OK, so the discussion tonight at dinner with one of my best friends and his wife (while we were out celebrating her birthday) was – What has become of me???
Today, the family went to a McDonalds birthday party, something I never dreamed I would ever do. Only five years ago, I was single, child-free, and living the bachelor life. Today, I have a wife, 2 children, and 3 godchildren and go to birthday parties for kids at McDonalds!!! Ahh yes, he has been domesticated!
I am not complaining, only pointing out facts… 🙂
And the family life is just part of it! Some of my students last year asked if I wanted to go party with them on a Friday night. I told them my idea of partying on a Friday night consists of trying to stay awake through an entire rented movie… And I was only partly kidding! 😉
Such is life in the fast lane!
This is Buck the deer, and I wanted to comment on all those nuisance people in Rothesay.
In the past 20 years or so, they have started to really become annoying, always on our property, cutting down our trees and food supplies. It is getting so bad, we have had to settle for some foul-tasting colourful things they grow outside their homes just to survive.
And they have become so used to being here, they are almost domesticated! Why, just recently, I was minding my own business, munching away on some foul things in MY backyard when one of them came out of her home and threw a broom at me! Then she came out and started hooting and hollering, all wide-eyed like she had been bitten by a rabid racoon! I was so shocked I just stood there, wondering just what other silly things might come next from this nuisance human!
They have also become a problem for us while we travel. They just zoom around in their vehicles, not paying attention to the other creatures that share the same area, and dart out in front of us while we are trying to get from place to place. If they continue this reckless behaviour, we will have to erect people fences to keep us safe!
Our own human biologist has recommended several options for dealing with these nuisance people, including trapping and relocating them to their natural habitat in the city, or feeding them birth control pills to stop the darn things from multiplying.
According to our human biologist, the climate is so good that there isn’t a large cull of those darn nuisance people in the valley in the winter like there maybe should be.
Anyway, just wanted to point out our side of the story.
Thanks again, love your show, but would like to hear more interviews with Bambi!
Buck the Deer
It appears that the voters of NB have given Premier Bernard Lord and his Conservatives their walking papers in favour of a Liberal government.
The funny part is that the Conservatives actually had more of the popular vote, but Shawn Graham’s Liberals managed to capture more seats… I am not at all upset with the final results of the election, but I am upset that they really don’t represent the true feelings of New Brunswickers, and that is unfortunate. If this isn’t a clear message that we need to do something about the way we elect a government, I don’t know what is.
So, congrats to the Liberals, I am confident for the future. But I am disappointed it wasn’t a clearer mandate, since we are not much further ahead than we were when the Legislature was dissolved. Once again, it may be difficult to get anything done…
I am also disappointed that the NDP failed to win a seat. They are always a great social conscience for any government… Elizabeth, Elizabeth, why hast thou forsaken NB?
On the bright side, at least now US President Bush won’t be the only politician in power despite the fact their opponent received more overall votes…
In any case, they say a change is as good as a rest, so I guess we’ll see what the next 4 years bring our way!
The Nature of Things” spoke at the University of New Brunswick in Saint John last night to a sold-out crowd of 1600 people. It was the largest ever crowd for a speaker outside of convocation, and he was speaking here to kickstart his book tour for his new autobiography. The engagement was almost 2 hours long, was populated with a great slideshow that included video clips from some of his shows, and he had lots of commentary to go along with every slide. The speech was well-received and he received numerous rounds of applause, including a well-deserved standing ovation at the end.
I showed up early to get a good seat. We managed to find seats in the fourth row, and I snagged a few shots with Nadine's point and shoot camera.
Here he is, making a point about the requirement for sustainability and environmental protection.
And here he is again, encouraging everyone to take an interest in the environment and make the government pay attention.
I also grabbed some shots of David Suzuki signing books. He signed some of our copies of his books, plus he signed two copies I purchased for donation to the library at the New Brunswick Community College – Saint John campus.
David Suzuki raises money for environmental causes through the David Suzuki Foundation.
My thoughts? Hmm, let's see – lots of violence, tons of neat mutie vs. mutie action, some mutants die, some lose their powers, and of course it was left open for another episode… I think I covered everything!>
So, I looked around my house to see all the things I started and hadn't finished, and before leaving the house this morning, I finished off a bottle of Merlot, a bottle of White Zinfandel, a bottle of Kahlua, a package of Oreos, the remainder of my old Prozac prescription, the rest of the cheesecake, some saltines and a box of chocolates.
You have no idea how freaking good I feel now!
David Suzuki is speaking at the university on June 9. I am tres excited, since there were only 1000 tickets available and I managed to get some.
David Suzuki has done amazing things relating to scientific research, but in my mind, his most important contribution has been to increase the awareness of Canadians of nature and all things environmental. He has always been an advocate for sustainable use of our world, something that really only makes sense if you think of it from a survival point of view! I knew I was destined to be a nerd when I started watching his “The Nature of Things” on CBC at a young age…
Of course, I have some friends who just kind of say “Have a good time” when I tell how excited I am to be going to hear him speak. I guess they don't really think he is worth spending their time going to hear. Most of these friends would prefer to watch Nascar or something similar on Speedvision…
Different strokes for different folks!>
According to an online site I visited, based on my gender, current age, and some other stats, I should statistically live to be 77.8 years old – let's round it up to 78. Saturday, I turned 39, which just happens to be half-way to 78, so I'm half-dead!
For the past few days, I have been receiving the usual “Happy Birthday old man” and such. My wife bought me a cactus, because they are prickly and hard to kill so they are the perfect gift for me, and one of my best friends sent me an online birthday card calling me a dog – an old and neutered dog! (see my post about “Feeling a bit “snippy” today!” if you have any questions about the neutered part!
Other than that, it has been quite uneventful. That slave driver who manages the Dive Shack made me work the beach for SCUBA checkouts rather than letting me stay home and enjoy the sun on my birthday. And then I spent yesterday working around the yard (see the post about the yard – I have been doing some work!)
Last night, I spent time trying to figure out why a 4 pin plug for my trailer wiring assembly wouldn't work with my 7 pin adapter on the trailer… OK, maybe I am old!
So today was the big day, the one I have dreaded for some time – the “big snip”, the “V” thing, the “Sunkist treatment”, the… well, you get the picture!
For the past month, I have been getting a little more tense each day, and for good reason… My boss told me the story of her husband's two-week recovery ordeal, my co-worker sent me daily jokes she found on “vasectomiesgonebad.com” or someplace similar, and my mother and sister got together to sent me a card wishing me well and hoping I was n't feeling too “snippy” after my surgery… Ahh, the humour of it all!
As it turns out, the fear was much worse than the reality of the operation. The worst part was the needle with the local to freeze the nether region. After that, there was some give and go conversation with the surgeon (a guy who by the look of his age reminded me a lot of Dougie Houser, for those of you who ever saw that show), then he said “OK, I just have to put a stitch in and we are done.”
Done? Wow, that was fast. 15 minutes start to finish. I have waited at drive-thru restaurants for my food longer than that! Regardless of his age, in my expert opinion (with all my experience at this sort of thing…), I think he did a superb job.
So, into recovery mode.
After sitting around getting intimate with an ice pack for about 40 minutes, I was permitted to leave, with a prescription and “note” for work. I have been ordered to stay home for 3 days, told to only move between the couch and washroom during the day, and to keep taking my anti-inflammatory pills, even if it feels like I don't need them…
So far, things are quite good. Of course, the freezing hasn't worn off yet (I can tell because I can't feel the strategically placed ice pack yet…), so I am sure the real recovery will not be quite as easy.
While at the drug store getting my prescription filled, I rented 4 movies… Between those and some reading assignments for school, I should be busy enough, although I don't think I will make it to class at the University tonight…
I'll post updates!>
A week later, I had half-empty boxes of Allegra, SinuTab, Claritin, Reactin, and many other name brand drugs that cost far too much if my results were any indication of their capabilities… It took me a few weeks to get in to see my doctor, who prescribed FloNase. That was OK, but it took a while to kick in.
Meanwhile, I was referred to an allergist, who had an appointment available sometime in the Fall… (great timing for environmental allergies, just before all the contributing factors are suffocated by a blanket of snow!).
Eventually my appointment came. I went, she tested me – it was ugly! Turns out I am allergic to dust, horses, rabbits(?), cats, dogs, grass, trees, the environment, my house, my clothes, eating, breathing…
For those who have never tried it, I highly recommend the ultimate test of your self-control and any zen-like powers of concentration you may think you have – an allergy test! The itching sensation is only slightly less likely to send you for regular trips to see a psychiatrist than being held captive for 20 years in a confined space with millions of ants… Some of the individual bumps from the various tests actually merged, I reacted so well. On a scale of 0 to 4, I think I scored 5 on several… It took 4 days before all the hives disappeared!
So, after spreading some kind of ointment on my arms that was supposed to stop the itching, the allergist changed my prescription from FloNase to Nasonex (probably because their drug rep gives her a better yearly trip for a conference in Hawaii for sprescribing it). That worked well too, but of course, by this time I was feeling much better, since the allergies were under control from the FloNase, and was wondering why I had subjected myself to such torture. I mean, was a stuffy nose really worth all this?
The allergist then mentioned a “permanent” solution. My ears perked up! The conversation went something like this:
“Permanent?” I ask.
“Yes, it involves immunotherapy”
I had visions of some sort of couch where my allergies would sit and receive counselling… “How does it work?”
“Well, I order an allergy serum cocktail, and then you show up here every week for a year to get a needle. Each visit requires a stay of one hour after you receive the needle (I assume to ensure someone is a witness if I die of Anaphylaxic Shock…)”
One year of weekly needles…. that's 52 needles! UGH! I am the ultimate needle wimp! But, I guess if it is permanent…
“Then, you only come every second week the next year!”
Another year!?! 26 more needles???
“The third year you only need to come every month”
Holy mother of god, 12 more needles??? (that's 90 needles now, in case you are keeping score!) – I'm going to be a pincushion! “And this is all safe? Why do I need to hang out for an hour and read outdated magazines every week?”
“Just to be sure you are OK”
OK? Didn't I just ask if it was safe??? “Um, OK… and you said permanent?”
“Well, it is reported to be permanent. Nothing is certain with allergies”
Great. A pincushion AND a Guinea Pig… “OK, so three years… I guess I can live with that…”
“Well, three to five, depending on your response to the therapy”
Wow, another potential 24 needles… that puts me at… 114 needles??? At this rate, my house will be paid off and I will be in the ground by the time I am allergy-free… At least I can have flowers at the funeral without worrying about sneezing!
So anyway, today I picked up the serum from my pharmacist. That is another funny story, since my Blue Cross does cover this treatment (in their inadequate, 80% way of course), but requires me to buy the drugs from a pharmacy and not directly from a doctor… So, my $125 treatment is now $159 because the Pharmacist has a markup and dispensing fee. Of course, I could care less about this, since it is the insurance company eating the difference because of their stupid policiy, but in the end, stupidity affects everyone because they eventually put their rates up to cover their losses…
Now I have a bottle of allergy serum in my fridge (did I mention it has to remain refrigerated?), awaiting my first treatment, which I am reluctant to make, since it will begin a long series of uncomfortable visits to a nurse who will say to me weekly “Just take a breath, this will only hurt a little… Sir? Hello? SIR?!? Uh, Doctor, can you give me a hand here? I think the patient just passed out…”>