Mundane Doesn't Describe It

For the slackatudinally challenged.

My Photo
Location: United States

I have never taken any exercise except sleeping and resting. Mark Twain, Hard work doesn't harm anyone, but I do not want to take any chances. - Unknown, I am retired and have tried to do as little as possible - slowly. Me.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

A Celebration.

I guess you could say it’s a day of celebration tomorrow for my town. About two years ago the Wal-Mart in my town closed and they built a super Wal-Mart about 28 miles away. This really hit my town hard because once the Wal-Mart moved into town, a lot of the smaller store had to close because they couldn’t compete. So it ended up that just for necessities we would have to drive a long way. To say there is no love lost for Wal-Mart would be an understatement.

So what’s so big about tomorrow? Another department store called “Fred’s” is opening up. It’s a department store that’s located in the Southeast states. From reading their web page they have over 700 stores and 300 pharmacies. The store is very welcomed, but it will be interesting to see how the pharmacy will go. In my town and the next closest town about nine miles away there are two pharmacies. The same guy owns them, so you can sort of see a monopoly there. Unless you want to drive over fifty miles round trip to pick up a prescription, you go to one of these, and they’re expensive. So I’m wondering what Fred’s will do to their business? Will it effect them greatly, make them lower their prices some, or what. It will be interesting to watch.

So if I’m feeling up to it, I might go to the grand opening tomorrow and wander around the new store in town. I have to admit we are starting to become a metropolis here. Ah yes, the big city life.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A Day of Tests and Doctors.

Today was a day of tests for Fmom and myself and a doctor appointment for Fmom. We left the house a little after 7:00 am and didn’t get back to almost 3:00 pm. It has been a long day for both of us.

To begin with I went to the wrong place for my test, but I finally found the right place. Since I didn’t want to leave Fmom in the car, I get to the place and get a wheel chair for her. It’s a long walk inside the building to where the test will be done. I hobble back out to the car and the closest place I can find to park is a long way away from where I have to go. Well it’s raining and I start limping back to where I have to go. I had to stop two times in the rain because my foot and leg started hurting so much. I finally get there and there was a short wait for my test.

I had an Arterial Ultra Sound done. They put blood pressure cuffs on my calves and thighs. Then they started doing the ultra sound. They started on my left leg and foot, and I could hear the ka shoos, ka shoos of the blood flowing. They then went to my right leg and foot. The ka shoos kept going until they got to my right foot (the one giving me so much trouble) and then you could barely hear the ka shoos. When they inflate the cuff on my right calf it hurts so badly, I almost come up off the table. When it’s finally over, I roll Fmom out to door and go to get the car. It’s the same having to stop on the way to the car, but I finally get there and get the car back to get Fmom. I go inside and one of the technicians who did the test is there. She said they had to do one more shot and then it would be through. So I leave the car in the drive through and no parking area, I leave Fmom in the wheelchair and limp all that way back to have then do something else. When the technician gets through, I ask her what did all the readings look like. She said the doctor would have to read all the stuff, but she said, “I can tell you, your right leg is much worse than your left leg.” I started laughing because I thought, well duh. She started laughing too and said, “I guess you didn’t need anyone to tell you that, did you?” So I finally get out of there at 9:15 am. Sometimes you luck out by going to an appointment early. My appointment wasn’t until 9:00 am, but we got there an hour early. They took me in early and we got through pretty fast.

Then it was on to Fmom’s tests and doctor’s appointment. We have over an hour and a half before her tests were scheduled, but we got there early and they do them shortly after we arrive. Now we have a lot of time (three and a half-hours) before her doctors appointment. It’s about a 30-40 minute drive back home, but we decided that an hour or so at the house and the gas we would have wasted wasn’t worth it. So we go and fill up the car and go to lunch at a Cracker Barrel. One of Fmom’s favorite places. When we’re through, we go back to the doctor’s office with about an hour and a half to wait. We wait two hours and finally get into see the doctor. He said the test that were run showed her heart was doing fine and that all she needed this time was a pneumonia shot. He said other than that; she’s doing fine. She gets the shot and we’re on the way home. On the way home, we had a continual chorus of saying, “God I can’t wait to get home.”

Lesson learned today is that on some appointments if you get there very early, you’ll get out early. Of course if it’s a doctor’s appointment, then all bets are off.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Basic and School.

When I first joined the A.F. I went through basic. I just got under the wire for age back then, and obviously I was the oldest in my basic flight. The training instructors (TI) told me I would be the flight leader (FL), and I flat out told him no. Now when you go into basic, you don’t ever say no to your TI. You get yelled and screamed at, do a lot of running and basically keep your head down. I don’t know why, but my TI didn’t go off on me and said OK. So he picked one of the other guys out of the flight.

The guy he picked thought he was a TI also and did nothing but yell at everyone. I had seen this before in where someone suddenly thrust into a position of power just went crazy with it. But these were a bunch of kids who had never left home and were in a very alien and hostile environment. So I just went with the flow and tried to keep my head down.

There’re different things besides your training that have to been done during that time. I lucked out and got the laundry detail. While everyone was stuck in the barracks constantly cleaning the bathroom and anything else they could find, I got to go outside to the laundry room and be free for a certain length on time. One day I came back from laundry detail and see that the FL had everyone get their toothbrushes out and started cleaning the floor with them. I couldn’t believe it. I realized this guy was young and inexperienced in leading people, but this was over the edge. I went to him and asked what the hell was going on. He told me we were cleaning the floor and to get my toothbrush. I asked him to come with me and I showed him the floor cleaner/buffer. I plugged it up, got the cleaning pad under it and started cleaning the floor. I showed a couple of other guys how to do it and the whole things went pretty fast. The TI came in later and a few guys told him they needed new toothbrushes. He found out why and shortly we had a new guy as the FL. The new FL was a case unto himself.

As I said these were a bunch of kids. While there I had more than a few I had to help a lot just to get through. My TI called me in again and pointed out one guy that was definitely having a hard time. He told me to watch out for the guy and help him as much as I could. Now I don’t want to sound uncaring, but I was having a hard enough time just getting through this stuff myself. But I did help the guy out, and I can say I went through many a time with him crying his eyes out, and him saying he would never get through this. Well there were a lot of guys that got put out of basic, but he wasn’t one of them. You’ve got to remember that back then the military wasn’t hurting for people, and it was very easy to be put out. Everyone left basic and I found out later that the guy I helped so much had been made a FL at his school. I couldn’t believe it, but I was proud of him.

After this I went to my school. I ended up getting there three weeks before it started and I had a blast. I was put on what was called the Casual Squad. In other words any job that needed to be done, they would have us do it. It really wasn’t too bad, plus after 5:00 p.m. your time was your own. I wasn’t one to sit in a dorm room with nothing to do, so I would head to the club on base. It was a nice little club that had two pool tables. As I mentioned before I used to love to play pool and spent many hours in the local pool hall as a teenager. I would be in there every night talking to people and shooting pool. I got to know a few people who would be teaching me. I’m not trying to brag, but I used to be pretty good at shooting pool. When the tables were taken over by people playing doubles (partners playing against each other), I would always be picked to be someone’s partner. About two days before we started school, one of the guys I knew would be one of my teachers asked me to be his partner in a doubles game. We were playing two other guys he knew, but I hadn’t seen before. Now as I’ve always said when playing any game, if you win you tell everybody how good you are, but if you loose, then it’s only a game. My partner and I were beating them a good bit and they were friendly guys and I have to admit I did a fair amount of ragging on them. The best shot I had ever done in my life, up to that point, was during the last game that we played them. I was shooting the 8 ball (black) to win the game, but their 2 ball (blue) had the pocket blocked. If I didn’t make the 8 ball, just about no matter where I left them on the table, they would be able to make the 2 ball and then the 8 ball to win.

So I called the shot and made it. The guys we were playing against were amazed (I was too), and I just let it go with “Damn that was a great shot. How could anyone be that skillful.” A lot of trash talk like that.

Two days later I start my class and in the first hour the teacher and different people connected with the school come in and introduce themselves and tell us what they expected. The last person to come in was one of the guys I had ragged on so hard during my great shot, and he’s the top guy for our school, he’s the whole enchilada, ever teacher and student there answered to him. I was thinking OMG as I sank lower into my seat. When he got through and was leaving the classroom he saw me and gave me a nod. I knew at that point, I was out of that school. To my surprise he turned out to be a nice guy and I told him later that when I saw him the first day, I had expected to be kicked out of school. He laughed and told me no, he didn’t work that way and that I did shoot a hell of a game of pool.

There are a couple of more stories I have to tell about being in school there. But this is getting a little long right now. I will say that I really enjoyed my time there, and I did learn a lot. That is between all the partying.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Still Chugging Along.

We’re still running with the flu/cold bug here, but Fmom said that today she thinks she feels better. Last night I was pretty worried about her. She was going from the den to her bedroom and had to stop because she couldn’t catch her breath and then there’s all the sweating she has done. I’m changing her bed linens at least once a day because she is perspiring so much. I’ve taken her temperature numerous times and either our digital thermometer is wrong or something, but it shows she isn’t running a temp. I’m beginning to believe our thermometer is wrong. Anyway she says she feels better today, so I’m going with that.

One thing that really made my day today is Tom finally showed back up. He’s usually gone for periods of time, but he was gone for over two weeks. A neighbor told me earlier that he had seen a cat that had been run over that looked like Tom down the road from us. I went to see, but didn’t see any cat. So I was in the mind set that Tom was dead. It’s an understatement to say I was overjoyed to see Tom this morning. I grabbed him up and started rubbing his ears and telling him how happy I was to see him and he keeps looking at me like, “what the hell is the matter with you”? He was fed very well this morning, which I’m hoping will keep him closer to home.

I’m expecting a brother and s-I-l in tonight or tomorrow morning. Plus Fmom said two other brothers might be here this w/e. She said they were talking about re-doing her bathroom to where she has a walk-in shower instead of the bathtub/shower she already has. I’m hoping they weren’t just talking and they do that. I do worry about Fmom when she gets in and out of the shower. I’m always afraid she’ll trip and fall. I figure if they were just talking about it, then it’s time to go into guilt trip mode. I don’t like to use that, but I don’t want them to get her hopes up and then forget about it.

I hope everyone is doing fine and I’m thinking of Andi and hoping she gets back home safe and sound today.

Everyone have a good w/e.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

How Do I Explain This?

When I was about 10 or 11, I had a best friend named Mitchell. Mitchell was a year older than I was and much more worldly. He was one of these people that were constantly in trouble. While trying to think up new trouble to get into, he would try and get me to go along with him, but thankfully I had sense enough to decline, well at least most of the time. On the long dirt road in front of our house, he lived about a mile away. He lived with his grandmother in an old travel trailer. To say they were dirt poor would be an understatement. The trailer was parked by a country store and she worked for the man there. As far as I can remember she was a mean old lady, but I guess this went along with the guy she worked for being a mean old man. I would walk down to Mitchell’s place, but would never stay too long. It always seemed to me to be one of those places that just didn’t seem right and there was a lot of bad vibes there. So Mitchell would be down at my house a lot. My parents tried to discourage this, but Mitchell was the only one close to my age out in the country. Being the worldly guy Mitchell was, I was always trying to impress on him I was just the same. Of course I wasn’t, but I would look for things to show that I was.

One day Fmom, Fdad and siblings were going to visit some friends for a little while. I had talked them into letting me stay home and Mitchell and I would do stuff around the farm. It just so happen that Fdad had bought Fmom a pocket tear gas thing to keep in the house incase someone ever broke in while he was gone. I can still remember it. It was a long bronze looking tube about 5 or 6 inches in length. It had a sort of nub on the side to take the safety off and a button to fire it. I told Mitchell about it and he was all on me about getting it so we could look at it. Trying to show Mitchell how worldly and cool I was, I got it and started to show him how it worked. Up to this day I still don’t know how it fired, but all of a sudden there was tear gas though out our house. We’re both trying to breathe, our eyes are burning and saliva and snot are running freely (sorry to be so graphic on that). We run outside and don’t know any better and start rubbing our eyes. Very big mistake. We finally get our eyes and breath back and then we start to freak. I knew the family would be back soon and something had to be done. I told Mitchell we had to go back in and open all the windows and get the house aired out. Mitchell refused to go back in and this started an argument. In all the time I knew Mitchell we had never exchanged punches, and we didn’t this time. It was always wrestling and getting a face in the dirt and seeing how far you could push an arm behind the back up past the head. I was lucky in the fact that I won most of the matches we had. So here we are fighting it out in the dirt while the tear gas in impregnating everything in the house. I finally won and Mitchell said he would help. I start heading up the steps to the house and thinking Mitchell is behind me, I look around to see him high tailing it out to his house. I didn’t have time to run him down, so I went into to the house to start opening windows. It was horrible. The same choking, eye’s running and other things as I mentioned before. I would get a few windows open and then run outside again. I finally got all the windows open and a box fan we had pushing air out of the house. I was thinking OK; I will get all of this taken care of before everyone gets home. WRONG! Just when I thought it was all right, the family drives up. As soon as Fdad came up to the house he asked, “What the hell is that smell.” Before I could explain what had happened, he goes into the house and turns around and comes right back out. Now Fdad when he got mad he didn’t yell. It always came out more of a roar. He was angry and he roared at me what did I do. I told him what had happened and he surprised the hell out of me and started laughing. He saw how miserable I look with my bloodshot eyes and said there would be hell to pay later, but right now lets get the house cleaned up.

It turned out that since the tear gas gun was kept in my parent’s room that was the place that got hit hardest. All the clothes, bedding and everything had to be washed. My parents put me to cleaning the entire house. It took days to finally get it back to where the house was at least livable. I didn’t see Mitchell for a couple of weeks after that. Fdad had talked to him shortly after it happened and Mitchell was playing the “I told him not to do it, but he wouldn’t listen to me” spiel. Of course that was a complete lie because Mitchell was trying to get the thing away from me so he could look at it. Fdad took that with a grain of salt thank goodness.

Time passed and Mitchell was allowed to finally come back to the house. Needless to say when he first came back, I wrestle him down and really put a hurt on him. We remained friends until he destroyed a present my favorite uncle had given me. It was a little Honda 50 that offered me some freedom at that time. But that’s a story for another time.

We moved away from there when I was 13, and I never heard from Mitchell again. Years later my brother who lives out there and keeps up with people told me that Mitchell had moved to West Memphis, gotten married, and been arrested a number of times. One day my brother told me that Mitchell was dead. He had been in a poker game and gotten shot and killed.

As I wrote earlier about M who I had worked with in Germany, there are people in your life you don’t forget. I can remember Mitchell as a friend, the trouble he got me into a lot of times and how even back then how I felt sorry for him about where he lived and how he was treated by everyone. Even at that early age, I somehow knew Mitchell would always be in trouble and come to a bad end. I think now if he’d just had a stable family and more people to love him how his life might have turned out differently. I don’t know but some people from the day they are born to the day they die are bad news. I always liked Mitchell and prefer to think that if things were different he might be alive today leading a happy life.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Big Whine!

It seems like every time now I make a post that there’s something wrong here. Well today is no different. Both Fmom and I have the flu. It’s very wide spread around here, and they’ve closed some schools. I know this will be over in time, but I’m getting to the point of thinking what next? Between migraines, back problems and now the Peripheral Neuropathy that started in my right foot, I guess getting the flu was a given. So far 2008 is starting out very badly.

To top this off, George has been whining constantly, and I don’t know what’s wrong with him. He’s eating, drinking and going to the bathroom normally, but he keeps coming up to me whining. I’ll have to drag myself out tomorrow and carry him to the vet. Plus Tom, our outside cat has been gone for over a week and a half. That’s longer then he has every been gone. So I’m worried that something has happened to him.

Plus, plus on top of all that my computer keeps going in and out on me. I think I remember reading earlier that a satellite is coming down at the end of this month. The way things are going; I have no doubt on whose house it will land.

OK this is it! That was the big whine, and I’ll do it no more. From now on I’ll write about happy things and not complain. But geeze, I feel like hell.

Well I’ve got to get back to taking care of Fmom. I hope everyone w/e and week goes well.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

All Is Fine Here.

We missed the tornadoes the other night. We did had some pretty bad thunderstorms, but nothing major. All of the damage was in the upper part of the state and we’re in the Middle Western part. So Fmom and I are doing fine weather wise.

I don’t know what’s going on with my computer, but I keep getting a crash dump coming up. I’ve only been able to use it a little bit today. I hope this doesn’t keep up.

Other than that, I’m trying to keep Fmom and myself in the house as much as possible. It seems we have a big outbreak of flu in this area. My sister who works in the city about 30 minutes away told Fmom last night for me not to go out to any places that have a lot of people there, grocery store, post office, etc. The schools in the city and also here have had a large number of students and teachers out with the flu. At the moment I’m really stopped up so I don’t know if I’ve already got something, but I definitely don’t want Fmom catching anything.

So this is just to let everyone know we’re OK, and if I’m not around for a little while, it’s because I’m having trouble with my computer.

Monday, February 04, 2008

The Tests.

With all the things that have been going on around the house, I forgot to tell ya’ll what happened with my last two tests. It actually turned out to be three tests. The first two were a nerve conductivity test. On this test they clean the skin with alcohol around where they will be testing. They then taped an electrode to one end of my ankle. Now you’ve seen and heard those electrical machines they use in the movie Frankenstein. These machines weren’t quite that bad, but I could hear the hum of the power. The nurse would tell me to hold on and she would touch what looked like a miniature cow prod to certain areas on my legs. If I said it didn’t hurt, I would be lying. She went through about thirty of the prods and then she was done. That was the easy part. The doctor came in next and what he had to do was out of the Middle Ages.

The doctor had these needles that he inserted into the muscles and applied electricity. I was supposed to flex and relax the muscles while he was doing this. This part made the cow prod part seem like a piece of cake. The neurologist said it looked like I had some type of neuralgia. He gave me a long name, which I didn’t catch, but I’ll have to wait to see what my GP says. All I’ll say is for those two test – NEVER AGAIN!

The last test was an ultrasound. I figured this wouldn’t be that bad. The woman that did it was definitely manic. A lot of times it seemed she was trying to push the probe through my leg and after each time she said, “that wasn’t so bad was it.” The rest of the time she was talking about some guy that was thirty minutes late for his appointment and raised hell he wasn’t pushed ahead of all the people there who were on time.

I finally got out of the hospital and test and made my way home. I’ve come to the conclusion that they make some of the test so bad that you would rather put up with what you have than to go through those things again. I can see me now using a wooded stick to try to move along and they tell me, “we could run these test on you.” I think I would through the stick away and run as hard as I could.

Other than that, everything was peachy keen.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Farewell Mr. H.

I haven’t written from sadness for a long time, but I’m extremely sad today. On Saturday we called our plumber Mr. H. to come and fix a clog. He has helped Fmom long before I moved back and had always made time for us. He has always treated us very fairly and kindly, and he was always one of those people who were a joy to have around. He had his own small business and would bring along his kids and grand kids with him a lot of times. This morning when he came in Fmom and my brother had him sit down at the table to eat some breakfast and talk for awhile. I was asleep in my bedroom. He ate some and then got to work

I hear a pounding on my door, which brings me out of a sound sleep, and my brother is yelling at me that Mr. H. is having a heart attack. I get on the phone to 911, explain what is happening and where we are, and then go into where he is to try to get him as comfortable as possible. The 911 people were here in less than 5 minutes and they take over. They do everything they can do for him, but it’s no use.

I get Fmom to her room and she is very upset about what is happening. She kept asking what could she have done. I keep soothing her and telling her it was nothing anyone of us could have done.

Mr. H. was always in my opinion a very good man. He had worked hard all his life and passed down to his children those same ethics. I was thinking today that I was glad none of his children or grandchildren was with him today. It’s horrible to see your father or grandfather pass away in front of you.

I feel there’s a dark cloud hanging over our house. Not so much our house, but the community for someone who everyone knew and liked. It feels to me there will be one less nice person in the world and this nice person was of a high caliber.

Farewell Mr. H. I hope you are resting peacefully.

There's no need to write any comments of condolences or anything. The more I got to thinking of it, the more I though I wanted to just say good by to him.

To people who you've might have know as acquaintances over time, just give them an extra hello when you do see them. Things change so quickly before your eyes.

Visitor Map
Create your own visitor map!