A Day of Days

Today is a special day. It’s Nikola Tesla Day. But, it’s also the anniversary the first day of the “Scopes Monkey Trial”, which started on a sultry Tennessee morn, almost 100 years ago. And it’s Don’t Step on a Bee Day – let’s see if we can keep that up all week!

Also, on this brilliant July Tesla-Scopes-Don’t-Step-on-a-Bee Day, I am breaking my long self-imposed blogging hiatus. I’m doing that with an important public-service announcement.

Many of you know that I have a motor neuron disorder (similar to ALS). For me, typing, guitaring, walking, and singing Verdi’s La Traviata have become increasingly difficult. You’d think that would be enough of a challenge, but in late May, I decided to have a heart attack. For extra drama, I scheduled it on my wife’s birthday, following a lovely meal of our favourite East Indian take out. (Restaurants were still Covid-closed at the time, so we ate at home with the kids.)

Here’s my PSA. If you’ve just had a delicious dinner with family and you start to have serious heart burn, maybe it’s something else. After our dinner, I felt awfully unwell – dizzy and weak with uncomfortable chest pains. The birthday girl suggested that we visit the hospital, but I wasn’t interested in going anywhere. I was sure I had overeaten, and in half an hour, I was feeling better and shuffled off to bed. However, I had barely touched the pillow when I had a painful jolt to the chest, neck, and arms. No one in my large family had ever had a heart attack, so I quickly ruled that out. However, I was feeling quite badly and agreed to go to the hospital. Within half an hour, I was wired up and blood tests were happening. Then I had the third heart attack of the evening. It was very serious. A few hours later, doctors placed a stent in a primary artery entering my heart – it was almost completely clogged with bacon grease.

So, my PSA-warning to everyone reading this. Even if you and your ancestors have no history of heart issues, even if you are not overweight, even if your last cholesterol blood work was fine, you need to know the signs of a heart attack and be prepared to expect the unexpected. Some of the signs which I ignored were long-term fatigue and swollen feet. That had been going on for months. The immediate signs which took me to the hospital were severe pain in my chest and arms. Don’t be a Ron. Take these signs as deadly serious warnings.

I am still recovering and have reduced my work, but I hope to get back to blogging about bees regularly again. Today is a start. Meanwhile, pay attention to your body – and don’t step on a bee, either.

About Ron Miksha

Ron Miksha is a bee ecologist working at the University of Calgary. He is also a geophysicist and does a bit of science writing and blogging. Ron has worked as a radio broadcaster, a beekeeper, and Earth scientist. (Ask him about seismic waves.) He's based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Ron has written two books, dozens of magazine and journal articles, and complements his first book, Bad Beekeeping, with the blog at badbeekeepingblog.com. Ron wrote his most recent book, The Mountain Mystery, for everyone who has looked at a mountain and wondered what miracles of nature set it upon the landscape. For more about Ron, including some cool pictures taken when he was a teenager, please check Ron's site: miksha.com.
This entry was posted in Culture, or lack thereof, Personal and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to A Day of Days

  1. Granny Roberta says:

    This is, perhaps, a more “interesting” story than we might have wished for from you. Best wishes for a full recovery.
    (And if this is a duplicate comment, I blame word press.)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ron, glad you went in for that hospital visit or we would not be reading this! Hope you are on the mend. FWIW friends who are ER nurses say men often delay seeking help for heart attacks when they have them on Fridays, figure they can hang tough for the weekend….which means they end up with much more damage to the heart (when they manage to survive to Monday). So good on you for going in!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: A Day of Days - One-Bee-Store

  4. Pamela Yeamans says:

    Thank you. You are a great guy.

    My husband had a heart attack while we were bike riding.

    On Sat, Jul 10, 2021 at 7:26 PM Bad Beekeeping Blog wrote:

    > Ron Miksha posted: ” Today is a special day. It’s Nikola Tesla Day. But, > it’s also the anniversary the first day of the “Scopes Monkey Trial”, which > started on a sultry Tennessee morn, almost 100 years ago. And it’s Don’t > Step on a Bee Day – let’s see if we can keep that up ” >

    Like

  5. Alan Jones says:

    Hi Ron,
    Sorry to hear about the heart, get well soon, I miss your blogs.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Kendell Killian says:

    I am so glad u are okay. I hope recovery is going well. Thank you for all that u do.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Kendell Killian says:

    I am so glad u are okay. I hope recovery is going well. Thank you for all that u do.

    Like

  8. You are an inspiration and are amazing. I am very happy for you and us readers that you made it through this episode. Listen and take care of your body and mind as much as you can, take it easy and still work hard on yourself. CIAO and take good care. Stefan

    *—*

    *Live Simply*

    * _O (` |> ,|. `-‘*

    On Sun, 11 Jul 2021 at 02:26, Bad Beekeeping Blog wrote:

    > Ron Miksha posted: ” Today is a special day. It’s Nikola Tesla Day. But, > it’s also the anniversary the first day of the “Scopes Monkey Trial”, which > started on a sultry Tennessee morn, almost 100 years ago. And it’s Don’t > Step on a Bee Day – let’s see if we can keep that up ” >

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Markus says:

    I’m hoping you recover well. Glad you’re writing again.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Luca says:

    Hi Ron,

    That’s a good message, everyone should take those signs seriously.

    My father went to the hospital with the same issue some years ago. Fortunately he had a full recovery so follow the doctor’s orders and “don’t be a Ron”.

    It’s been a real pleasure to talk with you about bees and we hope to chat again in the near future.

    Get well soon, me and Silvia are waiting for you in Tuscany 🙂

    Like

  11. Dale Harden says:

    I hope you are continuing to get better Ron.

    A few days ago I had a conversation about small cell beekeeping with someone that only has bees in the wall of a building, no actual managed hive. They were pretty certain that what was wrong with the beekeeping industry was the foundation that is used is raising bees that are too big. I searched your site and didn’t see anything. What I did find was not very scientific and it looked like just an idea that someone thinks is a good idea. What are your thoughts.
    Dale Harden
    beekeeper549@yahoo.com

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ron Miksha says:

      Hi Dale,

      I am getting better. I feel like I have had the extended warranty on my old body renewed.

      I don’t know much about small-cell beekeeping. Some day, I should ask a few people for their thoughts and report what I learn. I remember when I was a youngster, I showed my father tiny honey bees in a hive. He figured that they came from small brood cells, the sort you sometimes find on burr comb and on frames with holes that bees have patched. My father figured that tiny bees would carry half the nectar but would be able to sneak into veils more easily. I guess he wouldn’t have favoured them. That was before varroa. We have to be careful not to conflate the presence of lots of drone cells with increased varroa as due to cell structure size, of course, because large-sized cells are not the problem in the case of drones, but rather it’s the extra days of drone development that give varroa an edge.

      You prompt some good questions. When did our common brood cell-size become established? Was it based on a large number of measurements from a variety of honey bee subspecies, or just the Italian bees that were so popular at the time that foundation was first being milled? Are there advantages to different sizes, race to race? Are small cell sizes, in fact, better? I don’t know.

      Take care,
      Ron

      Like

      • Anonymous says:

        your thoughts are similar to mine. I think it is something that may attract attention from people that don’t actually keep any bees. There’s an automatic hive that you simply put a jar below the valve and open it up.

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Luca Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.