Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Pain of Marriage

This past weekend, 7-9-11 to be exact, my daughter, Lindsey Regh Harden joined in matrimony Robert Fabel. It is cliched to say you are not losing a daughter but gaining a son. While this may be true the experience can still be rough on a father. The wedding itself was perfect and my daughter was stunning, only out done by her mother, but deep down inside I feel a loss. My children are drifting further and further from us. This, ulitmately, is good for the species, gene pools grow deeped and more diverse as new combinations are born. Even so, there is still a part of it that hurts. But it is a good kind of pain.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Love Means Never Having to Say You're Sorry

OK, let's move on, folks. Chris, it was a poor judgement in the use of your words. Making such a gaffe doesn't mean you have to apologize. What has it come to? Say something insulting then make it all better by apologizing sincerely? Michelle shows her cahones by not making it all better by saying all is forgiven. I would have liked her even better if she had smiled and said, "Consider the source."

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A Memory of My Dad

My favorite war story was one my dad told me. He was with the 26th Infantry Division in Patton's Third Army. My dad's best friend was John Benson who went into the army serving in the Combat Engineers with the First Army. (He claims to have been at the wheel of the first 2 1/2 ton truck onto Omaha Beach but who knows?) They were very close growing up and, living next to each other, were inseperable. They were both a trial and a joy for my dad's mom. She worried terribly about how Benny was making out in the war. To keep her from worrying, my dad told her in every letter he wrote home that he had seen Benny and he was doing fine. He allayed her fears and they both survived the war. In truth, they ran into each other only once, for a few moments in a blown out building near Metz. Their meeting was purely by chance. They did not see each other for the duration. My dad's mom went to her grave never knowing the truth.

I honestly think that my grandmother thought they were in Europe on a camping trip. She died before I got to know her but they told me she was one of the sweetest persons who ever lived. As he recalled the incident, dad said he was told there was a combat engineer unit nearby and started looking around. He found Benny sitting on the second floor staring across the room at a GI eating limberger cheese. They both talked about the smell of that cheese until the day they died.

Monday, June 6, 2011

One of the most hallowed places you could ever visit is the Colleville US Cemetary on the bluff above Omaha Beach. Unknown soldier. How can we ever thank them? It goes to show you what one group of people is willing to do for another. God Bless and keep them in His heart. On this Day of Dayskeep them in your hearts too.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Rough Men

We sleep soundly in our beds at night because rough men stand ready to do violence on our behalf. Churchill

This is on the wall of the Memorial at Coville, France. A few yards from Omaha Beach. Yet another reminded of what one group of people were willing to do for another. Rest in Peace and never be forgotten.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

As a surgeon with gray hair, I can say without reservation, as Medicare implodes in 20 years (not next year or the year after) there are really only five steps that can be taken to halt the decline of American health care as we know it.
1. Evidence based, compassionate rationing. Should a bed bound 85 year old patient be given a pacemaker just because we can?
2. Tort reform. I always base things I do and order on the circumstance of trying to explain on the witness stand why I did or didn't do somehting to a jury not of my peers. So far, it's worked. I have not been sued.
3. Get rid of all this paperwork. One chart I just peer-reviewed for a complicated 2 week stay in the hospital was 500 pages long. Standardize all of this so a hospital in Brooklyn is the same as one in Walla Walla.
4. Focus the research so that the next expensive test or therapy is affordable and practical.
5. Incentivize the practice of medicine so it once again becomes a noble profession and it's doctor-patient not doctor-client...

Friday, May 20, 2011


Some very favorable reviews for the novel. Thank you for all the kind words. The next one, The Business of Killing, is in the works and should be ready by the fall. Philip Roth said, The idea is to turn flesh and blood into literary charcters and literary characters into flesh and blood. Nobody told me it would be this much fun, though. Wes