Salfloofbrious (floofinition) – An animal whose presence is favorable to health or well-being, or promotes harmony and peace.

In use: “Beginning in the weeks before Debra’s breast cancer diagnosis, Karma became very loving and attentive, staying with her side as Debra underwent treatment and the cancer went into remission.”

Less than Six Degrees

They — you know who they are — are always talking about how closely we’re connected. Here’s close for you. You cough from your chest, spewing out air, phlegm, and sputum, and at the same time, you fart, and a little urine squirts out of your urethra.

That’s connected.

Writing Interrupted

Ready for a rant of self-pity and exasperation? It’s all about me. Yeah, you’ve been warned.

So, sick. Nothing threatening like a terminal disease, just a trifecta of irritations, a head cold, the flu, and then a kidney stone. With each, I thought, this will pass, and then I prayed that the last one, the kidney stone, passed fast (which it seems to have done).

Three weeks mostly killed except for a few days when I caved to the obligation to defy my body, throwing ripples of confusion and discontinuity into my carefully constructed writing existence. I could little practice the rituals of writing, of  walking to clear my mind, establishing a mental framework for walling myself into a solitary zone where I coexist with word storms, of ordering coffee and sitting down to tap, tap, tap, forwards and backwards, creating and correcting, of staring out windows and trying to understand WTF the muses are trying to tell me.

Illness didn’t slow my inner writer and army of muses. Death might slow them down, but not minor illnesses. They came in waves, expecting to be released or entertained. That doing nothing routine was unacceptable, a position strengthened because my illness habits called for me to read, sleep, dream, awaken, and read, punctuated by episodes of eating, drinking tea, and the sickness processes that my body demanded in which it hurled things out. Nothing like reading to calm the writer, right? Wrong.

Perhaps, worse of all, was the limited coffee. My taste buds warred with the coffee’s flavor. Variations failed. Spiced herbal teas were substituted, but they’re not coffee, ya know?

All of that seems cleared away today. Did my walk. Got my coffee. It still doesn’t taste right, but I’ll work through it. Time to write like crazy, at least one more time.

The Trap

He doesn’t want his father to die, but this person that he sees every day doesn’t tell the jokes that his father used to make, and he doesn’t drink beer and coffee, doesn’t go walking with his dog, or wash his cars, or go for drives (driving too fast), or watch television and argue about sports.

He doesn’t want this man to die, even though his beard is white and wispy, and his hair is gone, and the lean, tall body sags like a worn fence, and he no longer barks out demands and orders.

He doesn’t want this man to die, the drooling one who sits in a chair and stares most of the day, the one that doesn’t eat much, mostly eating candy when he does eat, the man who doesn’t remember his name and needs help to use the toilet.

He doesn’t want this man to die, no matter what kind of wreck he is, because he knows that he’s still his father, and he will miss him more when he’s gone.

But he doesn’t want this man to suffer any more, because he is his father, so he comes every day, visiting and waiting, wondering and remembering, wishing that he had hope for something besides what it is.

The Sick Dream

I love how my mind works through my dreams. It often surprises me, and frequently amuses me.

This was a few days ago. I was sick and feverish. My head throbbed. I couldn’t breath through my nose. My lips were dry and cracked, and my nostrils were peeling and raw from tissues. Light hurt, and tears frequently blinded me as the cold hunkered down in my eyes.

Falling into a fitful sleep, I dreamed I was in a computer video game. While most details are sketchy, I recall that I was shooting things. The things were about eight feet tall. They had short legs, arms, and torsos, but a huge head with a plain, blank face. Black hair sprouted from the crown of their head.

Running across open fields, laughing as I went under a sunny but cloudy day, I would see those things and shoot, and keep going. Upon awakening, I thought, yeah, I was fighting my illness through a video game in my dream.

Not quite The Illearth War, but what a trip.

Six Days, Seven Nights

I’m feeling so much better today. The cold seemed to have taken a cruise of my body for six days and seven nights. They really seemed to party in my eyes, for that was the worse day and lasted almost two days. The cold briefly ported in my chest at the end, and barely visited my throat in the beginning. Although I didn’t walk and exercise as much as desired, I wrote every day. There was no vomiting, and bowel movements were normal. Severe coughing only struck the last two days. As illnesses go, it was pretty mild and short, and I consider myself fortunate that I feel almost completely well today.

Thanks for indulging me as I complained about it. Time to write like crazy, at least one more time. Cheers


Catopox (catfinition): An illness people use to call in sick or stay in bed, brought on by an unwillingness to disturb a sleeping animal. Originally associated with cats, the illness has been extended to include any animal.

So Just

Illness interrupts life, if you’re fortunate. The less fortunate end up in hospital, hospice, or a grave. For me, the latest illness is an interruption to my usual routines.

  • Took a hot shower on day three, first since March 20.
  • Didn’t exercise or walk, achieving less than four thousand steps on each of the the first two days, far below my Fitbit goals.
  • Didn’t post, and barely read anything, until the third day.
  • Didn’t write, edit or revise. Didn’t address any publishing biz.
  • Didn’t do yard work, or go out anywhere, and scarcely kept up with the news.
  • Ate little but soup and buttered toast for the first several days, and drank large quantities of tea and hot water.
  • Binged season four of ‘Justified’ and advanced halfway through season five. No ‘Red Dwarf’ was available streaming. RD has been my sickness staple since the turn of the century. I have some of the DVDs and tapes, but it was easier to stream TV.

Being sick allowed some thinking time. I remembered that I’d dreamed of trying to help a general get to a hospital a few days before my illness, and wonder if I was attempting to warn myself. I dreamed a bunch when I was sick, about broken plumbing, stolen baseball gloves, fake roses, taking charge to organize people and processes, family, and flying.

I dreamed of flying a lot during the illness. It wasn’t like Superman and other superheroes would fly, horizontally, with their arms stuck out in front of them, as though diving, or with my arms swept back like wings. No, my flights were like I was walking through the air. I would step up into the air, find my direction, step toward it and be there.

There was some goofiness. I sang to myself. One of the things I sang was, “You say , “Meow,” and I say “Hello. Hello, hello.” I don’t know why you say meow, I say, “Hello.”” I just kept messing with the Beatles’ song, substituting meow for everything “you say”.

It was a mild illness in the relative spectrum of how these things go. The illness has faded to a harsh cough, a throat that’s sore when I cough, and some mucus. Energy is back up to about eighty-three percent of normal. The sensation I couldn’t get warm is gone, the aches have receded, and clarity has returned to thinking.

So just resume everything.

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: