Endgame

¡Hola, amigos y amigas! ¡Buenos dildos! That means, “very good day,” en español. I have to admit, I’m getting pretty damn good at conjugating nouns and stuff in the language of our adopted country of residence.

* * * *

My lovely supermodel wife and I were knocking down wasp nests on the patio a couple of days ago. When we finished in the back, we decided to check out the front of the house. Lo and behold, there was a fucking rat sitting on a ledge in the carport!

Probably Not So Surprising Little Known Fact About Me: I hate rats. I hate rats more than I hate bats. Even more than I detest Donald Trump.

* * * *

I read The Donald’s Tweets every morning. I used to call him out for being the reprehensible slob of humanity that he is. And then a couple of absolutely stupefying things happened, even by Trump’s standards.

I will say one thing about America’s current Commander-in-Chief. He is the most accidentally funny President, ever. Too bad his ego won’t let him list that as one of his many great accomplishments.  He’d actually be telling the truth about something.

First, Trump tried to buy Greenland. When the deal fell through, he said he was joking, but yeah, he actually wanted to buy a country! Denmark essentially laughed at him. They probably checked his credit rating…

Second, Trump tweeted his thanks to one of his supporters who said the people of Israel love The Donald like he was the King of Israel, and they love The Donald like he was the second coming of God.

And without a drop of humility, Trump agreed with him.

Since then, I’ve had a change of heart. Instead of chastising the President, I now wholeheartedly encourage him to double down on every petty insult and slur he can’t stop himself from tweeting, to raise his bet on every inane thing he says. I’m hoping his unfettered madness will make him say something that will make even his most ardent, hardcore, comatose, lemming-like supporters stop, scratch their heads, and think:

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* * * *

Sorry. Back to the rat story…

I just happened to be holding a broom in my hands at the time, and my dental X-ray combat training took over. I charged the rat and smote it mightily with the broom handle, delivering a death blow to the odious rodent.

The rat, who was apparently not even close to being dead, jumped down from the ledge, then jumped up into the engine compartment of my car, disappearing into the maze of components under the hood of my Buick Encore, which was even worse than having a rat living in the carport.

I had a dilemma. I wasn’t about to let that rat continue living, but I had no way to easily confront my enemy to finish it off.

“Now what do we do?” Lea asked. She doesn’t like rats any more than I do.

“I need a gallon of gasoline.”

“Why?” she asked.

“So I can set the car on fire.”

* * * *

Many years ago, I admitted a young guy that had been a patient on my unit a couple of times. I think he was schizophrenic, and he usually came in because he was drunk and needed to be detoxed. But this time was different. He was sober, but his neighbors had called the fire department because he had set his motorcycle on fire at the end of his driveway.

After they had extinguished the fire, the fire fighters had called the police.

If you don’t mind me asking, why did you set your motorcycle on fire?

Oh, there’s a simple explanation for that. I couldn’t get it started! I had been working on it for the last couple of weeks, and I just kind of snapped today and poured some gas on it and, you know, set it on fire.

Was it an expensive bike?

No, it wasn’t a brand new Harley or anything. It was a piece of junk that had been in my garage for at least five years. I think I paid maybe fifty bucks for it. It wasn’t running when I bought it. I’m a pretty good mechanic. I figured I could get it running and use it to get around town. Cheap transportation, you know.

Was there a rat in it?

What?!? No, there wasn’t a fucking rat in it. It wouldn’t start!

And that’s when you decided to set it on fire…  

Yeah, well, maybe that wasn’t the best thing to do…

Because your neighbors called the cops..

No, the firemen called the cops! Like it was any of their goddamn business. It was my motorcycle!

Imagine this: You’re driving down the street and you see a motorcycle on fire. What’s the first thing you’d do?

Yeah, okay. I see where you’re going with this. (There was a long silence while he thought about everything.) Say, how long do you think I’m going to be stuck in here?

I don’t know. It probably depends on how many more motorcycles you have.

* * * *

In our situation, suffice it to say that cooler heads prevailed. Lea and I eventually came to the conclusion that the rat would probably, hopefully, abandon its’ hiding place in our car once night fell, and it would scurry off into the dark. Hopefully, it would get killed to death by one of the two dozen semi-feral cats that live in the neighborhood.

Our neighbors to the south of Casa Tara feed all of the wild cats in Lower Chula Vista. They have a veritable herd of cats that congregate in their yard. And ours. I always thought our neighbors were a little crazy, but now I think they might be geniuses. The best defense against a rodent infestation is a herd of cats.

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Little Known Fact About Cats and the Black Death: Sometime around the year 1230, Pope Gregory IX issued a papal bull called Vox in Rama. This piece of papal bullshit declared cats to be the instruments of Satan, especially black cats, who were particularly Luciferian in this infallible Pope’s mind. Thousands of cats were killed to death at the order of the Pope, and the rat population of Europe exploded.

The bacteria that cause plague, Yersinia pestis, tend to live inside of fleas that live on rats. Adult fleas live on blood that they suck from their host animal. The plague is generally transmitted by the bite of an infected flea that has abandoned its’ rat for a new food source. Anywhere from 75 to 200 million people in Medieval Europe died from the plague.

As if that wasn’t enough, Gregory IX also established the Inquisition. He was probably the deadliest Pope that ever lived. He could have been the prototype for Thanos, the brutal supervillain in Endgame who had wiped out half of the population of the universe with a snap of his fingers in the previous movie, Avengers: Infinity War.

The only reason I qualify that statement is this planet has had a lots of historical figures that were immensely good at killing.

* * * *

For those of you that didn’t know, or who could care less, Avengers: Endgame is the latest release in the Marvel Cinematic Universe®. There have been 23 films in the series, and I’ve seen them all.

The Avengers franchise is the highest-grossing movie series of all time, having grossed over $22.5 billion at the global box office. Endgame is the highest-grossing film of all time, having netted almost $3 billion all by itself.

If you think this is going to be a movie review, you’re going to be very disappointed. Okay. I liked the movie; despite its many flaws about how the TimeSpace continuum works in the quantum universe.

The Radiolab guys would have a blast trying to fill in all the holes in the storyline of Endgame, but that’s their problem, if they choose to accept that mission, not mine. And that’s not what this post is going to be about.

Despite all of their box office success and superpowers, the people of my generation know these modern-day Avengers are nothing but a bunch of posers and wannabes.

These, are the real Avengers: They didn’t need any superpowers. They were British.

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John Steed and Emma Peel, portrayed by Patrick Macnee & Diana Rigg

The Avengers was a British espionage television series that aired from 1961 to 1969. It initially focused on the duo of Dr. David Keel, aided by John Steed, investigating and solving crimes.

Dr. Keel left after the first series; Steed then became the main character. Over the years, he partnered with a succession of intelligent, stylish, assertive women: Cathy Gale, Emma Peel, and Tara King. Emma was the cream of the crop in my mind. Witty, beautiful, and she could kick some serious ass. I fell in love with her at first sight.

And, there was that dream I had about her when I was fifteen. Diana was very, very…  friendly. She was my first celebrity crush. I wonder if she has a Twitter® account?

Diana Rigg also played Lady Olenna Tyrell in Game of Thrones. She may no longer be young and beautiful, but her biting wit hasn’t lost any of its sharpness. She was an immediate fan favorite, and her character was responsible for the death of the sadistic King Joffrey Baratheon, an act for which I will feel eternal gratitude.

* * * *

The results of my colonoscopy are in. No polyps! First time ever for that. I think it’s the Mexican diet. Polyps apparently live in fear of jalapeños, which are used in almost all of the local dishes down here.

I had my procedure done at the Hospital San Antonio, a brand new healthcare facility at the bottom of the hill below our house. The hospital was built by Dr. Carlos Garcia del Castillo, our Family Practice physician. He’s kind of the Milo Minderbinder of Medicine around here.

“Brand new” implies “state-of-the-art,” especially when it comes to medicine. But this is Mexico. The new hospital had the only MRI machine in the Lakeside Area — until they plugged it in — and it kind of exploded, turning several people into giant, mutant green-skinned hulqueros.

It was probably made by LG…  At any rate, you’ll have to go to Guadalajara for an MRI, until Dr. Carlos can get his machine repaired or replaced. It’s probably still under warranty.

The procedure room where my colonoscopy was done is right next to the loading dock in the back of the hospital. The massive door to the loading dock was open wide as I was escorted into the room. A curtain was the only thing separating the procedure room from the rest of the hospital. It was also wide open.

As the medical staff — two doctors and three nurses — were getting ready for my procedure, two dogs trotted into the room and laid down on the floor to watch. The janitor wandered in, mop in hand, to see what was going on and say Hello to everyone. Some random guy selling hats wandered in with him.

I asked the anesthesiologist, his name was Hector, if he could just please put me under. Once I was unconscious, I wouldn’t care who else came into the room to check out my rear end. And who wouldn’t want to see that? Lea tells me I have the cutest butt she’s ever seen, so there’s that.

That’s the “end”game this post is going to be about. My ass is about as American as it gets.

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* * * *

Just in cases you were wondering, the total cost of my my procedure was $10,500 pesos. Roughly $525 US. You might want to read that again. Five hundred twenty five dollars. Service dogs included at no extra charge.

That’s about how much it costs for one visit to the Emergency Room in the US. Add a lots more money if any actual procedures are done during that visit. That’s probably how much it cost me, monetarily, the last time I was in the ER.

I went to the ER because of my third kidney stone. I knew I had a kidney stone, but this stone was possibly worse than my previous two renal calculi combined. What I didn’t know was I also had a kidney infection and prostatitis.

I got checked in, turned in a urine sample, then waited however long it took for the doctor to see me. The ER doc was a pleasant, older man named Josef Mengele. Just in cases you don’t know who that is, Dr. Mengele was a German SS officer and physician at the Auschwitz concentration camp during World War II. His nickname was The Angel of Death.

He took my history, typed his notes into the computer, then said the words that every guy in a doctor’s office dreads to hear, “Okay. I’m going to have to do a prostate exam.”

He said he was going to be gentle. He made a fist with his left hand and demonstrated how slowly and carefully he was going to insert his right finger into my rectum. That was actually reassuring.

I dropped my pants and assumed the “Bend Over” position on the exam table while the good doctor donned gloves and lubed up with K-Y Jelly.

“Take a couple of deep breaths and relax. Oh, and you should probably take your glasses off, too.”

I had never had a doctor suggest that before. I almost questioned why, but I did as he asked. And then I knew why he had suggested it.

True to his word, Dr. Mengele was slow and careful with his digital insertion. Until he got to his first knuckle. Then he shoved the rest of his finger into my rectum like it was making the jump to lightspeed.

And I’m almost positive that I heard something like unto this:

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Pain! Pain worse than a dozen goddamn kidney stones filled my being. My face smashed into the exam table. Hard. Like I was having a seizure hard. I vaguely remember thinking, Oh, that’s why he wanted me to take my glasses off! After that, all I wanted to do was cry.

“Oh yeah. You definitely have prostatitis.” Dr. Mengele gloated. It felt like he had put his foot up my ass and he was kicking my prostate. “Your prostate feels like a grapefruit! So, you’re a nurse, huh? What’s your specialty? Where do you work?”

I couldn’t have responded if I had wanted to. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t move. I was paralyzed. But these words formed inside my head:

Get…your…arm…out…of…my…ass…you…motherfucking…Nazi!!! I seriously would have confessed to the Kennedy assassination if that’s what Dr. Mengele had wanted. That was the longest five hours of my life. Five seconds later, it was over.

I’m pretty sure I collapsed to the floor in relief. Dr. Mengele washed his hands, told me he’d write some prescriptions for antibiotics, and cheerfully bid me Auf Wiedersehen.

The nurse thought I had had a heart attack when she entered the room with Dr. Mengele’s prescriptions. Fortunately, I could speak by then. As I was getting dressed I was able to convince her she didn’t need to call a Code Blue.

Besides, I’m DNR/DNI.

* * * *

My first kidney stone and my third kidney stone were large, like, 6 mms each. They had to be broken into little tiny bits by extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy. It’s one of the few medical interventions I’ve experienced that might be worse than the initial condition.

I felt like I had been hit by a bus afterwards, and it took about a week to get to the point where I stopped wishing my kidney stones would have had the decency to just kill me to death and get it over already.

I had my last kidney stone in 2013, I think. Since then, I have conscientiously done everything I can to prevent getting a fourth kidney stone.

It’s not all that difficult. Drink a lots of water. That’s the most effective thing you can do. And eat a lots of jalapeños. I don’t think kidney stones like them either.

This Week Today

Hola, feliz miércoles. 

I normally have Spanish lessons at this time of day, but Planet Janet has fallen ill, so there’s no class today. She has a stomach bug and should recover soon. We’ll resume muddling through Spanish next week. I’ll try to sprinkle in some español and create the illusion I know what I’m hablando sobre.

I should probably thank Donald Trump for proving my assertion that he has no idea what he’s doing. If there was any doubt, Helsinki took care of that. His fans still love him. That will probably never change

I think they all have Battered Idiot Syndrome.

* * * *

It’s been a busy week here. I should clarify that. We had a busy Monday. There really hasn’t been much of anything else going on in our lives since.

Monday was MRI Day. Lea’s orthopedic specialist thought there was a shadowy area on her x-ray. He ordered an MRI, which will give him the best view of what’s going on with her wrist.

I’ve done some additional Interweb research on wrist pain. It seems there’s something called a ganglion cyst that is a frequent cause of wrist pain, especially in women. The shadowy area on her x-ray might possibly be a cyst. The good news is it’s relatively easy to treat, if that’s truly what it is. We’ll probably know more on Friday after Lea sees the Ortho guy.

Lea had the clinic receptionist here call the imaging clinic in Guadalajara for an appointment. The imaging clinic said she didn’t need one. She could walk right in.

Cool, huh?

So we went to the Imaging Clinic in Guadalajara early Monday morning and arrived about 7:30 AM. Lea drove. I was the Navigator. She says I’m a better navigator than she is, which is probably true. But I think she also likes driving far more than she likes navigating. I don’t mind doing either, and you get to do a lots more sightseeing as a navigator. There’s a lots of sights to see in Guadalajara.

The first thing the imaging clinic staff asked us when we arrived was, “Tienes una cita?” Do you have an appointment?

Yeah, not so cool.

There’s nothing like a language barrier to remind you that you’re living in a foreign country. Between the little Spanish we spoke and the little English the staff understood, we explained that we tried to make an appointment, but we were told to just come in.

The staff was apologetic, and very accommodating. The first available time they had was 1:00 PM. We had several hours to kill, so we asked if we could go spend a bunch of money and come back at 1:00. There’s no word in Spanish for shopping. There are a few ways to say spend money, or buy stuff. But you can’t technically go shopping in Mexico.

There are a lots of stores in Guadalajara, so we went to the Walmart Superstore. The Golf Express Store. And Costco. By a spooky twist of fate, all of those places were within ten miles of the Imaging Clinic, and each other.

Driving in Guadalajara is pretty much like unto driving in any other very large urban area. There’s a lots of traffic and traffic jams, and plenty of crazy drivers. But thanks to the technological wonders of smartphones and Google® Maps, you can get almost anywhere fairly easily, even if you’ve never been there before.

We went to the Walmart Superstore first because it was only place that was open at that time, and bought a few items to kill some time until the golf store opened at 10:00. Well, that’s when it was supposed to open.

Golf is becoming more popular in Mexico, but it’s nowhere near as popular as futbol. The only golf store that popped up on my Interweb search is in a nondescript strip mall in an equally nondescript neighborhood in Guadalajara. Then we waited for half an hour until the owner arrived at 10:30.

It’s Mexico. Time isn’t as important here as it is in the States.

In a previous post, I mentioned that I might need some new clubs. Well, they had a lots of new clubs at Golf Express. Very new, fairly expensive golf clubs. This created a dilemma for me because I have relatively inexpensive golf clubs, and I could’ve bought three sets of used clubs for the one club I eventually decided I probably couldn’t live without.

It’s a Callaway Rogue Hybrid Fairway Wood. I don’t know if it will be the answer to my golfing needs, but it’s so pretty! And then I decided I couldn’t put my brand new, very pretty and expensive club into the old, beat up, cheap-ass golf bag I had purchased at Goodwill several years ago in Arizona. So I bought a new bag for my new golf club.

On the bright side, I won’t look like a homeless golfer anymore.

After stocking up at Costco, we headed back to the clinic. And I got to do some sightseeing. From my point of view, the most impressive things to see in Guadalajara are las señoritas bonitas. 

I doubt I’m the only guy here that thinks some of the latinas are stunningly beautiful. They are obras de arte. God clearly paid a lots of attention to what He was doing when He designed them. He measured everything carefully, and made sure He had all of the necessary ingredients, unlike when He made me and used whatever He had laying around.

These very special creations look like unto angels, and dress like unto porn stars. It’s a very eye catching, head spinning combination.

At any rate, we were sitting at a table outside of Costco after we finished buying stuff. Lea was drinking a soda. I was packing all of the stuff we had purchased into our insulated shopping bags. When I finished, I saw two chicas bonitas walking through the parking lot toward the store.

They were young, of course. And thin, very pretty and shapely. Their long raven hair was flowing behind them in the breeze. They were talking to each other and smiling. They were both wearing skintight outfits that looked like they had come out of a can of spray paint. Form fitting tops, skinny jeans, high heels. One of the angelic chicas was wearing a lightweight, sky blue sweater that appeared to be struggling to contain the talents she had hidden underneath.

If there had been any music playing, I would’ve thought Costco was filming a music video.

I’m not sure why they started running, if you can call the short-strided scurry that women do when they’re wearing heels, but every guy who saw them stopped what he was doing to watch in a kind of awe, and silently offered a prayer of thanks, even if they didn’t believe in God.

I nudged Lea and pointed the girls out to her. She said, “Oh my. Those are real.” as she watched the chicas scurry toward us, bouncing all the way.

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They were real all right. Real fun.

I might need to go see a chiropractor, preferably in Guadalajara.

The last time we took a day trip there, we went to the Andares Mall. After Lea had made all of her purchases we had lunch at a charming restaurant near the mall called Vincent’s. If you’re ever in Guadalajara, it’s worth checking out. The steak tacos were to die for.

Seated at a table near us were several chicas bonitas. Again, they were all young and ridiculously gorgeous. They were all wearing stylish yoga outfits, like they had just finished working out at the gym. A couple of them had ordered something to eat, but the rest of them were drinking beer and smoking cigarettes. There are very few professions where exercising enough to stay fit, yet drinking and smoking are combined. In fact, I can only think of one.

“I wonder what those girls do for a living?” Lea asked, as if she was eerily thinking along the same train of thought my mind was on. When you’ve been married as long as we have, that kind of thing happens a lots. So I told her.

“They’re strippers. Go ask them if they have any business cards.”

She wouldn’t do that, of course. She doesn’t mind that I enjoy seeing the sights. She even points out a great set of knockers to me on the rare occasion that I don’t see them first, but she has her limits.

As a rule, I tend to not write about anything that requires a lots of research on my part. However, if I were ever planning on writing about the Gentlemen’s Clubs in Guadalajara, I’d be willing to make an exception.

I really think we should go to to Guadalajara more often, like, every day. But I haven’t been able to come up with a reason that Lea will agree to yet.

* * * *

If not for occasions like those above, and updates from my virtual friends, I’d probably be bored into a coma most of the time by now. I’ve been retired for roughly twenty months. After six months, most everything becomes routine. Thankfully, my virtual friends have lives vastly more interesting than mine.

At least two of my virtual friends announced that they are pregnant. One of them is asking for prayers for a daughter. She has two boys already and doesn’t think she could survive having three sons.

Three or four of my virtual friends are on vacation. They’re traveling the world and having a great time.

Several of my virtual friends just started new jobs, and they’re so excited! In six months they’ll be struggling to remember that at one time they really wanted this job. Probably. That’s what usually happened to me.

One of my virtual friends also writes a blog. She’s much more successful than I will ever be at blogging. She has hundreds of people who read what she writes. She just finished her first book, and she just got it published!!

Yeah, I pretty much hate her fucking guts right now.

My virtual friend has become kind of a marketing machine. She sells advertising on her blog site. She always features an image of herself for her posts, and lately she’s started asking this, Do you want to buy this look?

She’s young–early thirties–thin and pretty, of course. All of her outfits look darlingpreshadorbs! She doesn’t look like an angelic pornstar, she just looks like an angel. Everyone seems to agree on that.

There’s one more thing about her. She’s a virgin. She writes about not ever having had sex all the time. I’m thinking a few of the guys who read her blog do so for that reason only. However, she’s also an English major, so she actually knows how to write good. That’s probably why she has hundreds of real fans.

I’ve contemplated adopting her tactics, but there are a couple of mitigating factors. She’s basically everything I’m not. I can’t remember a time when the old, short, fat, bald and myopic look was ever in vogue. I’ve never had anyone ever tell me that I look like an angel. And it’s been a very long time since I was a virgin.

* * * *

I haven’t had any friend requests from kooky young Christian women who want to have a deeply passionate with a benign grandfather figure in over a month. I think the guy living in his parents’ basement in Iowa has decided to move on to easier scam victims. I’m kind of relieved, and kind of disappointed.

They were kind of entertaining. But they were also very predictable.

I’m going to guess they’ll return some day. They’re probably all at conference trying to think up new gimmicks and taglines.

* * * *

There’s a Go-Go tournament at the country club tomorrow. And according to some posts on social media, the world is supposed to end on Friday. If it’s on the Interweb it has to be true, doesn’t it? Maybe it’s next Friday. Either way, I’ll get to use my new golf club at least once before The End.

You know what? I’m going to ask for prayers on the tees for the par three holes. I haven’t had a decent tee shot on either of them since I almost got a hole in one.

I don’t think I can take another six…