What's trending ? ..... what's trending? .... Bob Ross is what's trending
Who doesn't love this guy? Even if you don't care to learn painting, Bob was (is) a pleasure to watch and listen to.
"The Mr. Rogers of painting."
Youtube now has a ton of his videos, as I just discovered. Turns out some TV channel (not in my area) is running a maraton of 200 of his shows. I watched about 6 Youtubes last few days.
"Let's make some happy little trees" ...... "Let's get crazy and put a tree right here" ....
"We don't make mistakes; we just have happy accidents." ...... "That's why I paint. It's because I can create the kind of world that I want, and I can make this world as happy as I want it. Shoot, if you want bad stuff, watch the news."
From Wikipedia .....
Ross used the wet-on-wet oil painting technique, in which the painter continues adding paint on top of still-wet paint rather than waiting a lengthy amount of time to allow each layer of paint to dry. From the beginning, the program kept the selection of tools and colors simple so that viewers wouldn't have to make large investments in expensive equipment.
Anecdote: when he was younger, to save money, he had his hair "permed" simply so he wouldn't have to pay for haircuts. But his "look" became iconic and he just kept it that way, even though he was on top of a $15M/year business.
We Have Some Tough Choices Ahead of Us ....
In Boston again, at last
Today may have been my last mild-weather trip to Boston for a long while, and it was really nice. Walked along the Charles River, then up Commonwealth & Newbury, across the Public Garden. Ever so slowly and enjoyed every step of the way.
I got Impressionistic with these last 2 . . . .
"Overmedicated" can mean a few different things. It can mean one person taking too much of a prescription drug, or too many different drugs.
It can also refer to a population of people who are taking useless prescription drugs. I mean drugs they don't really need to take. And this is what I want to talk about at the moment. I feel that it is inevitable and acceptable that many people are taking prescribed drugs that they probably don't need to be taking.
Imagine you have a disease, and science indicates that 3% (3 out of 100) of the people who have what you have will die in the next year, if no one of these 100 people take any drugs to prevent that. If no one takes the disease-fighting drug, 97 people will live the next year and 3 will die.
I think you can see where I'm going with this.
So ..... what's the only acceptable course of action? Answer: prescribe the drug for all 100 people, even though 97 of them don't really need it. The problem of course is, no one knows who those 97 are.
You could argue that this is outrageous overmedication of the population; then I would argue, if it was you that had the disease (that is 3% fatal), how would you feel? Take the prescription and join the "overmedicated community" or turn it down and take your chances?
A Comic Book Interpretation of Today's Last Picture
Maintaining these trees gets harder every year, and they drop branches and block a lot of sunlight, so ..... I made this decision a year ago and today was the day.
I need to clean it up and plant some small-ish shrubs (roses?) along that line, when spring comes.
Thusday was my first meeting with the cochlear implant doctor, and he was encouraging, but we have do do a CAT scan and one other test (?) before we take the next step. The actual operation is 6 months away. Lots to read up on until then. (There are 3 different kinds of implants.) Must search the web for forum discussions by people who have actually done this. The doctor says "the operation is the easy part".
Friday was the cardiologist and he says I got better last week, and I reminded him that I never actually felt "not better", but he says heart disease is a "silent killer". Yeh yeh yeh .... this thing I have (a-fib) is very common and most often curable and not life threatening once it is treated, so I view it as an annoyance more than a worry item.
We went to a "gravesite service" for a nice lady we knew long ago. It was pathetic and trashy. *Not a sad service* - just disgraceful. Obviously whoever set this up was taking his last shot at disrespect for the dead lady. She deserved a lot lot lot more respect than what she got yesterday. This was not a sloppy job, it was deliberately disrespectful.
Got my chainsaw back from Mike. Will clean it up today and see if it starts. Probably needs professional service, as it's been on a shelf for a few years.
Decided to fill in the pond next spring. It's become pointless, and a bother.
Today is leaf cleaning up with my new ( 3rd ! ) blower-vac thingy. But first I need some pancakes !
This movie (by Quentin Tarantino) is much more fun than the poster suggests. It is funny, but quite graphically violent (typical of Q.T.)
Some parts, I laughed my butt off.
Dr. King Schultz: [aiming .45-70 rifle at fleeing Ellis Brittle] You sure that's him?
Dr. King Schultz: Positive?
Django: I don't know.
Dr. King Schultz: You don't know if you're positive?
Django: I don't know what 'positive' means.
Dr. King Schultz: It means you're sure.
Dr. King Schultz: Yes, what?
Django: Yes, I'm sure that's Ellis Brittle.
[Schultz shoots Brittle off his horse]
Django: I'm positive he dead.
Calvin Candie: Your boss looks a little green around the gills.
Django: He just ain't used to seein' a man ripped apart by dogs is all.
Calvin Candie: But you are used to it?
Django: I'm just a little more used to Americans than he is.
Dr. King Schultz: How do you like the bounty hunting business?
Django: Kill white people and get paid for it? What's not to like?
Cochlear Implants: What they sound like
I have been researching cochlear implants; specifically what they sound like and how long is the typical "rehabilitation" period after the operation. The surgeon told me "The operation is the easy part".
From a patient's website:
It's important to remember that a cochlear implant will not give you normal hearing. However, it will give you better hearing than with hearing aids, and it can take up to 2 years for the rehabilitation process. Some will do well within a few months; others, particularly those born deaf, can take much longer. Many cochlear implant users report ongoing improvements for years after activation.
The following was kind of shocking to me. It's a comparison of what normal ears hear compared to what a successful cochlear impant patient hears. Listen to these !
Successful implant hearing:
Right now the quality of my hearing is about half way between those two samples.
I cannot imagine that I will have this operation if that is what the results will be.
I am really upset about this.
Another implant example of a man speaking:
Music (melody & harmony) does not exist in the implant world. You can hear the beat, the rythm, but the musical tones are flat and distorted. When I asked the doctor about using headphones to listen to music, he got off the subject quickly.
So . . . today was pretty disappointing. Looks like implants are miraculous for people who are literally totally deaf (they hear zero). But they are arguable for people who have some hearing. One discussion went on about saving the patient's "residual hearing" but still doing the implant. This sounded interseting but another argument - since the implant "hears" so differently, isn't it smarter to totally wipe out normal hearing, rather trhan overload the brain with "two kinds of hearing"???
Before today, I thought this was a pretty clear cut decision. Now it's a train wreck.
Well, to cheer me up, Leica has done it again. Today's new Leica item is a key ring. Plain old stainless steel ring, BUT with a little black token that says "0.95", which is a reference to their new lens. This cute little key ring will cost you . . . . $167. If you actually want the lens, you can pay your $9600 to get on the waiting list.
How could that not make you smile ?
Is Friday the 13th a good day to have a cardiogram?
The nice lady let me take a picture of her screen, for my journal here.
Out of the depths of our despair,
In the darkest hour of our times,
When our beloved country abandoned all hope for the future,
And lost all of its former greatness,
There came a Hero.
The light of a new day.
The flame ....no, not the flame .... the Raging Fire of new Hope.
(Thanks for the poster, Pete!)
Have been stuck around the house and yard for 2 weeks for various reasons, but today I broke away to The City (Boston). It being November, even though a warm-ish November, there are not crowds of people walking around sightseeing. Especially along the Harbor Walk (which I did after the art museum).
A long-distance "selfie" .....
Chris & Mike Walk the Turkey Trot
Local run / walk to aid scholarship fund. Next year, Deb and I must do this too (I didn't know you could walk it !
Never Skype With Someone Who Can Do Screencaps
(My Audio-Tech headphones worked GREAT ! )
Implants, CAT Scans, More Hearing Tests
A few phone calls back and forth with the cochlear implant hospital. They finally got the message that this is still uncertain in my mind. But we are proceeding with the testing to see where they stand on this, and put me in contact with some other people to help me decide where I stand on this.
It is kind of un-nerving that the patient has to push push to get the doctors to explain what's going to happen after surgery. The best answer I got was
"No one can tell you. The results vary from person to person. There is no way to simulate or demonstrate what you will be hearing".
Because I can still hear well, compared to a 100% totally deaf peson, they brought up the possibility of a "hybrid implant" that uses some of the acoustics that your ear can hear. This sounds very interesting.
When you think about that, this is one scary decision. Not something you rush into - especially the way information is squeaking out one tiny fact every now and then.
Thanksgiving 2015 at Our House -
Always Glad to See it Come,
Always Glad to See it Go
This year was easy for me. Everyone pitched into the hosting work and cleanup. I actually had a very fun and stress-free day of it !!