Monday, September 21, 2009

601 Do I Hear a Waltz?

601 Do I Hear A Waltz?

It's a complicated musical drama about love and marriage and divorce in Italy, and the title is used here elsewise. It's about waltzing. Or potential waltzing.

Waltzing and, for that matter, all dancing is and always has been a foreign concept and something best unattempted at least around here, more so since a nasty series of damaging events to the left knee five years ago. Hobbling and walking canes become part of one's nature after awhile.

Now, it's time to walk normally again, and free of pain at that.

The sheer relief of not hurting is a result of a contraption the doctors call an "unloader" knee brace. It is fabulously expensive (will Medicare pay for this?) and complicated. It is, in effect, a two-foot-long tube into which one inserts the errant leg, which is then bound by a series of Velcro straps attached in mysterious places and which presses a circular hinge in a spot that straightens a crooked knee.

This particular model is made by a company headquartered in Iceland, where they have time to think up things like this.

In the orthopedic clinic, an anorexically thin woman with a lovely open face applies the thing. Standing and walking suddenly becomes normal. It makes one want to run out and play tennis, even though tennis is in the same category as waltzing.

Even when the thing comes off, the leg is good. The knock-knee isn't knocking in three-quarter time, any more. The single step from the garage to the house no longer is Mt. Everest, or even mole hill Everest. And when the pain dissolves, the bad attitude that goes with it dissolves too.

So here's to the deep-south doc who said "try the unloader," And here's to the rail-thin and ever-so-pleasant girl who fitted it, and here's to the Icelanders who have time enough and ingenuity enough to think up this Rube Goldberg looking contraption.

Now, do I hear a waltz?


--It's a good thing today's kids aren't going to end up with any money. If they had it, they'd probably have to write checks. And elementary schools have put "penmanship" on the back burner, if they teach it at all.

--On the other hand, if banks continue to fail at their current rate, NO ONE will be writing checks. As of today, there have been 94 bank failures this year. The good news is that putting the money in your mattress now earns only slightly less than the average return on deposits.

--Governor Paterson of New York has given Mike Bloomberg's campaign for a third term as NYC mayor a big boost. Paterson has endorsed Bloomberg's opponent, William Thompson, the city controller with an office under investigation in a pension corruption case. Meantime, the White House wants Paterson to step down after the current term, which, if he does, could be his greatest contribution to the state.

I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them.®
©5770 WJR

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