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Monday, November 27, 2017

Close Friendships Equate Longevity and Cognitive Integrity

In yesterday's post, I reported learning from my oldest stepson Tho that his younger brother Poté had parted ways with his longtime girlfriend, Priyanka, some while back.

Well, last evening ─ it was at least 10:20 p.m. ─ Poté came slipping into the house with a female companion. I never laid eyes on her, but she was extremely quiet ─ as was he.

Priyanka was always rather unreserved here, for she had become quite accustomed to being in the house ─ for weeks at a time, she would spend more time here than at her own home. 

So this quietude led me to suspect this was a female guest who had not before been here.

My younger brother Mark soon went on up to his bedroom for the night; and I was in bed by either 11:16 or 11:18 p.m., by which time Poté had turned out the lights downstairs and evidently retired to bed with whomever was here with him.

I had a night of broken sleep, although I was comfortable enough in bed. And when I checked the time at 6:18 a.m. this morning, I decided to rise for the day.

Normally I go downstairs right after turning on my computer and logging into it, but within the past week it has been causing me grief by failing to properly load.

What happens is that soon after I log in, and while it is loading, the cursor will suddenly freeze over the desktop somewhere ─ or else on a browser if I had opened one up.

The whole screen freezes ─ I cannot do anything, including using the 'Alt' and 'Delete' keys to get the machine to present the options that include shutting down.

I have to force the machine to shut down by holding the on / off button for several seconds until it obeys my command and closes down.

My machine is several years old, and takes a damned long time to entirely load ─ I hate wasting my time sitting here and waiting for it to happen. What I usually would do after logging in is go downstairs to prepare my morning's hot beverage.

But this morning I was forced to go through the process a few times as I tried to figure out what I might be able to do to prevent this from happening tomorrow morning ─ I even resorted to my laptop to research the issue.

None of the advice was anything I cared to take upon myself, except for starting up in 'Safe Mode' and then unchecking all of the processes that were loading which had nothing to do with things like virus and spyware protection, or else what seemed to me to be the specific mechanics of the Windows 7 operating system.

Whether or not that has bought me time will be determined tomorrow morning after I turn off my computer tonight, but at least it loaded nicely after unchecking the many unnecessary processes this morning.

Poté got up fairly soon after I had done so this morning ─ he was alone ─ and left for work at 6:41 a.m.

Then to my surprise, Tho started routing through the kitchen as he late readied to leave for work, and then he headed out the front door just barely ahead of 7:00 a.m. He was anywhere from about 45 minutes to an hour later than when he normally leaves.

I must say, Poté certainly deserves to be as drained as he always seems. He and his guest must have risen overnight and he drove her home before the rest of us were up this morning ─ Mark doesn't rise for work anywhere later than about 4:20 a.m., so it's always possible that they waited until he had left around 5:15 a.m.

With a functioning computer once again, I got to work setting up the foundation of a new post at one of my six hosted websites. But the work took far, far too long ─ it was after 11:00 a.m. before that set-up was finished with.

I had hoped to get in a nap, but it had become too late.

The early morning had been remarkably clear and sunny, but it had mainly clouded over before noon.

I dearly wish that my life's situation was not as it is ─ it becomes so painfully onerous spending hours and hours everyday trying to somehow develop a second income to augment my monthly pension.

I sure cannot seem to win any lotteries to free me from this endless and fruitless cycle.

I have been locked up like this since retiring back at the beginning of April 2011, and I am just getting older. There is no reward for what I am doing.

But how can I stop? Apart from winning a lottery, there is no other possible way that I am going to come into a second income ─ I am a slave to this.

I have no friends. None near, anyway. There is no one I can just simply take a break from all of this and pay an enjoyable visit with ─ or have visit me.

The last close friend I had living anywhere near me died of cancer on January 21, 2011 ─ I still had not officially retired. I had been somewhat looking forward to occasionally getting together with him to drink with just like we used to before my so-called career usurped my social life.

Once I started having to work downtown in Vancouver and then in Burnaby for almost the last five years of my working life, I had to forsake friendships. There was no time anymore to socialize ─ not when I was rising at 3:30 a.m. each workday in order to get away to be at work by 6:00 a.m.

Sometimes I would go to bed in the evening no later than 8:30 p.m. And on weekends, I did not dare break from my sleeping pattern, or else Monday would be more of a hell than it already was.

Besides, I was often going in to work on the weekends just to try and reduce my workload ─ and that was entirely unpaid work. Management was generally unaware of my devotion to my job.

When I read reports about studies that find out just how important close relationships are to health, longevity, and cognitive preservation, it makes me a little fearful ─ I am 68 years old, after all.

Note these two reports on a latest study:



That last reference admits to being a republication of one from Northwestern.edu as can be determined here.

I am not close even to my wife ─ she and I have not been intimate since March 2013.

Sometimes it seems more appealing to be non-existent than it is to keep on with this pointlessness that has become my life.

On a related note, my monthly pension has not yet been directly deposited into my chequing account. That account's balance has had less than $10 available to me since I last did some grocery shopping on Monday of last week.

With no more funds than that to access, I have been virtually housebound because I cannot do any kind of shopping.

Limited means are also why I have no social life ─ I would love to be able to visit a bar as does my younger brother Mark.

But I cannot.

Early this afternoon I had what presently constitutes a full session of exercise out in the backyard tool shed ─ I have not had a full session in possibly two weeks. Of late, I just settle upon some pull-ups each day.

But I had no reserves nor enthusiasm for the exercise ─ I felt physically depleted, as if I have been over-training.

How ludicrous is that for someone who has been utterly housebound the entire past week ─ somehow I am physically overworked?

But I must get off this subject.

Perhaps I will offer a final comparison of two versions of a photo that belonged to my mother Irene Dorosh and her husband Alex.

I presented similar comparisons in each of my past three or four posts.

The photo may have been taken while my mother and Alex were on a chartered bus tour that seems to have involved Yellowstone National Park, but I do not know if that is where this photo was taken.

If it was taken on that same trip, then perhaps it was taken sometime during the decade of the 1980s.

As you will see, the photographer attempted to capture a photo of the scenery from inside a vehicle, but the camera's flash spoiled the photograph.

The two comparison versions that I will now post of the original photo will first be an iPhone 5 shot of the photograph, and then a scan of the original photo:

And now I am going to close today's post with an old journal entry of mine from 41 years ago when I was 27 years old, and living in a basement housekeeping unit in New Westminster.

I was renting in a private home located on Ninth Street, and not more than two houses up from Third Avenue.

My mother and her husband Alex just happened to be into the first week of a two-week holiday to somewhere, so I was taking full advantage and almost daily visiting their home off in the Kennedy Heights area if Surrey.

Their home was my main mailing address.

The little house no longer exists, but its address was 12106 - 90th Avenue; and it would take me a full 1½ hours to hike there from my room using a goodly pace.

My younger brother Mark was renting a duplex unit that was less than three miles from their home ─ I believe the duplex was located a short distance down Semiahmoo Road from Old Yale Road.

It seems that in order to spare myself the walk back to New Westminster after hiking to my mother's home, I was instead walking over to where Mark lived and spending the night there. He had to drive through New Westminster on his way to work, so I would get an early lift back into town.

I was unemployed, but collecting Unemployment Insurance (U.I.) from the federal department of Manpower and Immigration ─ I was also fairly regularly checking out the latest job postings at their local offices in New Westminster.

I did much walking back then, for I did not drive nor own a car. However, thanks to my recent involvement with 20-year-old Melody St. Jean, I had been motivated enough to start classes at John's Driving School.

But unfaithful Melody and I had broken up after she hooked up with Chris, a young co-worker of my brother Mark.

That breakup was maybe two weeks earlier, I believe, but I was still quite stuck on her and would weakly have re-involved myself with her had she wanted it.

However, since the previous weekend, she and Chris were away in his lavish pickup truck touring the province.

Note that all of her furniture was in the apartment of my old friend William Alan Gill, who was renting a bachelor suite about four or so blocks from my room. My room didn't even have space for Melody, let alone her furniture.

Besides, she and Bill had thought to find alternate accommodation where all three of us could live together.

That was of course now never going to happen.

Anyway, the last entry in my journal for the previous day ─ a Friday ─ indicated that I was leaving my room at 12:45 p.m. to hike to my mother's home.
SATURDAY, November 27, 1976

I feel hungover, arising here at 8:00 a.m. after retiring very late. Bill & I bought 2 large Venus pizzas, most of which he took home last night; we were going to eat them at his place with Melody & Chris, but they had bedded and weren't answering the phone.

Bill showed up at Mark's last night shortly after I did, and we 3 went to the Dell. Bill found out that Melody & Chris were returning that night, and he caught them at home, inviting them to join us.

I guess Chris is handling her quite well; both her cheek bones are bruised.

They stayed with us a while, then left.

Mark bought Bill & I a pizza, but we were still hungry. And his call home yielded that Melody was too. Thus the Venus purchase ─ but all for nought.

I must accept that she is lost to me.

Master Movers called Mark last night; I'm to phone them, but I want my licence before I start a job.

I never did mail Jean's letter. I'll do that on my way back to Mark's; I never should have come home last night.

I'm leaving for his place about 8:40 a.m.

I feel I need Melody badly; I'm still very drunk.
And there ended that day's journal entry ─ and the next entry is not until Monday, skipping Sunday entirely. Obviously, I got involved in something heavy that kept me away from my room.

The letter I mentioned was intended for American pen-pal Jean Michelle Martin (née Black).

Did Chris really bruise up Melody? I don't know. She could be a Grade A bitch, and had caused me enormous misery. But I am not the sort to physically engage a woman in any sort of argument.

Reportedly we had gone drinking at the Dell Hotel beer parlour ─ that Whalley hotel no longer exist, having been demolished just a few years ago. If it was still in business, it would be one place that I would likely go if I had some spare funds. I always felt at ease there.

But let's return to the present and leave that old part of my history behind.

I am expecting my wife Jack home this evening ─ if she worked over in the Guildford area at the Thai restaurant where she has been putting in a couple of days early in the week for quite a number of consecutive weeks now.

She normally spends most of her week somewhere in Vancouver, but has been spending the two nights here at home once she has finished work over by Guildford.

So we shall see.

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