Friday, February 27, 2009


The following was passed on to me and is laugh out loud funny. Next time I'm due for a colonoscopy, I'm going to work some of this material into my gig.....

A physician claimed that the following are actual comments made by his patients (predominately male) while he was performing their colonoscopies:

1. 'Take it easy, Doc. You're boldly going where no man has gone before!

2. 'Find Amelia Earhart yet?'

3. 'Can you hear me NOW?'

4. 'Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?'

5. 'You know, in Arkansas , we're now legally married.'

6. 'Any sign of the trapped miners, Chief?'

7. 'You put your left hand in, you take your left hand out...'

8. 'Hey! Now I know how a Muppet feels!'

9. 'If your hand doesn't fit, you must quit!'

10. 'Hey Doc, let me know if you find my dignity.'

11. 'You used to be an executive at Enron, didn't you?'

12. 'God, now I know why I am not gay.'

And the best one of all....

13. 'Could you write a note for my wife saying that my head is not up there?'

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Absence of Common Sense

Several incidents in past 3 days gave me time to reflect on the beleaguered American workforce. Alas, what I found ain't pretty folks. Where is our common sense?

I walked into my local Lenscrafters the other day and am stopped by this tall African-American lady who barked out, "What do you want here?"

I looked around quizically, and said, "You sell shoes here right?"

She didn't get the humor but the gals at the optomotrists desk did. What did she think I was doing at an eyeglass shop? I have to wonder how some people manage to find the door on their way out of the house each morning.

There is an absolute flurry of activity going on right now at Casa Runyon. The carpet installers are here so that meant my having to get all the little stuff boxed up and put away leaving only the furniture. As I sit at the kitchen table while that stuff is going on, the pool repair guys are in the backyard drawing straws to see who gets to jump in the 50 degree water to change out the pool lights. At least it's not me.

Now the carpet guys are an interesting pair. I could hear their moans of disgust at having to move the furniture. I don't get it. This is their job. Do they think husbands and wives make better furniture movers than a couple of 250 pound guys? When the carpet salesmen showed up it's not like he didn't see furniture in the house. He priced his bid accordingly. I even helped these guys since my back is 100% better (the discs probably exploded earlier this morning but I can't feel anything - haha), yet they still have this look on their face, like, "Who's gonna lift THAT?"

"Hold on a second guys, let me get my wife, she can do it."

The pool guy is stalking the pool like a shark circling its prey. He doesn't want to jump in the pool but he has to. And since I'm not paying him by the hour, he can stare at the water all day long to see if that will make it warm up. Why he doesn't have a wetsuit is his problem. To me, that would make perfect sense.....that the pool light repairman would have a suit and be able to jump in and out of cold pools all day long. Nope. He's gonna waste a couple of hours and psyche up to make the plunge. Surely someone must have thought about the pros and cons of buying a wetsuit?

My glasses did manage to get done within about an hour. This is a good thing since I can read small print again.

The carpet guys are on their umpteenth break and hundreth sigh.....You'd think they would be happy to be working? If only they could get a management job....Then they would have to shower every day.

The pool guy? He left. He got all the way up to his ankles and then backed out.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Fine Saturday

Assorted injections over the past few weeks? Check

Perfect day for golf? Check

First time on a golf course in 3+ months? Awesome.

After ALL the back and shoulder medical mini-drama over the past few months, I was FINALLY able to tee it up today after a long respite. It could not have gone better.

Wade put our usual foursome together for an 11:30am tee time. This is the perfect tee time for me since I loathe mornings and it's not too late where it affects saturday afternoon nappy time.

I was pretty sure my clubs were still up at TPC but I had no idea what was in my locker so I loaded up on golf balls that I received for my birthday and Christmas, tossed a light jacket in my car and sped off.

Nervous? Nah. I had worked myself up into the usual state of mind where trash talking reigns supreme. Some guys can handle, some can't. The guys I play with can and that what makes it fun.

No problems on the range. Everything felt great. Better than I'd felt in years. Alas, my glory was short-lived. I made par on the first hole and the rest of the group each made a bogey. I was in the lead. This didn't last long when my tee shot on #2 hopped into the desert, and my 3rd shot landed in the greenside bunker. An up and down for bogey was a welcome score.

At the end of the round, I tallied up the scores: I shot an 86 - higher than usual, but I was quite pleased with the result. At the outset of the day, I told myself I'd be happy breaking 90 and I did. My shoulder and back? Not a peep out of either. I was very happy about this.

Afterward I had to go over to my moms and fix her dishwasher (I'm a renaissance man- I do it all). Once home, the couch was screaming at me and I settled in for a nice long Saturday afternoon nap before heading off to the UNLV-BYU basketball game.

For the first time in some 15+ years the Thomas & Mack was sold out. I was skeptical since I saw a few solid sections that didn't have anyone there, but hey, if that's what they want to say to get the crowd fired up, so be it.

I was excited to see what the crowd mix was going to be tonight. With an 8pm start, this meant an extra hour of drinking for the cocktail crowd. For sure many a rebel fan would be inebriated to the point of embarrassment tonight. We saw a lot of these folks as we took the escalator up the stairs and in line heading into the building. I didn't see much blue - a good thing. Despite my dislike for BYU, I really didn't want to see the UNLV fans humilate themselves again in front of the coogs. We like funny drunks, not sloppy mean ones.

The game was outstanding. The first half sucked but both teams more than picked it up in the 2nd half. Just when people were streaming out of the arena with a few minutes left, BYU puts on a furious rally and the rebels held on for 75-74 win for a season sweep of the hated cougars. The rebels are still a full game back in the loss column behind New Mexico, San Diego State, and BYU. They are 3 games behind Utah and play them on Wednesday in SLC. All the teams in the Mountain West will probably lose 1-2 more games, and Utah tends to implode so we may end up with a massive 5 way tie for the title. Then again, the only lock for the big dance goes to the winner of the conference tournament. Luckily for UNLV it's held at home so just pencil the rebels in for one of the conferences spots - they'll probably get 3. I hope they don't pick BYU since they lose in the first round all the time, and have that pesky rule where they won't play on Sunday so IF they make the NCAA tournament, they have to play the Thursday/Saturday bracket.

Beggars can't be choosers. But they are.

And that's why we don't like them.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Can YOU Do it?

I saw a neat article today about a woman in Florida who said "You don't have to be a politician to put forth a stimulus package." Now before you think my head is in the gutter, the implication here is for ALL of us to perhaps reach out alittle more to our friends, neighbors, strangers and yes even relatives who we may run across each day who are struggling to cope during this unprecedented period in American history.

She continued, "Anybody can help anybody at any time. It doesn't need to be something that comes from Washington; it can come from your own home and from your heart, even if it's for a little bit." Mother Teresa once said, "Do not wait for leaders-do it alone, person to person."

I immediately liked this idea. I should be doing this stuff anyway. My problems are small, manageable and really not problems. I have been selfish. People with health issues or those who are in a financial freefall who have found themselves upside down and behind on their mortgage, or worse, homeless, make my heart ache.

On the subject of housing, regardless of whether or not folks bought too much house, stretched themselves to the breaking point to get the house of their dreams is irrelevant now - people need to get their confidence back. Their Tre'Von Willis-like swagger. Banks need to forgive penalties, lower interest rates to reasonable levels, and get money going back into the system. Moving forward is the ONLY option.

Now, more than ever, Americans need to have more patience with each other. Smile when you meet someone. My wife is GREAT at this: Do an act of kindness each day. Let's try and lighten each others burdens - even if its only for moment. It's up to us.

You in?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Oops I Did it Again

Shoulder MRI today. Radiologist was preparing to insert dye into my shoulder and asked, "You want the anesthetic first then the dye, or just the dye?"

I looked at the needle and laughed. It was tiny.

I said, "Just shoot the dye and let's get it over with."

This time it didn't hurt, but having a needle stuck in my shoulder for about 3 minutes while chatting up the doc just seemed strange.

Five minutes after the injection, my left shoulder and arm felt like I had lead in it. My arm didn't swing quite right. It tingled. I giggled.

Next up was the MRI machine. Can you say: Claustrophobia? In the past I had to place a washcloth over my eyes and think happy thoughts. Today I was better prepared but still had to grit my teeth and still think happy thoughts. I forgot about the racket these machines make. While the machine is doing it's thing, it sounds like someone is on the outside beating it with a baseball bat. It would get quiet, the technician would mumble something I couldn't hear, and then the noise would start up all over again. After the umpteenth time, I was pulled out of the tube and couldn't yank out my earplugs fast enough and pitched them in the trash. Whew.

"You're not done," said Nick, working his way out from behind the control room.

"Now you're gonna charge my insurance company another $50 bucks for earplugs," I said.

"One more set with your arm twisted over your head."


The MRI machine should have a big dollar sign as it's logo. Nick said the they cost around a million bucks and that an MRI like mine cost $2 grand....for less than an hour in the tube.

I thought the entire gig would last from 9am to 10am tops. I wandered out of the facility at 11:15am thoroughly convinced that both of my boys need to be doctors. Even with the economy in the crapper, people were lined up 3 deep getting x-rays, MRI's, CT scans and what not. And judging from past physician bills, one year of med school has to devoted to billing and fees. Doctor and facility fees are worse than buying an airline ticket. Rarely are two bills ever the same. I think they throw darts at a board and laugh like hell all the way to the bank.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Oh the Pain of It All

I was up early today and headed to my spine specialist for an 8:30am appointment. What on earth am I doing going to a spine doctor you ask? Well, for quite some time I've experienced back pain ranging from moderate to severe-stand-up-straight-and go "Whoa, that hurt," pain for about the past 5 years (Golf injury getting progressively worse).

After years of stretching and an admitted lame attempt at rehab for exercising of the back and core muscles, I sought the help of trusted Doc Eells. He suggested an x-ray and MRI. For me this would have to be done in the afternoon since I'm bad at mornings, and afternoons were usually scheduled for golf so getting an actual diagnosis proved to be a difficult task that spanned 18 months - hey, I'm a busy guy. Plus, in my mind, my spine looked like the pipes under the sink - all curvy and whatnot. I just didn't care for it to be confirmed medically.

A few weeks ago, after all the tests were done, I met with a spine specialist, the wonderful Jorg Rosler whose German training is as precise as the engineering in any Porsche.

Jorg pulled out the MRI and held it up to the light and proceeded to show me where two of my discs were poking out of my spine ever so slightly. These two rascals were what were causing me fits and making me feel OLD. Jorg gave me a couple of shots in my rear-end before I left for Mexico, prescribed some meds, and said, "Have a good time, see you when you get back." He sounded like Arnold Schwarzenegger. Haha.

So today was the day for my spinal injection. To say I was floored when he said, "The anesthesiologist will be in shortly to start your catheter," would be an understatement.

"Hold on Doc, I thought you were just giving me some shots, uh, like last time," I managed to spit out.

He laughed. "No, no, no....those shots were nothing, today we are injecting right into your discs."

Uh oh, discs as in PLURAL? This meant not just one shot either. I asked him, "Do I have to go under? Can't I just get a local anesthetic and have you do it?"

He paused, and sort of hemmed and hawed, "Well, if you want to." Remember, he sounds like the Governator.

"Will it hurt?" I croaked.

"You should be fine Keith."

Okay then. I was going to get some shots in my back. I let out a big sigh and started to lift up my shirt and he chuckled, "No, not here, we are going to the procedure room."

"But this is where you did the other shots," I said. He laughed some more. Good crowd.

I followed him down a long hallway until we entered what appeared to be a small operating room. This was "The Procedure Room." Maybe that's the term Germans use for operating room?

I met the anesthesiologist who wasn't too happy at losing out on $800 bucks since I wasn't going under.

He was a real kick. "Just using local huh?"

"Yeah." I figured, it was just a needle - it couldn't hurt that much although since everyone I had bumped into said, amusingly, the same thing, "You're not using anesthesia?"

I immediately began to second guess my decision on the meds but I was already face down with my shirt pulled up and pants yanked down exposing the small of my back. "No biggie," I thought, this will be over soon and I can go grab some breakfast."

When the first needle when in I felt fine, until it kept going in. OUCH.

"Anyone ever tell you that you have a deep back?" Jorg blurted. By now the pain was searing.

"Uh, no, never, not really but maybe that's what makes my ass look so good." Everyone laughed except me. The pain was making me sweat.

Jorg had moved on to the 2nd injection. More sweat. Waves of nausea began to come over me. Uh oh.

"I need a longer needle," Jorg quipped.

"You're kidding right?"


I could feel the needle being pulled out only to learn that he was only HALFWAY done. Holy Smokes! I told him, "Mach Schnell!" which is "hurry up" in German. I'd learned this on Hogan's Heroes.

Jorg began to sense he was losing me to blacking out and asked me a bunch of stupid questions. "Who's your favorite football team?" "EEEEEEAGLES....YOURS?"

3rd needle just being pulled out.


4th needle going in. More sweat. More nausea. "What the..."

Then, I felt the needle being pulled out. We were done. I reached under the headrest to push my eyeballs back into their sockets, and managed to pulled myself up.

"You did great Keith,"echoed throughout the room. Me? I wanted to vomit.

I then said, "Next time I'm going under." Everyone busted up. Some dude came to push me into recovery and the lady there looked at me funny.

I said, "I guess I don't need recovery since I didn't go under."

She eyed me again with all of her 60 plus years of wisdom and said, "I need to take your vitals."

I'll be back there on February 13th for another round of shots including an epidural that should last for several months.

I'm going under.

Way under.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Rebel Rebel

FINALLY feeling better after the Mexico debacle. I did take the Saturday flight through Atlanta and gutted it out in the Delta lounge quaffing ginger ale and eating pretzels while charging up my laptop so I could watch "24" on the ride home. Watching Jack Bauer save the United States from disaster kept my attention from wandering and allowed me to survive 4 hours in the air next to a big, fat, cigar-smelling guy who had the aisle seat, thus stuffing me next to the window. Again, I had to focus to the nth degree and gut it out. Ebong met me in baggage claim and whisked me home. Home never felt so good. I was glad that Doc Eells took care of my meds and I tossed those down with a couple cans of diet pepsi. It was 12:30am and I wasn't tired, so I watched the Australian Open final between Rafa Nadal and Roger Federer. That took me to 4:30am - I fell asleep then.

I arose the next day feeling much better and not just because it was Super Bowl Sunday. I kept an eye on the pre-game show but seriously, a 5 hour lead in to the game with Al Roker and Conan O'Brian and other assorted NBC stars was pitiful. Even Bob Costas doesn't shouldn't be doing football games - he's too small and he dyes his hair. Football players don't dye their hair Bob.

The game was a snoozefest until the 4th quarter (with the exception of the half-ending play by James Harrison) and then all hell broke loose and we had, for the 2nd year in a row no less, the greatest Super Bowl ever played. It's sort of like Nadal-Federer; each final is the best tennis match of all time. Contemporary society demands platitudes and superlatives. So be it.

Oh yeah, and the Steelers won the game. No one remembers the loser.

I'm am tormented right now. The cause of my lament? A bum left shoulder that is keeping me off the golf course. MRI next week, doc visit the following week and then either injections of WD-40 or the wing gets scoped.

Jake continues to trek the muddy streets of Ecuador. What I like about Jake is that he adapts so well to different places. He's at ease anywhere in the world and that disposition will serve him well in life.

Alec and Tiff continue their journey as a young, married couple. We hope to see them in a few weeks for UNLV-UTAH.

We were at the Rebel game last night and watched a close game versus San Diego State University. Alas, UNLV was beat for the first time in 3+ years on their home court during a conference game. This was not a good loss although the game did provide some funny moments. Well, actually, the funny stuff happened before the game. Here goes.... Janae and I were running late and we got to the Thomas & Mack midway through the first half. As we pulled up to the orange parking lot, the lady says, "Lot's full," and wandered away. I saw another parking guy coming so I told Janae, "Tell him I'm handicapped." She hesitated, but I had already gone into character. The guy says to Janae, "He doesnt' look so good." "Bad back," she croaked nervously.

Apparently I looked really pathetic to the point where the guy moved a bunch of orange parking cones and served us up a front row spot! I had to maintain character, so I whispered to Janae, "Come over and help me out of the car." She rolled her eyes. I giggled.

As Janae AND the parking guy were helping me out of the car I had to bite my tongue to surpress my laughter. My neck was cocked to one side, I pulled my right elbow in, and I shuffled like Ray Charles. As I walked toward the escalators, Janae kept looking back to see if the guy was looking - he was - so I had to maintain the limp/gimp strut. At the top of the stairs Janae said the guy wasn't looking so we bolted to the entrance. I was laughing and Janae was worried about our Karma.

What's Karma?