December 31, 2008

Fun Stuff 2008

Jan.6 - Juke Joint- Visit to Mr. Gip's Juke Joint in honor of his 86th Birthday. Pics HERE. Trip report HERE.
Jan. 15 - Pool Session at UAB. Rolled 52 times and remembered to bring towels this time.
Feb. 2 - Graffiti removal at Graves' cave. Pics here.
Feb. 2 - Jam at Kat's - First ever jam at my sister's house, in honor of my 42nd b'day.
Feb. 9 - Locust Fork, 2.8 - In my Riot Magnum. New gauge correlation. But it was low.
Feb. 22-24 - Keel Mtn. Ridgewalk, Guntersville Getaway. Pics here.
March 2 - KofC 5k run.
March 2 - Mulberry Fork Races.
I did not kayak race this year.
March 3 - Hawking with Neo.
Pics here.
March 9 - Spectator at Bike Race - Watched Cyclists go up the hill to Horse Pens 40.
March 14- Bobby Rush - Saw Bobby Rush, Big Daddy's New Band opened.
March 15- Ridgewalk on Keel Mtn. To see a lead of Dave Howell's. Rainfall had made the entrance too wet to enter. I found a new cave, my second find ever - and I named it Wake Up Well, because we went by Jason's house and woke him up, and convinced him to come with us. Indeed, I got so giddy about finding it that I almost fell in it - twice. I joked about naming it Piss My Pants Well because of that. Pics Here.
March 21- Hike, Oak Mtn. State Park. With The Hat. Went up the white trail, to the red-yellow connector just past Maggie's Glen, once on the red trail chose to take the second red-blue connector to the blue trail, then followed the blue trail back to the trail-head. Gorgeous day.
March 22 - Mulberry Fork, 2 ft. With Ken L. Beautiful weather, friendly level. Met a man in a canoe with his 13 year old son in a kayak. Kid was surfing the big spots with his dad spotting safety downstream. Wish I had started that young!
March 31 - Dan Morton and Fruit Cellar Caves. With Dave Caudle, Dave Howell, and Tom Hagood. Pics here.
April 2008. Swim Lessons at the YMCA. I learned how to swim laps. Addicting zen.
April 5-6 - Broad River Canoe Float, Athens Ga. With the Tag Paddlers. TR here. Pics here.
April 12. Alabama Football A-Day. Pics here.
April 19-20 Pre-Geezerfest. Nantahala, level 2.6 IIRC. Pics here.
April 22 - First ride with the Birmingham Bicycle Club. From the Botanical Gardens to near what used to be Eastwood Mall. I demoed a bike which I bought the next day, a Specialized Allez Elite with compact frame. 10 miles.
May 3- B'ham Grotto Anniversary at Horse Pens 40. Pics here.
May 6- Bike ride with BBC. To Wachovia on Crestwood. 17 miles.
May 10- Fossil hunt at Union Chapel Mine Site. Didn't find what I was looking for, but it was fun nonetheless. Pics here.
May 11- Bike ride, Oak Mtn. With Jim R. 20 miles.
May 13- Bike ride with BBC. To Exxon on Montclair. 13 miles.
May 16-18 - K1chik's B'day. Party and paddle at Bear's Den cabin in Nantahala gorge. I paddled Dave N.s Shredder on Saturday and Skully's Jackson Allstar on Sunday. Pics HERE.
May 20-Bike ride with BBC. 13 miles.
May 21-Bike ride -Ride of Silence. 10 miles.
May 22- my hiking accident. See blog.
June 1 - Cahaba Lilies. My friend Susan drove me to where you can walk a trail and see the lilies. Saw some caver friends in sit-on-top kayaks. Pictures HERE.
June 8
- Oak Mtn. Susan kindly drove me to Oak Mtn. and we visited the Demonstration Farm and walked up the .03 mile Treetop Nature Trail to the Wildlife Rescue Center and back.

June 9 - July 18 --- A long wasteland of boredom---
July 19 - Hiwassee!!! With various cavers, Dr. Wendy and K1chik. I rented a double ducky from Webb. Pictures here.
July 27 - Firelighter and Bangor caves, Blount Springs Sulfur Springs site. Jeff Harrod and I are led by Dave Caudle to the three caves on his property, including Wine Cellar Cave, and then directed to Firelighter cave. We stayed awhile in Dave's preferred entrance (there are 9), but did not 'cave', it is a wet cave for a through-trip. Then after driving Dave home Jeff and I went to Bangor Cave and the Blount Springs sulfur springs site. Pics HERE.
August 2 - Rappeling, Weaver Point at LRC. 230 ft. drop in Little River Canyon. A few pics HERE.
August 3 - Rolling Practice, Oak Mtn. Lake. First time back in my kayak since the accident. Did a couple of laps. Rolled 3-4 times. Wore a SixSixOne wrist brace. With Mark and Juliet.
August 9 - Coosa River, 6000 cfs. The locals think the release was closer to 5300 cfs. First time back in my kayak on whitewater since my accident! With Dr. Wendy, Alan, and Ray. Pics HERE.
August 13 - Rappel Practice at Tiny N' Nikky's House.
August 16 - Julie Ranelli's 50th B'day party.
August 17 - Rappeling at Palisades Park.
With The Hat and Jason Wall.
August 20 - Rappel Practice at Tiny N' Nikky's House.
August 22 - Return to Gym workout. First time since my accident.
August 23 - Gross Skeleton Cave. With The Birmingham Grotto. Through-Trip. Pictures HERE. Trip report HERE.
August 30 - Hiwassee. With Mark, Juliet, and The Hat. Camped at Chilhowee with Amanda and Derek.
Sept. 6-7 - Hiwassee. With the B'ham Canoe Club. A sweet cat was at the campground, with a cute puppy as its sidekick in the morning. Sunday, 1 generator at 1pm, 2 at 2 pm, the level was low. At 3 chutes the water rose to 2 generators, and then 10 minutes later started to sink again. Saw 2 snakes, helped one (water snake) across the river and the other (black racer) was on the lunchstop trail.
Sept. 18-21 - Dauphin Island. With pretty much my entire family. ;-)
Sept. 28-29 - Whitesides Mtn., N.C. Rappel. Pics Here. Trip Report 1st part here, 2nd part here. Pics from Kevin HERE.
Oct. 4 -Coosa. With Richard T. Level 8000. In my XXX.
Oct. 9-12 - TAG Fall Cave-In. Cedar Ridge Crystal Cave. Pics HERE.
Oct. 18 - Bridge Day 08. Forbidden Caverns. I visited psychicmidget, Ronzo and J., Roberts, and K1chik. 8 state tour! I did two rappels on Bridge Day and took a helmet cam video of my first. Pics HERE. Video HERE.
Oct. 26 - Coosa. With Joan S.'s group. Level 8000, XXX. Stern Squirts and surfing Little Gap.
Oct.31- Black Sabbath Tribute Night at Bottletree. I played on three songs - Symptom of the Universe, Junior's Eyes, and Children of the Grave. Pics HERE.
Nov. 1 - B'ham Grotto Halloween Party. Pics HERE.
Nov. 2- St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox festival, Bare Hands Gallery Dia de los Muertos festival. Pics HERE.
Nov. 8 - B'ham Grotto Trip to Anvil Cave. Trip Report HERE. Pics HERE.
Nov. 15- B'ham Grotto Trip to Secret Society Cave and Unnamed Pit. A biking trip to these two caving destinations, along with some cold, wind, rain, and a couple of stream crossings. Pics HERE and HERE.
Nov. 16- Hike at Red Mountain Park. A short hike with Susan and Donna to the newly minted Red Mountain Park, site of many (35) iron ore mines in our city's past, now wooded and set aside as an urban park. Read about it at:http://www.redmountainpark.org/. Pics HERE.
Nov. 22- McClendons Cave trip. 6 months to the day from my hiking accident. Pics HERE.
Dec. 6 - BCC Christmas Party at Steve n' Sue's.
Dec. 13-14 Howdy Puff Fest at Moses' Tomb.
Dec. 26 Mulberry. In the Riot Magnum 72. Level 2 ft. With Joan S.
Dec. 31-Jan 2 New Years at Dneesh's.




December 25, 2008

More Bridge Day pics including 3 of yours truly...

My friend Ron Miller has a gallery of Bridge Day pics here:
http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/album.php?aid=194812&id=692685402&ref=mf

And he got 3 pics of me on rope... I am stoked because I don't have any others:


I hope all of y'all are having a Merry Christmas...

December 24, 2008

Richard Lloyd Scale Lesson

Check out this lesson by Richard Lloyd. I find this exercise very helpful in my playing. He is a frickafrackin' genius.

November 30, 2008

Groovy Amp!

Check this out - I went into Highland yesterday and saw a big amp in Sam's repair room. I said WTF is that and Jeff W walked around the counter and looked in and said WTF is that ... lol. Manny brought it out and said a buddy of his bought it at a yard sale or flea mkt. for $20. I said it was so huge I wouldn't have paid $20 for it and Manny said oh yes you would once you plugged it in. He plugged it in and revealed thus:

http://www.vimeo.com/2387013

And we all geeked...

November 26, 2008

Bat Video

Here's a great link to a video about bats from Scientific American. It's in 3 parts for a total of approx. 12 minutes.

http://www.sciam.com/video.cfm?id=3156681001

November 25, 2008

McClendon's Cave TR

Saturday I went to McClendon's Cave for my first ever visit there. It is a big cave and it's only an hour or so away from B'ham. My group first went to the landowner's house to get permission to visit the cave and to get the gate key. Then we went to the cave entrance. The cave gate is made out of big pieces of angle iron.
This gate is on top of a 40' pit, which we rigged and descended on rope.
This cave has a large entrance room, then a long canyon passage back to where a couple of waterfalls are.
The canyon passage was dry and dusty, with a stream bed at the bottom. As we got closer to the waterfalls, the cave got wetter and muddier. In the biggest waterfall room it was about 35' tall IIRC, a scallopped dome area, and very humid. Hard to take pictures in the humidity. The wall of the waterfall dome had this strip of eroded stone in it, that looked like marble, though I suppose it was calcite. The brown rock is probably chert. This strip of stone went all the way to the top of the dome. Note the muddy boots and funny shorts of my friend Julie in this pic. That was the first cave trip for the shorts and also the last...
There was a spot in the cave marked by a small cairn. Behind the cairn was a clay bank covered in claw marks. We have no idea what kind of creature made these marks, but they were way in the back of the cave. Sometimes prehistoric bear bones are found in SE caves. Or it could be a cave monster sharpening its claws...

Anyway, a fine way to spend a Saturday during a drought...

November 11, 2008

Incredible Blog

I just finished reading the new post on http://therangelife.blogspot.com/. Incredible. Take a look!

November 10, 2008

Holidays without John

The holidays without John are going to be hard. We never knew if he would come to Thanksgiving or Christmas, but in the past few years he had. Now we know he will never come to visit with the family again.

I've been watching Intervention (the A&E show) on the internet, and I can't help thinking about him.

If you know someone with an addiction do not hesitate to try to get them help before it is too late.

November 9, 2008

Anvil Cave Trip, Nov. 8th 2008

The Birmingham Grotto went to Anvil Cave on November 8th. The cave requires a 3 mile flatwater paddle on a flatwater creek to get to the cave entrance.

Since my camera crapped out, I don't really have any pics to share. I have a friend's gallery of pics instead. All pics are credited to Scott Fee. Here we are just before entering the cave.


The 3 mile float to the cave entrance is flat, flat, flat. A dam backs up the water I am told, so we actually paddled 'upstream' to the cave entrance. There is NO current. It was very pretty, sometimes covered in green plants, and full of strainers. We never had to portage any. Saw one beaver or otter, it made a big splash when we came up but didn't 'slap its tail' so I am not sure, and heard one woman screaming in the woods as we floated by - bobcat was my guess but someone said a fox can also make a sound like that. It was loud!
Consequently, with no current, my XL12 canoe was the slowest boat. My friend Julie spun circles in her Perception Torrent as well. She wondered aloud why this was happening because she hadn't had a problem keeping her boat straight on other trips, then guessed that it was the lack of current. I am considering getting an inflatable flatwater kayak or canoe and selling the ww canoe.

The entrance was small, the only real 'crawl' we encountered in the cave.


This is the only 'legal' entrance we can enter. The other 8 or 9 entrances require crossing private property, i.e. trespassing. Before the landowners closed their property to cavers' excursions, this cave was the site of the Anvil Cave Rally. Teams of cavers would go through and try to find certain survey markers in the cave, for the quickest time. Anvil was a great site for this rally because it is 13 miles mapped of a maze, on a very small plot of land, making it one of the longest caves in Alabama. You can see my helmet cam on the top of my helmet. It kept cutting off in the dark of the cave. I haven't checked the SD card to see if any video was shot. Anyway, we found a lot of spray paint graffiti near the entrance in the cave. Locals still know where the cave is and apparently they have had some parties in there. Beer cans were also aplenty. Note the 'glow stick' on the ground near me, probably left by a local. String was throughout the passages near the entrance as well. Scott didn't take any pictures of the graffiti - I'm not surprised, much of it was expletives.
Here is a picture of the cave map:

and much of the cave looks like this:



Of course we ended up split into groups and my group found a part of the cave full of pretty formations. Hopefully some pics of that will be posted. We used the map and a compass to find our way out. This wasn't easy even with map, compass and a trip leader who had been in the cave during this summer. It really is easy to get turned around and lost!
At some point I mentioned that we should have set a call-out time. And my group realized that none of us wore watches. And I said that it gets dark early and padding through those strainers in the dark would suck. We all started (tried) to head back. Which was comical because 'heading back' was no easy task. The map owner said we were in a part of the cave far from where I thought we could have traveled in the time we were in there. So the trip leader and I looked at the map and decided that we were actually in a totally different area than the map owner thought we were. (sorry J but that really happened. Now that's not saying Dave and I were right... but it did look that way to me). That's how Anvil Cave is! I told everyone I had fire starter, warm clothes, a 6 pack of tall boys, some Doritos, and a Big Snickers bar to share, all stashed in my boat, if we spent the night outside. You might not believe me but the whole time the trip was fun. Being in the maze like that was like a big puzzle. We kept trying to head South-West.
I am editing this post because it sounded like we didn't need the map reader and compass guy the first 'edition'. On the contrary, I was worried, seriously worried, that we would lose those two and then really be lost. I had a chance to bring a copy of the map and didn't, and a chance to bring a compass and didn't. Which was f'tarded, reminded me of my not bringing water, food, a GPS, phone or warm clothes that time when we almost overnighted on Clear Creek at flood.
At a long hall called 'Main Street', like a miracle, the rest of the group showed up at the same time. We did a head count and everyone was together! We headed out of the cave and had several compasses and cave maps to add to the confusion. The map readers did a good job, and when we were out, it was only 2:30 pm. We really weren't in there as long as we thought!
Back to the boats, and a slow (for me) paddle to the cars. Then radio as I drove to a restaurant near home, I heard most of the second half of Bama/LSU on the radio, and went into the mexican restaurant with the group just as 2 minutes were left in regulation. The game was on big TV's in the restaurant. The others found my enthusiasm amusing. Bama won in OT, I had a great dinner, and went home exhausted and happy.

September 22, 2008

Black and White animals

This is fascinating!
I watched an episode of Nature on Netflix online. It was about domesticated dogs. In it the subject of coat color was mentioned as being related to temperament. This is in regards to evidence found from the fox taming experiments in Russia by Belyaev. That's a subject worth a Google search in itself. The show remarked on the prevalence of black and white as a coat color in domesticated animals.
Think about it - black and white Tuxedo Cats like my bosses..err, I mean like my two girl kitties, black and white dogs like the damned Boston Terriers my friend Donna loves so much, black and white cattle like Holsteins, black and white horses...

Anyway I've been doing some web surfing and found this article:

http://www.ratbehavior.org/CoatColor.htm

... which is about rats, another domesticated animal (if perhaps not as pleasant to some as cats and dogs are... I have never owned one but did feed a few to a corn snake over the years).
Here is a quote from the article:
"...certain physiological processes underlie facets of both coat color and behavior. In particular, the hormones and neurotransmitters involved in the stress response and other behaviors are closely integrated with pigment production."

I KNEW there was scientific evidence that B&W Kitties are the BEST!!!

September 4, 2008

Just saw my orthopedist!

His words: "I don't think you need to see me again."

He said my range of motion is a month ahead of schedule. He said he didn't know how that was possible, but keep up the good work. ;-) I said, "I've been working hard on it," and he said, "I believe you!" Then I asked him about my numb fingers. He said that if my numb fingers don't regain their feeling in 6 months or so, come back to discuss a carpal tunnel release. But they are getting better, it is just slow.

I asked if I was cleared to do anything I wanted and he said, "Yes! Have at it, rock climbing or whatever you want!"

I'll still wear my little brace when doing stuff for awhile though. That's my call - I forgot to ask him about it but I think it makes me feel safer. If I crank down on one motion in particular it still hurts. And I have another month of PT ahead of me.

I am VERY happy right now!

August 11, 2008

sad news

My nephew John had an accidental OD Saturday night, August 9th. and died. He was 26. He was my sister Marilyn's son. We are all in shock.

August 10, 2008

Upper Chattooga letter - a must read!

From RangerRob on Boatertalk:

"I've spent the past few nights reading the Upper Chattooga management plan comments sent to the Forest Service. Most of them say the same things. However, Claude E. Terry has a very unique point of view. Its one of the finest comments sent to the Forest Service. Please take a few minutes to read every word. Then e-mail it to all your boating buddies, post it to any message board, list serve, and blog you can. This is a letter that should be read by everyone."
From: Claude E. Terry
Reply To: Claude E. Terry
To: comments-southern-francismarion-sumter@fs.fed.us
Subject: Chattooga Planning Team - Comments
Date: 07/22/2008 11:44 AM
July 22, 2008
Jerome Thomas
Forest Supervisor
Francis Marion and Sumter National Forests
US Forest Service
4931 Broad River Rd.
Columbia, South Carolina 29212
Attn: Chattooga Planning Team
Jerome, Thanks for the opportunity to comment on the draft EA for the Upper
Chattooga River. It appears that reasonable comments and input are sorely
needed. As a history, I boated the upper river in the early 70's, before the
arbitrary, capricious, and probably unlawful closure by the Forest Service in
1976. I obeyed the rule of law, and now, regardless of the eventual access
decision, at 70+ years I will never be able to boat those magnificent gorges
again.
Similarly, thousands of boaters have seen their prime years pass without ever
being able to legally use the river.
The closure issue, this decision and its casual flaunting of equity and rights has
been divisive and has produced major questions as to the Forest Service’s
objectives and ability to handle complex and adversarial issues. As an aside,
having a Trout Unlimited executive as the Forest Supervisor for an extended
period did not aid in the issue either.
At the start of this process, several years ago, I had conversations with several
whitewater clubs people. I assured them that today’s Forest Service would be
even-handed and give the boaters a fair hearing. It appears I was wrong. To put
my response in perspective, please note that I have consulted to Federal
agencies since 1969, served as a expert witness on water related issues, and
was the Mission Contractor for Region IV, USEPA for Environmental Studies of
the impact of Federal actions. The projects often involved public presentations. I
have done hands-on and design work for geohydrological restorations on the
Chattooga and other Federal projects. In all of these activities, fair and objective
consideration of alternatives before acting was essential, and even the
appearance of bias was to be avoided.
It is counterproductive to address one "use" of the corridor in flowery terms, while
starkly pairing the other use alternative with "conflict" or "loss" wherever it occurs.
Yet, the existing rainbow trout fishery is described in your letter and the three
pages of alternatives as:
-"high-quality trout fishing experience"-
-"one of the unique premiere trout fisheries for backcountry anglers
seeking remoteness and solitude in the southeast"-
Boating? Boating is mentioned with the need to:
"Minimize conflict between boaters and anglers by establishing flow and
season(al) restrictions for boating"
Maintain a "boatfree recreational experience"
Boating is considered a threat to "uniqueness" and to "unique
opportunities for enhanced solitude"
There’s more, but the simple fact is the fishery is a trout-farm based, put and
take fishery based on a species alien to the area, providing recreation to a very
few people. There are many questions raised in my mind by the verbal "color"
attached to each use. For instance;
Where on the entire Chattooga River are fishermen excluded to provide
"solitude" and "uniqueness" of experience for boaters?
Where do you note the differing impact of shoes of fishermen, hikers,
campers, bird watching groups, compared to the passage of a boat?
There are trail problems noted in the alternatives. Are those trails the
result of boaters’ visits or of fishermen and hikers?
There is frequent use of "uniqueness" to describe a put and take fishery,
and almost no notice for the incredible white water, and the truly unique
boating experience.
The level of skill and perception required to enter and use this wilderness area
for white water boating are high. There is a reason that boaters have fought to be
allowed to use this segment of the Chattooga, and it is the truly unique white
water, not the artificial fishery.
The blatant attempt to make boating more dangerous or impossible by
prohibiting removal of " large woody debris" apparently came from a Forest
Service sycophant’s input. The removal ban would be laughably absurd if it were
not so dangerous and unscrupulous. It would be appropriate to list the name of
the individual suggesting the protection of woody debris against the loss of life of
a hapless fisherman, hiker or boater. I think this suggestion is the height of
absurdity.
There is a curious inconsistency about a purportedly fair review that touts fishing
as though it were unique and had no impact, vilifies boating as destroying
uniqueness and solitude, ignores hiking, birding and other uses with their
impacts, and wishes to leave trees across the stream to the risk of injury and
death for boaters, hikers, swimmers, and other users. So much for an objective
study.
The two different descriptions of the regulatory trigger flow for alternative 4 are
curiously unknowable and perhaps not even capable of attempts to calculate,
except retroactively. I can visualize boaters detained by Forest Service
personnel, standing at some gauge until midnight in the dead of winter, at which
point the Ranger say "Aha. Got you. See, the average flow was 451 cfs, but the
mean daily average flow level was only 448.5 cfs." It is interesting that a
basically incalculable number would have to be calculated before going to the
river in mid winter, where you park miles away, walk in with your gear, calculate
the river’s cfs accurately, enter the river, avoid touching the trees blocking the
channel at some point, cannot legally use the most attractive areas of the river,
and get out, only to find your calculations were for the "average mean daily flow
level", not the "mean daily average flow level" and that you are boating
unlawfully. If this sounds ridiculous, it is.
To this point, the Forest Service has been a friendly agency to users of the upper
Chattooga, except boaters. The proposed alternative 4 regulations for boating
display the same blind bias that has prevailed for 36 years. Surely, after years of
delay, we could expect a document without the inherent bias shown in the
current proposal.
Please accept these comments as a suggestion that I don’t think Alternative 4 is
objective, reasonable, fair, logical, or capable of actually achieving balanced
management of the Magnificent Upper Gorges of the Chattooga.
Very truly yours,
Claude E. Terry
Atlanta, GA

July 13, 2008

Few Thoughts

I posted this on BT LL, and liked it so I'm posting it on my blogs.

"One thing keeps coming back to me. As I lay at the bottom of the cliff, in the creek, the first thing I did was check my jaw/teeth/face, and wiggle my toes. But my mind was thinking, "You silly goose, all that music you play by yourself, and if you were dead now nobody would know. They would never have heard it." Only it wasn't silly goose it was more like shy, stupid woman.

And then the other night I realized I have spent the entire 21st century without playing out except for little pick up gigs with my brothers. I got sidetracked into the whole kayaking thing, which I'm not very good at but it is fun.

I have had a lot to think about. Like, what is important. Or, if I'd died, how I would be remembered, and what for, and what good things have I bothered to do while alive? I really was afraid I wouldn't play again because of my loss of feeling in my fingers. I can type with this hand again though, and I believe it will all come back. I have faith it will come back.

No I'm not God's Gift To Music, but it really does make me happy like nothing else."

July 11, 2008

My Favorite Guitar Solos

Been thinking about my favorite guitar solos. Some of the best ever, ever ever are on:


"Nowhere Man" by the Beatles
"Don't Worry Baby" by the Beach Boys


That's the sort of thing I seek in my solos, not saying I've found it ever but it's a worthy goal. To have the right notes, not a bunch o' notes played as fast as one can manage.
In "Don't Worry Baby", it's just chords. I love it.

"Nowhere Man" is even closer to what I try to do when I make up a solo.
To play a phrase in a different melody, complementary to the song it is contained within. To give a glimpse of the spirit? person? of the guitarist. To make a mini-song.

My Cast is off, my Pin is out!

Got the cast removed and the pin pulled out of my wrist, Wed. July 9th.

They put me under heavy sedation in the surgery. Versed, thank you for making me not remember the removal of the second pin! Being fully awake, alert, and w/out pain meds for the removal of the first pin was memorable enough.
Here I am in my pre-op room, getting ready to get going with the bidness:


My sister Kathy kindly took these photos for me, and stayed with me while I was in the hospital.
I hate my f'n neck btw.

And after the operation:

It was all quick and painless, the worst part was the IV. I hate getting IVs, but usually when they tape 'em down I can't feel them anymore. Not this one. It was a bitch all day. Before they gave me the Versed etc. I did a crossword puzzle to take my mind off of the IV.

And here is the pin ------------->>>>
A friend commented that it looked like a 16 penny nail. So I had to look up what a 16 penny nail is and I'd say he is about right. Except there is no nail head.
I've got both pins btw, hoping to get K1chik to make me some jewelry with them, someway somehow.
Now I'm back at work in a splint. I wear the splint when I am walking around or doing anything where I may slip and fall and re-injure myself. Except the shower...
But when I'm seated I take off the splint and do three exercises:
Turn the doorknob
Hammer the nail
Flip the pancake (my description of it)
I am already a lot better than I expected to be. Oh but I am jonesing for the water, and for my guitars!!!! And my new Vox amp...
Here is a vid to tide me and you over. It's the best band that ever was or will be, The Beatles. And I could have been singing this song for the past 7 weeks! Fortunately I have family and friends who did Help!
BTW John Lennon is the most beautiful thing in that video... I will always love him!

July 8, 2008

Update -hiking accident, bear chow, etc. etc.

Update July 8 Tomorrow I am getting this cast off and the second pin out. Went in today for surgery pre-testing. They asked a lot of questions, and had a lot of instructions, that seemed to indicate full anesthesia. That isn't what I was told to expect so I figure they ask the same things of everybody who comes in, regardless of the type of pain management. At least, I hope so. I'm hoping for a valium/demerol IV instead. That's what I got for my wisdom tooth and it worked a treat, as the Brits say.
No advil, no aspirin, no contact lenses, no makeup, no mouthwash, no food or drink after Midnight. No Kafka, no Verdi, no Dead Milkmen. Instead of ten commandments she read me a litany of dozens.
But - good news is I've had no lortab for days now, so I am driving my car. Being without a car in B'ham has sucked big time. Having a car again is sweet freedom.


Someone I love very much is going to Alaska this coming week to be mauled and eaten by bears, after which I will never see him again, and he is worried about: being bored during the trip.
I thought, later, after sharing a lunch break and giving him a final big goodbye hug, of books to suggest he read, but somehow I didn't suggest them. He is taking Into The Wild which is certainly thematically appropriate, but I have some different suggestions that, should he read my blog, he may take into consideration. I don't have the cheek, as the Brits say, to tell him the list in person.

OK on to the list:

Iron John

How 'bouts some Kafka

Flannery O'Kick Ass

Death In Venice

A Walk In The Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail

IMHO, out of all of these the last will be best... it is very funny and apropro. propropropro.

I am in an absurd mood tonight, surely in part because I am afraid of tomorrow. But I will muddle on through.

Let me tell you about a bad habit I've nurtured - looking up old high school mates (as the Brits say, rather than 'friends') on the Internet. And they are damn hard to find. Certainly the ones who loathe me (and vice versa) that I look up, to see how they are, are invisible on the 'net, but even ones I'd like to say hey to, like the one who became a goddamn lawyer, are not to be found easily, and then scantily when found. Whereas I am as easy to find online as a recipe for buttermilk spongecake.

Men, I am told, do not do this. The thought of finding old hags online, without the intent of talking to them but simply to be nosy, does not enter their minds. Ever.

On to future plans:

buy self new kayak, a playboat silly, whatthefuckelse would I get with a perfectly good Riot Magnum decorating my kitchen?

catch all the eddies in Broken Nose.

buy townhouse, so I don't have to deal with a yard, or downstairs OR upstairs neighbors.

That's plenty.

DJ

*edit - I was joking about Iron John!!!!*

July 1, 2008

The Saga of Jekey

I had forgotton about Jecky. In Jan 2004 I decided to attract and mess with a nigerian scam artist. They had been hitting my favorite paddling forum's gear swap pretty badly. I made a pseudonym 'Anita Sponsons'* and posted an ad on the forum.

*sponson - a sort of outrigger to attach to a boat. Useless on whitewater kayaks, its inventor trolled rec.boats.paddle on Usenet relentlessly until most people left the newsgroup. Though before my time as a paddler, I have heard tales of how the sponson guy ruined rbp, by being a persistent, trolling ass.*


It didn't take long for me to get a response.
>From: jekey tayo
>To: sponsons@hotmail.com
>Subject: This amazing
>Date: Thu, 15 Jan 2004 14:52:46 -0800 (PST)
> >Hello,
> I saw your advert on the net and i have interest in buying the boat
>which cost $300. My mode of payment is by cashier's cheque.give me the best
>price for quick purchase and the condition of the boat as at now . >Thank you > jekey

Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> wrote: Hello! I am selling the boat for $300 plus the Genuine Natural Hair Fiber Paddle as a free bonus. However there will be a charge for shipping and that depends on where you are located. The boat is in fine condition. I took it a few times down the Green Narrows, Whitewater flume park in Atlanta, and then got a mystery groove in the Upchucky before my left sponson creased. After I got my neck cast off the main paddling I did was the swamps of the Cahaba, and the boat has served me well. It's like it's on auto-squirt, and I can spew like a rodeo boater. Let me know where you are. I like cashier's cheques.

HELLO , THANKS FOR THE RESPONDS. AM LOCATED IN ASIA.WHAT I NEED FROM YOU NOW IS THAT NAME THE WILL BE ON THE CHEQUE WILL BE PAYABLE TO AND THE ADDRESS,WITH YOUR PHONE NUMBER SO THE PAYMENT CAN COMMENCE ASA I GET THIS INFOMATION I WIULL CONTACT MY CLIENT TO ISSUE YOU THE CHEQUE THE EXCESS OF THE CHEQUE WILL BE FOR THE SHIPMENT. I HAVE MY PRIVATE SHIPPING COMPANY THAT THEY WILL COME FOR THE PICK UP YOU CAN CONTACT THEM THROUGH VIA EMAIL(JEKEYSHIPPINGAGENT@YAHOO.COM)I WILL LOOKING FORWARD TO YUR REPLY.


>From: jekey tayo >To: Anita Sponsons >

Subject: RE: This amazing >Date: Fri, 16 Jan 2004 12:55:32 -0800 (PST) > >HELLO , > THANKS FOR THE RESPONDS. AM LOCATED IN ASIA.WHAT I NEED FROM YOU NOW
>IS THAT NAME THE
>WILL >BE ON THE CHEQUE >WILL BE PAYABLE TO AND THE ADDRESS,WITH YOUR PHONE NUMBER SO THE >PAYMENT >CAN COMMENCE ASA I GET THIS INFOMATION I WIULL CONTACT MY CLIENT TO >ISSUE >YOU THE CHEQUE THE EXCESS OF THE CHEQUE WILL BE FOR THE SHIPMENT. I >HAVE MY >PRIVATE SHIPPING COMPANY THAT THEY WILL COME FOR THE PICK UP YOU CAN >CONTACT THEM THROUGH VIA EMAIL(JEKEYSHIPPINGAGENT@YAHOO.COM)I >WILL >LOOKING FORWARD TO YUR REPLY.

Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> wrote: ASIA? Really? What a coincidence! I ate Mu Shu Shrimp last night! I love Chinese food, because you can order in Chinese with words like Mu Shu and also learn about Chinese history, like General Tso and those Mongolians, and do your horoscope with the place mat. But I digress. I am having a hard time imagining my baby boat 2000 miles away from Alabama. It's just that it was designed for Southeastern whitewater, by a famous Southeastern paddler. He played banjo in the movie Deliverance, maybe you've seen him. What kind of river would you be paddling with it? Or do you live near the ocean? I am concerned for your safety. Kayaking can be a dangerous sport. Anita

HELLO THANKS FOR YOUR MAIL.I WANT YOU TO GIVE ME THE FULL INFOMATION THAT I GIVE YOU SO THE PAYMENY WILL BE ISSUE.I WILL BE LOOKING FORWARD TO YOUR REPLY.

OK he wanted me to write the shipping company he uses, which happens to be called jekey shipping company.

Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> wrote: Hello, I was given this address from a man? woman? named Jekey who is interested in buying my kayak. I suppose he wants you to calculate shipping to his address from mine. Well I live in Hog Teat which is right outside of Wetumpka, Alabama, but we usually ship things from Montgomery at the UPS store. So why don't you figure out shipping from Montgomery. Thanks, Anita Sponsons

HELLO, MY NAME IS OLANREWAJU VALENTINE. I AM THE MANAGING DIRECTOR OF JEKEY SHIPPING COMPANY.MY CUSTOMER MR JEKEY JEFF CONTACTED ME THAT I WILL BE HELPING HIM TO SHIP A KAYAK HE PLANS TO PURCHASE FROM YOU.HE MADE ME UNDERSTAND THAT YOU WILL BE SENDING SOME AMOUNT OF MONEY TO ME WHICH WILL COVER SHIPPING AND SOME OTHER BILLS. I WILL WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT IT IS THE POLICY OF MY COMPANY TO HAVE SHIPPING CHARGES PAID UPFRONT BEFORE WE COME DOWN TO YOUR LOCATION TO ARRANGE FOR THE SHIPPING AND PAYMENT IS USUALLY PAID IN CASH. I WILL SEND ALL MY DETAIL INFORMATION TO YOU AS SOON AS YOU NOTIFY ME THAT YOU WILL BE SENDING THE PAYMENT TO ME AND I WILL WANT THE FUNDS SENT TO ME AS SOON AS POSSIBLE SO THAT I MAY LEAVE FOR AN EARLY PICK-UP . AS SOON AS I HAVE THE FUNDS WHICH I WILL MOST PREFER TO BE SENT TO ME VIA WESTERN UNION MONEY TRANSFER IN YOUR LOCATION, I WILL LEAVE FOR THE PICK-UP AND I WILL WANT YOU TO PUT IN PLACE ALL THE MAJOR THINGS THAT WILL ENHANCE A SMOOTH AND SUCCESSFUL SHIPPING ARRANGEMENT FOR THE KAYAK,HOPE IS IN GOOD CONDITION. I LOOK FOWARD TO HEARING FROM YOU AS SOON AS POSSIBLE SINCERELY, OLANREWAJU VALENTINE.


>From: jekey tayo <jekey882000@yahoo.com> >To: Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> >Subject: RE: This amazing >HELLO > THANKS FOR YOUR MAIL.TRY TO GIVE ME THE INFOMATION SO I WILL FORWARD TO IT TO MY CLIENT TO SEND YOU THE PAYMENT.I WILL BE LOOKING FORWARD TO YOUR REPLY. > >> > >

Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> wrote: >Why would I send you money? I am selling a boat, you're paying for a boat. >What do you mean, jekey or olwananrana or whoever? I haven't even gotten a >check from you for the boat by the way.
> >On a happier note, one of my hogs won Best Teat in the annual Hog Teat
>contest, held here in honor of the town of Hog Teat Alabama.
>>>> ANITA


From: jekey tayo <jekey882000@yahoo.com> >To: Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> >Subject: no problem >Date: Sat, 28 Feb 2004 07:11:20 -0800 (PST)

> > > >Hello Anita, > Am not saying you should send me money i have sent youexess i have have already said eaierler on so themoney is excess that is why i said you will send the remaining to my shipper in norway so no problem try to get the check as soon as soppible can you can thet you dog for me to take a look.

Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> wrote: Well now wait a minute. Why would you send more money? I could just keep the extra money after all, instead of sending it anywheres. I know that when I buy hog milk I don't send more than the prescribed amount due. I wasn't born a pig ear's sandwich, you know. I gots smarts. What I don't have is a check from you for anything. And what's a dog got to do with this anyway? ANITA

>Hello Anita, > Why should you be talking like this?i don;t want any means of play o.k when you nget the check deduct your money there and send the remaining to my shipper via western union and let stop our deal there o.k

Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> wrote:Jekey. How's it hangin'? Listen, I'm worried about you. >Kayaking is a serious and dangerous sport. At least tell me what country in >Asia you are writing from. >I don't want to sell you a boat that you could use inappropriately and die >in. > >

HELLO > THANKS FOR YOUR MAIL.TRY TO GIVE ME THE INFOMATION SO I WILL FORWARD TO IT TO MY CLIENT TO SEND YOU THE PAYMENT.I WILL BE LOOKING FORWARD TO YOUR REPLY. > > > >Anita Sponsons >Well, OK. I have to give you my work number because we don't have a phone here in Hog Teat.

Anita Sponsons
2121 8th Avenue North,
Suite 1400
Birmingham, Alabama 35203
334-242-7300
*This is the address and phone number, IIRC, for the B'ham FBI office. This was Gordo's idea.*

Thanks for your purchase,
Anita Sponsons
Oh yeah you should write : Attention: Check for online boat purchase on the envelope so someone at the office doesn't open it by mistake.

HELLO THANKS FOR YOUR MAIL.I WILL CONTACT MY CLIENT TO SEND YOU THE CHEQUE.YOU WILL RECEIVE THE CHEQUE AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.I WILL BE LOOKING FORARD TO YOUR REPLY.

>From: jekey tayo <jekey882000@yahoo.com> >To: Anita Sponsons <sponsons@hotmail.com> >Subject: PAYMENT >Date: Wed, 25 Feb 2004 13:08:12 -0800 (PST) > > > >
Hello Anita,
> I called the number you gav me but it was your wife office phone number,could you expalin why you have done that to me of which your wife was embarassinmg me.the payment it;s on the way so i will like you to get everything set as soon as possible. > Regards - Jekey

FROM ANITA: jekey that's not my wife!!!! She doesn't work. She stays at home raising our kids, slopping the hogs, and cleaning out the chicken coop. The woman you spoke to is my secretary. Don't take any guff off her! I told her to expect your call! Sometimes she is hard to deal with, she has a hearing problem. TELL HER WHO YOU ARE AND WHY YOU ARE CALLING. I am so sorry for the inconvenience! ANITA

HELLO THANKS FOR YOUR MAIL.TRY TO MAKE THE SHIPPING ARRANGEMENT SO THE SHIPMNET CAN COMMENCE SOON.TRY TO SEND THE SHIPPING CHARGES SO THEY CAN COME FOR THE PICK UP IMMEDIATELY,BECAUSE I WANT IT SHIPPED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.HERE ARE MY SHIPPIER'S INFORMATION YOU WILL USE IN SENDING THE MONEY. NAME.....OLANREWAJU VALENTINE. ADDRESS.....108 CURTIS STREET,OSLO NORWAY. HERE ARE THE INFORMATION YOU WILL PROVIDE TO ME AS SOON AS YOU SEND THE MONEY SO I COULD FORWARD IT TO MY SHIPPER. SENDER NAME.................. RECEIVER NAME............. AMOUNT SEND........ TEST QUESTION AND ANSWER......... MTCN#10 DIGIT NUMBER.......... I WILL BE FOR THE INFORMATION... HERE ARE THE WESTERN UNION OUTLET WERE YOU CAN CASH AND SEND THE MONEY ....

after which olarnasnjoruwer jekey whatthafuck helpfully sent FIVE little maps showing the western union locations in birmingham, using mapquest.


Anita's response: Jekey... I don't know how to tell you this. I am SO SORRY. But my best Nigerian hog, Scammer, got into my boat shed and took a liking to the boat you are buying. I wasn't aware of this until this morning. He has been 'nesting' in your boat, apparently for quite a while, and he has relieved himself several times in the boat, judging from the smell. The result is that your boat is full of... shit. I just don't know what to do, Jekey - I really don't want to touch the thing after this, and I doubt any manner of cleaning will get the shit off of the flex capacitors. The wicker seat reeks of hog urine, and he broke the mast off, too. Do you still want me to ship you this kayak? Anxiously, Anita

HELLO ANITA, COULD YOU LET ME KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON ,I NEED IT URGENTLY. so...

Anita responds: I'm trying to tell you. Oh I forgot your from asia so maybe you need it said like on a chinese menu. Boat have pig shit generously filled within. Smell make eyes water and nose run - off face. Boat need ancient chinese secret to remove shit and smell. If you use boat, fish run away and flies have party. You want boat not sure anyone willing to ship. Boat has become a Distatefull Object. No egg roll include. Anita

Welcome

Howdy. My name is Judy Ranelli and this is my blog. I also have a blog at http://www.myspace.com/dangerjudy.
This blog is for my personal thoughts and whatever I want to post. It has no purpose other than my expression. I am so stoked that I know now how to make a top-level post that remains top-level! What you do is outlined here.

Anyway, my favorite things include guitars, whitewater kayaks, caving boots, photography, critters, particularly snakes and cats, history, and interesting non-fiction. Whiskey from kittens, mmmm. So expect posts about that stuff. One of the reasons I have this blog is to make a list of what fun things I do on which day, so that later on I can go back and read when something cool happened. So it's kinda for my own nefarious purposes.
Some people have amazing blogs. They post really intelligent comments about pertinent topics. This ain't one of them blogs. But I will post some links to some blogs that I keep up with, later.

Oh yeah - how I got the nickname Dangerjudy. When I started paddling my friend Michael made up superhero names for us. Thus Kombat Keith (got his combat roll first of us all), Zenmaster Sam (my nephew the buddhist), Shreddin' Ellen (I named her that. 'shredding' means playing very well on a wave), Panda whose real name is Panda, and so forth. I still call Ellen Shreddin' Ellen on the rare occasion I can get her to paddle. I needed a Boatertalk user name and used the nickname Dangerjudy and also the cavers started using it too. The cavers already had a guy we call Hazard when I joined the grotto. So no, it's not meant to be a bragging kind of name. If anything it's ironic because I am not one to just jump into something without fear. But after flipping my truck and rolling it several times on the interstate, and walking away from the wreck, I felt that I had earned the nickname.

June 12, 2008

my hiking accident - update

Well here I am, 3 weeks since my hiking accident. I am in a short cast and I have a lot of pain in my thumb and first two fingers. They feel asleep, tingly/prickly, and sore under the nails and fingertips, down the length of the finger, very unpleasant.
I'm on Lortab 10mgs. The prescription said "1-2 every four hours". I tried to stay on just 1 every four hours, and did so earlier in the week, but today I've ended up taking 1 every two hours.
I called my surgeon today and left a message asking for a refill of the script and also asked if this pain was normal. His nurse called me back and said yes, it's normal. She said, "Your hand looked awful when you came in, with it being dislocated and broken. I bet the nerves are screaming. That is going to take time." I wonder what the people who get plates and screws in their wrists suffer if this is what I am going through with just two pins.
This whole thing is frustrating because I can't drive until I am off narcotic medication.

Other things: I think I am gonna try to go back to work Monday. I'm going nuts being stuck here. Maybe by Sunday my pain will be better. I do have some better mobility in my fingers so there is progress. Friends have been great. So has Kat in her patience to let me stay at her house. Today I thought about how fortunate I am for being able to walk etc., vs. being stuck in a wheelchair. Easy to take things for granted.

That's it. I have three weeks over - come on lets get the rest of it over so I can have fun!!!

Update June 16th. This morning I went by work to visit a bit and get my mail and work email messages. Confirmed that I cannot use my fingers well enough yet to work. I have to be able to use a Wacom tablet and pen to do my job. But I don't have enough feeling in my right hand fingers and thumb to use the pen. My boss, who is the sweetest person on Earth, is very understanding, and none of my projects are time-sensitive, so everything is OK. I do miss my work friends, though.
Kris drove me and Kat by the bank, then to lunch, then he dropped me off at home, where I promptly iced down my hand and went to sleep. Luna had meowed much of last night and so I hadn't slept very well even though it was my first sleep in my own bed in 3+ weeks. I do not let Luna and Clare in my bedroom to keep the cat fur out of my clothes etc., and paid for it with Luna's yowling, which is NOT usual (I couldn't live with that!). I guess she expected me to stay in the living room with them since I had been gone so long. But there was no way I was going to sleep on a couch again. BUT I've digressed...
This laptop computer is one of the best things I've ever purchased. I can type easier with my left hand only on this small keyboard, and I can lay on the couch while I do it instead of sitting in a chair, which is not easy to do with my sore tailbone. This laptop has saved my sanity.
Trying to take 1 Lortab every three hours (up from two) and so far so good.
Someone at work asked me what I was doing for food, if I could cook, and I told them I was great at fixing bowls of cereal. Seriously I have eaten a lot of cereal... Oat Cluster Cheerios.
If I think of anything else to write I will. I know I won't be able to sleep for awhile.
I'm trying not to be a titty baby, so many people suffer worse injuries than mine, and survive, and thrive.
Thus, I skirt the edges of the 'why me' trap but I am determined not to get snared. I have had two accidents now that I should not have survived, much less walked away from relatively unscathed, and these events have a way of messing with one's mind. But I ain't a-messing where I shouldna be a-messing.

I got my hair cut Friday, it 's pretty short. I love it. My nephew Simon is getting married this coming Saturday. I am going to look lovely all dressed up with a purple cast accessory.

Update June 26 Got the purple cast removed, took some rather gross photos here: My Hand After 2nd Cast.
Then they X-rayed it. After that the doctor came in and casually took my hand, picked up a pair of pliers, and yanked the pin out! A line of blood splattered on the pillow, the table, my shorts, my leg, and the floor. It didn't hurt but it didn't feel good, either. I'd prefer not to experience it again.
Then they put on another cast, this one red, and in 13 days it will come off and they will do surgery under mild sedation to remove the second pin, which is not poking out. Then a velcro brace and PT.

May 30, 2008

my hiking accident

I went for an early morning bushwacking-style hike with my friend Brian on Thurs. May 22. We were in a tight narrow gorge near Bham, with no trail. A stream trickled down steep drops. We trekked through lush walls of poison ivy. (I am not affected.) Wildflowers and vines entwined our journey. We were in a beautiful hidden gem. I have pics on the camera in my car.
At the last steep portion I was near the edge of a drop and had the ground give under me. With nothing to grab to stop my descent, I slipped over the edge of a cliff wall. I free-fell 15 ft., hitting the ground on my side, bounced, slid down a steep angled rock floor about 25 ft. and ended my forward momentum by slamming my right arm into a boulder (I was tucked into a curl). My wrist broke. I lay in the stream, incredulous that I was alive. I had not lost consciousness. I did a quiet personal inventory. I could move my legs. As far as I could tell, only my arm was broken. I hollered my condition up to Brian, who then spent about 10 minutes and one ass-bustin' of his own to get to me.
We determined that I could walk. I consulted my GPS and determined the best route would be down the streambed. Eventually we found an ATV trail and hiked out to the road from that. It took us about half an hour. Brian had called a friend who lives nearby, who drove and met us with bags of ice and a towel for my arm.
He took us to my car which is a stick-shift. Brian drove me to St. Vincents East ER. They gave me dilautid injections and x-rayed my arm and pelvis. They put 3 stitches in my right knee. The ER doc told me I would need surgery on my arm. My tailbone, ass, and left hip were black with bruises. Jeans ripped open in the seat. I never heard anything about the pelvis xray, but my tailbone remains absurdly sore (and its been 8 days since the event).
I asked to transfer to St. Vincents in Southside, where my orthopedist Dr. Adkison is. He did my bankhart shoulder surgery in 04. I was admitted to the southside St. Vincents. The ER nurses put my arm in a splint. My sister Kat drove me to the southside StV's. Since my jeans were ripped and soaked with creekwater I wore two gowns tied together in weird fashion. I had a DVD with my xrays. The tech geek in me loved this.
My room at StV's was the nicest hospital room I have ever been in. It was a 'suite' in the south tower with a big window view of the city. It did not look or feel like a hospital room. It had a refrigerator and a self-adjusting bed.
My ortho doesn't do wrists so a partner in his group did my surgery. Dr. Kissel looked at my xrays and brought out a model skeleton arm with an apparatus screwed into it. "Best case scenario, we use one of these- an external fixer. If the bone is shattered too much I'll have to open your arm up instead and put plates and screws." I hoped for the best - what else could I do? I told him I am a guitarist. "We'll have you playing again in 3-6 months," he said. "F," I thought.
He shot my wrist full of lidocaine - that sucked but when he was finished it was gloriously numb for a couple of hours - and set my bones, then put my arm back in the splint. I would have surgery on Friday. They hooked me up with a morphine pump back n my room. Every 10 minutes I could press a button and get 1 mg morphine.

Friday I remember the pre-op room, I was in a queue I guess. I had to stay there a long time. Finally they wheeled me into the OR and I got on the table from my bed myself. Then I was knocked out and woke up back in my room. I love anesthesia!

My mom and sister told me great news. Instead of all that hardware, when the doc got to my wrist he found that setting my bone had lined it up great, so all he had to do was put in two pins. I am in a big cast for two weeks, then a short cast for 4, then some PT. Kat stayed in my room with me Fri. and Sat.

I spent that night with the pain pump. Saturday they took it off and put me on slow release morphine pills, and on Sunday I was discharged from the hospital. I'm staying at Kat's. Can't use my right hand for anything. I typed this whole trip report with my left hand on my laptop. I anticipate at least one more week off work. I'm on short-term disability, so I'm not eating my PTO.

What I am missing:
Mini triathlon last Sat. that I trained for over 2 months and bought a road bike for, AND took lap swimming lessons for.
Sunday Coosa kayaking
Monday Mem. Day Chief Ladiga bike trail

Tonight (Fri 30) -gig with my brother Rick's band, using my new Vox AC30CC1 for the first time.
This Sat-Sun -Hiwassee paddle trip
All the Tues. night road biking (I have fallen in love with road biking) with the Bham Bicycling Club.

Who knows what else.
But I am grateful to be here! And grateful for my great family and friends.


Update June 11th.
I'm wearing my second cast. I still have a lot of pain in my thumb and first two fingers. When they cut the first cast off, I took (warning, kinda gross) pictures of my hand with my camera phone here:
http://dangerjudy.smugmug.com/gallery/5147918_cRVao#311429818_c6GqS


This cast is much shorter; it starts below my elbow. They will take it off on June 26th and x-ray my wrist again and determine if the two pins are ready to come out. If they are, then the pins will be removed and I hope I get a brace not another cast.

More updates: http://dangerjudy.blogspot.com/2008/06/my-hiking-accident-update.html

March 31, 2008

Water

I was telling my friend Dave Howell about the decipherment of Hittite Cuneiform. We have interesting conversations as you will see.
My knowledge came from a book from the library that I checked out sometime in the recent past, but I have no idea which book it was. I suppose it was about the decipherment of cuneifom and hieroglyphics in the Middle East and North Africa. ;-) Sometimes I 'graze' the new book shelves in the history and social sciences sections of the library looking for an interesting read.
What makes this subject particularly interesting, and made me remember the tidbit of information that I related to Dave, is that the word 'water' was the key to translating Hittite Cuneiform, because it's the same word phonetically in ancient Hittite and in Modern English. No, really! When I went home I looked this up on the web to verify my memory's claim.

From:

http://www.sjsu.edu/faculty/watkins/hittite.htm

"A Czech linguist, Bedrich Hrozny who specialized in Semitic languages decided to attempt the decipherment of the Hittite cuneiform script. He was able to visit Istanbul and obtain copies of some of the cuneiform text from Boghaz Keui. In one text he found a example of two rhyming lines that looked promising. He knew the phonetic values of the cuneiform symbols so he rendered the two lines into the Latin alphabet as:

nu ninda en e-iz-za-te-ni
wa-a-tar-ma e-ku-ut-te-ni

Hrozny recognized the cuneiform ideogram ninda as representing bread. This led him to speculate that some of the other words in the lines might be for something like eating. He at that point was still considering Hittite as a Semitic language so he was looking for words that might be cognate with words for eating and so forth in other Semitic languages. Hrozny was a Semitic scholar but as a Czech he was also familiar with German. In scanning the lines looking for something that would be associated with bread what does he find at the beginning of the second line but wa-a-tar. It fairly leaps out as virtually the English word water although Hrozny probably saw it as a cognate of the German word for water, wasser. This was the clue to Hrozny that Hittite belonged to the Indo-European language family. He found similarities of the words in the lines to other Indo-European languages and was able to translate the pair of lines as:


Now you will eat bread and drink water. "

______________________________________

In fact, the sound 'ah' as in water, or close to it, is in the word for 'water' in all of the languages that branch out of the Indo-European family, as far as I can find. If you have an example that contradicts this, feel free to post it here.

Latin - aqua
Italian - aqua
Spanish - agua
French - eau
German - wasser
Hindi - pani
Marathi - pan-ni
Arabic - nahla

January 30, 2008

My mom's recipes - I made a blog just for them

I've made a blog and moved my mom's recipes to it. Hopefully I will add lots more. For now, here it is:

http://sarasrecipes.blogspot.com/

January 21, 2008

Locust and Mulberry Conversion Chart

*Note - the Mulberry Gauge is being moved to a site upstream.  The correlations to the bridge gauge will all have to be re-done over the coming year(s).*  
Link to spreadsheet of new Mulberry correlations

I've had this in a printout on my wall for years. I don't think it is online anymore so I am going to type it in so I have it handy online. I don't know who originally compiled it. I've altered it to suit my own experiences.

Online gauge for the Mulberry:
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/al/nwis/uv/?site_no=02450000&PARAmeter_cd=00065,00060

Online gauge for the Locust Fork:
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/al/nwis/uv/?site_no=02455000

This information is NOT intended as a gauge for safe water levels. Be sure to check the readings at the put-in bridges. Use your judgment and DO NOT attempt to paddle if your skills do not match the river conditions. Gauges change, and rivers change.

CFS Conversion

-->
THE
CFS Flow
LOCUST
Stage or Height
FORK
Comments
222-441
2’0” to 2’6”
Minimal flow for paddling
530.5-630
2’8” to 3’0”
Good Paddling begins at this level.
732
3’2”
Ideal technical paddling with a little push.
962.7
3’6”
House Rock rapid gets strong; ender hole is prime for tricks.
1230
4’0”
House Rock rapid needs scouting; Double Trouble rapid gets less technical; ender hole begins to wash out; surfing and wave wheel paradise.
1970
5’0”
Big Water river in trees; Powell Falls becomes grabby – scout river right.
2900
6’0”
A real flusher; Whirlpool above Ender Hole becomes very dangerous.



THE
CFS Flow
MULBERRY
Stage or Height painted on Bridge. Subtract 3.3 from the online USGS gauge to get the correct feet on the painted bridge gauge.
FORK
Comments
250-300
0”
Bump and scrape. Too low!
420
0” – 6”
Class I.
600-750
1’
Class II. At 651, bridge gauge said 1 ft with lots of little surf waves. -at bridge 1ft./700 cfs the surf spot between the islands at Glen Clark was in.
800
1’6”
Hawaii 50 begins to form and bow surfing possible.
1100
2’0”
Enjoyable run; great down river run.
3000
3’0”
Hawaii 5-0 is a surfer’s paradise; Lunchtime becomes retentive.
4000
4’0”
Pushy; rapids and eddies begin to wash out; floating debris may be present; 5.0 questionable but the hole behind is great.