Tuesday, February 10, 2015

4 Miles!

I walked four miles today.  I am so psyched!  It's even more exciting since I am in the middle of my 3rd round of Pomalyst.  I started last week and tonight will be the 7th pill of 14.  The first two rounds were 1mg each evening; but this month was doubled to 2 mg.  But some part of me must be getting used to it.  Less shaking, less panic, more energy.  It's still not a cake walk.  There is still insomnia and *cough* intestinal distress.  But I'm grateful for any good news.

Now let's see what this doubling does to my numbers.


Sunday, February 01, 2015

History's "Sons Of Liberty"

To be fair, I have only watched the first of the three part series.  However, based on this first episode I must say....."History"?....not so much.

Very disappointing historical content.

That said, it's well filmed and acted. If it were an outright "drama", I would gave it many stars.

A few years ago " The History Channel" dropped "Channel" from it's name.  I would suggest they dropped the wrong word.

As I said, I have watched the first episode.  I had recorded all three episodes with plans to "binge watch".  But now I have decided to pace myself.  The third episode purports to deal with the Battle of Bunker Hill". Breath in.  Breath out.
 Just for a frame of reference, this is John Singleton Copley's 1772 portrait of Sam Adams.  Not much resemblance.

Friday, January 30, 2015

January 30, 1945 Raid at Cabanatuan

Seventy years ago today LtCol Henry Mucci of the US Army Rangers led a force of Rangers and Alamo Scouts in the largest and most successful rescue of American prisoners of war in American military history.

The Japanese held approximately 500 prisoners of war at Cabanatuan Prisoner Camp in the Philippines toward the end of World War Two.  These prisoners were largely made up of Bataan Death March survivors.  Men barely alive.  Allied/American intelligence knew that as our forces were successfully moving through the Pacific, the Japanese captors were killing POWs.

The rescue force of 133 US Army soldiers was vastly outnumbered.  Not just those Japanese soldiers in and running the camp, but very close by was a Japanese Infantry Battalion with approximately 1,000 soldiers.

So not only did Mucci's men need to get into the camp, overwhelm the 200 or so strong Japanese captors, rescue the POWs and escape; they also had to keep the camp down the road, from sweeping in and re-enforcing the camp guards.  That's where Filipino guerrilla Captains Juan Pajota & Eduardo Joson and their forces came into play.

Pajota and Joson with their force of approximately 270 Filipino soldiers coordinated a roadblock at the Cabu River Bridge.  This attack decimated the Japanese Battalion and took that pressure off of Mucci's forces.  It still wasn't easy, but it gave the Americans a real chance of success.

LtCol Mucci had handpicked Captain Bob Prince to plan the raid.  They had to go 35 miles behind enemy lines and they had to pull it off before Japanese to slaughter the remaining prisoners & deserting the camp ahead of McArthur's arrival on Luzon.  Prince's plan, featuring Army Rangers belly crawling across a large flat, open area right up to the camp landed him in the Army Ranger Hall of Fame!
The result - a great, great success!  This pic is the liberated prisoners.  Mucci & Prince lost only two men in the raid, which is astonishing as well.  I guess for today "BostonMaggie" can say - "Rangers Lead The Way"!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Global Tests - John Kerry Just Failed It

You know I don't believe in this crap, I have the sweatshirt (kinda tattered now) to prove it.

Back when SecState John Kerry ran against "W" in 2004, he made some ridiculous statement about "Global tests" during a debate moderated by Jim Lehrer

LEHRER: New question. Two minutes, Senator Kerry. 
What is your position on the whole concept of preemptive war?
KERRY: The president always has the right, and always has had the right, for preemptive strike. That was a great doctrine throughout the Cold War. And it was always one of the things we argued about with respect to arms control.
No president, though all of American history, has ever ceded, and nor would I, the right to preempt in any way necessary to protect the United States of America. 
But if and when you do it, Jim, you have to do it in a way that passes the test, that passes the global test where your countrymen, your people understand fully why you're doing what you're doing and you can prove to the world that you did it for legitimate reasons.

I went right online and bought one of my favorite items of clothing, evah!!!  It's a sweatshirt of Uncle Sam superimposed over a UN logo pointing & saying "I DON'T DO GLOBAL TESTS".  It's been eleven years, so when people ask I explain it's a belligerent retort to an obscure political statement.

Anyway, if you did believe in them.....the test took place in Paris, France over the weekend.

 Kerry didn't even show up - his grade?

F

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Who Is Back On Pomalyst?

I'll give you a hint - I am blogging at 0500.

Never mind I have already screwed up.  I was supposed to start December 30th; lounge on the couch for 14 days and be done & have my head clear for my January plans starting January 16th.

I didn't factor in the chaos of the move.  Believe me I am thrilled with the new place...but happy chaos is still enough of a distraction.

So I'm three days late.  And I forgot to take something to pre-empt the digestive upset...strike two!

Pomalyst is taken at night, two hours after you've stopped eating.  Out of the fourteen days, two are also steroid days.  Steroids are best taken early in the day.  I got my burst of energy....but had to waste it looking for some lost paperwork.  Meh, win some, lose some.

But I am bummed, I will lose out on some of my January plans.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

We're Moving!

I've haven't been this excited about a move since John Miller, Tommy and I left our apartment on the top of Broadstreet Ave to move to Rocky Nook in July of 1981.

When Tom asked me to move down to Virginia and live with him for a while in 2013, I arranged for a temporary place in Harrisonburg near JMU for June & July.  That way we'd have two months to poke around the rental market.  There were at the time, others who had a say in our choice.  I said I didn't care except for two criteria,  One, I wanted to be within a mile of public transportation.  I haven't driven in years, unless you count nipping down to the Craigsville post office or over to the dump. My second request was that it not be a ranch house.  I find them depressing.  I can't tell you why, but I've never lived in one ..... until now.  That's right we ended up moving into a ranch house twenty-nine miles from public transit on August, 2013.

Wha' happen????  I-a-no.

The only good thing that could be said for it as far as I was concerned was that Tom's commute to the correctional facility was nil.

Tom started talking about moving  just after last Christmas and I was like a four-year old.  When are we moving?  Can we start looking?  Well first decisions had to be made about where he wanted to go.  Would he move to another facility altogether?  Which one?  Or would he stay at this one and we would move into Staunton?

Well decisions were finally made and I found something so fast Tom's head was spinning.

It's an old tavern in the historic distract called "Gospel Hill".  It is 400 feet from a trolley stop.  Staunton has a good public transit system considering you're deep in the southwest of Virginia.  It's not Boston, but hey it beats having none!  I will be less than half a mile from the Amtrak station - no more scheduling around Tom.  The library is maybe three quarters of a mile - no more worrying about overdue books.  And right up the street is -  A CATHOLIC CHURCH!!! 

Not to mention that the main thoroughfare, East Beverly Street, is full of shops and restaurants.  There is a Shakespearean troup  and a movie theater.  It's a small movie theater, but the public transit system will drop at the front door of a big, new theater.  There are supermarkets and little specialty markets.

But the apartment itself has me even without all the great things around it.  It's old, it's got tall windows and high ceilings and wood floors and a long west facing front porch.
It's a triplex.  We are the middle with a couple below us and a family above us.  The porch seems sturdy enough, but up close you can see how badly it needs to be painted.  The landlord assures us this will happen in the spring.  The open living/dining area is behind the front door and first three windows on right.  Further to the left and out of this pic will be Tom's room.
In the back you can see that they have closed in the wooden porches.  That's where the kitchen, utility room, bathroom and second bedroom are.  As with many old homes there have been renovations over the years that did it no favors, but being a little strange appeals to me.  I like that it's not like any other house around.
There will be lots of cleaning to do, but so far there has been no sign of the mold I had to contend with out here in Craigsville.  And as a special bonus, as near as I can figure the overall household budget (rent, utilities, etc.) will drop about $200.  Thank you very much for this Christmas present Santa!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Last Pomalyst Pill....

...for December will be swallowed tonight.

And not a moment too soon!  My brain is seizing up.  Decisions need to be made and I am nearly incapable.  I am messing up other meds.  I am trying to arrange my Dr. Miller visit.  I am trying to remember things.  And I am nearly paralyzed.  I've been up since 10:44am (thanks Frank!) and only just out of the shower.

Pomalyst was none of the things I thought.  Unlike Revlimid which just put me to sleep, Pomalyst makes me shaky and dizzy, but unable to sleep.  My body is physically exhausted, my eyes are burning, but I don't sleep until I nearly pass out.  Even then, it's not restful.  It's full of strange, vivid dreams.  No, it turns out Tommy didn't come out to the living room the other evening and cut his hair and make a mess after I had just swept and washed the floor.  First off, Tom shaves his head to a whisper of hair these days.  He hasn't has curls in twenty years, lol.  But Sunday evening I dropped dead on the couch while watching CSpan BookTV (yes, I am that nerd).  I woke two hours later looking around for the hair.  Author James Robbins had been discussing his new book on Custer....I think that was the hair connection.  Anyway, I got up and went to bed and could not get back to sleep at all..  I didn't sleep until midnight last night.