Saturday, December 29, 2007
Anyway, I guess everyone knows that my mother-in-law passed away last evening, December 28, 2007. I suppose it is a relief for all concerned. I have peace knowing that she and Al are finally reunited. These last few years have been hard on her. She was taken from her familiar surroundings, the place where she and my father-in-law spent their last years together, to a more institutionalized setting. I know it was because she needed more care than they could give her at the assisted living place that she and Al picked out together and lived at for the last 3 years of his life, but still... she was alone in strange surroundings with her mind going and I think she spent much of the last 5 years confused, frightened, and lonely. In a way, I am glad for her that this part of her journey is over and she has moved on to the next part. I can see her and Al walking on, together, along the path...
However, her passing from this life means that Pete will be going to Las Cruces, NM for the memorial service. Thomas and I will stay home, this trip. Why does it always seem that things like this happen at the worst possible time? I guess I could phrase that differently, but... it does. Holidays just past and now the big expense of traveling. Thank Goodness we resisted the urge to break into the 'emergency' stash for Christmas gifts. But I don't really worry about the money. We will make things work somehow. What I worry about is Pete getting stuck in El Paso, like we did last Christmas, and not being able to get home for his scheduled radiation treatment. I really don't want him to miss any. The doctor said that they would 'like' him to not miss any sessions, but that if he absolutely had to, they would work something out. I'd rather not risk it, myself. I know his sister needs him there, if for nothing more than to help her deal with their reprehensible, younger, brother. He's just awful, a completely and absolutely horrid excuse for a human being. But anyway, what if he gets out there and something unforeseen happens. What if he misses a session and it messes everything up and he doesn't get rid of the cancer? Well, I guess I will have to worry about that when (and if) the time comes. He's going and there's nothing I can do to change his mind, so... what will be, will be. I should just quit worrying about it.
My sister and I were emailing back and forth about our New Year's plans. Remembering how we used to always watch Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin Eve... we decided that it just isn't any fun anymore. The musical acts they get to perform are so not interesting. We must be getting old. But those little tartlets, rappers and no-talent wanna-be pop stars, just don't appeal to me. I know there are some good acts out there, but they just never seem to get them on shows like that. I'm just not interested in watching acts like the one's they have been having on the past couple of years or so. This is what the ABC website has to say about this years show:
"multi-platinum three-time Grammy Award-winning artist Fergie will return to host and perform during the New Year's party celebration in Hollywood. The Hollywood party will also feature performances by Akon, Natasha Bedingfield, Sean Kingston, OneRepublic, Plain White T's, Taylor Swift and will.i. am. In addition, "Dancing with the Stars" judge Carrie Ann Inaba, whose new ABC show, "Dance War: Bruno vs. Carrie Ann," debuts in January, will make an appearance in the first hour.
The 36th Annual Edition of "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve" will be broadcast on December 31 on ABC. The special event will be hosted in New York by Dick Clark and Ryan Seacrest starting at 10:00 p.m. (ET & PT) and will include three and a half hours of special performances and reports on New Year's celebrations from around the globe."
I liked some of the stuff the Black-eyed Peas did, but I don't really care for Fergie as a solist, nor will.i. am, and I have barely heard of any of the others. Akon and Natasha Bedingfield are the only two I've ever heard of but I can't for the life of me remember any of their songs so they must not have made much of an impression on me. Oh yeah, and I've heard of Taylor Swift, but don't remember any of her stuff, either. Of course, I don't listen to much country and that's what she does isn't it? But you get my point, right?
Jeez, I AM becoming my mother! Ack! Somebody kick me, really hard, really quick! But seriously, at least she liked some of the acts that were popular when I was a teenager and young adult. She liked the Rolling Stones and Lynyrd Skynyrd and Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers and Annie Lennox (Eurythmics) and Eric Clapton and a some more. She didn't much care for Alice Cooper or Peter Frampton or Led Zep or Rush, but she did like a lot of it. There seems to be very little mainstream popular music that appeals to me now days. Anyway, I told my sister I remembered that one of the stations, like one of the local PBS stations or maybe it was VH1 Classics, had a 70's New Year's Eve show last year. I seem to recall that it was hosted by KC & the Sunshine Band. I watched that last year. I am going to look for something similar again this year. She said she is going to do likewise. Watching the ball drop has been a lifelong tradition for me, and I may flip over just to watch that part of the show, but I don't know... it all seems so cheap and tawdry anymore. Maybe I'll just celebrate by going outside and making sure my neighbors don't set my roof alight with their bottle rockets and night flowers and other assorted fireworks.
Enough of this novel for now. My eyes kind of hurt today. More later, I'm sure.
Friday, December 28, 2007
I used to speak to Fissy (Lucille) quite a bit before the dementia got so bad. I would call her at least once a week because Pete wouldn't. We talked about cooking, Southern traditions, family remembrances, etc. I even tried to keep in touch after she got bad off, but she usually didn't know who I was. I'm saddened that I didn't have more time to get to know her, find out what was important to her. I wish I had taken the time to learn more about her, her history, her dreams... What was her favorite food? Her favorite color? If she ever told me, I've forgotten. But I do remember her wonderful smile. The last time I saw her was Christmas 2006. She was so happy to see her son (my husband) and me and Lori (her niece) made over her and she had such a big smile on her face. So innocent and childlike. I will always remember her that way.
On another, happier, note. My Aunt Tina called me to say that my sister and her husband actually came over to her house yesterday for a visit. The first time they've seen each other since my mother passed away back in January 2000. Tina said she invited them to come back for New Year's Day and eat with them. Tina has to work New Year's Eve night, but she will be home New Year's Day. I got an email from Martie (my sister) this morning confirming that she and her husband and the girls are going there New Year's Day. I'm so glad. Words cannot express how relieved, happy, ecstatic, over-whelmed, etc., I am about this. I was getting pretty tired of having to split my time between the two of them every time I went to Florida. It was always so uncomfortable when I'd go there and visit my sister, then have to tell her that I was leaving her house to go visit Tina. But I couldn't ignore Tina just to please Martie. Tina is my family, too. A very important part of my family. Now we'll be three again, like we were before Martie got that bee in her bonnet. Still don't know what her problem has been all these years, and I don't really want to know. The important thing is she is apparently willing to reconcile with Tina and that's ALL that matters to me. I really wish I could be there with them, but it's probably better for them to re-connect without any extraneous interference (and let's be truthful here, if I was there, I would probably try to interfere, head off any trouble before it got started, that sort of thing).
So... that's the bad and the good all in one go. There's so much more to talk about: Bhutto; Pakistan; "Prosperity" preachers (and the stupid sheep they prey upon); the Iowa Caucus (which is less than one week away); so much stuff... but Thomas is about to go bonkers cause the Fedex website says his Xbox 360 console is "out for delivery", which means it could be here any moment now, and he's practically bouncing off the walls, which is making it very hard to concentrate, so I'm giving up and calling this one done.
Take care All!
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
And look! It even has tiny little sparkly diamonds down the shank. Isn't that sweet?
The pictures may not be the best quality, but it is so pretty and so sparkly. I can't believe he picked it out all by himself. And that I like it too. Our tastes are usually so different that what he likes I don't and what I do like he detests. I'm not sure why he got it for me. I mean, he's talked about it for years, but we've never had the money and well... you can see from my old wedding band that we aren't wealthy people. Poor folks just don't waste money on things like this ring. He got a really good deal on it (my son told me how much he paid, later on), but it's still more expensive than any single item I've ever owned, excepting cars and a house. I worry that he thinks he's gonna die so he wanted to go ahead and get this for me before he does. Or maybe he thinks I'm going to die because I haven't been able to get my sugar down to acceptable levels yet. I don't know... I'm just being silly, I guess.
He does start his radiation treatments tomorrow. I'm going up there with him. When I asked him if he wanted me to, he says, "They won't let you in there with me, you want to just go up there and sit around in the waiting room?", so I says, "Won't you feel better knowing that I'm out there in the waiting room?". So he looks kind of sheepish and he says, "Well, yes." So I says, "So... then I'm going with you." So that's my plan for tomorrow. He's getting up at his usual 3:30am and going to work, then he'll leave there and come get me and we'll be at the hospital by 11:15am. First they have to mark him and tattoo him for the machine and the girl said that will take about 45 minutes, then they will go ahead and do the first treatment. Since it's his very first, the girl said it could take up to 45 minutes as well. So... I will be sitting up there reading my book until they are finished with him. Then, when he's done, he will bring me home and go back to work. I know he is scared. He admitted it to me a few days ago. A very, very hard (shameful, in his eyes) thing for him to do. Men are so weird and funky about those kinds of things. It's just weird. I mean, what's so shameful about admitting you are scared about having radiation treatments for cancer? I would be terrified. And I would admit it in a heartbeat. In fact, I am scared. For him. For me. For Thomas.
Anyway... you want to hear something funny? This is how much my honey knows and understands me: Yesterday the History channel and Discovery and the National Geographic channel were running some really good biblical history shows. I was watching them while I was ironing Pete's work clothes and then when I was finished with the laundry I just laid down on the bed and continued watching. Stuff like that is extremely interesting to me. Anyway... as I'm watching Pete comes in to see what I'm doing and he stands there and watches with me for a while. He isn't in to all that like I am. He likes historical fiction, but I like my history hard and dry. Just the facts, Ma'am. So, like I was saying, he comes in and he's watching it, and he gets this puzzled look on his face and he looks at me and he says, "I thought you were agnostic, what are you watching this Jesus stuff for?". That just blew me away. How little my sweetie knows me or understands how I feel. So I said to him, "I do believe in Jesus. I just don't believe in organized religion."
And I do believe in Jesus. I mean, I believe there was a person named Jesus and I believe he might have tried to teach mankind a better way of living. I mean, look at it this way: for the stories to have lasted this long, for it to have made as much of an impression on humankind as it has, there must have been a person whom they began the stories about. Look deeply enough into any myth, story, belief, and there is almost always a kernel of truth to be found. I believe there must have been a person named Jesus; just like there was a real Muhammad, a real Buddha, a real Confucius. These are historical figures. We have evidence that these people existed. Just like we have evidence that King Richard III of England existed, or Pontius Pilate. I believe that if we could delve deeply enough into the past, we might find evidence of persons that humankind built the myths of Zeus and Hera and Athena around. Go back far enough and you may find a real Gilgamesh, a real Beowulf, a real Jason, a real Epona, a real Thor. Perhaps there really were Amazons or Valkyries. Or perhaps they were real people like you and me, who did unusual things, were especially great leaders of their people in times of crisis, or were the hunters, warriors, shamans, of their clans, who lead them to a better place to live; discovered something incredible like fire, like flint-working, like how to pile stones up to make a dwelling, etc. and the people remembered them, and told the stories about them and then they died and their children told the stories to their children and so on and so on. And oral traditions change. A word changed here, a sentence changed there and a larger than usual war hammer or ax becomes the hammer that Thor hurls lightning bolts with. Or the weird looking, man-killing foreigner becomes the evil, man-eating monster Grendel, whom Beowulf slew. Drop just a few words and the flood that washed away one settlement in one valley becomes a great flood that washes the whole world away. Who knows. I don't claim that it's the God's honest truth, but it is my opinion. So, yes, I believe in Jesus. I believe in God, perhaps. Perhaps believing makes it real. Perhaps when enough people believe in a God it makes that God live. I don't know.
It was just weird that my darling husband has known me for all these years, been married to me over a decade, and he still doesn't understand my kind of spirituality; still doesn't know that I believe anything. He was so shocked. He looked so confused when I told him that I believe Jesus is or was real. That I just didn't believe what organized Christian religion told me to believe. He really looked shocked when I told him that I believe that if there really is a Devil; a Satan; that he had hijacked the Christian church before it ever got started good. That he has been steering it since the beginning and laughing and rubbing his palms in glee at all the evil the "Church" has done and continues to do in Jesus' name.
I don't guess I should be too hard on the man for not knowing what I believe. I don't always know what I believe myself. Goodness knows, belief in anything is a hard thing to find sometimes. Faith has always been hard for me. I can remember lying in bed when I was a small child, like 4-5 years old, before I even started school, wondering if I was going to go to hell because I couldn't find it in myself to believe in the God that the preacher told me to believe in. I was scared to death that there might really be such a God and that I would be punished horribly for not having enough faith to believe in him the way I was supposed to. I still wonder about that sometimes. Cause I know that if utter and complete belief in God is the ticket to heaven, I'm not getting in. That kind of belief is beyond me. I suppose the one true thing that I've always believed, the one thing that has always stayed with me since I first learned it as a wee small child, is The Golden Rule:
Do Unto Others As You Would Have Others Do Unto You.
I've always tried to live by it. It is a thing that I believe in, a thing that works. It is a true thing that I believe would make the world a better place for everyone, if everyone believed in it the way I do. But I can't force people to believe it. I wouldn't want to if I could. For then, how would I be living by the Golden Rule?
Anyway... enough meandering for today. Must go get some sleep and prepare for tomorrow. I'm stressing a little bit, but I'll be fine, I'm sure.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Anyway... since his Xbox 360 console is in for repair, he came up with the idea to have two Christmas celebrations. So... Christmas Day we will have the traditional feast and open some of our gifts. The day that his Xbox 360 console gets back we will have a nice steak dinner and a second Christmas celebration and open the rest of our gifts. His 360 games primarily. According to the Xbox Live website his console has been received and is in the queue awaiting repair. The web-site says it will take approximately 2 days but the fellow I spoke to on the phone when it broke said that it's taking about 3 weeks total turn around time. Who knows? Certainly not I.
And you just wouldn't believe the improvement in graphics on the 360 over the PS2. I bought a used copy of Stuntman Ignition for the 360 right after we got it and the graphics were awesome, but the game kept freezing up so we traded it in for a PS2 version. Man! The graphics sure suck compared to the 360. We only played it once and I listed it on half.com thereafter. Will shell out for another 360 version soon after the holidays. I liked that game! It was fun.
I have to tell you guys, this coconut Christmas candy I made is unbelievably good. I can't stop eating it. If I don't I may well find myself in a 'sugar coma'. But it is so wonderful, so rich, so creamy, so gooey, so yummy. I love coconut anyway. One of my most favorite flavors in the world. So... just to make you all jealous and wish that you had some, here is a picture I took just now.
Sorry, I had to do it. If anyone wants the recipe, I will be happy to share. Making this candy is a long, tedious process, but well worth it. You have to stir and cook over low heat for EVER, then you have to stir and cook it some more. Just when you think you've been cooking it for long enough, take a deep breath and keep going. Sometimes I don't get mine cooked long enough and it doesn't firm up as well as it should. In that case, you can do one of three things:
1. scrape it all back in the pan and cook it some more.
2. cover it in chocolate to hold it together.
3. eat it with a spoon, it tastes wonderful anyway.
So, Thomas would like to play another N64 game, so I'm off.
Take care everyone.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Brazil-Nut Sensation Fruitcake
Begin several weeks ahead
Makes one 3 pound fruitcake
3 cups Brazil nuts
2 cups whole pitted dates
1 cup maraschino cherries, well drained
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Grease 9"x5" loaf pan; line with foil. In large bowl, stir nuts, dates and cherries. Add flour, sugar, baking powder and salt; nix to coat nuts and fruits.
2. In small bowl with mixer at medium speed, beat eggs and vanilla until foamy; stir into nut mixture; mix well. Pour into pan; level top.
3. Bake 2 1/2 hours or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack 15 minutes. Turn out cake; peel off foil; allow to cool completely on wire rack. Wrap well; refrigerate.
That's about it. It's not hard to make. I always made mine about 2 weeks before I gave them to my step-dad. I always made him two at a time and they would be gone within the week after he got them. The recipe says "begin several weeks ahead". I don't know what their idea of several weeks is, but mine never lasted longer than 3 weeks. I suppose it gets more dense the longer you keep it, I don't know. Perhaps the cherries and dates ferment? Maybe the sugar turns into alcohol? Who knows???
This is a recipe from that wonderful, old book: "The Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook". What a wonderful gift for the new cook. My mom gave me my copy for Christmas in 1985 (the first in my now huge collection of cookbooks). It still gets frequent use. They still publish a new edition every so often. I've seen them in book stores. Some of the recipes are still the same as what's in my edition. I should get a new one for myself and retire my old one. The poor thing is falling apart.
Anyway, hope you like it, Jeannie. Since your fruitcake recipe made me think of this, I may have to make one for my family, too.
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Right now it's looking like it's going to come down to a choice between Hillary and Obama. A tough old bird or a tender, young chick? If I'm frying chicken, of course I want the nice, young, tender bird. But if I'm choosing who I want to run this country, I think the tough, stringy, old bird. The one who's managed to keep from getting her neck wrung long enough to not have to worry about being some one's dinner any more.
But what I really want... what I'm really starving for... is neither fish nor fowl. What I'm really craving... is a nice, juicy, well aged, judiciously seasoned beefsteak (with a dollop of sinus-searing horseradish sauce). What I'm craving is... Joe Biden. The more I listen to him, the more I watch him, the better I like him. I wish with all my heart that he would get the nomination, but he won't. He's smart, honest (as honest as a politician, and a man, can afford to be), experienced, he knows everybody, and he knows what needs to be done, as well as what can and cannot be done.
Oh well... useless to wish for something that I know I'll never get. Time's wasting and what I need to do is decide who I'm going to vote for in the primary between Hillary and Obama. I pretty much think it will be Hillary. By a simple process of elimination. Hillary is smart, experienced, quick on her feet, she knows everyone and everyone knows her, she can do the job, and she's got Bill. I love Bill. He's my hero (next to Makoto Nagano, that is).
Obama is also smart, quick on his feet, and I think he can do the job. His wife would make a wonderful First Lady, he has good ideas. On the other hand... he has no experience, nobody knows him (other world leaders), and he doesn't have Bill. Just kidding about that last part (I think). But seriously... I don't like his body language, sometimes. And the way he does that fake gimpy shuffle walk sometimes. I don't like it. Can you see the President of the United States walking across the rotunda with a visiting head of state and he's doing that shuffle, limp, shuffle, limp kind of walk? How's that gonna look, I ask you? Not that I think people should go around worrying about what others think about them, but... fortunately for me, I don't have to worry about what others think of me. I am not the President of the United States of America. If he does get elected to the office, I hope he can stand up straight and walk like a man. If that sounds racist, I'm sorry. No... I'm not. It's the truth (or my truthful opinion, anyway). I am not racist. I just want my President, the person who represents me to the world, to look good, sound smart, and be someone I, and the world, can respect.
On a lighter note: I finally made the chicken curry and roti that I'd been craving for so long. It was, quite possibly, the best I have ever made. It was delicious, and HOT! Boy, oh boy, was it ever hot. Just the way I like it. I usually try to tone it down a bit so Thomas can eat it, too. But I didn't this time. He had to put a big dollop of sour cream in his just to get it so he could stand it. It still made his nose run, poor child. But he didn't have to eat it. He chose to eat it instead of the chicken soup I made as an alternative to the curry. Pete ate that. He won't even try curry. Not that it bothers me, just means more for me if I don't have to share with both of them, HA!
Finally got the shipping box and label from Microsoft to ship the Xbox 360 to them for repair. (Red Ring of Death Syndrome, you know.) Took a week to get that from them. Had to drive up to the UPS store to ship it off today. I hate, hate, hate driving in the rain! Simply detest it! Wouldn't have done it, except that I promised Thomas I would take it up there today, so... I did it. It's done. And yes, I still have the headache that driving in the rain gave me. But anyway... I was in the UPS store, with my box on the counter, waiting for the young man to scan it and give me a receipt. He was ringing up the lady in front of me, and he looks at my box and raises an eyebrow and says, "Xbox?", so I smile and say, "yeah". A few seconds later a young man walks in and plops his box up on the counter... AND IT'S THE SAME EXACT BOX AS MINE!!! I look at him and I say, "Yours too, eh?". He looks at my box and grimaces and says, "yeah, mine too." Sad story, ain't it? All of you who are thinking about getting one of these new, high dollar, game consoles, keep this in mind: we've had our Xbox 360 since late June of 2007 and it already needs to be repaired. We've had the PS2 for about 4 years and it had to be sent away for repair after we'd had it about a year and a half. The Nintendo GameCube is at least 6 years old and it still works like new. The Nintendo N64 that we have was bought in November of 1996, AND IT STILL WORKS LIKE NEW!!! Wish like hell I'd bought Thomas a Nintendo Wii instead of the Xbox 360. And the Wii plays all the old GameCube games too. A real plus, considering how much the stupid games cost all by themselves.
So there you have it. I think I'm going to go to bed now and snuggle with my man.
Thursday, December 6, 2007
Hubby went for another CT scan this morning and this afternoon the doctor called t0 say that the prostate is no longer too enlarged to start his treatments. So... they will call next week to schedule his final CT scan (the mapping scan) and soon thereafter he will begin his radiation treatments. He is so relieved to get this started. He just wants it to be over with, and I do too. The doctor explained that they will not be able to completely cure the cancer but if the treatments are successful it will be unlikely to cause his death. No, I know it isn't a 100% guarantee, but it's the best we can hope for, so I'm going to believe the best possible outcome is what we will have when this is over. I dare not think otherwise right now. Happy news, happy thoughts, happy, happy, happy...
Things are going pretty good. My sister has finally decided that it's time to quit punishing herself and our youngest aunt, Tina (who was always like a sister to us) and get in touch with her again after a decade or more of not speaking to her. I cried when she told me. I'm so happy about it. It's like a miracle. I had given up hoping for it. Had reconciled myself to never being with both of them at the same time again ever in this life. I feel really wonderful about it. I can't wait to go back to Florida and be with both of them in the same place. That will be so fun.
Thomas and I watched that Will Smith movie "I, Robot" tonight. That was good. I'd not seen it before, tho I'd read the book many years ago. That man just seems to have a knack for picking the right scripts for his talents, or perhaps he just has the talent to do any character well. I don't know, but if I was a big movie watcher he'd be one of my most favorite actors. In fact, I'm not sure he isn't my very most favorite, even tho I'm not a big movie watcher. I want to see his new one, "I Am Legend". It looks pretty wow. I read a headline the other day that said he accidentally gave away the ending of it and that the producers, or whomever, were very mad at him. I can see why, considering the thing isn't even in theaters yet. Anyway, I didn't read the article because I want to see the movie and I didn't want to spoil it for myself. Don't know if I can stand to go see it in a theater, tho. The last time Thomas and I went to a movie the place was just filthy. And it had just opened up! We played hooky from home-school and went to the movies one morning. I don't really like public places like that, anyway. I know, I have a phobia about it, I always think about how many germs and bugs, etc., are getting on me. I don't even like eating out in a restaurant that much. There are only a very few in the area I will go to. So... I may just wait until it comes out on DVD and see it in the comfort of my own living room. Either way, I don't want the ending spoiled.
And today we finally experienced the "Red Ring of Death" on Thomas' Xbox 360. It's all of 6 months old. And wouldn't you just know that most of the new games I got him for Christmas are for the 360. Still waiting to hear back from the Microsoft peeps on where to send it for repair and what to do and so on and so forth. It really sucks. I was enjoying the hell out of that Dirt game. I'm totally not good at it, but the graphics are so well done. I guess it's back to the Burnout games or the Flatout games on PS2. I'm slightly better at those. We still go upstairs and play on the N64 sometimes. We've had that old thing since 1996 and it still works like it was brand new. Still have the original games we got him at the same time. Wave Race and Diddy Kong Racing. I'm horrible at both, but not bad on Mario Cart and I love Pokemon Puzzle League. Thomas won't play that one with me anymore. Not since I got good enough to beat him at it. HA!
So that's what I've been doing today. I know it's been an awful long time since I blogged about anything. There's been so much going on: in politics, in the movies, with the family, etc. And I always mean to post my thoughts but something always seems to intervene with my plans. Things like cooking, schooling, playing games, sleeping, more sleeping... I'm really trying hard to get my sugar under control. I get really bad sinus headaches sometimes and I've always taken Advil for the pain. Last night I had a bad one so I took one Advil, and my sugar went thru the roof. It was 389 when I checked it after dinner! Not good. It was down to 244 this morning, but that's still not very good. It had to be the Advil, cause it hasn't been that high in days. So, today when my entire face was hurting from it, I just suffered thru it. I won't be taking any more Advil any time soon, I can tell you!
I really am trying hard. But it is so damned hard. Anything and everything makes it soar. So, I sleep a lot lately. I'm sure I'll have it under control soon and I'll be feeling better in no time. I gots things I want to do. And being a couch potato or going blind just isn't part of the plan.