2018-02-07 / Families & Friends

Points East: About ‘geese’ and ‘heebie-jeebies’

By IKE ADAMS

Speaking of geese, of which we were speaking here recently, one astute reader, Jay Bertram, has informed me that there is no such thing as Canadian geese. They are technically called Canada geese. Since most of the Canada geese we see here are locally born, I suppose we should call them Kentuckian geese if we insist on using an “ian” in reference to their heritage.

Based on the messes (poop and feathers), they leave on local parks and golf courses, they are also closely related to, if not the actual offspring of, the human Kentuckians who consider our roadsides to be their personal garbage dumps.

In the meantime, my friend, Alice Shuman, herself a Michigander, (does that not sound goosey?) emailed me a goose riddle in response to the column I would like for you to ponder.

When geese fly over in a V formation, why is one side of the V usually longer than the other side? (Answer will be near the last line of this column.)

In the meantime in other news, I have some news concerning my adventures with Mr. Parkinson.

Readers who frequent this page of the paper already know that I contend with Parkinson’s disease.

Since there is no pain, in my personal experience, associated with the affliction (at least to date), I maintain that I do not suffer from it. On the other hand, I am, oftentimes, very aggravated by Mr. P.

For example, over the last nine years or so, ever since the early onset of Parkinson’s, anytime I go into a store, especially a big box department or grocery store that is fluorescently lighted, I have commenced having fits of what I call the “heebie jeebies” within four or five minutes of walking into the place.

Until very recently, I had not previously complained to my neurologist about this phenomenon because it has on hundreds of occasions provided me a convenient excuse to grab whatever I want, throw it into the buggy, go back to the car to read on my kindle or listen to NPR, while my wife checks the prices on every single item in name your favorite Walmart location.

But you may recall a recent Christmas shopping excursion that had me frantically trying to find a cash register when the heebiejeebies caught up with me and an armload of panties. It would have been much easier and far less conspicuously embarrassing to get through the checkout line had I been able to pull it off without exhibiting a dire sense of urgency brought on by the aforementioned condition.

I figured the good doctor would, yet again, suggest I change my Parkinson’s miracle medication. My take on that is in the spirit of, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Previous attempts to deal with the symptoms by trying something “new and better” have resulted in near disasters that literally knocked me off my feet.

Instead he prescribed an antidepressant of which I am unable to spell without the bottle in front of me, nor pronounce when I have it. It’s generic for something called Lexpro and he insisted it would not interfere with my regular medication. He said it had worked on other Parkinson’s patients prone to anxiety attacks similar to my “heebie-jeebies.”

Anybody who knows me well, also knows that my state of mind is normally the polar opposite of depression as long as I am not reminded of Donald Trump. But I decided to try the stuff anyway.

So, lo and behold, the stuff is working. I’ve even confessed to Loretta that I’m perfectly fine when we’re out shopping but I’d still be more at home in the car.

Answer to riddle: One side of the geese V is longer because it has more geese in it.

Whaancq! Whaancq! Whaancq! Whaancq!

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