Monday, 31 January 2011

Siggies Big Adventure.

I dunno, pets can be worse than kids can't they?

Bear took Sigma the dog for his routine run around a local field. He absolutely loves it.

He came back a bit subdued, limping, but we thought nothing of that as he'd pulled a shoulder muscle a few months back, and if you've ever been athletic, you know how long that takes to wear off.

I noticed a blood peck on his nose, so I thought oh-oh, and gave him a once over. Turned out the poor not-so-little mite had a cut on his, well, wrist I suppose, that went through to the bone. D'know, other than looking fed up, he never complained once.

Thought you might find the following information useful.

After phoning local vets, we discovered we would need an appointment, and non were available. PDSA it was then. After taking a taxi there (Yup, that nasty a wound) she discovered they prefer their customers to be on benefits, and show proof of benefit. Otherwise they provide emergency only treatment.

In this case, they stapled the wound shut (three, metal), without aesthetic, and gave him an antibiotic injection. Though he yelped, he still gave the vet a lick, bless him. Apparently we have to cover the wound with a sock? Have you ever tried to keep a sock on a dog?

Though he's an excellent guard dog, I'm amazed how good natured he is. If he'd been a person with a nasty cut like that, it'd be all 999, ambulances and hospitals and much gnashing of teeth and wailing.

I've got a gu'd'en there.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011


From a question on my last post

" Julian said...

I hope this is not too personal a question wheelie, but what drugs do you take?

26 January 2011 12:09"

I'm happy to answer, because my experience while hanging around the Stroke Association and the Blogs of people with disabilities is that they often don't know what options are available to them to prevent further strokes. The list I'm going to post was arrived at over quite some time, after long periods of monthly/three monthly appointments. Trial and error, one might say.

As I've replied, I hope Julian means 'drugs' in the American sense -that we Brits call tablets or meds.

Having said that, if Julian means illegal substances? Nah. I had a couple of puffs at a cannabis joint when I was a teenager in the 70's, and couldn't understand what the fuss was about. Besides, no one around me was making much sense. Having said that, I do appreciate that some people with persistent pain benefit from prescribed cannaboid derivatives.

I should point out I was for some years a councillor of people with severe alcohol and opiate derivative problems, and that I'm a fierce opponent of a derivative of cannabis called 'Skunk' which is immensely powerful, and kills. Don't get me on that one. The words 'bee' and 'bonnet' come to mind ;)


Where was I? Are you still awake? Ah, tablets. I have posted this before, but I don't mind repeating it.

All prescribed, all free, because I'm a skinny (ish) Type 2 Diabetic. Diabetics in the UK are issued with a card entitling them to free prescriptions. Non diabetics who pay can get an exemption certificate, which costs about £100 a year. That may seem a lot, but with each item costing £7.20, I would pay 93.60 per month or £1123 per year!

Here we go :)

Clopidogrel Hydrogen Sulphate 75 mg Once daily
Asprin 75 mg Twice daily
Atenolol 25 mg Once Daily
Felodipine 10 mg Once daily
Doxazosin Mesilate 4 mg Twice daily
Ezetimibe 10 mg Once Daily
Ramipril 5 mg Twice daily
Cocodamol 500 mg Twice daily
Pravastatin 40 mg One in the evening
Metformin Hydrochloride 500 mg Three times daily
Folic acid 400 mcg Once daily
Cod Liver Oil 550 mg Once daily
Vit C 120 mg Once daily

Why Folic acid? Low dose Folic has interesting research showing it lowers Stroke risk.

Why Cod liver Oil and good old fashioned Vit C? An affect of my stroke is I don't get hungry. As a result, if I was left to my own devices, I'd probably forget to eat. Luckily, (luckily?) I have a problem swallowing, so I don't eat alone.

Catchya :)

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Through the Round Windows

How very odd. The Bear noticed, while searching on Facebook, that despite my unusual surname/forename combination there are a number of people who shared the same name.

A couple I knew of already - the larger than life, colourful and jocular American preacher/rap artist, and the DJ in Trinidad who loves to "chat Trinidad Style", with a wonderful line in insults ("Yo muther so old, she makes ma raisins look like grapes". Ahum...). I'm in touch with those, off Facebook.

But Bear discovered four others, all apparently 'locked' all local to me. Trust me, if there was anyone local to me with my name, I'd know about it. So I took a shot in the dark, and emailed Facebook, included a few personal details expressing my concern, and little more. I didn't get a reply, but within 24 hours they were gone.

Unfortunately, I've had a couple of emails from friends wondering what's happened to 'my' Facebook page. Oops.

I've had a feeling for some months that I'd been at the wrong end of identity theft. I had a stalker some years ago, who eventually, with a couple of prods from the police, drifted off - I suspect more from boredom and peer pressure from her little committee of friends than police pressure.

Was she 'back'? I doubt it very, very much. The consequences would be far too dire, and the woman might be many things, but she's not a total idiot.

How about someone trying financial gain? Well, lets put it this way. I have what is colloquially known as a disability, that presumes a loss of intellect. Like running a company, one has to bulldoze a ring of steel to buy a pen. However, I allow that for my own protection. In reality, I'm tighter than a camels arse in a sandstorm, if you'll forgive the expression. I know where every pen and penny goes.

So nope. No financial disadvantage has or can happen. I can only conclude that someone has 'reality TV syndrome'. Which is very sad.

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Here's to the Carers...

S'cuse me for being a little technical here.

No great secret I get Disability Living Allowance. I'm on Middle Rate Care, lower rate mobility. Feel free to check out how much that is on The newish coalition government are going to try and mess about with that by introducing something new called PIPS. Personal independence Allowance.

It will, on the face of it, give people more control over financing their own care. Everyone who is on DLA now will be called in by a a commercial organisation employed by the present government for a twenty minute assessment of their needs, with a primary motive of 'getting people off benefits' and into work. About 380,000 people?

One problem with that. On DLA, you can be a company director on a million quid a week, and still receive the help. Because it isn't 'means tested'. Neither is PIPS apparently. So how that works, confuses the heck out of me. More so, there's already an option where someone disadvantaged by their disability can say where they get their care from, and how they pay from it from their benefit.

But there are hidden victims, and that's Carers. As things stand at the moment, a Carer, nominated by someone who receives Middle or Higher Rate Care or Higher rate Mobility, gets about £57 a week. But for that, they have to be a full time, day and night carer. Work out the hourly rate for that! BUT they can not be a carer and work!

But that's not the half of it. As you can probably imagine, because the person with disability often needs full time care, and therefore needs a full time carer, neither is able to work - so they end up on Income Support :( .

As carers allowance has always been classed as 'income', those carers have their allowance reduced to a few pence over £25 a week. For caring 24/7.

Pure Craziness.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Books, Covers

Had a bit of fun earlier.

A visitor asked if they could use Bears laptop, on a table at right angle to my desk. "Sure" I said, logging them in.

10 minutes later, I noticed they were frowning and glancing sideways at my desk. "Hmm?"

"No. Nothing....." . Another 5 minutes. "Ummm, that tin". Ah. I keep a little tin on my desk. It's very Bob Marley in it's d├ęcor, psychedelic, had it for years. Tatty, aged, colourful, very 60's.

"I'm surprised that you're into that". Into what? I asked. "Well, you've always said that you hated it".

I couldn't resist it. Well I said, I tried to keep away from it for years, but I found it so useful, I had to give in in the end. So I've stuck with it.

"I'm very disappointed" they replied. "And so will everyone else be when I tell them you've been using that stuff. It's hypocritical of you to 'gob on' about it, g'won about it killing people, and here you are having it on your desk!. "

So I reached over, opened the tin, and showed them my collection of USB sticks.

Awful man, aren't I? :)

If you want an explanation, comment.

Friday, 7 January 2011

Future shock / Nothing changes.

Every now and again I come across comments on blogs who presume, not meaning to be unkind, that a blogger blogs because they have embraced the blogosphere as away of 'moving on to greater things', or advertising their potential talents or works in progress.

May be true for some, and that's cool. If you've got it, flaunt it. Heck, it's almost mandatory nowadays to define yourself as a character and promote it along with a demonstration of your skills, be that a CV or a Van Gough of a book.

I don't see blogging as any way a second hand replacement to 'real' writing.

I came into it way back as an extension of what I do, and what I've done for what feels like forever.

Another avenue to explore and learn. To me it's no different than being a street preacher (done that) technical writer (done that) giving radio interviews (done that) preacher (done that) councillor (done that) book binder (do that), book restorer (do that) cartoonist (do that) artist (do that - um, sometimes) and actor. Golly, have I done that in so many ways, or my real name's not Wheelie. Oh, wait.... :)

Nothing I do or will do be exclusive of anything else I do or have done. They are all mutually inclusive. If you blog, you are publishing.

If you don't believe me, look at the millions companies like Amazon or Apple are spending copying REAL books to be read on their electronic devices............. Chuckle!

Blogging is now 'mainstream'. My advice. If you have a desire to publish printed book, give them the net address of your blog - warts and all.

That, in my opinion is the important thing. To do what you love to do, and if one can put food in fridge along the way - hey, that's a bonus.


Having said that, you can't beat a book - anyone's. I have a really battered tiny King James bible I picked up many years ago for a few pence, hand noted and hand scribed in beautiful script with someone's family history from 1796. I meant to restore it.

I can't. I can't.

On a bad day, I'll sit with it, running my fingers through it's yellowed pages, carefully following the wonderful handwriting of previous caretakers. Delicate, tatty, loose paged and yellowed. I don't give a donkeys that it's a bible. I do care care about the delicate, crisp, allure of the centuries, the glance of the printed and hand annotated prose. And ye small gods, that smell. The pure joy of it.

If you want to be a published book writer, that's what you should send your mind ahead to.

As someone did, jotting down proudly the dates of births of their children in 1796.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

I'm getting old. The reason I know, is that I'm suffering from that great British ailment - forgetting to complain. And being told off for not doing so ;)

In November, someone spilt Cola in my three year old Colour Laser. I spent a small fortune cleaning it, and replacement toner, got it working of sorts, but little by little, it curled up it's tootsies and died. I stripped it down and rebuilt it, but, nah. Gorn.

Imagine my surprise, discovering that anxious to get people spending, websites were offering a better model, different manufacturer mind, at the price of ONE toner cartridge for my old printer. (They take four). Couldn't believe it (being a Yorkshireman) so scoured the net, and yup, it was true.

22/12, ordered printer, next day delivery. Received email confirming order, and tracking number for DPD. 23/12, checked tracking - parcel from supplier, fine, DPD to depot 2 miles away, cool. "Please ensure you are in to sign, you will ...". Magic.

Nuthin. 24/12. Nothing. Ah, well. 27/12 then?. Nope. Phoned DPD. "Sorry sir, it's in the van sir. Get back to you" Checked the website - goods in van as of 23rd. Waited. 28th, 29, 30th. 31/12 phoned again. "Ah. Seems the van came off the road. Parcel Damaged. Can't get hold of supplier, shut".

"Can you Phone them sir, ask them to resend?" No. Shut. Not open until 4/01. Holy cow.

So much for next day. Now I'm getting it in the ear from friends and relatives for not demanding compo, digging out the directors personal numbers, and making a pain of myself.

Can't win.


Had to ask the gas fitter to come in. Apparently, I get priority service because I "Have a disability", and I'm "vulnerable". Well cheers, and thanks for the reminder.

Fitter walks in, and notices 'Er 'Indoors on Facebook. "Don't mention F*book to me" he says, opening his toolbox. Oh dear, I said, trying to appear nonchalant. G'won, I thought. Don't ask Wheelie.

"I hate the fluking thing". Really? "Yes?" I said? "My missus said". Ah. He brandished a spanner at my boiler. "You know what my missus said?" Errr...."She said, " Crunch. "If I complain again, about her using F*book" Thump. "She's going to divorce me" Clatter.

"You know how OLD she is?" Now, y'see that's a loaded question. Bloke in his early fifties. Discretion was I decided, the better part of valour. Or in my case, Act Thick. So I said "Errrrr?".

"48" Um? "F**kin 48". Oh. 20 minutes of silence. "Thanks for listenin' mate". "Tara, said Bear" "Yer, yeh, right" he said frowning at her.

D'y'know, that's the second time that's happened? ;)

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Another year begins :)

Funny thing is, my Journal, or diary if you like, is handwritten on paper. With, would you believe, a pen. There's not a cat-in-hells chance I would entrust it to electronic media. Amusingly, I can account for where I was at any time in the last 3811 days.

If you're using Windows 7 by the way, it has a handy function on it's calculator that can track that back :)

Here's to the future, whatever it may hold. And the next 3811 days, at least.