Irish Medical Dictionary The Irish have the lowest stress rate because they do not take medical terminology seriously You are going to die anyway, so live life
Medical Term / Irish Definition
Artery= The study of paintings
Bacteria = Back door to cafeteria
Barium = What doctors do when patients die Benign = what you be, after you be eight
Caesarean Section = A neighborhood in Rome
Cat scan = Searching for Kitty
Cauterize = Made eye contact with her Colic = A sheep dog Coma = A punctuation mark Dilate = To live long Enema = Not a friend Fester = Quicker than someone else Fibula = A small lie Impotent = Distinguished, well known Labour Pain = Getting hurt at work Medical Staff = A Doctor's cane Morbid = A higher offer Nitrates = Rates of Pay for Working at Night, Normally more money than Days Node = I knew it Outpatient = A person who has fainted Pelvis = Second cousin to Elvis Post-Operative = A letter carrier Recovery Room = Place to do upholstery Rectum = Nearly killed him Secretion = Hiding something Seizure = Roman Emperor Tablet = A small table Terminal Illness = Getting sick at the airport Tumour = One plus one more Urine = Opposite of you're out
A short walk ( although it seemed long to me because I was so tired ) around a beautiful mirror like lake near Winchester Bay. Lots of fishermen who were almost guaranteed a catch as the lake was populated with farm fish. Definitely not our Ter's cup of tea but it made for a great day of fishing for those who were not experts. I probably could even have caught a fish myself. It was a nice tranquil and very quiet atmosphere with lots of trees and a wonderful trail. Only 90 minutes from Roseburg.
Dad and I never got along. We were always at odds and he could never have a normal conversation with me the way he could with all the others. This is all common knowledge. I don’t really know why but that is the way it was for a long time. We would try to make small talk but it never seemed natural and it was always uncomfortable for him and for me. We both tried but we could never reach that level of common communication that seemed to be natural with everyone else. I still don’t know why.
I was always envious of the easy banter he had with all the others.
Yet I have so many memories of him that were carefree and happy. He had a beautiful sweet baritone voice and when he was in good mood he would sing as he was getting ready for work, usually on a Saturday Night. He would ease into a Crosby or Sinatra ballad and we would follow him around saying ‘Da, da why don’t you become a singer’? He just loved it. He would look at us with that look that only Brendan can recreate and made us wonder if he was seriously considering such a change in career. We knew he was good. He would enthrall us while looking into the lopsided mirror that was above the fireplace. He knew we were in the palm of his hand and he played with us like a true troubadour. He was teasing us one minute, fishing for compliments the next.
In these moments of abandon we adored him. He was ‘Joe’ our Dad, although we would never call him ‘Joe ‘to his face.
One night, I must have been all of ten years old, while watching him shave I convinced him to leave a little pencil Clarke Gable type moustache. He did and I was thrilled, we thought he looked like a film star. He looked fantastic. I expected Mam would appear as Scarlett O’Hara. He was told to leave it on but, alas, he couldn’t. It was inconceivable to me that he would shave it off, but to my disappointment he did.
It was one thing to impress his children and make them laugh: it was quite another to go into the Irish Press looking like Clarke Gable.
In those years he was virile, he was robust and he counted. His authority was undeniable. His demeanor went from stern to stern and understanding with a hint of humour. He was everything to all our little minds. He was omnipotent! He was our Dad!
Time went by and I left and life went on. Contrary to the old saying time was not a healer of all wounds. If we ever met again conversations were stilted and not at all natural. I ignored it and carried on. It didn’t matter.
But it did matter. I came home in 1998 and had a great time with Mam and Dad and all the children. After a long absence I was able to be with them and all the siblings for an evening. That was all I wanted. There was misunderstanding about having ‘the kids’ there but I just wanted to be with Mam, Dad and my brothers and sisters.
A few days later and after the end of one evening of Guinness and singsong it was time to leave and Dad was sitting in his chair at the fireplace. He was no longer the same presence that he had been but a frail old man, a shadow of his former self, enjoying himself vicariously through his family.
As I was about to leave I stood up and approached him. Instinctively I kissed him on the forehead and told him I loved him and said” See you tomorrow Da”. In his characteristic way he looked up at me and said ‘Ah, don’t be daft’ but he gave my hand a very tight and meaningful squeeze anyway. With that little gesture all the years of misunderstanding and missed opportunities seemed to disappear and blow away with the wind.
He died a few months later.
It must be pointed out that this is nothing more than a simple commentary on our family history. It is not a plea for understanding or a sad statement. What it really is is an homage to Dad who was himself a character. Nothing in this is new. All families go through these kinds of things and ours is no exception. So this little narrative should be read with as much humor as pathos, nothing more. We all love Mam and Dad and we are thankful that there are as many stories and events to guide us through our own lives.
A few shots with the new Lumix camera around the Umpqua River today. I was supposed to go to the Rodeo and do a little film but I wasn't up to it really. Those are mist rain clouds that you see rolling over the tops of the trees. My kind of day.