I Can’t Explain It – Can You?

Issue #55
Blog #17-2017
Section: Mysterious Happenings
Blogger: Joseph Clay

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I had a hard time figuring out what category to place this blog in. Since I am a fan of the unexplained I created a new category and placed it there. Due to the wide range of topics and content it could have fit into any one of the categories below.

  • “Joe’s Doctor Encounters”
  • “Joe’s Life”
  • “Mysterious Happenings”

Yes, “Mysterious Happenings” a new category on the Joe-Coming Unglued  blog.

The happenings here at Sleepy Cougar Ranch have been controlled by mystical forces for almost a month now. These forces brought on by something or someone with powers unknown to me. This unseen force did all it could do to prevent the completion of the task at hand.

It all started out innocent enough with no hint of the paranormal, but now as I look back I’m sure the supernatural was there as the cards were being shuffled. Get ready as we head in to the dark unknown of Joe’s world. It all started when…

5-17-2017 – My 1989 Toyota pickup needed an alternator, I guess after 200,000 miles it was time, as the truck still had the OEM from 1989. I headed out to get one.

At O’Reilly Auto Parts, a fine auto parts store in East Nashville was my destination. There they informed me that I could get a salvage OEM alternator for a quarter of the price of a refurbished one and half the price of a new one. Since I’m a starving author and always trying to save a buck along with the salvage one coming with a warranty that’s the route I went.

The Customer Care Representative, and I use the term loosely, told me that the alternator would need to be ordered and be in the following week, and they would call me when it arrived.

I figured what the heck that’s only five days away…

5-26-2017 The official – unofficial start to summer, Labor Day weekend was about to start. Still no alternator, but no problem I didn’t need the truck for any of my festivities, its was a 3 day weekend made for bike riding…

6-5-2017 – Still no alternator! Which added to the aggravation of the scheduled activities for this dreadful Monday.  Yep, it was time for my 2D Echo to see how the old ticker was progresses since the last heart attack. Now that’s a grand way to start your week off.

During the test the professional Echo technician informed me she needed to get someone to start an IV.

“I’ve never had to have an IV before when taking an echo. Whats going on?” I asked

“We are having trouble picking up the blood flow on the left side of your heart,” she replied.

She continued explaining it to me, but I wasn’t paying attention, all I heard was not picking up blood flow….

6-6-2017 – Call from the doctor with the 2D Echo results started off the next day.

The echo showed some change from the last one, the left side of the heart is worse not  better. He didn’t feel it was bad enough to change my follow-up appointment but felt he needed me to do the following along with making some more some more restrictions to my daily routine or as he calls them life style changes.

  • Cancel the appointment to have the planters wart removed from my left foot.
  • First sign of pain behind the left shoulder blade or left jaw get to the ER (him) as fast as possible.
  • Always make sure I have my Nitro with me, at all times, no  matter where I was at.
  • No exercising with free weights or machines, all I could do was walk. Then he added, while walking no pushing or pulling, that includes cutting grass.

I held him up there and explained I had a riding mower so I could continue cutting the grass.

He was fine with that, but pulling on anything, even rip cords for the weed eater, push mower, and leaf blower were out.

His next set instructions and treatment were simple and to the point.

  • Stay away from stressful situations.
  • Replace this medicine with this medicine and add these medicines to your regiment. He explained as he handed me the prescriptions.
  • Stay with in an thirty minute radius of Vanderbilt.

He drove that last point home and made sure I understood it; as in November of 2015 I had a heart attack. I just made it to the hospital before almost coding. His first words to me were,

“Good thing you were close or we wouldn’t be having this chat.”

[Bloggers note: My heart doctor is the best in the business. He is the Assistant Professor of Cardiology at a institution of higher learning known as the Harvard of the South. Along with taking on the task of keeping me alive he is witty and has a great sense of humor.  However there are times I fell like informing him that all his life style changes are making for a boring Joe.  Then let him he know that no matter how sick or healthy we are the only way out of this life is death. Sure the healthy ones may live longer or maybe not  but we all will die.]

Once I get off the phone I call O’Reilly Auto Parts, Alternator still not here.

I’m beginning to get more than perturbed about this issue and quickly headed into my Josephus  personality which puts a damper on relaxed and clam….

6-10-2017 – Since the sixth of June I hadn’t gotten any writing accomplished, yep that’s my job now, or gotten the alternator on the truck. I didn’t feel like doing nothing due to my body was trying to adjust to new heart medicine and it was kicking my butt.

Things were looking up, it was my moms birthday and the grounds keeper that was hired to take care of the Sleepy Cougar Ranch had the place looking good for the birthday activities.

When my little brother showed up the party was on. If there is a person who can lift one from the pits of hell it would be my little brother.

He had his chair in the shade and I had mine in the sun, the old-time rock and roll was playing and the grill was smoking as the neighbors were trying to figure who the two hunks in dark sunglasses were. Yep that’s the way me and Bro roll.

After the burgers were done we ate, ate some more, the ate some cake and had more great conversation.

[Bloggers note: I know what you are thinking, since I felt bad why not get my brother to put on the alternator or help you do it? That’s easy to answer, the alternator had not arrived from the potato farm in Idaho yet.]

6-12-2017 – Another birthday celebration, yep it was the Queens birthday.  Thank God the Queen is finally turning 30 and showing a little age. I’m tired of getting strange looks when we go out and she is tired of people asking for her ID, especially at the nudist resort.

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The Queen of Sleepy Cougar Ranch

[Bloggers note: The one who I call Queen is the Queen of Sleepy Cougar Ranch. She also wears several different hats besides her Crown, but we always remember she is the Queen. One of those hats in a nurses cap. The Queen is my personal nurse, who I refer to in blogs that deal with this responsibility affectionately as BSRN, (Bachelor of Science – Nursing) Registered Nurse. I will also attach other abbreviations to the end of Queen or BSRN such as MH (Mechanics Helper) which is used in this blog.

The celebration of the Queens birthday began as soon as the sun came up along with other things rising. We did have to cut the the activities short, but she was deeply pleased with what she had received up to that point.

My son and I had an appointment at his college to finish up some grant paperwork. On the way back I stopped and picked up a special gift for the Queen, in order to guarantee that the celebration would continue once I arrived back home.

On an impulse I also stopped by O’Reilly Auto Parts, a fine auto parts store in East Nashville.  The alternator had arrived several days before, they just hadn’t got around to calling me, like they said they would.

[Bloggers note: The fine auto parts store in East Nashville, O’Reilly Auto Parts, I recommend no one uses them. Why, Customer Service sucks, don’t do what they say, and come to find out from another employ I could have got a refurbished for the same price. The guy who sold me the alternator evidently was getting kick backs from the potato farm in Idaho.]

Between the present and the alternator there was nothing but pure jubilation at the house when I arrived.

Now being a man I knew what my priorities were, but instead of installing the alternator I continued the celebration….

6-13-2017 – After morning pills and breakfast it was time to slap the alternator on the truck. BSRN advised against this, and suggested we pay someone to do it or at least help do it.

I balked at this and told her I’ve replaced hundreds of alternators in my life time and it shouldn’t take no more than an hour, two at the most.

I headed out to the truck and began. BSRN came out to help, after changing into the outfit she wears to help with vehicle repair.

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BSRN-MH reporting for Duty

[Bloggers note: A good BSRN is always close by to monitor and ready to spring into action. They have the medical equipment, blood pressure cuff, oxygen sensor along with a stethoscope and medications within arms length. A BSRN-MH has all the above plus. She knows the difference between a wrench and a socket, bolt and a nut, flat head from Philips, metric from standard and knows where everything is at in the tool chest.  They also don’t mind getting there hands greasy or their head under the hood.]

The first I did was remove the battery from the truck and place it in the garage. Back at the truck I noticed the alternator was in a weird location, not on the top or bottom and wasn’t accessible from either.

In order to get to it the air intake system had to be removed. This involved the filter canister and the lower system tucked neatly under it. I began unplugging all the wiring from the system and then removed it. Now with it off, I could at least see the two bolts that held the alternator to the brackets. I removed the bolts, removed the wires from the alternator and lifted it out.

[Bloggers note: As most of you know I’m not an early riser, since I limited to what I can do, I figure why get up early just to be bored, so I started this task around noon.]

It was now around 12:45. My shirt was soaked and sweat was running from my brow and splattering on the fender of the truck. BSRN stomped her foot and informed me to get in the house and cool off. I agreed, not because of her insistence but I decided that since I had taken the truck this far down I would replace everything I could get to on that side.

Once inside I was calling Advance Auto Parts as BSRN handed me a Potassium pill and began removing my shirt then wiping me down with a cool cloth while I was on the phone.

Jessica at Advance was very helpful and professional, the only thing they didn’t have were the plug wires, but she guaranteed me they would be there the next day. She furnished me with the quote and said she would began pulling my order.

[Bloggers Note: Jessica works at the Advance Auto Parts on Gallatin Road in Madison, just up from the intersection of OHB and Gallatin Road headed North. I highly recommend this store!]

I hung up and was informed by BSRN to lay down under the ceiling fan to help cool me down. I didn’t argue as I was beginning to feel lite-headed and I was sure that nausea wasn’t to far behind. I was a sleep in a matter of minutes.

[Bloggers note: Sweating is another one of those things I’m suppose to avoid. I take three types of water pills to reduce the load on my heart. Combine sweating with that and I became dehydrated fast and my Potassium drops, causing muscle cramps and an irregular heart beat putting me in something they call bigeminy and other weird stuff.]

I was awaken from my nap by the dinner bell. Once I had stuffed myself with meat loaf, I headed to pick up the parts I need to from Advance Auto Parts.

Rain had begun to fall lightly on the windshield, but since the sun was out I figured it would be stopped by the time we got back. Sure enough it had and the sky was clear of clouds.

I placed the parts in the garage as BSRN come from the door leading from the house to where I was. She looked me over took a few stats and suggested since I didn’t look to good and was still pale I should put the job off till the next day. I shook me head and headed outside with the battery as I heard,

“I have powers that I can use to get you put this off till tomorrow you know that right.”

I nodded as my mind raced trying to think of what kinky sexual act she was referring to that would distract me from my task at hand.

I was placing the new battery in the battery tray, as she joined me back outside. She wanted to know why I had left the battery cables off the battery. I explained why I wasn’t going hook the battery up as I needed to get the alternator wired.

I placed the alternator back in the bay of the truck and attached the necessary wiring. I then lined the alternator up with the top bracket. I held out my hand, BSRN-MH slapped the top bolt in it like she was handing a scalpel to skilled surgeon. I slid the bolt through attaching the alternator to the bracket. I stretched out my hand again and  BSRN-MH slapped the bottom bolt in it, but she held my fingers.

“Since your hands are shaking I suggest we finish this in the morning. ” She snapped before letting go of my fingers.

She was right my hands that were normally steady were shaking along with a weakness coming over my thighs. I was determined to push through and kept working, after all I only had one bolt to go.

I shouted several obscenities as I dropped the bolt. The rattling of metal on metal reached my ears as it fell through the lower parts of the truck. I breathed a sighed of relief as I heard it clank on the hot asphalt somewhere beneath the truck.

BSRN-MH got on her knees as I did in search for the bolt. Once I located it I laid on my stomach and crawled under the truck. With a stretch the bolt was in my grasp. I slid back out.

As I walked back around the truck I was greeted with the most spectacular sight. BSRN-MH was still on her hands and knees. While admiring the scenery I informed her I had the bolt in my hand. As she stood up with a smile she let me know she was aware of that and with a wink she suggested once again we go in and finish the work tomorrow.

I stuck my head back under the hood. As I was reaching my hand to the alternator a loud clap of thunder shook the ground and continued rumbling across the sky as the rain began to fall from the clear sunny sky. BSRN-MH began picking up the tools and headed to the garage with them as I closed the hood. Looking back over her shoulder grinning she winked again as she spoke.

“See I told you have powers to get what I want…next time you my want to listen.” BSRN-MH replied.

Lighting streaked down from the sky disappearing behind a row of trees that separated the ranch from the river. The thunder boomed and continued to echo as the rain became blinding as it fell, drenching me before I reached the garage.

[Bloggers note: Once back inside my blood pressure was checked, it was way to high, along with my heart rate. The oxygen sensor had me at 91, BSRN doesn’t like for it to be below 92, and would prefer it be between 95-97. I was ordered to bed, but she did bring me lap top so I could write this. According to her I was only minutes from an ambulance ride to Vanderbilt.]

I’ll close with these finial thoughts I have on the Queen. Have I been underestimating her powers all the years. I have questions that need to be answered to know what powers does this women really have.

Did she delay the delivery of the alternator till after the 2D echo because see already knew that the doctor would add more restrictions?

Can she conjure up a Thunderstorm from a clear blue sky at will?

Maybe the Thunderstorm was some sort of  divine intervention, freak occurrence of nature, or do you chalk it up to an act of the strange and unusual that can’t be explained?

What ever it caused the strange events that hindered the installation of the alternator they have taught me a lesson.

Listen to your doctor but most of all listen to your Queen!

-JEC-

[Publishers note: The opinions and/or endorsements in this blog are the blogger’s and only  published by ThunderHorse Publishing.  The opinions and/or endorsements do not necessarily represent the views of ThunderHorse Publishing.]

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