Friday, June 19, 2009

Quips And Stuff . . .

. . .Just Thinking Back

Well, everybody, it's a couple weeks since they put my re-charger under my left collarbone and I have had a few thoughts about the thing called a Pacemaker and the procedure.

They told me "this won't hurt much." That was probably right but they
put me out when they (the doctor and his crew) got started so I didn't feel it anyway.

They didn't tell me much about the aftermath except "you'll have some discomfort." They were right.

It wasn't that bad in the Lubbock Heart Hospital because they fed me pain pills every once in awhile. When I came home I took an over the counter pain relief for a few days and most of the discomfort has passed.

(And that word passed brings up another story, below, which will bring my "headline" QUIPS into being.)

But just a bit more about discomfort. They, at least three of them, instructed me not to raise my left arm over my shoulder for a month [I am obeying] and not to sleep with my arms in back of my head on the pillow [I am obeying].

The same three alternately told me not to drive "for about seven days, "for two weeks," and "for a month." I obeyed the first instruction and almost made the second. Forget about the month - I've already blown that one.

So I am driving but not without a bit of discomfort. It seems "they" in Lubbock put that Pacemaker in the same place on the left shoulder where the makers of Dodge and Ford vans have their seat belts passing over the left shoulder and chest.

Need I say anymore?


Now let's get to that word "passed" mentioned above. It brings back a story from Lubbock and from what they call the cath lab, where doctors and crews perform such procedures as angiograms, open heart surgeries and Pacemaker installations.

On the particular day of the Pacemaker procedure, they laid me out flat on a cold steel table but fortunately covered with a heated blanket, and covered me up with another heated blanket.

Next somebody inserted something into the IV tube in my arm that pretty quickly started to put me to sleep. You won't guess what happened next - but maybe you will. I'll tell you anyway.

I don't like to use the word F===== in a blog that sensitive people may be reading so I opt to say "passed gas." This is what happened:

While almost asleep I could feel that such an event was about to happen and I strained to restrain but restraining did not restain.

With a loud and resonating sound that gas went " pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, and finally whooosh and one more pop' that sounded like a grenade exploding.

Through quickly dimming eyes I glimpsed five or six wide open mouths, and then heard raucaus laughing as I delivered my final words before going to sleep - "Anybody get hurt?"


I have a sister back in Massachusetts who sometimes comes up with a forwarded joke on the Internet which she sends along with a little editing to make it family-oriented.

Here's an example and I hope my priestly cousin won't be offended at the use of his name.

It's entitled "A Very CLEAN Round Of Golf." and goes like this, as short as I can make it.

Monsignor Hoye was playing a round of golf down on Cape Cod with a parishioner. On the first hole he sliced into the rough and muttered half aloud - Hoover.

On the second hole Hoover came out again a bit louder as the orb splashed into a water hazard.

On the third hole it was a miracle when the ball bounced onto the green within six inches of the hole. "Praise Be To God" Monsignor Hoye exclaimed.

But when after carefully lining up his putt with the hole, the ball curved around the hole and went awry. "HOOVER"

The monsignor's parishioner-opponent by this time was more than curious and he asked "why do you say Hoover?

The reply: "It's the biggest dam I know!"


Today after a funeral service for a congregation member, I happened to encounter the funeral director with whom I am familiar through association as an American Legion chaplain a few years ago when I officiated at two graveside services for a veteran.

Patting me on the back he asked the usual question "how are you doing these days?"

I told him "I'm doing pretty good now, just been re-charged with a Pacemaker and getting back into the swing of things again."

LONG pause - and then from the funeral director "Well, I guess we won't be seeing you for a while yet!"

I walked away laughing.

- 30 -

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