Monday, January 31, 2011

Scandal in Toy Soldier Land

Director Peter Jackson (LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy) is a toy soldier collector. He even had figures created just for him. Jackson also shopped at the Michigan Toy Soldier Company. Rick Berry, owner of MTSC, is now accused of using Jackson's credit card to steal $189,000. A sad moment for the hobby. Berry's excuse is that the economy has made it difficult to keep his business going, and that he intended to repay the money.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Have a Scar?

Just thought you'd like to see the pretty scar on my shoulder. The one the doctor said would be a couple or three inches. Rick Robinson asked for an update, and all I can say is that the healing continues apace. Today's physical therapy was the hurtingest one yet, but I hope that means it's working. I may be able to ditch my sling in a few weeks and that will be a real benchmark.

Speaking of benchmarks, I ordered a Kindle and it arrived the day before yesterday. Yesterday I ordered my first download, WILD NIGHT, by Livia Washburn. I find it easier to read than a book right now because of my sore shoulder, and it's not too tricky to learn how to use it. Now, I love books and have no intention of abandoning them, but there are a few things better loaded into a Kindle, and some things only available in Kindle format, and for these I'm glad I have the device.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Health Update

I've been sleeping better and feeling saner. Better yet, I've been able to sleep in my bed as of yesterday, to the relief of everyone in the house. Physical therapy starts tomorrow. And tomorrow is another day.

Say hi to Anna May Wong.

Another Honor

Not for me, of course. I just read that my old buddy Dave "Evan" Lewis won the Robert L. Fish Award for his Skyler Hobbs short story "Skyler Hobbs and the Rabbit Man" in EQMM. Atta boy, Dave.

Pictured is Dave on the left, me in the middle, and Tough Jim Gaston on the right. Collectively we are The Moops.

Monday, January 17, 2011

A Visit to the Invalid

A friend wrote and asked me how I was doing. What follows is my response. Anna May Wong appears courtesy of my fever dreams.

Kill me! Don't wait another day, just killllll meeee! This is not living. There is no quality of life here. Sleep is elusive. Concentration is minimal. Food is unpleasant or dull. Time is a snail. For all I know I'm going cold turkey from the meds, which I'm trying to eliminate. You don't even want a hint of what my digestive tract is up to. There is no succor in TV, I can't read for long, I can't do anything that requires two hands, and I stink. Tomorrow I'll shower and sign up for physical therapy. Maybe go see the baby. The rain and gloom aren't helping, either. I have to sleep on the couch and it's very noisy out there when it rains. This was not what I expected from retirement. The good news is that it will all go away eventually and I'll be my old self again, perhaps even better. But until then life sucks.

Thank you for asking.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Yes, It Hurts Just Fine.

Since I got home from the hospital Friday I've slept, popped pain killers, and watched TV. Go Seahawks. That's it. I'm still wearing the same clothes I put on Friday morning, haven't shaved, and could stop a charging rhino with my offensive underarms. Not a pretty sight. Today I plan to shower, shave, and don fresh clothes. I'll also apply a new bandage to the incision.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Under the Knife

In a few hours I'll go in for rotator cuff surgery. I expect to spend the next 6-8 weeks as a one-armed man and doing even less than I normally do, which isn't much. This morning I practiced putting on my socks with my left hand. It's not easy. One of the pre-op instructions tells me to write YES on the shoulder that needs the surgery. I'm thinking of writing CONTINUED ON OTHER SHOULDER under that, and on my left shoulder writing ...WE HAVE NO BANANAS. Surgeons aren't the only cut ups at the hospital.

I forgot to mention that my daughters' Chihuahuas celebrated their 8th birthdays on Jan 3. Many happy returns, Toby and Tiny.

Can't get enough of Anna May Wong, so here's a picture of her when she was very young.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Back From the Cold

Yesterday I returned from a cabin outside Mt. Rainier Park where I spent five days doing nothing but eat, sleep, read, talk, and watch movies with four other fellows. The event is yclept Tankon. It was cold. The heaters didn't work well and the Franklin stove wannabe went out at night. When it was time to go home I found my car's doors and trunk frozen shut. It snowed a few inches. There's no running water, thus no chance to wash. We use an outhouse. One night the power went out three times, but not for long, thank ghu. And we all had a swell time. We don't have TV, radio, Internet connections, phones, or newspapers, but we have movies. We saw two movies with Anna May Wong and a documentary about her. It piqued my interest in this Chinese-American beauty and I did some web surfing about her last night. I felt very sad for her. She was an intelligent, talented, accomplished woman who never reached star status in the US because of the prevailing bias against minorities. In fact, she was forbidden by miscegenation laws to kiss any white actors on screen, even if they were appearing in yellow face as Asian characters. She died of heart failure at age 56, way too young.

Happy New Year.