Showing 1 - 10 of 94 posts found matching keyword: illness

About a week ago, I took the boys for our usual walkies. It was unusually blustery, and I stopped to check the weather radar on my phone. At exactly that moment, a golf carts drove by.

Despite the fact that we live just across the highway from our local country club, golf carts used to be rare in my neighborhood. Back when I started walking the girls, there were only two carts on my street. The gas-powered one belonged to the people who teach horseback riding and use the cart to ride along the street and collect the horse droppings, like a motorized version of the street sweeper at the end of Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons. I only saw the batter-powered one occasionally when the kids got bored and took it for joyrides, doing donuts in their yard.

(Side note: I personally don't think golf carts are more fun than watching Rocky and Bullwinkle, but I doubt those kids have ever seen it. Back in the day, there really wasn't that much to watch or that many channels to watch them on, so everyone knew everything on television, making pop culture references the coin of the realm. You made friends in school by quoting reruns of shows that had been first runs for our parents' generation: Leave it to Beaver or Gilligan's Island or Monty Python's Flying Circus. I have no idea what tweens watch these days after school, but if I threatened a kid today with a loaded banana, they'd think I was brain damaged.)

There are lots of golf carts in the 'hood now. The boys love 'em. They go crazy when they see one. I don't know why. So long as I've had the boys, they've never been within five feet of a golf cart. A golf cart has never brought them a treat. But I guess they do drive by slower than cars, making them easier to chase, and the ones in my neighborhood often have other dogs on board, making the chase worthwhile.

Anyway, as I was saying, the golf cart drove by while I was half paying attention, and Henry and Louis went berserk, and their leashes damn near pulled off the fingernail on my left index finger. Not totally. It just bent it back halfway. It hurt a lot the first few days, but it's gotten better. Or at least I thought it was getting better. I showed it to Mom earlier today, and she nearly swooned. So maybe not all better. I'm just taking it one day at a time. (Boy, that Schneider was a card.)

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Welcome to June, the 18th annual Superman Month!

I'm typing this without my left index finger, which I cut while washing my car. (I'll never make that mistake again. Stay dirty, car!) My injury made me wonder when was the first time in comics we actually see Superman bleeding. So I went looking.

Superman loves needles!

As you can see in the above panel from his two-page origin story published in Superman #1, Summer 1939, Superman's skin was essentially impenetrable from the get-go, so the opportunities for him to visibly bleed have always been few and far between.

If those aforementioned bursting shells led to any bloodshed, it was always hidden by smoke and debris. When Superman needed to give blood to save Lois Lane's life in 1940's Superman #6, he had to give the doctor a hand. Literally.

Not even God can make a mountain God can't lift.

But that wasn't technically an injury, so I kept looking for something that could hurt Superman that wasn't Superman.

Magic was an early weakness (bloodlessly stealing Superman's powers multiple times in 1942), but Kryptonite wasn't introduced into the comics until 1949 in Superman #61. (Like many elements of the Superman mythos, Kryptonite first appeared in 1943 on the Adventures of Superman radio show.) It usually just made Superman weak and fall down. He doesn't even scrape his knees.

March 1960's Action Comics #262 would introduce Superman's immediate weakness under a red sun. In that issue Clark Kent gets stung by a bee for the first time. Two years later, a bare-knuckle boxing match against Lex Luthor on the planet Lexor under a red sun would give Superman a face full of bruises, but still no visible blood. This might be because beginning in 1954, the Comics Code Authority strictly forbid showing, among many other things, "All scenes of horror, excessive bloodshed, gory or gruesome crimes, depravity, lust, sadism, masochism." Bloodless injuries were no longer optional.

A Practical Superman
Action Comics #49, June 1942

The code would relax beginning in 1971, and by the time Superman was beaten to "death" by Doomsday in 1993's Superman #75, blood was everywhere. (The 90s were a violent time.) Unfortunately for Superman, the Code was nowhere to be found on the cover of 1978's All New Collectors' Edition #C-56, better known as "Superman Vs. Muhammad Ali." In that issue, following a different boxing match under a red sun, Superman gets beaten so badly by Ali that he bleeds all over his pillow. If there's a lesson here, it's probably that Superman should give up boxing.

For whatever reason, that bloody pillow was removed in a re-colored 2010 reprinting. But that's okay. I'm sure it wasn't the first time Superman unwillingly bled on panel anyway. Because after four (delightful) hours of looking through comics and comics websites, I found this sequence in 1976's Superman #297:

May Marigold? I bet Clark Kent never paid a porn star hush money

Ouch! Be careful where you put those fingers, Superman.

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Adding to my list started on March 8, once again I have damaged my scalp, this time while cleaning limbs that had fallen into my father's yard on Memorial Day during the most recent tornado-generating weather to rumble through my town. Tornadoes have always been the most common natural disaster around these parts, but now they are stating to be annual occurrences. Isn't living in the future great? Also starting to become common occurrences: scalp injuries. The future's so bright, I gotta start wearing a hard hat.

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When it's quiet, I hear a ringing that doesn't seem to exist. I'm pretty sure that tinnitus is just a sign of my ears gradually ossifying. My solution to that is to turn on the radio. I still hear the static, but at least then I can pretend there's a source.

That's not the only time I hear things. Sometimes I think I hear someone call my name or dogs barking when there can't be anyone around to call my name or my dogs are sleeping beside me. This has to be my mind playing tricks on me, right?

I probably shouldn't be typing any of this. Everyone knows that hearing voices is a bad sign. A little over a decade ago, my then across-the-street neighbor told her friends that she could hear people having conversations in the basement when no one else was there. They put her in a home.

She was nearly 100. I'm only half that age. I'm too young to be put in a home. But at least in a home there would be other people who could be calling my name. I have to admit that, technically, that solves the problem.

In the meantime, if you call my name and I don't answer you, know that I probably did hear you; I'm just in denial.

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Mom came down with a 24-hour stomach virus on Thursday. She's feeling much better today, but they say these things can continue to be contagious for a week or more, so I've been mostly hiding in the basement.

Will it work? Or will I be puking my guts out within the next few days? I think the anxiety might be worse than the illness; Mom assures me it's not.

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I have a migraine. (Today's symptoms: headache, loss of vision, numbness in left hand.)

That is all.

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It's Little League World Series time again, hooray!

Now if only I could figure out how to work the remote control without a thumb....

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While we were changing my bandage yesterday, I asked Mom to help me get a picture for the blog.

"No one wants to see your wounded thumb," said Mom.

So nothing to see here. Move along. Move along.

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Sometime in the past decade, before the Pandemic, I'm sure, I badly cut my left thumb near down to the bone on a piece of sheet metal while installing a new stove. I say "sometime" because I'm not sure exactly when, and I didn't seem to document it here on my online diary. Maybe it was something I didn't want to remember. It took a month to heal.

The reason I mention that is because I have now badly cut my right thumb, this time on a food processor blade... while I was trying to put it away on a shelf. I should have been paying more attention. It was just last week I was blogging about how clumsy I am. But since nothing can ever be my fault, I'm blaming Mom for leaving a food processor blade sitting face-up on the shelf where the food processor goes. Curse her!

Even though this cut is much shallower and less painful than the last one, I'd say it's in some ways worse because just last week I bought a new trackball mouse with a left-click button designed to be used by my right thumb! D'oh.

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It probably won't come as a surprise to you if you've seen my latest poodle strip, but as is usual for springtime, I have a terrible case of poison ivy. This year's bout, no doubt thanks to the helpful paws of underbrush-romping Louis, is the kind of rash that makes me wonder how much life is actually worth living. (There must be some reason so many people are taking fentanyl, right?)

Most people seem to think that cortisone cream makes poison ivy feel better, and maybe it does... for them. For me, all cortisone cream does is take the itch away so that I can feel only pain. "Burning" and "stinging" sensations are on-the-warning-label common side effects of cortisone cream, and I feel both. I'm left with the choice is to scratch myself to death or self-immolate like a Vietnamese war protestor. Thank you, medical science.

I've always had a problem with poison ivy. As a child, I believed it must be contagious, and for many years after, I believed that the rash spread through the bloodstream. In about 2010, a very grumpy doctor finally convinced me that "contact dermatitis" can only result from surface contact with the irritant, but that only deepens the mystery of how I get rashes where I get them. Last month it was on my scalp. It was ugly; even Sitting Bull wouldn't have taken it.

My current worst rash spot is right on my belt line, which makes makes the socially-approved custom of wearing pants feel like something out of the Spanish Inquisition. My solution, obviously, is to not wear pants, which would only be acceptable if I lived in a society that still killed criminals with hemlock. I have a rare, in-person meeting scheduled for this tomorrow. Boy, are they going to be surprised.

If the march of human history is leading us to a global warming heat death, bring it on. So long as all the world's vegetation dies with us, great! I hate poison ivy.

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To be continued...


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