The God Thing

So, since it has come up quite a bit lately, I thought I would go ahead and outline my beliefs for everyone.  Many of my more religious friends have been praying for me since I found out I got sick.  Let me start by making it clear that I really do appreciate all of the prayers, thoughts, vibes, etc…  Despite what I know some of you think, I also believe they make a difference.  Just because we may not have the exact same idea of what or who God is, doesn’t mean that I do not believe sincere prayers can’t help.

But how can this be, you ask?  Well, let me tell you what I do and do not believe.  By the end, I am hoping that you will be able to understand that my beliefs are not a threat to yours, and neither are most of those who also do not share your belief.

I guess the easy way to tell you what I believe is to start by telling you what I do not believe.  I do not believe that books, written on behalf of deities, can be trusted absolutely.  The word of God, filtered through man, would be flawed by man’s imperfections, therefore, do not ever try to quote from a book in order to convince me of what I should or should not believe.  I do not believe that millions of people who believe differently from myself or anyone else are necessarily completely wrong, because I believe we are all wrong in an aspect or two.  And I do not believe we know where we are wrong.  I do not believe that God is short of cash, mister.  I do not believe that God is as actively involved in the day to day goings on here on Earth as most people think.  I think there is free will, I think that some things are part of the plan, but occasionally, I think God can intervene.  I do not believe that the Earth is only 6000 years old.  I do not believe the Earth was created in 7 literal days.  I do not believe that humans have not and do not continue to evolve.

So what do I believe?  Well, put simply, I believe that God is energy.  I believe that energy always has, and always will exist.  I believe in the Big Bang, but I don’t believe that was the beginning.  The energy was there.  Something had to create that first particle.  Something had to cause it to explode.  I believe that something is energy.  And I don’t think anything created it, it always has been there.  It is God.  God is everywhere.  God flows through us at all times.  I believe that energy causes things to happen, but I also believe energy can be manipulated to make things happen.  So fate and free will both exist.  But there are some things one may not be able to change.  Science now has theories that thought can physically manipulate energy.  That a stream of consciousness can actually cause something to happen.  This to me, is why your prayers and thoughts matter to me, even if the God you pray to isn’t the image of what I believe God to be.  I believe that new theories in science regarding infinite alternate universes help to reconcile the concepts of Heaven and Hell, and life after death.  I think it also helps reconcile the beliefs of those people who believe in reincarnation, and the beliefs of those who believe in almost any other life after death concept.  I believe that science will never have all the answers, but that science is the correct method for searching for those answers.  I believe that science has proven itself, since I am typing this on my laptop, made possible only through scientific achievement.  If science disproves my beliefs, I will have to alter them.

I don’t want to die.  I like my life.  On hard days, I may not want to face the world, but I still enjoy being alive.  I am not about to give up things in this life, for the possibility that that things will be better in another.  I try to be a good person.  I am not sadistic, and have a good sense of empathy, so I really don’t think it is all that difficult.  Not to say that I am always a good person, I have been a jerk more than once.  But as long as I keep trying to do the right thing, I’m not particularly concerned.  I don’t need to think that if I’m not a good person that I will burn, or that if I am good I will experience eternal bliss in Heaven to do it.  I try to be a good person because I can put myself in the shoes of who I affect.  But, if my beliefs are right, and my consciousness moves on and the next universe is a happy one, then hey, bonus.  My faith is strong, but only in that I know there is SOMETHING out there we do not yet understand.  My faith in my beliefs as to what that is, is not strong enough to forgo fully enjoying this life in the hopes of experiencing another.

So that is basically what I believe.  I don’t think anyone has the right to be offended by it, just as I am not offended by what you believe.  If you are, and this is all blasphemy to you, tough shit.  I don’t live in Pakistan for a reason.

The End of Optimism?

45 days ago, I checked into this hospital with the intention of kicking the ass of the Acute Myelogenous Leukemia that I was diagnosed with just 6 days earlier.  I felt like I really didn’t have a choice.  It was either do that, or live out another couple weeks to months, each day with less energy and unable to make it as long on my feet.  I had no intention of checking into a hospital, only to never leave.  I was doing pretty good believing the doctors and convincing myself that wasn’t going to happen.  I would be out in 4 weeks or less, because my age suggested no complications.  At that point I would have a little time at home before consulting to see if a Bone Marrow or Stem Cell Transplant would be necessary, or if consolidation chemotherapy would work for me.

Day 14 after the end of chemo, and I have a Bone Marrow Biopsy/Aspiration to look for Leukemic cells.  And the results come back.  There is no evidence of disease!  Can’t get better than that!  And I’m on my way to destroying this thing.  My blood counts are low, I’m feeling a little off, worried about getting an infection and basically self-ban visitors, but my spirits are high as I wait for my counts to return.

And a week goes by, could start any day.  One doctor suggests I could be going home on day 25.

And another week goes by.  Nothing.

And into another week.  Another Bone Marrow Biopsy/Aspiration is done, this one with Flow Cytometry.  Still no evidence of Leukemia, but basically no evidence of any cells at all.  Doctors expect them to climb.

And into another week.  Doctors bring up that maybe the dose of chemo I was able to get because of my age and over all health might be delaying the recovery.  That theory lasts a few days.  Then the doctors suggest that perhaps there still is Leukemia that just isn’t showing up because all cell counts are so low, that may be interfering with bringing up my blood counts.  Apparently, their tests are not sophisticated enough here to make sure that those negative results were truly negative.  I am told that in Seattle they can run a test with certainty that would show any even with very, very few cells available.  While all this is going on, I am told by my doctor that he has consulted with a doctor in Seattle and I definitely need a bone marrow transplant.  He also said that if my counts do not come back up it would not be that big of a deal because they would just be wiping them out for the transplant anyway.  Okay, not the news I wanted, as transplants are rather scary things, but let’s get moving on it if that’s what must be done.  My spirits while somewhat frayed, remain intact.

So Monday, I have a large amount of blood drawn for HLA testing (among other tests, obviously) and sent to Seattle.  This was all from an order created Friday by a doctor up in the transplant center I will likely be having this procedure done at.  So on Monday, I give my brother and sister the number to the testing people in Seattle, so they can get their own testing started.  And here is the beginning of the end of my optimism.  (Don’t get me wrong, I have had my share of bad days along the way, but always managed to pull out of them.)  My brother is asked if my insurance has pre-approved the testing.  He is also asked what specific type of testing was ordered, where the testing would be done, all things that should have been in the order on Friday.  I call my doctor’s office from the hospital and ask them to find out what the f_ck is going on.  I get a call back from my doctor telling me that I should have them wait until Wednesday, because, even though the order was done Friday, they would not yet have me in the “system”.  So on Wednesday, my brother calls and finds out that I am in the system and that the order for them to be typed is in there.  Not only that, but it is a rush order.  Great!  Well, no.  Because they won’t test until they receive authorization from my insurance company, which can take 2 weeks.  2 more weeks of my counts at bottom.  2 weeks of my immune system being comprised exclusively of antibiotics.  2 more weeks of languishing in a hospital room.

And here’s the kicker.  Everyday, something seems to get a little worse.  So far, since my counts have been at or near zero, I have had nightly fevers.  Today, I hit 101.1 right around noon.  That is a first and not the kind of first I am looking to have happen.

Make no mistake my friends, even with good insurance, people’s fear of not getting paid and slow processing ability can still kill you.

45 days, heavy chemo, antibiotic side effects, drug cocktails that make an AIDS patient feel bad for me.  I’ve fucking done my part.  I need these assholes to do theirs.  Perhaps if they do so before I get worse and can’t keep up this fight, my optimism will return.  But for now, I am in realism mode, and the reality is that red tape may kill me.

If you want to talk to me about how important it is to keep a positive attitude, try walking in my shoes right now.  I don’t like feeling negative.  I know it doesn’t help.  But you’re not shivering from fevers when it is 75 in your room.  You aren’t the one sleeping 4 hours a night maximum, and all of that broken.  You aren’t the one who knows that without additional treatment, relapse is inevitable.  You aren’t the one who swears you can feel it coming back.

If you were looking for inspiration in this post, I’m sorry it isn’t here.  I just wanted to let anyone who cares know what is going on.  I hope to post some more.  Maybe those will be with good news.  Guess that last sentence is sort of optimistic, right?

A Helpful Guide to Acute Myelogenous Leukemia

Okay fine, it is Sunday, not Friday.  Sue me.

So as you may or may not be aware, on July 24th of this year, I was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia, (or fucking piece of shit AML, for short).  Because of the nature of this cancer, it is important to start treatment as soon as possible.  So I did.  On July 30th, I was admitted to St. Mary’s hospital to begin my Induction.

Induction:  In the world of fucking piece of shit AML, Induction is when you get a dose of a couple of chemotherapy drugs, (one lasting 3 days, the other a week).  The doses are massive, the clinical term is “a shit ton”.  The effect of this chemo is that the cells in your bone marrow, both cancerous and healthy, are wiped out.  The chemo is fairly tolerable, but once it works…

Nadir:  The period in fucking piece of shit AML treatment when your blood cell counts are 0 (without the aid of transfusion).  Some believe this term was named after the doctor who pioneered treatment for fucking piece of shit AML, but in reality, it was a misspelled attempt at naming the term after Ralph Nader, who always got low counts.  This is the part of Leukemia induction treatment that really kicks your butt.  Your white cell count is down to 0.  You have no protection from infection.  You will get a fever.  Then chills.  Then another fever.  Then a high fever.  Then the infectious disease specialists will get called in and will really make your life hell.

Infectious Disease Specialists:  Doctors and a couple nurse practitioners who are programmed to run the same tests over and over, reaching the same results, with little regard to the health and well being of the patient.

You will get stabbed at 4 in the morning, even though you have a line to take blood from, so they can run cultures to make sure you don’t have sepsis.  It will come back negative.  They will put you on IV antibiotics that all have side effects.  You will have another fever.  They will send you down for a two view chest x-ray.  The chest x-ray will come back negative,  They will not stab you at 4 that morning.  The will tell you they can’t find an organism that is causing your fevers.  The next day, you will have another fever, but one that is much smaller than previous.  They will stab you again at 4 in the morning.  The person who stabs you that night does do literally and bruises the hell out of you in her 4 attempts at digging into your vein.  The culture will come back negative.  They will have you on 4 different kind of antibiotics.  They will get a stool sample.  It will come back negative.  They will get a urine sample, it will come back negative.

Somewhere in this, you discuss with one of the nurses that you probably wouldn’t be running fevers if you were actually left alone to sleep more than an hour at a time.  She offers you ambien.  You are so desperate for sleep, you reluctantly accept.

You wake up the next day feeling great.  The infectious disease doctor comes in just as you first sat up to eat breakfast.  She listens to your lungs.  She says you have decreased lung function on one side.  She tells you she thinks you have pneumonia.  You get another two view chest x-ray.  They tell you that if you get a fever they will need to re-culture you and you are not looking forward to being stabbed at 4 in the morning, when you feel better, and the first two didn’t find anything anyway.  You get a breathing tester machine.  Within a couple tries, you max it out.  You don’t run a fever all day.  Then, just after 5, they take your temperature.  You are feeling fine, but it shows a 100.5.  You know you are going to be needlessly stabbed again.  At shift change, the night nurse comes in to check your vitals.  When she puts the pulse/ox sensor on your finger, it shows you have a heart rate of 228.  This is the same machine with the thermometer that read 100.5.  You tell the night nurse you thought that was wrong too.  She brings the portable thermometer.  You are at 98.2.  You have won your first battle in the long war against the infectious disease doctors, but you know victory is short lived.  Any fever for any reason and they will stab and culture as much as they can.  It is their purpose, test, test, test.

So what is left?  Well, another 2 weeks or so of very low white counts, which means another 2 weeks or so of antibiotics.  After that you will have about a month off before you either come back for consolidation therapy or go to get a stem cell transplant.

Consolidation Therapy:  Chemotherapy given over 4-6 rounds after initial remission to prevent recurrence.

Stem Cell Transplant:  Taking blood stem cells from one person and putting them in another person do the receiving person can rebuild their own healthy marrow.

The last part of this guide is some advice, should you ever find yourself with this diagnosis.

STAY POSITIVE!!!  You can beat every aspect of this and will survive it.  Except the infectious disease doctors, they will most likely win.

Not Down With the Sickness

Okay dear reader(s), decided that I would revamp this little blog-type-thing.  

No more recapping the week, just posting on Fridays.  Seemed like a good idea at the time, ’till I realized that most days were just too boring to mention.  

So, what is new with you?  How have you been?  Is your family doing well?  It’s been so long.

With the pleasantries out of the way, how about we get down to business?

Today I have been thinking about life and death quite a bit.  More specifically, I have been thinking about people who have given up on life, but still live.  A couple of events have triggered this line of thinking.  They are, in no particular order:

  • The tragic shooting in Aurora, CO at the Dark Knight Rises premier, and…
  • The tragic trip I took to Wal Mart today

In case you weren’t aware, I am sick.  I have something going on in my blood and/or bone marrow that is kicking my ass lately.  The results from the sudden surprise bone marrow test last Tuesday are expected back at my next appointment in a couple days, and I am just hoping that whatever they find won’t kill me anytime soon, and that it is something I can fight and win against or at least manage for another 5-7 or so decades.  You see, I like living.  It is hard as fuck most of the time.  I struggle on a daily basis to get through, and if I’m honest, I would say the good times are outnumbered by the bad.  And yet, when it is good, it is sooooo good,  When my bills are paid, it isn’t too hot, I’m behind my drum kit playing, or outside on a beach with Hannah, or hanging out with my friends watching a band, or lying down in bed on a quiet morning, or cracking up with my family on the phone, or going on a little road trip, or a million other little things that make my life worth living, all of the crap I’ve fought through to have those moments seem to be worth it.  

And that makes me ask this question:  What the fuck is wrong with people?!?!?!  

Everyone knows that I despise Reno.  I have gone off about the climate, the dirt, the meth heads, the lack of things to do, pretty much every aspect.  But it wasn’t until I had to go to Wal Mart today (don’t hate, I have medical bills up the Sam’s Club), that I realized the real reason.  With the exception of just a few, this town is full of people who have given up.  Not only have they given up on their community, their sense of responsibility, their hygiene, but they have given up on living.  Yes, people give up everywhere, but not nearly everyone in an entire city.  (not even Detroit)

So I’m at Wal Mart.  Now, for a little background, I get dizzy every time I stand up.  It passes after about a minute, but really sucks.  Also, I get winded walking around a store the size of Wal Mart lately.  So I go in, look for a few items, and decide on a little wood TV tray I will be using as a bedside stand for my cool mist humidifier (CVS, best $30 I ever spent, FYI), and a 12 piece dish set because Hannah has a way of making dishes go boom.  I did not grab a cart as I wasn’t really sure I’d find something that would work.  I pick up the items, with my arms.  It hurt.  I am tired.  My hip muscles still feel like someone hit them with a bat.  My hip bone still feels like someone drilled into it, sucked blood & a core sample of marrow out of it (oh wait, someone did).  But you know what, I COULD do it.  It wasn’t fun.  I took the two items out to the Jeep.  As I am walking toward it, some 700 pound asshole motors by me with a few Little Debbie items sticking out of his bag in the basket of one of those handicapped electric carts to his Ford F98750, which he has to CLIMB up into after he HOPS up out of the electric cart.  No handicapped placard, or license plate on the truck o’ genital compensation.  He is parked in a regular spot, all be it as close as one can get without being handicapped.  He leaves the electric cart sitting there and speeds away.  I have not yet reached the Jeep as I did not circle the lot for an hour looking for the closest spot.  I feel pretty satisfied knowing that I am not that guy.  I don’t NEED the electric carts, I leave them for the people who do.  That guy clearly didn’t need them either.  It is clear he is someone who has just given up.  

So the Colorado guy,  Or should I say the Colorado piece of shit.  He decides he can’t hack it as a PhD candidate, drops out, and decides that the only way he will be remembered is for killing helpless innocents in a packed theater.  Famous for being a hated asshole.  Wow, congratulations asshole.  You win.  The world hates you.  Why, when you decided to give up, did you just not give up all the way and take yourself out?  You didn’t show us anything we haven’t seen before.  You were too weak to make it in society.  A society that will move on after they inject you, by the way.  You little weak ass pussy couldn’t make it in your field of study and so you think you need to show how cool you are by killing people?  And guess what?  You look like a little bitch.  In my weakened state, I am near certain I would fuck you up without your weapons.  So you gave up, good for you.  Wish you would have done it sooner, without hurting all those people and their loved ones, but guess what?  You aren’t the Joker.  You aren’t Bane.  You will either die soon or rot in prison.  No elaborate escapes, no henchman working on your behalf.  No one fears you, they just want a few minutes in a room with you so they can do to you what you should have done to yourself when you made your first attempt at giving up.  

So is this one of those, “life isn’t fair when there are bad people like that and good people suffer” posts?  Nope.  Life never has been fair.  People can suck.  

This post is simple.  I am physically sick.  I am not giving up.  I am going to fight against whatever is going to make me suffer.  I am seeing doctors for help with this.  

People with mental illness need to seek help.  Their friends and families need to help with that.  They can’t give up.  Even if it means giving up one life in order to prevent them from giving up on letting others live.

I may have an illness, but I’m not going to just give up.  When you do, that is when you’re just sick.

3/9/12, or ONLY 2 DAYS LEFT OF THROWING AWAY YOUR DAYLIGHT!

Okay bitches; let’s get right to it, lots to talk about.

Today, Friday, 3/9/12:

www.cnn.com/2012/03/09/opinion/obeidallah-social-media/index.html

First, read that.  Now I certainly am not appalled about some lack of privacy issue here, as the writer says, “Social media is almost the equivalent of speaking loudly at a crowded party”.  What does upset me is the complete and utter waste of time and resources the government is spending launching investigations because of word triggers that would keep them from better utilizing the time and resources to fight actual terrorists.  It occurs to me that I have likely had a few posts here or there flagged because of words on this list.  Which gets me thinking, if you are also opposed to the government randomly spying on US citizens instead of targeting people who, I don’t know, have ties to terrorist groups or countries that sponsor terrorism…why not point out to the DHS the folly of their ways?  We can talk all day long about how it is likely ineffective, plays right into the terrorists plan of getting us to overreact and bankrupt our country by hiring analysts to dig through haystacks for a shiny pin they will likely miss in this haystack of information anyway, or we can SHOW them.

Here is how I see this going down:  You, me, and anyone we can convince to join us (particularly those who have nothing to fear from an FBI investigation (Big deal, you guys found out I like adults-only hardcore porn and have some fetishes that you don’t share…scary!)) start posting today, multiple times, on our Facebooks, Twitters, LinkedIns, MySpaces, (if it still exists), etc… words that are on this watch list or likely would be.  The key is, use them completely innocently, just enough to flag the little computer program and make someone spend physical time looking at your posts.  Then the analysts will complain to Michael (I believe myself to be High Lord and Protector of America) Chertoff that they are wasting time looking at all this increased “chatter” and it is keeping them from their real jobs, of say…examining the people who threaten to kill for using some supposed prophet’s image or likeness, name, or whatever other backwards-ass superstition they have a problem with.

Here is the post I will likely start with:  “So glad that US Border Security is good and people do not try to smuggle Dirty bombs into San Diego or elsewhere.  Terror is like an infection and must be decapitated.”  That is 6 or more words on the list.  Now think about what happens when a lot of people post it.

Thursday, 3/8/12:

International Women’s Day!  Now the GOP can try and keep them from gaining access to contraception in more countries than ever!  Also, to all my friends that are posting the KONY2012 video…just stop, sit down, and learn about it before you go spreading the fancy YouTube video.  The LRA is hardly active in the region and losing for quite some time, we already have special forces looking for him, the US can’t save every one of the 80% of people in this world living in oppressive regimes (& we might make that list), it is sad what has transpired but is about 15 years too late, & posters on one day will not change this.

Wednesday, 3/7/12:

I love my job, when I am allowed to do my job and do not have to catch people lying and being underhanded in the course of doing so.  That is all.

Tuesday, 3/6/12:

Today I am thinking about Hannah.  I am thinking about how much I love that she is a real person and not just the half of a couple including myself.  She has not morphed into being me and I have not morphed into being her.  She still has her Hannah-isms, (6 and a half dozen of one or the other) she still disagrees with me on a lot of things, she gets as disgusted with the co-dependent qualities of some people as I do, and I just really love her a lot.  I know I COULD live without her, but I am happy that I don’t.  I love that we both believe that just because you are part of a couple, family, group, etc…, you do not fail to exist as an individual.

Monday, 3/5/12:

I used to have a lot of friends; we would go places and hang out all the time.  I wonder what happened?  Oh well, at least I have a guitar, three chords, and the truth.  My guitar is black.  Oh, and drums.  And a laptop.

Sunday, 3/4/12:

Leave it to the day I get 4 hours of sleep the night before for everyone and their sister or brother or cousin to call out.  So busy.  No sun because no windows.  So tired.  Grrrrr. Lame post for a lame day.  Deal.  Grrrr.

Saturday, 3/3/12:

Today was supposed to be fun.  Hannah was going to a concert in Tahoe with her girlfriends, I was going to get together with some friends and have a few drinks, maybe do some karaoke, hit the new indoor trampoline park, and just generally have a great time.  The problem was when I realized that I do not seem to have any friends.  Ugh.  So instead, I played with my laptop, recorded today’s entry with the webcam for a VLOG type experience and made it really funny, (then somehow managed to not save it, hence your extreme disappointment), and stayed up late while surfing educational materials on Reddit; never once going to the NSFW areas.  Honest.

Stay tuned for next week’s entry as I know it will just be super awesome for all!

Friday, March 2nd, 2012, or How I Met Your Mother’s Best Friend.

Hello there!  I’m glad you happened to have stumbled across my little blog today, because I always enjoy the company of fine people such as yourself.  I just poured myself a cocktail, so let me pour one for you.  Sit back, relax, and enjoy my babbling about the week that was, up until today, in reverse chronological order.

Today, Friday, 03/02/2012:

The thing on my mind this day is sex.  Not in a dirty, what is always on my mind kind of way…but sex used as a political fear tactic.  To start this post, I suppose I should let you know that my belief system is based on the premise that, not only is sex for pleasure not wrong, it is in fact the very thing that sustains my mental health and spiritual well being.  If you believe that the only purpose for having sex is to reproduce…shut off your computer, walk away, and take your very boring and uninteresting life, because I feel sorry for you.  Many people in the Republican Party have been trying to make it seem as though anyone who believes that one should be able to have sex without the fear of bringing an unwanted child onto this already overpopulated planet is someone who should not be tolerated.  I simply can’t tolerate that.  I respect their right to have bad sex only when trying to make babies, they need to respect my right to fuck for fun.  The Obama administration, has decided that employers (as part of providing health insurance to their employees), must include contraception in their plans, (or for religious organizations that employ people), at least have a provision that allows the employee to add on individual coverage for contraception if their backwards-ass religious beliefs prohibit the idea that one can fuck for fun.  Rush Limbaugh has decided that this is the equivalent of asking for money to have sex (nice little leap there), and calls women in favor of this idea sluts and prostitutes.  Millions of “conservatives” agree.

So let’s talk about being a conservative.  Let’s talk about the party that claims to want a smaller government.  Let’s talk about the party that claims to be full of God-fearing Christians.  You see, Christians, (if they follow Christ), know that they cannot judge until they themselves are free of sin, (which they also know they cannot be).  Smaller government works across all facets, not just financially, but what happens in someone’s bedroom.  Let me make this clear, these Republican candidates aren’t just calling for doing away with the rule about companies having to offer contraceptive coverage, some are calling for banning contraception all together.  Hardly seems like that additional regulation leads to smaller government.  And part of the word conservative is conserve.  This is the party that denies a link between man and global warning.  This is a party that claims an oil sands pipeline will end our dependence on foreign oil and create jobs even though the oil is foreign (last I checked we had not annexed Canada), the amount of jobs they claim are exaggerated (even according to the company’s own study), and the oil extraction process produces more pollution than shipping regular oil from the middle east.  This is the party that asks Americans to pray for victims of the freak tornadoes in early March across the South, but turn around and say that Earthquake victims in Haiti brought God’s wrath upon themselves.  They also deny that the pattern of extreme and odd weather and the increase in these freak events could have anything to do with the massive amounts of pollution their industry friends dump into our air every day.

I was a delegate for Obama in 2008.  The last few years have been tough, because I have felt let down by him.  I have not seen the kind of change that I was promised.  But today I have made up my mind that I will vote for him again.  I am not a Democrat, but I will never vote Republican as long as this party continues to give voice to those who would trample the rights of women and non-Christians.  And as long as they continue to deify ignorance.

Thursday, 03/01/2012:

Today I noticed that the construction zone on 395 Southbound has been considerably shortened to the area just before and after the lane diversion where people are actually working.  I figure this must have happened by court order as the entire construction zone before hadn’t had any work going on for at least 90 days.  Someone must have got a ticket, fought it on the basis that you can’t have a construction zone without construction, and won.  Wonder how NDOT and NHP will survive without the additional revenue.

Wednesday, 02/29/2012:

Leap Day!  I am saddened to hear of the passing of Davy Jones today, and have reached out to Marcia Brady to provide as much comfort as she needs in this most difficult time for her.

Tuesday, 02/28/2012:

Slow gradually into the curve; accelerate at the apex on the way out.  Breaking just makes you slide more, you idiots!!!!!!  That said, the snow up in the Sierras is still way below average so I am preparing to hear about nothing else locally for the next 7 years.

Monday, 02/27/2012:

Everyone is back at work; maybe those additional hires are not necessary after all.  Except, I guess, to cover when 14 people have to go on leave at the same time again in the future.  Glad everyone is back, now if only I could draw without threat of the camps.

Sunday, 02/26/2012:

Back to work after a week of extreme sickness, still not 100%, but at least I can breathe.  Sadly, I kind of missed it.  Maybe I was just really bored.

Saturday, 02/25/2012:

Good Filipino soup and American banana splits.  Great game of Cranium in which we dominated!  Okay, fine, winning by one question both in the center is not dominating, but I will take it.  All in all a good day interacting with good friends before my triumphant return to the office.

Well friends, until next time, take it easy, or take it hard, or give it easy or hard.  Whatever, it is up to you.  I don’t care how you do it, I’m not Republican.

2/24/12, or the beginning of the end of the middle section of the introduction

Remember me?

Me neither, but I’m back anyway and ready to give you my take on the events of the past week and anything else I may want to write about here because I can.  So let’s count the week backwards and vomit my thoughts about it onto this here fancy computer screen for the enjoyment and education of all mankind, shall we?

Today, Friday, 2/24/12:

Right now the main thought going through my super-computer like head is the hysteria surrounding and contributing to the high price of gas.  I would like to thank the media for blowing this story through the roof and escalating the cycle of worry and high prices.  Does anyone, anyone really, for even a moment, expect Iran to close off the Strait of Hormuz to oil shipments?  How successful do you think they would be in doing so?  I have a hunch our Navy would not really allow much of that.  Now, if you want to fear that escalating into a wider war with Iran, causing terrorist attacks and all sorts of bad stuff, be my guest, but the oil will flow relatively freely regardless.  It always does.  There will be no issues with supply for very long.  This isn’t the 70s, we won’t have to deal with a real embargo, so cut the BS.

Yesterday, Thursday, 2/23/12? yeah, that’s it:

Okay, so let’s talk about the Quran or the Koran or whatever way you spell the book this week.  Today I found myself agreeing with Newt Gingrich for the first time in my life.  Creeped me out!  But before all you pee-tardiers start going off about how bad Obama is I suppose I should clarify that I only sort-of agree with Newt, and not for the reasons you think.  I don’t think Obama should apologize to Afghanistan for some of our troops accidentally burning a book because I think if the US is going to apologize to Afghanistan it should be for occupying their country, killing thousands of innocent civilians, trying to press a system of government on a people that is so backwards they honestly believe that it is worth killing when a freaking book gets burned, and letting the cause of the reason we went into that country in the first place escape the Tora Bora region and rebuild into a force that continues to terrorize their land.  I saw so many tweets (that is Twitter speak) about the murder of two US troops while Obama was apologizing yesterday, that it made me physically ill.  So right now, let’s get something clear:  No US troops in Afghanistan have been murdered since we INVADED their country.  Many have been killed in WAR, but not murdered.  Book burned or not.  I find it offensive that people there burn our flag and freak out so much over a book, but the people there do not live in civilization as you or I know it.  We really shouldn’t care what they think, until we have evidence that specific people are planning on attacking us.  Then we should fly a drone or missile or bomb over and kill them.  In the mean time, we should leave their pit of a country in their own hands.

Wednesday, 2/22/12:

That is a lot of 2s!  Did you know that Jeremy Lin played for the Reno Bighorns?  It’s true.  Did you know that Jeremy Lin plays in the NBA?  It’s true!  Did you know that the NBA is a professional basketball league where people play basketball for money?  It’s true!  Did you care?  Me neither!  It’s true!  UNTIL, I was flipping through the channels and landed on ESPN which at that time of the day (while home sick) was actually the most entertaining thing on, and saw some highlights of this guy who has made people in New York sort of care about basketball because he plays it sort of good and came out of sort of nowhere (Harvard, bet you never heard of it, but for sports I guess it is sort of nowhere) and has gone on to become a sort of star.  Then later, I was again flipping through the channels and saw something on Channel 8 (which I think is KOLO, or COLA or SOPA, KOALA, something like that) about Jeremy Lin having played for our very own Reno D League Team, the Reno Bighorns!  (Disclaimer:  I have been to a Bighorns game and found it to be less exciting and with about the same level of play as the SMS vs. Dilworth middle school basketball games of my 7th and 8th grade years.)  Anyway, this Jeremy Lin kid escaped the Reno Big Horns and is now playing at a sort of high level for a real NBA team.  And if anyone wants to know how, or why this kid is playing so well, re-read that part about him escaping Reno.  I believe every human is capable of greatness beyond their wildest imagination when they are working to never end up back in Reno.

Tuesday, 2/21/12:

The great plague.  Seriously, why the hell am I suddenly dying?  How is it that Hannah can almost function again?  What is wrong with my sinuses? I hope I don’t get fired.  Goodnight.

Monday, 2/20/12:

The great plague.  Seriously, why the hell am I suddenly dying?  What is wrong with my sinuses?  Poor Hannah is sick too.  Goodnight.

Sunday, 2/19/12:

Thought I could make it through work, but this thing is a lot worse than it started out to be.  I think it is sticking in my sinuses.  Surprise, Surprise.  Need to see an ENT.  Goodnight.

Saturday, 2/18/12:

Slept most of the day to go out tonight!  Even though I’m feeling kinda crappy, had the best steak ever at Harrah’s.  Also saw a funny comedy act at the Legacy.  Did both with my Hannah, so of course it was a good night!

Well thanks for visiting my new Friday blog!  I look forward to blogging more for you next week, when hopefully I will have not spent the vast majority of this week in bed trying to determine if the color of my snot means I should go see a doctor.  By the way, I did see a doctor, and this flu thing that everyone got DID turn into a sinus infection for me, like it always does.  I take my last antibiotic today, and my health has improved to the point that I can occasionally breathe again, my cough only scares animals within a 1 mile radius, and I can only do a convincing Batman within 4 hours of waking up.  Until next week…