Total Pageviews

Monday, May 30, 2011

May 30, 2011. If you can't stand the heat.....

I'm now home from my walk. 2.4 miles, numerous stops. I now smell like the rest of NY in the summer. NY is an ideal place for someone who can't take the heat. The humidity rarely exceeds 99% and there are these wonderful tall buildings to trap the stagnant air. The sanitation department does such a wonderful job. They allow you to visit Monday's garbage at the same curb on Friday.

Pre PD, on a day like today, I would have gone into Central Park. It's my favorite place in the world. Now by the time that I'd get near the Museum of Modern Art, I would smell like a recently dug up ancient relict. They would put glass around me and make me into an ancient exhibit.

Can't you see it now? You're walking through the park on a beautiful day. You come across the Egyptian Obelisk, "Cleopatra's Needle". This was a gift to the United States from Egypt on the 1880's. So you know that your at the magnificent Museum of Modern Art. You go around to the front. On Fifth Avenue the vendors are selling buttons of the museums newest exhibit, "King Marcankhamun." You must go. The exhibit is scheduled to tour the country.

After you leave the impressionists, and spend some of your Monet at the gift shop, you meander past the African room. Where you see this magnificent exhibit. First you walk through the childhood memories of Kong Marcankamun. There are pictures with Mickey Mantle and Yogi Berra. There is his Schwinn Orange Krate.

You think, "Oh my, that couldn't be, but it is, 200 MAD Magazines."

Next comes the picture of the King, as a child, reading the four questions: 1) Why a Duck?; 2) Who's on First?; 3) How fast does a Swallow fly?; 4) Does Your Dog Bite? Now the King's religion was rarely spoken about, but here is the proof of his pious soul.

You come to a room, with a large curtain. People are all waiting to see what is behind the curtain. The curtain opens, It is King Marcankamun. He speaks, "Good evening, Ladies and Germs...." The crowd quickly dissipates.

Later when asked about the exhibit, you say, "The exhibit was good, but I'd pay no attention to that man behind the curtain."

Sunday, May 29, 2011

May 29, 2011. God does not play fair.

God does not play fair.

I know that I'm only 25 years old. Why then does 2011-1956 = 55?

God does not play fair.

I know that I'm 189 lbs. Why then does the scale say 245?

God does not play fair.

I know that I have long, curly brown hair. Why then, when I look in the mirror are those few hairs that I see, turning white?

I'm still the same guy, who could hit a Baseball a long distance, who couldn't be moved from the crease when playing hockey. So why does he make shoes that make me shuffle?

Women speak about aging, men are supposed to be stoic. If this is the truth then God has a wicked sense of humor. Why then would he start having hair grow from absurd places (nose and ears) and stop it from growing on the top of the head?

I had lunch in an open cafe today on Austin Street. Because dining has become more than a momentary pleasure I had a salad and not a steak.

I calmly tried to read my Kindle as beautiful young women in sun dresses walked past.

Among the things I'm sure of in this world are:
1) I am Heterosexual. Once many years ago I asked my Dad what his reaction would be if I said that I was Homosexual. He responded, "You, your eyes follow anything with bumps!" My Dad was a wise man.

2) Women look great in sun dresses. I don't think that there is anything misogynistic about this. Many women have ogled my ass, and I don't object.

3) I, like the Gibbon apes, wolves, termites, coyotes, barn owls, beavers, bald eagles, golden eagles, condors, swans, brolga cranes, French angel fish, sandhill cranes, pigeons, prions (a seabird), red-tailed hawks, anglerfish, ospreys, prairie voles (a rodent), and black vultures am a monogamist.

This is where God makes up for everything else, because I fear that if I weren't a monogamist, those beautiful women in their sun dresses, might see me the same way that the Calendar, the scale, the mirror and my shoes do. That would be the cruelest trick of all.

Monday, May 23, 2011

May 23, 2011. Fuhgettaboutit

I did something today, that I hadn't done before, and I swore that I wouldn't do. I relied upon the Parkinson's to ask a favor of somebody.

In April I had filed, via Federal Express an Estate Proceeding in Surrogate's Court Kings County. I did it via Federal Express, because, 1) I hate Brooklyn Courts, 2) I hate this Brooklyn Court, 3) I had no time to waste a half of a day dropping it off. Big Mistake.

I has heard nothing from the court so i called them. As of 2 weeks ago, the clerk said that it hadn't made it to their office yet, but if I came down, they'd look for it. Fuhgettaboutit!!

I finally went down there today. Went in every wrong direction after getting off of the F Train. You see, one of the byproducts of this disease, seems to be, that I have lost any sense of direction. If I could run I could star in the Monty Python comedy skit which featured a marathon for people with no sense of direction. They all went in different directions.

"No, no, it was the 100-yard dash for people with no sense of direction. The long-distance run was the Marathon For Incontinents, featuring runners constantly dropping into the bushes alongside the road."

So by the time I got to Court, I was sweating profusely. Another attractive aspect of Parkinson's Disease. It takes me so long to empty my pockets and I was sweating so much that the cop at the metal detector, must have suspected that I was hiding drugs, so he made me take off my belt. Now I also have to worry about my pants falling down.

I get to the clerk's office, and the clerk says, "I don't have it." He indicated that it would turn up, but that there was no way to look for the file.

I finally broke down and said, "It's very difficult for me to get here. I have Parkinson's. Anything you can do to help would be greatly appreciated."

Although he did not find the file, he did spend the next half looking for it, gave me his name and said that he'd continue to look. The clerk indicated that this was not unusual and that the file would turn up.

That trip may not sound like much, in fact a couple of years ago, I would have made the trip and been back on Long Island by 10:30, but I'm exhausted. I don't think that I did anything wrong. I wasn't trying to elicit sympathy. I was just trying to get some help from a nice man.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

May 22, 2011, A Tame and Toothless Tabby Can't Produce a Lion's Roar

"When I started this song I was still thirty-three
The age that Mozart died and sweet Jesus was set free
Keats and Shelley too soon finished, Charley Parker would be
And I fantasized some tragedy'd be soon curtailing me
Well just today I had my birthday
I made it thirty-four
Mere mortal, not immortal, not star-crossed anymore
I've got this problem with my aging I no longer can ignore
A tame and toothless tabby can't produce a lion's roar."
Harry Chapin
There Only Was One Choice

Age is such a strange thing. We shouldn't define ones age chronilogically, but mentally. Chronilogically, I am 54, but mentally I feel no different than I did at 25. Physically, well it changes from moment to moment.

Women are far more logical than men. They seem to accept the ultimate inevitable facts of aging. Men don't. My wife has known where she would be buried, long before I had met her. I suppose that I will be buried next to her, but frankly, I don't care.

Don't get me wrong, I can't picture myself becoming an aging man, with a comb-over, shirt unbuttoned to the navel, 4 inch Jewish Star, driving in a convertible, with the mirrored sun glasses. You've seen the type. Often the lens in the sun glasses are put in with the mirror facing inward. This is so he can look at himself.

There are certain inevitable facts about growing older that I must concede. I could not imagine myself with a woman much younger than me.

"Dear where were you when Neil Armstrong walked on the moon?"

"I was a zygote."

Common experiences are too important.

Life is strange, when you're old enough to truly know how to have fun, you either can't do it or look ridiculous trying.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

May 18, 2011. Ticket Stubs and Memories.

I've been to Baseball Games all over this country, from Seattle to Portland, Maine. Since 1964, when my Dad, brother and I went to the Bronx for a Sunday afternoon, double header against the Orioles. I now must consider the possibility that those days are over. Between the crowds on the Subways, the steep steps and my inability to sit still, I may be better off watching these games at home.

My family had season tickets to the New York Rangers in 1968-69. We had season tickets to the New York Islanders from 1972-1993. I had a season ticket for St. John's Basketball from 1991-93. I shared a season ticket for the New York Knicks from 1992-2001. I shared a season ticket for The New York Yankees from 2000-2002.

I was at game 3 and game 4 of the 1969 World Series. I rooted for the Orioles. My heart was broken by Tommie Agee and Ron Swoboda.

I was marveled and was saddened by the great Bobby Orr.

In the spring of 1971, I watched Tom Seaver strike out 19 (including the last 10 batters) Padres. It was the only time that I rooted for the Mets.

I was at Candlestick Park, in 1972, when Willie Mays played his first game there as a Met.

I watched Bill Bradley hit a shot from the corner to complete a comeback, by The Knicks in the over The Bullets in the 1973 playoffs.

I watched Bobby Murcer drive in all 5 runs, in a 5-4 comeback victory, on the day of Thurman Munson's funeral. He will always be one of my favorites.

For four years I watched great Islander Teams in the Stanley Cup playoffs. The final game often conflicted with my Law School exams, but I did see the final game in 1983. A month ago I had the extreme pleasure of discussing this with Bobby Nystrom. The next year my we lost to Edmonton. There has never been one as good as Gretzky.

I saw the Knicks in the finals in 1994 and 1999. I saw Michael Jordan at his finest. I was crushed by Reggie Miller scoring 16 points in a little more than a minute. I saw the final game of the NBA Championship, when the Knicks lost to the Spurs.

I watched Mariano Rivera saw off Atlanta bats as the Yankees won the 1999 world Series. I watched Roger Clemens, inexplicably, through a broken bat in the direction of Mike Piazza. I saw Scott Brosius send game 5 into extra innings, for the second straight day, in 2001.

I sat next to a Fisherman from Alaska and discussed baseball for three hours in Safeco field in 2001. Where else can a Fisherman from Alaska talk Baseball with an Attorney from New York?

The last couple of years, it has become more of a hassle then it's worth. So I'm afraid that I'm now stuck with Ticket stubs and memories.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

May 17, 2011. Parkinson's Dementia

Perhaps nothing scares me more than the possibility of Parkinson’s related dementia. Although I was never the “smartest kid in class,” I also had nothing to be embarrassed about.

Parkinson’s Dementia affects about 20% of those with the disease. Early indications are hallucinations and severe motor control problems. I’ve had minor hallucinations. For example, I swear that I actually remember the Yankees winning a ballgame. My motor control problems, even in my most self pitying moments, could never be considered severe.

It’s difficult to tell what is Parkinson’s Dementia and what is a normal function of aging. The eight signs of Parkinson’s Dementia are:

1) memory problems: As I’ve previously indicated, my memory is not what it once was. This could clearly be a sign of aging.

2) distractibility: I’ve always been easily distracted. I’m not concerned.

3) slowed thinking: Haven’t noticed any problem.

4) disorientation: Haven’t noticed any problem.

5) confusion: Haven’t noticed any problem.

6) moodiness: clearly not.

7)lack of motivation: lifelong problem

8) hallucinations: I have had them. Situations where out of the corner of my eye, I see something that is not there.

What is worse, losing control of one’s body, where you’re a burden upon yourself as well as others, or losing control of one’s mind where you mostly burden others. I may have to get back to you on that one.

May 13, 2011. Dignity

I'm not afraid of dying. I'm not embarrassed by my condition. I am however terrified of losing my dignity. Now I’ll bet that your first thought is, “A guy who puts is picture, with a fake nose and glasses on a t-shirt, is worried about dignity?”

Dignity is a personal thing. If I do something foolish or silly with the intention of getting a laugh, or lightening up an otherwise tense situation, that’s got nothing to do with dignity. As long as I feel that I still have it, I still have it!

But, ending my days in a Nursing home would devastate me. Losing the ability to complete the necessary functions of daily living is my greatest fear. The thought of somebody having to brush my teeth, help me with toileting, etc….is why I continue to fight.

It’s been a tough few weeks. I’ve been a bit absent minded and wobbly.

When I was younger, I had a photographic memory. The fact that the shutter is now broken, and I may be out of film alarms me. I don’t know if this is a function of age or Parkinson’s.

People with Parkinson’s often have periods of freezing. Not temperature wise, but suddenly not being able to move. This happens to me, only when I get out of chairs. It’s been happening more often.

The last few years have been the perfect storm. The Parkinson’s which caused a depression, and forced me to move the office, combined with the worst economy in 70 years, has been devastating to my business.

I don’t want to give the wrong impression. I don’t feel sorry for myself. On the contrary, people have been so good to me that I realized that I’ve got a lot to live for.

Monday, May 9, 2011

May 9, 2011. Can I have a time out?

I haven't written for days, because I wanted a time out. For a few day I wanted to be Marc. I didn't want to be "Marc with Parkinson's." The disease has come to define who I am.

It's not possible to escape oneself. When you're tired of a co-worker, you get to leave at the end of the day. When you're tired of a friend, you avoid them for awhile. Even if you're tired of your spouse, you can take a walk. You can't get away from yourself.

I don't usually mind my own company. I make me laugh. But lately, even my jokes are Parkinson's related. So, I'd love to just to have one week that I needed no prescription, one week to take a walk in Central Park, without straining, one week to take a day trip with my wife to Southern Vermont, One week to go to Yankee Stadium. I didn't realize how much I loved these activities, until they became difficult.

I can't escape it, no more than I can escape aging. It's now a permanent part of my life. It's with me during the strains of waking. It's with me during the dreams of sleeping. It effects how I get out of bed, brush my teeth, dress, sit at my desk, eat my lunch, walk, talk and even go to the bathroom.

So if I'm stuck with you, Mr. P., you're stuck with my Parkinson's jokes.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

May 3, 2011. This is Facebook, It's not life

Clearly I talk a lot. I love eliciting a debate, and then sitting back and watching the results. Sometimes it gets out of hand. A few years ago there was a nasty fight over the meaning of Don McLean's American Pie. You see, we are talking about important stuff.

I used to occasionally post things on a political chat room. I'd get all incensed at the insults. Life has been far more peaceful since I decided to quit.

Until yesterday I was a member of a few Parkinson's Facebook Support groups. I met some wonderful caring people at these sites. The folks at these sites started to fight among themselves. The purpose of this site is support. I hastily quit the sites. It no longer served the purpose.

I go on the internet when I want a distraction. Not for fights.

There are major issues in life. I have Parkinson's, my business could be much better, each day my future is a mystery. This is Facebook, not life. I will miss the support that I got and that I was able to give, but on balance, I made the right decision.