Jerry & Ruth: The $623 Enema

We visited Ruth’s friends Julia and Scott in Santa Barbara last week and were having a great time when an unexpected situation brought the fun to a screeching halt. It came bang out of nowhere, as health crises often do. One minute we were frolicking around, people were commenting on my good looks as usual, and nobody had a care in the world. Then, out of nowhere, blammo! I blame the cat and, of course Ruth is not without responsibility here.  ••• One day I was nosing about the side yard when I came upon a half-eaten snack left there carelessly by the cat. It was the work of a minute for me to munch it down, a fitting response I felt to Ruth’s recent campaign to make me even slimmer than I am by decreasing my daily intake. Talk about projection! I’m not the one who goes around wearing pants suits that are way too snug, and what I wear, I might add, in the privacy of my own living room is nobody’s business.  •••  I thought nothing about that snack until the next morning when I decided to void on the lawn. That’s when my ordeal began. Absolutely nothing happened, so I moved a bit and tried again. Nothing. I applied pressure. I strained. Moved yet again. Not a thing! It began to hurt and I yelled. Yelled loud. We’ve all been there, right?  ••• Then I realized that these silly people were just standing there goggling at me. One of the most venerable dog wisdoms tells us that bodily functions don’t need to be secret. We don’t hide behind closed doors the way people do, most of them at least. “Be here now,” we say, and we didn’t need the help of any new age wisdom peddler to figure that one out. But staring is indiscreet, people. It’s rude.  ••• At length they rushed me to the vet – without consulting me of course. Before I knew what was what, I was whisked into the, no pun intended, bowels of the building, and as I left the room I heard the receptionist talking matter-of-factly about x-rays and blood tests and other high tech measures and I thought, is this really necessary for a simple, if very painful, back-up? Is this what medical care has come to? Is this about my sore butt or some company’s tired bottom line?  ••• In the back room the doctor, who was absolutely driven, attacked me with an arsenal of weapons that boggle the mind. First she gave me a shot for pain that made everything go wavy. Then she and an accomplice began to “probe”. I couldn’t take my eyes off the doctor’s outsized red-glazed fingernails because I knew what she had in mind, and sure enough, she plowed right in with a vigorous thrust. I howled in pain that didn’t slow her down a bit. She even wiggled her finger, wiggled the damned thing – and I think she liked it. Actually, I would not be totally surprised to discover that she is lonely.Read More…