Tuesday, September 28, 2004

I got nothin'

It's been tough this past week or so. I am almost at my wits end. What is a guy to do when he almost nothing to complain about.

Anyway, I got nothin' so I'll just leave you with this little time waster.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Mr. and Mrs. Logan: Part 2.

Wifey sometimes calls me a Vulcan because of the way I can separate my emotions from what is going on around me. Today however, I couldn't hid what I was feeling. DREAD!. Absolute Dread of having to make a follow-up call to Mr. and Mrs. Logan.

I was actually suppose to call them last week, but I chickened out. I knew they would have Mrs. Logan's results back from the cancer specialist and I didn't know how I would react. It took an hour to work up the courage to make the call. Sad commentary on me I'm afraid. They're dealing with cancer and I can't make a simple call.

"Ted, it's Arthur. I am following-up on our appointment last week". Normally I would have asked "how are you?", or "how was your weekend?". I didn't of course because that would mean knowing the answer to a question I dreaded knowing the answer to.

"Oh hello Arthur, how are you today?" I respond, but quickly move the conversation back to business. The words "COWARD" racing through my mind. I was really starting to hate myself, but I continued to stay on track.

Mr. Logan and I had a very professional, very generic conversation about his financial well being. In the end he decided not to make any changes. In the end I asked him how his wife was and what were the results of her biopsy.

You see Mrs. Logan is very fond of berries. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries it really doesn't matter to her, she loves them all. She likely thought that eating fresh berries instead of junk-food for snacks was a good thing. It actually is a good thing, except when a tiny berry seed lodges itself in a tiny polyp in her digestive track and causes a simple little infection that eats a tiny little hole somewhere in her colon which ultimately manifests symptoms very much, and almost identical to cancer. Unlike cancer though, this little infection that was caused by a little berry seed can be cured by a very little pill taken twice a day for about seven days which she finished taking this past weekend.

Mr. Logan is still quitting his job to spend more time with the woman he loves. He's just a lot happier that time seems to back on their side.

Friday, September 17, 2004

Hardly anything that happens surprises me anymore. It's not that I have lost all faith in humans ability to survive, I've never had any!

I'll illustrate why. This past week I read a story about a group of people in New Orleans that made the decision not to seek shelter from hurricane Ivan, but instead put their faith in the all mighty to protect them. Hmmm, Cat 5 hurricane, two story storm swells, living below sea level. Me, I'm thinking the all mighty might be trying to tell these people something. Besides, what kind of supreme being would allow this kind of stupidity to live and breed?

Here's the kicker, New Orleans was spared the brunt of Ivan. It just sort of veered off and nailed Florida, again. So I have to ask myself, was this because a bunch of nut-jobs on Bourbon Street had more faith then the bunch of nut-jobs on the Pan-handle, or just dumb luck? Doesn't this sort of thing fly in the face of natural selection? Could Darwin be wrong? Perhaps Einstein was right! Maybe there is a God and he does play dice. If so the almighty needs a new game plan because he's on a losing streak.

I'm so confused.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Mr. and Mrs. Logan

Yesterday afternoon I had an appointment with Mr. and Mrs. Logan. They have been my clients for just over four years. I first meet them a month before Mr. Logan, Ted, was to retire. Ted took mandatory retirement from his city job at 65, but after a year he couldn't stand it and found a part-time job. He told me a while ago that he took the job because it made him feel worthwhile again after leaving a job he had for 35 years.

I really like the time I spend with clients like the Logan's. They have been together a very long time and are still very much in love. There is a respect for each other that is unfortunately not present in most couples I talk to. I like the Logan's.

Our appointment was going well. Ted mentioned he is leaving his part-time job because the extra income from his pensions and job, combined with the retirement savings he would forced to start to withdraw would place him in a higher tax bracket. He didn't want that. The tax problem isn't as bad as he thought and I quickly worked out that it would only be an extra $800 a year. Within in two minutes I had worked out a plan so they didn't get hit with a big tax bill at the end of the year. Ted could keep his job.

Then I noticed the tears in Mrs. Logan's eyes. Leaving the job that made Ted feel worthwhile had nothing to do with his tax bracket. It seems Mr. Logan now has something else to make him feel worthwhile. Spending as much time with the woman he loves before she is taken from him. It was heart-wrenching looking into his eyes as he re-assured her that he was not going to continue working, that he was going to be there for her. He looked into her eyes and told her it would be okay. Except both of them knew it wouldn't be. Ted's eyes welled-up as he turned to look back at me. He explained that Mrs. Logan had not been well, but it was much more serious than that. Mrs. Logan tried to lighten the mood by exclaiming "yes, didn't you notice I lost 40 lbs". I hadn't.

After the appointment I went home for lunch. Wifey was there. She had decided to work from home yesterday. With the image of Mr. and Mrs. Logan's tear-filled eyes fresh in my mind I went to wifey and kissed her softly on the neck as she typed away on the computer. I gave her a hug. I wanted to tell her that I hoped to live long enough to love her as much as Mr. Logan loved Mrs. Logan. But I just smiled and gave her another kiss.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Daddy's little girl

Wifey and I have two children. The boy is nine and is in the 4th grade. I don't worry too much about him cause he is more like me than most people see. Weird and original, brilliant and foolish, creative. He already likes girls...A lot. He has grand ideas of life and his role in it. I did too, still do!. That's why I don't worry about him. Most adults, after being caught in conversation with him all seem to come to the same conclusion: He's different from most kids, sort of like what a young Quentin Tarantino must have been like.

The girl is four. She starts school tomorrow and I worry about her. Not because I think she's not going to do well in her studies, or because I think she will be unable to make friends or cope. In fact, she's fiercely independent and extremely bright, I don't worry about those things. I worry because she looks like an angle. Big blue eyes and a devilish smile. It's what is behind that smile I am worried about. I've seen it before.

A colleague of mine has a daughter. When she was 13 we had her babysit the boy and the girl for us. (The boy had convinced her that it was okay to eat cereal for dinner which is funny, but irrelevant to the story) She always wore pink. She went to art camp in the summer. She didn't date. NOW! At 18, she dresses like a tramp, drinks like a fish and curses like a sailor. I am pretty sure it's what is causing the unexplained pain in my college's chest.

AHHH...Damn chromosomes. The human haploid genome (my half) contains 3,000,000,000 DNA nucleotide pairs, divided among twenty two (22) pairs of autosomes and one pair of sex chromosomes. ONE PAIR! My future chest pains came down to one pair of chromosomes.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Hey, that guy just backed into my mini-van

It was raining this morning when I got to work so I parked right in front of the office so not to get my laptop too wet. It's not the best spot as drivers often back up without really looking. I really should have moved it hours ago when it stopped raining.

So I'm sitting here at my desk catching up on a weeks worth of email, mail and all sorts of other crap that tends to build up when there is nobody here to throw it out. Out of the corner of my eye I notice a blue-hair getting into her Crown Victoria. Boy that's a big care for a woman that can't be more that 5 foot. I'll skip most of this little story and jet to the mastercard commercial. It would end like this:

Blue-haired woman backing up without looking, stopping, or even wondering why her car abruptly stopped when it hit my mini-van:
I wonder if she even noticed she hit my mini-van. I'm sure the earth hasn't moved like that for her in a really long time, if ever, so I'm sure she most have known.
Well at least there is no damage and I got to laugh for a while.