Earlier today I visited my doctor. After taking up half an hour of her time in which we discussed things like my recurring bouts of pain, whether or not I should see a neurologist, my recent colonoscopy, and even my big toe, she informed me, “You look good, on paper.”
Exactly what does it take to look good on paper? It wasn’t that long ago the sound of snap, crackle, and pop in the morning was my breakfast. Today, it’s the sound my body makes getting out of bed. I am guessing the paper I look good on is crinkled since every time I look in the mirror I see more lines, cracks, wrinkles and sagging skin. Never wait until you are my age to renovate your bathrooms. You will be shocked at what you see with better lighting and new mirrors.
For a guy who prides himself on staying physically fit, how is it I ran out of time to go over all that ails me? I never got to my ears which are either plugged up with wax or just plain blown out from rock music. Either way, that paper I look good on didn’t show my hearing aids I need if I want to be part of a conversation rather than being the guy everyone talks about because he can’t hear a damn thing.
My eyes are terrible too. I long ago gave up on prescription glasses because about as soon as I got a new pair, my eyes were in need of more help. I just keep buying cheap bifocal readers. The problem is, if I am not wearing a pair, I can’t see well enough to find where I last left a set lying around. I have them at work, in my car, at my desk at home, the kitchen table, the bathroom sink, the workout room, but I never seem to find them when I need them.
While we talked about my big toe, which last year saw me having to have the nail removed, did I remember to talk to her about my aching and stiff arch which seems to make my Achilles stiffen and calf knot up when I try to run? Now, along with my glasses, I get to keep track of the massage rollers and tennis balls I need to work out the kinks. Maybe I can wear one around my neck along with my glasses.
She noticed the toes next to my big toe looked a little on the red side. I couldn’t bring myself to tell her it was due to my stubbing them this morning. I guess I see about as well in the dark as I do in the light. I would get a seeing eye dog, but with five dogs already, I am not sure I can take on the task of scooping up more poop without risking hurting my back.
Two weeks ago, I was bitten by a dog while out on a walk. I failed to mention this when she asked me if I had any unusual accidents lately. I figured she was asking me about my bladder or bowel control. Fortunately, I am nowhere near needing to wear a diaper. I could stand to wear a helmet because I also forgot to tell her a few months back I passed out when I suddenly stood up and proceeded to fall like a tree cut down by a lumberjack.
What is my reward for looking so good on paper? For starters, I get to go get blood work just to make sure there isn’t anything wrong that did not show up today. The only thing that I know was wrong was pretty much me. I also get to buy one of those home blood pressure machines and start keeping track of it. Maybe I can get one that yells the results since I most likely won’t remember to wear my hearing aids or my glasses.
It did not take me long to find out women notice you when you look as good as I do on paper. While I walked up the stairs on my way to make an appointment for my blood test, a young woman who was set to walk down stopped at the top and waited for me so I could walk past her. I know she was not impressed by how good I was looking on paper as much as she was worried about me possibly falling down the stairs and rolling into the back of her. Why risk this happening to you when you can stand at the top of the stairs and film the old fart as he tumbles down a flight and then post it for the world to see?
Looking good on paper never felt so good.
Jim is a life long resident of California and retired school teacher with 30 years in public education. Jim earned his BA in History from CSU Chico in 1981 and his MA in Education from Azusa Pacific University in 1994. He is also the author of Teaching The Teacher: Lessons Learned From Teaching. Jim considers himself an equal opportunity pain in the ass to any political party, group, or individual who looks to profit off of hypocrisy. When he is not pointing out the conflicting words and actions of our leaders, the NFL commissioner, or humans in general, he can be found riding his bike for hours on end while pondering his next article. Jim recently moved to Camarillo, CA after being convinced to join the witness protection program.