Monday, April 17, 2006

70 Easter, beach, Jebus, new research

Yesterday was Easter. The only thing I care about for Easter is getting a chocolate rabbit. I got one, so I'm happy.
We had dinner with my parents and my grandmother. As usual my grandmother was crabby. Her "mornings are bad" everything's bad, everything makes her fart (so she claims) so she didn't want to eat anything. Of course everything makes my dad fart, he was trumpeting away throughout dinner. I could tell my husband was totally grossed out. And it is gross. But what can you do? He says he's not farting.
Grandma decamped before dessert was hardly finished. At least she drove herself so we didn't have to disrupt everything to get her back home. Will had homework or a quiz or something so he went home too, and I went to Hammonassett with my parents.
We were barely out of the driveway when my dad started to freak out. "Oh no, oh no, oh no, I forgot again." Then he gets mad at himself and starts swearing. "Goddamn it." We ask what's wrong. "I forgot again, I forgot to bring the stuff, and they get so happy." He hadn't brought any bread for the birds. (There were no birds to feed when we got there so no biggie.) My mother explained that they didn't have anything at home to bring, but he wouldn't stop being upset. Until my mom realized she forgot her purse, and of course I didn't have mine, and then my father freaked out about that, that she lost her purse (money, you know) and then she remembered that she only brought her wallet. That was a bad few minutes.
They kept forgetting I can't walk like I did when I was 19. We started on the boardwalk. That was okay, and there are benches along the way. Then that section of the boardwalk ended and we went down onto the sand (what there was of it--high tide). Every few steps I'd sink. It was throwing my not-stable-on-a-good-day gait off, and really hurting my ankles. My parents' plan, as far as I could tell, was to walk all the way to Meig's Point, the other side of the beach. I couldn't do it. So we turned back at one of the bathroom pavilions and walked back on a gravel road (better than sand but not by much). I found some nice small shells but I had no pockets and eventually I lost them all.
The first thing that happened when we got to the park was that my mom bought a season pass. It's something like $10 to park every time, or a pass is $40. That's a no-brainer. My dad insisted on getting a reciept and they also gave us a list of parks where the sticker was good. We parked and my mom started to apply the sticker. My dad FREAKED and started screaming at her "No not there, don't put it there!" He got out of the car and slammed the door and went to look from the outside and stood there just screaming at her. Everyone in the lot was looking. He went and slammed his door a few more times and I told him to stop it. But you know what-he was right. She put it behind the dark strip at the top of the window and it couldn't be seen. But still, he doesn't have to yell like that.
On the way out, my mom asked him if he wanted to stop and get a soda. He didn't answer her the first few times she asked and then when he finally did what he said didn't answer the question so she just went to McDonald's. I decided I wanted a chocolate shake which I haven't had for a long time, and since I'd just spent 2 hours walking it would get burnt up quick. My father was literally counting out pennies to pay for his senior drink. He doesn't know my name but he knows how much a soda is at McDonald's. For whatever reason, my mom didn't use the drive-through, she went inside. So we all went with her. It came to about $4. As soon as we got outside my father started in on her. "Why did you give them so much money? I gave you the forty-six cents and you gave them six or eight dollars! Why did you give them so much?" My mother pointed out that she gave them $4 and they gave her change. "No you didn't it was six or eight dollars, I saw it." "Berta got a shake so it cost more." "We got ripped off." Now he's muttering. "Where's the piece of paper, they gave me a piece of paper." He's frantic for this piece of paper. My mom says "What piece of paper?" "They gave it to me! Where is it?" He was looking for the list of parks, which I had. God forbid I should want to look at it. It's his paper.
At the end of dinner (wow, I'm skipping around a lot aren't I?), my dad was of course still eating because he takes forever, and he was sitting there all alone while we cleaned up and got my grandmother off and I just felt so sad looking at him. It's like he's in a bubble and for now we're in it too with him, but it's getting smaller and smaller. Already I'm on the edge as "whatshername" and someday I'll be pushed out entirely.
I have to backtrack to Friday night. My dad didn't really work on the puzzle at all with us. Just wandered in and out. I think he was watching a ball game, I forget, but he kept swearing. "Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ." (Which made me think of the Simpsons and Homer yelling "Help me Jebus!") It was getting kind of funny and I finally said to my mom, "How funny would it be if Jesus appeared in the living room and said 'Bob, what do you want? It's Easter weekend and I'm kind of busy. Can you stop calling me every five seconds?'"

Now onto some research news.

Alzheimer's patch. I didn't pay to read the whole article, but the gist of the sample is:
Neur-Hitech Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NHPI) announced that it has signed a development agreement with Xel Herbaceuticals, Inc. to develop a transdermal patch to treat Alzheimer disease.
The therapeutic agent is Huperzine A, a molecule currently undergoing U.S. phase II clinical testing as an orally administered treatment for mild-to-moderate Alzheimer disease.

Charlton Heston has AD. I didn't even know that. Actor Charlton Heston has become a virtual recluse and is unable to leave his home as he continues to battle Alzheimer's disease. Heston's son, Fraser Heston, claims the disease has had a devastating effect on his famous father. He says, "He's still at home and will be for the rest of his life. He's exhibiting a kind of courage I haven't seen before."
It has a devasting effect on non-famous fathers, too, Fraser my friend.

Assisted Suicide Clinics for Alzheimer's sufferers: I would do this. I will do this, if I get it.
A Swiss lawyer who runs a “suicide clinic” that has helped 42 Britons to kill themselves, intends to offer his services to people who are not terminally ill. ... “We never say no,” says Minelli in an interview in today’s Sunday Times Magazine. “Even those suffering from Alzheimer’s will have lucid moments in which they may choose to die once a certain point has been reached, such as when they can no longer recognise their children.” ...
Dr Peter Saunders, general secretary of the Christian Medical Fellowship, said: ... “It is laughable to suggest that someone with Alzheimer’s, who cannot remember two minutes later what they told you, could have the capacity to understand and weigh up and make a decision on suicide. The potential for abuse is horrendous.”

Is it? If I had AD, yes, I'd set a benchmark. When this happens, that's it. I have no plans to allow myself to be so incapacated that I'm not capable of killing myself. With no children and no brothers and sisters, I won't be a burden on society, some lonely old kook alone and drooling in a nursing home. It's just wrong.

And here's another reason why I could get AD (besides the genetic component)
Obesity raises Alzheimer's risk. People who are overweight or obese in their 40s have a greater risk of developing Alzheimer's disease later in life ...(R)esearchers followed nearly 9,000 people over a period of up to 30 years. The study participants were evaluated ... by measuring skin fold thickness .....
Those with higher skin fold measurements in their 40s were more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease than those with smaller skin fold measurements. Those in the highest group of shoulder skin fold measurements were nearly three times as likely to develop Alzheimer's disease as those in the lowest group. For the arm measurements, those in the highest group were 21.5 times as likely to develop Alzheimer's as those in the lowest group.
The results did not change when researchers took into account people with diabetes and other conditions that can increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

Vitamins and Ibuprofen Reduce Alzheimer's Risks (A) long-term study claims that taking a combination of vitamins A and C, along with ibuprofen can greatly reduce those at risk of Alzheimer's disease. ...After adjusting for several parameters, such as age and gender, those subjects who took the combination of vitamins A and C and the ibuprofen, compared with those who did not, were found to have performed better by approximately 1 point every 2 years according to standard mental examination scores.....So if patients seem to be at high risk, such as having several family members with Alzheimer's disease or with early memory loss, they are likely to benefit the most from the triple-combination therapy.

So if I lose weight and take my vitamins, I'll be okay? Pretty please?

1 comment:

Karma said...

My mom has Alzheimer's and so does her mom. After seeing what it does to them, hellyeah I'd want to kill myself if I knew that I had it. I don't think that people should be forced to suffer through the last stages of the disease.