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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Road Apples, #87

Gerry Rafferty...Scottish musician Gerry Rafferty passed away yesterday.  Story link HERE.  His well known songs included "Right Down the Line", "Stuck in the Middle with You" and "Baker Street".  True story:  when I was temporarily working in Florham Park (NJ) in 1997 I had the lyrics to "Baker Street" posted outside my cubicle.  Why?  I really don't remember the reason, other than the fact that it just seemed fitting at the time.  Here they are...

Windin' your way down on Baker Street
Light in your head and dead on your feet
Well another crazy day
You'll drink the night away
And forget about everything
This city desert makes you feel so cold.
It's got so many people but it's got no soul
And it's taking you so long
To find out you were wrong
When you thought it had everything

You used to think that it was so easy
You used to say that it was so easy
But you're tryin'
You're tryin' now
Another year and then you'll be happy
Just one more year and then you'll be happy
But you're cryin'
You're cryin' now

Way down the street there's a lad in his place
He opens the door he's got that look on his face
And he asks you where you've been
You tell him who you've seen
And you talk about anything

He's got this dream about buyin' some land
He's gonna give up the booze and the one night stands
And then he'll settle down there's a quiet little town
And forget about everything

But you know he'll always keep movin'
You know he's never gonna stop movin
Cus he's rollin'
He's the rollin' stone

And when you wake up it's a new mornin'
The sun is shinin' it's a new morning
You're goin'
You're goin' home.

Rest in Peace Mr Rafferty.  You're goin' home.

Medical News...On the medical front, I received some very good news yesterday.  What would that be?  Well my blood pressure, which had been border-line high for a long time, seems to have dropped down to a quite normal 120/90.  Yesterday was "decision day" in that my doctor and I had agreed that if it was still elevated after the holidays I would agree to go on some kind if medication to treat it over the long term,  Now for some that may not seem all that terrible, as there are probably millions of Americans who are blood pressure medication.  For me though it was daunting, as I'm really not a pill kind of guy.  I take two pills every day as it stands, a vitamin and a 20mg Prilosec, and even that troubles me in some small way.  The vitamin just make sense, but it bothers me that I can't control my really bad case of acid reflux through any other means.  Conversely, I was able to reduce my blood pressure through a combination of weight loss and dealing head-on with the personal stressors that negatively impact my life.

As a side note, I do have something of a cold/sinus thing going on (which explains why it is 5:30am and I am writing this).  I think it's because I have been exposed to germs from foreign lands, you know, from places like Egypt or Wilkes-Barre.  Oh well...time heals most things, including sinus infections.

Repeal!...Yes, the GOP and Tea Bagger crew and hell-bent on repealing health care reform.  G - I - M - M - I - C - K.  Any kind of repeal will not pass the U.S. Senate.  This is all about placating the politically active Right, not about actually addressing the fact that health care inflation in the United States has been running at an annual increase of about 12% for the past few decades.  Where is the alternative?  "Market Based" reforms?  Newsflash:  the free market doesn't work for everything.  Want proof?  How many here want "for profit" police?  Or a "market based" military?  I'm not advocating any one solution, but I am advocating some solution, something that is non-existent for most of the talking heads on the extreme Right.  Oh, wait, they have advocated lawsuit reform...which is a good idea, but most estimates that I've seen indicate that frivolous lawsuits add a whopping 3-5% to the nation's health care bill.  Next...

Budget Axe...House Republicans want to cut an initial $100 billion from the federal budget.  That's not a bad thing.  The initial cuts will include $35 million from the Congressional budget.  That's also okay.  Here is a suggestion though:  Let's make members of Congress take the same health care benefits that the average WalMart employee enjoy.  This would serve two purposes:

1.  Reduce the federal budget.
2.  Get members of Congress to understand what "market based" health care is really all about.

Somehow I don't think that will not be happening any time soon.

Home...I've been working over the past few weeks to make my domicile more of a home.  This includes more pictures, a better organized kitchen, and, most recently, place mats.  Yes, place mats.  It's amazing how the little things make something of a difference in your life.  Note though that I almost never eat at my dining room table (in fact it is a bit of a stretch to even claim that I have a dining's more like a room that stores my Trek and has a table in it).

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