Very short post tonight because I seriously overdid it at the fair today as in too much walking and standing around, and my back is making me pay for it. Having a lie down to let my back relax for a bit will probably fix it, at least somewhat. I did manage to get some pictures of the Pentastar V6 in the wild, as it were, but forgot to put something in the picture to scale from so they are pretty useless for my needs. Curse my drain bamage for making me forget.
Tag Archives: Brain damage
Yep, it were windy out here in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell, with one tree losing a branch to the wind. Otherwise things are just fine. Still doing good on edibles, I have about a half pot of beans and rice seasoned to my preference, plus Pop Tarts, ramen, Spam (I’m having the teriyaki flavor tonight with my ramen), and a fresh jar of peanut butter that I just opened this morning to put on my bagel. So food I got, and Mrs. the Poet will be returning from NY tomorrow evening.
Up first is Our Daily Ted, Part 1. Morning Links: LACBC wins national award for work on Mobility Plan; Sadik-Khan says the bikes have won That’s right, we won! All that’s left now is mopping up isolated pockets of resistance. So I guess I can quit this blog and go build models…
Part 2. San Diego cyclist killed in pre-dawn trolley collision and Cyclist hit, killed by trolley in Barrio Logan Damnit people, what did I just tell you yesterday about staying off tracks? Don’t cross when the arm is down, how hard is that to do?
Still in CA, but covered in one of Ted’s posts yesterday. Bicyclist Hit, Killed by Moving Truck in Rancho Palos Verdes Right hook but the cyclist was riding hard in the bike lane. At least I think that was a bike lane. The cyclist’s speed had a great deal to do with this wreck, both in the fact that it happened and in the severity of the wreck as to how for under the truck the cyclist got squished in the initial impact. The fact the cyclist was dragged for miles under the truck more than likely only changed the condition of the body, he probably died in the initial impact.
More Portland infrastructure. Counting votes at Metro: Will the region invest in walking and biking near schools? Don’t want the kids getting too independent and thinking they don’t need a car to get around.
Another update on the MN cyclist injured in a hit-and-run. St. Thomas student critically injured in bike accident returns to class “The St. Paul Police say that since January of this year a pedestrian or cyclist is hit by a driver in St. Paul every other day. And they think it’s the cyclists and pedestrians are the problem?
A little CT infrastructure change might be in the works. Connecticut Cycling Advocates Urge Stiffer Penalty For Drivers Who Don’t Share The Road The comments section is in rare form today. I lost count of the times I saw people complaining about cyclists “not paying” for roads, like riding a bike gets you a tax refund or something like that.
From CT to MT, a fallen cyclist is remembered. Tuesday morning vigil honors cyclist killed in wreck, reminds riders of traffic danger
I think this was national but reported by a PA media outlet. Early data suggests pedestrian deaths surged in 2015 There were more deaths across the board but it looks like peds took a larger share than previously lending more ammunition to the need to get drivers out from behind the wheel because the cars are great at protecting people inside the car but utter crap at protecting people outside the car.
Ran red, killed cyclist, needs to spend rest of life working to repay victim’s family after long prison sentence in the Great White North. Trial begins for man accused of running red light and killing cyclist For those not fluent in metric, bystanders estimated the speed before the wreck at 55-65 MPH, the reconstructionist put the speed at 41.6 MPH at impact with heavy braking.
More on Canada’s helmet fetish. Bike helmets are safe, but here’s what really makes cycling safer
From Jolly Olde a car doesn’t stop at the sidewalk, but goes right inside the building. CCTV VIDEO: Man ‘lucky to be alive’ after Coleshill crash – watch footage I though it was from NYC with the car driving at such a high speed on the sidewalk. 😛
One of the 12 people likely to get killed by a cyclist in Jolly Olde this year (if this is an average year). ‘Wonderful’ woman killed after crash with a cyclist at Old Street Nothing on what happened because it’s a UK media outlet, but so far no charges have been filed.
Another cyclist memorial. Family pays tribute to cyclist killed in ‘hit-and-run’ accident
Trying to find answers in a cyclist’s death. Inquest opens into death of cyclist killed in Doncaster Road crash The UK version of a left cross since the drive on the wrong side of the road.
Another blind driver takes out a cyclist. Coach driver accused of killing cyclist on A9 heard ‘a bang’ Never saw the cyclist until they were scraping him out from under the bus.
Well this can’t be good. Police investigate spate of cyclists being pushed into London canals Getting wet in winter in the UK is not as bad as getting wet in winter in MN, but it’s still not pleasant.
This is a frequent symptom of TBI from a traffic crash. Young cyclist ‘cannot remember’ how she got facial injuries in Crawley Much of what I know of my wreck is from the police reports and witnesses who ran into me later. Except the being dead part, that I remembered on my own.
Over on the Emerald Isle. Garda appeal for witnesses after cyclist (19) killed in road collision The narrative sounds like a SWSS at the moment with the driver failing to process the cyclist in front of the car until impact.
This sounds more like pressing the gas thinking it is the brake than brake failure, but hey I’m just a hot-rodder doing a bike safety blog. UPDATE: Taxi that slammed into traffic light knocked down cyclist prior to major crash I think this was South Africa, but I’m not sure.
What’s 130 miles on a bike when you have done a full Ironman? NASCAR’s Jimmie Johnson to join PeopleForBikes’ Ride on Atlanta
And last link if you think mash-ups are a recent phenomenon, here’s a mashup of “Rock And Roll, Pt.2” with the theme for Doctor Who from the ’80s. The Timelords (The KLF) – Doctorin’ The Tardis (12-inch mix)
And that’s all I go tonight. I’m going to try to get to bed early.
Billed @€0.02, Opus
Yep, I’m in actual pain right now from a gum problem, there is exposed bone on the inside of my right lower jaw where my wisdom teeth were extracted about 30 years ago. I don’t know what could have caused this, and I don’t care because it is very uncomfortable. I mean we are not up to “broken fibula bouncing around in my leg” levels of pain, but above “post removed hardware holding bones together with a slide hammer” pain. I am only having issues with this because proximity is making my right eye water sometimes and that makes it hard to see what I’m doing. Mrs. the Poet looked at it and her interpretation is it looks more like a series of infected areas along a cut, which makes a little sense considering all the chips I have been eating the last 2 weeks.
Now what makes this really fun is I’m writing a service that I’m going to put on this Sunday on the subject of “Love”. It is really hard to get enthusiastic about love when one eye is watering from discomfort. But I will muddle through somehow.
Up first is this notice from Bike Friendly Garland about a local event. Bridge Dedication, Ribbon Cutting Set for Feb. 13 Unfortunately I will not be able to attend this event, as I will still be unconscious after completing the post around 0300.
Still in CA. Police Update: Cyclist Killed This Morning By Hit-and-Run Driver on Winchester Blvd. I loathe, hate, despise and find drivers who hit-and-run appalling. Especially the one who just abandon their vehicles. If you drive home you could just claim blindness and stupidity (“I didn’t know I had hit anything”), but if you ditch the car you know damn good and well you hit someone and left them to live or die as their fate dictates. A suitable punishment would be hitting them in the abdomen with a 16 pound sledgehammer and then leaving them unconscious for 48 hours. If they die, that’s their karma, if they live then they get minimal medical care to keep them alive but nothing for repairing any non-life threatening injuries like torn muscles or spinal injuries. If you had been killed by a hit-and-run driver I’m sure you would feel similar to me. Not identical, but similar.
Also still in CA. A Problem We Can Solve: Commercial Vehicles Blocking Our Lanes My take can be summed up thusly:
Meanwhile in NYC… Bicyclist clings to life after being struck by crane truck in Tribeca and Cyclist Clings To Life After Being Hit By Truck Driver In Tribeca The driver of the wepon vehicle claimed the cyclist ran a red, but would you trust a driver to give an accurate accounting of a wreck? The back of the bike from the picture in the first link looked too smashed up for a cyclist who was crossing in front of the truck, but the TwitPic was less definitive about direction of impact with the bike still under the truck. So we have a classic SWCC wreck, unless someone has video of the wreck that shows the cyclist actually running the red.
Still in NYC. Driver Arrested For Killing Midtown Pedestrian, But Will Vance Follow Through? This was the same DA who let a truck driver off because the victim was 5’5″ and the driver couldn’t possibly see someone that short.
More hit-and-run in MA this time. 15-year-old cyclist severely injured in hit-and-run crash in Lowell See above for my feeling on hit-and-run (ugh!).
Legal infrastructure in America’s Copenhagen. Police write 15 citations for illegal driving during Clinton enforcement action 15 tickets/arrests for cars, 2 for bicycles (no lights after dark).
And more physical infrastructure changes in Portland. Update: City extends new bike lane on SE 34th Avenue The bike lane was advisory so that trucks could access the noodle shop (gotta have supplies to make the noodles from), but truck access was diverted to another street that still would get to the shop so now everything is just peachy.
Infrastructure news from the city my brother lives and works in. Ashley River exit ramp work beginning This is the first stage of installing the bike lane, but I’m doubtful of the second stage where they block off the right lane but don’t allow bicycle access and then see how the traffic moves. One of the benefits of bike lanes is they allow people to use a bike instead of a car and still have a modicum of safety.
Good news everybody [/Professor Farnsworth] The Truth About Cycling and Brain Injuries tl;dr if you don’t get brain damage in the wreck you are not likely to develop brain damage later as long as you have recovery time after the concussion.
This was in the feed and I’m not sure if I posted this particular link when it came out, so here you go. ‘Dooring’ charge laid in death of e-bike rider So glad to know that if someone kills me with the door of his car in Ontario he will face up to $365 (CDN) in fines and 3 points against his license.
Not-so-Jolly Olde. Learner driver’s guilt as cyclist hit by car “In a letter to the court Cooper stated that both she and her passenger had thought the cyclist was on the pavement and that he would stop.” This is a typical “roads are for cars” attitude. The cyclist is permanently maimed but will only have to come up with £702 and 5 points on her license. TANJ!
Crap infrastructure in the UK (do they ever do anything else?) “Failure of ambition” on London Quietways
Someone did something stupid with this company’s logo all over the vehicle so they are suing the… guy who took the picture? JM Clark Ltd threaten legal action over helmet cam footage after driver is filmed using phone at the wheel Yeah, that’s not gonna pass muster, at all.
And I’m outta links again, so time to proof, tag, and post. Gigi is gonna be mad at me because she won’t have time to finish reading before her internet goes off at 0300 my time. I’m trying to figure out where she is from that but I keep coming up with odd shutdown times or somewhere in AK or HI. If she’s in HI then I’m jealous…
Billed @€0.02, Opus
Yep, I bought a ticket to that half-billion $ Powerball jackpot. I mean invest $2 for a potential payout of $500,000,000? With my luck I would be crazy not to. I mean how many people do you know who survived getting hit with a truck going 60 MPH? The odds are slightly better than winning the Powerball, but not by much.
Up first is our Daily Ted. Morning Links: Too much bike tech, cyclocross nationals, and riding your bike pony through an LA El Niño
Still in CA, an update on that Loma Linda wreck from earlier in the week. LOMA LINDA: Cyclist fatally hurt when elderly motorist turned left Left cross, one of the scenarios I had guessed at when this was last reported on.
Another cyclist is hit in the most deadliest state in the US to ride a bike (or walk). Cyclist injured in hit-and-run crash in Sarasota The narrative sounds like a left cross or right hook, or just posssibly a swoop and squat. If the latter, then this was an assault with a deadly weapon rather than a hit-and-run.
This driver in NYC was trying to go out with a bang. Suicidal Driver After Christmas Eve Hit-And-Run Rampage: “I Wanted To Go Out In A Glorious Way” The current condition of the cyclist hit during the rampage is undisclosed.
The depravity of this wreck is beyond comprehension. Drunk Developer Allegedly Tossed Dead Passenger & His Stuff From Porsche After Hamptons Crash The only thing I have to say is all the dead and injured in this wreck were inside the weapon vehicle. Oh, and the deceased had terrible taste in “friends”.
Who gets sued when the inevitable cyclist injury or wreck happens? City gives in to state demand to remove bike lanes from SE 26th Avenue Do they sue Dimwitty, or the head of PBOT, the entire city government, or ODOT?
Also in America’s Copenhagen. Hit by Uber driver? Portlander watches as car that hit him drives off The victim in this case was a pedestrian who did not suffer serious injury, but still… the driver of the weapon vehicle left the scene.
A little infrastructure news from WI. Unplowed Snow Reveals Overbuilt Streets The “sneckdown” will show where even rush hour traffic fails to tread leading to significant reductions in street space allocated to motor vehicles. Of course this method only works for places where it snows regularly, which leaves out the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell.
Infrastructure news from the coffee capital of the US (home for Starbucks and other coffee companies, but not Seattle’s Best, which is located in Texas). Dangerous, unnecessary Seattle bike lane project moving forward There are two things that make me think this might not be an unbiased article: the credit is given to a Jason Rantz from a radio station and this line from the article: “The only people who like this idea are the small group of loud bike activists and “urbanists-at-all-costs” who bully anyone who stands in their way.”
A legal saga from Canuckistan. Alberta driver who crashed into teen cyclist to be sentenced in February “The Crown is asking for a sentence of 12 to 15 months while the defence is seeking three to six months.” Of course they are, they’re not the one stuck in the living hell of a shattered mind.
A cyclist escapes death by a terrorist act only because he and his bike put his neck significantly higher than a normal rider. Cyclist is almost GARROTTED after yobs strung a piece of electric flex across a bike path The picture showed what could have been a serious boobly trap. This was no “prank”, this was an attempt to kill.
And some people will just kill with a car or truck instead of going to all the trouble to rig a bike path. Hailsham cyclist captures near-miss incidents on camera I couldn’t watch the videos because they failed to load when I clicked on them. The stills were less than spectacular.
More videos from the tiny island nation of Malta. Watch: Cyclists’ near misses in Malta
I’m out of links and ready to get some more work done on the Mini Sprint-T. I have just about finished the dam that will support the body filler that will make the kit bucket like the Speedway bucket only 1/25 the the size. There will need to be a lot of work done to the cowl especially in the firewall area to get the vacuformed body as narrow as the Speedway body, but I think I have the skills to do it. I’m still trying to figure out the best way to do it, but I know I can do it. One way or another I will have the T-Bucket of my dreams even if it’s only 1/25 scale.
Billed @$0.02, Opus
Just got home and re-caloried from a day doing Good Things indirectly for my church. I went to a lesbian bar and handled the door for an HRC fund-raiser called HE said SHE said. I was familiar with the bar by reputation, because one of my tenants goes there when she’s had a bad week or two, but not having the required equipment to be a lesbian I didn’t go there (combined with the fact that I just don’t drink that often, I just finished my Christmas 6-pack of Shiner last week).
I can’t say too much about the event. That is not because of any NDA or privacy thing, but because I had a job to do at the door and doing that job pretty much prevented me from doing anything else. My job was to get people to sign up for the HRC as members. I’m a member, too, BTW. If you click on my home page link you will see a page called The Gay Marriage Challenge . If you check the posting date on that you can see it has been up there for a few years now, in response to a comment in the Virginia Pilot about how gay marriage was going to destroy “traditional” marriage. My response was “prove it, and give examples”. I expanded on that in The Gay Marriage Challenge to make it a contest that if anyone could prove two men or two women getting married would have any negative effect on any man-woman marriage I would personally speak against same-sex marriage and cite their arguments and sources as a reason. Since then several thousand people have read the post, and several hundred have posted comments. Most of those “comments” were links to gay porn, which got them deleted, and most of the non-porn “arguments” were variations on the “marriage is for children” fallacy (if marriage was strictly to produce children, then there would be an automatic annulment when the women entered menopause, or the youngest child reached 18 or 21).
Anyway, the people there seemed to have a good time that I could tell when I wasn’t actively working to get people signed up for the event. And there is a group of lesbians out there who “squee!” very loudly with harmonics that verge on the ultrasonic and that feel like icepicks in my ears. The date auction had one offering that came with a U-Haul gift certificate and I thought my ears never would stop ringing in addition to the permanent noise I got from trying to crush a truck roof with my skull and break a street with my face. The scores on that are truck roof zero, skull won, and street one, face zero. And I have a permanent noise in my head that varies between a high-pitched whistle and a wind in the pines, mostly the really annoying whistle. Anyway, all that noise just made the noise in my head all the worse…
Just to get things out in the open, Mrs. the Poet and I had a big fight, over the way my brain processes things now that I have brain damage.
The fight was over the way newspapers are placed on the table. I should mention that we subscribe to the paper on Wednesdays and Sundays, with additional papers at the discretion of advertisers. Mrs. the Poet was complaining she hadn’t finished reading Saturday’s paper when it was put in recycling. I told Mrs. the Poet that I didn’t even know we got a paper Saturday because every time I looked all I saw was Wednesday’s front page on the top of the pile. Mrs. the Poet said that I should just look through the pile if I wanted to see the current paper. My reply was if I don’t know there was a paper delivered that day how am I supposed to know to look through the pile for the new one? I mean for me this just makes common sense, put the newest paper on the top of the pile. There is even names for this, in computer terms it’s a LIFO stack, in physical terms it’s archeological filing. That way everyone knows when something new comes in because the top of the stack changes.
And this is stuff that would give problems to people who don’t have brain damage, and I have problems processing that I should deal with new data. I do the blog by following a set pattern of reading new messages in the Feed folder in my e-mail and filtering the links, then do the opening paragraph or sometimes two, then present the links with comments, then sometimes I have a closing paragraph. I have been using this format at least 5 days a week, down from 7, since shortly before this blog moved here in 2008. I had to change this format slightly when I was double-posting the blog to MySpace but after saying good-bye to them in January of 2009 the format and preparation has stayed pretty much the same since then. The only changes made has been dropping Sunday wrecks, then dropping Saturday posts completely after the RPG group moved start time up from 8PM (2000 hours) to gathering and setup at 1 (1300) and game at 2 (1400) which left no time to filter and post. But really I’m not dealing with anything “new” except the links, which aren’t “new” except for the information they contain. I do the same thing to the links every day, use the HTML for creating a link, copy and paste the URL in the proper place in the code, create the middle part of the link, then copy/paste the headline as the “title” of the link and close out the link tag. Add some cogent commentary and move to the next paragraph where I make a new link. If a bot could be taught to parse the headline from the code and text, and then make the cogent commentary I could be replaced with a few thousand lines of code, but the current State of the Art for AI hasn’t reached that point yet. When it does expect to see a new author for this blog, because I will pack it up and go on a long bike camping trip after I get my neck fixed.
And I almost forgot to mention for everyone to have a Happy Yule today.
May your days (and tree) be bright!
PSA, Opus the unkillable badass Poet
Today is one of the days when I really feel my brain damage. Mrs. the Poet and I were working the itinerary for the trip to NY and TN to visit with friends and family, and deciding which order will cost us the least money (I may have gotten paid last week but that doesn’t mean we have unlimited funds for the trip). I had no problem planning the trip for least travel time and lowest cost, what I was having the problem with was explaining the schedule and cost differences to Mrs. the Poet. The idiot box was going and the distraction was playing Hell with my ability to form sentences and relay information to Mrs. the Poet, to the point that I had to stop and scream in frustration. Part of the problem was even when I managed to get the information out correctly the previous errors in transmission had Mrs. the Poet so confuzzled she didn’t know what I was trying to say. Eventually (after the scream) I was able to get the information across to her about the benefits and deficits of the various schedules with benefits being mostly confined to less time en route and preferred seating.
Yesterday I went to A-Kon for the first time in years, and I have to say I don’t think I’ll be going back again. It wasn’t an A-Kon problem it was an Opus problem. I can’t stay on my feet that long without things getting really painful, and there was a dearth of places to sit down in the really interesting parts of the layout. Add to that the distances between things (it was a very large venue) and I needed a place to sit down and rest after walking to the places that had no place to sit which compounded my distress. I really need either smaller cons or cons with more seating in the dealers’ room. The problem is none of the cons here in DFW can be considered “small”…
The spring NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Pocono just finished with everyone in Jr. Nation is happy, Brad Keselowski fans less so as Bad Brad mis-timed a move to get some trash off his grill and lost the lead to Dale Jr. and ended up finishing second (with the trash still on his grill). The thing that got me late in the race was the number of cars on the lead lap with less than 50 miles to go. When I was a lad watching the first races held over at Pocono, they had less than 30 cars finish the 400 miles of the race, today with less than 50 miles to go they had 30 cars on the lead lap. That’s orders of magnitude improvement in reliability in the 40 years since I was a kid, or PROGRESS! in the engineering of the cars. About 20 or so years ago NASCAR decided to drop building the cars with parts from production cars and allowed more and more parts that were pure race that had never seen a production car or a street. Now there is nothing on a “stock” car that is anything resembling stock. It makes for a better show, that’s for sure. One thing it doesn’t make for is better street cars.
I’m still frustrated in locating raw stock for my “other” bike. The seat tube is a standard size, but the metals dealers that sell lot sizes I can afford are not carrying the size, and the ones that are carrying the size require a half-ton lot size per size of tubing. I need 1.25″ 0.120″ wall square tubing which is strong enough that I can work with mild steel without worrying about bending or breaking on impacts. I redesigned the swing arm to get a better leverage arm and to move the pickup point for the coilover to a structurally better location on the frame. What I have done on the new swing arm was to extend it so that the pickup point for the pivot is roughly above the bottom bracket at the point where the chainwheel picks up the chain so the pogo is reduced. This was easier to do because of the 1X9 drivetrain I have chosen for this bike. I can get within a mm of the point where the chainwheel picks up that chain, and the stresses from the spring/shock unit are placed close to the seat instead of feeding from the seat to the pickup point through a lot of structure. This resulted in less structure and a lighter frame. Now if someone would just sell me some raw stock for that dadgum seat tube I would be set.
I’m still contemplating building a car, too. There is a Toyota Camry wagon for sale on the way to the bus stop that with only a little bit of work will make a perfect long-distance touring car for 2 people. Switch the stock gas tank for something like a 22 or 32 gallon safety fuel cell and we are talking some serious range between fillups. I mean the stock tank on this model is something like 16 gallons, putting in that 32 gallon tank will double the range. Now to put the big tank in there something has to give and that “something” in this case is the spare tire, and the back seat. Since the design passenger load is just me and Mrs. the Poet the back seat is not a big loss and a little more work where the floor pan and the bottom support structure of the seat went the spare tire will have a new home leaving a flat load floor from the rear hatch to the backs of the front seats for lots of luggage. Since the floor is getting worked on anyway, why not smooth out the structure for better underbody aero? So reduced drag and a touch better gas mileage extends the cruise range even more. This is the mission profile that Mrs. the Poet has emphasized over the one I prefer of handling and speed for short races around traffic cones (SCCA Solo racing). Both are totally valid mission profiles (mine’s better) but Mrs. the Poet’s profile has the slight advantage of being useful for getting around on our vacation (mine’s better).
And now I need to help in the kitchen with Sunday Dinner, making sure the roasted vegetables don’t stick to the pan and burn, so I’m cutting this off now.
The headline pretty much spells out what I’m going to be writing about tonight, the rest is just details.
I went to Pagan Fellowship Night at my church tonight. That “fellowship” always includes drums and dancing and usually a 24 pack of Shiner Bock that I have one(1) of and no more. I like the taste of dark beers, with Shiner being one of my favorites. Tonight was different, because everyone was pushing beers on me because I didn’t have to walk, ride a bike, or take the bus home, so I could drink as much as I wanted. I was more polite than I should have been and ended up drinking 2 beers and 2 shots of tequila (with a salted slice of lime) in just the first hour of the event. And then I had 3 more (different brewerys’) beers over the next 3 hours. I’m a big guy, but as I pointed out in the headline I have a “head start” in the “walks like a drunk” contest because of the brain and nerve damage I took from the wreck. So all that alcohol did my gait and coordination no good at all. In addition my concentration is shot to hell, but at least there is still only one of everything in my vision.
At this point I’m not sure of what effects this is having on my judgment, but since I’m writing about it in a public blog I’m going to go with “judgment is shot to Hades” as an assessment. I’m sure Hephaestus is just overjoyed my alcohol consumption has temporarily sent me to the arms of another deity, but this too shall pass. And even as I type this out my liver is doing massive efforts to clear my bloodstream of toxic additives, as my head has cleared considerably in the last half hour.
But this experiment has made me know: One beer or other alcoholic beverage per hour maximum. More than that and my poor liver can’t keep up with the workload, and my damaged brain can’t function with more than that much alcohol in my system.
Actually the thought I had was on something totally different, but that thought vanished and I couldn’t find it again, because of the brain damage. So now I’m back to thinking about brain damage.
The thing that really “gets” me is that my TBI was on the mild side as far as immediate effects went. I really didn’t discover anything until I was back at work trying to run searches for the symptoms the clients were giving me on the phone, and unlike before the wreck when I got exactly what I needed in the first try I couldn’t get anything to come up in several tries. That’s when I started to get a hint that something wasn’t right. After I lost that job when the office was sent to Bangalore, I started noticing other things missing, as all of a sudden I couldn’t follow the action on the Spanish language TV channels and translating signs from Spanish to English had become an agonizing process instead of the read it and move on I had before the wreck. I started re-watching my Anime in the original Japanese and it no longer made sense until I read the subtitles. Eventually I discovered the only bits of foreign language I had were the things my mother used around the house to try to keep her French sharp, and the bits of Italian we used after we got “adopted” by the family that had no grandsons.
When I started trying to write poetry again I discovered that my ability to hear meter in my head as I wrote was gone. I could still read the stuff I had already written, but I could only rarely write anything new. As time went on those flashes of being able to write in meter became fewer and fewer until they stopped completely, sometime after 2006. That was also the time I stopped getting asked for job interviews when I had to present the application in person.
So, it is established that TBI is a major pain in the
tukuss butt. It has also been established that under the current system getting compensation for TBI is pretty much impossible unless you have visible symptoms that can be correlated to your TBI, like tremors or a limp. The problem is the worst effects of TBI are not physically evident, and that even mild cases of TBI can make a person permanently unemployable. Another problem is that when I was injured the technology to find my kind of brain injury was not widely available. To find the kind of injury that is now believed to be what I have an MRI needs to be done within two hours following the event that caused the injury, at the time I was injured MRI was not available at even the highest level trauma center in the area, which is where I was, the best trauma center in the surrounding 200 miles. I think they have MRI now, but not having it then made documenting my injury impossible.
Getting off the subject of my brain don’t work right, I have been converting a Friday the 13th Halloween mask into a winter face mask to keep my face warm this winter and still let me see where I’m going by having someplace for corrective lenses to attach and baffling to prevent my hot humid breath from fogging the lenses. I’m to the point now that I’m ready to paint the mask black and glue the foam baffles into the mask. The way I used to hold the lenses on the mask is really red-neck, the old pair of glasses had a pair of bars between the lenses that I could use a bolt through the mask and a wingnut to hold the frame to the mask. Like I said, red-neck, but when red-neck works is it really red-neck or just inelegant engineering?
Of course re-purposing a Halloween mask as winter protective equipment is already about as red-neck as it gets, but I prefer to think of it as “value-added engineering” rather than “red-neck”. As has been previously stated, the economic situation here at the the Poet house is somewhat dire. If I hadn’t found a total of $3 in loose change in the streets since Thursday I would not have been able to buy the stupid hockey mask. So I’m taking stuff I had around the house from Freecycling exchanges (foam), leftover from other projects (plastic paint), broken stuff (glasses) and making stuff I need for riding my bike this winter. Of course this means that now that I have the mask it won’t get cold enough to be able to use it this winter.
And as I was completing this post I remembered what I was going to write about originally, fueling the cyclist on a limited budget. When you have a $5 (that is FIVE dollars) to spend for groceries this week and you have a person that burns more than 4000 Calories a day and is losing weight that at this point does not need to be lost, what do you do? Well we get the perishables like milk and bread and hope we can ride on what we had in the pantry from the previous week. And I resign myself to coming in under my best weight at the Lab Rat Keeper the end this month. I still fit the classic definition of a cyclist, eating machine on wheels, but I’m lacking the material to process as an eating machine.