Tuesday, September 30, 2008



The surgery went well. Just wound up being a triple bypass, no more (al-hamdul'allah!). Finished around 2:30pm (earlier than expected - awkwardly, Ryan and I were in the processing of donating blood when we got the call). He's in the ICU for 24-ish hours with a dedicated nurse who gave us the rundown and then sent us home since she wasn't going to wake him up for a while (we talked to him and gave him lucky squeezes anyways). Had a call a little later that because he was still bleeding more than they liked, the doctor was coming back and taking him back to the operating room in order to put a stitch or two more in. This went off without a hitch, and the doctor says he's doing just fine. I'm in touch with the nurse every hour or two - apparently he's awake-ish right now, and they're taking the breathing and nasal/stomach tubes out within the hour. When we go see him tomorrow morning, apparently he should be sitting up, eating breakfast, and having a generally fantastic, if somewhat immobile, time - what with the new and effecient heart pumping capacity and all.

I'm just glad it was Dr. Pa doing the surgery, not Dr. Nick. I think Dad is well re-arranged now, and fortunately he doesn't have a leg for an arm and an arm for a leg!


Thank you all so much for your words of support and your prayers. Again, if you want updates or anything, please feel free to call my cell phone or send an email. I'm running point on this so that the hospital isn't fielding loads of concerned phone calls from dad's fan club, so really...please don't hesitate to call me.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

my heart will go on

I'm not typically a fan of the movie "Titanic", but I found myself playing its theme song today in the chapel of Bakersfield Memorial Hospital, on an old electric organ with foot pedals that I quickly taught myself to use for an added emotional dimension to the tune. The family was gathered around, laughing.

My dad, the healthiest, most active recently-turned-50-year-old whom I know, went in for a routine checkup a month or so ago...and came out of what should've been an unexciting angiogram on Friday with news that he need triple bypass surgery. That surgery is going to be happening Monday morning, and he's in both excellent spirits and excellent health (minus those pesky arteries) as we all prepare for it. My brother and sister and I are all with him.

Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers. If you have questions or want updates, please feel free to call or text my cell.

We hooked up our TI computer from 1983 and practiced the heart surgery ourselves on the microsurgeon game. hope he's in better hands with BMH's surgeons.

This man is definitely not disheartened!

Thursday, September 11, 2008


How many people died on 11 September 2001?

Approximately 50,000.

Most common cause of death?



*in memoriam to those who died on that day, all around the world.
*with gratitude that America has not sustained additional terrorist attacks in the last 7 years.
*in hopes that we can broaden our perspectives, rid ourselves of ignorant stereotypes, and reach out more effectively to our brothers and sisters around the globe.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

another long road home

I watched The Dark Knight tonight.

At the Imax theatre.

I left speechless and jittery.

Escorted to MazdaTron by fellow moviegoers, I got into my truck alone, put the keys in the ignition, confirmed that no one had stowed away behind my seat, and reversed out of the parking space.

A black Escalade was speeding toward me. It stopped so I could finish reversing. I told myself not to be reckless; I was NOT in a parking lot chase, NOT in a chase, NOT in a chase.

I found the freeway and tried to shake the feeling that I was driving in Gotham City, that any minute the car next to me would be engulfed in a sudden explosion. I saw a sea of brake lights ahead, so I quickly slowed (quickly slowed? is such a thing possible?).

All lanes of traffic were completely stopped.

I tried to turn my radio on to find out what had happened - but nothing. Well, that was because me radio was stolen a couple years ago, which I remembered as my hand felt around the empty space. I looked up and realized I was parked right behind a huge double tanker truck full of gas. I could see the shot now; an opportunity for spectacular explosion and MazdaTron's imminent immolation, just as soon as someone trained their grenade launcher on said truck.

I switched lanes as soon as I could, though trading the possibility of pyrotechnics for the chance that the side panels on either of the 18-wheelers flanking me would suddenly open to a group of joker-masked villains holding tommy guns was equally unsettling.

Slowly, slowly we made our way toward the Washington Exit, where traffic had narrowed to a single lane as countless police cars with lights flashing eventually gave way to the sight of the most smashed black sports car I have ever seen in my life.

I exited on National Ave., anxious to get home. On the way, I passed another bad wreck that had just occurred moments before. I parked several blocks from my house and began my walk home, taking in my surroundings as if I was on methamphetamines (which, side note, I never have taken) - everything seemed more immediate, sharper, faster. Almost home, I began to question whether I had turned MazdaTron's lights off. About face, walk back. Lights off. Walk home again. Never have I been so prepared to confront evil in my alley.

There's a helicopter flying around overhead as I write this in the dark of my living room. I am certain that within minutes, someone is going to come crashing through my porch window.

The good thing is, I'm dreaming of Christian Bale tonight.