Friday afternoon I had my doctor's appointment. I had to fast until 1:30 p.m. My doctor looks young, though less young than he did when I first saw him ten years ago. He's a good doctor.
He reassured me about my one question (a very intermittent mild faintness). I was impressed that both the nurse who administered the anti-dinosaur-flu shot and the med tech who drew metric tons of blood were gentle and quick about it. The cold weather was in session Friday, so I got to wear my blue Winter coat. My physical was a non-event, but all the fun is in the bodily fluids. We'll see if the tests turn out well. I saw a kestrel and bluebirds in the rain at the park.
Friday evening we ate at Silver Thai restaurant, where I had the big bowl seafood soup. I fell asleep reading a comforting sci-fi on my e-reader.
I set out this morning to drive to see my father in Arkansas. During the drive, I used the TuneIn radio app to listen to the Linux Action Show. The episode discussed the latest version of the Linux distribution called OpenSuse. It sounded very interesting. The show also talked about the crowdfund for Linux Voice magazine, a crowdfund I support.
Scott Simon of NPR, who I usually like, irritated me. He made a dismissive note of the world championship chess win of young Magnus Carlsen of Norway, to talk about sports and JFK. JFK, in my view, would have embraced Magnus Carlsen and the new, and rejected the past.
Living near Dallas this month has subjected me to way too much JFK myth exploitation. Though I have my own memory of the day of his assassination (watching the horse-drawn caisson with a United States flag draped on it was my first childhood memory of television viewing), the
local media and the national media have sought to increase ratings by tying in everything in life to the 50th anniversary of this assassination. It's the worst sort of iconography and hagiography. Here in Dallas, they closed the courthouse and the mayor of Dallas, the former CEO of Pizza Hut, declared in a speech that "I believe the “New Frontier” did not end that day on our Texas Frontier". The death of President Kennedy was of course a very significant event, and deeply sad. But the coverage here has been a non-stop orgy of sensational non-news. When Scott Simon ignored modern sports news to talk to a sports guy about sports around the time of JFK's death, I made a resolve to tweet him about it. Such resolves mean nothing.
On the way to Arkansas, I stopped in Princeton to fill a low tire with air. I am glad that my car's computer now tells me when a tire is low. The Collin Street Bakery in Greenville supplied me with a small fruitcake for my father, banana nut bread for his wife, and a loaf of raisin bread for my sister. I stopped at McDonald's in Mount Vernon,where the staff is always prompt at oatmeal preparation. I filled up with gasoline at an Exxon and hit the road again. On the drive, I saw lots of trees with Autumn color and lots of huge red-tailed hawks on trees and telephone wires.
I arrived in Camden, Arkansas at 12:15 p.m. I went first to Subway sandwiches,where I had a
black forest ham on Italian herbs and cheese. Then I drove to Riverfront Park on the Ouachita River. I saw a flock of American goldfinch in the trees. I snapped photo after photo of them, as well as of northern cardinals.
I drove to my father's and arrived at 1 p.m. I visited with him for 2 1/2 hours. I got a good chance to talk to my sister and to my father's wife. I was glad I went to Arkansas.
I hit the road at 3.30 p.m. I do not stay long with my father nowadays because I do not wish to tire him. But I sure enjoyed seeing him. I drove to White Oak Lake State Park, where I took a walk on the Silver Branch trail. I took photos of a squirrel holding a nut. Then I got on the road home to Texas.
Another time, I might have stopped to rest tonight at a town in northeast Texas. But I wanted to drive all the way home in one burst. I needed to get home because a massive winter storm is rolling in tonight. One curious thing about going to Arkansas was that though Camden is 240 miles northeast of my home now, it was warmer up north.
I stopped at Applebee's in Mount Pleasant, where I had a Weight-Watchers-friendly steak with a portobello mushroom and roast potatoes. I listened to a sports contest on my cell phone.
When I arrived home, my wife had put my dog's jacket on my dog. She looked comfortable.
We watched Lady Gaga on Saturday Night Live and now we are watching Sarah Silverman on HBO.
I posted a picture of an American goldfinch to Facebook.