I'm an optimist. Whenever there's good news and bad news, I like to hear the good news first. Other folks are just the opposite. Which makes me wonder whether I'm a jinx. Now please don't misconstrue that to mean I'm superstitious. I'm not. At least I think I'm not.


I'm fortunate enough to have a very lovely lady, my wife, Peggy, by my side sharing all the highs and lows life has to offer. However, these are her golden years and it never dawned on me that she could be longing to travel instead of watching over me like a mother hen. That's what she's been doing ever since I was discharged from the medical rehabilitation facility last August.


Whenever I feel lousy, I have a tendency of becoming a grouch, and it seems as I age, my grouchiness becomes more prevalent. But her ever present smile and pleasant gleam in her eyes takes the darkness from any room and brightens it tenfold. This lady can lighten any room and you can't help but to feel better whenever she's present. Yes, when I met her it turned out to become one of the right moments of my life. Somewhere, sitting on my shoulder, my Guardian Angel was guiding me.


So why do I feel jinx? I shouldn't. I was fortunate enough to help raise two wonderful children; the late Jimmy Bock and Wendy (Weaver) Wilson who has Peggy and me sitting so high above the very top of her personal totem pole, Mt. Everest looks like an anthill. And a son-in-law, Bobby, for which most parents would give their right arm.


On top of that there are six grandchildren; five girls and a boy. They include Jimmy's two, Mitchell, in his second year at the University of Akron, and Morgan, and Wendy and Bobby's four girls, Nina, AnnaMay, Ella and the youngest, Wee Li'l Mia, who's not so wee any more. These children, highly courteous, always helpful and quite polite are a credit to the way their parents raised them and are a delight to be around.


So with all that indicating that I am one wealthy individual, why do I feel jinxed. I've asked myself that many times and the question entered my thought process lately when I received the latest update from my cardiologist. Imagine my delight when my heart doctor, Otfried Neidermeier, MD. informed me that he had good news and bad news. I chose the good news first and it felt good to hear him say how well I'm doing, considering how far I had to come.


About 20 months ago I was anchored in a bed with two rows of machines stacked one on top of the other from the floor to the ceiling. There were feeding tubes and wires poked into every hole in my body and where there wasn't a hole they made one.


So the good doctor's words, that I was doing so well he didn't need to see me for a year rather than the regular six month period, was music to my ears. I was about ready to dance an Irish jig, when the thought of a jinx crossed my mind and mostly because of this column.


Most readers remember my predictions of how the Cleveland Indians, Browns and Cavs would do before their seasons started. But I was always wrong. I'd write “They'll go all the way,” and at the end of the season they'd barely get off the launch pad. Year after year I'd share the pain with my readers, hoping they'd do better the following year. And it wasn't until lately that I finally admitted I must have been jinxing them.


So on the way home, Peggy reminded me that I forgot to ask the good doctor what the bad news was.


“I purposely forgot,” I answered.


With my past record predicting how Cleveland's sports teams would do, I just didn't want to take a chance.


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