2017 A To Z Challenge – J

Challenge2017

When I was looking at others’ A to Z Challenge ideas, searching for inspirational prompts, I didn’t always read the complete posts. I thought it might be from a fan of legalization of marijuana, when I chose
JOINT SUPPORT,
as the title of the post for the letter

Letter J

The wife has tried for years to get knee replacement surgery. Her doctor asked her one time if she was a good Catholic, but her days of kneeling are long past.  Finally, she got referred to the Orthopedic Surgeon who replaced my left shoulder 10 years ago.  He now specializes in knees.

She was told that the first one would be about a year, and the second, six months after. Government funding cutbacks stretched the first to almost 18 months.  Despite hours of hospital interviews and paperwork, they still managed to f….oul things up.

Despite clearly marking that she was allergic to pineapple, they served her fruit salad for every lunch and supper – with pineapple in it. (I loved it.) One night, supper was sweet and sour chicken – with pineapple in the sauce.  She says that, without me bringing her fresh fruit and vegetables, and Tim Horton’s Tim-Bits (do-nut holes) and coffee, she’d have starved.  She lost almost 10 pounds in a 3-day stay.

She also impressed upon her surgeon, that she was allergic to the nickel in (surgical) stainless steel, and insisted that he use sutures, instead of the far more common staples. They still teach suturing techniques in doctor school, but her surgeon has never practiced much.  She had hoped for small, delicate stitches, perhaps in a soft blue silk.  Instead, he put in 18 big, ghastly, bride-of-Frankenstein’s turkey-trussers, with black fishing line.  Still, it healed nicely.

When I had my more complex shoulder surgery, the arm was put in a sling, and I was told not to use it for six weeks, as it healed. Only then could the long, painful process of stretching and strengthening rehab begin.  Knee surgeries have become so easy and common, that she was expected to get out of bed, stand and shuffle a couple of steps, the day after surgery.

I worried about the Princess and the Pea wife not doing painful exercises, but have been pleasantly surprised.  Although she had already been looking forward to having the second knee done, it’s possible that she’s not looking forward quite so hard now.

Flash Fiction #119

a-door

PHOTO PROMPT © CEayr

LET ME IN

It really was an unpretentious door. He remembered its far side, and thought of P.T.Barnum’s sign, “This way to the great Egress.”  Phineas said that no-one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public, trusting the unschooled to exit a portal they couldn’t return through.

This door did not conceal any cheap, threadbare sideshow though. Rather, inside were Peace, Joy and Escape, everything a man could ask for, only, not the Reality which men are forced to return to.

He smiled as he continued driving to his appointment at the rehab center. He and Reality had a date.

***

Go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

***

Click on the title to hear the doo-wop group, The Sensations sing about Let Me In, in 1962.

Flash Fiction #59

Addiction

PHOTO PROMPT © G.L. MacMillan

WHITE RABBIT

As a little girl, Alice had enjoyed visiting her grandparents. She often spent time in the old storage shed behind their house. Her path to the back was blocked by the swivel frame of a mirror-stand.

When she was 13, she realized she could access the rear simply by stepping through the empty oval. She found a set of shelves with colored bottles and vials. A sign on one said, “Eat me”. Another was labeled, “Drink me.” Others said, “Snort me,” and “Smoke me.” She obeyed them all.

“And that,” she told the rehab psychiatrist, “is how I got addicted.”

***

Go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

#487

Triviana

Damn!  I appear to have invented a neologism, a new word.  Ana is a collection of miscellaneous facts and information about any given subject.  To add it as a suffix to a proper noun identifies what the information is about, like Americana.  Look out folks!  Triviana simply means another serving of Seinfeld, a blog about a bunch of things in general, and nothing in particular.

During the recent American election, I saw several ads on my Detroit-based American TV channels, decrying the intention to build a second bridge to link Canada and the USA there.  The ads said that traffic is down, and so is the economy!  But the economy should rebound, and the time to build a bridge is before you need it, not after it’s too late.

After the elections, it was revealed that the Arab-American who owns the Ambassador Bridge had spent $300 million, to produce and air ads to convince Michigan voters that they couldn’t afford another bridge.  Saner heads prevailed, and they voted to go ahead anyway.  If he could afford to spend $300 million to try to keep a monopoly, imagine how much he must rake in, just from that bridge.

The son now works in the same building that I did, forty years ago.  The company I worked for is long gone, and his company now occupies it.  I had to pick him up after work one Saturday morning, and he convinced the plant manager to give me a short tour.  It’s the same….only different.

The plastics-parts company he works for provides bits and pieces to a company 15 miles away, which produces 4-, 6-, 8-wheeled and tracked, amphibious ATV type vehicles.  They have a contract with the American government to design and build a Lunar Rover, for an upcoming mission.  None of the parts the son produces go toward that vehicle.  Those are one-of-a-kind, specialty parts.  Still, it’s impressive to look up and think, I have a tenuous connection to that thing.

The bitchers try their best to make it simple and straightforward, and it’s never their fault.  Almost inevitably, there is layer after layer of complexity, and usually there’s guilt and responsibility in every direction other than the one the accusing finger points in.

A Toronto couple had their 25-year-old son move back in with them.  They took him to the hospital, and he came out dead.  They want to sue the emergency ward doctor who didn’t get him to ICU quickly enough.  They want to sue the ICU physician who didn’t administer enough of the correct medicine soon enough.  They want to sue the administrator who placed him in the regular ICU, rather than the Cardiac unit.  They say that they want to know why their son died.

Maybe it’s because he was a drug addict.  Maybe it’s because this was the third time this year that he’d been trucked to a hospital with an overdose.  Maybe it’s because his internal organs were so damaged that they were shutting down.  Maybe it’s because they didn’t put him in rehab.  Maybe it’s because they didn’t check on him in time.  Nah!  It must be somebody else’s fault!  Lawyers ho!

The case of the young man who fatally stabbed a gun-toting Negro in the park has finally ground to a halt, and gone away.  It would have been nice if the authorities had declared him innocent, or stated that his self-defence was justified.  Instead, the Crown Attorney’s office released a statement that, “The Crown does not feel, at this time, that they can proceed with a case, with any assurance of a conviction.”  So, it’s not about any real-world justice, it’s all about lawyers’ Win/Loss Ratio.  Thanks for thinking of us.

They let Justin Bieber perform at the half-time show at the Grey Cup football game.  That’s the end of Canadian football for this year.  Even with domed stadiums, we can’t keep playing as long as the American league.  Bieber got thoroughly booed.  To be fair, the booing was more about the choice of entertainment.

They may have been trying to attract a wider viewership, but the mostly over-thirty male audience was not impressed.  Poor Justin.  He was so upset that he had to accept some meansnothing award from the Prime Minister, half-wearing a pair of denim overalls.  You can’t take the yahoo out of the boy, but you can take the yahoo boy and get the Americans to pay him to live there.

Two local families, each with a twelve-year-old female Bieber-maniac, went on-line and spent $450 to get them tickets to a Justin Beiber concert.  They carefully checked everything, and downloaded and printed the bar-code confirmations.  It wasn’t until the two were giddily racing around one’s house, spelling out their hero’s name in song, B I E B E R, that the parents realized they’d been scammed.  The companies each father worked for donated money to get them valid tickets.  Damn!  I’m disappointed that they’re not.

Just when you think that political correctness has reached its peak, or nadir, someone takes it to a new ridiculous level.  A local mother, whose son has a nut allergy, is petitioning the city to cut down the oak trees in front of, and near, her son’s school – with no proof that acorns affect him.  To remove these trees would cost tens of thousands of dollars, and would set a precedent which could force the city to remove all oaks at all city schools and parks, at a cost of millions.  Can you beat the stupid and entitlement off someone??  Where’s that shitty diaper and my ski-mask?