“Hi,”said the woman on the other end of the line, sunny as could be. “This is Dr. Ward’s office calling. We received a referral from your family doctor. He’d like Dr. Wade to check your eyes.”
“Yep,”I said. It had been over two weeks since my doctor had suggested as much. I’d simply assumed someone had dropped the ball.
“Well, let’s see. The earliest Dr. Ward could see you would be…2014.”
2014. Not 2013. NOT next year. The year AFTER next year.
“OR…”she followed up before I could say anything. Clearly, she had the routine down pat. “…you could come in this month and have one of his associates examine you.”
The tenor of her voice, possessed of an undercurrent of hope with a dash of empathetic excitement, made me feel as though I’d just managed to secure a lucky-once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. No doubt mistaking my confused silence for reticence, she quickly followed up: “They’re very good.”
I’m sure. I told her yes and made the appointment for later this month. Presumably, Dr. Wade’s associates will prove equally up to the task of getting to the bottom of my tortuous eyeballs (April 6, 2012: Tortuosity and Dark Matter!).
As it so happened, today was also the day I went in for my blood test, just a (hopefully) routine part of my annual physical. I’d been meaning to get around to it for a while (a.k.a. putting it off) because I wanted to be sure my bloodstream was free of trace elements. No, not drugs. Sugar. A week before my tests, I usually like to switch up my diet, drop the desserts in favor a daily serving of oatmeal. But my girlfriend, Akemi, has been adamant I not try to fool the test this time. “It’s like you pretend nice guy,”she said. And then, realizing: “Well, not pretend nice guy. You have to accept the reality. You eat sweets every day.” She had a point. Screw it. So, yesterday, I skipped the oatmeal in favor of these:
A half-dozen dougnuts from Cartems Donuterie. Sorry, vegans. Your sans gluten offering touted as “cruelty-free” was, ironically, the cruelest version you could possibly serve a doughnut-lover. Baked, topped with toasted quinoa, it tasted like slightly sweet bread. The Triple Threat Chocolate was good, but trumped by the Mexican Mole. The winners, however, were the Classic and Citrus Dust, both of which proved mouth-meltingly delicious.
Anyway, I received a clean bill of health after last year’s physical, with no alarm bells going off or warnings dispensed, so I’m confident I should pass this one without issue. But, you never know. Until then…
I’m a hypochondric pragmatist. I imagine I’ve been stricken with a variety of medical conditions, then persuade myself I’m okay by ignoring the symptoms I convinced myself I had to begin with. It’s exhausting. Some nights, my internal dialogue goes something like this: “What was that? Was that a pain in my chest? I think it was. Chest pain. Am I having a heart attack? I could be having a heart attack! No, wait. That medical study I read about in the Malcolm Gladwell book concluded that trouble breathing, rather than chest pain, was a likelier indicator of a heart attack. And I’m not having trouble breathing. Or am I? Yes, I think I am having trouble breathing. Am I having a heart attack? I think I am. I should go to the hospital! But that would mean getting out of bed, getting dressed, driving down, sitting in the waiting room… Soooo tired. Hmmmm. Maybe this isn’t a heart attack after all. Maybe I’m not having trouble breathing. I think I’ll just stay in bed and sleep it off.”
And sleeping it off has always worked to this point, so what am I worried about?
hitmanjr writes: “The producers were beating on him and if anyone remembers who Peter Gruber and Jon Peters was it’s any wonder this movie even got finished. Those two went on to take the Japanese to the cleaners at Sony Pictures after this movie, there is a book about it.”
Answer: Check out this terrific video of Kevin Smith recounting his Superman Reborn experience with Jon Peters. Some great insight into how things work in Hollywood: Kevin Smith explains what happened to his Superman movie …
dasndager writes: “Burton was the director, not the writer. The writers were: Bob Kane (Batman characters, as consultant), Daniel Waters and Sam Hamm (story), Daniel Waters (screenplay). So, if there is blame, put it where blame is due. (And before you start saying, ‘but direkor responseble for…’, I’ll point out a mess called Inquisition ).”
Answer: I, of course, don’t have a dog in this fight. The opinions expressed in the disputed entry are those of our guest reviewer, Cookie Monster, and do not necessarily reflect my views or the official policy of this blog. Having said that, I’m going to have to side with monster on this one. In television, the writer/show runner is usually the one in charge while the director is a hired gun. So, yes, in the case of something like, say, an episode of Stargate, you should feel free to blame the writer (partly) and the show runner (mostly). In film, the opposite is true. The director holds the power while the writer is lucky to even be permitted on set once they’ve turned in their final draft.
dasndager also writes: “I really enjoy Burton’s movies. They are visually stunning, but more than anything, they have heart.”
Answer: Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – yes. Mars Attacks!, Planet of the Apes, the Batman movies – not so much.
Josh writes: “Hey Joe, do you know if there are any plans to release SG-1 on Blu-Ray?”
Answer: Sorry, Josh. I’m out of the loop on MGM’s plans for Stargate, Blu-Ray release and otherwise.
jys writes: “mise en place and service.”
Answer: Where are you working now?