Monthly Archives: January 2007

Non-Opiate Rambling

On one hand I don't really mind that I'm not on many painkillers (they're just a small step up from OTC — I turned down heavier ones — and because I don't take as many as I am allowed), because I prefer to be aware of what's going on in my body than not. On the other hand, I wish I'd been doped up to the point of not knowing quite what's real and what's not for this video… ah, Klingon Karaoke night.

So I kind of waffle between “something has gone terribly wrong and I need to go to the hospital now” (when things hurt a lot) and “in about fifteen minutes I will be completely healed” (when I feel alright). Ha. No happy middle ground for me in anything I suppose. The joint (so where they removed the core of the tumor) doesn't feel that bad — at this point it's no more painful than it was before the biopsy — but the half of my calf that was cut through aches like crazy and still doesn't have feeling. That said, to the best of my understanding, that's perfectly normal.

“There is no one who, after having endured pain or sickness, does not experience the slightest, vaguest twinge of regret. Although longing to recover, those who suffer intensely for a long time sense an irreparable loss in their improvement. If pain is part of your being, overcoming it is like a loss and causes a pang of regret. I owe to suffering the best parts of myself as well as all that I have lost in my life. Therefore I cannot curse or love suffering.”
     – E.M.Cioran, The Ambiguity of Suffering (1934)

They told me that after the tumor is removed (so far they've just removed a piece of it, and it's still inconclusive whether I'll be losing any of my tibia or not), that it'll take my brain a while to train itself not to have pain there, which is sort of neat.

Anyway, I am sooooo looking forward to the “pundit exchange program” today between O'Reilly and Colbert… I hope O'Reilly freaks out and punches him on television or something crazy, but who knows. Maybe they can talk about China's new satellite killing technology or Iran's 300+ kph rocket torpedos that they've been buying from Russia voraciously over the last year (an unusual weapon in terms of its pros and cons, based on the Shkval torpedo, but with better guidance systems like the German Barracudas have). I actually only found out about that weapon because I was wondering if a supercavitating submarine could smash the Atlantic crossing record and was doing some reading on it.

Hey, sometimes tech is worthwhile as well as just cool.

Other than that, here's something to think about. In the 1940s (and before) an amateur aviator named Adalbert Schmid flew a series of DIY orinthopters (airplanes with “flapping” wings instead of propellers). His vehicles had three to ten horsepower engines, and could fly as fast as 120 kph. Oh, and so you can compare the efficiency of flying to your 16MPG SUV, his airplanes got almost 160MPG.

That said, they couldn't tow a boat.

Opiate Rambling

This is going to be a bit rambly and quite possibly filled with gramatical errors and word substitutions. And feel free to read the paragraphs in any order you feel like. It's all the same.

So one of the other guys in the ward with me was a thirty-year old homeless guy that had his leg put through a bicycle post (the round ones) and shattered in front of the shelter he was staying at… So not only was his leg a serious mess, but the shelter had thrown out his possessions while he was in the hospital, and the hospital had cut off his pants in the process of dealing with his injuries… Talk about having a bad Saturday night.

When I was having my IV put in, the anesthesiologist is like, “I'm going to apply numbing now”. And I look over and she's got the syringe ready, and she sticks me, and I feel the (now so familiar) sensation of lidocaine tearing and spreading under the skin. I asked her why she was numbing it since the IV needle would have hurt less than the local — maybe I had a student anesthesiologist or something, because when she put the full size IV needle in, blood started spraying everywhere and a second later my hand was covered in blood and it was running up my arm.

I just got flowers, which was very nice. When the doorbell was ringing I thought it might have been the property manager for this house, because there was a vague plan for her to come and check out the damage today (the gap between the wall and the staircase is definitely growing with every day past warranty). I'm definitely not up for giving a tour of the house today though so I'm definitely glad it was flowers!

I warned a couple of the people involved with the procedure that I had explicit tattoos that I didn't want to surprise anyone. They told me, “oh, trust me, we've seen everything” — which I'm sure is true, but still, I have no doubt they had a chuckle about it while I was under. In the recovery room, one of the nurses (super friendly) was checking it out and commenting what nice work it was… I dozed a little and opened my eyes and noticed a doctor looking at my sleeve. He told me it was really nice and the nurse asked if she could show him my chestpiece — I told her, “sure, as long as you don't think it will offend him.” With a sly grin, she says something along the lines of, “oh, I'm sure this tattoo won't offend Dr. [Can't remember]”. So I don't know if he's got a reputation as a perv or as a prude, but it was funny either way.

The first thing I remember when I woke up in the recovery room was asking what time it was — 1:30PM. Later I asked them about the rest of my schedule. At 12:30 I went under the general, and my procedure ended at 1:20. I am amazed at how fast you recover from a general these days — I haven't had surgery under a general since I was a teenager and a rural hospital decided to explore my nuts, and I guess things have changed a lot since then (and I suppose outside of the obvious, these days I'd have had my balls ultrasounded or something instead of cut open). But anyway, it's pretty cool that you can knock someone totally out and bring them back.

The girl who did my admission at the hospital was really funny (I love it when normal looking people confess to me that they're “freaks” too). Anyway, it was a cool crossed-paths, because she'd been tattooed by my old friend Thor ages ago — she said she'd be covered in tattoos, but that if she was, her boyfriend would never marry her. It was hilarious because she was really manic… I can see her going out one day and getting just covered. Maybe you'll see her on ModBlog.

The day of the procedure I was given some morphine right after I came out from the general (1:30PM) and never got any painkillers other than that. There was literally no pain whatsoever while I was lying in the bed, it was wild. But at the same time, it made it really boring, especially because I was released so much later than expected (thankfully Saira and Michael hung out). Anyway, they gave me a prescription for low-level painkillers (Tylenol with Codeine), but I didn't bother filling it because I wasn't sore or forgot in the rush to get home. After hanging out with Saira and Jon, I went up to bed (a four story climb), and couldn't sleep due to the pain.

In the morning Jon picked up my painkillers (and a cane), but I was pretty worried because I had initially been told I'd be walking out of the hospital the same day and that the biopsy's healing would be a non-issue. The thing is, while the joint and tumor area was really sore, the main pain I felt was in my calf muscle, and the entire left half of the lower leg had no sensation… I noticed that the bandages around my inicision were tight, probably denting the skin in about an inch. I loosened it, which reduced the pain a great deal (and I'm sure the painkillers helped too!). I was worried that a potential eighteen hours of having my leg tourniquetted, so I called up my surgeon (who didn't know I'd been discharged — he thought he'd be seeing me in person) and he let me know that to get to the tumor to take the saple they had to cut through the muscle (if they'd gone a more direct path, they'd have to deal with a lot of nerves and blood vessels). So I guess the severed muscle is spasming or something and it's supposed to hurt. I'd rather it didn't hurt, but it's good to know it's not a complication. I actually just changed the dressing and everything looks very healthy.

I was supposed to get tattooed tomorrow but because of the cut through the calf I'm not back in my feet yet or really feeling very well, so I had to cancel that appointment. So another day of Star Trek and a little typing. The only thing that sucks is that the closest bathroom is two stories away, ha…

Blood wine please

So I have a lot of stories to tell about my hospital stay but I don't feel up to a ton of typing today. But I wanted to let you know that other than soreness from the cuts through my calf muscle (not fun) and drilling into the bone (not so bad) I feel about right I think (which is pretty crappy right now, ha). Anyway, with any luck I'll be more up to speed again tomorrow. I won't be replying to any messages today and don't really plan on being online.

Bone grinding

 

So a BME update is in place with a ton of new images (although we're still wading through the holiday backlog). Unfortunately I didn't manage to create all of the user accounts, and it's already past my pre-surgery day bedtime. Hopefully Phil will be able to create them in the morning. If not I apologize for the inconvenience — it will definitely be done soon either way.

I guess surgery makes you all weepy-keyboarded because I just wanted to publicly thank Phil for both being a good friend and his hard work in keeping BME images processed. I also wanted to thank Jon and Saira for all their help and friendship this year and say how much it's helped me, and that without both their help it would have been a very difficult year for me. Anyway, I could ramble on because there are so many wonderful people in my life, but eventually that get's all boo-hoo-silly because what I'm having done tomorrow is totally no big deal and short of some complication with the anesthetic (it's done under a general surprisingly), there's not a whole lot that can go wrong.

That said… If I die, I have a simple warning reminder for you that I've brought up many-a-time: Beware the Robot Apocalypse.

I'm serious. First they get a taste for blood by feasting on the hottest blood of all, and then they move on to the coldest — man.

But yeah. I'll post here Monday if I'm up to it. In theory I could be released from the hospital as early as four in the afternoon, but they've also told me that there's a bed booked for me, so who knows. Most likely I'll be out that day.

Per Mors Mortis, Adfero Anima

So last night I'm watching Jeopardy with Saira and Jon. It's interesting to watch the different ways that male and female minds are wired, and what they can instantly catch. Within a fraction of a second of it appearing on the screen below, Saira starts screaming LOOK! LOOK! LOOK! LOOK! LOOK WHAT IT SAYS!

There's a typo on the first word if you don't see it. Anyway, what's funny is that within a fraction of a second of contestant Kelly appearing on the screen, Jon shouts out I could fit my cock AND balls in her mouth — and she really did have an unusually large mouth.

Anyway… I was thinking about a better way to commit military mass murder.

Here's my plan for what US foreign policy should be.

The US should arm itself with tens of thousands of UAVs and missiles, enough to be capable of laying ruin via firestorm to an entire country border to border with the push of a button. No worrying about collatoral damage — if war really is needed, then let it be decisive and historically permanent. So everyone and everything dies.

But as the offending country is being bombed, along with the bombs are dropped ceramic “seedbombs” containing inside them a multitude of seeds for weeds, trees, vegetables, fungal spores, soil bacteria, and so on. As the cities and landscape smouldered and rotted, water would begin seeping into the shells, causing them to expand and split, spreading their seeds and seeing them sprout. Small scavengers and insects from surrounding areas and unbombed pockets would join the fresh ecosystem.

So push a button and the Genesis Weapon reduces your enemy to a catastrophic wasteland, and then over then next decade replaces their territory with lush farmland ready for you to claim as your own. Yeah, ok, so there's a small issue of pollution. Yeah, ok, so it's sort of monstrous. Yeah, ok, so it's a total ripoff from Star Trek II.


zoom if you want

But I have writer's block (I have to get a column for a print magazine finished for, well, yesterday) so I doodled it while I was working on other things. I also have three canvasses that I have to decide what sort of triptych I'm going to do on them but that's a project for another day…

Well, time to get to work.