Mike Ault's thoughts on various topics, Oracle related and not. Note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are not contributing to the overall theme of the BLOG or are insulting or demeaning to anyone. The posts on this blog are provided “as is” with no warranties and confer no rights. The opinions expressed on this site are mine and mine alone, and do not necessarily represent those of my employer.

Friday, May 20, 2005

It was the best of times...

I had a bit of a start the other day. I had a call from my brother in Florida telling me my Father was in the hospital for some "tests". Turns out his heart, which has been beating fiercely for nearly 70 years, has decided to take a rest every now and then. Probably he'll need a pace-maker, no big deal. No big deal, right, it gave me pause to think.

Over my life I've taken antibiotics, had inoculations (more than I care to remember courtesy of Uncle Sam), been in the hospital for stitches, an occasional kidney stone, etc. Even 80 years ago I might be dead instead of writing this. I know for a fact both my daughters and my wife, the central facets of my life, would be dead. Various infections, a blocked bowel requiring an emergency re-section, other things that we would take no notice of, polio, small pox, a plethora of deadlies would have stolen them from me, if not visa-versa.

People fantasize about simpler times. They can keep them. My Mother (god rest her) lost a brother, my Uncle, lost a son, my wife's paternal grandmother lost two children. Good old days, right. My father-in-law, a retired doctor, told the story of a patient who had come in complaining of shortness of breath, a check showed walking pneumonia, a quick prescription and poof! no more problem, 40 years earlier, it would have been a death sentence more than likely.

Perhaps we live in an age of information overload, where our lives are filled with stress and we run hither and yon after things our grandparents couldn't have conceived of. My Great grandmother, who passed away at 105 years of age, saw from wagon trains to space shuttles, all-in-all an incredible thing.

So many people seem to be longing for this age to end, whether it be through the "rapture" or whatever religious apocalyptic vision they have. They seem to fear how far we've come and how far we are likely to go. Many have forgotten history, how many-many times in the past the world has been a much more evil place than it is right now. Now we see the evil, in full color and sound, while before it could require generations for it to be seen.

I for one would not trade the current time for any I could think of in history. That we are standing on the brink of average life-times greater than 100 years is wonderful, maybe if we have longer lives we won't be so greedy with our time, maybe we will take the time to appreciate the good things instead of spending so much energy fleeing the bad. Maybe we will take the time to truly teach our children what they need to live, not just what they need to get by.

Anyway, just a few stray thoughts on this Friday in spring.


Jeff Hunter said...

Sorry to hear about your Dad's health issues. I agree with you about living in these days. I myself owe my life to medical advances not available even 10 years ago. I hope the children of today have even more to be thankful in this area.

DaPi said...

Mike said: "Perhaps we live in an age of information overload, where our lives are filled with stress and we run hither and yon after things our grandparents couldn't have conceived of."

For me there's a too much of "because we can, we must", and woe betide if you're not first.

We all have driven along a road, come across a vehicule a little bit slower and have overtaken it. Now ask yourself "Why?". Now ask if your answer makes any sense! Interesting excercise.

(P.S. - I died about 15 years ago of a burst appendix.)

Peter K said...

Mike,wishing your dad all the best.

Take it easy.

Mike said...

Thanks everyone, appreciate the kind words.


Don Burleson said...


Janet and I are praying for your Dad. If there is ANYTHING you need, just ask.

I wholeheartedly agree about the the advances in medicine. Jenny was a preemie by 8 weeks (2.5 pounds) and she would not have made it without modern meds. . . .

It hasn't been that long ago when disease commonly took children. My Grandmother lost three babies, all under 3 years-old, and she was scarred for life by the trauma. . .

Anyway, I hope you, Susan and all are doing well. . .

PS - Have you noted that Dapi and friends seems to enjoy insulting people who are hurting?

It's the same pulling-wings-off-of-flies cruelty we see in psychopathology.

BTW, we know who Dapi is (the Swiss CH web domains are very cooperative about web antagonists).

DaPi said...


I would hope that a positive comment on and elaboration of something in your post might indicate that I'm broadly in agreement with what you have said. If that's too subtle for some: "Mike, you're right! (mostly)"

I goes without saying that I hope things turn out well for your father; "No man is an island complete unto himself". My dad died of heart disease 30 years ago; I'm sure current medicine would have given him many more happy years. I'm thanking God that my trouble 15 years ago was almost trivial rather than a death sentence (Sorry if my heavy-handed humour was misunderstood).


So you know who I am. What took you so long?

Jeff Hunter said...

don burleson said...PS - Have you noted that Dapi and friends seems to enjoy insulting people who are hurting?

Fear is that little darkroom where negatives are developed.
--Michael Pritchard

Bill S. said...

Having had the opportunity to experience modern healthcare vs (through my parents' eyes) healthcare from the 1950's, I definitely prefer today.

You and your Dad will be in my thoughts and prayers - wishing your dad a speedy and full recovery.

Tarry said...


I wish all the best to your dad, hope he gets better.
God bless.(us all :-))


Hope everything works out well for you and i pray to God sincerely for this.
I could not avoid myself sharing my own suffering with you.(My Dad also had a heart problem last year.now he is somewhat ok)