Tuesday, March 27, 2018

I feel like I’m slowly returning to the land of the living.

Yes, I’m home. At last. I was discharged from Baylor Hospital on Sunday morning — right on schedule! — and came home in my own wheelchair via a Care Flite medi-van. Unfortunately, I have to learn how to walk all over again after a whole week in bed because all my goddamn leg muscles were SHOT. I’m still trying to conquer it, people. Walking has been incredibly painful for years; now it’s even worse. I can’t walk yet using only my cane. Thank God I also have the walker I bought for my birthday a few years ago!

My first order of business on Monday morning was to reschedule last week’s missed appointment with Elite Mobile Dental. They’ll come back on April 2 at 2 p.m. to do that final fitting for my lower denture. Then I called Mobile Vision to reschedule my missed appointment with Dr. Munson ... he’ll be here to adjust my new glasses on April 10.

I feel like I’m slowly returning to the land of the living. If that’s too melodramatic for you, just deal with it, okay?

Last night Sam and I watched a weird and miserably depressing sci-fi movie about the side effects of radiation poisoning: The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957) starring Grant Williams, whose only other genuine credit included 48 episodes of the TV series “Hawaiian Eye” in 1959 and 1960.

“Hawaiian Eye” was a VERY cool series, in case you’re too young to remember it. Other cast members included Connie Stevens, Robert Conrad, Chad Everett and Troy Donahue, all considerably more well-known than Grant Williams, whose success petered out in the mid-1960s. As far as “Hawaiian Eye” was concerned, though, all those good-looking 1960s’ hunks weren’t part of the cast at the same time. Apparently one would drop out, another would take his place, and so on. I really didn’t give this too much thought as I was just a kid at the time. (I was only eight years old when “Hawaiian Eye” premiered in 1959.)

The cast of “Hawaiian Eye”: Robert Conrad, Connie Stevens, Anthony Eisley and Poncie Ponce.
Another TV series I loved was “Surfside 6,” a Miami-based private detective hoo-hah that used the same formula as “Hawaiian Eye” (and its predecessor, “77 Sunset Strip”). “Surfside 6” aired from 1960 through 1962 and featured Van Williams, Lee Patterson, Troy Donahue (he migrated from “Hawaiian Eye”), Diane McBain and Margarita Sierra as ChaCha O’Brien, the headliner at the Boom Boom Room in the Fontainebleu Hotel.

The cast of “Surfside 6”: Troy Donahue, Lee Patterson, Van Williams, Van William’ nipples and Diane McBain.

This is the first time I’ve included photos in the Howdygram since I was hospitalized on March 18, when I only had access to my MacBook Pro laptop and couldn’t use the expensive fancy-ass Adobe software (Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign) that resides on my big iMac at home in the study. When I originally bought my MacBook at the beginning of March it was my plan to use it at night to write posts from my favorite spot in family room but not actually publish anything until the following morning, when I could sit down at my iMac and add images and captions using the aforementioned fancy-ass Adobe software, which isn’t loaded on the MacBook. Now that I’m home from the hospital and still trying to walk, I won’t be able to shlep all the way to the study for a few more days — you never realize how big your house is until you can’t walk any more! — so I finally decided to try including photos a different way … without drop shadows and with captions created by Blogspot’s software instead of my own. The result really isn’t as nauseating as I thought it would be. Woo-hoo! I CAN INCLUDE PICTURES AGAIN! Please raise your hand if you’re as excited as I am. Thank you.

It’s a dismal Tuesday afternoon and pouring rain outside. Sam and I are snuggled up in the family room watching The Magnetic Monster (1953) starring Richard Carlson, a screwy and altogether ridiculous movie about the mysterious terrors of radioactivity. Carlson is a senior research scientist for a government agency, which is housed in a building that looks exactly like my old junior high school. Carlson and an associate (played by King Donovan) discover that some old dude swiped a highly-radioactive raisin from his university laboratory to run private experiments in the attic above a local hardware store. (I couldn’t make this shit up.) All of a sudden everybody’s searching for the aforementioned old dude (played by Leonard Mudie), who’s a passenger on a commercial airliner and already dying from radiation sickness after a stewardess begins shrieking that his gums are bleeding. This is some really weird and wild stuff, people … and apparently it totally reflects the general public’s views about nuclear power in the early 1950s. I’m pleased to award this stupid clunker with the Howdygram’s two-star ★★ rating.

Time to sign off and watch a couple of movies with Sam-a-roonie. (Yes, I’m taking a LOT of pain meds. Does it show?) Take care of yourself, remember the Alamo, and thank you for reading this.

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