Category Archives: Personal

Bah humbug. Trump is canceling Christmas. 🎄


Never pass up a chance to blame The Donald. The crew at Newsweek know better.

And just what is bah humbug? I know it is a famous line written by Charles Dickens. But what does it mean? What’s a humbug?



Me & the Policeman

Recently I had an encounter with the Seattle police. The background is a long, drawn out story that I may tell someday. But right now I am focusing on what the officer said, partly because it’s so odd and partly because I find it amusing.

I sit in public spaces for long periods of time when I am not feeling well, and this apparently makes some uncomfortable, who then call the police about this strange man — me — who just sits. I rest up and then eventually move on. But when I am exhausted I just sit and rest.

I usually do this in spaces with wifi. Otherwise, I’d be bored out of mind, though lately I have been catching up on my book reading. (I am reading one about Martin Luther and the Reformation that is fantastic.)

Part of our conversation went as follows:

ME: “I’ve been having serious medical issues. I may have lymphoma.”

A look of alarm suddenly covers the policeman’s face. He backs away slightly as if I might somehow infect him.

OFFICER: “Is that contagious?”

I am taken back by his ignorance.

ME: “Seriously?”

I am quickly chastised by his partner, so I expound on my answer.

ME: “It’s a blood cancer,” I reply, incredulously.

He probably still has no idea. Did he get into his patrol vehicle and look it up? My guess is no.

I’ve been wondering if he was hoping he’d have something on me, like being a public health threat, so he could call in a HAZMAT team and ship me off to a hospital ward somewhere.

These two officers were hard, cold-hearted authoritarian types. Not a fan. I’ve encountered so many heartless bureaucrats recently.


Finally found her, my great-great grandmother, using one of the quirky spellings of the family surname, Schanofski.

Schenovsky? No.
Sarnowska. No.
Scharnowski. No.
Scharnofske. Maybe.
Schanofski! Yes!


Marie Friederike Schanofski was born to Johann Schanofski and Marie Mesick on July 20, 1826. Three days later, she was baptized, on July 23, 1826 in Damerkow, Butow, Pomerania, Prussia, Germany, also probably the place of her birth.

It’s only a short distance from Borntuchen, which is turning out to be a hotbed of familial connections. It’s the birthplace of her son-in-law Albert Fromke, my great grandfather.

I’ve uploaded a digital copy of the complete page scan from microfilm.


At the multiple choice section of my health


Is it —
a) lymphedema
b) inflammatory bowel disease
c) mesenteric panniculitis
d) lymphoma
e) a combination of some
f) all of the above
— that afflicts me?

So the doc looking over my recent CT scan wrote the following notes. His name is Caldwell and he wrote:

Mild mesenteric adenopathy with fat stranding throughout the fat. Appearance is nonspecific and the differential is somewhat broad. Differential diagnosis would include lymphedema, underlying occult small bowel inflammation (including inflammatory bowel disease), mesenteric panniculitis as well as lymphoma.

My primary doc explained to me that all of these are potential options explaining the abnormal imaging and that further analysis is required. The gastroenterology specialist is recommending another colonoscopy and something new for me, an upper endoscopy. Both will be scheduled the same day, so I only have to be put under once.

What fun!


I’m an Arschloch, a big Arschloch! Anyone have answers as to why?

People have been tweeting at me in German, in Serbian, in Russian. And I haven’t had such a good time on Twitter in awhile. I’ve been using Google to help me translate.

“So I’ve read your main page. You are well educated, but in the end you are a big asshole. Why?”

“I’m happy to laugh with you. Should I call you asshole in Serbian too?”

“Motherland Russia is calling! Go home!”