Changing gears…

Here are the next five in my list of 100 things that I have learned from living with a TBI. Recall from their previous list the use of such numbers as one, three, four and so on. I’m going to change it up with this list and feature numbers such as ten, eight and se…

I’ve decided that the list of a hunnerd is a solid basis for a book, and would like to hang on to it for that purpose. I’ll leave the previous list up to…well, because I don’t wanna take it down. It’ll also give loyal readers a taste of what I hope will be a book someday.

I’m not going to give up this blog though. I’m going to use it for public service announcements. The following message is near and dear to my heart –
Are you a licensed driver? Do you understand the rules of driving?

If you answered ‘yes’ to both of these questions, you’ll be equipped to complete the following sentence: “When I drive on a road in the United States, I keep to the _____ side of the road.

I’ll make it even more simpler by providing answer choices –
A. Awesome
B. Right
C. Bright
D. Dark

The correct answer is B. Right. However, I’ll accept D if you’re a Sith Lord. Sith Lords don’t have to drive on a certain side, they can just use the force to move cars out of their way.

Now that that’s settled, ponder this question – Do you or anyone you know shop at a supermarket? If you answered yes to this question, correctly answered the previous and can’t use the force, the following concept should make perfect sense – when patronizing a supermarket  STAY TO THE RIGHT!

DON’T walk slowly in the middle of an aisle and stop suddenly to look at the Pop Tarts
DON’T suddenly speed up when the person waiting behind you as you FINALLY select the S’mores Pop Tarts (barf), forcing this person to stay behind you.
DON’T stop in the middle of the aisle to look at Nutri-grain bars (how many quick breakfast fixes does a person need?)
DO stay to the right.
DO politely move to the side of the aisle when you find something that you’d like view.
Lastly, and most importantly, DO STAY TO THE RIGHT!!!
This announcement brought to you by  PISS (Public Information for safe shopping).

102 Is The Loneliest Number…

This will be post 102. I’d hoped to mark the occasion of my 100th post by giving away 100 pillowcases or some such thing, but I let the landmark pass me by.

But, FEAR NOT, internet! Who says post 102 can’t be treated with great fanfare? After all, it’s higher than the oft celebrated 100.

To mark this monumental occasion, I thought I’d look back through my posts and talk about how far I’ve come. Isn’t that a wonderful idea? OF COURSE IT IS!

To give me some direction, I’ll create a list of 100 things I’ve learned from living with a TBI and reference posts that relate. I’m not going to list all 100 right now. Rather, I’ll break them into sets of 10 over the next several weeks.

Before I start I need to share something. For whatever reason, I haven’t been in a funny mood lately.

That doesn’t mean I’ve been a grump. For purposes of this blog that means I’m going to approach this list from an informational point of view.

You see, others with brain afflictions have been asking for my input. I’d like to slant this list more as informational rather than funny. I can’t promise some funny won’t ooze out like so much puss from a blister. What I’m trying to say is, read and be informed, dammit!

That said, here goes 100 things I’ve learned, one through ten –

1. Patience – I didn’t even look through my blog for this one because if there’s one thing that permeates your life after a TBI, it’s slowness. I don’t think it’s an accident that ‘weight’ and ‘wait’ are homonyms.

Listen, I’ve been through YEARS of rehab. A very popular item for physical therapists working with individuals with ataxia is the ankle weight. I’m getting off topic here.

The point is that everything takes longer. For instance, I fiddled with a caribiner clip and the loop on a water bottle for about three minutes on Friday. I know that doesn’t sound long, but to Ta-Ja (Taskmaster Jarrett – more info. HERE ), it was an “egregious unsanctioned activity”.

I’ve become a bit neurotic about maximizing my time. In fact, I poked fun at myself for the silly ways that I make/save time (see more HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE).

You’ve been very patient if you’re still reading. What I’m saying is my life is full of tedium – gotta be patient.

That one was too long. I’ll do more better, I swears.

2. A thing or two about Neuro-anatomy: Early on, I learned all that I could about my affliction to be my own advocate. I have continued educating myself because I’m interested, there’s much to know, I wish to advocate/educate (eduvocate? Advucate?) others and because I get to learn and use big words like “proprioception” (the brain’s perception of where the limbs are).

I’m getting carried away again, read more about my understanding of the brain HERE and HERE

3. Know your body: It’s true what they say (aside: who are “they”?), the body is a temple. In the same vein as the previous point on this list (previoint?) , I believe that one should be mindful of the things one puts into/subjects one’s body to.

This is an overused cliche, but it’s spot on – think of your body as a car. If you put crap gas (heh, poop) into the car it’ll ruin like crap. With the body/temple, the same principle applies.

I don’t think I’ve ever written on this topic directly – you’ll just have to take my word for it. Also, here’s a picture –

EVERYBODY must get stone! (temple)
EVERYBODY must get stone! (temple)

4 & 5. Therapy axioms – “slow & steady wins the race” and “nose over toes”: TJTW (The Jarrett That Was – more info HERE and HERE) was a rabbit, not always on the move, but very capable of keeping up with or exceeding the speed of life.

This part of TJTW has morphed into Ta-Ja (Taskmaster Jarrett, mentioned above). I had to learn to slow down, that speed is no longer an option if I wish to do things right. I still struggle with this concept.

In essence, I’m a rabbit stuck in a turtle’s body.

“Nose over toes” is a simple rhyme that helps one with bad balance stand up. I’ve also learned that this quip helps me to know where my center of gravity is.

OK, folks. I know that I said that I would list one through ten, but the intro and the first five have already made this post far too long to fit into one post. Henceforth, I shall try not to be so verbose and just give the “straight dope”. I will post five through ten tomorrow. If you would like for me to expound upon something, leave a comment.

FIN

@JarrettLWilson

Preoccupation Alliteration

I write these words with great sorrow.
For me, this is a very busy week;
As such, this post will be meek,
You see, I work on the morrow.

I work at a school, and was off for the summer.
Teachers and staff return a week early;
This is to prepare for the kids, they can be pretty squirrelly.
Point is, vacation is over, what a bummer!

I haven’t had time to write anything meaningful.
Instead, I came up with this short verse;
Don’t despair! It could be worse!
I could’ve posted nothing at all.

Crazy Jarrett’s Video Conversion!

I put out an ad in the paper offering to convert home videos to DVD. Here’s the ad:

Convert your home video tapes (VHS, VHS-C, Mini-DV) to DVD. Contact Jarrett at # withheld. $12 per tape.

How lame is that? I was limited to 160 characters, so I had to stick to the basics. If I had the space, I would’ve said this –

Crazy Jarrett’s home video conversion service is officially open! I can convert your old VHS, VHS-C and Mini-DV to DVD.

Just think, that old video tape of Uncle Fred burping the alphabet will have new life in digital quality! Normally, this service costs $14,000 per tape, but take advantage of this introductory offer, and the price goes down to $12 per tape – that’s a savings of over 1166%!

Not convinced? Check out these testimonials:

“He converted some old video tapes, whoopty shit.”

– Marie, 30 – Queens, NY

“I thought he was selling celebrity sex tapes. Grrr.”

– Preston, 29 – Madison, WI

“What’s a video tape?”

Britney, 13 – Edmond, OK

“What’s a DVD?”

Jeb, 68 – Nashville, TN

“Will you convert all my old naughty movies?”

Ryan, 35 – Salina, KS

What are you waiting for folks? As an added bonus, have three videos converted and get a FREE oven mitt! Sign up today!

The Blue Menace explained

Oy! My dog took over my blog! I’d take it down, being unauthorized and all, but I think it’s pretty cool that my dog can type and put together coherent thoughts.

That said, let me give you more explanation about the “blue menace”. I recently brought home some personal items in a blue plastic bag from “Children’s Place”.

Said bag made its way to the floor. The hustle and bustle of life at my apartment caused it to move in front of a fan.

The fan caused it to scoot across the floor. Lily saw this, shot me a glance of deep, heart-rending terror and ran for her life.

Silly dog.

FIN

@jarrettLWilson

Lily the Dog Here

Greetings, humans!

Fowawaplaberugu (food water walk play belly rub guy) went somewhere in his moving domicile (car) and he left the computer on with a web browser open and signed in to his blog. So I thought that I, Lily the dog, would tell you about life as a dog.

 

It is a common misconception that life as a dog is a breeze. Why, just the other day, the blue menace (a blue plastic bag) tried to kill me…excuse me, I need a nap.

 

Also, Fowawaplaberugu  only let me lick his bowl twice! TWICE! Egregious, I know.

 

I also have to defend Fowawaplaberugu from the people walking by outside our domicile. For the most part, my savage bark and my kill face keep them away: but occasionally, Fowawaplaberugu lets these people in. That’s when I have to unleash my most fearsome barking and growling…excuse me, I need a nap.

 

When we go for PEE-PEE as he calls it, there will be humans lurking out there, sometimes they try to TOUCH me! This aggression will not stand, so I poop on their lawns…excuse me, I need a nap.

 

Here’s a picture of me –

YIP YIP!
YIP YIP!

Humans call me “cute” and “precious” a lot. I guess those are different words to describe a vicious beast.

I better go now, I need to take a nap.

Free Association Rhymification

I’m going to try something new here at Brain Injourney Industries.

I have writer’s block of a sort. I have several topics swimming around in my head and have even started writing on a few, but they don’t feel right.

So you see, my problem is that I’ve too many things to write about rather than too few.

I’ll start writing on one topic and think, this topic is boring, this other topic is WAY more interestinger, I think I’ll write on it instead. I’ll write on this other topic for a bit and think, this other topic is boring, this other other topic is WAY more interestinger, I think I’ll write on it instead.

I eventually make it back to the first topic and think this is a good topic, I’ll keep working at it.

Then the process starts all over again.

I conjure the best way to deal with this quagmire is to let my thoughts spill out like so much upchuck from a

college freshman’s stomach.

This upchuck will not spew forth in the erratic order you’d expect from vomit; i.e. Cinnamon Toast Crunch, then the bean burrito followed by the nuts from a Snickers, all swimming in a broth of Keystone Light and vodka. No, no. This ralph is going to rhyme.

Mmkay, What is to be the subject?

My Uncle Sam is an architect.

The subject will be whatever is both interesting and easy to rhyme with:

Such as, the Jedi fight the Sith.

Do the Sith use the force?

No, their power comes from a horse.

I’m hungry right now,

So hungry I could eat a cow.

Thing is, I wouldn’t call it “cow”, I’d call it beef;

There’s a character on Street Fighter 2 named Zangief.

That was a game that I loved to play,

I used to play it at my grandma’s house with my cousin TJ.

He usually beat me,

Excuse me, I need to go pee.

Ok I’m back, sorry for the delay,

I’m sure you want to get on with your day.

Not wait for me to go potty,

Loddy doddy, I likes to pawdy.

‘Potty’ and ‘Pawdy’ are almost the same word, cheater.

Watch out for flooding caused by a faulty hot water heater;

A pipe burst on my old one, spilling water everywhere

There was quite a bit here and even some over there.

How much longer will this be?

Not sure, I don’t wanna stop before I give thanks to my sister, Chelsey.

A couple of weirdos!
A couple of weirdos!

I spoke to her the other day and told her I was in a slump,

She knew just what to say to give my spirit a jump

I think that it is now time

To end this rhyme.

I do hope you had a laugh or two,

If you didn’t, go find something better to do

Such as, take a poo.

FIN

@JarrettLWilson

“The Loop”

My daughter, Quinn, is awesome. She’s also a fan of spelunking as you can see –

Spelunking

I keep track of her oddball comments, called “Quinnisms”, and post them on the Bookface that all my friends and family might share in the hilarity.

I’ve compiled all of these on my blog, they can be found HERE. I’ve also written some explanations as to how I conjure the Quinnism was conceived; I’ve posted one of these explanations HERE.

I do so enjoy her and thought I’d share more of her uniQueness with you –

Quinnism #34 –

Who’s on first, Q style:

*Daddy hands Q a sucker*

Q: “What flavor is this?”

Me: “That’s a mystery flavor.”

Q: “Why it’s a mystery flavor?”

Me: “You have to taste it to figure out what flavor it is.”

Q: “Why you have to taste it first?”

Me: “Because it’s a mystery flavor.”

…and so on.

This conversation is still hanging over lake Texoma somewhere.

The “why/what is” gambit will swallow your mind if you allow yourself to get sucked into it. It’s like a maze with no endpoint and no cheese; there is no reward and no way out.

I can’t promise any cheese (cheesy jokes, perhaps), but I have found a few techniques to point you toward  the

exit.

Technique #1: “The loop”. The seeds of this technique can be found in the Quinnism above.

The key is to find a loop where the answer leads to a question that leads to the same answer. This is not as easy as it sounds.

It didn’t take Q very long to figure out how to confound the loop – ask questions related to the topic, but make subtle movements towards a different topic. For instance, she frequently asks about traffic cones. Such a conversation might go like this –

Driving down a road under construction

Q: “Why there’s cones?”

PnQ: “They’re fixing the road. They don’t want cars to drive there.”

Q: “Why cars can’t drive there?”

PnQ: “It probably has a bunch of potholes”

Q: “Why there’s potholes?”

PnQ: “Well, water gets into small holes in the road, then freeze, and makes the hole bigger.”

Q: “Why’s water freeze?”

…and so on.

I could continue this conversation for the rest of the post, but I won’t do that to you or myself.

Let’s analyze this conversation; we started with traffic cones and ended with a question about ice. Clearly, Q is in control of this dialogue.

If you’re going to be successful employing “the loop”, you have to strike early; like this –

Q: “Why there’s cones?”

PnQ: “They’re fixing the road. They don’t want cars to drive there.”

Q: “Why cars can’t drive there?”

PnQ: “Because there are cones.”

Q: “…”

You might be thinking that no child is curious enough to want to know why water freezes. Let me tell you something, EVERY time my windshield has condensation on it or there is dew on the grass, she asks if it rained. I tell her it’s condensation, she asks me what that is, we do the condensation dance all the way to her school.

Let’s say you miss the loop window, you still have one chance.

Technique #2: The laws of science and nature.

For some reason, natural law is an ironclad stopper in the ginormous, ever refilling bottle of “why/what is”. Let’s look at the previous example and insert this technique –

Driving down a road under construction

Q: “Why there’s cones?”

PnQ: “They’re fixing the road. They don’t want cars to drive there.”

Q: “Why cars can’t drive there?”

PnQ: “It probably has a bunch of potholes”

Q: “Why there’s potholes?”

PnQ: “Well, water gets into small holes in the road, then freeze, and makes the hole bigger.”

Q: “Why’s water freeze?”

PnQ: “Winter makes fools of us all.”

Q: “…”

FIN

@JarrettLWilson

Help me with a terd example

Today, I tweeted the following terd (term + word: word made by combining two other words) –
Clarissed (Clarity + pissed (drunk), which means: thinking very clearly while drunk.

I usually follow this up with an example of how it would be used. Such as –

Threatertainment (Threat + Entertainment): Entertainment that is potentially harmful.

Example- Salesman: “3D TV may cause seizures.”
Customer:”That’s Threatertainment!

I can’t think of an example in 140 characters or less, so I thought I’d ask you to help me. Leave a comment with your example for “clarissed”.

FIN

JarrettLWilson

This Day(ish) in History

Hello, Internet!
Welcome to a very special edition of this blog! The theme for today is “this day in history” – when someone says ‘this’ or ‘day’ or especially ‘in’ or ‘history’, you have to do an obnoxious yell and do your best Peewee Herman impression – example.

You see, on August 7th (or 8th, can’t remember exactly), in that foul year of our Lord 2009, I was released from inpatient care at Pate (brain rehab). This ended three long months of inpatient care; two months at an acute rehab hospital and one month at Pate.

My time in rehab was only about halfway over, I’d spend the next four months as an outpatient at Pate. I’m getting ahead of myself. Before I go into detail about that day, I thought I’d discuss a few other famous events from August 7th, err…8th. The only way to settle this is to discuss events from August 78th.

Wikipedia and every calendar ever tell me that August 78th never has, or ever will exist. How am I to proceed? Obviously, add 78 days to the first day of August in that foul year of our Lord, 2009.

If my understanding of the calendar and the sequencing of numbers is to be believed, the magic day would be October 17th or 10/17.

Historically, October 17th has been a very busy day. It was on that day in 1777 (roughly 1,000 years ago) that GW gave the British what for at the Battle of Saratoga.

A few years later, in 1781 (roughly 1,000 years ago) the British said, “To hell with you, pompous Americans!” and surrendered at Yorktown.

So you see, October 17th is a day to celebrate freedom! Be it from tyrannical mother countries or inpatient rehab facilities

If you need more proof of the freedom that is October 17th, know that Al Capone finally got convicted of income tax evasion on that day in 1917 (roughly 1,000 years ago); freeing the world of a cheapskate tyrant. He was shipped off to jail where the taxes he didn’t pay didn’t go towards its construction.

Being the law abiding taxpayer that I am I was released home that day (August 7th or 8th).

I remember feeling ecstatic that that day had finally come, but upset that I missed all of that time. Truth be told, I still feel robbed of that time.

Anyway, Jessica (ex-wife), Quinn (daughter) and Priscilla (ex mother-in-law) put up welcome posters on the garage – a very nice homecoming.

Excuse me for not making with the funny, I’m in sentimental mode now (sentimode?).

I still went to neuro rehab, I got there by using my newfound ability to fly. That’s a lie, I only fly to run short errands in town.

I was close enough to Pate that they’d come and get me. My driver was usually a very pleasant lady named Sandy .

That name turned out to be very fitting for her – she ate more candy than anyone I’ve ever seen. You see, candy and Sandy rhyme.

Candy, err… Sandy would chauffeur me to and from Pate for until the end of January – at that point, I had been back to work for about a month – I was either going to sink or swim.

I can keep going in this fashion for a while, so I’ll just stop here and say I’ve been very lucky – excellent doctors/medical facilities, caring and attentive family (that definitely includes Jessica), proximity to rehab facilities and top notch therapists.

All the above mentioned happiness is possible because a). GW turned the tide of the revolutionary war 1,000 years ago and b). Al Capone was brought to justice.

LET FREEDOM RING!

FIN

@JarrettLWilson