Wednesday, January 08, 2014

D-I-Y Me?

A little stroll through the aisles of your local pharmacy makes it clear that we have now entered the wonderful world of medical do-it-yourself-ism.  There are test kits for everything from warts to pregnancy.  DIY health care is sure to save millions of dollars in unnecessary co-pays to doctors, but there’s a darker side to this story. 

 "Uh, hello?  I just used your "So You Think You Have a Brain Tumor" test kit and I think I... What?  State my symptoms?  Well, ok.  Excruciating pain in the left side of my frontal lobe, seeing flashing lights and, oooohhh…paaasssingggg…ooouut…”

“Whoopsie, that was a close one.   Now where was I?  Oh, yes, flashing lights, vomiting and severe ringing in my ears.  The test kit says I most likely have a brain tumor. The cute little picture of the brain turned pink when I…well, you know.” 

“What?  Cough into the phone?  But I don't need to cough?  A matter of routine?  Alright, if you say so.  Aaahemm, aaahemm!  I'm sorry, that's the best I can do, I really don't feel a need to cough.  It's just that I used your brain tumor kit from the drug store and it came up positive, so I figured I'd better call and find out what to do next before it gets worse.” 

“Place two fingers on the carotid artery?  I think my arteries are good.  It’s just I've got a big presentation due on Monday at work and I don't want to be passing out in front of the suits from corporate, so I...  What’s that?  Prick my finger and time how fast the blood clots?  Are you kidding?  For a brain tumor?” 

“Hey, wait, is this the right number?  I dialed the number on the back of the kit like it said.  This IS the right number?   And don't forget to sterilize the lancet?  Cheesy crackers!  What lancet?  I don't have a lancet.  Can I use a really sharp fork?  I've got a really sharp fork here in the drawer, but there's crusted egg yolk on it, can you wait a minute while I wash it off?  I'm putting you on hold, don't hang up, ok, don't hang up.”

“You're not ‘programmed’ to hold?  Heeey, am I talking to a real person?  Well, you don’t sound like it.  Ok, ok, don’t get huffy.  You say I should use the complimentary lancet in the test kit?  I didn’t see a lancet in the box?  Oh, here it…yikes, this sucker's sharp!  Crap!  Can you hold, I just stuck myself with your stupid lancet and…  What?  Oh yeah, duh, start timing, right.  No, I don't have a watch with a second hand.  Alright, alright.  One Mississippi, two Mississippi…”

“Ok, fifteen minutes and…and…forty-seven seconds.  Now what, I‘m getting pretty light-headed here?  What?  Did I remember to sterilize the lancet?  Oh, crap... What’s that you say?  For my convenience, there's a nice selection of  ‘So You Think You Have Tetnus’ test kits at my local pharmacy?  Yeah, thanks, you have a nice day, too.”

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At Wednesday, April 02, 2014 9:43:00 PM, Blogger Danny Dunne said...

Very funny, Gloria! Many great lines. Loved "cheesy crackers!"

And you used my favorite word: Yikes, this sucker's sharp! Crap! Can you hold, I just stuck myself with your stupid lancet and… What? Oh yeah, duh, start timing, right. No, I don't have a watch with a second hand. Alright, alright. One Mississippi, two Mississippi…”

And a fine closing paragraph.

Sorry I just now ran across this--I seldom visit Blogger,as I always get their notice about using an woefully out of date browser.

At Wednesday, April 02, 2014 10:52:00 PM, Blogger gloria said...

Hey, thanks, Danny. Yes, I thought it was about time to post something else here. I'd been getting comments wondering if the writer of this blog was deceased perhaps.
BTW, which favorite word would that be?
Well, I'm glad you ran across this. I seldom visit Blogger myself, as is evidenced by my infrequent posts. I'm so in awe of writers who make their living by blogging. I'd starve to death.

At Thursday, April 03, 2014 12:17:00 AM, Blogger Danny Dunne said...

Favorite word: crap. I'm with you, Gloria--I'd never make it as a blogger.

Why don't you post this piece at Facebook?

At Thursday, April 03, 2014 8:39:00 AM, Blogger gloria said...

Ah yes, crap, it's such a satisfying word. I've been trying to post some of my older pieces on facebook, but I don't want to over-do the frequency. Keep 'em wanting more, you know. Also, with this piece, what did you think about my using brain tumor? I'm concerned it could offend some readers, seems I've heard of more than a few people actually having them lately. I don't want to be an insensitive humorist. Which means I'll never make it as a humorist, blog or no blog. I think at one time I substituted brain fog for brain tumor. Not as good, but...

At Thursday, April 03, 2014 11:08:00 AM, Blogger Danny Dunne said...

Yes, I've been holding back on posting anything more at Facebook for partly the same reasons. Have also decided not to post anything new in case I want to submit somewhere. (Sent three things out about a month ago--the rejections should be here any day now.)

I didn't find the brain tumor reference at all offensive.

Excuse me--I've got to prove to Blogger that's I'm not a robot.


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