Gabe with Lady Ramona, the statue from our last house. Just under Ms. Ramona's armpit is Hank's grave.
We have pink, red, yellow, orange and white roses growing around the perimeter of our house and they are very abundant this year due to all the wet weather. I thought they were annoying at first but I've come to realize that I can give Jil a dozen roses at any time, for free. It's pretty sweet and makes me look good.
KT in the hospital
Karl was in Utah Valley last week and had quite a scare. (BTW, check out Voo's blog for some great photos of Karl). He is now back home and feeling better. However, it was a pretty shaky scene when we walked into his room on Friday night. He had a large breathing apparatus on his face that looked like that egg from the Alien movies that plants the alien monster into your stomach. He was kind of alert and was obviously happy to see his family there, studying the various charts and monitors that give an update on his vitals from moment to moment. But the room was so tiny. Apparently Utah Valley didn't plan on all the equipment that has now become such a part of patient care. Even so the room was way too small. I felt like we were visiting him in a closet. He was moved after a few days to another room that was larger and that helped.
Hospitals are so lame. They do exactly the opposite of what you want them to do: they make you feel sicker. How can you get better with sick folk all around you? Don't get me wrong. I'm grateful they had a place for Dad that could get him back on track and a good doctor that really seemed to care about him and his well being. But how many times when walking to his room did I have to look into another patients' room and see them in some sort of tortured state? It was like a never ending slide show of the infirm and enfeebled. I guess you just put your head down and don't look up until you reach your patients' room.
Plus, almost everything you touch feels a little sticky. I used those anti-bacterial bottles about once every ten minutes and still felt gross. The handles have some weird lacquer on them, the stainless steel appears to have a bunch of stains and the sheets looked gray. The food is barely worth mentioning at all except that it keeps you alive. The only redeeming factor of the hospital were the people caring for Karl. He had some really good nurses and one or two whackjobs. That's to be expected. It's like any experience you have in the service industry: some people just get it and others are clueless. It may be too much to ask for all hospital staff to have some kind of bedside manner, but why get in that profession in the first place if you don't genuinely care for sick people? I've never understood the Rude Nurse.
Other things I've never understood:
Homework for elementary school kids. If you have a child in school for eight hours a day and they come home with two more hours of school work, you have failed as an educational system. Kids need a break. They need some time to be kids. My kid comes home, does his homework, eats and then gets maybe an hour to be a kid before going to bed. It's ridiculous. These little students are not in college. Their capacity to retain information stops at about 2pm. Let's just stop with the worksheets, the huge spelling tests and the dumb as hell science projects.
Dropping the F Bomb (not THE F Bomb but the word) in a sales meeting. My boss is a great guy and I like him a lot. But the other day he said the f word in a sales meeting and it sounded so lame. He sounded like an idiot. He was trying to stress a certain point that he was angry about and felt it would be more impactful to tell us "This is f***ing bullshit". HIS boss, the VP of our company, turned red and rolled his eyes. Clearly it was not the venue for a naughty word. Here's some advice: when you've resorted to swearing to get control of your sales team, you've already lost control.
Thieves. Of all the crime related professions, this one is the worst (we're talking non-violent crime here). My friend Joey Watts is in town and staying at his in-laws (they are in Europe). He is also borrowing his brother in law's road bike and we have been able to go on a few rides this week. He left the garage door up for ten minutes on Thursday afternoon and when he went back to close it, he discovered someone had stolen the bike and a bunch of expensive power tools and a few other items. I can't tell you how many times I was robbed in Hawaii, from my credit cards to my day planner to swim fins to clothes. Also, I've had a bunch of CD's stolen from an apartment and my stereo ripped off from the parking lot of Gart Sports a few years back.
Thieves, BURN IN HELL.
The handshake/hug/bro hug/stones/knuckles/awkward greeting between guys. I met my friend Eric for lunch on Thursday at Market Street Broiler. We hadn't seen each other for a few months and I was looking forward to catching up with him. However, I wasn't looking forward to the greeting. Eric and I have always had a hard time greeting each other. We've known each other for 15 years and I would consider him a hug-worthy pal. Someone you see and just give a quick hug and pat on the back and say, Good to see you my friend. Come, let us eat and drink and discuss the affairs of our lives. But Eric and I aren't sure how to address each other upon arrival. He raises his hand for a...what? A high five? A sideways handshake? I kind of get ready for a hug but he's just ready for a shake. Cool, no problem, I move my hand to shake and then he opens his arms for the hug. I now have to move my arms out quickly and after we embrace, it feels soooooo awkward. The valet watching us I'm sure was just taking in the supreme goofiness of the whole thing. When we made eye contact after both of us just had this shameful, stupid look on our faces that made it even worse. I should have just said, "Boy that was weird" and we could have laughed about it. Our lunch was fine but I won't be calling him soon because we'll have to greet each other again. Painful.