I got an email the other day asking me where I’ve been and why I haven’t written anything in a while.
Well, to answer your question, I was busy learning a very valuable life lesson. You see, the other day I found out that slapping yourself – no matter how hard – does not cure nausea. It will however keep you from falling down. Let me explain.
The DR Headquarters are on the top floor of a building that doesn’t have an elevator. We get here the old fashioned way: feets and stairs. So it was that I was stomping up the stairs one night when an ebb of nausea swept over me. Determined not to be bested by the flow, I did what I thought wise – I stopped immediately.
This did not help. In fact, I began to feel like a hovercraft: I may not have been moving forward, but damned if I wasn’t moving! I tried to focus on one corner of the floor but failed horribly. Instead, I just found myself somehow spiraling towards the floor sure that …the… room… was….spinning? The logical quadrant of my brain began having an argument with my perception.
Logic: Hey, cut it out, man. We’re falling down.
Perception: Dude, the room is f**kin’ spinning, dude. It’s impossible not to fall down.
Logic: Nah, for real. A room can’t physically spin unless there’s a giant force spinning the entire building.
Perception: Like a giant!! If there’s a giant, then we should see him if we peek outside the window.
Logic: There’s no such thing as giants. Plus, we can’t peek out the window if we’re spiraling toward the floor.
Perception: Nah. Even if we were upright, we can’t find the window. Remember, the room is spinning.
And that’s how I ended up slapping myself.
A passer-by witnessed this but had to walk on like nothing had happened. Alas, what does one do when you find a man spinning on the spot while slapping himself in a stairwell at night?
As my perception slapped my logic and the passer-by giggled, I was combating my inner demons; trying to regain control of myself. I began pondering on whether I should make a
futile valiant attempt at climbing to the top or whether I should resign to my fate – and gravity – and go to a nearby clinic. Seeing as option b involved going downstairs and not up, I began to tumble down the steps towards medical salvation.
With help from NV and the DiaspoMobile™, we wound up at a 24 hour clinic. After going through some very senseless sign up procedure that involved no identification, I was told to go see a doc in Room 7.
Room 7 was actually labeled “Chief Medical Officer” with no room number or anything on it; so I really just chanced it and walked in to find a guy in a New York Knicks winter hat and a Barcelona t-shirt watching radio. Yes, I said “watching radio”: he had his little tuner on the desk and he was staring at it as it fizzed and crackled nothingness. He then turned to me and gave me the most “I-honestly-do-not-give-a-squirt-of-piss” glare. If I wasn’t looking sick and terrified by then, I surely did after the look. Then he shuffled my file on his desk and says:
I looked back at him like: “Isn’t it your job to tell me what’s wrong or are we switching roles here?”
Doc: OK, how are you feeling?
iCon: Nauseatic. About to throw up. I’ve been having migraines. Oh, and I may or may not have broken my finger the other day. None of these things are related.
Doc: (while scribbling notes) Do you have Diarrhea?
iCon: Not that I know off. I couldn’t make it to the pooper before I came here.
Doc: Hehe. You said “pooper”.
iCon: You’re 12.
Doc: (ignoring me while ripping out a sheet of paper) Go get this bloodwork done.
Just to be clear, the doctor – he who should be making sure I don’t die in the next few minutes – just sent me to do lab tests across the street in the middle of the night when I told him I could barely walk.
We get to the lab and the Lab Tech isn’t there. So now we’re going on a treasure hunt for a freakin’ doctor. Finally this guy shows up, waltzing happily, with a mouthful of ugali stashed in his left cheek saying “Nani mgonjwa?” (Who’s the sick one?)
A few clicks later, we’re in the lab and he tells me to sit down and roll my right sleeve up. Then get this, he asks “Do you have a problem with needles?” after sticking the damn syringe in. I thought I was not processing this whole experience properly. So I looked at my arm with a syringe stuck in it, and then looked up at this guy who was still chewing food smiling open-mouthed in between chomps. I had to ask him just how high he was at that point. He chuckled and said “Just enough.”
Bloodwork came in a little dirty; turns out I must have eaten whatever got NV sick so I get prescriptions for the medicines necessary and hobble towards the door. On my way out of the doc’s office, I remembered something.
iCon: “Whoa, wait, what about the migraines and the thumb?”
Doc: “The thumb I can’t help you with, but let me give you something for the headaches.”
iCon: “What do you mean you can’t help my thumb?”
Doc: “I don’t do x-rays. Talk to one of the guys in the morning. Here’s some pain pills though; should get you through the night. Don’t take too many.”
Just like that I got a week’s worth of severely addictive meds from a doctor who couldn’t care less in the middle of the night without so much as showing ID or spending a blue.
Anyway, I’m back, higher and better than ever; courtesy of your friendly neighborhood doctor.