Sunday, July 29, 2007

8 Random Facts About Me

Today I was tagged by Scott Sands, an aquaintance of mine and fellow blogger (Scott Sands Alive) with Duchenne Muscular Dystropy, to play a game called Eight Random Facts. Here are the rules.

A. You must post these rules prior to giving your facts.

B. You then must post eight random facts about yourself on your blog.

C. At the end of the post, you must tag eight more bloggers.

D. Then you must visit each blog and leave a comment that they’ve been tagged.

Unfortunatly, Scott already tagged the bloggers I know. So I will just list my random facts. But, if anyone reading this would like to share 8 random facts about themselves, just email them to me ( )

Here are my eight random facts about me:

In 1982 on a school trip to Washington, D.C., I happened to meet President Reagan during a tour of the White House.

I am a big fan of the band Los Lobos and saw them in concert several years ago.

In 1988 b.v.(before the vent) during a trip to Venezuela I went to the rainforest in Canaima. I don't think they ever had someone in a wheelchair there.

In 1984, I attended the opening ceremonies of the summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

I am a baseball fan. My team is the San Diego Padres.

I am not a big fan of rap music.

Jeopardy! is my favorite television show. I qualified to be a contestant, but they couldn't figure out how I would buzz in to answer the questions.

I am a history buff.

Monday, July 09, 2007

My Birthday

Today I reached another milestone in my life--I turned 39. For most people this is not a particularly big deal, but for those who have Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy it is a significant event. Every birthday I look upon as a personal victory against my disease. Last year, with my health problems and two month hospital stay, there were times I thought I would never see this day. But, the love and support of my family and friends and self-determination kept me going and enabled me to cross my bridge over troubled waters.

I had a big birthday bash on Saturday, July 7. I have had a party almost every year for the last 9 years. There is nothing I like more than spending time with family and friends. So, I use my birthday as an excuse to get everybody together. To me that is the ideal way to celebrate my birthday. Gifts are no longer important to me; to me the gift is being with friends and family.

The party was held on the nice, big lawn at the house of my sister, Bibbi and her husband, Rick. It was decorated in a western motif. There were hay bales, wagon wheels, and cow skulls scattered around the yard. There were cowboy hats for those who didn't bring one. The caterers had quite a spread of western style foods. I couldn't eat any of it, but I am glad the guests enjoyed it. I had my non western tube feeding. They don't have barbeque tube feeding. It was great to see the adults mingling and the children romping around. Everybody seemed to be having a genuine good time. The phrase eat, drink, and be merry truly applied.

The highlight of the day was the performance of the magician who performed some amazing tricks.He started his act swallowing fire (ouch!) One trick involved making a bird dissappear, then he took out a lemon, peeled it and inside was an egg. When he cracked the egg open, the bird flew out. In another trick he had a milk carton and poured out all kinds of drinks such as milk, chocolate milk, root beer, apple juice. The children really loved that trick. When he was done he ripped apart the carton to show that it was a regular milk carton with no hidden compartments. The most amazing was the finale when he levitated his daughter with a single broomstick to hold her up. I could not figure out how he did it. I always enjoy a good magic show, especially when I can't figure out how the tricks were done.

After the magic show, my 8 year old niece, Dallas Rose got up on stage and sang a song. It was very touching; I don't think there was a dry eye there, including my own. Dallas also had the idea to have a lemonade stand with the procedes going to the Muscular Dystrophy Association. She wants to give the money to MDA during the Labor Day telethon in San Diego. What a thoughtful little girl! After that my sister had activities for the kids such as sack races and egg toss. It was great seeing the children enjoying themselves.

I returned home from my party feeling elated and blessed to have such a wonderful family and group of friends. I couldn't have asked for a better way to celebrate my birthday. Next year will be an even bigger milestone when I reach 40. I plan on being there.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

July 4

Today I attended the annual July 4 parade in my hometown of Rancho Santa Fe. It is a nice community event and has a quaint, small town feel.

The parade always starts with a local singing the Star-spangled Banner; this year it was sung by a student from the school. It wasn't a perfect rendition, but that's what makes it quaint. At least she didn't resort to the horrid vocal gymnastics so many singers use to mangle our national anthem. It always brings a lump to my throat whenever I hear it. Next, the fire engines, with sirens blaring and lights flashing, led off the procession. They were followed by a Marine Corps color guard from Camp Pendleton who marched by with the stars and stripes held proudly aloft. After that was the parade of vintage cars, floats pulled by tractors, decorated golf carts, people on horses, and children riding bicyles decked out with red, white, and blue streamers,balloons and flags.

After the parade there was a picnic and concert by a local orchestra on the village green. It was a nice, low-keyed way to spend the afternoon.

I couldn't help but reflect upon the over 3500 men and women of our armed forces who have died,and the thousands of others who have been maimed or injured in Iraq, in an exercise in futility. I am tired of hearing the mantra that they are fighting and dying for our freedoms. This is just more empty rhetoric to justify a tragic waste of lives and treasure. It is a sad state of affairs for this nation. How many more lives will be lost before this national nightmare is over?