Friday, March 10, 2017

Legends of the Fall - Part 4

Legends of the Fall is a 1994 American epic drama film directed by Edward Zwick and starring Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, Aidan Quinn, Julia Ormond and Henry Thomas. Based on the 1979 novella of the same title by Jim Harrison, the film is about three brothers and their father living in the wilderness and plains of Montana in the early 20th century and how their lives are affected by nature, history, war and love.

These posts have nothing to do with that.  
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After the events of Legends of the Fall - Part  3

The next morning, I woke up in a hospital room with a nurse checking my pulse and temperature while an orderly rolled in a tray with breakfast, a plate of the most beautiful pancakes I’ve ever seen with a warm, buttery aroma. My mind was still in a bit of a fog and my stomach felt a bit topsy turvy in tandem with my wobbly brain. My left arm was a leaden weight, wrapped firmly in a cast. My right arm had little or no strength or coordination.


The nurse asked me if I was up for eating some breakfast. I wasn’t completely sure but those pancakes did look pretty and smelled good too.


The nurse cut up one of the pancakes and fed me a couple of bites. Hmm! They tasted as good as they looked and smelled. And then…


Sorry about this, dear reader.


I threw up all over my breakfast.


Which was a tragic loss because they were very good pancakes.


Hey, let’s go back to where things left off in Part 3 which I posted 2 days ago. which ended with this dramatic note.

"MR. LONG! MR. LONG! WAKE UP!!! CAN YOU HEAR ME, MR. LONG! MR. LONG?"  

"Wha...? Huh?" 

"MR. LONG, DO YOU KNOW YOU'RE EXHIBITING SIGNS OF HAVING A STROKE?!?"

And if you're having trouble visualizing this scene, try this:



Original artwork from Terry Beatty, Rex Morgan MD


  • The part of David Long is being portrayed by legendary comics writer and noted misanthrope, Alan Moore.
  • The part of the female nurse who was shouting at me is played by an accountant probably named Murray.   
At this point, there was a flurry activity as the rest of my clothes were cut off. (The left sleeve of my shirt had already been cut off before; the shirt was already a total loss anyway from all the bleeding.)  I heard things like “cc’s” and “stat” shouted a lot, right out of an episode of "E.R." or "House MD". Someone said to get the neurologist on call on this. 

Then a nurse ordered, “We need to get him cathed!” This is the part where…

Again, I’m sorry about this, dear reader.

Someone stuck a needle in my penis!

Yes! A NEEDLE!! In my PENIS!!!

What the hell, people?!

The next thing I Know, there’s a flatscreen TV in front of me and Alec Baldwin in a tuxedo is asking me to wiggle my fingers and toes and make faces at him.

OK, to be honest, I don’t recall what the neurologist looked like who was doing the video consult; it just seems like fun to think he looked like Alec Baldwin. And why a tuxedo? What are we, barbarians? Of course he was wearing a tux. 
Anyway, Doctor Baldwin seemed satisfied (if a little annoyed) that I was not having a stroke. (Of course he would be annoyed. He was doing tuxedo stuff like attending an opera or seducing a young woman when he was called away to save a stroke patient who had the audacity to not actually be having a stroke.)

The among the reasons the hospital staff thought I had or was having a stroke? Weakness in my extremities. (OK, I had just taken a nasty fall. I wasn't feeling particularly strong in any of my extremities, including....

Yes! A NEEDLE!! In my PENIS!!! What the hell, people?!) 

Also I was incoherent. (Constant and excruciating pain doesn't do a lot for coherence.) 

And the left side of my face was "droopy".  (OK, I got nothing on that.)

Some of my cousins caught up to me at the hospital. Apparently the family was getting into a tizzy trying to find me when I didn't check in after leaving my mother for the evening.

Meanwhile, the hospital had reached my wife Andrea and threw her into a complete tail spin (especially when she heard word "stroke". Look, Doctor Alec Baldwin wasn't worried about that so... let's move on.)

One story hit the family gossip wires was that I had driven myself to the hospital with a broken arm. I hated to disavow such a bad ass recount but no one was buying it anyway. ("David drove himself to the hospital with a broken arm? Nah! That don't sound like our David.")  

After that everything was a blur. I have no recollection of specific details of what happened after that. Just a fever dream of random of images and sounds until I awoke the next morning to barf on some perfectly lovely pancakes. 

I remained a guest of Brunswick Hospital until Wednesday:
My left elbow would require orthopedic surgery. There was a perfectly good orthopedic surgeon at Brunswick but it was suggested that I could wait and have the surgery when I returned to Greensboro given that I would require follow up care and physical therapy. But it needed to be done as soon as possible when I got back as my left elbow was in rather bad shape.  

Doctors still remained concerned about the “stroke” from when I was admitted. It was determined I had experienced a TIA, a transient ischemic attack.  This happens when blood flow to part of the brain is blocked or reduced. After a short time, blood flows again and the symptoms go away. With a stroke, the blood flow stays blocked, and the brain has permanent damage. Some people call a TIA a mini-stroke, because the symptoms are those of a stroke but don't last long. A TIA is a warning: it means you are likely to have a stroke in the future. So, to quote Bill Murray from Caddyshack, "I've got that goiong for me."

But there were other matters to attend to first. 

Tuesday night, my mother, peacefully and in her sleep, passed away. 

-------to be continued----------

Doctor Who Is NEW! Smile

Yes, there was no post on Monday. I was too busy partying hard celebrating my birthday!  OK, fine: yes, it was my birthday. But I've n...