Sunday, June 29, 2008

#117 Vision

Mark Twain said:

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

In the deep dark recesses of my adolescsnt mind resides a gremlin who whispers, as unrelentingly as the sea erodes the shore; "you're weak, you're stupid, you're not good enough- you are a fucking poor excuse for a human being; a failure!

Oh that little bastard is a coniving SOB: no matter what successes I may have attained in life, he always finds a way to belittle them.

At night I steal away, from that wretched failure monger, to my dreams of success and prowess. Ah, if only....... But dreams are just that; dreams, fantasies.

After years of dreaming dreams that don't come true, the despicable little beast has gained more ammunition to hunt down and destroy my self-esteem. So, you may wonder why I've yet to be reduced to a state of catatonia or worse yet, to have ended my earthly plight. Why have I not shuffled off this mortal coil?


Because, through-out my whole life, I've been exposed to people who saw in me more than I could see in myself.

Aunt Nellie, who, despite my childish antics, and adolescent mischief making, always told me what a good boy I was.

Uncle Ed, who refused to accept my awkward attempts to play baseball as inability. He kept putting me in the line-up until I'd proven to myself that he was right in his encouragement.

Mrs. Wells, my 6th grade teacher, who, when she sent my report cards home, always ended her comments with; Bobby is capable of doing better.

Coaches Plimpton and Stratford, who snatched me from the brink of juvenile delinquency to turn me into the athlete I never envisioned.

Mrs. Hunter an art teacher who praised my inovative paintings, which were actually products of my unknowing colorblindness.

Mrs. Robie, High school vocal music teacher, who encouraged me to solo at concert every year.

Coach Bill Powers, who wrote in my senior year book; "to the best athelete I ever coached."

D. My wife, who pushed me out of my complacency to further my education and become the professional she envisioned me to be, and to be a better parent than mine were to me.

My whole life has been peopled by friends and acquaintences who saw a better me than I saw. Even today, my friend Leigh refuses to allow me to give in to an aging body; always encouraging and praising so that I push against the aging process.

What's the secret to success for a man who has been plagued by a nay-saying inner-self? I still take refuge in my dreams; dreams of things that can never be, will never happen, and/or should never happen. Yet some of those dreams, those that I call visions, are achievable. By paying attention to how I act and behave in those dreams, I have a blueprint of how to act during my waking hours. I act as if I've already achieved my dream. In essence I chose and choose to believe what those who believe in me say and have said: Bobby's capable of doing better.

Leigh and rel, Ottawa 1/2 marathon 2008.... front and center.

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Friday, June 27, 2008

D.'s in Texas to fetch the grand daughters. :)))
I'm on call for the next 3 days. :(((
The river is a sheet of mirrored glass enshrouded in fog and I'm going to immerse myself and kayak in it now.........................................

Thursday, June 26, 2008

There is a rumor
that says;
spontaneous thought
has been locked away
in the secluded
where thoughts are
to fester and maim
try as I may,
can't shake this

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Guess who showed up this morning at 0730?
Yesseree....The Joint commission!


Saturday, June 21, 2008


Father's Day Chiminea

Aris' kayak lesson (Leigh, rel, Aris)

Out of the Mist

Kristi's maiden voyage...or is that Maiden Kristi's voyage?

The joys of summer...or is that The Boys of summer? (neighbors)

Canada guarding the coast.

My new boat was delivered this morning. the catch was that I had to retrieve it via my kayak. I made a valiant effort, but.........................

The big one got away. Oh well, at least I've got the picture!

Friday, June 20, 2008

photo by DAL. 15 Jun., 2008

This is this blog's 500th post.

Today my brother turns 53: Happy Birthday Jeff!
Some weeks you write up a storm.
Some weeks you work your ass off.

I like my work, I really do. No, really!

Schaefer says: " I was talking to a patient who works as a dealer at the cassino. She said it's a great job; they get a twenty minute break every hour. There are five tables and six dealers."
Asked why so many breaks, she replied: "when dealing with money the owners want the dealers sharp so they make fewer mistakes."

"So rel, how many breaks do you get when dealing with peoples lives in the middle of the night?"

"Fuck you Schaefer! ;)"

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Monday, June 16, 2008

In this little corner of the world, father's day weekend was a huge success. Jay and Kristi arrived late Thursday night and left mid-morning on Sunday, making a long weekend for all to enjoy. We bar-b-q'd Friday and Saturday nights and had roaring fires in the Chiminera that the kids gave to me for FD.
The four of us went to the Bedrock for dinner Friday night and were thoroughly sated as usual. But the story of the weekend, there's always a story isn't there? was the 5K run/walk race Saturday morning.

Six weeks or so ago, d. decided to start a walk/run/healthful diet regimen. She has been faithful to her program and makes sure she gets her 10,000 steps in everyday. Her conditioning has improved accordingly. In fact she was feeling so good about her progress, that when she read about the 5K that the Chamber of Commerce was putting on, she asked me if I'd do it with her. I said sure.

This being her first race she was plagued by the usual questions and jitters, and had decided that she would come in last and that she was OK with that.

The forecast for the day had been for rain all day but it turned out to be only overcast and muggy. Being overcast kept the sun's heat at bay but the heavy air made efficient air exchange a little more labored. D. began to experience the difference between running/walking at home by one's self, and running in a group of other runners. At the half way--turn-around point, Dedra, who had jogged for most of the first half decide to finish by walking with us. About 75 to a 100 meters from the finish line, which was also around a bend in the road and unseen for the next 30 or 40 meters, D. suggests that the 3 of us join hands and finish with a flurry, running to the finish. And so we do...oops, there is the newspaper's sports reporter, camera in hand ready to photograph the exultant trio approaching the finish line. D. who disdains the lime-light was mortified by the prospect that her picture would grace the local sports pages Sunday morning.

Sunday morning while out for my morning training run, Bonnie and Dick yelled over to camp to ask D. to come over and autograph her photo. She couldn't deny that the photo op was of her own design!!!!!!

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Friday, June 13, 2008

Joseph's son said:

If you become as a child,

Deserving of Heaven

Are you-----

Over time, I've put


My childhood superstitions.


That I could believe


As I did then.

Then I must change, must find the


The thought though


Will set me free.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I like persons better than principles, and I like persons with no principles better than anything else in the world. - Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

sitting in the darkness of loneliness, unable to discern any light, the ebon tympany reverberates each cell of his somatic self...........

is this the result, all that there is? then for what, what purpose we?

only a cog? an ant in the hill? or, a cell, a cancerous mutant in the body of the universe?

leave your crystalized ash as a reminder, a fossil, of how insignificant this existance.

ego; the failed experiment.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Friday morning, fully ensconced in the cottage on the shores of the mighty St. Lawrence, whose surface at this first light of day is picture perfect: A glassy mirror shrouded in a fog, obscuring the view of Canada's shore, two geese lovers floating placidly together like drift wood bobbing in front of the dock, and to complete the scene....the intermittant blare of a ship's fog horn as it plows down-river toward the gulf of St. lawrence, past Quebec city and on to the atlantic. The sound of the foghorn and the churning deisel engine proclaim it's presence in front of the camp, but remains invisible in the mist.

A pair of ducks, a blue herron, two loons join the water crowd, while with yours truly here on the shore, the starlings, robins and woodpecker join the morning coffee/worm clatch. Piles of drift wood await the summer camp fires, while rain glistened picnic tables, tell of overnight storms.

The cedars stand vigiant, framing the scene, and the light poles on Dick and Bonnie's dock are reflected perfectly in the water by the shore. Newly potted plants placed decoratively here and there by the newly retired D. add a renewed sense of occupancy here in the pastoral summer retreat..

The ship's horn is now so loud I feel that I can touch the sound as it emerges from the fog to reach my ears on the water's edge, yet she remains hidden. The mist moves in toward shore as if rolled to the side by the advancing boat, pushing not only swells of river to the side but dividing the fog and sending it to roll up on the beach also.


Speaking of plants; the story of the florist's tomato plant continues. I was on call Monday last but did take a brief moment to come to camp for supper before returning to spend 3/4 of the night in the OR. When I entered the porch, there in all it's glory was the previously snatched-from-my-arms tomato plant. It had been delivered by the florist delivery van early Monday morning, causing some quizzical glances from the landlord. Being the always asstute business man he has been for years, my friend Joe had reconsidered and decided to gift me the potted tomato plant. I'm positive that this was in no way precipitated by any comment from Jane, or my blog post, but just merely a display of the great business sense my good friend has used throughout his career that built such a successful business that his parents would be so proud of.

In addition he had wanted to enclose a picture with his comment on that last post but being unable to do so, he called me at work to get my e-mail addy so he could send me his photo greeting to accompany the tomato.

I'm glad to see that he captured that tomato horn worm, (that is what you're hiding, isn't it Joe?) before delivering the plant.

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Sunday, June 01, 2008

The week in transition:

Last weekend,in Ottawa, the weather couldn't have been better. The race day temps were just as predicted; cool for the morning start and rising to the mid 70's by noon. We finished standing, not crawling, and even had a 50 meter sprint left in the tired limbs at the end. I've never considered myself a masochist but after running 13.1 miles I think I understand the concept of pleasure from pain. I recovered in three days unlike the 6 weeks it took to come back after the Marathon run 3 years ago.

Will post photos when they arrive.


Fast forward to yesterday. It was a rainy day! No, it was a sunny day. No it was a rainy day.

Sometimes I like rainy days, and yesterday, early morning, sitting at the kitchen table, sipping java and staring out the window at the landscape blurred by rain, a sense of peaceful quietude embraced me and it felt comfortable. A day that boasted of reflection.

Around noon the sun shone brightly and warmed the air considerably, bringing thoughts of different activities; i.e. lets move somemore stuff to camp and have supper there.

After supper we watched the phenomena of the storm clouds and pouring rain advance from Canada across the river. In a matter of only a very few minutes we went from bright, warm summer evening to deluge of rain and coolish temps made even more uncomfortable by the gusting winds.

A day of transitions, just like the week preceding it. A week with many stories; some routine and mundane, to a career wrenching scenario always feared and fortunately had a satisfactory outcome. A week of tremendous highs, to very low, to meditative to....well let me tell you a titillatingly humorous story of woe.

You thought that I'd forgotten Joe? I know, I was supposed to post this last night but I didn't, but then You didn't sell me that tomato plant now did you? ;)

The day starting out with a steady drenching, slow, garden soaking rain, seemed like a good time to make a trip to the big city to stock up with provisions and run various and sundry errands. After getting groceries, the last item on the honey-do list was a stop at the local florist's green house to procure some plants; flowers for the cemetery and a few vegetable plants for the veggie garden. Before going over there though, I stopped at Wood's to pick up a trellis. I didn't know that we no longer needed it but, oh well, we'll use it next year I'm sure. We have a new backyard neighbor, who when she met D. asked if we grew hot peppers? She is from Mexico (her husband is a Border Patrol officer), and said if we did she'd like some. ( Therese, tell Chuck that they bought Prof Hugh's place from the Wades.)
I picked up a few plants at Wood's but more importantly had a great chat with Glenda, who informed me that I was correct when I told her last year that genetics could be over come. She started on a concerted diet and exercise regime and has realized remarkable remission of the debilitating symptoms of her rheumatoid arthritis.

Now on to the last and very important stop: Basta's, and the purchasing of the bulk of my planting needs. Surprise, surprise, my good friend and the owner of Basta's: Joe, was the one and only service person working. It was around noon and the rain had stopped and the sun was warming things up, the garden center was quite busy with customers and Joe was reflecting that he had almost closed for the day. He informed me that I had just missed Jane, his wife and an avid reader of this blog. Hi Jane. ;)

Let me interject here: have you ever gone to a retail store and picked something off the shelf, taken it to the counter and have the clerk snatch the item from your hand and tell you that you can't have that item because it was theirs?

While my good friend (we go back nearly 50 years) Joe was attending to the needs of other customers, I browsed around the many green houses looking at and picking up plants for purchase. Before leaving the house in the morning D. had asked me to buy a patio tomato plant for camp. You know, one of those already three foot high ready to set fruit potted tomato plants that apartment dwellers and such buy so as to have and enjoy the flavor of home grown tomatoes? Ok, well as I wandered through the green houses I came upon a large potted tomato plant, a plum style tomato for which we have a particular affinity because not only does it makes the best sauce, but fresh, sprinkled with fresh cut basil, and a slice of goat cheese, makes a great appetizer or even a meal in itself some nights.

This will be just the ticket for D. thought I, and I struggled to pick up this giant plant. In fact I had to set down the box with the multitude of plants I'd already accumulated just to maneuver the bigger pot into my arms and todder over to the cash register.

Imagine...just imagine, if you will, my chagrin when My Friend comes out from behind the counter smiling, chuckling and snatches the giant tomato plant from my arms and says, "oh, oh, oh,.... no, no, no, you're messing with my garden now rel , you can't have that!"

Well of course I was taken aback and at a loss for words (can you imagine...rel at a loss for words?) and it took me a few moments to collect my thoughts. Then I responded: " Oh gracious me Joe, I so sorry, I never saw the sign that said that this plant was not for sale or reserved for the owner. I'm really, really sorry. It was just an honest mistake."

With sheepish grin Joe says;" oops, there wasn't any sign or note. I know I should have marked it but I didn't." Hmmmm........ What do you think of that????????????????


Ok, I'm off for a 6 mile run and then to the Bedrock for a breakfast buffet and then to camp.
No phone, tv, or internet at camp 'til next week.....But our cell phones work!

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