Ina Sez Goodbye

Ina Sez Goodbye

Posted by: on Jun 1, 2017 | No Comments

Ina Sez Goodbye

Allie, Grandma Ina and Zach at the Steely Dan Concert in Bend Oregon

The Cancer Tsunamis

Posted by: on Apr 3, 2017 | No Comments

The Cancer Tsunamis

On November 14, 2016, my mother-in-law (Ina) was told that she not only had a spot on her pancreas, but she also had spots on her adrenal gland and liver. As I was sitting in the doctor’s office with her and my wife, I was 99.99% sure I knew what that meant. You know the 5 stages of grief? I skipped the first 4 realizing that I needed to be the one to keep my emotions in check while others around me might not be able to. That was Cancer Tsunami #1.

A little more than 2 weeks later, Ina would have a biopsy (actually for the second time). That same day, I was on a business trip to Syracuse University with my friend (and fellow SU alum) Betsy. I called my wife to check in, when she informed me that they had done a rush biopsy and that the cancer had been confirmed into 2 locations. 99.99% is now 100%. I have to go into a meeting and keep my shit together. On the ride home, I inform Betsy of what my wife are about to speak about. December 1, 2016 – Cancer Tsunami #2.

After spending most of Christmas week in the hospital dealing with post-chemo and pain issues, Ina moves in with Linda and me on New Year’s Day, 2017. The next 2-1/2 months are a whirlwind of doctors visits, chemo treatments, pain management (Fentanyl – a.k.a. legal heroin; morphine supplements; other stuff), most of which falls on Linda. FYI, I’ve been told by certain family members my Nobel Prize is waiting for me! Cancer Tsunami #3.

But the big CANCER TSUNAMI is the floodgates that were opened when all of this was swirling around Linda and me. It feels like cancer is an epidemic and once it hits you, the epidemic comes at you like a huge tidal wave…a tsunmai. Everyone you speak to, everyone you interact with in person or via social media, everyone is touched by cancer. Relatives, friends, business colleagues, casual acquaintances. I feel like I can’t go on Facebook without reading a post from someone who isn’t dealing with cancer on a personal level. They are raising money, they ask you to pray for a friend or relative, they post stories and photos of their own battle with cancer. Every time I hear or read about someone with cancer, I feel like that tsunami is pushing me down beneath the wave. I know that I can survive the tsunami and that I will eventually come up for air. I also know that there will be days when the weight of the water will make me feel like almost all the air is being squeezed out of my lungs.

Even when the tsunami has me down and almost out, I know that the battle against cancer is one we must wage so that we win the war. That the tsunami will end and leave only calm waters in it’s place.

 

My Cell Phone Ate My Life

Posted by: on Mar 15, 2017 | No Comments

My Cell Phone Ate My Life

I remember fondly the daze before cell phones. No calls from clients on weekends; no midnight texts from friends and family; no people banging into you walking down the street with their noses buried in their phones.

It’s The First Amendment!

Posted by: on Feb 24, 2017 | No Comments

It’s The First Amendment!

For those of you that don’t know this one, this is The First Amendment of the Constitution of The United States of America:

Jury Duty Daze 2016

Posted by: on Aug 8, 2016 | No Comments

Jury Duty Daze 2016

Yes folks, I have been called to perform my civic duty and have been called for jury duty.  Much like I did 3 years, I will post on my experience.

Who’s The Bigger A’hole?

Posted by: on Feb 26, 2016 | No Comments

Who’s The Bigger A’hole?

Over the years, I have made no secret about my love/hate relationship with folks at the local supermarket. Hate them because they can be such assholes. Love them because they can be such assholes, which is great fodder for this blog. Last Sunday’s visit to the ShopRite was no exception

It started in the parking lot, upon arrival. When I pulled into my spot, about 30 feet from the little cart holder, you know…where they ask you to return your cart to, there was a cart in the spot…30 feet away from where it should be. Asshole!

Then there’s the folks who think the most convenient spot to stop is by the door right when you get into the ShopRite, basically clogging up the whole entry way. Asshole!!

And no trip to the ShopRite is complete with the mother and/or father who think a supermarket is a big playground for the kids, and let them run amok like little chicks with their heads chopped off. Asshole!

But let’s get to the 2 biggest assholes of the day. First there’s this guy, in the 25 item express lane.


The picture is kind of small but how many items do you see there (and there was another 15 already bagged and in his cart)? I tell you exactly how many there were…40. 4o items in the 25 item lane. The total number of items is right there on the display, next to running price total. I don’t understand why they can’t program the express lanes registers to actually stop when the person gets to the maximum items on the lane. Believe me, you’d only to do it a couple of times before everyone got the picture. As for this guy…he’s an asshole!

And then there’s this guy.

Saw this just as I was leaving. I slowed down, looked at the guy – and he saw me looking at him – and watched him walk away. You know what? He’s an asshole?

But the question is, who’s the bigger asshole? Express lane dude or 2 space parking lot dude? I will leave it up to you decide. Hey, and the next time you go to the supermarket, please don’t be an asshole. The world is already filled with them.

But First Moments

Posted by: on May 26, 2015 | One Comment

But First Moments

M*A*S*H Season 1
The Army Navy Game

There’s a really great episode of M*A*S*H from Season 1 entitled “The Army-Navy Game.” In this episode, everyone is glued to the radio listening to the big game, until a barrage of artillery leaves an unexploded bomb in the compound. Of course, anyone they call who can help them deactivate the bomb can’t be bothered because of the game. One naval officer goes so far as to tell them to call at half-time (or something along those lines).

Eventually, Hawkeye and Trapper take on the task of defusing the bomb, with Colonel Blake reading out the instructions. They have to un-tighten a screw, remove the cap and eventually get to the wires. At this point Colonel Blake reads out to them “and carefully cut the wires leading to the clockwork fuse at the head.” Trapper cuts the wire. Colonel Blake than continues “but first, remove the fuse.”

At this point, Colonel Blake looks perplexed, Hawkeye and Trapper exchange glances of dread, they try to get as away the bomb stops ticking and explodes, raining down a shower of CIA propaganda leaflets. A classic M*A*S*H moment.

I have been known to use the term “a but first moment” when the opportunity strikes. Recently, I had one recently. A few weeks back, I was working on an estimate for a client for some signage and display work outside his office.  I went and took pictures of his existing piece, measured it, sent specs out to vendors for production, installation and everything need to complete the job. Showed him one vendor’s ideas and he said “no.” Showed him another vendor’s ideas, again “no.” Presented him with a 3rd option and he didn’t say no. He just said “I don’t need all of this. I just need you to design the sign”. I have a guy who can handle production and installation.  At which point I say to him “but first…”

Here’s another classic but first moment. It’s actually a typo but it certainly qualifies as a “but first” moment, at least in my book.  Take a look at the image below, which is taken from Hemispheres – the United Airlines inflight magazine (click on it for better viewing).

 Can you spot the mistake. I will give you a clue (with kudos to my friend Matt for coining this one): Ready, Fire, Aim. You’d think with all the writers, editors, proofreaders, etc., who work on a publication of this nature, that there would be no typos but I guess they just missed this one.

For everyone who flies in an airplane, let’s hope this is only but first mistake any airline personnel ever makes.

Postal Service Daze

Postal Service Daze

Posted by: on Apr 28, 2015 | No Comments

POSTAL SERVICE DAZE

Postmarked March 30th.
Delivered April 27th.

When it comes to excuses, “the check is in the mail” is right up there with the dog ate my homework. Oh sure, it’s possible…it’s just not all that likely…or is it?

Working Remotely Daze

Working Remotely Daze

Posted by: on Mar 5, 2015 | No Comments

WORKING REMOTELY

With the latest in a series of snow events here in NJ, Mother Nature has finally gotten the best of me, so I’m working remotely today. I love that expression…Working Remotely. That’s just a fancy way of saying I’m at home working in my underwear (with kudos to my friend Scott who owns the domain name AtHomeInMyUnderway.com, or something like that).

My New Job

My New Job

Posted by: on Feb 19, 2015 | 6 Comments

 

The first (and not quite official) @IraSez hat.

Yesterday I updated my LinkedIn Profile and added “IraSez” in the Experience column. Despite the fact that I stated I had been “Writer, Editor & Blogger” since 2010, LinkedIn told all my connections that I have a new job. Since then, my inbox has been a constant flow of emails and LinkedIn notices offering congrats on the new job.

First, thanks to everyone for sending their best wishes. Second, I have actually been writing IraSez for about 5 years, so it’s not exactly new. Third, I never really viewed my blog as a job. It is fun to write, fun to have people read what I’m writing, fun to get comments, fun to interact.

I had always hoped that maybe, someday, someone might actually pay me to write a column or two. That IraSez.com might actually be a place for people to advertise and that I might actually make some money off the damn thing.

IraSez was not my idea. It was my wife and our friend Lizzie who talked me into starting my own blog. What possessed them to do this? I have no idea. I also have no idea what possessed Lizzie to recently tell a friend of hers, who happens to be in “the biz,” about IraSez but she did. This friend, who knows a thing or two about writers and blogs, told one of her colleagues about my blog, and she is actually interested in helping me out. If you think you are shocked by this turn of events, imagine my surprise.

Of course, there is work to be done. First, this one-page very WordPress, site needs to go. A new and improved IraSez website is in the works. Second, I need to keep writing, writing, and writing some more. For those of you that have been loyal fans, you know it can be weeks between posts. Those daze are over. Third, and here’s where you all come in, I need to keep building my audience, or maybe I should, say build an audience. I need to get my name out there, use the IraSez moniker wherever and whenever possible. Post comments on other blogs, other websites, whatever it takes to build the IraSez brand.

Most importantly, I need to stay true to the core values of IraSez. First, common sense…always common sense. Second, be real, be myself, and never hide from folks who don’t agree with me or appreciate my view of things.

Third, and this was really the whole point of IraSez….a bunch of years ago, I was in Las Vegas on the annual golf trip. I was walking down the strip and talking to my mother (miss you mom) – the strip is fertile ground when your mind works like mine. I said to my mother, “Mom, I missed my calling. I should have been a sociologist, studied people so I could write books making fun of them.” Who knows….maybe, with a little help, I can find my calling after all, but it will never be my “new job.”