Friday, February 24, 2006

Lateral Epicondylitis anyone?

I hate the term Tennis Elbow. I haven't played tennis since I was in High School ! Actually it was keying and using a mouse that got me into this mess (and heavy lifting on the job) - 3 years now of tendon pain and constant "rusted hinge" elbow. After physical therapy for 4 weeks failed, and a nice big cortisone shot didn't help, it's surgery time.

I'm looking forward to it - not just having the elbow fixed, but having the 2-3 weeks off work ! I've never taken more than one week at a time in all my years of working. Never. So having this much time to sit around on the couch, watch DVD's and read books, is really appealing. Not to mention the added bonus of narcotics and an eventually pain-free right arm.

There's still a few weeks of waiting, my surgery isn't scheduled until March 22nd. And I've been told all about the procedure - no big deal, really. They just numb up the arm and go for it, takes a half hour, no big thing. And my orthopedic surgeon tells me some people are pain free as soon as it heals, some take a year, but 99% are perfectly fine within one year of this simple procedure.

But what I don't know - and haven't really been able to find out by surfing the internet - is what to expect in those 2-3 weeks. I've been told I can't go back to work during that time, and I'm sure I won't be allowed to use the keyboard on the PC - except one-handed. And I know I won't be able to pick up either of my cats (after all, one of them weighs in at 15lbs!) That'd be Rumor. His brother, Secret, is a good 5-7 lbs lighter.

So I was wondering - since this is a very common ailment and the surgery is pretty routine - is there anyone out here who's had this done? Someone who could maybe give me a heads-up as to what I can expect this to be like??

Wouldn't you know it - not only am I right handed (and it's my right elbow) but I'm getting a new story worked up (Alex and Evan) and won't be able to type with both hands for who-knows-how-long !

My tennis career is over for sure ;)

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


I've figured out the secret for getting published . . . LIE.

All this time I've been calling my work Science Fiction, when I should have labeled it a Biography. Or called myself a former male prostitute. Or claimed to be fourteen years old.

If Oprah could only catch wind of me, I'd be famous !

I was disgusted when I heard of one author getting caught in a lie - then it happened again, a little less publicized, and then again, only slightly more publicly. Sure, it's only news when Oprah falls for it - but in the past month I've seen three separate cases of flat out, unabashed, blatant lies previously known as popular, well read and well respected works. And to make matters worse - the authors become famous a second time when the lies are made public ! Everyone runs out to read the "scandalous" work, which brings in even more money for the publisher, who has now scored twice.

Authors claiming to be writing from personal experience - that of a young former male prostitute - when in fact they're a forty-something female who just couldn't get published as herself. Or a guy who completely fictionalizes something he claims to be a biography. An author who gets notice because of her young age, when she's really in her thirties. A story written as fiction, then posthumously changed to a biography to sell more copies.

The usual trick to getting noticed by a publisher is to present a cover letter that compels them to read your work (which had better be just as good). Once they read your work, the idea here is that the story itself will compel them to publish.

Clearly I've been misunderstanding the rules !

The new trick is to dazzle them with bullshit and hope they bite.

So what do you think . . . I'm getting ready to start my new story - think a publisher would buy a modern-era science fiction tale full of intrigue, subterfuge, and aliens as an autobiographical work penned by a five year old literary prodigy, former prostitute with a drug problem and one bad eye?

If only Oprah could discover me . . .

Friday, February 03, 2006

Looking Up

Things are looking up

Sure, the weatherman is measuring our rain in feet now, instead of inches. But the Seahawks are in the Superbowl, gotta love that.

After bemoaning the state of things the other day - and all the crap that's out of my control - I decided the only thing to do was to take control of the only thing I COULD take control of. Found my new dentist's phone number, made an appointment and, last week, had that mondo-huge root canal ! WooHoo.

Well, it's just the start of what will end up being a nice new crown and a few other odds and ends, but at least the worst of the ordeal is done and over with. Had my pain pills and my antibiotics - have more appointments scheduled - and felt downright giddy at finally taking charge and getting something done.

Still waiting on my HMO's approval for that surgery, but that one isn't something I can take charge of.

But visiting the dentist, and having that root canal done, got me in such a positive, forward thinking mood - I couldn't help but go with the flow. I purchased a cable modem/wireless router, and scheduled an appointment for my new High Speed internet connection to be installed !

Yep, that's right. . . I took the plunge. Jumped in. Charged ahead.

By this Saturday afternoon (sometime between 1:00 and 5:00) I'll be enjoying the grown-up internet like all the other adults ! Not only High Speed, mind you, but I'll also have the laptop wirelessly connected - so I can see what all you guys out there find so fascinating in the idea of surfing the web in my jammies on the couch.

By the time The Who is streaming their summer concert over the internet for live viewing, I'll be an old hand at it. (sure, the Ox is gone, but Daltrey and Townsend are still worth the price of admission).

So I'm definitely stepping through the door into my happy place. Root canal done, crown prep/crown/cleaning still to come, but already on the docket. Cable internet being installed - surely the HMO is next to phone?

I'm looking forward to that 2-3 weeks on the couch !