Journey to L.A. – May 12th, 2015

Promenade on the Peninsula Flyer May 2015

Promenade on the Peninsula Flyer May 2015

.

 Welcome back My Dear Shoevians to The Other Shoe. Well, it has been a difficult and very painful week. I am writing this on Saturday afternoon, May16th. The subject of this article is my recent ‘Journey to L.A.’. It is this trip, last Tuesday, which has left me crippled with pain this past week. Two years ago, the journey was difficult, but not really that painful. However, at about 5:00PM last Tuesday I was in such crippling pain that I could hardly move or speak. Again and again, over the passing days, I awoke to the same pain.

.

Danny @ Disneyland Transfer Point - Outbound

Danny @ Disneyland Transfer Point – Outbound

(Danny @ Disneyland Transfer Point – Outbound)

.

For all of you, My Dear Shoevians, who are unfamiliar with my circumstances? I am wheelchair/power chair bound and must make a journeyfrom here in southern orange county all the way into Rolling Hills Estates, above Los Angeles. Round trip… it takes just over eleven hours! So, today I am going to build a little story around some pictures and vies I made, this week, while on this ‘Journey to L.A.’

.

.

The video, above, was shot in the parking lot of my current residence at 7:50AM May 12th, 2015. In it I welcome all of you, My Dear Shoevians, to this article and the journey ahead. I made this trip, last, in February of this year. However, I was finishing up chemotherapy and was quite bereft of the energy needed to; write, upload, edit and publish that article. For that, I apologize to you, My Dear Shoevians. This journey takes a lot out of me, and by the end I am drained and in severe pain. My Dear Shoevians, you might well ask “Why?”. Why do I make a journey of this length, that spans over 11 hours, and leaves me completely drain and in severe pain? Check out the image below.

.

Dr. Gorlick’s Bio

Dr. Gorlick’s Bio

(Dr. Gorlick’s Bio)

.

Take a moment, My Dear Shoevians, and read this biography of my primary care physician. He studied medicine at Yale! He was an Associate Professor of Medicine and Instructor at UCLA St. Mary’s Hospital. Board certified in Internal Medicine and Geriatrics. Former Director of Laboratory Medicine at Pro Health Partners @ Los Alamitos Medical Center (where I met him, first) and supervises and is a Sub-investigator of Clinical Trials at his own “Peninsula Research Associates’.

.

I have to tell you, My Dear Shoevians, I do not know of… any other patients on Medicare that have as accomplished a physician as their primary care doctor. That is the “Why?” I make this journey, and I will continue to make this quarterly journey, as long as my health allows. I am very fortunate to have found, and obtain, Dr. Gorlick as my PCP. When I first started this relationship, Dr. Gorlick was practicing at Pro Health Partners right here at Los Alamitos Medical Center. That is a very short ride, taking less than a half hour each way.

.

Danny at Disneyland Transfer Lot

Danny at Disneyland Transfer Lot

(Danny at Disneyland Transfer Lot)

.

So, the pictures and videos are in chronological order. Starting with a video taken in the parking lot of my apartment, moving to a picture taken in the Disneyland Transfer Lot, and finishing (below) with a short video I made. This video was made, as I am outbound from Orange County to Rolling Hills Estates/Rancho Palos Verdes. The journey starts with me getting up at 6:00AM. My first ride picks me up, at home, at about 8:00AM. I arrive at the Disneyland Transfer Lot by 10:00AM and the L.A. Access bus arrives between 10:30AM-11:00AM.

.

.

Depending on traffic on the many freeways L.A. Access takes on any given ride. Add to that any/all other passengers that they pick-up and/or drop-off. This ride, in the L.A. Access Minivan, takes anywhere from two to three hours. I, usually, arrive at Promenade on the Peninsula by 12:00PM to 1:20PM. I have a standing appointment, with Dr. Gorlick at the Palos Verdes Medical Group, for every three months on the second Tuesday of the month at 1:45PM. I am his very first appointment of the day. This gives us all time to; review my ‘Agenda For Appointment’ (a handout that I prepare and print up prior to every appointment), go over any tests/scans/surgeries since out last visit, then we both talk about our families.

.

Danny at Palos Verdes Medical Group May 2015

Danny at Palos Verdes Medical Group May 2015

(Danny at Palos Verdes Medical Group May 2015)

.

This appointment usually takes about 15 to 20 minuets, and we all leave smiling and very happy to have spent time together. Now, My Dear Shoevians, I have to tell you about the Mall where Dr. Gorlick has this office! It is a very ‘Upscale’ mall situated at the top of the PV Hills. There is a ‘Lord & Taylor’, an ‘Abercrombie and Fitch’ and an indoor skating rink. This place is a very upscale mall and I get a big kick out of going there to see my doctor. I always, as you can see from the pictures and videos, dress up very nice.

.

.

I just get a big kick going to see my Medicare doctor in this kind of mall, with all the well-to-do people scampering around in the Land Rovers and BMWs. I mean, I cannot afford to get my teeth fixed, from the falls I had back in April, but I get to travel 34 miles in about five hours. Five hours there, and five hours back. Now that we have completed our journey in, let us start our return to Westminster. The last video I have embedded (above) was taken from the Third Floor of the Promenade on the Peninsula. If you look closely you might be able to see the hills just behind me and the cellular towers and the like on the very top of the PV Hills.

.

Danny at Promenade on the Peninsula

Danny at Promenade on the Peninsula

(Danny at Promenade on the Peninsula)

.

After our appointment, Allen and I, take a few moments to look around the Mall. Once we have finished our Window-Shopping we find a nice quite place to sit back and enjoy peanut butter sandwiches and Coke Zeros that we have brought along with us. We sit and talk, taking in the view, then work our way back down to the ground floor to await our return L.A. Access minivan. It usually arrives between 2:30PM and 3:00PM. Now, this is the kicker! Where it took us an hour to two hours (tops!) to get to my doctor’s office?

.

The return ride on L.A. Access always takes three to three and a half hours! For the first year I would always schedule my pick-up, at Disneyland Transfer Lot, for 6:00PM. However, they (L.A. Access) would always be late. So, now I schedule for a pick-up at 6:30PM. This makes my day a little-to-a-lot longer, but it is better than having to call OCTA while in transit. The video, below, was taken at the Disneyland Transfer Lot at approximately 6:30PM.

.

.

When OCTA (the Orange County equivalent of L.A. Access) arrives at the Disneyland Transfer Lot it is, usually, between 6:30PM and 7:00PM. On this occasion it did not arrive until 7:30PM. My journey is, usually, complete by 8:00PM when I am dropped off in the parking lot at home. One this journey we arrived, in the parking lot, at 9:00PM! Thus creating a THIRTEEN-HOUR JOURNEY!

.

Danny at Disneyland Transfer Lot –HOMEBOUND!)

Danny at Disneyland Transfer Lot –HOMEBOUND!)

(Danny at Disneyland Transfer Lot –HOMEBOUND!)

.

Many of you, My Dear Shoevians, are very aware that I did not publish this (last) week. This is the reason why that happened. Why I was completely unable to sit behind the keyboard and create this article. Why I was unable to; write, download images, upload images, edit and publish the regularly scheduled articles that you and I love so dearly. It was not from a lack of material. It was not from a lack of desire to entertain and inform all of you, My Dear Shoevians. It was, quite simply, because I was unable to move for several days.

.

Now I hope that all of you, My Dear Shoevians, understand my absence and accept my deep and heartfelt apology. I very much enjoy writing and publishing for your enjoyment. This act helps give my life meaning, and joy. I will do my level best to work to write and publish more of our favorite weekly series articles, here at The Other Shoe. We have reached that point in our journey today, My Dear Shoevians.

.

The end of this article and my telling of the tale of my ‘Journey to L.A.!’. I hope that I have entertained and distracted, made you laugh and helped you to relate. One final bit of new business before I go. If you follow me, or The Other Shoe, on Facebook (just click on either link to ‘Like’ or ‘Friend’) then you are already aware. For all of you, My Dear Shoevians, that are not my Friends yet.. or have ‘Liked’ The Other Shoe… I have some news!

.

I have started an all new THIRD location for our blog, The Other Shoe! Working with my Google account and my Google-Plus I have created a mirror image blog at BlogSpot! Here is the URL for the all NEW The Other Shoe!(Just click on the name, right there) As of 3:00AM this morning, the all new location is 95% updated with the other locations. As a matter of fact, this new location has all the articles that are published at my Word Press location. It is just missing the 2010, 2011, and early 2012 publications from my primary blog location at blog dot com here: The Other Shoe.

.

Be sure to drop by and take a look. All the articles, all the images, all the content will be the exact same as the other two locations. All that is different is the look of this new blog location. I am working very hard to increase our readership. Increase just how many My Dear Shoevians there are! Thank you for your time. Thank you for your support. Thank you for dropping by, and most of all… Thank you for being a SHOEVIAN!

.

Thank you!

.

Adieu!

.

Danny Hanning Writer, Editor, Research Staff and Publisher at The Other Shoe

Danny Hanning Writer, Editor, Research Staff and Publisher at The Other Shoe

© 2010 – 2015 Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

Advertisements

The Death of ‘American Exceptionalism’

Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty

.

Welcome back My Dear Shoevians to The Other Shoe. It is with a heavy heart, and with much trepidation, I write this article and bring it to you, My Dear Shoevians. The title, alone, took me weeks to… discover. While I wanted to draw in readers, I felt a responsibility to convey the seriousness of the problem, without scaring readers away. I am a proud American, proud Texan, and proud journalist. I cannot tell you just how many times, in any given day, these three convictions clash. It is more times, in a given day, than I find comfort.

.

While other boys, in my Texan neighborhood, were out playing ball… swimming in the local pool… or getting into trouble, I was reading. Since the age of six my mother kept her sons inside during the summer months. It was not until I was in my 20’s that I read an article, and discovered why. My mother kept four boys inside during the summer, until I was nearly a teen, each and every year and I had no idea why until she had passed.

.

The fear had started long before I was born; however, it came to a head just a year before I was born. In Cork Ireland, during the summer of 1956, the number of cases of polio reached 499. It was the highest incidence of polio infection since 1904. The news rocked the world, and reverberated throughout America. In the South mothers started keeping their children inside all summer. My mother was horrified Danny might end up back in leg braces. (IT is a little known fact I was born with misshapen leg bones. I wore metal braces on both my legs until I was five years old).

.

1958 Children’s Polio Clinic in Cork, Ireland

1958 Children’s Polio Clinic in Cork, Ireland

[1]

(1958 Children’s Polio Clinic in Cork, Ireland)

.

My mother was scared to death one of her sons would end up with polio, so the Hanning boys spent much of the summer locked up in the house reading. At the beginning of the summer, and I am talking just days after we came home for summer break, Mom would take us to the library and told us to check out as many books as we were allowed. On that day I would come into my bedroom, with a stack of books that covered my face, and put my books in a corner. Each day I would move books from one corner, and once read, to another corner of the room. Twelve. Twelve was the number of books I checked out on the first day of each and every summer till I was 13.

.

Three weeks later, my mother would take me back to the library. Back to return the 12 books I had finished, and to check out 12 more. From six to thirteen my mother and I made five trips to the library, each and every summer. All because my mother was scared to death her little Danny would end up with braces on his legs… again.

.

I still read every single day, what time I am not now writing. Unlike the 60’s, today I find myself greatly distressed by what I read. Six months ago, I was reading some articles at some financial web site. I think it was the CNN Financial pages. In one article I learned; in 1870 England was designated ‘World’s Largest Economy’. I kept reading and discovered that, in 1872 America was designated ‘World’s Largest Economy’. America had quite a run, with this title. America holding this title, year after year, decade after decade. This run on this distinguished title was one of the reasons we were all raised with the idea of ‘American Exceptionalism’[2].In October of 2014 America was robbed of this distinguished title by China[3]! China ‘overtakes U.S. as the the world’s largest economy’: IMF says economy is now worth £11 trillion as America falls into second place for the first time since 1872[4]

.

‘American Exceptionalism’ is alive and well all through our Southern states. In beer halls and VFW halls, in hair salons and PTA meetings, and in churches and schools, mothers and fathers, sons and daughters proudly speak of ‘American Exceptionalism’. I was raised believing in ‘American Exceptionalism’. It is my unfortunate duty to inform you, My Dear Shoevians, that… while our cumulative backs were turned? “American Exceptionalism’ became a euphemism without merit. That while some Americans may still, wrong-headedly, believe that America is (somehow) exceptional juxtaposed to other nations. It is no longer true.

.

From 1872 until 2014 America held the title of “World’s Largest Economy”. I just thought that bears repeating. Now, My Dear Shoevians, I am very aware that some of you might be pretty disturbed by the demise of ‘America Exceptionalism’. Continuing, if this article has, already, rubbed you the wrong way? Well, if that is the case you might well want to skip the rest of this article. However, as a writer… a journalist… as your friend I suggest that you keep reading this article. Things are not going to get any better, for America, in the rest of this article. Yet, I am convinced that it is better to keep reading and conclude this article more informed. Even more important, how can we as Americans stand a chance of regaining our title if we have yet to come to grips with loosing the title? The answer is, none.

.

Oh, and while we are on the topic of financial prowess, I regret to inform you, My Dear Shoevians, that China (stole from America) still holds the title of ‘Fastest Growing Economy on Earth’[5] . With China holding duel financial titles, that America held for generations, we will be hard pressed to regain those titles and regain the mantle of ‘American Exceptionalism’.

.

The days of double digit growth are over. China will be lucky to grow over 7%. Despite that, China will continue to be the world’s fastest growing major economy this year and next, and arguably into 2016 as well, says Bill Adams, senior international economist for PNC Financial in Pittsburgh.”[6]

.

As I warned you, My Dear Shoevians, above the news will only get worse and worse as this article progresses. As far as financial news I have, unfortunately for you, saved the worst for last. Please do not shoot the messenger. K? Let me lead you all into this a little slowly, so as to avoid culture shock. For as long as I can remember we Americans have made fun… made light of… based comedy sketches on our funny speaking neighbors to the north. Canadians.

.

Yes, for generations we America have had many a good laugh at the expense of our neighbor to the north. We made fun of the way they speak. We have made fun of their Royal Mounties (the ‘Rocky & Bulwinkle Show’ regularly got laughs thanks to Canadians). From ‘The Rocky & Bulwinkle Shoe’ to ‘Saturday Night Live’ and everywhere in between (including ‘South Park’) Americans and American comedians have made bank making fun of the Canadian people. That changes today!

.

Today because it was today when I was made aware of the following, disturbing, factoid. Well, actually, it is more like several factoids. While (sorry) faux snooze was pumping up America’s cumulative self-esteem, reality outpaced their propaganda. Now, you will never hear what I am about to tell you on faux snooze… you will hear it from ME! I have never wanted a relationship with my readers (you, My Dear Shoevians) based on falsehoods. I have no appetite for lies… falsehoods… or being disingenuous. My relationship with you, My Dear Shoevians, may trouble you at times, but you can rest assured that I will never lie to you!

.

Here is the disturbing news about our neighbors to the north, Canada. (Ummm, we may well want to stop making fun of them, too) Here it IS! Canada’s Middle Class now are wealthier than America’s Middle Class! Here is what I am reading, from several sources.

.

“The American middle class, long the most affluent in the world, has lost that distinction.”[7]

And…

“After-tax middle-class incomes in Canada — substantially behind in 2000 — now appear to be higher than in the United States. The poor in much of Europe earn more than poor Americans.”[8]

And…

“The numbers, based on surveys conducted over the past 35 years, offer some of the most detailed publicly available comparisons for different income groups in different countries over time. They suggest that most American families are paying a steep price for high and rising income inequality.”[9]

OK, let’s take a few moments to gain your composure. I am right here… holding your hand, My Dear Shoevians. Now, I know that this is all coming a quite a shock… to some of you. I understand that this information can be quite troubling, I understand. I, on the other hand, I have read the writing on the walls for the better part of a decade. I first became aware of this growing troubles as far back as 1996. The depth and breadth of the growing reality started coming in to sharper focus as early as 2003. In 1996 I moved from the health care industry, I was a State Board Register Pharmacy Technician in; acute care, clinical care, retail and home health care. Today, I realize that if I had stayed in medicine I could well have missed the signs.

.

OK, now I have given you all a moment to regain your composure… let me continue. If you haven’t been seated, so far, it might be best if you sat down now. Are you ready? Here is what is coming next in a nutshell.

.

Canadians pay lower college tuition, cheaper medical care and less income inequality. What is the US doing wrong?”[10]

.

Hang on… sit down… put your head between your knees… breath in deep breaths, in through your nose and out through your mouth. Take a moment. … … … You OK? Alright, now I will start unpacking the statement I quoted above. While America was busy shuffling the majority of the gains of the recovery to the 1% and the 0.02% Canada was taking care of Average Canadians! What a novel concept, eh?

.

However, before I go further into what Canada is doing right, let me outline what America is doing wrong! In two graphs thanks to the New York Times. (Yeah, funny place for ME to be researching info, huh?)

.

Other countries’ middle class incomes have grown since 2000. The United States’ has not. Here is a chart of SIX other major nations showing their INCREASE in median income since 2000. America ranks LAST (a trend you will see more and more in this article).

CHANGE IN MEDIAN INCOME SINCE 2000 BY COUNTRY

Britain 19.7%

Canada 19.7%

Ireland 16.2%

Netherlands 13.9 %

Spain 4.1%

Germany 1.4%

United States 0.3% [11]

Conversely, in America all of the financial gains since the recovery have been concentrated at the TOP in America. Of all the nations included in these studies, Canada has seen… not only have incomes increased. At the same time Canada’s costs have decreased!

.

Increases in Income in America ONLY at Top

Increases in Income in America ONLY at Top

(Increases in Income in America ONLY at Top)

[12]

.

Now, for those that are not as good with graphs and graphics, and I was not always ‘good’ with these thigns… honestly I had to get better with graphs and graphics for financial data when I started working as a senior manager for a Beverly Hills Real Estate Management Group (‘Domino Realty’ of Beverly Hills). First, income disparity Canada as compared to America. Here is a salient sentence that I think will help put this into perspective.

.

Median after-tax income for a family of four in both Canada and the United States hit $75,000 in 2010 and as later income surveys show that Canadians have earned larger wage gains than their counterparts south of the border in the years since then, Canadian income now is ahead of that in the US. The gap is even wider further down the wealth ladder.”[13]

.

Now, My Dear Shoevians, ‘wealth’ is about more than just income. To put in the simplest terms, it is like the difference between Gross income and Net income. While Americans have not experienced the same gains in income, our Canadian brothers are also facing smaller costs!

.

Let’s be honest, My Dear Shoevians, if Americans were not just getting the same level of wage increases, as Canada, and it ended there… well, I just wouldn’t have a story with the same importance. Nope, while Canadians are outstripping of wages by 16%+ in the past decade, they are also experiencing lower; taxes, health care costs, and tuition costs. That is what adds UP!

.

Canada seems to realize this: that’s why the government subsidizes the vast majority of the tuition tab. Today, if a Canadian teenager gets into Queen’s, McGill or Dalhousie, or one of any number top universities, their tuition will still set them back only $6,500 a year or so. Princeton, analogous in status to Queen’s or McGill? Next year’s tuition bill will be $40,170.”[14]

.

Therefore, once Canada’s college graduates hit the market place, they are getting paid more than their American counterparts. But, also (and more importantly from what my niece tells me) these graduates turned professionals are paying a FRACTION in repaid tuition. Graduates/Professionals are making more money upon entering their field and they are paying out (loosing) less of that income paying back banks and skyrocketing tuitions and interest rates.

.

Ok, so keeping score. Canadians (over the past decade) on average are taking home more of the benefits of the recovery and paying less for their (or their children’s) educational expenses. I really wish that I could end it here… that this was all the ‘Bad News’. Alas, I am not yet done and there is yet one more bit of ‘Bad News’ for Americans. Now, for the final part of the puzzle. My Dear Shoevians, when I finish this first part about the Canadian Middle Class becoming richer than America’s Middle Class? I still have one more section to this article. The last section will be the last area where we have lost our “American Exceptionalism’. Hang in there!

.

SO, to recap, Canadian incomes have increased by about 19.7% over the past decade, while American incomes have increased only 0.3%! While American students are paying crippling tuition and interest rates, our northern brothers Canadians have the majority of the tab picked up by their Federal Government and are paying 0% interest rates on the monies barrowed. BOY, I hope my niece Jessica is reading this article. Hey, Jess? Can you imagine paying only $40K for your whole educational tab… and 0% interest???

.

For our next field of humiliation, let us compare Health Care Costs between Canada and America. Canada, like all the other industrialized nations on the planet (except America), have a ‘Nationalized Health Care System’. That means that to go to your Primary Care Physician is only a co-pay and no monthly premium taken out of your check. Say you need a major surgery? That is covered by your nation’s single payer nationalized health care system. As if I need to go on more about the lower health care costs, I simply cannot leave out the fractional cost of prescription medicines, as compared to America. NO premiums, low co-pays, cheap medications all add up BIG! Rather than go on with more and more statistics (I still have the LATER part of this article to go), let me put the health care costs into perspective with ONE chart.

.

World Health Organization National Ratings 2013

World Health Organization National Ratings 2013

(World Health Organization National Ratings 2013)

.

America has the highest per capita expenditures for health care and rank from fifth to ELEVENTH in the world. Re-cap; Canadians (on the whole, especially the Middle Class) are: getting paid more, paying less for health care and related health care expenses. So, Canadians are taking home larger paychecks, paying less for health care for themselves and their children and when those children decide to get a college education? Regardless of if it is the parents that pay, or the children, when hey graduate their burden is a fraction of what we pay in America.

.

US Health Care Ranks Last Among Wealthy Countries

US Health Care Ranks Last Among Wealthy Countries

.

These are the factors that have pushed America’s Middle Class BEHIND Canada’s Middle Class. Hard working; teachers, dentists, veterinarians, firemen, policemen and construction workers are ALL better off living within the borders of our Northern Neighbor… than here at home in America. America the old home of “American Exceptionalism’.

.

Now, My Dear Shoevians, I have laid out the crippling disparity in income equality between America and our European and Canadian brethren. Showed how China has stolen our long-held titles of “World’s Largest Economy” and ‘Fastest Growing Economy”. Outlined how Canadians earn more, and take more home. Outlined our nation’s financial failures, and saddening income inequality. These are huge factors that degrade our nation’s international standing, and tarnish our “American Exceptionalism’. Now, My Dear Shoevians, I have one final area of failure I simply must share with you. Again, this whole task sickens me. However, if we are ever able to regain our ‘American Exceptionalism’ we simply must face all our failures. Here is the last straw.

.

EDUCATION.

.

Education is how to make sure we’ve got a workforce that’s productive and competitive”

—President George W. Bush

.

Education is an economic issue when nearly eight in 10 new jobs will require workforce training or higher education by the end of this decade. Education is an economic issue when we know beyond a shadow of a doubt that countries that out-educate us today will outcompete us tomorrow”.

—President Barack Obama

.

As a boy, and later as a young man, my father stressed the importance of “good education”. IF often told me that he would rather his children received a good education, than have fun during their school years. “In life you have only two choices. You can work hard of you can work smart.” He grew up working hard, and had a deep desire that his children would grow up and work smart. He would spend whole evenings, after getting home from his job in Houston, sitting with me doing homework and drilling spelling tests.

.

My father took a personal interest in my education. Not limiting my education to just school, he would take me into the garage (where he ran his own ‘T.V./Radio/Appliance Repair’ business – K & M Electronics). There, in the garage, my father taught me; Morse code, how to read electronic schematics, resistance, capacitance, ‘Ohms Law’, the “West Virginia Formula’ [W=V/A], and the ‘Rules of the Road’ for Ham Radio broadcasting. Starting in Houston and continuing into Pearland, my father (on weekends and holidays) would have me help him run “Phone Patches’. With his ham radio set-up he would connect to Radio Operators at forward bases in Vietnam. With the information he gave me I would call the parents of a serviceman in Vietnam. Once on the line we would connect the parents on the telephone to their son on the ham radio.

.

I cannot count the times we connected worried parent with their sons serving at and near frontlines all over Vietnam. It was a very rewarding feeling to help families connect from halfway around the world. My father did not get his high school diploma until after he served in our military during World War 2. He did not have the education he wanted, until later in life. I do not know if he worked with Ken or Darrell, the way he worked with me on homework and studies. All I know is that I was extremely grateful I grew up with a father that valued my education, and educational opportunities.

.

As a boy… a young man… and an adult I have taken advantage of every single educational opportunity I encountered. In 1989, after my head injury (a typewriter fell thirty feet and struck me in my head and cervical spine), I entered in a technical training program for Pharmacy Technician. I graduated Valedictorian of my class with the very first 4.0 GPA, in five years of the school’s history. Upon graduation, and acceptance at Long Beach Memorial Hospital, I was offered an open-ended opportunity to come back and teach. Since that time I have taken courses in, Unix from A.T.& T., Hexadecimal and Electronic Switching Systems (used by all the phone companies at the time) from Star-Tel here in Irvine, CA and in business automation from my (then) mentor Ginger Lindberg (who worked for Mohawk Data).

.

I have been very lucky to have educational opportunities span my lifetime. My father taught me basic electronics, but I taught myself all about constructing and repairing home computers, even building three of my first computers from parts. Education is not only important for the individual, it is important for a workforce and a nation. I, and my contemporaries, were very fortunate to grow up in a nation (and a state, Texas) that placed a high value on education and it showed. It showed with America leading all other industrialized nations in; mathematics, science, and reading comprehension. These educational opportunities and standards, of the late 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, were instrumental in America’s international standing and in our perception of ‘American Exceptionalism”. That is not the case, today.

.

My Dear Shoevians there is no “American Exceptionalism” without education. The workforce for the twenty-first century must be proficient in; mathematics, scientific principals, and reading comprehension. So that everyone can follow along, let me start with the basics, overall proficiency (quality) of a nation’s educational system. The chart, below, is from 2012 and compares the quality of the educational system in 29 countries. America rates TWENTY-SIXTH (26) out of twenty-nine (29) countries. America is BEHIND; Barbados, Costa Rica, Lebanon, Malta and Austria.

.

2012 Educational System Ratings by Country

2012 Educational System Ratings by Country

[15]

(2012 Educational System Ratings by Country)

.

Now, My Dear Shoevians, this fall did not happen over night. It took America generations to build up our educational system to the high point I was fortunate enough to take part. The fall… roughly corresponds to the dominance of the Republican Party, starting in 2000. With a trend starting with President George W. Bush, and continuing through our Republican controlled Congress, less and less funding goes to education. States, with Republican controlled State Houses, continue this trend of under funding public education. Punishing teachers unions, and blaming teachers for failing students. Cut monies, and then blame teachers for the failures of students and their parents. Remember, my education did not stop at the schoolroom door. It continued into my home, into the garage and even in Boy Scouts on camping expeditions.

.

So, the current Quality of the American Educational System puts us at 26th in a survey of 29 countries. I say that it hasn’t always been this bad, but do I have any evidence to back up my claims? Glad you asked. Here is a chart that shows America’s educational standing in; science and math from 2000 to 2012.

.

National Rankings by the National Center for Educational Statistics

Science

  • 2000: the U.S. scores ranked 14th among the 28 OECD countries and 14th of 32 total nations.
  • 2003: 19th among 30 OECD countries and 22nd among 41 overall.
  • 2006: 21st among 30 OECD countries and 27th among 57 overall.
  • 2009: 17th among 34 OECD countries and 23rd among 65 overall.
  • 2012: 20th among 34 OECD countries and 28th among 65 overall.

Math

  • 2000: the U.S was 18th among 28 OECD countries and 19th of 32 total nations.
  • 2003: 24th among 30 OECD countries and 27th among 41 overall.
  • 2006: 25th among 30 OECD countries and 35th among 57 overall.
  • 2009: 25th among 34 OECD countries and 31st among 65 overall.
  • 2012: 27th among 34 OECD countries and 36th among 65 overall.[16]

.

[OCED stands for Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development]

.

This chart shows that, just over the past twelve years, America’s standing in mathematics has slipped from 14th to 34th. In science America has slipped (during the same period of time) from 1`8th to 34th. Now, My Dear Shoevians, one could counter that this is just one ranking done by one organization and (therefore) proves little to nothing. There is a kernel of truth in that line of thinking. Therefore let me share with you, My Dear Shoeivans, more charts with more statistics and let’s see if there really is a downward trend.

.

2012-2013 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA)

2012-2013 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA)

(2012-2013 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA)

.

Now, I was unable to locate a chart (by PISA) that shows a decade in review. However, if we look closely to this chart from 2012/2013 we can clearly see America ranks; 31st in Mathematics, 24th in science and 21st in reading comprehension. Not shown on the chart is that America slipped from; 25th to 31st in math since 2009; from 20th to 24th in science; and from 11th to 21st in reading, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.[17]

.

I do not mean to alarm anyone, but I would like to draw everyone’s attention to the top line of the graph above in all three categories. The Number One slot in; Mathematics, Science and Reading Comprehension is Shanghai-China! Ok, let me do a little article-related mathematics. In this article I have showed evidence that China has displaced America as “World’s Largest Economy”, “Fastest Growing Economy” and now #1 in mathematics, Science and Reading Comprehension. I do not believe that these factors are mutually exclusive. Meaning, it do not think it is any coincidence that the nation that leads in math, science and reading also leads in economic growth and size. These factors are not mutually exclusive and they show a direct correlation between leading in education and leading in economic might.

.

Educational Performance 15 year Olds in Top 40 Nations

(Educational Performance 15 year Olds in Top 40 Nations)

.

In our final chart for this article I have scrounged up a chart that shows the ranking of the top forty nations in math and science comparing 2006 and 2012. In both categories America ranks below the OECD average, and drops in both categories, too. My Dear Shoevians, it simply must be crystal clear (by now) of the linkage between our failing educational system and our failure in “American Exceptionalism”. We have to put and end to education taking the back seat, or last seat, when it comes to funding our states’ educational systems and our educational national priorities.

.

If we do not work to make these changes now, it will be too late all too soon. I have worked very hard to provide you with the most up-to-date statistics, charts and information. This is a very high priority for me, and it needs to be for our next; President, Speaker of the House, Senate Majority Leader, Majority of the House and Majority of the Senate. Any other decisions will place the future of our nation, our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in peril. This is not hyperbole, this is factual eveidence present with passion and conviction.

.

Thank You!

.

Adieu!

.

Author/Editor Danny Hanning in Rolling Hills Estates February 2015

Author/Editor Danny Hanning in Rolling Hills Estates February 2015

© 2010 – 2015 Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe


Notes From Behind the Keyboard – February 6th, 2015

.

Danny Hanning

Danny Rolling Hills Estates

.

 Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe. My goodness has it really been over a month since I last posted? Yes, it has! For most of you, My Dear Readers, this comes as no surprise. My battle with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma has taken the last little bit of strength from my body. Leaving me quite bereft of the physical abilities needed to write and publish. Normally, I would apologize for this extended hiatus, today… I am not. My adventure with chemotherapy has come to an end.

.

Unfortunately the chemotherapy did not have the desired results. From what I am told, these drugs did not “knock back…” my disease as much as my oncologist has anticipated. Therefore, we have started a round of radiation therapy. This will last another couple of weeks, and then I will be finished with all the toxic… exposures. With any luck, once I am finished with this current treatment I will be relatively free of this cancer.

.

My Dearest Readers, I have many videos from the past several months. Videos of me heading to treatment, videos of me during treatment, and a few of Prince Alexander playing and being my little boy rat. It is my desire and intent that, once I am recovered from these treatments, I will be sharing all of these videos with all of you. My Dear Readers, I genuinely long to return to a regular and full writing and publishing schedule.

.

Do you all remember what that was like? Five to seven articles every single week. A weekly edition of ‘The Mars Report’ with all the newest information and images from Curiosity and the Opportunity rovers. Weekly editions of ‘News From Around the World’ with all the news that does not appear on the major media outlets web sites. Weekly editions of ‘The Horror in Smithville’ with the latest antics of Timmy and Archer if their fight against ‘The Tall Man’ and the upcoming adventure @ the Harvest Carnival. Weekly editions of ‘A Week in Review’ and the antics of Prince Alexander in ‘Sunday Funnies’!

.

I have not forgotten all the wonderful articles and all the wonderful experiences that we shared here at The Other Shoe. Nor have I forgotten how wonderful it is to write and entertain all of you, My Dearest Readers, from all over this great planet Earth. I really had no idea just how bad these chemotherapy treatments would slam my health. I really had no idea just how much these treatments would negatively effect my neruopathy in my left hand. I really ad no idea just now bad things would be, or I just might have opted out of getting these treatments.

.

All I can hope is that you, My Dearest Readers, will come back once I start writing and publishing, again. For I have dearly missed all of you… deeply. I would like to promise that this weekend I will return to my regular writing and publishing schedule. However, I have never lied to you, My Dearest Readers, before and I am not about to start now. Terrible as it may be? Just writing these two pages has taken a great deal of energy and focus. Looking back? I really am amazed at the amount of content I generated all by myself. Over just under five years I wrote, edited, and published nearly SIX HUNDERED articles for your reading pleasure.

.

When I consider all the effort that goes into just one edition of ‘The Mars Report’! Downloading images for the article, writing the article and embedding the images, uploading the images on to both blog servers, uploading the text, and then integrating the images (and adding descriptions) for as many as ten images. Honestly, it would take me up to four to six hours just to get from start to finish for just one edition of ‘The Mars Report’. It was a labor of love, My Dearest Readers. A love of all things extraterrestrial, and a love of all of you My Dearest Readers.

.

Well, that brings us to the end of this edition of Notes From Behind the Keyboard’. I do hope that all of you, My Dearest Readers, keep checking back and drop by often. With all luck and a bit of extra strength, you can look forward to me adopting a partial publication schedule by the end of February, or the first of March. I know that, sometime in March, my oncologist will start (again) the process of ‘Staging my Cancer’. That will mean PET scans, blood tests, and most likely another bone marrow test.

.

As always I will keep all of you, My Dearest Readers, fully informed on the results of these tests. Fear not, even if I loose this battle with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma? I will continue to write and publish so long as I have life. It is my heartfelt desire to complete ‘The Horror in Smithville’. I already have the final chapters in my head… and the bloody and violent conclusion… it just is not on paper or saved on a hard drive. It is my deeply felt desire to start, and finish, ‘The Adventures of Princess Nadia’, too. At least the first book of the series. If I have my way, I will manage to write (and get published) all FIVE books that will make up her story.

.

In closing, I would like to take a moment to say “Thank you!” to; Ian Cottier, Jason Kleppinger, and James Coate for their kind support during the holidays past. Without their kindness and support I would not have had the genuine thrill of a Christmas Dinner or ANY presents under the tree. Times are tough all over, and I fully understand. I am just thrilled to have friends, and My Dearest Readers, that care enough… and trust me enough to make donations to help me find some small happiness. I am hopeful that when I get my novel works finished… that I find a receptive publisher. That I can get my works published… and never have to ask for the help or assistance of friends, readers, or family… ever again. I just hope that I make it that far. 🙂

.

Adieu!

.

Thank you!

.

Danny in Rolling Hills Estates - Rancho Palos Verdes - PV Medical Group Noember 2014

Danny in Rolling Hills Estates – Rancho Palos Verdes – PV Medical Group Noember 2014

.

© 2010 – 2015
Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

 

The Battle Rages On…

Danny Hanning @ Chemotherapy

Danny Hanning @ Chemotherapy

.

Welcome back My Dear Shoevians to The Other Shoe. First, I would like to wish everyone a “Happy New Year!” I don’t know about you, My Dear Shoevians, but I really needed a ‘new’ year. 2014 had become filled with; pain, suffering, sadness, darkness, confusion, and an overwhelming sense of depression. 2014 brought cancer from something that plague my; father’s father, my father, and my brothers. To something tactical and very real to me. Good riddance to 2014!

.

Next, I would like to share two ‘new’ events in my life and the life of this blog. First, it is my unfortunate task to inform all of you, My Dear Shoevians, that my chemotherapy was not as “effective” at battling my cancer as my oncologist had hoped. The gains were minimal, and the effects of the treatment on my body, too severe. Therefore, within the next month of so, I will be moving from chemotherapy to radiation therapy. Anyone that has followed a family member through his or her fight with cancer knows what this treatment entails.

.

This move concerns me, as does the bodily harm of the chemotherapy. I am concerned about the radiation burns that will appear on my face. Yes, the area they will ‘nuke’ will be my lower right jaw and neck. For a time, I will have a large discolored area. I know it will pass, just like my hair “will grow back”. Knowing and seeing are two very different things. However, I will soldier onward in hopes that the combination of these two different treatment types will give me a great chance of not having to wage this war again, soon.

.

youtube=http://youtu.be/jwLsxzpJLtM

(Danny’s Chemotherapy December 29th 2014)

.

Second, I have not been able to keep up the articles at this blog like I had previously, and like I have wanted. This concerns me greatly, and I am at a loss as to find… assistance. However, with the coming of the ‘New Year’ I will redouble my efforts to make more regular postings. Much is happening with NASA’s Mars Exploration project, and I would very much like to keep all of you abreast. I assure you, My Dear Shoevians, that I will make every effort to keep you abreast of these historic events.

.

Since I last posted, I have undergone another chemotherapy treatment. Below is a short video I made during that treatment. You know, My Dear Shoevians, I had ‘good intentions’ when this battle started. Intentions to make this blog a journal of my journey through my cancer treatment. Boy did I underestimate the toll these treatments would demand! Now understand that this chemotherapy is not happening to someone in ‘good health’. Not to someone that jogs frequently, or goes to the gym on a regular basis. My body and health were already compromised by my ongoing health issues.

.

For me, this was more like kitting a guy when he is already down… with a baseball bat. I am not ‘complaining’ I am just giving everyone some perspective. Some understanding of just why I have been unable to keep the commitments I have made to you, My Dear Shoevians. Now I am going to give you a little insight into just what you might also be reading, here at The Other Shoe, in the upcoming editions.

.

March tenth 2010 I wrote and published my first article for this blog. I started this blog, as I have told you My Dear Shoevians, to be a small counterweight to the overwhelming deluge of negative and harmful media and dialogue coming from the far extremes of the conservative movement. Truthfully, I have been remiss in this original goal. I stepped back from political writing and publications in an effort to halt the alienation of some of my readers. Some of my readers, in the South and in Texas, had become deeply disturbed by my writings. Then, they tied their support for me… for my many ‘causes’ to a kind of control over what I wrote and published.

.

I should never have allowed this to happen. What is done, is done, and cannot be undone. However, at the risk of never gain receiving help of assistance… never again knowing the kindness of these ‘others’… and standing alone against a sea of troubles. I will begin a series of articles, here at The Other Shoe, that shines a light on the path ahead. We are not the first modern society to place its feet on a path without; reason, knowledge, or logic. That is what I call it when a very vocal group of zealots want to replace the science of evolution with the illogical and unscientific ramblings of ‘Creationism’.

.

That, My Dear Shoevians, is just the tip of the iceberg that has frozen reason in political dialogue and discourse in America. Over the next few weeks I will work to open eyes… to share perspective… to draw political parallels… to bring reason back to American political dialogue. Yes… that is a huge goal… but I am a gay man that made it thought the 80’s death march of HIV/AiDS. We buried thousands of our loved ones… before anyone paid attention. I made it thought that… I made it though a fracking typewriter dropping on my head… I made it through loosing my MOBILITY!

.

If you, My Dear Shoevians, think I will shy away from this battle? Then the upcoming weeks and months will change your mind!

.

Happy New Year!

.

Adieu!

.

Thank you!

.

Arival at the Oncologist's Office

Arival at the Oncologist’s Office

.

© 2010 – 2014 Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

Let it Rain, Let it Rain, Let it RAIN!

Danny Hanning

Danny Rolling Hills Estates

.

          Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe. I know that you, My Dear Readers, cannot see it… and you may well doubt it… but as I write this article I am SMILING! I am smiling because, after more than sixteen months, it is raining here in Southern California! That’s right starting late Thursday night, early Friday morning; the rain began to fall here in Orange County. This low-pressure system originated in Oregon late last week, and began its march down the California coast, Monday.
.

As readers here at The Other Shoe I have kept you, My Dearest Readers, fully informed of the California drought. As well, I wrote and published an article, earlier this year, about the stationary high-pressure system that parked itself off the Southern California coast for the past 14 to 18 months. Since January I have written and published five articles on the subject of the California drought. They are; The Great Californian Exodus, California Drought Update 2-16-14, The California Drought – The Desalination Solution, California Gets Relief From Drought and California, Up In FLAMES!.

.

Anyone could easily see that I was pretty darned concerned about the growing drought problem, here in California (mainly Southern California). The culprit, in this drought condition in Southern California, (as explained in several of the articles listed above) was a persistent stationary high-pressure system that had parked itself just off the Southern California coast for FOURTEEN(+) MONTHS! This intransigent & persistent dome of high-pressure had befuddled meteorologists and scientists at The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). They had never seen a high-pressure system park itself off the west coast of America for this long, like ever!

.

My Dear Readers, I make no effort to hide the fact that I was born and raised in the great state of Texas. Why I mention this is that the intransigent dome of high-pressure (parked off the Southern California coast) has, also, one of the major culprits of the ongoing drought in my home state of Texas. 2014 was supposed to be an El Nino year. That means that there should have been twelve months of rolling low-pressure systems starting in Southern California and rolling all the way into Texas. o- However, the persistent (and unexplained and freakish) dome of high-pressure forced all that low-pressure and precipitation North! Denying and depriving Southern California and Texas of, more than, a year’s worth of El Nino rain.

.

Now, My Dear Readers, with two days of (often pounding) rain has given much needed relief to Southern California. Further I think that it is safe to assume that this freakish dome of high-pressure’s grip, on Southern California, has been broken! That is not to say that our drought conditions are over, far from it, but that we here in Southern California (and my friends, family, and loved ones in Texas) can look forward to a very wet (remainder) of the holiday season & a reasonably wet New Year (2015). I love RAIN! Growing up in Southeast Texas from late 50’s into the early 80’s, I grew up with frequent and persistent rainstorms.

.

I was reading information, at the NOAA web site, that explained that Texas experienced “higher than average” rainfall amounts and more frequent than normal El Nino conditions during the exact time I grew up in Texas. These conditions predisposed me to, not only, enjoying rainy weather, but also making it such that without rainy weather… well, I just don’t feel normal. I would even guess that all that rainy weather, cloudy days for days and days at a time, might have some bearing on my being a gloomy kind of guy… and always including rainy weather in my stories.

.

Well, My Dearest Readers, I have to tell you that (since the rain started on Thursday night) I have; slept better, napped more often, found my (lost) appetite, and relaxed more than anytime since my cancer diagnosis. I hope that this rainy weather continues throughout the rest of the holiday season and well into the New Year. For my; friends, family, and loved ones in Texas I do hope that all the rainy weather that starts here (in Southern California) finds its way all the way into Texas.

.

That brings us to the end of this article for Saturday December 13th, 2014. I am working on an article about Alexander and his improved health for tomorrow. YES! I have ‘Good News’ about my fury buddy and he may soon return to ‘Sunday Funnies’ right here at The Other Shoe very soon! I hope that everyone has a great weekend. That you get lots of rest and relaxation and that you spend your time with the people that make you smile and show you love and affection. Unfortunately I have my THIRD chemotherapy this week. I am not looking forward to the chemotherapy… or the bleak and dismal upcoming Christmas.

.

I won’t belabor the point… but My Dear Readers I find myself facing another holiday without the means for any kind of ‘Holiday Meal’. I really do not want to be Captain Bringdown… but… I was really hoping and praying that somehow… someway…. I was going to find or work a way to pull off a Christmas Miracle. I apologize. It is just so difficult to face the cancer and chemotherapy… during the Holiday Season without any Christmas cheer.

.

Thanks for dropping by, My Dear Readers. I hope that everyone has enjoyed this rainy article. I look forward to publishing more articles in the upcoming week and weekend. I am trying my best to get back into the swing of writing and publishing on a regular basis. Again, I wish a very Merry Christmas to all of you, My Dearest Readers!
.

Adieu!

.

Thank you!

.

Danny Does Chemo - Day One #1

Danny Does Chemo – Day One #1

.

© 2010 – 2014
Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

.

The Other Shoe eBay Store

PLEASE Shop at The OTher Shoe eBay Store for the Holidays!

Danny Does Chemo – Day One

 

Danny Does Chemo - Day One #1

Danny Does Chemo – Day One #1

.  
    Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe. Welcome to ‘Day One’ of the main part of this article series, and my current round of chemo. I am writing this article while I receive my chemotherapy treatment. I do so for two reasons; first because I am stuck here for seven to eight hours, and I kind of doubt I will feel up to writing once I get home… tonight about 7:30PM. Make the best use of this time while I can. 
.
[Youtube=http://youtu.be/9s5uR4w9oO0]
.
The image, at the top of the page, is of me prior to chemo treatment. I hope to have three to four videos and several stills for the release of this article. Along with the wonderful images and videos, I plan to give you a blow-by-blow of my ‘Day One’ chemotherapy. It is now 1:15PM on Wednesday November 5th, 2014. You will notice, in the videos, I keep saying it is “November 4th”… it is not, it IS November 5th. I just got up at 5AM so I am a little loopy. 
.
So, yes, my day starts with a 5AM wake-up. Allen helps me out of the bed and I grab, a half-awake, Alexander from his cage. Allen is running my bath, while I set out the clothes I will wear for the day. My red ‘Tommy Hilfiger’ thermal-top and my ‘Red Mickey’ pajama bottoms. I may have to get chemotherapy, but nothing says I cannot be comfortable while it happens. Alexander is climbing on my shoulders, talking in my ear. 
.
He tells me that these 5AM 2 wake-up calls best be rare and infrequent. He no more enjoys being awaken at 5AM than I. I assure Alex this will only happen once every three weeks… and on the 11th when I go see Dr. Gorlick. He is still upset, but satisfied with my answer. He licks my ear, says a few words in ‘rat’, and settles in for a ride on my shoulders. I finish setting out my clothes, and see that Allen is finished preparing my bath. 
.
.
By 6AM I am bathed, shaved and dressed ready for a light breakfast then my ride to the infusion center. I am scheduled for pick-up at 7:30AM for arrival in time for my 9 AM check-in time slot. My pickup time, for my ride home, is 6:30PM to arrive home by 8PM. Oy it is going to be a very long day My Dear Readers. Finished with preparations, I sit in my power chair waiting for the transit bus to arrive. I pass the time reviewing the depressing, but not unexpected, results. 
.
‘Off-year’ elections generally favor the party not in the White house, so this comes as no great shock. Democratic candidates have won a few heatedly contested seats, and a few governor’s races. Yet, Republicans take the (non-fillibuster proof) majority in the Senate. Senator Mitch McConnell will soon know the pain Sen. Harry Reid has endured these past six years. During the second commercial break, in the election news, I turn off the television. Now it is time to help Allen prepare our cooler of fluids and snack foods. (Little i did know that 5 hours into treatment everything would taste terrible)
.
The transit bus arrives and Allen helps me get settled in. It is now 8:10AM and I will arrive shortly before 9AM. It is an uneventful ride. Several stops, along the way, people getting in and off at their destinations. Finally, about 8:55AM, we arrive at my stop. Allen assists me disembarking from the bus. 
.
Danny Does Chemo - Porta-Cath Ready For Chemoterapy Drugs

Danny Does Chemo – Porta-Cath Ready For Chemoterapy Drugs

.
First, I want to make mention and sing accolade of the staff and nurses here at the ‘Total Care Infusion Center’ of the Los Alamitos Medical Center. Ruby, Toncy (my incredible nurses and support staff) and Mary. These women showed me great kindness and wonderful support. My thanks and kudos to Dr. Curti and the entire staff at his office and here at the Total Care Infusion Center. If I must have chemotherapy, I cannot imagine a better place or a more wonderfully supportive staff. It is now 2:30PM. I am taking a short break from writing. 
.

Shortly after I took the (indicated) break… well, things got a little sketchy for Dan. Yes, I am writing this Thursday morning while preparing to leave for my injection of Neulasta at my Oncologist’s office. The fun just never seems to stop, here in the land of Danny’s Chemo Adventure! So, what changed? I started having increasingly worse lower back pain, everything I drank or ate tasted like aluminum metal, and I had difficulty getting out of the recliner and up to go to the bathroom. Weakness, dizziness and headaches soon accompanied the cacophony of symptoms that now plagued yours truly.

.

Danny Does Chemo - Day One – Blood Red Chemo Drug

Danny Does Chemo – Day One – Blood Red Chemo Drug

.

I relayed the symptoms to the very supportive nursing staff, but did my best to marshal on without complaint, just like a good ‘Little Texas Boy’. In the last still images, and the last video, of this article you can see the Ariamycin/Doxrubacin medication going into my body. Yes, it is a blood red medication… and it is one of the most toxic chemicals in mankind’s modern day chemotherapy arsenal. My oncologist is bringing out the ‘Big Guns’ to fight this bodily invader. Kudos Dr. Curti!

.

.

Much to my glee, the chemotherapy treatments end precisely as the OCTA transit bus arrives to take me home. I leave the Total Care Infusion Center @ 6PM, to arrive (finally) at home at 7:45PM. Ready to hurl chunks, head throbbing, back aching, and stomach churning I come home to great an anxiously awaiting Alexander R. Hanning Rat. He is quite happy to see Daddy Danny and Daddy Allen.

.

He immediately pries open my mouth, to discern where Daddy has been and what have my fellow humans done to me over the past ten hours. I pull him away from my mouth, only allowing him to smell my breath. He immediately coughs and spits… yes, right into Daddy’s mouth. Well, it’s my son’s spit.. so I laugh and explain to him where I have been and what he smelled. He accompanies me to the bathroom where Allen is running my bath.

.

Danny Does Chemo - Day One Another Blood Red Chemo Shot!

Danny Does Chemo – Day One Another Blood Red Chemo Shot!

.

Allen helps me get ready to bathe and change out my Fentanyl pain patch. It is really late for the patch change, and I am feeling the waning of its effect. While I am soaking away, some, of my back pain and much of the smell of that day’s chemical infusions, Allen is preparing a frozen pizza in the kitchen. It is nearly 9PM when I, finally, sit down in my bed to eat and rest,

.

I manage to eat one piece of pizza before falling asleep while having dinner and watching television. I awake at 1AM to extreme nausea, where, I deposit the recently eaten pizza into… well that is TMI. I return to bed, to discover that Alexander was sleeping with me all this time. I return my sleepy little rat buddy to his warm and comfy cage. Then I collapse into the waiting bed. I awake several more times, over the night and into the wee hours of the morning. Seems my stomach is competing with my headache to see just which one will/ can give me the most grief. When the wrenching of my neck, puking, adds to my headache with growing shooting pains in my neck and arm… well, the headache and neck pain beat out the nausea soundly.

.

Thus, My Dear Readers, was the entirety of ‘Danny Does Chemo – Day One’. I hope that you have enjoyed reading nearly as much as I have enjoyed sharing and telling. I am not too sure just how much I am going to have written, over the weekend. I want to relax and recover. I know that all of you, My Dear Readers, will understand.

.

Thank you for all your kindness and support during this difficult and trying time of my… newest battle with misfortune. I will write again, soon. Take care!

.

.The single MO$T disturbing part or yesterday? Well, what I WASN’T told. One the paperwork, when I get admitted to Total Care  Los Alamitos I ALWAYS get a ‘Share of Costs’ page FILLED OUT! Yesterday, I was given a BLANK PAGE to sign, agreeing I would “Pay all “thereNon-Covered” charges. Meaning ANYTHING Medicare decides NOT to cover I MUST PAY to continue getting treatment. This has NEVER happened before… did ‘The Other Shoe’ just drop (again) in my life? I can barely pay rent, food and bills… THIS was the WHOLE reason behind the ‘Cancer Treatment Fund’ campaign. Not a great time for financial fears… on top of cancer concerns… and the holidays right around the corner… 

.

Adieu!

.

Thank YOU!

.

Arival at the Oncologist's Office

Arival at the Oncologist’s Office

.

© 2010 – 2014
Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

Danny Does Chemo – Prelude

Danny Does Chemo Leaving for Oncologist

Danny Does Chemo Leaving for Oncologist

.

Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe. The picture, above, is my most recent picture. Taken this Wednesday as I prepared to head to my oncologist. This article is a diary of that journey, and the beginning of another journey that will last for the next eighteen weeks. But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves, My Dear Readers. Let’s take this one-step at a time, one day at a time, and one event at a time. First, let’s take the oncologist appointment that changed my life.

.

The day, Wednesday, started out like any other day I have an appointment. I wake-up early to get bathed, dressed and ready for a long day of; crowded transit rides, sitting and waiting for drivers, and rushing from appointments that ran long to catch my ride home. Allen gets up and helps me out of bed and into the bathtub. I sit there, in the warm water, thinking of how my life will change in just the next few hours. Below is my video before I leave for my oncologist appointment.

.

.

You see, My Dear Readers, I have already talked with my Oncologist on the phone. Yes, I have a doctor that actually calls his patients with any and all ‘news’. It was late the previous Friday evening when Dr. Curti called me. It was imperative that we start chemotherapy just as soon as possible. This decision was based on information from my last scan, and discussions that he engaged in with oncologists at the City of Hope’.

.

So, My Dear Readers, I already know just what I am about to face, and hear, on this day. That I must start chemotherapy as soon as possible. Already, I understand that this means I will be dealing with the battle that is chemotherapy will trying to beat a deepening depression due to the upcoming ‘holidays’. You see, My Dear Readers, it (my depression) always takes a nose-dive around the ‘holidays’.

.

Arival at the Oncologist's Office

Arival at the Oncologist’s Office

.

As with any ‘American Male’ I desperately want to give a nice Christmas to the person most important in my life. For the past several years I have taken to accepting no ‘gifts’ in lieu of making sure that Allen has the clothes, and personal items he needs to work comfortably. This will be true, this year, too. It is just that… well, I would give anything to actually have a ‘Nice Christmas’ and dealing with chemotherapy… too. Well, lets to dwell on just how dark it will be in the coming months. Let me focus on this visit.

.

My Dear Readers, I had Allen take a video of me on the lift getting on to the OCTA transit bus. This is the first time that I have ever allowed this to happen. I really do not enjoy having my picture taken… in these situations. For me, it is kind of like having my picture taken while I am in the bath. Anyway, below is a short video of me being raised on a lift into the transit bus. This was the beginning of a very eventful day… and a journey that will span the next 18 weeks.

.

.

That, My Dear Readers, is me in my power chair getting on to an OCYA transit buss to ride to my oncologist appointment. That begins a day that will, by its end, change my life it ways that I never imagined. Then again, I guess at this point in my life… one would think that I would be used to my life ‘changing in ways I never imagined”. It just hasn’t happened… yet.

.

So, once my power chair is fastened into place and I am belted to the floor. I sit in my chair and wait over an hour as the other people on the bus are taken to their appointments. My appointment is at 2PM, and we arrive at the medical center at 1:57PM. Allen and I rush to the elevator and up to my oncologist’s office. By the time I get to the office it is already after 2, and when they check me in… my heart rate is 90 bpm, and my blood pressure is 130 over 97. I usually have a heart rate of about 60 to 70 with a blood pressure of 120 over 80.

.

Danny After his Oncologist's Appointment

Danny After his Oncologist’s Appointment

.

My Dear Readers, I do my very best to make all appointments on time. I do my very best to never complain, and to keep positive and remain a good example of patient facing adversity with grace and honor. That is how I was raised, and it is always my goal to make good on my upbringing. Some days… it is just much more difficult than others. Today, just happens to be one of those days. I sit in the room waiting for Dr. Curti to show up. Allen is with me… Allen… I lay awake nights praying that somehow… someday I can… show… reward him for all he has done for me… and all he is about to do.

.

The next two hours I meet with; my oncologist, the chemotherapy nurse, their business manager, and my oncologist… again. It is now 4PM and my ride home is about to arrive downstairs. I am told that, for the next 18 weeks, I will be undergoing chemotherapy ever three weeks for a course of six treatments. After which they will run all their scans, again, and make the decision. I agree and the decision is made that I will undergo my chemotherapy not in the office but at the Infusion Center across the street.

.

My Dear Readers, I leave the medical center in the same rush that I arrived. I al lifted into another OCTA bus, where I wait another hour and a half to everyone else to be left off and I am taken home. I, finally, arrive home at 4PM. One visit to one oncologist… takes me from 10AM until 4PM. What I wouldn’t give for my own transportation… and an once of dignity while I face my cancer. You see, My Dear Readers that was all I ever asked for… all I ever wanted.

.

.

Today, I started this all news series here at The Other Shoe. I know that I have not been here as much or as often as in the past. My Dear Readers, this diagnosis… and, the following battle to get and obtain treatment for my Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma has taken a toll on me. A toll unlike any previous in my lifetime. I am not a man that can see into the future. I do not know IF I will live to see the end of this treatment. I will do everything in my power to not only finish this treatment but to go on and beat/meet my goal of becoming a published writer.

.

Until then, I will be HERE My Dear Readers, and I will take you along for the next 18 weeks. Be sure to come back, often, and tell all your fiends, family, co-workers, and acquaintances about my journey through cancer chemotherapy.

.

Adieu!

.

Thank you!

.

Danny

Danny

.

© 2010 – 2014
Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

Ebloa and YOU – FACTS vs. Fiction

Ebola 2

(Colorized transmission electron micrograph (TEM) revealed some of the ultrastructural morphology displayed by an Ebola virus)

.

Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe! YES! Yes it has been a very long time since I wrote or published here at The Other Shoe. Now, as for that and the reasons for my absence? I will leave that for another article later this week. Look for that information in an all new edition of ‘Notes from Behind the Keyboard’. I anticipate that article to be published on Thursday or Friday of this week. Finally, before we get to the subject at hand, I would like to announce that ‘The Horror in Smithville’ will not conclude before or on Halloween… this year. The story, and the one after this one, will continue here for the next several months… or years.

.

My Dear Readers, first I am going to tell you a story. A story of the incident that lead me back to my writing and back to this blog with this article in my heart, mind and soul. Alas, I am going to share a few teasers in this paragraph. So! If you do not like spoilers, and would like this week’s reading (and next week’s, too) without any spoilers? Just move on to the second next paragraph, eh? My Dear Readers my cancer has really reared its ugly head, over the past three weeks. That has been the reason (behind the scenes) for my extended absence. Last week I had; another ‘Full Body CT Scan with Contrast’, an Ultrasound of my thyroid, and another MRI of my head, neck and upper torso. This has lead me to be ‘out’ among the masses, more than usual. Well, Allen and I were out and about and we see this middle aged woman, Anglo, with a ‘Particle Mask’ over her mouth and nose. You know, one of those one would use for sanding and painting.

.

.[FYI Spoilers are OVER!]

.

FYI those are completely useless for stopping something like ebola. So, I just couldn’t help it… I mention that fact to this woman.

.

“Hello… why are you wearing a particle mask?”

.

Woman responds-

“It is to protect me from ebola!

.

I resist the urge to laugh (for the moment), and respond-

.

“You do know that ebola is not airborne and that painting particle mask will do nothing to stop anything but a cold or maybe the flu, right?”

.

The woman harrumphs to my statement and merely responds with-

.

“Well, that is what they said about AIDS!”

.

NOW(?) I am laughing maniacally! I just cannot help myself; I break out into deep loud and unbridled laughter!

.

Allen and I go about our business, for that day, but it is in that moment that I realized that I simply must write an article to share FACTS about ebola and dispel FICTION!

.

My Dear Readers it has come to my attention that (some) ‘Conservative’ media outlets and ‘conservative’ politicians are spreading falsehoods about ebola. SOME ‘conservatives’ are spreading falsehoods and sewing seeds of fear in the American populace just before elections next week. Spreading fear and falsehoods and proffering that “president Obama is not doing enough to protect the American people from this growing threat” (FYI- THAT statement was taken directly from a very popular show on a very popular ‘conservative’ network.. I witnessed this myself).

.

Therefore, I have taken upon myself to write and try to dispel some of these blatant falsehoods, and (hopefully) alleviate some fear. I feel that it is my duty to try to counter some of the fear mongering that is taking place, just before this mid-term election. For anyone that has worked, and studied well, in the medical industry? You will know and understand the difference between these disease spreading modalities.

.

Infectious disease: A disease caused by a microorganism and therefore potentially infinitely transferable to new individuals. May or may not be communicable. Example of non communicable is disease caused by toxins from food poisoning or infection caused by toxins in the environment, such as tetanus.

Communicable disease: an infectious disease that is contagious and which can be transmitted from one source to another by infectious bacteria or viral organisms.

Contagious disease: a very communicable disease capable of spreading rapidly from one person to another by contact or close proximity.

(Disease transmission information thanks to the CDC web site[1])

.

Let’s take, as an example, the ‘Common Cold’. A Rhinovirus that is highly contagious, in that it can be passed as airborne particles from a ‘wet cough’ or sneeze by an infected and symptomatic patient. Aye, THERE’S the RUB! For there to be a transfer of ebola from one human to another? First- the infecting patient must be symptomatic! They must have a high fever, chills, muscle pain and sore throat. Even a person with ebola that is not yet symptomatic cannot spread the ebola virus.

.

Further, ebola is NOT airborne! It cannot be passed through the air. Contrary to some) ‘news’ reports the ebola virus is NOT “mutating”! It is NOT in the process of changing methods of infection or modality. Anyone that tells you that, or makes a statement of that in ‘news’ or other broadcast is merely engaging in fear mongering. Now, I have put the majority of this article in my own words. Now, I am going to hand over the rest of this information to the experts. The World Heath Organization (WHO) has more real life experience dealing with ebola than any organization on the planet.

.

Ebola Signs and symptoms

Ebola Signs and symptoms

(Image thanks to Centers for Disease Control Web Site)

.

Symptoms of Ebola include

  • Fever
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Weakness
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain
  • Unexplained hemorrhage (bleeding or bruising)

Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after exposure to Ebola, but the average is 8 to 10 days.

.

Key facts

  • Ebola virus disease (EVD), formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever, is a severe, often fatal illness in humans.
  • The virus is transmitted to people from wild animals and spreads in the human population through human-to-human transmission.
  • The average EVD case fatality rate is around 50%. Case fatality rates have varied from 25% to 90% in past outbreaks.
  • The first EVD outbreaks occurred in remote villages in Central Africa, near tropical rainforests, but the most recent outbreak in west Africa has involved major urban as well as rural areas.
  • Community engagement is key to successfully controlling outbreaks. Good outbreak control relies on applying a package of interventions, namely case management, surveillance and contact tracing, a good laboratory service, safe burials and social mobilisation.
  • Early supportive care with rehydration, symptomatic treatment improves survival. There is as yet no licensed treatment proven to neutralise the virus but a range of blood, immunological and drug therapies are under development.
  • There are currently no licensed Ebola vaccines but 2 potential candidates are undergoing evaluation.[2] (From World Health Organization web site[3])
  • .

.

Further, here are some more salient FACTS about ebola.

.

Here is great information on just how ebola can be transmitted!

.

Ebola Transmission

Ebola Transmission

(Image thanks to Centers for Disease Control Web Site)

.

Transmission

It is thought that fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family are natural Ebola virus hosts. Ebola is introduced into the human population through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals such as chimpanzees, gorillas, fruit bats, monkeys, forest antelope and porcupines found ill or dead or in the rainforest.

Ebola then spreads through human-to-human transmission via direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected people, and with surfaces and materials (e.g. bedding, clothing) contaminated with these fluids.

Health-care workers have frequently been infected while treating patients with suspected or confirmed EVD. This has occurred through close contact with patients when infection control precautions are not strictly practiced.

Burial ceremonies in which mourners have direct contact with the body of the deceased person can also play a role in the transmission of Ebola.

People remain infectious as long as their blood and body fluids, including semen and breast milk, contain the virus. Men who have recovered from the disease can still transmit the virus through their semen for up to 7 weeks after recovery from illness.[4]

.

So, My Dear Readers, one can clearly and easily see that ebola simply cannot be transmitted via airborne contact. An uninfected person MUST come in contact with the bodily fluids of an infected and SYMPTOMATIC patient. Period.

.

Ebola Virus

Ebola Virus

.

Now, I promised myself that I will keep my re-introduction to writing and publishing… limited. I am going to do my best to keep the first articles short, and only write three times a week. I hope to publish, again, on Tuesday or Thursday. I will not be publishing on Wednesday… as I am going back to my oncologist on Wednesday. I am returning to chemotherapy. But, that is a story for another day.

.

Before I go I would like to share a handful of other sources for good information on ebola:

.

.

Now, My Dear Readers, having shared this information I would like to express my deep concern about the way certain elements in our political universe have used this disease. First, there is no need to “stop all flights into and out of areas with this disease”. That is just ignorance meant to stir up fear and to act out of ignorance. We need to keep moving people (medical and support personnel) into and out of these effected areas. It is illogical to stop all air traffic, and in the end, it will make the situation worse! These (few ‘conservative’) governors that are implementing draconian measures based not in science but in fear. We need to monitor, closely, all people that come out of the effected areas… IF they came in contact with symptomatic patients! I am just deeply offended and deeply upset by this politicalization of a deadly disease!

.

Finally, My Dear Readers, I am very happy to be back. I will do my best to keep writing and publishing all through my chemotherapy and treatments. I have every intention to complete ‘The Horror in Smithville’ as the story unfolds in my head. I was wrong to try and put some artificial deadline on this work, I realize that now. You see, just in the past two days I have had several major revelations about character development and pot lines… that, well, I would have totally missed out on if I had stuck to the deadline of Halloween!

.

I will be back tomorrow or Thursday. I do hope that you, My Dear Readers, will be bac… too!

.

Adieu!

.

Thank you!

.

Danny Arrives for PET Scan

Danny Arrives for PET Scan

.

© 2010 – 2014
Hanning Web Wurx and The Other Shoe

 

 

DCTF COUNT-DOWN CLOCK SEVEN HOURS LEFT!!!

Daneil Hanning of The Other Shoe 2001

Daneil Hanning of The Other Shoe 2001

.

 Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe! Today is THE day. THE day my campaign to BATTLE my cancer ENDS!

.

Today, for the next 7 hours, I am going to do my BEST to garner MORE SUPPORT by running this Count-Down CLOCK! Right NOW there is just 7 HOURS LEFT! Only 7 hours till the end of my campaign! SEVEN HOURS LEFT to gather as much help as I can!

.

SEVEN HOURS to get the HELP I NEED! PLEASE won’t you GIVE?

.

Please Donate to @ Danny’s Cancer Treatment Fund @ Indiegogo!

.

PLEASE?

.

P.S. Click on ANY link to GO to the CAMPAIGN and GIVE!

.

PLEASE DONATE to

Danny’s Cancer Treatment Fund @ Indiegogo

.

Danny in Rolling Hills Estates August 12, 2014
Danny in Rolling Hills Estates August 12, 2014

PLEASE GIVE!?!

DCTF COUNT-DOWN 9 HOURS LEFT!!!

Daniel Webelo's Uniform

Daniel Webelo’s Uniform

.

Welcome back My Dear Readers to The Other Shoe! Today is THE day. THE day my campaign to BATTLE my cancer ENDS!

.

Today, for the next 9 hours, I am going to do my BEST to garner MORE SUPPORT by running this Count-Down CLOCK! Right NOW there is just 9 HOURS LEFT! Only 9 hours till the end of my campaign! NINE HOURS LEFT to gather as much help as I can!

.

ELEVEN HOURS to get the HELP I NEED! PLEASE won’t you GIVE?

.

Please Donate to @ Danny’s Cancer Treatment Fund @ Indiegogo!

.

PLEASE?

.

P.S. Click on ANY link to GO to the CAMPAIGN and GIVE!

.

PLEASE DONATE to

Danny’s Cancer Treatment Fund @ Indiegogo

.

Danny in Rolling Hills Estates August 12, 2014
Danny in Rolling Hills Estates August 12, 2014

PLEASE GIVE!?!

The Other Shoe

Home to; 'The Mars Report', 'Lost in Space', 'News from Around the World', 'A Week in Review', 'Election 2016', and 'Sunday Funnies'

Otrazhenie

Reflection

Allen's World

Personal Blog of Allen Hanning

J T Weaver

And in the end the love you take, is equal to the love you make. -- The Beatles

Invisible Mikey

philosophic topics and the arts

tigerboose

a videolog about tigers

Hiking Photography

Beautiful photos of hiking and other outdoor adventures.

Movie Dr

Independent movie reviews and more...

palisadespete

10 Facts to Get You Started

The Other Shoe

Home to; 'Lost in Space', 'The Mars Report', 'News From Around the World', 'A Week In Review', and 'Sunday Funnies'

Ruijssantos's Blog

Na na na na naaaaa

%d bloggers like this: