You know how they say your entire life flashes before your eyes before you die? Well, if I was dying and my entire life flashed before my eyes, a replay of December 1st, 2010 would seriously make me reconsider rescinding that do not resuscitate order.
I woke up late this morning – and it was downhill from there. Because I was dropping my pug, Jelly, off at the vet’s for her MRI, she was the only one who didn’t get breakfast this morning. And, boy, did she remind me – barking, whining, looking up at my with those big pleading bug-eyes as if to ask: “Why? What did I do? Why have you – and Nature’s Variety Beef Formula – forsaken me?”. I did my best to ignore her like a persistent panhandler or fellow producer Carl Binder suggesting we sit down to watch a producer’s edit. I loaded Jelly into the car, said goodbye to the rest of the gang who would be cooling their paws until lunch, and headed off –
And directly into a traffic jam. An early morning fire had shut down one of the city’s main streets, West Broadway, for two blocks in either direction. Interestingly – one might even go so far as to say “annoyingly” – motorists were denied access to the street but there were no signs directing them around the blockage. And so, I took a left, hoping to take my next right and run a parallel course to the one I’d planned, only to discover the next block was inaccessible as well, forcing me to take another left and travel down another two blocks before taking another right to travel twelve more blocks before taking a right and eventually finding my way back to civilization. Seriously. Would it have killed them to put up a simple Detour sign directing us to the quickest and most convenient way around the problem area? Time and again, it seem as thought Vancouver’s city planners plan for everything, except for the possibility that cars may be on their roads. They’re far too busy building cycling lanes in order to curry favor with the city’s powerful bike lobby.
I arrived at the vet clinic and dropped Jelly off. After showing remarkable improvement following a stem cell procedure to treat her hip dysplasia and arthritic shoulders and elbows, she has deteriorated significantly over the past week and a half, leading her vet to suggest we investigate other potential causes for her condition.
I then headed to work where I spent the greater part of the morning, sitting in my office impatiently waiting for a certain individual to join us so we could watch the Day 1 Mix of Deliverance (The second part of the mid-season two-parter. Last night’s episode, Resurgence, being the first. Ohhhh. So THAT’S how it turns out!). Eventually, about a half an hour before lunch, said individual informed us that he would not be joining us and to go ahead without him. So, we settled down and watched the music. The verdict? Music = awesome. Sound effects = are going to need some work. Not that they were bad; simply…wrong in so many ways, owing to the fact that they were all synced to temp visual effects. Time and again, a frustrated Paul would pause the episode to remark “Okay, that’ll be totally different.” or “That’s gonna change,” or “Pay no attention to that!”. Since we started so late, we took a break, then resumed after lunch, which allowed us to finish up well after the time I needed to head out and back into town for my dentist appointment.
I chipped a back tooth earlier this year (all that caramelized foie gras no doubt) and had gone in last week to get fitted for a crown. Four needles, an aching jaw, and a numbened tongue that I ended up biting three times and so ended swelling up painfully making it difficult to either chew or talk for days on end later, they had an impression of my back tooth and I had an appointment to go back and finish up the procedure. Unfortunately, it turns out the lab failed in their task of transforming my dental impression into a crown AND delivering it to my dentist. I’m not sure what the hell happened. Either they forgot, misplaced my file, lost my crown, or inadvertently shipped it to a loved one in Amsterdam along with a pair of hand-knit socks, an ugly Christmas sweater, and a ceramic scottie mug. It doesn’t matter really because, in the end, it amounted to the same thing for me. And so, four more needles, another aching jaw, and a second numbenened tongue that I will end up biting three more times so that it will swell up painfully making it difficult to either chew or talk for day on end later, they had a second impression of my back tooth and I had a second appointment to go back and finish up the procedure (tomorrow, unfortunately right before kick-off of the Texans-Eagles game I had planned to enjoy with friends).
Immediately following that appointment, I was in the car and driving all the way back to Burnaby to pick up Jelly and get the news on her MRI. But not before waiting another thirty minutes in the waiting room for the doctor to free up. So, here’s the deal with my gal: she’s got a disc extrusion, a disc rupture of the vertebrae, high up on her spinal cord (T11/T12/T13) which has seriously hampered her movement and made it impossible for her to walk, squat, pee, or poop in a dignified manner (well, as dignified as possible given that she is a pug). Left untreated, there are number of ways things can go: 1) With rest, her condition may improve with time, 2) Her condition will stabilize and she’ll have to accustom herself to these latest hardships, 3) Her condition continues to deteriorate and full paralysis sets in. Given the gradual turn in her physical condition, I don’t think #1 is even remotely likely. Faced with the latter two scenarios, I asked the doctor about possible treatment. Surgery is the other option, a two hour procedure that could go a number of ways: 1) It will improve her condition (and quality of life) to varying degree. 2) There will be no change in her condition, 3) The surgery will have the opposite effect and she may end up paralyzed. Oh, and there’s always 4) She doesn’t survive the surgery either owing to her advanced age, pug-related breathing issues, or other complications. And so, I’m faced with a big decision. Do I risk her life to attempt to improve her quality of life, or do I avoid the risk of surgery to run the risk of her succumbing to paralysis? Food for thought during my once highly anticipated Tokyo trip.
Oh, forgot to add – as I was receiving care instructions from the tech, Jelly, proceeded to relieve herself…while seated on my lap. It was pretty damn impressive volume. She must’ve been holding onto that all day.
Arrived home late tonight to discover that I’d misinterpreted the post-season scenario for the Stargate NFL Fantasy Football League and that, with Monday Night’s heartbreaking (and, apparently, hip-breaking) loss of Frank Gore, my Snow Monkeys were eliminated from playoff contention.
Would love to take refuge in a good book – if I could find one. More misses than hits of late (although I owe you guys a write-up on Joe Abercrombie’s greatest latest and am, thus far, very impressed with Art Spiegelman’s Maus) so I’ve taken steps to rectify the situation by stopping by my local bookshop on the way home from dinner and ice cream tonight…
Apologies. I’ll be announcing the finalists of the “I Make the Best Whatever…” contest in tomorrow’s blog entry.
[Addendum to tonight’s entry: I just went downstairs to check on my laundry and stepped in a huge puddle. Apparently, my washer is leaking.]