Six Days

by wjw on September 17, 2019

So.  Six days at home after completing surgery.

Today I was able to take off the surgical dressing and view my eight-inch scar.  I don’t want any of you to faint, so I won’t post a picture, but it looks was if I sat down on last week’s centipede attacker and it was somehow fused with my hip.  Disturbing.  Maybe it will look better after the staples come out.

I am learning the limitations of my training.  At the hospital they ran me through occupational therapy and such, teaching me how to get out of bed and step into a walker and clank around the room, and it was all pretty easy.  Of course all the hospital furniture was the right height from the ground, the bed’s height was adjustable, and there was plenty of floor space between objects.

None of that applies in a real home.  None of my furniture is at an ideal height, there are narrow passages, and stuff is always getting knocked off tables and such.  I have had to improvise a new way to launch myself into the walker from every chair in the house, because they’re all different.

And, y’know, there’s pain.  Usually it builds over the course of the day, until by evening my entire right leg hurts.  Oddly enough the hip hurts the least— the quads, knee, and shin produce the most pain, and also my skin becomes incredibly sensitive.  If I’m wearing a sock, that sock becomes very painful.  The narcotics don’t exactly stop the pain, but they make it easier to ignore.  Still, a couple nights, I was in too much pain to lie still, and I couldn’t sleep.  So there’s that.

But on the other hand I’m progressing from day to day, and getting around is slowly becoming easier, and I’m feeling well enough to be bored with staying at home all the time.  So I have to conclude that before long I’ll be strolling along with my usual suave elegance, and doing the things that television assures us that cyborgs can do, like leap obstacles, listen to the dark web with my mind, and round up gangs of spies.

But in the meantime I’m stuck with the walker, and measured progress toward my goal.  One clank at a time.


I Become Bionic

by wjw on September 10, 2019

IMG_0259Behold my world for the next few days.

Monday morning at 5:30am I reported to the hospital for total replacement of my right hip. Anesthesia came via a spinal, but I slept through the procedure anyway. The surgery was brief and trouble free, and I was alert and chatting in the recovery room, and on into my hospital room. The first physical therapy session was a few hours later, and I nailed it.

I was in considerably less pain after the surgery than before it, although loads of painkillers might have had a little to do with that.

Today, Tuesday, I had a couple more PT sessions and an occupational therapy session, after which I was sent home. (For hips, they want you on your feet as soon as possible.)

I am surprised at how mentally alert I am despite the opioids. I might even do some writing later.

They gave me a walker and told me to use it for the next couple weeks, but I really don’t need it. I walk funny but I’m in no danger of falling over.  But still, they told me to use it so I will.

Otherwise, I’ll be alternating TV with various sorts of physical therapy.

So far, so lucky.


Highway in the Sky

by wjw on September 8, 2019

IMG_4555I’m going to be intensely occupied for the next few days— so totally unlike me, right?— so I’m going to leave you with this lovely picture of the Kerry countryside.


Sticking to the Ribs

by wjw on August 31, 2019


Prepared for any grilling emergency, I am and remain the Master of Meat!


Westlake on Publishing

by wjw on August 30, 2019

This from Donald Westlake:

“Publishing is the only industry I can think of where most of the employees spend most of their time stating with great self-assurance that they don’t know how to do their jobs. “I don’t know how to sell this,” they explain, frowning, as though it’s your fault. “I don’t know how to package this. I don’t know what the market is for this book. I don’t know how we’re going to draw attention to this.” In most occupations, people try to hide their incompetence; only in publishing is it flaunted as though it were the chief qualification for the job.”

“If it weren’t for received ideas, the publishing industry wouldn’t have any ideas at all.”



The Sands of Dingle

August 29, 2019

Sunset at Inch Beach, in or near Dingle.  Fine golden sand, beautiful setting, and surfers!  If it weren’t for the kids playing with their hurling sticks I would have thought I was in Monterey. I also had ice cream at the legendary Murphy’s parlor.  The elderflower ice cream was particularly fine on a hot afternoon.

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Mere Observation

August 29, 2019

So I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I had a kind of Theory of Dunsany that I wanted to put forth when I had the time, and I seem to have time right now.  Because I’ve had a while to ponder the matter the theory has expanded from its origin point to a consideration […]

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Out of the Mist

August 23, 2019

These are the Skellig Islands off the west coast of Kerry, home to an ancient abandoned monastery, and the location of a key scene in Return of the Jedi. The Skellige Islands also feature in Witcher III, one of that game’s jokey references to cinema.  (Another is an elven swordsmith named Hattori.) I’ve been back from […]

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August 15, 2019

Here’s today’s picture of a butterfly. The rollicking Wilbercon around Ireland is over, and I’m now in Dublin for Worldcon. I’d love to post my con schedule, but I can’t because I don’t have one.  I’m not on programming, go figure. Whether I’m on a panel or not doesn’t signify, but it would be nice […]

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Big Boat

August 13, 2019

This is the flight engineer’s station on a Pan-Am Yankee Clipper, circa 1941, as displayed at the Flying Boat Museum in Foynes.  (Flying Boat Museum!  This trip is so geeky I want to swoon.) The flight engineer was kept pretty busy, having to nurse four big radial engines all the way across the Atlantic.  (Or […]

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