Category: I've Noticed…

Shingles and my mom

My mom began the new year in a quite painful manner.

A few nights ago, she began to feel intense abdominal pain. The pain was so bad that dad rushed her to the hospital, in fear that she was taking a heart attack. Our medical services here on the island are so poor that she had to wait six hours before being examined. If it was a heart attack, she would have died in the waiting room. When she finally got to see the doctor, he was very rude and totally hard to understand. The doctor was an east indian who had little concern for my mom. The nurse who worked with him had to translate for him, and he told my mother that she was wasting his time because all she had was a pulled muscle. He attempted to prescribe VERY strong pain killers, but my mom told him that she would not take those tablets, and would deal with the pain herself. My mom is a very strong woman.

Over the next few days, mom suffered from the pain, and upon examining herself in the mirror, she discovered a very painful rash developing where the pain was. She realized that she had the same painful rash her mother had many years ago, a rash linked to chicken pox, Shingles.

Upon realizing this, she once again visited the doctor to see if her diagnosis was correct. This time she waited seven hours in the waiting room, and finally got to see a doctor. This time the doctor was again from east india, but this time he seemed more courteous than the last ‘doctor’. He said that she was correct and that it was indeed shingles. Mom asked if there was anything he could do for her, and he prescribed some medication (these guys prescribe narcotics at the drop of a hat). When she asked about the medication, he said it was very strong and would help with the pain. She instructed the doctor that her son was a pharmacist, and that she would check with him first. At that, the doctor tore up the prescription and wrote her one for a medication designed particularly for shingles. When she asked if she was contagious, he said he didn’t know, and left the room. Talk about professionalism!

She is home now, the rash has since moved around her body, a painful band of red swollen skin. The medication helps a little, as does the Tylenol that she takes every four hours. There is no cure for Shingles, only time. The research she did online told her that once a person has chicken pox, they are open to contracting Shingles. Apparently if a person who has not had chicken pox in their lives can contract the disease, but if they never had the disease, then they wont catch Shingles from another person. Strange disease that can now be controlled in small children. There is a vaccination available for kids under ten. For now I sincerely hope my mom a quick recovery, I hate seeing her like this.

What a pack of snow!

I dropped into my oldest uncle’s home today for a chat. Uncle Mike is 88 years old, and has more than one story to tell. Mike is the youngest in my grandfather’s family, and the last one to survive.

When I got there, I exclaimed at how much snow had fallen in the last little while. “What a pack of snow we got out there!” I yelled loudly. Uncle Mike’s hearing isn’t what it used to be. (neither is mine, but I have hearing aids, he doesn’t)

“Thas nothing!” he said. “When I was a kid, we had snow banks the height of the house!” he said.

He is right. I can even remember those days, and I am only 49. I remember mom warning us not to be walking along the tops of the snow banks touching the bottom power line. I remember when I was 17 and had my first car. I blew the motor in January and needed to replace the engine. Luckily I had bought a scrap car back in November and parked it in Dad’s driveway. Unluckily, Dad had a hundred foot driveway and the car was at the other end, covered with snow. The two of us shoveled the entire driveway by hand, with each an iron shovel. (they never had those lightweight plastic jobbies back then)

It took us five days to dig out the driveway. We worked so hard that when we finished, it was as if a long tunnel was created from the road to the old car. People commented on our work, and even a campaigning politician dropped by to have his picture taken in the tunnel. He won, but that’s another story.

Back then we went everywhere on ski-doo (back then, all makes of snowmobile were referred to as ‘ski-doos’) and there was always plenty of snow for sliding, snowmobiling, and snowball fighting. (the three ‘S’ of winter)

When we got a winter storm, we got a winter storm. None of those ‘snow squalls’ we get these days. We always managed 5 or 6 snow days where we couldn’t make it to school. These days a kid is lucky to get even one.

Every kid had a toboggan or at least a Krazy Karpet. We used to spend hours on the steepest hills, ones so steep and long that we climbed the hill for fifteen minutes for a two minute slide down the slope. These days kids very seldom slide, partially due to the fact that there isn’t as much snow as in the old days, and partially due to the fact that kids those days are damn lazy. I seen a few kids on a hill the other day. They would slide down the hill, and wait at the bottom until someone brought them to the top with a ski-doo. Damn that’s lazy. Where is the fun and exercise in that? No wonder our kids are so fat those days. (Oh Oh, Now I am beginning to sound like my uncle!)


We are still here (because we are not all there)

I woke up Friday morning to see that everything was exactly the same as it was on Thursday night. I expected to see asteroids smashing the planet, chaos everywhere, people screaming…you know, doomsday. I am glad the nutcases who predicted the end were wrong.

I read somewhere that somewhere in Russia, a few con men sold people underground bunkers that would protect them from the apocalypse. The bunkers, which sold for enormous amounts of money (I put in ‘enormous amounts of money due to laziness in not researching the exact amount, but you get the point), with a clause (not Santa) that if the end of the world did not occur, the buyers would get HALF their  money returned. The cons still ended up with the other half of their hard (in Russia, HARD EARNED) money. It seems that whenever a worldwide disaster is predicted, con artists emerge everywhere.

I can laugh at those who would purchase an underground bunker anyway. If the end did happen faithfully on Dec 21, what would be the point to live like a bug underground anyway? If 99% of the world is going, I want to go as well. I watched far too many post Apocalypse movies, and I know what the world would look like.

You ever notice in those cheap low budget sci-fi movies about the impending future, the only vehicles are 70’s chevy’s and dodges? Where did they find those long gone autos anyway? And the people…they look like zombies, robbing and looting just to survive. Who would want to survive like that?

What I still find difficult to believe is that some people ACTUALLY believed that the world was going to end this Christmas. I know people in town who didn’t put up Christmas trees because they figured we would all be gone before the bearded one (No, not Willie Nelson..Santa Clause) would arrive. Now those fools are scrambling out to the way too busy Walmart to buy up whatever beat up fake Christmas trees they can find. Go figure!

I am still amazed that someone found a Mayan stone that closely resembled the side of an Oreo cookie, and somehow made the assumption that this spelled the end of the world for us. We seem to be ready to believe anything.

Just a short time ago, some nutcase predicted that on a certain day we would leave this world and travel on a space ship to another world. This guy made the news and actually  had followers who sold or gave away all their worldly goods to prepare for the trip. There is one born every minute, and another born to take their money!

Speaking of con artists, the night club and bar owners around here made a mint on the end of the world predictions. On Thursday night, local bars featured ‘End of the world’ parties, while on Friday night, they held ‘We are still here’ parties. Again, one born every minute, one born to take their money!

Hey, I just did research (on the not so dependable Wikipedia site) to discover that throughout time, man has been predicting the end, and coming up short each time. for more on the list, click HERE

And to think that we didn’t even wait until after Christmas to predict the end. If I was going to predict the end of the world (as we know it), I would wait until after Christmas so that I could at least get all my presents opened and see what people gave me…DUH! Just saying…


ATVs, Snowmobiles, and kids too young to drive them

Living in rural Newfoundland, and on the west coast of the province, we tend to get lots of snow. When I was a kid I spent untold hours playing in the stuff, sliding, making snowmen, and having snow ball fights with my friends (and enemies). Nowadays, that isn’t good enough for kids. They want their OWN snowmobiles.

Many of the kids in the community have snowmobiles of their own. The legal age for operating a snowmobile is 16, but some parents think that their 9 year old’s are quite capable of operating snowmobiles, and not the kiddie types either. Most ‘parents’ around here have opted to purchase full size and high powered snowmobiles for their small children.

The other day a friend asked me if I planned on buying my 10 year old a snowmobile. He said that he knew of a guy who had one for sale. My 10 year old doesn’t change his underwear and socks if he isn’t told to do so, so I don’t thing his maturity level is high enough to own one. I don’t think the other kids are mature enough either. I replied that he wasn’t old enough to drive one. His response was “aw, all the kids have them, they fly around my backyard with them!”. My response to that was that just because ‘all’ the kids have one doesn’t mean mine will have one.

He did have one thing right though. In winter, kids from the ages of 7-12 drive snowmobiles in people’s yards at incredible speed and with total recklessness. Not one parent sticks around to supervise them, and eventually someone is going to get killed. Nobody believes  me when I say it, but it happened before, it will happen again.

A few years back, one of my neighbors had the same misconception. Her youngest son of ten years (he would be 42 now) used to spend his time either driving a racing snowmobile or a Honda Big Red (an enormous and then very fast all terrain vehicle) around the community. He loved speed (what ten year old doesn’t), and even though many residents warned them, his parents refused to supervise him, or even tell him to slow down. One night while he and his friend were racing in the back roads, he took an unexpected spill, smashed his head on a rock (he wore a helmet but didn’t fasten it under his chin) and died instantly. Everyone in the community was in shock (well not everyone, I knew something would eventually happen) at the tragedy, and parents then took the action to take away the motorized vehicles from their kids. That was thirty two years ago. His parents said that maybe he died so that others would learn from their mistakes. By the looks of things around here, he died for nothing. Nobody remembers this little kid nowadays.

Last week in the news, a 39 year old man was struck by an ATV. The driver was a 14 year old boy who had been riding his quad on the highway and drove right into the poor man. Despite killing someone, he will only be charged on the highway act, and possibly get a small fine, bu given the fact that he is only 14, he will probably get off without being charged.  I say that if we allow our kids to drive vehicles made for adults, parents should be held responsible for any harm they cause others. Here Here!

Spelling, Math, and our kids bleak future

The other night we had to meet with our kid’s teacher. It was a time where the report card came out and the teacher asked to talk to all parents. He explained the ‘new math’ where no longer did a kid do a math test on his own, rather it was a group effort. It was like that when I was a kid for awhile, I would do my test, and others would copy. They also removed spelling and grammar from our school system. Apparently some geek with his head in his ass decided that kids who couldn’t spell weren’t confident enough to write a story because of their spelling skills, so this idiot decided that if one kid (probably his kid) couldn’t spell, no kid should have to. The school board came up with a method of teaching (I use that term lightly) where a kid spells the word the way it sounds rather than how it is spelled. Now there are no spelling tests, and none of the kids know how to spell. I have to wonder where we are going as a people. Imagine trying to read a novel one of those kids (when they finally grow up) will write.

I believe that there is something going on here. Right now the majority of work in the country is in the construction/labor area. Most of the work in the country is in Alberta, Fort Mac to be exact. There is currently a shortage of laborers, and I think that by having an entire generation of kids almost illiterate when they graduate, it would spell certainty that they would go off to work in Alberta rather than go to university. I would say that only the elite would have moved on enough to attend university, thus ending the labor shortage in the country. That or I am just a conspiracy theorist.

Commas and overuse

I had an English teacher once whose pet peeve was commas. Well not really commas, but the total misuse of commas..she said that people spread them around like salt from a shaker. In some aspects, she was right. Until that class, I was one of those people, but learning when to use commas was relatively easy if you used her method. I will share her secret with you…

Her secret was to speak the sentence as you write it, and only insert commas where you pause. She went on to say that if you recited the entire sentence and you became winded, you probably didn’t have enough commas. Now writing in her class made us seem like a crowd of nuts, each speaking the sentence as we typed it, but in no time, we were writing great sentences and only using commas where they were needed. To Mrs Darlene Oake, I thank you.

classifieds for kindergarten dropouts

The removal of spelling and grammar from our schools has already begun to show. Below are actual facebook classified ads posted by those who cannot spell. My question is, how do the sellers expect us potential buyers to purchase their products if we cannot understand what they have written?

  • Kar for sale nothing wrong with it and don’t need nothing to pass all power p/w p/l p/s tilt staring and crues control inbox only for detales and price needs gone.
  • wtb a 6volt battery…I have a small one but need one bigger!
  • lil mermaid puzzle. 300 peeces, most peeces are there. inbox me for more detales
  • A picture can mean a million things when its in that frams on the wall ….Remember Dis is available for all your photos….. so many pictures out there are to plain… I like to go with the poses and angles ……great poses and prices are available…… feel free to inbox for info
  • looking for a good used wealchoir van  (what the hell is a Wealchoir??? Did he mean Wheel Chair?)
  • Me and my buddy are lookin to get a old truck good for haulin wood. inbox with pictures and prices please!!! ASAP
  • geeeeeeeeze on two minds now if i should sell the van runs so good i,ll install the water pump an new thermostat i put new starter an battery on it was sellin for $500.00 2000/chevvy venture anyway its there for now. inbox me soon
  • 200 0 chevy venture works an runs great 500.00 takes it first turn the key butta not sure think the water pump shot or thermostat one or the other n 4 new tires on it studded (this guy is his own worst enemy)
  • willing to TRADE for a touring sled and CASH for the car ,like vk 540 or grand touring call or inbox for offer. she gots to GO BOYS she gots to GO make offer dont want to store for the winter
  • Playpin forsale. 75 bucks. In brand new condition, only used a handful of time
  • FREE TO A GOOD HOME: A female full bred beagle she is just over a year old she is fixed and house trained. come with a big cage and alot of food. reason i am getting rid of her is i am in collage and just dont have the time for her like i though i would. She is really shy at frist but once she warms up to them she will be great and she is very play ful (Maybe this person should take an English course in college…)
  • WTB: Bell cellphone! comment with what ya got…
  • Looking to purchase seats and other interior pieses doing project with daughters
  • wanted to by a steerin whele (for what???)
  • Do anybody have a 12 inch rim forsale to fit a attic cat quad if so massage me
  • i have a 1971 olympic in great shape i baught it the summer as a project the motor is put on and the chain case skies  and stearing and the clutch had it goin just needs to put rest of the track on its half on just needs to put the back sprocket on so if intersted
  • prouf readin done for studnts. if you has a assignment that needs prouf readin inbox me. good marcks garanteed (I saved this one for last, it is my favorite!)

toothbrush hunting: the dilemma

In an attempt to buy a new toothbrush, I visited the local Walmart. I was amazed to find an entire aisle devoted only to toothbrushes. Choosing a new toothbrush was more difficult than choosing from the Pizza Delight menu on a busy afternoon.

It shouldn’t be this hard. A toothbrush. A simple instrument used to clean teeth. There are many varieties, from brushes that reach where others don’t, some that clean your tongue and teeth at the same time, and some that vibrate. Does vibration clean teeth or is this some gimmick?

There are brushes that spin, some that don’t, there are some with plastic bristles that move independently, and some whose bristles are stiff enough to clean concrete.

Captain America brushes, some devoted to movie characters, there is even a Luke Skywalker light saber toothbrush. Some have timers that ensure proper brushing, and some even have power cords that power them. There was one toothbrush that had a water reservoir that actually flossed while you brushed.

In essence, everyone is trying something different, but at the end of the day, a good ordinary toothbrush will do the same as all those fancy brushes.

And the manufacturers. Crest, Colgate were the most popular, but now Oral-B is moving into the scene. (Incidentally, Oral-B is owned by Crest) and all three manufacturers offer ‘The Best Toothbrushes’ on the market. Hell, Nine out of Ten dentists recommend Oral-B over the other brands. What about the other million or so dentists? What do they recommend?

When I was a kid, we had this neighbor who was poor (and cheap). He and his wife and their five children shared the same toothbrush. Gross huh!

My shopping is over. I found the perfect toothbrush! I found a no name brand that gives you six toothbrushes for a dollar. No fancy gimmicks, no rotating brushes, nothing but a stick with a brush on the end, hand powered my my hand. Can’t wait to try it!

life is funny VIII (and sometimes gross): The Spandex people

Life is funny but it is also gross. I am talking about the Spandex people. You seen them, 300 plus pounds of woman ass, squeezed into a tiny pair of spandex pants, strutting around town trying to look sexy, but missing (totally missing) the point of spandex.

When spandex first came out, a few shapely gals made the stretch material popular. For some reason, those with enough ass to block traffic on a four lane highway got the idea that if they squeezed their fat asses into this material, it would make them look thin. Didn’t work.

The black spandex is bad enough, but when those fashion conscious (NOT!) females chose the bright neon spandex pants, all hell broke loose. (well, better hell than the asses of their spandex pants)

Only thing sexier than giant asses stuffed into stretchy pants is the rolls of fat that hang over the sides of the pants. OOh!

Note to governments of every country: BAN SPANDEX!

or better still, put a weight limit on the stuff. Like they do for tractor trailers on the highway. We could have weigh stations right in the city, and anyone stuffed into the spandex material would first have to stand on the scales.

Ya, that’s an idea, think I will start a petition!

life is funny 6: the pj people

Life is funny.

At least for some people. I am talking about the PJ people who go out and do their shopping in the same clothes that the slept in. And they are always flannel. Ladies, if you are going to go out shopping in your undies, at least wear something sexy!

You know the crowd I am talking about. Armed with a cup of Tim’s and a smoke, they carouse from one store to another wearing their Pajamas. Is this not the laziest thing ever?

What about if others joined the PJ people? What if those who slept commando also shopped with the clothes (or lack of) that they wear to bed? For this we get indecent exposure, but the PJ people are ok doing it. I don’t get it.

And perish the thought that someone comments on this behavior.

“Nice plaid pajamas” I says.

“Fuck of” replies the fat missus in the coffee stained flannel plaid pajamas.

“I take it you were in a rush to shop, didn’t have time to dress” Says me, too stupid to keep my mouth shut.

“I did that once, so don’t feel bad. I actually went to the store missing a sock, imagine that” I add.

She wasn’t impressed.

Oh Well, could be worst, this manly woman could have came here in spandex, but that is another blog