Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Days of whine and poses

Had a few bothersome days there.

My blood pressure kept crashing. Well, not crashing, exactly, but falling down into the 60/30 range. Which isn't so bad, I guess, except that I feel exhausted and mentally foggy when it does that. I don't like feeling that way.

I'm in the middle of a 30-day heart monitor trial to see if my heart is having a rhythm problem which might be causing the low blood pressure.

Of course we can't see the readings until the 30-day period is over. "Ve haff procedures vitch must be followt, nicht wahr?"

The regular ekg is fine, and although my heart rate is only about 50 when the b/p drops, 50 beats per minute is not profoundly slow and the rhythm is dead normal. For certain values of dead, of course.

The medical cookbook used around these parts does not allow for any real investigation of real symptoms. Patients have to be lumped into a particular category. Period. Once placed in a category, the cookbook requires that treatment follow the recipe precisely. Period.

The category I'm supposed to fit into is the old fat guy with a failing heart category. The cookbook says I'm supposed to take powerful heart drugs designed to make a post-heart attack heart beat more strongerly. Despite the fact that I have had no heart attack and have no signs of any kind of cardiomyopathy. Also I am supposed to go home, hit the recliner, and watch the 24/7 news cycle.

Well, firetruck that.

Fortunately for me, I'm aprofoundly and fundamentally uncategorizable individual with a rudimentary understanding of human anatomy, physiology, and medicine. I have the ability to reason, and when I bend my mind to the task I can pretty easily tell when a recipe is likely to do more harm than good.

I am, therefore, according to the cookbook, a non-compliant patient.

I suppose they'll come for me in the night. That's fine, my Sig has lovely night sights.

Up until a few years ago medical science held a lot of promise. But America began to kill it off when people decided that the ponzi scheme of "insurance" would be a good idea. After all, it said so right there on paper! You get something for free! More importantly, you get to punish your enemies by making them pay for your care! What's not to love? And the best health care in the world, state of the art medicine, all rainbows and unicorns and shit. Says so right there on the paper!

Which is all wonderful and tingly.

Reality in the real world is different than the reality described by Royal Tailors Who Produce Cloth Which Can Be Seen Only By The Wise.

I'll take the ratty old denim, thank you very much, and I'll take a pass on the nostrums which will only hasten my descent into decrepitude.


It's been very hot so far this month. Hot and dry. So hot and dry, in fact, that all the experts is sayin' how the weather conditions is all unprecedented, and that we're on track to shatter ever' single record and stuff. Boosche caused grobal warmering by stealin' the 'lection from the saintly, world's-champeen climatologist algore, and now we all gonna die.

Funny thing though.

You have only to look back five years, to September, 2012, to find near identical conditions.

Through the first 11 days of this September at Kimball, the daily high has averaged 85.54 degrees, the overnight low 52.09 degrees, and the daily mean 68.81 degrees. Those numbers through the first 11 days of 2012 were 85.90, 51.36, and 68.63, respectively.

Nicht nach den Experten!

Well, you know. Reality.

I did some prairie dog hunting this morning. I stalked in from a mile, paying careful attention to the wind and to the noise and vibration of my approach. The last 100 yards I did on my belly, slowly and quietly worming my way through dry, scratchy, stabby vegetation.

It was a good stalk, and I was rewarded by the presence of a happy, above-ground group of prairie dogs. The scope brought the first one into sharp focus, and I laid the cross-hairs just to the left of the third button down on the Tattersall vest he was wearing. I put my thumb on the safety and prepared to fire.

The prairie dogs disappeared.

Overhead soared a large Ferruginous Hawk.



Reality has hard edges and stickers. Sweat and blood and gore and bitter disappointment. In the end, mortality.

I would far rather hurt and bleed and suffer and die than spend my precious and limited time in the psychotic realm of an externally dictated alternative reality.


And now that the temperature has touched 89 degrees I shall go charge some hills.


I have charged those hills. It is now two hours later, two degrees hotter, and I am not dead. My workout covered 4.5 miles in an hour and a quarter and those hills were lovely. In February I could not have walked up heart attack hill. Today I did it five times in succession and had to sprint (for certain age-adjusted values of sprint) the steep pitches to feel like I was doing something exercise related.

When I finished my heart rate was 57 and my pressure 107/75.

I'm beginning to suspect that my bouts of hypotension will even out as I continue to improve my level of fitness and cardio-pulmonary health.

Time will tell.

I'm not gonna take those firetrucking drugs and sit around waiting to die.


  1. Glad to see you back in action Shaun. I was starting to get a bit concerned.

    Funny how life works innit?

  2. Once again I echo OAFS.

    I admit that I'm slow; is that hawk that cloud?

    Stay well my friend.

    Paul L. Quandt

  3. So pleased you are back, Old Bean! HUZZAH! Smite those prairie dogs! Rotten little four legged Commies!

  4. Good to see you back. Mom's n grannies worry when the kids don't report, in you know!
    The Cowman went down much the same road with statins after his heart attack. Got him off the damn things as soon as possible, against doctor's orders. Everything came back to normal parameters (for him) after he quit them. Sometimes you just have to do what you know is best for your individual body.

    1. Thanks Brig. Cookbook medicine is worse than witch doctorin.