Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Like a Diaper . . . For Your Back !

So, jelly-beans-be-praised, I am finally getting to the bottom of things health-wise, and
if I am a good girl and some luck finally comes my way,
I will be on the road to recovery, if not better, by the New Year !
When I get more answers and have my Plan-du-Healing established, I'll share the situation with yas.

But for now,
I'm going to tell you about the diaper on my back.

I am lying here in bed, going batshit crazeeee because I'm not allowed to do much.
And the doctor neglected to tell me how little I would be able to do,
so I didn't plan on it.  I didn't give the apartment the overhaul scrubdown I was going to because I had a migraine, and I didn't stock up on books and magazines and snacks.
So I'm just kinda stuck here in Purgatory until Friday.
When Eli comes home from work he helps me out (mainly picking things up off the floor, moving things, scratching where I can't reach, and helping me change clothes).

The Backstory:

We decided to investigate a metal allergy.
We know I'm allergic to nickel and a few other alloys,
and considering I've got a titanium alloy implant in my jaw
that hasn't been working out as planned, and I've felt like hell basically since the same time I had it put in, I needed to know.   Just to make sure.
Especially considering my bone marrow graft around the implant is depleting.
Bad, bad bone marrow graft! You stay where I put you! The hip you came from is a little less from your removal, and if you decide to go all AWOL, all the bones in this body will be very unhappy with you!

So after a hellish 2 week battle with the insurance, we got me set up for a patch test.
Which, apparently, you can't get from an allergist, even though it is testing METAL ALLERGIES.
You have to go to a dermatologist.
And no offense to dermatologists, but I've never met one I liked.
They tend to be pompous, self-obsessed jerks that demean your questions and sneer at your pimples and are overly-interested in Botox.
The last dermatologist I went to had a dozen Hermes scarves mounted and framed behind glass!
And hung all around his office as decoration.  And since I know how much those scarves cost, I threw up in my mouth a little bit.   And again, when the nurse was interviewing me and taking notes all blase on his iPad.  Ew.

And this dermatologist doing the patch test is okay.  He is still kind of a bastard, and makes you sit in the waiting room for an hour listening to his 5 dumb receptionists jabber about waxing their faces and how many carbs that has in it, but when he tried to demean me over a medical issue I was talking to him about, and went off on medical jargon he assumed I wouldn't understand, I owned his face.

Note to doctors:
Don't think using semi-technical terms in front of someone who has spent their life in and out of the hospital with a multitude of health problems is going to impress them.  Or shut them up.

Just yesterday the doctor said "The implant is in your jaw, right? That's what you'd call it, your jaw?"  And I said "no, my left lower mandible."
He later asked me about passing out -- "What caused you to faint?"
I responded "It's just typical syncope."   He stopped being disparaging after that.

So, the patch test.

I had to call the oral surgeon, and then the implant company, and then their supplier to get the exact components in my metal implant and the screw holding it to the bone.
[P.S. when they tell you in school that chemistry and the Table of Elements will come in handy one day, they're right]
Then the dermatologist ordered all the metals we would be testing for.
Yesterday I stripped down and they pasted these little cubes with dabs of extracts from those metals on my back.
They led me to believe that they would be testing 12 metals and I would just have a strip across my upper back that would prevent me from showering for 5 days.

They didn't say that they'd be testing more than 40 things on me, and that they were going to cover my entire back, then tape me up for 30 minutes with strips of this terrible, non-sticky tape and leave me feeling like I'm wearing a frontless corset.

I feel like I have a turtle shell, or a soiled diaper on my back.  I could go on forever.
Eli keeps saying he sees the wraps and thinks I've had a skin graft!

It forces me to walk completely upright, and I can't bend over to pick things up, or reach around, or move my arms much because they taped it so awkwardly.
They didn't warn me my movement would restrict me so much I would be essentially bedridden for a work week.  Thanks, doctor.

And, to top it all off, I didn't sleep last night.
I can't sleep in this thing! It is a major operation to roll myself over, I get stuck to the mattress, and my hair keeps getting stuck in the tape.  I tried lying on my stomach, and that was as close as I got to actually relaxing.
I hope I can handle this for 5 days.  It is honestly making me claustrophobic.
And the way they taped me I can't even decently sponge bathe myself.
Speaking of which, why does everyone think sponge baths are so hot?
They're awkward and disagreeable, and every other antonym of sexy you can think of.
And sponges, and anything foam-related is plain hateful.

After this, hopefully having a bare back and the freedom of movement
is something I will never
take for granted again.

As for now though,
it should keep things interesting at the Jazz opening game tomorrow night ! Woot woot

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Wait Until Dark . . . The Ones that Scare Me

In honor of my favorite holiday,
I'm going to reminisce about the scenes in scary movies that always have always terrified me
(and still do)! 
Some are tame, others are downright horrifying.

Featuring MOVIE CLIPS!

Beginning with...
Wait Until Dark.

Have you seen this movie?
It used to scare the pants off me, and still kind of does, when it enters the final 8 minutes...

Audrey Hepburn at the top of her game, playing a blind woman tormented by strange men that believe she has accidentally come into ownership of a doll stuffed with illegal drugs.

This movie plays on the notion of darkness and her blindness, and in the climactic ending she uses her blindness to her advantage, shattering all the lights in her basement apartment so the intruder suffers the same weakness she does.

This is the moment that always makes me scream, even though I know it is coming (and watch the entire movie just to get to this point!).  Alan Arkin, the baddest bad guy since Norman Bates, has been stabbed and she thinks he is dead.  Until he friggin' leaps into the air off the floor and grabs her!

That's a good scare that makes you jump.

For a scare that starts out as terrifying, but quickly becomes absurd,
check out The Changeling's wheelchair scene!

Eli and I watched this recently (he had never seen it), and of course we both were half hiding under a blanket when this woman is wandering further and further upstairs in an obviously haunted house, but when an ancient wheelchair gets involved, well... it verges on humorous!

Skip to 2 minutes in if you're impatient.

Going really old school, I've got to mention Baby Jane.
This is one of my favorite movies ever! It is morbid and eerie and has the themes of Old Hollywood stardom that I love, and who can get over Bette Davis and Joan Crawford being co-stars that despised each other in real life?! Bette Davis actually said, unabashedly, of course,
"The best time I ever had with Joan Crawford was when I pushed her down the stairs in Whatever Happened to Baby Jane."
This is the movie with the famous line
"But you are Blanche, ya aaaah in that chair!"

What people don't realize is that both actresses were younger than the old hags they're playing onscreen, and they had to COAT them in prosthetics and makeup, which is why they filmed it in black and white (look at color stills, and you'll see why).
Anyway, here is one of the scenes that gives you chills and makes your jaw drop in shock and amazement.
It is just so grotesque seeing her dressed like a child, delusionally shrieking this song!

If that isn't enough for you, watch the famous impersonation scene as the old lush changes her voice..

Skip to 1:20 if you're impatient.

Of course, I have to mention some mainstream classics, like The Shining, The Ring, Poltergeist...

And I can't leave out my Hitchcock favorites...
The Birds.
The fact that there is no music or sound effects in this scene just makes it more awesome!
Psycho, of course.
Not sure why, but the staircase murder has always freaked me out more than the famous shower scene.

Indeed, a boy's best friend is his mother.

Ew, I just remembered a scene from The Sixth Sense that always makes me heart drop into my stomach.. When he is taking a wiz in the middle of the night and that ghost woman walks past him in the hallway..yikes!
And, of course The Haunting. This was one of the first adult scary movies my mom let me watch when I was a tween and it has stayed with me! I own the original from 1963 as well.

But for a scare that gets right into my bones and makes me fearful after the movie is over,
and for years to come, it is obviously the Exorcist. 
I read the book a few years ago and it is even more terrifying than the movie, and forever changed the way I see it.  I have a hard time watching Exorcist, and when I do, I usually only get about 30 minutes in, because I enjoy the suspense and creepy buildup of them not knowing what is going on (rats in the attic??), but after that, seeing a little girl suffering and all the disgustingness of it...well it isn't my cup of tea.  But the scene that scares me most is the spider walk...

The only new movie that has scared me more than this is Insidious, and that's not just because it is along the same lines as Exorcist, but because of the old woman ghost creature in it.  I had some night terrors when I was a kid and they featured an old woman similar to her.

Welp, that does it for today! I do love my scary movies, and this is only the tip of the iceberg.
I need to do some horror flick binges over the next week!

Happy Haunting...

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Life and Lies of Another Blogger . . . me.

Yep, I had to incorporate Harry Potter into the title.

I am finally ready to write about what has been going on with me (and is still going on).
I've been keeping it secret and playing this one close to the chest,
but part of getting better is being honest, with yourself and the world,
so here goes.


(and to help you kind of enjoy a not-so-fun story, I've included animations! If they're not moving, glide your mouse over them... think of this post as a brief autobiography with pictures!)

As my frequent blog readers and friends know, I've had a variety of health problems.
And they have compounded in the last year, and things have gotten so rough that I have been taking some time off for me, and haven't worked in a few months.

I've seen a multitude of doctors and after the frustration of misdiagnoses and being a "medical mystery" for so long, I finally got an answer.
And boy, was it a shock.

So here is my story, complete with silly illustrations.

The Symptoms

I was exhausted. All. The. Time.
To the point that it was difficult to function.

I was drinking those 5 Hour Energys that work wonderfully but are so awful for you.
I was popping B vitamins like candy and dozing off at random moments during the day.
And yet..
I couldn't sleep.

I would lie in bed, my heart racing sometimes, and for apparently no reason.
I couldn't shut down my mind and sleep (without chemical help) and once I fell asleep I would constantly wake up with a start, not knowing what was wrong (you know, that sensation when you sit up in bed and think "maybe there is someone in the house?? Why did I wake up terrified?!").
And once I finally woke up in the mornings I wanted to lie in bed for hours.
Which would leave me feeling even more tired.

And I had horrible, awful nightmares.  The kind that are so realistic you know that they've really happened to you, somehow. Maybe in another life.  And I had dreams within dreams, where I would wake up from one nightmare and be in bed going "holy crap that was scary" and then realize that my face was missing, or someone would walk into the bedroom and stab me, or a bomb would go off outside the window.  And I would realize I was still dreaming and wake up for real.

Or sometimes I would wake up and be paralyzed with fear--the way you are with night terrors.  Completely aware, and unable to move.  Pretty much the worst feeling ever.

And it went hand in hand with the other worst feeling ever: Nausea.
The kind that makes you unable to walk upright.
I would literally crawl around the apartment, or run to the toilet all hunched over.  But I never really threw up, I just felt incredibly, light-headedly nauseated.  I couldn't eat because of it.
So when it went away, I would stuff my face, seizing the opportunity to eat.

My stomach hurt all of the time.  It always felt uneasy, cramping, aching.
It was like having butterflies living in there 24/7, which I suppose was tied to all of the anxiety.

It was bad.

I had tremors.
I was always cold, yet sweating nonstop.
always aching.
My whole body literally hurt.
My muscles were so stiff that sometimes they felt numb, and my circulation was a joke.

I was pale and dizzy and noticed that my hair was starting to FALL OUT in places.
I just felt weak.

And then, the heart pains.

These really scared the shit out of me.
My chest would feel tight at random times, and I had minor panic attacks where I literally felt like I was having a heart attack.
It was difficult to breathe.  We later learned I get palpitations.

And I noticed I was jumpy, and having angry outbursts,

which I attributed to feeling like hell and not knowing why.
Visiting a dozen doctors and getting a different (wrong) disgnosis every time, and being told you are a "medical mystery" gets old pretty damn quick.

And throw in some occasional mood swings, and I was one wicked medical mystery.

 The longer it went on, the sicker I got, I felt pretty down about it.
 I became sad and disconnected and felt like I was in the same boat as angsty high schoolers, or Harry Potter in Book 5 (SO annoying!).

I had about 2 pints of blood drawn and tests run.
I got all kinds of answers:
A possible tumor on my pituitary gland, adrenal dysfunction,
hypothyroidism, Hashimoto's Disease, anemia,
parasites, mono, et cetera. I was even tested for HIV.
That was a barrel of laughs.

No clear answer.
And then finally, I went to see a new doctor, an internist.
I had never seen an internist before and needed a new general doctor, so I went in.

Afternoon at the Hospital 

And they function differently than any other doctor I've seen-- the hospital I go to is a teaching hospital., all Grey's Anatomy style (but without the sexiness and humor. Don't go to a teaching hospital and expect them to be gorgeous and sarcastic and witty.  They don't like it).
So you go in, bring all of your medications with you, and go over them with a pharmacist.
I literally at this point had a SACK of medications I had to bring in.

Then they bring in an intern who examines you and talks to you for about an hour.  They usually address your "top 3 health issues" with you in each visit.
Then they come up with their own diagnosis and discuss it with their attending. Then the intern and attending come in and talk to you for as long as it takes for you to feel comfortable with the diagnosis and solution.  It takes a while, but boy is it worth it.

Well, the first time I went, the intern asked me some very interesting personal questions about my past, and my childhood cancer.  She could tell I was trying to avoid talking about it, and brought in a psychologist that they happened to have on their floor that day.
She had a theory she wanted to check out.
They hooked me up to a heart monitor and then the psychologist asked me a lot of in-depth questions about myself, my health, my childhood, the cancer.  And they noticed that when they brought up certain aspects of the cancer, my heart palpitated.
After more talking, and some crying on my part, we had a diagnosis:

So here it is, my big moment, what I've been unable to share for more than 2 months now:
I have Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder.

When the doctors told me that, this was my response:
And they told me the different symptoms of it and the fact that I have had it for so many years and suppressed it is what caused my body to manifest it physically.

After I went into remission, my family and I moved on. Rapidly.
We didn't discuss the cancer, and whenever we referred to it, it was "when I was sick."  You would rarely even hear the word "cancer" in our house.
The doctors think that this caused me to teach myself subconsciously to tuck inconvenient and upsetting emotions way down deep and ignore them.  Which is NOT GOOD.

And they think the fact that I was having work done in and around my jaw/mouth this last year, with my bone marrow graft and teeth implants, is what triggered a big PTSD meltdown in my mind and body.

And it explains everything---why I haaaaate going to the hospital, or even the dentist.  I literally have panic attacks when I go to the dentist. I usually take a Xanax because I can't go in cold.

In May, when Vicky was visiting, I had to go to an emergency dental appointment because I was in severe pain and when she saw the way I responded--freaking out on the drive there, shaking in the waiting room--she even held my hand while I sat in the dental chair--she was like "this is not normal."

But I just thought I had a sever aversion to the dentist.
I get heart palpitations just going in for cleanings!

Taking the Long Route

And it explains why certain smells set me off.
I have smelled something that reminds me of the hospital, and retched.  It affects me that strongly, which makes sense, considering scent is the strongest memory-evoker.

I could be walking along, in a wonderful mood, and catch a whiff of something in the air and just lose it, like this silly baby here.

This happened when I was at college; they put in a new science building and it put off some kind of steam that smells like chemotherapy.

After walking past it a few times, and throwing up right after, I made the connection.
And it was right in my path, somewhere I had to walk every day, and I went round the longer, inconvenient way, just to avoid it.  If I was in a rush I would hold my breath for 2 minutes and book it.

Self-Therapy: Let the Healing Begin

Anyway, I just couldn't believe that my severe illness was caused by PTSD. It is simply incredible.
So I came up with a "healing plan" with my doctors that is centered around self-therapy (the idea that I know what is best for myself and am the only one that can truly make myself better).
My plan of attack includes writing about it, meditating, and revisiting the trauma.

And it is going well.
Which is not to say that it is easy.
In fact, it sucks.  It is difficult and painful and only recently have I been able to sit down and do what I need to do, rather than finding any possible distraction (including deep cleaning the kitchen. Yech).

Some days I feel like.

Or I think that I could do better, and if I were smarter/happier/more focused I wouldn't have PTSD.

And other days, I feel like I'm getting nowhere, like I'm backsliding and I'm a big fat failure.

On those days, I need a swift kick in the butt from my husband, my dad bringing it up to me instead of letting me ignore it, or a raw pep talk from my best friend (all have been happy to oblige).

But on the whole, I've been so much better.
My energy is coming back and I can get out of bed in the mornings and I'm sleeping at night.

I'm having fewer nightmares, less anxiety, don't have that lingering sense of impending doom, and best of all..the nausea is gone!  I still get occasional waves of it, and still get that gripping chest pain sometimes,  but I am really getting somewhere.

I am truly learning how to treat myself right, which includes taking out the trash in your life (ditching toxic relationships, habits, and donating those old clothes in the back of the closet).

I am blessed to have a husband that is willing to work his ass off so I don't have to worry about working right now, just focus on getting better.
And I am unspeakably grateful to know what is "wrong" with me, though there is nothing "wrong" or "bad" about PTSD.

I am not totally better, and am still trying to get some answers on other health problems,
but this is the big one.
This is what I haven't been talking about and have been struggling with.
And boy, it feels good to finally put it out there and not care what people think, just know that I'm strong enough to say "Yep, I've got the Post-Traumas, baby!" and accept it and hope by sharing I can help someone else on their journey.  Yes, it is giving me chest pains and anxiety, but I'm stepping up to the plate and publishing this, and will continue to write posts about it.
And after I publish this post, I'm going to go pour myself a glass of champagne, sit on the couch, and just breathe.

Let me conclude with a cheesy but true quote:

"The best way to get rid of the pain is to feel the pain.
And when you feel the pain and go beyond it,
you'll see there's a very intense love
that is wanting to awaken itself."
-Deepak Chopra 

My Life, Courtesy of Disney

Back by popular demand,
my life reactions, courtesy of Disney. Because honestly, what else could you possibly need?
[Remember, many of these need the mouse scrolled across them to work properly]

When I hear someone make a racist comment:

When my husband and I speak in Seinfeld quotes:

When I'm fed up with my hair and think about cutting my own bangs...again. 

Me at the bookstore (minus the ladder, unfortunately):

When the waiter delivers my giant plate of nachos:

How I feel in medical situations 85% of the time:

How I feel after eating at the China Buffet.

When I catch my husband trying to sneak the last beer in the fridge.

When I improvise my own recipes.  

How the night ends when I say "I'm just going to have one glass of wine!"

When I make an inside joke, history nerd style:

When I wear my Tiffany's necklace:

When I can't fit into my favorite jeans and insist it's my "curves" :

When someone cuts me off on the road:

When I realize I'm out of candy:


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

A Shot in the Middle of the Night

Early this morning, the Mr. and I were awoken by a flash and then the cracking sound of a shotgun outside our window.
It was a great storm, the kind with lightning so bright you think hundreds of people are shining flashlights into your house, and the thunder has the initial dry bang of an old school gun.

The first few lightning bolts were very close to our place--the thunder chimed in just on the tail end of the lightning.  We laid in bed, looking at each other, and going "WOOOOOAH!!"
We don't get storms like this in Utah.
It reminded me of a good South Dakota thunder storm, only the apartment wasn't shaking like the booming thunder tends to make buildings do in the big SD.

He had to get up and close the window because the rain came pouring in.

Unfortunately (or maybe, for the best, since you just can't sleep through that kind of storm), it was fast-moving and we only had intense thunder and lightning for 5 minutes, then heard it fade away into the distance as it moved toward the mountains.

As I drifted back to sleep, I wondered why people call it "lightning AND thunder,"
 as if the thunder is its own entity, and not a sound created by lightning.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Spider Monkey Jesus

I'm sure you've heard about this--
a centuries old fresco by Elias Garcia Martinez in a Spanish church that "needed to be refurbished" and ended up being botched.
The beautiful painting of Jesus Christ was absolutely destroyed.  It turned into what can only be described as a 6 year old's crayoned version of a beast.  It is a laughingstock, and has become a worldwide phenomenon, even to the point of attracting thousands to the little-known, non-tourist destination Spanish church to see it!

And now people are signing a petition to leave it the way it is, rather than re-re fix it.

I'd like to bitch slap the old broad "amateur" they hired to do this job.
Even after the damage she did to the piece she is whining about being paid for it.
It's like parents coming home to a dead baby and the babysitter goin "where's my twenty, pops?"
She wants a cut of the profits the town is seeing due to it being flooded by tourists, all there to see the maimed Jesus.
 Michelangelo, Giotto, and DaVinci are rolling in their graves right now.

It begs the question of whether or not classic art should be restored.
Some believe that the aging of a work of art is part of its natural cycle and allows viewers to appreciate its evolution, and that fiddling with it to re-create what it once was is damaging and destructive to a piece's history.

Others believe that maintaining a work allows people to see it how it was originally intended to be viewed and appreciated, and helps preserve it for generations to come.

It's a difficult argument, and one that will not be resolved anytime soon. Or ever.
So now for the funny bits, that celebrate the irony of the Spider Monkey Jesus...

 Need a clever idea for a Halloween costume?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


These debates are getting intense.
They are fiery political discourse and they are getting personal.

This was evidenced by some stings Romney and Obama hit each other with in the Second Presidential Debate last night.  When pensions came up, and a spat over who has personal investments in China, Governor Romney (his wealth is now common knowledge) asked President Obama when he last took a look at his own pension and Obama turned to him and said
"I don't look at my pension, it's not as big as yours...I don't check it that often."
My jaw DROPPED.  Ouch! These insults were flying back and forth last night and at times I realized I was on the edge of the couch, amped for a fist fight.
At this point, a fist fight would definitely illustrate the characters of these men better than any of their high-falutin' brags about statistics would.

I know a Fight Club quote may not entirely fit into this discussion, but I agree that you don't know everything about yourself until you've been in a fight, and this is applicable to politics.  Certainly.
We just have to keep in mind that the political process may be a bit damaged if two dudes in suits start beating the absolute shit out of each other at a "town hall meeting" so we've got to make do with verbal fighting.
Which gets really old really fast.

I love this image from last night's debate--it sums it up so well.  And politics in general.
Romney said a few things that were questionable, some that were downright wrong, and some that were offensive. His "binder full of women" remark falls into all three of these categories.
[Read more about said binder here]

The Vice-Presidential Debate was similarly intense and fascinating, and probably set the stage for the most recent presidential debate.
(For those of you that are non-American, or for Americans that live underground with no connection to the world but mysteriously can read this blog) The setup is like this:

1st Prez Debate
VP Debate
2nd Prez Debate
3rd Prez Debate

Vice President Biden was criticized as being too aggressive and harsh during the VP debate, but he needed to bring rough game after the weak face Obama put on for the first debate.  I believe Biden's sharp offense was spot-on for the Democrats and I rather enjoyed watching Paul Ryan squirm...though that is partially because I despise the fish-faced fool.
Media and viewers also had issue with Biden cracking up when Paul explained his different theories/platforms/ideas, etc.  and that was a bit much, but I prefer it to Ryan's ever present smirk.

I really perked up when JFK came up.

RYAN: You can cut tax rates by 20 percent and still preserve these important preferences for middle-class taxpayers. 
BIDEN: Not mathematically possible....
...RYAN: Jack Kennedy lowered tax rates, increased growth.
BIDEN: Oh, now you’re Jack Kennedy?

It was awesome. I was in hysterics.
And let me clarify that Ryan doesn't understand Kennedy's tax/growth connection.
As a Kennedy scholar, please allow me to clarify:

JFK PROPOSED changing taxes from a range of 20-91% to a range of 14-65%. He proposed that in 1963 (the last year he served as president, 3 years into his term).
Ironically, in 1963, the economy was seeing a significant amount of growth.  Silicon Valley was being established, the gross national product doubled in the early 1960s because Americans were transitioning to the suburbs in the wake of the postwar boom and therefore needed cars and refrigerators and television sets.  Commercial airlines were developed, the baby boomers were growing up, and sitcoms on TV encouraged consumerism.  Plus, after the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, Americans were generally living it up.
JFK had little, if anything, to do with this prosperity.  It was happening on its own--caused by long term factors in place before he was elected.
His proposed tax cuts didn't even happen until 1964 when they were put through following his death.

And these tax cuts don't really matter if you compare them to federal spending; in 1964 federal revenue increased by 25%, but federal spending grew by 24%.  The government was pushing the economy along in this way as well.

Sorry for my little history lesson there-- I figured it is something people (especially those running for Vice President) should be aware of.

I really just don't dig Paul Ryan.  The guy is so blindly pro-life that he wants to criminalize in-vitro fertilization.  Which, to me, is batshit crazy.  He also wants to get rid of several forms of contraception, and alongside Romney take away Planned Parenthood funding.  He is one of those that doesn't understand exactly what PP is, why it was founded, and what they do.
I'm afraid he thinks they're luring pregnant women in the back and performing illicit, gory, unAmerican abortions, conveyer belt style, killing as many healthy babies as possible.  Because they can.

The VP debate concluded with the topic of women's rights and Ryan, as predicted, said that he believes certain things are wrong, and they would outlaw them.
Biden said that his religion (he is Catholic, as well as Ryan) professes what he believes in, but that he would never force his personal opinion on someone else.  That was perfect.  That is exactly how politicians should be.

------------------------   ----------------------------       ----------  ----    ----------------------  -----------------------    --
This is a crazy election.  I have been following it closely and am looking forward to the last debate before voting. I really think it is going to come down to the Electoral College this year.

I don't believe early voting should be allowed as extensively as it has been (i.e. letting people vote even before the FIRST debate!! Ridiculous! These debates can affect so much!).
Personally, as you can probably tell from many of my posts, I will not be voting Romney/Ryan.
I like Romney.  Ryan I have no love for, and would never trust him to run a country, but Romney I like.  He is a good guy and he has done a lot of good things and clearly has some incredible financial and business experience.  But personally, I can't afford to have someone like him in office.  He won't be good for the middle class and because of his insurance coverage plan, he wouldn't be particularly good for me.  And with my own values, I cannot vote for someone that doesn't believe in gay rights and doesn't uphold women's rights the way he should.

I wasn't planning on voting for Obama this year, but that is my only option now so I am embracing it wholeheartedly.  Obama has been a disappointing president, but overall he has been decent and hasn't done anything to make me hate him or fear re-electing him.  I can only hope that if re-elected he doesn't take any more guff and try desperately to appease everyone and therefore often end up compromising or doing nothing at all, the way he has been. He needs to get in there with guns blazing.
But that is just my opinion. Everyone should have an opinion, and likewise respect the beliefs of others.
And everyone that is able should VOTE to make their opinion heard.

And now,
some interesting videos you may not have seen. Just to make you think.

I love this spunky veteran.

Um...Canada has a Prime Minister.  Not a President.



JFK wrote himself in Profiles in Courage that politics is a place where "the choice constantly lies between two blunders."
He was right.  All I can say is, do your research and hope for the best.