DailyAfirmation (dailyafirmation) wrote,

My physical and Kurt's passing...

My day started off with my annual physical. My appointment was for 8:30. I arrived at 8:25.

At 9:00, still in the waiting area, I got up to confirm with the receptionist that my appointment was at 8:30. Just as she started responding, the door opened and the nurse called me to the back.

She took my blood pressure, which was high. Surprise, surprise. Gee, I wonder what caused that.

Amy, the doc, (P.A. to be accurate) asked a bunch of questions about my lifestyle (not the gay lifestyle), and then felt me up in all the right places to assess the general worthiness of my 47-year old casing.

This concluded with the "go ahead and drop your drawers, turn to the side, and cough for me" check, followed by her totally ignoring the "Exit Only" tattoo at the top of the crack of my ass, and plunging her finger into the abyss. When I grunted a little, she said, "Be a man, girl." Okay, that didn't really happen. I didn't grunt.

All surfaces and crevices seemed to have passed muster, and this part of the physical concluded with a nurse coming in and "taking a graphical representation of the heart’s rhythm and the sum of the electrical forces of the heart measured in 12 different directions" -- also known as an EKG.

I asked her to shave as little of my chest and leg hair as possible, as I leave for Ft. Lauderdale on Friday morning, and I don't want to be a blotched beach boy down there.

I said to her, "After all, it is all about how you look; not about how healthy you are." She laughed and rewarded me by completing the procedure with no shaved spots at all. Praise Jesus; amen.

The last thing on the agenda was to get my lab work done, and after receiving my referral for my colonoscopy from Amy, I walked over to the lab.

There, I took a seat while "Attila the Hun" finished up with the patient before me. This nurse/phlebotomist/whatever is not a happy camper, and she is huge, which is a quality in a nurse I struggle with. But I digress into that pot and kettle area, so will cease and desist.

While sitting here, I looked for something to read, passing on these three choices:

"Outdoor Life,"

Under it all, I saw the book, Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss, and picked it up. Now, I have, of course, heard of this book, but I have never seen it.

I was really taken aback by the picture on the page that first asks, "Do you like green eggs and ham?" Both the eggs and the ham are green!

In all of my years of picturing this, I've always pictured the eggs green, of course, but not that ham. I have to tell you, this rocked my world a little bit.

It got me to thinking about whether or not there was a better way, grammatically, to indicate what in mathematical terms is represented by the distributive property.

The distributive property in mathematics says: a * (b + c) = (a * b) + (a * c), which when applied in this instance, becomes: green (eggs + ham) = green eggs + green ham. Mathematics is beautiful stuff.

Grammar and punctuation? Not so much. The distributive property clearly breaks down when it comes to adjectives and nouns.

How can we more clearly communicate that the entire package is green? None of these options looks good:
  • "Do you like green (eggs and ham)?" makes it look like the parenthetical expression "eggs and ham" is telling you something about the word "green."

  • "Do you like green, eggs and ham?" looks so wrong, and when read sounds like it's implying a series of three things: green, eggs, and ham, but presented without the final serial comma.

  • "Do you like green eggs and green ham?" sounds redundant, but I'm afraid is the best solution.

Claim: Dr. Seuss wrote Green Eggs and Ham after being challenged by his editor to produce a book using fewer than fifty different words.

Status: True.

From the doctor's office, I went to my eye doctor's office as they had called me yesterday to tell me that my new glasses were ready. In retrospect, what they actually said was, "Your lenses are in for your computer glasses," which became significant only after driving out there.

When I arrived, there were two people being helped by the two people who work in "the glasses section" of the office, so I leaned against a wall and waited to be served.

I looked at a guy leaning against the mirrored wall directly across from me, and thought, "He looks a little chubby." Then thought, "I am not really attracted to him."

Then, "Well, it could just be that he's not my type. Oh, but he is my type; I like dark-haired and hairy, and he is."

And finally I thought, "This is a conversation a straight person would never have in his head."

Both me, and my reflection in that mirror, looked over at Mike, the guy who works there and helped me order my glasses a couple of weeks ago, when he said, "Your lenses are in for your computer glasses, but your other new glasses aren't in yet."

This is significant only in that he has to take the lenses out of the glasses I'm currently wearing (and will throw them away) to use these frames to put the computer glasses lenses in. And I can't very well give up these, as they are my only pair of glasses, until my other new glasses are in.

Summary: Poor intra-office communication resulting in a wasted trip by the customer.

I finally got to work at 10:45, and saw this subject line on the most recent e-mail in my "URGENT" inbox: "Sad News: Kurt Heins."

Kurt is my colleague, a fellow technical writer in my department, who in October of 2004 received the diagnoses of what was causing those excruciating migraines he had begun to have: Brain Cancer. Prognosis: Six Months.

Kurt is one of the reasons I'm currently enrolled in the MS in Technical Communications program at State. He, and another colleague, had both completed the program, and had mentioned it in a department meeting we had two summers ago. I didn't even know the program existed, and jumped right on it after learning of their experiences.

So, tomorrow, in my regular obituary readings, I'll, regretfully, see a familiar name. My hope is that the viewing (if there will be one) will be Wednesday night, and the funeral on Thursday. I won't go to the viewing, but would like to attend the funeral. I'm afraid it'll be Friday, on which day I have a 7AM flight out of Raleigh.

The book club met today, and we had lots of laughs. It felt good to laugh today.

I had my monthly "one-on-one" meeting with my manager, and was tempted to call him and say, "Mel, I really don't feel like meeting today. We went over most of the stuff on my June monthly highlight report at our last meeting since we had had to postponed it a couple of times."

I decided not to, though, because the truth of the matter is that we "just talk" a lot during these meetings. It's scheduled for an hour, but the "actual business" to take care of in the meeting can easily be done in 15 or 20 minutes.

In retrospect, this was probably the best decision of the day. Mel and I talked a lot about Kurt, and the discussion moved into the realm of each of our "philosophies of death and dying," which were surprisingly (to me) similar, and then he took us, a natural progression, really, into the subject of religion, which we also, and I was very surprised about this, had frightening similar thoughts about.

The meeting brought a "personal" or "human" touch to the business day. I needed that.

During the day, I had two conversations with Irene by phone, who was lost not in Yonkers, but in Greenville, NC. And lost not in the physical sense, but in the context of trying to penetrate the walls of academia.

I had an extremely productive 2-hour meeting with Michelle. We went through the WIM PPD in preparation for their audit coming up at the end of August. We ate fresh black cherries while we worked, and I tried to keep my mind off Kurt.

I stopped at K-Mart on the way home, and picked up my re-filled prescription of 60 800-milligram generic Motrin tablets.

The evening plan was to meet Eric (innoman) and Kevin (av8rdude) at Helios and then go to Flex for Karaoke.

Early in the evening, Kevin checked in, running a fever, which I hated to hear, and bowing out of Flex, but preserving the possibility of meeting at Helio's, if he needed to grab a light dinner.

I lied down for a nap at about 7:45, setting my alarm for 9PM. When it awoke me, I wanted more sleep.

At the computer, Eric IMed me about what time I was going out. I expressed my ambivalence about going out tonight, and he replied, "I can take it or leave it."

We left it.

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