Sunday, November 29, 2020

The Future Is Upon Us!

Let no day end before you have spoken words of love, friendship and thanks. A quote from that prolific philosopher – Anonymous

This quotation is on my perpetual calendar for today's date. The calendar was a gift from my long-time, dear friend, Barbara Glanz. Barbara is known for “Spreading Contagious Enthusiasm” - which, coincidentally, is the title of her calendar.

And the photo for November in my 2020 Nelson Marlborough (New Zealand) calendar from another of my long-time, dear friends, Brian Morris, is a photo of a beautiful marina in Picton Harbour, Queen Charlotte Sound, in Picton, New Zealand. Picton is where my “brother from another mother,” (as I describe him) Brian lives. If things were different and better than the current world conditions and my medical condition, I'd be preparing to depart for a long-anticipated trip to New Zealand in about two weeks. Sadly, that trip has had to be moved to the back-burner until some unknown date in the future.

So, it's Sunday, November 29, 2020. It's three and a half months since my last post on the blog. Actually, the last post was on the one-year anniversary of me being stricken by the near-fatal case of gastric-esophageal cancer. Last year, around this time, I had been very prolific actually posting what could be considered a diary of my experiences during my diagnosis, chemotherapy and radiation treatments and then some of the recovery period leading up to my surgery on January 3, 2020. Since that time I've only posted a few times and each time I indicated that I was going to begin writing regular articles for the blog, again. Obviously, I haven't kept that promise to myself or you.

So, before I go any further, let me say thank you for your readership and interest, I appreciate your friendship (even though I have never met most of the readers of my writings) and I love you for who you are and for indulging me through my writing. So, that fulfills the commendation of today's quotation.

The Future Is Upon Us!

The last 16 months of my life, without any hesitation, has been, for want of a better description, flat out horrible. I have experienced:

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Happy Anniversary . . . to ME!



Anniversaries are like birthdays: occasions to celebrate and to think ahead, usually among friends with whom one shares not only the past but also the future. Zbigniew Brzezinski

Today is the one year anniversary of the beginning of a new life for me. On August 18, 2019, a Sunday morning, without any warning, a fireball of cancer came out of the universe and struck me down. There were no serious symptoms or anything that would have given me an inkling of what was to befall me and how my life would be forever changed.

I was having a normal morning. I was a bit fatigued, but that was about all. I took care of my normal, very regular routine “business.” Everything was fine. I then went for a morning walk, another part of my daily routine. I believe I got about a mile and a half in. But, when I returned to my friend's, Carolyn's, house, I felt pretty wiped out. That wasn't normal. But, I still had no idea there was anything seriously wrong.

Well, within an hour or so, I was unconscious, on the floor. The first time I had any recollection of what had happened was when I started to regain consciousness and I was on my bed. I have no idea of any details of my collapse or the actual amount of time. It might have been seconds or minutes. I'd never experienced anything like this before in my 74+ years of life. Carolyn and her grandson were hovering over me trying to help me regain consciousness and comprehend what was happening.

Chris, Carolyn's grandson, a professional EMT who just happened to be visiting his grandmother that weekend, had either seen me collapse or found me in a pile on the floor. He managed to get me back on my bed that I had fallen next to or at the foot of. Carolyn was checking my blood pressure and heart rate – which, according to clinical standards put me in the category of being dead, which is what I probably would have been if Chris hadn't found me and called for Carolyn. Carolyn started putting glucose under my tongue to get my blood sugar up.

Chris called the local EMT's who arrived within minutes along with a medic shortly thereafter. Once they assessed the situation and got me stabilized, they moved me to a gurney, out the door and into the waiting ambulance. A short, but rapid trip (maybe five minutes) with the lights flashing and siren wailing and I was being rolled into the Emergency Room of the local, small, West Virginia University-affiliated hospital. (Continue reading the rest of the article on the blog.)

Thursday, July 2, 2020

When Is Enough . . . Enough?


DISCLAIMER: DO NOT READ THE FOLLOWING IF YOU WANT TO OBJECT TO MY POLITICALLY INCORRECT VIEWS AND OPINIONS AND MAKES COMMENTS. I DON'T WANT YOU TO COMMENT EVEN IF YOU AGREE WITH MY VIEWS AND OPINIONS, EITHER. THIS IS MY FORUM. I WILL DELETE ANY AND ALL COMMENTS AT MY DISCRETION. IF YOU HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY, POST IT ON YOUR OWN SOCIAL MEDIA PAGE, BLOG OR SEND IT TO ME IN AN EMAIL. I'LL READ IT THERE. BE SURE TO NOTIFY ME. I AM EXPRESSING MY FEELINGS, VIEWS AND OPINIONS BASED ON MY FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS – UNTIL I AM TAKEN AWAY IN HANDCUFFS AND LEG IRONS AND THROWN INTO SOME GULAG FOR NOT BOWING TO THE RADICAL EVENTS GOING ON IN OUR COUNTRY CURRENTLY!!!

I'm sending you a link to a statement presented in (what I believe to be) a rational, articulate, not emotionally charged, thoughtful manner by someone who genuinely sounds concerned about the country he loves and has served on two levels of public service. Here is the link:


I don't usually circulate things of this nature. I sent one to a few people the other day that was emotionally charged because it moved me. I'm sending this one because it not only moved me, but because I've been asking the same questions this man addresses. I tend to identify more as a conservative, but a moderate conservative. I'm far from a radical or extreme conservative.

When is enough... enough? This is no longer a peaceful protest. It has spread to over 650 US cities. Billions of dollars of destruction and looted merchandise, businesses have been lost, personal property destroyed, innocent people seriously injured and already there are deaths of innocent people as well as perpetrators of this “civil war.” Public property and infrastructure owned by ALL the citizens have been destroyed or occupied. Fortresses/strongholds have been created in the city streets of several cities (and if this keeps on, I expect there to be more situations like this across the country). This has been going on for five weeks at the time of this writing. To my knowledge, it's the longest and most widespread, prolonged event of its kind in the history of the United States. This is no longer a peaceful protest to affect change in the justice system. Sadly, I say this has become a civil war backed by people, frankly, who I believe don't give a damn about African-Americans or anyone else other than their own self-serving interests and agendas.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

New Lease on Life . . .


First, let me thank everyone who has been concerned about my cancer issue and my recovery. Your notes, positive thoughts and prayers have been so much appreciated and they certainly contributed to me keeping a positive attitude through this “journey” and maintaining my sense of humor. This, in no small part, has contributed to my above-average recovery process.


I received a comment yesterday from one of you loyal blog readers asking where in the world I am and how am I doing. The reader said it's been 5 months since my last post. It's actually 4 1/2 months or 130 days. Add that to the 113 days at my last post and it totals 243 days or exactly 2/3 of a year since the “fireball” struck me on August 18, 2019.

So much has happened since that time. I underwent chemotherapy and radiation. After a short recovery period, I underwent major surgery (only 10 hours in the operating room) on January 3, 2020. That was followed by a total of 12 more days in the hospital and then five weeks in a rehabilitation/skilled nursing facility. I got out of rehab on February 21, 2020, and, within just a couple of weeks the COVID 19 shelter-in-place, stores, gyms, etc. lock-down went into effect. I've been hunkered down at my friend's house in north-central WV in a small rural town. She has been fantastic. I've only been out of this area a few times since then mainly for follow-up doctor appointments.

By the way, the photo of me is very recent. My New Zealand buddy has made me an official “Goodwill Ambassador.” You'll also note I'm now wearing a U.S. Air Force veteran cap to share my pride as a veteran with my comrades. I have a pin to recognize prostate cancer survivors (of which I'm one). I also have my American flag pin and my Vietnam Era Veteran pin on the cap. Soon I'll be adding pins to recognize survivors of stomach and esophageal cancer as well.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

GREETINGS OF THE SEASON and Some Other IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Thanks for visiting my blog page and . . . today is Day #113 of my adventure . . . 

Greetings of the Season!

Merry Christmas, if that is how you celebrate this season.

And greetings to you if you celebrate this holiday time of the year in some other meaningful way.

And, I also want to wish you a Happy, Healthy and Abundant 2020. I hope the new year fulfills all your expectations.

Now, I'm going to let you all in on something I've kept pretty much undercover for the past four months. Only a very few folks know about what I'm going to reveal.

As you have probably noticed, I have been pretty quiet during this period. I have not been traveling as I normally would be. I have not been posting on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, PM or email. I did actively post on my blog, but that was about it.

I have not made this information public because, frankly, there are so many other individuals I know who have been experiencing their own challenges, especially medical challenges. However, in less than two weeks I'll be undergoing something that I feel extremely confident I'll pull through without any question in my mind. Unfortunately, it is very serious and, as we all know, there are no guarantees in life.

Friday, November 22, 2019

The First Day of the Rest of My Life – Better and Better – November 22, 2019 – Day 83

I believe it is in my nature to dance by virtue of the beat of my heart, the pulse of my blood and the music in my mind. - Robert Fulghum

It is now Day #83. My thought to ponder today is from one of my favorite authors, Robert Fulghum. There is some powerful vision in his words. I believe this is or should be true for everyone. Unfortunately, I believe most people get lost in the stress, complexity and trivia of day to day life in our 21st Century society.

Yes! I said I was going to write a day by day journal of my “adventure.” But, you know the old saying, “the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Those words were penned by Robert Burns. Here is the reality. At this stage of my adventure, there are often days that go by and nothing of consequence or interest occurs. It is actually quite tiring for me to have to think up something to say. So, am I really saying anything of value or just using up words?

So, here are some things of note. Nothing much on Days 72 & 73. On Day 74, November 13th, I had three medical appointments.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

The First Day of the Rest of My Life – Yikes! My Own Words – November 10, 2019 – Day 71

People have lost their dreams years, even decades, ago. They have lost their own individuality. They mainly identify with spouses, partners, family, jobs, social involvements. But, they have sublimated their own dreams so much they can no longer remember what they were.” - Ed Helvey

You read that right, that's a quote from me. Here it is, Day 71, Sunday November 10th (the day before Veterans Day) and I received an email from one of my long-time followers of this blog, Richard Rosen in Florida. Wow! As I read my own words, they seemed to be particularly meaningful today. No! Not because I wrote them, but because, as I deal with my cancer adventure, I need them to bolster myself up.

So, today, I start off with my own quote. Below, I'm going to list a number of other quotes from other “dreamers.” The intent? Simple! To inspire and encourage you to reach for those dreams that have been gathering dust in the far reaches of your memory.

But, first, here is a brief update on the past few days, Day 69, Friday and Day 70, Saturday as well as today. Eating and drinking, while still a bit challenging, has been pretty good and I've been enjoying the flavors and textures of the various foods and liquids I've indulged in over the past three days. I even had pepperoni pizza last night and polished off the cold leftovers today. I've been enjoying orange and grapefruit juice, two of the many juices I like.