Thursday, December 27, 2007
Not really a lot going on so I'm not going to bore you.
CI mapping is tomorrow so got my fingers crossed that I'll dial into hearing a female voice better. Right now most sound a bit like they have a cold. Some really do. After an hour of that then I cross the hall and have speech with Krista.
I did daydream a moment today. Well, I had eaten lunch and the office was warm, which is rare. Also it was very quite. One moment I was working away and the next moment I was snapping out of it. HA! I was thinking about all the people who helped me along this past year and so I'm going to name some names. (If your name isn't on here, don't worry, it'll show up in a later blog).
Wes (Man, you have rocked this year! It has been an inspiration watching you heading toward Ironman!)
Boomer (Ironman who carried our hospital Cancer Center name with him while doing the Ironman! Thanks Boomer -- always our hero)
Chris and Rebecca -- Friends just don't get any truer (is that a word?) than this. Always there for me!
Chris and Jen -- Shawdawg and Shawkitty. You know those folks you just plain enjoy being around... Dawg and Kitty are those type folks.
Yale -- I just laughed out loud thinking of all the crazy fun times. One of the generous kind hearted guys you'd ever meet.
Aussie Rodney -- Always inspiring me to do better spiritually.
Aussie Chris -- Always inspiring me to take photos like he does and ride outside the lines.
Ed -- dropping 140 lbs and kicking it on the bike now!
Jenn, Abbie and Jeff -- CI friends who are getting me through this thing.
Robb -- He's up there with Yale. Laughing thinking about the crazy times. "The faster you pedal the sooner the pain stops."
Shoot... I'm out of time... more later!
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
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You're an independent minded reindeer who never plays by the rules.
Why You're Naughty: That little coup you tried to stage against Santa last year
Why You're Nice: You secretly give naughty children presents.
Christmas was a lot of fun. Terri and I "promised" we would not get each other anything this year and we ended up getting each other more than in past years. It was funny. I woke and went into the den before anyone else got up and spotted a huge box... to me... from Santa! Ok, I became a kid at the moment! I was so excited and so surprised because I wasn't expecting anything. Turns out to be a ready nice office chair for the home office. I love it love it love it! Thanks Terri!
Ci Stuff: Ok, I've learned not to take this think off. I got lazy and just didn't want to deal with it so I wore only the hearing aid during Christmas morning (Yes, I just heard the collective gasp for all of you!). We then headed to my folks house and I put it on. I had to get used to the sound again. Seems like it took forever for my brain to process the sound on that side of my head again. I stayed CI only the rest of the day. I keep hearing stories about how folks with hearing aid on one side and CI on the other how they come to realize how nice the CI really is. I'm turning into one of those people. I still haven't plugged the CI into the IPod since music s-t-i-l-l is funky sounding. It's getting there.
I have a new love of baseball caps! They keep the mag on the CI in place when I work in the yard.
New Years stuff: Oh this is gonna hurt! I know I have got to get this "extended off season" gut off of me. Really guys, it's just plain bad. I'll be the first crazy person and throw my resolution out there. I've not seen any blogs putting their cards on the table for this yet.
Not in any sort of order... just random thoughts coming out here...
1. Drop the gut.
2. Get the fat gut and butt back on the bike and push off to a new adventure.
3. Get back to your 2-wheeled family. You miss them! You n-e-e-d them!!
4. Use the term "all learned up" this year in honor of Boomer.
5. Stop with the Java City... doesn't matter if it's a skinny latte, just cut that crap out.
6. Plan something big this year. Big enough to make friends say, "Are you serious?!"
7. Take church media to the next level and don't take credit for it either.
8. Spend a week on the beach with the family.
9. Give Emmy her new car when she least expects it. Yep, she's getting one and everyone knows it but the big question is when??? Buh ha ha ha!!
10. Meet Tyler Hamilton! He has signed with Rock Racing and should be racing in North Ark this spring. I know he had some issues but just the thought of seeing this guy race is just mind blowing. Now to think of Rasahann, Austin and Tyler all racing on the same team... oh man!
Used to I would make a list of One hundred and... whatever the year was, list of things to do during that year. Think I may do that again this year. 108 things to do in 2008.
Monday, December 24, 2007
Woke up and spent some time reading by the fireplace early this morning. Reading a lot of Christmas humor stuff this week. The full moon lit up the neighborhood like it was daytime. Even with the bright moon I could see the stars with ease. That was out on the deck. Now on the other side of the house (looking out the kitchen window, the sun was starting to light up the horizon. Beautiful light blues and orange.
Headed out to get a few stocking stuffers and back to the house by 10. My yard was calling me. I cranked the lawn mower and cleared the leaves, hopefully for the last time, off the lawn. The back still had some wet leaves from the rain a couple of days ago so it made for a heavy tarp-o-leaves to drag to the curb. We have a leaf sucker truck that comes by about once every other week and sucks all he leaves that you can put down at the curb. For a couple hundred bucks you can buy them back this spring as mulch. Serious.
Sadie (family dog) loves it when I work outside because she will be out there running and playing. She doesn't seem to like to really hang out by herself out there.
OK, ok, here are the CI stories... Church was really nice. The songs really sounded nice and I flipped the hearing aid on just a tad to get it in 7.1 Surround Sound. HA! Greg asked me from where he was up front how the second service was sounding. Embarrassed I said, "You guys are rocking!" Then after the sermon he walked up to were we were sitting and handed me a mic and asked me to tell the church what I thought about my hearing. First thought was ,"Man, would you cut this stuff out!" I just told everyone how grateful I was and how nice it was to hear so many voices in song. It really was. One of the things that did really surprise me was when everyone turned pages in their bibles. I could hear hundreds of people doing this.
Well, the gifts are all wrapped, I can smell the girls starting Christmas Eve dinner (wife's family all come to our house), sun will be starting to set behind the hill in about an hour and the outside lights will all come on. Yup, life is good!
Have a merry Christmas everyone!
Saturday, December 22, 2007
I chilled this morning and was a slug until I went to a family gathering this afternoon. I didn't put the CI on until we got ready to go but I've had it on since and it's been a good day. We did get good rain and it's so pretty to listen to. I cringed a bit as we drove the 20 minutes to the place of the gathering. Every time our Odyssey hit a water spot it sounded like someone hitting a cymbal.
I got to play with ALL my great nephews and niece. I am lucky enough to have 4 great nephews and 1 great niece (she is part of a twin set). Oh goodness, Elliott is a doll! She walked in with her big purse and was a sweetheart the whole time. All the kids were great actually. She curled up on my lap and had her sippy cup and got really still. Someday years from now I hope I get one just like her!
Friday, December 21, 2007
Had my first speech therapy today with Krista. She gave me the 6 sounds on a dry wipe board in front of me. You know the oo ee ah m s and sh sounds. Then we went through some words that sound alike. I crashed on the difference between boot and book. All in good time... all in good time. I also got a page long list of homework... who on earth gives homework over Christmas break? HA! No, serious, I'm glad to have these projects to work on.
I felt good about the speech therapy session. One of the other speech/audio guru's (Anna) came in and there was something about her voice that I wasn't picking up on. I kept catching myself not quite understanding her. There have been a few women that have the same pitch that I'm just not getting yet. It bugs me... I want it to process now. HA!
I'm telling you, this is the best Christmas present ever. What I'm about to say, I kid you not is the truth. I love the Porsche Boxster and this morning there was one parked right outside my office. A fine black on black number. As I was heading to Java City I looked it over then I asked myself the ultimate "Loaded Question"... which would I rather have this Christmas? A 50 grand CI or a 76 grand car? The choice was so easy... it was the car! HA! I'm kidding. Now that I have a CI, I couldn't live without it.
Met with Greg last night to do the run through for all the Sunday's holiday service media. Video's, special music, overlaid songs, you name it and it's part of the service. I'm glad that Scott is going to be in the control sit this week. This will be the first Sunday to check out my CI in a auditorium full of people.
Well, now it's just doing my speech homework and learning to live with the implant for the next week. Tonight will be my first experience dining out with it on. Fingers crossed that it's Roma in J'ville but I think it may be Whole Hog for BBQ.
For all of you folks heading out for the holiday... have a safe trip and laugh a LOT! It's good for the soul!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
It rained but it was about 4 this morning so I missed the big sound but I did get to hear it a little this morning. Cars on wet pavement with water spray have a "reeeeeessse" sound.
While walking back into the office I kept hearing a do-it, do-it, do-it. What on earth??? It was water drops in the downspout on the corner of my office.
Oh and several cars starting their engines at the same time is weird. I could pick up on one car at pretty close range but hearing several at once and being no where near them is sweet!
I'm hearing all sorts of sounds far way that I have no clue what they are. I did figure out one was a printer at the other end of the building.
If someone walks down the hall and coughs it scars the hibby gibby's out of me. That sudden burst of sound s something else.
I'll try and update more tonight... lunch is over.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
The washing machine is another thing that is deafening to me. Oh and hangers in my closet. If I slide a hanger and it makes that metal scraping noise -- ugh! And the dryer with blue jeans banging around while it tumbles. But you know what... I'm excited to even hear that.
I did notice a couple of folks looking at it today and even though I've seen people looking at my hearing aid, it didn't bother me. This is a bit different with it's wire and magnet. I want to say, "It doesn't go in my head and it doesn't hurt."
In laws made it in safe from Florida. Tons of gifts and homemade goodies. I'll do my best to not eat a bunch of it. Now if she makes her famous Key Lime pie, well, there will be no turning back.
Once again, I am tired from all the new sounds today. It's been a blast but it's at time overwhelming. It's so funny to get excited over simple sounds. I think the number of coworkers I've made cry is up to 3 or 4 now. When I tell them things like I heard keys or I can't wait for the rain, it seems to hit home that everyone takes the simple sounds of life for granted. We do. Even with my pre-CI hearing I took sounds I could hear for granted.
New count down started and that's to Saturday. I get to see the twins and all the other little tots in one room at one time. (Make a Little Richard style Whoooooo here! HA!)
I called my sister yesterday and we had a 20 minute laugh session Every time we get together we seem to get the silly's and that's what makes her great. Now, what I was saying about the tots all together. Well, my sisters will be all together Saturday and I will leave with a tummy so sore from laughing. It's Arkansas style version of Steel Magnolias. Insanely funny stuff. You'll hear (you have to say this with a slow southern accent) "Now, y'alllll..."
Oh, family funny.... While I was talking to Sherry, her husband had made some candy (it's really good too). I asked her if she ate it all and she stuttered around and said "Yes... I mean, no... well... uh... I mean I ..." I got so tickled and I laughed and laughed.
Spent part of the morning hanging out in Audio with Jordan while she did some more programming. Everyone told me that each day sounds different and to be honest, I HATED it when I turned it on this morning. OK, here's a clue for folks like me... yes, you can turn it down. I was so set on working through the 3 programs yesterday.
Today I got a different sound coming through. This sounds so much more like my hearing aid on steroids. Much more easier to live with. (Note to the audio guys... yes, I have my hearing aid turned off). Voices are much better today. Still sounds grungy when people who talk loud talk. I love folks with soft voices now. Trust me, it's so easy to hear them now. Never thought I would ever type those words.
I did plug the IPod into the processor while in the clinic this morning. I'll have to work on that one awhile. It was a Beatles tune and I couldn't have told you that at all. that's one of the unusual things about this journey. I can hear my car keys jingle but I can't process music yet.
Note to CI users: Have you tripped a store thief alarm? I'm not looking forward to that day at all. I suspect I'll just shout, "Put your guns away, I'm bionic!" Oh that will scare them huh? HA!
Am I still blown away by this product... you bet! Blown away 10 times over!
Back to work... more later.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
12:12pm --- ALL SYSTEMS GO!!!!
Velcro sounds so funny! Poor Jordan sounded like a man. Terri (wife) sounded more like herself. Steve the other audio sounds like himself just fine... maybe a little tweaking. They are giving me 3 programs that increase in volume... you are kidding me right? Everything is so loud right now. This keyboard is insane. Most folks are gone to lunch right now so I'm excited to see what it is going to sound like in a little while with coworkers around.
I'M GONNA LOVE THIS!!!!!!!!!
Not near as mechanical as I was expecting. It seemed to be right as Jordan flipped the switch and it was then sort of like I could hear her but there was a sound barrier between us. That seems to be going away really fast.
It keep picturing one of those underwater plants that move and flow. That's sort of what this is like. I'm already having those... what was that moments.
Oh what a fun journey this is now going to be!!!
4;21pm --- What an absolute amazing afternoon! I have some really funny stories. I have asked, "What was that noise?" a few times when I shouldn't have. We've laughed a lot.
Check back later tonight and I'll do my best to have the video up.
8:16 -- Been a blast today but I'm about ready to find a quite spot and a book for a bit. I was told that I'd be working my way through 3 programs before my morning appointment tomorrow. Not sure I will get to #3. Everything is so loud. I've been asking folks to whisper so I can understand them better. When some folks talk normal it seems so loud that it's distorted.
I did venture out to run an errand and did fine. Some of the funny things that have happened today are:
I heard a noise and asked what it was and to my embarrassment it was someone in the restroom.
One of my coworkers walked down he hall and I could hear a swishing noise and it was her pants. I said I could hear her pants rubbing and she thought I meant she had big thighs! She doesn't but I logged that in the ole mental bank to never mention anything like that again to a girl. HA!
I heard my keys jingling. That sound was what I used to gauge the volume on my hearing aid years and year ago. If I could hear the keys then I knew it was turned up loud enough. Now it will always be turned up!
I washed my hands and just stood there listening to the water. Oh how I can not wait until it rains!!!! I want to hear a car drive by and hear the water spray. I could always hear the car going back and I knew what the water spray was supposed to sound like but over the past few years the high pitched part slowly died away.
Well, here it is being turned on. It takes a bit to load. Sort of long.
I hate looking at myself in video or photos but promised the activation video. There are 3 more videos but I'll space them out. It would sort of be like watching someones vacation slide show.
Thanks for hanging out with me today! Can't wait to see what tomorrow will bring.
Monday, December 17, 2007
Ringing: Wha???!! Yep, that pesty ringing in back in my CI ear. I have figured out that when my heart rate goes up the ringing returns. I figured this out when the media at church froze and I had to do some fast moving while the guy was doing the announcements. thank goodness he was long winded! I got everything back on line but the stress made my heart giddy up and when it did the ringing was roaring. I can make it ring by yawning too. Weird!
Riding: I got on the trainer (bike) tonight. Ever gotten one of those papers back in school with the big red bad grade written over sized on your paper? I would have gotten one of those tonight. I was just glad I got on it and rode and even sweat. My pal Jason and I went to lunch today and I was telling him how surprised I was that I hadn't gained that much weight even though I had been eating fast food and other crap and not riding. He said, but I bet you lost a lot of muscle weight. I cringed! The was like a cold wet rag thrown in my face. He didn't mean it like that but I was the good smack up the side of the head that I needed. To even think of losing muscle due to fat middle aged laziness is a bad thought all the way around. Bet I'm back on that trainer again tomorrow night...with a CI in place!
It's so strange that I'm booking into the new year already. I even got one schedule of events today via email that takes me all the way to the end of 2009.
I did something pretty bold today. In an email I set out to the church presentation team, I told them how I was really looking forward to hearing Christmas songs this Sunday. (Enter Willie Coyote snickering laugh). Well one service last year had zero Christmas songs. I thought that was the most deflating thing in the world to do. I'll know Wednesday if it worked... keep your fingers crossed.
By the way, here is the hospital Christmas e-card that went out to thousands. When you watch it, pay close attention to the scene after the helicopters. Yep that was me and the awesome team that rode the River to River ride for kids with hearing impairments.
Note to cycling friends: I am still very grateful to you all and because of you a child is hearing better today!
Saturday, December 15, 2007
A friend of mine was telling me at lunch yesterday that a friend of hers took their little boy to a live nativity scene where you walk through. They were talking back and forth about the different parts and then they were about to round a corner to were the people got the element of surprise, the baby Jesus part.
So mom and little (5 year old) son are talking and she knows what's around the corner so she starts buttering him up and she says, "... and what did the wise men see?" About that time they round the corner and the little boys screams, "MCDONALD'S!!!"
Seems there was a McDonald's on the hill just outside so when he looked up for the star he spotted the golden arches!
The wind is howling outside but we are warm and toasty in the house. I got the firewood a few days ago and brought some of it into the garage to keep it dry and it's just been a nice afternoon/evening with the Christmas tree, fireplace, the girls wrapping a mountain of gifts for family and friends. Tyler came by and we had fun working with my new video software. It's great to have a video pro (him not me!) in the family.
It was fun going to the office yesterday with the buzz. Everyone was doing the double take and then rubbing my head. It was funny. I stopped by Audio and the guys slapped the magnet right on. I could feel it pull together. (Big sigh) All systems go for Tuesday. This is sort of like leading up to the surgery...excited, nervous,,,etc.
I set up the media for church tomorrow and there are 178 transitions for 2nd service! Whoa. The search does seem to have a real preaching time but a few words then couple of songs and back and forth 3 times.
Bonus of the day: Who really played the tune "Miles Away"? I ran across the Ryan Farish version on ITunes and remembered I liked that tune but couldn't figure out who really did it. This will be a great tune for riding through the pecan groves.
There was another tune called Pacific Wind that he plays that's good too. These will work for basic "just get your miles in" rides. The wind and rain/sleet supposed to be gone tomorrow so I'm thinking loading Ipod with new tunes and take the bike out for a few miles. There is actually a ride heading out to the farmlands tomorrow afternoon but my legs couldn't keep their pace and I'd be dropped like a bad habit.
Life sure is fun right now!!!
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Meanwhile, as I was saying, Jordan was trying different mags and we had the door open. All the other audios would be walking by and see me sitting there and freeze. They would all then get excited and Jordan would have to tell them we were just playing with mags. Then she said she wanted to hook it up to the computer to get a green light. At that point I got all excited! Will I hear the beeps??? No, not this time. Pure torture... Just gimme the keys and let me drive it!
Get this though, she told me that she scheduled a CI for a patient today and guess what the earliest date is now.... M-A-Y of 08.... 5 months out. Well John is the best! Come to think of it, we started all of my CI stuff back around May of this year.
One other really cool thing Jordan was telling me today. With the little girls who get CI's she gets an extra cap and glues rhinestones on it for some styling! I thought, you know, that's why I love these folks I work with. They are always a level above!
Note to Boomer: Awww man, Chris Botti jazz is great! Love this stuff! Thanks for the suggestion!
Got to run... y'all have a great Friday!
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
OK, here's another funny "Trash" story. The lady that cleans our offices walks down the hall every morning dragging a huge trash bag. We all have these mini trash cans and she will stop in front of our door and just look at you and say "Trash". One day she did this to my coworker in the office next to me and I completely lost it. I thought she was calling Evie "Trash". Didn't hit me that she was gathering our trash. We all had a good laugh.
Well then it got funnier this week! She came in my office and said , "Trash?" and I said, "Yes, ma'am, I got a little." She has this funny little he-he-he laugh she does then really loud she said. "Oh, yeah, George got a little!" he-he-he-he. I wanted to crawl under my desk. I could hear snickering down the hall. Man, never a dull moment in HR.
I got a GREAT email from a friend about getting back out there and riding. It was good and Chris Ironman, I appreciate it. It was just what I needed to hear.
Speaking of hear... I get the big turn on in less than a week. Whoa man I'm psyched!
We'll have 5 little folks UNDER 2 this year at my folks house for Christmas. It's going to be fun! I plan to take the mov-ee cam and roll it. They'll be grabbing toys from each other and screaming, and sneezing in each others faces! Award winning video coming up! HA!
Temps are doing the big drop and the firewood man is bringing this winters firrewood after work today! Yea-izzz!
Monday, December 10, 2007
Well this morning I'm standing there with coworkers and one of my favorite Audiologist is standing a few ahead of us and she had a little girl with her. I could see the little pink things in her ear. After she made her order I knelled down to talk to her. That's a big thing at a kids hospital... get down to their level. So I told her I like her pink ear molds to her behind the ear hearing aids. She was all smiles then I flipped her out and reached up and pulled my hearing aid from around my ear to show her I had a hearing aid. She was sooo funny and cute. I told her I needed o get a new one (ear mold) and I asked her what color I show get and she stopped and did that little kid thinking look and then smiled real big and said, "PINK!" Everyone laughed. I just don't think bubble gum pink ear mold would look cute on me like it does her. She made everyone's day!
We have had 3 days of fog and it's getting sort of a pain. Sounds like a big cool down is headed this way after the Wednesday rain. Kin, if you are reading this, I hope you guys over in OK missed the bad stuff.
I bought some new software! Pinnacle Studio for making movies! I've got this PowerPoint stuff down for church and work now I want to go to the next level of "entertainment". Since my son is a professional in this stuff I figured I could get him to work with me getting me through the basics. I'll try and upload a few test movies as I build them. I'm planning on putting together some cool stuff. It's all in my head... yep, stored in that new 50 thousand dollar computer installed in my head. OK maybe not but sounded bionic-ish huh?
I'm getting in the mood to go to I-Tune land and download some new music. thinking Jazz this time. Anyone got a favorite? Leave me a comment and let me know what it is.
Hey Jeff, GOOD LUCK on your CI activation on Tuesday!
I'm outta here for the night.
Sunday, December 09, 2007
I'll see Dr. D (Dornhoffer) for a few minutes as a post op check-up on Tuesday right after lunch. There are a lot of questions I want to ask just because I'm curious and really get into this stuff.
The the 18th this the big turn on. Since I have a great team of folks, especially Scott, covering the media at church i a as close to stress free as I have been in 2 months. I feel like now I can really concentrate on learning to hear out of the new ear. I have been really worried about the services. The "look and feel" and can roll out there but once we go live I was thinking, "What if your ears start ringing?" I sat upstairs in the control booth the first part of service and had zero problems and could have even drove but then I wanted to get a feel of the crowd and even with my hearing aid turned down my ears were ringing a bit. Bummer, they had been playing fair all weekend. It went away fast.
I got the rest of the Christmas decorations outside yesterday. I really had thought I might could have put them up last weekend but I was too looped still to care. I also got the few leaves up off the lawn. Tonight is the big drive through all around the neighborhoods to see the lights. We've got it good because our home is on top of the hill looking over the valley so we can see a lot of Christmas lights Usually it' bumper to bumper but a strong storm came through and dumped the rain and dropped the temps about 2 hours ago so it was a slow start for luminary night.
Our house group from church put together 40 gym bags of items together tonight and they are planning to go under the bridges next Sunday morning at 6. They really packed some valuable stuff including what is called a "homeless blanket". I had never known there was really a blanket called that but it's a super thick heavy wooll blanket. They also packed canned meats, peanut butter, puddings, snack pack fruit, spoons, gloves, socks, caps, cleaning stuff and then they did something really col, they packed 4 cards and envelops stamped so they could write to let a loved one know they were OK. Then it gets even better... they were given a couple of wrapped gift, one with socks and one with gloves that they are to give away to someone who needs them. I will be interested to hear the results.
Well, I didn't get on the trainer bike today. Yeah, I know... lard butt! I was busy today and it was a fun day so maybe tomorrow. A guy can dream can't he? HA!
Friday, December 07, 2007
My to do list for the weekend is 3 miles long. Man, you miss one weekend and it sets you back big time. I have to put the lights up outside and clear the side of the garage so we can put a car in there. One side is fine, the other is tons of Christmas boxes (Note to my wife: No dear, I love all this stuff, I really do)
I need to do some Christmas shopping. I need to get leaves off the lawn...again. If "green" wasn't so "in" right now I'd cut a few trees down.
I W-I-L-L get on the trainer bike this weekend and ride. I have got to get my bike legs back. I keep telling myself, "Geo, the party's off you big buffoon! Get back on the bike and get on with it."
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Here's the link if you are interested:
So why not do something a little crazy and out of the box this Christmas season?
Oh by the way.... our church entered the Sherwood Christmas parade for the first time this year and guess who won first place??? Oh yeah!!! They worked so hard!
Monday, December 03, 2007
I did return to my office this morning and still have times were I walk like the ground is slanted but the roar is going south finally.
I have this bruise on my neck like I've been in a fight with one of Tony Soprano's men.
All in in, really, it's getting better.
Now just waiting until Dec 11th for the surgery follow up
Then it will be wait one more week after that... Dec 18th for activation.
Please tell me the ringing doesn't return when they flip the switch!!
Interesting story: Emmy went to stay with friends in Fayetteville and Terri drove 1/2 way to pick up her up yesterday. A big cold front was coming and David called from Fayetteville as he was going back and the south side of the tunnel was 69 and the north side when he came out was 39.... that's a trip!