Category: Health


Before anyone jumps all over my shit, I know my definition of a bad day is nowhere near as bad as some people’s bad day. Some people have cancer, some people are abused, some people are homeless, have no healthcare, have no friends, voted for Trump and now realize he lied to them. OK that last group I have lost all sympathy for. If you are stupid enough to believe his lies, you deserve all the pain you get.

Whew. Today started good, no work, so no getting up early, in fact I didn’t get up to lunchtime. That’s when the shit hit the fan. It look like I had spilled coffee on my kitchen counter, but to the left of my sink and my coffee maker is to the right of my sink. Then I smelled the liquid and it smelled like vinegar, but I don’t have vinegar in my apartment because I am allergic to it. Then I thought, maybe I spilled beer, you know, maybe I poured a glass of beer, didn’t drink it and when I poured it out I missed the sink (could happen right?), so I started to clean it up, picking up the things on my counter and rinsing them and mopping up the spill, then I noticed it was all over the wall, and on the underside of my cabinets! What the actual FUCK happened here?

I had been boiling water to cook pasta for my lunch. I turned off the water, I cleared off my table, moved everything from my counters to the table and washed the counters and my wall. The liquid seemed to be coming from behind my kitchen cabinets. I looked above them and there were no stains so it wasn’t coming from the apartment above. That leaves only one explanation. Demons. My apartment is possessed by demons. I briefly considered calling my landlord, but decided against it.

Then I got diarrhea, while doing my laundry.

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Back to running

Last Friday (October 30) I started running again, it was a good idea badly executed. I decided to run at night on the path by the East River. Going through a dark spot I didn’t notice the path was broken up and down I went. On my face, ouch.

This was supposed to be my first run after my ankle healed. My ankle was feeling good and now my face, wrist, and knees were not. My Friday ended with a trip to the Emergency Room, where the doctor looked at my face, ignored my knees, ordered a tetanus shot and had the nurse give me some bacitracin. I was sent home, no cat scan, no x-rays, not even a bandaid for my open bleeding wounds. Just instructions to see my doctor in two day.

So I made an appointment with my Doctor, he checks me out and says “Don’t stop running.” What? With my knees hurting? “Give it a few days.”

Today I went out to run, a few more days than he suggested, in addition to my knees hurting my ankle decided it wanted to hurt also. At 2K I decided my doctor is insane. My knee told me it was quitting. “No” I said to my knee (actually to myself) we are running 4K. My knee whimpered and wobbled. I walked for a minute and decided if I couldn’t run, I would walk very fast. Except that cramps my shins so I had to run, my knee shut up and I went to the diner when I was done. I run this body, my friend says that and I was never sure what it meant. Until today.

My time was pretty good, which is good considering my run is next Sunday. I hope to do great, by great I mean finishing without puking, fainting, or dying.

The struggle is real

Recently I wrote about my stomach problems. I’m here to give you an update. I finally went to the doctor and he diagnosed me with Gerd. Which I had already decided I had from googling the symptoms i was experiencing. I didn’t want to have it, but it was that or stomach cancer. He gave me some medicine and a list of foods to avoid. I took the medicine for a month and a half, then i starting having side effects. Now i am just trying to manage it with diet, avoiding acidic foods (tomatoes and citrus), coffee (very hard) and alcohol. I discovered i don’t have to avoid all alcohol and when i do eat or drink something i shouldn’t the flair ups are not severe because most of the time i’m being good but sometimes ….. I just have to have that cup of coffee.

Some of my symptoms are caused by allergies and intolerance. I discovered i’m lactose intolerant and allergic to eggs. In the midst of all this i decided to go back to being vegetarian further limiting my food choices. A friend asked me “Can you eat real food at all?” “No not really.” So its challenging, but i’m up to it. I feel so much better now. 

Sliding backwards

“On Sunday, November 15, I will follow in the footsteps of the New York Yankees as part of the seventh annual Damon Runyon 5K at Yankee Stadium – a unique fundraising run/walk that uses the Stadium as its course. I’ll get to explore the concourses and ramps, climb stairs between levels, and take my own victory laps around the warning track that circles the field. – See more at: LINK

This is not a plea for money, however if you want to click on the link and donate I would appreciate it. Rather I posted this so readers would know why I am running. I don’t really like running, I do like how I feel afterwards and I like raising money for Cancer Research. It is a charity that is near and dear to my heart.

There is an app that tracks exercise and besides that I am listing them in a spreadsheet. This is how I know the last four runs I am getting slower. Each run slower than the one before. I’m still faster than when I started and not discouraged.

While I’m tempted to blame this on a variety of factors, blisters on my toes, sore legs, twisted ankle and/or worsening asthma, part of me realizes this is probably just the ups and downs of running and human physiology.

Today I did not want to run. I made a compromise, that I would only run 2 miles. My time was terrible, a friend who I admire as a runner commented on my Facebook post that a “bad run is better than no run”. Support strengthens my resolve.

“Speak” is a young adult novel by Laurie Halse Anderson, it is not a new book, it was first published in 1999. And this is not a review of the book, that will be on my other blog. In fact, this post has a spoiler in it so if you haven’t read the book and are planning to, you might want to not read this post. This is a chance for me to get on my soapbox about my favorite topic to get on my soapbox about, violence against women.

Melinda Sordino’s freshman year is off to a horrible start. She busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops, and now her friends — and even strangers — all hate her. Months pass and things aren’t getting better. She’s a pariah. The lowest of the low. Avoided by everyone. But eventually, she’ll reveal what happened at the party. And when she finally speaks the truth, everything will change.

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know what happened at the party. In fact I knew before I read a review of the book with a spoiler that told me what happened that Melinda had been the victim of some sort of sexual assault, either rape or attempted rape, probably by a popular boy. What I didn’t understand when I was reading the book was why no one knew what happened, they all knew she called the police but not why. I was expecting that she was a pariah because she had claimed she was raped at the party but no one believed her, but no one knew why she called the police. The reason (here’s the spoiler) was because when the police got there, she ran away and didn’t talk to them. Of course then, you might ask, if she didn’t talk to the police then how did everybody know she called the police? I don’t remember that being explained. It’s really the only thing in the book that doesn’t make sense. It did not detract from the impact the book has had on its reading audience.

This book has an interview with the author in the back. I didn’t really read it, just kind of skimmed through it, one question and answer caught my attention:

Have any readers ever asked questions that shocked you?

I have gotten one question repeatedly from young men. These are guys who liked the book, but they are honestly confused. They ask me why Melinda was so upset about being raped.

She admits she was horrified, as she kept getting the question over and over she realized that many young men are not being taught the impact that sexual assault has on a women. I would go a step further and say a lot of young men don’t truly understand what rape actually entails. “Lots of Men Don’t Think Rape is Rape“. I keep reading on social media that we need to talk to our girls and boys about rape, tell girls how to protect themselves and boy to not rape. Parents need to do more. They need to educate their children, boys and girls, about what exactly rape is and why it is wrong. Boys can’t understand the emotional impact of rape unless someone explains it to them. Realize I am speaking in generalities here, I know there are some very aware young men.

Rape is a crime of violence and woman can feel it. Even when their life wasn’t threatened women report being afraid they would be killed. Some men don’t realize they are a threat to women simply because they are bigger and stronger than the woman. Also the way the ‘definition of rape’ has changed and the fact that many men are starting a ‘mens movement’, just makes me more afraid.

O.K. that’s all I can think of right now. Getting off my soapbox.

Since I eliminated some foods: soda, processed meat, coffee and cutting back on others I have noticed some changes. For one thing, I really miss coffee. And my stomach is getting better. I am starting to pinpoint some foods that should definitely be avoided and some that I probably should eat more of. Also I need to eat more regularly and eat real meals instead of just snacking. I should eat less sugar also.

All this is an attempt to avoid going to a Gastroenterologist since I did that when I thought I had an ulcer. Meaning I know what tests they are going to want to do and I am not ready for that.

In the interest of healing myself, I googled probiotics and found some sites with lists of foods high in probiotics. There is a good slide show at Livestrong.com. Briefly the list is:

  • Green peas – raw
  • Dark chocolate
  • Natto – Japanese breakfast food
  • Kefir
  • Miso
  • Kombucha tea
  • Umeboshi plums -eaten by Samurai
  • Yogurt
  • Sauerkraut – unpasturized
  • Pickles – made with fermentation
  • Cheese
  • Tempeh
  • Kimchi

Looking over this list, there are some foods I recognize, some I don’t and some I never eat. I knew about yogurt and kefir, in fact I have been having a half cup of kefir in the morning and evening. I didn’t know about green peas although eating carrots and celery seemed to help. I knew dark chocolate had some good things for you. The fact that miso contains probiotics explains why I can eat the miso ramen. 6 foods are Asian, apparently the Asian way of fermenting foods either produces probiotics or doesn’t kill them. I never eat pickles, sauerkraut and never tried Kimchi because of the vinegar allergy, also I don’t like sauerkraut. Now I can claim that my allergies are killing me.

Progress is being made. I am writing down everything I eat so when I do have an ‘attack’, which is still happening I can look at what I’ve been eating and make adjustments. If nothing else, I know what to do to get relief. The pain doesn’t go away as quickly as it I had a pill to take, but it does go away.

Here’s the plan

Lately I’ve been complaining about my stomach. Sometimes it really hurts, so bad at times I have trouble walking. Nothing has made it feel better, when it hurts I have to lie down with an ice pack and sleep. I was trying to adjust my diet, but since I don’t know what foods are aggravating it, this is a very hit or miss proposition.

I’ve been googling the symptoms and that is an exercise in futility, there are so many things it could be, symptoms matched GERD, so I started avoiding cola, coffee and alcohol, but that didn’t seem to help.

While scrolling through Facebook I came across this video, “Vampire Fungus”, which said, if you have problems with bloating etc etc watch this video. I normally don’t, but I was feeling desperate for some relief. It was long, the man referred to doctors with laughable names. Seriously I laughed at their names, until he said Dr. Oz. (Wait a minute! Wasn’t Dr. Oz exposed as a fraud? Not sure about that) Now I had to listen to the end, just to see how ridiculous he was. What gets me is the promises, I will tell you now what you need to do now to get relief, oh but first, I’m going to tell you five reasons blah blah. I might have bought his product, but he annoyed me.

So what was he selling? Probiotics. Which I can buy at the health food store, of course not the super de duper ones he sells for $70. I bought some and am giving them a try. I’m glad I didn’t buy his, since the best ones at the health food store had coconut oil in them. Yeah, that would have been great.

Babysitting upstate

Not really babysitting since the girl is 25, she had surgery on her sinuses on Monday and so needs someone here to make sure she is o.k. I also helped her with her sinus rinse since I am somewhat of a pro at them. After she did it, her exact words: “Oh my goodness! My nose feels so good!” She is not allowed to actually blow her nose so all the blood and other gunk just sits there. The sinus rinse clears it out as well as moisturizes her mucus membranes. I can imagine it is a wonderful feeling to get all that out of there.

For a while we weren’t able to get online. I thought my old laptop, which is now hers, had the connection to the router here saved, apparently the password has been changed. Then the hotspot on my phone wouldn’t work and I couldn’t connect through her phone’s hotspot. I sent a couple of angry texts to the boy. I always blame him for everything. Now we are online through the router instead of my phone. I just reset it and we were connected and eating up my data, for some reason the hotspot want to use cellular data not the house wifi, yes my phone and iPad were working through the wifi even though I couldn’t connect through my laptop.

After all that, I couldn’t remember what I wanted to write here. It was brilliant though.

The young male cat here has been avoiding me since I got here. For some reason he is afraid of me.

I was banished to the basement, the girl was sleeping where I normally sleep when I come and so I had to sleep in her room. My biggest complaint about sleeping in her room is the mad parrot in her room that hates me. It’s not personal she hates everyone except the girl.

And that is the end of today’s updates. Talk to you soon.

Is my Keurig killing me?

The only appliance in my kitchen is a Keurig. Recently I read an article about the hazards of using a Keurig. After describing how you can never empty the water completely and the sludge and microbes and mold that will grow in it, she went on to talk about the foil that seals the top of the plastic cup and the actual toxicity of the plastic, I was convinced that the mold would kill me, or the foil would give me Alzheimer’s or the plastic would poison me and make life not worth living. Then I read an article that disagreed with the first article, convincing me that my Keurig is not a death ray masquerading as a single cup coffee maker.

Fully realizing that anyone can claim to be an expert and write anything and pretend it is Gospel, after all that is what all those anti-vaccine idiots did to convince gullible parents to not vaccinate their children and endanger us all. By the way, is it possible for an adult to get a pertussis vaccine shot?

It just so happens that I use a filter for my Keurig, so I don’t have the plastic cup and foil lid problems but there is the still the reservoir with its supposed mold growth. Here is where I put my own brain to use. I am extremely allergic to mold. If I was drinking mold everyday, in the form of my morning cup of coffee, I would be sick. But I’m not. So I’m still using my Keurig, and loving it.

While scrolling through my twitter feed I came across the following tweet.

Even though I grew up in the South I have been living in New York for almost all of my adult life, I was sure I would be familiar with most of these foods. As this list demonstrates New York and New England have some major differences at least food wise. A few of these I have eaten, some I have known of for years, some friends have talked about but most had me scratching my head and saying: “What the ….”

The link in the tweet takes you an article with only 9 of them, the following link is for the original article with all 22 items.

22 Things You’ve Definitely Eaten If You Grew Up In New England

After saying “What I missed not growing up in New England!” @eladyland said, Florida probably has a list too; hmmm no, not really. After giving it serious consideration, I could only come up with two, and one of those is southern not Florida specific. Biscuits and gravy, and strawberry shortcake.

The strawberry shortcake I am talking about it the kind you get at the Strawberry festival in Plant City. Where you get a plate with a biscuit on it, a huge biscuit, split in half, then you walk along a table with a bowl of strawberries and a bowl of whipped cream and pile them on.

Biscuits and gravy is not a Florida food. I don’t even know if you can get it there. The gravy is sausage gravy, basically a white sauce with sausage in it. The sausage is cooked before adding to the gravy so its not real greasy, but you can still feel it sticking to your arteries when you eat it. The biscuits are huge, as big as my brother’s hand. You can’t get it here in NYC, it used to be available at Denny’s or Perkins but no more. Even when they had it the biscuits were small.

Whenever I go visit my parents I make them take me to every restaurant in driving distance that serves biscuits and gravy. I just love it.

Those are the foods I remember from my childhood. Everything else, is pretty much what everybody had as a child.