In Which I Attempt and Likely Fail to Get “Freshly Pressed”

I’ve accomplished a lot in my 37, almost 38 year life on this side of the proverbial wormhole of existence. I’ve rambled, ranted and raved about many of those accomplishments–both good and bad–for years, both here, on “Random Musings of a Pseudo-Madman Version 1.0,” in my oldest pieces of “Mental Flatulence” and in my original “Dissertations.”

Most recently, I’ve written about the publication err, self-publication of my first book, ENDWORLD – A Novel (I need to keep it real for the people that think I got a book deal). A quick, parenthetical aside on that: The book is still selling modestly well, even after almost a month, and I am patiently awaiting next week when my self-proclaimed “Memorial Day Week Promotional Blitzkrieg” will begin. Note to all: Be prepared. Me and my book are going to be popping up all over the place. And by “all over the place” I mean across the blogosphere and on social media. Maybe even on one or two Google “Search Result” pages. “I don’t know. It’s a mystery.”

Don’t all “ooh” and “aah” at once. I don’t expect that you’ll see my book cover and my face on a billboard overlooking I-95 through Philadelphia. At least not until I shed a couple of pounds. You think a television adds 10 pounds? Imagine what a 30 foot wide by 20 foot high billboard adds. Crikey. I’d look like an albino extra from an old “Godzilla” movie. Just call me Mecha-Marsh.

I’m even 50+ pages into the sequel, CHILDREN OF ENDWORLD thanks largely in part to the not-so-gentle insistence of the people who have finished the first book and really want to see what happens next, and the new Daft Punk album, “Random Access Memories.” All in all? Life’s pretty good, right now. I’ve got to say that as the eras of my life go, this one ranks pretty close to the top. After all, I’m fulfilling two dreams at once: Being a dad and being a writer (not in that order nor in reverse order).

Are there things that I’d change? Sure. I’d love to drop a couple of pounds (and by a couple I mean 50-60). I’d love to spend more time with just my wife and less time with my wife and my beloved “minions,” AKA my children. I’d love for my book to already be a bestseller. I’d love a place down the shore. But I’m a realist really (try saying that five times fast), and I know that, in the immortal words of Mick Jagger, “you can’t always get what you want.”

Okay. Accepted. But there is one thing that I’m lacking. One last, little accomplishment that I’d love to… well, accomplish. That accomplishment? To be…

Drum roll please… 

Freshly Pressed. 

For those of you that don’t know what that means, here’s a definition: “Freshly Pressed” is something that WordPress does with certain blog posts. Per their tutorial (viewable HERE), they Freshly Press blog entries that “enlighten us, inspire us, entertain us and get us talking.” As for who “us” is I’m assuming “us” = The Powers that Be, otherwise known in this case as the WordPress Admins. There are other criteria but at it’s core? That’s what being Freshly Pressed entails. Almost every blog that I follow here on WordPress has, at some point, been Freshly Pressed. They’ve all got that cool, little “Freshly Pressed” badge on their sites. But “Random Musings?” Nope. Never. I could just copy and paste one to my sidebar but that would be cheating. I believe in earning my kudos, not undercutting the system/fabricating them.

Do my posts not enlighten you? Inspire you? Entertain you? Get you talking? If they don’t okay. No problem. I’ve obviously overestimated the reach of my ramblings. Perhaps I spend to much time talking about things that interest me and too little time talking about… I don’t know. Cats. Or Doritos and Smartfood. Or something else that I know a lot about. I’ll concede that at times, this blog has seemed more of an online journal and less of a… how does one define a “blog?”

A blog (a contraction of the words web log) is a discussion or informational site published on the World Wide Web and consisting of discrete entries (“posts”) typically displayed in reverse chronological order (the most recent post appears first) (SOURCE: Wikepedia of course).

Okay. Per that criteria, “Random Musings” does qualify as a blog and not an online journal. It is a discussion, even if it’s just a discussion with me, myself and my wife who religiously reads every one of these posts in the hopes that she will see something transcendent. Or just funny. I think she’d settle for funny. In truth? I think she just reads it to humor me. And I appreciate that in the same way that I appreciate people telling me that I’m not obese. Um… yeah. Guess what? I am. Morbidly so though I have been told that I carry it well by people that I know would not humor me. Fact? I’m 30 pounds clear of just “obese.” And that’s without consuming sugar. Stupid potato chip-esque products. I should have left you in my proverbial rear view mirror after Lent had expired.

Curse you, Doritos and Smartfood! Curse you to h-e-double hockey sticks! 

There’s more to being Freshly Pressed. A lot more. And admittedly? I want it. I want it so badly. I crave it the way I crave Tostitos,Velveeta and Salsa. There’s nothing like watching college football in the Fall while your “minions” nap with a bag of chips, a trough of cheesy but spicy goodness and a towering glass of Tea Cooler, the latter of which has enough sugar in it to fell a thoroughbred. So this blog entry will be… is an attempt to get Freshly Pressed by analyzing and, hopefully, incorporating each and every one of the selection criteria outlined in the aforementioned tutorial (again, viewable HERE). Will it work? I have no idea. But much like the whole publishing err, self-publishing a novel thing, I’ll never know unless I try. So here goes:

1. Write unique content that’s free of bad stuff. 

In layman’s terms? DOA. 90% of “Random Musings” is “dead on arrival.” Per the Freshly Pressed criteria, “hate speech, fear-mongering, adult/mature content, copyrighted images that belong to someone else, spam or content that’s primarily advertorial in nature” are not allowed (SOURCE: WordPress Tutorial, cited above). I’m good on hate speech, fear-mongering, adult/mature content, copyrighted images and spam. Those items are not in my nature as a person or a writer. I hate no one, not even my Biological though admittedly? I “strongly dislike” him. Fear-mongering? The use of fear to affect the actions and opinions of others? I’m seriously the least scary person I know, though the idea of seeing my mug on a billboard really terrifies the you-know-what out of me. As for adult/mature content, let’s face it: I’m a traditionalist. I feel that certain things need to be kept behind closed doors. The name of this blog isn’t “50 Shades of a Pseudo-Madman” (though if it was, I bet I’d get a lot more traffic) and the only sex scene I ever wrote is contained in the pages of the only novel I ever published. And even it’s not too graphic. Copyrighted images and spam? Okay, the idea that anything on the World Wide Web is “copyrighted” at this point is ludicrous. The bulk of what’s out there… out here is a part of the eminent, public domain and will remain so until such time as someone buys a controlling interest in the Internet, AKA never. And I decry spam/spammers. I’d hunt them all down and spank them if I could. But that last bit? “Content that’s primarily advertorial in nature?” Yep. D. O. A. I’ve spent the better part of the last six months hocking my book, AKA my “wares” on this blog/over on ENDWORLD and THE ENDWORLD SERIES. I’ve even done it in the content of this blog entry. Survey says? Disqualified. I am the weakest link, and I probably should say goodbye at this point. But I’ve already started so really? Why not finish. 

2. Have a point of view/Don’t be afraid of your voice. 

I’m lumping these two together because they’re invariably related. Furthermore, in the interest of time and fairness, I’m only going to rank this as one criteria, and not two. “Random Musings” comes much closer to meeting this one than the first one. I most certainly have a point of view and I express it, sometimes to the chagrin of people who come here looking for something transcendent or amusing and end up reading x-amount of paragraphs that ruminate on my own, subjective life, the universe and everything, i.e. the world… the “All” as I see it. But that’s a point of view, is it not? Everyone sees the ever-turning world around them and the ever-expanding (or shrinking depending on your perspective) universe differently. Me? I generally don’t get depressive about what’s occurring in the grand scheme because really? It’s supremely FUBAR. It has been for some time now and will likely remain so so long as one side of the proverbial aisle can’t agree with the other. Note that I said “proverbial.” I’m not simply referring to Congress though I’m sure that one or two conservatives/liberals will take it that way. I’m referring to one belief system as opposed to another, or one world view as opposed to another. We’re a long way as a species from the idealized Earth that Gene Roddenberry envisioned when he first conceived of “Star Trek” a half a century ago. In this world’s defense? As docile as Roddenberry’s Earth was, his universe was incredibly f*cked up. And we’re still 50 or so years away from Zefram Cochrane’s first warp flight/First Contact so there’s time. But I’d feel a great deal more secure raising my “minions” into adults in a world free of crime and currency that emphasizes learning and exploration, not just on a macro level, but on a micro one (i.e. not just the exploration of the vastness “out there” but of the limits of the mind). And as for not being afraid of my own, unique and sometimes exhaustive voice? Well, I think that I’ve demonstrated that on multiple occasions  In summation? I think I’ve got this one. Survey says? I’m one and one. Moving on.

3. Paint us a picture. 

Ugh. This one is just about DOA, as well. Yeah. “Random Musings” doesn’t really have much of a visual element. That’s the problem with my writing: I’ve grown accustomed to illustrating things with words and not with pictures. I was never very good at taking pictures, though I’ve got a couple at home/on my C-drive that I really treasure. Do you want to see them? Here are a few. With explanations (of course):

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This is a recent picture of me and my “minions.” I’m the ugly mug rocking the grizzly beard on the left. That’s Cara in the middle and on the right? Natalie, otherwise known as “Natalia.” Because in Soviet Russia, everything sounds cooler with an -ia (pronounced “ya”) on the end.

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This is a recent pic of me and my smoking hot wife, Nicole. It was taken at my cousin’s wedding back at the beginning of April. There was a fedora there, as well (the one that you see in my Gravitar profile pic/my author pic) but it didn’t make it into this picture. It made it into others, but showing those pics on here would further violate criteria number one (posts that are free of “bad stuff”). Finally…

Higbee Beach, Cape May, NJ

This is not a recent pic. It’s actually pretty old. It’s a picture of the path through the dune forest to Higbee Beach in Cape May, NJ. If you’ve finished reading ENDWORLD – A Novel (SPOILER ALERT) you know that it plays a pretty significant role in the final pages. It also plays an even more significant role in the opening pages of CHILDREN OF ENDWORLD. The final scene in ENDWORLD originally took place upon it. It was not until a few years ago that I decided to “move” it to another location. But I couldn’t resist bringing Higbee into William’s story. And I like it’s function now a lot more than I like it’s original function. But I’ll leave it at that. You’ll find out soon enough for yourself.

So there you go. Whether that visual element is enough to get me Freshly Pressed remains to be seen. At the least, I got to share a couple of meaningful pictures with you. Meaningful to me. Whether or not they are meaningful to you is open to debate. Survey says? Draw. Still one to one with one push.

4. Make it easy on the eyes/Aim for typo free content. 

Oh boy. Here’s another one… two, actually (ranked as one singular criteria) that “Random Musings” arguably fails miserably at. Actually, I shouldn’t just blame the blog. It’s me. Easy on the eyes? Not physically or proverbially. I’m wordy. It’s about as integral a characteristic of my genetic make up as my love of anything and everything potato chip-esque. In my defense, I’ve been trying lately here, over on the Endworld site and in CHILDREN to cut back on it. One sentence to describe what used to take me two; shorter paragraphs. Have you noticed? Likely not. And if this blog entry is any indication my paragraphs are still as morbidly obese as I am. The problem with that? If I drop the equivalent of 50-60 pounds off of one of my paragraphs I end up with something that is not Mecha-Marsh. I’m descriptive. I think it comes from my Biological, a fact which I acknowledge, but don’t exactly revel in. I do use bulleted and/or numbered text (these criteria being a good indication thereof), I rarely center justify anything and the design of my page–Misty Lake–is one of the cleanest templates available. But verbosity? Yeah. I’m a’cursed with it. As for typos? I was an English Major in college. I had a qualified Editor edit my book. Yeah, typos = Me. Though I do endeavor to cut down on them here. Survey says? A big minus one. “Random Musings” one, WordPress Powers that Be two.

5. Add relevant tags. 

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: I don’t “get” tags. I mean, I understand the idea behind them. “Don’t use tags that are too obscure” and “use relevant tags.” Okay. So I guess “The Ooh Cat,” “Dead Possum” and “Ebola” aren’t exactly popular or relevant to anyone save for:

  • Someone who worships “Puss in Boots” more than my almost four year old does.
  • Someone who lives in a metro area and thinks a “possum” is a creature of lore, right up there with foxes and bunny rabbits (both of which exist in abundance in Broomall and DELCO).
  • Someone who recently traveled abroad and is now suffering from influenza-like symptoms or someone who has watched the move “Outbreak” way. Too. Many. Times (I mean, it’s not that great a movie; the book is a whole heck of a lot better).

FYI: Bulleted points, WordPress Admins. Bulleted points twice in one blog entry. Bonus points, perhaps?

Tags like those aren’t going to get “Random Musings” noticed by the WordPress Powers that Be. And until my book is an established commodity and not “selling modestly” “ENDWORLD” isn’t going to pull in too many readers, either. My tags may not be relevant. But they are creative, and a part of the overall, “Random Musings” experience. Do any of you ever read the tags I tag my posts with? You should, sometime. Therein may lie the transcendence and/or funny content that you are looking for. I mean, what other blogger uses the phrase “Herbal Refreshment” as liberally as I did a few posts ago? The answer? No one. Still, I have monumentally failed to fully grasp the potential of the tag. Survey says? Another big, minus one. The Madchronicler one, WordPress Admins three.

6. Write a headline we can’t ignore. 

Regardless of whether my headlines on “Random Musings” are catchy or not, the WordPress Powers that Be have, by my reckoning (and simple mathematics) clinched victory. The best that I can achieve at this point is a two-three loss. Meaning? Meaning that unless I break from my tried and true formula of writing non-fiction “essays,” not only this blog post, but no other blog post that I have ever written or will ever write here on “Random Musings” will be Freshly Pressed. That said, I think my headlines are pretty catchy. So I’m going to score this one for the good guys. Survey says? “Random Musings” two, WordPress three. Sound buzzer. Game over.

And there you have it. Cue the faceless victors cheering and cue me, the morbidly obese published err, self-published author/blogger with the grizzled beard weeping profusely in the corner of his subjective reality on this side of the proverbial wormhole of existence. Congratulations: You have now shared in yet another, personal accomplishment–one of the bad ones.

The point of this rambling treatise that might get me kicked off of WordPress (but I certainly hope it doesn’t) is this: I don’t write because I seek the validation of my peers. I didn’t write ENDWORLD – A Novel because I wanted the world to see me as more than just Frank Marsh, a semi-regular Joe Schmoe that works an eight to five, Monday through Friday (and every fourth Saturday) job. I said this earlier and I’ll say it again: I’m fine with how my life is, presently. This really is one of the greatest eras of my life too date. Because I’ve got my “minions.” And I’ve got my sweetie (pics above). And Higbee Beach awaits me at the far edge of my vision IRL though in Endworld? It’s currently in the forefront. I was a living and breathing facsimile of a smiley face pre-publication. Being a published err, self-published author is just the icing on the cake. No. I write because I want to tell a story. I’ve got a whole book of ’em in my head. Some fiction, and some non. Some both. And one day, I hope to tell them all to anyone that wants to read them. Time and health–God willing–permitting.

And as far as being Freshly Pressed? If it happens it happens. Again, I don’t blog because I seek validation as a blogger. I blog because I’ve got something to say. I blog the way I talk because IRL? Most of my talking revolves around answering technical questions about hydraulic applications, the myriad of questions that Cara asks me on a given day or teaching Natalie (AKA “Natalia”) how to say “Mommy,” “Daddy,” “Cara” and “Doritos.” Whether or not people chose to hear my voice is their prerogative. Whether or not my ramblings have an iota of meaning for you is relative. I’m sure there are one or two people out there that can relate to my accomplishments–both good and bad–and can commiserate with my musings on life, the universe and everything. Maybe the others just read “Random Musings” because they’re looking for something transcendent. Or just funny. In truth? I think they’d settle for funny, too. Like my wife, who either humors me or hangs on every word that I type (and sweetie? Please don’t ever tell me which; thank you).

I’d love to be Freshly Pressed. I’d cherish that badge the way I cherish a cool, Fall Saturday (not one of the fourth ones) filled with College Football, multiple tall glasses of Tea Cooler with enough sugar in them to fell Godzilla and Tostitos with Velveeta and Salsa dip. Admittedly? It would be really cool to see my ugly mug of a Gravitar picture, fedora and all on that page along with one of my headlines. Much better than seeing albino Mecha-Marsh 30 feet high and 20 feet wide. Who needs a billboard when you can gain access to 500,000 other bloggers, some with like interests to yours and others with completely different ones. Can it happen? Will it? Or am I forever doomed to blogging obscurity?

Here is the conclusion of my pitch, WordPress Powers that Be: When I’m not working my eight to five, oft times mundane, routine existence, playing with my “minions” or squeezing a few all-to brief moments of quiet time in with my wife, I’m writing. It’s not just what I do. It’s what I am. I may not meet your Freshly Pressed criteria. “Random Musings” may be an atypical blog compared to others that you read about cats, potato chip-esque products and “Star Trek.” If that’s the case no worries: So long as you continue to host me I will continue to post here. But give your buddy the Madchronicler, AKA Frank Marsh a shot. If not for the rest of the blogosphere, then just for my poor wife, who can’t understand why I write rambling pieces of “Mental Flatulence” for free if only a select few people read them, searching in vain for something transcendent. Or funny.

I think they’d just settle for funny.

Winky emoticon. Smiley face. Have a great Memorial Day Weekend, everyone.

Of Doctors, Dieting, Elbows and A**holes.

“Five ear infections in nine and a half months. That has to be some kind of record.”

So read the text message that I sent my wife this AM upon finding out that our youngest is yet again suffering from an ear infection. The good news? At least this one is not a “raging, double ear infection” like the last one. Seriously? Some doc’s watch too much “Grey’s Anatomy,” i.e. they’re incredibly over dramatic about the conditions that they diagnose. They treat every sniffle like Ebola and every case of Pink Eye–Conjunctivitis if you want me to get technical–like the Plague.

That is by no means an indictment of every doctor that coexists with me, here in my subjective reality. My wife, for example, is a PharmD and she’s not over dramatic though she was, once upon a time, an avid follower of the “Grey’s Anatomy” soap opera, both onscreen and off. One of my best friends is a doctor and he is arguably the straightest shooter that I know. But many of them? I’ve encountered my fair share over the course of my 37, almost 38 year life on this side of the proverbial wormhole of existence and let me tell you something: I’m not over exaggerating. I’ve wondered often if the whole “see a doctor, see a specialist” thing isn’t an elaborate, money making scheme that they learn about on day one of med school, along with the Hippocratic Oath and the difference between an elbow and an a**hole.

Am I wrong? Who knows. Whether I am or am not is irrelevant. Perhaps it’s all legit and above the board. This might just be a brain fart–an accumulated bubble of Mental Flatulence that I’ve been mulling for years. While I can’t speak accurately on the topic of whether “specialists” are a limb of the many tentacled conspiracy that is health care in 2013 (and I wouldn’t want to; after all, I did vote for Obamacare by virtue of voting for Obama), I can say with a good degree of certainty that the drama? It exists.

Consider: There is a whole generation of doctors like my wife and my good friend the straight shooter that have entered the working world in the last half decade. Many of them were inspired to become doctors by television shows like “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scrubs”, along with older ones like “ER” and, in a few isolated cases, “St. Elsewhere.”

Okay, really? If you’re a doctor that has entered the profession in the last half decade due in part to the impact that “St. Elsewhere” had on you there’s something seriously wrong with you. I know med school takes a while but “St. Elsewhere” went off the air in 1988. Assuming you were of the Age of Reason–seven–in 1988 you would need to be at least… what? A 27 or 28 year old Resident at the least? That means that by the time you’re done your Residency you’ll be approximately 30. Guess what? Unless you’re in spectacular shape things start to go downhill after you hit the big 3-0. I’m not saying that your hands shake and your body gives out, but your mind begins to get a little wonky. You develop conditions that you need to go and see a “specialist” about. You feel the cold, rubber encased and lubricated index finger of time diddling your a**hole and you realize that even Doctor Doug Ross had gray hair by the time “ER” went off the air in 2009. Don’t believe me? Just wait. Your time will come.

All I’m saying is I that there’s no way in H-E-double hockey sticks that I’m letting a mid-30 something, new doctor care for me. I like my doctors one of two ways: Young and inexperienced or old and grizzled. That’s it. If one of my mid-30 something friends came to me tonight and said, “surprise, Frank! I’ve been secretly attending med school for the last six years. That’s why I missed ‘Kilt’ night (as in the Tilted Kilt in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania) this past Saturday but good news: I just graduated and I’d love it if you would be my first patient.”

Well, guys? Despite my loyalty to that friend I’d either A.) Come up with an elaborate excuse not to see him or her or B.) Throw another of my friends under the bus. “Oh, thanks BLANK. I feel great despite the volleyball sized tumor protruding from the side of my neck but I hear that BLANK needs a Proctological exam. You should really call him.”

Interesting. In this hypothetical scenario, am I a good friend for sending business the newly minted doc’s way or a bad one for denying him or her mine, and recommending that he or she recruit one of my otherwise healthy friends to be a medical guinea pig? Along the same lines, another question: Why am I suddenly obsessed with a**holes? I’ve gone whole blog entries without mentioning the Chocolate Starfish but now? It may end up being a Tag by the time I’m done. Note to self: Try and resist referring to “a**holes” in what remains of this blog entry. And please resist the urge to use it as a Tag. That may be easier said than done. Once you get an a**hole on your mind, its tough to get it off. SHIVER. 

I have no idea. The only thing that I know for sure right now is that I’m tired because my youngest has another ear infection and hasn’t slept well since last Wednesday (it is now Monday night). Said exhaustion is compounded by the fact that I am currently dieting in an attempt to shed a few, extra pounds before the wedding I’m going to in two and a half weeks and am this close to chowing down on one of my limbs. I’d drink another cup of water but I’ve already downed six today. I feel like Violet Beauregard from “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.” The Oompa Loompas are singing “drinking, drinking, all day long” in my mind. Seriously? I’d make love to a bag of Doritos if you put one in front of me right now. Think I’m kidding? Try it, and please: Avert your eyes.

Which reminds me of something my wife told me last night. No, not about having intercourse with a snack food. This:

Begin parenthetical aside: I generally don’t think much of these when they clutter up my Facebook Feed. I think about as highly of them as I do of the “specialist” that informed me a few years ago that I had Fybromyalgia, only to inform me during our second appointment that he, too, suffered from it and “by the way, Frank: There’s a support group that I’m the chairman of that you can join for an annual fee of BLANK.” Shockingly? I was cured from that day forward and have never even mentioned FM as a condition that I suffer from since.

Until now. Consider yourselves lucky, guys. “Hi. My name is Frank Marsh and I suffer from a condition of exclusion called Fybromyalgia. I don’t know if its real or not but my ‘specialist’ told me that for X-amount of dollars, he’d diagnose me with any condition–exclusionary or otherwise–that I want.” He should have just told me that I was tired because I was overweight and out of shape. Maybe I would have dropped the weight I’m trying to shed now then. Maybe I’d be eating a bag of luscious, mouth watering Doritos right now and not a Nutrisystem, “Thick” Crust, Personal Pizza. Ever eaten cardboard with cheese melted on top of it? Trust me, guys: It’s more filling than this. I feel like a contestant on “Survivor: Delaware County.”  Yes, Broomall. The tribe has spoken.

Dieting? It’s a bitch. If you’ve ever tried it you feel my pain. If you’ve never had to diet good for you. And screw you. I want your rubber stomach and your skinny genes. No, not “jeans.” Stuff me into a pair of those things and I’d look like an over-microwaved hot dog. End parenthetical aside.

Back to the Rheumalogist that told me I had Fybro. That guy? He’s the guy that I think of when a doc tells me or one of my loved ones that we need to go and see a “specialist.” Regarding my youngest’s predicament: I understand that it’s in her best interest. I further understand that doctors, even the over dramatic ones that model themselves and their approach after the “Grey’s Anatomy” derived approaches of Doctor McDreamy and Doctor McSteamy. By association, “specialists” are a necessity in a world filled with sniffles and Conjunctivitis and, to a lesser extent, Ebola and the Plague. The whole thing may very well be an elaborate, money making scam, perpetrated by members of the medical profession but that doesn’t change the fact that as a dad, I’m locked in. I want the best for my children–I could give a sh*t about myself–and if “the best” includes taking them to multiple PhD’s, PharmD’s et al and not just one apothecary? So be it.

As I write this, it is 10 in the PM. Across from me, my wife the PharmD sits playing Candy Crush Saga on her phone. She’s waiting patiently for me to finish and I don’t want to disappoint her. About an hour and a half ago, I put my youngest, five time (“five time! Five time!”), ear infected daughter to bed. She’s whimpered once or twice but for the most part, she seems to be sleeping peacefully. That’s not to say that she won’t be waking up in the next hour or two. If she does? She does. Occasional sleepless nights are a part of being a parent. As are “raging double ear infections” and Conjunctivitis. She has an appointment with an ENT (Ears, Nose and Throad) “specialist” tomorrow AM which I will be attending. Hopefully the doc will offer my wife and I a less invasive solution than placing tubes in her ears. Who knows? About the only thing that I know for sure is that I want her to get better, and if that means giving into the slimy embrace of the many tentacled conspiracy that is health care in 2013? Well sh*t. I may be an a**hole sometimes, but I love my family.

Just no Greenhorn, 30-something year old medical professionals, please. Either under 30 or over 50. Experience optional for the former, but imperative for the latter.

“Doom-pa-dee do.” G’Night all.