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Letters to Cari, #3 August 25, 2014….

Your only 9 years old and you have done many things to make me very happy and very proud.  As you read these letters you will find they aren’t really in a natural progression, more so as they come to mind.  But I will try to identify as best I can when they happened.  Smiling and trust me, many of our shared moments come to mind open. 

This particular incident occurred at the Christmas Pageant during your 3rd grade year.  Your mom and dad told us you had a part in the pageant but didn’t go into specific detail. 

As normal we (your grandma and I) are quite early, but that did get us good parking. And because of it we got to participate in many of the Christmas activities going on.  In particular you sat and visited with me as I sipped the hot chocolate you had gotten me.  We chatted about numerous things none of which changed the world but I just enjoyed that moment.  By the way you were dressed to the “nines” and looked as cute as you could be (as the below picture attests).

 

3rd Grade Christmas Show
3rd Grade Christmas Show

  

At long last we were advised it was time to move into the cafeteria because the show was about to begin.  Much to your Grandma’s and my great astonishment as we walked into the cafeteria we found we had stepped into a full house.  There must have been 300 or 400 people crammed to the space, everyone was jockeying for the best possible place to take pictures of their beloved children.  Your grandma and I were trying as well, but we ended up be shoved into the corner far away from where you were performing.  The program was simple enough that allowed full participation from your choir.  

Of course I don’t remember the entire program, I do remember the trash can drums, and thinking that was pretty cool.  Then your group came up on stage.  If memory serves you were in the 2nd row, about 5 or 6 right to left across the stage, and I know your mom or dad will be able to tell me exactly where you stood.  Your group performed a couple of songs and I remember watching you from the back 40 of the cafeteria and thinking she is really into it tonight.  

After either the 2nd or third song there as a shift in the performers on the stage. You came down from your perch and took a position center stage before the microphone and waited as appropriate.  When the music again started you began reading your part from the script you before you on the music stand.  I was astonished by how clearly you read your part, the clarity of your voice, how you announced each word correctly, and with the changes in inflection of your voice as you read.  It was amazing to see such a young lady with so much poise. 

I remember thinking when I was your age I could barely say my own name without sounding even more childish than I was.  I also remember how surprised I was with your ease in front of all those cameras, the flash of pictures being taken, and how all the movement around you did phase you at all.  It was like watching a miniature anchorperson going thru the news. This picture shows you looking at the paper on the music stand, but as you “performed” you would look up from your page and make eye contact, a feat I didn’t feel comfortable doing until I was well into my 20’s.  Yet it appeared so normal for you. 

You are extremely photogenic, and it showed in how presented yourself before that large crowd.  Smiling I can almost see an actress in the making, the smiling a leading lady, or the anchor of the evening news. 

Cari, I had seen you perform a few times before this event, and while your were a good and active participate, you seemed to hold back a little. This time you were all in and  your performance was outstanding.  It was so much fun to watch, and even more fun to brag about you later.  Take care, Love, Grandpa 

Folks, as always if you have any questions, comments or concerns please feel free to send them to me.  Take care, Bill  

 
 

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How I Feel for the Week Ending 08.08.14

I missed posting last week, because I was busy and was putting it off, and didn’t really have anything of substance to address. Hell I don’t know why that stopped me, there are lots of weeks I don’t have anything of substance to report but I do anyway.  Today’s music selections start with Toby Keith’s “Blue Bedroom,” and yes you will get a running commentary of the music during this report.  My last reported dated 7.25.14 spoke of the upcoming invasion of my wife’s good friends.  Well they have come and gone, and a wonderful time was had by all.  It wasn’t as difficult as it could have been, and I wouldn’t have missed their visit for any reason.

It has been a particularly trying 2 weeks since my last report breathing.  The heat, the humidity, has caused a constant issue with SOB.  As for breathing the only time I really have felt comfortable at all is just sitting on my ass, but I refuse to do that.  I have managed to keep up with (my self-imposed) chores, and I have stopped and taken breaks when I needed them, which really has been often.  There has only been a very slight increase in coughing the last couple days.  But that cough has been for the most part very unproductive.  The IPod random selector has been in strange mode today, I started off country, and have had 3 selections from Lewis Black (my favorite comedian) intermixed with Jimi Hendrix, Journey, CSN and Aretha Franklin.  These shifts in music really change the pace of my head LOL. Yet at the end of the day when I am brushing my teeth I will have a massive coughing spasm, which is extremely productive.  It’s almost like a pre precursor to an exacerbation, and while I am not down playing the significance of the words, I am not ready to race around shouting the warning.  But I am keeping a very sharp watch.   The only other ongoing medical issue is that I have had a super low grade headache for what seems like weeks.  It is more an annoyance than anything.  It doesn’t worsen in the bright sunlight, and being in the dark makes no difference and playing my music loud has no impact.  It’s just there.  Yes I have advised Hospice and my team of doctors, no one seems overly concerned because by my own admission other than a tiny bit of annoyance it’s not a problem.

I had only one medical appointment this week which was with Doc Head. Without going into a single detail, we talked, and it was good.  Oh what the heck, we talked about my Blog. Last week I was stood up by Hospice.  The nurse that comes to my home weekly and checks me had advised me that she wouldn’t be coming last Thursday, BUT I would be visited by Hospice.  Well that didn’t happen.  So after a stern talking to this morning I was advised that in the future, if I haven’t been contacted by Hospice in a timely fashion regarding an upcoming “scheduled” visit to call them and put them on the spot.  I am quite capable of doing that, and in the future I will abide to this unless circumstances beyond my control prevail. 

I will also admit I am relying on the Morphine for the relief it gives for my SOB.  I have yet to use the maximum of 6 doses on any given day, but will admit that there are times I look forward to that next dose. 

Considering everything available to me, I am going to rank myself as 2.5 for the week.  Of course this rating doesn’t include the normal aches and pains of everyday life. Sidebar; we have been listening to Billie Holiday, Moody Blues, Montgomery Gentry, Nickelback, Cream, Eric Clapton (playing blues), Ray Charles and Muddy Waters during this session. As for my mental attitude I am a 9 this week.  I woke up each day so far, and have found more reasons to smile than frown.  It is difficult to be better than that.

So to wrap up week ending 08.08.14, we are ranking the week an overall 2.5, with a 9 on the attitude scale.  So we can move on to the vitals for the week ending 08.08.14

  • INR = 2.6 taken 07.28.14 – no change in meds

  • O2 level @ 2.5 LPM = 95 taken 8.07.14 — but during the last 2 weeks I have found myself to be as low as 79 pct a few times.  A few deep breaths and some afrin seem to clear things up and my O2 level jumps back into the 90’s

  • Peak Flow = 210 taken 8.07.14

  • BP = 110/64 taken 8.07.14

  • Heart rate = 95 taken 8.07.14

  • Temp = 98.5 taken 08.07.14

  • Weight = 263 taken 08.07.14

So ends the technical aspect of my “How I Feel This Week” report for the week ending 08.08.14, moving now to the word of the week discussion aspect. This week I will be giving my 2nd official report on the Hospice “experience.”

On June 1, 2014 I posted my 1st official report on being under the care of Hospice.  At the time I advised that it wouldn’t be a regular weekly report but one that I would share from time to time. Going into my 6th month under the care of Hospice I thought I should provide a view from the front row.  Since my involvement with Hospice there has been only 2 weeks where someone from Hospice did not visit my home.  One was planned, the other I fell thru the cracks.  I am sure if I were displaying serious signs of illness I wouldn’t dropped thru the crack.   Folks shit happens and sometimes the best laid plans don’t work.  I was busy last Thursday and them not visiting allowed me to get other things done.    That is my biggest gripe.  Not bad for a 6 month period.  Now on to the nuts and bolts of this report.  Each week I can expect to be contacted by Hospice at least twice.  One is a call that comes in around 930am each Thursday.  This call is a medicine check.  I am called by a cheerful volunteer that gathers the needed info and passes it on.  The reason for the Thursday morning call is that allows Hospice time to fill the medicine, and deliver it to my home by 5pm on Friday.  They make 2 attempts to deliver each Friday then they will call you until they contact you, and then make the delivery.  I know this because I am so anal and I will call for a prescription refill before it is needed. I will make the refill request even if I have plenty to get thru the weekend.  So getting the delivery is not an issue as long as I have it by Monday or Tuesday at the latest. While it may not be an issue to me, it sure is to them.  If I say I need meds it becomes their mission to get me the medicines before COB (close of business) on Friday.  They are always supper polite, and I have never been asked if I can wait until Monday.  There is only one place I get better service that’s my Publix Pharmacy, but Publix makes me pay, and they don’t deliver so it becomes a push.  The 2nd call is my nurse scheduling my weekly visit.  This visit consists of my nurse taking my vitals, and “chatting” with me, I am sure part of the chat is to check the status of my head.  Clearly (at least to me) they are checking for signs of depression, or negative drug reactions, making sure I haven’t fallen, that my mobility isn’t an issue, and probably several more little things I haven’t quite figured out.

Each month I am also called and visited by a counselor, again to check me out.  Offering to have volunteers come in to do chores around the house, to do some grocery shopping for me, or just to sit and visit.  So far I have passed on these offers.  As I have stated before I can still manage my chores they take far longer, but I still get them done.  I go to the grocery store 3 or 4 times a week to pick up odd and ends, and to flirt.  I also use the aisles as my exercise area, pushing the shopping cart up and down up and down up and down. I can only walk by the ladies hygiene area so many times before management watches LOL LOL. JUST KIDDING!!!.  But those trips to Publix are therapeutic.  My best buddy Art comes over at least twice a week to BS and play cribbage.  While I appreciate the offered services, until I absolutely need them I will manage on my own and with the support of my wife, family and friends.  Sidebar; it has been an extremely interesting day of music, with some comedy thrown in.  I am especially tuned to the head banging music of Marlyn Manson followed immediately by Reba McIntire, that may account for why some of my post seems disjointed.

I have yet to use all the offered services that are available to me from Hospice, but as time passes and my condition changes I am sure I will have my opportunities.    So far I have only spoke to those things I have 1st hand knowledge of, if you have a question please feel free to ask.  I will find out and let you know how it would be handled by these folks if or when I need that service.

As always if you have any questions, concerns, or comments please feel free to bring them to my attention, I will answer as completely and honestly as possible. Please take care, Bill

 

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How I Feel for the Week Ending 07.11.14…

It was nice to see that you’ll made it thru the 4th with little to no issues.  Some of your pets were stressed I am sure and I do hope they have recovered.  But now that should be the last of the significant fireworks until, until hopefully New Year’s.  Oh, by the way, it is Saturday July 12, 2014 and I am just starting my weekly report. So don’t be greatly surprised if you don’t see this until sometime early tomorrow afternoon.  Sidebar; we begin the day with Travis Tritt, “Anymore”.  The weather has been so so this week, the normal hot and humid weather we expect in Florida, but the sea breezes have been playing hell with us, and have screwed up the weather pattern, this week we have a lot of AM monster storms, with the evenings being clear and calm. Forecasters say things should normal out by this weekend. We will see!  The reason I mention the weather is because it has significant impact on how I feel during a given period. Heat and Humidity just eat my lunch and leave me quite weak.   But I am sure if I lived any of places I have lived in the pass the weather would have the same impact, so Florida isn’t the problem LOL.  

I saw Doc Head this past Monday, and as always I found that to be productive.  It doesn’t matter to me what we talk about, it helps and I like talking.  I only have one medical appointment this coming week and that is for my monthly IVIG treatment.

One of the many gauges I use to evaluate how I feel for a given week is the amount of specific drugs I use on an “as needed” basis.  Two of those drugs are Morphine Sulfate .25ML to be taken every 4 hours (as needed) and Alprazolam .5 MG table to be taken every 8 hours.  Both of these drugs are used to ease SOB and both of these drugs are quite effective and addictive.  It is my understanding (drilled into me by my Doctors) that at the dosage levels currently prescribed I have very very little to be concerned about.  Besides as explained (and these are my words) I don’t need to be concerned if I become addicted because end of retirement will arrive before any impact from a potential addiction becomes an issue. Having said all that, I have been extremely careful in my usage of these drugs, and there hasn’t been a day when I have used all the “as needed” dosages.  But for four days this week I have wanted to, and have reached for these medicines far more often than normal.  It is for this reason I am going to give myself a 2.5 for the week, it could’ve been lower.  As for an overall general health assessment, yes the SOB is wearing me out.  The harder it is to breathe the harder it is to do everything else.  I have all the aches and pains an out of shape 64-year-old would have,  so if I didn’t have COPD I really would have very little to complain about health wise.

On the bright side, if I were scoring the week of a combination of mental and physical health I would have given the week a 7 because of the emotional high I got this week, which by itself would have been a 10 on my 1 to 5 scale.  Were 1 equals “death sucking on a lifesaver”, and 5 being able to play golf without the assistance of supplemental oxygen. Sidebar; DL Hughley then Hendrix, followed by Garth Brooks, then CSN, Gretchen Wilson, AC/DC, then Nickelback, Ray Charles and now Aretha Franklin, followed by Marilyn Manson.  No wonder my head spins sometimes.  So as a wrap up we are ranking the week an overall 2.5, with a great mental attitude. So we can move on to the vital for the week ending 07.11.14

 

  • INR = 2.3 taken 06.30.14 – next test will be 07.28.14 – but no change in meds

  • O2 level @ 2.5 LPM = 93 taken 7.10.14

  • Peak Flow = 215 taken moments ago, 7.11.14

  • BP = 108/62 taken 7.10.14

  • Heart rate = 102 taken 7.10.14

  • Temp = 98.7 taken 07.10.14

  • Weight = 266 taken 07.10.14

So ends the technical aspect of my “How I Feel This Week” report for the week ending 07.11.14, moving now to the word of the week discussion aspect. This week I have chosen “COMMITMENT” as the word of the week. As I normally do I will start with the dictionary definition for the word.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/commitment

Commitment Definition com·mit·ment  — Noun – a) promise to do or give something b) a promise to be loyal to someone or something c) the attitude of someone who works very hard to do or support something 

Go to the link above if you want or need a more complete definition of commitment.

I struggled all week looking for a word that I wanted to address, it came to me the moment my preacher spoke of it during church today and as it as it relates to being a Christian that our commitment to being Christians is not a 9 to 5 job. It was great sermon, her sermons generally are great. 

A little over 7 years ago I was “officially” diagnosed with COPD. (But please be assured that I had been working up to this official diagnoses for 20 years) I was already in the moderate stage and pushing against the severe stage real hard.  Doc Lungs told Steph and me that it is terminal, and there was no cure, and at best I had 3 to 5 years.  I don’t remember what we spoke about for the next 10 minutes, we left his office in silence, I am sure we both had that super stunned look. I know I moped around a bit, and 2 weeks later I was back in Doc Lungs office.  He sat with me and said “Bill, I will commit to you that I will do everything in my power to help you manage this, we will change your medicines as new “better” ones become available, and I will work with you every step of the way.  But this will only work if I get your commitment to fight this as best you can, if you don’t fight I can’t help.”  It was at that moment I made the commitment to fight my COPD with every tool at my disposal, that I would not wallow in self-pity, I would not bemoan my illness, and that I would be my own advocate, that I would enjoy the remainder of my life to the best to my ability.  Sidebar; we have been listening to Trace Atkins, Lewis Black, Montgomery Gentry, Aerosmith, SRV, more Nickelback, AC/DC, Cream, 3 Doors Down, Mountain, Rob Zombie and the Eagles during this session. Folks I have honored that commitment for 7 years, and I will continue to honor it. 

This blog is a direct result to that commitment and the fact that my wife just nagged my ass, again and again and again, until I finally gave in and said “FU…. It!” And I started writing with the goal to help and educate as many people as I could. I am not a quitter, (hell I couldn’t quit smoking, BUT I DID STOP), and in a little over 2 years I have written a 286 posts of which 114 are “How I Feel’s”.   I have reaffirmed my life for Christ, but I also have made the commitment to live as healthy as possible.  I exercise everyday even if it’s just pushing a shopping cart up and down the aisles at my local Publix, or ensuring the laundry is done, folded and put away. I watch my weight and it watches me, when my wife is home I cook and eat better, healthier meals.  I try to rest but sleep does elude me sometimes. I maintain a positive attitude, and I really don’t fret about the end of retirement.

That said we all have choices.  When we get devastating news that we or someone we love and cherish has a terminal disease, or one that has no cure, or both, or even if you’re as heathy as a horse. With that news comes choices, and you can choose to make the necessary commitments to make the most you can before the end of retirement.  You can make commitments to eat better, to exercise more, or to stop smoking.  You can make commitments to get your personal life in order.  To not burn bridges, and to try and mend those bridges that have been burnt.  You can commit to your Doctor, to pay attention to what he or she has to say, and do your best to follow his instructions, you can also commit to keeping your doctor informed of the changes you feel within, because as you live thru this you will usually notice changes in your daily health pattern long before a hospitalization is needed, if you’re aware and in communications with your doctor.  You may be ill, but you still need involved in your health.  These are commitments you can make to yourself, your family, your friends, and your doctor which can all have a positive impact in a negative world. Hell you can write a blog, it sure has helped me.

As always if you have any questions, concerns, or comments please feel free to bring them to my attention, I will answer as completely and honestly as possible. Please take care, Bill

 

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How I Feel for the Week Ending 6.13.14…

Smiling, just like last week I am starting my report around noon. It would appear that I am a creature of habit LOL LOL, which isn’t always a bad thing.  It has been a wet dreary day here in not so sunny Florida during the last 24 hours we have had close to 4 inches of rain. Today our music selections begin with “Bully” by Shinedown, to fully appreciate Shinedown you must listen at 7 or 8.   Staying with a recent trend I feel the week has been a 2.75, not quite as strong as last week’s 2.75, but not enough difference to drop it any lower.

Over the past week I have been extremely careful not to stand over the grill inhaling the wonderful aroma of burgers and marinated chicken cooking, with the smoke being provided by the 80/20 lean beef burgers.

Doctor appointment wise it has been a busy week.  I met with Doc Head Monday and it was as always a productive meeting. Then on Tuesday I met with the Head RN for the Hospice Team that manages my health.  I thought (and it had been implied) that this was the meeting to determine if I were progressing towards end of retirement in a timely enough manner to stay under Hospice. Well it wasn’t really that meeting; the Head Nurse is required to visit each patience within her teams’ care on a periodic basis.  Smiling “she had heard so much about me,” she felt it was time we met.  When will I learn to just shut the f…… up LOL?  All kidding aside it was a very through 1st meeting. She visited with me for over 90 minutes, very engaging (as I have found most of the Hospice folks) and when it was over I asked her if this was in fact the meeting to determine if I were still a candidate for Hospice care.  Her response was that while this had not been the official meeting for such a determination, it was clear that I would be staying with the program.  Sidebar, we have been listening to a variety of hard rock so far, including Van Halen, Stone Temple Pilots, more Shinedown, Nickelback (for my Canadian friends) and Puddle of Mudd. Finally on Thursday I had my normal weekly meeting with the Hospice, this appointment when as expected and all my vitals were drawn from it.

This, like last week and the week before, my general health remains approximately the same. The coughing is about the same, tiredness seems normal this week; SOB better than last week, but I am not standing over a grill LOL.  Sleeping soundly is an issue, but in fairness I have never been a good sleeper, it just seems like in recent months it has gotten more and more erratic, and I am finding I am napping more than ever before in my life, this morning after taking care of the morning rituals and folding the cloths, I looked out the window at the gray ugliness, so I laid down for a couple of hours. 

Let get the vitals out-of-the-way for the week ending 06.13.14

  • INR = 2.3 taken 05.19.14 – next test will be 06.16.14

  • O2 level @ 2.5 LPM = 93 taken moments ago,

  •  Peak Flow = 225 taken moments ago

  • BP = 102/62 taken 06.12.14

  • Heart rate = 107 taken moments ago

  • Temp = 98.6 taken 06.12.14

  • Weight = 267 taken 06.13.14 my weight has been all over the place in recent weeks up or down as much as 6 or 7 pounds any given week.  I check my weight at the same approximate time daily. I talked to the Hospice nurse about this, and one of the long-term impacts of the disease is weight lost, soft smile if you can’t breathe it is difficult to eat.  Ergo you diet a natural unnatural way.

So ends the technical aspect of my “How I Feel This Week” report for the week ending 06.13.14, moving now to the word of the week discussion aspect. This week I have chosen “Therapy” as the word of the week. As I normally do I will start with the dictionary definition for the word.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/therapy

ther·a·py  –  noun – the treatment of physical or mental illnesses

Full Definition of THERAPY :  therapeutic treatment especially of bodily, mental, or behavioral disorder

Examples of THERAPY

            1. He is undergoing cancer therapy.

            2. talking over my problem with you has been good therapy.

Origin of THERAPY

New Latin therapia, from Greek therapeia, from therapeuein

First Known Use: circa 1846

Before I started “therapy” I had no feeling about it one way or the other.  There was no negative stigma I ever associated with “therapy” my feelings were and still are simple; if you needed it you needed it.  Kinda like a pill, if you have to take it, take it.  But since I have been it I have found I have very real feelings about therapy.  I could never be a therapist; I would never want to be a therapist. I understand more than ever some folks are deeply troubled; some not so troubled, and still others that are a mixed bag.  My 1st experience with a therapist was an effort on my part to find out about the dying process, especially for a person such as myself who had a terminal disease that slowly killed you.  I had 2 sessions with that therapist, and I truly believed she answered my question within the 1st 20 minutes of our conversation.  Being honest I didn’t bond with her, and one of us had an agenda that didn’t seem to be in my interests.  But I did go back for a second session, same net result, but I left satisfied that I had the answer I sought.

Some 12 months or so after my initial experience, I was troubled, and again sought out therapy.  My Health Coach did the research and kinda sorta recommended Doc Head.  She wouldn’t and couldn’t push me towards a particular Doctor; she just laid out the info.  One of the single biggest aspects of the decision process was that Doc Head’s office was about 7 minutes away if I took my time.  Decision made, appointment made, and the rest is history.  I have been seeing Doc Head for over a year and not one moment has been wasted.  For those who have been following me for any length at all knows I am an open person, and will talk about anything.  But damn was I quick to open up to Doc Head.

I am not sitting here saying everyone needs a therapist, or that everyone needs therapy, but I am saying is that for those of us who do admit to a need, it is great experience.  To be able to vocalize thoughts, and not just let them spin around in your head is worth the price of admission.  To be able to say just about anything you want and not have someone judge you, to be as totally honest as you want and need (as long as you stay honest), to be able to talk about your pains, your disappointments, your needs, your wants, your desires and to be able to do so out loud, so not only does someone else hear them, but you hear those words, those thoughts, those needs, wants, and those desires aloud.  Trust me, they sound a lot different verbalized than they do rolling around in your head.  And as you verbalize there is someone 4 feet away asking you what makes you feel this way or that, they aren’t judging, yes they may be digging, but it has been my experience that sometimes you have to dig to get to an issue.  Smiling, sometimes Doc Head will just sit and knot her head, encouraging me to finish a thought, or come to a conclusion, or realize that what I am yapping about isn’t really the issue at all, but it could be the conversation starter that leads to the issue.  Also I have learned that not all issues are problems and that not all problems come from the issues you present. The best thing about therapy is it allows you to get things off your chest, but be warned sometimes the things you get off your chest find their own replacements.

Also there is joy to be found in therapy, it is the perfect place for me to brag, I love writing my blog. I love the thought that my words may have reached out and helped an individual, I can share stories about folks who have come to me and said “thank you” for this story, or this hambit of information, or how I helped them cope.  And when doing so I don’t need to feel modest, I don’t worry about sounding like a braggart, I even allow my head to swell with pride when I talk about the positive things my blog gives me, and the love I have for my  fellow bloggers.  I can and do talk of the pure joy it is receiving the wonderful positive feedback I have gotten.  Smiling and my therapist doesn’t even look like she is tired of hearing it LOL.

Of course you can say something stupid like your planning on taking someone out, but as soon as you do the Doc will drop a dime on you.  You can talk about a plan to commit suicide, again the Doctor will drop a dime on you and measures will be taken to prevent such actions.  There are laws that require a therapist to advise authorities if you’re planning such actions.  I am sure there are therapists that are trained specifically to deal with situations like these.

Okay I have bent your ear as long and as hard as I can for this post.  As always if you have any questions, concerns, or comments please feel free to bring to my attention, I will answer as completely and honestly as possible. Please take care, Bill

 

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A Lifetime in Reynoldsville PA, a lifetime ago… A Grandpa Tale

When I have written posts in the past I will sometimes say “There’s a story in there someplace.”   On July 27, 2012 I posted a post titled “The Places I have lived.” Quite the original title, but I think back upon that post and remember that there were additional posts to be written. This will be one of them.  The entire text of the time I lived in Reynoldsville is offered here, and as you can see there isn’t much to go on.  But I am going to make an effort to expound on that simple paragraph.  Hopefully you and my granddaughter Cari will enjoy reading it.  Because it’s for Cari that I write lots of these stories. 

“Next stop Reynoldsville PA.  Reynoldsville is a coal mining town just north and east of Pittsburgh, we lived there 1 winter. The house was coal heated, and Stephen King could have written about it in many of his more scary novels.  I do have fond memories of sled riding during that winter, and a school trip we made to Washington DC to visit the national museum’s that was cool. Began the 4th grade here.” 

If we were sitting around bull shitting, and I began to speak of the time I lived in Reynoldsville, PA, my memory would span a year.  But the reality is that the family moved to 937 Grant Street, Reynoldsville PA in September 1959 and departed for Norwalk, Conn. in February 1960.  The address is of no importance other to mention it was 2 downhill blocks away from Main Street. It was a 6 month period that was a lifetime to a 10-year-old. 

Here is some current information regarding Reynoldsville it has a population of 2,730 folks of which almost 52 pct are women.  So it must be good for guys looking for a date.  The median resident age is slightly over 37, I would be one of the curve busters there LOL. The town of Reynoldsville is located approximately 75 or so miles (depending on the map) northeast of Pittsburgh.  The prime industries have been coal mining, lumber, and tanning.  The borough of Reynoldsville had originally been an Indian village, with the last of Indians moving on in 1824.  In the 1830’s the Reynolds moved to the area.  The name of Reynoldsville was confirmed by the Post Office Department in 1850.

I guess this has been plenty of setup to speak of 2 events that live on and on in my mind.  Again I was 10 years old when I lived there.  My granddaughter just celebrated her 9th birthday.  Because these events remain so familiar to me, I wonder what events are shaping Cari memories.  I wonder what memories Cari will have 55 years from how to share with her grandchildren.  I wonder if she will still have this blog to share with those grandchildren when she speaks of her grandfather.   Soft smile, I really hope she does speak of me.

Anyway moving on.  The first event was a school sponsored field trip to Washington DC to visit the museums.  I have no idea how much money my folks had to shell out for this trip but it was a one day event.  It started at the butt crack of dawn, and was over close to midnight that day.  At the time I could not be accused of having patience, so I am sure I must have driven someone crazy asking “are we there yet?”  Sidebar; I have had the headphones pounding in my ears since I started and the IPod is set to random.  Just so you “Kid Rock” is now screaming in my ears, but I have heard Creed, Toby Keith, Cream, Sting, CSN, Aretha Franklin, DH Hughley, Eric Clapton, Johnny Lang, Travis Tritt, SRV, Buddy Guy, Koko Taylor, Moody Blues, AC/DC, Jimi Hendrix, Melissa Etheridge, and of course Nickelback to just name a few. The things I clearly remember seeing are the Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, Smithsonian Institutes’ Castle, The Capital Building and the Whitehouse.  I remember that the bulk of time was spent at the Castle.  I do remember standing at the very foot of Lincoln and being not much taller than his shoe, I also remember playing on the steps to the Capital Building. And I suspect if I were playing on the steps at some point a chaperon told me to stop. I know we did not go into either the Capital Building or the Whitehouse. Those are the sum total of my memories of that field trip.  One of the reasons it must stand out, is because it was by far the most significant field trip I ever went on throughout my schooling.  I was fortunate enough to end up working in Washington DC some 20 years after this field trip, and lived in the area for the next 30 years.  During the course of those years, I visited every building on the Mall more than twice, except the Holocaust Museum which I only visited once. That single visit could be a post by itself; it was the most moving 3 hours I can remember.

The second memorable event to take place while I lived in Reynoldsville was sled riding on a public street.

I have no idea how it came about, so what I am about to say is pure conjecture on my part.  But this conjecture is based on the fact that the cross streets were closed (Willow and Main) and blocked, no cars were part on 10th Street (the hill), and transportation was provided back to the top of the hill.  It only happened one time during the period we lived there, but again, I suspect it might have been part of some annual event because it was just too organized. The run started at the Top of 10th Street, and ran for 2 blocks, where the road leveled at Main.  Something had been done to the snow at Main because you just quickly slowed to a stop.  You and your sled were loaded up and taken back up the hill, for another run.  I know dad and I did one run together, and I believe he allowed me to do a couple more by myself, and I am sure he did more than that by himself; he was only 35 at the time.  Hot chocolate and coffee were served, and I am sure something stronger would have been available.  I know we moved on shortly after this event.  LOL I don’t want you to think we were nomads, at this time my Dad was a store manager for McCory’s 5 & 10.  He would be sent to a store that was in “trouble” and stay long enough to get it back on its feet, and then management would move him on to the next store.   I would also hazard to guess that this could never happen in this day and age because of insurance, community groups, safety, and expenses.  The new order at work. LOL

Folks that sums up an expanded version of the time I lived in Reynoldsville PA.  Cari, I hope you enjoyed the story.

As usual folks, if you have any questions, thoughts, concerns or comments please feel free to ask.  Take care, Bill    

 
19 Comments

Posted by on May 14, 2014 in Grandpa Stories, Humor, Ramblings

 

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Happy Mother’s Day

Good Morning, and Happy Mother’s Day

Each morning as I take my meds, I sit and respond to the many notes, comments, posts, or other mails that fill my in box like pedals of (fill in the blank).  I respond directly and on target to what I have read or thought I read, or answer a specific question. But today is special, and in my responses I failed to take the time in each response to say Happy Mother’s Day in some of my responses. So I want to take a moment and extend to each of you mothers a wish for a wonderful day, filled with love and joy, a warm smile, a tender kiss, and the thought in your heart that you did good.  

Mom’s we love you, we thank you, we will never forget you.

Love Bill

 
19 Comments

Posted by on May 11, 2014 in Grandpa Stories, Observations, Ramblings

 

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How I Feel for the Week Ending 05/09/14

For the week ending 05.09.14 this report will undoubtable be late, but it will be coming from my home and under the influence of my music.  Sidebar, it is one of those days, and I started the music with Vince Gill’s “Go Rest High on the Mountain.” Smiling I am in a Country Music kinda mood, so we have moved on to Big & Rich’s “Why does everyone want to kick my ass”.  We are out of the hotel, and have been since Wednesday evening, and Lord to I appreciate being home, in my own bed, my own shower, and my frig!! It is so refreshing to be home.  The wife is tickled to death with the new floor, and we all know happy wife = happy home.  The oral surgery went well (on Tuesday), and the offending tooth pulled, and have only a slight bit of post extraction pain, so little in fact I have only taken one pain pill in the last 24 hours.  If I live to be a 100 I might end up with dentures. LOL LOL. The only other appointment I had this week was with Doc Head, it is nice to have someone who you can completely bare your soul and inner thoughts without fear of repercussions.  Oh it appears that Hospice day will be on Thursdays.  They will come once a week to check me out, they take all vitals, make sure all my prescriptions are up to date and that I have enough to get thru the weekend at a minimum, ask several questions regarding my general health, and then out the door.  Hospice will take care of all my medical needs that I need that relate directly to my COPD.  They won’t supply medicines that may deal with other medical conditions.  Sidebar, we just listened to Toby Keith’s “I’ll never smoke weed with Willy again.” Smiling, fun song. All things considered, tooth pulled, living in a hotel, managing the contractor replacing the floor, and putting up with the Florida heat and humidity I am going to give the week a very solid 2.75.  The other reason the week gets a 2.75 is because very little else has changed, the coughing is about normal, tiredness about the same, and the respiration’s are staying above 20 + breathes a minute, which makes the heart work harder.

Let get the vitals out-of-the-way for the week ending 05.09.14

  • INR = 2.1 taken 04/08/14 – next INR reading scheduled for 05.12.14

  • O2 level @ 2.5 LPM = 95 taken on 05.08.14 – I would say spot checking my O2 level this week has found on average about 91/92 range.

  • Peak Flow = 215 taken 05.08.14

  • BP = 122/64 taken 05.08.14

  • Heart rate = 122 taken 05.08.14

  • Temp = 98.7 taken 05.08.14

  • Weight = 268 taken 05.09.14

So ends the technical aspect of my “How I Feel This Week” report for the week ending 05.09.14, moving now to the word of the week discussion aspect.  This week we are going to talk about Expectations.  We all have expectations that we impose upon ourselves and those others have in us, today I would like to talk about those expectations.  As normal we will start with the web dictionary definition of the word:

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/expectation

ex·pec·ta·tion  — noun  1. the act or the state of expecting: to wait in expectation. 2. the act or state of looking forward or anticipating. 3. an expectant mental attitude: a high pitch of expectation. 4. something expected; a thing looked forward to. 5. Often, expectations. a prospect of future good or profit: to have great expectations

Of all of the definitions I have drawn from the Internet to use for this part of my post, this definition is one of the clearest to date.  It is safe to say that each of us with a life threatening disease face two prime points of expectations. One; those expectations that come from within ourselves, those we think and feel when we look in the mirror or set about doing a task, or two; those expectations that others have for us.  This second group of expectations is a whole big can of worms in and of itself and I will talk to that next week.  But the simplest way to address those expectations is to say FUCK THEM, but I will get into that further next week.

As kids when we do something successfully, we anticipate being able to do that again and again and again.  Once that accomplishment registers in our head it stays there forever.  We from that day forward, always have the expectation that we will always have that same level of success whenever we attempt that activity. Experience and effort, coupled with a level of success establishes expectations in our head. Sidebar: we have been listening to Travis Tritt, Trace Akins {(This ain’t no) thinkin thing}, Dixie Chicks, Lucinda Williams (Change the Locks), Garth Brooks (Friends in Low Places), and Gretchen Wilson, to name a few. The problem is that sometimes I listen and sing instead of typing. We experience in so many things, from school work, to sports, cooking, yard work, building things, carrying or lifting different levels of weight, and on and on.  Through our accomplishments and experience we find that doing things will take this level of effort and this amount of time.  That activity could be doing the laundry, cooking dinner, doing the dishes, cutting the grass, folding cloths, walking down the street, yard work, and all other manner of daily household chore or projects.  Again success breeds expectations. 

Soft smile, the aging process is a marathon not a sprint.  As we age, we gracefully and gradually come to conclusion that the process does impact our expectations, but because acceptance happens steadily over an extended period we softly slip into a lower level of self-expectations. This in my opinion is nature’s way, the way it is supposed to be.  We turn around and look the majority of our counterparts and we see the same process is taking place in them as that we see in the mirror, and because of this we collectively are okay and accepting of the process.

But when you are terminally ill this process seems to be in overdrive.  Tasks that we would have done without breaking into a sweat 2 or 3 years ago (longer or shorter depending on you), we now have to take break after break after break to accomplish. Some tasks we don’t even bother with because we may not have the breath or stamina to complete. Some of us (especially me) are embarrassed easy when we (I) don’t have the ware for all to complete a task. Sidebar: for all my great Canadian friends, I have switched gears and now have Nickelback blasting in my head LMAO, because I try to keep my posts at the PG-13 level I can’t even tell you the names of most of my favorite Nickelback songs LOLBut I am here to tell you we need to get over it, and we have to acknowledge the fact that we do need to lower our personal expectations.  We need to come to grips with the fact that our diseases have robbed us of the capabilities we once had.  To acknowledge this doesn’t mean we send out the invitations to the pity party.  It means that if we had the expectation to complete a task in 15 minutes and it now takes 30 minutes, then damn it, it takes 30 minutes. But by completing the task we have met the expectation, and this my friends is a moral and physical victory. I started this post last night around 11pm.  It is now Saturday, but since I started today I have, made the bed, emptied the dish washer, when out to breakfast, and stopped at the grocery store. Not even mentioning a bunch of little crap kinda things. I will admit that I am a bit tired, but I met my expectations.  Years ago I would not have budgeted as much time, and I sure would not have inserted as many breaks into the completion of these tasks that I have.   

Changing your personal expectations is nothing to be ashamed of it’s no reason to hold your head down. It is terrible unfair of you to hold yourself to self-imposed expectations that will disappoint yourself when you don’t complete them. BTW everyplace you see a “you” I am talking about me, if it applies to you, apply it.  COPD has robbed me of many things, and it will end up shortening my life by many years.  But I will not let self-imposed expectations which I fail to meet drag me into a deep dark hole.  I would suggest you don’t let it drag you into a hole either.

Next week I will talk about the expectations other TRY to impose upon us.  I suspect it will be just as emotional as this. 

As always if you have any questions, concerns, or comments please feel free to bring to my attention, I will answer as completely and honestly as possible. Please take care, Bill

 

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It’s a matter of Sense …. A Grandpa Tale

Most of us have or should have the 5 basic senses, some of may not be so fortunate.  They are sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch.  For the most part these senses are all self-explanatory and don’t really need to go into them.  But to further the explanation I am calling on Wikipedia (in part) for a slightly fuller definition.   

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_senses 

A broadly acceptable definition of a sense would be “A system that consists of a group of sensory cell types that responds to a specific physical phenomenon, and that corresponds to a particular group of regions within the brain where the signals are received and interpreted.” There is no firm agreement as to the number of senses because of differing definitions of what constitutes a sense. Sidebar;  the music today is being brought to you via my IPOD being featured today include, Alice in Chains, Stone Temple Pilot, Gemini Syndrome, Van Halen, and Puddle of Mudd, I almost forgot yes, Nickelback is pounding away too!!!!

Smiling, I am done with definitions (at least for this post), I want to talk about that 6th sense, or the 7th sense, or and 23rd sense. It’s the one each of us have, that is not recognized as one of the common senses (nor is it common sense).  Some of us know when to hit on 17 at the blackjack table and are successful more times than not (especially if they are playing 5 decks), others wouldn’t know if they had a guide-book. Some will hear a phone ring and answer it knowing who is calling.  Some of can sense when a friend is sick or needs us from thousands and thousands of miles away.  Others of us know when not to get on an airplane.  Some of know when it is really the right time to give that beggar something more than a dirty look.  Moms are extremely good at knowing when their child needs a tiny bit more attention, and even more importantly when their child truly needs to be left alone.  Some of us dads can figure it out with our daughters, but have more issues trying to figure it out with a son.  These extra senses don’t stay with us a lifetime, sometimes they are only one time events, but that event stays with you the rest of your life,  you remember your little miracle, you remember that special time and it gives you a good feeling, it does warm your soul. Sometimes these extra senses, come with maturity, and are honed as we age.  Yet other times they happen for no definable reason, at no particular age. Case in point: the young man who found the 20 dollar bill in the Cracker Barrel parking lot and felt it was the right thing to do by passing it on with that now world-famous note to the soldier, who has in turn passed it forward. 

I think that another word we need to consider is premonition. It is exactly like a sense only different. But just like that oddball sense you from time to time I am sure you have had a premonition.  You know that feeling you get just before a storm hits, or a view just outside of your vision that something bad is going to happen. Notice the 2 examples I gave for premonitions were negative, but being honest I don’t remember having a good premonition.  If I thought I was going to fail that math test, it was a pretty foregone conclusion I was going to fail that test. But what about your premonitions, have the outcome always been bad?  

 I suspect you’ll are awaiting my announcement as to what my special skill or talent may be, or if I have some superpower I haven’t shared with you.  Oh and I do have one, but I am not going to share it with you (at least not yet). 

Yet be it a premonition or an extra sense.  I do believe we all have one or more.  Some stay with us for a lifetime, others only for an incident.  I also think a person can talk themselves into having an extra sense, and by the same token talk ourselves out of a special ability.  In my opening sentence I stated that most of us have or should have the basic 5 senses, and that others might not be as fortunate.  Let me be very clear, I truly believe that the folks that do not have those 5 basic senses, utilize the senses they have to a much finer degree than we do, they hear better or see better or smell better or have extremely good taste.  But these folks also have special senses and utilize them much more so than us burdened with the basic five. They are not handicapped, they are empowered. 

This post while playful is also somewhat serious.  Please take a moment to think about yourself, and if you’re willing please share with us your special ability. 

As always if you have any questions or concerns or if you have a comment please feel free to ask or post it.  Take care, Bill.

 
27 Comments

Posted by on April 24, 2014 in Grandpa Stories, Humor, Ramblings, Uncategorized

 

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How I Feel for the Week ending 04/11/14……

For the week ending 04.11.14 I am actually starting this post in a timely manner, that’s not to say that it will be finished in a timely manner. It sure was nice to see Kentucky lose the National Championship Game, that’s all I am saying on that matter. Sidebar, we are going cover song to start today, “Bad Company” by Five Finger Death Punch, very true to the original. For the past few weeks I have felt like I was in the early stages of yet another exacerbation. I have been coughing (mostly nonproductive, but slightly milky otherwise) so hard my chest hurt, my nose has been running a marathon and winning, I have been weaker than normal, and of course the SOB is always present.  And like a dumb ass I kept it to myself, I fretted, I worried, I let my attitude slip a bit, but I hadn’t gotten to the point of actually having a pity party. Finally I sucked it up, and saw my nurse (as I advised last week). This week I am giving its due. On by the way, this is the March/early April time frame, if I had even paid a lick of a bit of attention to the local weather, even I might have picked up on a potential cause to all my recent problems. With the patience of a saint, she explained to me that the bulk of my problems have come from the “P” word POLLEN. Folks the Pollen level here in the Tampa area of Florida where I live has been either High or Extremely High, with the exception of 2 days, for going on 3 weeks. Being honest I never even considered POLLEN to be the issue. But Doc Lungs confirmed my nurse’s diagnoses and I have been told pretty much too just “suck it up” and deal with it. And BTW! STAY INDOORS as much as possible. Sidebar, the last 4 songs I have listened to in this order are: – 1. This Means War by Nickelback, 2. Possession by Sarah McLachlin, 3. Gotta Get Me Some by Nickelback and 4. Stairway Way to Heaven by Heart. No wonder it takes so long for me to write a post. BTW if you are a Led Zeppelin fan and have not heard Heart’s cover of this song you need to give yourself a treat.   Having said all of that about pollen, and the multitude of issues it brings with it, I am going to still rate my week as a 2.75, and at the same time increase my stock in Kleenex.

This week has been relatively painless regarding Doctor appointments. I saw Doc Head, Monday and that is such a positive impact on me. She is having me read a book called When Bad Things Happen to Good People, by Harold S. Rushner. The book is only 111 difficult pages LOL LOL. I am half way thru the book, and he (btw he is a Rabbi) is finally starting to make good sense. And while it may be a difficult read for me, it may not be for you. If you or someone you care for is trying to play the blame game, for whatever ails you, this could be a very helpful book. I haven’t finished it, but I will, and already I am getting something good from it. It is just a suggestion. Also this week I saw Doc Lungs, when I spoke to him about the nurse’s diagnoses about the Pollen, he gave me that patented “DUH” look. He said “honestly I never thought to talk to you about this, of all my patients I thought you had this one figured out.” I really expected him to have me sit in the corner with the dunce cap on. He listened to my lungs and stated they were as a clear as they would be for me, and that he would see me again in 4 weeks, and that at that time he wanted to do a breathing test (oh joy!). The only appointment I have lined up for next week is my monthly IVIG treatment.

Let get the vitals out-of-the-way for the week ending 04.11.14

  • INR = 2.1 taken 04/08/14 – next INR reading scheduled for 05.12.14

  • O2 level @ 2.5 LPM = 91 taken on 04.11.14 — avg daily is 93 for week

  • Peak Flow = 225 taken 04.11.14 – avg for week 220.

  • BP = 112/62 taken 04.10.14

  • Heart rate = 102 taken 04.11.14

  • Temp = 98.5 taken 04.10.14

  • Weight = 273.5 taken 04.11.14 – beginning to have some belly creep

So ends the technical aspect of my “How I Feel This Week” report for the week ending 4.11.14, moving now to the word of the week discussion aspect. This week I have chosen Challenges. The definition used in today’s post comes to us via http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/challenge

 Challenge – Noun

1. call or summons to engage in any contest, as of skill, strength, etc. 2. something that by its nature or character serves as a call to battle, contest, special effort, etc.: Space exploration offers a challenge to humankind. 3. a call to fight, as a battle, a duel, etc. 4. a demand to explain, justify, etc.: a challenge to the treasurer to itemize expenditures. 5. difficulty in a job or undertaking that is stimulating to one engaged in it.

Challenge – Verb — verb (used with object), challenged, challenging.

11. to summon to a contest of skill, strength, etc. 12. to take exception to; call in question: to challenge the wisdom of a procedure. 13. to demand as something due or rightful. 14. Military. to halt and demand identification or countersign from 15. Law. to take formal exception to (a juror or jury).

Challenge – Verb — verb (used without object), chal·lenged, chal·leng·ing.

21. to make or issue a challenge. 22. Hunting. (of hounds) to cry or give tongue on picking up the scent.

Challenge — adjective

23. donated or given by a private, corporate, or government benefactor on condition that the recipient raise an additional specified amount from the public: a challenge grant.

Origin: 1175-1225; Middle English chalenge  < Old French,  variant of chalonge  < Latin calumnia calumny

Folks I choose to talk about challenge or challenges today because we all face them. Our 1st day at school, or earning that final degree, in the prime of health or on our death-bed, standing over a 5 foot putt for a 12, holding our newborn child, or our grandchild, choosing a career or changing careers in mid-stream, we all face a variety of challenges. Some challenges are humongous; some are no more than an ant hauling one grain of sand. What challenges one individual may have absolutely no impact on another. Sidebar, I have listened to tons of music as I have put this together, Van Halen, Tom Petty, The Wallflowers, BB King, and then some old school Kinks and Zombies, and Rob Zombie to name a few. But that being said because each challenge is different we are allowed to handle each challenge differently. For me I have a simple process, I start at the most difficult part of the challenge for me, at that time, and work back from there. Example, my wife cooks a great meal and it has a ton of different ingredients. When the meal is presented to me I eat the things off the plate that I like the least, for instance, if peas (YUK) were on my plate I would gag those down 1st, unless I was allowed to push them aside, and use the taste of the next ingredient to cleanse my palate. This is easy because I usually only encounter this challenge when she cook Asian. Until the remaining ingredients were all to my liking, then I would just kinda graze through them. This is the approach I have used to deal with most challenges my entire life. But it’s not for everyone. I will admit that some challenges you just can’t attack head on, so I have had to change my approach from time to time to accommodate the challenge presented. Overall it has worked well for me. You choose the method or methods that work best for you to deal with the challenges you encounter. And remember to find what works best for you, given the situation.

As always thank you for indulging me as I have rambled on. I hope you have a great weekend. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to ask, if you want to comment those are appreciated as well. Take care, Bill

 

 

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 It’s a Matter of Music…. A Grandpa Tale

Good morning folks, I hope your Wednesday is starting off great, mine has.  Per my normal daily habit I was up and about at 6ish this morning. I was nebulizing this nebulizing that, and taking the rest of my morning medications.  As usual during this morning ritual, I was scanning my email accounts and Facebook. As I was scanning Facebook, throwing out some likes, I stumbled upon a post by a dear friend (Huntmode). She shared the following YouTube video.

http://www.thisblewmymind.com/street-musician-tipped-girl-happened-next-blew-whole-city-away/?fb_action_ids=10201782776426970&fb_action_types=og.recommends

Of course it was one of those staged flash mob video’s which I truly enjoy, because they just make me so damn happy.  So I am nebulizing and blasting this flash mob video, it comes to an end I am smiling, already it’s a great day, and I begin to explore.  Originally my intent was to find some more orchestra (flash mob) video’s and just sit and immerse myself in some classical music. So I jumped on YouTube, and immediately encountered the 2 Piano Guys, which if you haven’t discovered them I would strongly suggest you give time a listen. I just wasn’t in the mood for the Piano Guys this morning, but…… if you have spent any time on YouTube, on the right side of the page is a column of what could be related or similar video’s kinda if you like this you may like that…   Well I was going down the column and there were a bunch of 2 Cello video’s available, I had never heard of 2Cellos, but I recognized the title of one song from the get go, “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC, and for those that know me, know that AC/DC is one of my favorite bands (maybe you didn’t know cause I do have hundreds of favorite bands), so of course I had to give it a view, and from that view grew this post.

I have attached (besides the inspirational video from Huntmode Facebook post) 5 additional videos from 2Cellos.  Two are from AC/DC, one from Guns & Roses, one from Michael Jackson, and finally one from Jimi Hendrix.  I know as sure as I am sitting in a black chair, in my office, that some of you can’t stand any of the bands I just listed, some of you love all of them, some of you are too young to appreciate Jimi Hendrix, and some of you are a mixture of all of the above, or for that matter none of the above. I know I now have a new appreciation for Guns and Roses LOL.  But if I could beg your indulgence, please do me this one favor and watch the “Thunderstuck” video. Angus Young (lead guitar for AC/DC) must be beside himself.

If you have any level of vivid imagination you can see the roots of rock: hardrock, grudgerock, acidrock, puckrock, in this video and besides it’s just fun, considering the setting, the music and most importantly the audience.  If this is the direction that elevator music is taking, I may ride elevators the rest of my life.

Thunderstuck – AC/DC – as covered by 2Cellos  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uT3SBzmDxGk

Jimi Hendrix – Purple Haze – as covered by 2Cellos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ae23y2D8VSI

Welcome to the Jungle – Guns and Roses – as covered by 2Cellos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3V7EugoweM4

Highway to Hell – AC/DC – as covered by 2Cellos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qfGggAGITwg

Smooth Criminal – Michael Jackson – as covered by 2Cellos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mx0xCI1jaUM

Sometimes as adults when we listen to the music our children enjoy we scratch our heads and know exactly why the world is going to hell in a hand basket. Other times we are filled with joy, the fact is, it’s their music.  If for every Foo Fighters, we discover a group like the Piano Guys or 2Cellos, we are all gaining and we are all part of the every growing metamorphosis of music.  I know when I was a kid, my dad had a conniption fit whenever he heard us play the Beatles, or the Rolling Stones, or SteppenWolf (Dad destroyed my copy of their album when he heard the song Pusher Man).  I know I looked at my daughter in sheer wonderment when I found out she enjoyed rap, and even gangster rap, music I detested then and even now, though I will admit I have become a fan of Kid Rock.

Quickly jumping down from my soapbox. The point is I am offering you six videos for your enjoyment, if you don’t like any of them that is your business your choice, and I completely appreciate it.  I get it, I am just saying discovering 2Cellos has made my day, and has satisfied an itch.

As always if you have any questions or concerns please feel free to ask them and as always your comments are greatly appreciated.  Thanks Bill

 

 

 

 
29 Comments

Posted by on April 9, 2014 in Grandpa Stories, Humor, Music, Observations, Ramblings

 

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My Education, if I Only Knew….. a Grandpa tale

I sit here today a bit over 64, being somewhat reflective (not!), thinking about what I wanted to share with you today.   I have George Thorogood’s “Bad to the Bone” slamming in my ears, but I know this post wasn’t going to be about music. In fairness I have been kicking the thought of my education and all the time I wasted in high school and even in the military schools I attended, and what could have been had I actually applied myself way back then.  In part this post also came about because yesterday I sat with Cari at the kitchen table practicing her multiplication tables.  Cari is in the 3rd grade and has not yet committed these to memory. We sat for over an hour practicing, we me giving her little lessons, and offering math truths as I knew them. And basically had a good time, I wouldn’t allow her to quit, and I wouldn’t allow her to just guess.   I know the truths (about math) I shared with Cari were correct because my wife (the math whiz) didn’t correct me. It was enjoyable to just sit with her and help. 

But this story is really about me, so let me get to it (btw Nickelback is pounding now).  When I went to school (1st grade thru 12th) I would have been the poster child for ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), but that term hadn’t been invented.  If my grades had been a touch worst I might have gotten to ride the short bus (very non PC) to school. I was probably only a stupid smile or two away from being called retarted (extremely  non-PC), but the simple truth is that school really didn’t keep my attention. It wasn’t interesting enough, it didn’t stimulate me in a way that made me want to excel.  Throughout my entire education process, the classes I found interesting and stimulating I did extremely well.  You could look at any given report card and find I got an F in “English” but I got an A in “Reading.” (3 Doors Down’s “Kryptonite” now blasting away) Another example would be that I got “C’s” in Math but “F’s” in Algebra.  I had found out early in the educational process that I did not have to apply myself at all in order to get just barely passing grades, so I didn’t. And there was no penalty at home, sure I got yelled at, and I got “grounded” all the time. But it wasn’t enforced and I had a job outside of the house, so that kinda took the wind out of being grounded. Also, the folks didn’t know my hours or my schedule so it was easy to get around being grounded. I cruised thru the first 13 years (I did the 3rd grade twice) of school without putting in a lick of work.  But again, the classes or components of classes I liked I did great.  So as a result, I became an extremely lazy student.  (Garth Brooks “Thunder Road” is now slamming) I only (studied) when it was absolutely necessary.  The day before a paper was due, or the night before a big test, I was the poster child for cramming. Imagine that, a student with ADD trying to cram. LOL LOL. Sometimes it worked mostly it didn’t.  But I did graduate high school, it took a summer school English class, and Mom begging, but I did graduate.  In my HS class were approximately 283 kids, I was something like 265 in ranking.  It is hard to imagine that many students who accomplished less in HS than me. 

These bad habits continued into my Navy career but really stopped while I was in Radioman “A” school. My class at NTCC San Diego was the last class of radioman school to teach and require a level of skill in Morse code.  I was lazy, and I was just getting by, all the other components of being a Radioman had my interest, and I did well in those aspects. But if I flunked out of Radioman “A” school I would end up on the deck crew as a boatswain mate, which equated to really really hard dirty work, that I knew I wanted to avoid.  The minimum standards (in 1969) for graduating from Radioman “A” school in Morse code was to be able to receive 12 words per minute (wpm) and transmit (6 or 8 not sure which) wpm with no more than 5 errors, over a 5 minute period.  On the last day of qualifying I could transmit 8 wpm, but I was still hung up on receiving the minimum 12. Test after test I failed. Each test was a different message using all characters on the keyboard.  But the light came on, and the dots and dashes became songs and I qualified 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18 and 20 wpm in separate tests over a 2 hour period. I went from the slowest code reader to the 3rd quickest in the class, and graduated “A” school in fine shape.  BTW I never in my Navy career actually copied a real Morse code message.  I really didn’t have much of an issue with class room training the rest of my Navy days, and all things considered did quite well during my active duty time.

When I got out of the Navy, it was suggested that I might want to go to college.  It seemed like a good idea, and an easy way to make some money.  I did have the GI Bill working for me.  So a few months after I got established in my job, I enrolled in Northern Virginia Community College. Because I had been out of HS so long I was required to take a college prep math and English classes.  These where were a snap, and I pretty much aced both of them.  Thus I started my college career.  I started with the same attitude and study habits that I had 10 years before in High School. The 1st couple quarters were easy because I chose classes I wanted to take so I put the effort in. But the next quarter I took classes I was required to take and did very poorly.  So poorly that the VA counselor called me to his office and said “Bill, if you don’t pick you grades up, you will have to pay the government back all the money you have received to date.”  That equaled about $1,800 over 6 months, folks if you don’t have 2 nickels; $1,800 is a crap load.  LMAO, folks I took a 1.69 GPA and converted it to a 3.27 over the next 3 years.  I never had to pay a penny back, and I loved college.  My favorite courses were those that required reading and comprehension, and simplistic math courses. I aced Accounting I, II, and III.  The math was simple; it was just knowing and understanding the rules. Economics for whatever reason was another class I loved and did extremely well.  The science classes gave me issues, and required every bit of effort I could muster to get thru.  Business Law was another class I found to be easy because it was all about reading and understanding the rules.  But my most favorite courses were the political science classes.  It allowed me to be opinionated and I was graded pretty much on my ability to be opinionated LOL. How cool is that. 

One of my favorite college stories involved an English Literature course.  It was mid-term time and the test consisted of 10 questions. We used “blue books” to complete the test.  The kicker was that each question started off “In your opinion” blab blab blab.  The next week the test came back and I got a B+. I was so pissed. I stood up and questioned the professor how my “opinion” was only worth a B+, she was quite shaken that anyone would question her, and was even more put off when she couldn’t successfully tell me my opinion was only worth a B+, and I demanded an A instead of a B+ and suggested we take it up with the Dean of English at NVCC.  The professor decided that maybe my opinion was indeed worth an A.  As soon as she said she would change my mid-term to an “A” most of the class stood and made the same demand.  And while she stared at me with daggers in her eyes she gave anyone that asked a better grade, (who answered all ten questions with something other than BS)  based on their opinion she gave them the better grade. 

But the professor won in the end.  When finals came around, it was the single most difficult test I have ever taken, period. But, while it was difficult it was fair. Also the word opinion was not on the test in any form. LOL LOL. (“Boom Boom” by The Animals is playing now) I killed myself taking that test, and barely had it turned in on time.  The next week I got the test results and I got a “B” for the test, I stared at the B and said quietly to myself “Thank You God!  I ended up getting an “A” for the course, but it was the hardest “A” I ever got. 

College was a wonderful experience, but my career started to take off and I made the decision to concentrate on being a Dad and my career.  Two of the best decisions I ever made.  I love being a Dad and granddad, and I had a great career. 

I rarely do could’ve, would’ve or should’ves.  It makes no sense to try and second guess myself all the time. I of am of the mind that if I changed one thing, that action then ripples thru the rest of my life, making slight or large changes in every aspect of my life from the time of the change forward, for the rest of my life. I have so much to be thankful for that, I don’t want risk any of it to change any one thing.  But as successful as I have been, I can only wonder how much more successful I could have been had I applied myself way back then. (Melissa Etheridge’s “Refugee” is playing now and almost seems appropriate) I am not going to speculate, but, damn I don’t think there would have been a mountain I couldn’t have climbed.  I hope this is a lesson Cari learns early, and takes to heart. 

Thank you for indulging me as I took this trip in the wayback machine.  Education is so very important, and it doesn’t have to be college, our world requires all manner of folks, with all manner of skills. Yes some of those skills are learned in college, but in this day and age, that is not the only place to get an education that you can build on, that you can support a family on, and reach all manner of success. 

While writing this I have listened to at least 25 songs. Each song has provided some level of influence.  The artist included: John Lee Hooker, Eric Clapton, Garth Brooks, Brooks and Dunn, Seether, AC/DC, Five Finger Death Punch, Nickleback and Marilyn Manson to name just a few.  It has been a very enjoyable afternoon.  I hope you have enjoyed yours as well.  Take care, if you have any comments, suggestions or thoughts you wanted to share, please do.  Bill

 
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Posted by on January 20, 2014 in Grandpa Stories, Observations, Ramblings

 

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How I Feel Today 12.27.13….

Good day folks, I don’t know about you, but around here it has been very hectic to say the least.  Santa came, and NO I didn’t get a bag of coal or a bunch of switches.  Santa was good to me (as I sit here grooving to my ITunes and listening on my Dr. Dre headphones).  I truly hope that each of you had a wonderful Christmas filled with love and joy.

Over the last week I have had only one doctor appointment.  That was with Dr. N, the doctor who installed the Mediport.  On Monday the 23rd he checked his handiwork and was pleased with himself.  The incision point was healing very nicely, the swelling and bruising are all but gone, and with the exception of the little bump in my upper right chest you would hardly notice the Mediport at all.  There are no real scars to brag about, but I did get a nice bracelet out of the deal.  Oh and I did get easier access, no being stuck 3 or 4 times to draw blood, and some peace of mind, and a bunch of other little benefits. All this equaling why the hell did I wait so frigging long.  No bad at all.

So how do I feel today, for the week ending today (12/27/13), I will give myself a 3, it’s a good score, but it’s a reflection of the acclamation of a weeks’ worth of activity, the being tired that comes from it, the overdoing, and all the other holiday issues that pile up.  And I wouldn’t trade those activities for a 3.5 week.  Another reason for the 3 (cause I know you will ask) is my coughing has jumped to a higher level.  Mostly non-productive, but from time to time a chunk of slightly yellow crap will come up. Just enough junk to put you on edge.

Shortly after Thanksgiving a fellow blogger (Huntsmode, who has a great blog) and fellow sufferer of COPD asked a question I didn’t have the answer (yes I know, that’s a great surprise).  Hunts wanted to know what my Vitamin D level was.  I didn’t know, but I asked the follow-up question, “Why?” Hunts stated that had been Vitamin D deficient, and thru the use of supplemental Vitamin D, it has greatly improved her level of this vitamin.  She also stated it seemed to help her breath easier.  I am all for breathing easier, so I had my Vitamin D level checked and I too am deficient in this needed Vitamin.  I was going to provide a lot of filler here with an extended list of potential problems from a lack of vitamin D, but there is so much information available on line by checking vitamin D deficiency you can check and see if it reaches out and grabs you.  I know it did me.  One of the biggest problems with a Vitamin D deficiency is that it hampers you immune system, so you become susceptible to many other bugs that bite.  And for those of us suffering from COPD we don’t need any additional bugs finding ways to bite us.

In keeping with due diligence, I also called the Blue Cross Blue Shield health coach.  She provide a lot of significant info, but one of the most important pieces of information she provided was to call, my pharmacist for potential interactions of a vitamin D supplement with the other drugs you are be taking.   And before going a step further, if you are considering self-medicating, I cannot emphasis strongly enough DON’T – DON’T let me repeat DO NOT CONSIDER SELF-MEDICATING. Talk to your doctor, get his buy in, his support, and if he or she won’t, find out why, a doctor’s response like a simple “no” or “let me think on it”, isn’t really an acceptable answer.  You need to stand up for yourself, your voice needs to be heard, and he is being paid the big bucks so “no” (without an explanation) is not the right answer!!!  Anyway, back to the post.  My pharmacist has advised me that there wouldn’t be any interactions with any of the drugs I am currently taking.  She also suggested that I have my doctor provide a prescription for Vitamin D.  She went on to say that prescription strength Vitamin D is stronger and cheaper than over the counter vitamin D.

I hope that my friends that suffer from any disease think about having their Vitamin D checked, it is a simple test, and while it won’t cure you, it may make your quality of life a touch better, and we all want that.  But again, if you’re thinking about it, consult your Doctor.

So Monday December 30, 2013, I will be talking to Doc Lungs for the last time in 2013 and this will be one of the main topics of discussion.  We will also be checking my INR.  As you remember I was off blood thinners for 5 days before surgery last week.  So this will be the 1st time in weeks that my INR has been checked, and I am betting that it’s close to therapeutic (between 2 & 3).  The only other doctor appointment looming in my near future is an appointment with Doc Head on 1/6/14.

All things considered December has been an extremely good health month for me. I really don’t have any complaints.  I got thru the hustle and bustled of Christmas shopping with the masses without bringing home an unwanted gift.  We had a great visit with the Kids and an early Christmas where Cari can take full credit for ampping me up health wise with her wonderful nature, and her performances both in Choir and Dance. And a surprise visit from my brother-in-law. Most likely my next post won’t be until the 5th or 6th of January, and it is my intention to kinda do a year in review post.

As a totally random sharing of information since I started writing this weekly report I have listened to at least 5 cuts from the these artists; SRV, 3 Doors Down, Match Box 20, Eric Clapton, Nickelback and a bunch of single cuts from: The Allmans Brothers, The Kinks, The Byrds, The Animals, Rob Zombie, Depeche Mode, Marilyn Manson, Five Finger Death Punch, Van Halen, Seether and Theory of a Deadman.  So if this post seems disjointed to you, I blame it on the music.  I have been in the wayback machine all morning.  I have been lip singing, and playing air guitar to all these tunes, and I haven’t been typing. For those of you that didn’t know playing air guitar is an aerobic exercise.  I do thank God there isn’t a hidden camera in my office. Oh the potential for blackmail, have mercy on me. This is not the normal process for me writing posts. I am just saying. 

On to the vitals for the week.  Clearly lip singing and playing air guitar are good for the body and soul.  My O2 level is running right at 95/96 pct, heart rate right at 100 (normal for me), the weight still sucks, but I am back down to 280.  Blood pressure at Dr. N’s office on Monday was 117/62 pretty damn good if I say so myself.  Temp was low normal, 98.1.  So my numbers have been good. 

Folks thanks for sticking with me, and getting to the end of the post.  I hope you have a safe and wonderful New Year’s (key word SAFE).  Look for my next “How I Feel Today” post the 1st week of January 2014.  As always your thoughts, comments or concerns please feel free to let me know.  Take care, Bill

 
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Posted by on December 27, 2013 in How I feel on a particular day, Ramblings

 

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The Feast is over but not forgotten !! subtitle – the post FEAST workout.

The kids (Allison, Stu and Cari) arrived on Tuesday evening on time, well actually early, which is a very rare event.  Steph and I had prepared (well Steph prepared, I cleaned) a smorgasbord of Chinese dishes for dinner, which were consumed immediately with great gusto.  The family retired to the den, to sit, relax, and plan for Wednesday which was our Thanksgiving.  Those decisions made, Allison invited (challenged) me to a game of Triple Yahtzee, a tradition of sorts when we celebrate any holiday.  Being the wonder father I am I said sure (knowing full well I would kick her butt).  As we sat down at the kitchen table, Cari my 8 year old daughter asked if she could play. Allison asked her if she knew how to play, and she replied, “yes, we play it in school.”  That being said, we said sure, knowing that the game just got longer, and we would spend a considerable amount of time explaining to Cari what was going on, and how to keep score, and even strategy.  Lord could I have been more mistaken.  Clearly Cari had played, clearly she understood the game, and clearly she had some sense of strategy.  I was so wonderfully amazed.  Then DAMN IT!!! she kicked my butt.  She had her own little rendition of the Happy Yahtzee Dance, and a little song to go with it.  Not only did I hear the song once during the game, I got to hear it a second time.  True to my thinking I did kick Allison’s butt, but Cari KICKED mine.  It was wonderful.  But it did get tiring, over the 2 and half days the kids spent with us, Cari beat me 6 out of 8 Go Fish Games, I had one win and 1 tie.  She also spanked me at Sega Racing on my MY Xbox.  Cari was so joyful, having the kids here for thanks giving was wonderful, and I hope that we continue to find a way to have Thanksgiving together as long as I am available.  The meal did take over 5 hours to prepare, and also like predicted it took 30 minutes to consume.  Dishes were complete washed and put away an hour later.  It was a wonderful feast.

One of the many wonderful comments I got about the Feast came from a very dear and very special blogger Chatter Blog.  If you want insightful, meaningful, fun, and honesty put together in a short wonderful message, please check her out.  Anyway, Chatter asked (kinda demanded) that because I made her gain “13.2 pounds just reading this” that I had to create a workout to help her lose that which I freely gave her.  So with that in mind, and out of total respect for Chatter, I have developed the following as a sure way to shed some of the weight I caused, but you have to help by not having 2nds and 3rds and the some extra like I did.

Folks this was my workout which I did 3 times a week while in Pulmonary Rehab.

treadmill – 40 minutes at 2 mph

Arm Crank – 30 pct resistance for 15 minutes

Airdna Bike – 300 rpm for 15 minutes

Recumbent Bike – set at level 3 for 15 minutes

Airdyne Arms – set at level 4 for 15 minutes

Stair Stepper – set at level 3 for 15 minutes

Weight training – 10 stations, 3 sets of 20 at each station, weights varied from 30 to 150 pounds.  Leg work was done at 150 pounds.  Arms and shoulders work anywhere from 30 to 50 lbs.

Sit ups – 3 sets of 20

I would be sweating like a pig at the end, but quite proud of myself.  Being honest this was quite easy (not really) but because I had my IPod and was listening to my tunes all was right with the world and I could get thru it.   

 

The very 1st time I when to pulmonary rehab, the lab had a source of music that was not tailored to my needs at all.  I remember distinctly the tunes were from an era and grouping that left me wanting for something anything to help motivate me.  Listening to the provided music was more difficult than the actual workout.  From the 2nd workout on, I brought my IPod with my 1700 potential songs. Setting the IPod to random made for some unique song grouping, and as a result I created the playlist called “Walking Music.”  I would dawn my headphones and work my way around the gym, the music made the workout a pleasure.

When I walk on the treadmill, I always hold the hand rails. But I close my eyes blanking out the world to me and my music.  Folks I am here to tell you I can’t carry a note in a basket.  Cats having their tails under rocking chairs sound much much better than I do singing.  And here in lies the problem.  With the headset on, and in my own little world I sometimes don’t lip sing, I actually sing, and sometimes quite loud I am told.  Anyway, one morning while walking on the treadmill, I was gentle touched by one of the nurses.  She said, something along the lines, of that while I liked how I sung, and while for laugh factor it was great to hear me sing, the other patrons were not as into my music as I was.  I was asked to make a very real effort to not SING, especially the lyrics to some of the songs, on my playlist. That Playlist is below.  My workout generally lasted 20 songs.  Because I had it set up to be random I never knew which song was going to be next.  But by looking at the list you can get a feel for the type music I enjoy.

Slide1

 

 

 

I am sorry for the sizing of the “Walking List” but if you get your readers, and a magnifying glass you should be just fine.

Folks, if you follow the guidelines for the post Feast workout, and if you have yourself a great playlist.  You should be able to get rid of any extra pounds I caused.

As always if you have any questions, concerns or comments, please share them.  Take care and have a great Day.  BTW let the shopping begin in earnest.  — Bill

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2013 in Grandpa Stories, Humor, Observations, Ramblings

 

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My Music….

When Cari reads this she is going to have to dig deep into her own UTube source to find out what I was thinking.  The week before last I shared with a few a music video by a new version of the Boogie Woogie Twins.  I have watched that video at least a dozen times since I shared it, but it got me to thinking about the music I truly love.  My wife gave me an IPOD for Christmas about 5 years ago. I painstakingly loaded over 1800 songs from our CD collection.  And just as painstakingly I whittled down that list of sounds to approximately 1250 songs.  Over time I have made a few dozen purchases.  So I am now well over 1300 songs.

I am going to list the 20 most played songs on my IPod, and then I am going to talk about some of my favorites, and give a little personal history. (Like you didn’t think personal history would come into play)  If I considered a song to be among my all-time favorites it will be in bold.  Here goes;  1) Statesboro Blues by the Allman Brothers, 2) Next Contestant by Nickelback 3) Boom Boom by The Animals 4) Animals by Nickelback 5) For What it’s Worth by The Buffalo Springfield 6) Mr. Tambourine Man by the Byrd’s 7) Changes the Locks by Lucinda Williams 8) Call Me the Breeze by Lynyrd Skynrd 9) Whipping Post by The Allman Brothers 10) Thunder Struck by AC/DC 11) Bad Company by Five Finger Death Punch 12) Save a Horse Ride a Cowboy by Big and Rich, 13) Follow you Home by Nickelback 14) Hoochie Coochie Man by Eric Clapton 15) Good Time Gone by Nickelback 16) Country Song by Seether 17) Personal Jesus by Depeche Mode 18) Lowlife by Theory of a Deadman 19) Time of the Season by The Zombies and 20) Go Rest High on That Mountain by Vince Gill.  Some of the songs that didn’t make the top 20 played but should have are: Southern Cross but Crosby, Stills, and Nash, Crossroads by Clapton, The Dope Show by Marilyn Manson, Steam by Peter Gabriel.  Hell I need to be careful or I will list all 1300 songs on my IPod. This list by no means represents my favorites.  But on my IPod, I have a playlist called “Walking Music” which when I was going the respiratory therapy came in real handy.  Then center pumped o u t some rather sedate music, which I couldn’t use to motivate myself. I created this list to get me going, to fire up my motor, and it worked.  I could do 40 mins on the treadmill at 2 miles an hour listening to this music.  When my treadmill time and distance were thru, I shifted to one of the different “Blues” lists to listen to while doing the weight training.  The point is every time I went to PT this Walking Music would play and then selections from other lists.

When I was doing the PT’s I didn’t mind sharing my music.  With the music blasting in my ears and head, my heart racing, my BP okay, my O2 sinking, and my heart rate on a roller coaster, the music work for me, yes I knew there was some overflow from my headset, but again, I didn’t mind sharing my music, but alas, apparently my taste in music might have offended some of the others, so I had to tune it down Damn it!!  Which I did, and that is the end of that story, though I was asked time and again why (at my age) did I liked that music, the simple answer was because it worked.  It helped me put forth the effort necessary to get the most from the PT’s. Besides I love music especially LOUD music.

I want to spend a few words talking about my favorite song.  If you had asked me two years ago to name my favorite song it would have been impossible.  My love for music spans fifty plus years and at any given point I would have had a favorite.  So when I was asked that question I gave a short list of 2 or 3 songs depending on my mood.  But now I have a favorite song, and I know it will stand the test of time. It is Go Rest High on That Mountain by Vince Gill, if you haven’t heard it (and are interested) it just type it in the search box on your internet home page, it will take you to many an opportunity to hear it.   The first time I heard this song was at my Mom’s funeral, it is such a sad, and joyful, and passionate, sorrowful song and every time I listen to it I cry and smile at the same time.  Because it is now playing I have to take a break.

Back, with Go Rest High On The Mountain is top of the list; I have a ton of songs that would be tied for 2nd place depending on when you asked me. On my list of most played you will find several of them and I will add a few to this paragraph. So here goes Superstition by Stevie Ray Vaughn, Crossroads by Clapton, With Arms Wide Open by Creed, Tattoo by Van Halen,  A Warrior’s Call by Volbeat, In your Eyes by Peter Gabriel, Tobacco Road by The Nashville Teens, Beer for my Horses and How Do You Like Me Now by Toby Keith, this list could go on and on but I am going to stop and list some Bands and Artists (not already listed) that are important to me: Roger McGuinn, Jimi Hendrix, Aretha Franklin, Matchbox Twenty, Buddy Guy, BB King, Bo Diddley, John Lee Hooker, George Thorogood and the Destroyers, The Kinks, Disturbed, Evans Blue, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, Brooks and Dunn, Neil Young by himself, Travis Tritt, Cream, Linkin Park, Melissa Etheridge, Marilyn Manson, Nickelback, Kid Rock, Genesis, Garth Brooks, lord have mercy I am suffering from SOB just writing this list, needless to say it’s an even longer list. It is a quite diverse list of the music.  There is only period of music that I am hard pressed to say I have a favorite from, and that’s the Disco era.  The worst (saddest) part of it is I had the white platform shoes, the wide white belt and 2 polyester leisure suits (lime green and day glow orange).  And I actually went in public dressed like that.  Thank God there is no photographic evidence of this.  I know I couldn’t live it down.

I have a short story to share and a comment, then the abuse of your senses is over for today.  When I was a kid I wanted to be a ROCK & ROLL hero, I could not play an instrument and I could only carry a tune in a basket.   So I figured the closest I could get would be to manage a band (Cari cover your eyes) cause they got laid too.  Me and a friend spent 100 of hours and I mean 1000’s listening to albums from the Who, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and other big bands of our time, and painstakingly copying down the lyrics of every song on every album we could get our hands on so we could provide this wealth of knowledge to a local band we were trying to hook up as their manager. Back in the old days, they didn’t put the lyrics on the album jacket, you had to buy it, so we thought we were doing someone a big favor, well, we didn’t know how to manage poop, and we knew even less about the music industry, and less on what bands wanted in the way of a manager.  Every band we approached 1 had a manager, and 2 had already paid for the lyrics and sheet music to the songs they needed.  My career as a band manager came to a screaming halt before it even got off the ground, but I did meet some cute girls.  So it wasn’t a total failure.  I had become friends with a band member, and because of that friendship, I did get to hang around with the band and that was my hall pass. LOL LOL.

This is wordy enough I hope you enjoyed the trip thru my head regarding my likes of music.  BTW my vehicle has XM radio, I listen to Octane, and the Blues Channel 99 percent of the time when driving about by myself.  When the wife is in the car, for some strange reason we listen to whatever she wants.  LMAO but as soon as she is out of the car, the volume goes back to 7 or 8 and I turn on the music I want LOL.

Oh Lord, I almost forgot the comment I was going to make, I know you just said “damn it he remembered”.  I am the self-proclaimed world’s best air guitarist.  The key is the self-proclaimed part here LOL.  I will make another comment, I still can’t carry a tune without a bucket, but when I am sitting in my house with no one here, I sing every song that plays, I rock and roll, I have all the rock star moves, and it gives me great pleasure to strut my stuff, just thank God there are no witnesses. Take care, Bill

Folks please take care, if you have any questions comments or thoughts regarding my choices in music I would love it is you shared them. Also if you choose to respond please include one or two of your favorite songs, I promise I will go check them out. Please take care, Bill.

BTW I am in better spirits this week.  Take care

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2013 in Grandpa Stories, Humor, Ramblings

 

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