The Naked Emperor

09 June 2008

Making the Cut

Before we get into the gristle of today's topic, a brief aside is in order.

When I write, I try to follow facts to logical conclusions. By doing that I'm not very terse, and can ramble on a bit. I've been told by some that I write well.

But sometimes, just a single line of sarcasm works much, much better than my long essays.

Today, I was showing thenakedempress a story on the web saying that over one quarter of the population of New York City has genital herpes. Her instantaneous response:

"And these are the people worried about trans-fat?"


But on we go.

"This really ain't the place or time,
To reel off rhyming diction;
Yet we'll write a final rhyme,
While awaiting Crucifiction."

Harry Morant

The reason for the title of today's drivel is because, at dawn tomorrow, I go under the knife.

Nothing too dramatic, just an arthroscopic meniscectomy. Assuming all goes well, I should be home by afternoon.

But it still worries me.

I haven't been under general anesthesia since Ed White made the first spacewalk. (Google that to discover that I'm an old fart) And I have seen, albeit rarely, fatal idiosyncratic anesthesia reactions. But gas passing has probably progressed since the Gemini program.

I know that the odds of anything that bad happening to me are extremely small. I just have to be ready in case of that eventuality.

Actually, what has a greater chance of going wrong is for them to cut the wrong leg. Unfortunately my MRI was mis-labeled. It says it was on my left knee, but the problem, and the MRI, were on the right. No Problem. I'm just going to write "CUT HERE" in large, friendly letters on my right thigh.

OK, there's a teensy weensy chance that today could be my last. So what to do?

Well, I determined that if it were to be my last, it would be a great day.

I worked ER down in Houma until 7 AM, and helped a bunch of patients. I then drove home, and had a great wife breakfast, then a nap. I decided to keep the clinic closed this afternoon and cut the yard. A shower and a typically great dinner at home. Later the wife suggested we go to Sonic for a malt.

In short, nothing special about today. And yet everything special about the day.

I once read something about telling someone they had 24 hours to live, and wondering what they would do. The moral was that a happy man would just do what he does every day. I guess this means I'm damn happy.

Only one thing left to do, and I'm doing it.

In the movie about Harry Morant, "Breaker Morant", the star asks the Padre to get his last poem, the one above, published. The quote is "We poets do crave immortality".

I guess bloggers do too.

Okay, I've admitted I'm a bit afraid. But this is also a bit different fear experience. When I was in and out of New Orleans after the storm, I was also afraid.

But that was not the same as now. I certainly had much more to fear then. I knew it was there. But I just had to put it out of my mind, I frankly didn't have the time for it. I was just too busy doing what I had to do. And we didn't know what would happen when, you just kept going.

Now, I've had the luxury, or curse, of knowing what will happen and at what time. It's kind of annoying. I just want this damn thing over with.

After the surgery, I'll be shackled here at the house for a couple of weeks. Boredom will probably lead to a productive time for blogging.

I'll also have to undergo PT. I'm supposed to be seeing the best local guy. But dammit, it's a guy. If somebody is going to get paid to torture me, couldn't it be a pretty girl in a leather bustier?

In keeping with my reputation for inappropriate responses to situations, I've also been thinking about my situation and the movie "The Princess Bride".

After Westley has defeated Andre' the Giant, he tells the passed out Andre', "Rest well, and dream of large women". Wouldn't it be cool if, as I'm going under anesthesia, the gas passer would tell me to "Sleep well, and dream of large breasted women". Beat the snot out of that counting backwards crap, wouldn't it?

Oh, assuming I'm alive tomorrow, I offer this caveat.

You know that I'm just the teensiest bit, oh, weird. Tomorrow, I'll be just a weird, but also on pain meds. You've been warned!!!

The Naked ( and Limping ) Emperor


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