Thursday, November 10, 2022


Thursday, trash out day

Just nonsense.  Spent the first part of the week wondering at the political process.  It was wandering.  Of course, as we all should know, I could care less what your political opinions are unless they coincide with mine.  Yes, my political opinions are the only ones that count.  I am willing to share my political brilliance if asked.  Spoiler alert:  if you are a democrat, don't ask.

This morning's today show had Bobby Flay giving his chicken parmesan recipe.  We have been discussing this very dish off and on for a week.  I hit record on the tv box.  Next, I used my phone to find the recipe from Bobby Flay - he does have a charming personality.  I found one on phone which had a print sign.  Loped over to computer room and hit the print button.  Such a dreamer I yam.  It didn't work.  It tried to send the recipe to some unknown source by FAX,  

Turned on big computer (desktop, not laptop -my lap isn't big or stable enough).  After waiting patiently  for the machine to function, I dug around and found several entries under Google for this delight.  Printing was another thing.  One "print" button sent me to another website where they wanted all of my personal info and a fee to register.  


Finally found a recipe with a proper print button.  Nothing printed and computer froze up.  When it freezes, I never know if it is me or AOL messing up.  I do have a tendency to think it is AOL.  I hit Cntl - Alt - Delete.  Rebooted the machine.  Meanwhile, the spouse and I made it to the kitchen for a beautiful lunch of leftovers.  It's a dirty job; but, somebody has to do it.

With Computer re-booted, I opened the printer app and deleted everything in the queue.  Nothing there since machine had re-booted.  Found a setting in Printer App and did some rearranging of preferences.

Back to Google.  Found the recipe.  Printed and stapled.  Am ready to go.  I hope it was worth the effort.


Son texted last night.  They had to put one of their dachshunds to sleep last night.  MAX.   He was a good boy.  Long legged - long nose - nice mutt.  It made me really sad and depressed.  We have gone through that much too often  Had I been smart years ago, we would have had parrots and turtles instead of dogs.  Their life span is longer than mine.  Let my children or Grand Girls mess with it.


I'm having a marijuana issue.   The news says that 12 states have legalized the leaf.  I just don't understand the why.  Here we are - daily - fussing about drunks, alcoholics, fried brains - and, they add marijuana to the mix.  I don't get it.  I just don't get it.

Potheads!!!  They will be more responsible than beer drinkers.  It doesn't make sense.


Today, I have had 3 phone calls wanting to buy my rent house in Waxahachie.  Yesterday and the day before ???  same thing.  I get calls daily and snail mail daily wanting to buy Waxa.  For a while, I use to say something like, "Send me a check for half mil, and it's yours."  Now, I just tell them how many calls I've had this week.  

It is similar to when we had a hail storm last spring.  Starting at 7 a.m. the next morning, we had hundreds of shingle salesmen ringing our door bell.  They just kept comin' and comin' for over a month.  I finally got a roofer's sign and planted in the front yard.  I heard this would deter salesmen.   It didn't.

And, it is like the guys who are pushing solar panels for your roof.  These guys don't know anything about the money - just certain misleading facts - no cost to the home owner - new policy:  one low price - it never stops.  Back to the real estate thing.......

OPINION: These home buyers / folks are going to a weekend seminar, paying good money, and hearing how some slick talking feller made a million dollars.  They sit in awe.  Monday rolls around, and they begin searching for houses without the "Homestead" exemption.   "Grab the phone Mrytle, I just found another hot lead."  Surely someone has made a score somewhere.

Take you back to the 70s when lovable Jimmy Carter was in office.  Inflation soared (just like today), gasoline went sky high (just like today) and bad people in other countries began to take advantage of a weak president (just like today).  I quit teaching and earned my real estate broker's license.  My partner and I would find homes for sale by owner (FSBO).  We'd make an appointment - look the house over -  make an offer on the house.  Several took us up on the offer.    Buy the house, fix it a bit, and resale for a profit.   Good plan.   I just wish my partner hadn't been a slick talking feller.

The houses we bought had low interest rates on them.  With assistance from a certain bank, we would buy and refinance at the 16+ % interest rate and help the bank unload its low interest notes.  It was a good plan until people quit buying houses.  The plan is still good.  But you have to know "when to fold and when to hold 'em."    Thus, endeth my lecture.   QUIT CALLING ME!  HALF MIL OR NADA.


Last night, my cousin Red called me rather late.  (RED:  guess his hair color)  

Red, (I knew him by another name in years past) is getting up there in years like me.  I'd suppose that he is almost 80.  He has been getting a facebook messenger thing from my wife.  Something like: "Why don't you answer me?"  So forth.  Well, folks, my wife doesn't do messenger.  Someone has made a connection.   I told Red to ignore and block the messages, cause my wife don't do dat stuff.  Someone has found a way to do this scam.  Suppose I should go online and try to warn some folks.  Or not.


{The following contains a news item and an outright lie, by me.}

Local paper announce that there will be a solar eclipse in April of 2024 at about 1:30  right here in the center part of Texas.  It will last for a while.  Based upon other things from the past, I believe we will have many folks visiting our area for the sight.   It could be fun.    

(now for lie)  When Beto O'Roarke heard this -- April, 2024 at 1:30 - he asked, "A.M. or P.M.?"

Speaking of Beto.

I hope he goes away.  El Paso:  this is your fault.

I saw a cartoon (don't know who wrote it) which shows Beto standing at the Louisiana State Line with a sign:   "Hello, Louisiana, I am Beteaux O'Roarke."  I'd give credit to the author if I knew it.  Please don't sue me.


All Hades just broke out here at my house.  The Amazon truck pulled up out front and my lovely dog Sadie just let loose with some expletives that I didn't know she knew.  Good watch dog.

Thunk I'll quit for now.

take care and remember to hug your dog (or cat).  You never know when you'll lose one of them.


Tuesday, November 8, 2022




(special thanks to bro-in-law Ernie for this message)

Friday, November 4, 2022

Revisit 82 is just 28 spelled backwards


Today - my 82nd birthday.    Born about 12:05 at night.   

I understand my brother Jim (16 months old) was standing in his crib watching when it happened.  Yes, I was born at home, not a hospital --   Tecumseh, Oklahoma

My mom was the high school band director at the time.

I'm sure there is more to the story, but I wasn't paying attention.  Some guy kept hitting me on my back.  


Monday, October 31, 2022

Hallowed Weenie

 This was a good night, Halloween 2022.

We lived on Richland-Chambers lake just east of Corsicana for about 14 years  --  the last house on the left with a nice cul-de-sac.  For 14 years, I shopped for candy, and piled it by the front door ready and waiting for the mass of ghosts and goblins to arrive.  During the entire 14 years, we had zero, zip, nada, 0 trick or treaters.  After a few years, my wife would fuss at me for buying candy.  I bought it on the QT and waited.  I was the Linus waiting in the pumpkin patch for the Great Pumpkin to appear.


14 years

Moved to Salado - the Amity development  (yes, Amity, not Amityville).  This is a nice area with large lots and affordable houses - well, most don't sell for half million or so.  Quiet.  Good yards.  People out walking their dogs.  Most houses have an unattached steel shed - mine is about 20' x 30'.  I really like the neighborhood - or most of it anyway.

Since daughter Christine became part of our household, life has taken on a different slant at times.  She has been living in a duplex with a small yard and somewhat scary neighborhood.  For 15 years or so, she has seen Halloween come and go.  Nobody did the trick or treat thing.  Would you send your kid out where the neighbors camp out in their front yards daily (nightly) eating and drinking and playing loud music of unknown origin?

Today - here she is in a completely different environment.  I bought an enormous package of candy at Walmart - 350 pieces of snickers, M&Ms, 3 musketeers -- you know the company.  We didn't give away any trash candy.

Christine, did some decorating outside.  We moved a couple of chairs to the front porch area.  All lights were turned on.  The candy was poured into a large plastic bowl. She found scary music to play over a speaker.  Then, at 6 p.m. we moved to the front area and waited.  Nothing.  6:05 silence.   About 6:10 a family of 4 walked by.  They were our first.   Another 3 came in a couple more minutes.  It is still light outside.

All of a sudden the flow began.  WHO LET THE GHOULS OUT?   Little kids, Big kids, tiny babies in the arms of a mother, an entire family dressed as the Addams family, dinosaurs, ninja fighters, clowns, Disney, princess darling, characters from TV and Movies that I have never seen, a group of older boys who stopped across the street and sang Christmas carols - yes, a serenade, lighted golf carts loaded with urchins.   I cannot describe all that came to our house. 

I had given my daughter instructions to give each kid 2 pieces of candy.  It was a good thing.  We gave away 227 pieces of candy.  Next year, I'm buying 2 bags of good candy and giving each person more.

It was a fun evening.  We stopped at 7:30 in the dark with nobody in sight.  For a while I thought I might have to go inside and break into my wife's secret stash of Snickers.  In all of my career, I have NEVER seen this much traffic of monsters and creatures on a Halloween night.

I'll say it again.

It was a fun night.

M3, The Candy Man

Monday, October 24, 2022

Every new week is "new" (different)

It seems that each week is arriving at a much faster rate.  This is almost a cliche.  The older you get, the faster the years fly by.  It may not be for everyone, but for me - t'is true.  I suppose a young guy sitting on death row might have a different interpretation.  For me - things are going by really fast.  Do you remember how long it took for Christmas or your birthday to arrive when you were younger?  Not  anymore Charlie.

I just finished up the radiation treatments when we were thrown into my wife's cataract surgery.  (As I have noted before, it should be called Cadillac Surgery $$$).  A week ago Tuesday, I took her to the Pavilion (Baylor Scott & White eye place) for surgery.  They told us to arrive at 9:50 - - no earlier, just 9:50.  We did.  Checked in and found our special room.  She had to wear a hospital gown only on her top half.  Blue jeans were fine for the remainder - AND - I liked this one - she had to wear her shoes to surgery.  Yep.  Shoes.  Why?  They don't want her bending over to put on the shoes especially if it makes her head go lower than the heart.  Who'd a thunk?

We were hardly in the room when the process began.  About 10:20, she was rolled down the hall while I stayed in the room to wait.  The nurse gave me the remote control: "Husbands always want the remote."  I had brought a couple magazines and a Sudoku paperback to keep busy.  10:20 rolled out  - by 11:05 she was rolled back into the room,  wide awake and ready to go.  Mind boggling.  

They had put lots of drops in the eyes so she couldn't see clearly.  Nurse:  "That will go away by afternoon."   Wrong.   All afternoon and evening all I heard was something like, "I can't see."  It pleasured me when she went to bed.

Morning blossomed, and it was:  "I can see. I can see."  She went from one thing to another pointing out what she could see  -- a man on his lawn 2 blocks away --  the house numbers on the house across the street.   Marvelous.  Later that day, back to the doctor for a check over we traveled.  He thought she was doing fine except she had pressure in her eye.  10 ro 20% of people have pressure after surgery.   I didn't watch.  He used some machine up against the eye.  I'm guessing he poked a little hole in the eye to let off pressure.  Yes, I didn't watch.

Here's another bit:  Doc said that people normally have eyes that are size 23 --  I do  suppose that is MM.  whatever.  Her eyes are size 21.  He said that she had very little eyes.  I held my tongue and said nothing about "beady little eyes."  Probably helped save my life at the time.

For the past week:  I put eye drops in her eyes 4 times a day.   Two different prescriptions RX, 4 times a day.  Later this week it goes to 1 prescription 4 times daily.  She has these clear plastic big lenses that are taped over her eyes at night.  It keeps her from rubbing the eyes during the middle of the night.  Frankly, this was a tough battle to fight.  You must wear the lenses overnight.  No argument.  Wear the lenses over night.   


Done.  another appt later this week; then, a final appt. in a month to check if she will need glasses - reading whatever.  I'm glad it is over and the eye drops are nearing their conclusion.   

I'm next though.  Probably, this time next year, he will do my eyes.  I like this guy.  Personable, knowledgeable, no indecisions, and good at answering questions.              Dr. Mark Morgan.  

Now we move quickly into whatever comes next.  There will be something in the near future.  What?  

Mtz on the back porch enjoying the cooler weather.

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Eyes have it

 After many months of waiting (last April), my wife went in today and had her eyes scanned in anticipation of her (I like to say) Cadillac surgery.  When you can't spell a certain word, find one that is close and use it.  Remember to smile.

Considering how much this surgery may cost - BMW surgery may be a better title.  I would have said Lambogeenee Surgery if I knew how to spell that word.  Of course, my puter wants to help me with the spelling.  But, I don't care.  If you care, look it up.

After looking at the little bright light in the doctor's office and being scanned, we went to another building where different docs listened to her heart.  The logic:  When she has "Cadillac" surgery, if something should go wrong, they can say they checked my wife over and she was okay.  If that isn't close to a run-on sentence, I'm not working hard enough.

Outside one of the waiting rooms, we asked a nurse type person if they had a good waiting room.  I was just being full of nonsense.  

She stopped and said, "No, it's not.  It doesn't have whiskey."   We all chuckled.   I love it when people can do their job and still keep their tongue in the cheek.

After all of the testing, a stop was made at the Golden Corral.  In the past 2 weeks we have eaten at a couple fast food places.  The Golden Corral was within a dollar of each.  At the G.C. you get real food and a salad.  You want a burger?  They gots it.  You want meat loaf?  Buckle up your silver belt and call me Cowboy.  They gots that too.  Fried fish & hushpuppies - black eye peas - chicken, fried with too much crust - and sweets galore.  I once knew a dancer by that name:  Pretty little Sweets Galore.  Quite a dancer.

Walking across one of the doctor parking lots today, we passed a rusting white mini-van. . . bumper sticker on the back window:   My dachshund is smarter than your Honor Student.  I believe that says it all.  Our Sadie is way above average.

love ya,


Sunday, September 25, 2022

A Rock

 I was doing just fine until she handed it to me ...


This past Friday was my last Radiation visit.  Radiation deserves to be capitalized here.  I don't know how Radiation works or in my case at this time - if it does works.  Friday was my 42nd trip to Baylor Scott & White Oncology Radiation - desk XT - Nine weeks it has been.

Here is how it works.  You find a place to park out back and waddle up to the building.  The glass doors slide open admitting  you to a foyer with appropriate masks.  Put on the mask (sigh).  Walk through another sliding glass door and turn right.  A very nice lady - receptionist if you will - greets you with an appropriate greeting.  She asks if you have any new covid symptoms.  I try to beat her to the question explaining that I have no new diseases at this time.  For some reason that seems to bring a chuckle.  There are two ladies at this "kiosk" - you get one or the other.  Both are sweeter than pecan pie.

[ Side Bar:   Leaving Thursday, I stopped at this desk to ask a question.  I notice our young lady had a painted rock on her desk area.  I started to point at it and comment - I like painted rocks - and my hand grazed her pictures lined up beside the pretty rock.  I set off a clatter of disorder.  Things calmed, and I told her that I liked her rock.  For such a simple mission, I caused such a loud commotion. ] 

Once checked in, you sit and wait.  The room has various folks - sitting - waiting - nobody really talks.   Some I recognize from previous visits; but, there are always new people waiting.   If a nurse comes out and calls a name, that person arises and follows.  If the person is accompanied by 2 or more others, it must be their first time to see the doctor.  Everyone wants to hear what the doctor has to say.  I know when I first arrived months ago, my family went to the back room with me and met the doc.  I'm guessing it is a tradition for scared people and their scared families.  

In my case, I await the "Rad Tech" to come for me.  "Mr. Metze," is called; I walk through the door;  pleasant greetings and small talks are exchanged as we walk down the long hallway; my birth date is requested and checked on the computer --- "11 - 4 - 40," I respond.   Into the ambient lit room I go - my small backpack is deposited on an awaiting chair - and, I climb upon my metal table which has been covered with a white cloth.  

A block is placed between my feet as they are tied down.  A longer block of wood is slid under my knees.  A small wood block awaits my head - yes, a head rest for a block head if you will.  Next, a small white cloth is placed over my stomach - I affectionately calls this my "modesty blanket."  I slide my hands under the cloth and lower my shorts.  This exposes me to the machine. Finally, a small 6 inch round hoop is given to me to hold.  It helps me keep my hands planted on the chest, out of the way.

The young ladies {RadTechs} adjust the machine and the table before leaving out a door which is slid shut. The rest is just staying still as the big ole white machine rotates over me.  The machine first checks to see if I have gas in the intestines - if so, back the young ladies come and a tube is used to remove the gas - not my favorite thing.  This happened 3 times in my 42 days of zapping.

Obviously, when completed, the process is done in reverse.  The young lady walks in and says, "All through."  Never fails.  I dress; speak a departing salutation; and, yes, all through.   Tomorrow comes - same thing.

**On Thursdays, as I leave, the doctor and I discuss how it is going.  It is always going okay.

**On Mondays, before I leave the girls remark my tattoos with a big pen.  Tattoos are explained in a previous message.

But, on this last day, Friday, after I was zapped; I met with the doctor's great nurse who explains what happens next.  She & I walked out to the lobby to be greeted by my wife - my daughter Laura & her husband Tom - and a small collection of other nurses and staff who have followed to watch me ...


A large bell hangs on the wall.  The message says something about ringing the bell 3 times to signify one has completed his treatment.  With Laura's camera whirling and to the applause of the gathering, I RANG THE BELL.  Doing what I do, I bowed.  I explained to them that is had been merely an endurance test.  All was going well.

We started to leave.  I stopped by the receptionist desk and pointed at the rock on her desk.  I wanted Laura to see it.  The young lady smiled - picked up the rock and said she wanted me to have it.

I don't know why, but this got to me.  I could feel the emotion rising up in me: Attacking me.  I feel the same thing right now as I type.  I couldn't talk other than to mumble something like "no, it's yours."  She insisted and I waved my crowd out the door.  I couldn't even reply "Thank you."  I made it through nine long weeks of zapping and being uncomfortable.  And a stupid little rock broke me down.  Who'd a thunk?

So, I close.  Our plan is to wait 3 months.   I take a blood test.  Then, we will know what is needed next.  I do try to be optimistic and tough about all of this.  You can see that toughness in the others who share my waiting room - waiting.  They do what they have to do and smile.

But, a little painted Rock took me down.



Tuesday, September 20, 2022

shorty note: 3 more

 I have 3 more radiation treatments.  If you have read below, you know.   

42 total radiation treatments.  3 to go.   What more is there to say?

The doc told me - when these are over, we will wait three months; then, we will have another PSA test.  That will determine what happens next.  It seems that with treatment, hurry up and wait is the catch phrase.

more later

shorty note over


Thursday, September 15, 2022

82 is just 28 spelled backwards

Today - the 15th of September - my wife turns 82 years of age.  When I was younger, I had no desire to live with an 82 year old female.  It is interesting that one's visual perspective changes as we age.  Now, I cannot imagine living with anyone younger.   Soon, I will turn 82 and join the spouse.  She has always lived with a younger man.

So we go to the old  82 spelled backwards is 28 concept.  They had a commercial on TV with this concept last year.  I can't remember the commercial or the age of the old coot.  It makes turning a new age just a tad easier - albeit not a heck of  a lot easier.

So take the age that you have and make the best of it.  You will never get any younger unless you believe in reincarnation; but, that is a whole different ball of wax.


Now, let's discuss Putin.  I am surprised that someone has not eliminated that cretin.  That might not be the right word.  I don't care to look it up.   Do You?   And, no, for our govt who is watching my every move and comment (who says paranoia doesn't pay?) - no, I am not suggesting that anyone eliminate the guy.  No, I am not going to finance this either.  I am just surprised.


Just for the record.  We now have a brand new freezer.  No more digging through the small freezer on the side of the frig.  It is a beautiful white color.  My preference.  It has a little green light that shines on the garage floor indicating that we are freezing.  I understand it has an alarm which rings if the door is not closed.

This month we added a Bosch 800 something new dishwasher.  We love the new dishwasher.  40 dbl of noise at the most  We cannot hear the machine running.  It is a good thing it has (1) a red light shining on the floor indicating it is working   and  (2) we bought a big magnet thing which we change at has four setting:   Running, Clean, Dirty, & Empty.  Obviously we have been much too dumb to be able to figure these settings for ourselves.

And, finally,  a few months back our dryer quit.  We have a new set of Washer/Dryer.  Gorgeous, big, quiet, and - most importantly - it works.


time to go out and do a birthday festival.

take care - I shall return


P.S.  Today is my 7th radiation treatment.  After today, only 6 more treatments - zapping if you will.

Sunday, August 21, 2022

If you are looking for an intellectual conversation -

 If you are looking for an intellectual conversation, this is prolly not the place.

For example:  let's take up the names of the days of the week.  Right there should exemplify my title for this missive.  To save time, I will will list them all now:   Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and, finally Sunday.  I feel certain that our names somehow come from the Greeks.  I don't know that.  Greek or Latin roots seem to plague us.  I know certain females who have dark roots - my tree has dirty roots - then, there was that TV show Roots.  None are related to my conversation.

Question #1:  When creating week names, did they start with Sunday or Monday?  It is my belief that our answer lies in religion.  Most, I say MOST, Christians celebrate Sunday as the Sabbath.  There are those who really like Saturday.  7th Day Adventist have their thing.  The Jewish community use to shut down on Friday night - or was it Saturday?  I'd have to go back and watch Fiddler on the Roof to know for sure.  Then, we have the Catholics who seem to be able to have Mass on more than one day.  To me that seems the most logical.  Have it when it fits your schedule.  Not going to complain - any group who has to go through all that Confessing in a little booth - they have my utmost respect.  I don't think I could ever do that and be completely honest all the time.

God create earth.  On the 7th day he rested.  So, in your mind is the 7th day when?  Okay, let's say that a couple thousand years ago, I am creating the names of the week and I am Jewish.  Sunday becomes the first day of the week?  This is not meant to be accurate reporting on my part.  Frankly it doesn't matter to me right now.

Let's say, this guy Amos said, "The first day of the week is Sunday."   

Then comes Monday.    Why, why,  WHY was the 3rd day not named Tunday?  Wenday?  Thurnday? and so forth.  It makes sense to me.  Spelling is a whole "nother" issue.  Well, of course, part of the answer is simple:  Amos wasn't speaking English - or in my case, Texan.  Maybe in Yiddish these names are listed poetically somehow.

I'll leave you with this.  If dogs had named the weeks, they would be Barkday, Snortday, Growlday, Pantday, Ballday, Wagday, and Napday (this would have been the Sabbath),  It is obvious that dogs would have had an 8th day:   EAT or COOKIE day

You can make up your own cat named days, starting with:   Purrday (derivative of Purrfect - albeit Sabbath).

Lunch time for me.  Later Miss Gator  (bugeyeday)


Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Tuesday's tidbits

And here we are, past the halfway mark in August.  It is still too "dang" hot to do much outside.   Maybe that is not true for young whippersnappers; but for this older - I want to say older dude - it just doesn't sound right to me.... for this older - oldest - whatever - "for me," it is just too hot to spend hours outside digging in the garden or mowing yards  or painting a fence or you know.  Our weatherman is projecting some rain later this week.  I'll believe it when I see it.

Reading a certain column in the newspaper - a person asked about punctuation after a sentence.  Not the period, but how many spaces follow the sentence.  Her explanation:  if you learned to type in a typing class on a real typewriter, you were taught to put 2 spaces after the sentence, which you might notice, I just did.  It seems that newspapers have always put just one space. . . and the people on the internet adopted that process.  So, as you read my diddies, you will always note the 2 spaces in my work.  I feel uncomfortable putting only one.  Now, friends, that is stupid.  Why should spaces make a person feel uncomfy?  It could be because I expect the ghost of my old high school typing teacher to fly through the window at any moment.  And, frankly, I can tell you from experience, you don't want to cross that 7'9" woman.  {maybe she was a bit shorter, who's asking?}

Disaster today:  Anne or Annie - my daughter's beautiful, noisy basset hound just threw up her cookies right outside my office door.  I turned and saw her standing over the pile with a forlorn look.  Bassets have a natural forlorn look without much training.  I hopped up shooing her out of the hallway.  Guess what I did next.  Guess.

Wrong.  I looked for my wife to help me clean up the gooey mess.  No luck.  The spouse was in the front yard watering the flower bed.  I had no choice but to "dive" in and SLOP it up.  The pile sucked up an enormous number of paper towels.  I hate picking up a gooey paper towel.  Shivers, it gives me.  Of course, I used the very last paper towel from the kitchen.  Wandering into the garage, I sought more.  I couldn't find them for nothing.  Toilet paper, I found.  

I stood by the front door watching until the watering had been completed.  An explanation was made.  She, the wife/spouse walked into the garage and picked up 2 rolls with no effort.  I guess I'm going blind.

What makes a dog throw up like that?  She is as perky and vocal as ever.  If'n I had done that, I'd be in bed moanin' & groanin'.

For those why are paying attention, I have ONLY 27 more days of radiation treatment.  It really is a wonder why I'm not all A-Glow.

I thought, when I began the treatments, that the waiting room would be filled with the exact same people daily.  You walk in and see the same faces at the same time of the day.  That has not been the case.  I cannot think of one person that I have seen more than once at my appointed time.  Only the technical staff - nurses - doctors and receptionists remain the same...and the receptionist do change frequently.  I have absolutely NO IDEA what this is costing.  I could ask.  Nope.  We'll just wait and see.  Maybe Medicare pays for it all.  Who knows?

In closing, I should mention that our new Sleep Number King Size bed 360 whatever is nice.  The head lifts up and the knees can be lifted.  I sleep with the head slightly elevated.  They say this helps with snoring.  Of course, I never snore.  Never have.  Never will.  The bed takes up a large portion of the bed room.  I believe it looks nice with its Walmart special cover and sheets.  I worry about falling off this bed - it is a long ways to the floor.  gonna stop.  

later love, 


Monday, August 8, 2022

Monday - #34

 Monday - the 8th.

Not much to report.  Just returned from the radiation treatment...only 33 more to experience.  I don't know if I have mentioned it; but, the treatment process is the same - day after day.   I arrive 15 minutes early (usually I'm there about 20 to 25).  The lovely lady at the front desk asks my name and date of birth - why they do this is, not sure.  Why would anyone walk in and use my name or date of birth?  Maybe it is to make sure the techs don't zap my liver instead of the prostate.  I'm not sure.  Answer:  it is part of the procedure.  The front desk lady has learned my name.  Now, I just have to verify the birth date. 

I sits in de waiting room.  Me name is called - slowly, I am educating the staff that the "E" on the end of my name is silent.  It really doesn't matter.  I put my cell phone in my bag and follow to "the" room.  Once I have arrived, I climb up on the skinny table.  You'd think, as much as this radiation machine cost, they could afford to make the table 4 inches wider.  But, no.

I do have a question.  They have great big doors that close when the radiator is generating.  I wonder if the walls are made with the same heavy metal stuff - what about the floor - and, then, there is the ceiling.  If radiation could go through a wall and zap the tech staff - couldn't it go through the roof and zap a low flying airplane - or, a bird?  Just wonderin".

Once I am on the table, they throw a small cloth over my groin area.  I pull down my garments to thigh level.  They strap my feet together on the table and adjust me on the table.  Little green lasers are everywhere.  I am moved to meet their specs.  I am given a 6 inch ring to hold with my hands on my chest.  When nobody looks, I pull my mask down in order to breath.  The rest of the story is below in one of the other blogs.

When finished, I get up and leave.  They try to be upbeat and say goodbye,  All over till tomorrow.

I have quit drinking carbonated beverages and using a straw.  They say these are the two biggest culprits for admitting gas to my intestines.  But, then, they have not seen me eat 2 big bowls of beans.  Friday, this week, I plan to cook beans and cornbread for supper.  ?The Instant Pot is terrific for that.  Let the petroleum products flow.  Not eating beans and drinking diet coke - these are lifetime changes for me.  33 more sessions and things will revert back.


We bought a new Sleep Number bed back in early July.  It is to be delivered tomorrow.  Do I know the exact time of day?  Of course not.  They implied I would be contacted early.  That didn't work.  Delivery type folks do have a problem, generally speaking, in being punctual.  Go ahead.  Tell me I'm wrong.  This will be a brand new adventure for us.


non-local people may be unaware about our Texas weather - hot streak.  It has been a miserable summer.  Thank your Deity for A.C.  When I lived in the Panhandle as a kid, we did not have central air.  Instead we had swamp coolers.  A big machine which blew air over water soaked panels.  The air was cold.  A window had to be open somewhere to let the airflow escape.  We truly slept with a window open every night.  Nobody tried to sneak in the house and steal all our jewelry.  Well, we had no jewelry to start with.  Those were good times.  We didn't even know we were handicapped without central air.  My father bought a 1957 Chevy 4 door and installed a floor air cond unit.   It was the first air cond. car we ever had.  Glorious.   It was still unbearably hot in the car - but we had air.


Almost time to feed the dogs.  More rambling soon.


Friday, August 5, 2022

60 years, a ....

 shortest entry yet.   today is our 60th anniversary.  No, I was not 60 years, a slave.


Sunday, July 31, 2022

June - that was the month that was

 AND, here it is, the last day of July.  I suppose that month of July passed swiftly.  I am trying to forget a bunch of it.  But, July ( I like to pronounce it Hoo-lie ) has been 31 days of sameness and newness.  Let me cite a few examples.

Our garden has pretty much stopped producing.  Surprisingly to me, the cantaloupes keep putting forth little fruit.  To start, they were regular size - now, we get little ones about 2 to 3 inches across.  Yummy, they still be.  Tiny, they are.  My watermelons never have seemed to make it this year.  

Now tomatoes and peppers have been good.  Here in central Texas, I can now plant a fresh crop of tomatoes and peppers.  It won't be long till they'll put on fruit.  Our corn crop yielded about 5 good ears of corn.   Potatoes were somewhat of a joke.  I suppose Okra was the most surprising star of them all.  We learned that Okra should be picked when it is about 3 + inches in length.  Any longer and they become too hard to chew after cooking - yes, we fry our Okra.  Who, I ask you, "Who" can eat that slimy okra stuff that shows up in soups?  Certainly not me.


Back in June - yes, back in June, we ordered a new king sized bed.  It is a sleep number something model and cost way more that I should have spent.  The bed is actually 2 twin sized, extra long beds tied together to give the appearance of one enormous bed.  The head and the foot areas - both - can be raised and lowered.  Our old sleep number, regular size, bed has been with us since before the beginning of time.  My side has begun to lose air daily.  I realize Sleep Number people would make it work; but, I really felt that we need this (what I call) medical type bed as we lunge into our older age.  I can visualize one or both of us being bed ridden for certain periods of time.  This should make it easier.

Oh, forgot the point of this entry.  The bed will be delivered on August 9th.  I roll my eyes.


Son Roger and wife Penney plus Grand-girls came through on Hoo-lie 23rd or there-a-bouts.  Our Dot Christine joined them as they went to San Antonio for the DCI competition.  DCI stands for drum corps international.  It is a drum and bugle competition.  They dropped off their 4 dachshunds for us to dog sit.  We had a fairly good time with the dogs; I'm not sure our Sadie appreciated the company.  A good time in San Antone was had by all and the Blue Devils won.


Let's move on to the gross medical things.  In addition to our wellness visit (where our doctor says "hmmm") plus my wife's 3 visits to the dentist {had to go back the 3rd time because their air compressor died 2 hours before we arrived } - my radiation treatments began this month.  I didn't think they were ever going to get here.  I write this because there might be someone out there who'll have to do this in the future.   I will have 42 sessions of radiation.  They are are aiming at my prostate, I believe.  I have this philosophy: don't ask questions - just do what I am told.  My doctors seem confident and skilled.

/////an aside: my cancer doctor (Jhavar) was raised in India.  He had a vacation and flew back to India for the time.  It took 38 hours to fly - each direction.  I believe I have that number right.  He said it was tiring and thanked me for asking about the trip.  I like this doctor. /////

So for my first session, I had a short visit with my doctor (Jhavar) prior to the zapping.  I had just given blood on a different floor of the facility to be used in a heredity study being done by someone to see if I have a certain bad gene that caused this.  We'll see.  I was sitting in doc's office with my diet coke bottle on the floor.  He pointed at it and explained that I wanted to give them up until treatments end.

Before I continue this forward, an apology to my ex-students and others who might know me.  I am going to produce an image which some may not want me to share.  Imagine some of your past teachers lying naked on a metal table.  It is somewhat revolting.  

Now - get this - it seems that I have to have a bowel movement prior to the zapping.  The doc has prescribed Milk of Magnesia for me to facilitate this occurrence.  That, I assume, is to make the bowels empty for zapping.  At the same time, I am to come with a full bladder.  To me, these are contradictory.  But, if there is a gas bubble inside me, this is wrong.  Before zapping, they must roll me over and insert a tube (guess where) to let out the gas.  Tube goes in - Gas comes out.  You can hear the whooshing noise.  Cokes seem to be the biggest contributor to gas.  Who knew?

I am called into the room.  They make me put on scrub bottoms.  My regular pants have zippers and buttons and belt buckles and a knife and a cell phone and ...  I am escorted to a long metal table.  Lie down.  My feet are strapped to a block;  a longer block is placed under my knees;  I am given a 6 " plastic hoop to hold on my chest;  under a small / tiny blanket, I pull down my pants to the thigh; and, I am left alone - just me, a metal bed, and this enormous white machine.  I left off the part where they slide me back and forth and up and down until the green laser light is properly adjusted to my new tattoo.

They start. The bed slides under the machine.  The machine begins to rotate around me.  I believe there are 4 different arms on the machine - each different.  As warned, the machine rotates one way then the other then back and then back again.  Then, nothing.  Then, I lay in silence.  [ This paragraph has way too many "thens" ]   A voice speaks into my left ear.  "The doctor is always right."  I rolled my head his way and said, "Really?"  It was Jhavar.  Out came a tube - I laid on my left side and a procedure began.   Hisssssss

Back on my back (cute expression).  The machine rotated again and again.  Now silence.  Apparently the first rotations are to see if my innards are prepared properly for the zapping.  They were.   The  radiating began...I felt nothing.  With eyes closed and horrible rock and country music playing through the P.A., I was zapped. 

Wed. Session #42 was over;  only 41 more sessions to attend.  My other doctor (El Tayeb) was the one who used a device and removed parts of my Prostate 3 months ago.  He told me that 90% of the prostate had been removed.  You know how that 90% left my body.  It left through the other portal - like that word.  This means they are zapping only 10% of my prostate.  I suppose.  What do I know.  I have a degree in music education.

Thurs. Session #41 the next day was a replay of  #42.  This Session's numbering system has nothing to do with our President's number in office.  Coincidental, that's all.   In #41, I had the same gas problem.  The doctor was not there this time.  The technicians performed the dirty deed.  Interestingly, as I rolled over and listened to them talk, I figured out that one tech was a newby.  The other tech showed "her" how to insert the tube, etc.  I am close to losing all of my modesty.

Fri. Session #40 was different.  I bought a pair of shorts with no zipper - no changing into scrubs.  The night before, I swallowed a gallon of milk of magnesia - making me get out of bed at 3:30 a.m. for a quick trip.  In the morning, I swigged  half as much around 8:30.  I took a Gas-X Extreme pill after lunch.  I moved lunch back one hour closer to zap time.   I had no problem.  The FEMALE nurse said, "whatever you did this time, continue doing it."                      

I won't drink carbonated drinks again until this is over in September.  I won't eat beans or sauerkraut or ?? again until  September. I no longer have milk with my breakfast (milk is another trouble maker).  


For the rest of the month.  I see a doctor in about a week to get shots in both knees.   I get another "anti-hormone" shot in about 2 weeks.  My eye doctor appt. is coming up.  The new bed is coming soon.  And =

let's make that a big  A N D ....

My wife and I will be having our 60th anniversary on the 5th.  I need to plan a festival for that.  It would be nice to be able to see our 70th together.

over and out,

love you (sure),

send money,


Monday, June 27, 2022

I'm getting a Tattoo - but wait....

It is true.   I am getting a Tattoo.  I've held out for all these years while others were making black ink marks.  Not me.  I truly don't understand tattoos.  I once new an elementary P.E. teacher who had a tiny little butterfly on the outside of her right ankle.  I suppose it was lovely.  I didn't understand it then; I don't understand it now.  Someday that young 20 year old will begin to put on weight - or her ankle will swell up.  That cute  little butterfly will enlarge to be a large vampire bat.  But it was her ankle.

Follow this:  I am getting ready to have radiation treatments for 5 days a week for 9 weeks.   I muttered "That would be 45 treatments."  The doc jumped right in and said, "Only 42."  I suppose I am blessed.  I have a cousin who had 40.   Soon, I will report to the Baylor Scott & White cancer institute and they will zap me 42 different days.  I have been told that I will never notice it.  

The problem is:  the Big Zapper does not know where to zap.  They don't just take aim at you from 20 paces and let fly a jolt of uranium.  Nope.  Doesn't work like that.  Tomorrow I go in for a scan.  During the scan they will place a couple (who know, maybe 10) marks on me   in an appropriate location of course.  These will be tiny tattoos - so I have been told.  

No, I do not intend to take photos of the tats and post to Facebook.  I'm thinking, down in the area where the prostate and bladder are located, that might create a photo which would lean towards the Porn side.  Don't want to go to no jail for having my tats shown to some 11 year old child.  If they want to see my Tats, they'll just have to wait until they hit "OF AGE" and, then, pay me a lot of money.  I mean a lot of money.  I don't just show my tats to anyone.  I have standards.

Well that is it.  The prostate cancer saga continues.  One cancer doctor lady said I probably have 2 to 5 years or so.  I liked her.  She went to school at Dallas Skyline and played the flute.  Band kids will be my saviors.

As I close, my little girl Sadie is sitting at my door giving me the eye.  We are close to supper time.  She has "that" stare.    "Look into my eyes.  Now!  Come into the kitchen. Find my bowl.  Fill the bowl.  Don't forget the good stuff.  NOW!!!  You will not be sorry."



Sunday, June 26, 2022

She came back to see me...

 I don't know if this is a sad or a happy bluggy  (translation:  blog).  In some ways, it made me happy.  Then, later came the sadness.   Some days you just can't please anybody, including yourself.

As  you can see by looking down the page, this is not a real long entry.   

(I prefer to pronounce that word:  " AUHN-TRAY "  not  "In-tree."   "In-tree" just sounds so nasal.}

I had a dream.  Mine was nothing like MLK's.   His was dipped in goodness and fire.  Mine was merely sprinkled with "me-feel-goodness."  They say you can never remember a dream.  Usually, I would agree.  Once I am awake, the memory of that last dream vanishes.  Poof!  

ASIDE:  At Tech, I had an Education professor who constantly told us about his dreams.  I suppose it beat listening to education drivel that would make no difference in our future teaching careers.  He recited how a pencil and pad were kept by the bedstead.  When he awoke, the pencil was grabbed and he wrote about the latest dream.  I am sure this professor made someone a fabulous grandfather - assuming he had been able to find a wife.  But, as for teaching education, that's another story.

This morning I was jostled awake by my Sadie girl barking at something she saw out the front door.  We have a storm door on the front door - quite substantial door made of a big piece of glass.  Sadie watches "TV" by looking out the door glass and yelling at anyone or anything that should cross her line of vision.   At 8:20 this morn, she let loose her pent-up frustrations on someone passing by.  We have a lot of joggers in Amityville who pass by --  being walked by their dogs.

Sadie barked, I woke up - and at that moment I remembered the dream I was having.  Magic, it was.  The dream (all I can remember of it): I was inclined on a bed - twin bed size I believe - when I swung my tootsies to the floor into fuzzy slippers.  As I stood, from around the corner of the bed, Greta came prancing in.  Beautiful Greta.  I bent over, picked her up, and held her close.  She was still as soft and sweet as always.  The dream ended right there before I had time to talk to her.

Seeing Greta is the happy part.  The dream ending early?  That was the sad part.  When I told my wife later, I started to choke up a bit.   Even now, I am bothered.

Greta was our first wire-hair dachshund.  Dripping wet, she might have hit 10 pounds.  Greta was born in 2000.  She had a twin sister which we should have bought too.  I introduced Greta to some of my students soon after.  Sharisa was a French Horn player who had lost both of her parents and lived with her grandparents.  That is a wonderful story to be told later.  What spirit, drive, and determination.  You have to respect a young lady like that.  {She is an elementary Principal today.)

Sharisa got her grandparents to take her north where she got Greta's sister:  Harmony.  What a great name and dog.  The two dogs spent their first birthday together eating dog cake.  Fun time.

Greta was blond - wheaten, if you wish.  She was a soft coated, wire-hair doxie.  She was beautiful.  Sometimes I would just sit and look at her.  So pretty.   But don't get me wrong.  Greta was a fireball.  Nothing scared her.  She was what we called our snake dog.  It didn't matter what kind of snake - big or small - Greta attacked.  She was fierce.  My favorite story was when this 4 or 5 foot long snake came up on our back porch.   I'm sure it was probably a big rat snake.  It didn't matter; a snake is a snake.  

She was down in the yard when it was spotted.  I grabbed a shovel and pinned the snake's head to the ground.  Greta would have nothing to do with that.  She grabbed the snake by the tail and pulled it free from the shovel.  Together, we fought that snake till - well, until it was over.  I threw the dead snake over the fence and Greta tried to climb the fence.  She was a terror.

Nobody wants to hear other people's dog stories.  I miss Greta very much as well as all of our dogs who have moved on.   Her heart grew too big for her insides; and, she died on the kitchen floor one morning.  She had lived for 18 years.   Eighteen Years.   Her ashes are up here on a shelf.  I have requested that all dog ashes accompany me when I go.

It was nice to hold Greta again, even if it were only for a few moments.  

I wonder if this is a sign that I am having psychological problems.  Maybe.

See ya guys later, Mike  

Saturday, June 4, 2022

I was honked at today

 I was honked at today - it wasn't some carload of females commenting on my beauty amd charm - This morning, the spouse and I drove up to Waxahachie to take daughter Laura and hubby Tom to lunch.  They have an anniversary coming up.  Those two are different.  They will have a special day planned for their anniversary - a different, special day.  Those two are not always normal when it comes to celebrations...signs, music, planned outings.

So, naturally, the spouse & I wanted to do our best to celebrate with them before the actual day arrived, 17 years of marital bliss.  Nobody wants to get in the way when they do their thing.   Never have two people been better suited for each other.

We drove to Waxahachie, loaded them into the car, and headed for their choice of  food.  I don't think I can spell it correctly:  Johnny Carinos  or something like that.  It was good food and a good time was had by all.

We drove away and stopped at a traffic light.  I was the first in line to make the left turn.  It was a long light.  Highway 287 where it crosses old Hwy 77.  If you have ever been to that intersection, you KNOW how long the light is.  The light changed.  Less than 3 seconds, the guy in the big black Chevy pickup behind me - honked.

We don't honk in Texas.  Must be a Yankee or from California.   Honked.  Of course that meant that I had to stop and look in the mirror.  His honk slowed my reaction time.  Finally, I took off - edged slowly across the street as I turned left.   Still, I was ahead of the car in the other turning lane to my left.  As soon as the big black Chevy truck was able to get around me - he gave it the gas and, you guessed it,  he honked the entire time he was passing me.

I was honked at.  In Texas - I was honked at.  Dumb cluck.

Carino's report:   service was slow - friendly, but slow.  Normally we go to Olive Garden for Italian food like this.  Carinos gives you a basket of 2 small loaves of bread and a saucer filled with oil.   Break the bread and dip the oil.  It was tasty.   The food was good and hot.  It took forever to get served.   In all fairness, they had a sign outside advertising for help wanted.  

If given the choice, I'll go to Olive Garden next time.  I love their bread sticks and big the guy who puts extra cheese on your plate.  The bread and oil was nice; but the bread sticks and salad trump.  Cost is about the same.  Enough of that.

After lunch, we went to Braum's - ice cream.  I don't get to eat normal ice cream.  The wife had a one scoop vanilla cone - the guy behind the counter seemed to like her and filled the cup up to the brim - well, way past the brim.  My wife loves vanilla ice cream.

Long story shorter.  It was a good day.  We stopped in West, TX on the way home for sausages.

Just so you know, a Kolache is a bread thing with fruit on it.   A Klubosnik is the same type of roll with meat/cheese in it.   We bought the latter.  This topped off our trip (with a loaf of jalapeno cheese bread and a loaf of raisin bread.  All yummy but way over-priced for a reitred bandman.

see ya,


Tuesday, May 31, 2022

short praise

 Out new washer/dryer were delivered and installed.

The two guys came from Best Buy.  Geek Squad?    They were fast and efficient.   I don't know their names or I would praise them by name. 

This is not an exciting blog today - UNLESS you are us - the items were ordered over a month and a half ago.   The wait was hard.

Think about this.  They were ordered, scheduled for delivery, delivered, and installed.   How often have you had this happen.  

Maybe tomorrow's entry (if there is one) will be rolling in laughter and news.


Monday, May 30, 2022

Memorable Day?

 Prolly not.

It has been a slow methodical day awaiting tomorrow and the delivery of our new washer/dryer.  This should stop the question:  "When are they delivering the dryer?"   Should.  We have waited over a month for delivery.  Should.

zzzzzzzzz   up a bit after 8 a.m. this day.  Ate my traditional breakfast of Grape Nuts  - 3/4 cup cereal with 3/4 cup 2% milk.  It holds me until noon and fits into my carb count suggested by a nutritionist at Navarro Hospital after I was diagnosed with the diabetes thing.  She was a nice lady.  That was 2008.  I should calculate how many tons of Grape Nuts I have eaten in the past 14 years.  Might be a world record there. Might not be tooooo...

After breakfast and morning freshing-ing-ing up to make myself beautiful for the day, I read the paper and did less.  Went out back and helped Christine harvest food from our garden.  For lunch we fried up some of our garden okra picked this morning - and some store bought frozen okra.  Now you just guess which one tasted the best.  Fresh from the garden okra VS. frozen okra from the store.   Ya got an answer?  YEP!!   The frozen okra was really the best.  Apparently we lack  a certain skill when it comes to fresh okra frying.   This will not deter us.  There wasn't that much difference.

In addition we fried up some carrots, squash, broccoli, peppers, etc.  It is a pretty nice little garden.  Now, I smoked some boneless beef ribs (I have questions about this description).   They were tough.   BBQ sauce helped some.  Also smoked:  carrots, jalapeno peppers, other peppers, 2 big onions, and a cucumber.  There is something you have never had - a smoked cucumber.  Christine says it was okay with certain spices sprinkled over the top.  The onion and jalapeno were just fine.

HEB had 5 ears of corn for $1.  Have you tried cooking corn on the cob in the microwave.  There are instructions online.  Essentially, leave the husk on.  Wrap the corn in a wet paper towel.  Cook one ear for 4 minutes - 2 ears for 6 minutes - I did 3 ears for 8 minutes.  Fine.   Then you cut off the big end of the cob; squeeze from the small end; and the corn will slip right out of the husk, burning your fingers.  There will be no husk or silk.  Works fine.    "Slather on the butter."

And, now, we are into afternoon nap time.   Not much more to say about that as my fingers begin to dribble off the key board.  .joqpapk ,apiperjeirjg ga] ll'v ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

lvove oyuoll  b



Sunday, May 29, 2022

Covid - one week plus has passed

 just because I knew you'd worry ....

Our Covid has seemed to pass.  It has been a week since our trip to the emergency room.  Sure - a cough here - a runny nose there - general tiredness at inopportune times.   But, we are not sleeping 24 hours a day now.  I only slept 9 hours last night.  

I even ventured out once to get the mail.  Talk about Mr. Fun Guy.  That's me.  I spit on the mailbox just to see if I could infect the carrier (actually, not true;  I lied.)

Tuesday, between 7 a.m. and noon, men will arrive to install our new washer/dryer.  The old dryer (see previous posts) died.  Daughter found online how to remove computer board and solder a fix.  But it seems to me - if something has happened to burn the computer board the first time, it is only a matter of time before there is another surge of power which destroys another part of the board.  Perhaps next time, the board won't stop the problem - and a fire will follow.   

I don't want a fire.  The old dryer is more than 10 years old.   It is time.

The non-matching washer, still working fine, is about 4 years old.  It is going to me dotter's rent house to serve out its life chugging happily forward.  Back when the actual "matching" washer died 4 years ago, it would have cost more to replace the computer board than to replace the washer.   That does seem to be somewhat wrong to me.  We gave the old broken washer back to Sears, and bought another ... thus the "non-matching" washer is setting in my garage.   Make ya a deal on it - no delivery.  I'd give you the broken dryer ... uh, still, no delivery.

Roll your eyes now.   I got my income tax filed.  I expect a refund.  I know the rule is:  work your money in order to not get any refund.  That doesn't work for me.  I would have to file quarterly if I did that.  It is not in my nature to file quarterly unless a prison term is being held over my head.

With this, I close.


Saturday, May 21, 2022

if'n it aint one thing ....

 Going for more sympathy now:

My daughter went to a party last week.  Her friend's daughter had just graduated A&M  (we all have our cross to bear)  with a her Vet degree.  Several folks were there.  She came home.

About a day later she was wheezing and all those things.

She slept for 2 days moaning around the house.

Now about 2 - 4 days later, the spouse and I are wheezing and all those things.  We went to the doctor.  That was fun.  2 different docs, same clinic.  Both diagnosed us differently of course.  Since the lab at our clinic was already closed, I could not get the covid test.  So we went out in the Temple community to find one.  WALMART!!!     Back out to the car, swabbed my nose.  The test went to Covid almost immediately.  Wife was swabbed.  Her's did not say Covid.   That doesn't make sense.

We went to a pharmacy and picked up my Covid 5 day solution to the problem.   But, we couldm't get it for the spouse. No doctor RX.  \

Thus the tale is continued.  I would like to see a light at the end of the tunnel.

Regarding my previous blog about prostate cancer (see below) = I have received numerous messages about it.   You might be surprised by the number of people who have had this AND I NEVER KNEW.  I am getting the idea that it is taboo to talk about this subject.  Well, I plan to keep you informed what torture they put me through.

I now have appts. with Radialogy Oncology and Hemotology Oncology.  Sounds fun.

smile - keep coughing - and stay tuned.


Friday, May 13, 2022

Urine or Ur-out

URINE OR UR-OUT  (of what?)   😀

WARNING:  THIS WILL BE A RATHER LONG POST TAKING SEVERAL DAYS TO COMPOSE.  It will not be humorous - funny - gagging - or even perhaps eye rolling. Instead it will be a running description of what has happened since the end of last year.  I am NOT looking for sympathy or hugs.  At age 81, hugs are rather an advanced stage of groping and propping up.  I have already heard all of the "doctors can do great things" comments.  I don't need those either.  Just need to move on..

As of this writing - May 5th, 10:45 a.m. - the weatherman on TV is showing a storm heading this way.  He is talking strong winds - potential for a tornado - HAIL - rain - we got it all.   There was a time in my life when I wouldn't say:  "Hail."  I thought it was too close to Hell -   I always said that we had "Heck."  When you get older, your mind seems to wander (or wonder) at times.  HAIL comes up later in this edition.  The worse thing about  a storm approaching at this earlier hour is:  you have to watch morning TV to see the weathermen.  They break in and out of the morning shows.  Meanwhile you must endure the morning personalities:  smiling faces, jabbering females, uninspired topics, asparagus recipes, 

So my introduction is complete.  I shall now go to our spacious kitchen and begin preparing a delightful lunch.  What will it be?  Certainly won't be asparagus and tofu fondue.

Let me add that I have been a quiet person all of my life when it pertains to my personal self.  There are just some subjects I never attack.  With this entry, all of that changes.  You will see.

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Last December, I was starting to have problems going to the bathroom.  There are 2 types of bathroom:  as in my childhood, we have #1  and #2.   My problem was #1.  I had always heard that old guys have this type of problem.   Since I had a GP doctor appt after the first of the year, I figured I could hang on till then and start the new year with the new insurance deductible getting paid.    Financial reasons.

In January, I was scheduled for a doc visit (we diabetics tend to see doctors on a regular basis.).  By the time the appt. arrived I was having more problems and my lower abdomen was hurting some.   I talked about this problem with the doctor.  It didn't seem to be an emergency to me.  The doctor arranged an appt with a urologist in Temple - Baylor Scott & White Hospital area.  Fine with me - but about 2 months away.

That was on a Tuesday.  On the following Monday, I went back to the doctor.  My stomach was really starting to hurt, and I was visiting the bathroom on the average of once an hour - day and night.  I discussed that I thought I might be constipated.   He suggested a certain laxative.   We eventually went on our merry ways.

My daughter Christine was working at her hospital Fri-Sat-Sun.  When she came in from work late Sunday, I knew that I was in trouble.  We loaded me up with the spouse and headed for BSW  (Baylor S&W) emergency room.  I was hustled into a room -  discussions were had - a CT scan was done of my lower abdomen.  Now, comes my favorite part of the story.

The emergency room doc came in and introduced me to a "catheter."  If you are as dumb as I was, you should look that up...C-a-t-h-e-t-e-r.  It is a fact that I did not understand catheters - their use - or the overall process.  I got a quick education.  They took a tube and inserted it inside of me - and water began to flow.  They measured the water.  My bladder held 2 full liters plus about 15 more ounces.  Think about the two liter coke bottles at the store.  I could have the extra ounces number wrong by a bit.  When I was emptied, my stomach quit hurting.  It was a miracle; except now, I had a tube running out of me.

I was transferred to a hospital bed after some lengthy time. My family came and sat by my side.  The doctors felt like it was a good idea for me to stay a while.  The tube extended to a bag.  The nurses dutifully emptied my bag constantly.  I discussed with the staff if perhaps my 2+ liters was some type of a world record.  They thought, "maybe."  For a person who is very self-conscious about anything to do with that area of the anatomy, this was traumatic.  Little did I know it could get worse.

Just for the record:  by the time I was placed in the hospital bed, it was Valentine's Day.  Aside stone:  food in the hospital.  I saved all of my menus from the hospital.  It was my aim to reprint them here.  Now, that time has flown and this recitative has become lengthy, I will save them for later. Surprisingly, the food wasn't bad.  There never was enough to equal a trip to Rosa's Mexican Restaurant or the Golden Corral buffet - but it was adequate.

On the 17th, I went home - urine bag in hand - tube sticking out.  An appt. was made with urology for the future.  After a couple or more weeks at home carrying the bag, the urology appt approached.  Meanwhile, I had learned how to disconnect the tube from the big bag and attach to a smaller one which I strapped to my thigh.  Later, I learned these were to be attached to the calf of the leg.  I didn't know.  The leg bag was better than the big bag carried in hand.

Another CT scan was taken.   When I arrived for my urology appt, I was ushered into a room where a short discussion was had with staff.   Then on a table, I had the tube removed.  A female nurse had me stand & I was told to fill the jug.   Big Jug.  I tried.   I failed.  I could not make anything work.  

I paraphrase here:  She said something like FINE...or  OKAY .... or ALRIGHT THEN - You get the picture.  She waltzed out and back in carrying 2 large sacks.  The nurse handed me a catheter about 18 inches long.  I am standing there with my pants down and a catheter in my hand.  She told me to insert it.  Yes, my education continued.  I was able to insert the tube - it doesn't really hurt like a hammer hitting you in the head - but it is a quite uncomfortable experience.  Tube inserted, water started to flow.  She handed me a sack of new catheters.   I was told to insert a catheter 4 times a day to empty my self - then, pull it out and discard.  I went home with 2 large sacks of catheters.

I learned that Medicare pays for catheters.  The staff put in an order with an Oklahoma company for more catheters and sent me home.  I had no large bag - no leg bag - but a sack of catheters.   

When I got down to 2 days of catheters, I called the staff and asked about the replacement ones.   It seems that an error had been made and the order never placed.   There was all kinds of scurrying about.  A new order was placed and my order was "overnighted" to me.  They did arrive the next day.  I have learned much about this process.

I did figure out that 4 times a day was not good.  On many days, I needed 5 times a day because of  the long over-night hours. I called Staff - new RX was made and more catheters overnight arrived in order for me to do 5 times daily.   Me thinks I may drink too much tea and diet coke.

Life went on.  I was still waiting for my urology doctor appointment to arrive. One morning, I was unable to insert the tube.  No matter how I tried.  It would not work.  I tried another tube with extra lubrication (yes, they are pre-lubricated).  I tried and I tried.  My bladder began to fill.  I made a quick phone call to urology -  loaded the wife into the car - and headed for Temple.   Once there I laid on another table.  A nurse tried to insert the tube.  She couldn't.  A doctor was called in.  Nothing.   Finally a team of 5 or 6 doctors and nurse worked on me.  Imagine me on the table with my pants down during all of this.  On 2nd thought, don't try to imagine that.

One doctor inserted a camera inside me - they DO have a camera that small.  Diagnosis:  When I had inserted the tube, it had taken the route of least resistance, right into the Prostate.  The doctors tried to insert another tube.  A smaller tube was tried.  The eventual answer was a wire which was able to make the trip - then a tube was inserted over the wire -guiding its path.  Tube in - the water began to flush.  I filled another couple of liters.

The new catheter was attached to a leg bag - I was given extra bags - and I went home.  No more self-insertion ----- self mutilation if you will.  Meanwhile, my phone message to daughter C brought her flying from work up to rescue the both of us.  I am going to point out here that the date was March 17th ... St Patrick's Day.   First hospital on St. Valentine's - 2nd emergency problem on St. Patrick's.  This does not bode well for Halloween - All Saint's day???

Just in case any of you are as dumb about this as I was.  The prostate sometimes increases in size as a feller ages.  This presses against the tube coming out of the bladder.  Eventually, it increases enough to completely close off the tube.  That was my joy.

About a couple weeks or so later, I finally had my first visit with my urologist.  We sat and talked for a while.  He said that he needed to feel my prostate.  I dropped my pants.  When he was done with his 5 second feel, he returned to his chair and said: "You have prostate cancer."  5 seconds.  None of my other doctors since January had noticed that.  This doctor decided in 5 seconds.  We talked.  He explained things fairly well.   I am going to jump ahead here.

He has given me a hormone shot - actually an anti hormone shot.  Later, he performed a prostate biopsy.  This exam uses a device to remove 12 different small pieces of my prostate. I felt nothing. The 12 samples are examined and a determination is made.  It verified cancer.  Mine is called level (4+5) 9 - which means aggressive.  This is not the same as stage I or IV or V cancer.  It is different and can be found on line.  Once the cancer was verified, we moved on.  

I went in for a day surgery.  They performed what is called HoLEP.  You can look that up online.  He explained that I had two problems.  One was the cancer and the other was the catheter.  The HoLEP made it possible for the catheter to be removed.  I am going to simplify here.  A device is inserted.  It goes into the prostate gland and removes the inside leaving only the shell.  I don't know if everything is removed or just most of it.  At any rate, I slept through the procedure - happily.  I spent one night in the hospital.  I had to urinate 2 times on my own before being released.  I won't go into this gory detail or the description of my roommate, but I did my 2 jobs and went home - no bag - no catheter.

Meanwhile, being concerned about the spread of the cancer, the doctor had me go for a Nuclear Bone Scan.   This was on Tuesday of this week.   Arriving at 9:45, a tiny bit of radioactive material is put inside my veins.   Then, at 1 p.m. I laid down on a table while the big ole machine passed over me taking pictures.   I asked if I could get an 8 by 10.  Apparently not.  It looked at whether cancer had spread to the bones.

Three days later, I received the call that my bone scan was negative.  There is no cancer in the bones at this time.  Now we are in the process of heading towards radiation.   That's it. I don't believe they ever cure prostate cancer...prolong,  but not cure.  We'll see.


Now in an effort to make you feel sorry for me.  Other things have happened during all of this.

#1  My little dachshund Sadie suddenly had back problems.  The day after I arrived home from the hospital.  I had problems moving.  Luckily daughter Laura was here - She and my wife rushed Sadie to a vet.  Pills and drugs were given.   The next day, I changed vets to go to one who offered Laser treatments.  About 3 weeks later, Sadie was moving again.  I'm not sure she is perfect, but we hope so.

#2  Our dryer quit.  Bang.  It was older.  I decided to buy new instead of  fixing.  It took a week to get a new washer/dryer ordered.  Now get this:  it will be delivered on May 31st.   It is taking over a month for the items to arrive and be delivered.  My wife is going crazy waiting.

#3  We had the Salado tornado and hail storm.  The tornado missed us.  We had 3 inch balls of ice pound the house.  The back window of the Marauder was broken out, and the car took damage.  When the adjuster arrived, he calculated that all was fixable but the car would be totaled.  It is a 2003 Mercury Marauder.   However, the next day he called.  It seems that the Marauder has an $11,000 value while a normal 2003 Mercury is only about $5000.  The car is covered and not totaled.   It has been to a shop and is home in the shed.   Aside:  when it arrived, the left back window had fallen out of its track.  That window is halfway down and won't move.  Next thing is another trip to a mechanic.

#4  Roof damage.  Adjuster said only the north and east side of room had any damage.  Insurance would pay for half a roof.  He assured me that roof was plenty stable without new shingles.  I would have no problems with roof.    There is more.  That will come later.  Mtz