Hauling cast-offs from your neighbors’ trash is kind of like autoerotic asphyxiation: It’s all fun and games until you’re well hung.
Oh yes, I’ve hung myself well. Cimex lectularius, aka the bed bug, has taken hold of my home and lecturously clung to me, tying my noose in a rust colored bow. A creature smaller than a pencil top has wrecked my life emotionally, socially, and reduced me to semi -penury.
There are two things to do when you find you have a bedbug problem. First, tell everybody! Brag to your 1.5 friends that your previous state of having no blood relatives has been remedied by playing host to a growing family of consanguinious creatures. Your 1.5 friends may become .05 friends that are willing to touch you with a 10 ft. pole, but now you will have many bedfellows who find your society delicious.
The second thing is watch how you become as popular as a prostitute with mouth herpes on a Tuesday night. Watch as your friends inspect their domiciles as you wait with bated breath for the horror that your new family might have jumped ship for tastier fare. You will begin to see your bug relatives in every speck of dust, feel them, and itch from them when they aren’t there. You begin to wish for a bolt of lightening to strike your apartment and incenerate your tiny family. Your new relations are about as well esteemed to you as your Appalachian cousins, but unlike your cousins, your bed bug family won’t abandon you. Lucky you.
I began suspecting when I killed a tiny blood red critter walking its merry way across my pillow. It’s a baby bed bug, I inwardly squealed. No, came my angry reply to the voice within, it’s a spider mite tracked in by one of my cats. I told my psych nurse about the sighting and she agreed with my surmise.
A few nights later, I saw another insect, chubby and waddling. That’s an odd looking cucarocha.
And then December 26. D Day. I saw a bug close enough for me to grab and I captured it alive in a pill bottle. Oh dear God, that sure looks like an unfed bed bug. The poor little thing couldn’t keep itself right side up and flailed about so pitifully I had to stop looking at it.
I drew a bath and stripped off, afterward using jackets to keep me warm on the couch and benzos to lull me to sleep. It’s going to be a great new year.
Much of the next day I stayed on the couch, deep in the depression only suspecting bed bugs can do to you. You know no one will want to be around you anymore, that your life is over until your home is napalmed. I looked online for stories of losing friends due to bed bugs. Of course there’s stories of lost friends and one Yahoo Answers contributor answered to the fearful friend of a bed bug sufferer, “just get new friends, eww.”
I took my prisoner, who had croaked on its own accord to a nearby exterminator. I caught one of the guys towards quitting time, and he turned up the bottle, made a face, and replied, “yeah” when I asked if it was a bed bug. I promptly went to McDonald’s and ate two Big Macs.
What is worse than a bed bug problem, you might ask. OCD, bed bugs, and mingling your worst fears into that mix. I feared telling my landlady for fear of being evicted, because around this time last year I was threatened with eviction. I feared telling my social worker for fear of losing the assistance I get on my rent.
Both scenarios led to the same conclusion in my mind,the trifecta of my worst fears, a game show called Rest Home, Homeless, or Dead.Read More »
One year ago today I was a different woman than I am now. When I looked at my future, I saw nothing. Nothing alone, nothing without him by my side.
One year ago today, my paranoia came crashing down on me and I could barely breathe under its weight, let alone climb out from under it.
One year ago today, the lies became too much, the truth too clear, and the fear unbearable. It was the fear that did it, the fear that my soul mate was as unreal as his words, that imaginary friends are mirages that disappear.
One year ago today, I checked his ears for the cartoon character earbuds I gave him for Christmas. If he’s wearing them, maybe he’s not mad at me. My obsession: checking for signs of discord. Perusing his body for gifts in quick glances. He wears one of my gifts, maybe he is happy with me. The earbuds are there! He smiles at me, he talks happily to his dogs. There isn’t anything in the intonation of his voice hiding ire or sadness. Perhaps all is well. Or not.
One year ago today, he returned from walking the dogs and went into his room, pugs too. The door closed, me shut out. Me alone and the social worker coming. He was there with me before when she came, supportive, saying what needed to be said. I knock. No answer. Anger? Is he angry at me? Alone. Will I be alone forever? Scared, and the social worker is coming. And the letter he wrote is on the stove for her. Angry? Is that why he left me alone? So scared of him not loving me anymore. Or is he hiding? Does hiding mean he is guilty of something? No. He’s mad at me. Or is he a liar? The letter is partly a lie, making him a liar. Can a liar still be your soul mate? He lies sometimes, it means nothing. It means he doesn’t care. No it doesn’t. He has problems, but he loves me like a sister. He wouldn’t hurt me. Oh God, is he angry at me? What will become of me if I’m without him?
One year ago today, there was a knock on my their door. This is not my home, but a place where I stay at the mercy of the queens kings inside. No, my soul mate is merciful, even if his truth is not always truthful. But here is the social worker and there is the letter. She is not happy. She is angry at him. I am scared and try again to knock at my dearest friend’s bedroom door. I am crying. He must be angry. No, you dumbass, he’s avoiding a confrontation. No, he’s mad at me, he doesn’t really love me. Oh God!
One year ago today, my social worker read the letter penned in my dear one’s artistic script:
750.00 dollars I owed them for paying my mother’s final expenses (I had thought I owed $550.00…but what do I know)
40.00 for a light bill (odd, because I thought the $240.00 I paid a month in rent included my share of everything).
35.00 for a late fee (strange, because I hadn’t been late in giving my share).
PAID IN FULL.
One year ago today, my social worker said loudly enough for my soul mate to hear through the door, “He sat here and said that they would wait until you were back on your feet to pay them back!”
And I told her about the netbook I got too, because of my soul mate’s partner forcing me to take back the laptop I got with my social security check and give him that money or I would have to “get the fuck out of his house,” adding tenderly as he menaced me that I was a bitch and a whore (though he knew I was a virgin). All the while letting me know that his lover acted differently when I was around, that even his dogs did too)
Just don’t let it happen again, admonished my social worker.
One year ago today, I told my social worker a story I was told about my soul mate’s partner. “He’s very mean. He was more worried about a friend of his getting blood on the seats of his van than that she slit her wrists…and when he left her at the hospital, he wouldn’t stay with her.”
One year ago today, I was left alone and I knocked again on dear friend’s door. No answer.
That morning, one year ago today, I didn’t wake up saying to myself, “I guess I’ll pencil in committing suicide today.” But it wasn’t a spur of the moment decision either. I went to bed early many nights too depressed to face the partner of my beloved, he who had a way of making me feel like less than dirt. Secretly my death wish had waxed and waned since the day my mother died. Now, five months later, I reached my cliff. Before that day, though it was a thought, slightly researched. I had researched a while before if one was unfortunate enough to survive death by ativan, ones vital organs may not fail. And so I decided, What have I got to lose now? The only person who really needed me was dead, everyone else would easily get over my loss.
I decided on Russian Roulette Pill and OCD style because I sort of wanted to keep living if my dear one didn’t dislike me now. I wrote a note proclaiming my love in a style mistakable as sisterly love to my soul mate, enjoining him to please take care of my cats and that this wasn’t his fault.
I tucked the note under me in case I decided to stop, and began. One pill. Count to 300. My friend still hasn’t come out of his room. I take another and count to 300. Another and around this time I pass out. When I awaken, the door is open! I stumble in and ask if I can come in. He gave his ascent. I remember asking if he was mad at me and that was when he noticed I was doped. “Oh no! he exclaimed angrily. “That will get you thrown out in a matter of days.”
Was I afraid? No, peacefully, I stumbled back out of the room, decided what the hell, and down the gullet the rest of my Ativan went. How many did I take? My guess is maybe 7 or 9. When I woke up again sleeping next to Babee Dondee my littlest cat, my soul brother said with an edge in his voice “Good morning, or evening actually.” I can’t remember if he asked me to call my friend to get me or if I took the initiative, pobably the former.
My best friend told me Soul Bro answered the door, called to me that my friend was here, and promptly went back to playing a video game. There’s the love. As I left though, I recall handing him my suicide note.
I stayed in the ER several hours though I recall little of it, they mainly just monitored my idiot ass, my heart dipping down into the 60s. If one might die simply from judgemental lapses I’d have been a goner.
I was given the option of “voluntarily” being admitted or getting a judge to commit me. It was around 4am a nd I was finally sobering up a bit. I bid adieu to my best friend who had stayed through the whole ordeal, was carted off in a wheelchair by a surly cop and began a 10 day vacation locked away in a psych ward. Ten days because no one wanted my sorry ass and I ended up in a faraway nursing home for 2 months. It was the worst two months of my life, though I absolutely LOVED my stay in the psych ward. It was pretty fun and I met some great folks. I’d do it again if it didn’t entail trying to kill myself and making all my friends tell me they don’t want my crazy self and sending me away to the home. Not fun.
I’m back home, but along with the clothes I quickly grabbed, I brought back more baggage than an airport in December. It’s getting better than it was when I got here, and I’m starting to feel happy more and uneasy less. But the uneasiness isn’t gone, the feeling that I’m merely a transient or at least a guest doesn’t go away. The day my mother died was the day I became displaced in a world where I belong nowhere. Before my mother left, I knew my place. She needed me from the day she realized she was pregnant as I told you long ago. My mother’s great love broke up with her, her two best friends died, and when her 6 month married life ended there I was. Even a therapist I once had told my mom that he didn’t know what would have happened to her if she hadn’t had me.
So where does that leave me today? Every person has a reason for being alive, but some of us find it harder than others to discover that reason. I suppose there’s a reason for me being here too. I’m not certain of much anymore. I don’t know who loves me or if I’m just one misstep away from finding myself alone in the world again. Yesterday, I went back to my therapist for the first time since I tried to play my swan song, and she was less than happy to see me.
“If they threw you out, what are you doing back there?”
“Soul Bro was able to convince The Partner to let me back,” I replied. She listened to my fears, to everything I could cram into 50 minutes. There’s a lot I just can’t say for fear of losing my Soul Bro, and looking back at my reasoning for trying to kill myself, I don’t ever want to risk losing him. I love him that much and am that terrified of being alone (this blog has gotten 10 shades more creeeeepy with this last paragraph. My bad). I am an orphan, a mental midgety one at that, and I don’t have relatives at all. Well, none that care whether I live or die, they made that more or less clear when I told them my mother was dead. Oh well, they were just cousins. Second cousins. I’ll get into that some other time.
I shouldn’t be admitting this junk, but I told my therapist stuff I’d never venture to say aloud (please don’t hate me, Bro, should you read this). I’m not saying he lies a bit, but he stretches the truth until that bitch screams, to make himself look better occasionally. I think. Maybe it’s me being paranoid.
I think he got mad at me for begging to come home and not being “proactive” enough in trying to be independent, so he did the worst thing anyone could do to me. I think he decided he was done with me until I was back on my feet, so he put most of my stuff in my storage unit (including my mother’s ashes), and took two of my three cats to the pound. I was able to get them out because my home health nurse saved them and they’re living with her for now…Soul Bro says I can ask to bring them home in June if The Partner agrees. My nurse told me the story they told the pound that their owner died in September and they had lived in a barn in a rural county.
Soul Bro told me on the phone that my three cats had been picked up by the pound with some strays and that he had mistaken the feelings he had for my mom with the feelings he had for me. Of course several days later he repented, because he is a good person. Perhaps it was a bipolar thing, but it was obvious whoever that other guy had been was gone.
I never told this to anyone, but if I had the opportunity to do it, I’d have tried to kill myself again. When I first came to Window Licker Hall, Millie, a middle aged perpetual cutter/suicidal woman told me if I really wanted to leave the rest home she had half a bottle of pain pills. I told her then, no thanks. Around the time my Soul Bro said he had cared for my mom, but me not so much, Millie came back from a few weeks vacation at a mental intstitution. I was frantic and asked her if she still had the pills. No, she didn’t. And so I was saved again. Now I know regardless what happens, no matter how low I get, I can’t kill myself. I promised my Soul Brother I wouldn’t ever again and I was never so serious in my life. He’s had enough shit to last ten lifetimes (and at least one day of Lifetime Television programming).
Yes, my therapist ain’t happy, but I am. My Soul Bro is the joy and light of my life. To me he is a gay god, almost perfect. He keeps me laughing, except when I worry I’ll mess up. I imagine him thinking awful things about me. If anything goes missing I imagine him thinking I stole whatever it is. I fear he’ll think I’m on drugs, and I worry that I will never be what everyone expects of me. If I mess up in the slightess way the lack of perfection drives me crazy. One day I messed up and used the bathroom and bathed with his cell phone there. He accused me of taking it and even said that a lot of stuff went missing while I lived there before. I had to swear on my mom’s ashes that I hadn’t touched it. I forgive, but I don’t forget. I could say my theory on who stole stuff, but I will refrain from naming anyone. Soul Bro realized he was wrong and wrote out a note saying I couldn’t be thrown out for any reason, but I think some of the power belongs with The Partner, so who knows? All i can say is I ain’t a thief.
One last confession paragraph before I stop, I now pay about twice what I paid in rent the last time, but I’d pay more to be with my Soul Bro. My therapist thinks I’m being hosed and I don’t care! I think it was The Partner who came up with the sum. The only thing really marring my happiness is not having my cats, which makes me not want to face the plastic box holding my mother. I don’t think I can remove her from the storage unit until I get them back.
If my nurse hadn’t rescued Dondee, the pound would have killed my Mom’s
It’s not been a good 24 hours. I’m anxious and feel as though my life is over, which is stupid …I hope. All I can think of is “What if he doesn’t forgive me?”
My Soul Brother has two Chinese pugs. One is an ‘unaltered’ black male pug. He likes me A LOT. I’ll call him Stan to protect his dog anonymity. My first encounter with Stan after my mother’s death resulted in him trying to make love to me via my arm. His good lady wife, I’ll call her Maude, was in heat and it gave Stan an affection for her and every living thing around her. It was actually a good bit of comic relief from my terror and grief (it was a week after my mom went to the Great Beyond). Thankfully, once Maude ‘cooled’ he stopped. But he always wanted to be with me. At the time I thought it was my award-winning personality.
Later, when I moved in, I was sure I was going to be put back out when Soul Bro told me I shouldn’t be letting his dog sleep with me in case he started marking. But I wasn’t put out.
The other day, Soul Bro approached me again and told me to push Stan away for a couple of weeks and finally admitted why the dog liked me so much.
“It’s your feminine odor, but it’s the same with any female.”
Ugh. Great. So I resolved to rebuff Stan getting near me for exactly two weeks. But that didn’t last too long, because later that day I got upset by something The Partner did. The Partner is Soul Bro’s partner, a man who dislikes me, but the feeling is mutual. Soul Bro, being the dear soul he is, relaxed the rules so I could cry on Stan’s wrinkled shoulder so to speak.
The next day I asked if I should start pushing Stan away. “Nah, he’s OK. He’s a smart dog.”
But Stan’s behavior continued. and the night before last, Stan started to whimper when I wouldn’t pay him mind. I should have known pushing Stan away was back when Soul Bro took him back to his bedroom and shut himself up with the dog. I should have known, but I’m so ignorant.
So yesterday, sigh, Stan was beside me again and Soul Bro called him to go lay down with him (Soul Bro wasn’t feeling well). I quickly pushed the dog down when Stan refused to go with his master. Right back up there, Stan jumped, so I pushed him right back down. But it was too late. Soul Bro was angry at me. “See? This was what I was trying to tell you if you EVER let him sit beside you!” And he slammed his bedroom door.
I was afraid. Soul Bro has told me before that short of me killing him, there was nothing I could do to make him not want to be my friend. But I’m so scared. He’s my only family now and if he stays mad, what will I do? I love him so much, so I always try to please him, but I honestly didn’t mean to do anything. I hate myself. I even hate my vagina. This has made me Chaz Bono!
So like I used to, I went to bed and slept to get away from my problems. I dreamed about my mom giving me a beautiful Christmas Barbie doll. Then my mom died, I went to the Appalachians and was rejected by relatives. But then I look for dolls in a flea market, find out that Dolly Parton is my real mom, and she has the same Barbie that my mom gave me except in a different colored dress. Then I dream I’m peeing blood. The end.
At one point, I heard Soul Bro and The Partner up at midnight. I went and got a hello from both when I spoke, but as soon as the show was over, Soul Bro left without a word. I’m terrified he’s still mad and will want me to move when the lease is up. I don’t want to even imagine life without my Soul Brother.
Hi again, loyal minions! I have a new post up at the new blog. This one is an interview with Jaco, my beloved friend from over at http:// justwriteofleft.com. I injected my semi-comedic stylings throughout the interview to garnish it and give it the “me marinade.”http://ocdbloggergirl.com/?p=1414 . Let me know what you think!
Now for incidentals. Ah, I see where it says equine encephalitis found in mosquitoes around here. Not good, but mainly stays with horses unless it feels like infecting humans. Have you ever found a mosquito biting you. and since it’s already biting you, you decide to observe it’s phlebotomy skills. The little belly fills up, you can see the blood inside, and then she flies away. Me neither!
Anywho, yesterday, I decided to finally go out to the pool for the day, something I haven’t done all season because of Trevor the Terror, the scourge of swimmers. In fact, since one particularly annoying encounter at the pool I haven’t been as passionate a swimmer as i have in past years. I do have a post I’m writing about that, and hopefully I’ll have it done in a year or two, the way that I write. I swam 12 laps, on my 4th lap some youngins showed up and then the pool monitor’s kids, but wasn’t a big deal. The father relieved me by saying hello to me first. It’s like I’m paralyzed in my voice box until someone speaks to me and even then I’m anxious. I like people a lot, but it’s like I need permission to just be…and it’s getting harder. The day before yesterday, I had a fit and went to bed and stayed there, just because I couldn’t get things just right. I start something and have to stop, but anyway back at the pool. I read a bit of the world’s worst detective novel, played my original green screen Gameboy, read a little on my WordPress book. Jumped back into the pool and did 12 more laps in that just below the surface frog-way. It takes 30 seconds to get from one end of the pool to the other without surfacing and I’m proud that I at least have that achievement. I want it as my headstone one day: “She didn’t do much of anything, but she could swim.” By the time I was done with that other set of laps and marveling how during my fourth lap again children showed up, my eyes were hurting since I couldn’t find my goggles that day. I stayed out of the water and ritualized my out of water activities until I began feeling sickly in the 99 degrees and hauled ass home because my eyes could not endure another round of laps. I can get by with 12 without pain in my eyes, but more than that and I am bound to suffer. And the award for best mom at the pool 2011 ” I’ll dunk you over if you don’t stop crying,” said to a child of 2 or so, then splash splash in the face of him. Yep, that should stop him from crying for sure.
We went to McDonald’s for supper and I scored the first 3 Smurf happy meal toys. I think I was too enthusiastic as I looked at the toy display. “Mom! Just look! How cute! I gotta have them all!” People looked at me, but I guess they can go smurf themselves. Today I went and saw the movie in 3D. The first movie I ever saw as a child was a movie about The Smurfs, and what do you know, the first movie I ever saw in 3D was The Smurfs. Very cool!
PS, sorry to everyone about being slow to respond. My mind is going so many directions.
I want to go to the parade tomorrow alone, but I’m worried what might happen to me or my mom once I’m set out to fend for myself.
Nightmare Scenario I: I go to the parade, but as my mother is driving home from dumping me, she has the misfortune of:
a.) being run down by a Mack truck
b.)having a heart attack
c.) being murdered
You choose the scenario you like the best, but the point is she is deceased…and it all could’ve been prevented had I just gone to the parade with her less than enthusiastic self in tow.
I am alone. I can’t even afford to bury or cremate my mom. There is no money except my $674.00 every month, and the cats and I are soon hungry and evicted. My friend takes me and the cats in,thankfully, but I yearn to live on my own for the first time. I give up thoughts of love and all my dreams. There is nothing to live for but my cats, because my friends and everyone might not need me. I am a burden.
Nightmare Scenario II: I fall dead.
But I so want to go alone! If I do I’ll let you know…If I don’t, well, guess you’ll know too!
Ophelia: O woe! If only outrageous fortune spared me from Parade’s earthly delight and I knew whither I goest toward danger or iniquity. Harsh, bitter, agonizing fate! Mayhap I ought to not frolic among Danish princes, either, given their penchant to be douches. O woe, I die!
I was going to post this on March 25th to commemorate my first year of blogging, but my friend invited me over to hang out, so I guess I’ll do it today. I will list some links and excerpts from the past year that I favored. This is a chance to reminisce or to brush up on my ADHD-style masterpieces. Pay attention. There will be a test!
Here is an excerpt from my very first post, March 25,2010:
I worry about murderers, carjackers, rapists, etc. causing harm to my mother and sometimes to myself, but mainly to my mother when we are apart. Look at the news, awful things happen ALL THE TIME. But when something awful could have actually happened I was calm and I handled it.
Ok, so 3 or 4 years ago we tried out a newly opened Chinese buffet. It was later in the afternoon, just past lunchtime, so there was only a couple other patrons and they were in another section of the restaurant (this was before the state made smokers into lepers and my mom could still smoke inside). We were eating, the food was good too, which makes this all the greater a tragedy . Suddenly, one could hear yelling in the kitchen. It kept up steady and seemed to stay in the kitchen, so I felt confident in my safety at grabbing something else. Oh what to get, what to get. Soup? Or a couple of those slivers of cake?
Oh, the possibilities! Oh…….. oh …….oh shit!
The shit had now officially hit the fan. The argument spilled out near where I happened was, no further than 12 feet. A man was surrounded by 3 guys and 2 women, and boy, was he ever pissed. It was a good thing I don’t speak Chinese, but some things are universal, a psychotic rage is distinguishable from someone mildly miffed that he burned the General Tso’s chicken. Psycho Cook then took a soup bowl and smashed it on the floor, but this must have not been cathartic enough, for he soon lunged at another cook. I remained unnoticed and began to deliberate what to do. I wasn’t panicked I remember, a little nervous and disconcerted, but panicking? No, not really. Would someone else have totally freaked out? I’m not sure . Perhaps they would have the common sense to be scared, not just a little frightened. So I weighed my options, a little list in my brain:
A:) Every woman for herself, haul ass out the door and hope your mother will follow. But I would never leave my mother if if any harm could come to her, so scratch that.
B:) Run past the offending party back to my mother. Run, fat girl, run!!! No, that didn’t seem sensible either. Let the lunging crouching tiger become aware of Hidden Dragon here? Not a good idea in my estimation.
C.) Act normal (or fake it in my case since I ain’t never been normal, just seen the brochure once or twice). Yes this is the best idea. If I ignore whatever the screaming, striking cook is doing and act like an unconcerned customer I might have more of a chance at not attracting the ire of this poor guy. Time to not be too particular, so I grab a bit of orange and start back, walking as far away from Psycho Cook ‘n pals as I dared. One of the waitresses sat at the table with my mom kind of hiding out. The waitress said to us, “I hate Chinese people. All they do is fight.” ( disclaimer: She was Chinese or Malaysian herself, so she could say that I guess). She proceeded to tell us the story of the restaurant. Appears a few guys got the idea of opening a restaurant together. Too bad that among the angry lot, one was totally insane and off his meds. Happens in the best of restaurants.
Meanwhile, the fray moved more towards the kitchen and another waitress came over. “We got to go now! He threatening to kill people.”
Ever the scrupulous idiot that i am I tried to give them money fast, but they said not to worry about it. Fair enough, but I did manage to give the waitress 10 bucks at least and wouldn’t take it back. This all happened really fast. One or two of the men stayed with the wigged out chef and everyone else made for the door. When outside several people got into one car and left. The other patrons had already left before hell broke loose.
Safely away my mother and I were like “well…that was….different.”
The fireworks were beautiful and I think we had the best view we ever had, sitting in our fold-out chairs in clear view of where they were shot off. Then we went to the Chinese take-out for some soup. This joint gave birth to the term “seedy.” There’s always interesting people there. Someone opened the door to yell to a patron that their mutual pal is in jail, but she already knew and was cross but seemed to not view it as being as newsworthy as her friends did.
Soup is a rather ritual-oriented meal, especially the robust hot and sour they serve at Seedy China. The soup is spicy hot and would not do for the average Anglo to gulp down, but it is the best I’ve ever tasted. In case you aren’t fortunate enough to know how to eat a pint of soup the proper way, allow me to school you on the perfect and essential way. You can thank me later for this vital skill.
Please recall, gentle reader, we did not grow up in a sty and must actaccordingly. Unfold your napkin and set it in your lap (if you are lucky like me your stomach is one large flap and if utilized properly, can act as a ‘paperweight’ for the napkin in your lap). Take your spoon and begin. Begin from the left and take sips until you’ve taken a sip by dipping your spoon, working vertically until you’re at the right side of the bowl. Then put a few of those crisp noodles, at least 3 of them since you really prefer things in 3′s. Eat the noodles in your soup. Now repeat the entire ritual until you’re done, and if you’re good at it, people won’t even realize you have a ‘strategy’ for eating.
Once upon a time (like yesterday), I took a look in the bathroom mirror and my eyes were red, particularly my right eye. Not like bloodshot-been-opening-my-eyes-too-long-underwater-someone-been-on-a-drunk-red, much weirder. A horizontal line seemed to divide my eye in half in the middle, reddish at the bottom half and normal white on top.
I looked into the eyes of death.
My mind began to conjure up what symptom of my imminent death was this.
I had mostly given up my of several years’ obsession with the idea of contracting AIDS by bizarre means not pertaining to intercourse or needles, so scratch that one for now.
Cancer? Maybe that’s it, I thought. I always swam in outdoor pools without goggles due to my high tolerance for chlorine, and I loved looking at the sun’s rays dancing on the pool’s bottom.
So I ask my mother, a retired nurse, what dread disease is this one?
What malady is about to dispatch me, to nail the lid of my coffin, strike me down in the prime of my life?
Apparently, the good people of Rich White Cemetery in their good sense, believe a decent cemetery should expel all living patrons by 5pm sharp regardless of time of year. But the fun part is locking the gates without a glimpse for suckers who failed to read closing time upon entering. I wasn’t too concerned, though, since I had my cell phone, not to say that would be too fun a call to make to the cops. I suggest we walk around, that surely somewhere remained unlocked, especially since I saw a not-so-paranormal-looking couple just a few minutes ago walking.
Two gates locked, we’re padlocked in Perdition. We keep walking until a third gate. This one looks a tad different and I walk up to it, a side entrance and the damn thing opens like the pearly gates to Glory. Mama walks back to our ghetto fabulous classic 1994 Mazda MPV, me waiting so no one locks this gate on us. I look at this gorgeous azalea I remember from last year, a dark red-purple flower about the size of a common magenta azalea but much darker, so awesome. I take a peep at the graves near the gate, all the while keeping my eye on said gate. No one, not St. Peter, not the devil, not a grounds keeper, is gonna lock that damn gate without me at least screaming loud enough to wake the dead.
Safely delivered from captivity, we go downtown to have a look at the teabagger rally, I mean the Tea Party, that has gone on all day. We listen to Sean Hannity on the radio waxing rhapsodic about the noble Tea Party activists nationwide and Reagan this, Reagan that. Every time I listen to Hannity, I tend to think if he could dig up Reagan and marry him he would, anti-gay marriage or no.
So the noble tea folk are down at the federal courthouse at the river. Good for them, I suppose, since the joy of being American is the ability to protest for what you believe. It’s WASP Party 2010 downtown and rather fun to look at as long as you recall everyone is entitled to believe as they like, that is until I see this one woman and I have my What the Flying Fuck?! moment of the day. She has this sign, “Obama, Go Back to Kenya. I Will Buy the Plane Ticket!” Now, I could be wrong, but to me it sounds like some racist saying no more than “Go back to Africa.” Sure, I get the whole Birther rumor popular among some people. But honestly? Honestly. Could Obama be from Kenya and a closet Muslim? Could I be an Ethiopian albino and a closet Hare Krishna? Anything is possible, but probable? Um no. She has a right to her opinion and I have the right to think she’s plumb ignorant with a limited touch on reality.
Unfortunately, it seems I favor quite a few excerpts from my first 2 months. I know these aren’t literary masterpieces, but they were my first efforts. I think I got better at not rambling so much as I went on. I hope those of you who weren’t here from the first like this, and my first dear readers like “Lisa in Review.”
Do y’all like this and should I continue this base self-aggrandizement? Am I just being redundant?
I gotta do a book review on a book I got from bloggingforbooks.org. Hey, I was like, “Eh, what the hell? Free book! (I enjoyed it too, but don’t worry I’m not becoming a book blogger except every now and then).
Retrieve my stupid political post from Rejectionville and post it here. It’s a moot point now anyway, but whatever.
Finish my damn Christmas Post (once I get my netbook back from the pawn shop).
Do more OCD; less tangenty, boringy stuff.
Still want to write more of my memoirs, thrill a minute.
Answer my comments much faster.
I love you all and thank you for everything. Y’all don’t even know how much you mean to me and how you’ve helped me,
PS, If anyone dislikes this color let me know or even the font.
And then the swinging doors to the ER open. Cue music similar to the theme of Tales from the Crypt -only similar though since The Network doesn’t want to be sued.A young blond nurse calls The Patient to her doom, but she must go by the man who collects the insurance info and gives out the bracelets first.I have Medicaid, ” states The Patient, the slightest tune of joyous angels singing hallelujah come into the background. (As we at the network have said before, we commit to diversity, and what’s more diverse than seeing how the other half lives in penury? One needs a ghettoish/trailerish patient every other episode to pull at the heart-strings).“OK,” he says, only giving a second’s glance at the envelope The Patient brandishes before him that contains her Medicaid card. He affixes a paper bracelet with her name on it. Apparently they don’t use plastic ones anymore. They don’t make anything like they used to we suppose, but maybe that’s the fault of the props department. Well, whatever…Let us proceed.
The Patient and her mother are led into a small room where we see our protagonist subjected to her temperature taken; it’s 100 F. Her pulse is over 100 too, but the nurse says “Perhaps that’s because you’re nervous about being here.” (Quick! Someone call out ‘Bingo.’ American audiences really dig the stating of the obvious). The blood pressure is still pressuring, so we see some foreshadowing of The Patient living out the rest of this episode without flatlining, but you never can really tell with these shows. Keep watching!
More dramatic music as the nurse begins a barrage of questions. Are you pregnant? Do you use drugs or alcohol? Are you sexually active? The questions are each answered in a droning tone, “No.”We now hear a voice-over of The Patient saying in her mind, If only my life were so interesting.
“Do you have any medical conditions?” the nurse questions.
The Patient feels ‘IT’ must be stated, her constant friend who is always with her, whether ‘IT ‘ hangs out in the background or screams to the point of drowning The Patient out. “Um I do have a problem.” The words rush forth. “I have OCD and I’m terrified of going to doctors in case they find something wrong with me and I’d rather not know. That’s why I haven’t been to the doctor before now.” During this startling revelation, one that would make the incestuous secrets revealed in V.C. Andrews novels pale in comparison, we hear soap opera-type of music. The nurse is kind and reassures The Patient that things will be just fine….and then The Cup is produced. A flourish of dramatic music as the nurse announces she needs a specimen and points The Patient to the restroom down the hall. The Patient goes towards this sanctuary but she finds herself thwarted. Organ music, the sort used in silent movies to denote villains and dastardly deeds plays at intervals. A young cleaning woman and her cart is blocking the entrance. She stares down The Patient, who granted isn’t sporting her most charming-about-to-meet-God-dying-swan-look. Her curly hair is sticking straight up reminiscent of Einstein. The Patient, tall and plump, is the diminutive one, not quite sure how to handle this situation. She, unable to meet the eye of anyone for more than a couple of moments stared more towards the bathroom than directly at her obstacle. The camera pans out a bit and goes back and forth between nemesises, sounding the organ at each point.
Finally our heroine speaks. “Is the bathroom closed?”
“You need in here?”
The woman moves her cart out of the way, and The Patient thanks her. This is a public service message tucked into the script interpreted as, “Just because you’re among the walking dead doesn’t mean your manners should also be on their last legs too.” We expect this idea to be so popular it will span generations, be woven into samplers, and sell many Blu-Ray discs.
The Patient heads towards the handicapped stall preferred by most portly women when not needed. At The Network, we want to get a reward for positive portrayals of mentally ill persons, but sometimes an artist must pursue the artistic muse, that fire of creativity, which results in a crude sketch of Howard Hughes incarnated into the mind of our heroine.
The patient unscrews the cap. “What is it that makes capturing your own urine in a container so fascinating?” says the voiceover of The Patient. We hear a tinkling of piano keys and cymbals to drown out the sound of The Patient voiding. She fastens the lid on her handiwork, washes her hands and the bottle for good measure, then out into the frightening world of the hospital once again.
Conferring around the writers and producers of ER, we come to the conclusion that Emily Post never mentioned manners or propriety in regards to brandishing urine specimens in front of a live studio audience. We decide to have The Patient conduct herself with discretion in the matter (after all, we’re hoping she’ll win an Emmy). The Patient hides her ‘prize’ with both hands holding it in a vise against her stomach. We infer her thoughts in the matter as thus: “If the golden hue of regular urine be offensive to the eye, perhaps this color will be twice as bad.” The secret liquid in her hands, at the risk of sounding vulgar, looks as though one has mixed Red Bull energy drink with tea. This is partly due to a urinary analgesic that she uses and the disease itself.
A small office is where The Patient is shown to give her contribution. A plump African-American woman accepts the gift by telling her to set the cup down in the sort of plastic tray they give hospital patients to spit. (A little note from the writers and producers of the show: As we at The Network have stated before, we are committed to diversity, blah blah, etc., but the head writer feels that unless the person of color is speaking Swahili, has a Jamaican accent, or can mimic Flava Flav, to describe every person who isn’t WASPy “seems kinda racist, kinda.” So we only offer up one token African-American to show our commitment to whatever we committed to, but there are actually three in this series. In other words, we are afraid we would sound racist when we didn’t mean to be).
Flava Flav of Public Enemy
He isn’t just a brother,
He is THE BROTHER!
Then the blond nurse leads her to her room. “Taps” is playing in the background now. The Patient sits down on her bed and the nurse brings her a gown. “You need to take your shirt and bra off and put on this in case he needs am x-ray ….”
“WHAT?!” cries our heroine. We hear the sound of a banging down of keys on a piano. “Is that routine?” The Patient’s voice shows an escalating panic, which makes one curious whether she will run away, collapse, or maybe even fight.
“It’s just in case,” the nurse reassures her and leaves. It appears this episode ER is quickly turning into Girls Gone Wild: Hospital Edition. But no, the actress who plays The Patient wishes to be seen as tasteful; therefore, she exudes to the audience the modesty of Botticeli’s Venus as she quickly dons the hospital gown.
A male nurse comes in and introduces himself. Wow, he doesn’t even seem gay, thinks The Patient (Diversity strikes again! A male nurse AND not even gay. Take that, Stereotypes! Mind you if I had any say in character development, I’d have him so campy people would think he’s the incantation of Liberace or a character from La Cage Aux Follies…Just saying). He tells them that the doctor will be there shortly and that The Patient could watch TV until then.
The TV is flat screen and can be pulled up close by a patient waiting for the doctor to come and pronounce her dead. Voiceover says, “This wouldn’t be such a bad place to stay if a doctor isn’t around to mess with you.” The Patient has no interest in watching TV, but mindlessly flipping through the channels as her mind ponders deep thoughts is something to do. Oh Ellen is on. Flip, flip, flip. Wonder what Scott would do in such a situation as this, she thinks of a fellow blogger with OCD who doesn’t seem totally !@#$%^ by being afraid of everything unlike herself. He wouldn’t have waited long enough to be compelled to go to the ER instead of a doctor, you dumbass. He wouldn’t think he had diabetes/kidney failure/ cancer/AIDS. Oh well, different strokes for different folks. Then her thoughts flip channel and she thinks of all the times she’s wished she was dead in passing. Oh. No. I DIDN’T MEAN IT GOD! What if it’s true that you have to be careful what you wish for because you might just get it. What if I’m about to get what I deserve, and…..and……
….And the doctor comes in shutting off all irrational and rational thought. “I’m Dr. Boring,” he announces good-naturedly over dramatic musical chords.
Dr. Boring… Are you for real?
We at the Network feel we should interject here that once Clooney left the show, we had some trouble getting A List talent. But then we couldn’t even get C List writers after the show was cancelled, and yet we defiantly kept recording . Hence we have characters named Dr. Boring and The Patient. Que sera, and if you don’t like it, change the channel. Some station somewhere must be playing Saved by the Bell. By the way, anyone have Screech’s porn effort? Anyone? No? Oh, well, my friend, The Rodrigo, has a super crush on him, but never mind.
Dr. Boring has been informed that The Patient has OCD and a phobia of doctors that’s bigger than the state of California, but he seems like such a kind soul. The Patient says for fear of causing offense, “It’s not that I don’t like doctors. I’m afraid of knowing I have some terrible disease…I’d rather just not know.” May the audience agree there’s nothing more silly than an avoidant personality, great material though perhaps?
“May I listen to your breathing?” Dr. Boring doesn’t want to freak out the nice mentally unstable patient. No sudden furious ‘doctoring,’ for which The Patient is extremely grateful. He listens to her lungs and seems not to be disturbed at his findings. And then…
The results are in! Cue drumroll! And the winner of America’s Got a Kidney Infection issssssssss The Patient! Cue confetti falling. And the award is a generic antibiotic prescription! “You can have a follow-up in three days at Dr. Suchnsuch’s office. But,” says Dr. Boring, seeing the fear in The Patient’s eyes. “But you don’t have to.”
“If you aren’t better in a few days come back. The Cypro might not wipe out the infection completely or we may have to do some x-rays to rule out other problems like kidney stones.”
Cue yet another bout of dramatic music as The Patient asks dramatically, “Do you think there’s something terribly wrong with me?”
Dr. Boring is matter of fact. “I don’t think so.”
As the doctor is about to leave, he says to The Mother, “She’s tough staying away this long. Her urine was really dirty.” No doubt The Patient’s mother inwardly beamed with pride.
For more diversity than you could possibly shake a stick at, this part of the show is dedicated with reverence to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, jr., who said in his famous speech, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty I’m free at last!
“I’m free! I’m getting out of this without them finding something terribly wrong with me. Freeeeeeeee!” thinks The Patient, not believing she is going to walk out of those sliding glass doors with minimal trauma. Hallelujahs are sung in the background. The blond nurse’s parting words to The Patient’s thanks is “Remember doctors can help you get better if you do have a disease.”
Whatever! I want to go to McDonald’s drive-thru and get an Orange Lava Burst Hi-C drink and hope I don’t vomit it up.
After the illness
Two weeks later The Patient is telling of her ordeal, and though she now is recovered the memory remains so fresh that she lets not a single droplet of urine pass without inspection for blood. She has also taken to sleeping with a Barbie doll, as though among Barbie’s lengthy resume over the years, warding off urogenital diseases and causing regression in 32 year-olds are new jobs. She omits this last tidbit, sleeping with a Barbie doll due to the general idea that her death is imminent might be a little embarrassing.
“And so what did you learn from this?” ask the therapist
“Well, I learned that I ought to have a doctor…Yes, that I ought to.”
“You should have a doctor. You would feel better knowing you had a clean bill of health.”
“Duly noted,” The Patient replies. “But doubt I will anytime soon.” Cue wacky music that fades out as we enter our final scene.
It turns out that the hospital didn’t file her Medicaid, so they will have to sort it out with the hospital for her “Level 3 care” Level 3? We at The Network would hate to see what Level 1 care would be. A slap on the back and a, “You take care now and don’t die?”
When our heroine looks at the bill that thankfully will be paid for her, she is more than startled. “ $1033.00! MOTHER F-F…”The theme from Psycho plays as we fade to black.