Friday, February 03, 2006

How Bad is it?

-I sneezed this evening and my right eyeball fell into my lap.
-I used excess snot to refill my lava lamp.
-My ears are ringing so loudly I answered the phone 27 times today and it only rang twice.
-Bailey the Killer Beagle asked me to stop coughing because the squirrels can't hear her bark.
-The siesmology department of Washington University called and asked me to please jump into the air when I cough because I'm causing false earth quake reports.
-The meth dealers asked me to stop buying up all of the Pseudoephedrine.
-The Kleenex Corporation is naming their new multi-pack box after me.
-I had to squeegee my laptop screen repeatedly.
-The Weather Channel clocked my sneeze-gusts in Pittsburgh.
-FEMA has a trailer in my driveway.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

There are things in the universe that make sense, there are things in the universe that don't make sense. I am dealing with a couple of those items right now. I hope you don't mind if I elaborate. Because I am going to. It's my blog.

Why is it that science can cure horrible diseases like polio and small pox but they can't put a dent in the common cold? The entire world seems to be sniffling and sneezing right now. Well, most of the world. I watched some wild eyed maniac's in another country tonight chanting on the evening news about how they want to kill me and everybody who looks and acts like I do. I've never met any of them and I am not sure why they want me dead. But none of them seemed to have a snot problem. Come to think of it, have you ever heard of a wild eyed maniac getting sick? I went to high school with a girl whose father was a prison guard in Stateville penitentiary near Joliet. Part of his assignment was to watch the mass murderer, Richard Speck. She told me about how he spent his time making incredible works of art. He not only killed people but he painted in his spare time. She never mentioned him being sick. Do convicts get Kleenex? Is that one of their civil rights? What if you were strapped to the gurney awaiting lethal injection and you had to sneeze? Would they unstrap you so that you could wipe your nose or would it just be tough noogies for you? Dying is bad enough. Dying with snot hanging from your nose might just be cruel and unusual.

But back to the sane people.

Why do they call it a "bad" cold? Have you ever had a "good" cold? Do you know anybody who has? I think not. So that "bad" part is superfluous, don't you think? Wasted syllables. I suppose that we have plenty of spare syllables though so never mind.

Can you die from a "bad" cold? If it gets really, really bad? If you read my last blog you will know that my father-in-law had brain surgery two days ago. He's doing remarkably well. He left ICU today and is in a regular room. I talked to him on the phone. He's bald now. My wife e-mailed me a picture and he looks like Colonel Klink from Hogan's Hero's. Scary. But how weird would it be if my wife flew all of the way to Richmond, Virginia to watch after her father who was having his head drilled on and meanwhile, back at home, I died of a "bad" cold. What do you suppose that would do to her psyche? I would really like to worry about that for her sake but I can't because I seem to be out of Kleenex. I have resorted to using toilet paper to blow my nose. My nose finds that repulsive. It knows what part of the body toilet paper is made for and I do believe that it feels insulted to have reduced to that level.

Ok, well I'm over it now. Not the cold. I still have that. I'm just over having to talk about it. I am off work tomorrow so I plan on doping myself up with ibuprofin and some tylenol pm minus the tylenol. They have a name for it but I'm not sure what it is. If I take enough I won't have to get up in the middle of the night for more toilet paper masquarading as Kleenex. You know, sometimes whining to a computer screen really does help. I feel oddly better. Not good enough to proclaim myself healed but still.

Drip. Drip. Drip.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Today my father-in-law had brain surgery. That is pretty serious stuff. I could crack jokes about how they will probably only charge him half price. Or about how they went in, looked around, and didn't find anything. Jokes like that are kind of funny AFTER the surgery. When you are joking with the guy who actually went through it and now he's got his eyes open and he's laughing with you because everything is ok. But until then ... it's really not very funny at all.

I have a really wonderful father-in-law. There has been a time or two when I think he's forgotten about the "in-law" part. Times when he's treated me like a real flesh and blood son. That is the kind of guy he is. I mean he's not perfect or anything. That is one of the reasons why I like him so much.

I remember when I was just dating his daughter. He owned an elevator company with his brother in Chicago. He got a call to go downtown one night for a "shut down." All I knew for certain was that this meant some poor guy's elevator had quit working and that my father-in-law was the guy to go fix it. He asked his daughter and I to accompany him on the journay. I figure, what the heck? Worst that can happen is that I spend a couple of hours on top of some high rise with this beautiful blonde while he fixes the thing. So I went.

I almost died that night. One of my father-in-laws (nearly) fatal flaws is that he's basically a horrible driver. I really don't know how he has lived to be 73. My memory says it was about 9PM. It was definately after dark. We were in this place where the Dan Ryan Expressway merges with the Stevenson Expressway and cuts over to Lake Shore Drive. Very busy. Very inner city. You have to be careful here. So as my father-in-law merges from the right there is this big tractor-trailer to his left. He figured the trailer was in his way. He couldn't move it so he did the next best thing. He let it go by. Now when I let a tractor trailer go by I generally allow it to finish passing before I pull in behind it. My father-in-law never really believes in doing things the ordinary way. He let about 7/8ths of the trailer go by and then went ahead and pulled over behind it. Well, actually ... under it. I am not kidding. I am not exaggerating. The hood of our car was UNDER the back of the trailer. That, my friends, is a merge.

He told me before he went into surgery (they were about to drill four holes into his cranium and pump out some blood and crud that had gathered there, threating to give him a stroke) that his anxiety level was a one. That's on a scale of one to ten. Ten being high. He wasn't too worried. I suppose when you live under the tail end of a tractor trailer at 65mph a little thing like a drill to the head doesn't really intimidate you.

He came through the surgery just fine though it took about twice as long as it was supposed to take. I don't know why. He might well have been sharpening their drill bit for them before they started. That would not surprise me in the least. When he woke up his first question was if he was in South Carolina. He was in Richmond, Virginia. I suppose he got the continent right which is more than I would have done.

My father-in-law really loves Jesus. I have learned a lot about the Savior by watching his life. Like I've learned how to get forgiven. My father-in-law is the kind of guy that seems to need to get forgiven a lot. I don't say that in a mean way. I simply mean that he is human. And when he blows it he is smart enough to repent. Jesus liked that in a man. So do I. I blow it a lot too. More than you want to know about. But I do know what to do about it.

I repent. And I stay out from under tractor trailers. See, I've learned two very important things from my father-in-law. And he let me keep the beautiful blonde as a bonus.

Life is good.