No one likes going to the doctor’s office – except the doctor – on payday. You go because you have to – not because you want to.

I got there early and filled out the standard paperwork. Even though my insurance had not changed since my last visit, I still had to prove to them I wasn’t getting medical treatment under false pretenses.

For the record, if I didn’t have health insurance, I’d have to be half dead before you’d find me at the doctor’s office. Maybe even three-quarters dead.

I was halfway through a long article about ancient Roman aqueducts in National Geographic when the nurse called me into the office. I was still giggling at the name Sextus Julius Frontinus (a Roman governor and water commissioner) when she asked me to step on the scale.

I told her I weigh more with my clothes on, but she would not let me strip down to my underwear to get the same weight I get on my scale. There was a discrepancy. Apparently, my jeans weigh ten pounds (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it).

The nurse also asked me a series of questions. There were the standard ones. She asked, “Do you smoke?”


“Do you drink?”

“I had a margarita at Mad Mex like two and a half weeks ago? Does that count?”

It did not.

Then, she asked, “Do you feel scared or afraid in your own home?”

I realized one second too late that the question had darker implications, but I started laughing because I almost said, “What? You mean like ghosts?”

I said, “No,” but it wasn’t a plain and simple “no,” it was a long drawn out “noooooooooo,” surrounded by laughter.

The whole time. I wanted to say, “There’s a ghost, but he’s friendly.”

I could tell that this nurse would not have enjoyed my sense of humor. She didn’t even like that I laughed at the question.

I was at the doctor’s office for a stress test. That’s the test where you have to exercise in front of your doctor. Doesn’t that sound awful?

Luckily, I didn’t have to do the downward dog in yoga pants. I just had to get on a treadmill with a bunch of wires attached to my chest and run until he said stop.

I have a hairy chest, or, at least, I did. They had to shave parts of it to attach the diodes to me. I have square, bald patches now. You could play checkers on my torso.

Where they didn’t shave – things were worse. I had to rip the diodes from my body. Clumps of hair came out. Picture Steve Carell in “Forty-Year-Old Virgin.”


When the janitor came to empty the trash can, I’m pretty sure he said, “Who threw away all of these Tribbles?”

I passed my stress test with flying colors, by the way. I told the doctor, “I can keep running for as long as you want!”

I lied, but I passed anyway.

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