Bad Good News

Originally posted February 10th, 2009

Last night I received some distressing news. My 80-year old Dad was riding his trick bike with the teenagers in the bike-skateboard “pit”, something I have been scolding him about for years now. He apparently made a bad turn on his “third” run – he says he can’t remember what happened after that, but vaguely remembers the kind woman who drove (raced) his bleeding body (and his busted bike) to the ER.

He also remembers the surgeons laughing when they found out what had happened. He broke several bones in his face, including his right cheek and orbital (socket) – my dad says helmets are for sissy’s. His broken trifocals had to be “removed” from his face. One eye swollen shut, contusions and road rash everywhere, broken and bruised ribs, busted hand, toe, chin, and basically everything that should have had pads, but didn’t, is pretty bruised. He was such an uncooperative patient, they sent him home after seven hours in the ER. Apparently everyone but my mom, sister Annette, and brother-in-law Kip ,were laughing. I spoke with my dad last night, and prayed for him over the telephone, which he actually sat down for – what a shock. I spoke with him again late this morning. He is doing well. My youngest sister Janet, our irresponsible-yet-lovable United flight attendant (who reminds me of a certain unnamed person in my marketing department) is helping him shop for a new BMX bike. I tried to get him to add a helmet to his shopping list, but apparently his hearing has been affected as well. Oh well.

A Cormorant Named Jonah

Originally posted August 14th, 2008

When Kix, my Australian Shepherd, was nine weeks old, we kayaked together one evening up Lacamas Creek, near Vancouver, Washington. He wore a bright yellow dogie life jacket, a PFD, if you prefer, and despite being the smallest one I could find, it barely left a tiny black nose and gray bobbed tail, fore and aft respectively. The manufacturer had thoughtfully sewn a black web handle on top, so when I carried him, he looked more like a lunch box than a dog. There was also a ‘D’ ring next to the handle where I attached his leash.

A lonely black Cormorant curiously shadowed us, criss-crossing our wake, daring the occasional broadside glance at us. I could only imagine what her amazing quad-chromatic visual sensors were telling her about what was moving inside that yellow lunch box.

This was Kix’s fourth trip with me since his first at seven weeks, Continue reading