Wednesday, August 26, 2009

New Info

Yep, they moved me to another room. 3223. New Phone: 732-321-7213. Thanks for keeping in touch!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

I Was Right...

Dictated on Saturday at 3:30 pm:

Again I was misdiagnosed. For three weeks I have been complaining about pain in my lower abdomen and telling the "professionals" I have an infection, which I based on a fever and pain like I have never had before. They based their findings on guesses. It turns out I have an intense infection resulting in ulcers bursting forward in a matter of 72 hours. I have "skin necrosis," from the Greek origin, or "death of skin" which is from the English "HOLY CRAP!"

I am on heavy doses of intravenous antibiotics and it appears that they caught it in time to avoid surgery and resulting in some lessening of pain. However, they did up my pain medication -- Dilaudid IV -- which is stronger than Morphine and seemingly quite a bit of fun! A very attractive nurse has been changing the dressing twice a day and yes, I do cry like a little girl. This is worth putting up with for the pain med.

If anyone wants to call me here at JFK Hospital, my newest phone number is 732-321-7223. THANK YOU for all your kind thoughts and prayers.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Here we go again

The visiting nurse just stopped by and suggested I go to the hospital, so I'll be leaving in a few minutes. An infection has set in, causing ulcers.

I'll let youse know what I can when I can.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Zoo of Depressed Animals

Did you ever wonder what happens when circus animals can't cut it? When they just can't line up for the circus parade?

For a couple of decades, they came to New Jersey, and lived in Scotch Plains at the Terry Lou Zoo, the most depressing zoo in the world.

Sometime in the late 80's, I went with the Spawn to enjoy the entire zoo experience. We started out with a pony ride. It was a typical little path around a pond filled with greenish water. Then it was off to see the animals.

We saw some foxes and other small creatures pacing nervously, some in circles, others back and forth.

We really wanted to go to the monkey house, always a crowd pleaser. But we couldn't enter because of the intense ammonia smell.

Maybe the giraffes would be better. Tall, friendly, and again, in a cage barely large enough to contain them. Kids would reach up to pet them or offer up a snack.

The Spawn wanted to but, I saw that one of the giraffes didn't look well. We took a couple steps back, and just in time...
He sneezed blood over all the kids "lucky" enough to be in range.

We stayed a bit more, but it was more of the same; sick and depressed animals pacing endlessly in tiny cages.

Eventually, the zoo closed, and today, it stands abandoned, overgrown and unknown to most passersby.

Quick Update

I'm home and remain couchless.


The living room has been turned into a medical supply showroom, and we couldn't fit a couch in here anyway with the assortment of things like walkers, hospital bed, canes, crutches, wheelchairs, special recliner, and a commode.

I'm sporadically online because the 3 days a week that I get dialysis I'm sick all day. They upped my time to 5 hours which I hope makes it better.

Got to prepare my blog post about the NJ zoo for depressed animals.

Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Zoo Week

On the blog.

We always liked going to the zoo, and one of our field trips was to the Bronx Zoo.

Zoos back in the 60's weren't like they are today with natural settings and everything. Nope, it was a bunch of animals in cages being gawked at and taunted by kids and adults.

Our little band was no different. No, we didn't toss our drink cups (well, maybe a few) but the zoo sold souvenir rubber tipped spears. Naturally, every animal was threatened with a good spearing. They were all far enough away, that it was a hollow threat.

That is until we got to the jungle cats.

You see, Jack and Carl's entire reason for the zoo trip was to see the jungle cats. Penguins and monkeys were ok, but didn't have the cool factor of the big cats. And the stupid cats just layed there. No random roars, no frantic pacing. Nothing.

They decided to take matters into their own hands.

Remember I said the cages were just open with iron bars?

The lazy cats just nestled against the cold bars, leaving themslves exposed to a weapon of some sort. Say a rubber tipped toy spear.

Jack and Carl whacked the cat's tail. It barely flicked it's tail.

Alternately, rythmically, they began tormenting the beast by rapping on it's tail.

It leaped to it's feet, and clawed at the spears, and let out a mighty roar. Carl and Jack were frozen with fear, and may have soiled themselves.

Best school field trip EVER.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


After nearly 2 months of getting poked and prodded, and really lousy food, I'm going home today.

I couldn't have done it without you.

Thank you.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

My new shirt

I got up at 4:30 a.m., as usual. I got dressed in the dark, and something didn't feel quite right. The shirt felt like it was inside out.

But no, it buttoned ok, so that wasn't it.

So I went into the hallway and waited for the transport guys. They loaded me up and into the ambulance we went.

Zipping along in the early morning, by the interior lights, it hit me-- I had on a puffy shirt.


There were ruffles and busy scrolls everywhere!

Apparently the Crotchety Old Lady is playing some perverse joke on me.

The nurses here are terrible. I've been waiting 40 minutes for pain medication. And this morning the nurse came in at 4 a.m. to ask me if I wanted to be awakened at my usual time of 4:30 a.m.

Can't make this crazy stuff up.

And thank you my favorite goat, Pricilla, who sent a nice get well card and a small gift. I appreciate it.

Monday, August 10, 2009

More Tests

I was in the room for testing. Suddenly in walks


He starts sniffing me all over. Yup, even my naughty bits. After a few minutes, he leaves the room.

A short while later, she walks in


and stares at me. It was kind of creepy. Finally, she left.

After a few minutes, the doctor finally shows up. He announces he has the results.

"Of what" I say.

Of your lab test and cat scan.


Saturday, August 08, 2009

It never ends

Because hospital personnel treat people like hunks of beef, tossing us around and pummeling us like Rocky,


it looks like I have to go in to the hospital for tests.

The severe abdominal pain that my doctor hoped was nothing, looks like it may be something.

Should my entire abdomen be black and blue?

By the way, guess who was the first doctor to submit a bill?

Dr. Asshole, the one who misdiagnosed that I had a stroke.

Friday, August 07, 2009


In the 11h hour, Horizen BCBS corrected their mistake, so I have a few more days here. Everyone should be back from vacation Friday (today) and will make arrangements for a successful transition.

The Davita Dialysis center social worker will be back Tuesday, so she will help on her end.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

It's a Clusterf*ck

I can't think of another way to describe it.

The person in charge of discharge told me Horizon BCBS is discharging me Friday. Then she went on vacation. But Horizon BCBS is not ny primary insurance.

All I have to do is show my Medicare card and all is well.

I never got a Medicare card and a replacement takes 4 weeks.

The nurse for at home follow up care came in yesterday, did an evaluation of my current situation and said that going home now would be medically dangerous.

The dialysis center person who could help me is on vacation.

I called Medicare and they said call Social Security.

Social Security said Medicare should handle it.


Sorry, but sometimes nothing else works.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Odds and Ends

Do you know you go to the movies with someone, and their bladder is the size of a walnut, and they insist on getting a giant sized Mr. Pibb? Naturally they have to run for a "pee break" and want you to fill them in on what they missed during their break. What an annoyance.

But thanks to the interwebs check out the website Runpee beforehand and your Mr Pibb swilling compatriot will be able to choose a slow part of the movie to do his "bidness" and you won't have to fill him in.

Follow up on my dialysis: They determined my "dry" weight. That is my weight minus the extrs fluids.

How much extra fluid was there? 12 gallons. Holy crap!

The insurance company said I'm better and wants me released Friday. The PT department said I'm not ready, the doctor said I'm not ready...but what do they know?

Lastly I have a Korean PT that scares me. She really puts me through the paces. She tiny but tough.
File photo

Monday, August 03, 2009

Advice for Men

Every so often I give advice for men to help them keep the woman in their life happy. Or to women on keeping their man happy. (Men are simple, beer and sports and occassionally a little wink wink nudge nudge knowwhatImean?)

While I have explained The Price Is Right Theory on gift giving (women get as excited as the idea they may get a gift as actually getting one) occasionally it becomes necessary to buy something for them.

The thoughtful gift giver pays attention to a woman's needs and selects the perfect gift.

Here's some examples of how I have delighted the Crotchety Old Lady.

Last winter, I noticed that she was struggling while shoveling the walk. It wasn't even Christmas, and BAM! I got her a brand new ergonomic snow shovel. This little gift will make her think of me for years to come. I'm sure she appreciated that it was for no reason. That made it even more special.

It's the little things that count. She complained that she spends so much time in the kitchen and could use a break. So BAM! I got her a cookbook for 30 minute meals and easy clean spatulas. Thar was the happiest Mother's Day ever!

While it is important to listen and observe, sometimes just go with your gut. I did this one birthday, and it was her best gift ever.

I woke her up nice and early, 5 a.m. because she wouldn't want to waste any valuable birthday time sleeping. I rushed to get her in the car by 6, and started our journey. As we drove down the highway by dawn's early light, she pretended to be grumpy, but I know she was really happy. As we approached her birthday gift, I wasn't able to keep it secret.

She was going to drive a steam train in New Hope, Pa.!

She was overjoyed! At first she didn't want to climb aboard the engine. But the fireman encouraged her, and she climbed aboard. I made her promise not to stare at the shirtless, sweaty, rather well muscled young fireman as it would probably make him uncomfortable while he shoveled the coal into the boiler, and she said her eyes would not wander from the track.

Well, she successfully helped the engineer by ringing the bell and blowing the horn. She got off the train an hour later thoroughly soaked and with soot in every crevice of her body. And she pronounced it the best birthday gift ever as she waved goodbye to the young fireman.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

I Want My MTV

I had the TV in the hospital, and for a mere $4 a day I had access to entire network of about 20 channels including the Breastfeeding Channel and the Stained Glass Window Channel.

The Stained Glass Window Channel showed a stained glass window for 23 1/2 hours a day, and for 30 minutes had inspirational religious progamming. The Breastfeeding Channel is the porn channel.

Now in rehab, I have Dish TV, with CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, WOR, WPIX, Discovery, another Discovery, TLC, USA, TBS, some Spanish channel, and 3 Hindi channels. And Dish TV is awful. If there is a chance of rain, it goes out and becomes the "satellite is searching for a signal network."

I miss my days of sitting on the couch (RIP...sigh) and flipping endlessly through my hundred or so favorites, watching Magilla Gorilla, and Spongebob, and Beaver, and Reno 911 (my cable channels are awesome) thinking my joy would have no end.

Me and my remote--what a team.

When I get out of here, I'll be spending some quality time getting reaquianted with my TV.

I've written a haiku for my TV

My cable TV
Bringer of such happiness
I miss you so much

Can't you feel the longing and the love?