Woot Failure Update

Well, got tired of the silence, so I e-mailed Woot.com again, wishing them to just cancel the whole damn thing, and amazingly enough I got a response eight minutes later...

...To the e-mail I sent a week ago!

Too late, it's already in the mail.  Oh, and we won't charge you the $5 for expedited shipping (gee thanks).

Well, Dad got it last night, and his reaction?

"Well that would have been cool -- A WEEK AGO!"

Thanks Woot for a near hit for Christmas.  No longer can I trust expedited shipping or anything else you promise.  You have gone from "hip Amazon / Think Geek" down to "Fred's WWWorld of WWWonder WWWebsight".

Oh, thanks for my $5 back.


Doctor update

I love Dr. Lee.

We laughed and joked and had a rollicking good time.

However, my IGD numbers were not in yet (yea, that's an important one).

I am a bit anemic.

I gained eight pounds.

Oh, and the thyroid numbers made me up my dosages from .75 to .88.

I have a tender spot on my chest that I will be getting checked out on the 9th.

Tomorrow morning I have a "full body x-ray bone survey".

Other than that - I'm fine!

Gotta get some sleep - in my electrically heated bed!


Yay! My TSH is 4.45!

TSH4.450.35 - 4.00uIU/mL
What does this mean?

I get a bigger pill!

I started off with  5 MCG of Levothroid, and eventually went up to 75 MCG (that I took only hours ago).

I will start tomorrow taking the bigger 88 MCG of Levothriod.

Just in time to loose the weight I have gained this month...


Just more chemo fallout.

Not happy with WOOT.COM

Big fan of Woot.com, but no more.

Ordered my Dad, his friend, and myself teeshirts off of Shirt Woot.

I even did expidited shipping.

No joy.

Here is the note I left on their blog:

Ordered overnight, still have not received it. 

Waste of effort. 

Waste of time. 

Waste of $35. 

Earlier in the week I even sent them an e-mail, and got this back:
Your email to Woot Member Services has been received. This is an automated reply.
Your request has been assigned Case # W-999157-K6FC.
As you might expect, we receive a fairly large volume of emails. This reply is sent from our case assignment system to indicate your position in the queue has been reserved. Our staff works Monday through Friday during normal business hours in an effort to keep response times under 24 hours. However, on weekends, response times will be delayed until the start of the work week as our staff is not in the office. Please be confident that we will respond and resolve your issue in a timely and efficient manner.
Thank you for your support,

Ya, right.

It was a cool shirt, too - one perfect for Dad and Tony.

Oh, well.  If I am around next year, perhaps we can use it then.

Gotta go to mass now...


They are still out there... God Bless

We hope they have a truly silent night.

Merry Christmas


Guns are the new Gold

Yes, there is concern that things are getting out of control here. Guns and ammo may be the next gold... and they are more fun and useful to boot!

Via: Ammo.net

I do have a few, and yes, ammo has risen, but I didn't realize just how much.

Via: Ammo.net

Crime has risen lately here in my home town, and it will get only worse.  The jails are going to be releasing "non-violent" offenders to relive overcrowding (and over lawyering) in the prisons.


Fair warning: you won't get my stuff that easily (even if the dogs will take you to the secret stash in the back).  And, after going to the range last week, I am getting pretty good at the .45, so take note.

Gotta go clean up some stuff...


Bad back...BAD!

Well, not as bad as what dumped me in the hospital a few years ago, but twinges and twangs of flashback proportions.

The problem is thus:  Collapsed vertebrae damaged nerves, healed wrong, keeping those nerves dangerously close to bone chips ( chips that healed where they fell).  Most of the time I am OK, but then a peculiar twist or bend "twangs" the nerve bundle.  PANIC.  I shut down for a few days, overly cautious and super paranoid that I will have to use the GD walker again.  I eat, get fat, and exasperate the back problem with new stresses.  Repeat.

Yesterday, it hit me as I was getting out of the car.  Luckily, I had gripped the door handle as I was transitioning from sitting to standing, or it would have been ugly.  It took me a few moments to get my hips under my back and settle myself down.

Not fun.

I will crash for a bit before Kristin's birthday bash (ok, just going out to dinner).


RIP Christopher Hitchens

I have read some of his brilliant work online, and heard him several times on the radio... He was brilliant and yet didn't seem too full of himself.

I read this article recently, and since he too was dealing with cancer, it held special meaning for me.

Trial of the Will

Reviewing familiar principles and maxims in the face of mortal illness, Christopher Hitchens has found one of them increasingly ridiculous: “Whatever doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.” Oh, really? Take the case of the philosopher to whom that line is usually attributed, Friedrich Nietzsche, who lost his mind to what was probably syphilis. Or America’s homegrown philosopher Sidney Hook, who survived a stroke and wished he hadn’t. Or, indeed, the author, viciously weakened by the very medicine that is keeping him alive.

If I could write as forcefully and elegantly as he, my life would be complete.

Alas, as my wife noted tonight - Brain Jim work BAD.

Have a Dr. appt. tomorrow to have something looked at.  Rather apprehensive about it.



Does Obama Know the Difference between Great Britain and England?

From The Heritage Foundation, the moron in chief gets it wrong... AGAIN.
In a press conference this evening, the president referred in stumbling fashion to the “English Embassy” in Iran instead of the British Embassy. One can only imagine the kind of howls of derision that would greet any presidential contender if that kind of basic error were made before, say, the editorial board of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. You can watch the video above.

Here is a quick, non Harvard or Columbia lesson for you:

Even I, a state college bitter clinger, knows better.

Did the POTUS teleprompter fail?  Surely THE ONE could not have made such a BASIC mistake.

eh, I gotta go work out...


Quick trip recap

Went to Carson City, visited my Aunt, Uncle, and Grandma.

They are all well as can be expected, but the merciless drum beat of time keeps beating.

Bob and I went on "Jim & Bob's Big Adventure" and had a great time.

Travel was almost uneventful.  Lost my kool reading glasses on Southwest airlines.  TSA terrorized my 7 year old by putting her in a glass cage and checking her for explosive chemicals... except that since she is 7, her daddy had to be scanned for explosive chemicals (good thing I showered after going to Cabela's).  Oh, and the 8 year old saved her water from Aunt Pauline's house and stored it in her carry on.  THAT had to be checked for explosives, too.  As if the back-washed teddy grahms didn't give it off.

Oh, a new philosophy came about "The hardest part of herding girls isn't keeping them from killing each other, it was stopping myself from allowing it".

The Vegas layover was as crappy as I expected.

Glad to be in OC.

Gotta take a nap...


Way. Too. Cool.

I so want to do this...

oh, gotta go to Costo instead.


Wow, 4000 calories a day!

great news about Scott Ott (scrappleface) reported on by Steven Green of Vodkapundit fame.

Had to comment on his thyroid thing - I would love to eat 4000 calories and be only 116 pounds.

Damn nonexistent thyroid, slowing me down with 40 pounds of blubber...

Yep, definitely the thyroid, not the chocolate!


Health update part ???

The cramps seem to have gone away, and I now realize that it is important to keep up with my vitamins.

Last week had my ear sliced up to get rid of some basal cell stuff.  They had burned it off and biopsied it in July, but now they wanted to really get at it.

Well they did.

Well that was almost two weeks ago, and it is starting to hurt a bit.  I hope it isn't infected, but it is pretty hard to keep a band aid on it , and the Neosporin just doesn't cover everything.

I do look like Les Nessman, though.


Mr. Obama needs to get out...

...he needs to see the real suffering Americans are enduring with him in office.


Clark Clifford Republicans

Clark Clifford Republicans

I loved the American Spectator back in the day when it was something of a throwback manifesto... LARGE tabloid pages, olde tyme illustrations, and great writers like Ben Stein and P.J. O'Rourke.

Then came Clinton, format changes, and work overload.  I lost interest.  It just looked like a rabid right wing magazine of generic quality.  While I certainly didn't like Clinton, they were just nasty about it.  Subscription lapsed, and I didn't miss it.

Zoom forward to today, and I read a GREAT article (online) about "Clark Clifford Republicans" and how they are working against us behind the scenes.

Seems like they work to keep the machine buggered up, while promising to "fix" it for us.  For a price.  Because it is buggered up.  For a price.

I like the end, where there is this quote:

And it's very safe to say that when the day comes that the next Republican President and any Republican Congress that served with him or her leaves office, these people will have a few questions:• Is the federal government smaller than when you took office? How many Cabinet Departments did you eliminate? How many federal agencies did you eliminate? How many government regulations did you eliminate? How many federal jobs did you eliminate? How many federal employees did you cut from the federal payroll?

Great questions for the debate tonight... and NO, none of those questions WERE asked, nor will they be.  Ever.

Gotta go unfurl my Gadson Flag...


The "Yellow Dog" election

BHO is so under water, and so detached from reality (as if he ever was), that the GOP could run a yellow dog and still win.

Is this good?

Yes and no.

Yes - we will get a GOP President (80-90% certainty).

No - who that person is.

Romney is the early lead.  With all the primaries being pushed up, all seems to be going his way.  While I liked Romney last cycle, I don't think he is right for this cycle.  He doesn't lead the discussion, and when forced into it, he falls back on his corporate roots -- or run to the "reasonable middle".

Romney strikes me as lacking in the conservative gravitas department.

He is the one I have the most concern over, and I get that same tingle pain in my rear that McCain gave me.

The up coming student debt bomb...

When I got my degree (back in the late '80s) one could get away with a political science degree and still make a living.

Not anymore.

I have a nice and nephew coming up on college quickly, and my advice to them is:  Machinist or Nurse, no degree in "art through the ages as expressed by graffiti" or "UFOlogy".

IF you must go to college, get a hard science degree and cure my cancer. Then get a side degree in business so you can bring it to marked without government help.

Part of this is the glut of BA & BS degrees, but mostly, those jobs are not where the future lays.  Get a concrete skill, develop your "soft working" skills later - in the real world.

From: The Best Colleges

Obama by the numbers

Great graphic on the Bamster...

Click to make it bigger.

He has, despite his rhetoric, failed in what he "set out to do".  I put that in quotes, because I think he is doing pretty much what he wanted to do - create crisis after crisis to expand their power to the point of simply keeping things in constant turmoil.

Big Problem?  I CAN FIX IT (just give me these temporary powers so I can do it quickly)!

Never been a conspiratorial kind of guy, but this is obvious to me.


Day zero + 1095

Well, three years ago I had a date with the drip line.

I survived.

I seem to be thriving after it too.

Off to celebrate - alone - at Disneyland today.  Say a little prayer for Bern, then some fun.


Just realized that I missed day 1000.  That could have been a fun day!  Oh, guess what - I WAS AT DISNEYWORLD!

Coming up on Three Years!

This time, three years ago, I was packing to go to the City of Hope to have my bone marrow chemo-ed away and my wonderful stem cells come in to help rebuild my immune system.

What a wonderful world we live in.


Apparently, it's important...

Ken likes brownies, and Susan makes some good ones.  My Mom does an OK job of it, but Kristin makes cookies that will blow them all away...


Not that kind?


Gee, you think a Chicago polititian works this way?

The whole thing is corrupt... and BHO is in the thick of it.

Just like the Gunwalker scandal, and a host of other percolating scandals, the Chicago machine has come to
Washington and doing what they do best -- fleecing the taxpayer.

I need to move...


Update: Trip to see Dr. Lee

Had an appointment with Dr.Thomas Chung-Kiang Lee, Hematology Oncologist to the Stars.

So far, things look OK.  Some tests have not come back yet, but that is due to the holiday.

I asked about my new found ability to profusely perspire seemingly on command, and we both agreed that it may only be a problem when the weather turns cooler.

And how did I celebrate that AND loosing 5 pounds since the last visit?

Yep:  Breakfast Burrito at Nick's Super Burger!

I need a nap...


Carter or Buchanan bad?

Hoover at least accomplished something BEFORE becoming President.

The problem -- as I see it -- he is talking and playing one game, we are living in another.  BHO is so narrowly focused on whatever his goals are, he doesn't know (or care) what else is happening.

Like August 1914, there is no solution short of total failure of normality.  This political singularity will be ugly, and given 5-10 years, the landscape will be unrecognizable.

Oh, his version of triangulation: Lead from the behind.  Total Fail.



XKCD web comic and Cancer

another xkcd comic

They guy knows of what he talks about.

As I may have mentioned, I like the wit and wisdom of the guy.  Geeky, and I get it... most of the time.

As far as I go, the cramps are back - I changed multi-vitamins and it seems to have had an effect, so I will (when I have time) compare and contrast the ingredient lists and find out what it is that helps with cramps.

Why haven't I had time?

Well, we have summer vacation that is driving me to all sorts of distractions, and we have some special house guests here for a while.

Blogging is light, because there is either too much or not enough ______ (time or bloggable stuff) to make it happen.

Have fun -


Yep - cancer causes cell phones

Love Xkcd.com, and I do think that the stats are totally out of sort on this.

Just another bad research project working on headlines, not science.


Oh, Register, how I love and hate you...

I know that kid in the middle.  It's Johnny Norman (sorry - John Norman), little brother to Gina Norman.


After work or whatever, we (people including my Wife, John-Jay, Gart, and various others) would start our weekend there at her house.

Johnny was there, as the typical little brother, to spice things up.  He was into guns, camping, iron work, computers, and anything that could go boom.

One day he came into the living room to show off his "underwater fuses" that he hand made earlier that day.  Cool, now go start the BBQ, we are hungry.


Stomp - stomp - stomp


( wha? )

Streaking boy with a black mark on his leg...


...was that his underwear?

Well, yes it was.  And he brought in his burnt pants to prove it.

Of course they were wet -- the first thing you do to put out a fire, right?  Water?


Silly Johnny...

Well, Gina was talking to Kristin on the phone (a real olde timey one with a LONG chord) and she lost it... Gina and I laughed for what seemed hours.  Kristin (on the other end of the land line) was getting pissed off that no one could tell her what was going on...

"...he (giggle) lit his ('scuse me while I wipe this tear) pants (guffaw) HIS PANTS ON FIRE!!!"

Well, Mom Norman was a good sport about it and bought him Hot Pockets for lunch, and almost had the pants bronzed...


Good luck Mr. Norman!  Keep your jets cool!

(sigh, I miss my old friend Gina)



I must apologize to all my remaining friends.

An indication of how rare this is: spell check had troubles with my unique spelling of "apologize".

In September, a person I considered a friend got into trouble. 


A very good friend. 

One of the family.

He is also my daughter's godfather.

At the time, I heard his side of the story (after all, I picked him up from county lock-up) and believed him.  The story seemed reasonable because it touched on all the things I knew about this person:  great salesman, helpful, lousy handling money,and old people that change their minds like their depends.

I was wrong.

Heart wrenchingly wrong.  Shaken down to my core principals wrong.  Questioning every decision I have made over the last 20+ years wrong.

Mike Ragsdale was arrested, again, and on the same charges.


I got the call Wednesday.  Thursday I helped Loren get the car out of impound, and helped with Jill.  Continued on helping  Loren as much as we can since then -- but it can never be enough.

Try as he may, there is no money for bail -- not that Loren would want him out.

Since Wednesday, more has come out.  The late night drinking, the pawning of Loren's jewelry, advance payday loans on her check, borrowing from everyone -- the list goes on.

As for Loren, she must file for separation to protect what little he left her with.  Her and Jill will obviously be moving, and I will keep you up to date on that.  There are a few assets that she can sell to cover rent and food, but not much.  It is unknown how much may be lost in civil actions in the future.

As for me, all I can do is deeply, deeply apologize for not seeing what was happening and enabling this endeavor.  I don't make friends often, but I usually try to keep them.  If I loose a friend once a decade, I have about 6 months to go...

As for Mr. Ragsdale:  This isn't the person I knew 20+ years ago.  While we all change (except me, of course), it is inevitably for the better.  I am proud that my friends are now moving into wonderful positions of responsibility and leadership.  Spectacular successes are counter borne by this one spectacular failure.

Sorry for burdening you with my unburdening, but I felt that I needed to square up and put some things right.


At least they have turned around the economy...

Oblivious to the direction and consequence of their turning around the economy, but they did it!

Oy, I need a job.


Why has blogging been light?

While I don't find the act of blogging challenging or hard or even obligatory, I do need quiet.

I think that we have finished up the bathroom remodel.  I am about 99% sure of it.

Remember when I said it would take 3 weeks?  Well, it finished in 14 weeks.

Yes, it came out Gorgeous!  Thanks to the design insights of Leslie Kristen interiors, and the construction magic of Sunny Cal builders, it came together very nicely.

With construction happening, concentration takes a hit.  Not that I actually hover over the guys, but there is someone in my house creating havoc.

So, we went from this:

To this:

Was the time and effort worth it?  Yes.

The shower is expanded, and will accommodate me and a seat better in the future (if needed).  We have two sinks.  We have enough light to illuminate Pluto.  And we have two things that only a guy would appreciate:  A silent fart fan and a toilet that flushes like there is no tomorrow (that thing goes BOOM when you flush).

Two adults can actually get ready at the same time!

The colors are not those I would have chosen right off -- not that it is a problem.  Leslie K. Trasport has an eye for these things that we normal people don't have.

Thom of Sunny Cal builders worked super hard to sweat out the details -- and got them right on.

So yes, I am happy and most importantly, Momma is happy.

Now to get ready for summer vacation...


President Obama Has No Idea What Year It Is -- Daily Intel

President Obama Has No Idea What Year It Is -- Daily Intel

What a bright and intelligent individual we have at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Thankfully he isn't one of those moronic Republicans that want to reinstate slavery over these 57 states, and he knows that as long as the price of arugula is stable, all is OK.  None of this bitter clinging to bibles or guns for him!*

Pshhhh, what a self important boob.


*all things he has stated in the past

Now I have something to blog about...

At the end of a busy week with the girls, we used the opportunity to jet off to Disneyland for some afternoon treats.

Went over to Pirates of the Caribbean (long line) and saw the new Blackbeard effect - not bad, but he just says the same things that Davey Jones did yesterday.

Had some time to kill while waiting for our 5:15 fastpass to Big Thunder Mountain Rail Road, so we went over to Star Trader's to see if I could find a shirt I wanted (didn't get it and now it's gone).

WELL, lo and behold -- Star Tours is OPEN.  Not just "do you have a special ticket" open but "sure, soft opening -- get in line" open.


The line was long for what we were used to, but not bad.  They re-worked the que line room that used to have a customs room feel, and now it's just a room with pretty pictures.

The interior que was spiffied up a lot.  They have one BIG video screen (much easier to change, if need be).

They got rid of the old and busted star tours vehicle, and got them a brand spankin' new one!

Lots of neat additions to the line... like more robots and a real interesting camera display that works in the IR range.

Finally, you get to the top, and you get... 3D glasses.


Yea, 3D is "the thing" right now, but leads to silly things just to justify the 3D-ness of it.

Story first, I say.

And did I mention the story?  Well, I will let you figure that out yourself...


Still not focused on blogging...

Just been scampering around, seemingly doing nothing, but getting some things done.

The bathroom remodel is 98% done:  I can shit, shave and shower in one room!  The door needs to be replaced, and a threshold put in, but it works!

Went to the BMT reunion @ COH.  Had a nice time.  Sat with two other old guys that also had Multiple Myeloma.  We swapped stories (never trust a fart), gave advice (LOTS of water for cramps), and made each other feel OK to be surviving.

Didn't see many kids this time, which doesn't tear me up as much.  Old guys with cancer don't phaze me... Kids with cancer rip me open.

After that we went and had the Daddy - Daughter dance at Acacia School.  Had a good time, and only Caitlyn destroyed her dress with chocolate.

A busy life is a happy life.

I guess.

gotta take a nap - with the dogs.


Busy day

First the painters came for the detail clean up on the bath room.

Then I went to the City of Hope for a BMT reunion.

Came home, got the girls, and went to the Daddy-Daughter Dance.


Details later - with pictures.


Blogging? Who has time?

Construction on the master bath continues, with Jim friendly features being added.

The three week window has blown past double that, and hoping that it only reaches three times estimate.

Easter here has been canceled. Bunny time will be at Nana and Papa's. Next year we will be on the hook. Again.

I need a nap on my new bed.


A few pics from the game

Hey, they won!

Problem is:  You don't see much game when you go with the girls.  You are looking for the peanut guy, escorting to the potty, or goofing with them.

We did have a home run ball land 5 rows in front of us, though.

'night, I'm tired.