I’m going to try something new. When I arrived home every evening after a day’s work, I would ask my father-in-law how he was and his answer was always the same.  “It was a good day, I’m alive, aren’t I!”  It never dawned on me that he could have felt miserable or bored or both, or that he could have bitched or responded to the question as I do.  He came from a different generation, lived a different life and had different expectations of retirement than I have.

I find myself wondering whether his attitude actually made him feel better or whether it just made everyone around him feel better while he hid how badly he really felt. In retrospect, either outcome would be welcomed.  So, when asked how my day was, rather than going into my usual truthful complaints, I’m going to say, “It was a good day, I’m alive, aren’t I.”  I’ll let you know if it works (or, perhaps, you’ll let me know.)

You may be asking yourself why I’ve decided to change.  The main reason is I’m making everyone around me miserable. Maybe my father-in-was was onto something.  Maybe if the people around him were less miserable, he would be less miserable as well.  Afterall, every time he responded, “I’m alive, aren’t I?” I smiled and ignored the fact that he might be achy, bored, etc.  He was a bright man who cared for the people around him, never lost his sense of humor and overall enriched our lives.

BY the way.  I think I’ve found my old friend, Will Power. I have written about Will many times. He’s apparently has been hanging out in Chicago and contacted me when I started contemplating visiting Chicago. Visiting Chicago is going to be a daunting trip, 3 days driving there and 3 days back will be hard enough but we’ll be in a hotel for 2 weeks, no lift chair and, at best, so-so handicapped bathrooms.  In my current condition, visiting Chicago would be impossible.  With Renee and my old buddy, Will Power, at our side and an “I’m alive, aren’t I” attitude, maybe I can make it happen.

“Will,” your first assignment is to guard the refrigerator and pantry and keep me out!

Here is today’s joke:

Willpower can make you rich..

..if you get in the right person’s will.


I published the article below 3 years ago.  Covid has now done its damage and is now settling in for the long haul.  Looking back at this article, I realize that 69 was a very good year, as opposed to what I thought then.  Now that I’m seventy-one, it sucks!  In my case, aging is synonymous with rotting.  I’m making the best of it but rotting takes its toll.  The number 69 still makes me smile! Sixty-nine has come and gone.  Seventy-two is right around the corner. I can’t wait to see what it is like!

In the interim between 69 and now, I bought and sold my dream car and now have a handicapped equipped van. It’s pretty cool.  I can drive my wheelchair up the ramp and park it where the passenger seat used to be.   Road trips are now limited to 5 hours a day and the vast majority are to see the various docs I am currently seeing.  I’m still fighting with my weight.  My weight is winning.  The harder I work at losing weight, the heavier I get!  I’ll keep working on it. I suspect that my neighbor (on plant-based diet and doing well) is dumping his weight on my side of the fence.  I step in it and it sticks to me!

I’m exercising again, walking 200 steps a day (from the refrigerator to my chair) and opening and closing the doors. “AI” (artificial intelligence) is coming.  Actually, it’s here in my kitchen.  The LG quick view window lights up as I approach.  My fridge is glad to see me.  The quick view door weighs less so I can get food with minimal effort.  “Hey, Stew, I’ve got goodies for you.  Eat me!”  And I do.  While it’s not as good as 69, it certainly is filling.  See what I’m up against.

Three years ago, my perspective was a tad differen.  Below is the origninal article:

I’m 69 years old today.  I graduated from high school in 1969.  The 69 Camaro is my favorite car. Sixty-nine has always been my favorite number.  In previous articles, I’ve talked about the importance of keeping your inner child alive.  It used to be the mere mention of the number 69 that woke up my inner child.  Now, at 69, I’m not sure why that number was so magical.  My inner child died from CRS and/or the reality of aging.  Either way it sucks.  (Nice play on words).

As you know, I’m not happy with the aging process.  I fear my 69th year is going to blow (there I go again).   Renee and I are committed to biking daily. I’m starting to eat better although I’m not convinced it will make a difference.  My job search is not going well.  I’m overqualified for most and don’t have the credentials I need as a medical editor for the Sex magazine I talked about earlier. I stopped at the question, “Tell us about your experience.”  There was no way I was answering that other than to state that I was 69.  For a second, I thought that query had resuscitated my inner youth, then it fizzled.

North Carolina is hot!  Covid-19 is driving me crazy.  I want to sit in a restaurant and have a nice meal.  I want to have the neighbors over for a drink and appetizers. I want to go swimming.  I want to go fishing.  The reality is I’m stuck indoors like you and the rest of the world.

Writing about this is like puking; you feel better after the foul stuff comes out.  Maybe I’m wrong.  Maybe 69 will be a good year.  Only time will tell.  It’s 9 am and I have the rest of today to find something to do. Actually, once you are retired, every day becomes the same. 

Hopefully, a vaccine will be available by January and then we will be able to do more.  We’ll see!  Until then, I’ll just have to come up with something to do each day and so will you.  Renee, this is my 69 year!

Here’s your joke:

Whatever you look like, marry a man your own age.  As your beauty fades, so will his eyesight.  Phyllis Diller

I guess three years can make a difference.  Some things stay the same; some things improve; and some things get better or don’t.  Covid now is manageable; it is still hot in North Carolina; and I’m still sharing my experience with you.


Does your doctor ask you random, seemingly ridiculous questions?  Mine does!  Let’s say I’m seeing my doc for an infected toe. The nurse asks:

Nurse: How long has your toe been infected?  Have you been feverish? In the past 2 weeks, have you felt worthless?

Ok, what’s going on?  Toe infections usually don’t cause feelings of worthlessness!

So, why ask that question?  If you are on Medicare, you’re worth a lot of money that is hidden beneath the surface.  Doctors’ offices have learned to mine for that money.  If your staff is savvy, then they will fill out multiple check lists on every visit.  In turn, the billing department will apply the proper codes and collect from Medicare for the codes applicable.

When I was in the final years of practice, Medicare instituted the Annual Wellness Visit for which they reimbursed $140 dollars. In my 35 years of practice, I never had a code I could bill that much for.  What was even more amazing was the fact that the visit was all checklists.  No actual physical exam was required. It was no wonder that many specialists started billing for it also.  Heck, the pharmacies advertised free physical exams causing many patients to use this benefit in the pharmacy, diminishing its value. They also requested regular screening for depression and other illnesses for which they would pay even more money.

The AWV actually has merit, paying your doc to organize your chart, keep problem lists up-to-date, and do a medical review of your care and immunizations.  So, when in the middle of an office visit for a foot injury the nurse asks me about depression, I realize that she is panning for gold and am glad to answer her seemingly inappropriate questions.

Here’s your joke:

They say that during sex you burn off as many calories as running eight miles. Who the hell runs eight miles in 30 seconds?


Renee had shoulder surgery yesterday.  She’s doing great. As I’m no longer dependable, we have in-house, around- the-clock nursing aides to take care of both Renee and I during the acute stage of her recovery.  They’ll probably be here for 3 to four more days then we will shift to day-time help only.

To further assist Renee in her recovery, her childhood friend drove in from Norfolk.  Andrea is on a low fat diet and is going to help me get my shit together.  At 250 pounds, I have a lot of work ahead of me. For the next 2 weeks Andrea will be my Will Power.

I’m loving the attention.  Yesterday, I had 3 back rubs.   So far, I’ve had one back massage today and its only 5 am. Breakfast is being prepared while I type this article.  If this is what assisted living is going to be, sign me up.

Since my last article, I’ve noted some subtle changes in memory.  The changes are most visible when we play bridge.  Cards are shuffled and dealt.  Sometimes, if I  count points from right to left I get a different number than If I count from left to right.  It’s sad as I used to be somewhat of a math whiz.  Immediately after the cards are played the conversation goes like this:

Renee -Whose deal is it?

Me- I don’t know. I think Drew dealt that hand.

Drew-I think Ellen dealt it.

Me – I’ll deal.

And the conversation continues after every hand. Short-term memory loss is common amongst my friends.  If it wasn’t so funny, it would be sad.  I find myself using word substitutions more frequently as well.  Memory loss is scary. If you are worried about memory loss, watch for progression and the severity of loss.

Getting lost while driving in familiar areas is particularly threatening as is forgetting to turn the stove/burners/water off.  If these symptoms start showing up, see your doc immediately. Forgetting names or whose deal it is are much more common and may not be significant.

Neuropsych testing is the BMW of testing to study memory loss and should be instituted if you are worried or showing signs of progressive loss.  I have a mild cognitive impairment consistent with my age which is why I substituted BMW for Hallmark.

Medications for memory loss are often helpful and your doc may prescribe meds to be taken daily.  Here’s today joke:

My dad suffers from short term memory loss…

I hope it doesn’t run in the family because my dad has it too.


I must be hallucinating.  It can’t be real!  I heard rumors but was convinced that my profession would never sink to such depths.  It is real!  See for yourself!  I want to puke!  The AMA and boards should all go to hell.

What am I talking about?  Go to Amazon’s home page and look in the far-left corner.  See where it says clinic.  I thought someone must have misspelled “gimmick.”  Glick on clinic and you open the door to Alice’s wonderland.  Yep, got a urinary infection, you can be treated without seeing a doctor.

Fill out some papers.  Attest to your age and sex and without being seen by anyone, you get treated.  Having trouble getting it up, wave your fingers over the keyboard and “presto chango,” you get a blue pill boner.  If you’re a guy, you know what this means.  Once you’ve taken care of the boner, you are going want to take care of the pink eye.  Again, you have to be older than 18 to get meds for pink eye.

As a bonus, you can message the nurse practitioner or MD for 2 weeks after you are treated. Whoopy!  Is he/she going to treat the allergic reaction/side effect of the treatment you received.  What about the urosepsis (severe infection) from using the wrong antibiotic or the C. Dificile diarrhea from the antibiotic.

Heed my warning.  Read every piece of paper they give you and take every warning to heart.  Having an unexpected side effect is rare; but, if it’s one in million and the one is you, who cares about the other 999,999.  If you get into trouble, go right your doc or the ER and get appropriate therapy.

One last thought.  If your penis is not working, you owe it to your best friend/life-long friend (your penis) to see a doctor and get yourself checked out before you force him to stand at attention and take a beating.

Here’s your joke for the day.

A dick has it rough.

Not only are his closest friends nuts, but his backdoor neighbor is an asshole. And if that weren’t enough, he regularly takes a beating.

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_mastodonIcon_order" in /var/www/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 175

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_mastodon_display" in /var/www/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 268

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_snapchat_display" in /var/www/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 277

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_reddit_display" in /var/www/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 274

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_fbmessenger_display" in /var/www/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 271

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_tiktok_display" in /var/www/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 265

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)

Follow by Email