I had my annual physical last week, which has over the years been reduced to a yearly platform for cheap comedy. Less cheap than it used to be, since my co-payment keeps going up.
First come the delicate negotiations with the nurse. She tells me to put on one of those ridiculous gowns where everything but your fat ass is covered. Those seem silly and degrading, and even if I am undergoing surgery I try to wake up in the middle and remove it. So I of course refuse, and opt for my underwear instead. She measures my height, and she starts to write down 6-foot-two, but I keep her there as I lean in every direction until it comes out 6-foot-two and a quarter. I almost fell over, which caused her to write a few things that she would not show me. My weight isn’t bad, especially when I tell her that my watch weighs 5 lbs. She again made a couple notations that did not look like subtraction. She takes my blood pressure, which is exemplary, and I keep her there, threatening to walk out in my underwear unless she agrees with me. In the interest of decorum, she does, but I can see HER blood pressure might be rising dangerously. Then, inexplicably, even though I have been technically alive for the past 10 minutes, she takes my pulse. I figure I must be exhibiting dangerous vital signs, but even so I can’t resist shouting out indiscriminate numbers to try and throw her off. She looks at her watch for an entire minute, but I am still alive.
Then the doctor finally shows up, we shake hands, and he gives me a cold as usual. He says, “Time to check your ear,” and I bend over the table, misunderstanding him. He sticks in that cold ear-checking device which is shaped like a Pez dispenser. Sticks it in my ear I mean. He tells me something that I can’t hear because there is a Pez dispenser in my ear, but I bend over again just in case. He puts the ear thing away and tells me to open wide. My mouth he means. I say “Ah,” and not in a good way, as he puts that popsicle stick in my mouth, which my tongue finds depressing. I picture him eating a big fat popsicle before he sees each patient. Then he puts the freezing stethoscope on various parts of my body as if I am a lumpy checkerboard. He tells me to cough, which I have already been doing since he gave me the cold. He doesn’t ask me to sneeze but I do anyway just in case.
He tells me to sit down, and whacks my knee cap with a little hammer as if I didn’t pay back a teensy weensy loan, and so I kick him in the nuts with my other foot and he stops. Then he says it’s time to check my prostate. I bend over again, and this time he reads me my rights ands slaps a set of handcuffs on me.
Then he sends me down to the lab where they tell me they are going to do a couple tests, draw my blood, and that I have to pee into a cup. First they hook my nipples up to a machine. I assumed that there was a similar machine hooked up to a chimpanzee’s nipples, and that after they treated me with this machine, my nipples would then take on the characteristics of the chimpanzee’s nipples, and vice versa, since I saw a similar thing on Gilligan’s Island once. But it turned out to be just an EKG. By the way, wouldn’t EKG stand for Electro- Kardiogram? Seems sort of Krispy Kreme-y kutesy to me. Anyway, it measures your heart function. I asked the tech a question: What if I have a heart transplant- wouldn’t I then be likely to fall in love with the former owner’s widow? The lab tech said not to move, especially my lips.
Then she hands me a little plastic cup and tells me to pee into it. I tell her I misunderstood what she said earlier, and that she better wash her coffee cup. The one they give me is like a little plastic shot glass- it takes me forever, since I suffer from anxiety that it is going to overflow. Then it’s time to draw blood. I tell her I’m afraid of needles- I don’t even like pine trees, and can’t she get the blood another way? She says she has to do it this way so I tell her that her rubber gloves make her look fat. She punches me in the nose and we don’t need the needle after all.
She sends me back up to the doctor’s office. He asks me if I smoke, and I reply only if I’m close to bursting into flames. He asks me if I do drugs, and I say why do you have anything? He asks me if I drink and I say I do get shit-faced but only in moderation. Then we discuss my medical history, which means didn’t I use some of these same jokes last year?
Incidentally, It is also recommended that you give your pet a thorough going over at least once a year, or every seven years, depending on your point of view. For instance, if you notice an unsightly discharge coming from the mouth area, that’s pretty much normal. Also, if you detect a foul odor coming from the coat, that means your dog probably sat on it.
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