It's been a good ride so far!

Since I was just a kid all I have ever wanted to do was to make people laugh or just smile. As a child, an educator sent a note home to my parents. It read; If your son thinks he is going to get through life making people laugh he is in for a RUDE AWAKENING! He is not living up to his potential. WELL, I'M STILL NOT! But at this site you will at least see me try. From the heart, thank you for even being interested, it means the world to me. I always say, I have not a single fan but many a friend!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Now that's how you make an exit


As you guys know, I sort of dropped off of the face of the earth for a bit there. If you read my last blog I gave a brief explanation for the reason why. That trouble with the tooth has yet to be resolved and every so often rears it's ugly head. For as long as I can remember my life has been feast or famine and this is in no way, shape or form an exaggeration. When things are good for us, they are incredible but when things are bad for us, famine may not even come close to describing it. One week the lil woman and I may be eating fillet Mignon and lobster and then find ourselves just weeks later, for weeks surviving on Ramen Noodles! In the 25 years that we have been together, conventional is a word that has never been used to describe our life. There were some periods when we got conservative and tried to put some money on the side for a rainy day or in that "just in case" acct. but that only lasts so long anyway. It's just shy of 11 years since my wife was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and that changed the entire game! The reason that we knew something was wrong was the day that both of her feet fell asleep and went pins and needles. To make a long story short, those pins and needles rose steadily like a thermometer being taken from the freezer and placed directly in the sunlight! The numbness and incredibly painful "tingling" got up in to her chest where it made it impossible for her to breathe as if a giant weight lifting belt had been cinched around her and no matter how hard she tried, her lungs just could not expand and shortly after SHE WENT BLIND! I raced her to the hospital praying that she could catch enough breath to survive until I got her there. One MRI later and we got the diagnosis and it was devastating. Neither of us knew really much about MS at all with the simple exception that you became crippled and then you died!

She beat the odds and got most of her sight back which was an incredible gift as a great many people do not! That first major attack ended after a few months of brutal treatment with serious meds and I remember having never felt so helpless and so very angry in my life. Why her? This woman is a saint!
I remember sneaking away to the computer and going online to research all I could on MS and there was not one thing that was in any way positive. Later, I would walk in to the office, see her sitting at the desk on the computer and in the reflection of the windows behind her, see the header WEB MD! I would rip the wires out of the back of the computer and break the connection. Looking back it was silly and stupid. I wanted her to fight for her life and the last thing I wanted was for her to read the same things that I had just seen. It was to no avail, she would just calmly walk around the desk and plug them back in. I would walk out the back door of the house, walk deep in to the pine barrens behind us and cry and get it out of my system and then return to her side.

It turns out that I just may be married to the baddest bitch who ever walked the land! Rather than take that info she just read and say, "well, I have no chance" and just give up, it pissed her off to no end. From that moment on, she would not allow this fucking thing to beat her, no way, no how! With that attitude, I too became inspired. With the meds that she got put on immediately and diet and exercise she has put on the greatest display of staying positive that I have ever witnessed, it's just incredible! What does this have to do with feast or famine you ask? EVERYTHING! The thing with MS is that one night you can get a kiss from your girl at night and off to sleep she goes and then in the morning, she could wake up, blind or paralyzed! That is the viciousness of this monster of a disease. The problem in not so much the disease that gets you, but the unknown that scares you to death deep down. From the moment that she was able to live a relatively normal life again, we decided that was it! No longer would we worry about the future or what it may hold for us but we worried about what we were going to do tomorrow to make it count! We decided from that point on, that we would live each and every single day to come as if it were our last and you know what, it just may be. Look at what's happening in Japan right now. What good does a big bank account do for those people? What did saving for a rainy day do for them? It didn't rain, a tsunami came and took it all! There is no tomorrow!

We looked at each day as a gift. We travelled to places that we have always wanted to go. We packed up and up rooted our lives back east where the weather can be brutal and moved to THE VALLEY OF THE SUN! We would spend the money as fast as it came in on "living life". We have no kids so there is no guilt in not saving for them. Because of the businesses we were in, we had money rolling in hand over fist and life was looking pretty good. Then the market crashed, everyone around us, the people that we loved were losing everything. Some time to be in real estate right? It caught up to us as well. In that first 9 years since her diagnosis we blew through an utterly insane amount of money. We spent nearly a half a million dollars on meds, treatment and all the other great stuff that comes with being sick and we spent all else we had left on making every day of life the best it could be and we never looked back! Then the economy caught us by the tail as well. The money stopped rolling in and for nearly one year we had virtually no income. We never imagined at that time that for real estate "it was over" and that the entire economy would crash 18 months later. That river of cash turned into a dried up stream bed and we were in deep shit! There would be an occasional storm and we would have some water in that stream bed to give us life but for the most part it was time to liquidate. Do I need 3 bikes? NO! Do we need a convertible, a jeep, a bmw, a truck and water toys? NO! We needed a roof over our heads and mostly, we needed that life giving medicine that was costing us 4thousand dollars a month to get! So I cleaned house and that kept us going for a while. While everything around us was crashing down I noticed one thing, she stayed positive and she would say, "it could be worse".

When times are tough, you need to cherish what is good and that will give you the strength to carry on. No matter how bad things were, we would go out of our way to do something to help someone else and although it didn't help to keep the lights on in the house, it helped to keep the lights on in our Souls! We gained hope and inspiration through always doing the right thing and never turning our back to anyone in need and believe me, over the last 4 or 5 years there have been a shit ton of people in need. Thanks to our being such good people, there were people there to help us when we needed a hand up. People who see Diane's spirit down a bit and ask what's wrong? You are always the "up" one and now you are "down", what's wrong? Well, money is the problem, right now we are short and won't have any coming in for a few weeks, not sure how we are going to make it through till then. Next thing you know, there is a check in your hand for 2, 5, 10 grand and a message, pay it back when you can, if you can. If you can't, don't worry about it. That is karma coming back around. We had done so much good for so many and it was noticed. Well we have never not repaid a debt and those hands that reached out to us and kept us from slipping away will never be forgotten. Cherish friendship, always do the right thing no matter what you face and somehow in the end, you will have more Feast than Famine. Your pockets may not be full but your heart will.

So I say this to you my friends, you can fill your tank and take off on a ride. You can stay in third gear and ride at a safe pace but where is the thrill in that? All you have done is travel from one place to another in the most mundane way. I say fuck it man! Give that throttle a quick twist, shoot some gas in to that engine and cause an explosion and feel that adrenaline shoot in to your engine. I am not saying ride with the throttle wide open non stop. All that will do is get you tickets and maybe get you killed. I am saying that sometimes you have to crack that throttle, hold it wide open, grit your teeth and hang on for dear life. You may or may not even make it to your destination. I have always said that for me, it is never the destination but the journey there that matters! A few days ago we had a friend come back to Arizona for court because on his last trip, he had held that throttle wide open just a bit too long. It was great to see him. We ate, drank and just enjoyed each other's company. When it came time for him to go, he kick started that bad ass shovel of his on my driveway. He could he have jut pulled away with a nod and a smile and ridden off, sure. But rather, he jockey shifted that bitch into first, dumped the foot clutch and smoked the tire as he rode away and that is how you make an exit! We never know what life is going to bring us. What I say is the hell with it, I don't want to be heading to my grave with regrets of the things I never go to do and get wheeled in to a room to die. I want to come screaming in, throttle wide open and come in skidding and sliding in, fist pumped in the air screaming THAT WAS ONE HELL OF A FUCKIN RIDE. Make a graceful entrance but make an insane exit! Here is a quick video of Frankie who shares this philosophy and lives each day, one moment, one memory at a time! Now get out there, live it and when it's time to go, MAKE ONE HELL OF AN EXIT!

Monday, March 14, 2011


If you never go to the doctor
you will never ever be sick!
... at least that is what my father always said.  We would laugh each time but damn it if he wasn't right!

I can't tell you how many times we would hear this from him.  Dad, the engine hood fell down and latched with your hands caught in there, you need to go to the doctor.... WHY, I ain't sick?  I am injured and all I need is some ice and to walk it off.... remember that one folks, your father or coach would slap you on the ass and just say, c'mon son, just walk it off!

Well for the past few weeks, I have been "walking it off" and instead of ice, I have been loading up on anti-biotic!  I got so many messages from you guys when I pulled the disappearing act a few weeks back and I haven't been on here to write since.  For those of you who wrote all those amazing messages, thank you so much for your concern.  For those of you that wrote the violent hate mail style ones, I am especially sorry to you guys!  No, I won't let it happen again without letting you know why!  I hope in the time that I was gone, you took some time to check out the list of blogs that I love to read over on the right side of my page...

Some of you have somewhat of an idea of how sick I was, others not, so let me tell you now what happened and it once again lends proof to my dear departed dad's Jack Fitzlosophy!  As you guys know, I will do any thing that is asked of me if it is within my ability to do it for you and on a few occasions even when it wasn't if a friend truly needs me.  I got a call from my dear Brother Adam... he said hey man, on such and such a date, can you take me to the dentist office?  I got some real trouble going on here and I have to have it dealt with right away.  It's bad enough that they have to knock me out completely to do it!  Holy shit, of course I'll do it.  Well thank God that he called the night before because I had clean forgotten about it!  The other reminder I received the day before was from my doctor telling me that I had to be at their office at the same time.  Of course, I cancelled my appointment and took my buddy.  They treated him like a child and insisted that they meet me and talk to me about the "procedure" for picking up my friend.  For any of those who are wondering, yes, Adam listed in the space for; In case of emergency call? _________________.  He wrote Jack Shit!  They took one look at him and just shook their heads, he said "no really", call Jack Shit. 

I thought it so funny when he told me this that when we walked in to the office he said to the woman behind the desk in Adam's soft and gentle way, " this is fuckin Jack Shit, I told ya".  I leaned on the counter when I talked to them, then I touched the door handle, opened the door and left.  Be back in an hour and a half, "okay" I said.  Fourty five minutes later they call early and tell me to come get him.  I got there and they walked him out the door and he was high as a kite, out of his mind and by the look in his eyes, still anesthetized.  I grabbed on to him and along with the "gas man" walked him to my truck.  I touched all kinds of shit in that office.  Got him back to his house safe and sound and dropped him off and headed home myself.  Within 12 - 16 hours of stepping through the door of that dentist office, I began to feel a little bit of pressure up in my sinus'.  I was in the garage rubbing aluminum polish on the front wheel of the FXRS and blown away as with each wipe away of the polish I realized that the wheels were shiny, really shiny.  I thought I had gotten a headache from leaning over for a few hours and I went to bed and I slept like a baby!

At 8:15 am I rolled over and yawned big and loud and with that, it felt like someone jammed an ice pick straight up into the center of my very back upper tooth.  In an instant I shot up and out of bed....  It hurt so bad that all I can say is that imagine if you took a toothpick and opened your mouth really wide, placed it up and down between your top and bottom teeth and bit hard down and it shot straight up through the top of your mouth and right up and in to the brain!  I was walking around in fast circles in my bed room and talking to God and doing it out loud!  I have some damage in that tooth from the last time some idiots kicked me in the face.  We had eaten P.F. Changs the night before and thought that maybe a piece of rice or some super spicy chunk of food lodged in there.... I grabbed my electric tooth brush and raced to another bath room.  I didn't want the noise to wake up the lil woman!  I loaded that bitch up with tooth paste and dug in with a fury.  I was like that old janitor with the floor waxer and buffer just making endless circles around the tooth, the gums, the top of my mouth etc.  In an instant, the pain was gone.... I rinsed out my mouth and put my finger in and ran it along the gum line... in horror I thought, what the fuck was that?  It felt like part of the tooth had broken right through the side of the gums.... oh boy!  As I walked back to my bed room with zero pain or discomfort all I could say was thank you God for that quick hook up.  Wow, I really dodged a bullet with that one, whew!  I crawled back in bed and got in to spoon position with my girl and closed my eyes with deep fear wondering, why did it stop hurting?    I was awoken not 20 minutes later and for the next 9 days I would never again have to worry as to why it stopped hurting again! 

I grabbed my trusty bottle of water from my night stand and figured I will give my mouth a good "swishing"  SWEET BABY JESUS was that the incorrect answer..... as two big fat ky jelly sized tear drops rolled down my left cheek, one from the eye, past my chin and down my neck, immediately to be followed by one more.  I grabbed on to the granite on the vanity and squeezed as hard as I could muster.  It hurt so bad that I pictured myself crushing it like Graham crackers! 

As the insanity of that blinding pain subsided, I was facing the mirror and watched my eyes open wide like I had just seen the light that very moment that I heard my father's voice sound off in my head, IF YOU DON'T GO TO THE DOCTOR YOU WON'T EVER GET SICK!  I went to the dentist's office and now I have a massive tooth problem, MOTHER FUCKER!  I grabbed my trusty bottle of pain meds and like I was in Vegas at the black jack table, I doubled down!  First it hurt to lay down, so I sat up.  Then it hurt to sit up so I compromised and laid down with my head propped up.  Each would work for a few hours and the combo of the pain and the pills, I would just drift off to sleep as soon as the pain eased!  Each time the pain returned, I changed positon.  I knew that it was infected because of the way I had such pain in my sinus.  Here is a tid bit of info you may or may not know; you can not be made numb when the area is infected.  I knew what I had to do.

I grabbed my trusty bottle of long expired over the border Mexican Anti-biotic!  500 mg, hell, I better start with three of those....  I did that twice to jolt my system and then two at a time for another day and then one every six hours.  Beat the infection and ease the pain and then get it fixed.  I was a man with a plan.  I'll just keep busy.  I will go in the garage and work on the FXRS and get that bitch cleaned up.  I was after all blown away by what I found under her grease and grime.  I would do that for a while, get some pain, take a pill and then do it for a bit longer.  That lasted for the first evening and part of the next morning.  I was so completely exhausted from the walk to my garage that I couldn't hold my arms up.  Back to bed and that is where I stayed for 6 days!  I would walk to the toilet to pee and have to take a 4 hour nap from the effort!  I could not eat, I could only take little baby sips of water and each time I tilted my head back to do it my heart would race just a little bit more from the anticipation and I braced myself just in case a single drop of water made it to the other side of my mouth and hit the wide open exposed ROOT! 

Days passed and it only got worse, not better.  My wife pleaded with me to come sit out on the couch and at least let her change the sheets so I would be more comfy.  Yeah, she is a damn saint, I swear!  The thirty steps to my couch were more than I could handle and I just sat on the couch unable to open my eyes.  On the morning of the 5th day, I realized that I hadn't even so much as turned my computer on in nearly a week, it was sitting on the table right next to me and I didn't feel like I had the strength to pick up my lap top.  If Pam Anderson had come to her senses and decided to take me up on that offer I had made to her just 3 weeks before in Trader Joe's, sent me an email and said take me now, I would never have known nor did I care to.  I was in trouble and fading fast.  All the while, riding the waves of, holy shit I am so cold to wanting to pull my hair out just to cool off my head and so it went on and on until the chest pain began.  I could hear every one's voices playing back in my head of the stories they told me about uncles, cousins, parents and things they had seen on television about people dying from tooth infections or at the very least having suffered strokes from them and becoming paralyzed!  We made an appointment the next morning for the dentist, there was no waiting for the infection to subside.... I didn't care if they cut it out with a chain saw, fuck it, take them all and take them now!  That is if I could make it through the night without heading to the emergency room! 

If you don't go to the doctor, you won't ever be sick!

It just kept playing over and over in my God, my father was right. 

I could tell that the dentist wanted to slap me when I told him about how I had treated myself with expired, smuggled Mexican Anti-biotic.  Hell, looking back now, I wonder if they were even for humans or if they were for chickens because that is what I was and they were not doing shit to help me!  So just yesterday, I finished the last of my Z Pak and the infection is down if not gone.  I have gotten most of my energy back and I am even able to stand long enough to package all of those I know Jack Shit shirts that you guys ordered.  Thank you again by the way for all of the orders, you guys are incredible and it seems that they are once again, A HUGE HIT with everyone who's mail brings them a little something special from their pal Jack Shit.... perhaps now you can see what the delay was in "our shipping department", the entire department had a horrible toothache!  The damn tooth is still in my head.  I am debating on telling you here now why but don't want to run the risk of this thing running on and on.  I will this about the situation though.  Upon leaving the dentist office with my NEW prescription for some NEW fresh American medicine, the nice lady behind the counter was kind enough to create a plan of treatment as I asked.  On it, it put in to columns the cost of each and every thing right down I believe to the ink used to print the fucking invoice.  The left column listed the item, the next what my cost was, the following to was what the insurance picked up, they were all blank and then the final column of what it would cost with no insurance.  This I did not understand but hey, it was half the price in the first column then it was in the last.  Luckily for me, the first column was mine.  About 3 days after leaving, I get a message on my phone as I am still incapable of speaking to anyone without coming off like a complete jerk off.  The message played and it was; hello, John?  Terry from the Tooth Fairy's office I have a bit of a problem with the estimate that I gave you.  I seem to have left out a few lab fees.  I must re neg on that offer of services.  I have the new information all ready so please give me a call.  Now it's not as good as the price I gave you that you "loved so much".  Thank you and have a nice day.  Lab fees?  Price I loved so much?  Was this bitch inhaling the nitros oxide at the office?  WTF?  So I call, give them a fax number and ask them to send it over.  Yes, the price was in fact incorrect.  Including the new code for the insurance company, the new total was double!  Yes, double the original quote.   This nice lady was only off in her quote by 100%.  Can you imagine telling your clients, oh, I'm sorry, the quote was off by a small percentage, oh that's okay,  by how much?  Oh, well, uh, you see, uhmmmm  100%!  I thought my head was going to explode.  Needless to say, the tooth or teeth or jaw bone or whatever the hell else that was giving me all the trouble, is still an original equipment installed option in my mouth!  I am just grateful that I pay all that money for insurance and it covers, wait, let me see, just doing some math here, yes, getting the total now...... NOTHING! 

So then, as your friend and some one who cares deeply for all of you, I have only one thing to say to you, take care of yourself and whatever you do,