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Old 12-29-2013, 10:36 AM   #519
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Thanks for your kind words Maggie.

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Old 12-29-2013, 05:55 PM   #520
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Likewise, wishing you and yours the best in 2014.

Please stay healthy; your sage, often humorous musings on the forum are a delight!
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:19 PM   #521
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Gene, sorry to hear about your infirmities but it sounds like, as is always the case with you, you are taking it on with as much vim and vigor as a man your age can muster! I can only hope that I have your attitude when I am as old as you! Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous 2014.
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:54 PM   #522
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Thanks Carla. Flattery will get you everywhere (almost).

Dana, I now understand why old people sometimes feel like they are a burden. I hope to find some vim and vigor and try not to consume Barb's considerable energy by asking for help all the time. I reread the MRI report carefully and it appears I have 4 discs in a row either gone or badly damaged. No wonder I'm having troubles—years ago I would have been told to stay in bed. That only makes it worse. So I keep pushing myself and grunting and groaning to stay in some sort of good shape.

I have no trouble driving or doing things when I sit down. In my mind, I am 20 years old, have all my hair and it is still brown. I "think" I can carry an overloaded backpack miles and miles into the wilderness. I am sure I can cut firewood all day with a chainsaw with an extra long and very heavy bar. But not today, later in the week. That kind of self deception is useful to encourage me to work hard at being healthy and mobile. No one (well, no sane person) would choose disabilities, but for me there is no choice but to act young and sometimes childish. I keep trying to do everything, sometimes I can, sometimes I can't.

If all else fails and I am feeling sorry for myself, I think of the dogs and cats I have known. They get injured or sick, take care of it best they can, and then act just like they always did. They may stumble or walk into things or can't hear the doorbell, but I marvel at what they are doing. No complaints, just keep moving. They are smarter than us and they never have a mortgage.

When I think some pretty young girl is flirting with me, I don't let it get me down when my wife tells me that girl thinks I look like her grandfather. Well, I wanted an honest and smart wife and I got one. I just think she got it wrong this time. Everyone makes mistakes. I just ignore her.

I really want 2 things—finish remodeling the new house before I'm 80 (that's possible, but I'll probably come up with more things to do or buy another house to remodel, so I guess it is impossible), and travel all over North America with our Airstream. That'll probably take me to 90—by that time maybe they'll figure out how to grow new discs.

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Old 12-30-2013, 05:48 AM   #523
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Gene,

Life is just to short for some folks....

Press on...

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Old 12-30-2013, 10:18 AM   #524
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Leave the tiling and drywalling to someone else, IMHO. Having had a back injury I'm happy to do just that. What energy I lose keeps me from being able to overlook pain. And pain takes a really fantastic amount of energy when I'm honest with myself. I then get nothing done . . I'm just tired, not really in pain (as I'm used to that; BC Powder is my friend), but the end result is the same: more mistakes thus more materials and far too much time. Better, I think, to save myself for where my experience counts. Grunt labor doesn't meet that.

Same for my truck. Time for new FF spings, ball joints, etc to keep ahead of wear issues. Experience in this case is in finding the right shop. I know what questions to ask, and what to look for on a visit. And experience is also in sourcing the right parts as OEM is not always the best choice, nor are some old reliable aftermarket sources (thank the Internet for others having blazed some of this ground). I left behind or sold the pickle forks and spring compressors.

As to the age of this thread I'd imagine that when the old house sells so will end this.

Happy New Year to you and yours, Gene.

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Old 12-31-2013, 09:42 AM   #525
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The rest period over the holidays has been good for my back. "Mover", my wife says the same thing—leave the grunt work to others, but I am stubborn and the tile is finished and the drywall is somewhere in the future—to close in a closet I will build months from now. I see a doctor today who is a back guy, so I'll see what he says. Sealing the grout should go fast with my assistant and then we can move some things into the room and start installing doors, put up paneling and plumb in a utility sink. That stuff is easy compared to tile.

Many times, when I've hired someone to do something they don't do it the way I want, so the best way to get it done is to do it myself—slowly.

We moved a lot of boxes and a cabinet yesterday and I'm no worse off for it, so that is a good sign.

Seems like Grand Junction's winter inversion continues. We've hardly seen any days there for a month without a hazy cloud over the city and temps rarely going above freezing. We're glad to be above the nasty "air". Usually we are 5-10˚ colder than GJ, but during the in versions we have warmer temps a half mile above the city. Seems like pollution from oil and gas development in the next county is making it worse, but drilling there is slacking off because it is cheaper to drill elsewhere—North Dakota, Texas, etc.

So, we hope the New Year's brings a buyer for the "old" house and we can settle into the "new" one, my back calms down and remodeling moves forward happily.

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Old 12-31-2013, 05:54 PM   #526
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Hi, we bought a new house so I wouldn't have to break my back doing things. But as you know, I have to do repairs painting, tiling, molding, plumbing, and electrical on our old house. So far, I have most of that done. Don't over do it so that I can meet you when you come to Oregon. [or when we go to the Balloon Fiesta again.
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Old 01-03-2014, 09:53 PM   #527
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Bob,

I never seem to buy a house that doesn't need work—there seems to be a pattern here. I do get good deals that way and usually make a big profit on it. That way we get to live in nicer and nicer houses.

The holiday rest period is over and I did some plumbing today after our 1st overnight guests at the new house. Old friends, lots of fun for 3 days. Our usual barely awake New Year's Eve, but we made it to midnight. Buy a cheap utility sink and cabinet and you get cheap plumbing fixtures that can be hard to install or are so full of plastic parts I worry they will break when I tighten them to prevent leaks. Today I rearranged the drain pipes which the previous owner had installed in a muddled way.

I found from an MRI and a pain doc that all my discs are still there, but one is very thin and I have 2 cysts in one vertebra. The cysts press on nerves and cause all the pain, weakness and instability. I'm going to have the cysts drained on the 13th and some steroids injected to reduce inflammation. Supposed to take 15 minutes. Permanent 50% of the time, but the other 50%, not so much. I feel better because I have a specific (possible) cause and am seeking a hopefully correct, relatively uninvasive, solution. Meanwhile, I can work slowly. A physical therapist had me fill out a questionnaire—I thought it simplistic—and told me I was 48% disabled (does that make me a half man?). I find that hard to believe—lots of pain, but I'm doing a lot of stuff. I don't know whether I fell good I'm doing better than I should be or be bummed out by such a high number. I don't believe it. Just for more fun, Barb stubbed her index toe and broke. I taped it to the big tow and if she is careful, she has no problem walking. Last time she broke a toe (another pattern?), it healed in 2 weeks.

Just another week of nothing much happening.

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Old 01-03-2014, 11:00 PM   #528
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Hi, well I guess that is good news that your back is not as bad as you thought and mostly repairable. Tell Barb to take it easy too.
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Old 01-04-2014, 05:42 AM   #529
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Old 01-04-2014, 10:10 AM   #530
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Gene, glad you got better than expected news on your back. Sorry to hear about Barb's toe.
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Old 01-04-2014, 04:22 PM   #531
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Barb's doing a lot better than me—she just brought in a load of firewood. I must have done a good job taping the toe. She wouldn't give me an insurance card, so I'm billing her $1,500 for the emergency visit including an additional $150 for 2 Ibuprofen, $75 to administer it, $50 for the water and $35 for the cup, $212 for the tape, and the $153 for two gauze pads plus $400 additional fees and profit and $741 for sundries (total: who knows?). I've learned from car dealers, phone companies and the medical industry. Who says lawyers are expensive?

I am hoping the back procedure works—it may not or only work partially. It does not solve the arthritis or disc damage—it is just about cysts that have developed. I have to be logical and not have magical expectations. I've learned to do a lot with a 20% disability—that's the best I can hope for and that's ok. I certainly don't want surgery, fusing or anything like that.

I'd rather have a broken toe. And I'm glad I'm not in Green Bay tomorrow (0˚). Barb told me she went to the "snow bowl" in Denver many years ago—there was a foot of snow on everything when she got there and it kept snowing and snowing. Even in her ski outfit, she didn't last beyond the half. Sounds like fun.

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Old 01-05-2014, 11:58 AM   #532
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Good thing she knows you are a lawyer or you'd get sued for malpractice.

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