One Eventful Month


Tuesday July 19th, 2011 – Milwaukee, WI/Cary, IL

What a difference a month has made. I’m a completely different person who has made a radical lifestyle change from that idiot with the mysteriously inflated testicle who checked into the hospital on June 19th. I hope to have no further issues with my genitalia no matter how funny the term ‘mysteriously inflated testicle’ might sound. I am a whole new man.

I really could have had a major catastrophe on my hands. Instead, it turned out to be just a blip on the radar. Getting diabetes alone was unpleasant enough news, but it was driven home for good with having to have surgery on my plumbing to remove gangrenous tissue.

Just one short month ago I had no idea any of this was about to happen, but here I am in a completely new set of circumstances with a completely new set of challenges. I like my chances of success, but it’s a shame it took that harsh of a wake up call to get me going.

My friend David Lee Hendrickson sent me a fantastic quote from a guy named William Osler who was one of the founding doctors of Johns Hopkins University. He said the key to longevity was to get a serious illness because a person will take good care of him or her self from then on. In David Lee’s case it was recurring kidney stones. Mine was diabetes.

I’ve known David Lee forever. He was the second live comedian I ever saw on my very first night doing comedy at Sardino’s on Farwell in Milwaukee in November of 1983. He was introduced by my future mentor C. Cardell Willis, the first real comedian I ever met.

David Lee is a very successful architect in the Milwaukee area and a wonderful person, and I hadn’t seen him for years until just recently. I’m glad we reconnected, as he’s really into all things healthy and has been very supportive in this last month. He’s been eating a super healthy diet for years and exercises and does yoga and I can totally learn from him.

This whole gigantic ordeal has been a learning experience. I drove to Milwaukee to be a guest on ‘The D List’ with Drew Olson and Dan Needles on ESPN 540. I had no idea that Dan was a diabetic, but he was diagnosed years ago. He was very helpful in telling me his experiences and what I should expect and it wasn’t that bad at all. I was very encouraged.

He was eating an Arby’s roast beef sandwich when he was telling me all this and I have to say I was a little surprised to see it. He said after a while you get to know by instinct all you can and can’t have, and he said he didn’t have to miss out on all that many treats he’d normally enjoy anyway. He said he watches himself and uses his judgment, but he’s fine.

Right now, I’m not looking to do this for anything else but the long haul. I don’t plan on being a good boy for six months and then start wolfing down Whoppers again. I envision another completely new me in six months, and I want to enter old age with a vengeance.

The good news is, at least there’s a chance I can now make it to old age at all. The path I was on just one month ago was headed in the opposite direction. I’ve changed that now.

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