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My Stint in the Office of Security

…During my own polygraph examination the polygraphers had insisted that I showed a reaction to the question of involvement in terrorism. I was questioned for hours about the possibility that perhaps I had given money to a terrorist group or attended a KKK rally with my grandfather at some point in my life. These strange and quite inappropriate suggestions had soured me on the polygraph. Sometimes, making a determination on whether or not the person was suitable for a security clearance required interviewing the individual about questionable information in their files. Whether it was a previous bankruptcy or a disturbing sexual proclivity, I quickly learned that I did not enjoy delving into people’s most personal information in order to determine if they posed a risk to national security. The reading was definitely interesting sometimes. We all had our share of cases where the applicant had masturbated in an inappropriate venue, such as a shared office at work, or had sex with their pets. Some of these people would go on to receive a clearance, and possibly would be working right alongside us in our next assignments…

-From my first book, Single in the CIA .

Introducing Denise…

…Denise did not want to let it go though, and she would drill me almost daily about it. I finally blurted out that I had a disease that would not allow me to donate blood or bone marrow. I thought this would end the interrogation. Wishful thinking – Denise just wanted to know what disease I had. Did I mention I was surrounded by insanity?
I knew I had to get out of there. Besides the mind-numbing work, being surrounded by so many batty, crazed women was wearing me down….

-From my first book, Single in the CIA .

Don’t Fight the Cake!

I think these days I would welcome the cake, but still wouldn’t enjoy the forced socializing.

…As with all offices in the Agency, we of course had to have cake for as many occasions as possible. It did not matter if you were working on time-sensitive intelligence that could save lives, you had to stop and gather around a giant cake at some point at least once a month. Heaven help the individual who did not have a sweet tooth (like me) or was diabetic and refused the cake – your refusal would be so offensive to the women of the office and you would risk ostracization. I was not a fan of the cake, so I experienced many a forced-cake-eating episode during my time in this office…

-From my first book, Single in the CIA .

The DGSE is Following Me!

…Chester would sometimes entertain me with stories about Annie and Carina. Apparently the two of them would go out bar hopping and come back the next day to report their shenanigans to Security. They would run their stories of being followed by French intelligence at DC bars by Chester first to see if it warranted a report to Security. Chester would entertain their delusions, figuring that at least the security officer for the division would get a good laugh…

-From my first book, Single in the CIA .

This spring I will be doing flashback posts from my first book – not just because I am lazy and crazily busy with my two kids, but because I have gained many new followers since 2015. Thank you all for the continued support!

The Martha Stewart of the CIA?

Cooking in the CIA is now available!

Well, not quite.

One of my goals for 2018 was to learn how and build an app. It was a struggle, but…. I finally did it! It started with classes on Swift. Then it progressed into building an app in Xcode. Months of tedious work, and then… FINALLY – I finished it. But that was just the start of the frustration. I won’t bore you with the details, but let’s just say that writing books and getting them published is easier.

This app is all about cooking. These are my own favorite recipes – ones that I have used to entertain foreign delegations during my time as a CIA officer, or discovered traveling to exotic locations, as well as recipes that are simply good for family meals.

Entertain like an international woman (or man) of mystery! Explore regions of the world that you have only dreamed of! Buy Cooking in the CIA on the App Store!

Mission: Discredit Co-Workers

From my latest book, Mingling in the CIA: Bloud –

…He was a bit disappointed to see that his attempts to slander Marcus had not brought about his removal from the office. During his brief visit with Vicky he had learned that Mariana had been sent back to Headquarters to work a desk job. Marcus was a little harder to discredit, being male and all…

The Culprit

From my latest book, Mingling in the CIA: Bloud

…He remembered his life in suburban Ohio and how his wife, a nurse, had loved to garden. His life had seemed so full of light back then. Life had been so simple as an insurance salesman, returning home at noon to have lunch with his wife before her shift at the hospital. Taking drives around the neighborhood at Christmas time to see the lights, dreaming of starting a family. When had he decided that that wasn’t enough for him? When had things changed so dramatically?

He knew the answer to that question. It was a progression. A slow dissatisfaction had crept over him year by year until he knew he had to make a change. Of course, there were triggers along the way. For instance, after many trips to fertility doctors, the realization that they could not have their own children had sunk in. He had watched the light in his wife’s eyes dim day by day. He had at first assumed it was his wife who was infertile; certainly his organs all worked properly. He would never forget the day that her tests came back and all eyes turned to him as the culprit. That was how he felt, he was The Culprit…

Dodging puddles of mysterious liquids…

From my latest book, Mingling in the CIA: Bloud:

…Dodging a puddle of mysterious liquid on the floor, he slipped out the back door into the brilliant daylight of a Fort Lauderdale afternoon. The ocean crashed to his left as he walked down the sidewalk filled with joggers and bikini-clad women. Despite the bright surroundings, he felt a sense of dread creeping over him, hastened by the many shots of tequila he had downed at the last bar in which he had spent his afternoon. He glanced with disdain at a very botoxed older woman with a small white dog on a pink leash who almost bumped into him as she fumbled for a cigarette in her purse. He hated women. No, he didn’t just hate women, he hated the entire human race. He suddenly felt the urge for a very strong drink…

Introducing a new character…. Bloud!

We first met Bloud in my book, Single in the CIA. You may remember some of the more memorable moments, included below:

…Apparently he had done some pretty exciting things years ago and he loved talking about his experiences, holding a captive audience in the young officers surrounding him. He delighted in telling tales of encounters with tigers and serving time in a hole in the ground somewhere in the Middle East. It was hard to imagine this slovenly, obese man doing anything besides eating pork rinds and drinking beer, but the stories were entertaining. He was given the Chief of Operations or third-in-charge position in the office…

…Bloud painted a somewhat pathetic picture of himself, explaining that without his career he would have nothing. He was nearing the mandatory retirement age, and he did not know what to do with himself once he was forced to retire. He described a haunting image he had of himself as a janitor somewhere, sweeping the floor, living out his retirement. He seemed like a sad and lost soul. That evening, when we both left to go our separate ways, we agreed that anything we talked about was just between the two of us…

…Bloud was in charge while Lawrence was gone, but that was not saying much. He had taken to throwing hissy fits and closing himself in his office any time he received news from Headquarters that he did not like. He would leave the young officers who needed his guidance out in the cold while he sulked behind a closed door. He had also begun a weekly ritual of cooking a slab of meat in a crock pot for the whole office and we were all expected to eat it and listen to him blabber on while the young officers kissed his butt. I dreaded being herded into the office kitchen for these little get-togethers…

…One day when Henningway was out of the office and Bloud was Acting Chief, Bloud spent the day locked in his office and refused to release any cable traffic while he was there. Even the youngest most impressionable officers saw the immaturity in this almost sixty-year-old man…

…I sat down across from him and he explained that Bloud had been telling Vicky a lot about me. He said that upon her arrival Bloud had met with Vicky to discuss the office and had only discussed two people for the entire meeting – me and Jon, a more senior officer who always seemed to be in the middle of a controversy. Among the crazy lies that Bloud had told Vicky was that I had told him I was sleeping with Barry and that I had bragged about….

Want to get to know more about this charming personality, Bloud? Check out the newest installment in the Mingling in the CIA series!