Monday, April 30, 2007

Two More Weeks...

One week at the clinic and one week in the classroom in Kilgore and the nightmare of the last three years will be over. Time for the new nightmare of the National Board Exam. There has already been a bit of night screaming going on concerning that.

Maybe I am a little tired. I worked this weekend and it was the easiest weekend this year. I came home early and took a big ugly nap Saturday and Sunday afternoon. I guess night screaming is taking it's toll. Sometimes you just hit a brick wall.

Looks good for this week at the clinic. At least three free meals are on the books, a vendor inservice with lunch provided, the employee picnic and they plan on taking me to lunch. After all the years of shift work there is nothing like day shift workers going ape shat over free food. Despite the smell it creates a very festive atmosphere.

I think Mary should be home from the band trip. Been awful quiet around here without old Bear Wallace. Maybe there will be some pictures to post here, provided they won't get her kicked out of band or something. Me, I understand what musicians do on holiday.

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

Country Evening...

I had the best day at work yesterday that I have seen in some time. Cathy had no patients either so she stayed home that evening on call. Course the on call kept us from going anywhere but we kept ourselves amused with the spring day and cooking steaks.

Should have taken a picture of these boys when they started. I think planted during Holy Week. They have doubled in size this past week. Some kind of water from the bottom tomato grower that Cathy bought and planted. Works good. I have a few pepper plants slipped in there somewhere. You say tomato, I say tomato, we all say tomato before long. There will be more pictures of this progress.

Here is my neighbor, I mean my neighbor's mule. I call her Jenny. Cathy is feeding a handful of vetch she could not reach. Looks like we have made a friend for life and a possible re-occurring blog character. We need a replacement since the big white dog has not made an appearance in quite sometime now. He usually had a way of appearing when out of town company visited, but failed to show last time.

Morgan showed up about dark and picked up his drums. He said he had a friend that bought one of those pointy guitars. I said wear safety glasses during the jam. You can Google a picture of a pointy guitar if you like.

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Friday, April 27, 2007

I suddenly have to go to Kilgore Today...

I was real productive yesterday. Home after clinical, mowed the yard, studied a bit for the board exam and about 9pm I was about to haul out an electric guitar for some good loud fun right before bedtime.

A flurry of telephone calls erupt. On the house phone, on the cell phone, the email dings. It's my classmates. Seems almost everyone overlooked the fact that the case study papers are due today. So the lines are buzzing. I have my paper written, so no problem there. I call my teacher and her lines are buzzzing. She has another student on. I ask permission to email. She says no. So I got to drive. And go to clinical.

I guess I had assumed the paper was due in class next week when I return for a week of activities there before graduation. My fault for that assumption. Could not be a worse day to take time from the clinic. There will be a couple of new patients today and one PT is off for a funeral. So we will be busy. Maybe I can make it up there and back during lunch. The drive is an hour and we are usually slack from about 11:15 to 1:15. It's an hour drive from Doches. So I should just make it.

I did have to break my Wal-Mart boycott last night when I ran up there at 10:00pm to get a folder to put my paper in. First time I have been there in about 4 years. Then it took me a little less that an hour for one final proof read and to put it all together. Took me longer to go to sleep because I got all keyed up it the sudden dash to action. That old reticular activating system (RAS) and maybe a little sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) kicked it may have take me longer to go to sleep that to finish the paper.

It's heck I tell you to have all these signals and chemicals rocking around inside and know what they are. I sometimes wish I was just crazy.

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Mary is gone again...

Mary has had a busy schedule of late. One weekend it's a tournament. Next it was a confirmation retreat. Now she is gone with the band (the high school band, not Los StratKats) to Disney World. I don't think there is any performance involved, I wish there was, nothing like taking the show on the road, but at least they will have a good time.

With her gone so much lately it has been kind of a preview of how it will be around here in about two years or so when she graduates. You know the rules, the children are able to recite them from heart. The little voices chant in a singsong fashion, " move out, move out, when you are 18 you must move out." There also is that unwritten rule that if you act an ass, you could be asked to move out before 18. The is when it chant in my best night screaming voice, "move out move out, you must move out."

Of course there are various service plans you may buy into. You can work and pay rent. You could go to school. Involved in all possible plans is the clause that you do not act like an ass.

I had a call last week. It was Katie in Chicago. Said said that they do not like it there. They are thinking about moving back to Austin sometime this summer. I called Cathy and said, "Katie and Travis are moving home." Next time I make a statement like that I promise to do it in person so I can put body language and nuance to my meaning, kind of like I do on this blog. She thought I meant to our home. Luck for her she was able to jump start the heart without emergency team help when I said, " No silly, their home in Austin." Thought I was going to have to give her mouth to mouth. Again.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

On the Way...

A new family member, soon to be born, (well it's a while yet) to Cathy's sister Margaret and husband Kevin. An older you will get exclusive and here's the pictures.

This is 12 weeks. Cathy says this is a four D scan. Makes it look more like a baby than a bunch of aliens grappling around at the bottom of one of those holes I am always looking in.

So keep them in your prayers. They will need them most when those teenage years hit.

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Two Weeks Left...

Two weeks left on this rotation. Then it's back to driving to Kilgore for a week.

Can we start an official countdown?

Put May 11 on your calender.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Catching up on old pictures...

Here is some shots made by Runt's wife, Ruth of me at the St. Pat's festival recently. Pretty good pictures, she had exclusive shots of all the guys, I guess you will have to check their blogs to see their shots.

Here is me looking at the girls that always seem to take their tops off when we play. I really wish we could get Cathy, Belle and Ruth to stop doing that, but the band has kind of got used to that so we just let it go. You know how wives are, they do what they want.

Just to prove that I was not doing a solo spoken word poetry thing here is the whole band locked in the groove. Makes you want to take your shirt off.

There were dishes from many cultures to be sampled at the festival that day. I tried most of them. From the look on my face I am try to sneak out a little bad gas. I don't know why I was being so polite, you never would have heard it for the thunder of that Fender Bassman amp behind me. If it smelled I could have pretended it was that old vintage amp smell that is so in vogue right now.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The War is On...

The catfish war I'm talking about. Second time we have had the boat out this year and we rack up 11 keepers. Threw back at least that many maybe more. Good outing, kind of a shake down cruise to check things out. The spot we fished was not even in our usual area so looks like we are ahead of the game this year.

Just to place our presence in the confluence of national events there was the McDonald's Big Bass Splash going on yesterday. The main weigh in was way down the lake, but entrants could put in anywhere so the parking lot and campground were full. Not crowded at the fishing spot though, it's a big lake and if you choose carefully you can be by yourself, kind of like this person.

Our catch went into the freezer. We have folks coming soon and we need a little stock because you know as well as I do that somewhere there is a fish you cannot catch and this means fish fry in the event of a dry run. Instead we stopped and raided the oyster bed at Brookshire Bros. in Huntington and had poor man Rockerfeller and brochette. Hats off to Brookshires for maintaining such fine oysters in their meat department.

To further place us in the the national scene of events we arrived home to a a message on the answering machine. It's a cell phone call from a porta potty at a Jimmy Buffet concert. I'll just say that it was not Jimmy and leave it at that.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

New features...

You may have noticed the tags at the ends of the post this week. New features here and I don't quite have them all figured out. You know how computers are, something is working just fine and the new upgraded version comes along and bang you have to start the education process all over, which is a process I am weary of right now.

This particular service is a Google related. I used to just be able to keep myself logged in on this computer and bring up my posting page and get the latest news out there. Now I log through two passwords and then a Google log on before I get my control panel thing. I think Google stuff on your computer is kind of like having Wal-Mart do your funeral, they are all up in your stuff from then on.

I guess I should not complain, this is a free service. And I make money from it. Remember I will post your picture for $39,000. Here is a example of two people who went in halves, $18,500 each.
I also have the option to publish in Hindu, but I would not do you that way.
So I am muddling along with these new features, hopefully the tags can be used to create a comprehensive thread that runs through here. Proof of intelligent design I like to think of it as. Click on swimming in my belly, and it will take you to every post where I said swimming in my belly. Sometimes I say swimming in my belly more than once in a post.
I also invite you to post comments here, simple as clicking on the post a comment thing at the end of each post. Some one asked me this the other day, thy said "Well Carl, how do I post a comment?" See I am a little unlike other denizens of the Internet I do hang with real people. At least the ones that have $39,000 to spare.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I'm Subversive...

My current clinical is going real well. Good hours, nice people, patient load not too bad, and they sometimes listen to music in the gym where the patients come for therapy.

Pretty good selection of tunes, a lot of old time country stuff. Some cds are mix tapes of Bob Wills, Marty Robbins, Johnny Cash, seems like there is one where Bette Midler or somebody reprises big band hits and ever now and then there is a little modern country thrown in. Sometimes even the radio. The local call in contest are popular. It's kind of fun to see folks excited about these contests. I sort of study them. Anyway it makes for a cheerful place.

I thought I would help them out and slipped a couple of cds in the pile by the boom box. One was a Sun Records mix of Jerry Lee, Carl, and so on, real obscure cuts, not the usual most popular fare of this genre. The other was a Balkan Beat Box cd that I simply titled "Dance." I left off one political song when I burned this so as not to offend and make trouble for myself as a student but as I get to know the folks I don't think this will be a problem.

After a few days, no one has picked them. Yesterday a couple of folks cleaned up and organized the cd area. I heard on comment, "that sun records goes with these," or something like that. So it's been noticed.

Before I leave I plan on burning an Indian music cd, since there is an Indian person working in the clinic. That will get blamed on him. Even if they never get picked for play, some days we don't listen to music, they will be laying there for the unaware.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

So you always wanted you picture on the blog...

You would not believe the email I get. People want to know all the time when I am going to give away the next big screen TV or bass boat. And the individual in Virginia who has won three big screens must be at the computer all the time because they are always bugging me. And the pictures.

I get pictures. Yeah, those kind of pictures. Not the kind of pictures that get east texas deputy sheriffs in trouble though because parental permission is required to access this web site. You must be at least 25 years old. If you are here and are under 25, I have either spoken with your parents and received a payment of $39,000 or I am your parent and you probably owe me $39,000.

But those pictures, come on people do you have no shame? Will you do anything to get on the web (a payment of $39,000 will hasten that event) ? You know who you are, those that have voids in your lives. Maybe I have a void in my life (this is a good line, wish I had made it up)because I am going to start publishing those pictures. Here is the first one. No names, you know who you are. Hope you are happy. You look quite happy.

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

Americana Festival...

Got off work a bit early, put in some time on my power point, Cathy did a quick proof read through my finished case study paper, said looked good, Suzi had left a message that she was coming from Houston for the festival so after Cathy went to work I cruised over to Nacogdoches.

The evening was cool, crowds pretty light for a good free event with some great music. Saw South Austin Jug Band, a great set by them, and then the headliner, Ray Wylie Hubbard. RWH was pretty good, but seemed his voice gave way, maybe it was the cold wind, but heck the guy sat down to play. You know what Cathy thinks about guys that sit down to play. The number he played for encore was "Chotaw Bingo," a James McMurty song with a lot of verses. I could tell he was cracking after three or four and he said "My voice is gone, pick up the CD, goodnight."
Did not get any real good pictures. I don't know maybe my hand is getting shaky, or at night the camera focuses on close objects when there are lights and stuff or something, yeah, that's what it is...

I did pick up his latest, beat paying shipping since you will find in nowhere in Lufkin. Maybe the weather will be better next year.
Saw about 7-10 people I knew there so kind of continued touching base with old friends as has been my old man habit lately.

TKD tournament news, 1st in forms, second sparring for Mary, 3rd in forms for Morgan, double 1st, forms and sparring for Nichole.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Good Weekend for Live Music...

I hate not to support the local scene but I am stuck here writing a case study. It's mostly finished, I spent three hours going over it with a fine tooth comb, tightening up sentences (just like I do here) citing all sources (just like I do here) which took longer than I thought and I still have a few power point slides to finish the presentation aspect of this mess.

So it looks like home work tomorrow. Unless I really get off work early and swim this project to shore I'll miss out on the Americana Festival. Also in Crockett Texas at the Camp St. Cafe is the sister of songwrite Steve Earle, Stacy Earle.

At the Americania Fest is Ray Wylie Hubbard and the South Austin Jug band.

I saw Ray Wylie in the late 70s-early 80s and my ears rang for several days. He was backed by the Lost Gonzo Band and they smoked with a rendition of Led Zepplins Communication Breakdown. I often draw on that performance and the selection of material for the inspiration to not put yourself in a box musically. Go ahead and blow the doors off the place, let other folks put a name on what you do.

I saw the jub band in Austin maybe a year or two ago. Jimmie Dale Gilmore's son Colin was also on the bill, he happens to be friends with Katie, and his dad was in the audience for the show, which was at a coffee house type place.

I reflect on that evening too sometimes. Me and Jimmie Dale, Saturday night, neither one of us had a gig.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

One More Thing Down...

Had what we call a site visit from my instructor yesterday. That's where she heads out through East Texas stopping at various locations along the way where students have been sent and checking on them. It takes 30 minutes or even less, or at least they always have for me.

The purpose is not to see you with a patient or anything like that, but mainly to check that you are getting to see some patients, making sure that you and the on site clinical instructor can stand each other and that the instructor is not making you see all the clinic patients while he goes and does home health or something like that.

We have a skill check off book that is called for short the MACS. We need 59 points for a grade of 100. I have 58 with three weeks to go. My instructor said don't sweat the MACS and since my visit was the first student she had seen this rotation she hoped all were doing this well.

Getting close, getting close...

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

She is in Training...

Master Olford has started Mary on some extra training to prepare for the world tournament in June. She reports a 11 minute mile on the treadmill yesterday.

This weekend she goes to Fort Worth to compete. This will be the last tournamnet before worlds in June in Little Rock. Morgan is also cleared to compete his form for the first time since his surgery, no sparring.

Here is a link to the world standings. Scroll down to sparing, girls, 2nd and 3rd degree black belt, 14-16 to see where Mary is in the standings.

No tournament for me, I'm working. I have it on my mind to make my debut in that 50-59 year old ring at worlds. Think I can hack it?

Click here and scroll to forms, women, 17-29, 1st degree black belt to see Morgan's girlfriend Nichole Cisnero, from Allen, Tx to check her standing in forms. She will be competeing at worlds also.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Got License?...

Not quite yet but I have all the paper work sent in for my Texas Physical Therapy Assistant license and also my temporary license that will be good for 60 day once the school sends in all my graduation information so I can work as a PTA until I take the National Exam.

That's the next step, applying to take the exam and getting an exam date. I'll do that this week.

All the work of the last three years is coming down to an end. Seems kind of incredible. Soon to graduate from school, some days I feel pretty smart, some days not so smart. I have felt pretty smart with a couple of the neuro patients I have had this rotation, they were high level and did real well and I was glad I was able to help. I felt pretty dumb last night at the TKD school when someone said, "it hurts when I bend my knee like this."

Well dude, don't bend your knee like that.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Snow on April 7th...

This is my wife's strawberry patch. The snow has just started. No berrys this year.

I bought a swim suit the other day in case I was soon to need it.

I mowed the yard this morning.
This is about an hour later. We played music for the Easter Vigil and were headed for church. Glad I did not buy a real springy Easter outfit.
We get to church, Father Bill has on shorts. He's from the north.

Snow sticking good.
Get home from church about 11. Still snowing. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, April 07, 2007

The New Person, The New Person...

No, not this guy, he just cooked our supper at Tokyo Steak and Seafood.

This girl, Morgan's girlfriend. Her name is Nichole and she is visiting from Dallas this weekend. She is a first degree black belt and is an instructor at Master Sustaire's three schools in the Dallas area. Nichole is ranked in the top 10 in her division in forms and weapons this year.

Some of us at the hibachi table were hoping that the Asian food would make our kicks higher. Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 06, 2007

Good Friday...

Stations of the cross at St. Pat's today.

It's a long walk.
I was pretty far back most of the time, but I could hear those whips popping.
It's a pretty good undertaking to get a guy up on one of those.
He's down, but it won't be for long. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Playing Contest for Panther Band...

Mary plays with the Panther Band today for the symphonic band UIL palying contest. It is held in Whitehouse Tx. They sound good, wish them luck.

I have to be in Kilgore this afternoon, might just bop over there and check it out.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Here's Some Good News...

If a regular reader you may recall a few previous posts keeping you informed on Mr. Lawrence Holt, one of the Taekwondo school instructors who had a lung transplant. He's home now, a month ahead of schedule. Here is what he wrote about his experience:

I was re-born the second time on January 13, 2007. No, not int the religious sense. For the past seven years I've been in deteriorating health due to Interstitial Pulmonary Fibrosis. My life seemed to be over, my outlook was not good. I decided to go down fighting though. I exercised all I could and stayed as active as possible. I was still losing ground to this deadly enemy though. I had to give my my Taekwondo classes in November of 06. They are up stairs and I could no longer get up there. Also it was about this time that I got on the Lung Transplant List at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas Tx. I had to move closer to Dallas so I went to live with my daughter Kalin in Marshal Tx. All I had to do then was wait for the call. My lungs were so bad I had to use two bottles of oxygen, one in my nose and the other in m mouth to walk twenty feet to the bathroom. It took me a half hour to get out of bed in the morning. I slept twelve to fourteen h ours a day and sat on the coucn in front of the tv the rest of the time while Kalin and her kids waited on me hand and foot. I was helpless, unable to care for myself. My parents are in their eighties and they were in better shape than I was. The call came at about 6 AM January 13, 2007 - they had a potential donor. The ride to Dallas was hectic, done at 85 miles an hour. A 911 call kept the Highway patrol off us but there were a few morons who seemed to take delight in moving in front of us and slowing us down. We had a two hour deadline. Kalin drove with a couple of feet of these people and laid on the horn till they got out of the way;. She got me to the hospital and held it together until they took me into surgery - then she lost it. She was walking down the aisle bawling her little eyes out. An older gentleman by the name of Wayne who had had a lung transplant three years earlier took her under his wing. He calmed her down and took care of her till her husband got there, then the two of them waited until I came out of surgery. I woke the next day and from then on seems like a whole new life. In a way It is. Going into surgery was like a little death and coming out was like the start of a whole new life. The first day after I got out They got me up for a walk and I could barely make twenty feet. Two months later I had completed a twelve week rehab coarse in 8 weeks by walking a mile on a treadmill in a half hour and by walking 1400 feet in 6 minutes. I was able to do this because I had went in stronger than most lung transplant patients. I attribute that to my years of training and the discipline I gained to keep exercising until the day before the transplant. I drove about 180 miles home the next day.

Look forward to having you back teaching Mr. Holt!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Clinic is going good...

This clinic is going really well. Nice people to work with and good patients so far.

It almost feels like it's real instead of school. I go to work, work hard and good and come home and sleep hard and good. No late night studies for now, no night screaming, no bad dreams. I could get real used to this. Only little problem is that all this work is for free. It will be real nice when a pay check starts rolling in.

One note on studying for the board exam. I do have a study guide and have been using it to put myself to sleep several times a week. There is a young Physical Therapist at my rotation who took her board exam last Friday. She says it did not seem that hard. I hope I can say that several months from now.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Music Downloads for the month...

Haven't written much about music lately. Just finished up my downloads from emusic for the month. Those emusic folks are tricky. Your subscription runs on a 30 day cycle so that is why I have already wiped out my allotment for the month on the second day of the month. Makes you want to buy what they call a "booster pack."

Anyway here's whats booming from the speakers:
Hammer of the Honky Tonk Gods By Bill Kirtchen. Old Planet Airman lives in Austin now.

Memphis Blood by James Blood Ulmer. Covers of old blues tunes that remain true to the old sound, but with modern twist. Ulmer is one of those atonal guys, some of his stuff can be unlistenable, but his last two releases are great. He tunes weird, like EEEEEC# or something and plays the colors within the note.

Horses and Trees by Ginger Baker with uber bass player Bill Laswell. Outer space African sound tracks, for study purposes only. Laswell has a ton of stuff on emusic, all weird, I plan on getting it all sooner or later.

Cooking with Miles Davis Quintet, only five tunes, but I ran out of downloads so I only got four. Nice little live outing with Miles, Coltrane has some great drum breaks. I can't play jazz like this around my wife, she says it's the kind of stuff that makes her want to slap someone.
"...I know I've seen that face before," Big Jim was thinking to himself "Maybe down in Mexico or a picture up on somebody's shelf..."Bob Dylan from "Lilly Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts
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