Sunday, November 29, 2009

Not A Good Weekend For The German Boy

Eye infection is back, this time with a vengeance, and, as I can barely stand to sit at the computer for very long, this one will be short and sweet.

Going to the opthalmologist(?) Monday to see why this keeps happening. I sleep with a cold washcloth over my eyes and we have some Decadron ointment, but it only lasts about an hour, and as it is a steroid, I can't take it too often.

D and I thought it might be because I spend so much time on the computer doing research (otherwise known as playing World of Warcraft), but we're not sure. My computer stays on 24-7 (heretofore, I mean), but I am going to start shutting it down and see what happens. I hope I am not getting allergic to Bert. He's a long-haired domestic, but we keep him brushed regularly.

I wanted to re-visit the definition of Dementia vs Alzheimer's, and rather than write it all out myself, I want to link you to a very informative site. Just click on the blog title to take you there.

I didn't know this one had words, did y'all? Anyway, kind of a pleasant way to end a Sunday evening, and no toe-tapping allowed! J/K

For the four-legged ones. And the shelter.

The Animal Rescue Site

Thanks, and y'all have a great week!


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Had A Bit Of A Hint That Something's CHANGING

I had an episode a few days ago during which I couldn't reason something out and I didn't realize it until today, when I wrote it down "by the numbers".

For example:

1. I've never seen a purple cow
pause....... think, Bill!
2. I never hope to see one
3. But I can tell you anyhow
4. I'd rather see than be one

The episode didn't involve the above rhyme, of course. It had to do with a poll I created and that I didn't reason through, so the third choice made no sense in opposition to the other two. This negated the whole damn thing, causing me a lot of embarrassment, because people were voting anyway, even though it didn't make sense, I think, just to spare my feelings, God love 'em.

That's one thing.

Here's another: We have discussed before that sometimes a word will "fail" me, right?

Well now words fail me as I'm writing them.

See that word "choice" up there?

Well, I used it because I forgot the word "option". The whole flow of the sentence was disrupted because I had to stop and think and then substitute a word I didn't intend to use. This happened in a matter of seconds, y'all!

I was an English major with a minor in Journalism, and I was damn good at it! This isn't supposed to happen!

We won't even mention my errors in sentence structure, grammar and spelling. I wrote news articles for 15 years, sometimes with a 5 minute deadline and scribbled on toilet paper, fer Chrissake. Ran into the studios with just seconds to spare and did my thing, cool as the proverbial cucumber.

This just isn't acceptable to me.

This blog is taking me longer to write than it did last year, because the words "fly away" so fast.

We hadn't talked about my symptoms for a while, so I wanted to write about this latest one just to keep the "symptomatic timeline" going.

Hey, we have a new friend on the blog! Welcome sir, and in the words of the late Bette Davis, "Fasten your seat belts. It's going to be a bumpy..... night."

Yep. I thought it was ride too, but it's correctly quoted as night.

As I remind everyone, this is a "reality" blog about my dementia, and I have good and bad days, funny and sad days and happy and angry days. It's all in here and if it helps someone, somehow after I'm off the planet, well then, that's just fine. I appreciate your presence, and please, if you have a comment - good or bad - let me have it!

Hey, anybody going to be alone at Christmas? Would you like to open up a temporary chat room? Just an idea. I have trouble with the holidays myself, and now that I'm going batshit to boot, it would be nice to have some friends to chat with. Think about it and let me know.

If you'd like to do something that will warm the cockles of your heart during the holidays, take a bag of dog food, cans of cat food, old newspapers, towels to your local shelter. You might even want to volunteer a couple of hours of your time. I can guarantee you it will be appreciated!

This one's for our friend Becks. Try not to laugh. I dare ya'!

And here's the button that's there to remind us of the many pets which get turned in at shelters nationwide at this time of year! Unbelievable but it's true. Those folks try very hard with their "Home 4 The Holidays" program, but they keep coming in faster than they're adopted.

Sad, huh?

The Animal Rescue Site



Thursday, November 26, 2009

Need Y'all's Opinions and Help On Something

My niece Lisa (I've spoken of her before- the stage manager at 7 Stages in Atlanta?)and I spoke together today at TG Dinner and I mentioned that I missed acting, but was reluctant to try out for anything produced in community theatre because I'm afraid I might forget my lines.

So she suggested I write my own play about Dementia and perhaps have it produced at 7 Stages with all proceeds going to AD Research.

It would be one act for one night only and I already have a "working title" for it:
7 Stages Theatre Presents
I Can't Remember!
A Comedy In One ACT
All Proceeds To Benefit Alzheimer's Research
Featuring Bill Craig

Before you give me your opinion, I have already begun to write a few lines, and it is not my first effort at writing a short play. I once (in college) wrote the dialogue for a 20 minute film entitled I'll Show You Mine shot in 16mm as a silent film with the lines written on placards (I was on a "Low Budget" back then, too.) I know: a bit sophomoric right? But I was a Sophomore at the time!

Yeah, it was porn, but it was "soft porn". It starred me as "Rick Dickulous" and a theatre student (I ain't givin' out her name, sorry!) as "Vulveeta".

That damn thing quickly made the rounds of all the frat houses and almost got me thrown out, but the student council ruled that that would be censorship and called it an "art film". Yeah, right.

So anywayyyyyy what do y'all think of the title and do you have a better suggestion? I'll choose the best one and there won't be a "prize", just braggin rights that you named my play if it's a hit. Ha-Ha.

My son actually came up with that title as a "Who's On First" kinda thing.

"I'm going to a play tonight."

"Oh yeah? What's it called?"

"I Can't Remember"

"Huh? You're going to a play and you don't even know it's name?!"

"I'm telling you, I Can't Remember!"

And so on.....

Another thing: I'm not real comfortable with that word "Comedy" up there. Yeah, I'd like to reflect my sense of humor, but I need for it to be "educational" in a sense, too. "Comedy-Drama", maybe. Whatcha'll think?

Also, I know there's already a play about AD (My Father's Bookshelf), but this is about Dementia and about a guy who's headed down the "road" to AD.

My theory on all this is: If I act in someone else's play I might flub my lines, but if I write it myself then I'll aready be familiar with it because it's my "baby", so to speak.

So please give me your opinions and don't be afraid you'll hurt my feelings, okay?

Okay, now on to other things: Something very near and dear to my heart: Animals/Pets.

Some of my buds on SDMB are contributing some well thought-out ideas regarding older, very sick animals needing Euthanasia. The entire thread is very articulate and I'd like to share it with you. Just click on the blog title and it will take you to the thread.

So I hope y'all had a great Thanksgiving, and you're probably ready for a nap, right?

Now we have the "Hoopla" of Christmas facing us. We'll get through it! I've decided not to "bombard" you guys with Christmas carols - maybe just one a week or so? Would that be okay? Just nod your heads, you're probably still "recovering" from today's consumption! :)

So here's Ol' Blue Eyes, from my friend Mogipbot. See anything interesting in that video? I didn't see it the first time either! :)

Remember: WE domesticated THEM.

Ya know, I just googled that phrase to see if it needed quotation marks around it, and couldn't find where someone had said just that phrase, so if anyone knows different, let me know, because if it's someone else's saying, they need to be credited.



Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009......

.....and when I had my radio talk show here in Carrollton, the day before we always did a segment called, "What Are You Thankful For?"

So if it's okay here's my list. They're not in order of importance okay? EVERYONE I mention is equally important!

1. First of all, for D, who has been just super to me and whom I love very much

2. For our son Jason and our two grand kids, Amber and Julian.

3. For all of you who follow this blog, of course and doing what you can for the animals by clicking oh the link. I really look forward to your comments and really like to answer you.

4. For all my Doper friends. ALL of them! Even the ones who disagree with me or may not like me. The Straight Dope is a "safe haven" for me, since I'm kind of a "recluse" these days.

5. For my in-laws. Especially my sis-in-law Ramona, who has given D and me the upstairs of her home for very little rent. Yeah, it's kinda crowded and we have a lot of furniture in storage, but it beats living on the streets!

6. For what little cognitive function I have left. I can speak to my family in Germany, since I haven't forgotten my language skills (English is actually my second language).

7. For my family who live there and whom I will miss this holiday season. Christmas in Germany has ALWAYS been very special to me, even as a little boy. If you'd like to see a Christmas pic from my home, here ya go!

8. For my cat Bert. Bertie is the most loving cat we have ever owned, and he is a constant source of comfort to me.

9. For my Bro' Skip who always talks me through my "rough" times. We don't get to see each other as much as we'd like, but we telephone with each other.

10. For my adopted country. Yeah we're in a mess, aren't we? But I am confident that we'll bring our soldiers home soon, get some kind of decent health care plan and create a lot of new jobs.

Now, I don't do this a lot, but I'd like to recommend a novel to you. It is called The Charlemagne Pursuit, and it's by Steve Berry, my favorite writer. Mr. Berry has the talent of weaving historical fact into his stories, and I always learn something new. In fact, in a recent e-mail to him (he loves his fans and encourages writing to him via his website), I call him my "history teacher". If you're a history buff, I highly recommend ALL his books.

And as I mentioned before, I'd like to play you some Christmas carols from Deutschland. I have always been of the opinion that the sweetest carols are sung by children, and this is one of my favorites, from when I was just a "kleiner Junge"!

You won't be able to understand the "Sprechen Sie?", so feel free to tune out when the song's done.

Thanks also for supporting animals and the Paulding Humane Society/Shelter by clicking on the link below.

The Animal Rescue Site

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and my friends Helga and Luke "Down Under"!


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

How About Some Music For A Change?

And I just shut my pie hole?

Enjoy. These are some of the tunes I used to listen to, late at night, on my transistor radio (with ear-plug!)

(sorry, copy & paste, please!)

And one more.......

Tuesday's just as bad.

Worried about my D.

We can't seem to get her BP meds "regulated" just right, and her "bottom" just drops right out from under her sometimes, her face goes pale, and I cannot seem to do enough to make it go away.

PLEASE don't forget the four-footed ones????

In addition to asking you to click and vote, I am now going to ask you to volunteer your time at a local shelter.

Can y'all do that?

If not, could you just take 'em some food? Find a shelter in your area and just take a bag of food, please.

They HAVE no one else!

They have no one else.


Bill and Bert

Time For Some Pot Pourri?

1. As I write, it is 7:45 Saturday morning, and I just returned from the local Angel Food Ministries with my box of 10 frozen dinners. Loaded 'em into the freezer and now I'm set for at least 10 days of good eatin'.

Before I went in, I zipped my hoodie up, put the top over my head and put on my mirror shades and kept my head down. Kinda like a burka, only different.

Y'all do believe that, right?

Of course I didn't do that!

You think a guy who just asked hundreds of people to help him with his financial life is gonna balk at picking up some cheap food? Ya' kiddin' me?

I even helped 'em unload and stayed to help distribute!

It's been tough, letting go of the pride, but you gotta believe you'll come back and do some good for someone else again one day.

2. I have yet another sleep study scheduled on 11.23.09. Apparently the results of study number one were inconclusive, although D, (who is herself a polysomnographer, which is a fancy term for someone who puts wires all over your head and then wants you to sleep like that while she sits and watches you on a monitor from her computer room with all the paper and needles scribbling on it) felt like it SHOULD have been and I should already been on a have a CPAP/BIPAP.

There aren't a lot of men in that field, which led me to ask her if she or her colleagues ever watch to see what we do or say while asleep?

Which led to one of those "roll-eyed" looks and a slap on the butt.

She knows how I am.

And loves me for it.

I think.

3. As we're heading into the holidays, I wanted to kick off the "festive mood" with a picture of Murphy with his human, Suzette. As you can tell, as with all cool dogs, Murph is just thrilled as he can be to be all "decked out"!

4. Here's a new look at Wolkenlaufer and his mount Silka as they are presently depicted in World of Warcraft:

Wolkie and Silka are currently on a quest to find Pamela Redpath's "dolly". The story goes is that she lost it somewhere in Darrowshire and needs it to be found. So far we've managed to find two pieces of it and are looking for a third, so that we can put it back together and bring it back to the little girl.

Now, I realize that many of you may not be into RPG ("Role Playing Games"), but for me, it takes a lot of the depression away and for many millions of us, it's a world we can go to to get away from this one for a while.

Some of us are so into it that songs are actually written about the land of Azeroth, and this is one example. It's exactly about the quest I told you about in a previous paragraph. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Thanks to my pal Mister Rik for the link:

5. Update on the SSDI app: There IS no update, unless you count the third phone call from SSDI asking for an updated mailing address as one. Hoping to hear something soon.

6. Update on the Podcast: Just waiting to go to my storage cubicle to pick up my microphone and buy a cheap desk stand for it, and then we'll launch. (Hopefully by the end of the week)

7. As Margaret wrote in the comments section (and which I answered) Paulding Humane dropped to 14th place in the state in the Shelter Challenge standings. I can only keep asking y'all to click to feed and vote, call a friend and ask them to do the same and so on. Take my word for it, the animals will go needy this holiday season as they do all year, so please help if you can. December 20th ends this one.

The Animal Rescue Site

8. I'm gonna need some help with Christmas this year. The holidays have never been a good time for me, but this time REALLY needs to be better. In keeping with that, I'm gonna link y'all to some German Christmas music starting next week. I know that not all of you will know what is being sung, but hopefully the meaning will come through anyway.

9. Good news! We've picked up one more follower (31 now!) and Paulding Humane and Alzheimer's Research are within 20 bucks of getting a $50.00 check this Christmas! Whooo-Hooo!



Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Okay, Stay With Me On This One (Clarification Of Earlier Entry)

Just got a message from Becks, and apparently I kinda got my "wires crossed" about DEB (Bill from Scotland), so try to follow along as I try to get myself out of this "mess", okay?

1. Yes, he is Becks' guy and he lives in Scotland and among other things, is a guitarist/singer.

2. But he doesn't have an internet radio station, another guy from the US does and goes by the name "djsarg".

3. Because I put two and two together and came up with 5, I mistakenly thought Bill had AD, which he does not. djsarg, however, does and posts on the Alzheimer's forum about his radio station on the web. Becks helped him post on the AD forum a couple of times, just as she has helped me with my probs.

4. Bill from Scotland also helped me (through e-mails) find sarg's station, which is another thing that threw me off the track.

5. Jesus, what a cluster-eff, huh? But that's my life these days.

6. My apologies for the misinformation, but the stuff about my podcast is all correct information.

7. The YouTube "In A Big Country" is for Bill from Scotland.

Again, sorry to all concerned.

As y'all was! (That's southern for "As you were!")

Bill (DAB) from "Somewhere Out There" - apparently.

Podcast Coming!

Don't know exactly when it will air yet (still working out the details about downloading all the software and stuff), but in addition to talking about Alzheimer's/Dementia, there will be appropriate music in between.

I used to be a DJ/talk show host/news director, so I know how to jabber. I just need to keep it interesting.

Length? Don't know yet, maybe 20 minutes? Can y'all stand me for that long?

Times? Well, I'll let y'all be in charge of that since you can listen any time you wish. If you choose to book-mark me, that may make it easier for you as well.

The blog will remain and I hope to be able to embed the podcast from here. The only problem with that may be if I have a sponsor or sponsors for my show, which means they will foot the bill (very nominal), and I don't know how google will take to that idea. An alternative would be to launch directly from which ever podcast platform I choose and link y'all from there.

In other news, looks like Bill Clinton is hot on the Senate to pass the Health Care Reform Bill, so I am hoping they'll do that before the end of the year. Sure would be a nice birthday present not to have to worry about the almost tripling of my insurance premiums.

That's it for now. As I have written before "good days and bad days". Today was a good one due to the podcast idea, which, incidentally, came from Becks whose Bill (DEB - German for "Der Erste Bill" - "the first Bill" also has a radio show and you can access it by clicking on the title line of this entry. he has other dj's on as well, so you may not hear "djsarg" right away, but you have heard his own music here before, so I'm sure you'll find it entertaining.

Just go to the site, at the top click on LISTEN and then OPEN and your player should pop up.

Just a reminder, Bill is in Scotland, so be prepared for that accent!

Y'all know the drill, right? :)

The Animal Rescue Site



Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Memory Walk Totals Update

This below is from my dementia counsellor Suzette: I know it seems very self-centered, but I just didn't ever "feel" like participating and I am sorry about that, but I still do have my own fund-raising effort going on. When I get $100.00, $50.00 goes to the animals and $50.00 to Alzheimer's/Dementia Research. We're currently 75% of the way there! Maybe one day, I will once again be in a position to do more. I sure want to.

Edited To Add: I just wanted to let Suzette know that both D and I appreciate her being a constant source of comfort to us with phone calls e-mails and very informative links. This is also true for my friends Becks, Margaret, Skericheri, Kemi, all my Doper friends and my friend in Germany, Jo (if I forgot someone, please know it wasn't intentional and correct me, okay?). I may sometimes forget to mention it, and seem wrapped up in what's going on with me, but I appreciate and love all of you for coming here and reading.


"The final totals are almost in from our Forget Me Nots Memory Walk team efforts….and I am proud to say that thus far we have raised $3,325! We close out the season on Nov. 15th, but Statewide, we have already actually exceeded our chapter’s goal for the year, which is fantastic considering that the economy is still struggling to recover. I will be sending out individual thank-you to everyone who sent their donations in through our office. If you know of anyone who donated directly on the website, I’ll be happy to send them a note as well if you let me know their addresses. Again, congratulations, and thank you so much for all of your efforts!"


The below YouTube is from both Becks and Suzette (sent at different times - great minds and all that!

The following YouTube is from "Becks" (very clever!)

And a cute image from Becks:

Still asking for your help in feeding the pets and voting for Paulding Humane in The Shelter Challenge.

The Animal Rescue Site

It ends 12.20.09 and sadly, Paulding remains in 13th place.

Thanks for your help and remember: we domesticated them.


Monday, November 9, 2009

What The Health-Care Reform Bill Means To Me

I'm an unemployed medical professional.

I have only COBRA insurance until the end of this year (my birthday - how ironic is that?)

Right now, thanks to my sweet wife and a small pension from 17 years of employment, it's "affordable" at $139.00 a month. After that, unless the President signs a bill extending that, it jumps to $380.00. When it does, I will no longer be able to afford medical care for my dementia.

That means no more prescription meds, (currently running $80.00 a month, not including doctor's visits ($40.00 co-pay - $30.00 for my psychiatrist).

My SSDI is still pending, I am not eligible for Medicare, I cannot afford life insurance, can't get food stamps (our combined income doesn't meet the $1500.00 cut-off).

Medicaid? Still waiting to hear.

I can't even die without being a burden on my family. No life insurance. Bankrupt.

I have limited myself to one meal a day so that we can save money, in opposition to my wife's wishes. I just don't want to be a burden on her.

Beginning this Saturday, I'll get my one meal a day from "Angel-Food Ministries", (pre-prepared, frozen) for ten days. She won't even have to cook for me.

Cell-phone service ends on the 16th. The only things I have spent money on are toiletries and whatever I can contribute to what bills absolutely HAVE to be paid.

So what does all this mean?

If the bill doesn't pass, I may as well be homeless, and to be honest, I have seriously considered it.

So every time I see a commercial in opposition to Obama's bill, I am wondering what these people are thinking?

There are 36 million of us. Are they forgetting that?

In all fairness to myself, I am not the only person responsible for my problem (more about that later, when I can write about it, and believe me, it WILL be told).

So that's what it means.

And I don't mean to imply that I'm just sitting on my ass, feeling sorry for myself. I am TRYING to work, but unfortunately the only jobs available aren't medically-related and I have even tried to go to work as a "bag-boy" at a nearby supermarket. Just nothing available befitting my skills, nearby, so that I can at least ride my scooter (one of my few possessions I have not been able to sell) to work.

Am I bitter? Damn right, I am. It's the bitterness and anger which keeps me going.

Pride is something I had last March. I hated like HELL asking my Doper friends for help, since I am used to giving it, not asking for it!

Do me a favor, okay? Do NOT reply to this blog entry. I don't wanna read what you might write. I feel shitty enough as it is.

Please remember to click to feed the pets and vote for Paulding Humane by clicking here:



Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Gonna Be Busy For A While

In order to keep my RT license current, I need to work on some CEU's (need 30 by the end of the year), so I may not have a lot of time for entries here.

In addition, I'm involved in the translation of some post-WWII German correspondence for a friend of mine from the Dope, which I am very excited about, so that's going to take up some of my "slacker" time, which I sorely need.

Please keep on feeding and voting, thanks!

The Animal Rescue Site

Here's one for all my air-guitarist friends. You may wanna "toin" it up!