The Man From Nantucket

_20150511_130440

Anyway, I decided to pass this story on to y’all while I have had time hanging out at three different doctors offices today. I think y’all will enjoy it, especially the fishermen who knows the perils of early morning fishing in a tiny boat. Enjoy.

I never know how to title posts that are sent to me with no title. This is especially hard when entries come in for The Magic Weekend. But, I figured most of us have heard of the tale about the man from Nantucket, so I figured it just might catch someone’s attention. Did it work? Neither here nor there, he sends me a story that covers two of the categories for The Magic Weekend. If you need a moment to get up to speed to see what those are, we’ll wait. Got everyone back? So, Ron is of course from Nantucket Massachusetts where he has lived most of his adult life. Ron states he is in his mid-40s, single, dating, and spends most weekends fishing and drinking. Sounds like I’m writing his single’s ad instead of his story introduction. But, I guess if someone is interested in Ron they can get ahold of me and I will pass your information on to him. Hey, wait just a fucking minute, I’m not pimping for nobody, especially a damned ‘ol yankee. Anyways, this story wasn’t sent in by Ron, it was sent in by one of his lady friends. Hey, I don’t judge. Elizabeth, the lady friend in question, sent this particular story in this past weekend to share her version of their Magic Weekend. She made sure to send me in three decent pictures, two of Ron and one of herself. So, we shall begin with her e-mail now.

20150511_125309

El Scorpion~

Hi! My name is Elizabeth, 23, from the great state of Massachusetts. I’m sorry your not a big fan of us yanks but we’re just people too. I hope this email finds you well and that you will be able to see that even us yankees know how to have a Magic Weekend. I have been a long time stalker of your blog, I can relate to a couple of the stories you posted, but hell, that’s just part of dating I think, shit happens, we laugh, we learn, and we become better people down the road hopefully. Anyhow, I met Ron through a friend of a friend of a friend who thought we needed to hook up. The first time we met was a shock to both of us, the short version was we did allot of shots of tequila, allot, and I ended up bent over the couch with my bikini bottom pulled to one side as he drilled me so hard I though he would surely pound my tonsils out. It was great, I was hooked, and I wanted more, and more, and then more to cap it off. Does this make me greedy? I cant help it he knows how to screw one way, and one way only, to just drill and pound until everything is just a sloppy mess. Ah, memories. I have good pictures of some of these occasions as well, let me know if I should send them to you later. Just kidding, I know you can’t post those on your “Rated G” blog.

20150511_125350

So, Ron called me to see if I had any plans a few weeks ago because he wanted me to go fishing with him on some pond called Hummock or something like that. I’m not much into fishing but what the hell, I like to eat fish, drink, and party so I was game. I showed up at his house about 4:30 in the morning dressed for the nice day ahead. He met me on the porch, gave me the once over head to toe, got a dirty grin on his face, and then handed me cooler to carry to his truck. After we got all loaded up we headed out, it was a rather short trip, 15 minutes or so. The area we pulled up to was very pretty, looks like a post card you could find at the drug store or somewhere. I helped put his little boat in the water, we loaded everything into it, and we pushed off. It appears that we truly are in the middle of absolutely nowhere so I spent quite a bit of time fucking with Ron, trying to throw off his fishing game, but, for some reason fishing is what he actually had on his mind. I didn’t want to fish, I wanted to fuck, and I was going to get my way one way or another. As I laid back against the front of the boat, my fingers dangling in the calm water, I watched to sun begin to come up, I could feel its warmth as it moved up my legs, onto my stomach, across my breasts and face, and now I catch Ron checking me out from the corner of his eye. Game on now Ron, game on. Before I knew it I was sliding down my shorts to get comfortable, now I am laid out in nothing but my bikini. The warmth across my body, a perfect time to start lapping on the suntan lotion. Ah, I wanted to be so naughty, I wanted Ron to be done fishing, and I was going to have my way, you just keep on playing with your minnows Ron, I’ll see if I can’t change your mind.

20150511_125407

My bikini top and bottoms just slid right off and it took Ron all of about 33 seconds to realize he was done fishing this morning. And then he turned to me, trying to get out of his shorts, the all I see is Ron with his giant boner coming right at me, now all fuck breaks loose. Ron had slipped, then tripped, and was going down like a falling mighty oak, it seemed as if it were all going in slow motion, then I hear the crash, Ron had landed onto the corner of his open tackle box which shattered into oblivion, slicing his hand open. In all the commotion we ended up flipping the boat over in about 18 feet of water. Everything on the little boat was gone, everything. We ended swimming to the open area by his truck, where I finally was able to take his shirt off of him and bind it around his hand. As luck would have it, and we needed luck, I found the keys to his truck deep in his pocket, finding out that Ron was still peacocking his mighty wood. We headed to his house for clothes for me and a quick change for him. Luckily he wasn’t much of a bleeder or we would have been in grave shit. There was a small clinic not far from his house which is where we ended up. They sewed Ron up real clean as we laughed and joked that we could tell our grand children of this event one day. Afterwards I took Ron home, made him a hot tea and called it a day. Don’t worry, Ron healed up just fine, and a few weeks later we had a couple more dates, we had much unfinished business to attend to. He still calls from time to time, seems this is what our relationship has turned into, just two people too busy to have a dating life. Maybe one day that can change, we’ll see.

Yours truly, your the best, Elizabeth

Filling In The Missing Pieces

_20150506_205448

Y’all might have noticed that I’ve posted a couple of very task specific entries to the blog the last couple of days and might be asking why now, why the push of information about filing a VA claim and the bewildering plethora of related data. Good and fair questions. If you weren’t wondering then that is okay as well, because I’m going to try to explain it all right now. In previous posts I wanted to express to any and all veterans the importance of arming oneself with the proper information. This is very fresh in my own skull since I just re-re-opened my own claim so I can provide additional relative information to strengthen the facts in my own file in hopes that I can get an increase in my own personal rating from the VA.

My process actually started in March of 2014, not with the claim, but with my claim in mind. I fulfilled a large portion of the leg work to eventually get the ball rolling. How so? Up until then I wasn’t in the medical portion of the VA, only in the claims side. But, when I was laid off I soon found myself in dire straights. Forget everything else, I was finding out fast that I was headed for a dilemma which if not contained may have had some major health complications involved. Why? I’m an insulin dependent diabetic. If you aren’t aware of the nature of that beast just look it up. So, my number one priority was to contain that fire before it spread. Since I was already in the system and a VA card holder, enrolling for medical benefits was simple enough, time consuming, yet fairly easy, even for a simpleton such as myself. Good grief I blew through some trees filling out that paperwork, it was insane, it was as if they couldn’t share the same sheet of paper in my file around the office, everyone needs a completely originally signed document in order to proceed. That is nothing compared to the mountain of papers (records and reports) I face at this exact moment. I have mentioned what a pain in the ass the VA makes the process, haven’t I?

As well, at the time of my lay off I was in line to do an exploratory and maintenance surgery on my knee to clear away debris, old hardware, and torn ligaments. Being told beforehand they couldn’t repair anything since it would only complicate things down the road. I had an my surgery date, I had time arranged to be off from work, and then I’m laid off. Talk about coming to a screeching halt, Yea, dead in my tracks, cancel all plans until further notice. Being laid off screwed up allot, allot more than I will mention here. Then, and only then did I considered enrollment into the VA medical program, something my wife says I should have done back in 2000, but I was stubborn, I had private insurance, I saw no need in being in VA medical. For the most part I was right, everyone hears the horror stories about veterans trying to get care, getting the wrong care, how slow the process is, and the same mistakes made over and over. Who wants to be a part of that kind of mess? But then, who do I turn to in my true time of need, who do I expect to be waiting there for me at the edge of the red carpet, you guessed it, the VA. I will be one, of millions who can attest to the slowness of the VA. Fuck their timelines because they look good on paper but have no relation in real time with real people, and that blows ass for every single one of us veterans.

Reluctantly, yet willingly, I got “in line” and jumped into the process. The process wasn’t hard, but it was time consuming, lucky for me, at the time, all I had was time on my hands. I had four months to ride this pony for the big show or it wasn’t going to happen. It took longer, duh, and when I was hired to a new company last October I hated the fact that I needed to take time off here and there to button up all the loose ends, and there were allot of loose ends. I was seen multiple times at the clinic’s version of an orthopedics office, where we discussed my direct interest in seeing the orthopedic surgeon downtown. But there is a process, first the PA has to be convinced of a “need” before we “bother” the busy orthopedic surgeons with what might all be in my head. In my fucking head you say? Let’s review, for the sake of argument, that this PA went through my private sector medical records, my military medical records, started my new VA medical records, the MRIs, the CT Scans, the x-rays, the exams, and so forth, and this motherfucker was convinced ALL of my pain was in my head. Look, I know real pain and I know manifested pain, there is a distinct difference. As well, I know that there is very little help in eliminating the pain of degenerative joint disease, also known as osteoarthritis, and that steroid enhanced visco supplementation injections are a sick fucking joke. There is NO over the counter medications or prescription medications which can stop the pain of bone on bone contact. Just ask me, I have tried many, many combinations, and get the same result, pain. Hyaluronan injections (rooster comb) are nice and beautiful by design, but I don’t just have arthritis is my knee.

Finally, somehow, someway, I convinced the PA to give me the recommendation I was wanting, after a final review I was scheduled to finally see an orthopedic surgeon, 13 months after originally asking. My first visit to the orthopedic surgeon gave me the impression the doctor was blown away with the damage in my knee and he was a little shocked I was still walking. The overall decay within the joint is estimated, by him and one other doctor, to be a 97% coverage. At first he discussed surgery to remove the weight bearing of the joint to shift it more out to the outside, but after further review, eight weeks later, I was told I’m not a candidate because I would need the unloader surgery on both sides, which cant be done. My only option was to have my knee replaced. However, that option is gone as well because it is claimed that because I’m under the age of 50 that the VA will not do that particular surgery. Even though the governing regulations state that age cannot be used as a determining factor but is still an option of the individual physician. Nice double talk, right? Right. In reality, I was told to tough it out, move on with my life, and just try to “take it easy” for the next 4 years. Needless to say, I’m beyond pissed. What a fucking joke! Now I can’t get treatment? Isn’t the VA here to take care of my service connected injury? Seems that the answer is they will do it at their leisure. Hell, I don’t mind waiting in line if that is the issue, I know times are tough, money is tight, and y’all are having your asses handed to you by the media and the investigations right now, but why just tell me flat out no.

I don’t take rejection well. I really don’t. I did my part. I played the game. I followed the rules. For what? For nothing, that’s what. I know, boohoo wo is me. Well, okay, getting up to go to work every day is a bitch. A bitch I don’t mind riding because there are bills to be paid. Plus, I’m not the kind to sit on my couch all day to watch Jerry Springer. I have a drive to get out and work, to be functional on a daily basis. I’m at a loss here. I decided, after a careful review of the entries into my visits to the doctor, where he cites in black and white, that I’m not a candidate for either surgery due to age and complications down the road in the future that “could” happen, and his recommendation is daily, regular doses of over the counter anti inflammatory medications and more quarterly injections. I will have my way, one way or another, so I re-re-opened my claim with the VA, providing all the supporting evidence from day one back in 1990 until now, to include findings from a civilian orthopedic surgeon which I see next week. We’re doing a review of my records to review treatment, and follow up with his recommendations. I really don’t give a shit about the money, I just want to get this knee fixed, hell or high water. It’s never been about the benefits, it never will be, it’s about not being taken of because of one jack asses opinion. In the end, my goal is to rattle enough cages to get my knee replaced, which is recommended by two VA surgeons and two civilian surgeons, so come on motherfuckers, replace it already.

Yes, y’all have found a sore subject with me. I’m tired of doing battle, the VA is supposed to be here to help me and fellow veterans, not give us the run around, not to deny us care, and certainly not to individually bend us over because it is the easier thing to do. They can kiss my hairy white ass first, I came to fight, I came to get what I need, I came to see that the VA does the right thing by me. Hopefully, my education along the way can be used by other veterans who are getting the big shaft. So, my plan is to continue writing and sharing information about how to make sure all your bases are covered. It doesn’t need to be a battle to receive care, the VA just makes it that way. I have friends within the VA system, many of them veterans, and they encounter the same bullshit the rest of us do. Who knows what will happen with my case/claim, anyway it turns out I hope that someone has read some of my postings and figured out how to get through to the VA. I know it is bureaucracy at work, policy and so forth, set in place to curb abuse and better promote the health and well-being of veterans, but it has backfired, and now we all suffer, thanks. Next time y’all think that we are being handed freebies, remember we are people too, we just want to live our lives as normally as possible.

Something Serious I Wish To Say

veteran

For the most part people do not visit The Sting Of The Scorpion blog because it is a serious place to visit. Because the tempo around here usually focuses on the humor in life and my sarcasm towards it all. That’s just where this blog is, it started there and has continued to evolve in that direction for the most part. However, there are days such as today that remind me I wouldn’t be the person I am today if I didn’t first have a past. A past, you ask? Well, yes, every single person has someone they used to be. I’m one of the lucky ones, I’m one of the people who survived his military service, and I, not unlike thousands, are no different in our outer appearance than the next person. Meaning? If you were not informed I am an Air Force veteran who was involved in Desert Storm or The Liberation of Kuwait then you could never tell by merely looking at me. Involvement? I built and serviced munitions (bombs and bullets) while on both tours, as well as my normal peacetime job. Now you know something new about me personally. One might also see the DV handicap license plates on my vehicles (disabled veteran) when I am out in public.

What does all of this matter anyway, right? I had two separate encounters today, one in the real world and one here in cyberspace, where, someone who doesn’t “know” me thanked me for my service. The first time today, I was getting out of my vehicle at Walmart and a woman and her 11 y/o son were walking by. She stopped and waited for me at the rear of my H1, she extended her hand to shake mine while she began thanking me for my service to our country. If that was not enough for me to have to hold back tears, I see below me, her young son giving me a full on military style salute. This entire encounter moved me, when she and her son moved on I had to take a minute to collect myself, and that included the wiping of some tears. She said something that haunts me a bit though. She asked if I have DV plates why I was parked so deep in the parking lot and not in the clearly open spaces at the front. Why? Why indeed. Then she mentioned that she sees people parking in handicap who clearly don’t need to be, she says this as she is looking at my scarred and abused right knee and leg. I never had the chance to tell her that I walk these distances because it is added exercise I get to help with my diabetes, which is why I walk.

My second encounter happens today also, but here in cyberspace. I’m not going mention her name or anything like that here because our conversations are private. I know she knows I am talking about her, what she doesn’t know is that for a second time in a single day I found myself wiping a tear from my eyes. Which is rough in its own because I wear contacts. I’m very gracious for the thank yous and the well wishes, but it made me think, how once again, I am one of the lucky ones in my own eyes. My point here, is simple and complicated, I have never met her I’m person, yet I really feel she understands what it means to be a veteran. We have exchanged some of our background and when she speaks of her experiences with veterans I can really relate as I think she can also relate to me. Over time I have begun to have a true fondness for her. Don’t tell her though, she might think I’m cyberstalking her or something which is not the case. I just wanted her to know I appreciate how she has touched the lives of many veterans, and she has helped me and touched my life as well. Thank you H.

I think I will close this out now before I choose not to post it altogether. Blogging truly is the cheapest form of therapy there is out there. The top picture was borrowed from the internet. The bottom picture is indeed my own personal right knee. As one can see, I have had a few surgeries involving my service related injury, the last being a knee replacement a few years ago. Which, as fate would have it, is failing, hence my current dealings with the VA, in fact, the saga will continue tomorrow as I have an appointment with a VA orthopedic specialist. Yes, that is Tigger’s head. No, you may not ask me about it. Btw, that picture was taken a few hours ago, so yea, its pretty current.

IMG_20140724_140900

Keeping An Eye On Technology

sperm-extractor

In my own defense, this post should prove to everyone concerned that I do indeed look into almost all the weird shit sent to me as “leads” in my e-mail and even from much of the useless spam I tend to accumulate. Sometimes the science is more bizarre than most fictitious bullshit. Plus, if its found on the internet it has to be true, right? Wrong. I try to keep my bullshit filters on high guard when looking into miracles in modern medicine. What better machine could be invented than one that will jack you off in public. Yea human race, another medical breakthrough.

It would appear that a Chinese hospital in Nanjing has introduced a new machine that makes sperm donation even easier than before, an automatic sperm extractor. I’m all for hands-free technology, but have scientists gone a little too far with this invention? Who funded the research I wonder. Who decided there was an actual real need for such a device? How long before these trendy little machines show up in the United States? Maybe just put them in train stations, bus stations, and airports. We’re pretty greedy here, they would be fitted to take credit cards, PayPal, or even have an app to pay for it.

This effortless machine features a massage pipe made from a comfortable material, which is a patent secret, that can be adjusted to suit the height of the user. All the gentleman has to do is to insert his penis into the machine, then the frequency, amplitude and temperature can be adjusted to suit personal comfort, and off they go. These automatic sperm extractors are also fitted with a small screen to watch preloaded movies for those feeling uninspired. Surely they come equipped with a USB port so a person can watch what he prefers or better yet have free WiFi so we can keep it current.

According to the director of the urology department of the hospital, the machine is designed to help individuals that are finding it difficult to retrieve sperm the old fashioned way. I’m not entirely convinced that standing in a room shared by many other men and being milked like a cow is going to help, but their efforts are very commendable in my book. Here’s to technology, right? Society is on the cutting edge of science right this very second and very few of us even are aware of it happening.

A website which is selling the machine for $2,800. Promoting it by stating ‘it can give patients very comfortable feeling’. I wonder if one could purchase a automatic sperm extractor for home or personal use. I wonder what kind of licensing is required to own and operate one of these machines in your facility. Yes, in the end, I have more questions than I have answers. I can’t wait for the first damaged pecker lawsuit, hopefully its live on CNN or Fox News so we can see the dramatic reenactment live!

Posted From Scorpion Sting’s Motorola Droid Maxx!

Spending The Entire Day Waiting

US-veteran

Yesterday I spent the entire day at the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Houston waiting for assistance at the pharmacy. When I say all day what I really mean is I was in line for mandatory valet parking at 7:04 am, by line I mean there were already 64 vehicles ahead of me, for a service which doesn’t even start until 7:30 am. This is after a 55 minute drive from my house. But, before I begin my monologue about my personal frustrations with the VA Medical wait times or my personal complaints, my experience is minor compared to most others trying to get more critical treatment. In no way am I saying I have bigger problems, just I have my own problems. Regardless of what a person’s reason for visiting a VA Medical center, things should happen in a more timely manner than what it does currently.

My reason, and I had only one reason, for visiting the VA Medical center was a very clear and simple mission, to find out who and why my insulin changed. I would waste time explaining the significance to everyone but only a diabetic and doctors (most) would understand. Let’s just say we don’t change insulin for no reason at a whim. What started this quest was simple, Friday I got my new 30 day supply of insulin which was the wrong “brand” and the wrong dose. Names change so I did a little research and found what they sent me was wrong altogether. I called the pharmacy, and the short version is, I was told I must be mistaken and if a mistake was made it was because I ordered refills for the wrong insulin. Really? I’m that fucking stupid? I referred to my Rx # and so forth directly from the myhealth website and I was again told the mistake was all me. After hanging up I contacted my PCP in Conroe, spoke with her nurse, and was assured nothing had changed in my prescription details. Well, at that point in the day it way too late to drive into the VA so I made plans for Monday morning. Unfortunately those plans got scrapped and I was delayed until Tuesday. For your curiosity purposes I have included a screen capture from today to illustrate how vets can use this website to order and track prescriptions and yes this is my own personal list.

After driving, after waiting for mandatory valet parking, and after getting my number at the pharmacy, I sat there prepared to have a discussion with the pharmacist. I had my last vile, the vile they sent me, and the printed version of what you see below. So, I waited. after 2 1/2 hours my number came up so I got in line to wait another 20 minutes. Finally, when it was my turn to speak with a pharmacy technician, I was told that he could not help me with my problems and that I would need to take a different number so I could be consulted by the pharmacist. WTF? Again, I sat and waited in the sparsely populated waiting room of the pharmacy. Now, we are in lunch time so the slowness begins creeping to an almost halt. I’m hungry, but not hungry enough to leave and lose my place in line. Good thing I had brought a baggie full of spicy roasted almonds for a snack. Somewhere around 2:30 pm I was again alerted my number was up and got back in the line to wait behind the others whose numbers were called. Finally, the light at the end of the tunnel appears, I’m next. I was so close I could taste it.

The pharmacist very nicely asked what my problems were and how could he assist me. After explaining it all again to him he looked at me and told me any and all changes had to come directly from my PCP. Really? What changes did she make which changed not only my insulin but almost triples my dose? Of course, there ate no changes on record. The he pulled the “you must have ordered the wrong insulin when you did your refill request” bullshit. How in the hell can I do that? I have one fucking choice and that is what in the fuck I clicked. Here is the real kick in the balls, he tells me regardless of anything that is said that the current 30 day supply of insulin has already been verified, processed, and shipped which means he can not refill any more until July and if changes through my PCP happen then those will need to happen prior to that date. WTF are you smoking? If I am in need of this insulin immediately then I need to purchase it on my own. If I thought I would look good in prisoner orange I would have just ended his smart ass right then and there. FUCK I hate this fucking place!

And, by the way, one can not simply go to a civilian pharmacy and get insulin without a fucking prescription. I can, however, go on line and order it from a pharmacudicals supply in Canada with no prescription for a mere $260.10 plus express shipping. Yea, like that’s gonna fucking happen. Who knows what the fuck would be in that vile. As a result, my civilian PCP was nice enough to see me this morning. That only cost me $167.30 but he did give me a prescription for the correct insulin and the correct dosage. Which was generous of him, probably since I have been a patient of his for the last 15 years. So I got lucky, this time. At the pharmacy I had to pay the self-pay cost of $208.08 but now I have what I need for the next thirty days. I also am able to get in to see my VA PCP at the end of June so things hopefully work out and get back on track, hopefully.

No, I do not think I can ever get them to admit this whole thing was their mistake. I have come to a conclusion in the short time of dealing with the medical portion of the VA, they have to not have a soul or something to work there. I wonder how in the fuck they sleep at night. I do know, it is because they operate with no conscience. But, to be fair, I base this opinion solely on the people I have encountered myself. However, I have met ex-VA doctors, nurses, and technicians who say that they did not agree with how things worked but their hands were always tied when trying to make a positive difference. I can’t say I know what every veteran is going through and I know my problems are simple compared to most because my are Rx related. I would hate to see the state of my “health & wellbeing” if my only option was the VA. I am deeply sorry our Veterans must endure such bullshit as a course of their own survival, they truly deserve better, they deserve the best that is offered, and maybe with their asses in the news now the VA will clean their act up. I know, I know, wishful thinking.

20140618_105649

Walking The Halls Of A VA Hospital

wpid-automotivator.jpg

I have been wanting to write this entry for a few weeks now, but today I’m sitting down to actually do it. Its going to be allot food for thought, my personal observations, and about something that was said to me that I really did not appreciate one damn bit. It may seem as though I am ranting, which it is a little, but more venting than anything else. Before this year my dealings with the Veterans Administration (VA) has been very limited because other than receiving a check every month and my initial VA home loan I haven’t had a real need. Regulars here over the years know I am a retired disabled Air Force veteran who participated in Desert Storm and The Liberation of Kuwait back in the 90s. I am disabled with a 100% rating yet I have worked full time ever since the day I left the Air Force. Hell, the first time I visited the VA Medical Center here in Houston for my own personal needs was in February of this year (2014). There is but only one way to get into the VA medical system and that is to visit a medical center and take a fucking number.

Since that little adventure I have returned a handful of times and also to the VA clinic in Conroe where my PCP is located. My reasons were simple for beginning this journey so many years after my departure from the Air Force. First because my service related injury to continue care and because of needing diabetes medication. Both became an instant need once I was laid off in February this year. Never underestimate the need of private insurance and the amount of the financial burden it actually covers. I still had the needs I had beforehand, just now without insurance. So, I made a choice, and that choice was to start using my VA privileges for the first time. The inside of a VA hospital is a disheartening sight because inside a VA hospital is where one can see the cost of freedom just by witnessing the people visiting the hospital that day for their needs and services. I wondered the first time, just looking around, why in the fuck I am here. But, now I am a part of the “system”, I wait in line, I take a number, and I try to be patient while waiting for my turn. My point is simple really, the men and women, active or veteran, who are seen within the walls of a VA hospital are there because they have paid in one way, form, or fashion, that many of us have no way of understanding, whether it is mental or physical or a combination of both, because unless we are in that person’s shoes we can never know.

Everyday I grow a little more impatient with people who, in my opinion, are very self centered. Why? Let’s use a very recent example which happened to me back in April. My wife and I had pulled into a very crowded parking lot of a local supermarket on a Sunday around the time the local churches have been letting out. We maneuver around the parking lot in my Hummer H1 looking for a spot. My wife sees a handicap space has opened up and has told me where to go. As I signal that I am turning in to the vehicles around me a woman in a brand new Cadillac Escalade comes down the row against traffic, meaning she was coming down the one way lane the wrong way, and attempts to cut me off and take the spot. So, I approached her Escalade rather aggressively to see if she would back off. To my surprise, a 20ish woman jumps out of the driver’s door yelling and screaming at me to get the fuck out of her parking space. Pause a moment. Upon review of her vehicle I see she still has dealer paper plates a a red handicap tag (in Texas a red tag is very temporary) hanging from her mirror. For ten minutes she yelled at me, cursed at me, and scolded me. Then, then she showed her ass by asking why in the fuck I was even trying to park there since I don’t even have handicap plates or a placard. It is true, everything she said, except the fact that I have DV (disabled veteran handicap logoed) license plates. She had no idea what they are and proceeds to lecture me (the person with visible scarring on both knees, one being from a knee replacement) on the purpose and design of a handicap parking space. Since I was in the space, since I was done talking, I locked up the H1, and proceeded to go inside to go shopping. Meanwhile, she calls the police so they can have my vehicle towed (which never happened). When we came out about 25 minutes later she had moved her vehicle out of the drive so others could pass. Except now she was in the backseat of the police cruiser screaming at the officer. The verdict? She was in possession of an expired tag (new date was written over the old), her drivers license was already suspended, and the temporary dealer tags were also expired by two months. She was arrested and her Escalade was towed. That’s the end of what I know or want to know about her.

Is there a moral to this story? Who really knows. I do know that before she tried to be a fraud, a cheat, and a liar, that should actually know what in the fuck she is yelling about. I have no time for people like her. If she would have just asked me to let her have the spot politely it would have been all hers, no explanation needed because I wasn’t in such a great hurry and my doctor says a little walking on occasion won’t kill me. I’m easy like that. Blow up in my face and I make it hard because I will just walk away from the bullshit. I love people, especially the clueless ones because they make the world go round. I wondered, after the fact, why she had so many things going wrong for her and all I came up with is, to me and in my own opinion, that she had a poor and negative attitude. Personally, I doubt she will ever get her shit together and be a functional adult in society, but that is just my opinion based on one brief encounter with her. How can I really now anyways.

wpid-automotivator-1.jpg

Posted From Scorpion Sting’s Motorola Droid Maxx!

Life Under My Rock

wpid-keep-calm-cause-i-m-still-alive.png

It has come to my immediate attention that there are some of y’all who wish to inquire if I am dead or not. Sort of odd if you ask me. If so, death is not treating me very well. Anyway, I assure y’all that I am very much alive and kicking, well maybe not kicking, but alive nonetheless. Since my vacation over spring break I have been kind of busy yet I am still very unmotivated to do much more than screw around in my woodshop and keep my yard looking nice. Its like being in a weird funk of sorts since being laid off. Its like being in limbo between where I once was and where I might be someday. Make sense?

I do have a few quick stories to tell y’all because maybe y’all as well might sit back and scratch your head so that I am not the only one doing it. Before I forget, I wanted to let y’all know why I am not working yet, since it has been my choice. I have some affairs with the VA and VA medical board which I am trying to get settled because it takes a fair amount of time to do what I have been doing. I have not had much fun playing with the VA and right now they have me real frustrated so I can’t really collect my thoughts and write anything yet. However, speaking of dealing with government agencies (actually the state of Texas) my 17 y/o daughter and I have a real blast at the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) earlier this week. I never liked going into this facility because they are overrun with too many people and are understaffed to say the very least. It makes going there a real chore. However, as it would happen I still had to go. Why? Well, my daughter lost her photo I.d. while in South Dakota so she wanted a new one. Why? She has her drivers license but she likes to have the other one as a second form of I.d. because she has nothing else. We figured I would have to go to help prove her residency since she is a minor with absolutely nothing in her own name. Fair enough, I may not be a great dancer but I know this song and dance all too well it would seem.

We were there when the doors opened. Us and the 78 people we were behind. Yes, we arrived early just to get in the pre-line line to get in line to get a number so we could wait to be seen by a “specialist”. All though I am not a huge fan of the hurry up and wait game I have learned it is a necessary evil in life many times. Luckily I checked in advance to see what paperwork is required and brought them with us. I remind y’all, this is for a state issued picture identification card. The state of Texas requires that a birth certificate, social security card (or shot record), passport (when available) and two separate bills or references from different organizations which have one’s name and address printed on it (we used my vehicle registration and vehicle insurance) all to be presented for identity verification and residency verification. Sadly, no, the state of Texas issued drivers license is not a valid form of verification because the DPS office issued it. Go figure. The time we waited to be called back was 4 hours 23 minutes. Add that ton the time in line and we logged in 6 hours and 7 minutes at the DPS office. The time at the window was under 5 minutes and as we were walking away the lady tells us that this whole process could have been done online because the could have reissued the original I.d. and mailed it to her. I suppose this is my fault because I didn’t ask. Neither here nor there, I paid the $16 fee and then we left.

I have learned allot while waiting at places lately. First of all your phone’s battery will probably die while you wait. Second, you risk not hearing your name/number being called if you need to step out to the restrooms. Third, you are going to wait, period. In the last couple of months my ass has logged many hours in many different chairs and to be quite honest I do not think it has made me a better person for enduring the many, many hours. I have also been thinking quite a bit about this blog. In the past it was a passion to add material here. Seems lately it has been a mere distraction I have to make the time for. So, I want how it was back again. I am not a writer, but I am a person who doesn’t mind the monologue of writing on my blog. So, I have much that went on during our family vacation and much going on with the VA as well, so I have plenty to write. Plus, my daughter graduates in about six weeks so I will have some commentary on that as well.  I will get things back on track, don’t worry.

Update Explaining My Absence

SKDT1113Due to all the e-mail questions and comments about where I have been since last week have not gone un-noticed. I admit, I have not been paying attention to The Sting Of The Scorpion for the last several days. I have been distracted with some family health issues. Just know I will get all caught up this morning. But before I do I wanted to go over why I have been out of the loop for a while. Mid last week we had quite a family scare and it has set most of us into panic mode because of everything we didn’t know. Here is what happened.

My dad, 66, had been feeling quite a bit of abdominal pain, outright discomfort, nausea, and complete loss of his appetite. He let this continue, not in total silence, but what he had dismissed as gas, until finally this past Wednesday when I convinced him to contact his physician. He went in to his appointment in the late afternoon where blood tests and a physical examination were performed. The doctor made the observation on how dehydrated and pale my dad looked and recommended different ways to combat this from worsening. The doctor the released him and sent him home to rest. Later that night the doctor called my dad at home and told him his tests were back and he would like him to meet him at the hospital in the morning for some further testing. When my dad arrived he was met in the waiting room by a nurse who was going to expedite his admittance. After being admitted he was subjected to a battery of tests after he had to have an ultrasound done just to get an IV in his arm because he was so dehydrated.

We waited the remainder in his room in the hospital while we eagerly awaited all the test results. Shortly after 9pm the doctor came in to explain it all to my dad and all of us. The short version was that his gallbladder had shut down. He promptly let my dad know he had a 7am surgery to remove the gallbladder. We are all a little relieved now, my sister and I said our goodbyes and let him and my mother know we would be out this weekend to check on him. At 10am the following morning, Friday, my mother called to inform me that it was more extreme than a simple gallbladder removal, it was consumed by gangrene. At this point I headed back out to the hospital to check on my mom and dad. At this point this was all the information my mother had. I sat with my dad the remainder of the day and into the evening. He was given a whole slew of antibiotics, pain killers, and other medications throughout the day so he was not really aware of too much going on. My mother didn’t want to tell him that it was gangrene because she felt it would be better coming from the doctor.

Saturday morning rolled around and I was in the hospital by 7am. He started asking questions about his release and the nurses would tell him they didn’t have any orders for that as of yet. He was told he would go home the next day and now he is being told something different. To say the least he was getting a little agitated. By noon time I had time to convince my mother that we needed to tell him how extreme the surgery actually was so he will know why they are keeping him in for further observation. He took it pretty well and knew that sooner or later the doctor would actually come in to talk to him personally. The day pressed on and at 6pm Saturday evening the doctor made an appearance. He had a very informative talk with my dad and also explained to him sternly that he almost waited to long to be seen. Luckily, in the doctor’s best opinion, he explained that all the gangrene had been removed. He also explained that it had not passed into his intestines, other organs, or the bloodstream. Since he was recovering nicely he would be releasing him in the morning on Sunday.

For the first time in many, many years, I saw tears in my dad’s eyes because he knew he had just cheated death. He promised us all that in the future he would not be so stubborn when it comes to going to the doctor. The doctor had explained the gangrene is not something you want to screw with. We were all pretty taken with this ordeal. We all have sat back and given many things new attention, like our wills and family affairs. I took my dad home Sunday morning, got him all settled in, and called it a day myself. I hadn’t really been home in the last 5 days so I wanted to spend some time with my wife and kids. Lucky for me there was some icing on the cake Sunday evening, I got to Skype with my oldest daughter and my 2 y/o granddaughter who live in South Dakota. There is no better feeling than your young granddaughter to tell you she loves you and it will be okay grandpa.

We all had the crap scared out of us this past week and we owe our thanks to the doctor who was wise enough to do a great job with my dad. I know, for myself for sure, I will always be in his debt for giving my dad another chance in life. He’s not done yet because he is a stubborn old fart who just don’t know how to give up. I know now that he will take his aches and pains a little bit more serious and not dismiss everything as “gas”. I didn’t know too much about gangrene before this last week, but after allot of reading it scares me to know that my dad was riding that razor’s edge and didn’t even know it. Anyway, that has been my last few days, I just wanted to let everyone know I didn’t fall off the edge of the planet or something.

The Possibility Of Designer Babies

0000 DNA-sequencing-photo

Being adopted I have often questioned my roots. I have always had the questions about my traits, which ones are genetic and which ones are unique. Since becoming a legal adult I have been on a couple national and international adoption listings. I get really weird mail and e-mail on occasion with different ways to look into my genetic paths of the past. I have always had two concerns with being adopted which are my own health questions with an unknown family history as we all those same questions for my children and grandchildren. Over the years I have spent countless (1000s and 1000s) hours doing records research, phone calls, letter writing, and door knocking, all with few or poor results. It was a challenge for me personally because I didn’t actually want to know who my biological family was, I just wanted to know family medical history for my own peace of mind. Due to the conditions of my adoption back in 1968, my adoption records were sealed only to be opened by my biological mother. It took much time and a fair amount of court costs to have that over-ruled and have my adoption records un-sealed. In the end it was actually a fruitless effort since 99% of the included information was indeed false. However, there was one vital piece of information that was included, and that was her social security number. I was able to use her social security number to track her down. I will leave it there as this is getting into another story for another day. So, the other day I get a letter from a company called 23andMe announcing an opportunity for myself to be genetically tested for multiple reasons. I called the provided phone number and had a chat with a very nice receptionist who explained that my name was drawn from a national seeking adoption information listing. I was told that the genetic information would provide me a genetic history which could be used to further map my existence. Want to talk about a “WOW” and “WTF” moment all rolled up tightly together, this was it.

After I hung up the phone I was still a little stunned and really didn’t know what to think. I began a conversation with my wife to review what we already knew about “me” and what more we could want to know. Starting with the simple things I knew we remembered that the date on my birth certificate had been altered to read the 7th of November when it was actually found to be the 6th of November. Why this was done has been a controversial question I have had for many years, but after receiving my original “original” from the hospital I was born in I let it rest. As far as genetic history I had found out that my heritage is “Viking” and can be traced back a good 900 years with some really cool family heirloom documents, crests, flags, and so forth. It has been interesting to find things related to these documents and symbols over the years. I was also able to produce some nice results from Ancestry.com which confirmed allot of what I was told as family “folklore” and so forth. It has always been an interesting ride when researching. It has been so interesting that all three of my children have done anything from family tree projects to full on heritage research essays over the years. Now, what does all of this has to do with anything at all? It’s simple, from my point of view, because the resources, as scarce as they may be, are out there if you know what you are looking for and sometimes even if you don’t know what you are looking for. My wife and I decided to explore what we could find out about 23andMe and what that company was all about. There have been many, and I mean many, articles, papers, reports, and stories written about this company. Most of what we read all ended up with them talking about the morality of what this company does for a living. Why? Recently the company received a patent on a product that could allow parents to calculate “traits” of their future offspring. It’s been called a Personalized Genomics Revolution by some since what it allows a person to do is unlike anything in the past. Now, I’m not going to do a run down on everything ever said or what others think about the company. What I want to do is explore what this patent, which the company says it will never use, has to say and/or do with our future as human beings.

The first question I would have is why patent a process that you promise will never ever be used? What’s the point? Is it solely a proprietary issue? Is it because the research and technology industry is so competitive? These are questions which I could not find the answers to. Had I not had contact with this company would I be asking these questions or would I have the questions at all? Good question. We here it in the news, read it in the papers, see the articles in magazines, here it from other people, and read it on the internet about the advancements in genetics and what is theorized to be able to be done. There are many claims being made by the scientists of the world and they have their critics as well as their fans. One thing I find interesting is that critics claim the scientists are “playing God” and screwing with mother nature in their research. I find that amusing on so many levels its unbelievable. First, what does “playing God” really mean? Aren’t we talking about science here? We are not talking theologies, theories, or myths so how can God even come into the equation. I’m not knocking people and their beliefs but I personally believe that God and science are two completely different topics altogether. Past my own opinions I think that genetic research has led to many great discoveries in the scientific and medical world. The human race has moved forward because of scientific discovery and will continue to improve ourselves as time goes by. But what is the cost? What do we lose in the process? Will we skip steps in human evolution that should take thousands to millions of years? One thing I do disagree with, and I’m pretty firm on this, is using science and medicine to alter how a baby is created. The mixing, splicing, and choosing the genes of a baby in a pre-pregnancy soup really bothers me. We do not want a generation of science experiment children which will spend their whole lives being examined and observed to verify if the scientists were right or not. But, wait. it’s already being done in the plant and animal kingdom isn’t it? We already ingest in one way, form, or fashion, the science behind our food and drinks already. Now, the line into human testing can be crossed. Is it ethical? Is it moral? Is it righteous? Is it needed?

So, what would happen if I purchased a “DIY Kit” and sent a sample of my DNA into to be tested, categorized, localized, and a genetic trail to be created? How would this benefit me? Would the information learned, if any, be beneficial to me? I think I will be passing on the opportunity. I think there are things about “ME” that might be better left unknown. I think I will pass so the off chance my DNA isn’t misused somehow by “accident”. I will leave it right there. Some other information I found interesting is that the past price for the kit was $299.00 and has been reduced to $99.00 in hopes to get more of the general public to participate. Something very interesting about Anne Wojcicki is she is the wife of the co-founder of Google, Sergey Brin, who recently gave an investment of $50M ($50,000,000.00). Coincidence? I wonder if it was a personal check or a Google company check because the press release doesn’t actually say. If it is a Google investment does that mean that Google will somehow play a role in the future of genetic tracking? Or is Sergey Brin just protecting his wife’s investment. Interesting sometimes to look where the money comes from and why. Except the “Why” rarely surfaces it’s ugly little head. Hey, I’m not knocking it, if one has the means the by all means do with your money what you please. But high profile people should expect that Joe Public just might a basic question or three.

hl-viking