It started on YouTube…

My first Internet exposure was on YouTube in April 2009. I had this notion I’d vlog my way to notoriety as a retirement activity that’d keep me off the streets yet encourage some small brain activity…so I didn’t die a slow, stupid death over however much time I had on this side of the divide.

I’ve set aside those early videos, much as I refocused this blog as one about “surviving retirement with two cats”. Cats are much, much more interesting and entertaining than some old fat guy chatting. Let’s be honest here! Yet those old videos pop up when people discover the older videos, recognize some value in them, and attach comments to them.

YouTube re-invented their channel format awhile back, and the new format allows viewers a sample of whichever videos the poster choses to feature. I feature current videos, most viewed videos, and favorites by others on my channel. Before the improvements, a viewer had to dig to find earlier videos people posted or call them up with tags. Most of the “most viewed” videos are early efforts at establishing a presence on YouTube. Apparently, people still find them worth a look.

Here are my five “most viewed” videos plus my favorite Andy video of when he was a very young kitten, upset with me for reasons I never learned:

NUMBER 1 ~

NUMBER 2 ~

NUMBER 3 ~

NUMBER 4 ~

NUMBER 5 ~

And, finally, Andy at two months old:

The Prednisone videos are hard to watch again, though people dealing with the effects of that drug periodically leave comments and questions on these. Doctors take heed: You put people on the drug, but you fail to really, really explain possible side effects, like you can suffer psychosis on the drug or develop diabetes. No small matters!

The Louie videos are fun. [“Lucy” is Louie before I learned how to tell the difference between a female and a neutered male cat. Ha! Seriously!]

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To be or which to be?

When I first set up my retirement computer, I made some decisions that were less than ideal. For example, use of “weggieboy” as an identifier here and other places. It’s meaningful to me, but it has other meanings to others, some not so good! The confusion my user name causes occasionally attracts unsavory people or comments wherever it shows up on the Internet. It prompted me to write a blog called “wedgieboy vs. weggieboy” in July 2009, and that helped for the short-term, if not so much now.

More and more, the user name is a burden, so I want something more comfortable and less provocative to wee brained people trolling the ‘net. I’m just not sure what that new user name might be!

Weggieboy might morph into “birdman”, since I am a life member of an ornithological group. I use “phainopepla95” on YouTube. The phainopepla is a bird. I’m a man. Erm. Yeah. Birdman. I note, for clarity, that I am the first person to make a photographic record of a phainopepla in my state, where records go back to the Lewis and Clark Expedition of May 1804 to September 1806. No one outside of my family saw it since I didn’t realize in 1980 that my record was unique, a first state record accepted by the organization that evaluates and maintains state records of birds. In the 33 years since, no other phainopepla wandered north to sample the lovely winters we have here!

There are people in the ornithological group to which I belong who feel it is unfair that an amateur spotted and gained credit for this record and that it spent two months in my backyard feeding area (January through end of February 1980) as my exclusive rara avis. Snot happens. (Thank me later for cleaning that up a little!) That makes “phainopepla95” a bit provocative as a different user name, but only to a small number of people worldwide. Ha! Many more confuse my current user name with immature behavior involving yanked underwear.

The blog’s evolved into a “guy with two cats” format since the early days, too, with a subtext of retirement issues. The blog might be, then, “Andy, Dougy, and Doug” or “2 cats and a guy” or “a guy and two cats”. Not too punchy, no sizzle, no pizzazz….

How about “birdman and the boys – surviving retirement with two cats”? I often call the cat brothers “the boys” here and in day-to-day references to them elsewhere. Seems a natural! Of course, no one will recognize the new name and I’ll risk losing both the people who subscribe to this blog. It’s a conundrum.

What do you think? Does any possible change above make sense to you? Or do you have an idea you like better?

Here’s a link to “wedgieboy vs. weggieboy”:

wedgieboy vs. weggieboy

GPA?

The name of this blog is based on a nickname for people with the disease used by one Wegener’s Granulomatosis support website: “weggie”. “Weggie” suggests someone living with the disease in any stage rather than a WG patient, someone who never breathes air outside a clinic or hospital.

Those who determine such things as what to call a diseases recently began calling Wegener’s “granulomatosis with polyangiitis (Wegener’s)”, with the added “(Wegener’s)” until everyone gets in line with the new name. “Granulomatosis with polyangiitis” is a bit of a mouthful, yes!? So the generally received way to speak of it is as GPA. Drop the “(Wegener’s)”, or it becomes GPA(W).

I’m a bit confused, so I looked up Wegnener’s granulomatosis to try to better understand why one might rename a disease. Here’s what Wikipedia had to say:

“In 2006, Dr. Alexander Woywodt (Preston, United Kingdom) and Dr. Eric Matteson (Mayo Clinic, USA) investigated Dr. Wegener’s past, and discovered that he was, at least at some point of his career, a follower of the Nazi regime. In addition, their data indicate that Dr. Wegener was wanted by Polish authorities and that his files were forwarded to the United Nations War Crimes Commission. Finally, Dr. Wegener worked in close proximity to the genocide machinery in Lodz. Their data raise serious concerns about Dr. Wegener’s professional conduct. They suggest that the eponym be abandoned and propose “ANCA-associated granulomatous vasculitis.”[16] The authors have since campaigned for other medical eponyms to be abandoned, too.[17] In 2011, the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) and the European League Against Rheumatism (EULAR) resolved to change the name to granulomatosis with polyangiitis….”

Wow. Dr. Wegener was a Nazi? Or one of those doctors a little too close to the death machine of the regime, and liking it? Damned if I want to be a “weggie” now! But I am. Till death.

Call the disease “Giuseppe” or “Jack”, it’s still what it is and it does what it does. Though I don’t care to glorify a Nazi doctor in any way, I won’t redefine myself as “guppaboy” or something equally obscure on the off chance that someone hearing I have the disease (WG) might think I somehow honor Nazis or this doctor by speaking his name out loud each time I say what I have.

Doesn’t “GPA” mean Grade Point Average anyway?

So, rather than confuse everyone by changing the name of this blog, it will continue to be “weggieboy’s blog”.

Dr. Wegener, if not his alleged crimes, is dead and buried. The disease continues to have huge impact on those who have it, medically, financially, and emotionally. People still die from it, though new treatments assure more and more of us live reasonably normal lives. (That is “new normal” lives, as in “within the parameters newly defined by the disease, as it stabilizes”.) Few know the disease as “Wegener’s granulomatosis”; fewer know it as “GPA”. The cause and cure for this disease still are unknown, though, thank God, it is treatable with mostly positive if variable results.

I don’t know. In a way, the disease probably should be named after an infamous Nazi doctor. It, too, isn’t very nice.

You can find out more about vascular diseases at this website:

http://www.vasculitisfoundation.org/

things are looking up…

I don’t know. After yesterday’s post, I felt a need to create something fun.

There are several places one can get t-shirt designs printed up. I created this t-shirt as a variation of a weggieboy’s blog postage stamp, a mousepad, and the heading of this blog. I guess the design makes it my official weggieboy’s blog t-shirt.

If it brings people to this blog, great! The statistics indicate people actually do come to it, and I hope they are entertained, amused, informed, and find it worth their time.

The symptoms I was concerned about seem to be clearing up, but caution is my word. Once a weggieboy, always a weggieboy.

wedgieboy vs. weggieboy

“What do you mean? Is this another one of your ‘I’ slamming ‘me’ blogs? Wedgieboy vs. weggieboy certainly sounds like it. Explain!”

Thus began another long, long, l-o-n-g, twisted, convoluted, cross-referenced, side-barred, confusing, and confused explanation of something I didn’t really want to know about anyway. Not really. Idle curiosity is all. Friendly chatter.

[No, You missed the subtle difference in spelling. (Subtle for a dyslexic orangutan..!) There are three basic meanings to three or two of the words, if you count. Yeah. See above for several examples of what we’ll call a “Type I wedgieboy. Note how they writhe. Note how they squirm. Note how they call out “Mama” in many languages. Note how they hang, twisting in the wind. Type I wedgies rarely reproduce, unlike their tormentors, who have taken over the world, running most national governments and virtually all major transnational businesses. Yes, Hitler was a wedgieboy, though Stalin most likely was a tormentor.] 

 

Tori the Norwegian Forestkatz or "wegie"

Tori the Norwegian Forestkatz or "wegie"

 

  Whaaaa..!? [Technically, this is a Norwegian forest cat named “Tori”, a “Wegie”, which I include because I like cats. For those not impaired, “Wegie” is pronounced as “WEE-gee”.  It has nothing to do with the wedgieboy vs. weggieboy explanation. Or, if you insist, we can call this one Type IIa. I’m amenable!]

Are we ever going to get to “weggieboy”?? My patience is thinning, and I need to hit the bathroom. [Twit! We are at the Type IIb “weggie”. Not to be confused with those above, it has an “egg” in it, so is pronounced “WEGG-ee”. Wrap your dyslexic orangutan lips around this: WUH + EGG + ee + boi. Say it ten times. Say it until your gums bleed. A weggieboy is someone with the disease Wegener’s granulomatosis, a potentially fatal form of vasculitis. Rather than go through life thinking of himself as a victim, something weak and to be pitied, a weggieboy – or weggiegirl, as they come in both varieties- doesn’t think of himself as a WG patient, but as a weggie, a person who, but virtue of a superior positive attitude, good doctors and nurses, many people in his support groups (work, neighbor, church, community, WG support group), the Drug Duo from Hell (Cytoxan and Prednisone), is a survivor, one of the 9 in 10 people who comes down with Wegener’s granulomatosis and lives. I hope you wet your PANTS!]

Is that a weggieboy?

Is that a weggieboy?


 

[Sorry, bad guess. Below is an example, perhaps not the best example, but the one I have to show.]

Picture 1

[Here’s a video of the real deal, showing the meeting of two actual weggies. I’ve tormented you enough]

You don’t know how unlikely such a meeting is!