I suffered a scuba diving accident in Belize.
This is a very unusually manly sentence for me to
write, much like “I hurt my wrist rock climbing” or “I sprained my shoulder
fighting a marlin while deep sea fishing”.
It's pretty ridiculous. I am more likely to suffer a unicorn trampling than what I did to myself.
I would like to tell you how I have been suffering in silence like
Hemingway, oblivious to the discomfort of the injury.
That would be a lie.
I have been whining like a baby about the barotrauma
in my left ear.
Barotrauma means that because I foolishly dove to 60 feet
with a head cold and couldn’t effectively clear the pressure in my ears, I
fucked one of them up for awhile.
a bunch of “fluid” in my middle ear which makes everything sound like I am
wearing one earplug.
I can’t judge how
loud I am speaking, so I have overcompensated and become a “low talker”.
It makes awful crackling sounds and at
various times I can’t clear the pressure in my skull.
I don’t know what this “fluid” is exactly,
but the eleven year old girl nurse practitioner I saw didn’t seem too worked up
I was given a few pills with
the marching orders of “Umm... if it doesn’t get better in a few weeks, come on back I
The older I become the more I am aware of the basic
ineptness of most medical professionals.
Don’t get me wrong.
Most of them
are probably very “book smart” and probably knocked their SATs and Boards right
out of the park.
The issue appears to be
that most of them don’t want to be held accountable for anything so they won’t
offer any kind of opinion or expectation unless you hold a pistol to their
Hey Doc, if I ask you how long my
ear is going to be fucked up, I’m not coming back to blame you if it doesn’t
heal in that time window.
I just want to feel like someone that knows
more about the gross “fluid” in my ear can give me a reasonable expectation of
the timetable to getting back to normal.
“Thanks for the $200 for the office visit Mr. Miller.
Take some decongestants and maybe that will
help your fucked up ear.
Maybe it won’t.
See ya later. Come back in a month.
That will give me the chance to be ambiguous
once again for another $200.”
This situation has left me taking an array of decongestants
from the pharmacy. Making matters even
more exciting is that I either have a head cold or sinus infection that leaves
and returns over and over again, or my resistance is so compromised that I
catch everything my disease ridden co-workers bring into my place of
employment. There are so many people
coughing and hacking in here it sounds like a Cholera Clinic in the turn of the
century. I feel like we should all be
sitting outside on lawn chairs under blankets while taking “the cure” from the
restorative waters of Lake Erie. Perhaps at dusk we can retire to the drawing room where Miss Daisy can sing a few songs with that helpful Mr. Phipps accompanying her on piano while we enjoy tea.
I am now horribly addicted to Dayquil and his horrible
Yesterday I started
sneezing for no particular reason after going for a run.
This left me no choice but to once again
climb onto the Syrup Dragon and have jarring dreams where I have to perform music
in front of large expectant crowds without any idea of the words, walk fields
of daisies looking for a lost key, and stack a never ending pile of books for a crying woman in a
bookstore that looks like the Book Loft in Columbus if the roof blew off.
This does not make for relaxing sleep, yet I
can’t wake up due to the grogginess of the Magic Syrup.
I am going to turn this situation around starting
today. I really feel now with increasing
confidence that I need to approach this with a game plan that would make “Papa”
Hemingway proud. I will now attack this
like a confrontational alcoholic writer from the 1930s and heavy up on the rum
and whiskey. I will resign myself to the
fact that my left ear is now lost forever, and it is nothing more than an
annoyance. If you are one of the people
that are going to see me with the Daredevils on our run of 16 shows in Europe,
I will be the one that is tone deaf and horribly drunk on whiskey. This is exactly what one looks for in a
vocalist. Well, if one is in the Pogues
I guess. No matter. It is all part of my New Manly Healthcare
Initiative. There is no other way. Pass the whiskey.