The respiratory specialist who has treated me for pneumonia three times in the last four years didn’t mince words:

"Were you born stupid or is this a level of incompetence you achieved later in life?"

Good question. I didn’t have an answer.

He was unhappy that I didn’t take his advice earier and ease off a busy schedule so my annual bout with bronchitis didn’t turn into something worse.  I didn’t take it easy and, sure enough, the bronchitis moved on to pneumonia.

I go through this song and dance with him about this time every year.  I get a cold, often from getting chilled while photographing a nighttime football game or so other event in chilly temperatures. The cold activates the chronic bronchitis and he tells me to slow down and get better. I didn’t show down last year and avoided the pneumonia that hobbled me the two previous years.  So I thought I could defy the odds again this year.


I guess I’m going to have to recognize that, at 60, I’m just not that tough. Injuries take long to heal, colds and the flu linger longer and pneumonia requires two-to-three weeks of rest to overcome.

But the FCHS varsity football team is in the district playoffs, basketball season is underway and the holiday season approaches.

I’m a workaholic. Always have been, always will be.

So maybe I can beat the odds one more time.

Maybe I was just born stupid. Odd. My mother always told me she downed the dumb ones. Guess I slipped through.