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Random Thoughts from a Random Memory

By Edward Master

Much has happened since I last penned a column here. I have a hole in my throat as I lost my larynx and thorax to throat cancer, but according to the docs at UPMC five years means I'm cured. I never had to undergo radiation or chemo so I was lucky. I speak through a tube and a 'voice prothesis' in my throat. I can't sing anymore, but, in reality, I could not warble before throat cancer anyway. I sneeze a lot, or so it seems, and my senses of smell and taste (almost) no longer exist.

I also lost my spouse (Eileen) of 40+ years to diabetes. Folks, watch your diet and exercise.

It's difficult to say, but I've also lost some other friends and family. Long-time friend Richard 'Waldo' Wilson will be memorialized soon. Waldo helped us pack up and move from Glassboro, NJ, to Indiana, PA. His older brother Gary was my classmate of 1967.

Recently, my cousin Earla McCall (nee Myers) passed. Our fathers were first cousins as their grandparents were in the Myers clan.

On the up side of life's goings-on, my nephews and nieces are ready to take on the world (or almost ready). One nephew is now an auditor for the state (Pennsylvania). The other nephew will matriculate this fall as a mechanical engineer. One niece is an RN in Grove City, while the other is beginning pharmacy school. At my age, it's good to have kin in medicine.

The ACV school district will name the gym in honor of long-time coach Ron Botz. I had the privilege of playing on the 67 squad that, I think, was the first team to go unblemished at home in the Foxburg gym. The Rapp and Marron families helped put up a lot of 'W’s" for Coach Botz.

Now to the world at large.

This transgender business in sports is quite the conundrum. I am biased from one perspective. In my younger days I pursued weightlifting both for recreation and fitness. I chose the 'natural' route meaning no performance enhancements, aka no steroids no extra testosterone or such.

Being of male gender, I already possessed the necessary parts and products. I did not wish to upset the apple cart and risk tumors or cancer-type things.

The transitioning male to female will also have that hormonal advantage. Reference the Canadian power lifter who transitioned male to female. That lifter should not have been allowed to participate as a member of the female class. She/he had a distinct edge.

Speaking of advantages, it seems as though the Republicans are handing the Democrats an advantage by supporting the Trumpster.

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