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Sunday, November 27, 2005

The Triumphant Return Of The Plumbing Goddess

Well, I made it back home about 7:30 last night. It's about 960 miles. By the afternoon the traffic was getting thick from Thanksgiving travelers, so I figured I'd just better push on and finish the drive on Saturday.

The way I reconstruct the evening, I staggered in to hysterical applause from the canine contingent, was administered some food by a delighted but surprised Chief No-Nag, and fell asleep fully clothed.

Anyway, Rescue Dog checked me out and gave me a tentative thumbs up this morning. Chief No-Nag was scurrying around trying to pick up the debris of a womanless week, and he mentioned that he was probably going to have to get a plumber to come in tomorrow. He said the shower drain was blocked, he hadn't been able to unblock it, he needed some ferocious sounding tool and he hadn't been able to find one.

Well, I went in and investigated matters after I sent him off to golf and unblocked the drain in about one minute. It was a mold clog, not an actual clog. He probably cleared the original clog. For those who have never encountered such a thing, mold can build up on the side of the pipes when a drain has been running slowly. When you clear the clog, the force of the water running down the drain knocks the mold loose and forms a clog. Normally you can just push through it and wash it down, but on rare occasions it forms a sort of flap that floats up and floats down right above the bend in the pipe. If the flap is attached at the top of the pipe, you can shove a small snake through there and never dislodge it. The best way to handle these is either to put caustic stuff down the drains (which we do not do because this is the country and there is a septic system). So I filled the drain up with water and sucked the mold out with a plunger.

The shower is draining just fine, and I expect I will be wearing even more of a halo when he arrives home and discovers this.

A forensic investigation of the refrigerator shows that
I have the image of a feral sort of purely carnivorous existence in my absence, so I am skipping church and going shopping for vegetables. I figure if I make him a pie he'll be so dizzy with pleasure that he won't notice he's eating a healthy dinner. He loves coconut cream pie.

Regardless, I feel pretty good this morning, which is good since I am undergoing healthcare. I don't care what the political wonks say about healthcare. It sucks. The average person probably needs less healthcare rather than more. I bet most of the people in this country would be healthier if they worked more and got less healthcare.

I now understand why the doctor was so nervous about this in the beginning when I first started. I remember him giving me anesthetic, and I could never figure out why. Well, it turns out that this particular medical treatment hurts really, really badly. I was just too far gone to know it. Now I'm not. Not that I am using anesthetic, because I'm tougher than an entire platoon of Marines. Anesthetic just knocks me out, and the entire point is to become more conscious, not less.

Fortunately, the doctor trained me to administer it myself. If someone else were doing this to me, I'd probably feel like punching that person out, and I like to live in peace and good fellowship with other human beings.

I was nervous about this step, because I had to originally quit this treatment. It's very effective, but while I was getting better physically I was having terrible neurological side effects.

Now here's one that should stump you who don't believe in God. I recall praying about it years ago, right when I descended into wordlessness the last time, and I was told what was wrong and what to do about it. Where my skull met my spine an infection had formed around the vertebrae. The reason that this treatment hurts so badly is that the medication knocks out the infection and causes massive swelling at those sites. The swelling from the treatment was putting pressure on my brain. You can use antagonists to cut the swelling, but they all have serious side effects.

So what I was told to do was use a much less effective treatment. I remember God telling me that he would take care of it, but that it would be very slow. I am pretty sure that the doctor believed I had decided to let nature take its course. Instead, I very slowly recovered. It took years. Several times I could feel what felt like someone had just hauled off and hit me in the back of the neck. According to what I was told in prayer, the inside lof this area was blocked off so that it wouldn't protrude into the base of my skull or push against my spinal cord, but that meant the pressure had to be bled off slowly on the outside of my neck. I had this big lump I could feel there. Sometimes I had to take ibuprofen to deal with the swelling, but I only took it when I was told to when praying.

Last year when I went to see the doctor I told him about this. He looked into my eyes, freaked out and sent me to have a CAT scan. This year I got the go ahead (in prayer) to do the real treatment. And lala! The rest of my body is hurting as if I had been pounded with hammers, but I don't even have a headache. Now I should start to recover swiftly, because this stuff really, really works. The doctor sent me off with a very happy admonition to keep the faith, adding (somewhat mysteriously) that "There aren't very many of us left."

So, as you can see, the occasion calls for coconut cream pies and jubiliation.

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