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The Bird

A little piece of my past left me yesterday, but I had a smile on my face as it rolled away.

During my first year of college I had no car and needed some wheels for a date one night. I still lived in the same city as my parents so I called my mom to ask if I could borrow her 1991 Pontiac Sunbird. She obliged like any good mother would.

I thanked her by never returning the car back to her. It was the 2nd time she had let a son borrow a car only to have the title eventually turned over. She totaly kicks ass...for a white mom.

The picture in this post is not my actual car. Mine was white with a sunroof and definitely not as nice as this one...not even close. Still, for 16 years old, it only had 84,000 miles on it and still has some road life left.

Yesterday I donated "The Bird," as I called it, to the ALS Assocation. As I watched it roll off with the tow truck, I had a good feeling in my gut knowing a few dollars were headed in the right direction. For those that don't know about ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, check out more info here.

One day in early 2001, one of our Financial Advisors walked into the office with his suitcase in hand and was talking with fellow employees in the hallway. His suitcase fell out of his hand, but he had no reasonable explanation as to why. Though he did not know it at the time, it was the first time ALS reared its ugly head. Unfortunately it would not be the last. By 2002 he had lost most of his motor skills and by 2003 he was dead. He was in his 40's.

In 2004, another Financial Advisor in our office began to slur his speech during meetings. He had numerous hospital visits to try and determine what was wrong. He, his family and the entire office were floored to find out that he also had ALS. A fellow employee was put to rest in 2003 and yet another employee was discovering he had the same disease. It was truly disheartening.

As of today, he has fought the battle and is still living with ALS. He can barely move and is losing most of his motor functions, but he battles on. He is in his early 50's. His son has taken over his advisory business and is one of my close friends in the office.

Though my office holds a strong market share in the financial services industry, maintaining nearly 1.5 Billion dollars under management, we have less than 50 employees at our branch. To have two employees in our office stricken with the disease just seems unbelievable to me. As many of you know, between my work and playing poker, I live in a world of numbers and odds. I don't know what the odds are that two fellow employees in a small office in rural North Carolina are stricken with ALS, but it has to be slim.

It's not much, but hopefully the $1000 +/- the ALS Assoction gets out of the car will help the cause.

Until next time, may the felt be with you.

posted by TripJax @ 2:03 PM,


At 12:52 PM, Blogger pokerpeaker said...

That's really great of you do to do that. I'm guessing AA is coming your way soon for the karma. And it may actually hold up!!!

At 1:25 PM, Blogger cmitch said...

Very nice to do.

My grandmother had ALS and was in constant pain. She had gotten used to dealing with the pain so much that she eventually died not from ALS, but due to her appendix rupturing. She had written off the appendix pain as just another horrendous pain that she had to deal with. By the time she finally went to the hospital it was too late.

I agree. The odds of 2 guys getting ALS out of 50 people has to be out of this world.

At 1:28 PM, Blogger WillWonka said...

nh, sir

At 2:47 PM, Blogger Pseudo_Doctor said...

ALS is such a terrible disease...awesome of you to donate to the cause...nice job

At 11:09 PM, Blogger GaryC said...

You are indeed the man. Well played, bro.


At 9:50 AM, Blogger jjok said...

wifey's cousin had it. Fought it for 6 years before dying in 2005. It was absolutely the most tragic and exhaustive experience to see him slowly digress to the point that he could barely acknowledge you were there.

Scares the living hell outta me, quite honestly.

Good job JJJ......

At 11:42 AM, Blogger Instant Tragedy: Just Add Sean said...

I wish you the best of luck, though Karma will take care of that for you.

Continue kicking ass, taking names and flopping sets of Jacks.

All my best,

Torture... Dammit I mean Tragedy!

At 1:19 PM, Blogger StB said...

Sheesh! The things people will do to justify getting a new car!

Your generosity will be paid back tenfold.


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