No, I'm not talking about the twists and turns in some of my trickier cat and mouse novels. Nosiree! This is a true tale of torrid trauma. Stay for the shock in the end if you know what I'm talking about (and I think you do).
Years ago, I never bothered settling on a regular doctor. So when the time came that I got sick enough to go (a herculean effort in itself), I'd just pick one at random based on the criteria of location and if my insurance covered it.
Enter Doctor FeelGood (of course that wasn't his real name, and he definitely didn't make me feel good, but I can't remember his name. I'm old!). Located in the Plaza shopping district and covered by my insurance, the good doctor was accepting new patients. Sold!
For you see, I'd developed a strange headache that had lasted about ten days. Naturally I was convinced I had a brain tumor and this was before the days when I started diagnosing myself via the intronets.
Off I trundled, my head a-pounding. When I was finally summoned into the doc's chambers, something didn't seem right. An older, very tall man sat behind a desk in what could best be described as a large, stylish office with an examining table. He gestured for me to have a seat across from him so we could chat.
Very inquisitive, he put me through the ringer.
"What the hell brings you in today?" (Those were his exact opening words.)
"Um, brain tumor, I guess."
"Uh-huh, mm-hmm. I see. What do you do for a living?"
"I'm a graphic artist."
"Interesting. Interesting." He rubbed his chin, very professorial. "So..." His chair swiveled back and forth as he perfected his grilling technique. "Do you ever put hidden faces or messages in any of the designs you work on?"
"Do you ever hide things in your artwork? You know, like little people or obscene messages?"
"Okay, here's my card." Reaching across his desk, he handed me a card that read, "Dr. FeelGood, Psychiatrist and M.D."
Uh-oh. How'd I miss that?
"I don't think you have a tumor," he said, without once physically examining me. "But I'll give you a prescription for some extra-strength Ibuprofen."
"Say, how old are you anyway?" For the first time, he sat up, suddenly interested.
I told him.
"Okay, you're old enough."
For what, I wondered. FOR WHAT?
"Go on over to the examining table, drop your pants, and lean over," he ordered.
"Wait...what?" Clearly my brain tumor had affected my hearing as well.
"You're old enough to get your first prostate exam."
"But...I have a headache, not--"
"Get over there and drop your pants!"
Blindsided, I had no choice but to obey. Next thing I know he's got his finger in my backside, wiggling and twisting.
He finished with a sigh. "Nope. You don't have prostate cancer. But don't sit on the toilet and read and all that crap. You'll get hemorrhoids." (Actually, he proved to be prophetic there, but that's a different tale of horror.)
While I was totally freaked out and in shock, he hurried me out the door. Done and out in seven minutes.
Now I know everything in the human body is connected, but I thought this was taking that idea to an extreme end (if you catch my drift). I need a T-Shirt that says, "I went to the doctor for a headache and all I got to show for it was a finger up my yazoo."
Speaking of twist in the ends (see what I did there?), my short story collection, Twisted Tales from Tornado Alley, is full of 'em!