Friday, January 15, 2021

Hot Pork

 Back in the pre-Christian era, one Alexander of Greece built himself quite an empire. It stretched from what is now Spain in the west into the area of present day India in the east. (It was so huge, the very idea of it in the past made Julius Caesar cry because his empire wasn't all that big.)

Anyway, Alexander, who became known as being pretty Great, died. He was not all that missed by his four beloved territorial generals, especially not the one called Seleucus, his particular buddy. Thus, with this huge empire existing minus Alexander, the four generals divided the empire up among themselves. For some reason, Seleucus got the majority of land area...from Persia to India. The other three got areas with more people and goods, less sand.

Seleucus was ambitious. Why settle for his measly quarter dominion? He wanted to replace Alexander's entire empire and was quite willing to use his army to obtain more territory. He had amassed a huge army which he supplemented with War Elephants. Elephants carrying archers on their mighty backs. Sharpened tusks and armor...they were fierce and terrified Seleucus' enemies by there mere presence. Think about a dozen or more charging tons of pachyderm busting through the enemy lines, trumpeting and slashing away with their ivories.

So, thus equipped, Seleucus gradually led his army into the territories of the other generals. And won. Gradually, he reconquered the lands to the west...with the help of his infamous War Elephants.

This went pretty well as a military tactic, but not forever. Some brilliant strategists on the other side came up with the idea of setting wild pigs on fire and sending these much smaller animals rushing into the line of elephants. Call it porkchop potential The boars were coated in pitch which was then set aflame. Fiery piggies rushed up to the War Elephants. The elephants apparently were quite afraid of the flaming pigs and broke ranks, turning back into their own soldiers,  scattering and killing them.

Fire Pigs.

Porcine projectiles.

Took down the mighty Elephant Army.

Seleucus did eventually end up taking over most of the rest of  Alexander's Empire, but met his end at the hands of one of the other generals. 

You never hear much about Seleucus the Great but the story of his barbecue tactics lives on.

Tuesday, January 5, 2021


Indefinite time period, but within the past 10 years. Who can remember dates when it is the event that is important?

I am sitting in the waiting room at my local hospital, which I believe has changed names twice since then, but no matter. I am sitting there with my daughter who had to drive me because I was too weak and sorta out of it to drive myself. Maybe it was the x-ray waiting room. There were so many tests back then I just can't remember.

Anyway, after I sign in and go back to my seat, I notice one of the ladies behind the counter smile and hand my papers over to another woman. Then, she pronounces quite clearly, "I see we have a celebrity in here, today."

 I look around the crowded room (pre-covid) looking for maybe Cher or Angelina or even Rosie O'Donnell. Not there. And everyone is staring intently at me.

Huh? Here I sit, wearing sweat clothes and a silly but necessary Finnish reindeer herder's cap on my head, braided wool down the side and pompom on top. Everybody is staring at me?

I do not blush. I cannot blush...totally impossible. I am yellow with chemo coursing through my veins and look like crap because the cap is hiding the fact that I am bald. 

Staring at me.

All I can think of is that somebody had read my books or maybe, my celebrity was on my chart as a joke.  I smile. Cast my glance around the room. Yes, people are still staring at me.

Okay. For one nanosecond, it was cool. 

Just the one.

Friday, November 6, 2020

Long time gone

Gee. Time doesn't pass quickly when one is having fun, nor does it pass quickly when one is miserable.

So, having been miserable for weeks, I'm anxiously awaiting the end of my trauma, for the world to know that it can be set right again, and for my family and friends to speak to one another again.

I fear it is going to be difficult. Too many things have been said or avoided to be easily forgotten and mended.

And when the only thing making me the least bit happy is watching Aquaman several times, well, what does that tell you? The world has been too much with me, late and soon, Mr. Wordsworth.

But, no matter what happens in the next few days or weeks, I remain hopeful. And we should all feel that way. There are too many bad days, too many pains and illnesses, too many broken people for us to completely give up on doing what is right and healing our hearts and minds.

If this is not my normal post, I have to tell you that I have my late autumn pain in my side. I cannot regulate my body temperature, going from hot to cold to hot to sweating. Every year for the past 11 years, I have felt this. Every year I hiccup when I turn. I lose my balance. I get that dark line on my right thumb, and I think, well, it is back and this time, I won't make it through.

But I will never give up. I have dealt with phantom pains and feelings for a decade.

 This time is no different and this time, I will be okay.

Two of the people who attended this remission party have passed away. I miss them terribly. They were not as fortunate as I have been. Take care of them, God.

Monday, October 5, 2020

Tomorrow I get the braces off

It has been since February 8, 2019 since I've been wired. The reason I had my teeth straightened, again, was because my teeth had gone back to the original condition, as in when they first came through the gums when I was about 8.

Crooked and horrible.

I wore braces from the end of 5th grade until I finally

 had them taken off between freshman and sophomore year in college.

A long time. When they came off, I remember smiling all day because there was nothing for my lips to catch on to. I felt human and grown up and pretty. So I kept smiling.

I took photos of my teeth before the braces went on this time, and intend to take them tomorrow, but no one will see the befores. It is quite ugly and an embarrassment.


Saturday, October 3, 2020

We were raised on violence

Saturday morning again. 

Ancient 50s-60s cowboy shows on tv.

It was okay to kill the bad guys. It was perfectly acceptable for Lucas McCain to shoot 3 guys before the midway interruption for advertisements.

Paladin shot anybody who disagreed with him, but he usually got paid for it, so that was okay.

Nobody ever had regrets.

I'm older than most of the gun toting good old boys who show up at protests with their weapons de jour

Perhaps they've been watching these old cowboy shows on television, or maybe they've been watching movies about Iraq or WWII or Korea. Maybe they've not been watching MASH but instead old John Wayne flicks. Like the one where he kills off Japs or Nazis or Commies somewhere.

Not the ones where John Wayne dies, there were only a few of them. And not the ones where the lesser Army guys or Marines or Sailors get blasted. 

Face to face killing.

Who can tell.

I saw these shows and movies when I was a kid. The bad guys had to die.

The honest to goodness (or badness) bad guys had to be eliminated.

Is this the current mentality?

Or is it unused testosterone? Dormant urge to kill manifested by protests and candidates for office.

I don't know. This may be a question for the wisest among us, for i can't answer it.