Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Plagiarism, Pilgrims, and Regret.

It's time for a cleansing of the soul. I have done things, man. Things that would make Russell Brand blush...this is not one of those, because it's stupid.

This is the story of how I started a prank that ended HORRIBLY. I COULD ACTUALLY DIE FOR TELLING YOU THIS. Ok, not really....but it will be embarrassing, and the first time I have publicly admitted to it.

Before I begin. A Special Message to Mrs. Thompson. OMG I'm so sorry. I hope you still love me after reading this (if you read it).

OK. It started with the announcement of a writing contest during my senior year in High School. I was not any sort of writer in school. In fact, I hated it. However, some friends and I decided it would be a fun little thing to enter a piece of poetry into the contest that would be so ridiculous that Mrs. Thompson would call me out and we would simply have a hearty laugh and chalk it up to a poorly thought out Sr. Prank.

The plan was simple. Submit a poem that was so ridiculously and obviously fake that it would never leave the classroom. The ONLY rule. It had to be song lyrics.

I was at a fairly odd point in my life and I just happened to like Enya.

Anyhow, They have a lovely song called Pilgrim that is overly homosexual. The lyrics were OBVOUSLY over the top. Or so I thought....

For your listening pleasure, here is the song.

So. I pulled the lyrics from this overly horrible song and hastily wrote them down, being sure to remove the chorus as not to be TOO obvious. In hindsight, that was possibly not a wise decision, but hey....I have never been known for my wise decisions.

I brought it to class a couple of weeks later. I walked it to the front of the class amidst the chuckles and snorts from my friends and handed the crumpled and folded paper to the teacher, because in my head, a true artist would not have a clean piece of crisply folded paper. You know...I had to show artists angst. I take this role very seriously.

Mrs Thompson (looking shocked) took my paper and stuck it in the pile.

Now I just had to wait for her to read through it, and bust me out in front the class and have some laughs, and pray she doesn't report me for plagiarism.

A week passed, and I began getting nervous. She announced that she had chosen the finalists, whose work would be submitted to a panel of judges at ASU. They would then decide the winners.

She called out the finalists for Poetry. SHE CALLED MY NAME. JESUS CHRIST WHAT JUST HAPPENED! This is NOT going as planned. Surely this is her realizing that I was trying to mess with her, and this was her revenge. Embarrass me in front of the class. This is SO Mrs. Thompson (I secretly hoped). NOPE. IT'S HAPPENING.

I needed to think fast. If I admitted to her what I did, she would make an example of me for fooling her. On the other hand, what were the chances that this sorry excuse for a poem would even get a second glance from the panel of judges. OR what if they read it, and get pissed, and report me. JESUS THE ANXIETY WAS UNBEARABLE. There was one thing I could do....CRY LIKE A GIRL and pray I don't get into trouble. I mean, it's what any other wuss would have done. I'm no better than the others.

Another couple of weeks went by. I waited, my friends reveled, Mrs Thompson swelled with pride....

I knew at the very least, I was burning in Hell for this.

SUDDENLY! One day, the loud speaker came on. It was Mr. Dunivan with an announcement. The school had some students that placed in the "High School Writers" Contest.

Ronnie Boling wins FIRST PLACE IN NEA for his original Poem "The Journey" and guess what.... it would be published in a book!

H-O-L-Y   S-H-I-T What have I done. HOW DID NOBODY NOTICE! It's an ENYA SONG! Understand, this was in 2001, Enya was fairly popular!

I was in too deep. There was no escape. This was my life. I am now a poet. I literally cannot tell anyone I did this.

Only a small handful of people knew, and I wanted to keep it that way.


I have kept this to myself long enough to hope that I am outside any statute of limitations that could possibly get me in trouble.

I'm sorry to those who thought I was a real writer. I never had a copy of the book...but Mom did. She held it proudly until the guilt got too much and I had to tell her. I think was like 22 or so when I told her.

Lesson Learned. I am a terrible terrible person.

I feel better after having confessed, I'll go whip myself with a cat of nine tails until it bleeds just a little bit, because I don't like pain.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Broken Ankle and a Mended Heart

It's been a while since I posted. Things have been a little hectic for me ever since the holidays.

You see, I stayed over at my girlfriends house on Dec 27th, and on the way home the next morning, I had a pretty terrible accident.

I was driving down the highway, doing about 60MPH in the fast lane. The lady in front of me had apparently realized that she almost missed her turn. She slammed on her brakes in the left lane to make a right hand turn. While she waited for the right hand traffic to clear so she could make her turn, I rear ended her. I guess I had switched the song on my radio or something. I only looked down for a second, but by the time I looked back up it was too late. I slammed on my brakes with my right foot, and smashed into her.

The impact coupled with my foot on the brake was enough to destroy my ankle.

When I came to, I didn't realize my injuries, and in an attempt to stop rolling into oncoming traffic continued to try to smash the brake with my broken ankle. I finally realized that I wasn't stopping, and pulled the hand brake.

A gentleman ran over to check on me and I remember trying to get out of the car. He made me stay seated and asked me where I was hurting. About this time, I realized that my ankle was hurting...badly. I told him that I felt like my ankle was broken. He bent down to look at it, and his expression said it all. He explained that it looked pretty bad, and called the ambulance.

Next thing I knew, I was being lifted into the back of an ambulance being transported to the local hospital. My clothes were cut off of me, and I was sent through a blur of tests. You name it, and I had it done. X-rays, CT, MRI, blood, etc,

The doctors came back and recommended I get sent to the closest trauma hospital which is The Med in Memphis, TN. Low Clouds meant no helicopter, and I would have to ride in the back of an ambulance.

I had a lacerated liver and spleen, a bruised pancreas, and a "complete dislocation/fracture" of my ankle. To everyone's amazement, the skin didn't break. So the only thing hold my foot to my leg was skin, and my Achilles tendon. All other ligaments and my talus (the main ankle bone) were broken and torn.

I didn't realize just how serious it was until we got to the med. There was talk of amputation, rods, fixators, "reduction", and a whole host of other options. Everything was a blur at this time. A flurry of nurses and doctors and medicines. I finally went into surgery about 12 hours after my accident, and I woke up with what resembled a bionic leg. Rods and hinges and screws sticking out of my leg and ankle. Here are some pictures of the foot before and after surgery,

I was told I would have to wear the "External Fixator" for 12-16 weeks. Needless to say, it was uncomfortable. There were 2 rods drilled into my tibia that served as a kind of anchor. The carbon fiber rods attached to them and ran down to a third rod that went all the way through my heel bone. This particular rod would come to be the bane of my existence for the next 4 weeks. This whole contraption disabled any and all movement in my foot with the exception of my toes.

Fast forward about a week. I went to the doctor and learned that I would only have to have the fixator on for about 4 weeks. This was great news. At this time, there was no pain, but it was difficult to deal with. My sheets were shredded, I wasn't sleeping good, etc.

Well, about a week later I woke up with an unbearable pain in my heel right where the rod went through. I popped a couple of pain pills....nothing. The pain continued to increase throughout the day until about 8pm when my girlfriend and I decided to go to the ER in Memphis (more on the girlfriend later). They X-rayed me and said everything was fine despite my immense pain. They sent me home with more pain pills that did nothing to cease the still increasing pain in my heel. It seemed that the more time went on the worse it got. Over the course of a week, we made 3 separate trips to Memphis with ZERO explanation as to why it hurt so bad. Since there was no explanation, my doctor came to the conclusion that I was exhibiting "pill seeking behavior" and cut me completely off pain meds. He instructed that until the fixator comes out in 4 days, I was only to take tylenol. THATS IT. I couldn't believe it! The pain was real, and I was just beginning to suspect I was a wuss.

I barely made it through the weekend. I hit a very very deep depression. I was in tears, I wasn't sleeping, I couldn't even move my foot. An infection had set up in my pin sites...I was just in complete misery.

Monday rolled around and it was time for surgery. I went under, and when I woke up, the Doctor had learned something! It turns out, I'm not a pill head. The bar in my heel had become loose, and with every slight movement of my foot, it was grinding against the INSIDE of my heel bone. He concluded that I was probably in "Considerable pain". WHOOPS! Geez doc...maybe if I make three trips across state lines to complain of severe pain, I'm not just looking for a fix. GO FIGURE, JACKASS!

He sent me home with pain meds, but now that the fixator was out, I felt unbelievable! I was in no pain, and I was smiling for the first time in weeks. Here is a pic from right after getting the fixator removed.

Here it is about 9 weeks post accident, and I am in a walking boot. I am still ZERO weight bearing, but I went from Fixator, to cast, to boot in just 7 weeks! I'm making a great recovery, and I'm back at work. I'm happier than I have been in a long while too. While we're on that subject, lets rewind a little bit, and let me catch you up on my love life. Yes...I have one now.

Lesle, the girl I was dating on the night before the accident showed up to the hospital without being asked to check on me. She was here at my house on the day after I came home, and has been here ever since. She was my nurse. She cooked, cleaned my wounds, cleaned my house, helped me in and out of the shower, took me to doctor's appts, and saw me at my absolute worst. She never ONCE complained. She just took care of me because "Someone needed to." She was completely selfless, and I was blown away. I wasn't accustomed to this. If I was her, I would have run like hell.

She stuck around, though, and I fell in love. We had been dating a while before the accident, but it was nothing too serious. However, I decided to go for it and just ask her to move in. After all, if she could live with me during this incredibly tough time and be happy about it, she's a keeper. I wasn't about to let her go.

She is currently in the process of moving in, and we are completely in love. Shes good with the kids, and they seem to love her just as much as I do. So here she is. The new other half, Lesle.

As I continue to move on in life, a lot has changed! On top of all this, I have continued to lose weight and I am now down over 160 lbs!

Woah, who is that guy on the left. Jesus...that gut!

I also replaced the old car since it wasn't really roadworthy.

Everything is going well. My foot is on the mend, I should be walking (or at least trying) this time next month, so I will be sure to keep you guys updated.

Thanks for reading!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Let's talk about Vaping.

Before I start, I am no expert. I have the ability to research objectively, and gather facts.

Quite frankly I am sick of hearing the propaganda from the media about this new technology. I don't use the word propaganda often, and I tend to stay away from media/news in general.

The first and most important thing everyone should understand is that Vaping does NOT put harmful chemicals into your body. Yes, it is debatable that nicotine is a "harmful chemical" if not used responsibly.

In american made juice there are FOUR ingredients. Propylene Glycol (PG) and Vegetable Glycerin (VG) are the main 2 ingredients. Then you have flavoring, and SOMETIMES nicotene. 0 nic juice is gaining popularity because aside from the replacement of analogue cigarettes, vaping is also actually fun.

Do you know that Propylene Glycol is used in asthma inhalers? It's also FDA approved. Of course you didn't, because you probably heard they use it in Anti-freeze didn't you? Nope, thats ethylene glycol. The only time PG is used in anti-freeze is for "non-toxic" anti-freeze. They leave that part out in the anti vaping agenda.

Vegetable Glycerin - Also FDA Approved and used in Pharmaceuticals such as cough syrup, elixirs andexpectorants, toothpaste, mouthwashes, skin care products, shaving cream, hair care products, soaps and water-based personal lubricants.

Flavorings- Food grade flavorings found pretty much in everything you eat.

Nicotine. This is a chemical. We know it's a addictive, but it is one of the least dangerous chemicals found in "analogues". Some Juices don't even contain it! The ones that do, contain pharmaceutical grade nicotine

Now, I will grant you this. With the exception of PG and nicotene, little research has been done on the affects of inhaling these ingredients. That is a valid argument.

However, extensive research has been done on the affects of inhaling Analogue cigarettes. The fact is...they kill. There are thousands of chemicals in cigarettes.

So, research before you preach what you hear on the TV.

I am tired of being told that vaping is "bad" for me. I smoke EXTREMELY low nicotine levels. I vape the nicotene equivalent of about 1-2 cigarettes per day. Bear in mind, ITS ONLY THE Nicotine. Not all the other crap.

And, It smells nice, and tastes good. AND i spend MAYBE $10-12 per month on juice.

So, if you see me vaping, please don't try to preach to me. I enjoy it. I would enjoy it with no nicotine, but the fact is, I like it. I can do without it, I'm not addicted. It's a great way to unwind, and it's fun to blow clouds.

It's something to do on a boring car ride. It's fun to do after a big meal because you get the treat of a sweet flavor without actually consuming calories.

Let's get the facts straight.

Again, I'm not expert, and I didn't cite any of the information listed here, because it's all a google search away. It's my blog, and I'm too lazy to cite.

I just wanted to get this out there.


To restaurants, bars, and schools. Vaping is NOT a damn tobacco product. Stop lumping it in as such.

If you don't want me to vape in your establishment I won't out of respect. It's your place. If you don't want me vaping in your car or your house, I won't out of respect.

Just don't lump me in with the smokers. I'm not a smoker!

And to all the vapers, show some damn respect. Don't assume you can vape anywhere you want, and then argue with people about your right to vape in public. It makes the rest of us look like douchebags. Instead try to educate people.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Black Friday Blues!

Bill decided to get brave and get 6 of the craziest men together for a black Friday STL Blues game for his birthday. This is an account with very explicit details of this not-so-forgettable trip.

So, Here is the mob that went.

From left to right. Me, Adam, Wes, John, Bill, Evan

We met up at Adam's house in Paragould, and took 2 cars on the trip. The trip up there was completely uneventful. However, once we arrived at the hotel, it was evident that Evan and Adam had decided to start the party a little bit early.

We checked into our rooms and unpacked etc, Before I could even get unpacked, everyone had regrouped and was in Wesley and Adams room having some drinks and planning our next move. We had decided to go to Maurizio's Pizza. It was about 1ish. On the walk over to the pizza joint, you could tell things still weren't quite right in the area. Humvees and soldiers were placed in some parking lots, and street corners. City Hall was still barricaded off. We stepped into the pizza place and there were 2 uniformed soldiers and us. That's pretty much it. We had some drinks and I gotta say, the pizza was pretty damn good. By the time we left there we all had a pretty good buzz and things were going well. There were some adult conversations had in the establishment and a majority of that time was spent discussing our relative feelings on transsexuals I won't go into details on this, but let's just say that the entire conversation had Bill squirming a little bit in his chair.

As we left there was a homeless amputee. He yelled "Can I get a hand up?" EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US thought he said "Can I get a handjob?" That alone would be funny enough, but while we were all trying to figure out if that's what he really said, Wes was already halfway over there! Keep in mind, at this point he still hadn't figured out what he said and the fact that Wes was already over there was kind of disturbing. Wes told the guy he would not be giving him a handjob to which the homeless guy just laughed and said that was a good one. Wes helped him up, but that didn't stop us from making fun of him for being "upset" when he got over to him. Thus #hobohandjob was invented.

We adjourned back to the hotel bar at which point, I probably ordered more drinks than necessary. We had a fantastic bartender. We got a little rowdy and loud in the bar, but I think we were mostly just busy with drinking. I also sat at the end of the bar, so I didn't participate in much of the group conversation. Mostly it was just me and Adam talking.

This is Calvin the bartender. He always treats the guys well when they stay at the Sheraton.

We spent an hour or so at the bar, and went up to the room to get ready for the game. We got dressed, had a couple more drinks, and set out.

Once at the game, I was feeling a little frisky and bet Adam I could get selfies perfect strangers, just by approaching them and starting a conversation. He said I couldn't get more than 3 or 5, I forgot what we settled on, but before and during the game, it was my mission to get as many as possible. At one point the people behind me were telling another couple to get one with me and tapped me on the shoulder. So, Here are all the selfies I got.

So, right at 2nd period of the game, Adam decides to run off to the bathroom, and gets lost. He couldn't find his way back to the seats, and by the time we decided to go find him we realized that he had decided to give up and just leave the game to find a bar. He sent us a message and asked us to grab his jacket when we leave. I looked over and sure enough...his jacket was still in his seat!

After an inner dialogue with myself on whether or not to go get him, I decided it would be best, since it was cold, he was drunk, and wandering around looking for a bar in downtown St. Louis. As I was getting ready to leave the arena, I was stopped by security, who asked if I was leaving for the night. I explained that I had a friend leave in a drunken rage and I was going to look for him. Now keep in mind, that by this point, I was completely sober. The guys explained that the arena was on lock-down due to a shooting, so if I left, I wouldn't be re-admitted. I accepted it, and walked out and headed to the hotel bar (assuming that's where he went) I waded through police barricades back to the hotel bar. Adam wasn't there.

I messaged him and asked him where he was. He said he was at Maggie's, which is an Irish Pub in downtown. I wasn't sure where it was, so I asked the hotel staff. They told me that it was about a 20 minute walk.

I said yea, screw you Adam. I'm staying at the hotel until the guys are out of the game. I went up to the hotel and had a cup of coffee and watched TV until The other 4 came and picked me up. We got ready to go, and I grabbed Adam's jacket. As soon as we stepped into the hall Adam popped around the corner and was just like "Hey guys!" Everyone cussed him. He grabbed his jacket and the 6 of us trekked on to the pub. I couldn't resist this cuddly guy, so we snapped another picture, and continued our 20 minute walk.

We all sat around at the pub and ate and drank. I ordered a drink, because by this time, I was pretty much sober, and wasn't too interested in drinking anymore. Adam on the other hand....He was a different story. Everyone was ready to go, but he made it very clear that he wasn't leaving until the pitcher of beer was gone. So, Bill and I stayed behind to wait for him.

Adam had a terrible case of the hiccups, so I slid my water over to him and told him to drink some water. He yanked the straw out of my glass and drunkenly asked for the butter knife. Confused as hell, I handed it to him. He proceeds to throw it into the glass of water, and threw the glass back WITH the knife in it and started guzzling. Bill and I were both yelling and asking what the HELL he was doing. "That's a knife, not a straw." Adam responded with "Dude, I do this all the time, it works," He then proceeded to attempt to drink from the knife as if it were a straw. Bill and I almost died laughing. Thus #knifewater was born/

We gathered Adam up and left the pub. There was a fairly attractive girl sitting outside the bar. Adam asked her for a cigarette and sat next to her and began to hit on her. Her boyfriend then came around the corner and was talking about something he couldn't find in the car. I was certain that this guy was going to be pissed. Adam talked to them both and at this point Bill remarked "Well, RJ, at some point you just have to realize that Adam is just going to do what he wants, and he's a big boy, so let's just go."

We left and Bill and I talked and walked back to the hotel and left Adam to his own devices. Needless to say the other guys in the group were a little concerned by the fact that we left one of our own out in the wilds of downtown STL. He eventually made it back to the hotel, and by this point everyone was in bed except Adam and Wes. They proceeded down to the hotel bar, and the party continued for them.

The next morning, Wesley and Adam found blood splatters on both of the beds, and neither one of them could tell us where they came from, so I guess that will just remain a mystery for now.

The drive back was quiet and quick. I had Wes and Adam with me. Lets just say that Adam wasn't feeling his best on the trip home.

I realized that not only am I too old for this, but my stomach just doesn't allow for this type of activity anymore. I did have a blast, but I think I'm partied out for a bit.

Monday, November 24, 2014

BFL's Important Life Lessons

So, lets get off the beaten path for a bit. I'm going back to my blogging roots for this one, and make a satirical entry.

Let's talk about some things that I feel like everyone should know, but probably don't.

These items come from my personal experiences and miserable failures in life. So, have a laugh at my misfortunes, and maybe you can learn from them, because I NEVER DO.

Lesson 1: Dating Sites - BAD BAD Idea.

So, you are lonely. You never get out to meet new people. Maybe you think you are fat and ugly. Maybe you are socially awkward. Maybe all the above applies to you. For whatever reason, you are having a hard time meeting someone. There are lots of dating sites. They are convenient, and you can flirt in the nude, and not be a creep, because you are doing it from home. RIGHT? What's not to love about dating sites? EVERYTHING. PLEASE DON'T.

There are several types of people on dating sites. Let's not be too harsh to judge them, because you might be one, or are considering putting yourself on one, and you are perfectly normal, right? Whatever makes you sleep better tonight.

If you are a woman. Here is what you can expect. (I have heard first hand accounts of these situations from female friends)

PENIS. Lots of Penis. You will receive messages asking if you want to see one, you will get random pictures of them. Just...PENIS.

You will receive countless messages about the size of your breasts. Save yourself time...just put your bra size on your profile. Then, the guys will just go straight to asking you for pictures of them.

I know what you're thinking... "I'll just put on my profile that I'm not interested in pictures of penis, blah blah blah".

WON'T WORK. Know why? I'll tell you. The types of guys that are sending you those messages don't read your profile. EVER. They look at pictures, and message you....Another secret. I'm sorry, but just because a guy sends a picture, or asks for one doesn't mean you are actually attractive. It means they want to see tits. In fact, to be brutally honest...the less attractive you are, the more likely he is going to assume you have self esteem issues, and therefore more likely to give attention to someone that tells you that you are attractive.

Now that we've established that. Let's move on.

MEN: I hope you like kids. Because 90% of the women on there have them. Also, it is important to ask pre-emptive questions if you attempt to message a seemingly attractive normal woman without 8 children.


If the answer to either of these questions are ANYTHING but yes, move on. Take my word for it. I have had women ask me to make down payments for cars, give them rides to work, pick up items and bring them to their homes, etc.

Don't fall into that trap. Of course she is attractive. She knows it, and she's using it to her advantage to get things from horny men. You might get lucky, there's always that. I wonder what she did for the guy that brought her to work yesterday? Or the guy that brought her sonic to work on her lunch break. Things to think about.

There are no normal people on dating sites. I only say that because the ratio of normal to freaks on these sites is incredibly low. There are a few unsuspecting normal people on there. You might get lucky and find them.

HOWEVER, be wary of telltale signs that they are hiding something. Profile pictures at weird angles. Chances are that's the only angle that they look normal in. If it's the same pose/angle over and over again, they are hiding something.

If they have very little information on their profile, they are hiding something. Ask lots of probing questions.

Here are some great questions to ask. I am speaking from experience. Each of these questions have merit. I have seen some things

Are you a prostitute? (see HERE for an example)
Are you a midget?
Do you have all your limbs?
Do you currently suffer from mental illness?
Are you actually a female?
How many times have you been married?
Are you currently married?
Is your ex husband crazy?
Do you have Demon Children?

Keeping ALL this in mind. If you have waded through the cesspool of the dating site and emerged with the unicorn that is a suitable person to date, then congratulations.

If you enjoy the search, and are convinced that none of these could possibly apply to you and you are determined to find your next soulmate on a website. I shed a tear for you.

The only hope you have is a paid site like eHarmony or match.com. People that are paying for the service are much more likely to use it for it's intended purpose.

That's all I have on that. I'll see you guys on PoF and OKC.

Lesson 2: Kidney Stones are real.

You could have one right now. I swear. I'm not kidding. You might not even know it. You will eventually know it if you have one of those sneaky bastards hanging out in your kidney.

I have 1. How do I know? Because I HAD 2. It's a great little story.

I was lying in bed a few weeks ago browsing dating sites (see what I did there? Haaaa) No really, I was browsing Reddit at about 1AM on Sunday morning. I had a weird little cramp in my back, so I kinda rolled over and readjusted, thinking I was just laying funny. It eased a little bit. I quickly got back to pictures of kittens and realized that the pain was coming back. I rolled over again. It felt like a spasm. I hadn't had a back spasm since I weighed like 400lbs, so I thought it odd, but I rolled over and started the cat stretch thingie to keep my back from cramping. It wasn't helping. It was at this point that I decided to get up and walk around. The pain starting to migrate and felt like gas pains.

I went to the bathroom and sat on the toilet waiting to relieve pressure, but nothing came. Except pain. It literally felt like the pain was beginning to swell. I got up and went to the living room. At this point, the pain was intense, but not unbearable. It was at this moment that I felt something might be going on with me. The pain felt different. I had the kids so I kind of non nonchalantly called Mom and told her I might need to go to the ER and need her to come over. I told her I'd call her back if it got worse.

IT DID. Within 10 minutes, the pain was so unbearable I could barely speak, and I was sure that I was dying. I called mom and told her to get there now, I needed to go to the ER. After I hung up with her, I called Dad. I literally could not think straight at this point.

There was no position I could get into that would relieve the pain. All I could do was hyperventilate and roll around in the fetal position. My entire right side absolutely killed. It's a pain I'll not soon forget.

By the time I got to the hospital, I couldn't breathe. I was having a panic attack, and my balls felt like they were in a vise. That's not something they really explain well on any website when describing the symptoms of a stone. Trust me. You will feel it in your balls, and it is unrelenting.

By the time I got into triage, my lips, hands, and feet were numb. The nurse kept telling me to calm down and breathe. I was breathing, but just not properly I guess. My mind was literally in a fog of pain. Then I met my friend Dilaudid. Such a sweet kiss she had. Warmth followed by immediate pain relief. This all took place over the course of about 4 hours, about an hour and a half of that was unbearable pain.

The doctor explained that the stone was about 2mm in size and had just passed through the smallest part of my urinary tract, and I had another stone in the other kidney just waiting to drop. So, I get to do it all again. Maybe next week, maybe next year. NOBODY KNOWS. That little bastard is just sitting there in my kidney collecting particles of whatever and growing.

The Dr. sent me home with pain meds and a strainer to pee in. Also gave me medicine that dilates my urinary tract. He explained I still had to pass the stone and to pee into the strainer until I catch it. I was terrified for 2 days straight. If it hurt that bad passing through my upper tract, I could only imagine the pain it could inflict on my mini me.

One day I decided to literally do nothing but drink water all day, and hold my piss in until I felt like i was going to burst. I finally reached the point, and did my business in the strainer. A strange feeling washed over me as I felt my stream go from squirt gun to super soaker. I looked down when I was finished and saw A SPECK. I do mean....a SPECK in my strainer. I put my strainer in the sink and rinsed it out, and literally thought "that must have fallen off my zipper or something. I picked it up and it felt gritty like a piece of sand or dirt. I snapped a pic and sent it to my Dad to ask if it was the stone. He confirmed it was, and I was in shock. It was tiny and unassuming, and caused the single most painful experience of my life.

And I get to do it again sometime in the unknown future.

Here is the source of all the pain....


OK, so there were only 2 lessons.

Mainly, I'm just tired of typing at this point. Maybe this can be a thing. Whenever terrible things happen, I can post them so you won't make the same mistakes!

I hope you enjoyed!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Gastric Sleeve 5 months Post Op

Well Hello again!

Here we are, almost right at 5 months after my surgery. As a reminder, before the pre-op diet I weighed in at 400 lbs. I weighed in this morning at 283 lbs. The weight loss has slowed up quite a bit, but, I haven't been exercising as often as I should.

I'm from 52x30 pants to 42x30. 5xl shirt to 2-3xl.

Loose skin is becoming apparent at this point, and it's starting to bother me a little bit. It's mostly my upper arms, thighs, and pelvic region. It's not enough to cause any discomfort, but it is definitely affecting how my clothes fit. I am working on getting some measurements so I can get some compression garments for my mid region. I'm not so sure about compression boxer briefs. I don't really see those being comfy.

Let's talk about food for those of you looking into this surgery, or you're reading out of curiosity.

Food is still a problem for me. The issue is that I still really love food. I have gotten way better about knowing when to stop ahead of time. However, just like before I had the surgery, it still requires the will and ability to just say "OK, that's enough." and put it down. If you are at home, pack it up and put it in the fridge. If you don't, you will find yourself grazing. TRUST ME ON THIS!

The BEST piece of advice I can possibly give you is to watch your portions. Measure it and only give yourself that much food. Eat it, and wait 10 minutes. If you are still hungry, consider having more. I have a TERRIBLE habit of saying "I'll make X amount, and snack on it throughout the night if it's too much"

I do this knowing damn well that it's too much, and I sit and graze and feel like an asshat for doing it.

Also Pork Rinds and Popcorn. They are your friends. They chew down to nothing, and they are very satisfying for when you feel hungry. Keep in mind that BEFORE you snack you need to drink! When I get hungry, I will make myself drink 16 oz of water first. Then, if I'm hungry I'll look for something to eat.

I'm to the point that I don't miss sodas at all. They aren't worth the pain and discomfort. AT ALL. I have gotten to the point that I simply won't drink them. Not even a sip. I drink water, tea, and 5-hour energy. 5 hour energy is very lightly carbonated, but it's small and causes no discomfort. It also doesn't bother my stomach like coffee does.

I haven't suffered from gout since the week after surgery. Allopurinol is your best friend if you are a gout sufferer. Please take my advice, and start taking this as soon BEFORE the surgery as you possibly can. It takes 3-6 weeks to fully benefit you.

Things are going pretty well for me other than that.

I do plan on giving you guys another blog post about a very interesting experience with passing a kidney stone that I had last month. That's content for another less serious post though.

Please please please, if you are considering this surgery and have any questions, send them to my facebook page, or post in the comments. All comments here are moderated, so if you want to send me your email address, I will make sure not to publish it, and I will contact you personally.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 3, 2014

RJ's Fright Night!

Many of my readers know that I suffer from debilitating social anxiety. So the idea that I could host a party was far from my mind.

I was looking for a Halloween party to attend this year when a friend of mine off offhandedly mentioned "Throw one yourself, and I'll come." We both kind of laughed it off as a joke, but a few days later I realized that if I wanted to do something for Halloween I would have to consider throwing my own party.

This is the first time in probably 4-5 years that I was dressing up for Halloween. Losing the weight meant that I had more costume options. My friend suggested that I throw my own party and she would help decorate and co-host the party for me. The next thing I knew...I had a FB event started, and I was planning a party. The amount of anxiety I had over throwing the party was insurmountable. The number of things that were bouncing around in my head that I needed for the party were driving me insane.

First of all, I had no clue what I was doing, how many people to expect, what sort of things would be entertaining to guests. In short I was over thinking it. Time rolled on, and I had like 6 people RSVP, and I was starting to get pretty upset. Living life as a hermit over the last 3 years meant that I lost a lot of friends. So, I was worried that I would only have a couple people show up. Like, my friend and sisters.

Saturday rolled around...

I made about 8 gallons of PGA Punch, bought some hot dogs and marshmallows, built a fire, and before I knew it, the party was going.

I had about 15-17 people show up, which I thought was perfect. We circled around the bonfire in lawn chairs and just talked. I saw my cousin that I hadn't seen in years. Both my sisters came. A close friend/coworker and his girlfriend. My chiropractor and her husband, and even an ex girlfriend and her new better half.

We all laughed, and enjoyed some good music. Overall, I am thrilled that I decided to do it. I hope to have more parties in the future. If I have more of these, and show up to more parties, maybe in the future I can have bigger and better parties. Here are some pictures from the party that you guys might enjoy.

I hope you had a safe and happy Halloween!

Me and my cousin, Brett

Me and my friend

This is Jennifer and her Roommate Britney (Batman and Robin)

Tracy (Girlfriend of a coworker) as a not so scary vampire

Jennifer, Tiffany (my sister), and Britney

Jen and Tiffany

My two sisters. Brittney and Tiffany

The party was great, and I can't wait to do another one!