Friday, December 4, 2009
When my children Maya & Alex (both now 45) were in grammar-school (in the '70s) in Brookline MA, an upscale town next to Boston, they often used the slang word ‘hunning’ to mean overdoing anything physically: visualize Arnold Schwarzenegger playing the role of Conan the Barbarian, presumably a Dark Age Hunnic tribesman. I finally realize (at 67) that I’ve been mentally & physically 'hunning' since 17; my recent angioplasty & stents have brought me to a sober realization that I can't 'hun' anymore with impunity. I've been told by the cardiologist that did the angioplasty not to overexert myself, & not to lift over 10 lbs (which my Maine 'coon cat' Reggie probably weighs by now). That's a dynamic restriction I never expected to have to observe, so it finally makes me cautious about my long-ingrained habit of 'hunning' as truly dangerous to my heart & life. This may seem banal to some of you reading this, but this serious realization has come late in my life, at an age my father didn't live to see (he died at 64.5 in 1976, of a cerebral haemorrage caused by high BP he had never bothered to have diagosed & treated.) I, however, have been treated for high BP since the '70s (beginning at Harvard Vanguard HMO in Wellesley MA) & I'm still alive to say so. Now my 'hunning' must be confronted & eliminated...in all the usual ways, but this time, by me.