A new way of doing things...

Tonight I sit in a small mom-n-pop motel in Comanche TX posting on my blog as I get ready to see my daughter tomorrow. I picked this motel because several weeks ago on my last trip to visit my daughter I noticed the sign out front that said they had free wireless internet. Now I know that most motel chains now offer this but they usually cost $60 and up for a room. I usually stay at these smaller local motels because they generally offer a clean room for around $40. And just as I thought, this room cost me $44 including tax. And it is a nice, large room with microwave, mini-fridge, and coffee maker. But the internet is what I like. What does this have to do with a new way of doing things? Tomorrow when I see my daughter I am going to stress to her the importance of focusing on that which you have decided to do. I am practicing what I am going to preach to her because I am now really starting to focus on that which I want. For my wife and I that is to eventually move to the country. I am going to stress to her that she cannot let anyone allow her to stray from the path she chooses until she has accomplished the goal at the end of that path. I have never had this foresight before. I know that those that are successful in life know this, many from a very young age. I never before had the maturity to understand this concept. I do not want my daughter to have to struggle through 20 years of adulthood before she figures it out. But if I do not practice it myself I cannot be a guide for her to follow. I do not know why I could not understand this concept nor have the discipline to follow it. Looking back, I have exhibited it in my work as I learned more and more but I never put into practice regarding my personal life and the bigger picture of life itself. So while I cannot go back and redo things in my life, I can start right now with goals to accomplish and put my undivided attention on them. Keep the focus is what I am calling it. I am going to tell her that you can and will have more than one "focus" at a time. Example: While moving to the country is the big picture focus for my wife and I, the smaller "focuses" are my work, our home, etc. I have a stack of claims from our new store that go back 3 months that needed correcting and resubmitting. I made a conscious decision to get them all done by the end of work today. And I did, even though I was asked to do other things, I always returned to my current "focus". This may sound easy and it may be for most people, but for me it has not been easy. I do not know why my brain is wired the way it is but it is. So many of my beliefs that I held are changing and I know part of it is because I never wanted to be like everyone else. So I did things differently just to be different. But it has held be back in life. Also it is because I have never been confident of my abilities. But over the past year I have had to be responsible for so much that I have really started looking at my life and how others were able to accomplish their goals in life. I get so down as I see how so much of what could have been was wasted. But I hope to be able to put that behind me as we cannot change the past and just go forward with what we want to accomplish now. I just hope my wife can overcome her illnesses so that we may do this together. She is in so much pain right now. And that brings me back to focusing. I am tired and burnt out on trying to please everyone. When I say I am making decisions that are best for me, I mean for my wife and me as we are one. I believe in that principle of marriage. So many times when I talk of her sugery or doctor appointments, I use the word "we" but also whenever I say "I", I am also speaking of "we". I can no longer allow anyone to influence my decisions just because I do not want to hurt their feelings. I needed to see my daughter as I have not seen her in about six weeks. My "mil" (mother-in-law) probably feels I should go to the hospital tomorrow. But I can see my wife on Monday as I am off, even without the holiday I would have been off. I have chores to do when I get back tomorrow. She is the one that came uninvited last February when my wife got sick again and I have tolerated her attempts to remake my home into her home but no more. If she is here to help me take care of my wife, then that is what she is going to do. And I mean take of her the way I need her to do it, not how she wants to do. There will be no more of me coming home and her going to her room and to bed while I have to continue taking care of my wife. She is the one home all day resting while I am working 10 hour days to pay the rent. She does not pay rent or help with the electricity but she can run that tv 24/7. I have had enough. I need to get some rest at night and if she cannot help me the way I need her to help, then she can go back home. I know I am ranting now but I needed to get this off my chest. I feel everyone relies on me but does not ask what I need. My parents do the most of that by helping me with errands and loaning my their car to take my wife to the doctor and to see my daughter. In short, I am done with allowing others to influence my decisions because I don't want conflict. I have to take care of me first (again, meaning wifey and me) everyone else second. Focus is the word.


An ending and a beginning....

Today Tammi had surgery on her left hip. The ending is that the wait to is over. The beginning is that this is the beginning of 6 months of surgeries to put her back together again. Everything went well and she is now resting in the ICU. She is expected to only spend on night there and then be moved to a regular room. Sunday she will have her first wound change with the vac so that will not be a fun day as it is extremely painful. Right now she hurts a lot but they have her on a self-administering pain release which means she does not hurt for long. I have decided to pay the $63 for a room at the hospital hotel located on the 9th floor. That way I can get a good nights sleep as tomorrow will be another long day. I am hoping she will be moved in the morning so I can get settled in to stay with her through wound care on Sunday. This past week I scanned some photos in and then uploaded to yahoo and then sent them to Target for one hour printing. I am still amazed and impressed with this setup. I scanned them enlargement from 4x6 to 5x7 and they came out great. Then I bought 8x10 frames with matting for the 5x7 size and we are giving them for gifts. Tam has been crafting modge podge containers that we filled with sugar free hot chocolate and I wanted to contribute with my creativity. I have been going through photos I have shot over the years and found some that I thought were relevent to certain family members. I don't know if these people will understand the meaning behind the picture they were given, i.e. that it was something that I had created and then spent time putting together, but I am proud of them and the job I did making the final, finished product.


Predictions and other stuff...

Time for my weekly Cowboys prediction. This week, based upon the fact the Saints have a very good offense, think the score will be: Dallas 34 Saints 21 I came to this conclusion that while both offenses are good, Dallas's defense is better than the Saints defense so Dallas will score more points. It will be close but in the end Dallas will pull away, especially if the are up by double digits at the start of the 4th quarter. New Orleans will be in catch up mode and that is when interceptions happen. I am confident in Dallas ability to win out.



On the Cowboys score. I had it 23-16 Dallas. The final score was 23-20 Dallas but I was not so close on how the teams would end up with their scores. I really thought Dallas would be more in control of the game than they were. But a win is a win and this was a good game. Alwasy better when your team comes out on top so that is just some icing on the cake. Dallas did have their chances at some turnovers but I guess the cold weather made them fumble fingers. Their was Aaron Glenn's drop of a certain interception in the end zone and Tiki Barber's fumble that three Cowboys had their feet around and yet could not come up with the ball. Romo's final figures were slightly off of my prediction as well. He through more passes than I thought he would but the yardage was about right. He did throw it down field more than I thought he would have but then what do I know?? What I do know is that the Cowboy's are 8-4 and are not afraid of any team in the league. If Rex Grossman continues to play the way he has, Chicago will be a non factor. Dallas is the only team in the league that is top 5 on both offense and defense, so they are well balanced. Which means other teams just cannot load up on side of the ball and dare Dallas to beat them with another part. Dallas runs the ball effective enough that teams have to pay attention to it and they have enough weapons in the passing game that teams must account for it. Take away the outside receivers and the tight ends and back tear up the middle. Send linebackers out to play the passing game and the running backs gash the middle for yards. Terry Glenn and Terrell Owens are too good for defenses to play man to man more than a few plays so they must give them help. On defense, Dallas a very good against the run and their corners are good enough to one on one with most teams or at the least they only have to double one opponents receivers leaving a safety to help out with tight end coverage over the middle. And then there is Ware's speed rushing that is starting to cause havoc for quarterbacks. Double him and that will leave someone else uncovered. Last night showed that Dallas can play pass defense well enough that they do not have to live and die by the blitz constantly. New Orleans is going to be a big test this week again but this team seams to be rising to the occasion with each passing game. The believe they can win against anybody and Romo's swagger is trickling to down to each player. We have seen Brees pass for over 500 yards in a game this season along with a much improved running game but the Saints are also susceptible on defense. If Dallas once again plays ball control, then Brees and company have fewer chances to do something with the ball. That in turn places pressure on them to make something happen when they do have it and that is when turnovers and mistakes happen. This is the time of year when each week is almost like a playoff game and Dallas once again has the power offense to impose their will on other teams and control the game. Even with the Giants offense success yesterday there was the impression that Dallas still controlled the game. The Giants were always going uphill and did not really demonstrate the ability to stop Dallas. That comes from the energy and attitude of Tony Romo. He is in control and the others now feel a leadership within him that has not been there since Aikmans days. I read an article yesterday about how there is the feeling in New York that how can Manning tell others what to do? He is the young one. Well,age does not matter, it is position and the responsibility that comes with it that matters. It is how a person carries themselves. There are butter bar Lt. in the military that take firm control of their units and there are some that never get more than what the enlisted has to give them. Demand respect and you will get none. Command respect and you will get it.


Predictions and other stuff...

Cowboys vs Giants: Dallas 23 Giants 16. This will be a game that Dallas will be in control of but will not blow out the Giants. With the weather being nice but in the 40's the running game will dominate. Romo will use a short, controlled passing attack to keep the Giants defense off balance while the running game will be strong enough to keep the chains moving. I predict Romo will go 18 for 27 for 220 yards. Alot of passes on slants and in the slot to the tight ends. Linebackers just will not be able to keep up with Witten and Fasano and that will open up the slot receiver as well. Once the defense has to account for them, the corners will be left one on one with Glenn and Owens. I see Dallas driving in the first half but the Giants will stiffen in the red zone so Gramatica will have 3 short field goals. Later, as Dallas wears down the Giants defense Dallas will have a couple of long drives ending in touchdowns to put the game away. The Giants will score some points late to account for the closeness of the score, which will be closer than the actual game. Tammi was admitted to the hospital this past Tuesday as she was experiencing some swelling and hotness on her hip. The doctors agreed something was wrong and proceeded to have more MRI's and CT scans done. On top of that they did not get the whole hip in the scans and had to do them again on Thursday. Today she told me they are changing her antibiotics as she should not have a flair up of infection while on these antibiotics. So here we are, once again praying to have this surgery done quickly and yet it seems it is getting farther and farther away. There are times the weight of all this just becomes too much, but then I hear from her or my daughter and all is better. Where this is going to I don't know but I will continue to strive to take care of them. We have much to do in life yet. I am nearly 42 years old and yet I get so excited of stuff, stuff I really enjoy doing. I am a fanatic now with notebook computers. I cannot ever see a reason to go back to a desktop pc. The mobility is something I just love. With broadband and wifi becoming so commonplace, I can go so many places and log on. Today I found out every library in Dallas and Arlington has free wifi, along with the Schlotzkys sandwich shops, and the coffee shop I go to near my work. Add in the fact that the library is such a quiet place to work I feel I will be going much more often. The main Dallas library is just a few blocks from the train station so whenever I ride the train to go see Tam I can stop off for awhile at the library. The Arlington main library is open most nights until 9pm so I will have an hour or so to be online. I predict that within 10 years free wifi will everywheres. Already I have decided that there is not reason to pay $2.99 for 2 hours at Mcdonalds or to pay $40 a month at Starbucks. Why pay for access when you can have it for free? Sure, you can't watch porn at the library but I don't have a need for that. Downloading music might be frowned upon for taking up so much bandwidth, but again I can live without that. The main thing I miss by not having it at home those moments you want to look something up right away. But acceptance sets me free and I accept that I don't have it at home so i look for other ways. Write it down and look it up whenever I do get online. Oh, and then there is my parents house where I always get online for free. So there are many advantages to being mobile and the best part is that prices are coming down so low for pretty well setup units there just isn't a reason to buy anything else. I told my wife that whenever I buy one I will purchase an extended warranty policy and when that policy is up is when I will buy a new notebook. That way I always have warranty and a fairly up to date computer. Enough of this for tonight but it is good to be blogging again. Speaking of blogging, this goes right in with a new way of thinking I have been working on. Instead of becoming upset at something, I look to what I could have done to avoid the issue. My example comes from a doctor's appointment we had a couple of months ago. We showed up for the appointment and they promptly told me the doctor was not in and that they had called and left a message for us that we needed to reschedule. Knowing how much pain it causes Tam to get out I really blew a gasket as I never received any such message. Later I thought about whatI could have done to avoid this issue and ever since then I have made a point to call and verify our appointments. What I am trying to say is, instead of laying blame on others, I find my "ownership" in the issue and work from there. Yes, it is there fault that I did not get the message, but people make mistakes. But if I had called in advance I would have know to reschedule. And since then that has happened a couple of times. This all comes from Dr. Phil and the book I read 3 years ago. I am still learning how to communicate with people and this is just another step. How does this apply to blogging? Because I do not have internet at home. Instead of stressing over something that I cannot control at this time, I look for solutions in other places.


A long time....

I had not realized it has been over 4 months since I last posted. I stay so busy with wor, Tam, and Jess that I just don't have any free time. And since it has been over 6 months since I have had internet at home I just don't get to the cafe very often. I have learned that Schlotkzy (spelling??) has free internet also, so once Tam goes back into the hospital I will be on alot more. The cafe here is really nice but it sure is hot in here. But that is ok, they have a very good connection, the cost of a great tasting cup of mocha frappe is less than $4, and not only is it on the way home but it is close to work and a lot of places to eat dinner. She is hurting so bad I just hope they give us a surgery date soon and that the surgery itself will be soon. I was finaly smart enough to do remember something. Today I brought headphones in with me and that was the way to go!! I watched some webisodes of battlestar galactica (I think they turned the heaters on just so people will buy more frappe's!!) and that just wetted my appetite for more internet. I am sorry but I have to leave now, this is just too hot in here!!



Man has always asked of the Lord, "Why us, are we the only ones?". Well, not being a religious scholar, I have nevertheless come across the answer. We are not the only ones, we are just the first ones. Think about it. We have always looked outward, continuing to expand and explore. I used to believe there were others out there but no longer. I believe God did create the universe and all that is in it. But I also believe that He created it all for us. We are just at the very beginning of what He has planned for us. I know He wants us to expand and explore, that is why he made the sun only last so long. He gives us all we need but we must explore and travel the stars. He set us out on a path of discovery and growth but where we end up is so far distant that it is incredibly hard for most of people to comprehend. Our lives are so short compared to that of our planet, sun and distant galaxies that we just don't see that far down the road. The bigger picture is we better learn to live together or God is going to find another species to spread his Word. He can get it wrong sometimes. The dinosaurs, the Neanderthals, they all could be mistakes that He corrected in some way. We are not perfect, that is why we keep going, exploring and searching. In time we will become something other than what we are. Science has a place in His plan, it is our way of figuring out how to spread ourselves outward to fulfill our place in his plan. There are worlds out there supporting life, just not intelligent life as we know it. They are there, Edens waiting for us to find them. We are His children, and just as our children grow up and leave the nest, we too as a people are growing up and will leave for other places. It is our destiny.

Ramblings and such....

I think the best looking female athletes are the tennis players. Toned, not overly developed, tanned and many times fairly tall. Who needs porn when you have ESPN?
It is never better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all. If you have never loved you will never know just how bad it hurts to have lost.
If I ever lose my mental abilities, I request that I am taken to Oregon and allowed assisted suicide. Having spent the better part of the last month at a nursing home, I see so many eldery people that just drag themselves around in their wheel chairs not even knowing where or who they are. My grandmother went through 10 years of this. I will not. I can accept physical limitations as long as I have my mind to think and learn. I sit here and can laugh with my wife but if she was physically ok without a mind, that truly would be a loss.

A little commentary...

People need to understand that some things in life go both ways. Today I am going to be putting forth some commentary on the subject of fast lanes vs. slow lanes. I am a slow driver, I freely admit that. Not only because I drive an underpowered mini-van (last time I checked, any give speed was the same no matter what you were driving) although it will go fast if I want it to, it just won't get to speed very fast (acceleration for anyone that is confused). I also choose to drive slower, about 65mph on the expressway. I personally feel that is fast enough but I do want to make it clear that I used to drive much faster (85mph). After living in Rapid City with its slower way of life (no expressway to speak of) I have gotten used to the lower speeds. I also understand the respect of staying out of the fast lane if I am going to choose to drive at a slower speed. And now to my point of this little diatribe: If you are going to be a fast driver, stay out of my lane!. I mean, that is only fair, I want to go slow so I stay in the slow lane, putting up with all the drivers (fast and slow) merging onto and off of the expressway while keeping an eye out for any idiots making three lane exits at 90mph. The least the fast drivers could do for me is get out of my lane as soon as you get on the expressway and stay out. If a slow driver does decide to be rude and stay in a fast lane, don't take it out on me and make a 3 lane change to go around them, endangering everyones life. Just be patient until the lane beside you opens up and go around them. I will stay out of your lane if you stay out of mine. Because believe me you don't want your really nice Mercedes or Corvette messed up by my littl ole van.


For anyone that may be interested...

It seems that there may be some people out there still reading this and they know a certain young boy that befriended my wife during a difficult time of her life. This young child brought comfort to her when all else was going wrong and I will forever be grateful for that. So I am going to explain just what is wrong with her and if anyone who reads this and knows who I am talking about can explain it to him I know she would appreciate it. What she has is Osteomyelitis, which is a big word for bone infection. The bone becomes infected by a bacterium that is transported by blood. The bacteria itself occurs naturally in the gut of all people. It seems that because of Tam's chemotherapy in her abdomen area her immune system is supressed to the point where she cannot fend off this bacteria. The infection started out as necrotizing fasciitis or mistakenly called flesh eating bacteria. The bacteria does not actually "eat" her flesh but rather a byproduct given off by the bacteria is a toxin and causes the flesh to dissolve into an abscess. It has become apparent as we look back over the past year that all her infections were related rather than independent incidents. Last May she had an abscess on her tailbone, followed by the one on her abdomen in October and now this one. February of 2005 she fell on some ice while in South Dakota and broke her tailbone. According to my research the infection can be from any type of wound, even one that you don't know you had. Once she became infected the bacteria just kept spreading and traveling throughout her body. It is also the cause of her stroke from last fall. That is called Endocarditis, or infection of the heart valve. The infection caused a blood clot which in turn broke loose. The bacteria in question is Streptococcus. Her version is Strep B. Antibiotics will never get rid of this, surgery is always required. The mortality rate is 25% so there is a real chance of her not surviving this. If she does survive, she will never be as she was. As we know right now she will either have a flail hip (no bone in the leg, it just hangs there) or be amputated at the pelvic bone. That is known as a hind quarter resection and it is fairly rare. It is more involved as not only is the leg removed but also half of the pelvic bone so there is no support for half of your body. I am amazed at her spirit and humor she keeps with all this. Pain is her constant companion, and no matter what I do for her, I cannot ease it. Whenever I feel like things are too much I only have to think of her and what she cannot do to know that my obstacles are not very large.


This is how I am feeling right now....

Yankton leader Strike-the-Ree said "The white men are coming like maggots. It is useless to resist them.... Many of our brave warriors would be killed, our women and children left in sorrow, and still we would not stop them." **


Each day I watch my wife die a little more and there is nothing I can do to stop it.


From Wikipedia



Be careful what you think you want.....

Over 20 years ago, in high school I had my personal tormentor. I have written about him in the past but I will not post his name anymore. He was a bully and it took me 20 years and a painful loss (at the time it was a loss) to get me to look at many things about my life. Why I was who I was and how I came to be that person. He was a large part of it. I had wished for a long time for him to suffer. I learned this past week that he did. Was it retribution for what he did to me? I sincerely doubt it and if it was I surely would not have wished this kind of suffering on anyone. For some unknown reason I did a google search on him and I found out some news that has disturbed me. This person was a grade ahead of me and his brother was a grade behind me. His brother had the same first name as myself and he never bothered me, not once. I didn't even register on his radar. So why was his brother such a bad person as to cause me to wish bad things on him and his brother was not? I know the answer. These young men's family were genitic marvels, muscular, athletic, powerful young country boys. But my tormentor was the runt of the group, much shorter than even his younger brother. I believe he was tormented by his older siblings and he took it out on me because I was no where near his strength and he knew I was afraid of him. I finally left all that behind. But this past week I found out his younger brother died 3 years ago. It has disturbed me to find out that my tormentor did ultimately suffer. Suffer more than I would ever have wished him to. As my wife lies in a hospital, possibly having less than six months to live I am confronted with the knowledge that sooner or later we all have to face that which we do not want to. Be careful what you wish for because it can come true in the worst of ways. I forgave him long ago but that does not absolve him of what he did to me, yet I would never have wished that kind of suffering on him.


Testing something new...

I just read about a new photo hosting sight called allyoucanupload.com. It is not a destination sight but rather a hosting sight. No sign up, no login. Simply upload your photo, copy and paste the url you are provided into your blog or wherever you want it to show up and your done. No size limitations, no bandwidth limitations. I was with photobucket a few years ago before they got really big and it was ok but with donations and cap limits it wasn't perfect. This might be the perfect thing, next to Blogger of course since I can upload them directly to here. Someday I will host my own sight and this would be perfect since I can upload all I want. The following picture is hosted on allyoucanupload.com.
Free Image Hosting at allyoucanupload.com
It is one of my favorite photos I have ever taken.

What's all the fuss about??

Last night I finished reading The Davinci Code" and I am just wondering what about it has so many people so worked up in a tizzy? I understand what is it is saying about Jesus and religion in relation to history, but come on, it is just a book. A fictional book. I take no more offense with it than I do with the movie "National Treasure". This was a story that took a factual historical situation and created a fictional story about it. The same with the movie "Titanic". Now even if the author of the book was trying to say it is a true story, it is how we, the readers percieve it that matters. I have no thoughts about it being true, I just read a good book that made good use of metaphors, riddles, and suspense. Nothing more. People should stop trying extract meanings that are not there to begin with. I know how my relationship with God is and someones fictional tale about it is not going to change that.
Well, today we go see the surgeon again, most likely to decide Tam's fate. It seems to be coming down to death or amputation. Of course we don't want amputation but that is better than 6 months of the worst pain imaginable followed by death. I have taken a couple of days off to be with her while these tests and decisions are being made. Sometimes there are situations more important than money and this is one of them. Our life is about to be changed forever and we want to make the very best decisions we can.
My daughter will be happy. I was able to retrieve her property from the detention center. She called the other night (it is a very hard thing to earn a phone call, I was very proud of her for being able to do it) and spoke to Tam the whole call. She apologized for some things that she had done. That needed to happen in the healing process of the last several years. I saw her for a couple of hours Sunday and she I beleive she is finally getting it. She is figuring out just how much everyone loves her and what it means when we get to see her. She made a statement that she is going to do whatever she has to do to get her time done and get out. She has a dream of owning her own comsotology business and I am going to do what I can to make it happen. I don't want to put her down for her dreams because they are hers, not mine. I have told her for years to figure out what she likes to do and then learn how to make money at it and she is doing that. She tells me she will get assistance for college and I will do whatever I have to do to help her get that. We have decided not to move from our two bedroom so that Tam's mother can stay close to her daughter. When Jess gets out we will transfer to a three bedroom.
It is less than two weeks before our anniversary and I am planning nice evening just the two of us. Of course it will be at the hospital but I am bringing in a nice dinner and of course some flowers. As part of my employee of the month award I received a $50 gift card to TGIFriday's and I will use that to bring the dinner to her. It may be our last one together so I want it to be the best I can do under the circumstances.


      More of this sad day. Fortunately no one was hurt. Posted by Picasa

A close call

  Just 2 house's down from my parents home (and next to my old home) our neighbor lost everything. Posted by Picasa



now I am posting from the lunch room at work. Netzero works pretty good. Dial up still has a place in the world, at least until wifi is everywhere. Not good for watching streaming video but for checking email or blogging it works fine. I just got an inviation at yahoo to test their new beta email. looks just like outlook express and works the same. But I like that. If I can just get all my other emails in one spot life will be good. Maybe I can use some type of auto-forwarding setup. We shall see. Tam is doing fine. I ran across an email I had been sent over a year ago from the sister of someone she used to know. A nasty person she was. But she was proved wrong as Tam and I are strong. We just lost our way for a short while. Got to go, lunch is over.


Brave new world....

Well, right now I am posting from a coffee shop with my new Dell notebook. That's right. I broke (literally now!!) down and bought a Dell. It is a base base model but it offered everything I wanted plus a little more. Last Friday as I arrived to work I was having one of my conversations with the Lord, telling him that it just had not been the right time to buy a notebook. I just said that I would leave it up to Him to tell me when the right time did come. Later that day as I was walking through the lobby at work I saw the weekly Life mini-magazine on the table. The Dell ad is what caught my eye. They were selling their base laptop for $467 with free upgrades to 512mb of ram and built in wifi (b/g). It came with a cd-rw burner/dvd player and a 14.1 screen. I don't know why but it just felt right to get this one. It has all I needed plus it will run Vista when that finally comes out. I have not been able to really use it until now but I have no regrets buying it even though I have so much more to be paying for. I watch a dvd I had recorded the other night of the show 24 and it looked good. I hope buying a Dell has bought me some quality as I cannot be replacing it any time soon but so far it works beautiful. This coffee shop is like a knock off of Starbucks but with it having free internet it is worth the $4 for a grande coffee. I will be coming here 2-3 nights a week after work to read email and such. I typed a letter to my daughter the other morning at the hospital while they tended to my wife. This is really cool. I tested it out by watching 24 while typing a letter and it worked really well so I am set. and with the burner I can backup anything anytime. I am so out there in the world like I never have been before. I was born 20 years to early. To be a college or high school kid now would be great. But oh well, better late than never. I can't wait for Tam to get out of the hospital and come share this with me. Once she is hooked I will have to buy her a notebook of her own. the only thing I just learned tonight is that this coffee house has wall sockets everywheres which means I could have brought my old laptop and done the same. but this is cool and finally I have a notebook that is strong enough to stream video. yeah.



So much to report and so little time. But things are going to get much better soon. I broke down (and got broke!!!) and bought a laptop. I got the Dell entry level Inspirion B120 but it should do what I need it to do. 40gb hd, 512 megs ram, cdrw-dvd combo drive. I think that will be enough for what I want. I want to be able to watch shows at the hospital that I have recorded on my dvr. That way Tam and I can share in it. I want to be able to surf the net when away from the house. My old laptops don't have a battery so I have to find an outlet. Also, they are just not powerful enough to watch video like what is on abc.com. I found a coffee shop very close to my work that has free wifi so I figure I will stop in a couple of nights (or mornings depending on the amount of patrons) a week. Just long enough to check email, read some news, maybe upload some pictures to yahoo (they partnered with Target and it worked wonderful) for printing. I have found since I lost my internet connection at home just how much time I was wasting goofing off. I now get a lot more of my chores done along with many more of my other hobbies and interets. That includes stuff on the computer, but not surfing. Editing photos or video or writing letters to doctors, hospitals, or my daughter. Or maybe just posting to my blog, haha! Tam was moved to a rehab hospital on Thursday. We don't know how long she will be there but once she is strong enough to put weight on her legs she will go back to Presby for surgery, at least most likely. She may not ever have surgery and just take antibiotics for the remainder of her life. Soon I am going to the doctor to be tested for bi-polar and diabeties. I am borderline diabetic and we are convinced I am bi-polar. I look at all the symptoms of my daughters diagnosis and compare them to my entire life and I fit perfectly. I wonder what it will be like to be "normal". What could I have become? Could I have done a better job teaching my daughter? Could I have avoided the pitfalls of my ex-wife (my son's mother)? I will never know and I cannot dwell on that which has already happened, I can only go forward. Speaking of my ex, she has been "not nice" again but I made a choice that I was not going to let negative people bring me down and I have had a really good coupld of days since. I don't know when I will get to post again but I do know once I get my new laptop I will be able to post a couple of times a week at the coffee shop, Americas Best Coffee, which is just a short hop from my work. I plan on moving close to work at the end of July so this will work out very well, I think. I really miss my wife, I want her home soon. It is hard but I perservere.


So much to tell. No time to tell it. No internet connection at home anymore. What am I ever to do?? I have to find time to use the email function at work. Maybe go to Mcdonalds and use their wireless service.


General going ons......

Not much today. Spent the night at the hospital with Tam. She was told that she would have an MRI this morning. What they did not tell us is that she would also have a CT scan right after. The medical staff has finally caught on to her extreme level of pain and they now prescribe enough medications that she is basically knocked out. So I did not get to spend much time with her today, time that she will remeber anyways. But I got to be there with her and did not have to hear her scream from the pain. For anyone that has had to stand at the side of a loved one while they scream in agony, they will know how I feel. For those that have not, I truly pray you never have to. I don't care how big and bad you are, when you can do nothing to relieve their hurt, it is a humbling, dejected feeling. All I can do is hold her hand, tell her to breathe, and pray. Monday, during her wound change, as I held her hands in mine, I closed my eyes and prayed for the Lord to take her pain and pull it from her and send it to me. Let it flow from her hands and into me through my arms. I think it did as shortly afterward my back started to hurt. Now it always does that when I am leaning over her as it is an awkward position. To me, that just means each time I am there for her wound change He is taking her pain and letting me have some of it. She is my hero and the toughest person I know. I draw strength from her. I also feel the need to take very good care of me because how can I take care of her if I am sick myself. The other day I was walking to my van and as I stepped over the curb I realized that I move pretty good for someone my age (41, my gosh I can't beleive it!!) and that I should not take that for granted. And I try not to.


A breath of fresh air....

Today I got to take Tam outside. The physical therapy team came with this special chair that we put her in. The chair has a motor to make it sit up or lay down as they want her to work on sitting up more. She went as high as she could tolerate painwise. I then wheeled her outside and for the first time in more than two months she felt a breeze upon her face. It was a very good thing. We stayed out about 20 minutes and then she was ready to go back as it was very humid and hot. But to get out for just that short amount of time helped both of our spirits. Thursday I will be taking her out again. The hope is she will be able to sit up fully soon. She needs to regain her strength for the upcoming operation. I want my wife home in the worst way. Each time I spend the night at the hospital I have such a hard time leaving the next day. But I remain strong so I can be there for her whenever she needs me. She would do it for me. Saturday night I finally got to use my new DVD recorder. And it met and exceeded my expectations. It might break tomorrow but for today it works great. And that was using the Frye's Electronics house brand of DVD! At 17 cents a disc, I can afford to build a large collection of shows and movies. Tam and I were talking last night and there are so many movies that we would not mind having in a collection but would not pay $3 for. Think of the Lifetime channel as an example. The discs are so much cheaper than what VCR tapes cost and hopefully will last much longer. And I can always copy a disc to the computer and then burn it on a new disc if I fear deteriation has set in.


Saw Gates McFadden in a commercial tonight. For those that do not know who she is, watch reruns of Star Trek: Next Generation and take a look at the doctor. Sometimes I drive my wife crazy with my uncanny ability to remember actors names and where I have seen them before. I don't know why I am so good at it but if I see them once, I will be able to recognize them right away, even if it has been years since I first saw them. I bought a DVC recorder today. I went for the advertised model but ended up buying a different one. I got an RCA model that was refurbished instead of being brand new. It is quite large but I figure as long as it works. And maybe I got a better one than the new model selling for around the same price. I got it out but have not hooked it up yet. I have been wanting one to make my own recordings of my favorite shows so I don't have to buy those expensive boxed sets. If this works I will be one lean mean recording machine. I want to give a shoutout and thanks for the tip to Lori. I have yet to find out of there is a Krystal's here but it is nice to know there might be. It is getting closer to the time to cut the internet off. But that might not be such a bad thing. Instead of goofing off on the puter each night I might make it an event by going once a week and doing all my internet stuff in a couple of hours. Get me out of the house. But it is nice being able to look something up anytime I want to. Maybe, if I hurry up and send it, I can win my appeal and not lose it completely. We shall see. I was contacted by a director at another dealer last weekend. They are seeking a warranty administrator and I was recommended by a mutual friend. I interviewed on Wednesday, well, more like an informal meeting to just feel each other out. I am not looking for something else but I owe it to myself and my family to listen. I have worked for this company before (1997-1998) and thought I would never again. But I am older and my needs have changed. I might not even be offered the position but I have been weighing the pros and cons of each place. I don't think I will change jobs but one never knows what might be offered. Because I missed all of Monday waiting for Tam to be transferred to another hospital I won't see her again until Sunday afternoon. I really miss her and it just tears me up when I have to go so long without seeing her. I struggle just going from morning to evening. But we will overcome this. Our Love is strong and deep. Got to go to bed now.



Evangeline Lilly from "Lost" is so hot, especially in a wet t-shirt!! I still think Jennifer Garner is tops, but she is leaving television so that will leave E.L. to fill the spot as tv's tough hotty. I am only now getting into the richer things the internet has to offer, such as streaming video and such. I only have two shows I make "appointment tv" time for. That would be "24" and "Lost". The rest of my time, when I am either not at the hospital or at work, I spend on the net. Now that is not new, but it is so much better than it has ever been before. And it will only get better than that. I can't wait until I have a laptop with a good battery and strong processor. Soon I will have to turn off my net connection as I can not pay the bill my daughter ran up on the phone. My phone and net are intertwined. So with a much better notebook I can go to MickeyDees or the library, maybe Starbucks and do all this stuff. Some hospitals have wi-fi, so maybe Tam will end up at one that does.



Well, Tam has been in the hospital about six weeks. And this is her fourth hospital to be in. The tests are finished. Next week she should have surgery. They are going to do a total hip replacement on her left side, or so that is the plan right now. There is a possibility she could have a "hind quarter amputation" meaning they would remove her leg and one of her buttocks. That is a worst case scenario and I sure hope it does not come to that. Her car was recovered last weekend and my daughter is now incarcerated. For how long I do not know. I wish she had listened but some people are very stubborn and hard-headed. Or maybe just plain dumb. Sometimes I wonder. It is going to cost almost $3000 to fix the car. Just another issue to be dealt with. I read in PC World or PC Magazine (I can't remember which and I am too tired to get up and look) about some cool free things. One of them is an RSS news agragator called Abilon. Four years ago when RSS and blogs and such were just beginning to pop up I used and agragator but it did now work too well. Times have changed. This little free program works well and even has a built in blogging tool so I can post here straight from the program. Pretty neat I think. Going to lose my internet soon as my daughter ran up a phone bill I cannot afford to pay. The internet and phone are tied together on one bill. But I can always take my laptop to Mcdonalds and get online for only $3. The library has free wi-fi so that is another possibility. And even though I cannot go to blogger from my work connection, I can email in my posts. So I really have no excuse for not writing more, do I?


I miss.....

Writing here. I have so much social commentary I want to write about but just no time. I hope to be able to do more in the future.


What price to pay?

Just what is the price of our freedom? Why is freedom not free? Why does that which makes us different bring us together? Why does that which binds us destroy us? I ask the questions but I know not the answers.


Sad times...

It has been too long since I last posted. I think of all kinds of good topics I want to write about and possibly start a discussion about. But I just don't have the time anymore, or rather what little time I have I am so tired I can hardly think straight. My wife was nearly healed when three weeks ago she experienced severe pain in her left thigh. Eleven days later she was admitted into the hospital with another infection and today I found out she is to have another surgery. It will be the same or worse as her last one. That means she will be suffering great pain and anguish for several months. I love her so much and I am terrified I am going to lose her. How much more can her weak and fragile body take? I continue to pray, please do so too.


A good movie...

Just finished watching the movie "Crash" with Sandra Bullock, Don Cheadle and other fairly well-known thespians. I thought it was very well done, especially in the context of social commentary. I thought the movie was a very good example for the Butterfly Effect working at its best. I intend to purchase this movie to add to my collection. I have been doing some inward thinking lately and I really want to become the person I want to be. I know who I am and now I feel it is time to become who I want to be. I want to be less overly emotional about things. I want to be much more pleasant and receptive when speaking with people. I want to reduce my anxiety about my job and whether I am going to be fired each and every single day. I need to relax and just do what I can do and not get worked up about things I can't do. I need to have more faith in God. I need to continue to believe that my daughter is ok. I need to stop being so angry with the world and everyone in it. It is not a beginning nor an end, just another step in my journey to be all that I can be.


Football musings...

Could we be nearing the end of the $40 million dollar rookie quarterback? Not hardly. But I do think we are at the point where, if a quarterback is not drafted in the top five, he isn't drafted at all. Why should a team draft a player that they will have to pay a lot of money just to sit on the bench and, if things go right, not play? I draw this observation from this past weeks signing of Casey Printers by the Kansas City Chiefs. He has been playing in the Canadien Football League and now, with some seasoning is being hired to be Trent Green's backup. In the NFL of today, you can almost bet with 100% accuracy that a backup will see playing time during the season. I find it amazing that we can send 17 year olds to war but they can't earn a living playing football? Why can Tony Parker, point guard for the San Antonio Spurs play professionaly in France at 15, but can't here? I understand the injury aspect, but whether it is high school or NFL Europe, the danger is there. Why are we wasting valuable scholarship money on players that will never finish college when they could bypass that and go to a developmental league, get some seasoning and then jump to the pro's? It would even the playing field somewhat in the college ranks, as it has in college basketball and keep players that have no business in college out of college. I have digressed from the original topic, developing a quarterback. Teams will always take a chance on the next "franchise" quarterback. And thats why we will still see some Ryan Leaf mistakes (I am sure he had loads of talent, just not the mental aspect to be a top quarterback) along with the surefire pick such as Troy Aikmen (Hall of Fame candidate). But there has to be many more Tom Brady's out there, diamonds in the rough just waiting for the chance to play. 96. That is the number of NFL quarterbacks, if each team keeps three on their roster. With championship caliber signal-callers so hard to come by, saturating the development with as many as can be found seems like a good way to find another one. Colleges don't play to develop a pro quarterback, the play to win at their game. We have seen so many times that a great college quarterback does not always make (really, rarely makes) a great pro quarterback (look at Texas Tech). In the win-now mentality of pro sports, we need a place to slowly bring along a quarterback, so that when he is ready, he can step in. The learning curve is too sharp to be throwing rookies into the fire, it takes too long to develop the skills, all the while the rest of the team grows old. I use my beloved Dallas Cowboys as my example. Who is going to take Drew Bledsoe's place in a couple of years? The defense is becoming top-notch, Zimmer will be ready to take over as head coach, the running game is looking good, but the offensive line and quarterback situation is goine to be the achilles heal. By the time a new quarterback is groomed, all the above mentioned parts will be past their prime, or gone via free agency because they will see that without a developed quarterback, they will not win here and will have moved on. Is Jerry Jones going to continue to bring in hired hands to do the quarterbacking? That just won't work. Look at the best teams, they found a young quarterback, built around him, and the team grew up together. Only then, at the end of the growing, did they add a free agent to put them over the top. I use Charles Haley as one very good example. When the team was ready to breakout, he was brought in as the final piece to the puzzle. I cannot stand Terrell Owens, he is so arrogant and his ego is so large he makes me puke, but he did the same for Philadelphia, put them over the top last year. Timing is so important.


Musings and other observations....

I have come to the conclusion that my Dallas Cowboys will not win another Super Bowl as long as Jerry Jones is running the team. I am watching the beginning of the Steelers/Bengals game and I am amazed at the patience shown by the Rooney family. Bill Cowher is still their head coach after, what, 15 years or so? and it just shows that one or even two bad seasons is not a reason to just blow everything up. He has shown time and time again that he knows how to build a winning team. Has he won a Super Bowl? No. He has taken them there once, been oh so close several times and yet the owners understand that it takes so much more than just a coach to win it all. Jerry Jones is so impatient to win another Super Bowl that he is working for the short term instead of the long term. Bill Parcells has a proven track record and has assembled the beginnings of a really good team, mostly on defense and at running back. But what concerns me is the lack of development at quarterback and wide receiver. Even in today's win-now mentality it takes a young quarterback a couple of years to get comfortable and in that vein of thought he needs to work with the same group of receivers to develop a comfort zone. Drew Bledsoe and the current group of receivers, with the exception of Patrick Crayton, are going to be here in a few years. So, is this young defense going to become old and stale by the time we have the offense ready? I am concerned that this will be the case. I know Jerry Jones wants to win now, but if the powers that be were to identify and get their quarterback and receivers this off-season so that they may grow along with this defense, they will be ready in three years to contend for a title. And also find Bill's replacement at coach. Sean Payton it is not, Mike Zimmer it should be. The Cowboys are going to lose Zimmer, if not this year, then by next year unless they make it understood, he will take over very soon for Bill Parcells. This is what I was alluding to at the beginning of this comment: Pittsburg has stayed a steady course with Cowher at the helm, and more years than not they are in the playoffs. Once again, he is set at quarterback for a decade, has a good young defense and running back. The Cowboys came close this year to having a really good year so the expectations will be very high heading into next year. But what happens if they don't make it? Bring in another hired hand at quarterback and wide receiver? Philip Rivers has been wasting away on the San Diego bench for two years. That means more years it will take for him to develop. Let's bring in our quarterback, receiving corps and head coach of the future and let them grow with the young defense and running backs we have now.