Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
I have a story about side effects from 2 years ago:

WE had a "little" scare yesterday and this morning. Yesterday my wife and I took a walk and about 5 minutes into the walk I started to get itchy.
Like all over. I felt like I had fire ants doing the macarana all over me and also in places I didn't know I had. :oops:

Of course we walk up to this couple that we always wanted to make friends with and we were talking to them for like ten minutes. I was dying to scratch
"all over" but I didn't want these people to think I had cooties, amphipods or black ich.

The itchyness was unbearable and I know I was squirming so they may have thought I was a Mime, contortionist or Mick Jagger.
I put one foot on top of the other like I was resting my leg, but I was trying to scratch between my toes. It didn't work.

Eventually we left them and I told my wife "We have to go home".

She said Why! Whats the matter? Are you sick? With this virus around everyone is paranoid.

At home I told her what was going on and she insisted on inspecting me. I had this rash all over my body. I generally don't get rashes and I am not allergic to anything. So she rubs this stuff on me which was probably meat tenderizer and the itching subsided a "little".

I figured I would lay down. Yesterday we put this new blanket on the bed, right out of the package.
As I am laying there listening to Vintage Linda Ronstadt, I notice my tongue feels big. I have a big mouth but my tongue usually stays the same size.

My tongue was scraping against the teeth in back of my mouth and It seemed like I was having just a little trouble breathing. Just a little, not enough for me to call a SWAT team or "The Good Doctor" or even "Doctor Who " (it's an English thing, don't worry to much about it)

Now my Girly man emotions kick in and I am getting a touch worried.

I make the mistake of telling my wife who immediately goes into panic mode and wanted to give me CPR and get out the paddles.
She calls our Daughter in Vermont because her husband and Daughter have allergies to everything except air, and not all air.

She tells me to take Bennedril. All I have is our Grand Daughters Bennedril and she is 7. The largest does on the bottle was for a 10 year old so I take about two doses.

In ten minutes I am as Loopy as the people on Circ De Solei . I can't stand up so I go lay on the bed.

My tongue gets bigger. OOOOOooooooNNooooooo. I'm gonna die and Humble won't be able to come here to take my fish. But if he does he will quarantine them in tree stump remover and they will get nightmares.

I look up symptoms of Corona Virus and a big tongue. A rash are about the only things that the virus "doesn't " cause.

So We call my Doctor on the slim chance that he can see me. Here in New York nothing is open, you can't even open a clam.

But the nurse, who I know answered and she said, as long as you don't have Corona Virus symptoms, the Doctor will see you.
Of course If I had Corona Virus symptoms the doctor won't see me and I will have to go to a fortune teller or Lady GaGa concert.

I go there and the guy immediately sees the rash, takes blood, looks in my mouth, listens to my heart and lungs and doesn't have the slightest idea what is wrong with me but says he is getting a lot of patients now that have this from eating meat.

(I have learned that unless you have an arrow sticking out of your head or a crow bar stuck in your nether regions, they won't really know what the diagnosis is)

I almost never eat meat and didn't eat any in a week or so. He gives me a prescription for Prednisone.

Meantime Our Daughter is freeking out because she doesn't want me to go out of the house. It would be hard for the doctor to take blood through my computer screen unless I got really close to it and maybe stuck a USB cable in my arm.

So, I am still alive but the Bennedril is still making me walk like Uncle Festus from the Adams Family.

We think we figured it out. The new blanket my wife put on the bed was the only thing different we did. We bought it last year and one of my hobbies is removing those tags that say "Don't remove under penalty of the law"
So I am not sure where it came from.

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
And another one: (I am obviously bored while I am waiting for an appointment for my PT appointment for a silly shoulder operation)

So this morning I was going to make a nice breakfast for My wife and our best friends next door. I forgot it is Friday and we normally go out for breakfast.
I figured I would make some eggs, potatoes toast etc and I got some nice farm fresh potatoes and I was going to make a new breakfast recipe for the potatoes which meant I had to slice them very thin.

We have one of those hand slicer things where you slide the potato back and forth and it goes into the slicer and slices the thing.
I have used it many times and you don't have to be a rocket scientist. But you really have to be careful.

So it was going well until I sliced off the end of my finger. This isn't good because I am getting blood all over the slicer and I didn't want to get it on the potatoes because we have ketchup if we want them red. :rolleyes:

So I wrap a paper towel around it and figure I can still keep slicing to finish my breakfast menu.
I take another potato and continue slicing. Oops, I slice my other finger and almost cut off the tip of that one off.
I didn't go to college but I assumed it was time to stop using the slicer.

I take a paper towel and wrap the two fingers up together and try to clean up the blood before my wife sees it and gets the horrors. o_O

No such luck, the blood is kind of dripping all over the place faster than I can clean it up. So now I have to wake my wife because I can't keep wrapping this thing up with my left hand and I didn't want to make to much of a mess.

I tell my wife I need a band aid and she sees it and panics and wanted to get the paddles and jump on my chest, give me CPR and call the paramedics to fly a helicopter here to rush me to the ER while she ties a tourniquet around my neck.
(I live five minutes from the hospital.)

She wants to come with me but I convince her to stay home and my friend next door decides to take me to one of those "Emergency, Urgent Care Docs in a Box."

We go to the nearest one with the biggest sign that reads "URGENT EMERGENCY CARE, NO WAITING" Just walk in Doctors on Call.

It's closed :confused:

It opens at 8:00 and it is ten to 8:00. So we wait outside while I am making a puddle of blood in the parking lot.

After a while I go to the door and hold up my arm and the "Nurse" comes out and says, we will open soon but we have no doctor. He "may" be here in 20 minutes but I am not sure.

The area is surrounded by golf courses so I figured he was on the 18th hole and was lining up his last shot.
I ask where the next "Doc In The Box" is. Thank God I don't live in Buck Chuck Oregon and these places are more numerous than Starbucks.

We drive to the next "Urgent Care, No Waiting Emergency" places and it's closed. Of course it is, But it opens in 5 minutes so I go through the motions and show the "Nurse" my bloody arm and she lets us in after I put my mask on.

She needs my insurance cards, next of kin, drivers license, photo ID, social security number, Astrological sign, address of my cemetery, first pets name, Mothers maiden name etc.

Then she hands me a pen to sign the 6 consent forms so they can see me. Now I lost one or two pints of blood and am getting a little stupefied and get the forms all full of blood do they really didn't have to write down why I was there as the doctor could tell by the blood stained paper.

The Dr. comes in and soaks my hand in a little bowl of liquid and says he will be back shortly. By the time he comes back the thing is almost overflowing from blood, I am A Positive.

He wraps up the finger with the missing tip and goes to give me a shot in the finger where the tip is still hanging on. But as he is trying to give me the shot, the other finger is bleeding through the dressing going on to the other finger. Now the Dr. is getting a little "Viclemp" and I can see he is getting nervous.

He keeps wrapping the finger up but it is bleeding through. I finally said I will hold the bandage tight so it doesn't leak so you can fix the other finger.
He gives me 3 or 4 shots and looks for the needle and thread. I think he left it in his golf cart.

Finally he starts to stitch this thing up and during each stitch he says things like "OOH No, OMG, Dam, Come On," etc which doesn't give me much confidence and I was wondering if he went to medical school or plumbing school.

Finally he gets 7 stitches in and he goes to the other finger which is still bleeding profusely like when you used to use a canister filter and the hose inadvertently comes off and squirts water all over the painting on the wall that your Mother N Law gave you for your wedding gift.

He looks puzzled like I am going to offer advice to stop the bleeding so I say jokingly "Why don't you use that stuff you put on your face when you cut yourself shaving". He says, yes, I have that stuff in a bottle. Good Idea.

He puts a little stick in the bottle and says this is going to hurt. Of course it will. So he puts a little into the pool of blood that used to be my finger tip and I hit the ceiling. Like OMG!!!

It felt like when you are SCUBA diving in Aruba and you point up to show your girlfriend what the bottom of the boat looks like and a Man of War jellyfish wraps a stinging tentacle around your finger so you jerk your hand down at the exact same moment a lionfish was making a grab for a baby Achilles tang
and impales you with 3 or 4 poisonous spines forcing you to grab the nearest thing witch is a spire of fire coral.

If you ever did that, you know what this "death fluid" feels like. I would rather he heated up a sword and melted me together like they do in old western movies.
So he gives me 5 shots of lanicane in that finger and pours the stuff on it. It still won't stop bleeding so I said why don't you use that glue they "stitch" you together with when they replace your knee, and I show him my scar where my new knee is. He says, I have that and comes back with this tube of stuff I swear he got in Home Depot and blobs it on. It is running down my hand but not stoping anything and just making the table stick to my hand so he keeps wrapping it in multiple layers of cloth hoping the blood won't seep through until after I get home.

I am sitting here now wiping blood off my keyboard waiting for this to stop and I know it will soon as I am almost out of blood. :oops:


Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
A visit to the doctor’s office here would go something like this.

First thing in the morning you would call the doctor’s office and get elevator music with a recording that says "Your call is important to us, stay on the phone and your call will be answered by the next available operator". You would get that message twelve or thirteen times with 20-30 minutes of elevator music in between. Then someone would answer and say

"Please Hold."

Now you hear the music again with that same message.

You are now eating dinner with the phone on speaker on the table right next to the bread and mashed potatoes.

The operator comes on and says "can I help you?" You finish chewing and say: Yes, I am trying to make an appoin......... "OK, I will connect you with the appointment desk." Click

You hear:

"Your call is important to us, stay on the line and a representative will get back to you"

Now dinner is over and you are sitting on the couch watching TV with the phone still on speaker. It's hard to concentrate on the TV with Beethoven’s sixth symphony playing through the phone.

"Hello, can I help you? "

Yes, I would like to make an appointment.

"Sorry, the office is now closed; please call back in the morning."

After a few days you get an appointment the week after Easter. It is now December.

You get to the office and park, in the next town because the lot is full and there are a pickup trucks and wheelbarrows in all the handicap parking spaces.

Finally you get into the office and get in line at the desk. You grab lunch.

"The doctor will see you now"

The nurse or the lady who washes the windows shows you to the little room where you get naked, put on a paper gown and wait.

You finish your lunch while you read, "Pregnancy Today or Golf Magazine". Two things you wanted to read but never had the time.

The nurse comes in and asks for three forms of identification with a picture ID and wants to know your medical insurance group number and if they are still in business and how you will pay if the insurance doesn't cover you and how much money do you make as well as what kind of car you drive and what sign are you.

The nurse then says, what’s your name? "Paul", "How do you spell that?" Like the Saint, "Which Saint? Peter?"

No, "P" as in pin head, "A" as in "Are you kidding me", "U" as in are "U" kidding me, and "L" as in "Let me know the college you graduated from".

The nurse leaves.

After you are finished with Golf Digest and have learned 14 ways to breast feed in a subway, the doctor comes in. He doesn't hug you or look at you but looks at your chart and says. I don't see anything blaring here maybe you should see a Podiatrist.

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
I am slowly making a big change to my tank. I have so much blue encrusting sponge that I think it is either sucking nutrients out of my water or it is adding some sort of toxin. It is beautiful and looks like light blue montipora but you can't eliminate it. You can see a milky substance come out of it when it is cut. (angelfish won't touch it)

The last time I trimmed a lot of it, I lost almost all my SPS corals and many of the Zoa's. The Zoa's are all tiny now and they were huge. My green star polyps disappeared and that stuff will grow on your piano if it's close enough to your tank.

But the good news is that gorgs and leather corals grow like crazy so maybe they like what the sponge is putting into the water or taking out.
I am slowly changing the tank over to leather corals, mushrooms, gorgonians and of course sponges. :)

It's this stuff.


Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
Just slightly over 5 decades. It's only 51 and probably going down hill due to all the sponge that is taking over. It is OK though because although my reef is old, I am much older so who knows how long I will keep the thing?

I just looked back over some of my old posts. The entire thread is anticlimatic so I wouldn't read any of it if I were you. :cool:

Timfish, I see you are still on RC. I had like a 15 year old thread on there. I think they erased it after I left. :unsure:
Last edited:


Experienced Reefer
Asutin, TX
Just FYI but in my maintenance business I've had systems Inherited and keep going strong and systems go through multiple owners. SPonges are just as fascinating as corals, some are essential for recycling stuff and helpful but some invasive ones certainly are questionable. This technique might help control yours
I'd like to say I originated the idea but I was talking with friend/competitor a few years ago and he started doing the same thing about the same time. There's probably others who've figured it out also.

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
Hi Tim. Thanks for that. I have been using my diatom filter for that for many years as it has a very strong suction but unfortunately it won't work for my encrusting sponge.

The stuff is like tough leather and I have to cut it with an exacto blade on a long handle. Then I pull the cut piece off in tiny pieces with a long nose pliers. It is everywhere.
The stuff is tenacious and can't be sucked out by any means. Also, Nothing can eat it.

If I limit light or nutrients, I will kill the corals. The stuff doesn't even die in the air for many hours.
It also exudes toxins that kill SPS but leather corals are not affected so I have been replacing many SPS with those.

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
2 or so years ago I built a DIY de-nitrate reactor just for fun.
I didn't think it was actually going to do anything and it is behind my tank so I hardly ever even see the thing but today I am going to PT and I needed to kill an hour so I figured I would test the water coming out of it.

I didn't think it was actually doing anything and if it wasn't, I would take it out and build something else out of it. This is it.

Denitrification reactor.JPG

I tested the water in my tank which is on the left and is about 60 mg/L nitrate

The water coming out of the device is about 5. I guess it works. :p

Nitrate test.JPG


Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
Ronkonkoma, NY

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
Timbo, today I added silicate remover in the hope some of the sponges will disappear. If it works, I will keep doing it. I also ordered a silicate test because I believe my water I collect is loaded with silicates. I collect it at the surf line where the water is crashing into the silica sand. :oops:

Paul B

Advanced Reefer
Manhattan Reefs
Good Morning. After my walk this morning my wife and I were eating breakfast and I had the TV on in the background. We have a Long Island news channel here and they talk about what is happening locally.

They mentioned a murder in a town near here so we listened. Then they mentioned the street and it is the street my wife's family used to have a summer home on.

Then they showed a picture and said the address. It is her exact old summer home where the murder took place.

They owned it 55 years ago when this area was what we called "sticks". Practically dirt roads and it was very hard to get here because the expressway wasn't even built yet.

Does that make her famous? :unsure:

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