Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Good Samaritan

Well, yesterday our car got seriously smacked from behind while it was parked. (this is the 2nd time this has happened since we have live in NY. I am starting to understand why we have such high insurance rates).

The driver of the truck assumed nobody saw him and he left the scene of the accident, figuring all was well.

Luckily, a good samaritan saw the whole thing and left me a note on my windshield with the number of the Ryder Truck that hit the car, and the time of the accident.

(almost) Instant karma gonna get you! I will see to that.

Friday, September 23, 2005

No News is Good News

Sorry about the dearth of posts lately (all 3 of you who regularly read this claptrap). Grace is acting all healthy which makes for some boring copy, but also for more restful sleep.

Combine that with the Cleveland Indians recent play, and I have become a happy father again!

When she starts vomiting or the Tribe loses to KC, I'll be sure to let you know.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Sick??? Naaah.

After inquiring about airfares to Lourdes, Grace took a turn for the better. But like Bruce it was 2 steps up and 1 step back (more accurately, 8 steps up for all of us, and 3 steps back for the woman who provides the breast milk).

Grace is essentially back to normal, her appetite fully recovered. However, she has begun waking up at least 4 times per night, each time with an insatiable thirst for the breast. Sarah dutifully rises each time, offers the nectar, which allows Grace to resume slumbering. Lather, rinse repeat.

She went to bed tonight at 7:30 and has yet to stir. With our luck, she'll sleep through the night, and awaken vomiting her guts out!

Friday, September 09, 2005

Hospitals - Can't live with 'em, Can't Live Without 'em

An update:

Battling medical professionals was the theme of yesterday. Our pediatrician felt that Grace was not ready to have the stent removed as she was still too compromised from the endless vomiting. The surgeon says that leaving the stent in could create its own problems, like the creation of kidney stones (Carter, I know you sympathize). The medical compromise is that Grace will have the stent removal procedure pending approval of the anasthesiologist, but will be admitted for 24 hours of observation and hydration.

Fast forward to this morning: Grace throws up as we are entering the hospital (ahh, harbingers) and again at 9AM. The medical professionals are actually relieved as this now means that there is NOTHING in her stomach to aspirate. I make a joke about "The Verdict" which falls on deaf ears.

Procedure goes well. Stent is removed and all foreign bodies are removed from her body! Grace appears to be doing fantastic. She is lively, laughing, making all the sounds that give one false hope.

2PM - Massive diahhrea. This actually is a good sign, as we now assume the virus has made its way from the stomach to the intestines. There is much rejoicing.
6PM - massive vomit.
7:15PM - Massive Vomit Part Deux (actually part 4, but I reset the clock after the surgery).

It is now 5 days since we entered the vomitorium, with no end in sight. If you are a parent (or someone who has entered middle age with your body beginning to break down) you immediately concoct all sorts of scenarios like Crohn's disease, Seliak's disease, and stomach cancer. It truly is moronic to think like that, but that is what you do.

Sarah is spending the night by Grace's side and is on strict orders to call me if she throws up (I left 3 hours ago and no phone call - perhaps she doesn't have cancer after all!).

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Like The Office, except there are dead people

According to Time magazine, Michael Brown's resume has some holes.

According to the news mag, he lists being the Assistant City Manager in Edmond OK in the '70's.

However, he was the assistant TO the City Manager.

If you have seen BBC's The Office, it is pathetic.

Meet the Assistant TO the Regional Manager.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Love = Fear

I need to go to bed, so this will be quick.

Sunday morning, Grace decided to begin vomiting. And she continued to vomit for essentially 3 days. Her last bout was only about 6 hours ago and she currently has a belly full of breast milk that Sarah & I are terrified that she will decide to bring up the wrong way. So far, so good, as she is still sleeping.

Things got so bad yesterday that, after already making a sick visit on Labor day to the doctor, she was dehydrated enough to bring to the hospital last night for re-hydration. We arrived at 10PM.

After sitting around for more than 2 hours, all of which was spent listening to a small boy watch the Shaquille O'Neal epic "Kazaam" at an elevated volume, here is what happened:

I know it looks kind of scary, but actually she handled it well, considering all of the white coats. IV in place, she and Sarah got a little rest:

They eventually let us go at 5:30AM. She promptly vomited in the hospital parking lot. Not a good sign.

Today has been a non stop rollercoaster of fear as she was a rags to riches to rags story. Brief periods of somewhat normal behavior, followed by vomiting I haven't seen since my college days. There is not much worse than seeing your child helpless to stem the attack. There is that moment of dread in her eyes, followed by resignation and quickly thereafter, lots of liquid all over one of us (usually Sarah). the only good thing about this is after driving the bus, she seems to recover immediately. But then the whole cycle repeats and we sit there helpless, assuming our child is dying and there is NOTHING we can do to help. I try to remind myself that humans have a long history, and my ancestors survived Black plague, so we must be a hearty lot.

But the nagging fear is almost too much. Loving someone so completely and differently than you ever have brings all kinds of emotions out. This week, it has been awesome and complete fear. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.

I will leave you with a final shot of Grace, taken during a sleepy, yet "riches" period. Hopefully she will stay like this until the morning.

And that's why we call her Grace. Goodnight.

A simple question

Apparently, the Republican Senate leader Bill Frist has decided that this is not the right week to be bringing the Repeal of the Inheritence Tax to the Senate floor for a vote. With all the death of poor people in Louisiana & Mississippi, it didn't seem like the right time.

My question is, if it doesn't seem like the right time now, then when is it ever the right time?


Thursday, September 01, 2005

The Bridge to Nowhere

Note: This post was edited for clarity on advice of gracious reader MG.

Please bear with me here and follow me through this post.

You may recall the recent Transportation Bill passed by Congress. There was lots of talk about "pork" projects, but none got more press than Alaska Rep. Don Young's "Bridge to Nowhere," a span as long as the Golden Gate & taller than the brooklyn Bridge. And it connects Gravina (pop. 50) to Ketchikan (pop. 8,000). And it is going to cost the US Taxpayer $221 million.

Also in the same bill is another bridge, this one costing $231 million that will connect Anchorage with Port Mackenzie, a rural area with exactly one resident (but it is near Knik, Pop. 22)

Now let us do a little math. The money per resident of Anchorage to build their bridge is $887.45 (I am being generous assuming every single resident will use the bridge equally). The residents of Ketchikan have a slightly better deal. the money per resident of their town is $28695.65.

Now we move to New Orleans:
According to published reports, the Army corps of engineers requested $78 million for drainage projects & $27 million for hurricane protection projects around Lake Ponchartrain. However, the Federal Government approved only $36.5 million & $5.7 million respectively.

Now, let is do the math. If both projects were fully funded, the money spent would have been $216.64 per resident. However, the actual approved per resident was only $87.06.

This is our Federal Government. We vote for them. We let them get away with this. $29,000 per person in Alaska for dubious bridges vs. $87 per resident of New Orleans for flood protection. I can think of nothing better that crystallizes to me what is wrong with our elected officials. People MUST be held accountable.

Here is the real bridge to nowhere.