High school classmate Lum Adams

I recognize that I’m not exactly cheating here, but I am posting a discussion with Lum (Larry) Adams.  He was a classmate in high school. He bullied me one time that I can remember but in time, and thru his wife, we are chatting.  Cut and paste here to see the change and a bit of lifestyle in those days.  (we graduated in 1955

I grew up with coal subject almost at a daily thing…..thing could be a better word, but I forget so much. I wouldn’t be a doc if it didn’t exist.  Clarion Co, would not  have existed without it. My uncle took is into mines behind a coal car pulled by a shetland pony.  Carbide lantern was soon part of my clutch, used them heavily in college, exploring caves.  I’ve surely written a note of my experience with the poor guy trapped in a mine and I was to help him out.  Again, thank God Dad arrived.  I can recall union problems when I was in high school (maybe earlier) and Dad worried of the outcome.  Of course 99+ % of Dads work was related to coal.  I can recall being lifted up by an old steam shovel…me in the bucket.  And running a dozer being allowed to understand and use the levers.  Delivering to some poor guy up across from Howard Bish’ house a full tank (big tank) of O2…and dragging it up two flights to him…blue from lack of O2…smoking a cigarette and breathing so bad it scared me.  Getting the hell out of Dodge (are it were) to Tampa…away from coal.  I knew it couldn’t possibly last and it was a LOT of years later that Dad accepted that truth to me.  Then, get out of Tampa…a whole book in itself…back to TN..closest thing to normal life as I could get as a surgeon…to the largest coal mines in Va.  The entire county, existed on Coal and tobacco.  Very long story.  I am happy that the tobacco thing changed (I’d like to think I had a part in it.).   Wow.  Commode that late in life.  I wonder of the shock!!  I’ve seen (honest) a 4 hole outhouse and wonder of the conversations.  I do remember Lum and Abner very well.  Never heard you called Buck.  How is Bill managing?  I’d be dead if it wasn’t Mary working on keeping me alive.  Your lady has affected your life dramatically and you sure can be proud of how you are doing.  I do need to add to my blog.  Wish I could remember stuff. 🙂  How old was your Dad when he died?  You should come sit with me by the fire sometime 😉  We’d have a Lot to talk about.  Now I’m curious how you type.  Both hands or two fingers?  When did that change?

I can add something interesting right here.  Typing changed our brains in a very positive way.  Then I learned Morse code and learned to send code at a very high speed, and that caused another brain growth.  Then computers came.   WOW.  We’re speeding toward oblivion. 

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Have I told you about Gordy?

I think it was in the second year of college at Bucknell, when we had a student on our dorm floor named Gordy.  It was the first ever experience of narcolepsy I had experienced.  When Gordy was out, asleep, he was REally out.  Gordon went by Gordy and he was a friendly sort of sophomore.  He had a problem for sure.  Shortly after the onset of classroom visits, he was not able to make them on time.  He begged us to wake him.  We tried ice, we nudged him, knocked on him…pulled his eyelids open, and rarely would it awaken him.

We discovered (I don’t remember how), that Gordy couldn’t swim and was afraid of water.  With all the previous methods, we found that having him waken without hurting himself was a problem, and splashing his face with water and screamind “Swim Gordy swim”…usually did the job; but his thrashing in bed as his efforts to prevent drowning ended with lots of scratches and usually a bit of blood.  Some took terrible incidents with him and the two that I remember the most…was carrying his bed down two flights of stairs and out into the middle of the quad, (an area which was a square walkway of paths with shortcuts from the angles.)  And he woke up in the quad on his bed, with his pajamas on and almost a foot of snow on the ground.  They did the same style with him somehow waking up on the 50 yard line in the football arena, but with way fewer witnesses.  I lost track of him and still wonder what became of him.

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Another water episode (s)

I am (was) very heavily into water things.  At age 16, I went to a Red Cross week long swimming camp.  First year, get water safety and senior lifeguard certifications.  Next year, get Water Safety Instructor Certification, 3rd year Small Craft Safety certification AND…water ballet.  I had never heard of males doing water ballet, but it sure gave me help on holding my breath.  I can’t remember the number of pupils there were, but like 3 cabins for men and 3 for women and pretty even numbers, and then naturally, contests between all. Like joining the polar bear tribe, getting up at 6 and going to the dock which was on a small lake.  We would sit on the end of the doc and at the whistle we would drop to the bottom on one breath, exhaling thru the entire underwater portion…push off the bottom and be out of the water long enough to inhale a deep breath (in one motion), then a deep pull with the hands and arms to propel us to the bottom to repeat the cycle…and the water was 20 ft deep.  My personal record of breath holding (which really isn’t very good) is 3 1/2 minutes.  In water ballet…we would have two people on the surface with one holding the other with his feet at the jawline of the second, and this process went all the way to a circle with only 2 on the surface at one time, so, grab a big breath, scull like crazy in make the circle move.  Great fun, and Great challenge.  But then there’s Scuba and a whole other aspect of my water experience.

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There is a religion…Presbyterian (I’m told), that believe in predestination.  So, if you hear a smattering of that thru your life and get thoughts of “am I here for a reason”, or something of that idea, then you wonder why I was born at this particular segment of time…as time has no boundaries (so far).  Was I born to witness the end of a planet, or to end all life on this planet etc.  NK is psychotic weird and Trump is easily ruffled.  Just NOW…NK has launched another large missile.  I’m sitting right at this moment in time…to see if this is IT.  WOW.  Wonder, if I took pix…someone (maybe even you or me) will see them in the future…or even…the past.  Nope…no weed or drugs on board.

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zoo near Gate City, Va.

I had a most unusual experience a day ago.  We took Mary’s friends 5 yr old to a zoo.  There are zoos around here in the country that are mostly for the ….can’t think of the proper word…continuation of the health of the species.  In essence breeding programs for a few animals from around the world.  There’s one in Limestone TN, and this one near Gate City Va.  The Limestone one had more spider monkeys than I’ve ever seen  in one place.  Sorry, I can’t remember what all was their breeding program.  There were a bunch of different species of spider monkeys at the Va zoo, and for that same reason.  Of special note was Bactrian Camels, the two hump kind.  Now I’ve seen them before but I can only remember them from TV shows.  They were discussed on an Animal Planet show and it showed a short segment of them breeding.  Talk about weird.  They mate with the female down on the ground with the male in what I can only describe as a dinosaur in action. Really weird. So, I got within 5 feet of a male recently and for the first time heard their sound.  I have Never heard such a sound before.  Low, rumbling, reverberation and Long interval.  Last time I experienced that kind of sound was at the launch of a space shuttle.  Then….he made chirping sounds that were like a bird chirp but loud.  At my age, my ability to localize/locate by sound is lost so it took a while for me to realize it was coming from him.  I MUST go back for that experience.  I called the zoo back today to ask if they were in a breeding program and yes…he had mated with all 3 of the females they have.  About 14 months is the gestation period.  No, they refused to let me be there for delivery photos. sigh Now I wonder how I can get thru.

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