Too long for a post response…(and probably nonsensical for those that don’t visit The Wagon.

I am me, the same on the Internet as in real life – the obnoxious know-it-all who will never say anything behind your back that I wouldn’t say to your face. But then I’ll tell you to your face what I think- no punches pulled. I’m self-centered and live in my own world – and yes there are many of you that I would like to get to know better (Goldie, Stacey, and Terri come to mind) and there are some that I would just as soon never meet because of the way that they present themselves on the ‘Net. Only one or two people that I’ve met were not the people they are on the BB’s but they just intrigued me and made me curious about them. (A wonderfully gregarious BB talker who is horribly shy IRL comes to mind). There have only been 2 members of the ezboard community that I never wanted to see again after we met, just because we rubbed each other wrong. Both of them should know who they are (I’m pretty sure neither of them visits the Wagon so if you came to this blog from the link in Whizgidget’s post – IT’S NOT YOU!). Of those two, I probably owe one of them an apology since I very publicly ranted in my blog as to why I can’t stand her when it should have been handled in private. For those that have emailed me, you know that I’ll drop everything to come meet you. (I keep waiting for Darla to pass through my city so I can have a 3 am truck stop meal.) If you’re in trouble, I’ll drop everything to come get you and help you escape (remember the offers -LisaUT and Indystitch?)
In the long run, I don’t have as much time as others to spend cruising blogs or the boards, but when I do get time, I’ll either go random through the bloggers links or I’ll hit a blog like Whizgidget’s, Suz’s, or Annette’s where there are bunches of links to choose from. Most days, I do my best to try and find something to comment on just so that you’ll know that I was there and I read it. I do that because I have days when I wonder if anyone visits my blog and reads it. It’s one of the reasons that I post questions here (That and to get people to think on occasion).
I’ll admit that I sometimes wonder if it was me that caused someone to delete their blog all together (I can think of a couple that disappeared within days of my leaving a comment that I thought was helpful and provided an answer to a question they were asking – sugar glider care comes to mind).
I do know that there are some people out there that actually hate me (but not enough to send me hate mail, just enough to post about me in their blogs or on other BB’s). I just figure the rest of you are as self-focused as I am and haven’t had the time to let me know that you noticed me. (Or you just agree with everything that I say – I would love a comment expressing a contrary opinion and providing an argument to back it up, I love to debate. Debate is not insulting, it’s informative).
I do have to admit that I am amazed at the number of people that ask for RAK addresses and although I’m not quick at giving them out, I do respond eventually (I’ve asked that people ask Kirsten first though). I have to say that I was shocked to get a RAK myself and I feel guilty that I probably wasn’t as eloquent or timely in expressing my appreciation (yes, Susan, I still feel bad that I didn’t email you immediately).
There have been one or to that have reached out to me to whom I feel I haven’t responded as well as I should have (Belinda, Annette, and Shorty come to mind) and there are others that I talk to all the time – to the point that I’m thinking of adopting the South American custom of having my children refer to them and their spouses as Aunt and Uncle.
Beyond that, it’s a time and distance issue, after all, as my husband is fond of saying…”You don’t know who is really a stitcher and who is Bubba from Cell Block C.” Ever since I first posted that comment, I’ve been telling him – but Darla admitted she is Bubba so the worst anyone else can be is an unconvicted rapist. He still worries about how much I get wrapped up in your issues and problems, after all to him, you’re all imaginary; except for Karen, Cat, Robert, Ann, and the people he met in Vegas. The jury is still out on those who he’s talked to on the telephone.

Is this Suicide?

There is a lot of talk of death and dying on the blogs this week in the community I read and there is some talk of suicide which got me thinking. Is refusing medical treatment suicide? When you know the cancer is terminal and all chemotherapy will do is prolong life by a few months is it really worth the pain and side effects? What attitude do you take while it’s happening?
Jim is in his mid-sixties. He served in Vietnam, he dresses today like the old hippy he is. 15 years ago, Jim discovered religion and he discovered my aunt. They’ve been happy together and good for each other. She has him eating healthy and helped him eliminate the majority of his unhealthy habits. 6 months ago, doctors found a spot on Jim’s lung. The biopsy discovered even more cancer. Jim’s attitude has been “Well, 30 years of smoking and other stuff finally caught up with me.” He started chemotherapy and did 2 courses. He loves the “tie-dyed” chemo cap that a dear friend of mine knitted for him. He wears it daily (I should probably beg for a 2nd since he’s almost worn it out). Last week, he heard that the cancer is now in 5 areas, and it’s not responding to chemo as well as they hoped. The doctor wants to do another series, with stronger drugs. Jim said no.
He intends to go home and do what he wants for the next several months. He’s said he’s done with hospitals and doesn’t intend to go back. His wife is having trouble with this. He keeps saying that this day was inevitable with his first cigarette. He’s moved the family into a condo so his wife won’t have as much to take care of after he’s gone. Some of the family accuse him of committing slow suicide. I can see their point. But I can see his too. I think I agree with him. Why bankrupt the family to gain a few months on earth when you know there is an afterlife? Why suffer pain for a few more weeks here when you know that you will be with your loved ones on the other side? Yes, they will be sad for the short time that you’re separated but the span of a mortal life is a grain of sand in the shores of eternity.
So, is it suicide or death with dignity? Last night, in an episode of House M.D., I heard a monologue that there is no dignity in death. Death with dignity is a lie. Dignity only exists in life. One can live with dignity but death is always a messy, undignified process and should be delayed at all costs. If everyone believed as Dr. House, did in that moment, then we wouldn’t have the debate about assisted suicide. There would be no questions about “quality of life.” (Notice I qualified the comment with “in that moment.” The next episode showed House choosing to sacrifice the life of one baby in order to save 5 others.) So we come back to the original question – – Is doing nothing a way of committing suicide? Is it wrong?

Pop quiz…

What is the deadline for filing taxes? If you said April 15th, that’s not the right answer. With the utilization of 2 extensions the deadline is actually October 15th. Last year, I filed my taxes on October 15th and that’s only because my accountant was very good and didn’t yell at me when I turned everything in to him on October 13th, nothing like waiting until the last second.
This year, I’m doing it all early. I’m not going to wait until the last minute and that’s not just idle talk. In fact, today, I got out my bag of tax papers and organized them. I still don’t have the stuff out of the tax cupboard but I did buy an expanding file for receipts this year. I know there are some deductions I missed last year due to lack of organization. This year there are some I’m going to be missing from lack of documentation. Mainly the humanitarian giving that I’ve done. I didn’t get receipts for a lot of the stuff I sent for charity. But in a way, isn’t that the way it’s supposed to be? Let thy alms be in secret, let not the right know what the left is doing, charity should be in private not shouted to the world. I do like not giving my money to the government and if I can give it to charities of my choice instead, then that’s even better. In an ideal world, we wouldn’t need social security, Medicaid, or many of the government social programs since individuals would see beyond the ends of their noses and help others without being begged, cajoled or forced. Anyway, I’ve at least started on my taxes. Maybe after I post this, I’ll open Quicken and get started. Then again, maybe I’ll go clean the stash room.

Just another manic Monday…

So I forget to tell my husband that I have to be in the office early so he wakes me up with just enough time for me to shower and run out the door. I’m out of my “base coat” base color. The office manager is out so I’m the only supervisor in the building. My ceramic cup cracked when I put hot water in it to make cocoa. If I hadn’t started LifeChange today, I would take this as a sign that I was about to have a bad week.

And in this corner….

I have a Tempur-pedic mattress. You know the advertisements, “made of space age material” and they have the wine glass that doesn’t move when the girl in a shorty nightgown jumps on the bed. Now before you think I fell for advertising hype, let me explain a few things about my life. I’m married to a man who has been mistaken for Peter Jackson (before Jackson lost weight) on more than one occasion. My last traditional spring mattress lasted 3 years before it looked like that kitchen gadget that goes next to the stove in which you to rest spoons. Turning it didn’t work, it just broke down the springs on both sides. Let’s not even get into the back pain. DH has a congenital back problem that the doctors describe as “Pretend your spine is a sturdy ladder, now put that ladder on a bowling ball.” Needless to say, a good mattress is a necessity. So we went mattress shopping. First, DH spent a month researching things on the internet, by telephone and in print. Then he found all the shops in town and went and checked them out. Finally, he took me with him to the shops that had the best prices. I wasn’t that thrilled with the thought of a traditional mattress that we would have to replace in another 3 years. So we checked out some of the specialty shops.
It’s amazing how someone dressed like a laborer with long hair can’t get taken seriously by sales people. Did I mention that in the morning DH had been doing remodeling on some rental houses we’re selling and then going mattress shopping in the afternoon? Anyway, the Tempur-pedic people didn’t try to run him off the premises so they had an advantage. So after checking out the bed and prices, he called me to come try the mattress and see the shop. I got there and the salesman showed us several models. We decided on a king. Smart sales person then suggested that we try several different models of pillows. I ended up loving one that reminds me of the wood block described in Memoirs of a Geisha (the book not the movie). It was so comfortable that while DH and the salesperson were haggling, I fell asleep.
Fast forward to winter…
No one bothered to tell us that the Tempur-pedic material becomes rock hard in the cold. If you “flop” back onto the mattress, you may crack your skull. I’ve learned, however, that if you crawl onto the stone cold rigid surface, body heat will warm the mattress and you will sink in beautifully. Think about that a second, the mattress molds around you and is a perfect fit to your body. But if you’re like me, you came to bed to read, do crosswords, logic puzzles, or sudoku puzzles before going to sleep. You crawl into bed and make yourself comfortable for the activity that you’re doing. The bed molds around the position that you are in and when you’re ready to sleep, you move to get into your favorite sleep position and discover that the mold you set is not the one you sleep in. It takes a while for the mattress to shift the mold and while it’s doing so, it never fails that there is a small spike of cold mattress poking into my back.
But in the morning, the bed is warm and soft, the blankets cozy and the flannel, which attracts beagle hair quite well, is comforting. The beagle is usually at my feet, either under the blankets and on top of the sheet or right at my feet depending on how he burrowed in the night. And this brings us to the point of this entry… This morning, the mattress won, I didn’t get up and exercise.

and the life change continues….

Last week the focus was on starting an exercise program and it worked and is still working. I may not be getting to the gym but I’m working out every day which is more than I used to do. This week’s focus is organization – starting with cleaning my areas of the house. I decided to start with my closet. I decided to start slow, every time I go into the closet, I have to pick up and put away 5 things. Then about bedtime, I got into a frenzy. I can now see the floor of the closet, it needs to be vacuumed, if only because a potpourri thingy spilled a while back and it’s all over the carpet. I did decide that the 4 drawer unit is too small for the closet. I also discovered that I own more purses and belts than I thought I did. DH says I should throw out any purse that I can’t repair the lining in. I just might after all part of organizing is simplifying and I probably don’t really need 5 animal print purses.