Category Archives: Aging

Another Blumenthal Ranger

Time was when every Vietnam vet was a baby killer. Then every Vietnam vet was a hero, simply for having served over there. Neither made much sense but reflected the ambivalence in which we were held. Mostly I remember people on the street looking away when I was in uniform. They would not meet my eyes.

Then came the wannabees: the Blumenthals and other liars, who wanted the hero label and the consequent general sympathy. And finally some vets got together and began policing these scumbags under the rubric of Stolen Valor.

Comes the latest in their ranks: Nathan Phillips, the aging old American Indian who insolently played the drum in the Catholic kids’ face and got raised to hero status by the Leftist media who wanted the kid strung up because he wore a Trump hat. Lynched, in other words.

Thanks to another Blumenthall Ranger.

Via Google and The Lid

UPDATE:  Time for Phillips to lawyer up.

The idiot light

So an idiot light came on last Sunday on the dashboard just above the temperature gauge and I looked in the manual and it had something to do with the emissions system.

Took it to the Honda dealer this morning and was informed that the other thing I wanted, an inspection to update my registration, was impossible until the emissions system was looked at in three days. I could have a rental but there were 65 cars ahead of me. Sixty-five!

Then I went to show my insurance card to the rental guy and discovered it was out of date. I drove home to print out the updated one. Starting back I got the bright idea to take the CRV to Jiffy Lube when it opened and see if it passed inspection. It did, along with two brake lights replaced, saving me a ticket.

The idiot light, meanwhile, had gone out and not come back on. Saved by the insurance card.

Burying Mom

Barbara Ellen’s aging mom was buried the other day. Now comes the hard part.

Mom wanted to be planted in a box. Dad preferred cremation. So his nine-year-old ashes were put in the box with her. Her remains, that is, as hard as that idea would be to deal with under normal circumstances.

They are the lips that kissed us, the hands that caressed us, and the arms that encircled us when we needed them.

It was made “tremendously comforting,” however, by two dreams her Dad brought her shortly before Mom passed. One was of him telling her to get the dying over with and come along. Mom had the same dream that same night but it included the detail that he was waiting to go dancing. Bar’s other dream was of a crowd of people with him waiting for Mom to come along. She recognized some of them, including her great grandmother.

Still, Mom is gone from our sight and that is the hard part. After many months dying she is suddenly gone. Everything has changed.

Colonoscopy

Finished yesterday my sixth or seventh colonoscopy. Hard to remember as they’ve been coming at five-year intervals. This was the easiest by far, thanks to HyGieaCare, which obviates the necessity of drinking even 12 ounces (with lots of water) of awful, nauseating stuff I can only call motor oil.

An all-around shitty subject this, but a worthwhile alert if you have a first-degree relative whose death was due to or preceded by colon cancer. In my case they were my father and his father. If so, see a gastroenterologist and get on with it.

Five Four polyps were found this time, versus six last time (in 2013), but it’ll be a week or so until I find out if any of them were malignant. Never have found one such so don’t know what the protocol would be. Hope not to find out.

UPDATE: No cancer but two of the four were pre-cancerous so the doc has me down for another test in 2020—two-year interval instead of five.

Cigarettes & pneumonia

When I was recovering from my recent bout with pneumonia, one of the doctors I saw at the hospital told me my smoking cigarettes at age 74 made me vulnerable to the bacterial version of the disease. And that I would continue to be vulnerable to it the longer I smoked. Until it finally killed me.

So in the three weeks—including one of coughing before I came down with pneumonia and the two weeks since recovering, I have had less than one pack of cigarettes. And I was only drawing the smoke in my mouth and blowing it out again. I didn’t start inhaling again until yesterday.

Which ended in a fit of coughing. I have a Nicoderm patch packet but haven’t used it yet. I think it’s the act of inhaling that I miss rather than the nicotine per se. But my lungs won’t let me do it any more without a penalty of coughing. Am I going to quit entirely? I hope so but really can’t say just yet.

The Baby Bust

The WSJ’s Best of The Web argues for more legal immigration based on an historically-low birth rate for American women:

“American women are having children at the lowest rate on record, with the number of babies born in the U.S. last year dropping to a 30-year low, federal figures [show]…

“The general fertility rate for women age 15 to 44 was 60.2 births per 1,000 women—the lowest rate since the government began tracking it more than a century ago…”

With European women likewise giving birth at historically low rates, the West’s declining (and simultaneously aging) population should be grounds for statistical worries, yes, but more immigration? When unemployment among blacks and legal Hispanics is at an all-time low? Maybe not.

Via WSJ

No more launching

You know you’re getting old when you can’t launch anymore. Launch yourself up and away from a sitting position, I mean. Like the young do. Without thinking about it.

Can’t do it anymore. Fall on my face if I try. No, I have to slowly stand up and let things settle. Let gravity adjust itself. Then I can start walking, slowly usually, is the safest way.

Happy to say I can still stand erect though. I am not bent over like some in their seventies. And my legs are pretty strong from the treadmilling and the squats I do six days a week. I won’t need a walker anytime soon. Or a cane, either.

But I can’t launch. No more launching for me.