January 2008


Apologies to you-know-who-you-are. I’ve been engaged in a massive organization of artifacts here. There is documentation (I was wrong to think there wasn’t and I don’t know how I failed to see it earlier — it’s difficult to decribe the feeling of displacement when a large chunk of time is unaccounted for in one’s memory), and even a rare photo from the interval-I-don’t-have-much-recollection surrounding my surprise surgery last March. This processing of the whole surgical experience and aftermath is somewhat similar to what I went through after my 1996 hospitalization. They also share the extraordinary and physically demanding support of my family and friends, to make my recovery possible.

Energy is the key here, as I’ve previously outlined, and it’s nice to be getting the swing back in the other direction for the sake of contrast, and for the sake of getting back to several endeavors I wish to pursue.

So I’m going to be bringing some pieces together here, I suppose. It seems like a good idea.

Maybe my blog will live up to its name afterall.

I feel extremely fortunate to have the longitudinal perspective of living with the body and mind I have. And surrounded by the influences, near and far, that I am.

If you read this, MD, the spigot is on. Thanks for the catalyst!

So my last weird episode was in early December.  I was supposed to follow-up the ER visit with my local neuro within two weeks. Oops! I don’t remember what all happened, but since I didn’t take a nose-dive and it seemed like the whole thing was an aberration due to a no-big-whoop head cold and possibly having missed a dose of my med, I ended up seeing how things went. (I do this a lot. I’ve documented it and written about it several times. I guess it’s part regression-to-the-mean, and part optimism.) Most gratefully, it worked well this time: my body seems to have re-regulated itself, and is certainly still on an upswing. (Confidently reinforced with a great book on neuroplasticity, deserving of its own post!)Ok, so as I was saying: When I called my doctor’s office via Cap-Tel to make the appointment, I had to spell my last name. Well, with the weakness in my facial nerves, my Ps and Bs are pretty weak. The advantages of Cap-Tel over traditional TTY/TDD relay and IP relay are many.
Speed, efficiency, personal connection, near-normal paced flow of conversation (seamless, invisible call assistant), recipient can hear me laugh, I can hear who I’m calling with my ABI while using captions to understand words…
The drawbacks are fewer but similar to other relays, with the slight delay for connections to be made and for voice to be converted to captions using Voice Recognition software.

Anyhow, I highly value using my voice as long as I have it, and I know callers catch on to Cap-Tel rapidly. I realized the nurse thought I was saying T, instead of P, and this post’s title is what came to my mind first to get it right. It worked. And I did get a chuckle. And I did get an appointment much sooner than I thought I’d get. Like I said, Cap-Tel rocks!

Pairs, perspective, and reciprocity.

I’m thinking in a rebus.

Some folks may have noticed the return of American Gladiators, and in primetime television no less.

But that’s nothing. For authentic entertainment and vicarious adventures, you really oughtta have a relative in the delivery business, with unpredictable schedules and backhauls (abbreviated bh below).

“I was in a cave 2day. Had 2 pick up bh. Only took 4 1/2 hrs. Monster drinks 4 Kazoo. Pkd 4 nt in Effingham. Watch out 4 bad storms.”

I am entertained by Dad’s need to adhere to his tiny text character limit, and selective uses of short-cuts (notice 4 1/2 rather than 4.5). It is cool, though. Both my parents have come a long way tech-wise the last few years. (Somewhat captured during the holidays when I was sitting near my mom and she checked her mobile for messages (voice or text), showed me the screen to confirm that she had none, and since she seemed sad at having none, I then sent her an email from my mobile. And also, the replacement of Dad’s toaster, which had lost the plastic knob over the metal to lower the slots, with a new toaster with “advanced bagel technology,” as chosen by Mom because I knew I had to have her aesthetic approval for something going in her kitchen–I was leaning towards the pink Hello Kitty toaster, though, because I’d sustained injuries from Dad’s repeated refusals to replace the other toaster–hence the need to get it as a GIFT. That alternative suggestion was born out of my convo with ma about the style of toaster to get, and her insinuation that white is tacky (which was said knowing that my own toaster is white). Mom proclaimed that only silver/metallic-colored and black are appropriate, so I then suggested the (pink) Hello Kitty toaster and we could paint it black. (Then I inserted some musical references.)

I ended up finding a toaster with Mom that was appropriate (kitchen appliances are off-limits as gifts for Mom, as long as I can remember. If there was an incident when I was very young, I’ve blocked it out, although I can imagine it’d be like a dude buying a scale as a gift for his significant other. In any case, a friend suggested a coup with the HK toaster, to surprise everyone, but I couldn’t pull it off.)

I wonder what Dan would do with a semi trailer full of Monster. I have no idea how the Monster distributors are dispersed, or even if the cans are returnables, but maybe Kalamazoo does serve South Bend.

I’ve tried to talk my dad into blogging, or at least taking some pics of the more notable sights and such he notices and shares with me through stories, but no go so far.

I did get a pic of the sign for the Effingham exit during a trip, so it’s cool I don’t have to ask for the state he’s parked in tonight. Last week he was up in Saginaw, MI, while we were getting pummeled with snow down here. They didn’t have much at all up there, and despite my abstention from driving since early December, he seemed to fault my report for sounding like it was off the internet, and not first-hand (so I spiced it up a bit by changing “blowing and drifting snow with white-outs in spots of heavy lake-effect snow bands,” to being, “tons of snow!”

Happy New Year! (Btw, my ability to incorporate tangents without losing all coherence is a great sign! And at this hour…)