Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly is the title of a Spaghetti Western from the 1960s.  I missed the movie’s first run when I was in the army, and for a variety of reasons never saw the movie.  But the phrase has crept in our lexicon and is still widely used.  The phrase is commonly used when there is a need to describe three conditions of a topic: one good, a second not so good and the third condition that is somewhat vague (ugly).

Last week describes a time period that comes close to the current usage of that phrase.

The week started out with an unusual weather event, very high winds overnight and into Monday daytime.  We had several brief power failures at work and needed to reboot our lab equipment and check for proper operation.  Monday afternoon I arrived at my ophthalmologist’s office to a dark office and my appointment cancelled.

Monday evening my wife suffered from a severe, but brief, bout of an intestinal bug.  She was up several times overnight spewing bad stuff out of both ends.  The ugly part was me sleeping through most of the noise and cleanup: very bad for her, bad for my reputation of being an attentive husband, and ugly for the bathroom.  To my defense, my wife went into our guest bathroom so she wouldn’t disturb me.  Although I did wake up when she returned to bed, I gained no points as a helpful spouse.  She survived her ordeal and felt crummy and weak for the next three days.

The bad for me during the week was the absence of home cooked meals.  I had to fend for myself.  One night I made a stir-fry chicken dish that was passable.  We had scrambled eggs another night.  We didn’t starve but my culinary skills still leave a lot to be desired.  At least I can cleanup.

By Friday she was back to herself and a delicious home cooked meal miraculously emerged.  Two chickens were roasted and we dined at home (for my wife, her sister and me).  My wife cooked a wonderful meal with the left-over chicken frozen for my next stir-fry or gumbo attempt.

Saturday I took a very long walk-shuffle, 3.4 miles in 46 minutes, in preparation for my upcoming 
Senior Olympics 5K Roadrace in April.  In the afternoon we took another photo-jaunt downtown.  Iris sat at a hotel side-walk café and enjoyed coffee while I photographed a new art series displayed in several store front windows.  

Whimsical design in restored ticket booth

Color Fans

Houston Street Children's Museum, not part of store front art project
She positioned herself opposite the Majestic Theater and reviewed a brochure of upcoming shows.  By the time I returned she had booked tickets for an April show with friends.  The good is that we’ll enjoy a live musical production depicting a recording session of Elvis, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins in 1956; the bad is that a casual Saturday afternoon outing now cost $150.  Not ugly, unless the performance in April falls flat.

Saturday evening we meet friends for a casual burger out; the burger was good but the service was very bad.  Apparently a few workers didn’t show and the kitchen was shorthanded.  But we weren’t in a rush so we had time to chat and bitch as we waited.  After dinner we went to Luna Live Jazz Club (noted for good music and its smokeless environment) to see one of Iris’ favorite groups, Johnny P and the Wiseguys.

Sunday got off to a slow start with nothing planned until the afternoon.  The afternoon found us at a local park for a charity fun walk event.  I was a team leader for the local CropWalk  event.   The walk was good; the event raises money for a variety of organizations that provide food and nutrition aid locally and worldwide, we walked with friends and I captured a few good photos.  My team raised $500; very good.  The only slightly ugly part was that I purchased a hat and tee-shirt at the event and needed to borrow money from my wife for dinner.  It is a debt that needs to be paid back upon penalty of having to eat my own cooking.
Strange group of walkers

One of two main trails through Comache Park

Bonus Shot.  Turtle enjoying a sunny spot.

Monday I returned to work with a rescheduled late afternoon visit to my ophthalmologist.  I expected a routine visit.  Check my eyes, get a prescription for new glasses and go on my way.  Surprise, the routine visit did not occur.

A new diagnosis was revealed; narrow angle closure is developing.  If the condition continues untreated the internal pressure in the eye will increase and glaucoma can result.  The bad news is that the progression could be sudden and with some discomfort.  The good news is that the closure can be treated rather easily.  All that is needed is a laser beamed into my eye to open drainage holes.

What?  Laser my eyes!  Holy Star Trek!

The treatment doesn’t sound like fun, but since my wife had the procedure done several years ago I feel good and know the procedure is safe and effective. 

Later this month my eyes will be blasted with a laser. It should be an eye-opening experience.

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