Saturday, September 26, 2015

Dreaming vs reality

It's easier to put off 'til tomorrow.
At 6 AM tomorrow I'll go for a long run, and see how far I  can go.
At noon I hit the pavement with low energy.
At mile two my right calf cramps up. Stretch it out. No relief.  Keep going, I think, maybe it'll subside.

Earlier in the morning I email my daughter with whom I'm supposed to run the MCM a month away.
"Good Morning "Chelle,
I'm sorry to say, I'll be sitting out the 40th MCM.  Go ahead and cancel my hotel room.
Your mother's surgery being only 2 weeks before is a convenient excuse for me, but in truth, I have neglected to stay true the training necessary to complete the marathon.  While I can still run a 1/2, the full is in a whole different category."

More than anything, I'm a dreamer. Somehow I think I can still complete the race.  Today's run will tell me the truth.

In May we ran the Buffalo half; my training was on track and I finished well.   Come the end of August we were signed up to run an 18 mile race in Sackett's Harbor.  My training lagged enough for me to accept my inability to clock that distance, so I downgraded to the half.  My performance was good enough to give me hope;  I can still get in sufficient shape to complete the marathon the end of October.

I failed to put mind over matter. A, persistent, dry hacking cough for 3 months, too many cigars, expanded work hours, failure to adjust my time to move my training runs to early morning, allowed me to neglect what I knew would lead to insufficient training.  But, I'm a dreamer who believes in miracles.

Shit or get off the pot Bobby!    I ran 3 miles to the park, hiked 6 miles in the park, ( a great leg work out btw)  and ran 3 miles back.  I'm exhausted, legs drained of ATP, I hit the wall at 12 miles.  Good decision to sign off on a looming marathon run.  I'm disappointed, but hardly surprised.

Persist in my dreaming, run the marathon; at best I'd not make the cut off times. At worst, I'd collapse half way through and who knows.......

Do the work or sit the bench.

Google photo

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The seven deadly sins

Words vs action; too often the dichotomy gives rise to cynicism.  The pope, head of the Catholic Church, spoke to a joint session of congress.  I admire his words and philosophy; his ability to hold fast to the catholic dogma in the face of too many examples, world wide, of man's inhumanity to man.

Even if a congress, at loggerheads on most issues, could  come together in an ecumenical fashion, I doubt they could bring about any meaningful change in humankind's, centuries old, addiction to: wrathgreedslothpridelustenvy, and gluttony.  

If nothing else, the pope's speech makes us focus inward to evaluate our own inequities.  And therein lies the solution to the world's problems. We listen to him bescheech us and we think, well he's not talking about me but if everyone else would  follow his pious direction we'd be okay.

I'm sorry to say, but I think only catastrophe or calamity might brings us to our knees in repentance.  Some believe that if Christ or some Christ like being were to arise in our midst, to lead us, we'd be saved.  But no, I think we'd crucify him again.

I truly believe that the answer is for each human to follow the Ten Commandments or some similar tenet. Then, and only then, will we see peace and harmony reign in our world.  If not, we'll become like the dinosaurs; extinct.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Living the dream.

I'm asleep, dreaming.  Dreaming that a co-worker has asked me to cover their call 'til 0200, and I agreed.  As the dream progresses there are bizarre scenerios involving wandering around back stairways, construction areas, and even some OR work.  Brining, the phone rings, in the dream state, I answer and the voice says, "we need you for a case."  Opening my eye a wink, I look at the clock and see 0130.
Next, I'm wide awake, in real time, thinking, shit, I've got a case. For a moment, filled with urgency, every nerve and fiber tingling, breathing short gasps, it dawns on me after a few moments; it was a dream Bob.  Was it really?  Are you sure?
Reality, I'm standing beside my bed.  The clock reads 0133.  And I realize, I didn't agree to take anyone's call.

Crawling under the sheets, I fall into renewed slumber.

Meeting the author

File under serendipity:
Tonight Diane and I were invited to join our friends and summer neighbors,
Bonnie Winter Wright and her husband Dick, for a get-together with famous,popular author, Julie Hyzy and her husband Curt. The Hyzy's daughter, and the Wright's son are soon to celebrate their nuptials in Chicago.
Julie and I have been Facebook friends for years, but this is the first time we've met in person.
Two highlights from the evening get together are worth sharing.
t; when you meet an author and have in your possession, a book of hers that you've read and enjoyed, you want to get her to sign your copy. So, while at dinner, I asked her to do so. When she went to sign she looked over at me and said, "Bob, I've already signed this." Embarrassed? Yes I was. We didn't decided how this happened but I'm guessing she mailed a copy to me back at the time.
Second, the piece de resistance, during dinner, Julie's husband Curt, casually asked me, " when are you guys flying in for the wedding?" I replied, "we haven't been invited." It seems that Curt was the only one who didn't know. Embarrassed? Yes he was. What a joyful laugh we all enjoyed at his expense.
A great evening all around.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Can we change the face of American politics

Let’s talk about politics.  I know, I know it’s probably your least favorite topic to talk about any day.  But today, after CNN’s GOP debate, maybe a few more people than usual had an opinion about the debate.  I’m not going to pick a winner, or proselytize my opinion about the direction the country is moving.  Rather, I’m going to note that Donald Trump is still leading the polls. PERIOD.  It’s reported that 23 million people watched this debate.  I’ll speculate that if Trump had not been on that stage, less than half that many would have tuned in.  The public likes Trump because he’s the antithesis of American politics.  He has brought to the fore front the populace’s distain for American politics, politicians, and government as a whole.  That, and he entertains us; especially when he skewers his opponents.  There is zero substance to his policies, proclamations, etc., but we don’t care, because we’re fed up with a government that we widely acknowledge is at best, corrupt.

In our everyday lives we rarely talk about politics.  At work, at play, in social gatherings, we talk about our kids, our families, sports, schools, our work, cars, the weather, what restaurants we like, and television.  We don’t talk about the constitution, the bill of rights, or even the economy.  We talk about football, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Criminal minds, The Big Bang Theory, America’s got talent, Grey’s Anatomy, 60 Minutes, American Idol, Dancing with the Stars, Law and Order; special Victims Unit, or you name it.  We talk about our immediate lives.

Politics? Not so much.  Perhaps because we feel so powerless to make a difference.  I mean, if you can’t get your boss to see things your way, what chance do you have to affect national or even State and local politics.  Granted we all know people who are constantly preaching politics; negative as well as the “right” way to think.   But the majority of folks do not.  I can say majority because less than 50% of registered voters turn out to vote in an election year.  We turn a deaf ear to talk of politics.

But whether you think, if you think about it at all, Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders, Carly Fiorina, or Ben Carson will bring a breath of fresh air to Washington or not, you may agree with me that Trump has galvanized the American people.  I predict that IF Trump gets the nod; the Republican nomination, we’ll see well over a 50% voter turnout for the 2016 presidential election.  I don’t know if this is a good thing or not, but at least we, as a public are paying a little more attention to politics and what we want from our leaders.

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Random thoughts 3

Sitting outside the cottage at the, cedar red, picnic table, the morning sun massages his back, the placid river flows towards the Gulf of St. Lawrence, dragging the summer-time to his friends downunder. It's the Saturday of Labor Day weekend, his last days at the camp for this summer.  The past a memory, the future imaginary.

Exhausted last night after a full day of administering anesthesia, then the three hour drive in Labor Day traffic, he looked forward to supper with his wife and two youngest grandchildren at their favorite hometown diner.  But, alas, they arrived to an eatery full to the rafters with patrons attending a birthday party.  Being told the wait would be close to two hours they decided to dine,  at McDonald's, ten miles down the road.  The last time he'd eaten a 'burger from McDonald's was in 1995, when the grandchildren's father was 17.

After a restful slumber on a cool late summer night, he awakened to the thumping of a three year old's feet exploring the camp for grandma.

Every time he makes the three hour trip, he thinks of a co-worker's daily, two hour drive to work; where does he get the energy?  It dawned on him that he was plenty old enough to be said co-worker's father.  Not only does he drive 4 hours everyday, work 8 hours, when he arrives home he has bees to keep, wood to cut and chop, a garden to tend and harvest, and attend to a wife's needs.

It seems for the best when we can accept the passing of the seasons, both in nature and life. Holding on to summer can only bring an accumulation of disappointments. Better to embrace each new season for the wonderment it portends, and like the river, flow on 'til it disappears.

But for  now, I'll go fishing with the new spring of my life; 3 year old Ethan.
Autumn will have to wait for another day.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Self pity

Why write about it? Who gives a shit about your woes, your mental and physical fatigue? Nobody.  He didn't like to read or hear other people's tales of woe or the things that get them down, so why would he think anyone would want to hear his?
The problem, he surmised, was his own.  He was acutely diligent in his writing, postings to Facebook, and blog to be upbeat and positive. He told himself that he tried to bring a smile to people's faces, to lighten their load for a moment, or longer.  But today he faced the truth; he did it all, not for them, but for himself.  He ways always seeking approval, accolades to prove his worth. His Facebook posts, blog essays, interactions with his patients and co-workers were meant to bring him good feelings.  Those times when the feedback was negative it hit him like the stab of a stingray. His hackles would rise in he would rebut furiously.

This week he noted a dramatic decline to zero, or nearly so, in his Facebook "likes" and favorable comments. Not that the ten or twenty likes were a majority of his 460 "friends," but enough to keep him coming back to the page incessantly for some little boost to his ego. Someone, not so insecure, might put this off to "Facebook fatigue."  But he took it as a personal affront.

It got him to thinking, for the first time in a lifelong career of caring for the sick and wounded, what's the use?  He never thought, in 52 years, that the time would come when he no longer looked forward to going to work.  Today that day arrived.  Mentally and physically fatigued, he thought; it's time to walk away from the head of the bed.

He never wanted to get to the point where he wouldn't give a hundred percent, when "they" would say, "it's time to give it up, retire." "They haven't,but he has. 

So, what's next? he thought; sit on the deck, smoke a cigar or two, drink a beer or gin and tonic and wait for the grim reaper?  Maybe, maybe, why not self-indulge, and fuck the rest.

Why not?

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Random thoughts

Random thoughts;
George Bush waged war on Iraq.
Barack Obama waged war on America.

Many immigrants are in America illegally....
America has always been a land founded by and populated by immigrants.

Our law-makers have created so many laws that the majority of Americans are law breakers; more or less.

The heat of this July day is preferable to the cold of February.

It's a dogs world.
Cats come in second.

I read books.
And write about reading.

I like George Carlin.
I dislike Donald Trump.

I never like math.
Common core makes me like it less.

I like trees, water; rivers, streams, lakes and oceans, birds, rabbits, deer, foxes, and wild life in general. Also flowers, vegetable gardens and grass. I like blue sky, red sunsets, greenery, yellow sun, brown skin, and purple anything.

 People? The jury is still out.

I dislike anger, yelling, bellicose buffoons, liars, politicians, rude crass vulgar language, war, bullying, religious zealots, media shit-pot stirrers, megalomaniac bosses, purveyors of child pornography, charlatans and their patent medicines, murderers, rapists, and/or anyone who promotes discord.

I'd like to teach the world to sing; they say that I'm a dreamer, Imagine.