A Great Man, An Even Better Friend

My father, Jack, passed away suddenly and quite unexpectedly a few days ago. He was 82, and rarely ill, but an issue the doctors found in his heart, one that they tried to fix 4 weeks ago, was his downfall. There are several factors that make no sense to me from all of the sadness and soul-searching that has followed his demise and so I thought I would write one small chapter in my blog dedicated to his life in the hope that anyone reading who has or has had a parent, child, friend in a similar position, will take not and then take action on the off-chance they might be more successful than I was in saving a loved one from a premature death.

Jack was born in 1934, prematurely I might add, in Edinburgh Scotland. Legend has it that his 3lb frame as placed in the local Jewish bakers oven for days on end to try to save him, incubators not having been invented at that time. That worked and so Jack made it to the ripe, though not terribly old by today’s standards, age of 82. His mother Alice though was less fortunate, dying 3 years later after giving birth to Jack’s sister Sylvia, dying of acute heart failure. She was 29. The warning signs were there, though unfortunately in 1938, no one had the foresight to place two and two together and tell both kids that they should keep an eye out for heart issues in their early lives.

Jack was the first person in the UK to bring plastic shopping bags from Hong Kong introducing them to the grocery stores and restaurant trade . He was a pioneer of sorts, although all you ‘greenies’ out there might disagree at this point. He also became the first person in Scotland to import 8 track in-car entertainment units from Japan. If you’re under 40 you won’t even know what they are, so Google it. Jack had very few health problems in his early life and although extremely fond of his whisky, and a regular smoker until he was well into his 40’s, recurring kidney stones were his biggest problem. Several times he was admitted to hospitals to have them removed, one occasion being in London when I attended visiting time accompanied by my usual sense of humor and after ten minutes of gut wrenching laughter and a few split stitches on his now scarred belly, the nursing team had to physically eject me to save him from certain death. There was blood everywhere and Jack, who was laughing so hard, was only saved from the after world by a quick thinking doctor who proceeded to sew him up again and the sedate him!

Over ten years ago, when I was in my later 30’s, I began to see my doctor annually for a physical. This included full blood work, heart and body check and a finger up my bum, where every time I could I continued to spout that wonderful line, “Hey Doctor, I just lost my virginity!” So I knew each year I was good to go and fit as a fiddle. Education had encouraged me to do this, and I rarely, if ever miss a year, so have been able to stay on top of any ailments that had any chance of making my future life on earth miserable. Jacks father dies of, guess what, heart failure, and his great Grandfather Morris, the same ailment, so you’d have thought that when Jack found out 4 weeks ago that his main artery was 100% blocked, rather than feigning surprise and lack of concern, typical for someone brought up in Scotland in the 1930’s where a certain toughness is instilled at birth and doctors are always seen as the enemy because anyone wanting to see one was classed as a total wimp, he would have sat himself down and regretted the fact that he’d ignored his pending problem for so many years prior.

A stent, inserted into his heart just 1 week later, and designed to solve his blocked artery problem, seemed to have assisted in sorting this issue out, that was until last Monday, March 13, when his pool man Charlie and his best mate Moshe, found him dead on the floor inside his house in Israel, not wearing the wrist band we purchased that allowed him to call for emergency help when he needed it and stone cold, having been dead for some 12 hours at least. The rest in now history, but sure the lessons are there to be learned.

If you have a family history of any diseases whatsoever, take heed, look into them and educate yourselves on their possible cures, or calamities, and sort them out while you can. Don’t wait, don’t be afraid of seeing a doctor. Spend the money, if you have it and figure out how a remedy is better than the alternative, straight death, or a life of miserable suffering. We have the cures, we have the technologies and we live in a society that allows us access to incredible convenience and rapid results. Please don’t let what happened to my dad happen to your dad or your mum. Look out for your own health too. there’s nothing more precious than time, so give yourself a chance to get as much as is humanly possible. Today I remember my dad, but tomorrow I will be very angry that I never saw him again after booking a trip to visit him next week. I should have had the chance to spend more time with him, but alas, that will never happen.

Shalom and le’hitra’ot Dad.

North Korea

This is my take on what’s going on with North Korea and it’s incredible charismatic leader Kim-Jon-un. He must have an incredibly small penis, oh wait, maybe I shouldn’t have said that because I am headed to the airport right now and perhaps he’s already on to me with two undercover Malaysian women ready to dab me with some unbelievably poisonous venom??

He’s a complete moron, and one can only wonder what he would be like if he took to Twitter, just like our very own complete moron, although ours seems to have a larger penis than Kim’s because so far he’s not splashed any ballistic missiles into the Pacific. With so much else going wrong on this planet, why oh why are we worried about a travel ban when this stupid idiot in North Korea is trying to blow every Japanese citizen into kingdom come. Trump, get off your fucking Iphone and get on your diplomatic high horse and stop this stupid bastard from starting world war 3. It’s on the cards, you can tell. The similarities are there from the past, but as the saying goes, ‘we learn nothing from history!’

NK is filled with the great unknown. Why? because Kim is a dictator with lots of toys and those toys are lethal. The country is starving, the borders are closed, his allies hate him and yet they still back him, and worst of all, he’s a wee boy playing big boy games without a care in the world for their consequences. Something unfortunate is about to happen and I am certain it’s not going to be pretty. So, if you’re a penis replacement surgeon in Florida or in any other part of the world and you can offer this man 8 inches instead of the 2 he already has, please call him and let’s set up his transplant with immediate effect. This my friends is our only out. I just hope he realizes that this gift of a new dick will be a bonus, because someone might want to blow him instead of him blowing us!.

Liz And Melissa’s Big Day

img_0750It was an honor once again to present two new sport wheelchairs to two very deserving young athletes today. As recipients of of these chairs, which took three months to manufacture and prepare, Liz and Melissa now have endless possibilities to take part in sports that a normal wheelchair would never allow. Custom made to their own specifications, both ladies showed up with their families to accept the wheelchairs and then participate in activities that were being laid on by FWWAA, Far West Wheelchair Athletic Association, at the Camden Rec center in San Jose CA. After receiving their chairs, the 17th and 18th that we have donated in the past 7 years, their joy was there to be seen and we would like to take this opportunity to wish them well as they begin a new journey in life with participation in sport at the forefront of their ambitions. Melissa chose light blue for the color of her frame, that being her favorite shade, and Liz went with the yellow and green of her favorite baseball team, the Oakland A’s. I cannot begin to tell you how proud I am of both ladies and efforts of everyone involved to make this happen and to continue to support disabled athletes in the Bay Area.

FWWAA are a great organization, and one that I have supported for many years. It’s easy to give, but to give the gift of sport is special. You too can offer this gift to a young disabled athlete just by donating at FWWAA.org or by going to smile.amazon.com, instead of the regular Amazon.com web site, and choosing FWWAA as your favorite charity. Then, every time you purchase anything from that site, a small but meaningful donation goes back to FWWAA to help support athletes just like Liz and Melissa. If you’d like to know more, feel free to leave me a comment on this blog or email me directly at alanzoltie@gmail.com and I’d be happy to send you information that could get you involved.

Once again, congratulation to Liz and Melissa.

“So Called”

downloadWe now have ‘so called’ judges here in the USA, not real judges, which leads me to believe that all the criminals incarcerated in out prison system are not real criminals, but ‘so called’ criminals, and that all our police are not real police, but….. Anyway, you get my point. At what stage does THE Donald sit down and come to the realization that he might not be the ‘so called’ President, but he’s definitely a complete and total prick? At what point does all the BS stop and at what point do we all come together and say, “fuck it, it’s time to wake up and unite?” I don’t turn on the evening news anymore. I don’t turn on the morning news anymore. I don’t turn on the TV anymore, unless it’s to watch the Real Housewives, beating each other up with never ending drama, or spending millions on extravagant and basically useless materialistic items. Oh wait, that’s THE Donald, and that’s exactly why all of our lives are now played out as reality TV, scripted or not, but amazingly chaotic. Pantomimes are shows that play live on theatre stages across the UK around Christmas time each year. A tradition, and one that I personally couldn’t stand. Google it, YouTube it, you’ll find one that takes your fancy or just pisses you off. That’s what politics has become, and not just here in America, but all over the world. Look at Holland, look at France, look at The Gambia. All these places, and many more, are being run like the circus. Corruption, fake news, incest, rape and pillage, failing economies, internal destruction, terrorism, it’s rife, and if you’ve had the chance to read the number one best selling book of all time, it’s exactly like that good book preached. Trust no one, believe in nothing, keep yourself to yourself and travel nowhere. That my friends is the only way to perhaps stay safe and lead a normal life, in this, the age of disasters, mindless killings, global warming, and waste. WE THE PEOPLE, as the declaration reads, are fucked. We have no place to go, no place to hide and we are certainly being made to believe that we have no place in this unjust country that we call home. I have told you all before, politicians are nothing but liars and cheats. THE Donald is neither. He is just a big fucking bully who’s probably never had any friends in his entire life and probably never will. I was all for change, and certainly not for Hillary, but now I am all for nothing. Let’s have a do over, let’s have some common sense, but most of all, let’s have some respect for those who are qualified by degree to perform the jobs they were put in place to do.

My Dick Is Bigger Than Your Dick

And imagesso it begins. Not even two days into his reign and the dicks are out. Mine is bigger than yours, Fuck you NO Fuck You. It’s just so stupid. I read an article this morning about a lady getting thrown off a flight to Seattle last night because she was disgusted that the passenger sitting next to her was a Trump supporter. She went overboard, as only uneducated or radicalized people do, telling that man he should have known better and that his vote has caused the world to come to an abyss. What are these people on? Why do we need millions of protesters on the streets when nothing has actually happened. Yes, there have been insults, insinuations and a continuous desire to blame the opposition, whoever that opposition is, but come on people, NOTHING HAS HAPPENED! The sun still rises, we all still pay taxes, and eventually we are all going to die, so tell me that I am wrong and that something has actually changed? The thing is, I am ALWAYS right, and so far, for the last 48 hours, I still pay the same taxes, the sun is still rising and I know that one day I will face my demise. Give me a break and give yourself a break, stop this nonsense. If in a week, a month, a year or even a day, something happens and Trump does the unthinkable, then, and only then, grab your protest signs, your pink hats, your rainbow flags and get out there and let’s kick the man arse in hope he will see some common sense. Until then, give him and the people he’s chosen to lead us for the next 4 years, the chance to prove to us that they know what they are doing and that all the election rhetoric that has most of you up in arms, was just bluster. You don’t know what’s going to happen in the coming months, and neither do I. If we did, we would be the first down to the bookmakers placing $100 on Trump pushing the button or building that wall or stopping abortion. The facts are we don’t know, although by the size of the protests, we all believe we do. It’s absurd to predict, it’s childish to be sore losers, and most of all, to compare what’s happening today to Nazi Germany in the 1930’s. Well my jaw dropped when I read that one. The media in the USA, no matter how you feel about them personally, are bias beyond belief, both ways. There’s no doubt in my mind that fair and unbiased reporting does not exist here. Unfortunately, you as Americans, are one of the most gullible races on this planet and you are completely insulated by what’s going on around you in your own cities without looking further a field for a true perspective. I for one came from a country where news is for the most part uncensored and balanced, whereas in the USA, it’s quite the opposite, filled with scaremongering hype that’s designed to sell papers and advertising on TV. So go back to work, go play with your kids, go believe in what you want to believe in but for goodness sake, let’s all sit back, relax and hold our tongues until something actually happens, and if it doesn’t, well think of all the time and effort plus the aggravation that you will have saved yourselves.

What’s The Matter With All Of You?

downloadHappy new year, but one question I have to keep asking myself is, what’s the matter with all of you? Why is everyone so angry? THE Donald is coming and Hillary is gone, although I read today she’s thinking seriously about campaigning for Mayor of NY! Wouldn’t it be better if she just went away quietly and enjoyed the rest of her days with her philandering husband? Maybe that’s the reason she wants to run? She doesn’t want to spend every day of the rest of her life with a man who cheated on her more than once and with whom she has nothing in common other than running a crooked foundation that seems to fund everything from their daughter’s wedding to their trips all over the planet begging for more contributions. No matter what, Hillary, I am pleased you lost, if only to rid this country of the cronyism that has dogged politics here for decades. And then there’s THE Donald, Mr. President Elect, to those who believe he actually won. Have you ever sat and listened to a more conceited, over reactive and supercilious bully in all your life? He’s done it better, harder, faster and with more money and great results than anyone else on earth, no matter what the subject, and Donald, would you mind holding your right hand down when you talk? It’s an embarrassment that anyone who behaves like he does can lead this country without the realization of how embarrassing he actually is. Can you imagine what the scene will be like inside the Kremlin when he meets Putin? I can, they will get along just fine and the scary part is, with THE Donald’s huge ego, you just know he’s going to do his damnedest to be the best President is the history of the USA. How can he, the most upfront bighead ever to take office outside of those tin pot regimes in Africa, even contemplate being anything else other than our best ever leader? He can’t and therefore I beg you ladies and gents, stay patient, keep the faith and before you go out and build your nuclear shelter and stock up with food for 25 years in case of a pending holocaust, give Trump a chance and then when he screws up, or not, as the case may be, then and only then, come back and criticize and complain. Don’t do it now, and certainly don’t blow a fuse because your side lost. Life is all about winning and losing and not about whining and moaning like spoilt children just because your favorite lost. Time will tell after January 20th and certainly not before, so join me and hold a hand in peace and with hope that we are all still around in 2020 to see that next President enter the White House knowing that the last kept us alive and made us prosper, and let’s just hope that in 2020 there’s not a Clinton or Bush to be seen and that Trump goes back to his tower satisfied that he did the best he could without sending us all to oblivion!

Max

IMG_0009Last night, Max received his new sports wheelchair. He’s the 16th recipient of chairs donated by funds that were raised specifically to change the lives of disabled athletes and give them a new outlook and opportunity to participate in sports and other activities that an otherwise normal wheelchair wouldn’t allow. Max is a really special kid. I’ve known him for several years and have watched him grow up into a superb athlete and fierce competitor. Here’s a little about Max.

Max is a local 12-year-old who has been participating in Wheels on Fire for 4 years. Wheels on Fire is a sports program in San Jose CA for children and youth with physical disabilities that is held each Sunday afternoon from September through June. A recent day involved learning field events, including shot put, discus, and javelin.

 

Max’s favorite participation sport is power soccer. He is currently taking part in the power soccer skills development program and is a member of the San Jose Rockets. He hopes to become a member of the San Jose Steamrollers and be able to travel and compete in Nationals (the Rockets only compete locally). He also hopes that one day he can represent Team USA in the Paralympics for power soccer.

 

Max’s favorite spectator sport is basketball and his favorite team is the Warriors – #DUBNATION!

His favorite color is lime green

His favorite food is fried chicken with the bones so he can eat it with his hands

His least favorite foods are eggs and cheese

His favorite move is The Avengers (the first one)

His favorite subject in school is P.E. (naturally)

 

When he grows up Max wants to have some sort of career relating to sports. And with this wheelchair donation, Max is now firmly on his way to achieving his goal. His chair was donated by funds raised on behalf of my Great Nephew, Issac Maxwell Brodie, who died in February of this year, surviving only two short weeks after birth. Isaac had a rare and inoperable brain tumor that eventually shut off his ability to breath on his own. His legacy, set up by his parents Rachel and Steven Brodie, was to raise money to help others. With their blessing, some of the funds raised for this cause were donated to purchase a chair for Max, (coincidently name similarities are astounding), and so today Max is a new man courtesy of Issac Maxwell. Quite fitting!

You too can help disabled athletes by donating at FWWAA.org or by simply shopping at Smile.Amazon.com and nominating FWWAA as your charity of choice. A portion of anything you spend will go to a great cause. As I mentioned, this is my 16th chair donation in the last 7 years and there are now many young athletes out there who have a new perspective on life and a great ability to enhance the opportunities to partake in sports, something that seemed only a pipe dream for all of them not too long ago.

Max, enjoy your chair and keep your dreams alive, always! You’re a special person and your excitement and enthusiasm are incredibly infectious.IMG_0006