Saturday, May 16, 2009

An Alternative Means of Entertainment......

Call it schedule interruptus (from the Latin meaning "something came up"), which dropped out of the sky upon Margaret and me this morning like a bag of wet cement. Over the course of the past several years I have had issues with intermittent back spasms. Usually the spasm comes, sets up shop in my low back for a day or two, and then moves on to torture some other less fortunate SOB.

Wednesday, a combination of too much time spent driving (almost 280 miles R/T between Circle Seven and a court appearance in Atlantic City) and crouching behind the plate during our season-opening softball game wreaked havoc on my lumbar spine. I have been set upon by the mother of all spasms, which arrived Wednesday and has decided apparently to stay through the weekend at least.

This morning, when the pain reached an unacceptable level, Margaret and I drove to Somerset Medical Center for a little TLC, ER style. Let me pass along this piece of unsolicited and wholly idiotic advice. If one must go to the ER and one resides in suburbia like the Missus and me, then make the trip between 4:00 and 6:00 a.m. Upon our arrival there was but one other patient waiting. I was examined, poked, prodded, x-rayed (please call our toll-free # to order your picture packages) and given something wonderful for pain. About two and one-half hours after arriving at the ER, we are already home. None the worse for wear and armed with two prescriptions: one for Flexeril and one for Percocet.

I have a sneaking suspicion that once the pain meds that are presently pulsating through my body have run their course, pain will return. I am equally confident however that it shall do what it always does, which is slowly abate and then disappear completely. It shall come back at some point - it is as relentless as the rain - but given that this is the first time that it has driven me to seek emergent medical attention, I am willing to wager it will not return with equal vim and vigor

One has to appreciate the difference between living in the 'burbs and living in a city at a moment like this. This morning, Margaret and me - a couple of middle-class suburbanites went to the ER because hubby's back was on the fritz. I can envision the mad scramble of the staff in the ER of any hospital in New York City or Chicago or L.A. to get to treat "bad back pain guy", which likely represents a nice change of pace from gunshot wound guy, stab wound girl and the rest of the inhabitants one would reasonably anticipate encountering there in the ER at 4:00 a.m.

And as an added bonus, I am envisioning the smiling countenances of my soon-to-be former partners when they receive notification of the bill and the payment of benefits through the firm's health insurer. I was treated so well this morning at the ER - and a big thanks to one/all who had the unadulterated joy of dealing with me at 4:30 or so - that I have half a mind to schedule a trip there every day this week......just for sh*ts and giggles - prior to my formal separation date, which is now only six calendar days away.


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