Sydney & Denny

Sydney & Denny
September at the Park

Thursday, June 19, 2014

My Voice

Up on My Soapbox!!!
OK, it's been some time since I've written anything on this blog, but it's time for me to say something. As the title to this paragraph states, I'm going to get up on my soapbox and state my opinions on something, and it may get a little long winded. So, strap yourself in, this could get interesting!
Today after the Detroit Tigers game, their manager Brad Ausmus made a statement that has ruffled a few feathers and got some people in an uproar. Reporters were grilling him about the team's play of late and how it affects him personally. The Tigers have been in a huge slump the last month or so, and naturally it has to affect the manager. When asked what he does when he gets home, he commented "beat my wife." Brad was just joking and within a few seconds of making the statement, he made sure that everyone knew it was meant as a joke and that he does not make light of battered women. 
Obviously, we can all see why this comment would upset some people. The idea of a man beating his wife, or any woman, sickens me, as I'm sure it does many of you. However, I am able to see that it was said as a joke. This brings me to MY issue. Why in the world are people so sensitive anymore to what others say???

Once again, I want to state unequivocally that I am against any man laying his hands on a woman in a manner that would be considered violent. I just don't understand why people these days can't seem to understand when someone is joking and when they are serious. It has gotten to the point that people can not say anything without someone getting upset about it. Let's all just take a step back and exhale for a moment. I find that in today's society, we are more sensitive and weak minded than what we were 20 or 30 years ago.  There is ALWAYS somebody who is upset about how they have been slighted by someone else. 

I read on Facebook today a post about someone overhearing a parent at a sporting event venting that one of the YOUNG people participating was just showing off and trying to make the others look bad just because this child was excelling at the event. What the heck is wrong here??? We are living in a society today that discourages excellence. Everyone gets a ribbon for participation, we don't keep score in games, everyone "wins." All to keep someone from getting their feelings hurt!!! What are we a bunch of wimps??? We all have interests in life that we excel at, why are we discouraged from doing so? Just because Little Johnny isn't as good at basketball as Little Billy doesn't mean Billy is less of a person. Billy is probably better at something(art, singing, golf, football...)than Johnny and when it comes time for that activity, he should be encouraged to be the best! I am so sick of people complaining about equality! Yes, we are all created equal, but no we are not all equal at all things!

This brings me back to Brad Ausmus. Everyone has their opinion, but I bet a lot(most?) people will agree with me on this subject. We are living in a country where we have the Constitutional right to free speech. Yet, we do not have this right protected in all ways. We can say anything we want, but we have to be willing to deal with the consequences of what we say.  Let's take a look at Donald Sterling. We have all heard about what he did and said. First off, I feel that he is a racist and his point of view on things is disgusting. BUT, he has the right to feel that way and the right to say those things that he said. He should not face any legal ramifications for what he said, ever. However, he was basically fired from the NBA for saying those things. And, the NBA has the right to do so. If they do not want to be associated with a person who is an obvious racist, they have that right. So, how does Mr. Sterling's case relate to Brad Ausmus? Well, it's the way people take things anymore. Donald Sterling was obviously very serious about what he said, and those are his beliefs. Brad Ausmus was obviously kidding and not serious about what he said. Where we've broken down as a society is in how we take things. Everyone is so ready to jump on something and claim to be offended. Just like I'm sure many who read this blog right now are going to be offended. Know right now, that I don't mean to offend anyone, however, I believe in my heart that we have become too sensitive to too many things.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Penn State tragedy

So, I've waited and waited until now to make my feelings on this subject known. In case you have been living under a rock for the last few weeks, you probably know all about what took place at Penn State. A former assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky, has been accused of, for lack of a better word, molesting young boys. The man is just not right!
 I guess one of my biggest problems with the whole situation is, how can a grown man be sexually attracted to young boys? I mean for all of time, the majority of men are attracted to women, but even those that are attracted to other men, are attracted to MEN, not young boys!!! What the heck is the matter with Sandusky???
Like I said, that is just ONE of my problems with the whole situation. What bothers me the most is how that man has affected the lives of his alleged victims. I say "alleged" because legally, the man is due his day in court, but I believe in my heart that Jerry Sandusky is guilty of all charges. I personally have never went through anything remotely close to what those young boys went through, however I have to believe that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives what happened to them. I have to believe that the fear they felt while they were raped, as I'm sure any rape victim feels, will be with them forever. I have to believe that they will probably never be able to trust any man again. That man basically used his influence as a football coach at a huge, prestigious football school as a way to lure in his victims. There are witnesses who say they walked in on him with a young boys hands on the wall of the shower while Sandusky was behind him and a rhythmic slap of skin was heard. So what happened? I'm sure we can all connect the dots. There is a witness who claims to have seen Sandusky performing oral sex on a young boy! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THIS MAN???
So what happens next? Well, we can never change the fact that the victims have been violated, and I don't think any punishment of Sandusky is going to heal those poor young boys. However, I know what I'd like to see happen. I'd like to see something pretty graphic take place, and I'm going to describe it to you here so if you have a weak stomach, or don't like graphic descriptions, skip down to the next paragraph. I'd like to see Jerry Sandusky be aroused to the point of erection, then I'd like to have someone sever his penis from his body! At that point, you shove the mans severed penis in his mouth and let him bleed out! I feel that would be a very painful way to go and in my opinion he desearves to die a very painful, slow death! I hope that I haven't offended anyone other than Jerry Sandusky, however if I have, remember this is my blog and I'm entitled to an opinion just as much as you are.
Do I even have to spell out what would happen if someone EVER touched one of my kids in an inappropriate manner? Awhile back I did a post about something very similar, and made my feelings known about it, read it here. I'm sorry, but if someone touched my kids like Jerry Sandusky did those young boys, I would turn into somebody I'm not. In all reality, I couldn't be held responsible for my actions, and would be able to claim temporary insanity, if it were my kids. I'm sure also that I'm not the only one who would be like that. Many of us would go apeshit if someone touched our kids.
I haven't even gone into detail about all the periphery people and their actions involving the Penn State sex case. There are too many details to discuss, I just wanted to let my feelings about what Jerry Sandusky did and maybe see if you are in agreement with me.
With that, I hope all of you have a great Thanksgiving and are safe on the roads!

Friday, November 11, 2011


I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S BEEN SIX YEARS!So Wednesday was my little girl's sixth birthday! Where in the heck does the time go anyway? I can think back to that day six years ago when she was born and it really does seem like just yesterday. I'll always remember the nervousness I felt that day. I had known my wife was pregnant for basically nine months, so I knew I was going to be a father, but that day that she was born, man it really became REAL! She was about two and a half weeks early and was born by c-section because she was sitting in there breech.  I'll always remember the anxiety I felt when the doctors made me wait outside the operating room while they administered the spinal block to my wife. They had told me it would be about 15 minutes and they would come get me. Well, about 25 minutes later I still sat there by myself. FREAKING OUT! At that point, everything that could go wrong was going through my mind. Turns out, they just forgot about me! My wife had to remind them to go get me, and that's just sad. I guess people are used to women having babies by themselves, and those that didn't know the patient well enough just assumed I didn't exist.
Well, it wasn't long and they held up a beautiful 8lb. 10oz. little girl for us to see! Literally at that moment life changed!  It wasn't long and I was in another room with Sydney in the warmer, while they stitched up my wife, that she grabbed my finger in her little hand. I was trying to talk to the little girl but it was unintelligible to even a newborn due to the sobbing! I was a DADDY!!!
It was then that I became the most torn person in the world. My wife had a horrible reaction to the anesthesia and got so sick. She couldn't stop vomiting and to this day has no recollection of holding her first born child for the first time. I didn't know what to do, be with my new baby(who also had some issues and stopped breathing when I fed her the first time) or my sick wife. Obviously, everything worked out okay and now I have this amazing little girl:
So we celebrated her birthday in the proper way, food, cake and ice cream, friends and family, and presents! She got all the stuff she asked for including:
Yep, she's spoiled! 
  A while back she had a loose tooth that needed to come out, and she's a Drama Queen when it comes to ANYTHING THAT MIGHT HURT! She was freaking out and I promised her a puppy if she let us pull the tooth out. Well, she let us and now she has her puppy! I had to get her one since she went ahead and let up pull the tooth, and I felt like that wasn't something I could go back on my word with, hence the puppy!
So now I have two dogs in the house!!! What was I thinking??? She named the little guy Rider after the main male character in "Tangled." It's her current favorite movie.
Well, I hope you enjoyed my little story, and feel sorry for me. I want your pity because I'm so wrapped around that little girl's finger, I have NO chance!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I've went on and on here in my blog about my lack of professional success in life, and it's a "woe is me" type of thing. Well, that is not the tone of this post at all. Lately, I've gotten very introspective about my life and what I've actually accomplished(or have not accomplished that is.) I'm really trying to figure out why it is that I've fallen short of my goals in life. And, the thing is, I see this as a teaching opportunity. If I can figure all of this out, make a change in my life, it will show my kids that if you decide to put your mind to something, you can accomplish it. I feel like I have no legs to stand on when I tell them that now, and that if I don't figure this out, I won't have any legs to stand on when I tell them that in the future as they get older.
So many times in my life I've had the opportunity to do what I've always dreamed of doing. As far back as junior high, I've known that I want to teach and coach. I feel in my very soul that I'm meant to do those things. I've been in and out of college in the twenty years since graduating high school, and let every single opportunity go by the wayside. WHY??? That's the question I keep asking myself, and I have no answer for. I've always been told that I'm a very intelligent person, I even tested at genius level once on an IQ test. So, it seems like I'm more than smart enough to finish a Bachelor's Degree. So, there must be something else. I can sit here and make all sorts of excuses for myself such as getting sick during my first semester of college as an 18 year old, continuing to be in poor health as a young adult, and now being sick with my current ailments. BUT, they are all just excuses. So many people in the world have overcome WAY more than what I've had to deal with. So, there must be something else! What I keep asking myself now is, what is it that makes one person able to put everything else aside and accomplish their goals in life, while I sit here wishing I had? Why is that my buddy is living the exact life I have always dreamed of living? He is a football and baseball coach at a good high school, he has a beautiful family, a nice house and car. He is happy. Why was he able to do all that, and I haven't been able to? Now, that's not to say that I'm not happy, because I definitely am, but I want so much more. The fact is, I am going to be without an income in the next couple of months, and I'm not in a position to just go out and get a job that pays any kind of decent wage. For a person without a college degree right now about the only jobs out there are what I left 14 months ago. Stocking shelves, heavy physical labor. Well, as I've told all of you MANY times over, I'm unable to do that anymore. The job(career) I want requires a college education, and I don't have one.

So here I sit trying to figure this all out. I messed up and let the college loans I took out years ago slip into default status. Well, I can't afford to just pay for the classes I need to finish my degree out of my pocket. I also am unable to receive any financial aid to attend college due to my defaulted student loans. On top of that, I am unable to afford to make the nine monthly payments that I need to make in order to get those loans out of default. So what do I do? I really don't even know, and that's the problem. What did I miss in life that made me the person who makes excuses rather than getting things done? Is is something in my DNA, or something NOT in my DNA? Why didn't I realize a long time ago that I NEEDED to get that degree? Why is it that so many other people realize what they need to do in order to reach their goal, do those things, and accomplish what they wanted, yet I don't?

So, I've always heard that the first step to fixing a problem is admitting you have the problem. Well, I know I have this problem, and now I am asking you for help. How do I fix this situation before it gets worse, and more importantly, before my kids slip into the same pattern??? I want my kids to see that if you pull yourself up, you can make it all the way back. I just don't know how to do that. Any thoughts? Please!      

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Well, I think it's fair to say that at some point, all of our lives have gone a different direction than we had planned. I'm no different than anyone else in that regard. When I was a young man, let's say high school age, I had my whole life planned out. I had become somewhat realistic and accepted the fact that I wasn't going to a huge college to play any sports. Bummer, but at least I knew it wasn't the case. So, I decided that I wanted to go to college somewhere near home, get my teaching degree, find a job teaching high school and coaching one of my favorite sports. I'd meet some beautiful girl who would fall head-over-heels in love with me, we would have a family and live the old cliche' happily ever after.
Well, let's just say, that didn't happen! I won't go into great detail over where and how things veered off course in my plan(I've done that way too many times as it is.) I do want to tell you of some sort of "condition" I think I may have. I say "condition" because I don't know if it's something that other people may experience, or if I'm just the freak that I've always suspected myself of being!

I've always had this feeling in the back of my mind, or my soul, or my heart, or somewhere I'm not aware of, that even though I've made mistakes in life(and I mean A LOT of mistakes) I'll get it right the next time I go through life. I know: unhealthy!
Now I don't know if anyone else does this, of if they do, there is a name for it, but I think I've let it hold myself back in life. I haven't accomplished nearly anything in life that I have always wanted to, and I think this "condition" is the reason why! Okay, I'm tired of calling this a "condition", so I'm going to give it a name. How about something like "lazyafraidofsuccessprocrastinatingdufussness?" Okay, that's probably too long so maybe something like "lupus." No, that's taken. Maybe, "DennisSyndrome" I LIKE THAT!!! I'll name this, we will call it a phenomenon, "DennisSyndrome!" 

So, does anyone else in the world feel as though when they get a second chance, a reset button maybe, that they will get it all right? I can't be the only one who stands in the shower thinking about all the times I've screwed up in life and that I'll do it all right the next time right? Somebody else out there has to have let themselves down and justify it to themselves that they won't do it again when they go through life the next time right? I'm not alone in my ability to fool myself right?

Something just occurred to me. I HAVE accomplished something in life besides having the most beautiful wife and kids imaginable! I have an entire phenomenon named after me!!! That's right "DennisSyndrome" is a real thing, and it afflicts millions of people around the world who don't "seize the day." On top of that, I have a cure for this phenomenon! It's called "Getoffyourassanddostuff." It's in large quantity in all of us, we just have to find a way to release it. I think I'll start a public service announcement!  

Monday, October 17, 2011


So, I have this problem, and I've told you all about it many times. My health sucks, and in case you haven't read my accounts of it, here you go. On top of the RA, and the Fibromyalgia, I now have some sort of issue causing me esophageal issues that I have to take yet another pill for. And, on top of that, I'm undergoing tests to determine if I'm diabetic! So yeah, I have health issues to deal with. But, that's not the point of this blog post/rant. What I really want to talk about is my health insurance!

Every two weeks my wife receives a paycheck from her employer, and every two weeks they take out health insurance premiums. I'm not going to go into specifics of what we pay, but it's not terribly cheap, and it's not outrageously expensive either. But, she does pay it, and in return shouldn't we expect to receive health care coverage? Yeah, that's not too much to expect is it? Well, that's not what I am receiving at this point. And, I'm sure if you went around this great nation of ours, mine would not be the only case like this. 
How am I not receiving health insurance benefits you might ask? Well, let me tell you about one instance in particular. Bear with me, this might take a couple paragraphs. About a month ago, my wife had the day off, I think it was a Tuesday. I woke up in my typical amount of pain, stiffness and fatigue. It's a regular thing for me anymore, and I'm starting to get used to it. However, as the morning progressed, I started to feel a pain in my abdomen that is not my "usual" pain. I can only describe it as feeling as though a ninja had taken his sword and attempted to cut me in half at my belly button! Yeah, it hurt like that. I laid on the couch writhing in pain, knowing that I have had instances of this a handful of times in the last couple of years. What usually happens is I show up at the ER, they get my vitals, set me up in a room, give me pain meds(usually pretty powerful stuff like dilaudid,) make me drink some contrast so I can have a CT scan of my abdomen, get the results and tell me everything looks clear, and are unsure what is causing me so much pain. So, basically nothing gets done other than I get pain medication. Well, this last time was a little different, a doctor actually took the time to listen to what was bothering me and was able to hopefully solve the problem. She figured out from listening to me that it isn't in my bowels(from which I had my entire large intestine removed due to Ulcerative Colitis.) It is more of an esophageal issue and she prescribed me Prilosec. At last, a solution!
Of course, here is where my current rant comes from. Last week we received in the mail the typical explanation of benefits from our insurance company, BC/BS, telling me that none of my ER stay was covered by them due to "Diagnosis is Pre-Esisting." Let's just say WHAT THE HELL???
This explanation of "benefits" by BC/BS is just the last straw for me. I am unable to work at this point due to my health, and I'm lucky enough to still be drawing unemployment for a couple of more weeks, and believe me I'm totally grateful for that, but it's not enough for our family to get by. My wife works and earns what would today be called a decent wage, but again it's not enough. We never have enough money to pay all of our bills on time, but we manage our finances so that nothing is too late. Where the problem arises is my medical bill. I see a family doctor, a rheumatologist, and of course my ER visits. On top of that, they all want blood work done, so I have to go to a lab. Well, all of those doctors and labs charge money every time I go there, and they bill my insurance. My insurance doesn't cover all of any of those visits, leaving me with an unpaid balance to all of those parties. Well, I make payments to all of them, as little as $10 per month, but it's gotten to be too much. I had to change family doctors because the one I was seeing said my balance was too high and my payments too low, and they refused to see me. Now with the insurance company refusing to pay for a NEEDED ER visit, which was only $6,549.25! I have no way of paying that, so what am I going to do? No, I'm really asking you, what am I going to do??? It's getting to a point where no one is going to see me because I can't pay for my medical bills, yet I can't get a good paying job to take care of the medical bills due to a serious medical situation! So, this is exactly what "a rock and a hard place" feels like!!! What's the point of my wife having insurance premiums taken from her check if that insurance company isn't going to pay any of my medical bills??? It just seems really unfair that this insurance company is looking for a reason to not pay out on something like this. So, from now on when I have intense pain that makes it feel as though my insides are going to burst out of my body, I'll just stay home and suffer. I guess that's where we are headed in this country. The phrase "I can't afford to be sick"
Does anybody out there in the blog world have any ideas on how to fix this predicament? If so, I'd love to hear them please!!!

What is it about bacon that after you make it on a Sunday morning, you can still smell nothing but bacon in your house on Monday afternoon??? Don't get me wrong, I LOVE bacon, but at this point, the smell is starting to make me a little sick to my stomach!

Monday, September 26, 2011

5 Going on 18!

Okay, I have a problem that I could use your help with. I have a daughter! Yep, that's the issue I have. I fathered a female, that's the big problem. Now, don't get me wrong or anything, I love having a daughter. She's the love of my life, along with her brother and mother, and I guess our dog. However, she absolutely has me wrapped around at least one, if not all, of her fingers. She is the epitome of a spoiled Daddy's girl. Of course, this is where the "real" problem arises. She has developed a bit of what most people would call an "ATTITUDE." 
Couldn't she just be a model?
So, here's where the attitude becomes a problem. She likes, and thinks it's okay, to tell me no. I'm not talking about if I ask if she wants onion rings instead of fries. I'm talking about the times when I tell her that it's time to go upstairs and brush her teeth for bed. That's right, she will tell me no to that. That is after she has ignored my first, and probably second, request to do said task. Then when I get upset and tell her in no uncertain terms that she HAS to get up from what she's doing and go upstairs to brush her teeth, she will use that teenage sarcastic tone, "I'm going!!!" Yep, attitude. 
So, I have a couple of choices at this point. I can yell and holler and threaten bodily harm. Of course, she knows that with all my health issues, she could probably kick MY ass at this point. And, I don't really want to have to hold the threat of violence over my kids. 
Or, I can go the route of taking things from her if she doesn't stop with the attitude. That's usually the way I go. Ever since she was about two years old she has had this stuffed dog that she named "Bean" for some reason.(Yes, my great-aunt told her at my grandfather's funeral service that it's a stupid name for a dog, hurting her feelings and pissing me right off, but it's the name she chose!) Well, I've resorted to taking Bean from her on occasion and that just devastates her now. But, what am I going to do in a few years? What am I going to do when a stuffed dog is NOT one of the most important items in the world to her? What am I going to take from her in the future, and what am I going to do when she realizes that a day or two without some item isn't that big of a deal? What am I going to do then???
I'm actually asking you!

So, I was a pretty easy to handle teenager(you know I'm right Mom.) I basically didn't get into trouble, and I always respected my parents. It was all about sports for me. I went to school so I could play sports. Is there anyway I could get that lucky as a parent? I doubt it because she's a girl. And, if she's anything like her mom, I'm in huge trouble. Yes, my wife was(is) boy crazy. I'm just worried that this attitude that Sydney has going on now, is going to carry over to the teenage years when she herself is boy crazy. I'm going to have a huge problem then because even though I was a good kid, I know what boys that age are like! So, am I just crazy(probably) thinking like this? Is it stupid to worry that attitude at age five is going to carry over to her teens? I know that I'm a worrier, but I'm stressing that I'm not doing a very good job now and it's going to lead to problems when she's older. 


It's not any better than it was at the time of my last post. In fact, it's gotten worse. I can't walk much at this point, and had to miss the wedding of one of my oldest/best friend. It really bothered me to miss his wedding due to my health and I'm getting really sick of having to worry about my health!
I hope all is well with you, and that you have some great ideas for how much I should worry about my little girl's attitude.