Thursday, June 14, 2012

Ognuno Soffre…….

It’s funny how you look at things when you get older.  Childhood allows, hell demands, you to think silly thoughts and they are somehow fine.

When I was a kid growing up In Avon, Ct. almost every kid on the block had his tonsils out the same summer. Stories of huge piles of ice cream and missing school for a week filled my dreams. Then appendicitis was the new scar to have. EVERY kid had that scar except me and my brother. I remember not being picked to be on a basketball team because I didn’t have an appendectomy scar. I could handle not being picked because I sucked at the sport, but to be left out because I was healthy?


As I got older I started to realize how lucky I was as a kid. Parent’s loved each other till the day Mom died. No real accidents to speak of, and no life threatening illnesses. I suppose most of the crap my family had to go through was my fault. For that I am sorry.

I started to take notice of how people acted and responded when they got sick. I mean really sick.. The really life threatening stuff like cancer and heart attacks and strokes. Mom always tried to beat into my head that I was to be the tough one when everyone was hurting and to be there for them. Suffer later, but be a rock for those who needed you to be strong because they couldn’t. I would like to think that I have made her proud.

I have watched a lot of people die during my tenure as a person, both personally and professionally in my medical career. Some were rocks, other’s were little balls of mushy crap that drips between your fingers when you pick it up.  Some people were inspirational in how they handled their personal tragedies, others were pathetic spiteful and hateful.

Regardless of my goofy religious beliefs, I think it’s everyone’s responsibility to make those around you as comfortable and happy while you are dying as you can.  It is going to happen to everyone at one point or another, so we might as well make it as easy as possible.

If I seem indifferent or cold about it when you ask me, it’s not you I promise. I have been living with this knowledge for the last ten years. I am acutely aware of what is happening. I don’t understand the why’s but I do know the how’s and trust me, I’m not OK with it. I am just stuck with it. I am doing everything I can to face this shit with courage and as much style as I can muster. Yes there are bad days where I am more pissed than normal, That’s to be expected.

Let’s all just have fun and dance in the sand before the music gets turned off or the lights go out and our parents make us come in out of the rain.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Here In My Car………

I feel safest of all, I can lock all my doors, It’s the only way to live….

I know I know. I don’t normally go around quoting Gary Numan disco songs from the 1980s, but it’s true.

Cars I have owned in my 52 years:

1.              1964 Ford Fairlane Sports Coup
2.              1981 Subaru Wagon 4WD (Cyclops)
3.              1982 Subaru Turbo Coupe 4WD
4.              1974 Ford LTD (Dorf)
5.              1977 MGB
6.              1983 Ford Bronco SLT (Big Black Bastard)
7.              1982 Mazda RX-7 GSL-SE (Rice Rocket)
8.              1982 Audi Coupe of some unknown kind
9.              1981 Pontiac Grand Prix
10.          1985 Chevy Diesel Conversion Van (Otamot)
11.          1986 Subaru Hatchback 4WD
12.          1980 Datsun Pick Up
13.          1986 Jeep Wrangler Sahara Edition
14.          1980 Ford Ranger Pick Up
15.          1981 Ford F-150 Pickup Lease then Purchased (MCF)
16.          1989 Ford  F-250 Pickup Truck Super Duty Super Crew 4WD (Behemoth)
17.          2002 Volkswagen Diesel New Beetle (Presently Owned) (Der Stuka)
18.          1999 Dodge Ram Conversion Van (Presently Owned) (Green Turd)

Best Mileage:   Diesel New Beetle      44-46 mpg Hwy
Worst Mileage:   1989 Ford F-250 Pickup 4WD     12-15 Hwy.
Fastest:   1982 Mazda RX-7 Rotary 13B engine    135 MPH (RADAR Clocked 4th gear)
Cheapest:   1964 Ford Fairlane Sports Coupe. Mimi sold it to me for $1.00
Most Expensive:   1989 Ford F-250   $25,000
Most Hated:     1981 Pontiac Grand Prix
Most Loved and Pampered:   2002 Diesel New Beetle

I’m not a “Car Guy” I never really gave a crap about my cars until I had the Mazda sports car. Then I fell in love with that rush of speed that flying  4 inches off the ground at a hundred miles an hour can give you. It didn’t handle that well though which always scared me, and 9,000 rpm in first gear was a little crazy.

My favorite car, and I have no idea why, is the 2002 VW Diesel New Beetle that I drive now. Being a diesel it hits maximum torque (power) at 1700 RPMs. A Porsche needs to get to 4,000 RPM to get the same power. It’s quick, turns on a dime, Handles like a formula 1 race car and gets 44-46 MPG on the highway.

We just took Der Stuka (his name) through one of the most thrilling and treacherous roads in the world. US Highway 129 in North Carolina and Tennessee. It’s referred to as the Tail of The Dragon. 318 curves in 11 miles. My beetle with it’s low end torque was running away from most of the motorcycles and sports cars we came across. On a road where the maximum speed limit is 30 mph we had 270° turns we took at 50.

And remember. I’m not a “Car Guy”!