Saturday, September 1, 2012

a really sick monkey

Unbelievable. Once again I am spending precious weekend hours sandwiched between a teen-ager with a really drippy eye and an ancient wrinkled little man whose coughs sound like they're being scraped off the moldy floor of an abandoned well.

Oh wait, those pathetic choking noises are coming from yours truly and the reason I am sitting in an emergency room full of welfare clients waiting to see some physician's assistant, all the doctors are golfing at the country club this Saturday afternoon. I can't seem  to make an appointment with my regular doc on a week-day.  I only allow him to see me at my bi-annual exams when I am healthy and robust and bragging about all the fiber I eat and how many hours I spend in the pool, a 60-year old poster child for aging broads.  I can't betray that image to him, it's a matter of intense personal pride and I don't want my doctor finding out I get sick.  Now that's sick.  In my defense I was raised by this short little German couple who considered illness shameful and not an allowable excuse for a day missed from work or the general arena of life.

And the phlebotomist is setting up jars, jelly jars I tell you, to fill with my blood. "Hey leave some behind, could you, I still have to drive home."  I'm tring to lighten up here.  No response. "Do you like your job?" I try again. "Yes," and she smiles this really strange little smile, no eye contact,  and I am just noticing the homemade tattoo on the inside of her wrist that looks like a gargoyle or a really sick monkey.  So I think it best to remain silent and get her out of here before she finds another empty jar on her cart. It seems I have pneumonia and they need to figure out which bug thus the need for half my blood supply being hauled away.  At least I won't need to be begging for antibiotics as they are practically throwing them at me, huge horse pills, only five, really powerful stuff and they come with a shitload of possible side effects including inflamed tendons. I am rubbing my calves as we speak . . .

And it seems they want me to see my regular doc on his first available convenience and the bubble will be burst and I just hope he won't get weepy.  In ten days I plan to be on a plane to Sweden and this is my main motivation for showing up for the dreaded weekday appointment.  He may need to approve an iron lung to be sitting at the airport.  Just in case.

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