The morning of my ground-breaking hip surgery, he paid me a visit in the pre-op area. I had a visitor sitting with me, a beautiful Amazon of a woman from my AA fellowship. He flirted with her outrageously, ignoring me totally, for a very long time. They looked like Jack Sprat who could eat no fat and his wife who could eat no lean (just saying, not because I was jealous, even though I, really, was his ticket to a new lucrative specialty, and I was his FIRST, after all, but I am short and she is tall, and for Pete’s sake! she towered over him, being as he is a little guy, but he probably didn’t know that since she never actually stood up so he could see she was inappropriately tall). [gasp!]
So. Anyway, the orthopedist is a flirt. A shameless one. And usually he flirts with me, but not, apparently, when I’m accompanied by tall, good-looking women. This has happened to me all my life, or at least three times. My theory is that short women are invisible to men when accompanied by tall, good-looking women. It’s one of the crosses we little ladies must bear.
The upshot of all this is that I didn’t invite my tall friend to sit with me in pre-op last week for my hand surgery. I didn’t even tell her about it. So when Doc Do-Little visited me in pre-op, he flirted with me somewhat briskly, wrote YES on my right wrist in permanent marker, and vanished for an hour.
When next I saw him, it was in operating room #4, and I was supposed to be knocked out by an IV drug, but I wasn’t, and not only that, but he was running two HOURS late. So while he did harsh things to my carpal tunnel, which had been numbed, thank God, I yakked with him and the anesthesiologist. He, the outrageous flirt, let fly with an innuendo in answer to an innocent question of mine.
I might have been a little crabby about everything. When he said what he said, I said something back that wasn’t terribly innocent. And because the stupid drug wasn’t working on my sober alcoholic/addict brain, I remembered everything, so I wrote this poem a couple of days ago. I’m toying with the idea of giving it to him on Monday when he takes off my bandages.
Don’t Insult the Doc
Are you done yet? I asked the surgeon
who was cutting up my hand
(I was supposed to be unconscious
and adrift in lotus land).
That is not a pleasant question,
he said with some hauteur;
it could emasculate a man
if he were insecure.
I said I know of an inquiry
that is surely more adverse:
Asking a man, Is it in me yet?
must be infinitely worse.
Oh, good God! cried the orthopedist,
with a vivid reprimand ~
and thus I learned to never insult
a scalpel-wielding man.