I spend an awful lot of my time over on Booksie now. I have quite a few novels (one topping over 100 chapters), and a bunch of short stories, poems, and the like. I enjoy doing them and have a few fans following me. Over there, I write under the name “Tom Oldman” so if you go to Booksie.com and do a search for that name, you’ll find me.
Lately, I’ve found WordPress to be a bit ‘clunky’ as an interface and have to go looking for functions and buttons that used to be quite visible. I really hate it when a web host makes changes just for the sake of changing something to make it look like they’re ‘moving along’. My adave has always been: If it works, don’t screw with it”.
Facebook, on the other hand, is really, really bad at creating chaos out of calm. For absolutely no reason I can see, colors are changed, position of buttons either changed or dropped/added willy-nilly, and whole iFrames are either modified or moved to make way for an increasing amount of ads. I’ve been kept busy writing scripts for my GreaseMonkey add-on in Pale Moon that helps me kill things that irritate me (especially on Facebook). Of course, nobody in their “customer service” even deigns to answer a simple query or an enraged complaint. No matter how nasty you are to them, they simply ignore you.
Anyway, I will now climb down off my soapbox and get some sleep.
Time has completely gotten away from me since my last post. My wife and I have had our 50th wedding anniversary of August 1st, which we celebrated in January with a 14-day cruise to the Caribbean. It was a wonderful trip and we enjoyed it a lot. Unfortunately, right after I got back, I came down with a horrible case of gout in my left leg, ankle, and big toe. It immobilized me for almost two weeks (and put me in the hospital for three days).
Then, a few months later, I had my prostate flare up and block me up. Now I had a catheter to mess with (documented as several previous posts).
As I’ve said before, I do most of my writing over on Booksie.com as ‘Tom Oldman”. Several short stories and three rather long novels have been published. I’m currently working on three more novels, but have had to curtail my time on them due to guests in house for the holidays.
Now it is into January and things have calmed down somewhat. I hope to get back to at least an occasional post here.
I have just published Chapter 5 of my newest novel: “You Only Love Twice”. You can check it out over on Booksie.com. Here’s the URL:
It is another Romance novel. Hope you’ll check it out.
The catheter for males was invented in 1760 by the Marquise (or Marchioness) de Sade for her husband, the Marquis, for his twentieth birthday as a gift. It is said that he enjoyed it so much that it soon became the law of the land that whenever a guy had problems urinating, a catheter was inserted. Therefore, what started out as a sexual aid soon became something not so nice.
I can vouch for that wholeheartedly. When I got back home from a wonderful 14-day cruise in the Caribbean all of a sudden my prostate decided to become enraged at the treatment I’d been giving it for the last 70 years and swell up to the size of what felt like a basketball.
This, naturally, impeded the flow of fluids from my bladder outwards. I can definitely tell you that not being able to pee for what felt like two days (but was only two hours) is NOT FUN!
The first doctor in the emergency room (a female Major) was either unsure of how to go about inserting the catheter, or was a devotee of the Marquis in some way because no lubrication or other deadening agent was used in the attempt.
I did a LOT of high-pitched singing while simultaneously trying to push down further into the bed I was lying on. Finally, she gave up and called another doctor – this time a male. His first question was: “how much lidocaine did you use?”
Her answer: “Lidocaine?”
After the generous application of a deadening agent, the catheter was finally inserted. For those of you who haven’t had this pleasure, just imagine a #2 pencil about a foot long being inserted up your urethra. And, get this; once it is inserted all the way into your bladder, a balloon-like section is inflated using distilled water to KEEP it there.
Suffice it to say that once it was in place, the pressure was off so to speak and they gathered nearly 900 milliliters that first time. Now, I am walking around with a bag strapped to my leg. The best thing: I can pee whenever I want to!
I am reminded of the clip from Dirty Rotten Scoundrels when Steve Martin’s character asks “Can I go to the bathroom?” When the person responds “certainly”, Steve gets a very satisfied look on his face and then says “thank you”.
For some reason, comments have been disabled for my blog. Does anyone know why this has happened?
I realize I haven’t been making many posts here, but that shouldn’t have any bearing on what gets commented on.
Let’s see what happens to this post…
EDIT: I found the culprit!! Buried down in my settings is a check box that says “Turn off comments after [fill in the blank] days. It was set to “14”. I changed it to “90”. I’d never noticed this check box before.
Yesterday, while working in my back yard, my hearing aid fell out of my ear and dropped to the ground. I (among others) spent around three hours searching for it with no luck. Today, I called the VA for a replacement.
Here’s how our tax dollars are spent:
The VA will not give me a new set of hearing aids without a complete physical. That, in itself, isn’t too bad because at my age you can’t get too many physicals BUT instead of picking up the phone and requesting the pertinent records be faxed over from the hospital at Wright-Patterson (I had a physical four moths ago), the VA requires that THEY do all the work – which effectively duplicates every bit of work already done.
The VA is always yammering about “how crowded they are” and “how they can’t possibly deal with all the veterans who apply” so why in hell do they ‘require’ someone who already has a complete medical history to come all the way across town and get yet another physical workup at their hospital? I have no idea how much time, effort, and money is spent doing this, but it certainly could be eliminated with a simple phone call and a facsimile machine.
So, here’s how things stand:
1) I have to wait until the 10th of September for the physical (in the AM) and a new hearing test (in the PM — which I could use since my last one was three years ago for renewal of my disability)
2) In the interval, I will have to go back to reading lips to understand completely what everyone is saying since I only have one hearing aid.
3) Last time (when I broke one of hearing aids by stepping on it when IT fell out of my ear) it took a grand total of two weeks to replace it. Now, apparently, the VA has had “updated procedures” they have to follow that were dictated by the head bureaucrat-in-charge-of-government-spending-of-our-tax-dollars.
Talk about government boondoggles, this one is the boondoggliest.
Just finished posting Chapter 1 of a new novel/short story/novelette or whatever you’d call it. It’s a departure from my last one only in that I’ve added a little spice to it. The rating system at Booksie is a bit vague, so I marked it PG or Mature; mostly for the language and such.
Still the same general theme, but this time it takes place in a mountain cabin in Colorado. Two people, who were maintained a ‘just friends’ relationship find that they were really only deceiving themselves and let love blossom. Yeah, I know – kinda corny. But, what the heck, I’m kind of a corny guy.
Yesterday (the 5th) I lurched over into my seventh decade of life. Yup, that’s right – I turned 70. Several forums I participate in have Happy Birthday threads running. It is heartwarming to find that I do indeed have a number of friends that, even thought we’ve never met, treat me like very a close friend. I like that very much.
My sister, Penny, is still sending me really funny stuff, but I’ve been tied up with all sorts of things going on and just haven’t found the time to post any of it. I’ll try to get some of funnier ones out soon.
I finally played Taps over my truck and turned it in to buy a 2012 Ford Escape. It’s a beauty too. Very nice color of blue, with cream-colored (or coloured, for my friends elsewhere) winterier. I temporarily put the old plates from the truck on it, but the color (colour) had eroded from the lettering so badly that nothing was left. Since I plan on taking a couple of trips, I didn’t want to get stopped in Podunk, Arkansas and be told by a cop that he couldn’t read my plates from ten feet away. So, I went to the DMV (Department of Monetary Victims) and paid for a new set of plates. I got a real doozy of a letter combination “FOZ” + four numbers. This helped me create a name for my new ve-hickle: “Fozzie”.
Here’s a picture:
I think this one’s going to be a real nice car to drive. Next week, I’ll have Ziebart add a trailer hitch and do their 10-year rustproofing gig. I won’t have this one getting eaten up by rust like the truck.
Anyway, that’s about it. If you want, let me know what you think of the first chapter of the book/novel/novelette/whatever. You can find it here:
PS: It’s HOT! Went up to 104 today and last night never went below 86 degrees. My grass is ‘crunchy’.
I am typing, at the moment, one-handed. My left arm is in a rigid cast bent at the elbow and in a sling. What fantastic surgery! I got a nerve block right in the shoulder – watching the ultrasound screen as they did it – and it almost immediately went to sleep. I couldn’t feel a thing from the upper point of my shoulder down to the tips of my fingers.
I still haven’t seen the stitches because they are wrapped in bandages, but those come off Tuesday when I see the surgeon again. The block was so thorough that I didn’t get any feeling back – anywhere on my arm – for 12 hours. I was kept in the hospital overnight to forestall any infections and then released Friday. It felt strange to have those fingers hanging out there from the wrapping and not be able to feel my touching them with my good hand. It felt like someone else’s hand.
I had to give up the waterbed temporarily because I couldn’t get up out of it. What was so amazing was that at no time was there any real pain. I got painkillers, but stopped taking them because they had codine in them. Codine and I don’t get along. It makes my stomach upset, I get the sweats, and mt BP goes up a bit.
This whole thing is going to cost me $3.75 though – for the food I ate.
It may be minor, but it’s still surgery. Men with knives will be attacking my left elbow in an effort to bring relief to my tingling fingers. Seems that I have managed to damage the nerve that wraps around the point of my elbow and it needs to be re-routed somewhere else. It is straightforward surgery – but I will refrain from calling it ‘no-brainer’ for obvious reasons.
I have to stay overnight in the hospital, which isn’t a real hardship because it is for my own good to make sure there isn’t any post-op infection. The hospital in question, by the way, the the base hospital at Wright Patterson AFB. I live very close. In fact, if there weren’t any trees I could see it. When the wind is right, we can hear the music at Reveille and Retreat.
When I get back on Friday evening, I won’t be of much use here at the keyboard since I have to type with one hand. I am very fast even with this handicap, but I think I just won’t feel like it so bear with me.