Tuesday, December 18, 2018

worth getting up for

It was worth getting up for -- another medical appointment, this one to the dentist. At my age, medical appointments are wearying, annoying, and intrusive. I have a distinct whispering in the mental ear that says, "Go fuck yourself" when it comes to fixing stuff, whether real or imagined. The appointment was for 8:30 and of course I was early, thus fulfilling my part in the medical assembly line.

Anyway, I had a dentist appointment. My younger son drove me to the office ... no sense in trusting me with his sassy pick-up truck. I went, checked in, and sat in the waiting area, grumbling without seeming to grumble. I could have been sleeping, after all.

On the walls were some new art works -- home-grown stuff that caught my attention. It was human and not terribly good, but it was better than the sexless prints that medical offices often display. Sexless prints and medical brochure offerings ... the kind of things I don't like seeing in medical offices. Hell, I'm there for medical reasons: I don't need to be reminded of advancing age, diminution of capabilities, and a rising up of what no longer can be done.

If the painting in the waiting room caught my attention by its human-ness, the small needle-point adorning the work space I was shown to really caught my attention. It was perhaps eight inches square -- blue and red lettering on a white background. The words on the needle point were direct:

It made my day!

The dental hygienist -- a woman with five kids ... two by an early heterosexual marriage and three with her later female partner -- explained the picture to me. It came from a patient as a gift and related to encouragements the hygienist gave to the patient in the course of cleaning the patient's teeth. How it all fit together, I'm not sure. All I know is that seeing that encouragement encouraged me to stop grumbling and start smiling for reasons I cannot and don't really want to explain.

It gave me faith in the human race and in the life I had lived.

Breathe like a sandwich.



  1. Oy!

    You might want to give your dentist a head’s up. It’s not a tribute to the Mindfulness Movement, or an American Zen trope. “Breath like a sandwich” is an insult to Asian woman.

    Check the Urban Dictionary.

    Sandwich Breath
    The breath usually associated with Asian women, smelling like a sandwich.

    “Did you talk to Mrs. Kim today? Straight sandwich breath, bro.”

    Quibble with “breath” vs. “breathe” or you want, your dentist and, by extension, you are asking for trouble.

    When you run a business, you have to do your due diligence.

    The NY Asians I know will go straight to local politicians. They’ll take a softer approach, but business will be lost.

    1. Andy -- You are wiser than I, I guess. It didn't occur to me for a second to parse and analyze. So it goes with old age, perhaps: The issue is whole as it stands and its echoes are merely echoes.

      Sorta like Joshu's mu: Does a dog have Buddha Nature or not? At one point Joshu replied, "mu!, meaning "no" or "not." At another he replied, "yes!" Either way, the issue was whole and Joshu was not wrong.

      Old age ... far too literal, perhaps.

    2. I didn’t expect a thank you, but got a defensive acknowledgement using age and “Zen,” but not laziness. Whatever....

      But, using a Koan to hide behind. LOL!

      And I thought the president was shameless for hiding behind Fox News. I guess foxes are good to hide behind.

  2. "Go fuck yourself" aren't exactly the words that came to mind the last time I went to the doctor, but I can definitely sympathise with the feeling.

    After my previous consultation, when my doctor had given me a list of more than 10 vaccine jabs and now asked me if I had taken them, I politely replied "Doctor, you can forget vaccination, no way I'll inject all the nasty chemicals listed in their composition. Oh, and by the way, Thimerosal is still used in at least one of the vaccines you listed (she had told me "not anymore". I didn't see all the vaccines composition, to be honest, but the few I researched were scary enough; caustic soda and muriatic acid, to name only a couple.

    I then asked her if we could just run some exams, but she declined saying now she would only ask for exams after I visited a psychiatrist.

    "Go fuck yourself" might have been the more honest reply, but I held myself and simply replied "that won't happen either".

    "Guess I won't be seeing you again" also came to mind, but I just took a long breath, shook her hand and said "thank you for your time, Doctor, goodbye".

    Breathe... Works for patience as well.