Wednesday, October 31, 2001

First, Ally, My heart goes out to you. I don't know the pain you've had to deal with, but I know it's great and all pain, no matter how old, can always use soothing and can always be given thoughts and prayers. You have both from me.

Logi, I SO FEEL FOR YOU!!!! I EMPATHIZE!!! I love singing, have done much theater and kareoke and when I had my cancer surgery I lost my singing voice completely for many months. I never got it all back, but it is much better now, to the point where I can really enjoy singing again. I hope you can bypass all of that and be singing again right away. What's more, I want to be there when you do.

Everyone, rejoice with me, my tooshie is in great shape! I am the luckiest man alive (except for all of the other luckiest men alive, like Skye ;-) nothing has interfered with the wedding or honeymoon at all and I feel so blessed for that and for all of you. I really want to restate my sincere desire to know you all in a much more tangible way in the future.

I'm not working after today, so not sure if I'll blog before I get back, but I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO HAPPPPPPY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :-D
HAPPY!!!!!! :-D

Thoughts and love to all!


Saturday, October 27, 2001

Okay, I have an explanation of where I've been the last week and not blogging and it is icky, but first I have a few things I need to say.

#1 and this wasn't the first item on my agenda, but it became first when I read it. GHOST, what you wrote on the 25th October was about the single most beautiful and well coveyed piece of writing I have ever had the good privilege to read. Bless you for posting this where the rest of us could share what wonderful personal beauty you have. If any of you missed it, you can read it here.

#2 Nightskye and Rhinogirl: CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! Sparks and I are so happy and thrilled for you. We still look forward to meeting you both, but hopfully not until after you have the single most loving and perfect honeymoon that anyone has ever had! (At least until next week when ours starts ;-) Some people say Heaven is God's gift for a good life. I'd rather say that the gift of a truly good life is being worthy to not just experience love and wonder in your own life, but to share in the joy of the good people around you as well. I feel complimented as a human being that I am a good enough person to deserve knowing about and being able to share the celebration of your union.

#3 UIM and Coogwuh: WELCOME BACK! I can't wait to see both of you! Call me as soon as you can!!!

#4 Ally: I cannot tell you how much we are pulling for you and Brogan and hopeful that your house comes through ASAP! Speaking also as people who have the occaisional D - day ourselves, we just want you to know that we are sure there will be so many A+++ days for you both in your future that you don't have to worry about ruining that perfect average ;-)

#5 Metrocake: Thank you so much for your sweet mention of us in your blog! I cannot tell you how nice it has been to follow your trials and victories and to have the opportunity to share a little piece of your lives.

#6 Tempest: Hope everything is going well with the job, you haven't posted in a few days, I hope all is well.


#8 Chynakatt: Glad you made it back safely and happy to hear you had a good time! Good luck with the job hunt, I'm pulling for ya!

Well if you've read this far than I guess you really want to know, so I'll tell you:
I had to have a operation on Tuesday, rather suddenly.
Yea, I'm all right.
No, it wasn't cancer related.
No it wasn't life threatening.
Yes it was something extremely painful, probably more so than anything in my life to this point.
I'm a little embarrassed by it frankly.
You see I developed an Abcess on my...good my...I can't believe I'm saying this...well, my anus.
Fist-sized aparently.
Went to the doctor on Monday, sent to a surgeon, and to the Hospital Tuesday morning.
Had to get a spinal anesthetic, it sucked.
The rest is history.
Yea, I feel much better.
It's really icky, should be healed completely by the wedding day.
So there you have it. Sorry if I worried anyone, miss talking to you all.

See you soon,
What else could happen right? Okay clear that. Forget I said it ;-)
I'M GETTING MARRIED!!! HEHEHEHEHEHEHE Who care's about my butt!
Wooo Hooo!!!


Thursday, October 18, 2001

Ally, I was thinking the same thing today and was creeped out too... I'll send the few warm fuzzies I have your way. Hopefully it will help :-)

Logi, I just want you to know you're in our thoughts every day and we wish you the very best. Just remember that nothing has to be or mean anything, everything is possible and no matter what things seem or what pattern seems to exist, people are all unique and can still suprise you. I know this is very vague and somewhat awkward, but it's the closest I can come to my positive hopes for you.

Ghost, You will be in my thoughts and prayers constantly and hopefully joy and fulfilment will find you once more. Then I can go back to being a hyper-reactive jerk again :-)

UIM and Coogwah, Bless you both. My hopes are always with you and I can't wait to see you both!

Nightskye, I cannot tell you how happy I am to be back in touch with you again, it's like waking up after a long sleep. I am so happy for you and Rhinogirl. That is a sweet picture of the two of you and Sparks and I look forward to meeting you both.

Chynakatt, Have a great, if not brief vacation. Getting to know you has been so nice!

Tempest, You are in my thoughts. Even though your job is hard on you, I can tell you do it very well. Your thoughtfulness and support has been appreciated.

Metrocake, I never got a chance to thank you for your help with my questions. I'd like to do that now. Thanks!

To The Whole Clot: I hope to meet you all one day and get to know you by your real names. As much as I love the blog, I can't help but suffer flashbacks to being 16 years old and in an AOL chatroom.... :-)

I like the 'Little Golden Books' thing so I made up some of my own. Here they are:

1. He hits you a lot because he loves you a lot!
2. The Magical Potions under the sink.
3. Games Grandpa makes me play.
4. Marco Polo + Running with Scissors and other fun combos!
5. You suck and you're lucky we feed you.
6. "Fu*k", your new favorite word.
7. You can go to the bathroom anywhere!
8. Magic words that make Mommy listen. Vol. 3: Child Protective Services
9. I can do that! Vol. 1: Headstands in the toilet.
10. Bad little girls get locked in the basement.

Wednesday, October 17, 2001

Most of you have probably seen this list by now, so I'll only post my favorites:


4. Kathy Was So Bad Her Mom Stopped Loving Her
5. Curious George and the High-Voltage Fence * - Editor's Choice!
9. That's It, I'm Putting You Up For Adoption
10. The Magic World Inside the Abandoned Refrigerator
11. Strangers Have The Best Candy * - Editor's Choice!
12. You Were an Accident
14. Pop! Goes the Hamster... And Other Microwave Games
18. Daddy Drinks Because You Cry

Best wishes for all of you and continued wishes for all of you struggling with tough times.


Tuesday, October 16, 2001

I know we don't see eye to eye a lot and sometimes seem almost adversarial in these blogs, but I can't respect someone without also caring about them and reading Ghosts words just broke my heart. I understand at least a little what that pain feels like and I'd take back any words I've ever said and undo anything I ever did if it could take that pain away. I'm probably the last one who he'd ever look to or lean on, but I just want him to know that I feel for him and wish with all my heart that it didn't have to be so. Yea it gets better, but sometimes you don't want better, you want what you had....


Monday, October 15, 2001

Sparks and I participated in the AIDS walk at Hecksher(How the hell do you spell that damn thing) State Park this Sunday. We did it last year too, always a good time and it didn't rain so it was all good. Then we sat down for lunch and when we were finished and had to get up again we remembered why they only do this once a year...OW! :-)

So back to the Cryo Center again today to make sure my oil isn't low and then next Wednesday to Stonybrook for a biopsy (more precautionary, we are pretty sure its cancer at this point, just making sure it's the same type) and then the prognosis hooray. :-) Either way, it doesn't look like the wedding and honeymoon will be effected beyond a little nervous cloud about the treatment to come, but hey, I'll take that any day.

I can only imagine what life must be like for Skye and Rhinogirl right now, My wedding is 2 weeks and 4 days away and I am going nuts, theirs is only 10 days..... All our best wishes to you guys through and through!

UIM, I forgot to tell you, you can still do that reading at the ceremony, we spoke to the Reverend about it. Of course this is on a "your choice" basis. :-)

So many of you have struggles and trials right now and I have been reading about them faithfully every day. I want you all to know that I feel for you and wish you well and have you all in my thoughts. I wish for peace and calm and resolution for you all.

Friday, October 12, 2001

Quick update on life in general for everyone:

Good News: We were able to reschedule a flight to FL. for our honeymoon.
Marginal News: We have to go out of JFK in stead of MacArthur causing us to change limo plans and rent a hotel room near the Airpoir for our wedding night.
Good News: Lawyer problems were worked out and we should be ready to go to contract shortly.
Bad News: It does appear the cancer has spread to the right side of my neck.
Good news: The cancer apparently did NOT spread to my chest.
Bad news: To sit down and just talk to a doctor at Sloan Kettering costs $1,100.00
Good News: I have a PPO that should pay 80%
Bad news: I found out that is 80% of "typical" rates. These are much much higher than typical.
Good news: I may not need to go to them.
Good News: My fiance's wedding dress will finally be here Monday.
Bad News: The Brides Maids dresses will not be here until 9 days before the wedding (Talk about cutting it close).
Good News: It looks like that even if I do need surgery, it will not be until AFTER the wedding.
Bad News: I just found out today that a very nice sweet person, the one who trained me at my current job and had moved on to a new job, was among those lost in WTC. He was a year younger than me...

I am really trying to make peace with that last one. I used to joke with this guy and tease him about his bad luck... That now feels terrible in a really creepy way...

Gears Changing...

I read UIM and Rhinogirls "Personal Pyro Party" safety list, I offer the following list of my own:

Fire tips for kids:
1. No matter how much you assure others that the "little" blaze you started is under control, they will refuse to listen to you if you are only 5 years old...
2. Don't burn things that don't beling to you, it pisses people off.
3. Don't ever run through the house with something flaming in your hand, people totally overreact.
4. Girls really don't like it when you ignite your gas, no matter how much you think they secretly do.
4a. You can pretty much write off anything involving flatulence guys, they apparently mean it...
5. No matter how formal you dress or how serious your demeanor, a bonfire in the back yard is not an acceptible way to help your old toys "pass into the next world".
6. You pretty much can't burn anything at a relatives house, no matter how much they assure you that you can "just make yourself at home".
7. Fire does not cleanse evil, leave your little brother alone!
8. "Show and Tell' and fire don't mix. Just trust me on this one.
9. Calling it "Flambe' " does not help you get away with torching food.
10. No matter how much you loved your dearly departed pet, your parents will never let you have a "Viking Furneral".

Wednesday, October 10, 2001

It's not a very busy day at work today so I have had some time with my thoughts...

We meet with the minister tonight for our first "official" meeting to discuss our up-coming ceremony, I am kind of happy about that. Of course, as with all things, tomorrow I find out my test results, namely how much cancer is there and where. That's kind of bad. Today, the lawers are trying to figure out contract stuff for the house. It's confusing and they are asking eachother for things they don't have and no one is sure what to do, I'm sorting it out. We also went out to Starbucks last night (Sparks and I) and we spent about two hours discussing this war and the state of affairs in the middle east and the fact that if, when the time comes for our honeymoon, either of us have a bad feeling and think it a bad idea, we simply won't go. Whether this helps or hurts America we don't really care, we care somwhat more for eachothers feelings, so that will be the end of that. Altruism is wonderful so long as it doesn't come at the cost of your emotional stability.

In spite of all the goings-on and uncertainty and excitement and stress, Sparks and I are getting on better than ever and I thank God for that.

24 days till the wedding, 16 for Skye and Rhinogirl....

I have been operating under the incorrect assumption that comments I have made in the recent past would lead to really powerful debates and good productive exchanges. This has proven not to be true, so in the interests of not wanting to appear disrespectful and lingering where I am not wanted, I'll keep my comments more impersonal and generic in the future so as not to upset anyone. I should not have assumed that just because a person is intelligent and has strong detailed opinions, that they would embrace what I consider to be a challenge of their stance. I regret that assumption.

ALLY was right, there must always be mutual respect in these exchanged for them to truly be valuable and unless that is established, there will never be balance. - Miogi Depate Team Captain

Great.... I just found out our airline cancelled our flight to FL to connect with our Cruise ship... Gotta run, wish me luck.


Tuesday, October 09, 2001

"Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do."
--Ben Franklin

Okay, enough Ben Franklin quotes and enough format stealing, but the amorphous "Guy" must sometimes take on many forms...

Well "The Guy" has read and enjoyed another Ghost post (Ghost-Post-Post-Ghost, ooh it just rolls doesn't it? ) and of course has a plethora of response. I must say though, that for someone who so often perported to love 'stirring the pot' and enjoyed 'drawing reactions', it is more than a little saddening to read the closing of his blog today.

Now it's time to respond to todays post and believe me, it is so pleasant to have the point of view to challenge (like it or not I guess). I don't know if my opinions are respected or even appreciated by him but luckily the blog doesn't need to know or care, and I respect the blog, the blog is good :-)

I guess I should also state that I am only addressing the aspects I do not agree with or have strong feelings about because I do not wish to be redundant and I'd prefer you read Ghost's blog directly to glean those positive bits for yourself. If I am missing the point I don't want to contribute to your doing the same.

Heck maybe I'll even start my own threads instead of leaching off the opinions and creativity of others, but hey, responding to interesting things is kind of a format in itself right?

I think it is a wonderful Idea to infiltrate these terrorist camps, on the surface, but there is a lot more to this than meets the eye. You'd almost have to utilize operatives from Middle-Eastern countries and also make sure they stayed alive, which is harder than it may seem on the surface. Then try and infiltrate, knowing that years may have to go by so that you can establish yourself and your beliefs. This is/was the ruling body, in a power position, not a rebel group, desperate for any help it can get. Also, the spies would likely have to participate in bloody operations, maybe even killing Americans and others before ever even gaining enough trust to be privy to such plans. You are not going to entrust "the new guy" with the plan to destroy America" It's not like this is a hollywood movie where we can send a guy over there and have him do some incredible deed or save someone's life and then get in the good graces of these guys? They'd probably kill anyone who hasn't been there for the better part of their lives who even inquired about such a thing. These are exremists, called that for a reason. So please don't think that even 8 years is all that much, it's not, especially considering the possibility of mortality and the probability of having to kill some of your allies and countrymen in the process.

I do appreciate the desire to find a simple and executable solution, but I think this is a case where it has been made clear from the get go that clarity of action and even clarity of enemy is not easily discerned nor decided upon.

Bombs are impercise, innocents get killed and targets may not even be valid. Believe me, I wish bombs would never be dropped and guns would never be fired unless we were sure of hitting the targets. I would love it because then there would be no war because unless you lined people up and held guns to their heads you could never be sure if you'll hit something and you'd never know if intelligence is completely accurate.

Now, I don't necessarily think the bombings by themselves are such a wonderful idea either, but I understand the reasoning behind them. We are not attacking to kill Usama bin Ladin (although it would be a nice incidental perk) we are attacking to weaken the position of the Taliban government so that the Northern Alliance with have a stronger position, enabling them to re-take the country. Not because they are necessarily the "good guys" but because, relatively speaking, they are the "better guys" and the point is to remove power from the government that would aid and help train the terrorists that attack us.

It is true that many if not most people in Afghanistan and even Pakistan think we are the "Great Satan" but what we are doing is smart. We are dropping flyers with the food explaining (in their native language) what the situation really is to slowly cause people to question the actions of their government. It's true that only 25% of the people there are literate, but it is also true that the literate talk and that most of the beliefs people there have come from stories and conversations as most news is inaccessible. We don't need people to love us, but if we can make them hate us a little less, foster at least a little uncertainty, then the threats are likewise reduced. Printing a huge USA on every bag and box also reinforces our position.

The idea that, 'if you kill the leader then the whole system will fall apart', is not true anymore (if it ever really was), If it were true then we are really wasting our time because in case you didn't know, the leader of the Northern Alliance was assassinated by a bomb hidden in a TV camera just 2 weeks before the attack that shook our Country. We should not believe that the Northern Alliance will fall apart because it lost it's leader and we should not believe that Usama bin Ladin’s clan will break up should he perish. I think the problem with people is that they want or maybe even need a person or a face to concentrate their agression on and that is a dangerous thing to do because there is always a new face somewhere in the background waiting to be hated next.

If you want an idea of the political intricacies of combating middle east terrorism, read the following page for a glimpse of just one piece of the complicated and murky tapestry that is middle-eastern terrorism.

What do I think the solution is? Probably what I percieve is exactly what the government is doing: Working on Multiple fronts in a varaiety of ways. Food, Fliers, Diplomacy, Force, Covert ops, Leveraging the people involved in their own country who fight against bin Ladin, utilizing allied support whether it's necessary or not, to foster unity, pushing through large aid packages for our own citizens, cutting lending rates to spur economic growth.... I have never been so proud of the government as I am right now.

But still with all that said, I am scared too, and I wish for a simple solution, I wish for a quick resolution, I wish for life to go back to the way it was, knowing it never can. But that doesn't mean life cannot be good again, it's just that whatever is coming, it is new and with new comes uncertainty and with uncertainty comes fear. I am just grateful that I have love and faith enough to face this new future and I hope for all of you to find the strength to do the same.


Friday, October 05, 2001

Okay, I read Ghost and the following is the response it illicited from me:

I think it overly trite and jingoistic to pull out the old "lazy lax Americans, they brought this on themselves" crap. I love how angry people who know better than everyone else come out of the woodwork when something goes wrong. The rest of us understand that it is human (not American) nature to seek the most relaxed and enjoyable a state as possible regarding macroscopic events so that we can concentrate on our personal lives. That is not to say that we are not concerned with safety and security, we are just predominantly concerned on a different level. This is not out of left field though, biological imperative demands we care for ourselves and loved ones first and foremost. That is not to say we do not care about Macroscopic matters, only that in the course of our lives we are frequently occupied with living and thriving and thusly place our faith in others to look at those matters sufficiently and provide us with forums and data with which to make an opion and formulate support systems in the most efficient manner such that an excess of time is not taken away from pressing personal matters.

I don't know who was the one to decide that if you don't outwardly say or display publicly your beliefs that you are a hypocrite if you decide to do so later "just because" of serious world events. Look Einstein, my parents love my brother and I, but if they didn't happen to tell me so literally for a while, they didn't suddenly become hypocrites when a tradgedy on tv made them run in and tell my brother and I that they love us. Yes that is an apt metaphore as a matter of fact. God, where the hell do you get off judging patriotism or political stance on any level simply by the presence or pervasiveness of the outward displays. Try conversation. Try asking a persons stances and views before judging how big their flag is. God how stereotypically primal male an attitude can you have?

As far as the level of security, any thief will tell you that if they want to steal anything bad enough they'll find a way to do so eventually. Don't put so much faith in security that you start becomming willing to "trim" some basic freedoms for safety's sake. As Benjamin Franklin said: "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Those are words to be pondered and considered very carefully.

I'm not saying that security is not necessary, I am saying, don't think you can set a level of security where you can say "Ok we are safe now" and think the sacrifice worth it. Let me tell you, if we sacrifice like that and this manages to happen again, a lot of people will be wondering what they sacrified liberty for and get angry, thats how kingdoms fall, look it up. Not that this is logically justifiable, but it is human nature and must be acknowledged. We don't have to like human nature, but to put a bag over our heads and simply say it shouldn't be so is just foolishness.

Just to reiterate, If one more person tells me why can't raise a flag if i didn't before or why I shouldn't display a bumper sticker I didn't display it before , they better stand 10 steps away when they say it. I'm not very fast and that should be enough of a head start. If I didn't display a flag before if DOESN'T mean I didn't love or take pride in my country before, it just means that I didn't think of for feel a need to express that outwardly. If I later do feel that need because of some event then I am justified, not phoney or hypocritical. You know what else? That may not be true for someone else, nor does it need to be. I'm simply saying that when you start slinging beliefs about groups and countries you lose the ability to see individuals and that is the kind of thinking that leads to hate and predjudice and war, just look at the the beliefs of the terrorists if you need proof of that.

Okay, I'm done. Wow that was fun, nice to have a strong opinion to react to...
I met my friend MeG for lunch yesterday. He's an Air Force reservist. He hasn't been home since Sept. 18. Yesteday he was stationed near ground zero a few blocks away from me. He escorted me behind the barracades and I had a view of the site that few civilians get. It was humbling, it was very sad. It's still burning, I couldn't belive that. It's bigger more menacing and more real than it ever seemed on TV. It seemed VERY real on TV, but reality has a way of blowing that away....

Had a nice chat with ChynaKatt, I now know exactly who the heck I am talking to :-)

Ally, send me an e-mail if you can, I need to ask you a question!

29 days until my wedding, that means only 22 until Skye and Rhino's, this is so damn exciting!

UIM has now been added to my short list of Groomsmen (3), thanks for being there buddy!

Tuesday, October 02, 2001

Well I am about to go for my MRI, followed an hour and a half later by a CAT scan. I am a little scared and hate the idea of having to get two infusions of "contrast". They inject the stuff to help take better pictures and of course the two tests usee different "contrast" so I get poked twice. That's secondary though. What I really want to do is let all of you know how much your words of encouragement and support have made to me today. I stayed home because I just couldn't work with these tests hanging over my head and every time I found myself getting sad, it seemed like one of you posted a message or sent me an e-mail or called and I have to tell you it made ALL the difference in the world. I have been blessed with only wonderful people in my life and knowing that gives Sparks AND I the strength to not just deal with this, but make sure only good things come from it. We know in our hearts that everything will be okay and with friends like all of you, I know we won't ever be alone in this, so thank you all, Ally, Tempest, Logi, ChynaKatt, Rhinogirl, Skye, UIM, CooGwuh and everyone I may have forgotton.

Oh and ChynaKatt, you actually DID meet Sparks and I at Karaoke one night ;-)

Lots of love,
Join us in a chain of smiles, it's all good
Wry and Sparks

Monday, October 01, 2001

Yesterday was a nearly perfect, absolutely divine day in the lives of Wryguy and Sparks. She had her bridal shower and was totally suprised, had fun and not a single odd moment all day and night. It was truly like a dream in every respect.

Today I found out they think my cancer is back. I am about as sad, scared and upset as I have ever been. I am leaving early. I am not going in tomorrow. My heart is breaking. I never wanted this for Sparks and I don't want it for us. Please send us your thoughts and prayers. I have has three operations already, I am not handling this very wll at all, this one hurts.

Love you all, keep us in your thoughts,