Without Offense Anticipated

Jim M


I promise I will send some more coherent stuff in the very near future. Perhaps you might find reading this fun or maybe this is too far out of line in which case you simply hit delete.
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The paragraph below was actually the first thing I wrote and intended to send to you. But I didn't, figured it was getting too wordy so I sent the short one you got instead. But I can fill up a page pretty fast and change subjects without warning. Seems my mind does a lot of wandering, in fact I spent a good portion of my life wandering around for no apparent reason.

Dalton, could not help but note with a lot of interest your adventure into a blog for vets. As you probably already know I am also one of those 100% disabled vets. Not sure about your medical history but it took a long time for me to finally figure out that all the medical problems I have gone thru can be traced back to one thing. Everyone knows what it is, so far one doctor and several nurses agreed that dioxin is the culprit. All the other medical professionals are still afraid of what the government might do should they say anything about agent orange. But all bird farm sailors also know that all aircraft carriers engaged in routine operations have plenty of toxins aboard. Pretty hard to escape being exposed to something that is bad for your health. Nevertheless I would still sign up for more cruises no matter the risk. While I do not know you personally I still consider you one of the brothers who served aboard the USS Hancock. Service I consider honorable and essential to our Republic. While I have no direct combat war stories to tell, I have plenty of other sea stories, some of which are hilarious, damn funny and of course derived from my time on aircraft carriers, aka bird farm fun!
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Dalton I do the same stuff that you have taken to. When I am in the mood I scribble notes to myself about any subject I want to discuss with myself. Fortunately I have this computer to take a lot of the work out of writing. My mind is usually racing far ahead of what I am typing. Since my hands are sometimes out of my control things don't get spelled right at times. Thankfully there is the spelling app that corrects my dumb mistakes. The wordy crap you see below I wrote several years ago while thinking about my aches and pains. Having been through more than eight operations some of what I feel were not needed. But hey, the VA knows what they are doing, don't they? Trying to avoid any more trips to the VA hospital, just got back a few hours ago from another medical appointment. The old right leg is in bad shape, they are trying to support the collapsing ankle but it looks hopeless. Ah well on to a new year.
I wrote the paragraph below, it's my philosophy story after reading a doctors advice column on what he considered 'health'.

Useless thoughts on my philosophy of life:
I think its called random data access?
Anyway here is my take on the 'doctors' answers to the web 'health' questions that are being passed around. How come I immediately think of my ding-a-ling, (Chuck Berry), every time I hear the word passed? Stick a camera up your (censored) and look around and if you enjoy that continue on up to the kidney where you can get stoned. The photo of the 'doctor' looks to be Asian probably Chinese, I thought they liked to stick pins in you to 'cure' what ails you. I sure like the 'Conclusion' that someone thunk up! I was probably prompted to write this after three kidney operations to remove some stones. The fun part was the camera they shoved up my ding dong on three different occasions to look around. They followed that by pushing a stint up there supposedly to hold everything open. Yeah that works, you get to leak all over yourself.
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I think I will learn some other language. But then who will I talk to? Oh yeah, if I learn the Mexican version of Spanish then I will have millions of illegals to talk to. Back at the Gilman, Colorado Mine I worked on the surface crew. While operating the end of a shovel and for no good reason I was told by some Spaniards that the Mexican language is a crappy version of real Spanish. I thought a fight was going to break out between the two groups. Senza offesa previsto.

The short paragraph I read in a health professionals magazine was about your worn out body at end of life. I am worn out an sure feel like it, used up as it states. However it is unlikely that I will be hollering 'Woo-hoo what a ride'. Most people die in agony as their 'worn out' body becomes a painful experience. Maybe some get a free ride, but I'm not that lucky. Haven't slept for three days now, the pain that is having fun at my expense is probably my pay back for often being a asshole. One thing for sure, I will be arriving at my grave looking like the living dead.
Take a nap, they suggested, so you can live longer. Now that is a useless statement. I don't want to sleep my life away, but it would be nice to get some normal shuteye for a change. But I can vouch for losing weight, it does take some of the load off my bad leg. 240 to 190 pounds now.

Shortly after opting out of the military I had a welcome home experience. Three females in a station wagon took me out. The driver looked right at me riding my Beezer an pulled out, my leg was purple for weeks. Now in my old age the leg is back to remind me that you have to look out for the stupid drivers. Oh yeah, I forgot, another 'driver' T-boned me on Skyline on my bike. Same leg. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, busted a vein when my bike kicked back. My leg was purple for a week. Same leg. Oh, which one of you was riding on the back of my bike when that old man in S.F. turned right into us and knocked us into the gutter. You should remember, you got two stiches in your leg. That time my port leg and not the soon to be mangled starboard leg took the hit. I am now older than that 65 year old driver who hit us, I imagine he is six feet under. AAh! Revenge is sweet!
Also he was driving the same faded blue '55 Ford I had. Some of my shipmates probably remember I was spinning donuts while driving my '55 backwards behind the barracks we were in when Hancock was in dry dock. Drunk again, several of you shipmates might also remember when I was trying to get my motorbike up the back barracks stairs so I could ride around inside. Drunk again. I am now 70 and the only thing I want is--- One last bike ride, Plez!
Funny according to the magazine advice 'doctor' sit ups will give you a bigger stomach. I haven't done sit ups for the last 40 years, how come I have a big stomach? I do like chocolate but the wife keeps me away from that, sort of.

When I was at the Treasure Island Electronics 'A' school the Olympic size pool there allowed me to teach myself how to swim. Which is a good idea when you are in the Navy and surrounded by water. Can anyone verify the sea story or remember the guy who was sleeping on the sponson. I often crapped out at night on the sponson too, it was too hot in that sweat box we called our living quarters. He rolled over in his sleep and went right thru the space between the chain stanchions. Sleeping in his shorts on his rice mat, I had one too, he hit the water and lost his drawers. They figured he went overboard about midnight or so and didn't get his naked ass picked up until noon the next day. What a swimmer, 12 hrs in the water and lucky for him one of the tin cans finally spotted him.

Me and the wife eat very small amounts of fried foods. I finally got my meat consumption down to a reasonable level, couple ounces every other day or so. We cut back our use of vegetable oil, switched to olive oil. More expensive but you use less and your chow tastes better. But I can't cook anymore, so all the credit goes to the other half.
Been volunteering for the heart group study. What the hell is cardiovascular exercise? Maybe your heart has to do sit ups? All the pieces of my body are falling apart but my heart has been deemed very healthy by the VA docs. I guess my ticker isn't likely to commit suicide anytime soon.

I did like driving my beloved '68 hotrod fast, very fast. Could have killed myself, especially when those f--king Firestone tires failed at 110 on the Nevada flats. Back when there was no speed limit on the open road in Nevada. Very few cars, bad tires and my auto capable of more than those faulty f--king tires could stand. Anyone remember, that was the first recall for Firestone. Many years later the big second recall and the law suits came later when people started getting killed by tread separation. Exactly what happened to three out of four of my Firestone tires in the 70s, luckily I am still here.

If you like this news letter, let me know. I can bestow more sea stories upon your eyes. Better than being forced to watch someones vacation slides or worse yet home movies! You don't have to squirm and wish it was over, now you just hit delete! For those of you who are using facebook, which I haven't liked, it's the pits to understand and use. Google has launched it's version of that, I signed up and tried it out. A world of difference, at least for me it is. Plez don't think I am recommending this just cuz my daughter works there. My entire photo collection, many more to add, is handled by Picasa. When I get enough time to edit everything I will give access to all my former flat top bird farmers. OK, Rant is Over, hit delete! I am sure no one needs any translation for the above, but if puzzled just ask.
Regards to all my former shipmates, RIP to those who have passed already.

Ok Dalton if you got down to this line then maybe I have a chance to write something that makes sense?
Best to ya shipmate! Jim

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REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: Jim, your writing definitely makes the reader think. A little rambling and meandering at times but that is the way I think, so it is a good combination. I started getting sick right after I turned 50.  It was five years later when I went to see a doctor. It was right after 911, around the time when that idiot was sending out anthrax powder packages in the mail. I showed up in the ER, looking like death warmed over and coughing up bloody sputum. They all went into a big panic - put me in a special isolation room with filtered ventilation and an airlock - everyone wore a mask when they came in there. The first set of chest Xrays were very bad - doctor told the wife that I was not long for this earth - most likely advanced stage lung cancer. But several things didn't seem to add up so he had some CT scans done - that gave him a different view of it all. He changed his mind, saying that I had TB with numerous infections and might survive for a while after all. Further testing ruled out the TB - so I was a just mystery man with trashed out  lungs but no one knew what caused it. I was discharged not knowing much more than I did when I went in there. I think they wrote "Severe lung scarring caused by multiple untreated infections of unknown origin". I felt better, but I would feel good for a while then go downhill again. It wasn't so much my breathing - I would just lose all of my energy, for no reason. That went on for 3 more years. I finally got so sick that I had to quit working. I didn't use my sickness as my reason for resigning, but it was.  That was in 2004. I went to the VA in 2007, and they finally determined that my illness was caused by asbestos contamination in the 60's and 70's. The civilian doctors were afraid to say that it was caused by asbestos poisoning - same as the Agent Orange thing you mentioned. I am now 67 and still kicking. I take it all one day at a time. Every day I wake up is a good day. I think I was down to 155 pounds for a while - I am now probably back up to  around 220 pounds, which is too heavy for me. I feel best if I keep my weight between 185 and 195. I am working on that. Anyway - I enjoy reading your stuff so keep it coming.

REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: Jim, I grew up with many Mexicans and some of them were good friends. After we were grown up, I ran into one of them. He joined the Air Force around the time I joined the Navy. After his training, he was sent to Spain. He was thinking, "Boy - I have it made now - being Spanish speaking". He got there and found out he could not understand them and they did not understand him most of the time. Worse yet, in Spain they think of Mexicans as being ignorant peasants who are inferior to them. Similar to the way it is for us "gringos" and the British.

REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: Jim, speaking of doctors and such. I finally went in a couple of years ago to have a double hernia in my groin fixed.  I had to do something about it because it was like walking around with a big cantaloupe in my drawers. My regular doctor looked at it, mumbled something under his breath, then left the room. When he came back, he rushed me over to see our local hernia repair surgeon. After I waited a few hours, sitting in his office on my cantaloupe, here comes the surgeon to look at it - with two very young female Medical School students in tow.  Why me - Lord? They fixed it - life is good. What more can I say?

REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: As for hotrods: I bought a new 1970 Pontiac Tempest. It had 160 MPH on the speedometer so I decided to test it out. There was a long stretch of level highway near where I lived, with very little traffic, so I went out there about 3 AM one morning. I put my accelerator to the metal and hung on. It got up to 128 MPH fast but it stopped there for a few seconds. I thought that was it, but I heard some more carburetor jets open up and it started to go up again. It steadily came up and it showed 142 MPH when I felt the back end start to slip and I knew we were going airborne. It still had more to give but I let it come back down to my normal cruising speed - about 85 MPH. I ran mostly Goodyear tires on that car - seems like I needed a new set of tires about every 10,000 miles. They were bias ply tires - didn't last long.

REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: As for the guy who fell off the CVA-19 while sleeping on the sponson, I don't know all of the details, but your version sounds accurate enough.  He was a BTFN and lived in the berthing compartment under ours. I saw him just about every day - tall skinny kid who was always very pale looking. That was because he was a BT - working those long hours and standing watches in the Fire Room where the temp was 140 degrees on a good day. Those guys had it bad enough - they deserved a cool place to sleep. He was on the TV show "I've Got A Secret". He stumped them - who would ever guess something like that? It is a "no shitter" - it really happened.

REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: Back to Doctors: Dr. Oz pisses me off. The man has made millions telling us about things we already know. 

REPLY FROM OLD SENIOR CHIEF 1946: Getting old is no cake walk. Like you - I am trying to eat healthy. I have already lived a lot longer than I ever thought I would so I sometimes wonder what the point of it all really is.   I sometimes think about what things will be like for seniors in a few years. If some of the politicians have their way, I truly believe it is possible (probable?) that they will be euthanizing some folks over 65 - even younger people on social security disability with bad health problems or serious  mental disabilities - if their medical bills get too high. The cost of health care for Medicare recipients is rising by leaps and bounds every year, much faster than for the general public (if we believe what the media reports), so they will have to do something about it.  When I was a kid, not many folks (especially the men) lived to see age 70. They were lucky to see age 60 back then. Now it is common to see folks in their 80's and 90's still out and about but I honestly don't think the quality of their lives is all that great.  It  is a complicated problem. I don't claim to have all of the answers.

daltonphillips@namvetsonline.com

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