Monday, March 29, 2021

Four Stages, So Far, of My “Bionic” Journey: 3-29-2016 to 3-29-2021 (published 3-29-2021)


On 8/26/2016, I wrote the first article on this topic. It's titled "I'm Still Alive – Why?"

That was my 71st article. This is my 200th article. In the 129 articles that I have written, between 8/26/2016 and today, I commented about various aspects of my ongoing “bionic” life. The 3/21/2021 article, with the short title “My 'Bionic' Excuse,” included three X-rays. If you haven't seen the “pretty pictures,” feel free to look – only if you are not too squeamish.

In this 200th article, I summarize the main details, perhaps adding a few new items along the way. My purpose is not simply to “tell my 'bionic' story.” I have a friend and brother in Christ, whom I have not yet met in person. He is in the early stages of his ongoing recovery. His malady is different from my multi-trauma (as they call it). The stages of ongoing recovery, however, are and will be similar. I want to inspire my friend and brother in Christ. His recovery may be quicker than mine. Mine is ongoing and may continue for about five more years or longer.

I hope that readers, in general, are inspired as well. Never give up! It is step-by-step and day-by-day.

The details are set in stages. The concluding remarks move from temporal to everlasting.

Stage One (3/29/2016 – 5/4/2016; 36 days in two hospitals)

The following is a segment from my yet-unfinished and unpublished book, “Light at the End of the Tunnel.” I had written the segment on 8/24/2016, very early in my still ongoing recovery.

On 3/29/2016, Tuesday, life as I had known it ended. I was driving home from the office. An 18-year-old female -- who had no auto insurance, no income, and no resources -- failed to yield to my right of way. She turned left, directly into the left front quarter panel of my truck. My ’95 Nissan truck died. I almost did. After 36 days in two hospitals, I came home on 5/4/2016, to continue the multiple weeks of recovery and physical therapy. My upper left arm, right knee, and right foot have a combined 25 metal pins or screws in them. My brain managed to slosh back into place fully. My left eye recovered fully. My job was held open, for when I would be able to return from my “sabbatical.” Despite a still-swollen foot and ankle and a stiff knee, I can walk, with a limp, even without the crutch (for a short distance).

On 8/24/2016, I have written again. It was my attempt to find a way to overcome the absolute boredom of staying indoors, with still no truck to drive – even if my damaged right foot would have allowed.

I did not know that I was alive when the surgeon repaired my shoulder and knee. My brain had “sloshed back into place” in time for me to speak with him, before he repaired my right foot. That was on Wednesday, April 13th. He knew that I hiked. He said, “You will hike again. It may not be until the fall.” From his words, I had speculated on my full and complete recovery later in 2016! I was wrong. I am still recovering.

I was at the University of Tennessee Medical Center from March 29th to April 19th – 21 days. Mrs. Appalachian Irishman, bless her heart, was with me daily, even when my brain was still sloshing and I didn't know anything. Family, friends, and neighbors visited. I don't remember some of the visits. I almost died twice, due to the concussion, so my wife tells me. After about ten days, I started to become aware that I was alive and that I was in a deep, dark hole. I started to think about how I could get out of that hole. I am on the upper edge of that hole now. I'm still working on climbing out fully.

I remember limited physical therapy. My right leg and foot were immobilized completely. The wheelchair and my wife got me around. I couldn't read or watch television, unless I wore a patch over my left eye. Otherwise, I was seeing double. The ice cream, on the outside deck, on which ever floor, was good! I was outside, at least, with my wife pushing me around in the wheelchair and buying the ice cream.

April 19th was my transition, by ambulance, to Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center. It is part of the Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center. I remember the fifteen days there much better. Mrs. Appalachian Irishman continued by my side, wheeling me around in the wheelchair, and so forth. It was “fun.” (Do not eat a full bag of chocolate-covered peanuts! You will pay for it later, on the portable commode seat! No worries! I could wipe my back side, with my right hand, not my left. My wife had the “fun” of flushing the mess, in the hospital room commode.)

In late April, I think that my wife took the above photograph of my right leg at Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center. Those hospital beds are not comfortable. I slept, or tried to do so, on my bed. Mrs. Appalachian Irishman slept, or tried to do so, on the bed beside me. (I had a private room.) Near bedtime, the nurse finally stopped asking me if I needed a pain pill. No! Give me two Tylenol pills. I'll sleep. I did, well enough. I don't know what pain medicine they pumped into me, in the early days, when I was trying not to die. When I became aware of reality, I refused all pain pills! I wanted to feel the painful damage, to know how to get out of that dark hole.

Several times a day, except Sundays, I had what I call “brain” therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy. My wife had to wheelchair me, via the elevator, to the location each time. Several good therapists were there. I remember Heather, by her first name. She was the best. Saturdays had a lighter schedule. I was glad. I was always trying to endure. I had a bench seat shower every week! I managed to get to the point that the nurse didn't need to see my private areas! I could do it alone. Well, my wife helped some with my private areas; bless her heart. She had seen them before.

“Brain” therapy was mental games, to see how well my brain was doing. They were easy, but I fatigued quickly, as my brain still recovered. I moved my left hand in circles on a table. My left hand picked up toy items to stack (as a child would). I don't know why they wanted me to play cornhole. I couldn't toss with my dominate and busted up left arm. I had to use my right. When I was allowed to start trying to bend my right knee, I tried to turn the pedals on a stationary bicycle with my right leg. I couldn't do it. There were other aspects of the therapy. I remember them all. My concussed brain was working correctly.

As in Star Wars, “May the 4th be with you!” On May 4th, my 15 days at Patricia Neal Rehabilitation Center were done. I could manage to transition from wheelchair to our 2008 Honda Civic, passenger side, with painful effort, trying to move my right leg, from knee down, forward enough to fit inside the car. (The seat was back as far as it could go.) I was home. It felt good. I was inside. I could see Molly (our ol' puppy) through the windows. Family, friends, and neighbors started to visit at certain times.

Stage Two (48 Out-Patient Physical Therapy Sessions)

The wheelchair, portable commode, shower bench, and other items also came home. The commode stayed near me in the living room. I could transition from wheelchair to couch and from couch to portable commode, using my good left leg. My right leg looked like a toothpick. My left shoulder looked pushed in and down. I didn't have a left pectoral muscle.

If you don't or can't use muscle, it will be gone in two weeks. You have to rebuild it all. I did. My right leg has the same power as my left leg. My shoulders are even. My left pectoral has been back for years. My left-side neck muscles look the same as my right-side neck muscles. It has taken time and effort, day by day. When I was able to have my wife begin taking me to our chiropractor, my bones held their alignment. We still see our chiropractor, every four weeks, for tune ups. My bones keep in alignment. My soft tissue still needs improvement.

The best “fun” of being home -- before I could manage to shower, using the shower bench, with my wife's help, in her bathroom -- was when my wife gave me a weekly sponge bath in our kitchen. Warm water can become cold quickly! I endured. My wife endured. Thanks, dear!

On 5/3/2016, the day before my discharge to home, Mrs. Appalachian Irishman helped me arrange a temporary wheelchair ramp, from the driveway to the front porch. On the day that I came home, 5/4/2016, the ramp was installed. I never photographed the entire ramp. It was temporary.

The following is a “pretty” picture of my right leg. I was on the couch. You can see various temporary devices in the image. I took the photograph on 6/6/2016. The “100 lb.” knee brace (as I called it) was off. I still have it. I still have the boot for my foot. They are souvenirs.

At some point after 5/4/2016, I had the “joy” of my three sixteen-session rounds of out-patient physical therapy. Mrs. Appalachian Irishman drove me to and from each one. Let's see. Three times sixteen is forty-eight, right? I thought so.

The location was at the Orthopaedic Center, near the University of Tennessee Medical Center. My wife tried to miss the rough spots on the roads, while driving to and from the center. My right foot and knee felt every one of them. My wife would have to “trap” Molly in her basement condominium, temporarily, while she got me to and from the house and car, using that ramp. (We had several instances of rainy weather that were “fun.”) After a while, she didn't need to “trap” Molly temporarily! I could see Molly outside, briefly! I had managed, over time, to get from the wheelchair to the rolling walker! Eventually, with my wife nearby, I could use the rolling walker, to go up and down the ramp.

I took my first “baby steps,” three in all, on 6/16/2016. I've written about that before. You can find the details in archived articles. Granny Wood was born on 6/16/1901.

The efforts -- from using a wheelchair, to using a rolling walker, to needing a walking stick, to needing no assistive device -- were not fun. I can endure pain. There were times that, almost cursing, I had to tell a therapist, “Stop! I'm done!” I couldn't move my shoulder, knee, or foot – whichever was the target of work at the time – any further, in any direction. After many attempts, finally, I could get the stationary bicycle to turn a full circle with my right leg!

I set up my own home physical therapy schedule. (I've written about it before.) They wanted my home routine to be done three times, for 30 minutes each day. I knew that I could do more. The trips to and from out-patient therapy were usually on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. My schedule was five hours daily. Each hour started at 9 AM, 11 AM, 1 PM, 3 PM, and 5 PM. I skipped the 1 PM and 3 PM schedules on out-patient therapy days. Usually, I followed my schedule all seven days of the week. Sometimes, I had to take a weekend or at least a Sunday off. At times, when I was “feeling my oats,” I added an extra hour at 7 PM!

The out-patient therapy was not fun. I endured. My wife knows the details, as well as I do. By the way, never say to me, “Suck it up, buttercup!” I heard that a couple of times during therapy. I educated those, who said that to me. They learned. I endured. Remember, as I phrase it, “No gain; no pain!” If you want to gain something, take the pain.

Stage Three (“Normal” Life Returning)

Papaw Ferrell passed away on 11/21/1970. On 11/21/2016, I drove the car to and from the location, to check out my soon-to-be “new, ol'” truck, a 2006 Nissan Frontier. Thanksgiving was 11/24/2016. (Mom was born on Thanksgiving, 11/24/1932.) The next day, I drove our car, with my wife along. We got my new-to-me truck! You've seen his photographs many times, if you have read previous articles. He loves to have his picture taken!

Pearl Harbor Day, 12/7/2016, was my first trip, in my truck, to and from the homeplace. It had been a while. The homeplace was, and is still, surviving well enough.

My first day back to work, after my “sabbatical,” was on 12/19/2016. The first two weeks, I worked only on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Afterward, I resumed the Monday through Friday routine. I started back to work too soon. I knew it later. I endured it. We needed my paychecks. My wife's income was barely meeting monthly expenses, maybe with a bit extra for retirement. (I had budgeted our construction-to-permanent home mortgage that way, in 2003. I tried to think ahead.) My income had to kick in, to bridge the gap.

The only financial “help” that we had was (a) the insurance settlement for my '95 Nissan that had died and (b) the months of paid leave that my job had accumulated. My health insurance provider and our automobile insurance company had asked me to let them know, if I ever got money from the “turnip” that had tried to kill me on 3/29/2016. Both companies had tried and failed. I didn't care. I was focused on trying to survive!

It was a winter day on 12/22/2016. Meteorological winter starts on December 1st. Astronomical winter starts on December 21st. On that day, I hiked House Mountain (on the loop trails, at least). That was hike #137 and “bionic” hike #1. I had missed my surgeon's prediction by only one day! As I have written, “A man has to start somewhere.”

On 1/28/2017, my new ol' truck and I hauled to the dump the temporary ramp! By myself, as I wanted to do, I ripped apart and broke up that ramp! It took more than one day.

The above photograph is of the final load that my truck and I hauled off, on 1/28/2017. That was a psychological victory!

On 12/3/2017, I hiked House Mountain. It was hike #141 and “bionic” hike #5. I happened to meet my friend, Dr. Antonov. We had hiked together several times, and I had met him on the trails many times before. (My hiking log has the details, for family, who may access it. I might publish my log, but not today.) This was our first time to meet, since I acquired my “bionics.” We talked. I told him about my “fun” so far. He examined me on the ridge. I remember the exact location. He has a doctorate in nuclear physics. He has self-educated doctorates in many other fields, including medicine. After he listened to me, asked questions, and examined me, he stated, “It will take you ten years, before you do not notice much, if any, difference.” That was his way of telling me that my ten-year recovery was well underway. I hope that it takes only ten years.

Dr. Antonov was right. Various medical folks have speculated on many things. I was told that I would never serve a tennis ball over my head again. I have been able to do that for a long time. I continue, day-by-day, slowly but steadily. I have had to go backward, temporarily, to go forward more times than I can count.

Stage Four (Life, “Such As It Is,” Continues)

If you read my articles from 8/29/2016 to today, you will notice that life, “such as it is,” continues. I'm still standing here. I ain't breathing hard!

The soft tissues (i.e., muscles, ligaments, etc.) are still a work in progress. Each “bionic” joint still feels the differences. I do not feel pain – unless I've reached the point that pain is my “new normal.” No, it's not pain. It's tightness only now. Each right foot step feels different. At times, I have taken steps when both feet felt the same. I like those rare moments!

Today marks the halfway point in my ten-year recovery. I hope that Dr. Antonov was right. I think that he was. I should know. I am in my own body. The step-by-step, day-by-day process continues.

I do not concern myself with mundane details of my temporal life. I write about “polytics” and other temporal topics. I place temporal life in the everlasting perspective. My sarcastic humor helps.

Each morning, I still do various stretches before getting out of bed. I have been taking hot and cold showers for so long that I don't remember when I started. I have taken a year of deep tissue massage therapy. I have tried all the various creams and ointments. I have inquired about other types of therapy but have found no interest. I even tried the “marijuana” sublingual liquid. All it did was give me the munches! That didn't last long. I know what I have endured. There are many other details. My wife knows them.

Hey! I need to get House Mountain hike #178 done! It will be a future hike. Let's hike! I do not back down. I endure. I'm that stubborn, as long as I have life in my body.


On 11/3/2016, I started writing “Punctuated Providence.” It will be an addendum to my yet-unpublished book, “Light at the End of the Tunnel.” One segment reads:

God, however, will allow disease, sorrow, calamity, injury, and death to occur in our lives – whenever, at the most inappropriate times. My years after our return from Russia demonstrate that. My current situation demonstrates that. In providence, God may protect us from the above, or he may allow it to come, and to come in waves. We want to know why he acts providentially at times and why he does not at times. He does not tell us. He may tell us in heaven. We may “cuss and fuss.” We may lose the zeal of what once was a strong faith. We may give up. I have done these.

The bottom line is that I am still saved by God’s grace through my faith. My faith, punctured by pain, is not what it once was. God is not as close as he once was. Why has he allowed so much tragedy, since we came back from Russia? He only knows. I do not. He will not tell me why. I just trust that he has his reasons. Whatever. Blah, blah, blah . . . .

This article today is relatively trivial, folks! When I publish my book, my “bionic” life will be a side note only. The book, “Light at the End of the Tunnel,” goes back to events that started on 12/28/1999. They involve my godly mother. Since then, my “five scars” are healing. They have been emotional, relational, spiritual, theological, and occupational.

The damage that I sustained, on 3/29/2016, was trivial. My emotional damage is nominal. My relational damage is relative. (Slight pun intended.) My spiritual and theological statuses have improved. My occupational life endures until I can retire.

I am ready to go home to everlasting life. I did not take that journey on 3/29/2016. I will take it eventually. I am ready to go home!

Are you ready? If not, you are welcome to comment or email me. Using the “Contact Form” will email me. Otherwise, don't concern yourself too much with temporal aggravations (e.g., work, “polytics,” economics, etc.). Focus on family, friends, and God.

I need to publish this article. An article, with more photographs, may follow in a few days. Y'all keep turnin' right and goin' straight out there! Email me, if you would like to start a conversation. I'm standing by. (I gave up that wheelchair long ago!)

Saturday, March 27, 2021


“Sandwich board sign with chalk-written message,” 5/7/2020, on Dig DC. Free Download.


On this stormy and rainy Saturday, I hope that y'all are enduring the weather “disaster.” The rain comes and goes. Oh, we had a little hail here a couple of times. The hail got up to marble size. I wonder if folks who can't get vehicles into garages, because of too much clutter, had vehicle damage. We didn't. Our car and truck were both “in the barn,” safely.

It's a spring storm, y'all! It's nothing else. Don't let those weather folks get you too worked up. It has happened before, over the centuries.

During the afternoon lull, the “luck of the Irish” was with me! I hauled trash, and my truck got his belly full of gas. (He had needed to eat. 3/6/2021 was the last time his belly was filled.) Mrs. Appalachian Irishman, bravely, endured the grocery shopping routine. We are fine, y'all. We're still “livin' la vida 'Rona!”

Hey! I see that my “livin' la vida 'Rona” phrase, which I started, has caught on! Here's the Urban Dictionary reference. I doubt that I will get credit for coining the phrase. I'm the first one that I know who coined it.


Democrat Socialism:” The article, "The Collapsing American Family," on Canada Free Press, by Linda Goudsmit, 3/23/2021, came to me via a “Farcebook” friend's re-post. He is a real life friend and a brother in Christ, which are both more important. It was an okay re-post. (“Farcebook” friends need to STOP re-posting posts from others and write on their own websites, as I do. Okay, I'm done with my soapbox!) You may follow the link if you are bored. The article is good enough.

The article states the obvious, however. Socialism/communism is based on the state. The republican (aka “democratic”) form of government is based on the family structure and proper values. (I can parse out “proper values,” if you need me to do so.) A government that is based on God's moral law (which I can affirm, in logical argument) is right. I know it. Anyone with any common sense knows it. The uneducated and brain washed masses do not know it.

The USSA “Utopian” socialists have been working, in the former USA, since at least the 1880's. They picked up steam, in the 1930's and in the 1960's. They are in control of the former USA now. They control the USSA, which started, as I have written, on 1/6/2021.

As I have written several times before, the USSA has about 70 to 100 years, before it falls. I will be at HOME by then. I still stand now. The stand of many, who agree, is a futile effort, but we still stand. That's the stubborn Irish in me, at least.

Border Insecurity: any nation that cannot secure its borders is doomed. The USSA (former USA) Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection, link is here. It shows the USSA border with Mexico. The fence that exists is present. The red shows the new wall system that the last president of the USA, Donald Trump, and his policy installed. They made good progress. The gaps, without any wall, show also. Note: the website states: “Last modified: January 25, 2021. Archived Content. In an effort to keep current, the archive contains content from a previous administration or is otherwise outdated.” (The meaning is that the first president of the USSA (Biden) has not had his folks update the website from the last president of the USA (Trump).

This next link, from the same USSA Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection, will provide various details. Here is another fairly valid 3/15/2021 PolitiFact link, to check the details, if you are bored. Here is an even better 3/25/2021 link, from, if you aren't too bored yet.

It is not border security. It is border insecurity. Any once great nation that cannot secure its borders, especially its southern border, is doomed. Are you learning to speak Spanish yet? I'm trying, every now and then. It's an easy language. I'll learn it, if I want to. I can speak Russian. It's a hard enough language to learn. Mandarin is harder. I have barely started on my Mandarin language learning. I may have to get around to it. It depends on whether the Russians or the Chinese begin to control this half of the USSA. I figure that the Russians will take east of the Mississippi River, where we are, and that the Chinese will take west of the Mississippi River. I hope that my gamble is right!

Guvrmint” Incompetency Verified

On 3/24/2021, Wednesday, my father-in-law attained age 83. That day, we received the Tennessee Department of Revenue (aka tax collectors) postcard, by postal mail. I don't know when it was mailed. The post office is slow. The postcard reminded us that our 2008 Honda Civic (Mrs. Appalachian Irishman's car) needed to have a new annual sticker on the license plate. I had already received the same agency's e-mail, on 3/6/2021, and I had paid to get the new sticker that day. The new sticker had come by mail. I had placed the new sticker (2022) on the car, many days ago.

On 3/26/2021, Friday, when I was working at the office (Monday through Wednesday at home; at office Thursday and Friday; insanity), we all received an e-mail that stated: the maximum benefit allotment for the household will take place in March. Well, the Tennessee Department of Human Services was only 25 days late on the e-mail. We had know this, since 3/1/2021.

On 3/27/2021, today, Saturday, Mrs. Appalachian Irishman received her Tennessee Department of Health postcard, by postal mail. It reminded her to get her second new cold virus shot. (She had her first new cold virus shot, on 2/24/2021.) My “long-suffering” wife had her second round of the new cold virus shot, on 3/26/2021, about 11 AM, at the Sevier County Health Department. She has had a sore arm (where the shot hit) and a headache, so far. She is not, yet, growing a third ear. That's good. I will not take any type of new cold virus shot. I don't need it. My three “bionic” joints and I are fine, such as we are. Hike with me. See if you can keep up, on the way up the ridge.

Need I write more? The incompetency of the State of Tennessee, in its various departments, is obvious. This is one state. What about the other 49? What about the USSA? The answer is obvious. As Dad used to say, “this country is about gone, boys.” Well, Dad, if you were still here, you would know that the USA is gone and that the USSA, such as it is, is here.

Life, “Such as it is,” Update

Aside from what I have written earlier, today, I decided to update my 2006 Nissan Frontier's mileage record. I hadn't updated the log in a few months. I hadn't updated the annual mileage and miles per gallon record, since 2018. Times does go by.

My new, ol' truck's record:
  2019: 10,610.6 miles.
            510.37 gallons of gas.
            20.79 miles/gallon.

2020: 6,931.7 miles (only; due to the new cold virus insanity that had started in March).
          342.29 gallons of gas.
          20.25 miles/gallon.

Our 2008 Honda Civic is catching up to the miles on my 2006 Nissan Frontier. Who knows? My ol' truck may have fewer miles on the clock than our Civic, if this new cold virus continues to work as a tool, for the “Democrat” Socialist powers that be.


I had to get this article published today. I will have a very detailed article that I will publish on 3/29/2021, Monday. The purpose of that future article will be twofold: to encapsulate the main details of my “bionic” fun, since 3/29/2016, and to inspire my friend and brother in Christ, whom I have not met yet in the flesh. I know him online only.

Wait for that article. I will be a good one. It may be one of my best recently.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021



I have another “polytics” article in my mind. I have been researching it. Wait for it, please. Until then, this is my “life, such as it is,” update.

Today, was, at least, “interesting.” Enjoy the ride!

The “Fun”

Mrs. Appalachian Irishman continued her to and from work daily routine. I continued my work routine -- at home on Monday through Wednesday and at the office on Thursday and Friday. We survived.

Today, our neighbor rang the door bell, while I was in the monthly meeting, as a waste of my time. It's boring. I'm used to it. I was in the meeting by phone, as everyone else was, in this “new normal.” Our neighbor offered to mow our yard, which needs mowing. I told him, with phone meeting muted, that I'd call him later. I did.

Afterward, our “mower guy” (i.e., LTD Lawn Service) and his crew arrived, as I knew that they would, to mow, for the first mowing of the season. They mowed two neighbors' yards also, while they were in our area. If you need yard mowing services, especially in east Knox County, Tennessee, you will do no better than to call my “mower guy.” His website, as I've referenced, has his contact information.

My father-in-law attained the young age of 83 today. After my work-at-home day, I called him. I have not seen him since 7/18/2020, due to “the new normal” or to whatever the “mask mafia” has dictated. He's getting along well enough. Mrs. Appalachian Irishman, his eldest daughter, her two sisters, and the daughter of “favorite sister-in-law” had no plans. At 5:44 PM, I hear the garage door open! Mrs. Appalachian Irishman was home, from the “new normal” festivities, such as they were!

Well, at the Fearghail house, here, the usual routine will continue, such as it is. I'll keep writing, as you keep reading!


I have a known friend. Her husband is in a similar situation, at the second hospital that I was in, back in 2016. I know the details. I pray God's blessings on her husband's recovery. I takes time. God will not heal, by miracle, well, unless rarely. It takes time and stubborn determination. I know.

By the way, as the Irish enjoy finishing with humor, today, we received a State of Tennessee, Department of Revenue, Notice of Motor Vehicle Registration Renewal. It was a little postcard in the mailbox. On 3/6/2021, these folks had e-mailed me, to remind that the annual tag sticker, for our '08 Honda Civic, was due. I had paid them the same day. I have the 2022 tag on the car now! When will the State of Tennessee every get it's head out of it's rear end?

Supper is ready. Let's eat! Y'all keep turnin' right and goin' straight out there! The straight course will lead us Home, but not yet, today.

Monday, March 22, 2021



“Polytics” is from Greek “poly” (many) and “ticks” (blood suckers). Pot is a known plant-based substance. Party is, well, a party. I hope that you enjoy my article. Let's have some “polytics” pot party fun!


First, I will note the minutia. Tim Burchett is our USSA House Representative. He was a great Knox County Superintendent (aka Mayor). He has advanced to his current “polytical” level. I am glad that he has advanced. I get his monthly e-mail newsletters.

In his 3/2/2021 newsletter, he wrote, regarding the $1.9 trillion spending spree with printed money, that “only 9% of the money in this so-called relief bill actually goes to addressing coronavirus concerns.” I “fact checked” this. Depending on how you count the money that the USSA does not have, he is correct, mostly. He added that “over $1 trillion in already-appropriated federal COVID-19 economic aid remains unspent.” I didn't care to check that. If the USSA has the last round of money tree money unspent, then how will the USSA spend the newest money tree money? It is all a joke! The USSA will keep printing Monopoly money. $1,000 may be worth $1 eventually. (I have written on the details recently.)

On 3/2/2021, I must have commented on his website, which requires much “hoop jumping” to comment. On 3/11/2021, he replied by email to my remarks, which I had forgotten. His reply was mundane and not relevant.

On 3/14/2021, on his “Farcebook” site, “Congressman Tim Burchett”, I wrote, in the Community Section: Appalachian Irishman is preparing an article, to be published, re: the democrat socialist agenda. On 3/16/2021, at 6 PM, I plan to be one of the ones who call in for your Town Hall, by phone. You are doing well enough. Your contact by email system is in need of MUCH improvement, however.”

On 3/16/2021, I joined Representative Burchett's Town Hall (via 865-217-2185), at 5:59 PM. I waited. The teleconference started. I left a comment, at about 6:08 PM. By 6:18 PM, I did not hear a reply, and supper was ready. I dropped.

Tim Burchett is doing his best to stand against the USSA “democrat” socialist agenda. I am doing so also. We will lose. The USA is gone, boys. Welcome to the USSA socialist utopia! The USSA is at least 100 years behind the former USSR. I have written about it recently.

The two Tennessee senators are (the website uses last name, first name): Blackburn, Marsha and Hagerty, Bill. I voted for Marsha Blackburn. I voted for myself, instead of Bill Hagerty, due to his obsessive efforts to contact me, to vote for him. Marsha Blackburn has a newsletter. I signed up for it yesterday. Why doesn't Bill Hagerty have a newsletter? Marsha Blackburn takes a hard stand, for constitutional principals. I hope Bill Hagerty is doing so also. He is better than “Lamar,” whom he replaced.

Pot Party

The USSA is on a “democrat socialist pot party” at the moment. The printed Monopoly money “weed” has many folks high. Like pot, once the drug-induced high wears off, the USSA must come down.

Decades ago, a life-long friend shared an event, that had happened not long after high school. He had a friend. His friend and he were at a party. My friend did not drink or do drugs. His friend did marijuana, at least. My friend's friend had inhaled or swallowed too much marijuana. My friend had stated that his friend was on the front porch, with his head in a flower pot, saying, “I need to come back down to earth, man!”

The USSA will come back down to earth, after the “pot party” (i.e., socialist democrat utopia party) is over. It may take 70 to 100 years or so.


I had started this article yesterday. It is published today, finally. Life goes on, such as it is. Are you ready do come down to earth? I am ready to leave this earth, to go Home. Of course, I have several more House Mountain hikes to do, as my plan, before I go Home.

It's almost supper time. I'm 10-10 on the side, until next article.

Sunday, March 21, 2021



Yesterday, I wrote about my expectation to hike today. Why am I not hiking but writing instead? “Any excuse is a good excuse.”

My Excuses

First, I know that the recent rain has left the usual muddy areas. My last three hikes involved mud. I decided to skip another muddy hike, being the “coward” that I am.

Second, the weather is too warm. If I had started early this morning, the temperature would have been cooler. That's my fault. There's nothing like a too-hot and muddy afternoon hike, even on a clear and sunny day! (That's a joke, folks.) Today would have been another one of those hikes, when I wear and hike in one T-shirt and then change into the other T-shirt after the hike. Never let them see you sweat!

Finally, my “bionics” decided to indicate that they are still present, more so than usual today. Every now and then, I get an electrical shock, as I call it, in my right foot. The shocks indicate that the still-recovering nerve trauma is improving, ever so slowly. My right foot was shocked this morning. It hasn't shocked me yet while hiking. I did not want today to be the first time, especially in one of the several steep and somewhat dangerous areas.

Have I ever shown some of the X-rays of my “bionic” joints? I did not think so. If you have a weak stomach, please stop reading now. Remember that I warned you!

I have a total of 25 surgically installed metal items (i.e., rods, pins, and screws) in my left shoulder, right knee, and right foot. Let's start at the top and work down, shall we? Each X-ray was taken on 6/27/2016. They are the last ones taken. The surgeon stated, as he examined his work and my recovery, that I would not have arthritis, due to the trauma, his surgery, and my healing. To this date, I do not have arthritis in the three repaired joints. That, at least, has been a very good result. Okay, I'll stop talking and show three X-rays. I warned you!


Can you count the ten metal items (nine screws on one rod) in my left shoulder? They are still there. I know every day. Over the past almost five years (since 3/29/2016), the left shoulder has come along well enough. The soft tissue (i.e., muscles, ligaments, etc.) has been the work in progress for the last several years. I had started out by being barely able to make a small circle with my left hand on a table. Now, I can almost lift a little 15-pound weight straight up, as easily with my left arm as I can with my “weaker” right arm. I'm left-handed. My left side has always been stronger. I'm still working on it.


The above is one view of my right knee. I have another X-ray that shows the screws more clearly. There are four screws, metal mesh, and wires. (I do not count the mesh and wires.) The mesh replaced my knee cap. The wires secured the mesh to the screws that held it all in place. I took my first “baby” steps on 6/16/2016. (I have written about it.) At first, I could not put weight on my right leg. The muscles had shrunk. My right leg looked like a toothpick. I could not bend my knee at first. Now, I can kick my backside with my right foot, as I can with my left foot. The knee regained all its motion. The interior left side of my right knee is still work in progress (i.e., muscle, ligaments, etc.), as it connects to my right foot. I have learned to study my recovery holistically. (Every joint, muscle, etc., is related to the whole.) The last two times, as I hiked down House Mountain, my right knee did not “talk to me” much at all. I'm still working on it.

The above is one view of my right foot. Another view shows what I call the “piece of bicycle chain,” which I count as one piece. The “piece of bicycle chain” is not as visible in the image above. There are ten screws that secure the “piece of bicycle chain.” All that reconstructed my shattered heel (or calcaneus). The bone to my big toe broke. It healed fine without metal. The nerve damage is not visible. The nerve damage causes the electric shocks, such as earlier today. I've felt the shocks while driving. It's no danger. I endure them. I would rather not have an electric shock, while on a relatively dangerous spot on House Mountain. My right foot cannot move in a forward position, as my left foot does. I can't move my toes down, without helping them, like I can do with my left toes. I still have a spot on the back of my heel that is healing. I still have a red dot between my big toe and the one next to it. The red dot goes away at times. It is smaller and more pink than red now. (No, I did not say that I wear pink on my foot! Real men do not wear pink. It's God's law!)


Am I counting correctly? Let's see. Ten metal items are in the left shoulder, plus four metal items in the right knee (not counting the mesh and wires), plus eleven metal items in the right foot. That totals twenty-five. I still recount at times, to see if I am still correct. It could be twenty-six or twenty-seven, depending on how you count the mesh and wires in my right knee, which I do not count.

I started calling it a sympathetic reaction, before I learned that the medical term is a crossover reaction. The body, joints, and muscles, are a complex set of levers and pulleys. (Do not say that we evolved that way. Anyone with any sense knows better.) Damage to areas (called “multi-trauma”) reacts in opposite areas (i.e., sympathetic reaction or crossover reaction). I feel sympathetic reactions in my left knee, left side and hip, both elbows, right neck, and so forth. It has much improved over these almost five years. I'm still working on it.

Well, as I had stated earlier, “any excuse is a good excuse.” I could have hiked, if I had not been such a “weakling.”

Saturday, March 20, 2021



At 4:24 PM, I will start to write on this blank canvas. The last few days of rainy weather are gone. The sky is clear blue. The sun shined all day. Today is the first day of astronomical spring. The first day of meteorological spring was on 3/1/2021.

House Mountain has to be muddy enough. I will postpone future hike #178 to write.

The Mundane

Mrs. Appalachian Irishman and I survived another work week. You do not, dear reader, want to know the details of the work insanity. We know. They are relatively trivial, in the long-term perspective.

Saturday, 3/20/2021, earlier today: Mrs. Appalachian Irishman had to get an oil change for our 2008 Honda Civic. She had driven about 3,000 miles in about two months. Most of that driving is her, Monday through Friday, round trip to her vice principal/teacher job. One-way is about 45 minutes or 32 miles. Her sister and she used to carpool. Each one drove, on average, 2.5 times per week. The “global pandemic” (which is a redundant statement) stopped their carpooling, in October 2020. Well, the “global pandemic” did not stop it. A particular point of reaction to the “global pandemic” stopped it.

My “long-suffering” wife continued her errands. While close by, after the oil change, she bought “red lid doggys” (treats) at the Tractor Supply! They had three in stock! Wow! I've been there, when only one was in stock. The USSA supply shortages are improving, for now. Wait until the USSA shortages become more like the former USSR shortages were, decades ago. It will not be fun.

What did I do today, you ask? While I was starting to haul trash, I met a neighbor, who was walking. We talked. His wife and he are okay. Their dog, Ben, had died recently. Ben was age 16. His ticker played out on him. Age 16 is a long time in dog years. In human years, Ben lived to about age 112! I had met Ben several times, over the years. He was a good dog.

Well, I hauled trash. Before doing so, I had worked on my side of the garage door opener mechanism. I may have it set better. Molly, as the lazy ol' puppy that she was today, never did come to “see the man.”

At trash hauling, I met a new friend. He has two Trump (the last president of the USA) stickers on the rear bumper of his truck. We talked. He and I agreed. He knows my website. I hope that he stops by for coffee, to read a while. I figure that he will.

I came home. I tried to kill a spider that got into my truck cab. I wounded him. He ain't dead yet! I can't find him – yet. I checked mail, all junk. I was outside a while. Where's Molly? Did she run off? Is she just lazy? I don't know.

The Humor

3/17/2021, Wednesday: it was St. Patrick's Day! “The Quiet Man,” from 1952, eight years before I was born, is still a great movie! I have enjoyed watching it, for years, on or near St. Patrick's Day, on Turner Classic Movies. “Comcrap,” as I call the monopoly, however, has taken away Turner Classic Movies, unless we pay more for it. I refuse to pay the monopoly more money.

If you need a bit of information on St. Patrick, “History of St. Patrick’s Day,” on, by editors, original 10/27/2009, is a good article. It's not very detailed. I know more of the details. We Irish must “live in hope, even if we do die in despair.” “May the luck of the Irish be with you.” If you are of predominate Irish heritage, you know the jokes. If you are not, may the Good Lord help you!

“Should” verses “Could:” “should” implied moral obligation. “Could” implies choice. For example, I could stop writing, but I will not. I should live right, by God's rules. Do you understand the difference? I figure that most of my readers do.

I have heard, via Mrs. Appalachian Irishman, that one of her relatives had stated that I should get a new cold virus shot (or series of two shots). In other words, I am morally obligated to get a new cold virus shot (or series of two shots). That, of course, was the incorrect use of the English language. My wife's relative needed to have said that I could get a new cold virus shot (or series of two shots).

Of course, I am having some fun! Ba chóir, in the Irish, is “should.” D'fhéadfadh, in the Irish, is “could.” There is a difference. We must use the English correctly. I'm still working on my Irish language skills. I am a long-suffering Tennessee state employee. I will retire from this state job, after I've found another job to do. I'm working on it. Today, the postal mail presented me with a offer, to which I am eligible as a state employee. I am offered help for any type of psychological need (i.e., relational, drug use, depression/anxiety, legal, financial, etc.). Well great! I may be able to help those folks.

At 4 PM today, I called the phone number listed in the mailing. I spoke with a lady, who had to work on a Saturday. I think that she enjoyed my humor. I offered to make my services available to the state of Tennessee government, as it could use my services. I would not charge the state for my services. I would help freely. Tennessee needs my help. I hope that the lady passed on my request, to leave me alone. If so, the state of Tennessee will save some postage, whatever the price of a stamp is now.


At 5:54 PM, supper is almost ready. I have an article on “poly-tics” in my mind, not on paper yet. Depending on the weather and my “bionics” tomorrow, I may write that article. Otherwise, it will wait. An Appalachian Irishman must hike, don't you know?

Until then, let's eat supper, y'all!

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

PAPAW ABY WILLIAM WOOD: 9/4/1901 – 3/14/1983 (published 3/16/2021)


I have written about, or mentioned, Papaw Wood before, in at least the following four articles.


Mom must have taken the photograph, below, in the 1970's. The occasion must have been Granny and Papaw Wood's anniversary. I don't remember the year. Mom didn't write on the back of the photograph that I still have. Mom had made the anniversary cake, which is on the table.

I wonder why Granny and Papaw Wood were not smiling! They enjoyed smiling and laughter! Mom took the photograph in their Bean Station, Tennessee, home. They were standing in the kitchen. I remember many details, except the year.

The above image was a moment in time. It had been a good day. Granny and Papaw Wood were married, on 8/26/1931.


Papaw Wood was age 16 when Russia became the Soviet Union, in 1917. He endured the good and bad in his life. He was my wonderful, maternal, grandfather!

On 3/14/2021, when supper was almost ready, I wrote: Papaw Wood, I'll part with this thought: I will see you, Granny Wood, Mom, Dad, and so many others again! Keep that cake ready for me! I love you! I miss you! I will see you again!

I'M FROM THE GOVERNMENT; I'M HERE TO HELP YOU -- USSA Socialism Gone Wild (published 3/16/2021)


I'm from the government. I am here to help you.” It's time for the USSA socialist democrat show folks! Buckle up! Let's roll!

The USSA “Democrat” Socialist party has gone wild! I hope this once great nation enjoys the ride! These are the early days. Wait until the GRAND DEPRESSION starts. It is coming. Wait for it. The most recent evidence is as follows.

The $1.9 Trillion Borrowed Money Insanity

How many zeros does it take to make $1.9 trillion dollars? $1,900,000,000,000. Watch the debt numbers fly by on US Debt Clock, if it doesn't make you too dizzy! USSA debt is now $28,000,000,000,000 ($28 trillion) and chump change, as of 3/14/2021, while I was watching.

Wait, however! “I'm from the government. I am here to help you.” The check is in the mail, folks! (Of course, we have not received ours yet. We received the first one. We NEVER did receive the second one. I'll be surprised if we get the third one.)

IMPORTANT NOTE: from this point, the black ink contains direct quotes from the websites. The blue ink contains my comments.

H. R. 1319. Title: American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

Source: All Information (Except Text) for H.R.1319 - American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, 117th Congress (2021-2022).

03/11/2021 Became Public Law No: 117-2.
03/11/2021 Signed by President.
03/06/2021 Passed/agreed to in Senate: Passed Senate with an amendment by Yea-Nay Vote. 50 - 49.
02/27/2021 Passed/agreed to in House: Passed by the Yeas and Nays: 219 – 212.

HOUSE VOTES, 2/27/2021:

yea: 219 – all Socialist “Democrappers.”
nay: 212 – all but one Republican. All seven Tennessee Republicans voted “nay.”
present: 0
not voting:
1 – one “Republicanter” from Illinois.

SENATE VOTES, 3/6/2021:

Source: Roll Call Vote 117th Congress - 1st Session.

YEAs 50 – all Socialist “Democrappers.”
NAYs 49 – all Republican (includes Blackburn and Hagerty from Tennessee).
Not Voting 1 – Sullivan (R-AK).

This bill provides additional relief to address the continued impact of COVID-19 (i.e., coronavirus disease 2019) on the economy, public health, state and local governments, individuals, and businesses.

Specifically, the bill provides funding for agriculture and nutrition programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the food stamp program); schools and institutions of higher education; child care and programs for older Americans and their families; COVID-19 vaccinations, testing, treatment, and prevention; mental health and substance-use disorder services; emergency rental assistance, homeowner assistance, and other housing programs; payments to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments for economic relief; multiemployer pension plans; small business assistance, including specific programs for restaurants and live venues; programs for health care workers, transportation workers, federal employees, veterans, and other targeted populations; international and humanitarian responses; tribal government services; scientific research and development; state, territorial, and tribal capital projects that enable work, education, and health monitoring in response to COVID-19; and health care providers in rural areas.

The bill also includes provisions that extend unemployment benefits and related services; make up to $10,200 of 2020 unemployment compensation tax-free; make student loan forgiveness tax-free through 2025; provide a maximum recovery rebate of $1,400 per eligible individual; expand and otherwise modify certain tax credits, including the child tax credit and the earned income tax credit; provide premium assistance for certain health insurance coverage; and require coverage, without cost-sharing, of COVID-19 vaccines and treatment under Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

Commentary: If our combined $2,800 chump change arrives in the mail, we will deposit it. Otherwise, we will get by without it. The “Democrat” Socialists won. The formerly great USA (now USSA) lost. Keep printing that worthless -- increasingly worthless daily -- paper money! Keep borrowing the money from China, etc. Let the USSA joy ride continue – as long as it lasts. I give it about 70 years.

Note: the Only Other Law the 117th Congress has Passed – SO FAR

H. R. 335 1/22/2021: Lloyd James Austin III became the 28th Secretary of Defense on that same date. They got this done, just in time to appoint the man. (Found via search of

Well, see below. The 117th Congress has plans!

117th Congress 2021-2022 (via

As of my check, on 3/14/2021, the 117th Congress, in the House, has a total of 4,448 items of legislation. Two, mentioned above, are law. The others are muddling through the bureaucratic insanity. The following two are of note, for those who value freedom.

First, H. R. 1 For the People Act of 2021. Passed the House, on 3/3/2021.

This bill addresses voter access, election integrity and security, campaign finance, and ethics for the three branches of government.

Specifically, the bill expands voter registration (e.g., automatic and same-day registration) and voting access (e.g., vote-by-mail and early voting). It also limits removing voters from voter rolls.

The bill requires states to establish independent redistricting commissions to carry out congressional redistricting.

Additionally, the bill sets forth provisions related to election security, including sharing intelligence information with state election officials, supporting states in securing their election systems, developing a national strategy to protect U.S. democratic institutions, establishing in the legislative branch the National Commission to Protect United States Democratic Institutions, and other provisions to improve the cybersecurity of election systems.

Further, the bill addresses campaign finance, including by expanding the prohibition on campaign spending by foreign nationals, requiring additional disclosure of campaign-related fundraising and spending, requiring additional disclaimers regarding certain political advertising, and establishing an alternative campaign funding system for certain federal offices.

The bill addresses ethics in all three branches of government, including by requiring a code of conduct for Supreme Court Justices, prohibiting Members of the House from serving on the board of a for-profit entity, and establishing additional conflict-of-interest and ethics provisions for federal employees and the White House.

The bill requires the President, the Vice President, and certain candidates for those offices to disclose 10 years of tax returns.

House Votes: Democrat 220 yea; Republican 209 nay; not voting 2 (2 “Republicants,” neither from TN).

Comment: the vote early, vote often “Democrat” Socialists will win this one. A real American's vote will become about as worthless as a $1 bill.

Finally, H. R. 127 - Sabika Sheikh Firearm Licensing and Registration Act.

Introduced in House (1/4/2021).

This bill establishes a process for the licensing and registration of firearms. It also prohibits the possession of certain ammunition and large capacity ammunition feeding devices.

First, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives must establish (1) a licensing system for the possession of firearms or ammunition, and (2) a registration system for firearms.

In addition, the Department of Justice (DOJ) must establish and maintain a publicly available database of all registered firearms.

Next, the bill creates licensing requirements for the possession of a firearm and ammunition. DOJ shall issue such a license if the individual is 21 years of age or older, undergoes a criminal background check and psychological evaluation, completes a certified training course, and has an insurance policy. It also outlines the circumstances under which DOJ must deny a license (e.g., the individual was hospitalized with a mental illness).

It also establishes additional requirements for an antique firearm display license and a military-style weapons license.

The bill generally prohibits and penalizes the possession of a firearm or ammunition unless the individual complies with licensing and registration requirements. Further, it prohibits the transfer of a firearm or ammunition to an unlicensed person.

Finally, it generally prohibits and penalizes (1) the possession of ammunition that is 0.50 caliber or greater, and (2) the possession of a large capacity ammunition feed device.

Comment: introduced in House, on 1/4/2021, with no vote yet, means that this legislation is going no where, for now. In time, when the USSA wants to come for my guns, it will have to pry them from my cold, dead fingers, after I've fired every round. I HAVE A STATE OF TENNESSEE LIFETIME CARRY PERMIT.


I have switched back to my own words, in black ink now. What is the conclusion? The USSA will continue to roll toward oblivion. It will take about 70 years. The once great USA is gone. We are in a “new normal.” The nation will NEVER return to what it was. I understand, to some degree, how people, in 1917 Russia, must have felt. Isn't it interesting that 1917 Russia was just over 100 years ago? The USSA is at least 100 years behind the former USSR.

Buckle up! The ride has only started! If you have land, you will need to learn to live off your land – until the socialists take it from you. Freedom to speak, or write, as this article demonstrates, will be gone eventually. Of course, the socialists will shut down my website. They will not, however, shut my mouth – unless they stop my heart, brain, and spirit, by killing me.

The new catch phrases are “cancel culture” and “woke.” They are euphemisms. They mean that the socialist agenda is rolling! Accept it or get steam rolled. I will do NEITHER. I CONTINUE to STAND – as a FREE man, in a once free and great nation. Join me?