Conundrum

It starts with waking up to read my work email in the morning. I don’t look forward to it. There is something about it now that makes me wonder how valuable a lot of what I do really is. I don’t think it was always this way. And I don’t think it has to do with my having less enthusiasm for work email. It’s the email that’s changed. Economy, people worrying about their jobs, tracking everything, measuring and justifying one’s existence, busy work. I don’t know. I just know the quality and quantity of it is painful at times. A distraction from work that matters.

My life will be coming to an end in an unknown amount of minutes, hours, days, weeks, years. If I could find out exactly what day I will die, it would allow me to allocate my resources. 3 months, 6 months? Hmm, perhaps I’m done wasting my time with pointless work. Hello, Las Vegas. Hello, speeding tickets. 5 years to 10 years left? Well then, work is good. Keep on trucking. Benefits, a paycheck – all good. No reason to risk anything.

I’m lucky to have a wife and daughter, two dogs, a job, a house, a car, health insurance. Knock on wood. Life’s checklist is good. I’m lucky. Good too. But what do I do with the rest of my time? It feels like I should be doing more and that I know better than to waste time and worry about trivial stuff. It could all end tomorrow. But one has to survive. Artists and musicians glamorize this situation, as if I should be driving a VW van while lip-syncing to Katy Perry’s “Firework.” I suck at making the most of life. I must have slept through that class in school.

Ah, Ms. Perry, What was Russell thinking?
Photo by Eva Rinaldi – Creative Commons

My garage is full of crap. It’s a warehouse for items I may need once in the next 5 years. It feels like a ball and chain. Stuff weighs a lot. I don’t have the courage to throw it all away. Who knows when I’ll need that spare insulation or scrap of plywood.

I surf the Internet too much. It’s a distraction, has ruined my concentration, and keeps me from doing anything that takes effort, such as writing a blog post. It is escape. I’ve mastered it.

I dislike Yahoo! and its headline stories about nothing. Yahoo! – it’s your brain on cotton candy. “Levi Johnson Poses with Baby Daughter.” At what point is that story worthy of a major headline? Have you ever noticed how many stories are about celebrities’ new hair styles?

Yapoo!

I’m tired of Apple mania. I dig the new Samsung Galaxy commercial poking fun at waiting in line for an iPhone. It’s pitch perfect. I own Apple everything, but now I’m wondering if I joined a cult and they’ll be asking me to drink iKool-Aid soon.

I fear failure, but have nothing to lose, or everything. I’m not sure.

I have ideas. Always have. But I was born without the gene to make shit happen.

This is my conundrum.

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Saturday Funhouse – Fox Returns with Inventions

Ladies and gentlemen,

I am one handsome hunk of fox

Fox here. I’m back. Did you miss me? If you didn’t, you can kiss my furry butt. I’m Fox and my middle name is “polarizing.” There is no middle ground with me. So, for those who love me, keep reading. The rest of you? Well, you can all F-F-F-Fade away.

Now I know what you’re thinking: Where have you been, Fox? The answer you may be expecting is “I’ve been partying,” which is a good answer, but not correct. You see there’s a side of me most of you don’t know about. I’m an inventor. I have patents for all kinds of inventions. And for the last three months, I’ve been holed up on an island in the south Pacific with my assistants Malorie and Julie, who are both top-notch engineers and help with the math I chose to ignore back in my school days (party or math class? Not a hard choice.)

The three of us have been working on inventions to make the lives of those fighting cystic fibrosis easier, even that jerk-off bum of a CFer named Unknown, whiny loser that he is.  A little blood and he runs to the hospital. You didn’t see me passed out in a hospital bed after my four-day bender with Keith Richards had me spitting up blood in a bathroom in the south of France. Some of us can take it. But I digress.

During the past four months, my brainy assistants and I have come up with four excellent inventions. I’m here today to share them with you. They’ll be available soon to buy, but I’m giving you a preview because that’s the kind of fox I am – generous and sober with my 1-day AA chip, which I’m going to bet on red to win.

Pull back the curtain, please.

Stay out of my room. You're covered in Pa.

Bacteria-finder sunglasses. Wear these glasses and you can see all bacteria harmful to CFers. Pseudomonas shows up in orange. Cepacia in red. MRSA in Yellow. You name the bacteria, we have a color for it. Friendly bacteria show up in blue shades. These are great to wear in the hospital. You’ll look like a rock star to doctors and nurses, while knowing who’s been naughty and nice when it comes to washing their hands.  “Come back when you learn to use soap and water,” you’ll say to the nasty Respiratory Therapist fresh from the bathroom and covered in C-Diff. He’ll stare with a sad-dog grin as you bust his ass for spreading germs and almost giving you the world’s most dangerous case of the squirts.

Am I still alive? iPad/iPhone app. Ever wonder what your temperature is, your O2 sats, blood pressure, heart rate, and heart rhythm are — all at once? Simply download the “WTF is going on in my body” app from Apple and you’ll know in the time it takes you to set down your mojito grande and place two thumbs on your iPad or iPhone. The CF version of the app also tells you if your lung has collapsed or if you’re just a big hypochondriac like Unknown is. And as a bonus, the Fox version has a built-in breathalyzer. Just place your mouth on your iDevice and blow (just the fact you’d do that tells you that you’ve had enough to drink).

Ring of hemoptysis fire

Dragon Gum. Nothing worse than coughing up blood. It’s a drag unlike any other. Chew this new gum and blood turns to fire. It’s quite a trick and we’re still working out the kinks, like timing the combustion of when the blood turns to flame after contacting the gum. I had a hard time kissing my PhD’s for a week after I burned my mouth on the first stick. Plus, my mouth smelled like dead flesh, making me off-limits to the opposite sex. But when this sweet tasting gum works, hello, King of the Dragon Colony. You’ll be spitting fire balls across the room. Take that cystic fuckbrosis.

IV fluid Clothing Pads. If you’ve ever been on home IVs and used IV balls, then you know it’s a pain to wedge it under your shirt by your shoulder while you’re infusing it. Hey there, Jr. Hunchback. We have a solution to solve the IV geek look – IV Bra Pads for the ladies and IV Speedos for the men. Now instead of IVs making you look like a geek, you’ll look like a Goddess or God with amazing physical gifts. And you won’t mind when the zosyn dose runs three hours. That’s three hours you’re eye candy for the opposite sex. “Why is there a line running from your bathing suit to your arm?”

I’m glad to be back and contributing to the CF community again. No need to fill my comment box with Thank You notes. I know you love me and what I do. But, hey, if you have to leave a love note, it won’t hurt me. I am, after all, a sensitive Fox who only wants to fill the world with love and happiness. Or beer and Vicodin chasers. I forget.

Party like it’s your last.

Fox out.