138 rue de bonheur

Everything Happens for a Reason

MY QUIPS ON BEING NORMAL

Being normal is boring, so I decided to be myself! I hate it when Spell Checker puts that red line under the word you just typed. It just confuses me that much more. If it looks right it probably is. Just cause there’s a red line underneath the word doesn’t mean it’s spelled wrong,  It means that Spell checker is guessing  just like me. And when you right-click the word, this little box comes up that says ignore. You bet I will cause I had it spelled right in the first place. So there! There is nothing wrong with Farting in an Elevator, I just haven’t figure out when is the best time to do it is.  I hate it when someone enters the elevator that you’re in and squints up their nose and gives you that Sherlock Holmes look. I must look guilty, so I bow my head were I should have looked tall and said” Ain’t that sweet one?”  Where has it all gone Blanch? Remember that Commercial? Boy, that still fits into today’s society and our way of thinking. How about “I can’t believe I ate the whole thing”. How many people do you see every day that fit into that mold. ( no pun intended).  How about the Women who blows her horn at a shopping cart rolling across the parking lot. The guy who checks his zipper when he exits his car. “What the hell were you doing in there? the women who always checks her hair each time she walks by a window. The young man looking at an older car at a car show and asked Why does it have two brake pedals? I like looking at the Murphy s Law list. I’ve done or had each and every one of them happen in my life. I think the catholic Church should come up with a Murphy’s Law List for the Ten Commandments. I’m sure they would get a lot more converts.  I believe in using seat belts, but reaching around to get yours and then trying to find the device that you connect to down in the cavity of the seat scares me at what else is down there. At 73 I consider myself pretty flexible, I mean I do exercise and I still can touch my toes but old age has put limits on what you can do and can’t do. Like reaching around your body to a point 8 inches behind you to grab the male end of the buckle on a seat belt than  pull it across your body to a point far below where you’re seated to engage its Female counterpart. Have you ever made Love in the back seat of a 49 Ford Coupe? The preparation is far more exhausting than the act. Then having to repeat the process in reverse especially if it’s too damn cold to get out of the car.  You know what I’m talking about. Hey! I’m old, I can and will complain. Elderly people are not a factor when come to designing new automobiles. They make us bend down lower and contort our feeble bodies in such a manner to enter an automobile that once were in, there’s not a whole hell of a lot we can do. It’s like the Garlic press. Some time ago I wrote about the Human Ass and I think that article needs to be reopened and examined again “LARGE”  February 22, 2013, which I will do again later this Winter.

These are a few of my observations of life.

Advertisements

SATURDAYS

4024 N Campbell Ave.

I always enjoyed Saturdays around my house back when I was 7, living on the North Side of Chicago on Campbell Ave. Life back then was peaceful. The War was over, People had jobs, it seamed everyone was starting out anew in their lives. Service men had returned, They were getting Married, as did my Brother and Sister, buying new homes ,starting new families, Car makers were back making new cars and people were buying them. Fancy ones. Painted in bright colors and offering new and invented accessories  like Radio’s, Clocks, and fancy upholstering.

1947_Chevy_Fleet_Master-a

Up early on Saturday Mornings. Dad took me to Church at 7:30 in our brand new 1947 Chevrolet as I had to serve Mass at 8:00. I was in 2nd. grade at St. Benedict’s School on Irving Park Road and Levette St. and I was an  Alter Boy there. After Church if the Weather was good, I walked home, about 8 city blocks, If not Mom or Dad were there to pick me up. Back home I changed clothes and had Breakfast which was a new cereal that had come out in the stores, It was called Rice Krispies.  Saturdays meant Shopping day at the Sears Store at Milwaukee Ave. and Cicero Ave. They had a Hillmans Grocery Store in the lower level. Mom and I spent most of the Morning Shopping with a final stop at Lutz’s Bakery on Montrose Ave. for after Dinner Cake or Pies for Sunday Dinner.

Lutz

My Mom didn’t Bake, She cooked some damn good meals but Baking Sweets was not her thing. That was left to Grandma Girard My Dads Mom,or my Aunt Eleanor my Moms Sister. Sometimes my Sister came along with us but mostly it was my Aunt Eleanor who did her shopping along with us. Back home for Lunch which was a Cold Cut lunch meat Sandwich on a Kaiser Roll, A Pickle, and maybe a cookie for dessert. In the afternoon it was a walk down to the North Center Theater on Irving Park, Lincoln and Damen Aveues for an Afternoon Matinee to see the continuing saga of Tom Mix or Hopalong Cassidy or Superman or Buck Rogers Serials along with 25 Cartoons and a News trailer all for 5 Cents. I always bought a Holloway Bar for 2 Cents. After that show was over I would walk down about a block to the Bugg Theater on Damen Ave. for another Movie and another 25 Cartoons. Usually the feature film was Abbot and Costello. That cost me another 5 Cents and I still had my Holloway Bar. On the walk back home I still had enough to buy a Archie Comic Book for a Dime and I had  some change left over to put in my Piggy Bank. The house always smelled good when I got home as Mom would have the Saturday evening meal cooking and I was hungry by now.

Shopping was different then , There were no Malls to go to. Stores were not grouped together I mean each neighborhood had a building on the corner that was either a small Mom and Pop grocery Store or a maybe a Bakery along side it. Maybe one neighborhood had a Meat market that everyone from several blocks around would go to for cuts of Meat but for Clothes it was a travel to a Sears store or stop at the Montgomery Ward store and order what you needed from their Catalog. My Dad being in Construction throughout-out Chicago found stores that specialized in certain things and we travel on a Saturday to them. Like for shoes, There was this shoe store on Roosevelt road around Halsted St. near downtown Chicago that had as my Mom would say” They have prices that we people can afford.

Thom Mcan

It was a Thom McAn Shoe Store that I always got my shoes from as did my Dad and Brother. There were other shoe stores in and around Chicago but the largest selection was always Downtown. There were Florsheim Shoes, Father and Son Shoes along with those sold thru  the Mayfair  Stores or the Fair. Mom and my Sister use to go to Wiebolds on Belmont and Ashland Avenues for their shoes or go Downtown Chicago to Goldblatt’s  on State Street for their clothing and Shoes. One boring part of a Saturday morning was going with my mom and Sister to Woolworth’s Dime Store and sit and wait while they went thru the Simplicity or Butterick pattern drawers looking for dresses to sew. That always took so long and After I walked thru the Dime Store and looked at everything, they were still there going thru patterns, but I was always rewarded for my patients with a stop at the Candy Store for a treat.

Saturday Evenings were always fun. My Dad had purchased a thing called a Television Set and they had it set up in the Living room and after a good meal prepared by Mom, My Brother and his wife Elvira and my Sister and her new Husband Stan would take some of the Dinning room chairs into the Living Room and we’d settle in to watch what programs were being broadcast that Saturday Evening. I don’t remember what shows were on but It was new and we all sat together and watched. Mom would make Popcorn later and we would have a Pepsi along with the Popcorn. Mom had gone out a few weeks ago and bought about 6 of a new thing called TV Trays. I enjoyed Saturdays when I was young. The big thing was we all were together as a Family. I miss that now and then more than anything.

WHATS NOT TO LIKE ABOUT GETTING OLD

Smoky Mountain Trip 109-L

There is a lot not to like about getting old. Disappointment is probably the hardest to adjust to. Not being able to enjoy the foods you use to pig out on, the diminished capacity you have when out drinking with friends, Happy Hour becoming Nap Time, and  having to settle for good friends instead of lovers. Holding hands instead of a rendezvouses. But getting old does have some rewards. The mind never gets old nor does it ever stop filling your head with excitement and Desires from the past, present and even the future. Since I’ve had my Heart Attack Kay has kept her eagle eye on my health. If it’s too cold outside, I can’t go out with out covering up my mouth and nose. Cold air makes your blood vessels shrink. Kay observes my clothing habits and she makes me dress I think some times to warm for conditions. I cannot shovel snow nor sweep stairs and sidewalks.  I can use the Snowblower, but only for limited times. It does pull you and sometimes too fast for my walking speed. So, I just let Kay do it and stand by and observe and occasionally offer my critic. I do get disappointed in not being able to do things that I took for granted, Washing the car, waxing the car and lately, not being comfortable driving at night. I love cooking and baking bread trying new recipes  preparing meals for us and for guests, But having to adjust recipes because of changing eating restrictions or tolerances has taken all the fun out of cooking. Luckily we can still enjoy the breads that I bake. So I have adjusted my life, Modified my life, and I will exemplify my life with those things that I can do now.

HOLLYWOOD

My thoughts on Hollywood and it inhabitants. As Mom and I sat there and watched the Golden Globe Awards being dished out we both came to the conclusion that as beautiful and Handsome the recipients were, none possessed an intelligent ability to speak or convey a simple Thank You or express their feelings to their constituents. Our thoughts kept going back to Dennis Rodman and his elegant conversation with Chris Como and how much these Hollywood Celebrities must have attended the same diction classes that Dennis attended  ( if they indeed attended). The simple art of conversation is lost or for that matter being able to express ones feelings and gratitude to another without using four letter words.  Let’s face it. The Queens English is dead. But were lucky, It’s beauty and color is forever saved in the Film industries vaults and can be listened too and enjoyed in Movies from a time long past where the interaction between people was  literary genius and taught my generation and generations before me how to converse with other members of the Human Race. These are my thoughts and I could be wrong.

MIXED FEELINGS

My Girls are celebrating their Birthdays this Month and their entering the best time of their lives right now. I remember my self going into my 40’s and at the time I thought I’m really getting old, but it turn out to be the most exciting time in my life and I ended up enjoying my 40’s. I really felt like an Adult, I had mature Ideas I did Mature things I drove a Mature car and I dressed like a person my age should dress. My Family lived the good life with multiple cars, we sold our old house and bought a large modern house, purchased a Sailboat, Sailed the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico  every Winter for several years, We did Vacations two or three times a year,  The Girls went to the best Colleges, Obtained their Masters. Our income surpassed are spending habits and we owned stocks in all the best companies. It all started to happen when we got into our 40’s so you ask “why are you so sad”?  I’m 30 years ahead of them and I know my days are limited and I want to be here when they get to be my age so they, as I am doing now, look back and see on how great it has been. For their doing all the right things.

When I was in my 20’s I thought I’d never survive Vietnam. It’s very nerve racking when someone is shooting at you, I mean I enjoyed adventure and I was scared but I also had that thin red Line and I guess that got me thru the service and back home again.

The 30’s were hard! Remodeling an old house we bought so we could raise kids in it. Making an old car last a few more years. Our repair and remodeling expenses exceeded our Income, raising two girls and sending them to a Catholic School was costly but that’s what we wanted to do. Somehow it all worked out and “We did it”.

I believe in having a good education, It will get you a good paying job and wanting to succeed drives a person to better themselves and also to drive there children to succeed.  having discipline in raising children and on ones endeavors will eliminate errors and assure successes and also one important thing, having two people who share the same philosophy on the direction of their lives and of their children is a must. two opposing views won’t work for a relationship nor in the raising of a family.

My advice,  Live a good life, Laugh at your errors , Love all that come into your life but also, take the time and the responsibility to make it all work.

POTATO GAMES

I believe it’s the best of relationships, Kay and I share a house that the two of us have put a lot of money into to make it a loving  Home for two old retired people. We each have are own Bedroom  and respect each others rights. I put in all new Electrical, Plumbing and a Heating system to keep us cozy and warm in the Winter and Cool in the Summer. Kay has decorated the house in a Country Motif, We don’t buy each other gifts at the Holidays as we have almost every thing we need, so we give to charities in and around Toledo and to our Church. Well, last year after visiting my Daughter in Chicago at Thanksgiving, Kay fell in love with my Daughters iPad. Kay kept saying ” I got to get me one of these”. So I broke our tradition at Christmas and I bought Kay an iPad.

Neither Kay nor I are savvy when it comes to electronics and getting this iPad to work was impossible. So we had to Skype my Daughter on my Computer and have her walk Kay through starting and using this device. we did get it working and made arrangements for my Daughter to come out in February and spend the weekend teaching Kay and myself the fundamentals of using an iPad.  After getting the Password and Username crap out-of-the-way Kay started to become a wiz at using her iPad. Well, my Daughter started Kay on this game,”Words with Friends” and Kay has been hooked now for almost a year and even though it’s called Words with friends, it’s basically a Scrabble Game on the iPad. Now there’s apps. that you can get that will help you find words and the correct spelling for them, but Kay is determined to do it the old fashion way using a Dictionary that 25 years old in the drawer alongside her Couch Potato Chair. Yes! Potato Chair. That’s where Kay resides lately. She spends about 8 Hours a day pushing letters around the screen of her iPad hoping to make a word that’s not rejected by the Game Guru and asking me how to spell ridiculous words that I ‘ve never used in my life nor would I ever. I like to keep my conversations simple and uncomplicated. hey, but listen, Kay’s having fun, she’s increasing her vocabulary and from playing with lots other players has befriended several nice people from all over the Country. I just wish she would recognize my existence now and then.

Kay and iPad

HEY! BE CAREFUL DOWN THERE!

We arrived at this dimly lite section of the Hospital with double swinging doors that looked battered and worn. As we entered my first impression was one of something from a Science Fiction Movie set. From my view point which was mostly up, I could see Television Monitors hanging everywhere along the walls were people looking at Television Screens and Monitors, and in the center of the room was this huge Monolith of steel beams supporting more Television screens which they rolled me under and immediately began to remove the Hospital Gown I was wearing. cute young Nurse placed a washcloth over my Privites and said,” I’ve covered you down there so that your not completely naked”. She began to violently remove any pubic hair I had down there with some sort of chemical, I guess Nair, and then dried me off which at the time I thought was a Burlap bag. Ouch! While this was going on, I was going thru the 20 Question thing again thinking how much time would be saved if the different departments in this Hospital would share Patient information rather than keep asking them the same old Shit every time they are moved from one area to another. If anyone has ever gone thru the procedure for Catheterization or read how it’s done I can tell you it’s painless and fairly quick. The insertion of the dye , the reading of the results on the screen ( which is your Heart and Blood Vessels) gives the Doctors a good idea what sort of blockage their dealing with and where to set the stint in your vessel. Unfortunately or luckily, I didn’t need a stint as the blockage was completely removed thru medication administered back at the Fremont Hospital and during the flight here. I was taped back up were the Dye was administered and sent back to my room. Everything went good and Tim and Alisa headed back home to Chicago and Kay went home for the night. It was a long day. During that night the Nurse would come in every 1/2 Hour to check my Bandage. She said if things look good tomorrow they would transfer me to a step-down room where I could have quieter room and be able to get up and walk around and have regular meals.

The Step-Down room was just like an ordinary Hospital Room full of amenities like a Television, Bathroom and a comfortable bed. Meals brought to you three times a day, not very tasty but palatable. I was now on a Heart Healthy Diet. No Salt, and low Fat. They may as well as put me on a Bread and Water Diet, food with out some Fat and salt was not fit to be consumed, but that was then, now 4 Months later, I have adjusted my eating habits and have found I can survive with out salt and low fat foods are now part of my diet. After taking several walks around the Nurses station and down the hallways I got my strength back and my blood work came back from the lab good and blood pressure was staying steady with the help of new Medication. On Sunday the head Doctor in the Cardiac rehabilitation  wing came in and told me I could go home. Give the Nurses a few hours to get the paper work done and a new list of Medications that I’ll have to be taking now for the rest of my life. About 4 hours he said. I called Kay and told her and she said she’ll be right there.  I’ve been there since late  Wednesday afternoon and was really looking forward to going home and be in my own house. I never want to go thru that again, and have made a really concerted effort to set myself on a strict diet of low salt and low fat and the several blood tests I’ve had have shown my Cholesterol and Triglycerides to be at good levels and a lowering of my blood pressure and Cardiac Rehabilitation and exercise three times a week has given me renewed strength and ambition.I never was a person who abused his health, I ate conservatively and in moderation. Like the Doctor said, it took 72 years of fats that you’ve eaten to finally create a blockage in your heart. so from now on eat health. and we’ll not see you here again.

Aye, Aye Captain!

DENNIS RODMAN

I’m sorry, but I have to say this. After watching Chris Como  interview Dennis Rodman I began to laugh my ass off thinking about the interpreter assigned to Dennis when he spoke to Kim Jong Un and how the interpreter would use Dennis’s use of the Queens English along with his hand gestures to have a meaningful conversation with the North Korean President. What a Piss Poor representative of our country to anyone weather friend or foe.

A Day in the Life

With the Absence of a clock on the wall, I had to guess it was about 7 or 8 PM. I was hungry, tired but comfortable, no pain. I was told I was on the waiting list to go down to where they do the Catheterizing. Golly, I guess a lot of us people were having the same thing I was having. Have you ever notice that anywhere you have to wait they purposely do not hang a clock on the wall. Airports, Doctor’s and  Dentists waiting room, Hospitals, Restaurant waiting areas. Anyway, I was attended by several Nurses who always asked about my well being then proceed to stick me with some sort of sharp device. I was in a room with about two other men who also were suffering from post Heart Attack symptoms, one who I guess was a heavy smoker as he coughed and coughed all the time and moan, Geez, did he moan.  Kay stayed with me till about 10:00PM and then left to go home and said she be back in the Morning. She said that my Daughter Alisa and Tim were driving in from Chicago and would be here with her in the Morning. Needless to say that after the lights were dimmed for the night, sleeping was not to be accomplished with the coughing and moaning from the one Fellow next to me. Also, Members of the Hospitals Satanic Group, better known as the “Lab People” would sneak in while your just about to doze off, Flick on that massive Florescent Light over your bed and announce that they need some Blood to help starve off starvation that ran rampant down in the Lab. They did this several times a night both to me and the other two Gentlemen in the room. Never the less, I did manage to get a couple of hours sleep that first night.

Morning brought Kay and my Daughter Alisa and Husband Tim to me along with our Pastor from Church, Marshall. I was informed that I would forgo breakfast as I was scheduled for Catheterization that day when ever there was an opening as mine was not an Emergency as the clot in my Heart had been dissolved my the medication given to me earlier, so when the opportunity arises, I’ll be rushed down there for the procedure. I’m Starving!!!!! The head Nurse promised me that right after I come back from the procedure that she’ll bring me a Ham Sandwich on Rye with a big Kosher Pickle. I was also told I’d be there at least till Sunday depending on my progress of recovery.  Hell, I’m ready to go home now.

It was about 2:00PM when the Nurse came in and told me they were going to send me down to the Operating Room soon and I should Pee now if I can. I’ve never been able to Pee on Cue. It’s something one must mentally prepare for and then after some Mental and Physical relaxation, Pee! When they came for me I had to transfer over to a cart and these huge  Male Nurses picked me up and lifted me onto a cold hard cart to be wheeled to my next destination. Every one grabbed my hand and said be strong, Love You, We’ll be waiting for you outside the OR, What, this not going to be life threatening, it’s a procedure done every day, don’t scare me like that!  As I was being wheeled down numerous hallways, I kept hearing this reoccurring them from the beguining of the “James Bond” movies. I was going to be all right. It’s an Adventure. I love Adventures. Lets go, Lets get it over with.

Next: Hey, Be careful down there!

$17,000.00 Helicopter Ride

I’ve always had a above average tolerance for pain and the pain of having a Heart Attack was unbelievable! But, the pain of someone ripping out your chest hair was excruciating!!!!  Upon arrival at the ER the Nurses applied these sticky Cardiac pads to your chest, 3 to be exact. Well as they were getting me ready for the Life Flight to Toledo Hospital the Flight Nurse realized that the pads that were on me were not compatible with the equipment onboard the Helicopter to monitor my vitals. So she proceeds to rip them off my chest to apply ones that were compatible with their equipment. OUCH, OUCH and OUCH. DAMN Girl, that hurts!!!! “Oh, Sorry” she says as she gives me this Mona Lisa smile. “Bitch” I thought. She enjoyed doing that!  Being wheeled out to the Helicopter I thought about the last time I rode on a Helicopter. That was back in 1967 in Vietnam. Back then Helicopter weren’t known for there smoothness of flight, in fact, they were down right uncomfortable to ride in. I imagine they have made some improvements since then. WRONG! They inserted me thru the rear of the Chopper and secured me to the inside bulkhead. I was plastered against the side, secured with several belts, I had a window to my right slightly above my head which I could not look out of. There was some sort of electrical receiver/Monitor above my head that I could literally touch with my tongue, The Cute Blond Nurse who enjoyed pulling of my Sticky Pads was tight against my left side, the other Male Nurse and the Pilot must be up front in the First class section of this craft as I never did see them. It was so tight and close inside that Helicopter that if one of us Farted, something or someone would have to be thrown overboard to make room for the gas that was omitted!

Riding in a Helicopter has not changed in 40 years! They are the noisiest, Bounciest, hardest riding Aircraft you can be in. It feels like your riding down a plank road is the only way I can describe it. It took about 20 Minutes to get to Toledo Hospital from Memorial Hospital in Fremont and upon arrival and after being extradited from this flying sarcophagus, I was wheeled down several ramps and into the Hospital and then down numerous hallways to a very small room and transferred to a table where several nurses began removing all the cables and intravenous tubes from me that were applied before my flight here, oh, guess what, the sticky pads that flight crew stuck on me,,,,,, they weren’t compatible with the Toledo Hospital Cardiac Monitors, so off they came, I swear the staff there at The Hospital and even the Blonde Flight nurse drew straws as who got the job of ripping off the old pads from my now almost completely bald chest as I screamed in tumultuous pain and cussed every one of them and they all gave me that “Oh, I’m Sorry” while deep down inside there Florence Nightingale Mind, A smirk of satisfaction exited the corners of their mouth. After answering a few dozen more questions and receiving several more shots and additional fluids feed into my stints I was rolled out of this room and down which seemed an extremely long series of hallways and into an Elevator that I believe they use in one of the scenes from the Blues Brothers when they were in Chicago City Hall and it took forever to get two floors while this hideous Elevator Music played. Mean while every one kept asking me how I was doing and if I was in any pain, and I replied,”Only where you Bastards pulled off those Sticky Pads”. I reached the room where I was going to be in till after The stint was installed. It was the Cardiac intensive care unit and it was here that Kay finely caught up with me and assured me every thing was fine back home and Molly was being watched by Mat and Mindy, Our good neighbors, and my girls where notified about me having a Heart Attack. And for the record, 6 weeks later I received a copy of the billing for that ride that was submitted to Medicare  for $16.875.00 of which they paid all but $1450.00 because there was a Hospital that was closer that could have given me a Stint and treated me for my Heart Attack. I was under Promedica care and flew past a Humana facility. I paid the difference!

Next; A Day in the Life.

Post Navigation