It’s that time again, cartooners—when we roll a big honkin’ blogiversary cake out on the trolley so that every member-in-good-standing of the Thrilling Days of Yesteryear faithful can have a slice while I wax nostalgic (which seems fitting, since this is a blog devoted to nostalgia) about what a long, strange trip it’s been in the many years since some sharpie at Salon Blogs sweet-talked me into signing a four-year lease back on November 4, 2003. (“You have to move? Oh, you can store that stuff over there—this place will never be torn down!”)
One of my dearest Internet chums, The Baby, mused out loud in a chat room one night that I should get me one of them newfangled blogs and I told her that I would as soon as I found out what the heck they were. Though Baby planted the seed, it was migrant workers S.Z. and Scott C. at World O’Crap who really cultivated the soil of the entire blog project (this was a time when they were working for $1.10 an hour, waiting for sales of their hilarious book Better Living Through Bad Movies to make them filthy, stinking rich beyond their wildest dreams)—honest to my grandma, when I first began reading WO’C and said to myself: “How hard could this be?” As it turned out, quite a lot—the first blog I authored crashed, burned, and vaporized itself in scattered smithereenies all over the Internet…prompting a second effort, which worked like a charm. (All three individuals present at the birth of TDOY belong to my true Facebook friendage, by the way—they are among my oldest online compadres, and I cherish each and every one of them…as well as the many followers, fans and other devotees who have encouraged my behavior over these many years.)
|Buy the book...so that they might continue to do the Lord's work.|
back in July that the ‘rents and I were forced out of our Athens digs a month earlier by an evil landlord heckbent on screwing us over because he could, and that we wound up in nearby
Pixley Winterville, a.k.a. “City of Marigolds.” (I need to mention here that while our
mailing address is Winterville, we’re actually
situated out of that burg to an unincorporated area in nearby Oglethorpe County—which
is why I never stop with the Green Acres references.) The move took quite a bit out of us, due to
the fact that Mom and Dad are no spring chickens and my rock-solid abs have the
consistency of Cool Whip. With the help
of sisters Kat and Debbie, we were able to successfully complete the relocation…but
the repositioning was not without its perils.
Then she started experiencing a lot of back trouble. It would come and go, particularly since there would be days when I would order her to sit down and rest (what is it about old people that makes them so goddamn stubborn, anyway?)—she’d be okay for a day or two, and then she’d overdo and be right back where she was. One Saturday morning, she went out to do a bunch of errands…and that was what buried the camel in a big straw stack. She was experiencing shooting pains in both her legs, and suffering from downright agony in her back.
This kept up for several days, until I finally laid down the law: either she would allow Dad and I to take her to the emergency room, or I would call 911 for an ambulance and save Dad some driving. She vehemently argued with me about this, and we agreed to a compromise—she would call her doctor in the morning for an appointment. (I wasn’t very happy about the compromise, to be honest—the healthcare system in this country is a farce, and I knew it would be several days before she would be able to see him.)
The results reveal that Mom has been suffering from scoliosis; Doc says from the looks of things she’s had it most of her life. (Mom is still bamfoozled that it took so long to diagnose this, seeing as how she unloaded trucks when she worked at Springmaid-Wamsutta and it never bothered her then.) He then referred her to a specialist, where further examination reveals that there’s been slippage in her third and fourth vertebrae that’s brought about painful arthritis. The nerves in the vertebrae area look like someone went at a circuit board with a pair of pinking shears; he had hoped physical therapy might alleviate the problem but it now looks as if surgery is the only way out.
She’s scared sh*tless about the surgery, which is understandable, but the only other alternative is how she’s getting around now: with a walker and a grimace of pain every time she overexerts herself (and as you’ve already guessed, it’s always too much). We had a long talk about the surgery, and she gave me a glimpse into why she doesn’t want to hop up on the table; my mother has this complex where she’s convinced she’s the only one who can take care of my father. “You don’t even know what pills he has to take each day,” she wailed.
“Look…I didn’t go to the best schools…but the one I did attend learned me pretty good about reading. I think I could dope out what meds he needs,” was my reply. As irony would have it, she’s at the doctor’s right now while you’re reading this and I hope they’re able to reach a quick decision as to when she’ll have this done. Nothing hurts me more than seeing my mother hurt, and even though one of the doctors suggested she try to do a few things around the house to prevent from getting “stove up,” I don’t like seeing her in pain. What really angers me is that she got so upset back in March of 2010 when I was at death’s door (well, not really—I was just helping the Girl Scouts move some cookies and I wandered into the wrong neighborhood) because I originally dismissed it as just a case of the flu. (In case you’ve joined us in progress, it turned out to be a life-threatening calcium build-up…plus I had to have surgery to remove some too-mahs.)
(We have cleaning people who come in every other week, thanks to Kat and Debbie…so that’s one chore off my plate.) I also have had to do most of the errand-running, and that includes doing the weekly grocery shopping. My friends—I do not exaggerate when I confess that I would rather chew off an arm and/or a leg than step foot inside a grocery store. I hate it with the white-hot intensity of a thousand suns. But hey—sometimes all good men have to come to the aid of the party, if I learned nothing else from typing class.
As her only son, I feel it’s imperative I spend some time with her so I arrange for us to have some Mom-and-Ivan outings in the evenings; this past October I entertained her with many of the Universal horror movies I’ve collected over the years (if you recall from yesterday’s Dementia review).
In addition to TDOY and the reviews I write for ClassicFlix, I’m also in charge of the Radio Spirits blog…so you can imagine all of this eats up a lot of my free time. I’m not complaining; I just felt you good people were entitled to know why the blog resembles a barren wasteland, and why the Doris Day(s) and Serial Saturdays features kind of came to a grinding halt—I just don’t have the available spare time to work on those as I would like. I even missed out on writing a post about my natal anniversary in September—and I had the perfect title, “Fifty-two Pickup.” (Crickets)
I wish I could say we’ve turned a corner here at the new Rancho Yesteryear…but for now, we’re continuing to take one day at a time. I’m going to make a concerted effort to do some landscaping here in the meantime, with a goal of getting something up once a week…twice, if I’m feeling crazy. In closing, I want to thank everyone for their patience and continued support of Thrilling Days of Yesteryear. I’m having too much fun here to quit anytime soon.