Saturday, December 29, 2007

add the congressional dem leadership to the indictment and i'll go make the citizen's arrest...

By the way, Brattleboro is the coolest little town too:
A group in Brattleboro is petitioning to put an item on a town meeting agenda in March that would make Bush and Vice President Cheney subject to arrest and indictment if they visit the southeastern Vermont community.
You go, Green Mt. Boyz! ... and Grrlz!

Friday, December 21, 2007

seasonal falicitations...

Merry Christmas!  Happy Hanukkah!  Falice Navidad!  Happy Holidays!  Merry Kwanzaa!  All of the above and below.
Am tooling up to Maine and don't know when I'm back online.
Friends & Family:  I'm getting stronger by the day, now on my 2nd cup of decaf.  I bought a pair of boots yesterday to keep my feet dry in the myriad Nor'easters already fallen, and this is only the first day of winter?
Good!  I too shall enjoy the Solstace.

clarence the cross-eyed justice...

Clarence Thomas: "I wouldn't say I Like" Being Supreme Court Judge.
Do us all a favor, Clarence: Go bungee-jumping. Leave the cord. Take the canoli.

for the record: today's asshole health insurance carrier is CIGNA... !!

Two words: "Wrongful Death"!
A 17-year old died just hours after her health insurance company reversed its decision not to pay for a liver transplant that doctors said the girl needed.
And here I am fresh off a 10-day fun-filled adventure in the ICU.

somehow it's always the other shoe that makes the story more interesting...

Alycia Lane is really a piece of *cough* work. Sending bikini shots by email to Rich Eisen, where his wife can (and did) intercept them. (And I woulda paid-per-view on that conversation.) Then she gets busted for busting a "dyke" cop across the chops (all alledgedly, of course). Then she puts in a call to PA governor Ed Rendell to, what, get a little sympathy? Fun stuff, all of this -- especially since she's a hottie.

But, well, there's the other side of the story, and it fits fairly nicely with my general narrative of America slouching toward a police state worthy of the Soviet Union:
Exactly. In fact, Lane's case -- tabloid lurid though it may be -- is a prime example. Without her pictures, we only have the damning and one-sided account of the police officers on what actually precipitated the alleged assault. American citizens have a right to film public police activity -- whether it's a potty-mouthed nightclubbing TV news sex symbol or the man who filmed the arrest and beating of Rodney King.
What we haven't seen yet is a cop getting videotaped tasering the camera op for taping the cop tasering the camera op.

Meanwhile, here's betting this story doesn't go away soon. It's got it all, Sex & Violence!  ...  and Sex.

Still hate Philly, Naahm, old buddy?

Thursday, December 20, 2007

dropkick murphys: i'm shipping up to boston...

Just reminding myself I ain't done w/the city. I'm just recuperatin'.

a chronically offended dinner guest is no more welcome at the table than a chronically offensive one...

'Tis the season to punch somebody's holiday lights out...
Bill O’Reilly and Focus on the Family have been waging an aggressive campaign to pressure people to use “Merry Christmas.” In the past, O’Reilly has argued that saying “Happy Holidays” to people “absolutely does” offend Christians.
Really? It offends the Christianists when you say to them "Happy Holidays!"?

Well fuck 'em if they can't take a glad tiding.

sliding slowly seaward...

The scale says I'm at 248 today. That'd be down 6 lbs from yesterday, a shitload of water that. Lasix would be the miracle drug, i.e., diuretic helping me shed said water.

Meanwhile, back at the Lawyer's office, Brotherman the Elder finely tuned the bet via email today:
First, you have to stay at or below that weight throughout the duration of those three lessons for me to pay for all three of them. For example, if you schedule the lessons over three consecutive weeks, but you make your weight for only the first lesson, then fall off the wagon after that (and into a large pot of chili, say), I only pay for the one lesson. Second condition, your weigh-in has to be on a scale we both agree is accurate -- your gym locker room or mine, either one works for me.
All of which presupposes I'll be right at/around 225 and not 5-10 lbs less on May 1, a bit of exactitude I find fairly amusing.

And even as I would like those golf lessons, my true motivation is to save my life... and score chicks... uhm, in that order.

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Update: Wait, chili is fattening?

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Update II: And, yes, scoring chicks would be a whole lot easier if I could find the sunny side of 200 and not hang around at 225... 

And hold down a job:  Yeaaaaah!  That's it! 

more CEOs agree...

They're overpaid!

Two words: "Salary Cap." Regulate the bastards. Max a percentage they can receive relative to the lowest paid employee.

Works for the Japanese, works for me.

nixon had sex... ?

I did not! have to visualize this (but you may)!!

in that case, nobody'd care who shot J.R...

Ok! If I'm not the only person in the world who doesn't find Ben Stiller funny or even interesting, then why is he in so many goddamn movies? J.R. Ewing? Excuse me?

I'd rather see a zillion year-old, baggy assed Larry Hagman come back to reprise the role. Why not the A-list Rat-Pack, i.e., Clooney, Pitt & Damon, and not the B-listers, Stiller, Vince Vaughn and the Wilson brothers (a virtual guarantee the production will slide into camp)? In fact let's lose the B list altogether and move on, shall we?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

focus...

Just off a conversation with Big Brother, i.e., R. He has offered to buy me 3 golf lessons should I get my weight down to 225 by May 1. Having just hit the scale, that'd require I drop 29 lbs. in 5 mos. and a week. Easy, no?

Dunno. I haven't seen the sunny side of 245 in a few years. I have one more day here in NH and then drive to ME, all part of my recuperation from Cardiomyopathy and Pneumonia. My BP, at last check, was 100/70, artificially low, given the meds I've been, er, given upon leaving the ICU at Cheshire Medical in Keene a week ago Monday.

R. & D. have put me up since then and are my favorite people at the moment. Leaning on Mom in ME starting Friday; shoulda been tomorrow but yet another Nor'easter is promisin' to party, so we're playin' it, like, conservative.

I get by with a little help from my fffffamily.

hillary once again disses the base...

As a former talk show host & producer, I totally grock Ed Schultz's frustration when he spouts:
I am done with the Clintons. I’m done with the cheap shots. I’m done with the innuendoes. ... Hillary, I do not want you to be the nominee. Biden, I do not want you to be the nominee.
From a distance, then, I see Hillary for what she is: a queen-wannabe with a flinty heart, particularly when as applied to the great unwashed of her party, where she expects she'll be held to account for the across-the-aisle collaborating (i.e., with those who won't collaborate back). What's interesting is she's fearless when facing the dark side of the media, but when it comes to real Dems wanting answers, none are soon to be forthcoming. Why is that? Because she'd be exposed as a Republican in Dem clothing that much more easily?

Bah! And to her I say, "Feh!"

Save yourself the aggravation, Iowa. Vote for John Edwards.

a former anti-dixie chicks protester repents...

Touching story about a mother who regrets her reactionary ways vis a vis the Dixie Chicks.  (h/t to DK).

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

oedipus call yer office...

Bill says George the XLIst will seek to repair the damage caused by George the XLIIIrd, and do so on behalf of Hillary.  

Would love to hear that next conversation between father & son.
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Update:   41 says WTF??  Count Bill as another idiot killing his wife's campaign.

a bout of "huckenfreude"...

Enjoying the hand-wringing by the Corporatistas on the right, fearing an actual loss of party control if Huckabee gets the nomination, but can you imagine, should Huckabee actually get elected, the severe damage those Christianist yayhoos could cause if they go marching as to war unfettered?

who framed roger rocket (A: nobody)...

Callahan sums it up for me:
Are we supposed to believe [Brian] McNamee is lying about [Roger] Clemens but not about Andy Pettitte?
I was listening on Boston talk radio saturday. Apparently friends of Roger Clemens are buzzing New England's capital with whispers that Roger wants one more (1/2) year to close out his career, and he wants to play for the Hose.

1) The Sox don't need him.

2) Baseball doesn't need him.

Monday, December 17, 2007

another one bites the dust...

Dan Fogelberg... 1951 - 2007

I see a Bad Moon a' Risin'...

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Update:  Acknowledging my profound ignorance on this one:  Confusing Dan Fogelberg with John Fogerty.  Like, arf!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

the cartoon mike huckabee wants u 2 c...

now if there are any "christianity" cartoons out there that mitt romney would like u 2 c...

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

no man is rich as he who has friends...

I am overwhelmed with good wishes in response to my email. Thought I'd share.

But first, An excerpt R. sent out updating friends on my situation:
D. and G. and I just watched the Pats beat the Steelers on the TV in G.'s hospital room in Keene. Fun game, although the nurse came in once when we yelled over one of the plays. She threatened to turn off the TV, as she felt the game was getting G.'s pulse up too high. G. pointed out to her that his pulse would likely get much higher if she turned off the game. She agreed to leave it on, but said "no more yelling" as this was an intensive care unit, not a football stadium. I asked if she could bring us a couple more beers, but she said the old lady with the heart transplant in the next room had just finished the last of it.
And, now, back to the good wishes...

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Annie in Topsham:
WOW G.! Your spirits are great! - exactly what you need to tackle whatever comes your way.

Hopefully we'll be able to get over to your Mom's for Christmas and see that you are doing just fine ('cause we were a bit worried ...).

Annie
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Naahm in Philly:
Jesus H. Christ, G. And to think my browser tried to screen you out. I think I am fibrilating just reading this.

Bout of pneumo seemed to have gone around my house as well, but no suffering the likes of what you have endured.

Pointless to ask if you are okay, and I need not admonish you to take better care. Lord knows, I gotta do the same and you are the latest cautionary tale.

Sorry about the job; sucks that they would hold a bout of pneumonia and congestive heart failure against you. Heartless cretins.

Well, relax, get well, and enjoy the Patriots laying the lumber to the rest of the league.

Commander Guy deux
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Holly in Santa Cruz:
How frightening! Thankfully, it sounds like you're in good hands, both among family and doctors. I hope that you enjoy this holiday season knowing that you're on the path to health. Take good care of yourself, and please keep me posted!
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Suzette in D.C.
So, clearly I've looked away for entirely too long. Look what trouble you get yourself into!\?!

Dude, I sure hope you get better soon. This is some serious stuff. Please keep me updated, and call me when you can in the evening.

Oh, and a word of advice, DO WHAT THE DOCTORS TELL YOU TO DO. (I know you)

Take care dude, and I hope to hear from you soon.

Suzette
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Jim in D.C.:
My goodness... I'm glad to hear things are a bit better now. When is your procedure?

I'll let the team know, if it's ok with you - I think some would like to send their well-wishes.

Take care, and feel even better...

Jim
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Chris in Wiscasset:
amen, you ARE a lucky man.
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Saadia in D.C.:
I am glad to hear you've been diagnosed and are in treatment. I was worried when you emailed me that you might have pneumonia. One of my work colleagues has similar conditions to yours -- blood clot, heart problems but no pneumonia -- and was in the hospital twice in the summer. But though her blood clot is still around, she's doing much better now.

Where are you going to be living in the next few months? Do you need anything?
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Steve in Wiscasset:
Hi G., glad to hear you are out of the hospital. Sounds like you had quite an ordeal. We all were and still are very concerned for you.

When you get up to your moms, maybe we can get together for a coffee or some lunch. Nothing to serious, just a little hand holding and gazing into each others eyes..... oh wait, wrong G. Maybe we can watch a football game or something.

Seriously though, your big bro has asked us to stop by your moms on the 21st. I am not sure if that will work out or not, but hope to see you over the holidays.

Having been through a similar escapade as yours on a couple of occasions, I may have some resources available to you. Cook books, tips etc. Let me know if you need anything. Take care of yourself.

Steve-O
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P. in Portland:
Hi G.,

What an ordeal for you! I'm glad you're out and resting at Rick and Diane's now - following a sensible diet and such. I imagine you have many thoughts and feelings that could go into some very creative writing now. I hope you can get it down because you have a talent for this.

I also imagine you have some major life changes to make and paths to discover. I'm routing for you. I wish for you to find your way.

Until then, I'll be seeing you at mom's in the near future.

Be well,

P.

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D. in Biddeford:
Greg: I'm so pleased that you are out and about. In the long run, this scare may be the early warning that keeps you vital so that you can help steer our political awareness toward truth.

take care, enjoy each minute.

D.
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Chaatoes in Alexandria:
G.,

Amen to that, I'm ever so glad yer on the mend -- I was indeed worried and apprehensive since talking to you last Thursday. Now, take care of yerself!!!!!

Talk to you soon.....

D.

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Bruce in D.C.:
Yo G.,

Sorry to hear about all your health problems--sorry, but not too surprised. I hope you take this as a wake-up call to lose a whole lot of weight.

I'll be joining you in that endeavour. About a year ago, I hit a personal high of 261 and lost 20 pounds in 40 days using a strict South Beach diet--no alcohol, no sweets, small portions. I'm back up to about 258, so it's time to start thinking about getting back on my diet again.

Hope you're up and around soon. Walking a lot is key too.

Bruce
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Mark in Winston-Salem:
G.,

Sounds like quite a ride. Glad you are still here. Have a Merry Christmas and hope it is all better from here on out.

Mark

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Karen in Memphis:
Hi, G.--

So sorry to hear of all you are going through. What heart procedure exactly are you scheduled for? a bypass? a heart replacement? Do you still have health insurance since you had to leave work? Let me know if you need a place to recuperate after you've worn out your welcome with R. and D.. There are a couple of rooms in my place or my Mother's in Memphis if you need time and attention to recover. I hope you make a full recovery very soon and that you have good doctors. My prayers are with you.

Sincerely,
Karen
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Laura in Fairfax:
Not a hey howa ya been? Just a hey I almost died? Well hello to you too!

Anyway- god that is awful and I hope you are feeling better! And 1 glass of wine a day is supposed to be good for your heart. Just ask my 97 year old grandma.
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J. in Portland:
Word, man. I'm so glad you're on the upswing. I was rootin for you. I'm off to yosemite early wednesday, but when i get back in january we should hang...meditate together, eat some raw kale, and then pick up some chicks and go on a long bikeride.

Cheers,
J.
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Paul in D.C.
wow. that's fukking intense. thanks, first of all, for letting me and others know. too often i think people don't, for whatever list of reasons, and i'd much rather know so that i can share the concern across the cosmic pathways... keep taking care of yourself, and keep eating and exercising well... we need you and your voice out there...

oh and get some rest...

cheers, paul
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The Harvster in D.C.
G.:

That its the worst (but best written) e-mail I have ever received. I am so sorry about your ordeal. I cannot imagine the fear and difficulty you experienced and continue to experience dealing with the physical issues and the related mental and financial stress. I got a little taste of prolonged illness when I missed two months of work with vertigo earlier this year--but only a taste. Your situation is in a completely different league. I am terribly sorry. I wish I could say more, but words fail me. Please know that we are pulling for you. You are a good man. You deserve some good luck.

My prayers are with you,

The Harvster

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Gil on Bailey Island:
hi g.,

so, it takes this kind of drama to persuade you to visit brunswick? you need to get out more!

let me know when you've settled and interested in a visit. bailey island is near. perhaps i'll come by. we'll go for a walk, introduce ourselves to the natives and terrorize them at a later date.

onward,
gil
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Beth in Portland (via R.):
Thanks for keeping me updated on G.. I did call him again on Tuesday, but he was pretty drugged up and I told him I'd just keep trying until he was able to talk. But please let me know if you think it's not a good idea for me to call. I know even with just pneumonia a simple conversation can wear one out, so I don't want to tax him further.
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Kathleen in South China (ME) via Rick:
Good to hear from you with updates. Glad he is getting stabalized. This is a shock as it's the first we have heard about G. being ill. Crimy he's my age!!! Give him our very best.

love kathleen and david
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Mike in Boston via R.:
Tell him we love him and need him back for the holiday rush

Thanks R.
mike
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Mark in Topsham via R.:
Hi R.,

Tell G. we are thinking about him and your family during this time.

Mark
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Dan in Pittsburgh:
I'm glad to hear that the problem has been diagnosed and the prognosis sounds positive. I was concerned with the "from a NH hospital" quote and was hopeful that you had just stuck your foot in your mouth or something.

Please keep us updated on your health and know that you are in my prayers that God's healing hand would touch your heart.

- Droid
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Susan in Alexandria:
Hi there!

I just tried to call, but your line was busy. As I don't check my e-mail too often, I just got the message you are in the hospital. Thank goodness you have Rick & Diane there to help "take care" of you. How frightening. I hope the doctors are able to figure out all that is wrong and get you up and well again soon.

Am going out with a friend this evening, but am thinking of you and hope that are steadily getting better by the moment.

Love you!
Susan
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I also received very nice falicitations from Ingrid in Alexandria and H.A. in Darnestown, but I'm switched to find them to post them. Sorry, guys!

Also: Cannot -- CANNOT -- leave unacknowledged other brother J., who helped me cover the cost of the pharmaceuticals and, with his 2nd son, moved me out of my one room cell over the bar in Southie over the wknd.

Family! You dig?

Thank you all. Very much!

on the mend...

Email sent out last night:

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Family & Friends…

Roughly 'round 2:45 p.m. this afternoon I was discharged from the Cheshire Medical Center in Keene, NH, after spending 9-1/2 days in the Telemetry and Intensive Care units. The initial diagnosis was Pneumonia in my right lung, such that I had to leave work for an indefinite period, thus subsequently losing my position for lack of being available to work.

I drove up to R. & D.'s on Thursday, the week after Thanksgiving, where he urged me, at her suggestion no less, to come and stay for a little while so that they could look after me. I had been suffering since late September and was only slowly getting worse. I spent one fitful night trying to sleep but with little success. That Friday, I was struggling mightily to breathe and with a persistent though mighty dry cough. Rick insisted on taking me to the E.R. in Keene. I didn't resist.

It wasn't long before the medical staff on duty discovered that not only was I suffering from "atypical pneumonia", but my heart was in A-Fib, i.e., Atrial Fibrulation, meaning the top part was beating considerably more rapidly than the bottom half, a decidedly unhealthy development. They treated me with antibiotics for the lung, and blood thinners and pressure meds for the heart.

Long story short, I was given a variety of drugs for a variety of symptomatic ailments. One of the intended procedures, after having been admitted, was to put me under anesthesia whereupon they could take the electric paddles, yell "CLEAR!" and shock my heart thru my sternum (vs., say, shocking my heart, then yelling "CLEAR! Oops!! Sorry!"). Except when they scoped me in the O.R., they discovered my atrium was harboring a blood clot. Shocking it could then possibly dislodge said clot to where it might cause an embolism or stroke. My diagnosis was downgraded to "Congestive Heart Failure!" I'm only 48 and must say, those words scared the hell out of me.

So I'm scheduled for the procedure in January, after the clot is made gone; meanwhile the blood thinners, the diuretics, and more antibiotics and vitamins. The good news in all this is medical technology: it makes for a possible near complete recovery. 20 years ago? Not so much.

I write this while sitting at the dining room table in Rick & Diane's home in Troy. She's preparing a low-sodium chicken soup for dinner, and I am drinking water while fantasizing it is wine.

I suspect I'll be collecting disability for at least a couple of weeks before being ready to go back to work, wherever that'll be. I just wanted to thank those of you Rick contacted about my situation, in response to which you kindly wished me well. Believe me – it was greatly appreciated. I was careening the emotional sturm & drang for certain, fearing life was indeed way too short. I found great comfort in your sympathies.

Suffice it to say, I have a fantastic family – The Best! – some of whom visited me at the hospital and the rest of whom called and text-messaged to wish me well.

Thank you, all. Please know this one believes more than ever no man is rich as he who has family & friends.

g.