Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Strong Impression

She kept getting heavier. I grabbed the gait belt cinched around her mid-section and hefted, attempting to pull her more upright. The Occupational Therapist I was assisting asked 94-year-old Alma Wilson to pull her head up, but I kept thinking, the woman’s doing what she can. Alma kept bending at the waist, her C-shaped spine at odds with her will to stand. Though she was slight, it took the two of us a lot of effort to support her full weight.

Alma had extremely limited motor skills, macular degeneration, and 85 percent hearing loss, as well as pneumonia and a host of other ailments. The pneumonia was the reason for her first visit to the hospital in nearly 59 years. “The last time I was in a hospital is when I had my daughter,” she murmured earlier, bragging on her ability to remain healthy for all these years, before telling us she hadn’t been able to stand for almost five weeks.

“Let’s help you stand for a little while then,” said Deana, the evaluating OT. So, the two of us held Alma up on her feet for two minutes, then a short rest, and then two more. After that, the poor woman was spent.

“That just...took all my...energy.” Her voice but a whisper, eyes shut tight, body uncontrollably shuddering.

We moved her to her bed. I stood there, looking down on Alma as the OT went to talk to her family. Head craned back, eyes squeezed shut, mouth agape, she lay rigid as a board. Or a corpse, I thought.

I brought her head forward by placing another pillow under it. Her face seemed to soften at my touch, so I let my hand linger there, on top of her head. I rubbed my hand across the dry, tangled white hair of her scalp and the rigidity of her features dissolved.

Through a mere touch of my hand, I realized I was giving just a small bit of comfort to this frightened, dying woman.

I lingered a few minutes more, and rubbed her scalp gently.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Jade Princess, update

Into the shadowgate.

I managed to eke out a little time to write on my novel tonight. It came out just shy of a thousand words, so I'm pretty happy. I was able to wrap up a scene I'd been struggling with for a while.

So...Gariel made his stand against his captor, the renegade satrap Prince Ilghaza and his Kazuk soldiers, though he came out a bit worse for wear, bloodied and pretty much resolved to his Fate (i.e., death). I'm happy with the scene right now, so I hope tomorrow I won't feel compelled to make too many revisions to it. I need to move forward and craft the next scene! Sender awaits. And he's an impatient S.O.B.!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

There's a bug.

It was unusually warm for a day in late December, so my son and I went to the park. This is the kind of strange thing Garen sometimes does that sets off little memories, taking me back to my own childhood where such joyful abandon can be found by merely whacking a stick on a table.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

I Like Percy.

You have to love a child's enthusiasm on Christmas morning. Here's my wife giving my son a Thomas & Friends toy. The toy is called "Percy," but my son has a little trouble pronouncing his R's.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Hangdog's the word.

I think hangdog utterly describes how miserable I've been feeling. Last night I got no sleep at all. I just malingered on the couch and living room floor in the grips of the Dark Nephilim of Nausea and the Black Lord Vomitous Maximus.

Sick sucks. Especially this time of year, when we have so much to do. In addition, the wifey and youngun aren't tip-top, either. It's a House of Hypermotility.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The New Age of Unreason

Some days it's so farcical I can't stand it. We live in a world where the headliner content of what is considered "newsworthy" has become criticism of a female VP-candidate's choice of clothing, a governor's indiscreet decision to turn a profit on a Senate seat and where an Iraqi news reporter is hailed as heroic for launching not one but two loafers at President G.W. Bush's overripe melon.

News? Maybe. Headline news? News that launches hours and hours of TV and radio discussion? This is what we have to talk about?

What about the unabated violence in Russia and Africa? What about the corporate greed and ineptitude directly responsible for the financial carnage of collapsing global markets, unemployment, and homelessness? Have the school massacres stopped?

Rather than clothes, chairs, and shoes, let's talk about how the GOP budget plan wants to slash $10 billion from our schools, or perhaps the rising demographic of how more and more children under the age of 14 are being sentenced to prison, or tax cuts for the rich that are increasingly destroying social programs. Or how about just how ignorance is pervading our culture.

Instead it's easier to say the word "Blagojevich." I gotta say this whole incident, in my mind, puts Illinois just one rung higher than Florida and immediately below Texas in the race for Most Insane State in our beloved U.S. of A. Welcome to the New Age of Unreason.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Let It Go Already

I don't get it. Here we are over a month past Election Day and some people can't let it go. I'm talking about Barack Obama's heritage. Just this morning on 700-WLW talk radio they're still bandying about the issue of whether or not Obama can legally be president of the United States, questioning his American citizenship. This is no big surprise, the question of just "what" the man is and all, but fer crissake, people! Really?! We're still talking about this? As I stated above, it's over a month PAST the damned election! If Barack Obama couldn't legally be the President, don't you think the various and sundry residency and citizenship attorneys at the disposal of the White House, not to mention those lawyers among Congress, the Senate and, oh yeah, the U.S. Justice Department (!) might have had all of this figured out once Obama petitioned his party for inclusion on the presidential ballot? Just a thought.

Then again, maybe that's putting too much faith in the guv'ment. I, for one, will tend to believe this campaign might not have gone so far as November 4th if Obama truly could not serve as this country's highest and foremost political official. Call me trusting. Call me naive. But, hey, I guess that's me.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Jade Princess, update

Revisions based on last night's conversation with Tone:
  • Changed Harad'ha to Kazuks
  • Changed Osketh to Pendara 
I'm also writing on the scene where Gariel and Prince Ilghaza arrive at the mountain to the Nandari Gate. I'm liking the suggestion of making the "shadowgate" (may change that name) into a trans-dimensional skein portal. What else could it be?
Well...just a few more paragraphs tonight. Tired.