Schingle's Blog

September 4, 2021

Another Mishmash

So, I thought I had a topic for today’s blog and was ready to write about it and then, while I was out for my (before it gets too hot) 6-mile walk, another thought hit me. So, I’m going to briefly brush on a couple different unrelated things. Here goes.

My original thought (which almost certainly none of you care about) was regarding this upcoming darts league that J and I are going to be involved in. We’re going to need a secondary bar to play host. We’re going to have 18 individuals playing and it’s singles. So, we need nine boards and LB’s (the Liquor Barrel, our host bar) only has six. So we need three boards for “overflow” matches. We’re hoping to use Murphy’s which is right across the street, but they are yet to open (I posted on this about three, maybe four days ago). As an experiment, J and I went to “Lucky Strike” bowl, a bowling alley with a bar that has like five dart boards. We thought, maybe

As it turns out, while the dart boards are plenty and the place isn’t too crowded, the boards are not in very good shape and there are a couple regulars that will talk your ear off. I can’t imagine them staying quiet while six to eight people are playing darts and trying to actually win. So, it would appear that Lucky Strike is a bust. Alas, the search for an “overflow” bar continues. This league may NEVER get started.

My second thought occurred to me during my morning walk. It was again about the hypocrisy of the Republican Party. I’m the first to say that the Democrats are really no better, but, this isn’t that. The state of Texas just passed the country’s most restrictive abortion laws since abortion was fully legalized by the Supreme Court in 1971 (the famous Roe vs. Wade). To top it off, the Supreme court, ignoring its own precedent, decided not to grant a temporary block to the law. They will hear the case when they start their next term in October, but by then, it may be too late for thousands of scared women who will have been forced to have children they aren’t in a position to properly look after.

To make matters worse, it is this same kind of thinking that abortion foes use to not want to pay for Medicaid and other entitlements. So, first make a woman have a baby she doesn’t want because of the sanctity of life. Then, let the same baby starve to death because god forbid we have things like Medicaid and Food Stamps, right? The hypocrisy is astounding. It reminds me of my dad, who was a devout Catholic. That is, until they took a stand he disagreed with. When Iraq broke out in the early part of the century, the Catholics opposed the war. My dad was all for it. In that case his Republicanism meant more to him than his Catholicism. Go figure.

So, there are my two mini-rants for the day.

And, as always, here’s wishing everyone peace on this gorgeous Saturday.

May 25, 2021

Seeing Mom Again

So, for the first time in a couple of weeks, I’ll be seeing mom again. She got out of her “re-hab” assignment in the nursing home yesterday and has moved into her new digs. The new place is more like a group home than a facility. There are only ten people in the home and two staff on during the day. There is only one person on at night. Meals and meds are provided by staff. My brother saw her yesterday within an hour or so of her moving in. So, today will be my first time seeing her since she left hospital.

I’m trying to be prepared for the worst. When Dave (my brother) saw her yesterday, he said she really looked haggard and worn out. I’m just thinking she’s very tired and just not in good shape. Of course, she won’t let them treat her. So, she’s got this gaping wound in the heel of her foot. It’s been infected historically. If it gets infected again and it goes untreated she could lose part of her leg. I don’t understand her stubbornness but I guess I have to respect it.

She has the right to refuse her medications and was doing that on and off during her “re-hab” stay. If she continues to do so in the new setting, she’s bound to get continuously worse. On the upside, in this new placement, they do offer hospice care, so if her turn for the worse gets that bad, hopefully we don’t need to move her again. Knocking wood on that one.

Meanwhile, I’ll see her today expecting the worst and hoping for the best. Dave gave me a heads up, so I have an idea of what to expect. All I can really do is have a good visit, hopefully make her laugh a couple times and leave it at that. Right now, I have to trust the staff that they know what they’re doing. Here’s hoping all goes well—for her sake and for mine.

And, as always, here’s wishing everyone peace on this beautiful and starting to get hot again Tuesday.

April 28, 2021

Off to Visit Mom

Among the ironies of this pandemic that has gripped the world for over a year, now, is the fact that visiting people is harder than ever. And, of course, this is a time when people could use a friendly visit to cheer up and to cope. I’ve seen my mom a total of twice (with today about to be a third time) since Covid hit. The first was this past Friday (five days ago). The second was this past Sunday (three days ago). Funny how it took hospitalization in order for me to see her.

Mom took a tumble in her apartment of the assisted living facility she was staying in. Paramedics arrived. She had no broken bones, but her blood pressure was very low. They brought her to hospital for precautionary reasons. She’s been there since last Thursday (six days now). They’ve found a number of sores that don’t seem to want to heal. It’s attributed to diabetes. But, the fact that she’s showing signs of the beginning of dementia doesn’t help. It’s apparent that she’s unaware she even has these sores. She may be staying in the hospital for quite a while to come.

Even when she’s discharged, she’ll likely end up in a true nursing home, as she is both physically and mentally/emotionally unable to care for herself, even in the most rudimentary sense. It’s a sad thing to witness. I’m going to see her today, partly out of guilt, but also to hopefully help her bring a smile to her face. Mom and I have had our differences over the last 58 years (my lifetime), but I still want what’s left of her life to be as comfortable as possible.

So, I’m going to head to hospital right now, before I start driving and hopefully make her smile a bit. I’m just hoping she doesn’t become argumentative. I try to explain to her what’s going on with her health but it’s met with blank stares and cries of “…why can’t I just go home?” All I can tell her is, “…it’s up to the doctors,” which is of little consolation.

At any rate, that’s where we are. Just try to make her comfortable and, hopefully, make her laugh a bit.

And, as always, here’s wishing everyone peace on this hump day Wednesday.

March 26, 2021

One Down, One to Go

All right, so I got my first of two Covid-19 shots yesterday. I don’t appear to be any the worse for wear save for a sore arm. I’m not one to gripe, and it isn’t THAT bad, but my arm really does hurt quite a little bit. No other side effects, so far. I front loaded with zinc and vitamin c and will continue to do so until Sunday or so, just in case. Overall, though, it would appear to be worth it. My second shot is scheduled for the 15th of April.

Meanwhile, less than two weeks after AZ opened up for 55 and over (my demographic, but not J’s), they opened up the vaccine for everyone 16 and over. So, of course, J tried to set an appointment as soon as she saw the news, and, of course, there are no appointments available for quite some time. CVS pharmacy did put her on the “in case someone cancels list” but no set appointment. Walgreen’s told her to check back in five days or so. The state was of no help or hope whatsoever.

Meanwhile, my mom continues to deteriorate. My brothers and I need to figure something out. Her current placement has room in their “memory care” program. She’d get more attention, but she’d have to move down the hall, and right now, mom doesn’t deal with change well AT ALL. We’re looking into a couple of other placements as well, where she’ll get the care she needs but with fewer overall fellow residents. Either way, it looks like she needs to physically move, whether it’s down the hall or down the road. Yeah, I personally cannot wait to turn 90. This sucks!

Sorry to gripe to my fellow bloggers. Just been a rough last couple of days.

As always, here’s wishing everyone peace on this beautiful and end of the work week Friday.

December 31, 2020

But, Mostly, It Was Pretty Bad!

As promised from yesterday’s post, which focused on the few good things that happened in 2020, now for a look at the less than pleasant happenings of the year.

I’ll start with a trivial matter that only means anything to me. After St. Patrick’s Day, which was the day Tucson “shut down” we no longer got to play league darts. J and I were really starting to get into it. The Fall ’20 season was canceled and it looks like the same for Spring ’21. We’re hopeful to get things back up and running come fall of ’21. Fingers crossed.

The obvious one, of course, is Covid. It killed and hurt a lot of people and disrupted the lives of, literally, billions around the globe. Now, they have a vaccine. Maybe that helps. But, also now, there’s a new strain. Will this disease last for the rest of forever? One, of course, hopes not.

While I put this in the category of good news in yesterday’s post, I need to clarify. We got rid of the orange faced and orange haired dictator. But, at what cost? I voted for him, but I’m not really sold on Joe Biden. I mean, he’s better than the dictator, but that’s a pretty low bar, isn’t it?

Again, this one is a bit trivial, compared to the health and safety of humans around the world, but entire sports seasons were lost, due to the pandemic. We’ll all get by, of course, but still, when you’re stuck at home with nothing else to do, sports can be a great diversion.

Ok. I’ve been a great big bummer, today. However, I do have optimism that 2021 ends up being a better year. Let’s all hope so.

Oh and, one final good thing. I’ve made a lot of new friends here on Word Press. This is now, officially, my only social media outlet. I’ve dropped Facebook for good now.

And, as always, here’s wishing everyone peace on this last day of the year, and on into the New Year. Peace and love to all!

December 16, 2020

The Most Sterile Place in the World?

As I inch my way towards 60 years old, it’s good to know that I can still learn new things. Yesterday, I learned something that, in retrospect, should have been common sense.

As most of you know, for bread and butter, I drive for Uber and Lyft. I gave a guy a ride, yesterday, who taught me something very interesting. This guy is a repeat customer. I remember him, but I’m not sure if he remembers me. That part doesn’t matter.

At any rate, for a living, this passenger owns and operates a tattoo parlor. He’s pretty heavily tatted himself, so I assume he knows what he’s doing. With the economic slow down, I asked him how business is going. He said they were actually doing very well. I told him that’s great, as I continue to root for the small business owner. He said they’re just playing it smart.

For instance, his shop is open to appointment only. He doesn’t do any walk ins. He knows ALL of his clientele. I said, well that’s smart to keep the overhead costs lower. He said that’s part of it but more than anything, it’s for the cleanliness factor. I said, well that must be a big concern now. He said, no more than it’s always been. “I, and all the artists who work for me, treat every single client we have as if they have everything—a cold, the flu, syphillis, chlamidia, AIDS.” He went on to say that they keep everything sterile all the time. If they draw a little bit of blood, they change gloves. He went so far as to say, “I never understood why they’ve been telling us to wash our hands since March. Weren’t people washing their hands anyway?” See? Common sense. It never would have occurred to me, but it could be that the most sterile place you’ll ever go to would be your local tattoo parlor. Assuming, of course, that it’s a reputable parlor.

To top off the ride, before I took this guy to work, we stopped at a convenience store, as he needed a coffee. As we pulled into the lot, we saw that an older fellow was having a confrontation with two cops in the parking lot. My passenger told me, I’ll bet the old guy is refusing to wear a mask. I didn’t hear any of the conversation, but my passenger went in and got his coffee. On his way out, I noticed the tattoo guy go up and say a few words to the old man and the cops. When he got back into my car, I asked him what he said. He said he told the old man, “You’re lucky you are who you are and not some young black man, the way you’re talking to these cops.” The old man said, “What?” My passenger just told him, “You didn’t like that did you?”

All of a sudden, this passenger of mine became my latest hero.

And, as always, wishing everyone peace on this gorgeous but quite chilly Wednesday.

December 6, 2020

Back on the Horse

Filed under: gratitude, images, Medicine, musings, Reminiscneces — Tags: , , — schingle @ 5:37 pm

Yesterday, I woke up feeling like absolute crap. I stayed in bed the good percentage of the day. J brought me water and crackers—about all I could handle. I’m better now.

Mostly, I do this blog for me, though I am grateful to have a following. I hate to miss a day, even if what I have to say isn’t all that important. But, yesterday, the idea of writing a blog piece was out of the question. And, today’s is going to be very short as well. I’m better, but far from 100%.

At any rate, I thank all of you who’ve stuck with me, even when my posts are very personal, and not necessarily relevant in any global sense. I read as many of all your pieces as I can in a given day.

With that I close and say thanks one more itme.

And, as always, wishing everyone peace on this beautiful, yet slightly colder, Sunday.

September 24, 2020

A Sad Anniversary

It was exactly a year ago today that J (my significant other) lost her dad. On the upside, I could be there with J and Adam(her dad) during the last six days of his life. J and I have never married, but I think Adam thought of me as his son-in-law, and I thought of him as my father-in-law. We were very close, and got even closer in his last days.

You know, when someone loses a loved one, those around often don’t know what to say. One of the cliches is “Remember the good times.” And, as trite as that is, there is truth to it. During his last days, I’ll never forget that I was able to make Adam laugh. We’d both laugh together and it helped him forget his pain. The laughter was helpful to me as well.

Though he wasn’t my dad, I cried when we got the news. It was about 4 in the morning when J’s brother called. We got to the home where Adam was receiving hospice about 5:30 am. He’d been dead since somewhere between 2 and 4 am. The hospice nurse came in and did all the tests and officially pronounced him dead at 6:15 am, Tuesday, September 24, 2019. Weird how even death has to have a bureaucratic touch to it.

Needless to say, J is a little down today. She’s working as I type this. I’m going to work shortly. We’re thinking of going out for beer and darts tonight, but if she changes her mind, I’ll understand that. Today is her day to make all the decisions. I’m merely here to be a support.

That wraps things up. I didn’t write this to bum anybody out. In death, Adam escaped some rather noticeable pain he was receiving. He also escaped the virus, which undoubtedly would have killed him as well, and probably with more pain than he had to deal with. I’m not one of these “Pollyannas” who always tries to find the bright side. But, I do believe Adam left when it was his time, and on his terms. We can all only hope for the same for ourselves.

And, as always, wishing everyone peace on this melancholy Thursday.

September 18, 2020

Science as Anti-Christ? Um, No!

I was kind of bummed out to read this morning that Van Morrison is putting out three songs denouncing the validity of the Covid Virus. Now, Van Morrison is a favorite singer/songwriter of mine. I’ll continue to like his music. But, I have to question his respect for science.

The great scientist/astrologer, Galileo, was way ahead of his time. In fact, he was so avant garde that the Catholic Church (which was essentially the law in Europe, at that time) kept him under house arrest for the last several years of his life. He had the audacity to show that the earth revolved around the sun, and not vice versa, as Catholic “educators” taught. After, literally, centuries, the Catholics realized Galileo was right and the Catholics were wrong. He was issued a formal apology from the church in the early 20th century. Fat lotta good that did him.

To my thinking, those who question the validity of the Covid virus are the same who deny climate change, the same who deny that man walked on the moon and the same as those who still feel the earth is flat. It’s as if denying science, good well-studied, science, is somehow sacred—no matter how ridiculous the denial is.

And so, in my humble opinion, for what it’s worth (and, admittedly, that isn’t much) we need to listen to our scientists. Yeah, there’s a place for religion, but it’s not the job of religion to uproot science. It just isn’t healthy.

And, as always, wishing everyone peace on this (end of the work week) Friday.

September 17, 2020

Our Poor Sick Girl

J’s (my significant other) and my dog, Fisk, has fallen ill. We knew something wasn’t right as she’s been lethargic, eating and drinking less and, worst of all, not very insistent on her morning walks, which is her reason for living. Last night, we took her to the vet.

It turns out she has “Valley Fever” which is apparently very common around these parts (the desert of AZ). She’s on anti-biotics and an anti-viral medication. The trouble with this affliction is, she’ll likely be on these (or some sort) of medications for life. Poor girl.

Still after only one day on the meds, she seems to have a little more pep and, we’re hoping, by Friday, she’ll be in the mood to go on a (short) morning walk again. J works from home and says she’ll keep an extra close eye on Fisk throughout the day.

So, everyone in this house is hoping for a speedy recovery for our dear, sweet Fisk.

And, as always, wishing everyone peace on this (we’re getting there) Thursday.

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