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Sick… AND Tired


I apologize for the lack of postings. After the last month, it would seem I have come down with a virulent cold. In addition, I am moving into my new digs and they lack internet connections. Hence I am thrown back on the connection at my mother’s apartment — which I use when she’s out at one of her ladies’ luncheons to avoid transmitting my cold to her.

I continue to be amazed and moved beyond measure by the outpouring of support here and elsewhere on the Net. I am sustained by them in all ways and without them I could not even begin to rebuild my life from the ashes of Paradise.

At some point, I will face the Herculean task of thanking you all individually but at over 600 kind and generous souls have helped me it may take a bit of doing.

In the meantime, God bless and keep you all.



Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Phil in Englewood December 4, 2018, 1:02 PM

    No apology needed. I am blessed to be able contribute in a small way to helping with your current resurrection, and return some of the contribution you have made to all of us through American Digest. Hope you feel better soon. Merry Christmas, Gerard!

  • Suburbanbanshee December 4, 2018, 1:08 PM

    Get well soon! Concentrate on that.

  • John Venlet December 4, 2018, 1:19 PM

    I recommend rest, and whiskey, and though rest may be difficult to attain due to your circumstances, Gerard, it is probably the best medicine there is.

  • Jeff Brokaw December 4, 2018, 2:12 PM

    Feel better soon, and do not fret about “lack of posting”. I’ve been a little amazed you’ve been able to do as much as you have!

    I’ve developed a cold recently too, and decided last Saturday was a good day to stay in and have some tea with lemon and Irish whiskey. Did it help? Who knows but it sure didn’t hurt!!

  • Marica December 4, 2018, 3:13 PM

    No worries! There’s a gracious plenty of wonderful content here to keep me busy while you recover and recuperate. Just read the story of Carl– the man who loved not wisely but at least twice. Delightful. Thanks!

  • Sam L. December 4, 2018, 4:20 PM

    Take care of yourself, first. We can/will wait.

  • I Am Who I Am December 4, 2018, 4:46 PM

    I understand. This helped me get through the Katrina aftermath:


  • ghostsniper December 4, 2018, 5:33 PM

    Unmanaged stress is your enemy, it weakens your immune system. Slow down, relax, think things through, plan your work and work your plan. Grab a bottle of vitamin C at walmart and get ample rest, force liquids, eat right. All the stuff your mother used to tell you. Without your health you got nothing. Peace. Onward.

  • pfsm December 4, 2018, 5:36 PM

    God bless you and keep you too, Gerard…and your mother.

  • Snakepit Kansas December 4, 2018, 5:49 PM

    Bourbon kills germs on contact, as other readers above have suggested.

    Short glass with crushed ice. 1.5 shots of Wild Turkey. Rub around the mouth of the glass generously with lemon. Grab a chair and a book to do a little relaxing.

  • Eric Fithian December 4, 2018, 5:54 PM

    …and you managed the Amazing Feat of sending that Virus to me!
    Over the Inter-t00bs…!
    Who knew such was possible?
    Just spent the whole day in bed, waiting for the fever to break (late afternoon)…

  • Anonymous Polymorphous December 4, 2018, 6:16 PM

    Gerard, you have been thanking and blessing us lo these many years with your grandeur and your grace. Now, swish all our best wishes for you together and drink deeply of our gratitude. You have helped mightily in making us better than we were.

  • Jim December 4, 2018, 8:34 PM

    Early, I know, given that you’ve not even settled into your apartment as yet.

    But, will you or anyone you’re aware of be able to rebuild on your lost house’s foundation or a freshly bulldozed lot? And if it’s possible, would you do so?

    I know insurance is the key determinant, along with the sizeable deductible and other nuances. And the per-foot building costs in CA, I shudder to imagine.

    But if you are intending to rebuild, well, then that opens up a whole ‘nother avenue insofar as help, gifts, support and contributions.

    Just thought I’d put it out there for your consideration, sir.

    Sunk New Dawn
    Galveston, TX

  • John the River December 4, 2018, 9:15 PM

    No internet at the new apartment, blessing in disguise. Relax, rest, contemplate.

  • leelu December 4, 2018, 9:20 PM

    Gerard, Burbon is a tad overrated for colds. The preferred drink (at my place, anyway) is gin and orange juice. Or grapefruit juice, if you’re not on a statin.
    As others have said, you have given us so much of yourself these past 17 years, what we can send doesn’t begin to somehow ‘make us even’.
    You *could* have us over for dinner, I suppose. That would be nice.

  • PA Cat December 5, 2018, 1:46 AM

    “Relax, rest, contemplate.” Yep– and may Miss Olive’s soft purring soothe you into much-needed sleep. If she’s the kind of cat who likes to “make muffins” (knead her paws) on her human, you’ll also enjoy “kitty shiatsu”– great for tired or sore muscles.

  • ghostsniper December 5, 2018, 4:39 AM

    At least the property tax for this upcoming year will be a lot lower.

    Regarding the idea of rebuilding on top of the existing foundation – I’d advise against it, for a variety of reasons. The first is structural. Fire tempers things and in regard to masonry products this is not good, they become brittle and unstable. I learned this as an early teen when I used my dad’s ramset to shoot a .357 nail into the driveway and it stuck up off the surface about a quarter inch. If my dad seen that he’d kick my ass. So I used his acetylene torch to cut the nail off. The 3000 degree heat made the concrete driveway explode and a 4″ crater was created and the nail was still there.

    Then there’s the idea that the old floor plan may not have been as good as it should be so rebuilding it would not be beneficial. Things change over time and what worked 10 years ago may not today. There are always better ways to do things in the world of architecture. Perhaps a smaller footprint is desired?

    Lastly, ever tried to follow in someone else’s footprints in the snow, exactly? It’s almost impossible, very difficult. Typically, in architecture, a floor plan is developed and then later the foundation to support it is developed. In the 7000 projects I have been involved with, less than a hand full was that process reversed, and with great difficulty.

    My overall assessment would be that if a new domicile is to be developed on the existing site a comprehensive evaluation (feasibility study) be done taking into consideration all of the pertinent aspects of the project, including things like budget, environmental impact ( I don’t necessarily mean that in a tree hugger way) floor plan layout including room orientation, traffic patterns and furniture placement, materials and methods, and yes, style. Striving for a balance between form, function, and economics in harmony with the occupants and the community for a building that can last for a century or more and require minimum maintenance using proven rules of value engineering. Good design isn’t expensive, it’s priceless.

  • jwm December 5, 2018, 5:56 AM

    Rest and be well.
    We’re here waiting.


  • Hangtown Bob December 5, 2018, 6:58 AM

    One day at a time…..

    Just keep moving…..

    God will provide….

  • Jaynie December 5, 2018, 2:55 PM

    Of course you came down with something, poor guy. Man, my heart goes out to you for the things you’ve been going through. Really, how many who were that close to that disgusting 9/11 horror then, years later, find themselves in a giant forest fire? Whoa, that shock to the system must have reverberations that it’d take someone smarter than I to figure out.

    For feeling better, let me echo the bourbon recommendations. Either the drink’ll help cure you or it’ll get you to sleep restfully and deeply which will help cure you. But perhaps it’d be good idea to try to have some great steak or roast beast too to build yourself up.

    For any small thing I may have done, please consider me thanked in plenty by all you have given with your American Digest. I have taken from you for years with giving nothing back. Just, please, consider me thanked. Please.

  • Snakepit Kansas December 5, 2018, 4:57 PM

    Ghost shot a nail into his Dad’s concrete driveway! Hell Yeah!

    When I was about 15 I acquired a 10″ piece of copper pipe, packed the center with gunpowder from a few 16 gauge shotgun shells and ground up leftover 04JULY sparklers, then packed each end with broken glass and lead 6-shot mixed into plaster. I had a pre-drilled fuse hole that was fitted with a waterproof fuse from a Missouri acquired M-60 firecracker and secured with wax. I had assembled this entertainment device in my basement bedroom with plans for imagined harmless countryside entertainment with some friends. I also rebuilt a Rochester Spreadbore four barrel carb for my ’72 GTO in this same bedroom, but I shall digress no further. One day after school I noticed that my home made copper pipe entertainment device was missing from my room. I didn’t say anything to my folks. My folks didn’t say anything to me. Yeah, Dad took it.

  • ghostsniper December 5, 2018, 6:14 PM

    Don’t know about all that whiskey business. I’ve been sick a few times and drinking alcohol was way down the list of things I wanted to do, and sleeping was never a problem, slept like a clam.

    Steak? Please.
    Hotter’n hell broth, any flavor, in a big, deep bowl. Use pot holders to sip it, right out of the bowl. When sipping, the steam will penetrate them passages and bust all that foulness loose. Granny’s universal expectorant.

    Get (2) 1 gal containers of local orange juice, the good stuff, with lots of pulp.
    Run 1 gal thru a strainer to get all the pulp out of it.
    Put all that extra pulp in the other gallon and drink it.
    Pulp so thick you can stand a spoon up in it and you have to brush your teefs 3 times to get all of it out of there.
    The other gallon? Leave some headspace in the gallon and throw it in the freezer for them screwdrivers and sunrises when you’re all better.

    Oh yeah, turn the dam phone OFF, completely.
    Computer too. Don’t turn any of that stuff back on til Sat evening at the earliest.
    We’ll be here when you get back. Bet on it.
    Dr Ghost

  • lendie December 6, 2018, 4:28 AM

    Heat on the chest helps the lungs. You are fortunate to have a heating pad already.
    In fact it is one that vibrates. The controls are a little iffy though. Put the black heating
    pad on your chest. Be very careful of the 4 black flaps as they have sharp pointy things
    at the end of each flap. It’s possible the heating pad may complain. All you have to do
    then is pet the nice fur covering until the vibrations start. You may find that different locations
    may yield stronger or lighter comforting sounds and vibrations. You must, however, feed
    and water this heating pad for the best performance of this model. Under NO circumstances,
    should you attempt to re-heat the heating pad in the microwave as this could prove fatal.
    Please take good care of yourself as you are at an age at risk of pneumonia. Trust me,
    you do not want to have this. Signed, veteran of the pneumonic wars.

  • Marica December 6, 2018, 6:55 AM

    I very much like the neighborhood here. It’s what a web-log communities should be. On the other hand, I’m a new kid on the block– I have no recollections of that time when. So. In the relative quiet right now, I decided to get schooled. I started with 12/1/2017 and read a day at a time.

    Favorite so far has been the story of “The Man Who Loved Not Wisely but at Least Twice,” from 12/1/17. What a lovable looser. We have one living in our Bunkhouse right now. 40+ year old boy (who we’ve known for 20+ years) who does have a job, but who, every payday, pays most of his rent and heads to New Orleans or Biloxi or somewhere. And then has no money for the rest of the month. I won’t say his name, but it’s unique such that whenever we stumble across another of his kind, we just say his name as a general summary of character.

    Today last year, under a Let’s Review post, there was a link to an article about children’s books: YOU CAN NEVER GO BACK: ON LOVING CHILDREN’S BOOKS AS AN ADULT. https://lithub.com/you-can-never-go-back-on-loving-childrens-books-as-an-adult/

    I think the author has some issues– “I’ve never gotten over growing up,” (see above)– but it was interesting nonetheless. At least to me. (You should know that I just happen for other reasons to have *The History of Children’s Literature* (Elva Smith, 1937) on my desk so yeah, I’m weird.)

    I don’t think anyone has recommended hot lemonade for the cold. Also, bell peppers have, ounce for ounce, more vitamin C than most citrus.

  • ghostsniper December 6, 2018, 6:56 AM

    That was clever.

  • Teri Pittman December 6, 2018, 11:51 AM

    Just write. That’s thanks enough.

    My cough syrup recipe is a pint jar with about a third honey, a third lemon juice and a third rum. You can tweek the proportions if needed

  • AesopFan December 6, 2018, 6:51 PM

    Marica December 6, 2018, 6:55 AM – thanks for sharing that link.
    I was able to keep reading children’s books for a number of years, by dint of having 5 kids, and volunteering at school to read to their classes.
    After some years of languishing in the adult wilderness (there are plenty of books I’ve read, of course, but they seem to get longer and longer, and less and less literate), I have chosen to return to reading youth and junior fiction.
    Some new, to send on to the grandchildren, and some old classics that I somehow skipped growing up myself. Laura Ingalls Wilder’s works especially captivated me, as I passed them by in grade school for science fiction, and my boys were not really interested in them.
    For those who feel that children’s books and authors are somehow “lesser” than fare written for adults, I submit that the only proper response is “pfui.”

    Gerard: how goes the library list for replacement?
    I may have missed where it is posted.
    Would love to send you some favorites if possible.

  • Kristin December 7, 2018, 2:30 AM

    Your Thank You’s are your postings. I truly feel what you are going through because of your writings. Get better, get well.

  • Marica December 7, 2018, 6:45 AM

    @AesopFan “For those who feel that children’s books and authors are somehow “lesser” than fare written for adults, I submit that the only proper response is “pfui.” ”
    Agree. Just recently discovered Charles and Mary Lamb’s “Tales from Shakespeare.” Christmas gift for the grandson!

  • AesopFan December 7, 2018, 9:49 PM

    Marica – good choice!
    An easy introduction to the Bard, and hopefully they will discover the pleasures of the originals in due time.