Thursday, November 21, 2013

Yes: MRI Like it!

A happy time.
For a long time, I was afraid of the idea of getting an MRI. The thought of being crammed into a coffin-like tube appealed to me about as much as being crammed into a tube-like coffin. But then a wacky discovery in my spinal cord bought me a ticket for a whole bunch of these MRI rides.

The first of these took place in the winter months. Another thing I don't really like is winter. I'm always cold. But when I voiced my concerns about the upcoming MRI to my sister, she said "I bet it's warm in that tube. You are gonna love it!"

Encouraged, but still wary, I presented for my MRI.  Did you know if you have metal stuff inside your body like pacemakers, the MRI could kill you? Apparently, the magnetic pull of the MRI could rip that sucker right out of your chest cavity, like you were in Alien!  

Also, if you are a robot masquerading as a human, the MRI will find you out. Be warned.

As this MRI was for my spine, I didn't have to worry about the freaky head cage accessory you get to wear if you're having your head examined. (In later months, I did get to wear that and it was freaky alright.) I informed the technician that I was nervous and asked if she could slide me in and out of the tube before beginning the procedure. I knew I would be okay as long as I knew I could get out of that tube if I wanted.

After positioning myself on the MRI plank-like table, the tech slowly slid me in, stopping when all but my lower legs were inside. "This is where you'll be for the test," she told me.  I mentally tested: while tight in there, I deduced I could, in fact, shimmy myself out of there if I had to. I don't know why I would "have to," but I was comforted knowing I could escape.

"Oh, so I could get out if I wanted to," I spoke aloud.
"No!" said the tech. "Once we start, you can't move!"
"I know," I said. "I just mean, if I wanted to, I could get out."
"No, you can't move!" she said again.
"I know, it just makes me feel better knowing I could get out if I had to," I said.
"You can't move!"

I rolled my eyes at her in my tube. This action gave me my other piece of comfort: I saw when I crammed my eyes up in my skull, I could get of glimpse of the wall outside the tube. Barely, but yes, the wall outside the tube was visible. Another potential escape route. I decided not to share this info with the tech.

Test ride completed, the tech slid me out, fitted me with the IV that I would need later for an injection of dye for the last part of the test, gave me some earplugs and popped me back in. Earplugs because it's loud in there. Banging and beeping and clanging and chirping. Kind of like the sounds one used to hear when using AOL dial-up internet, but louder and more frenzied.

It wasn't all fun and games. Every now and then I would experience a brief but jarring feeling of "Help, I'm trapped in a tube!" I'm told many folks who fear MRIs keep their eyes closed the entire time. This doesn't work for me as being trapped in my head can be far scarier than being trapped in a tube. When those shocks of fear came over me, I'd center myself by counting the holes in the little speaker that was right over my face. If there had been something to read, that would have helped immensely. A little sticker or something placed where patients could read it without moving. Perhaps something like "If you think this is bad, be glad we didn't have to do an autopsy to get this information."  Anything with words would have helped.

In any case, I survived the procedure and came out none the worse for wear.  Also, I learned three things:

1. I don't have claustrophobia. What I had was a fear that I might have claustrophobia.  That's kind of funny.
2. You can request copies of those images to take to your doctor or for your own personal enjoyment.
3. I am filled with all kinds of fun things:


No: Weeki Wachee Springs


I would not want to live at Weeki Wachee Springs, otherwise known as "The Only City of Live Mermaids," located in Weeki Wachee, Florida.

You'd think this would be right up my alley, what with the glitz and bling and whatnot. Plus, I can swim alright and I like sea friends.

But I wouldn't want to live in Weeki Wachee Springs.
Here's why:
  • How much you wanna bet the "treasure" in that treasure chest above is just cheap crap?
  • Water up the nose
  • "Boy, would I like a piece of that tail, har har har!"
  • Pruney, waterlogged fingertips
  • The undoubtedly tacky gift shop where I would likely have to work when not being a mermaid
  • Tight, thigh-hugging mermaid tails making me feel like a fat sausage
  • Bad, 80's-style blush: 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

No: Wax as Food

You know what I don't like?

These:


I'd like to know who came up with the bright idea of labeling an inedible substance like wax "candy." Wax is not candy and neither is dirt, Vaseline or paper. We don't eat these things. Nobody, for example, fills a paper tube with lemon meringue and peddles it as "candy."  So I don't know how the creators of these waxy bottles got away with it.

I do know I did eat one of these things many years ago and remember the experience well: a bite into flavorless wax only to be rewarded with a disgusting belch of syrupy discharge.  I can't remember if I ate the wax or spat it out, but I can't imagine that either choice was rewarding.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Yes: Bobbing for Wieners -- with Dogs!

Playing Bobbing for Wieners with dogs is probably not a very nice thing to do.  When the wieners go in the water, the dogs are unable to smell them.  With the scent removed, it's basically like bobbing for invisible wieners. But I venture to guess that most dogs enjoy a joke like anyone else.

Bobbing for Wieners I:  Lola, Clancy, Toshi

Left to right: Lola, mixed breed; Clancy, mixed breed and Toshi -- a wiener dog.  Toshi wasn't recruited to bob for wieners because she's a wiener dog, but you must admit, this certainly ups the excitement factor. The wieners were initially placed in large tub with about two inches of water. You can see the reaction. Lola and Toshi are clueless and while Clancy has his eye on the wieners, he's not even close to getting in a bob:


So the wieners were moved to a small dish.  While Toshi and Lola put forth an effort, Clancy apparently became engulfed in a wave of depression or disgust and refused to engage.  There's a lot of looking going on but still no bobbing:


Cheese was added to the tin of wieners. This boosted Toshi's determination but Lola gave up. All we see of her here are her (sad, dejected)  feet:


At last! Toshi goes for the cheese!  Here she is, mid-chew:


Is anyone remotely surprised that the wiener dog won the Bobbing for Wieners (and Cheese) competition? *Because Clancy and Lola were big, fat losers, they were not given any cheese or wieners at the end of the game, but instead had to watch Toshi eat everything.

Bobbing for Wieners II: Carter

Round II of Bobbing for Wieners had only one competitor: Carter, a long-haired German Shepherd. Carter has a reputation of eating any turd that comes his way: cat turd, deer turd, goose turd, his own turd. Doesn't much matter to him. Consequently, a round of Bobbing for Turds was briefly considered but ultimately rejected on the grounds that it would have been fucking disgusting.

This round went lightning quick.  The wieners were placed in large red tub. Thinking they are turds, perhaps, Carter goes right for 'em:


He zooms in:


And gets the wiener!


Bobbing for Wieners II was over before it hardly started.

There should have been a Champion Wiener Challenge between Toshi and Carter but that couldn't happen. One, because Toshi was a foster dog who is now happily reunited with her owner. The other reason is the possibility that Carter could have confused Toshi for a wiener -- or a turd-- and ate her.

I don't think Toshi would have enjoyed that joke.

*All three competitors received plentiful portions of wieners and cheese at the end of the game.