Monday, November 30, 2009

Prevent Car Accidents with the Bubble Rubber Bumper Buggy

If you believe that we hold within ourselves all of the answers to life's mysteries, I invite you to delve into the mind of my daughter, Lindsey, who has come up with a remedy to one of life's problems – a way to prevent car crashes.

Of every possible solution to the problem of auto crash prevention, I think she has come up with one of the most innovative and obvious answers to the problem – bumper cars.

I'm not talking about the supposedly street-legal bumper cars (yes they have them and you can find them at – I'm talking about old fashioned bumper cars – the fun crash-into-other-cars vehicles. But maybe a little bigger and maybe with an engine that runs on air. Oh, and with air conditioning and heat too.

After examining all of the positive aspects of using bumper cars, the only downside I can see is shopping, especially regarding food shopping – so I'm hoping somebody will construct a see-through bubble bumper top over the bumper car to prevent groceries from becoming tossed salads prior to getting home.

Imagine how different our lives would be without auto accidents! Daily commutes would be fun. We could exercise our stress release mechanism by crashing into the guy next to us over and over and over again until we've released pent-up stress from days, weeks, months, and even years before as we bang ourselves into a stress-free existence.

I can even see the commercial for it...

Announcer: The best stress relief program on the planet – bump your way to a stress-free commute with the Bubble Rubber Bumper Buggy (do not confuse with rubber baby buggy bumpers)!

Imagine driving your very own bumper car. Spin around in circles and bounce off the walls as you maneuver your way through traffic. Wheeee... Doesn't that sound like fun?

With bumper cars, we could actually enjoy what used to be mind-numbing exercises in patience. Remember when we sat in hour-long traffic jams, slamming our fists into our horns and cursing out stupid drivers who cut us off? Now we can use our cell phones without having to worry about causing crashes, because the whole point of riding in bumper cars is to crash into other vehicles without causing accidents.

And riding bumper cars would challenge us to make it into work before the boss got there. We could make a game out of it. Of course, lots of bosses never make it into work in the first place, because they're playing golf, so this game might be unnecessary. But it would be fun to try.

Or, we could stay on the road and work from our laptops.

Another benefit is the exercise we would gain as we stretched our muscles in an attempt to remain in our seats – much like that of people who use the Hawaiian chair shown on the Ellen Degeneres Show. (If you haven't seen it yet, watch the clip – you'll have to watch a commercial first, but it's worth it.)

Of course, construction workers would need to place bumper guards on the sides of the roads, but they would be safe, because bumper pads would surround their construction sites.

Naturally we would have to allow for police, fire, and medical vehicles, so we would have to construct special roads for them, possibly elevated above the bumpercar roads, allowing quick access to hospitals and government offices. But what's another couple of millions of dollars in taxes?

Two other problems Lindsey didn't yet address – getting to the airport on time and truckers jackknifing around us.

With the exception of those two problems, I think bumper cars are a great idea. Maybe, before actually purchasing them, we could use our existing vehicles by attaching different colors of bubbled rubber to the sides, front, and backs, colors like pineapple, peach, banana, caramel, chocolate, cinnamon, vanilla (I must be hungry – sorry).

I will leave you now to enjoy something edible as I ponder the solutions to the problems raised in this blog.

Disclaimer: my daughter and I come from a long line of inventive imaginative minds, the brains of which are sitting in examination jars held by scientists trying to research the link between creativity and delirium.

(Bumper car was borrowed from wikimedia.)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Because of YOU (my friends and family members)

Going through cancer is a journey I am traveling, but I am not traveling alone. Along with me for the ride are family and friends who offer me so much comfort, that even though exhaustion is my constant companion, the pain of needles is barely detectable.

Recently Associated Content had a call out for articles on things to be grateful for in 2009. When I thought about all the people who have rallied in support of me during my bout with cancer, I couldn't help but put in my entry, Thankful for Cancer – Thankful for You.

If you have journeyed with me through cancer, and even if you haven't, I invite you to read the article. That whole "blessing in disguise" comment is true. Cancer truly has been a blessing for me, because of the number of people praying for my recovery. What else explains a 4 cm. wide tumor shrinking to almost nothing in less than 3 weeks?

So what do you have to be thankful for?

Monday, November 16, 2009

My Philosophical Granddaughter

Young children ask questions. Parents and grandparents are supposed to answer them. For most of my life I have had to figure out ways to answer multitudes of questions asked by numerous inquiring minds from my children to my grandchildren to the children for whom I have provided care. Unfortunately, I sometimes have no answers.

I am ashamed of myself. How have I slid through life without knowing universal answers to philosophical questions?

In my attempt to answer these difficult questions, I try logic, memory, fantasy, and creativity, and when none of that works, I pray for miracles. Most of the time I jump online when I have to look for answers to simple questions like why bees buzz and how cotton becomes fabric. But the bigger questions leave me stumped.

I'm never prepared for the kinds of question for which no books or Internet sites provide answers. Just the other day my granddaughter Audrey, who turned 5 at the end of October, asked, "God made everything, so who made God?"

Words like "always was, always is, and always will be" didn't pop into my head. My brain, like Elvis, left the building as I searched in vain for a reasonable explanation.

Having never thought about asking that question myself, I hadn't a clue about how to answer it. The only thing I could think of that might appease Audrey was to tell her that since God made everything, God made Him (or Her) self, which implies of course, that He already existed if he had the tools to create Himself. But I knew that if I gave the response that God made Himself, Audrey would ask me how He made Himself, and I would be stumped again.

But I said it anyway. Quickly. Well, Audrey, since God made everything, I guess He made himself (and then – in my head – I said, please don't ask me to explain myself). Fortunately she didn't ask any more questions that I was unable to answer (she must be psychic), and I breathed a sigh of relief. But she frequently comes up with philosophical questions that leave me to wonder why I feel so inadequate when it comes to the big questions.

I should have been able to answer the God question long before Audrey asked it. So why didn't I ask it of myself years ago? If I had, I would already know the answer, right?

If life is eternal, and God made humans, what was He doing before He created us? Of course I'm thinking God would get bored in a universe filled with nothing but God. Then again, if God is everything, God is enough.

But we're talking about infinity and forever, or, as Buzz Lightyear might say, infinity and beyond. God is Spirit. Bodies are probably playthings to God, created to amuse Him as he watched our human antics and the foibles we made with the "gift" he gave us – free will.

As He portioned Himself out into millions of little beings, should He have known we'd get all caught up in being human to a point where we would forget we were spiritual beings inhabiting a body?

And I answer myself by saying, yes He should have known, because He is God.

But now I'm afraid Audrey will stop thinking of me as the all-knowing Grandma if she continues to ask questions for which I have no answers. What kinds of questions will she come up with later? How will I answer her (or any of my other grandchildren who think deeply about issues I can't explain)?

Does anybody know if Barnes and Noble carries a Grandmothers' Answers to Philosophical Questions For Dummies book? I think I'm going to need one.

By the way, had I Googled, "Who made God," I would have found some reasonable answers, so I guess I was wrong about looking up philosophical questions on the Internet. Answer abound everywhere about everything. God truly is everywhere.

Photo shows four of my grandchildren – Kaden, Audrey, Nolan (Audrey's brother), and Zac (Kaden's brother).

Monday, November 2, 2009

Me With Hair (I look like my mommy)

If you read My Bravest Blog Yet, you got the chance to see what I look like bald. Here is what I look like with a wig. Note the comparison between my mother and myself.

You'll have to excuse my pallor. Even though I slathered makeup on my eyes, I still look sickly – my mom doesn't. And that's how you can tell us apart. She's the healthy one. I couldn't even smile because of the sores in my mouth due to the chemo, so realize I'm just as happy as my mother. I just can't show it here.

My mom has maybe four gray hairs on her entire head. I now have none (hear that, Mom? none). The reason I know how many gray hairs my mother has is because I tower over this petite microscopic woman who stands at 5'2" and weighs approximately 8 pounds. I generally carry her around in my pocket and I frequently look down at the top of her head as I pet her.

OK, I'll stop. She's not that small, but I can pick her up with one hand wrapped around her waist and place her on my counter. She's a lot like The Incredible Shrinking Woman, played by Lily Tomlin several years ago. My sisters and I fear for her safety every time she goes into the bathroom. We'd hate to see her slip down the drain.

I promised to stop, and so I will. I just wanted to update everybody and let them see that I can look slightly human again.

Before I go, I'd like to give an update on my respiratory infection – I still have it, but my chest doesn't feel as tight today as it did yesterday. Soon I hope to be able to talk without coughing up a lung.

And now for a reenactment of Lily Tomlin's Edith Ann – spiiiiiiiiiiiiiit! And that's the truth.