Three days in a hospital and home again, just a little the worse for wear. A bit humble, but not all that much (sorry). Good to be home, back to my grumpy self, or almost there, anyway. Still a bit weary for full-blown irascibility. But still, it’s real good to be home and really good to know how much love and support I have. When I was helpless and in pain, I got help, and more love and concern than I deserve, but I’m not giving that up, no way, no how. If I ever get around to making up a list of things I don’t have, love will never be on that list. I’m very lucky that way.

So I have no complaints. Especially when I consider some of the people still in the hospital who have really bad stuff wrong with them, things that are unlikely to go away anytime soon or at all. Hopefully they have half the love and support that I did to face what they’ve got to face. There’s a lot to be said for the healing power of love. The doctor and nurses who run the place are all pretty special too, real pros who know their business inside out. Outside of the traditional embarrassing gowns that open backwards, I have nothing but praise for the joint and the people who make it work.

The place was Beth Israel Hospital on Kings Highway in Brooklyn, a small neighborhood hospital that still has all the bells and whistles of the big outfits. What was ailing me was a bit of a mystery so I had every kind of test, scan and probe you can imagine, including a camera up my sizable nose. They eliminated the dire things one by one and thankfully all I had was a nasty deep sinus infection for which there is treatment and a cure. It was the camera up the shnoz that located the culprit, and I have to admit I’m a little embarrassed it wasn’t something major. A pretty stupid thing to feel, but there it is, something I probably could have avoided if not for me ignoring it for long time, figuring I was “fighting it off.” Not such good figuring on my part.

I mean, I sure don’t want some dread disease, not for a second. I like living and I really dig being healthy too. But still, I feel like I should have something more dramatic to report to my loved ones for all the trouble they went to and all the worry I caused them and all the love they showed me. A sinus infection? Please! That’s like the Carpal-Tunnel Syndrome of diseases. I suppose I could claim I got it fighting off a rabid dog that was attacking the neighbor’s kid, but nobody’s seen any mad dogs in Brooklyn for quite a spell. More likely it was the result of me going to battle with some raw sewage that was backing up into my crawl space a while back, a pretty mundane way to get ill.

Not that the physicians were all that concerned with how I got sick, since it’s not contagious. They just wanted to get me better and move on to the next sick person, as it should be. And also quite correctly, they don’t give a crap how I feel about getting laid low by such a routine disease. These things happen. And whether or not it’s dramatic enough for my liking is my problem, the dopey caveman 10 year-old that’s still alive and well inside me. Live and learn. Or don’t learn, as the case may be. I still haven’t given any serious consideration to quitting cigarettes. I never said I wasn’t a stubborn oaf in many ways. But I will take better care of my damned sinuses, that’s for sure. Who knew they could put you down like a wounded ox?

In my short absence the look of my website has changed dramatically, thanks to my son Rob, who does all the heavy lifting web-wise for this site. All I do is the ranting and raving and the songwriting and singing, the results of which would still be on shelves in my house without him. Now that I think of it, I don’t even know how to post my blogs on this new site yet since it’s a new program and loading process. Looks like I’m going to have to call him for a quick tutorial and some passwords and the like, so this post will likely be a day late. I’m sure the world will still spin and the sun still rise somehow, just like it did while I was laid up.

It’s like somebody redid my house while I was away. Oh, that’s right, my other son, Mike the carpenter, is in the middle of doing just that, helping me turn our garage into another room. And they do this in the middle of hauling their old man’s ass to the hospital and visiting me to keep me company and bringing me real coffee and hot beef sandwiches from the great Brennan and Carr’s on Nostrand Avenue. Their wives, the lovely Lydia and Maria, visited me and helped my wife the lovely Louise through this. My sister Nan, fresh from her own surgery, was all over me with love as was the incomparable Mary Crespo, mother, grandmother and inspiration to us all.

Big Brother John in Florida, survivor of a whole slew of truly oddball maladies (he seems to attract them like a magnet), called me with tales of truly weird medical stuff. My friends Ace from Phoenix, Mulligan Man, Tony Tash, Alice the Fox, DeSisto the famous photographer and author and a bunch of others checked in with concern and love and some good laughs. My nieces and nephews and all my in-laws also checked in with prayers and love. And of course my lovely Louise still smothers me with the fiercest love any woman ever gave any man. I truly am one lucky stiff. It’s great to home, sitting on the swing in my tiny yard with the sun on my face and thinking about all this and how much I owe to so many people who have given me so much. Life is a damned good deal, and it’s people who make it that way. Somewhere, somehow I must have done something right to be surrounded by so many good ones. Still, damned fool that I am, I can’t help but wish I had something more dramatic to report…

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