my library, I created Moriah Dru.

Dru, a tall good-looking woman, began her career as a policewoman on the fast track at the Atlanta Police Department. She was approved for a slot at the FBI’s National Academy and takes the Yellow Brick Road challenge. Her prowess under the harshest conditions earned her a coveted Marine Corps’ yellow brick.

Back in Atlanta, she was partnered with Lieutenant Richard Lake. He was divorced, and they become lovers. When he was promoted, she got stuck with some unlovely partners who thought they should she share her bed, too. Not going to happen. Her good friend, a juvenile judge, urged her to leave the force and start Child Trace, a specialty child-finding private detective agency. In The End Game she is challenged to find two abducted sisters bound for the sex slave trade in Central America. With Lake’s help, they succeed. That book won the St. Martin’s Minotaur Best First Novel.

As her story progressed in the now five-book published series, Dru’s self-defense skills, including expertise in martial arts, shooting, and out-thinking the bad guys, increased. My editor figured out which fictional character she is most like: Emma Peel of the original British “The Avengers” series on television.


One time I rode on a Harley Davidson. Just that once. At eighty m.p.h. I like to be enclosed. But I have to admit I have been fascinated with motorcycles and a culture created by generations of men hungering for the unencumbered wild life. Not all clubs (never gangs) are of the outlaw bent, but Wild Blood is.

A couple of years ago, my husband and I were on the highway from hell—I-95 from Georgia to Florida—and a string of bikes flew past us. (My husband is no slouch when it comes to speed.) That’s when the idea of writing a Moriah Dru/Richard Lake thriller/mystery that would feature a biker club came to me.

It’s so easy to connect murder with an outlaw club, but more than that, in Running With Wild Blood I was able to explore the mystique and romance of the culture. I learned many arcane things from my sources—shared by those who knew bikers, including outlaws.

In my reporter days I met several scruffy-looking bikers at Bike Week in Myrtle Beach, S. C. They were the spokesmen (no women)—the front men or hail-fellows of the clubs. In the last few decades, the big national clubs have campaigned to clean up their image by sponsoring charitable bike events in places where they are welcome. In winter, Florida seems to be a magnet for Bike Weeks. Who doesn’t want to get the cold north wind out of their face?

While Running with Wild Blood reflects biker practices and traditions (including those with hearts-of-gold), the book centers on the heinous murder of an adventurous teenage girl and her missing friend. The Wild Blood Club is accused. After looking into the cold case, Dru has doubts about the club’s involvement. To clear them, if they can be cleared, Dru and Lake ride Lake’s Harley to a Florida Bike Week with Wild Blood. To be sure, the culture of cop and biker creates a lot of tension. Who would bet that hell wouldn’t break loose when another murder occurs?

My best to readers and riders alike!

Running with Wild Blood