My podcast partner, Scott (or as those of us closest to him say, “Scott”), sent me a message this morning inquiring as to the state of my health. To which query I replied, “Dying. Otherwise, all good.”
There was a moment of texting silence, after which he said, “We’ve spoken about this hobby of yours before. I don’t think it’s healthy.”
I was, naturally, quite taken aback by this assertion, as I’ve always considered dying to be the healthiest thing one could do, based on the unassailable logic that if one is dying, then one cannot yet be dead. And being “not dead” is, quite possibly, the exact opposite of unhealthy. Note, of course, that being “not dead” is not the same as being “un-dead,” a designation that carries with it all the foul suggestions of a zombie apocalypse. (Which, despite all the completely realistic TV shows showing the contrary, may not be as fun as one might assume.)
The point I am trying to make here is that, while I am not dead, there are those, my doctors among them, who might be tempted to confuse death with my current state.
That’s right; I’ve had some manner of seasonal malady that I can only guess is a product of some unholy mating ritual between smallpox and the bubonic plague. As such, I’ve been dragging my rotting corpse around for weeks now, comforted only by the fact that I’ve succeeded in making my family’s lives miserable in direct correlation to my own suffering.
Yesterday, I had had enough and went on yet another visit to my doctor’s office. My family was saddened to see me depart, or so I supposed from the way they began popping the tops off champagne bottles and donning small, pointy hats.
Upon arrival at my doctor’s office, they all but rolled out the red carpet for me, beginning with the entire staff joining in a collective groan, an exercise I can only assume was designed to amuse and lift my spirits. It was a failure, and I condemned them all to Hades, although I appreciated their efforts and will likely pray to shorten their time in purgatory. (I realize that my theology is likely completely off-base here, but you won’t be able to prove I’m wrong until it’s too late.)
I was examined by a doctor with very cold hands who then prescribed a chest x-ray.
“You sure that’s a wheeze good idea, doc?” I asked. “I’m a married man and if the x-ray technician gets a look at this chest, I might not be able to restrain him or her from having a go at me.”
The doctor pretended not to hear and tried to distract me by grinding his teeth together so hard that I had to duck to avoid a spray of enamel shrapnel.
The x-ray was taken, amorous techs were restrained, and I went home to await the results. In less time than it took the glaciers to grind down the Great Plains of North America, the nurse called to inform me that my x-ray had come back negative. I hung up the phone.
“What did they say?” my wife asked.
“It was negative,” I said. “Apparently, I have no chest.”
She nodded sagely. “Confirmed,” she said.
So, what does this completely true and not at all embellished story have to do with the Good Sentences podcast, you ask? Simply that, come hell or high water, good health or ancient illnesses, Scott and I are dedicated to bringing you at least one more episode by the time we both die.
Unless that is today, which, in my condition, it may very well be.
Check out the recent episodes here.