Misery to Joy in 6 Short Days

So, Mike went back to Emory for an infusion 2 days ago. His blood counts continue to improve, and he feels well. He had to stop the Revlimid a week ago because it doesn’t like his skin, nor does his skin like it. The rash is also much improved again, and he says it doesn’t itch now. This coming week will be informative on the lymphoma side of things. He has a PET scan Monday, and will get the results from Dr. B. on Thursday. Or maybe he can get it sooner from the patient portal, which he now knows how to access. He was making the mistake of entering the word “doctor” in front of his doctor’s name, and got a “no results found” message. That makes sense. Why would you refer to your doctor as doctor? Stay tuned for breaking news.

Every once in a while Mike gets a bright idea. He is better on the creative side than the actual selling side. His best idea came out of his work with chronic pain patients. He came up with an on-line patient education program for pain doctors to use in their management of patients. The patient would get a link to go on line and go through a set of about 35 power point slides. The slides talked about medications used for pain management, including both opioid and non-opioid formulations. They discuss correct use of medication, potential risks and side effects, and regulations governing their use. There was also information about drug abuse and addiction. Patients would be able to access the program, and after reviewing the slides take a 10 question test on the material. They could then submit the test results to the pain management doctor, where it could go into their electronic medical record. Thus, the doctor would get documentation that the education has been completed, an important risk management measure, especially if there is a subsequent problem with the patient’s medication usage (including accidental overdose). The patient would get a thorough and understandable education about their medication, and could go back and review the material at any time. Mike was going to charge a small fee to the doctor for this service. The cost was less than it would have been for the doctor to have his/her staff do the education and document that it was done. Mike found the doctors that he approached resistant to the fee because insurance wouldn’t cover a patient education service, so it could not be recovered. They also felt that there would be complaining from patients if they were asked to pay. A few doctors did use the system, and liked it, but he could never get it going on a large scale. It would have required a greater investment of time and money than he was prepared to expend. He has shut the program down, but it is ready to go if someone else wants to try to run it. Not likely, in my opinion, and he has made no effort over the past year to generate any interest. C’est la vie.

So, in another newsworthy item, the Dallas Cowboy’s star running back, Ezekiel Elliott, wants a new contract paying him more than any running back in the league. I only mention this because of what the Cowboy’s owner, Jerry Jones, was quoted as saying about the situation. His statements are remarkable and noteworthy for their word-salad approach to giving reporters a quote.  According to the agreement between the team owners and the players union, Elliott is bound to his rookie contract for 2 more years, so he has to struggle along at around $2,000,000 per year. His only recourse is to not show up, and hope that the team wants him badly enough that they will renegotiate the contract.  When asked about when he might be concerned that Elliott is not playing, Jones was quoted as saying,”I don’t see a point months into the season. While we’re not there right now, there are some lines there. And they do bite when you don’t play. I don’t have a time that I’m looking at that is a concern.” What does that mean? Or this: “As far as doing something that would disrupt and shake the base of our plans for how to keep the talent we’ve got here and how to do that, I’m not about to shake that loose over that concern.” What? How does one explain how a successful businessman, who must be very intelligent, can use the English language so poorly. My theory is that he constructs his sentences for public consumption deliberately in such a way that they mean absolutely nothing. This way he can give reporters a quote but not be held to the quote because it doesn’t mean anything. Why a reporter would publish such a muddled collection of words is a good question, but I guess they just report what is given to them. The commentators have been analyzing the situation for weeks, opinions flying everywhere about who is right, and who has more to lose. Mike thinks that Jerry Jones has way more to lose than Ezekiel Elliott.  Dallas has not been to the Super Bowl since 1996, when they beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 27-17. I don’t think Jerry Jones is getting any younger, and Mike thinks the Cowboys need Elliott to get back to the Super Bowl this year. Elliott is bound to make more money in his football career than he will ever know what to do with, unless he throws it away like so many athletes do. But as I said, I really don’t care. It doesn’t affect me one way or the other. I’m just a little black cat who sort of minds his own business here in Happy Meadows.

And by the way, it should be mentioned that International Cat Day was this week. Or should it? Every day is Cat Day, in my opinion. You might want to check back to my post “Happy National Cat Day Y’all” (October 29, 2017.) That is the same post that I talked about St. Dymphna, who, in an entirely different context was brought up by Michelle in a conversation with Mike this week. How random is that? And in a follow-up to my blurb last time about Tisha B’Av, it is worth noting that this sad day is followed 6 days later by Tu B’Av (the 15th of Av). This year it is sundown of August 14 to sundown of August 15. Tu B’Av is an ancient holiday that was celebrated during the time of the second temple. It was a date in which unmarried women were found matches with eligible husbands. In modern Israel it is celebrated in a way similar to Valentine’s Day here in the USA. Misery to joy in 6 short days. What a great progression.

So, that’s enough, or more than enough for now. It’s another hot sunny day in Happy Meadows. Mike and Judy are going to have lunch with their friend Brenda today. She is having her own battle with cancer. Pray for her if you do that sort of thing. It creates good energy. Have a blessed day. Until next time, so long from Happy Meadows!

Author: Black Magic

Black Magic is a handsome, charming, and self-absorbed cat who lives with Mike and Judy Gordon in Marietta, Georgia. He is about 7 years old, and he will remind you at every opportunity that his grandfather was Black Jack, that famous cat who wrote his own autobiography. Black Magic has a great many opinions, and despite his natural feline arrogance, he seems to be genuinely spiritual. But the reader can decide for him/herself.

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