Monday, January 13, 2014

The Relative Unimportance Of Minor Incidents



A while back, during one of my dog-sitting stints, I had a somewhat scary incident. I had been sitting for around two hours watching an absorbing movie on TV. When it was over, as I stood up from the sofa I noticed at once that the feeling in my left ankle was somehow wrong. It was as if my left foot was a lead weight when I put pressure on it except that it was not a sensation of heaviness (lead weight) but of a strange deadness, a total lack of feeling, and immediately upon stepping forward onto that left foot I felt myself falling, and I crashed down onto my left side on the carpet.

Eva came running and stood with her head cocked to the side, a quizzical expression on her face, looking down where I lay with my left arm pinned to the floor by my body. Of course I knew right away that I had sat too long in one postition, in a position wherein my left leg crossed tightly over my right knee had pressure-injured a nerve or nerves in my leg causing the temporary paralysis.

This has happened to me before. A couple of times. Over the years.

It's just a minor incident.

The feeling soon returned to my foot and I stood up, only a little the worse for wear.

I was really sorry that I had confused and upset poor Eva.

On BBC America I heard a British panel member pronounce the word pathology as path-ee-AHL-uh-gee, and I mused once again on the tendency of the Brits to add unnecessary syllables to a word instead of subtracting them as is often done in the U.S., where that word is spelled pathology and pronounced path-AHL-uh-gee.

On an episode of Antiques Roadshow I saw the owner of an 1830 First Edition of The Book Of Mormon told that it was worth at retail around $75,000 and that the owner would be wise to have it insured for $100,000. I was flabbergasted. An old, tattered-looking, ridiculous work of blatant fiction like that is in my estimation less than worthless.


Did You Know . . .?

The planet Venus has snow-capped mountains, but the snow is made of metal.



On this day in 1962, Ernie Kovacs, a comedian who hosted his own television shows during the 1950s and is said to have influenced such TV hosts as Johnny Carson and David Letterman, died at the age of 42 after crashing his Chevrolet Corvair into a telephone pole in Los Angeles, California, while driving in a rainstorm. Kovacs, who often appeared on camera with his trademark cigar, was found by police with an unlit cigar, leading to speculation that he had been reaching for the cigar and lost control of his vehicle.

The Corvair was later made infamous by Ralph Nader's groundbreaking 1965 book "Unsafe at Any Speed: The Designed-In Dangers of the American Automobile," about unsafe practices in the auto industry.

In a bitter coincidence, one of Kovac's three children was later killed in an auto accident.



1.  impossible to believe.
2.  difficult to believe; extraordinary.



(born January 13, 1966)
Patrick Dempsey is an American actor and race car driver, best known for his role as neurosurgeon Dr. Derek Shepherd ("McDreamy") on the ABC medical drama Grey's Anatomy. Prior to Grey's Anatomy he made several television appearances and was nominated for an Emmy Award. He has also appeared in several films, including Sweet Home Alabama, Made of Honor, Valentine's Day, Enchanted, With Honors, Flypaper, Freedom Writers, and Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

(born January 13, 1961)
Julia Louis Dreyfus is an American actress, comedian and producer, known for her television work on Seinfeld, The New Adventures of Old Christine, and her current series Veep.

(born January 13, 1964)
Penelope Ann Miller is an American actress. She began her career on Broadway, and starred in several major Hollywood films, particularly in the late 1980s and early 1990s in which she appeared in Biloxi Blues (1988), Big Top Pee-wee (1988), The Freshman (1990), Awakenings (1990), Kindergarten Cop (1990), Other People's Money (1991), Year of the Comet (1992), Chaplin (1992) and Carlito's Way (1993) and has continued to appear in supporting roles in both film and television including The Relic (1997) and The Artist (2011).

(born January 13, 1972)
Nicole Eggert is an American actress. Her notable roles include Jamie Powell in the television series Charles in Charge and Summer Quinn in the TV series Baywatch. In 1999 Nicole guest starred on Boy Meets World. She has made several Christmas movies that premiered on Lifetime. Eggert was most recently a contestant on the VH1 reality show Celebrity Fit Club, and now on ABC's celebrity diving show Splash.


Some incidents are accidental, others are purposeful. On the other hand, almost all accidents are incidents.

The ideal man bears the accidents of life with dignity and grace, making the best of circumstances.




  1. Gene, A good beginning of another Eva & Gene story. Your love for each other is clearly exemplified. I'm still hoping that you'll write more and longer tales (forgive the pun) that star you and Eva and a cast of characters. Here we have an incident that felt relatively unimportant to you. But should you develop Eva's character, how important was this incident -- or any occurrence that sees you in trouble -- to Eva? how does Eva convey her alarm and her determination to stay by your side?

    1. Again, I recognize this as a good idea, worthy of deep thought, but not so simple to execute, I'm afraid. And therein, perhaps, dwells a large part of the problem... fear, along with lack of necessary incentive.