Health summary: no major problems, I just am prone to worry constantly, so forewarning that most of you will be like “pbbbttthhh come back when you got real problems” and this is just about the basic conditions of mortality, which everyone has to deal with but many people gotta deal with worse.
Early in January, starting a new insurance plan, I had a checkup with a new doctor. Or maybe an “annual physical,” which I thought was just a fancy term for the same thing. “I’m going in for a checkup,” I told the insurance people on the phone, and they said “we also recommend you go in for your annual physical.” One way or another, I got it done.
The next week, instead of just posting my results to “the portal,” they told me to come back for a follow-up. They couldn’t tell me over the phone what the issue was. This concerned me, because in movies and TV that always foreshadows very bad news. “Tell me how dying I am!” I wanted to demand, but instead I just laughed nervously and scheduled the time and said “okay, I’ll be there Wednesday and I am very nervous.” The person on the phone told me “eh,” if it was anything “too crazy” they would have called me in immediately.
What would be between normal and “too crazy? Something that was fatal but slow moving and therefore not an emergency? Something that was past the point of no return and therefore not an emergency? It turned out they had broken a container of my urine before they could test for the mildest STI on the list, and that some of my readings were in the “high normal” range and therefore I needed to exercise more, which luckily is easy for me to do because my exercise frequency is historically low.
Anyway, I dodged the bullet this time, but I am very uncomfortable with a doctor’s visit. The reason is because I am mortal, and I am afraid they will discover that, notice it, and scare me about it. Here’s what they think about me, in my mind…
Doctor’s Checkup As I Imagine It
HEAD: The head presented with a perceptible skull shape, presaging the patient’s inevitable death. Inside the head were several squishy parts that haven’t rotted yet. The following parts of the head might have invisible cancer that we didn’t test for: eyeballs, brain, mouth, skin, etc..
The inane babblings of the patient’s tongue, one of the grosser of the head parts, revealed that the mind inside it has begun to perceive that the body must die. This condition could be treated with immediate decapitation or with a “wait and see” approach over several decades until the mind forgets everything it knew. We recommend the latter because patient is stubborn and would refuse the former, and the paperwork would be a hassle.
NECK: The neck was a little thick. We forgot to mention there might be sleep apnea inside it. Someday we will check for the sleep apnea and hook the patient up to a Darth Vader mask and nobody will sleep with it again.
BLOOD: We successfully withdrew blood from the patient. It seems to be everywhere. It could be drained from any of several (7) points. The more likely danger is from the inside. Of its own accord the blood could block itself up, bust out of the arteries, or fade away. Too much or too little blood will easily kill the patient. For one billion dollars this “relying on blood” problem might be fixable, but the patient is not a billionaire and therefore deserves to die.
Good news is the blood was a pretty color of red.
TORSO: The torso was skinny. The ribs were big but did not have a lot of meat on them. We pressed on the gut and the patient already had to pee, but we didn’t press hard enough to squeeze out any urine. Someday we will push harder and give the patient a choice between embarrassing itself or exploding its bladder, and whichever it chooses will will mock it and say it brought this upon itself.
LIMBS: Four (4) limbs, skinny but relatively strong. The nerves have not yet begun to degenerate, but when they do it will be funny to see this rough beast, with all its stringy muscles, laid low, no longer able to leap about and throw things. All its japes today will make it look the fool tomorrow. “How arrogant you were!” we will say, “to have chosen for your things of amusement these decaying limbs. A wiser man would be a billionaire and be carried about and have stories told to it, so that it would not rely so much on its body. If you beg nicely we will allow you to apply to be a billionaire’s storyteller. There are 450 applicants and one job. The job will end within a year and pay 80% of a livable wage. You will not get it.”
For now the limbs are fine.
INSIDES: Patient presented with many insides (guts and their associates, heart, lungs, essential organs, accessory organs, etc.) all of which may contain cancers or diseases, all of which escaped detection during the exam.
DICK: Don’t know if I should be mentioning this on a medical report, but a dick was there.
SKIN: The patient was wrapped in skin, a major liability to be expensive and time-consuming if cared for or to look gross if not. If the patient’s skin were peeled off cell-by-cell it would wrap four times around the world. But who has the time to do that?
NERVES: The patient is basically a network of nerves, trapped inside the body. We found many problems with the nerves, to wit:
They can cause pain
They can be scarred, or “scleroted,” either “multiple” (slow deterioration) times or “AL-style” (quick and certain death) and nothing is stopping that from happening
They are connected to the brain, which is does very little but envision all these problems
They run through the neck and spine, both of which have posture that is very bad
Nerve cures are expensive and we don’t want to do them, not for someone on this level of insurance
GENERAL IMPRESSION: 6/10 would not go out of way to visit again. Referred patient to two (2) total other doctors: one (1) skin looker and one (1) brain talker.