Friday, December 30, 2011
As I have mentioned before, my dad has Alzheimer’s. Nasty disease (I hate it’s fucking guts). Dad retired from work eight years ago and has been a professional piddler every since. Pay sucks, but it’s fun and he sets his own hours.
Anyway, about three months ago, my usually early morning rise-and-shine-with-the-sun mom slept in. Mom and dad woke up at about the same moment. Mom looked over at my dad and told him, “You better get up if you don’t want to be late for work”. My dad, already confused enough as it is, looked at her in wide eyed wonderment and asked, “I have a job???”
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Human beings are stupid. They have always been stupid. From the story of Adam and Eve eating that damned apple and having us kicked out of paradise to the most recent Darwin Award nominees, which include a man protesting the use of motorcycle helmets at an anti-helmet rally- he sustained severe head injuries when he wrecked his motorcycle at the event- to an English teen who electrocuted himself stealing in-use copper wiring from a local business. Then there are actual Darwin Award WINNERS (losers?), like the young man who decided to white water the newly created rapids brought on by recent flash flooding. Only problem was that he attempted this while riding a foam mattress. Said mattress, naturally, became waterlogged and sank, taking its occupant with it. Rescuers found the man's body the next morning wrapped around a tangle of trees. Had enough?
Human beings are not only stupid, but almost insanely stupid. I am surprised we have reached the over 7 billion population mark. The odds clearly show that we never should have lived past the building of the first pyramids. Of course, the first pharaohs didn’t keep records on how many people died building these great super structures, but historians estimate that pyramid building was more lethal than planking on a busy freeway; at least a million people died while building tombs for a wealthy and powerful class of people who believed that they were going to take wooden horses and stale beer into the afterlife.
Just how stupid are human beings REALLY? Well, we are systematically destroying the only planet we know of where we can exist. We are poisoning the water supply, the air, and our food. We elect politicians who can’t spell “potato”, don’t know what the definition of the word “is” is, and continue to drag our country into bloody wars in which we have no game plans or exit plans. In addition, our scientists continue to invent quirky little life ending items like nuclear weapons and then can’t tell us how to get rid of the radioactive waste left from the manufacture of these toys. (“Fred, let’s just shoot it off into space and make E.T deal with it”).
And you might know, dinosaurs existed for about 250 million years. That’s a long damn time. Human beings, according to scientific data, not biblical, have only been around for about two million years. I doubt we’ll make it to 250 million years. Call me crazy, but dinosaurs didn’t yell out “Watch this” and then do some stupid shit like bungee jump and not make certain the cord was tied correctly, or start the car in a garage to get warm and then decide to take a short nap. They didn’t walk down a busy thoroughfare road at night clothed all in black, put a funnel into their open mouth and allow other dinosaurs to pour two entire quarts of Jack Daniel’s down it at a tail gate party, or fry themselves in the shower while attempting to dry their hair (you know some asshole somewhere did that. I mean that’s why hairdryers come with a huge label warning consumers NOT to do it!).
I have managed to live for almost fifty years. I should not have made it past the age of five when I thought it would be great fun to tease the fierce looking HUGE dog down the block. Happily, I only ended up with a severe shredded bite on my calf and wet ruffled panties (when I was a child my bladder did weird things when I was scared). Or what about the time I was fourteen and refused to tell my parents I was sick because I had third row seats to see Black Sabbath in concert? I ended up in the hospital with an emergency tracheotomy and to this day I have not rocked out at a live show with Ozzie. But I did almost die.
I give human beings a hundred years max on this earth. Two hundred if we stop huffing noxious substances for fun and lighting our farts.
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Received a detailed report from the Mayo Clinic doctor I saw on December 13, 2011. After numerous costly tests, I find I am slightly anemic, have a vitamin D deficiency, and I have some increase in my gamma globulins markers that are not indicative of lymphoma (nothing serious- just need to be looked at annually now), and some degeneration in lumbar spine from the psoriatic arthritis. Otherwise everything looked normal.
So, why do I feel so not normal? Why does my entire body feel like I went eight rounds with a very pissed off Mike Tyson? The doctor had one explanation: pain amplification syndrome. Different from fibromyalgia in that the pressure points do not follow the usual pattern for a diagnosis of fibro. “Amplification” would be the word for how my pain feels. The past four days have been especially bad. And it was Christmas. I toughed it out, cuddled grandbabies, laughed, participated- all with a little help from a half a loracet twice a day; just enough to dull the pain, not get rid of it. I HATE taking painkillers. I will now spend the next week recuperating.
I am sick and tired of hurting for no good reason. I want to rip my entire ribcage out and toss it in the trash (that is where 90% of the pain is located), but tonight my friend, Scott, told me if I did that then my head would be sitting on my ass. He has a point…
I’m getting very angry about it all and feeling overwhelmed by the pain. Then I feel guilty because there are so many people out there worse off than me.. I am snappy, tired, and just want to hide. Trying my best not to do that.
Back to the Mayo in February. Ding Ding! Round Nine!!
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Winter days and the coming of the New Year always make me wistful. The bare branches on the trees; another three hundred and sixty five days- days lost in the past; the goodbyes to dear friends; the arrival of new babies, faces unlined, hearts untouched, all cause me to sink into a dearth of melancholy meanderings.
Like Prufrock, I seem to be measuring out my life in coffee spoons; a bit here, a bit there, until now almost fifty years have passed and I don’t know where the years have gone. I should have heaped my life out in gravy ladles, rich and overflowing- taken more chances, ran a bit faster, climbed more trees, loved fiercer. The realizations that come with age are an ironic joke played upon us all sooner or later. Just when we have gained the foresight to apply the lessons we have learned, life is almost over. I look at the young and shake my head in voiceless exasperation. They don’t know, and are too young to know that they don’t know.
I watch twenty-somethings in their daily struggles and know that the stumbling blocks in their paths are mostly ones of their own creations. I see the perplexed furrowing of their brows, hear the confusion in their voices over the occurrences of life, watch them as they become blocked by the debris of their choices, and I am unable to clear the path for any of them. They have to stumble as I did, as human beings have done since before recorded history. Nothing is new under the sun, although we like to think differently. And it goes on and on circling on a merry-go-round.
Of course, I still make poor choices, but the difference from my younger self is that I no longer attempt to rationalize my choices or explain them away. I no longer heap the blame on other’s doorsteps. I have learned that most often, I am to blame. And I don’t waste precious time in dwelling on the mistakes or berating myself too deeply. I simply accept the reality of them, tuck the lessons away, shrug and go on. After all, how many minutes do I have left on this earth? If I am lucky, I have approximately sixteen million minutes, or thirty years left to have the wind touch my face, fall asleep on cool sheets, get lost in the notes of a perfect melody, touch the faces of those I love, and spoon the ice cold creaminess of pistachio ice cream onto my tongue.
In my fifth decade, I listen intently for the song of the mermaids singing each to each..