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Showing posts from November, 2013

Hospital Daze

From Eva's Facebook timeline, posted between 3 and 4:00 this morning:

Trying to sleep in a hospital bed is rather like trying to sleep in a subway station and the heat is on full blast!

There is much more frustration behind this comment than you can probably discern. You see, it was at that time -11C (12F) in Guelph where Eva is. No wind chill. Eva's sole concession to a temperature like that, normally, is to turn one of the four fans in our bedroom from high to medium.  Oh, and she'll probably don one (1) thin blanket to go with her sheet. (In case you're wondering, if there's a temperature at which the bedroom window gets closed and the fans get turned off, we have never experienced it.)
Also, we have a Sleep Number bed, which is the most comfortable bed anyone has ever slept on by definition because you get to make it that way. In hospital beds, the number is permanently set at 666. Eva actually slept for four hours last night, which is about five hours more slee…

A Very Important Weighpoint

My wife is undergoing bariatric surgery tomorrow.

I have kept mum about this surgery to all but close family and a very few trusted friends. This has been, obviously, out of respect for my wife's privacy, especially given the very personal and sensitive nature of the surgery. Since Eva has broken  her own silence on Facebook, I have, with her permission and review, written this in hopes people will understand what's entailed here, and most of all that this procedure is not an end but a means; not a cure but a tool; not the destination but really a waypoint (a weighpoint?)  on the journey towards a prolonged healthy life for her.

I'm sure you, dear reader, are not so crass as to suggest to Eva or myself that this surgery represents anything like "the easy way out". Though you might be thinking it, which is  forgivable because bariatric surgery is not well understood and rarely discussed at any length. So perhaps I can give you some snapshots of my wife's journ…

Love of Music and Music of Love

Music was his life, it was not his livelihood
And it made him feel so happy, it made him feel so good And he sang from his heart, and he sang from his soul He did not know how well he sang, it just made him whole --Harry Chapin, "Mr. Tanner"
I can thank my parents for my love of music. I grew up in a home where music was a constant. I can still remember many of the songs I used to dance around to when I was a wee lad...everything from Knock Three Times to Nightflight to Venus to Stayin''s safe to say my Mom's musical tastes didn't stray too far from the Top 40 of the time, but 70s Top 40 was richer and more varied, it seems to me, than it has been since, and much richer than it tends to be today. There are undoubtedly gems scattered throughout today's music, but they don't tend to chart...or at least chart as high as they should. 
From my Dad I got an appreciation of music you don't normally associate with children. On one of the last d…

Harris Rosen and a Real Helping Hand

I had never heard of Harris Rosen until a few minutes ago. Thanks to Reddit, I've heard of him now...and I think everybody should hear about him. He's a self-made millionaire in the hospitality industry, and his story is inspirational on so many levels, it practically left me breathless reading it.

Here's a man raised in Hell's Kitchen in the 1940s and 1950s--an aptly named stinkhole of poverty and disease--who was launched into the hospitality industry by a chance encounter with Marilyn Monroe...and propelled after launch by his mom, who told him the ticket out of Hell's Kitchen was education.
After spending some time chafing under Disney, Inc. -- he developed the Polynesian, Contemporary, and Fort Wilderness resorts, but never felt entirely comfortable -- Rosen took all the money in his savings account and put a downpayment on a Quality Inn. From there, his empire blossomed: it now includes 3500 employees overseeing 6300 rooms, not to mention the premier hospital…

Put That In Your Pipe And...

So it goes without saying that Rob Ford has been kicked off Eva-world. It shames me to think I was once a card-carrying member of Ford Nation, even though I've never been eligible to vote for the guy. Even after his mayoralty sprouted its own sideshow, I blogged: "I like Rob Ford and I can't say why".
I can say why now, now that the like has curdled. I liked Rob Ford not just because he imposed some much needed fiscal sanity on his city, and not just because he seemed exactly like the sort of brook-no-bullshit type I wish I was myself.  (One of my life's great balancing acts: knowing when to call bullshit and when to keep my mouth shut. Sadly, I usually find myself doing the latter, out of what I think is self-preservation. But bullshit is corrosive. It burns internally).
I also liked Rob Ford because the media hated him from day one. The Toronto Star, a paper so politically correct it squeaks, has used words describing Ford that it won't even use to describe…