25. July 2016


You Know You’ve Had MS A Long Time If…



Here we go again.

Here we go again.


Certainly there are plenty of medical terms labeling you as a long-time MSer.

(Many of which you can’t pronounce or spell)

Therefore, My Odd Sock has come up with several statments you should be able to relate with as one with multiple sclerosis.


Let’s check it out…



You Know You’ve Had MS A Long Time If…..


…you’ve ever used reachers as a back-scratcher.


…you think of using bubble wrap as a personal protective device.


…your wardrobe has more pullovers than button-downs.


…you know the difference between a “flare” and a “flair.”


…you know your limits.


You Know You’ve Had MS A Long Time If…..


…you prefer to fall in the grass rather than on a kitchen floor.


…you wake up tired after a nap.


…you’ve ever left finger prints on a wall.


…you’ve ever had to find a new doctor because he/she retired.


…you know “A-B-C” stand for more than just letters of the alphabet.


You Know You’ve Had MS A Long Time If…..


…getting a shot/IV becomes as easy as brushing your teeth.


…you think an MRI has a catchy melody.


…you’ve read all the magazines in the waiting room.


…the trunk of your car contains more mobility aids than groceries.


…you have unexplained scrapes, bumps & bruises.


You Know You’ve Had MS A Long Time If…..


…taking a hot shower has been replaced with a lukewarm one.


…you’ve given up trying to remember your “to-do” list.


…you’ve ever needed a tire rotation for a scooter.


…people know you by your distinctive tracks in dirt, snow & sand.


and finally


…the words “Pokemon Go” remind you it’s time for a potty stop.






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16. July 2016


The Ant Can’t



A true story.

A true story.


What you are about to read is true.  The stupidity portrayed is a sad example of human evolution.  Any resemblance to the person in this post?—you have the sympathy of the writer & all of mankind.  No insects were harmed in the creation of this blog.



It was snack time late one eveningas I shuffled my way into the kitchen.

Yogurt?  Peanut butter sandwich?  Peppermint patty?

Hmm, I couldn’t quite define the preference of my appetite.

That’s when I looked upward.


Another ant!

Another ant!


There, crawling on the ceiling was a black capenter ant.

We often find them in our home as the weather warms.


The ant’s defying of gravity was admirable, but it still had to be eradicated.


And I was the man to do the deed.


Because the creature was on the ceiling, it was out of arm’s reach.

So what beter way to mash the intruder than by using the tip of a cane!


Steady on, Orkin man.

Steady on, Orkin man.



I assumed an executioner’s stance beneath the ant.

My feet in a wide-base.  Shoulder’s width apart.

Using one cane to steady my balance, I slowly raised the other like a staff, about to kill the enemy above.

I tried to stab the moving bugger.  Miss.

A second try.  Miss again.

My third attempt (and miss) only angered the insect to scurry across the ceiling even faster.


A fourth stab.  Bullseye!  I heard the slight crunch of thorax.  Damn thee ant.  Die, I proclaimed.


A deathly stare.

A deathly stare.


I released the pressure of the cane against the ceiling ever so slightly…to which the now crippled pest was even fiestier.

The ant took several frantic paces before gravity’s pull became too strong.

The creature fell….perilously….into my gaping mouth.

I could feel him inside, madly crawling about my tongue, cheek & gums.



A pleasant image.

A pleasant image.



I bent at the waist to violently spat the ant from my pie hole.


Again…once, twice, three times before it became dislodged and landed on the kitchen floor.




Gotcha now!

Gotcha now!



Moments later, the ant met its doom beneath the sole of my New Balance shoe.

Mission accomplished.  Finally.


Certainly it was a life and death struggle reminiscent of Leo Dicaprio & the bear in the movie “The Revenant.”


And the lesson here?…..Never kill ants with your mouth open.

I learned.  Hopefully you have as well.

Happy hunting my friend.





























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11. July 2016





Well, maybe.

Well, maybe.


He described how he watches people.

Noticing them not by looks or what they wear, but their eyes.

“And you are blessed” he said to me.

I gave him an “Aw shucks” kind of fidget followed by “I have lost a few pounds lately.”



He smiled and explained that he has been watching my sons & my wife take care of me during the week.

“You are a lucky man.  You are blessed” he added.

“Yep, I am.  Thank you” was the only genious response I could muster.


He was a Reverend from New Jersey.

We never learned his name, so we just called him “Reverend.”

We would see him every day sitting poolside on the deck and later each evening seated at the next table over.


Twins, I swear!

Twins, I swear!


The Reverend could have been an identical twin to Cab Calloway.

And I told him so.

He then said he presided over Cab Calloway’s funeral.  As well as Calloway’s son.

During our chat he said how he admired how my boys would push me through the dining room in my wheelchair.  How they carefully would get me seated at the table.  (I hate to sit in my wheelchair to eat!)  Even help cut my dinner if my hands were too funky.



Oh crap.

Oh crap.



Yeah, I know Funny Meter.  This isn’t a rip-roaring post.

I’m pegging zero.

But life isn’t all shits & giggles, you know.




My point in all this is to remind you of how fortunate you are to have family, friends, neighbors & caregivers who give their all for your well-being.

Praise them.  Appreciate them.  And love them for their compassion.

Be thankful for what you have NOT envious for what you don’t.

And work hard each day to improve on your struggles from the previous one.


Blessed?  I don’t know, Reverend.  Dang lucky that’s for sure.

Keep moving.






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6. July 2016


Get A Grip


If you have multiple sclerosis, two things are absolutes…

1)-   You have bad balance.  (Like riding a unicycle on a bed of ball bearings.)


2)-   Because of the lack of balance, you are forced to wall-walk–holding onto anything solid.


All hands on deck.

All hands on deck.




For a better grasp on the subject, I thought I would take you on a tour of the My Odd Sock homestead & introduce you to my favorite places to grab and hold-on.



Welcome to the 2016 Get A Grip Tour of Homes.




Come on in!

Come on in!




Entering through the back door, You’ll see I tend to grab hold of the top corner of a cabinet in the garage.



Open sesame.

Open sesame.




…Followed by a right hand on the door closer thingy.


(Not too much weight mind you as I don’t want to break it!)





All done!

All done!


Once inside, duty calls.  Time to hit the potty.

Sitting down is easy.  (Yes, I pee like a girl)

Getting up is another matter.

Luckily I can pull myself up with a right hand on the bathroom cabinet (pictured).

While the left hand has a death grip on the window sill (not pictured).




Is your refrigerator running?

Is your refrigerator running?


Getting something from the fridge requires me to grab hold of a cabinet frame with my left hand while opening the door with my right.


(Note:  A stainless steel fridge works wonders to preserve my million fingerprints.  NOT)




Up and in.

Up and in.


Shower time is a complicated movement beginning with grasping the shower’s top corner with a left hand.

Meanwhile, the right hand is lifting the left leg over the ledge.

Once the left leg has cleared, new grab points are established before dragging the right leg over the tub ledge.



Be careful with the pipe.

Be careful with the pipe.



During the shower process, the right hand can be seen occasionally holding on to the shower pipe as if it is a venomous pit viper.




A railing is always welcome.

A railing is always welcome.




Freshly showered & powered in delicate areas, it is time to venture down the stairs where the right hand is gripping the stairway rail.



Safety first, I always say!



How did fingerprints get on the ceiling?

How did fingerprints get on the ceiling?



As my right hand rides the rail downward, I casually place my left hand on the stair case ceiling to prevent any head-first momentum.






Having special “Get A Grip” grab points in your own home is a common practice.

The big problem comes when finding yourself in a strange place.  New surroundings, where you are forced to quickly assess & scout out unfamiliar settings for new grippy short cuts.

Consider yourself the Lewis & Clark of mobility.

“How can I get up from there?”

“How do I balance myself here?”


Some way, some how, you figure it out.  You always do.

That’s what makes those of us with MS a resilent bunch.

If there is a way, we’ll find it.  It may look ugly, but we’ll get it done.

Just be safe.

And as my wife always tells me “Don’t do anything stupid.”


Can you relate?  Tell me about your secret hand-grab-holds that make dealing with MS a little easier.

Keep moving.





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2. July 2016


Cocktail Anyone?


Watered-down filth.

Watered-down filth.


Some days you just need to unwind.


#1-   You look tired.  You OK?

#2-   It’s been a rough week.  Work is crazy.  Car broke down.  Family stuff.

#1-   Oh I know.  It all piles up.

#2-   Sure does.  I could use a stiff drink.

#1-   Me too.  I say we head to that new place that just popped up.


And I know the perfect place…..



Got my ID & a ruler.

Got my ID & a ruler.



Yep, it’s the Boner Bar.  Bermuda’s newest nite spot.

Erected early March of this year.

The Boner Bar might look small, but with all the attention it is attracting, I’m sure it will grow.

The owner is a lawyer.  Well-versed in penal code.


Boner Bar staff goes to great lengths for you to enjoy your visit!

Tips are accepted AND admired so please don’t stiff your waiter.

The Boner Bar has a rigid 2 drink/3 inch minimum policy.

Quiet now, but on Fridays & Saturdays, this place is hard to get in.


Quite a drink special!

Quite a drink special!


Boner Bar serves frozen boners, perfect for those hot nights.

A frozen boner is poured in a smaller glass due to shrinkage.

But by far, the most popular cocktail at the Boner Bar is the Harvey Wallbanger.

Lastly, no worries about visits to the rest room as the head is the first thing you’ll see at the Boner Bar.



P.S.  Thank you for putting up with my sophomore humor!





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27. June 2016




As one with multiple sclerosis, you are well aware of all the crazy, wacky “cures” touted by a countless number of shucksters on the Internet.

Cranberry, Ginko, Turmeric, Vitamin D, Diets, Bee stings, CCSVI and the list goes on & on.

I’m not one to discredit a treatment option as it may just work for you–but not all.

Believe me, I’ve tried my share too as I grasp & claw for anything to stop the downward slope of progression.  And I figure a “natural” treatment has to be better for the body than any Biogen lab-produced, chemically-inspired, mish-mash  of compounds I can’t spell or pronounce.

Which leads me to my latest jump into the unknown…..


Oh here we go.

Oh here we go.


Stuck in a traffic jam on a recent trip to Bermuda, my family & I were “trapped” in a taxi driven by Herbert, the self-described “richest Black man in Bermuda.”

Herbert said he was in his 80′s, a graduate of Howard University and married for over 60 years.


Over the course of our 1 1/2 hour journey, Herbert lectured nonstop on politics, marriage, business, medicine & everything in between.


He said to me…”Daddy, you need to drink Aloe Vera gel.  You lose those canes.  You will be running all over the house!”


Glug Glug.

Glug Glug.



Adding that he was also a Herbalife distributor, Herbert handed me a free bottle of Aloe Vera gel.

“Daddy, you take and be walking.  Chasing Momma” he said.  (Hey now!)


I figured who was I to debate the richest Black man in Bermuda.  Besides, he held our life in his driving hands.


So when I returned home, it was time to give Aloe Vera gel a try!



Absolutely putrid looking.

Absolutely putrid looking.


I opened the bottle and filled a shot glass.

(What better way to measure, right?)  (Scientific too)

The lumpy, gelatinous goo resembled agar in a petri-dish before it gels.

A shot glass of K-Y jelly.

Aloe Vera gel is NOT appealing to the eye.


Well time was a wasting so with that, I poured the slimy gruel down my neck….


Like Mom's cookin'

Like Mom’s cookin’



…And as soon as it went it—it almost came back up in one wretching motion.

Safe to say, Aloe Vera gel is not appealing to the gullet either!


It was going to be a torturous 32 ounces of goo-juice unless I figured another way.



Mmm, lumpy juice!

Mmm, lumpy juice!


The next morning & every morning since then, I have been mixing the gel with a small amount of juice making the entire process way more tolerable.


From what I have read, Aloe Vera is known primarily as a natural treatment for burns.  But it has anti-inflammatory & antioxidant properties as well.

Aloe Vera can also act as a natural & subtle laxative.

Lord knows, I need help there as MS gives me fits of constipation now & then.  

Note:  For making boom-booms, Aloe Vera has helped.  (Worthy of a smiley face emoji)


It is too soon to call for any other benefit, so I’ll keep swilling till the bottle is gone.

If you have ever tried Aloe Vera, I would love to hear what yo have found.

Yep, it’s the crazy things we do to slay the MS monster.

Keep moving my friend.








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