Two Good Bits

If you know me and you’ve got a pulse (and if you’re reading, I’m kinda hoping you do, otherwise, that’s creepy), you’ll know this year has been a large pile of steaming suck. With an olive on top, because I think olives taste like — well, olives, and that’s the problem.

But two good things happened this year, and I guess that’s something. But let’s start at the beginning of December last year. I was feeling decidedly crappier than my normal crappish state, I had been for several months, and I was trying hard not to acknowledge that. I was not the only one.

Mid-December we lost our little bastard of a pekingese, the nearly 14 year old Monster. As always, the little git was impeccable in terms of timing and “is he going to pull it off again or not” that he was known for.  I was surprised that Christmas was as oddly pleasant as it was last year. The now-elderly Norman (poor guy) was thrilled to see my parental’s Westie for once, and we brought out Wii up.

Of course, seeing how Norman perked up in the presence of another dog made us realize a new brother or sister for him would come sooner rather than later. And my parents loved the Wii.  My mom liked skiing with the balance board (my dad only tried boxing and then resorted to bowling and golf on the Wii — but I’ll get to that).

So shortly after Christmas all hell breaks loose for me. In February the doctors declared my dad had angina and scheduled him for an April stress test. In February we brought home the lovely little pug lady, Penny Glottis. Norman finally felt right with another dog to ignore — a dog who definitely doesn’t give him PTSD like Monster did.

In April, during the aforementioned stress test, my dad had a minor heart attack, and surprised cardiac surgeons at Maine Medical discovered he was in need of a quadruple bypass. As far as they could tell (due to a healthy heart, yet awful arteries) he’d only had one heart attack, which was surprising because like me, he’d been feeling crappy for several months before my mom spotted it and made him see the doctor. I’m betting boxing with Mr. Shoe on the Wii and yelling, “I’m gonna kick your ass!” probably hurt and he merely golfed and bowled to hide it (I’ll get back to this).

Fortunately, my dad never smoked, and wasn’t in horrible shape otherwise, and the doctors were sure he’d come through just fine. They were surprised at how much better he did than they’d expected.

So I’m flaring up again. I mean, I suck and it’s not my fault and it’s not necessary, but I gotta deal with it. But I felt really shitty — to the point that Mr. Shoe asked if I thought it was a good idea to go up to see my parents for Christmas. Uh, yeah. Because… I have to. Anyway, it was supposed to be icy when we were going to head back, which was a good enough excuse to duck early — but I looked and felt so shitty my mom actually agreed that it was a good idea to do so, no matter what the weather was. So believe me, I must have looked like a steaming pile with an olive.

But the light this year… Thanks to the hints my mom was completely unaware of dropping left and right and my dad’s hatred of the traditional game of Scrabble on Christmas afternoon, we got my parents a Wii (sans balance board, mostly due to cost, mom’s knee surgery, and dad’s reluctance to use it last year — but with a DDR pad and game).

I wish I’d know my parents would have this reaction. I’d have used our Flip video camera, and Nintendo would pay us millions. Cause — you know that home video (later turned into an ad for Nintendo?)…

Put about fifty, fifty two years on both kids, and imagine that the little girl is my dad (more gray, facial hair, glasses, there you go), and my mom is the little boy having the complete conniption — and that was about it. I mean, I’m sure that little boy didn’t have a hot flash or anything afterwards like my mom says she did. But it was pretty much just like that.

My dad spent Christmas boxing Mr. Shoe, and played DDR. Thanks, Maine Med.

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