Progress Report 6

Brian J. Sullivan

It has been rumored within certain circles of intelligentsia that I may be going mad. While I can't comment on my own sanity for fear of self-incrimination, I can point to several probable causes. The first of which is being housebound in a 300 square foot windowless apartment, bathed in artificial light, and breathing stale air. Then there is the steady diet of Hostess Ho Ho's and Krispy Kreme doughnuts and Mountain Dew soda. Surely trying to ignore the steady drip of the bathtub faucet does not help either as I toss and turn night after night. My madness may even come from watching hour upon hour of late night infomercials hawking new versions of snake oil: "Of course taking this product may cause intestinal bleeding, blurred vision, headaches, diarrhea, loss of appetite, ED, and a whole host of other possible side effects. So ask your doctor if it's right for you."

Three days before my doctor's appointment, I'm like an excited puppy anxiously awaiting my ride. A chance to go someplace. A chance to get out of the apartment. Ah, a breath of fresh air and sunlight as I hang my head out the car window at 70 miles per hour.

At the doctor's office, I mistakenly got into a debate with the nurse about the pain I'm still having in my foot. Before I knew what happened, I was picked off the examining table, body slammed to the cement floor, and received blows to all parts of my body. Nurse Ratchet was not letting up. Realizing I was at an extreme disadvantage, I saw no way out but to acquiesce to her demands. She threw a typed statement and pen to me (her foot still securely pressing against my throat). It read in part: "I, the undersigned, hereby acknowledge that under no circumstances is any injury, pain, or suffering I have ever gone through, am presently experiencing, or will experience in the future, is as painful as child birth is for womanhood" (I agreed under duress and signed a fake name). I climbed back onto the examining table just as the doctor was walking in. "Feeling any pain or discomfort today?" the doctor asked. I glanced over to nurse Ratchet lurking in the corner, and said, "No Doctor, I feel wonderful." He said, "Good, I'll see you again in one month." Walking out of his office, it occurred to me that I've just been gigged.

I have been losing a lot of muscle mass since my ability to exercise has been severely limited, if not impossible, on crutches. Then one late night, I was struck with a brilliant idea. I took an old pair of crutches and fitted the lower half of each with the spring mechanism from two pogo sticks. I call this new form of exercise "Spring Aerobics" and have begun working on an instructional video. Buns of Steel and Jane Fonda, look out! In addition, I have developed a complimentary line of reversible underwear for people on the go. (OK, that was a cheap one.)

One positive thing about being housebound is that I finally get to use up all my old canned goods, some dating from 1978. However, I don't seem to be losing any weight and my toes sticking out from my cast look like fat little sausages ready for the Weber grill.

I have 29 more days before I'll see the doctor again. I think I'll spend some quality time reading about childbirth.