O what a lucky man

So now Odin keeps a package of smoked, dried sausages in his desk drawer and never goes for a walk on his lunch break without one in his pocket, now that the grey crow has tracked him to his office. He goes out, the crow lands in the grass and Odin crouches there, holding out a sausage, C’mere, c’mere, lunch little buddy, across the street from a diplomat’s residence — guard, flag, servants — then gives up and tosses the sausage to the crow.

The crow marches up and down the street like Groucho Marx chomping on a cigar, then hides the sausage by the curb. Odin walks to a nearby park, but not without being accosted by the crow a second time. Sorry, pal, just one today.

How would his suit smell if he packed sausages everywhere he went? Like a mad relative, that’s how.

The park was recently re-opened after running wild for decades and is green and overgrown. Crows watch him from the trees and there is an observatory.

What say the hanged?

How unlikely it is that we are even here, we lucky crowd, conceived against millennia of opposition, branches withered and frozen, starved and broken and trimmed and yet here we hang, fat and ripe and feeling sorry for ourselves.

There is a science to luck and that science is put yourself in its way. Life might follow you into your room and roll on its back at your feet while you sit there at your desk, but luck is outside, barking at cars and jumping from branch to branch and looking you in the eye and smiling.

World prematurity day

Yesterday, 17 November, was World Prematurity Day. I saw a discussion on Mefi where a list of the things that can go wrong was mentioned, and I remember how terrified I was when Beta was born seven or eight weeks early because I had seen the same list. So much increased risk for so many conditions. You’re just gobsmacked when you go in and see the tiny child in the incubator for the first time, hooked up to wires and tubes and the doctor gently explains what to expect and what to fear.

It gave my opinion of medical technology a real makeover. Until then I had seen it primarily as a way to expensively and questionably drag things out at the end of things, but it made a real convert out of me.

I have written about this here before, so I won’t go into great detail, but it is important to me to point out, in case some frightened young parent stumbles across this by chance some day, that while all of those risks are real, things can also go very, very right. Both of my daughters were born prematurely, and they are both healthy, brilliant, original, wonderful, funny and beautiful, beyond all hope and expectation, and I am thankful for them daily. So have hope. May you be as fortunate and lucky as I was.