Apparently I set my birthday to private on Facebook last year, which meant that this year, I didn’t have a million Happy Birthday! posts from friends and family. I’m OK with that.
I had laser eye surgery performed on the weekend. Today was my second follow-up appointment with the opthalmologist.
My vision is now sitting at 20⁄16 with both eyes, which is apparently a step better than 20/20 or “perfect” vision. I gather that the 20⁄16 means that I can see at 20 feet what a normal person can see at 20 feet.
I had a look at the documents the doctor provided. Before the surgery, my good eye was at 20⁄400. My bad eye, well, they didn’t even bother with a 20/number, just marked OF 2ft (I assume “out of focus at two feet”).
Now all I need to do is get used to a life without glasses.
It’s quittin’ time. If you need me, I won’t be at the office.
This is my dad, Jim Johanneson. “JJ” to his students, his co-workers, and his friends. “Jimmy Danger” to his sons-in-law.
A couple days ago, he left this world. I miss him but I know he’s not feeling any pain now.
I will surely say more later, but for now: Thanks, Dad.
If you’re interested in making a memorial donation in Dad’s honour, here are the charities we as a family have selected:
- The Canadian Alzheimer Society
- The Canadian Foodgrains Bank
- Dr. Gendreau Personal Care home — Box 60, Ste. Rose du Lac, MB R0L 1S0
If you’re interested in sending flowers, please, spend the money on one of the above charities. If you want to leave a note of condolence for us, the ones left behind, you can do so on the funeral home’s site.
Here are my wife and I at Christmastime (shortly before we headed off for Midnight Mass).
Thanks to my brother-in-law Joël, who took the photo.
This all originally appeared on Facebook, but not everyone’s on Facebook. (Hi, Mom!) So I’m posting it here, too, for you to enjoy.
Any annotations are in italics, and mostly they provide context or commentary.
Dec. 7th, 5:20 PM
I love paying a $3.50 “convenience” fee and then having to catch a cab to the airport to get on the bus. A fine use of irony there.
At this point I hadn’t left my sister’s house yet. I had no idea. None.
Dec. 7th, 6:51 PM
I’m at the depot ridiculously early. Got my ticket. Found out my bus is delayed by 90 minutes.
If I’d known I wasn’t in a hurry, I’d have told my cabbie to not bother running those three red lights.
Thanks for the notification, Greyhound. You suck.
Any Wpg folks, if you’re bored, swing by and say hi.
One did. Thanks, Michelle!
Dec. 7th, 8:07 PM
I wonder if the dude with the Australian accent running the metal detector over everyone who will be boarding the northbound bus ever looks out the window at the snow, sighs, and thinks about the choices he’s made.
One of my Australian Facebook friends assured me that he does.
Dec. 7th, 8:22 PM
I just now saw a sign telling me that I can save 10% on a Harvey’s burger if I take my bus ticket to the airport terminal.
I was loath to leave the bus terminal, on the chance that my bus would somehow magically show up, and I’d miss it. Also, if you’re trying to lure me away, you’ll have to do better than Harvey’s.
Dec. 7th, 9:05 PM
Douglas Adams pointed out that it’s no coincidence that no language has ever coined the phrase “as pretty as an airport”. Ditto bus terminals.
Self-explanatory, I trust.
Dec. 7th, 9:23 PM
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA
I also posted a comment: “Greyhound, you owe everyone in this terminal a refund on their ‘service’ fee.”
Dec. 7th, 10:00 PM
In line. Greyhound suuuuuuucks.
They herd you through “security” before they load the bus. It’s pretty funny, since people getting on at stops along the way aren’t subjected to a metal detector. Also, in the Winnipeg terminal, you can leave the “security” area and return without a second check. Just so long as you don’t move your carry-on bags out.
Dec. 7th, 10:18 PM
They’re still calling it the 8:30 bus to Brandon. It’s 10:18 PM now. #greyhoundIsTerrible
Dec. 7th, 10:39 PM
The Thompson bus arrived after the Brandon one. Guess which one is boarding first. Go ahead, guess. #ffs
Dec. 7th, 10:43 PM
A dude has decided he’s not getting on the bus now. Cue the clown show of retrieving his checked bag.
He got yelled at for moving his carry-on bags from the “secure” area. He decided that the highway conditions were still too bad to travel. (He was partly right; as is tradition, the highway was terrible from Winnipeg to Portage la Prairie.)
Dec. 7th, 10:54 PM
I’m on a bus.
It’s almost 11 pm. This is the 8:30 bus.
Never again, Greyhound.
The early bus was scheduled to leave Winnipeg at 8:30 PM and arrive in Brandon at 11:10 PM. The late bus was to leave at 11:00 and get in at 1:50.
The early bus left Winnipeg at 11:00 PM (ish) and arrived in Brandon around 1:30 AM. I don’t know the fate of the late bus.
Dec. 7th, 11:00 PM
As we got rolling, I noticed that the front seat held two coolers of human blood, helpfully labelled Please Expedite Without Delay.
Dec. 7th, 11:40 PM
A middle-of-the-night bus ride down a snowy Trans-Canada between Winnipeg and Brandon? Yeah, The Tragically Hip seems like the right soundtrack.
Dec. 8th, 1:52 AM
Dec. 8th, 9:29 AM
They just got in touch via Twitter and suggested I check their bus tracker next time. I tried that. Apparently “Winnipeg” doesn’t exist.
I snarked a bit on Twitter, too. The helpful people at the Greyhound Help account obviously didn’t realize I was talking about Greyhound Canada.
This also felt a bit like the post-credits scene, the last joke in a rolling farce.
On the up side: at least I didn’t sleep on the floor of the terminal, like the one guy loudly proclaimed he had the previous night. According to him, the temperature dropped overnight in the terminal — almost certainly a cost-saving measure — and no one was willing to turn up the heat.
At least I had a good book to read. (Stories of Your Life and Others, re-titled Arrival to capitalize on the movie, a collection of short stories by Ted Chiang.)
So here I am in Winnipeg, ready for a class this Tuesday evening, and what shows up this morning? That’s right. A blizzard.
And it occurs to me: Will the instructor for the class be able to make it here from south of town?
Update: She did indeed make it in.
Prairie Girl has a couple cartoons on the matter, and they’re particularly poignant to me, because the ghost town she left is the little city that I’ve made my home.
(Clicking the image will take you to the whole story.)
I grew up in a much smaller town—pop. ~1200—and now it’s home only to my father. I didn’t even attend my 25-year high school reunion last summer (though, to be fair, I had my reasons, which included a scheduling conflict).
Today marks sixteen years that Kathleen and I have been married. Man, the time just flies by, don’t it, when you’re in love?
Happy anniversary to us.
Things to do in October:
- prepare a talk for a conference
- run a judo tournament
- write some more
- apply for a mentorship program
- submit some writing
- read & critique a friend’s novel
- start work on a WordPress plugin
- write a review of another friend’s novel*
- make sure my judo points sheet is up to date
- write a little more
- suit up for a friend’s wedding
I miss summer.
How’s your autumn lookin’?
* The short review: It’s amazing. Read it. (Chadwick, the longer review is still coming, honest.)