25 November 2007 by Published in: General musings 6 comments

We’re back home in Columbus after a long weekend of travel. Due to Susan’s work schedule, we couldn’t leave for Pennsylvania until Thursday morning. We dropped the dogs off on Wednesday night, as the boarding place was not taking drop-offs on Thursday morning. We got out early on Thursday and arrived at my parents’ house about 3:00 on Thursday, after checking in at the hotel. Due to their health and our schedule, we ended up going out to dinner. The problem with going out to dinner on Thanksgiving is that there are no seconds, there are no leftovers, and there is no turkey carcass to pick. I would much prefer to eat at home.

We braved the Black Friday crowds, did some shopping for work clothes for Susan, and got to visit with my cousins on Saturday. This morning, we hit the road about 10:30, and the traffic was horrific. It added about an hour to the trip, but we’re home.

Many of you have asked about my father and his progress. We spent some quality time with him. The good news is that the hemorrhage has completely re-absorbed, and that he’s doing well physically. He has a deficit on the right side, but he’s learned to compensate for it, and does so quite well. He can walk pretty well with his cane, and he can get around reasonably well. He can feed himself, and he’s actually made remarkable progress from a physical standpoint. However, his speech is definitely a mess. I can only understand about half of what he says, and then have to figure out the rest from context. It’s a major challenge. Although the speech therapists continue to work with him three days a week, with a nifty Apple Power Book notebook running some very specialized (and astonishingly expensive) software, I don’t see it getting any better. He also has a ton of trouble processing names. My cousin David–his nephew–visited yesterday, and my father called him Raymond all day. He knows David’s name, but with things being jumbled, it comes out as Raymond. He called me “hey you” several times, too. When he’s not thinking about names, he does pretty well. However, when he actively thinks about names, that’s when it gets all jumbled. It’s kind of amusing, but at the same time, it’s very frustrating for him and for my mother.

The most difficult thing for me is that for the first time, I saw him as a little old man. Up until the day before the stroke, he’d managed to avoid the ravages of age. Even at 86, he was very active and very vigorous. He still drove, he still worked a little bit part time, still did crossword puzzles, did all of the grocery shopping and most of the cooking, and never, ever looked or acted his age. What shocked me on Thursday was the realization that the stroke has finally enabled Mother Nature to catch up to him. He now looks and acts like an 87 year old guy. He’s frail, he needs a cane to walk, he’s cold all the time, and he’s finally acting his age for the first time. Never having seen it before, it really caught me off guard.

But, he’s still alive, and all things considered, he’s doing as well as I could possibly have hoped, given the scope and extent of the stroke.

Now, I’m hunkered down on the couch for Sunday night football, wearing my brand-new Philadelphia Eagles hoodie. The question is: just how badly are the Patriots going to whup up on the McNabb-less Birds?

I hope everyone had a good (and filling) Turkey Day. Tomorrow, it’s back to work and back to the Late Unpleasantness.

Scridb filter


  1. Sun 25th Nov 2007 at 10:12 pm

    As I write it’s tied-up at 14 and the Eagles have the ball. Anything is possible.

  2. Sun 25th Nov 2007 at 10:18 pm

    So far, so good, Kevin. Who knows how it will end. At least Feeley hasn’t embarrassed himself. ๐Ÿ™‚


  3. Mike Nugent
    Mon 26th Nov 2007 at 12:53 am

    “… The question is: just how badly are the Patriots going to whup up on the McNabb-less Birds? …”

    Ends up that wasn’t really the question after all! After last week’s Jets – Steelers debacle I warned Diane (my rabid Pat’s fan of a wife) that the game is played on the field and anything can happen. She ended up pacing the floor for most of the game and even though the Pats pulled this one off her usual post-game strut is significantly muted tonight!

    Dec. 9th – Pats vs. Steelers. IMO Pittsburgh is the only team left on the schedule that can spoil NE’s “perfect” season. In any event it will be an interesting evening around here!

    Black Friday shopping?! You’re a braver man than me!

  4. Mon 26th Nov 2007 at 11:59 am

    So glad to hear that your father is doing better my friend. My experience has taught me to be thankful for even the ‘small steps.’ Being a Pittsburgh native, I agree with Mike that ‘our’ Steelers are the only ones who are a threat to N.E., but I doubt that anyone will stop this juggernaut. However, the Steelers spoiled a couple other ‘perfect seasons’ in years-past, so anything is possible. All this mediocre-football talk really makes me miss baseball even more…and now that the NASCAR season is over, life here in VA is quite boring.

  5. Paul Taylor
    Mon 26th Nov 2007 at 8:11 pm

    At last, my Browns are doing something other than pulling defeat from the jaws of victory in spectacular fashion. Being in Columbus, you can easily root for the Brownies if your Eagles disappoint! ๐Ÿ™‚


  6. Mon 26th Nov 2007 at 11:41 pm

    Well, the Eagles did better than I realistically had a right to hope for. But for some God-awful play calling that cost them the game, they stayed right with New England for the entire game. I think that John Madden was right that the Eagles have given the rest of the league a roadmap for beating the Patriots.

    The big question now is whether McNabb should just be handed back the reins, or whether A. J. Feeley has deserved a shot at being the starting quarterback. I’m a McNabb fan, but he clearly has not been himself this year, probably coming back from his ACL reconstruction too quickly.

    Paul, I just may have to do that.


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