Takes A Licking……

And Keeps On Ticking. Some of us old farts remember the old Timex commercial with John Cameron Swayzee. They would put this watch through all sorts of torture and and then hold it up to show it was still working. I had this same experience this week when I underwent certain tests for my not so annual physical. You see I still think I am bullet proof and only gentle prodding by my wife caused me to darken the doc’s doorway.

Sonograms are in a word amazing. They grease you up and then put this thing over various parts of your body and voila there you are in black and white on the big screen. Kidneys, liver, carotid arteries et al were interesting but when they got to the heart, that really caught my attention. Yes, despite current thinking I actually have one. They show you the aorta, ventricles etc. but what was really fascinating was some sort of valve. It opened and closed like a snare drum keeping the rhythm of the band. All in time and without any urging. How very cool.

As is my want I did some calculations and reasoned that this baby had done this same function 2,649,024,000 times during my 69 years. Without missing a beat as it were. Being an inquisitive sort I leapt to my iMac upon arrival home and started looking at all the things that go into TTG. Depending on who is counting there are anywhere from 7-11 major systems in your body. Skeletal, muscular, lymphatic, cardiovascular, nervous just to name a few. But just think about it. All these complex systems are whirring away 24/7 and for the most part all in perfect balance.

Some are voluntary and some are involuntary. One monitors temperature. One processes all the good and bad stuff we put in our body. One reacts to stimuli. One wards off intruders. We pump blood and oxygen to the far reaches of our corpus delectum and and then pick up the trash to be disposed at the recycling plant. That brain of ours is clicking away in a zillion directions, giving orders and processing information. Hormones are keeping balance or may be knocking you for a loop. But this all goes on day in, day out with not a lot of guidance from the outside world.

While perusing the net an ad popped up for of all things, Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes, probably in a totally nutritional sense one of the worst things you could ingest first thing in the morning. Now of course I treat my body as a temple but on the odd chance I might toss some scotch, ice cream or God forbid cigar smoke down my gullet I really thought what a good way to screw up a highly complex organism. Now it is too late to right some wrongs but I really do try to keep in decent shape at least to stay even. What about the dudes and dudettes that don’t even give pause while inhaling all manner of food and drink?

The technician noted that what we have today is simply a well oiled machine that has learned to adapt over the millennia to every sort of outside force and custom. She tiptoes to the edge of the concept of evolution but stopped short. I meditated on the question of could all this world of ours just happen as in a big bang or is there really some incredible genius that found a way to make these things work? I’ll let you decide if either approach should be doctrine. But perhaps perish the thought, the truth might lie somewhere in between.

One thing you can’t avoid is our similarities. If you strip away the dermis, shave off the hair(Right On!) and everyone’s eyes are the same color we all operate from the same set of plans. Black, white, gay or straight, the plumbing and superstructure are assembled in the same fashion. The thigh bone’s connected to the hip bone. In essence at birth we are all identical in every way.

Here’s where I get a little crazy. I know it is not the first time. Thanks for pointing that out. But just imagine if we all progressed from birth in somewhat of a logical order. There are no politics or particular form of wealth. What if we are not producers or directors or divas but just bit players in this thing called life? What if we strived to just live rather than living to strive. What if we just thought life is good and we said just live it rather than trying to manipulate it? Is war, strife and the pursuit of excellence really essential to life or better yet a part of the plan? But then again is there a plan? Dunno. Maybe TTG is getting a little too spacey but it really does cause you to wonder. Some of you are saying what is this lunatic talking about? I know what I am trying to say. Just hope I get it across.

Okay back to the mothership and planet Earth. Back to DC and Putin and Snowden and Hilary. Stock markets, commodities markets and scandals. The VA, PTA, PETA, NATO, and SEATO. Actually I don’t think SEATO exists any more. But we really must get back to reality. This is the world we all have created for ourselves….for better or for worse. I’ll take a licking and keep on ticking. I will probably ponder if I am a Timex or a Rolex. But then again who cares? They both tell time the same way.

As always
Ted The Great

Factoids:
The aorta is about the same diameter as a garden hose. You have heard of a ruptured aorta….not good.There are 100,000 miles of blood vessels in our bodies.
We shed 600,000 particles of skin every hour. The dust under your bed is probably not dust but a lot of you. Gross!
The bacteria present in our bodies weighs about four pounds. The largest part of your body is the small intestine. Go figure.
The higher your IQ the more you dream. Dream on TTG. Dream on.
If I do well on my tests I might go out and buy a carton of Marlboros and a gallon of scotch. On the other hand if I don’t come out aces I might make it with the Marlboros and two gallons of scotch.
Gas (flatus) is made in the stomach and intestines as your body breaks down food into energy. We pass gas an average of 14 times a day….and that’s the truth and THE END.

 

 

 

One thought on “Takes A Licking……

  1. TTG, My 4th yr Latin teacher once said he was proud to be responsible for my “case endings.” How prophetic!
    You probably know that almost all belches are swallowed air and (as I suspect you are a member of “The Royal Order of the Purple Flame”) 99% of flatus is generated by bacterial metabolism in your colon. Hence lactose intolerant people, lacking lactase in their small intestine, allow lactose to travel to the colon where it is eagerly metabolized by our friendly bacteria with the byproduct of nitrogen and various odiferous sulfas but only those lucky few ROOTPFers who produce methane and can light their farts. I can go on for hours….unfortunately, it’s about the only thing I am still expert in. BTW, the world record for flatus passages is well recorded in the NEJM, by one of my former teachers, Mike Levitt at the U of MN. It turned out to be an exquisitely lactose intolerant patient who would pass gas over 40+ times per hour; I think his record hour documented in his food dairy was 144 times in one remarkable hour! How’s that for some truly meaningful information!
    Passingly yours,
    Jay

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